Unleashing martech potential: Insights for CMO success in 2024

Apr 30, 2024



New research from Modern (Digital Connections 3.0) reveals that while B2B businesses are rapidly accelerating their marketing technology investments, a startling 70% of CMOs admit they are using less than half of their tech stack. As the reliance on marketing technology accelerates, marketing leaders are scratching their heads, wondering how they can better leverage their investments to drive ROI.

The report, based on research conducted with 315 CMOs in the US and UK, disclosed that despite a rapid growth in martech investment, most of its potential remains untapped. 

The elusive martech ROI

The report uncovered that a pressing concern among marketing leaders is Return on Investment (ROI), with improved marketing ROI noted as the top measure for evaluating the success of their marketing technology investments. In a challenging economic climate, it is clear that marketing teams are under more pressure than ever to demonstrate financial impact.

However, extending the marketing technology stack seems to keep the ROI finish line moving. Just 19% of CMOs stated that they have delivered their marketing technology strategy and are seeing returns on their investments, a figure that has remained stagnant since the preceding year. A key reason is the inability of marketing teams to integrate different technologies, a challenge cited by 35% of surveyed CMOs.

People and processes for martech success

Sarah Roberts, Group CMO, Boldyn, advises marketers to “Keep it simple! You can have all the tech in the world but you must align marketing and sales to make the tools a success.” This highlights the need for integrated strategies and collaboration across teams to maximise the benefits of marketing technology.

Behavioural change was noted as a key element to the success of marketing technology and delivering ROI. Many CMOs agree that even if functionality is at 100%, without this bevioural change, the effectiveness of the tech is limited. This points to a need for robust training, processes and onbording practices to acclimatise teams to new technologies.

Interestingly, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is being embraced as a core component of marketing initiatives, with 72% of businesses integrating it strategically. However, as AI ramps up, so do challenges around its accuracy, costs, and integration with existing systems.

With new marketing technology arising, and consequently new challenges, a call for upskilling teams to understand co-dependencies, control inputs and strategically integrate the technology with wider business systems has come to the surface. Agreed by the majority of CMOs, there needs to be an individual or team that holds ownership of the tech. This individual is then responsible for training teams, managing data quality and maximising its capabilities. 

Key actions to unleash martech potential:

  • Align sales and marketing teams through consistent feedback and collaborative strategies
  • Ignite bavioural change with the help of training, process implementation and onboarding practices
  • Invest in upskilling teams, particularly with strategic skills. Focus on the ability to integrate various technologies and understand their dependencies to operate in harmony
  • Assign ownership of technology to an individual or team to drive marketing technology success

The Digital Connections 3.0 report provides a window into the strategic priorities of CMOs over the next 12-18 months . With a key emphasis on measuring ROI, addressing skills gaps, and the strategic approach towards martech integration, it offers a wealth of insights for marketing leaders to stay ahead. For a detailed view of the findings and insights to give you a competitive edge in 2024, read the full report.

About Digital Connections 3.0 

The research was conducted by Censuswide on behalf of Modern with 315 CMO / Marketing Directors in B2B companies with 1,000+ employees and company turnover £10m+ across the UK and USA. Censuswide abide by and employ members of the Market Research Society which is based on the ESOMAR principles.

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Further reading

The impact of the strategic skills gap in marketing technology

When conversion tracking goes wrong, everything gets shaky

Leading change: Unpacking the Forrester B2B Summit, North America