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#39 The future of marketing automation platforms, ft. Jill Rowley

Nearly 20 years ago, Jill read the first research report by IDC on marketing ops. At the time it was still a loosely defined, little-known niche. Fast-forward to 2011. Scott Brinker’s first marketing landscape diagram is released, showing the first 150 MarTech companies — 9 years after Jill began working in the sector. Today, with that number reaching 10,000, it’s clear that technology has been instrumental in the evolution of B2B marketing.

In the early 2000s, email marketing wasn’t widely used as a tool for nurturing leads as it is today. We almost take it for granted that it’s now central to any digital marketing strategy, providing rich, data-driven insights. But it’s taken years to get there. And Jill was instrumental in turning around how companies did sales and marketing, which evangelized the benefits of technology to better connect with buyers, and a switch to account-based marketing.

As Jill sees it, marketing automation platforms are currently embracing an ‘open ecosystem’ as opposed to ‘walled-garden’ approach, which allows integrations to enhance their core offering. In her view, to be effective they need to be customer-centric, centred, and obsessed. And it’s in their community of partners where the really exciting innovations are currently happening. Right now, that means sales and marketing platforms are increasingly building out their marketplaces. Over 11,000 people on LinkedIn now have ‘ecosystem’ in their title — so the right signs are all there. 

So what’s on the not too distant horizon? For Jill, the discoverability of trusted integrations on marketing automation platform marketplaces mean a quicker and simpler procurement of software as a service, by-passing the more conventional need to shop around for the right solution. Especially in a world where there’s almost too much MarTech. 

Learn more about Jill’s insights into MarTech, and her vision of vendors aggregating around a single use case to help marketers understand which products work well together, listen to the full episode of the Unsubscribed! Podcast.

You can follow Jill Rowley on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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If you have any feedback, or want to chat, feel free to reach out to Pierce on LinkedIn or follow him on Twitter @marketing_101.

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