How to challenge the traditional RFP

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In today’s fast-paced world, marketing technology is crucial for building and maintaining brands, driving top and bottom-line growth, and measuring the impact of marketing initiatives. 

The issue is that many organisations struggle to achieve the expected value from their MarTech investments, despite carefully selecting software that meets their needs. 

Why is that? The traditional RFP (request for proposal) process that precedes most MarTech decisions is too focused on technological functionality and lacks emphasis on communication and business objectives.

The distance between the business need for executing data-driven communication and the operational work with data and communication leads to unfulfilled expectations. 

To overcome this challenge, you need to take a more business-oriented approach to MarTech decision-making from the outset. 

This involves defining needs and methods, thoroughly testing software and suppliers, and ensuring that marketing can execute the relevant concepts and initiatives.

Challenging the traditional RFP

It’s no secret that the MarTech landscape is vast, with several thousand technologies and suppliers offering their services. Choosing the right MarTech solution requires asking the right questions and focusing on business objectives. 

While an RFP is a good starting point, it alone doesn’t provide the necessary insights to make informed decisions about a company’s needs. Most RFPs only focus on functionality and price, which are crucial, but don’t guarantee ROI. 

To make qualified and value-creating MarTech choices, all MarTech purchasers should challenge the traditional RFP process and consider additional steps.

The RFP process and the POC

In most companies, procurement departments are responsible for purchasing IT and software, which often starts with an RFP process. However, the RFP shouldn’t be the sole basis for a decision. 

To ensure that the MarTech investment delivers business results swiftly, companies need to go beyond the RFP and conduct a POC (proof of concept). This way, they can assess the technology and the supplier’s ability to support the company’s business objectives.

Communication concepts and daily work 

The success of MarTech investments lies not only in technology but in the communication concepts and daily work that, in combination with the right technology, create ROI. 

Before investing your marketing budget, figure out what your business wants to achieve and ensure your choice of technology and supplier makes it possible — and that it can happen relatively quickly. 

This requires a dialogue between IT and marketing, with CMOs and CIOs navigating the intersection of business strategy, communication, and technology.

To make the most of MarTech investments, companies must take a more business-oriented approach, thoroughly test software and suppliers, and ensure marketing can execute relevant concepts and initiatives. 

By challenging the traditional RFP process and going beyond it with a POC, companies can make informed decisions about their business objectives. 

The success of MarTech investments lies not only in technology but also in communication concepts and daily work, which create ROI. CMOs and CIOs need to work together to make qualified and value-creating MarTech choices and navigate at the intersection of business strategy, communication, and technology.