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The CIO and CMO Imperative: Collaboration

Because technology is now a key tool that enables marketing, the CMO – CIO worlds have collided, requiring enhancements to collaboration not only among those two groups, but also across the organization. But what is it that has changed, and what are these new challenges that we face?
What’s changed?

  • quote_cioThe business is directing the technology budget. CIOs are no longer just managing an IT budget, but also a “business technology” budget – the costs of those technologies that support the customer, drive insights for the business about the customer (business intelligence), and more.
  • Big data is critical to competitive advantage. This is the “Age of the Customer”, which means that, according to David Cooperstein in an article for Forbes, “the strategies that matter most are those that don’t start with the channel, i.e. mobile-first or digital-first. Marketers need to put themselves in their customers’ seat and define the marketing activities they take on from a customer-first perspective.
  • Consumerization of IT has an impact. According to Andrew Reid, Founder & President, Vision Critical, “BYOD (Bring Your Own Device to work) is making enterprise IT cheaper and less relevant.”

What challenges do we face now?

  1. Clarity around responsibility is becoming an issue
  2. Changing allocation of budgets means that it’s no longer clear who, exactly, is responsible for investment in things like big data and enterprise social networks.
  3. As the technology trends and social business world change as fast as they are, business objectives are also changing rapidly, making it difficult to align objectives against common goals.
  4. CMOs and CIOs have to “get with the times.” According to Anne Park Hopkins, Client Partner in Korn Ferry’s Global Technology Markets, old school CMOs “are non-analytical, shy away from data, and focus predominantly on advertising and promotion while old school CIOs are back-office technologists who don’t engage in the broader business.” This causes conflict as the two leaders of the function fail to see the bigger picture.
  5. Personality conflicts. “CMOs are often viewed as curious, compelling, and inspirational, while CIOs are viewed as expert, knowledgeable, and insightful.”
  6. Coordination and collaboration between the CMO and CIO’s groups is now necessary, as well as among the organization as a whole. This is where the opportunity with enterprise social networks (ESNs) comes in. These two executives have to demonstrate that they are in lock-step, and make it a priority of theirs to ensure that their teams are engaged and coordinated with one another.

David Cooperstein, in “The Age of the Customer” (Forbes), writes about four things that CMOs and CIOs must now partner to accomplish, which I don’t think any of us can argue with. CMOs and CIOs must partner to:

  1. Optimize their business through data
  2. Present value in context
  3. Engage with buyers when they are more interested
  4. Create value in marketing through content

We’ve partnered with Forrester this November to discuss these changes in more detail, and to learn what can be accomplished using tools that most enterprise organizations likely already own.
Join us on Wednesday, November 13, 2013, at 1 p.m. CDT for the webinar, “CIO & CMO Convergence: Microsoft for Cloud, Social and Mobile ESNs.”
Read more about this dynamic on our Portals blog: “The Blurring Line Between CIO and CMO” by Michael Porter.
The Executive Recruiter Perspective On The CMO-CIO Power Partnership” Forbes, by Kimberly Whitler,
The Age of the Customer Requires An Obsessive Focus By CIOs and CMOs” Forbes, by David Cooperstein
Four Reasons Why CMOs Are Well On Their Way To Outspending CIOs” Forbes, by Andrew Reid

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Erin Moloney

As the leader of Perficient's Dallas-Fort Worth geography, Erin is responsible for delivery excellence, sales, marketing, career development, partnerships, recruiting, and community engagement. She was a founding Co-Chair of Perficient's Women in Tech global employee resource group. Erin is a member of the DFW Alliance of Technology and Women and the Texas Women’s Foundation. Our Dallas-area marketing, strategy and technology experts are responsible for delivering a world-class experience for our clients. Erin's goals are to build career paths and professional development for each Dallas-based team member, grow our visibility and business relationships in North Texas, and to foster an exciting work environment for our employees.

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