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Marketing/IT should collaborate on digital

15 Aug 2014 08:02
According to recent research, chief marketing officers (CMOs) and chief information officers (CIOs) should align their efforts in a digital world.
The Accenture survey of over 1100 senior marketing and IT executives from countries and industries across the global economy, indicated that 69% of CMOs recognise the need to align with IT and 52% of CMOs place a high priority on marketing IT.

'Marketing is more about digital now, which requires more technology' - this is the top explanation cited by marketing and IT leaders for greater alignment and interaction between two functions that have found it challenging to work together in the past. The ripple effect of digital disruption is giving rise to a more integrated enterprise centred on the customer experience.

Marketing IT is a high priority

Notably, alignment is linked to financial performance, with high-growth companies much more likely than others are to acknowledge that marketing IT is a high priority within the overall IT organisation (60%). However, implementation issues with digital initiatives are getting in the way. Perhaps because they are juggling so much, companies say they find it more and more difficult to implement marketing solutions or IT projects that further marketing effectiveness, with 44% of all respondents reporting they have encountered problems in this area.

Marketing leaders also seem reluctant to take charge. "CMOs lack the vision to anticipate new digital channels," say one in four CIOs. This is an early-warning signal for marketing executives trying to navigate the complex and rapidly evolving digital environment. It is critical not only to have a vision but also to share it with IT, to enhance collaboration. If marketing does not invest the time to make its vision known, the relationship with IT will remain transactional. However, if both functions are on the same page strategically, digital transformation can become a reality.

CMOs that focus on building trust and improving alignment with IT will help shape the digital business of the future and chart the course to high performance.

Based on the survey, four imperatives emerge for CMOs:
1. Invest time in establishing a vision and collaborate with IT to bring it to life.
2. Unify around the customer experience to create a truly digital business.
3. Rethink the operating model to integrate customer-focused skills throughout the company.
4. Orient the marketing model and budget to align with a new ecosystem of marketing services.

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