In the past few years, if there’s one department that has evolved in terms of dealing with technology as much as IT, it’s marketing. As traditional methods of marketing have become increasingly obsolete and customers move to newer methods of connecting with organizations, marketing has become more dependent on digital media, social media, and mobility.
“Our research shows that marketing is going to undergo the greatest amount of IT-driven business transformation, which is projected around a growth rate of 10 percent annually by 2017,” says Richard Vancil, group VP, Executive Advisory Strategies, IDC.
Earlier, organizations controlled how customers interacted with it. That’s changed. Customers are more aware of what they want, and how they will reach out to enterprises. And if an organization isn’t ready to embrace this new reality, customers will let the whole world know via social media. “The CMO desperately needs help from the CIO to understand these new channels, most of which are technology intensive. Systems of engagement, digital engagements like social and digital marketing, or being able to effectively leverage tools like marketing resource management, budgeting, campaigns management tools and BI,” Vancil says, are all areas where a CIO can help a CMO. WATCH VIDEO
This forces CIOs and CMOs to work together more deeply than ever before—a fact that doesn’t always go down well with either party. Vancil says that across the world it has been noticed that marketing teams invest in systems independently, without understanding where the dots need to be connected, resulting in siloed pockets of technology. Often, marketing departments aren’t as clued in as they should be about how to make the best use of new tools or how to secure data.“The new CIO-CMO dialogue has to focus on rectifying these gaps. Fragmented IT infrastructure, low IT skills in the marketing departments, inadequate knowledge of what technology to bet on and its implications, are all areas where the CIO can make a significant impact and transform the marketing strategy of their respective organizations,” Vancil says.
And if the CIO and CMO don’t find a way to cooperate, they might be forced to, says Vancil. “If the CIO and CMO are not actively involved in meaningful dialogues of understanding what this new paradigm means to the organization and its customers, then it will become a company issue,” he says.