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What Marketo’s “Plan, Engage, Measure” Means for Marketers in the #RunMarketing Movement

Today, team Allocadia is in San Francisco for the annual Marketo Marketing Nation Summit, which has become a kind of benchmark for where the industry is, and where it’s going. This year was no exception. The big announcement from CEO Steve Lucas was Marketo launching a new strategy of: Plan, Engage, Measure. To support this framework, Marketo today announced several partnerships, acquisitions and integrations.

Why we love “Plan, Engage, Measure” and every marketer should too

As a long time Marketo partner, Allocadia has been fortunate to work closely with the Marketo team over the years. As part of our ongoing collaboration, Steve and I had a chance to sit down and discuss this new strategy of “Plan, Engage, and Measure”. I was thrilled to see this getting the focus it needs with CMOs and marketers today!

Allocadia has always seen marketing as two jobs: “Running and Doing marketing”. “Run marketing” refers to the critical functions of plan, invest, and measure (the 3 core pillars in a category we named Marketing Performance Management), while “Do marketing” refers to executional, customer-facing activities (such as engaging customers.) The most successful marketers do both – and work in a system in which these Run and Do sides are connected.

When one of the world’s largest independent marketing technology companies puts such a significant stake in the ground around planning and measuring, it speaks volumes to the importance of the “Run” side of marketing.

This means competitive advantage will now belong to marketers who can:

  • Understand where marketing investment is being spent
  • Align all marketing activity with overall CMO-level and corporate objectives
  • Understand the impact and ROI of marketing so they know where to spend their next dollar.

And our customers couldn’t agree more! This shift is the culmination of change-agent marketing leaders who have championed this movement within their organizations.

An industry shift driven by Marketing Ops and CMO change-agents

As the role of the CMO has evolved to leading their organizations through digital transformation, marketing leaders realized that they had to know what was working and what was not; their organizations depended on it to stay competitive and grow. But it was difficult – or near impossible! – with growing customer channels, technologies, priorities, and spend.

From this emerged a group of change-agents (many of them the early adopters of Marketing Automation and Marketo customers!) who advocated for better alignment to goals, better operational processes, and better stewardship over dollars invested, all in order to have the greatest impact on their business.

We’ve been honored to work with many of these change-agents, many of whom are joint Allocadia/Marketo customers.


Tim West at Box has driven change internally by “asking the right questions” and getting aligned on the right kind of data needed to answer those questions. More in Tim’s interview here.

CMO at Box Carrie Palin shares her perspective in this Forbes interview:

“We must not only demonstrate stewardship over every dollar spent, but we must also operate in lock-step with business objectives.” That was one reason she chose Allocadia, as “the I is very important in ROI – and we’re holding ourselves to this.”

Philips Lighting

Philips Lighting: In 2017, the Marketing Excellence organization within Philips Lighting – led by Emil Adigyozalov – undertook a major initiative to create a single planning structure and tightly aligned operational process.

Global Head of Strategy and Marketing Bill Bien shared that:

“Allocadia enables a consistent ROI marketing framework that allows us to learn how our marketing plan is working, to make real time adjustments, and lift our overall performance as we strive for overall marketing excellence.”

And many more.

A stake in the ground: Run Marketing as a competitive advantage

We all know there are a lot of marketing technologies out there. (Our partner Katie Martell shared this quote with us recently from the book Play Bigger, and I don’t think anything expresses this more perfectly!)

What marketers need most today is focus to prioritize a chaotic swath of vendors.

Marketo’s framework is a guidepost for this chaotic industry: It’s not only an indication of the priorities among Marketo’s customer base, it’s a message to all marketers that the “Run” or plan, invest, and measure side of marketing is as important as the “Do” or customer-facing execution our industry has celebrated for years.

Consolidation for attribution within the MarTech landscape

The Bizible acquisition helps to mature the marketing technology industry with critical consolidation. Bizible is the 2nd attribution vendor to be acquired in the last 6 months, as attribution becomes a component of larger marketing platforms and MPM strategies, whether they be Account Based Marketing, Customer Engagement Platforms, or Marketing Performance Management platforms (some have chosen to build to deliver on attribution, such as Salesforce and IBM, while others have chosen to partner, such as Microsoft with Adobe). While attribution is important to marketers, it is a not a standalone solution.

Within our customer base we brought this capability into our MPM platform with a build and partner strategy: We recently announced a partnership with Bizible to provide their attribution capabilities to our customers (a big congrats to our friends at Bizible for this milestone!). In recent months our two teams have been traveling between Seattle and Vancouver to support our joint value and joint customers, including DemandBase, and we look forward to continuing this for customers as MPM becomes a critical investment for CMOs and marketers:

“Bizible provides a deep view into our results from sales and marketing activities, including digital data, while Allocadia gives us complete control and transparency into our investments, how they align with our strategy and objectives, and reveals the ROI we’re getting from our marketing plans.”

Nani Jansen, Director of Product Marketing at DemandBase

We believe that Attribution is 1 of 3 paths to achieve Marketing ROI, which include Attribution ROI, Aggregate ROI (we also call this “Return on Objective” or “Return on Intent”), and Custom ROI. Ultimately, it’s about giving marketers choices in how they layer in marketing insights. Read about our 3 paths to Marketing ROI, which include Attribution ROI, Aggregate ROI, and Custom ROI. Ultimately, it’s about giving marketers choices in how they layer in marketing insights.

A milestone for MPM:

The news today is of course an exciting milestone in the MPM market (and it’s especially exciting for our team and customers!). We have defined the MPM market as the 3 core pillars of Planning, Investing, Measuring Results.

And Forrester analyst Allison Snow describes MPM in the following way (while identifying that MPM is more than measurement):

“The attributes of MPM sharply contrast to those of marketing measurement. If B2B marketing measurement represents what a driver sees in a car’s rear view mirror, then MPM serves as the headlights and the steering wheel of the car itself that improve both visibility and control for the driver.”

This category focus is timely: Allocadia research found that only 21% of companies are able to point all measurements to Marketing’s contribution to revenue. It’s clear that there is still A LOT of work to be done in the area.

Giving you confidence to embark on this path today

That’s where Allocadia comes in. We recently launched our #RunMarketingBetter campaign to help marketers everywhere start on this path to #RunMarketingBetter and determine what their next step is on the MPM journey, with the ultimate goal of bringing you confidence. Instilling that confidence in marketers has been our north star since day one at Allocadia.

Over 10,000 marketers have embarked on a journey to run marketing better, entrusting us to help them manage over $25B in global marketing investment.

We’re glad to see Marketo echo what we see every day from our work with CMOs and marketing leaders: You simply cannot hope to compete in the engagement economy without a powerful strategy for running the business of marketing.