2016 Marketing Automation & Social Technology Marketplace Analysis

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The marketing world has perhaps never seen so much change. The core concept of the marketing funnel is disappearing, replaced by the customer journey. The pace of change can be quite unnerving, and there’s a real risk of falling behind if you don’t keep up with competition. However, there is also the exciting prospect of differentiating your product and racing ahead. 

Despite all of this rapid change, we can say two things with certainty:

1) The strategic importance of marketing is more significant than ever before

2) Marketing is much more dependent on complex technology 

To be sure, if yesterday’s marketing is represented by Mad Men (reliant on individual brilliance and insights), today’s (and the future’s) marketing is represented by Math Men. The popular editor at chiefmartec.com (Scott Brinker) likens this to marketing moving from being “Art + Copy” to “Code + Data.” 

While the possibilities are exciting, the reality is sobering: RSG’s Digital Marketing Technology Survey reveals that many enterprises are still grappling with more basic issues. Futuristic trends may abound in analyst reports, but the real story is that marketing automation is still just getting off the ground. As is often said, the future is already here — it’s just unevenly distributed. 

This Reality Check, together with RSG product evaluations, will help you peer into the near-term future and set a path to the longer-term one. Yes, this is mostly about tools and technology, but there isn’t a marketing strategy today that can be implemented without the right set of tools.