A marketing technology stack is a grouping of technologies that marketers leverage to conduct and improve their marketing activities. Often, the focus of marketing technologies is to make difficult processes easier and to measure the impact of marketing activities and drive more efficient spending. In this article, I will give you six tips for building out the perfect marketing stack for you.

  1. Can it scale?
  2. Usability?
  3. Does it play well with others?
  4. Is it recommended or is it disrupting?
  5. Is it any good?
  6. Cost

Can it scale? Whether you have 3 customers or 300, chances are you are planning on acquiring more. This is where scalebality comes into play. You want to make sure that the tool you’re choosing can scale with your business as it grows. If it does not, that is okay, as long as you are aware of the upcoming constraints and can prepare accordingly. You have enough things popping up out of nowhere, reaching your user limit should not be one of them.

Usability? We all have that on shiney kitchen gadget in the back of our shelf. You know the one, the fondue set, the deep fryer, the smoker, the item we do need but just not often or almost ever. So we have it, and we invested in it, but we only ever plug it in 2-3 times a year. Now that you have the exact item you own like this in your head, you can easily see why a tool in your marketing stack should not be like this. Most software in today’s day and age are on monthly or yearly memberships. Invest heavily on tools you will use often and find the best workarounds for tools you will only use once every six months.

Does it play well with others? If you want to go quick, go alone. If you want to go far, go with others. With your business you should want to go far, very, very far. So one or two tools is not going to cut it. This is the norm with a marketing stack. So you will need the tools to be able to integrate and work in unison for your workflow to be optimized. When choosing a tool be sure that it has many integrations with other top software.

Is it recommended or is it disrupting? Nobody wants to be mediocre and the tools you work with should not be either. So look for tools that come highly recommended from other digital marketers, not just that one guy who calls himself a guru. Industry standards are there for a reason and this can help you from getting burned on a tool that over promises and under delivers. However, it is also okay to be ahead of the curve. If the tool is not highly recommended that it should be a new tool that is disruptive. That zigs when the rest of the maret zags. This is a little bit riskier though, so be sure to fully vet these tools. (especially if they have a high price tag)

Is it any good? Growing up I had an extremely cavalier attitude. My response to if I could do something, or if I liked something, was usually “There’s only one way to find out.” before jumping into an activity I probably had no business doing. Such as trying to jump over my parents’ car. (If you were curious, no, I could not leap a car in a single bound and the concrete made sure I did not forget it)

Luckily, most software is not set up this way. Most software allows you to try before you buy with free time at the beginning of your membership to get under the hood and see how it works. Most tools are not bad, they are just not the right piece of tech for your use case. That is okay when it is found out during your 14-day free trial, it is not okay after you just signed a multi year contract that will cost you thousands. Speaking of money …

Cost: This is where I remind you what you already know, but it still needs to be said. Be very wise with how you spend every dollar. You most likely will not be able to find the “perfect” tool that checks off all of the above boxes and know immediately what to pull the trigger on. You will need to weigh your options and see what makes sense for you. Resist the urge to keep up with the Joneses and resist the urge to buy the first tool you come across.