blog post

The State of MarkOps in 2024: The Top Pain Points in Marketing Ops (And How They Overcome Them!) 

Madhu Puranik
Madhu Puranik
February 29, 2024
8 min read

The marketing tech landscape is expected to reach its peak in 2024 - thanks to the sea of AI and ML startups that threaten disruption with advanced AI use cases. The overall MarTech domain grew by 18.5% over the past 6 months, driving the evolution of several industries, primarily SaaS. 

The MarTech Landscape
The MarTech Landscape

Besides, marketing investment is slowing, and budgets are shrinking. All this points to the fact that it will be a shakeup year for marketing ops professionals with a huge shift in their priorities. MOps professionals have been witness to so much change since 2022, be it the rise of RevOps or the MarTech bloat. 

They’ve encountered several issues along the way, achieving efficiency. We sat down with 11 MOps experts to unravel the top challenges they face and how they’ve managed them. 

Let’s take a deep dive into the top challenges they face and how they’ve been overcoming them.

Top Pain Points Experienced on the MarketingOps Path

1. Resistance to Change 

For the most transformational efforts, marketing operations teams often need to overcome staunch resistance. The biggest reason for this is they do not feel included.

In fact, a Gartner report reveals that 74% of leaders said they involved employees in creating a change strategy, but only 42% of employees felt included.

Johan Abadie shares that the MOps team experiences resistance at the upper management level and within the team. In a regular SMB, MarketingOps often competes with strategic planning, tech and data management, process optimization, project orchestration, and enablement for budget. 

Change management should be a priority when implementing MOps. Yet, most teams merely announce the change and distribute manuals. This will bring in change eventually but departments will not embrace systematic change. 

Nikhil Chaudhary shares that this resistance often roots out of mistrust and the fear of losing control. 

In fact, an Oak Engage report points out mistrust in the organization as the top reason for this resistance. 


This resistance can be easily overcome with proactive and transparent communication. Open dialogues alleviate concerns about job security and loss of control, fostering a more receptive attitude toward change.

Ran Yosef recollects an interesting experience on how initial resistance can turn into an enthusiastic option if we demonstrate the value of that change.

Jon Piehl found it challenging to steer his team from intuitive decision-making to the data-driven path. However, consistent communication and training helped them overcome this pain point. 

Summing Up Our Experts - How to Tackle This Pain Point? 

  • Engage people in the change by involving them and having open communication. Collaborative effort engages teams in the change. Seek feedback and incorporate them into the plan. This will address their fear of losing control/autonomy. 
  • Communicate the value of the MOps framework to all relevant parties. Address areas like how it will achieve their goals, solve their pain points, and the risks involved (with solutions to mitigate them). 

Highlight how the proposed change will translate into opportunities for individual professional development. 

  • Offer training and support through tailored online courses, workshops, webinars, or coaching sessions. 

2. Getting Executive Buy-In 

Executives often view MOps as being in a rut to ‘do-do-do’ instead of looking at the ‘why.’ Besides, several firms struggle with breaking the siloed information mindset. Thus, managing change and scaling MOps is tough.

Kate Bradley Chernis adopts an unconventional approach to tackle this issue - they celebrate disagreement. Her team believes in questioning and expects to be questioned. This creates an open culture, facilitating a frictionless buy-in. 

When aiming for a buy-in it’s important to make everyone feel included in the decision process. 

Mike Rizzo tells us how executive buy-in has always been a huge challenge for his firm. However, they have tried and tested practices to tackle this challenge. 

Jon Piehl shares a similar experience where executives were skeptical about whether MOps implementation would help them achieve their goals. Besides, they hesitate to invest as marketing ops projects involve a lot of cost with too many unknowns when predicting the returns. 

He shares that the key to getting executive buy-in is aligning MOps initiatives with the broader business objectives and demonstrating clear, quantifiable benefits.

At BeatRoute, Nikhil adopts an inclusive approach to overcome this challenge. He shares the importance of demonstrating the ROI and apprising executives of the MOps challenges and their role in it. 

Summing Up Our Experts - How to Tackle This Pain Point? 

  • Focus on communicating the ‘why’ and ‘what is in it for me.’ This will help teams understand how MOps implementation will positively impact their roles. 
  • Celebrate disagreements. Encourage a culture where executives feel free to question and discuss their concerns. 
  • Pilot projects work best versus full-on rolling out of MOps implementation. It not only optimizes costs but also helps gain the confidence and trust of executives. 
  • Work with internal MOps influencers who can help the team see value in its implementation. 

3. MarketingOps Being Treated Like a ‘Utility Drawer’

Marketing Ops needs help to define its role and impact. The segment is often associated with terms like alignment, data-driven, or sales and marketing enablement. All these terms sound good but have no tangible meaning. 

Plus, the sales and marketing teams largely look at marketing operations as a department that targets all the areas that need improvement. 

Johan Abadie says MOps cannot be treated like a quick fix that will solve all issues. In fact, it’s a recipe for disaster. 

Mike Rizzo shares the negative impact of treating marketing operations as a catch-all for improvement areas. 

Mike suggests adopting a holistic approach that involves integrating MOps into the overall strategy from the beginning while clearly defining goals. Further, MOps should be empowered with appropriate decision-making authority to implement changes effectively. 

However, having the sales and marketing teams trust MOps to solve their issues can be validating too. It centralizes expertise, leading to streamlined and effective business solutions. It also positions MOps as the innovation hub that experiments with new technologies and strategies. 

However, Jon Piehl shares the downsides of this approach. 

To overcome this challenge, Jon shares a few tested tactics. 

Summing Up Our Experts - How to Tackle This Pain Point? 

  • Set clear boundaries for what falls under the purview of MOps. This will allow the MOps team to deliver more value. 
  • Adopt a holistic and collaborative problem-solving approach by integrating MarketingOps into the overall strategy MOps into the overall strategy with well-defined goals. Responsibilities should be defined. 
  • If MOps is expected to manage several improvement areas, it should be empowered with decision-making authority. 
  • MOps usually adapts to the evolving needs of sales and marketing. Make sure this adaptation is strategic, not a mere reaction to address improvement areas. 

4. It’s Tough to Articulate the Value MOps Brings to Table 

MOps fetches results that drive tangible business value. However, its value isn’t obvious to the decision-makers and the leadership level. In fact, proving the ROI of MOps is a huge challenge for 46% of marketers. 

Establishing a tangible value if marketing ops builds a clear case for further investment. 

But what value does MOps bring? 

  • Removing wastage
  • Increasing revenue 
  • Improving customer experience 

Serena Zagame shares that proving this value is critical. 

Johan Abadie also agrees that articulating the value of marketing operations is difficult. However, he suggests a few best practices. 

Xander on the other hand, advises marketing operations professionals to focus on the benefits delivered rather than the task accomplished. 

Summing Up Our Experts - How to Tackle This Pain Point? 

  • Create a ritual of communicating with your internal and external stakeholders. Ask questions and listen to their responses and evaluate the effectiveness of the MOps implementation. 
  • Build meaningful relationships with internal stakeholders. Identify your ambassadors who will vouch for you and warn you of the issues. 
  • Focus on data literacy. Explain through data how MOps is making an impact. 
  • Process optimization and project orchestration are essential in ensuring proper execution of the plan with the right KPIs in place (leading and lagging). 

5. Managing Shared Operational Goals between Departments 

MarketingOps and the other departments possess knowledge and skills that the other doesn’t. Hence, effectively managing shared operational goals can be tricky. Getting the best out of each department isn’t as easy as it seems. 

For instance, change is a shared responsibility. Business leaders experience tremendous resistance when creating a "we" workplace. 

Stephan Stouffer shares that it’s important to build a common ground base to build trust in leadership and foster transparency, authenticity, and responsibility.

Serena Zagame also reflects how shared goals often spark a finger-pointing conversation at her workplace. However, her team has been able to overcome this challenge by leveraging data. 

Nikhil shares his experience where the marketing and sales teams were struggling with shared operational goals. 

Divya Sharma Dixit shares a practical solution to this challenge where the team tracks goal progress and relevant KPIs using tools. This helps them identify the gaps early. 

Summing Up Our Experts - How to Tackle This Pain Point? 

  • Get out of the ‘them versus us’ mentality by helping the team focus on the common vision and the role they play in realizing it. 
  • Explore diverse views, listen to and consider everyone's opinion, and set clear limits. 
  • Leverage data to set responsibilities. This will cut out any blame game, channeling the team towards playing their role. 
  • Set clear goals and KPIs for teams and track them regularly to monitor progress. This will inform the respective teams to take the relevant steps. 

6. MarketingOps Being Viewed as a Backend Role 

MarketingOps is often viewed as another cog in the wheel. However, it is tough for teams to accept the centralized Marketing Ops function as they feel it will slow things down. 

Xander shares how scary this can be for organizations. 

Ran Yosef reminds us to recognize the central role of MOps because they are best at leveraging data and segmenting it. 

He further shares that MOps should be woven into the fabric of each department as they are the strategy builders. 

Here are a few reasons he feels why marketing ops are central to an organization - not the backend. 

  • They are experts at managing data and guarding data integrity and efficiency. 
  • They implement process-driven approaches, ensuring all cross-functional teams are laser-focused on the mission. 
  • They are central to a firm’s Go-To-Market (GTM), Demand Generation, and Revenue Operation strategies.

7. The MarTech Bloat Issue Is Real 

Something we all have experienced in marketing operations is the surplus of MarTech solutions. Technology has always been an enabler for MOps; however, an excessive MarTech stack can make it tough to plan efficiently and creatively. 

In fact, according to Gartner, martech utilization sucks. It was reported that marketers are using only 33% of their martech stack capabilities.


Marketing operations should adapt to the mentality of doing more with less. 

Stephen Stouffer explains that the more options we have for accomplishing a task, the less impactful are the results. Would you rather track progress on one platform or multiple? 

Teams are often skeptical of consolidation. On the contrary, optimizing your tech stack can be incredibly empowering, making an impactful difference in business performance. 

Divya shares how they go about optimizing their tech stack at Ai Pallete.

Honing in on fewer MarTech solutions comes with countless benefits. With a limited budget being a concern for marketing ops professionals, it’s time to streamline the stack to boost efficiency and creativity.  

Summing Up Our Experts - How to Tackle This Pain Point? 

  • Avoid overbuying from renowned tech suite vendors. They tend to encourage brands to bundle multiple platforms. But the best value for a brand is often achieved by purchasing items individually.
  • The overlapping capabilities of tools cannot be ignored. However, MOps professionals can better manage this by focusing on the core services you need. Your tech stack should be designed around customer data requirements and business objectives. 
  • The ‘love at first sight’ mantra doesn’t work here. Test the tool, see what it actually does for you against the competing offerings, and then decide. 

8. Finding the Right MarketingOps Talent 

When building a marketing ops team all firms are hunting for unicorn talent - a candidate who ticks every box. Even if such a talent exists, they are highly competitive and rare. 

Shreha Jain delves into the challenges firms face when looking for MOps talent. 

While it’s great to have a fitting candidate for the job, our experts suggest not to look for ‘unicorns.’ Rather, look for talent that can be groomed into an awesome MOps person. 

Kate tells us how something as basic as hiring for a smart professional can work wonders for MOps. 

Shreha shares her view on how organizations should go about building a capable MOps team. 

Ran Yosef offers quick tips on the traits organizations should look for in their quest for unicorns. 

Summing Up Our Experts - How to Tackle This Pain Point? 

  • Identify people, both within and outside the organization, who excel at execution. In Marketing Ops, it's not enough to devise a brilliant campaign strategy; the real test is in the flawless execution of that strategy.
  • Look for specific traits like perseverance, resilience, creativity, and humility. These individuals aren't just great planners and strategists - they execute the plan. 
  • Individuals with a growth mindset, grit, and proactiveness can drive your marketing operations to new heights of success.

Tools for Navigating the World of MarketingOps: Expert Opinion 

- I like to avoid Martech bloat and opt for fewer and simpler systems. We aim to unify teams on common platforms as much as possible to expand the scope of collaboration.

My preferred tools are HubSpot, Zapier, and Google Workspace, which effectively meet the needs of marketing, sales, customer success, and support functions.

Nikhil Chaudhary, VP of Marketing, BeatRoute

- Maintaining robust documentation is one of the most challenging tasks yet is also the easiest to overlook. Documentation is crucial when developing complex systems and processes. 

For us, tools like Miro and Notion have helped. Their effects are felt not only in the present but also shape the future of our endeavors. These tools assist in scaling up in response to inevitable changes. 

Ran Yousef, VP Marketing, Glassix

- For us, consolidating data on a platform and ensuring it’s accessible to all departments is critical. Hence, we rely on tools like Confluence, JIRA, Trello, and HubSpot. 

Confluence helps us create, collaborate, and organize all our tasks in one place. It serves as a single source of information for our team. 

JIRA helps us in project management across HR, marketing, operations, and sales. 

HubSpot helps us with our marketing automation needs and CRM. It helps us with our workflows, ensures data hygiene, and creates dashboards, reports, and campaign tracking. 

Divya Sharma Dixit, Director of Marketing and Revenue Operations, Ai Palette

Summing Up 

Those were the top MarketingOps woes as shared by our experts in the domain. We are sure you will benefit from these conversations we had with them, just like we did. 

We would like to thank our experts for sharing their valuable experience and insights with us. 

Their collective experiences will surely help us navigate the dynamic world of Marketing Operations. 

For more such expert-led content, visit our revenue-led blog or LinkedIn page.

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