- Published on Friday, 13 May 2011 00:00
- Written by Alison Treadaway
The speed at which new marketing disciplines launch, mature and morph keeps accelerating, and just when you think you're on top of the jargon, you hear about 'computational marketing' and 'agile marketing'.
Can opposites attract?How often do you hear marketing say that "IT will never allow that" or "we're waiting for IT"? It is also not unusual to hear an IT person saying, "marketing doesn't understand security" or my favourite, "we have to standardize". The fundamental drivers of marketing and IT are different because measurement and incentives are not aligned. It's no wonder the two, until now, have not become engaged.
I recently attended a Webinar by Michael Haupt wearing his strategic marketing consultant hat (he has many) . . . that gave me a pleasant "aha moment". Entitled the "Rise of the Marketing Technologist", the gist of the presentation was the bridging of the proverbial gap between marketing and IT - all the better to achieve the goals of both.
Michael describes the emergence of a new role within organisations – that of the Chief Marketing Technologist (CMT); someone who is technically proficient and can apply technology to meet marketing's needs in an increasingly tech-dependent playing field.
The CMT is also a diplomat: someone who champions communication innovation, speedy turnaround times and differentiation on the one hand, but is also cognisant of what is important to IT.
Does Marketing develop IT skills or the other way round?In his 11 B2B Marketing Predictions for 2011 , Paul Dunay says it perfectly:
"Marketers for the last few years have been closet techno geeks, and it's time for them to rise up — companies need digitally fluent marketers who can apply technologies to make marketing more measurable and scientific."
Can a Vendor play the CMT role?Yes and no. A digital communications agency could bridge the gap in the short term, but outsourcing this function in the long term is tantamount to relinquishing the core of your marketing 'mojo,' and it shouldn't only be your digital agency that embraces technology; all your communication partners and suppliers have to be comfortable within the new marketing landscape.
As the way in which people engage with each other continues to change, so the core culture of the successful organisation is changing. Job functions are adapting, employment candidates need to be assessed differently and procurement criteria must change.
Appointing or nurturing a Marketing Technologist to champion the marriage of the two disciplines seems like an obvious move. Do you have one?