I often hear marketers express frustration having to deal with multiple tools when executing their integrated marketing campaigns. Sometimes I’m asked for advice on managing multiple platforms, and I say – We’ll I guess that’s why you have a job!
The biggest problem comes from keeping contacts and results in sync across the multiple platforms. A marketer can have an application to manage their contacts, send out emails, create landing pages, manage social networks, etc..
Here is an interesting study by eMarketer that shows the Average Number of Tools Used by US Marketing Professionals. A majority use between between 3 – 6 tools. Okay, somewhat manageable. But look a the 13% that use 10 or more tools! What a nightmare!
I have been aware of this problem for a few years now, but it seems like it is starting to reach an all time high. I imagine that APIs will be the solution to this problem. APIs allow applications to communicate and share information with each other, thus eliminating the marketer’s need to manage multiple tools.
I think that the Contact Management Systems, (such as salesforce, infusionsoft, and highrise) are best positioned to be the central “hub” for the API. These applications can then reach out to all of the other marketing tools out there to communicate any updates, additions, results, etc. Marketers would then only have to login to their CMS to see the results from all all their marketing tools.
This is a direction that Purlem is not taking lightly. We are going to focus on developing our own API, as well as tying in with the CMS applications already out there, to make the process as seamless as possible. Together we can get rid of this problem for good!