May 20, 2014

My first marketing meeting was hard.

As a seasoned IT systems engineer, it was daunting to land on a planet where everything was so alien: the environment, the natives, the way they think and do things, the culture, the language, you name it.

These people wanted to achieve their technology goals without following the software development cycle. They wanted to do all their testing and development of proofs-of-concept designs in a production environment and it blew my mind. I felt intimidated and confused. They were the enemy.

These were my impressions at my previous employer, a large insurance company, when I attended a joint taskforce meeting to find a replacement for marketing's outdated lead generation program.

[ Fighting Tips for 'Challenger' Insurers. ]

IT and marketing relationships tend to start like this and usually remain status quo, keeping interaction to a minimum. This, of course, ends up hurting marketing technology efficiency since minimal interaction usually means that systems are not optimized, dragging on marketing's ability to release products fast.

The reason for this all-too-common disconnect is because IT is from Mars and marketing is from Venus. Their outlooks, goals, and processes are different. But with the advent of big data and social media, cloud, mobile, and web analytics, it's become more important than ever to close the gap.

Instead of glaring across the universe at each other, marketing and IT should see that they're not only on the same planet, they are building a home there together. Marketing is like a modern designer house and IT makes enterprise marketing management (EMM) the sturdy foundation upon which the house is built.

[ Read the rest of this article on InformationWeek. ]