Ah, the life of a CMO! As a marketing professional, I've had the opportunity to collaborate with over 50 global brands throughout my career, playing a key role in designing and optimizing marketing strategies.
I've witnessed numerous success stories and a few unfortunate mishaps.
Now, serving as the CMO at 7L International, a leading technology advisory and custom software development firm, I want to share my insights on what marketing teams should prioritize when selecting a technology partner.
1. Value quality over cost
Resist the temptation to go for the cheapest option; instead, focus on obtaining the best value for your money without sacrificing quality. Picking a low-budget partner can often result in disastrous outcomes and might ultimately cost more in the long run.
A client who initially opted for a more affordable technology partner for their web development project ended up spending double the amount they would have saved if they had approached us first. Due to the low-quality website they received, they eventually sought our help, and we rebuilt the website with the quality and performance they needed.
2. Grasp your project's full scope
Before seeking a technology partner, ensure you have a comprehensive understanding of your project's scope. This allows you to effectively communicate your requirements and guarantees that your chosen partner can meet your expectations.
A client engaged us for an e-commerce website project but hadn't accounted for essential integrations like payment gateways and inventory management systems. Our team helped them grasp the full scope, and we delivered a seamless, end-to-end e-commerce solution that surpassed their expectations.
3. Seek industry-specific expertise
Choose a technology partner with a deep understanding of your industry's unique challenges and opportunities. This ensures that they can provide you with tailored solutions that cater to your specific needs.
We partnered with a top pharmaceutical company to create a custom CRM system. Our in-depth knowledge of the industry's regulatory landscape and data security requirements allowed us to build a robust, compliant solution that streamlined the company's sales and marketing efforts.
4. Evaluate a partner's track record
A technology partner with a proven history of successful projects is more likely to deliver high-quality solutions on time and within budget. Don't hesitate to request references and case studies to validate their claims.
A global fashion brand approached us after their previous technology partner failed to deliver a functional e-commerce platform. Our team's extensive experience in executing successful e-commerce solutions enabled us to salvage the project and launch a high-performing online store, resulting in increased sales and customer satisfaction.
5. Prioritize communication and transparency
Effective communication and transparency should be maintained throughout the project by your technology partner. This helps you stay informed about the project's progress and tackle potential issues early on.
When developing a mobile app for a prominent events company, we maintained open communication with the client. By providing regular updates and promptly addressing their concerns, we delivered a successful app that enhanced the event experience for thousands of attendees.
6. Assess scalability and adaptability
A good technology partner should be able to scale their services and adapt to your evolving needs, ensuring they can support your growth and address new challenges as they arise.
We've supported a rapidly growing fintech startup since its inception. As the company expanded, we scaled our services accordingly, providing ongoing support and developing new features to meet their ever-changing needs.
7. Ensure security and compliance
A technology partner must prioritize security and compliance, particularly when handling sensitive data or operating within heavily regulated industries. Failure to do so can result in severe consequences, such as data breaches and regulatory fines.
We assisted a healthcare organization in developing a secure, HIPAA-compliant patient portal. Our team's expertise in data security and compliance ensured that the portal met all necessary regulations while providing a seamless user experience for patients and healthcare providers.
Choosing the right technology partner is a critical decision that can significantly impact your project's success. By following these seven tips, you can increase your chances of finding a partner who understands your needs, shares your vision, and possesses the expertise to bring your project to life. It's important to remember that your technology partner should act as an extension of your team and be a driving force for your success.
Need advice on choosing the right technology partner? Got some recommendations you'd like to add? Join the conversation with a global network of marketing leaders on the CMO Alliance Community Slack channel.