The first question you should ask and answer to yourself is “why do we need full-stack marketing?” — Understanding “the why” will start you thinking how full-stack is useful to your situation. Starting with the idea of “Full-Stack solution” (see definition at Wikipedia) “… is a set of software subsystems or components needed to create a complete platform …” if we translate (adapt) this to marketing domain we get: Full-Stack Marketing… “… is a set of marketing subsystems or components needed to create a complete [marketing] platform …” For marketers, what were systems ten years ago are now components. Google Analytics, Google AdWords, WordPress blogs, Amazon hosting, Facebook pages, Twitter accounts and even Hubspot CRM are essentially just components we string together. This creates funnels, campaigns, market research projects, promotion and advertising tests (AB tests) and even strategy and tactical work (planning, analysis, operations). Eventually these marketing systems also need management, strategies, tactics and operation. Here a Full-Stack Marketers is becoming the most capable contributor to a company.
Growth of Marketing Tools and Their Use
Marketing tools from Google AdWords and Google Keyword Search are today standard staples in marketing. This also goes for WordPress, Hubspot, Facebook, Twitter and even Instagram. As the internet grows marketers quickly adapt and use formats (or channels, apps) people are using right now. With the changes we have seen, especially in mobile devices, social media and shopping preferences, we use new tools in conjunction with old ones. This trend seem to be accelerating with more tools, channels, formats and even styles growing constantly. Even business sectors which seemed to be static and out of the digital world are getting into the game. The mobile device use especially with social media seemed to have brought people and companies which were not engaged until now. Even traditional industrial manufacturers have to engage using social media, content marketing and sales portals (Amazon, Alibaba, eBay). Add to the changes we see in the west the almost unbelievable growth in Asia, South America and Africa and we are seeing a complete global marketing technology revolution. This component of new tools is driving marketers hard and fast.
Technology Adoption in Marketing
Another fast marketing growth driving force is technology itself. Digital marketing is both driven and a driver of technology. Some technologies such as cloud computing and mobile devices drive marketing to new formats, channels and uses (customer demand). While content marketing and marketing funnels drives technologists to develop features, tools and integration to fill new gaps. Today we see a mainstream adoption of mobile promotion, with 51% of advertising tipping the point in promotion (as of early 2019). This follows twenty years of desktop browser advertising from simple Google AdWords and AdSense to today’s optimized AI campaigns (see ArtuData as an example). The mobile advertising sector is seeing growth and the trend is continuing. Actually the mobile handset sector is seeing a plateau (leveling from growth to flat) and this is leading to lower hardware and service prices.
Social media is a big change from past networking and customer acquisition techniques. First LinkedIn, then YouTube, then Facebook and today Twitter and Instangram are the biggest apps and platforms being used. This makes them very useful in digital marketing. Twenty years ago blogs were the personal and professional networking platforms. But as blogs became the writing format of the internet, people stopped commenting and slowly the buzz and excitement were gone (as B. B. King once sang “the thrill is gone”). Networking is only one aspect of Full-Stack Marketing useful and critical to business, social media brings networking. I call this factor a technology element. In future posts this description will make more sense.
Some uses of mobile devices are a whole new dimension for marketers. Mobile devices are the most direct method to reach buyers in the west and is becoming so globally. With return customers, sales offers, news and account (and order) status mobiles are more effective than anything else. The promotion of mobile apps on iTunes and Google Play are becoming a sub-sector all by itself. In the future there may also be direct methods to distribute and promote mobile apps independently. Here marketers are playing catch-up to other communicators from games and finance all the way to driving navigation and government services. The mobile marketing sub-sector is still new and holds tremendous opportunity to Full-Stack Marketers.