We’re crowdsourcing the 2020 marketing technology landscape

Message from Scott Brinker was first posted on chiefmartec.com

It’s a new decade — and time for a new approach to the marketing technology landscape.

When I started that exercise back in 2011, it was a bit of work to research and catalog ~150 martech companies. Oh, man, I had no idea the beast that project was going to become. It didn’t just double, or triple, or even quadruple in size.

It grew more than 4,500%, within only 8 years.

I’ve spilled a ton of digital ink on the industry dynamics of that phenomenon over the years. (Most recently: Is martech headed for its dot-com moment in 2020?) But I’ve always believed that the empirical data itself speaks the loudest and clearest. We can argue why the landscape is the way it is, or endlessly pontificate on predictions of where it will go from here. (And I do.) But the data itself is indisputable fact.

Actually, that’s not entirely true. The data is disputable when it’s not correct.

And that’s become a real challenge as the sector has scaled exponentially and continues to change rapidly. Even with the incredible help ofAnand Thaker and Jeff Eckman and the Blue Green team in recent years — and the pantheon of world-class sources we’ve referenced in our research — we still miss hundreds, hundreds, of companies who have entered the space.

With the frothy M&A environment we’re in, we also miss mergers and acquisitions. We miss launches and pivots, where companies leap from one category to another. We miss name changes and logo changes (thank you, rebranders). And we miss the unfortunate endings of companies that drop into the martech deadpool.

We do our best — and with credit to my excellent collaborators, we’ve kept the error rate low. But it’s a battle against entropy that no one person or team can conquer alone.

The solution: open it up to the whole martech community (to add/edit or delete).

Of course, these crowdsourced contributions will be reviewed with love and care by myself and the Blue Green team, to keep the data set clean and consistent. (So, no, you can’t just add your own martech venture to every category on the map. Please don’t try.) And potentially other community moderators may join us in that mission, Wikipedia-style, moving forward.

In return to the community, we will make the resulting data set available to everyone. We’ve been releasing a subset of the data in recent years asas an Excel spreadsheet. But we’ve got some cool ideas for how to make the data richer, more dynamic, and — “mmMMmmmmmm,” in aDark Crystal voice — interactive.

We’ll be unveiling this next generation of the landscape at the MarTech conference in April in San Jose. However, you can start by making suggestions now.