How Can Anyone Keep Pace with All These New Technologies?

We were lucky to have a group of guest speakers in my Intro to Business class the other day as part of Marketing Mania Monday. (especially me, it was kind of like a day off…)

One of the speakers worked for a digital marketing agency, and showed two graphics that really struck me. The two images, created by Scott Brinker at chiefmartec, show the number of marketing technology tools that existed back in 2011 and then in 2019.

Here is the 2011 infographic:

Here is a brief description of the graphic, which highlights the 150 companies which offered marketing tech tools back then:

The categories are defined with the rounded boxes, containing logos of representative companies. In turn, these categories are grouped into three meta-categories — the orange, blue and green colors of the boxes:

  • External promotion (orange) such as advertising and social media marketing
  • Customer experience (blue) that you operate and control, such as your website
  • Marketing management (green) that runs the organization behind the scenes

Here is the 2019 infographic, this time showing over 7,000 companies/tools!

Don’t worry if you can’t read any of the names, that ‘s not the point of this post.

The tools have now been grouped into six major categories:

  • advertising and promotion
  • content and experience
  • social and relationships
  • commerce and sales
  • data
  • management

Martech notes that it is now impossible for any one vendor to deliver everything that every marketer needs in a digital world.

So what’s a person to do who works in marketing today? They can’t possibly keep up with all these tools, which means they may not be using the best tool available for their needs. Even if you hire an outside marketing agency for some assistance, it doesn’t seem like the agency folks would be able to keep up with all these tools either.

At the same time, how are the tool providers supposed to succeed? How are they going to break out of the pack? Even if they have a great product, it may not get noticed; companies/people tend to stick with what they are familiar with, making it hard for new companies to be seen and heard.

I am sure at some point these tools and companies will start to consolidate, allowing firms to bundle their offerings together so that they can offer a complete solution, across all categories and sub-categories.

All I can say is that we keep it pretty simple in Accounting.

Just give us Excel, Tableau, TurboTax, Python, and Quickbooks, and we’re ready to go…

*image from

26 thoughts on “How Can Anyone Keep Pace with All These New Technologies?

  1. You lost me at Excel.
    (Although I did actually use Quickbooks for a while – it came with the business bank account. I didn’t like it. I preferred to see up front what my spreadsheet was doing with the VAT. What a relief not to do tax returns any more)


      1. I quite like a spreadsheet… I always found spreadsheets easier than databases to get to frips with. I rarely use it for anything finance-related now though – or even number-related.


      2. the trouble is, I begrudge the time it takes me to learn how to use things properlythese days. (It was different when someone was paying me to learn… )I’ve forgotton half the techniques through lack of use and the other half have changed with subsequent updates 😦


      3. that’s why I love YouTube for all its useful instructional videos (many of them dealing with Excel), as well as Khan Academy videos. But you’re right, if you don’t use these tools on a regular basis, you forget how to do certain things.


  2. Wow, it can certainly feel overwhelming at times. It’s fascinating to see the astonishing growth via the info graphics. Thanks for sharing, Jim. 🙂 Have a wonderful day!


  3. It’s a fascinating world! Makes one wonder if this this another example of the Paradox of Choice? Is the volume of options in marketing tools helping people and organizations get the best marketing for themselves?


  4. I would imagine that eventually the number of these services will peak and then start shrinking as competing services begin consolidating and unpopular/unsuccessful services drop off. But in the meantime, yeah it’s a bit much.


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