Friday, April 1, 2011

Technology is the problem. Technology is the solution. Let us pray.

In February, the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council released results of a study that show today’s marketers struggling to innovate while keeping up with exploding technology.

Dubbed Unify to Multiply Marketing Ecosystem Effectiveness* [whew; that’s a mouthful] the report shows chief marketers scrambling to centralize data while extracting meaningful knowledge from vast volumes of transactional, behavioral, and attitudinal information. The dance has marketers seeking out partnerships with IT experts and/or relying on third-party sources to supplement customer profiling.

All the while, product life cycles are shorter and more tenuous. Consumer audiences are increasingly connected, opinionated, and virally influential. Supply chains and customer markets are more complex and distributed globally. And demand side marketing and sell-through requirements are now more resource intensive and channel-driven, requiring greater integration and alignment with the field.

It’s tough out there.

According to the white paper report sponsored by Webtrends, marketing process improvement, efficiency, and yield are directly tied to more effective use of tools—better platforms, analytics, and intelligence that improves rich media content creation, relevancy, delivery, access, control, workflow, partner collaboration, market engagement and sales lead provisioning, as well as campaign measurement and tracking.

It’s relentless out there.

Despite these pressing requirements, most marketers are hamstrung with antiquated legacy systems, an inability to “talk tech” with IT groups, and lack of resources to implement marketing automation projects. In short, tools that improve the quality and outcome of marketing decisions, as well as the effectiveness and performance of marketing teams and partners, are hard to come by.

It’s lethal out there.

This is the bad news. The good news? Well, we’re still looking for that.

In the report, the CMO Council identifies the top 10 ways marketers can create “marketing ecosystem value.” This includes the need to:

• Break down functional silos
• Institutionalize the use of data analytics
• Provide market insights + intelligence on-demand
• Transfer best-practice knowledge worldwide
• Synchronize supply and demand side operations
• Add discipline and rigor to campaign design, development, testing and delivery
• Ensure brand consistency, compliance and digital asset control
• Power the pipeline across acquisition, cultivation, and closure cycles
• Maximize customer value – relationships, revenue, and rapport
• Institute closed-loop performance measurement systems

What we haven’t been offered are the “how-tos” for breaking down functional silos or any of the rest of it. I mean, haven’t we been talking about this for years? HELP!

Source: The 20-plus page strategic brief can be downloaded here.

p.s. Why did they have to give this study such a jargon-ridden title? Yikes!

-- scrubbed by Marketing Brillo

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