The 6 faces of chief marketing technologists

Marketing now must be well-versed in customer data, analytics, mobile, social and marketing automation tools. Who's going to lead this dramatic and critical transformation? Enter the chief marketing technologist – or chief marketing 'technologists'.

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The chief marketing technologist

Technology has body slammed the marketing profession, turning a black art into hard science. Marketing now must be well-versed in customer data, analytics, mobile, social and marketing automation tools. Who's going to lead this dramatic and critical transformation? Enter the chief marketing technologist, a hybrid role bridging the diametrically opposed worlds of marketing and tech.

Here's a look at six types of chief marketing technologists from a SapientNitro survey, which also found that four out of five companies have someone in this role (such as a CIO reporting to the CMO). Interestingly, SapientNitro found that chief marketing technologists are evenly split coming from marketing and technology disciplines. Lastly, be sure to check out the bonus slide at the end.

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Marketing mavens

One out of four chief marketing technologists are really marketing mavens. That is, they are marketing experts trying to add tech know-how. These folks fancy themselves as marketing strategists, business consultants and customer experience pros, not so much marketers involved in the daily operations. The downside, of course, is that their technical acumen is probably weak.

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Content curators

Digital marketing content has become the currency of the modern marketer. Some of these content creators and curators will rise to become chief marketing technologists. At the end of the day, marketing tech is about delivering the right content at the right time to the right person. Content marketers have considerable expertise in digital asset management platforms.

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Media and marketing analyzers

A few chief marketing technologists have a marketing background as market analyzers. According to the SapientNitro study, this group has skills in research, consumer insights, strategic segmentation and connections planning. It makes sense that the most analytical marketers will become chief marketing technologists.

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Data divas

Technologists with the most marketing chops logically make good chief marketing technologists. These are data specialists with projects in marketing operations, CRM, data science, analytics and data modeling. They are the managers of big data from which marketing gleans actionable customer insights. As marketing becomes more data driven, data divas already have a leg up to become chief marketing technologists.

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Infrastructure architects

Marketers lacking tech skills often buy marketing tech without considering the big picture, unknowingly creating the dreaded Frankenstack. This handicaps marketing's ability to serve the customer down the road, let alone break things today. It may take years to fix the marketing tech stack. That's why infrastructure architects are often anointed chief marketing technologists to ensure a well-designed stack.

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Experience engineers

Technologists working on tech that touches the customer, such as e-commerce and mobile tech, can become chief marketing technologists. After all, they know more about the customer and how technology affects the customer experience than anyone else in IT. They can help marketers better leverage technology at these critical touchpoints.

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Color of money

Whether the chief marketing technologist has a marketing or tech background, there's one thing everyone can agree on: the color of money. The role of the chief marketing technologist is absolutely critical to the success of the company. Marketing tech is all about the almighty customer experience, and a chief marketing technologist is paid accordingly. According to Mondo Resourcing and Staffing Agency, a chief marketing technologist's salary ranges from $140,000 to $241,000.