[The first in an ongoing series of posts on martech tools by Jacqueline Madarang, Associate Director of Marketing Technology, Blank Rome LLP:]
With the arrival of COVID-19 and a shift mostly to online marketing and business development activities, we pivoted our digital strategies and re-evaluated how we were doing our campaigns. We launched custom and interactive landing pages, web apps, sent targeted email campaigns, tracked more data and levels of engagement to better understand client needs and how to better service our clients, produced a lot more content and moved a lot faster and became more efficient than we ever thought possible.
All of this was possible with tools we already had in our martech stack.
We used our CMS and email marketing system to build out custom landing pages depending on various needs. With our CRM integrations with various systems, we were able to better understand our client needs and their levels of engagement from data that we tracked. Through our mobile app builder, we were able to launch a web app that was integrated with our SharePoint database. And our firm intelligence tool allowed us to automate and profile matters as soon as they closed.
What is a martech stack and why should legal marketers pay attention?
A martech stack is a collection of tools or technologies selected to make marketing operations and processes more effective and efficient. Tools can include CRM, CMS, analytics platforms, social media tools, email marketing systems, automation tools, mobile apps, data visualization tools, and many others, dependent on the firm’s strategy and business needs.
...our job is to understand how these technologies can create a seamless user experience and improve client experience
To stay top of mind and maintain a competitive advantage, marketers must rely only on technological solutions that provide value to their clients. I think our job as marketers is to understand how these technologies can create a seamless user experience and improve client experience.
Stacking technologies helps improve marketing operations efficiency. As a marketing technologist, we also need to make sure all these tools speak to one another in a logical and efficient way.
Where should I start to better understand my firm’s martech stack?
Talk to your team members and stakeholders. Is there a technology need or is there a process gap that needs to be addressed? What does your current martech stack look like? Start from there and build upon that. A discovery session with your marketing and business development team can help identify any technology gaps.
What are the Marketing and Business Development department’s goals? Always start small but it doesn’t hurt to jot down those big ideas.
Is there a need to better understand data from different sources? Perhaps a data visualization tool can help tell that story. Once you have gathered your findings and can make your recommendation and tools to use, get back together with the team and stakeholders and present your recommendation.
I cannot stress enough how important it is to document your plan...
Get the buy-in from leadership early on and create your marketing technology plan. I cannot stress enough how important it is to document your plan. You may have existing tools that are not really being utilized at their capacity because, internally, people do not understand how they truly work.
Checklist: Tips for Documenting Your Steps
There are several steps that you can follow to get started. Go back to what I mentioned earlier, which is: understand your stack and document it. Start with your goals and create your checklist. Mine consists of the following:
- Define your needs.
- Write out a defined plan that will include the steps below.
- Get buy-in and budget approval.
- Run an audit.
- Develop a list of requirements.
- Plan your technology needs and demo products. – Are there integrations that need to be considered?
- Perform a gap analysis.
- Identify resources internally to help with implementation.
- Create a project timeline for implementation and clearly assign out roles.
Your martech stack should be laid out in a format that makes sense, works intuitively, and should allow for flexibility. We’re in a world of agile and you need to be able to adjust when needed.
Going back to what I said at the beginning - we pivoted our strategies at the beginning of COVID-19. By having a plan and being aware of our martech stack, our team was able to adjust very quickly and move very fast to implement new strategies.
Set yourself up for success and clearly communicate the purpose and everyone’s roles as you implement. This will ensure that you’ll continue to get buy-in and user adoption.
Stay tuned for additional posts in this martech series, including a look at budgeting, implementation examples and use cases, and more...
Jacqueline Madarang is Associate Director of Marketing Technology at Blank Rome, an Am Law 100 law firm. As a seasoned digital marketing technologist, she leads a team of marketing technologist enthusiasts. She and her team implement and execute firm wide marketing and business development technologies and strategies that align and support with business development goals.
She is not a stranger to technology and content marketing, and has led and implemented many large-scale projects. Her work has received many awards within and outside of the industry, including several Your Honor Awards on CRM implementations, a website award on the innovative use of technology and design, and thought leadership awards that lawyers have received due to the success of thought leadership programs she has launched.
She is an active member of LMA and ILTA and has held many leadership roles at the local and national level. You can connect with her on LinkedIn where she also co-leads a community with nearly 600 members of legal in-house digital and marketing technologists like herself, Martech for Legal.