The 2017 Marketing Technology Supergraphic is Your Frenemy.
ChiefMartec.com puts it out every year — a single-slide infographic that displays the logos of most known marketing technology brands, grouped (as cleanly as possible given the blurry lines of functionality) into CMS’s, Marketing Automation, Content Marketing, Mobile & Web Analytics, Ecommerce, and about 20 categories many marketers never knew existed (let’s face it, “DAM & MRM” isn’t on the tip of most tongues).
Seven years ago, you could read each of its 150 logos cleanly. It was (and perhaps still is) a useful tool to identify a universe of potential vendors and competitors. Today, it contains 5,381 logos. It’s like a whole revolution exploded onto one slide.
So, the utility of this supergraphic has elevated into something else entirely than what it was in 2011. As the logos proliferate, the supergraphic becomes more important simply as a reminder to be sure you know, well, what’s important.
In fact, as it began growing it’s secretly played a role in inspiring a couple of FINE’s oft-repeated credos:
- We say “A Brand Agency for a Digital Age” because it’s an age where brand is more important than ever as a compass to help you (and your customers) drown out the noise of exploding technologies and messages.
- We say “Bring Friends” because now more than ever brands need trusted advisors to help sort through all of the options, what’s real and what’s not, and help them differentiate, instead of just selling off-the-shelf solutions.
More than ever, the idea is to know what your brand uniquely needs in order to differentiate and connect. To take that strategic foundation and turn it into tactical requirements. The digital world is kind of like high school — your brand needs a strong sense of “self” or you’ll find it’s simply conforming to standardized platforms that cultivate sameness, and lure you with cool features that really aren’t right for you.
That’s how the Marketing Technology Supergraphic is like a friend gently reminding you to be yourself. And it’s how it reveals the potential foes of costly or misguided technology tangents that come from believing too much external hype.
Either way, it remains a tremendously enlightening annual tool for those dedicated to making sense of the ongoing revolution in marketing and communications.