Skilled agencies can help clients overcome martech talent gaps

Martech creates opportunities to support your clients

The complexity and growth of the martech landscape has led LXA to produce this guide to martech effectiveness in partnership with the IPA. We estimate that the global market for martech and salestech solutions was worth $509.8bn in 2022.

More than 63% of our survey respondents expect martech budgets to increase in the next 12 months, with an average rise of 6-10% despite talk of recession. This growth may reflect the reallocation of budget from other categories, as businesses aim to increase efficiency by automation or improve their ROI. However, our research also shows that 68% believe that the market is lacking people with the skills and experience for martech operations.

Martech Graph
Source: A Guide To Martech Effectiveness, LXA/IPA, October 2022.

Training is one way for client marketers to upskill, but many businesses have called upon agencies to fill gaps in technical knowledge, and to manage martech initiatives. Agencies have been upgrading their martech capabilities in recent years, acquiring digital marketing agencies and setting up martech centres of excellence to better serve the needs of their clients.

Carlos Doughty, Founder, Learning Experience Alliance

 The LXA UK MarTech & SalesTech Landscape 2022 identifies 1,200 UK-based marketing and sales technology companies. These vendors can be mapped around six capability clusters:

  • Advertising and promotion
  • Content and experience
  • Social and relationships
  • Commerce and sales
  • Data
  • Management

This increased complexity within the marketing technology landscape presents a challenge for brands and an opportunity for agencies that can demonstrate knowledge and capability across these six categories.

As technology used in marketing and advertising practice becomes even more sophisticated, agencies will need to understand its potential. The growing requirements for marketing technology infrastructure has opened up opportunities for those agencies that have approproriate expertise. Alert to these trends, many agencies have been building up their martech offerings, with the creation of marketing technology centres of excellence and the acquisition of more specialist agencies.

In recent years we’ve seen this in action. For example, Ogilvy created a Martech Centre of Excellence made up of more than 900 employees with expertise in many of the major platforms and martech solutions. Agencies have been moving into this space through acquisitions of martech. Examples of this include Ogilvy’s acquisition of Verticurl, Pennywise and Who Digital, and Dentsu’sacquisition of digital agency Merkle.

In fact, leading agencies are already supporting clients by:

  • Making sense of technologies for clients and helping them to understand the opportunities and challenges of adopting certain technologies.
  • Operationalising technologies and helping them scale by designing new workflows and frameworks.
  • Optimising technology capability.

While some clients may be focused on building in-house capability, these technologies will continue to evolve, so there will be ongoing value in helping clients to optimise the tools they already have, creating a circle of value that allows agencies to deliver improvement as waves of new technology become available.

Download the free report "A Guide to Martech Effectiveness"


The opinions expressed here are those of the author and were submitted in accordance with the IPA terms and conditions regarding the uploading and contribution of content to the IPA newsletters, IPA website, or other IPA media, and should not be interpreted as representing the opinion of the IPA.

Last updated 17 April 2024