B2B Martech Stack

The B2B Martech Stack: Healthtech Marketers Plans for 2024

I recently gathered over 20 healthtech marketing leaders to discuss the B2B Martech stack powering their efforts for the year ahead. Comparing their “stacks” reveals intriguing industry trends – notably the rapid rise of AI along with some lingering gaps in critical capabilities.

Flat Budgets Force B2B Martech Stack Prioritization

“We went from marketing being seen as driving growth to being treated like an extraneous line-item,” one exec remarked, encapsulating frustrations around budget. Most endured trims up to 50% amid economic uncertainty. Some had budgets slashed mid-year when targets were missed. One described it as “getting the rug pulled out from under us.”

For 2024, flat funding at best is expected. That demands sharper prioritization of core channels with direct revenue impact. Still, leaders carve out a budget for calculated risks – AI content generation, regional events, hiring copywriters. One observed, “You can cut for profitability but not growth.” Despite constraints, cautious optimism exists thanks to software enhancing productivity.

CRM and Automation: Salesforce Still Reigns, but HubSpot Closing In

The marketers deploy B2B Martech stack across four functional pillars:

  • CRM & Marketing Automation
  • Demand Generation
  • Analytics & Intelligence
  • Content & Operations

For CRM and automation, most use Salesforce for workflow management paired with HubSpot or Pardot for email marketing and broader automation. Salesforce maintains dominance for CRM, but HubSpot has gained traction with these marketers for its ease of use and affordability. Based on this group, HubSpot is becoming the default for healthcare marketing automation.

ABM is Stymied by Siloed Systems and Sales/Marketing Alignment

In advertising and outreach, few have invested yet in intent data or account-based marketing (ABM) – more on that next. The larger issue is sales and marketing misalignment hindering ABM or any orchestrated outbound. As one executive put it, “There is no balance. We’re completely siloed.”

Most described painful divides – sales relying on antiquated relationship maps rather than personas and insight-led outreach. “They just want the tools we already have,” said one leader of neglected Sales Navigator licenses. “I can’t show them what’s possible when the everyday discipline isn’t there.”

That impedes integrating the likes of Bombora intent data into workflows. As another exec noted, “Unless sales buy into operating differently, we won’t spend on technology to enable it.” Breaking down systemic siloes likely will remain a years-long process for many health-tech players.

Intent Data & ABM Remain Aspirational…For Now

Few have implemented intent data or ABM platforms that promise to expose surging account-level interest in solutions. Reasons include immature buying signals in healthcare, poor sales and marketing alignment, and inadequate third-party data on niche solution spaces.

Limited or “ABM Lite” target account selection happens, but leaders admit they remain years away from integrating robust intent feeds and orchestrating account-centric go-to-market motions. The gap between hype and adoption continues for now.

AI Experimentation Accelerates

If tentatively approaching external data sources and intent feeds, leaders are rapidly embracing AI, citing tools like ChatGPT, Jasper, and Durable. One marveled at AI’s “refreshing” problem-solving capacity and being “cool” compared to traditional healthtech. Multiple executives repeated a narrative around AI – its transition from a novelty to table stakes capability for modern marketing.

Some hastened to add AI requires oversight and governance to ensure recommendations meet regulatory, ethical, and brand standards. But make no mistake – an AI land grab is on as players integrate machine learning throughout operations to drive productivity. The tech gap feels especially acute for those playing catchup.

Project Management Also Needs Its Own Solutions

In content and operations, solutions like Canva, Vimeo, and Dragstrip meet baseline needs around creation and distribution. But for managing marketing’s complex workflows, leaders desire dedicated project management platforms instead of forcing sales or engineering tools into that role.

Most shared Monday.com positively for tracking campaign plans, assets, and expenses in integrated views. With custom templates for budgets, approvals, and deadlines, Monday appears tailored to marketing’s specialized needs. One added it helps her “simple view” of what matters most, like launch timing, without immersing in granular updates.

Missing Integrations Impede Impact

But serious integration gaps remain. One leader lamented having leading point solutions like HubSpot, ZoomInfo, and Definitive but little workflow connectivity between them resulting in output getting “lost in translation.” Another noted swivel-chairing between myriad siloed tools was inefficient.

As martech investments accelerate, taking full advantage means tying data and workflows across platforms. Lacking those integrations, marketers risk being buried under unused or misused technologies. Siloes create waste rather than leveraging strengths across stack components through a well-architected martech ecosystem.

Key Takeaways on Healthtech Marketing Technology

In total, reviewing these marketers’ stacks reveals four critical dynamics as 2024 priorities:

  1. Rapid Rise of AI
  2. Persistent Gaps in ABM & Intent Data
  3. The Power of Integrations
  4. Continued Shift Towards HubSpot

Budget constraints won’t slow AI adoption, integration deficiencies, and the HubSpot wave. Meanwhile, despite hype, ABM and intent data remain aspirational for many healthtech marketers until core barriers like change resistance and siloed systems are addressed.

As software investments grow amidst economic caution, the winners may be those applying AI broadly across integrated stacks to accomplish more with flat budgets. Leveraging technology is mandatory, but thoughtfully architecting and connecting tools will separate leaders from laggards.

If you liked this post and want to learn more…

  1. Check out more posts like this in the Healthtech MarketingLearning Center. It is chock-full of articles, use cases, how-to’s, and ideas to get you started on your ABM journey.
  2. Follow me or connect with me on LinkedIn. I publish videos and articles on ABM and healthtech marketing.
  3. Buy Total Customer Growth: Our book on how to win and grow customers for life with ABM and ABX.
  4. Work with me directly. Let’s book a growth session and we can explore ways you can improve your marketing using the latest techniques in account-based marketing.
Posted by Adam Turinas
Posted in Growth Enablement on January 6, 2024

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About the Author Adam Turinas

Hi, I am Adam Turinas, Health Launchpad's founder. I am passionate about helping healthtech firms succeed through better sales and marketing. I have hard-earned experience in healthcare technolgy as I started two healthcare businesses in the US, the first with zero healthcare experience. We sold the second business to a strategic buyer seven years later. Over 9 years building a healhtech businesses, I have learned how to sell and market effectively to healthcare organizations. Prior to this, I spent two decades in digital marketing across healthcare and other consumer industries where I sold over $100 million in products and services to corporations and healthcare orgs. I would love to talk with you. You can book a call with me on the right hand side. Best Adam (This is page 0 of many)Enter your text here...