There is no single business that doesn't require a bit of understanding of technology in this day and age. Even the least technical professionals are sporting smartphones or alternate mobile devices to check email, talk to staff and connect with clients.
The challenge is that technology can be a bit unnerving for some business owners. It’s not unnerving because it’s technology, per se. It’s unnerving because of the need to understand, yet again, something new.
When there is so much technology to keep up with, how do we keep it all straight?
Think of it this way- Technology helps us solve problems and improve our processes the same way any other tool would. Until we understand that the technology we use is meant to solve problems, we’ll continue to focus on how hard it is to integrate technology into our business and marketing efforts.
A trending term right now in the business world is "martech." Maybe you've heard of it, but for the sake of those who haven't, martech is the blending of marketing and technology. Every company has at least a smidge of this happening within their walls, whether they realize it or not. It's a thing of beauty. Let's explore a few examples of martech to give you a clearer idea of it in action.
Examples of Martech in Action
People-Focused Social Media
The idea behind social media isn’t a new concept. Connecting in a social setting has been around since the first public bulletin board system was born on February 16, 1978 (let's be honest, we saw it even before that event).
The problem we see many times from businesses is that they can forget that social media is really about people. All online bulletin board systems, discussion forums, blog comments, status updates, and tweets are about connecting people with other people, businesses, and products that will add to their lives.
Social media is the technology. Connecting people to reach a goal is marketing. Combining the two concepts together is an example of martech.
Storytelling Through Websites
Websites are a must-have now for any company that wants to remain relevant. On August 6, 1991 Tim Berners-Lee, a CERN physicist created the first website, called the World Wide Web Project. It didn’t take too long before big name companies followed suit.
In the beginning, storytelling wasn’t as important because only the innovators and early adopters could even access the web, anyway. It was more of a digital information hub for nerds. However, now with billions of websites, competition is fierce. You have to set yourself apart.
Websites are the technology, but storytelling is the marketing concept behind what makes this martech marriage work. Your story is what makes you unique, and by sharing that creatively on your website or creating a unique experience for customers online, you bring new and valuable goods to the table.
Email is for Communication
Well, that may seem like a no-brainer. However, we find that so many companies forget this! Since the first email was sent in 1971, it has changed the way business is conducted. It’s been nearly 25 years since it really became a mainstay of corporate communication. Most email writing is poor, at best. However, there are some companies killing it at email, like theSkimm and charity: water. They don't send out bland emails, but rather, they engage their recipients.
Email is a technological tool that helps to facilitate communication and engage audiences; which is, again, a beautiful representation of martech at work.
Smartphones Increase Accessibility
By 1930, land-locked telephone customers could place a call to an ocean liner in the Atlantic Ocean. In the 1990s, texting began to become another effective way of communicating short messages quickly.
In 1996, Nokia released the first phone that could be classified a smartphone. In 1997, the term smartphone was made official. With the release of the iPhone in 2007, the smartphone officially became a household term. Now, walking down the street, sitting in a coffee shop, or even at church, you see people using their mobile phones or other devices.
Smartphones are a technological tool that provide greater accessibility to people, information, etc. Whether there is greater accessiblity, there is more potential for greater marketing reach.
Learn to Embrace Martech
Take the time to understand how martech can help you reach your goals. If you focus on things such as people, storytelling, communication, and accessibility, it may be easier to embrace technology and recognize the ways in which it can serve your needs and goals.