The tools and technologies available to help agencies manage and grow their businesses are expanding rapidly. Three of the last four years, Scott Brinker (@chiefmartec) has published a marketing technology landscape supergraphic. In 2011, this supergraphic included about 100 companies; version 3, published in 2014, includes approximately 950.
As owners, account managers and financial officers, you understand that finding, evaluating and choosing the right technology for the needs of your agency and team becomes exponentially more difficult the more prevalent, diverse and powerful agency-related tech becomes.
To help you keep tabs on all the technologies at your disposal, we’ve featured some of the top agency-related technology reports and lists below. They overview, and in some cases rank, the technologies you should consider as part of your ongoing efforts to optimize process efficiency.
Top Agency Technology Resources
This report summarizes close to 350 agency executive survey responses about the technologies and tools they use to support and grow their business. The tool categories include:
- Social media tools
- Social media monitoring tools
- CRM/contact management software
- Research services
- Prospect contact/list building software
- SEO tools
- Email marketing services
- Marketing automation/inbound marketing platforms
- Collaboration and Project management tools
As mentioned above, Scott Brinker researches and builds the mother of all infographics, grouping approximately 950 technologies into six classes:
- Internet (e.g. Facebook, Google)
- Infrastructure (e.g. databases, cloud computing)
- Marketing backbone platforms (e.g. CRM, marketing automation)
- Marketing experiences (e.g. A/B testing, content marketing)
- Marketing middleware (e.g. data management platforms, cloud connectors)
- Marketing operations (e.g. analytics, marketing resource management)
HubSpot has put together an ebook that features 21 cloud-based technologies to help agencies improve creativity, efficiency and productivity. It includes:
- File sharing and collaboration tools
- Project management platforms
- Social networking tools
- Administrative tools (i.e. time tracking, billing and project management)
Marketing Agency Insider provides a list of the software they love that can help agencies improve efficiency, collaboration and attract the right talent. Specifically, they feature the following tool types:
- Time tracking
- Project and campaign management
- Internet marketing
- Internal social network
- Online meetings and webinars
Docurated has pulled together a list of the top 50 tools ad agencies can use to manage their business as well as coordinate agency-wide media buying and planning activities. They include end-to-end solutions as well as very specific tools.
Capterra is a directory of business software solutions built to help owners find the right solution for their needs. The site features a list of the top advertising agency software products.
Bring It All Together
While many of the time tracking, project management, CRM and accounting technologies included in the above resources are excellent products, if you’re in need of a cohesive platform upon which to manage your entire agency, you must consider how, and if, these technologies integrate with each other.
Combining disparate systems via APIs can solve some issues, but an inability to seamlessly communicate and share information from the start—from business development through job and project management to invoicing and accounting—may create new inefficiencies and time-consuming redundancies.
This is where an all-in-one agency management platform—like WorkflowMax—can offer the greatest value. These systems include all essential agency tools as built-in features under one cohesive system, streamlining data sharing and processes. With all agency lead, project and financial data in one spot, you’re positioned to maximize efficiency, drive profitability and support growth.
What other resources have you found to help keep tabs on the evolving agency technology ecosystem? Please share in the comments section below.