Don't be a stranger: Marketers told to ask for more help from IT department

26th Jan 2015

In the latest round of January statements and predictions, Gartner has published a report warning business leaders that marketing professionals are becoming hamstrung by an influx of technology implementations.

The analyst firm’s research highlights the only viable solution is to create more synergy between marketing and IT cohorts, and predicts that businesses currently building better relationships between the two departments could potentially experience an ROI improvement of up to 25% by 2018 compared with those that aren’t.

Gartner has found that many large organisations, in particular business-to-consumer (B2C) companies, currently have more than 50 applications and technologies supporting marketing roles, and that the process of evaluating, data sourcing and consolidating is affecting marketers’ ability to innovate.

"Marketing continues to be a hot area of IT investment and technology innovation with a rapidly growing application portfolio that demands greater integration and focused investment," says Kimberly Collins, research vice president at Gartner.

"IT leaders supporting marketing will need to develop a strong relationship with marketing leaders to help marketing derive the full potential from its IT investments.

"To generate greater business value, IT leaders need to work more closely with marketing to determine where IT leads versus where marketing leads and how both can work more effectively together. An integrated marketing management (IMM approach) that leverages a Pace-Layered Application Strategy can be invaluable to helping IT leaders derive more value for their marketing leaders."

Marketing and IT professionals have been on a convergence course for some time; however the relationship between the two departments has often been reported as quite fraught.

In 2013, Accenture surveyed IT executives across 10 countries and found just one in 10 believe collaboration between CMOs and CIOs is currently at the right level.

Interestingly, the study showed that out of the two types of executives, CIOs were far more committed to creating a collaborative relationship – 77% of CIOs cited the importance of the partnership compare to 57% of CMOs.

As a result, one trend currently gaining traction in larger businesses is the creation of the Chief Digital Officer (CDO) role, however Kaushik Banerjee recently told MyCustomer this was more of a temporary fix to what is becoming an increasingly complex problem, and that CIOs and CMOs would still require more unison in the near future regardless of the additional positions opened up. 

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