The Future of Martech in the UAE: Is Your Brand Ready?

To the untrained ear, the phrase “martech” sounds like another buzzword, and maybe in some ways, it is. It seems like everybody is adding the “tech” to words that already exist these days and making it a thing. However, there is real merit to understanding the intricacies behind the growing movement towards using technology in marketing and the applications and mechanisms that make this possible. 

As brand owners, playing in the marketing space, there are universal challenges that we have to overcome and tech provides us with a ton of ways to get there. 

The data conundrum

One of the biggest problems we face in the digital landscape today is making sense of enormous amounts of data available to us. In fact, according to TechJury, “1.7MB of data was created every second by every person during 2020” and these numbers only seem to be growing. With such a substantial base of information to sift through, it can seem impossible to draw truly valuable insights and manual detection of brand mentions can only get us so far. There just aren’t enough hours in a day or people on Earth to do the job of monitoring software, which is so key to improving performance in our industry. 

Does this mean that human power is now redundant? Of course not. But it is a good example of how embracing martech makes our everyday operations more efficient and helps create the right environment for smarter people-power. Without social listening and media monitoring, we create unimaginable amounts of work for employees, and by introducing data that needs to be manually vetted and constantly added to, we’re back at square one in terms of lacking resources for comprehending the digital spaces we operate in.

According to GlobalNewswire, the media monitoring software market was approximately USD 2,260 million in 2018 and is expected to generate around USD 7,236 million by 2027, at a CAGR of around 13.9% between 2019 and 2027”. What does this tell us? That data filtering is on the rise, and is quickly becoming part of our everyday operations in terms of monitoring, listening and reporting. 

As a result of this, new SaaS solutions are springing up around the globe, with major players in competition to get the monopoly. For brands and agencies, this shows an important skills gap to fill when it comes to understanding this software and developing the ability to draw meaningful insights and base campaigns on key findings. In order to future-proof the success of your digital marketing, you will need a firm grasp on the data landscape around your brand and the infrastructure to understand it. 


Martech skills development will grow massively in select nations

While the world is already adopting marketing technologies at a faster rate than pre-pandemic, we’re seeing a massive uptake of interest and skills development in tech-driven nations. For example, the first knowledge hub, related specifically to martech, popped up in the UAE in 2019. Now, only 3 years later, there’s a range of publications and supporting organizations coming to the fore, such as MartechNews and the Daily Martech Roundup, each with loyal followings. 


Spending and investment is on the rise

In the Gartner 2019 - 2020 survey (which conducts research from the responses of over 340 participants), it was reported that top-line marketing spend would decrease for the first time in over 5 years. So, this means that martech spend should decrease too, right? But the opposite has happened. The same survey findings showed that “martech spending rose to 29% of total budgets” - a phenomenal leap in light of the current scarcity of resources.

What does this mean for businesses, brands and entrepreneurs? It’s time to adopt or die. This level of investment and shift in spending is usually spurred on by greater ROI and predictive forecasting, which means the data is showing consistently high returns, either on resource savings or generation, that comes as a direct result of using martech more. 


New tools are emerging at a rapid rate

While some technological industries are forging partnerships within the ranks, martech seems to be a competitive and fast-paced environment. In fact, Martech Today reported that there are more than 8000 notable tools currently on the market for combining brand messaging and analytics with tech. 

These were mostly data analysis tools. To some, this may seem like an opportunity to join forces, but it appears that barring a few buyouts and acquisitions, we still haven’t quite solved the problem of adequately centralising data analytics and media interactions. Until this is achieved, and someone takes the monopoly, a rang of tools will continue to emerge.  


Preparing for the future

With growth in the martech sector becoming more evident and having an increasingly significant impact on marketing professionals, a few things are clear. The first of which is that brands must put the infrastructure in place to navigate a changing digital landscape or face some level of becoming obsolete. In short, there are a few critical steps towards preparing for the continued rise of martech:

  • Setting up infrastructure requires internal skills development and enlisting the help of expert service providers who already understand the space.
  • Marketing tools can automate daily tasks and take the grunt-work out of manually interpreting data. As this becomes the norm, it’s important for brands to be able to use and interact with these tools.
  • Businesses should designate marketing teams to help them continue to drive brand growth and capitalise on the growing level of opportunity available to them.
  • Outsmarting competitors will mean savvy, integrated marketing that’s based on data but does not forgo the human element. 
  • A bigger focus on allocating resources to marketing is a must in order to stay competitive and stay relevant to key audiences. 

At Digital Grind, we work tirelessly to understand the digital landscape and to keep building our technical infrastructure to meet the growing demands of the industry. Speak to us for more information or enlist our services on your next project and we can start to work together to ensure your business is fit for the future.


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