Marketing technology companies with the strongest networks

It’s a well known fact that networking and connections can drive success in any business; a company that successfully networks can increase investment, sales and talent opportunities. A new data set is making it possible to view that information, ranking the most connected marketing technology (MarTech) companies in the world.

Toronto-based artificial intelligence sales platform has teamed up with creators of the annual MarTech 5000 landscape graphic, attempting to show which companies are or will become leaders in the industry based on the success of their networking and connections.

“Nudge has developed this really interesting data set where we’ve got tens of thousands of users and we help them understand and build their network. With that we’re able to see the people and especially the companies who are highly connected to the outside world,” co-founder and chief technology office Steve Woods told, noting that based on that data Nudge found that companies that are invested in building a strong, broad and diverse networks are best set up for long-term success.

MarTech Landscape 2018 graphic by Scott Brinker and Anand Thaker. Source: has taken the annual data collected from MarTech 5000, (that looks at more than 6,000 companies globally) combined it with its own relationship intelligence data and turned it into a number of ranked lists that show the most connected companies with the strongest networks in the marketing technology scene. It created 14 different lists from CRM tools to mobile marketing, sales enablement and more.

What it found supports theories that state a strong network leads to success; the large enterprises like Oracle and Salesforce came out on top. But Woods says some of the more interesting findings come in the 10 to 20 ranks, with smaller, lesser-known companies that have strong networks outperforming their counterparts.

From 10th through 20th “you start to see these interesting organizations that punched above their weight,” he says, “out of that they… become the winners in a highly competitive landscape, in that next tier where the competition is very dynamic and difficult to predict who the next winner is going to be.”

A sample list of the Most Connected Companies in the marketing automation field. Source;

These smaller companies, he says, have strong internal connections within the organization, get partnerships, media coverage, funding and technology integration because they are able to access a strong, well-connected network across industries.

Understanding MarTech

Marketing technology encompasses any tools used within the world of marketing. The MarTech 5000 for 2018 broke down into six main categories with many more subcategories in each respectively. The main categories included advertising and promotion, content and experience, social and relationships, commerce and sales, data and management.

Woods says took a look at the MarTech graphic and figured it would be interesting to break that down into which of those companies are likely to be the future winners based on connectedness.

Stronger connections leads to greater success

The lists also show that in the newer, smaller categories such as bots and live chat or continuous data protection (CDP) don’t favour the big players and are still anyone’s game according to the blog post by Anand Thaker, one of the creators of the MarTech 5000 graphic.

A sample list of the Most Coonected Companies in bots and live chat marketing. Source:

Another interesting finding from the lists shows that one well-connected or visible person can’t successfully carry a brand. Companies at the top of the list have deep networks that have well-connected leaders and employees that reach across several industries. Meaning that one founder or executive with strong network won’t be as successful as a company with many well-connected contributors.

Understanding the strength of a company’s network can be important for a number of reasons according to research quoted by the Harvard Business Review and Forbes; it can help investors know where to invest, improve sales opportunities, and attract quality talent.

By offering these ranking Nudge is trying to make it easier for not only companies to see their own success but allow investors and those looking to purchase marketing technology to know who the key players are or will be in the near future.

“Technology companies are knowledge businesses, and knowledge and ideas flow through the human connections in a network,” says Woods, “product ideas, partnerships and funding all flow through those networks. For that to happen your company needs to have more connections in their network.” He notes that these lists are simply an easy to understand ranking of those connections.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Meagan Simpson
Meagan Simpson
Meagan Simpson is a staff writer for IT World Canada. A graduate of Carleton University’s journalism program, she loves sports, travelling, reading and photography, and when not covering tech news she can be found cuddled up on the couch with her cat and a good book.

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