Are CMOs The New Owner Of The Data And Technology Around Which Companies Should Organize?
Thank you Steve Olenski!
Let’s cut right to the chase here, kids. The answer to the question posed in the title is “largely yes” according to Alicia Hatch, CMO of Deloitte Digital. She cites the 2016 Gartner Spend Survey which found that CMOs had one of the highest technology spends of any C-suite member and is on track to overtake CIOs in 2017.
To further support her belief one can point to Forrester’s report C-Suite Tech Purchasing Patterns which predicts that by 2018 about 36% of all marketing technology-related new project spending will be fully controlled by CMOs.
Andrew Bartels, Forrester Research analyst and lead author of the report is quick to point out, however, that while the “growing tech-saaviness of business leaders and the wider availability of cloud solutions does mean that business leaders are playing a bigger role in the front end of this process… the persistence of licensed software, the growing adoption of cloud as a replacement for licensed software, and challenges of implementing and optimizing solutions mean that CIOs and tech management teams still play a dominant role in overall tech purchases by businesses.”
Mix and Match With Hatch
When I spoke with Alicia, in addition to getting her thoughts on CMOs becoming the new owner of the data and technology around which companies should organize, I wanted to picked her brain on a few other topics including recent changes she’s witnessed, what the difference between data-driven and data-informed campaigns is and more.
Steve Olenski: What have been the biggest changes in marketing you’ve seen over the past 6 months?
Alicia Hatch: Marketing leaders across verticals and industries are intensely focused on marketing technology, attempting to build the most perfect stacks for gaining the most precise customer insights. There are higher expectations of CMOs than ever before, and increased pressure to do more with fewer resources.
These shifts have also happened against a backdrop of a bit of digital disillusionment, spurred by brand safety concerns. While marketers work around the clock to ensure their brands are well-regarded via the distribution of consistent, powerful messaging, there is an increased awareness to the fact that brands cannot control every piece of digital content that may influence how a consumer or company views a particular brand. Companies are becoming more cautious when selecting where to run advertisements, for example, knowing that their ad could run alongside an offensive message or one that simply does not align with the character of the brand they represent.
Olenski: I read that you believe the evolution of the CMO has driven the rise of martech. Can you elaborate on that? Why do you believe this is the case?
Hatch: Marketing technology originated from the need for marketers to better understand their customers and create more thoughtful, personalized and simultaneously automated campaigns that help build brand identity.
As the role of CMO has evolved from being a pure brand ambassador to a central growth driver of the business, modern CMOs have become intensely data-driven. We must demonstrate we can be predictable revenue drivers with highly optimized spend. In order to do this, we must architect our marketing technology around critical data flows and not just capabilities. We must create data-driven cultures by designing workflows around these data flows.
To effectively act on these imperatives, the martech industry had to rapidly advance to catch up with the needs of the sophisticated modern CMO. Innovation in predictive analytics is now being driven by the new marketing imperative to not only demonstrate business impact but to continuously optimize it.