The idea for the StackScape™ hit me in February 2017, while preparing my SMX West presentation about SEM tools.
I was pondering on two extremes of the same spectrum:
- How overwhelming technology landscapes can be, such as Scott Brinker’s MarTech supergraphic and LUMA Partners’ LUMAscapes.
- How beautiful and well-thought-out individual tech stacks can be, such as these Stackie Award winners.
This made me think: wouldn’t it be useful if there was a visualization halfway between a technology landscape and a stack? A shortlist that helps marketers quickly identify the right solutions when they’re building their own tech stack.
The best thing I could find that matches this description was Smart Insight’s Essential Digital Marketing tools infographic showing 30 categories with 5 tools each, nicely visualized within their RACE framework.
But one more thing was missing: an easy way to identify the minimum price for each tool. So I decided to embrace the remix and to sub-categorize solutions within the following starting price ranges:
- Free(mium): including both fully free tools as well as paid tools that have a ‘forever free’ plan (a free trial doesn’t count)
- Affordable: paid tools starting at less than $200 / month
- Mid-market: tools starting between $200 and $999 / month
- Enterprise: tools costing at least $1,000 / month
Please note that freemium, affordable and mid-market tools are usually also very well suited for enterprise users. It’s just that the categorization is based on the minimum monthly fee.
This helps organizations with lower budgets to remove certain solutions from their consideration set.
Based on these and other requirements you can find under ‘What’ on the homepage I started creating the first StackScapes for my SMX talk:
- PPC Essential
- PPC Add-on: Display
- PPC Add-on: E-commerce
- PPC Add-on: Lead-gen
I’ll go into more detail about these and other StackScapes™ in upcoming posts, but for now you can download my full SMX West presentation in pptx to see these StackScapes™ (all logos are clickable) and learn more about this concept. Please note this presentation has not been updated since March 2017, but the blog posts on this website have been, so you’ll find a more up-to-date list of solutions on this website.
I’m looking forward to your comments, as I’m planning to continuously improve the StackScapes™ based on your feedback!