Thought Leadership

The Two Questions to Ask About Any Marketing-Technology Initiative

By Jonathan Copulsky

Every day, marketing executives confront a multitude of tough challenges to ensure that their organizations stay ahead of the competition and their campaigns break through the clutter. These challenges range from targeting the right audiences, to personalizing messaging, to leveraging new digital technologies, to effectively managing complex multi-channel marketing campaigns.

We’ve seen a significant increase in the adoption of marketing technologies to tackle such challenges. Hundreds of vendors offer diverse applications such as campaign management, marketing resource management, marketing analytics and content marketing.

Some organizations have deployed these technologies elegantly, allowing them to dramatically improve marketing effectiveness while creating compelling customer experiences based on deep insights and robust personalization capabilities. Others have struggled to realize the value of their marketing technology investments and have fallen behind.

More than likely, you find yourself pondering the question of how to proceed. What are the right applications, the right technologies, the right vendors and the right expectations? How do you ensure that you get value from investments in marketing technologies? How do you get started?

Before you launch headlong into a major marketing technology project, start with two seemingly simple questions.

First, ask how the new marketing technology will affect the experience that you deliver to your customers.

  • Will it make it your organization easier to do business with?
  • Will it flex along with your customers?
  • Will it help you become better at anticipating and predicting customer needs and expectations?
  • Will it allow you to support highly responsive and personalized customer journeys?

Second, ask how the new marketing technology will affect the way that your organization operates.

  • Will it help you standardize your processes in line with best practices?
  • Will it automate your repetitive and manually intensive processes?
  • Will it enable you to become more agile?
  • Will it allow you to scale your marketing organization more quickly and at a lower cost than you might otherwise be able to do?

When implemented effectively, marketing technologies can play a role in helping organizations create highly responsive, personalized customer experiences as well as agile and scalable processes, However, your success in making this transformation happen is likely to increase if you start by demanding answers to very two seemingly simple questions.

Jonathan Copulsky is a Lecturer of Marketing, Program Director of Kellogg Executive Education’s Business Marketing Strategy program, and co-author of The Technology Fallacy: How People Are the Real Key to Digital Transformation, (MIT Press, 2019).

Download a Brochure >

Spaces are limited. Register today.

Advanced Marketing Management

For executives navigating an ever-changing marketing landscape, this program gives participants practical knowledge of marketing management tools and how to implement them into a successful strategy across multi-level teams.

Upcoming Sessions

November 27 - December 1, 2023

Start: November 27 at 8:30 AM

End: December 1 at 1:00 PM

LOCATION: Format: In-Person at Allen Center

Download the Topic Overview

Click here for Executive Education's COVID-19 health and safety protocols


Fee includes lodging and most meals

Related Article

Advanced Marketing: Once Made, Connections Seem Obvious

Kellogg School of Management

James L. Allen Center
2169 Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60208