by John Dodge

Do You Believe CMOs Will Spend More on Tech Than CIOs by 2017?

Oct 30, 20132 mins
Big DataBudgeting

Gartner's prediction has gotten attention during 2013

If there’s an IT prediction that’s gotten traction in 2013, it’s probably from this Gartner headline: “By 2017 the CMO will spend more on IT than the CIO.”

In the main, there’s little doubt that the CMO and his or her marketing hordes are buying clouds along with a cadre of measuring, Big Data and social media tools. Indeed, IT lethargy, Big Data, mobile, and the cloud have analysts adither about marketing’s pending status as major technology IT decision makers.  

I cannot predict who will spend more by 2017 and obviously, it will vary greatly from company to company, industry to industry, organization to organization.

But my recent post “Digital marketers confess they are doing a lousy job” makes me wonder if they want Big Data, much less feel equipped to take it on. Indeed, blogger Mike Kreiger in the absence of obvious examples asks “Where are the great ideas for Big Data?” He writes:

“I’m pretty sure data scientists know how to get to the answer, do we know what the question is yet?”

If like me, you find Gartner’s prediction out there, try its forecast for IT spending in 2013. It says worldwide IT spending will both decline and rise 0.8% in 2013. Then its bar chart shows it taking off from  2014-17, growing an annual clip between 3.6% to 4.1%.

Here’s the conflicting statements within two inches of each other:

“Global IT spending growth to drop 0.8% in 2013.”

U.S. dollar-valued worldwide IT spending is forecast to grow 0.8% in 2013.”

Well, which is it? Maybe this is nuanced. Or maybe Gartner needs a copy editor even if it’s what they meant (I am not picking on Gartner because my employer IDG has IDC, a rival technology research company). 

But I, for one, am not buying that the CMO will be spending more on technology than the CIO in 2017. And were that to be true, what would the ramifications be? 

What do you think?