IT and marketing are colliding. Research paints a clear picture of how these two historically silo-ed groups are slamming into each other where dollars and (common) sense intersect. According to IDC, nearly 60 percent of new IT investment in 2013 will be driven by the line-of-business, and by 2017, CMO’s will out-spend CIO’s on IT, Gartner predicts.
Even though these two worlds are colliding, their strategies could not be more different. Marketing is not interested in buying new servers or routers – they’d rather tap into the innovation of the cloud and the flexibility it affords to meet their needs. Whether to better manage leads and content, to understand social sentiment, or just to handle good old-fashioned marketing automation, they want faster time-to-value and deeper customer engagement in order to guide their customers from merely a prospect to a promoter.
Because marketing is now making the calls on technology platforms, IT is increasingly being alienated by this shift in spending and then getting hit on the back end once marketing or the other lines of business decide they need to integrate their environments. Who is left to pick up the pieces of this corporate dysfuntion? Yes, you guessed it: you.
Yes, you. Whether you’re the customer of this company who is left out to dry, with pieces of your customer journey scattered across multiple systems, just waiting to be used in an uninspired marketing campaign because IT and marketing are not on speaking terms.
Or maybe it’s the you who works at this very company within a silo-ed team, competing for the same limited resources, having to ask too many of the wrong questions, and trying to move forward your team’s agenda – all while leaving the customer behind.
On the flip side, it could be the you who’s the nimble competitor, breathing down your rival’s neck with baited breath, ready to rip customers right out from under them. And you’re able to do this relatively easily because you know what customers want, you know how to talk to them on their terms and most importantly you operate as one team – company wide.
Yes – let’s not underestimate the power and transformative effect of a bridge between IT and marketing. When the gap starts narrow, the CIO becomes an advocate of the business, and in turn marketing sees the possibility of capturing the round-trip loop of the customer journey across multiple points of engagement. Merging these two perspectives around the shared objectives of serving the customer is not only critical, but it can become your competitive advantage.
And who knows? Maybe your CMO and CIO actually go to lunch to discuss their shared responsibility in growing your business the right way.
We’d love to hear what you think.