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Most people have think of advertising and marketing interchangeably and now industry experts who were able to see a clear difference between the two are struggling in finding the difference between ad-tech and marketing-tech. The general understanding is that ad tech is for an anonymous audience, while marketing tech is for known customers. This may seem like a small difference, but there are few important divisions that exist.

Marketing technology can be defined as the tools that help manage the marketing processes, workflows, digital content and customer analytics. It is described as advanced CRM as it targets customers and prospect that marketers have already identified as their target. It includes all aspects of marketing, including all CRM platforms, creative, design, SEO, and sometimes even ad tech.

Advertising technology are programmatic buying and selling of advertisements. It covers a vast database of digital identities called demand side platforms, and data management platforms. Ad tech is run by robots, which run on logic, which has rules, which are made to be broken. This can give advertisers a narrow view of what can be done. However, it can reduce ad spending, particularly with direct response marketing.

Vish Sastry Rachakonda, CEO of digital marketing firm iQuanti, believes that ad tech and marketing tech are in some ways interchangeable. They share commonalities, and much of the confusion over the difference relates to the fact that advertising is the most visible form of marketing. Where confusion lies is who has ownership of the data within the executives of an organization and who determines how this data should be used. Until this is resolved there will always be confusion between the two.

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