Number of active players has increased rapidly over last few years. Starting with roughly100 different options in 2011 and reaching almost 20 times more already in 2015.
As this development continues, the difficulty to choose right set of solutions becomes harder. Also you need to be careful when deciding which features are essential for your business and are they provided by your selected vendors. Continuity is also a question mark in this turbulent market as companies are acquiring smaller competitors or moving out from market after becoming obsolete.
Disruption and speed of change in this domain are amazing. It is easier to understand the speed, if we observe some of the forces behind growth:
The software is ever easier to build
There are better software frameworks available with growing population of programmers. Capital requirements are decreased by cloud, IaaS & PaaS. So it is far easier to start and test new ideas. API economy is supporting capability to combine different innovations more easily together. Important factors include also increasing open source resources as well as impact of crowdsourced knowledge.
The scope of marketing is expanding
New demand created by increasing scope is also creating more space for innovation. Some companies even see marketing as source of revenue, which justifies the investment into technology in this area. I would go even as far as to claim that in digital competition marketing need to be embedded in the products. New channels created by digitalization are also enforcing companies to disrupt the earlier ways of doing marketing. All these are opening new arenas for new solutions.
Market size for marketing technology is increasing
Market for marketing technology has been large already earlier. Now borderlines are disappearing as geography is no more limiting factor. Also smaller companies are able to collect benefits of marketing technology as need startup costs are diminishing. Solutions are also segmented to different industries or functions. All in all market is getting more mature while expanding.
Interesting to see the list of top players for 2016. I believe we will see plenty of new more specialized player in the market. Unfortunately many old players will exit the market also, if they are not able to keep up with the ever increasing speed of change.