In his 2015 marketing technology landscape, marketing technology blogger Scott Brinker has counted 1,876 vendors represented across 43 categories. And a 2014 Gartner report stated that by 2017 CMOs will have bigger technology budgets than CIOs.
Obviously marketing people are looking for digital tools that can help them collect and manage data from their customers. But they want them now, and tomorrow they might need something else.
So the IT guys try to keep up, creating these tailor-made solutions. Much against their nature, since they’re used to relatively long periods of development and execution. Marketing automation tools like Marketo, Eloqua and Marketing Cloud solutions created by Adobe, Salesforce.com and Oracle are great, but still they’re having trouble explaining (in a non-technical way) where exactly they fit in the marketing process.
Clearly there is a cultural and work-style mismatch between engineering-focused IT and user experience-focused marketing. That’s when the marketing manager calls upon his advertising agency to help him. After all, they know everything, right? Thanks to those inbound marketing tools we have been able to bring sales and marketing closer together. But the merge with IT might be the real challenge for any modern agency in 2015. In today’s market, agencies have to interact with marketing, sales, AND IT managers and they need people who can think like any one of them.
Unless they want to be one of those vendors, a real marketing agency will need people who can create content, people who know where and how to use it and people who understand and interpret incoming data. All of this within their overall marketing plan, of course. That’s why half of all new marketing hires in the future will have technical backgrounds.
Schools must quickly adapt to those needs and prepare a whole new breed of marketers. For now, we’ll have to create our own ‘hybrid agencies’. We’re doing just that, but how about you? Feel free to share your thoughts on this and tell us how you cope with these new challenges. This is our Brand Journey Model, an effort to explain in a simple way how we create an integrated marketing plan. Again, feel free to download it here and comment or contact us.