Merge Your Stacks

A Practical Guide for Combining and Consolidating Marketing Stacks During Mergers and Acquisitions

Filling Technology Gaps

With a clean stack in hand, you are now ready to fill in the blank spaces. 

In the same way it is important to have a process for constructing, auditing, and rationalizing your marketing stack, it is important to have a process for adding new products to the stack. Without a well-defined process, you run the risk of wasting time as multiple departments evaluate the same product, or as one team evaluates and qualifies a product, only to see their purchasing process stalled because another team identifies the need for something similar and wants to have their specific requirements incorporated into the work the initial team is doing. 

A note: Increasingly, we are seeing companies consider Build vs. Buy when it comes to new marketing technology.  This is either because they can’t find a tool to meet their requirements, commercially available tools are too expensive, or more commonly because they perceive that they can achieve a competitive advantage by building their own platform.

While each company needs to define a process that aligns with their own business operations, there are some best practices to consider:

  • Once complete, make your stack visible as the single source of truth about marketing technology for your organization. Before anyone starts the process of looking for a new product, they should first see if products already in use could address their functional requirements.
  • Identify all the stakeholders in the organization who are engaged in the development of product requirements, discovery, evaluation, approval, and implementation. Work together to define an efficient workflow for your company’s sourcing and approval process.
  • As you develop your own company’s workflow, we recommend that the process be defined in a way to accommodate different levels of product commitment. Evaluating and approving an anchor platform should follow a different process than evaluating a simple, non-integrated tool for a single function.
  • Regardless of whether your organization has a centralized or a distributed purchasing process, it’s helpful to have an individual or team who have centralized oversight of what is happening across the organization, so that requirements and activities can be coordinated across multiple teams. Increasingly, we see marketing operations departments taking on this role.
  • As part of the vendor selection process it is important to assess whether the tool’s value will outweigh its total implementation and support costs (license, people, process).