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Technology : The CMO Is IT!

Marketing controls many technology decisions, here's how to master them

May 2014 By Jacob Shama
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With more than 900 solutions to choose from, marketers will soon outspend IT on technology investment. This is your guide to navigating the marketing technology jungle.

Don Draper would be amazed that the world of marketing is transforming from executives whose strengths lie in creative to those whose strengths lie in technology, but it seems that the future of marketing is powered by technology. Gartner forecasts that by 2017, marketers will outspend IT on technology.

You have a wide selection of solutions to choose from. The marketing technology landscape has more than 900 companies, up from only 100 three years ago. To be successful, CMOs need to be able to intelligently select from and integrate multiple solutions.

The Marketing Technology Landscape
A new graphic released by Scott Brinker from Ion Interactive shows how much marketing technology is growing. The graphic lists 947 companies divided into six major technology classes in what he describes as an incomplete list.

The six classes are:

  • Marketing experiences: technologies for advertising, websites, content and SEO.
  • Marketing operations: applications for business intelligence, marketing data, dashboards and marketing analytics.
  • Middleware: customer data platforms, tag management, cloud connectors and APIs.
  • Backbone platforms: CRMs, marketing automation platforms, website technology and e-commerce.
  • Infrastructure: the actual databases, big data platforms and public cloud service providers.
  • Marketing environment: including the largest social networks and largest publishers. This is not marketing technology per se, but many of these companies play a role in the advertising space.

Just a few years ago, IT managers were the serious guys who made decisions about technology. They thought the only decisions marketers should make were around brochures, banners and logos: "Technology is for pros, not creative types." Decisions about a business intelligence platform, a database or a big data platform should be left to people who really understand technology—IT managers, CIO or CTO; that was the prevailing thinking back then.

 

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