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Marketing as a Service (MaaS): Why People are Excited About It.

MaaS looks ready to take a larger role in the business world. This shouldn’t be too surprising: The “everything as a service” approach has proven ideal for businesses looking to cut costs and outsource technical expertise. So, let’s take a look at what MaaS offers, and if it’s right for your company.

Marketing As A Service

MaaS in the Wild: A Little Bit of Everything.

MaaS adoption favors providers that already understand the “aaS” world and know how to forge connections with other businesses. We haven’t seen many MaaS companies until now because there wasn’t enough demand to support them.

The ones you could find offered packages in combination with data and security services, or as add-ons to more traditional marketing services. Today there are companies that offer MaaS with different tools and approaches. Most require you to provide your own data in a form that they can analyze and use. So, there can be a lot of give and take to consider with the services you consider.

You may have been using MaaS without realizing it in some of the features added to programs you already rely on. We’re seeing this with cloud tools like Microsoft’s partnership with LinkedIn, Connections. Marketing automation tools are popping up all over the place, and pull data from the cloud to get things done (particularly when using email, where there’s a lot of potential).   

Specialization in Areas of Low Expertise

When considering MaaS, you should divide you marketing strategy into low- and high- expertise sections (or core/non-core, etc.). Common low-expertise areas include extensive brand design across multiple mediums, demand generation or automation services, fast-response PR, and so on.

If you don’t have the necessary expertise to perform an important marketing task, it should be added to your MaaS list. This is one of the easiest ways to conduct a quick audit for MaaS possibilities. Most already have a pretty good idea about what marketing areas they underperform in, and what marketing features are standard in their industry, but impossible conduct due to lack of experience or information. Make a full list of these problem areas to create your ideal MaaS package. Then you’re ready to start looking for providers.

Lesser Marketing Task Management for Time Savings

MaaS also deals with another area – services that companies could do, but would take too much of time, and may not result in top quality or efficiency. This is a particularly popular approach for outsourcing in other areas like data management. However, it requires more analysis and an honest comparison of outsourcing via internal options to discover just what the budget and brand require.

Qualifying marketing tasks are usually non-essential parts of marketing that, while important, don’t really need to be handled in-house. Take photography—For the large majority of companies without a talented in-house photographer, it’s typically worth investing in an outside marketing photographer for a set of high-quality images. This is an easy, effective way to experiment with MaaS if you aren’t sure where to begin. Automation is another popular option, especially email automation and other services your business may not have access to.

Tailored to Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

This approach has grown more popular with large businesses that are looking for more efficiency with their goalsetting. Here, top company leaders typically set several high-level goals for marketing, such as lead-generation numbers, better net-promoter scores, client retention, etc. They want ways to improve this data and measure the change. The services are then presented to a MaaS provider, who comes back with something like, “All right, here are the secondary metrics we need to help you reach.”

There are a lot of secondary metrics to use, and MaaS companies often prove their usefulness at this point by pinpointing the exact online/brick-and-mortar metrics that must be measured (and those that don’t matter). This can lead to a back-and-forth discussion, with the company saying, “All right, we measure this metric with this platform, but we don’t measure this metric. Can you help us here?” Once the details are hammered out, the company sends over data, the MaaS provider performs a backend analysis, and the results are provided via tools or reports. Both sides get what they want – although it may take some work to get there. 

Helping Smaller Companies During Risky Stages

Finally, we have the case of startups and new ventures that have reached the point where marketing is vital. (This is happening sooner in today’s business climate). Here, these startups think something along the lines of, “We’re not ready for top-level marketing leaders yet, and we don’t want/can’t make the necessary marketing decisions that the business demands. We still need to work on our core strengths. Is there a provider out there that can help us with this?”

The MaaS provider steps up and replies, “Yes, we can take marketing off your hands for a few more years, and provide scaling services when you’re ready to make more decisions.” It’s like a turnkey service with a broader scope, but there’s a lot of growth potential here.

If you’d like more details about MaaS and related data services, contact Intivix.  We help businesses in San Francisco and the Bay Area find the right IT solutions. Contact us at (415) 543-1033 or on the Web at: