This Valentine’s Day, Two New Questions that Will Make CMOs and CIOs BFFs


Do you have a poem for your CIO or CMO this Valentine’s Day? Send it to me @comms_change

I’ll send a box of chocolates to the first five people to send in a poem.

 


We continue to hear from analysts and others about the new battleground between the CMO and the CIO. The CMO is taking away the CIO’s budget. The Cloud is taking away the CIO’s power. The reports and articles conjure up images of boardroom brawls, behind the scenes maneuvering, and office politics. It’s an interesting angle, but I’m not sure it aligns with what I’m seeing on the ground.

Sure, there are the standard complaints like “my CIO moves too slowly” or “my CMO doesn’t understand the technology”, but when I visit customers I see the relationship getting stronger. Their roles are evolving, and as they’re increasingly asked to answer new questions during board meetings, they recognize that they need each other. These two questions are top of mind:

  • “What are we doing to improve customer experience?” CMOs are increasingly inheriting accountability for the entire customer experience (across marketing, sales, and service) as large CSPs shift focus from attracting new customers to keeping existing ones. In this new role, the CMO is no longer just the business owner of marketing technology, or an e-Commerce site, but the proud owner of an omni-channel strategy, and multiple CRM, BSS, OSS, and service delivery environments. When considering how to prioritize improvements to this broad platform portfolio the CMO is ill equipped to do it alone, but needs a collaborative CIO partner to consider and execute a successful transformation strategy.
     
  • “How will Big Data impact our business?” CIOs sit atop a wealth of existing information – customer data, interaction history, billing data, network data – and are increasingly recognized as the custodians of Big Data within their organizations. But to the business, understanding Big Data is about more than understanding the technological requirements, it’s about understanding how to turn it into a business advantage. The CIO needs the CMO as a partner to identify use cases where Big Data can improve the customer experience, and drive profit for the organization.

Over the next few years, the CMO and CIO roles will continue to evolve as business priorities shift. The CMO role will continue to evolve in to a role that focuses on the holistic customer experience versus driving new leads, and the CIO role will evolve to broker complex relationships between business stakeholders, internal technology teams, and third-party technology and data providers. But as this evolution occurs, they’ll still need each other, and the smart ones will figure out ways to work together effectively. So don’t believe everything you read. This Valentine’s Day many CMOs and CIOs will be exchanging cards (maybe no flowers or chocolates – that might be awkward).


Do you have a poem for your CIO or CMO this Valentine’s Day? Send it to me @comms_change

I’ll send a box of chocolates to the first five people to send in a poem.