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ANALYZING THE
CHIEF MARKETING
TECHNOLOGIST
SHELDON MONTEIRO, HILDING ANDERSON & SCOTT TANG
RESEARCH
A reflective survey of MarTech
professionals and what it means
for brands and the profession
It’s yesterday’s new...
RESEARCH
Despite the excitement around market-
ing technology and the CMT role, the
ambiguity as to who these individuals
...
RESEARCH
The emergence of these archetypes
may represent specialization within
the profession, often seen in mature
fields...
RESEARCH
Current and desired job skills are
balanced between marketing,
technology, and business
The top five skills that ...
RESEARCH
1
Findings and analysis
Although most organizations may
have a CMT, they are certainly not
all alike or interchan...
RESEARCH
THE DATA DIVAS (17%)
The second-largest group loves its
data. Member skills are grounded in
marketing operations ...
RESEARCH
THE INFRASTRUCTURE
ARCHITECTS (16%)
This is a classically trained cohort
of technologists, with expertise in
deve...
RESEARCH
THE MEDIA AND MARKET-
ING ANALYZERS (10%)
A rare breed in our survey, this type has
significant skills in researc...
RESEARCH
2Archetypes are split evenly
between marketing and technology
disciplines. Marketing archetypes
are more likely t...
RESEARCH
3Marketing technologists most
likely work for the CMO. They also
have marketing titles.
Our respondents report to...
RESEARCH
4
However, we are concerned that prepa-
ration in computer science fundamen-
tals, systems and algorithmic thinki...
RESEARCH
39%Business/Management
Background
Business/management was
also a popular job category,
and we observed prior gene...
RESEARCH
5Marketing technologists are stron-
gest in core marketing skills, and
weakest in information security and
system...
RESEARCH
6In the future, desired skills span
marketing, business, and technolo-
gy, but mind the data gap.
We asked our re...
RESEARCH
With the shift from analog to digital,
from communications to experience,
from story “yelling” to the Storyscapin...
RESEARCHRESEARCH
Sessions are taught by SapientNitro
thought leaders across the globe, in-
dustry and academic external ex...
RESEARCH
Conclusion
The rise of the Chief Marketing
Technologist is bridging the worlds of
marketing and IT. In these data...
SapientNitro®
, part of Publicis.Sapient, is a new breed of agency redefining storytelling for an always-on world. We’re c...
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Analyzing the Chief Marketing Technologist | By Sheldon Monteiro (Chief Technology Officer), Hilding Anderson (Director, Research and Insights), and Scott Tang (Head of Global Consumer and Industry Research)

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It’s yesterday’s news that marketing and technology have become inextricably intertwined. Tectonic forces, enabled by technology, have fueled more disruption and competition for customer attention in the last five years than corporations experienced in the fifty years prior.

Despite the excitement around marketing technology and the CMT role, the ambiguity as to who these individuals are, the skills they possess, and where they sit organizationally has led to considerable confusion. To help us shed more light on these issues, SapientNitro partnered with Scott Brinker, the host of the MarTech conference and popular chiefmartec.com blog to conduct a first-of-its-kind study of marketing technologists’ skills, career paths, attitudes, and behaviors.

For the first time, we have been able to “x-ray” the professional marketing technologist. And the results are striking.

Written by Sheldon Monteiro (Chief Technology Officer), Hilding Anderson (Director, Research and Insights), and Scott Tang (Head of Global Consumer and Industry Research)

Published in: Technology
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Analyzing the Chief Marketing Technologist | By Sheldon Monteiro (Chief Technology Officer), Hilding Anderson (Director, Research and Insights), and Scott Tang (Head of Global Consumer and Industry Research)

  1. 1. ANALYZING THE CHIEF MARKETING TECHNOLOGIST SHELDON MONTEIRO, HILDING ANDERSON & SCOTT TANG
  2. 2. RESEARCH A reflective survey of MarTech professionals and what it means for brands and the profession It’s yesterday’s news that marketing and technology have become inex- tricably intertwined. Tectonic forces, enabled by technology, have fueled more disruption and competition for customer attention in the last five years than corporations experienced in the fifty years prior. On the one hand, Chief Marketing Of- ficers (CMOs) have realized that mar- keting’s success is gated by the digital acumen of their own organizations. On the other, Chief Information Officers (CIOs) find that the expectations of their engineering teams are influenced more by digital exemplars like Amazon, Google, and Silicon Valley start-ups than by peer benchmarks within their own industry. It’s no surprise then that Harvard Business Review recently joined the chorus and profiled the Rise of the Chief Marketing Technologist (CMT) – a new type of executive responsible for bringing marketing and technology together.1 According to a 2014 Gartner study, 81 percent of large organizations now have a CMT.2 1 Scott Brinker and Laura McLellan. “The Rise of the Chief Marketing Technologist.” Harvard Business Review. July, 2014. 2 Gartner. “How the Presence of a Chief Marketing Technologist Impacts Marketing.” https://www.gartner. com/doc/ 2652017/presence-chief-marketing- technologist-impacts. Marketing technologists cluster into six distinct archetypes
  3. 3. RESEARCH Despite the excitement around market- ing technology and the CMT role, the ambiguity as to who these individuals are, the skills they possess, and where they sit organizationally has led to con- siderable confusion. And the confusion results in two related issues. One, executives need better clarity regarding how they can identify, recruit, bring on board, and retain these talented individuals. Second, aspiring market- ing technologists have no guidelines against which to benchmark and level up their own skills. To help us shed more light on these issues, SapientNitro partnered with Scott Brinker, the host of the MarTech conference and popular chiefmartec. com blog to conduct a first-of-its-kind study of marketing technologists’ skills, career paths, attitudes, and behaviors.3 For the first time, we have been able to “x-ray” the professional marketing tech- nologist. And the results are striking. Today’s marketing technologists cluster into six distinct archetypes, and they are not equivalent or interchangeable. Of the six archetypes, three are focused on technology and three are focused on marketing (see Figure 1). Respondents’ self-identified skills fell into distinct clusters, revealing the archetypes. MARKETING MAVENS (26%) With marketing skills emphasized over technology, mavens specialize in build- ing marketing programs using expertise in marketing strategy, strategic position- ing, and promotion. 3 We asked the community of marketing technologists – recruited from the MarTech 2014 fall conference and Scott Brinker’s popular chiefmartec.com blog – to help us document this group. We contracted an independent market research firm – Decision Analyst – to execute the survey. Our study had 280 respondents, and took place from August 15th, 2014 to September 8th, 2014. (For more details, see “About the Survey” at the end of the article.) DATA DIVAS (17%) Divas are skilled in marketing opera- tions management, customer rela- tionship management (CRM), data science, analytics, and modeling. They know how to acquire, integrate, and make data perform. CONTENT CURATORS (16%) Storytellers. Message crafters. Marketing strategists. Content man- agement platform experts. This type exercises considerable knowledge of content marketing and related tech- nologies to direct communications- oriented marketing. INFRASTRUCTURE ARCHITECTS (16%) Enterprise-level technology chops define this archetype, but they are also business consultants and bring a high-level understanding of a compa- ny’s marketing initiatives. EXPERIENCE ENGINEERS(15%) One foot in technology and the other in experience. They are experts in cutting-edge technology: from e-commerce to front-end technology and mobility. MEDIA & MARKETING ANALYZERS (10%) This archetype specializes in research, consumer insights, and strategic planning. Members think strategically about segmentation and connections planning. The six archetypes have two main areas of focus We found that marketing technologists are grouped into six archetypes – three with a marketing focus and three with a technology focus. 52% Marketing 10% Media & Marketing Analyzers 16% Content Curators 26% Marketing Mavens 48% Technology 17% Data Divas 16% Infrastructure Architects 15% Experience Engineers FIGURE01
  4. 4. RESEARCH The emergence of these archetypes may represent specialization within the profession, often seen in mature fields such as medicine or engineering. However, we doubt it. More likely, the skill gaps we found indicate that the archetypes are emerg- ing through a Darwinian selection pro- cess as individuals who may not meet the full job specifications are promoted into this new role. One immediate implication for those organizations in search of the best person to steward marketing tech- nology through a period of profound disruption is that they need to define the role more specifically than simply as “marketing technologist.” The needs of an organization may in fact require that the CMT embodies a combination of at least two – and possibly as many as all six – of the archetypes. This said, the archetypes are a starting point to contain search efforts and costs, as they are clear segmentations of today’s talent. Marketing technologists report to marketing While 69.2 percent report to the C-suite, just 8.6 percent of marketing technologists reported to the CIO, with the majority reporting to the CMO or CEO/President. Our findings matched other recent industry surveys in this regard. In our view, this reporting bias could explain the surprising underweighting of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) academic back- grounds in the population, which we describe further below. Our hypothesis: Marketers and business leaders are promoting from within their own depart- mental ranks and backgrounds. This is understandable, but executives should consider where pure-play digital firms – who are setting the pace of today’s disruption – are sourcing their talent, and then consider proactive skills development to level up existing talent, or increase the diversity of their talent sourcing, for instance, by overweighting IT and business analytics capabilities. Today’s practitioners are learning technology on the job Today, marketing technologists are strongest in core marketing skills, and only 26 percent have STEM degrees. Additionally, nearly half of the respon- dents reported that their prior job was managing technology or programming – often in a marketing context – provid- ing the job environment for developing technical skills. We believe the lack of hybrid academic programs is forcing talent to train on the job. The implica- tion? Rudimentary preparation in com- puter science fundamentals, systems and algorithmic thinking, statistics, and data science may be glossed over or completely skipped, which will undoubtedly impair job effectiveness. Interestingly, technology-oriented mar- keting technologists are 20 percent more likely to be the “primary” or “chief” marketing technology officer, indicating that greater responsibilities are award- ed to those with technical proficiency. The emergence of these archetypes may represent specialization within the profession... however, we doubt it.
  5. 5. RESEARCH Current and desired job skills are balanced between marketing, technology, and business The top five skills that respondents report possessing are marketing strategy and positioning, marketing operations management, website design, the ability to persuade and negotiate, and marketing channel strategy/connec- tions planning. Perhaps attributable in part to confirmation bias (the tendency to search for or interpret information in a way that confirms one’s precon- ceptions), three of these were also fea- tured in the five skills that respondents said are most important to the future of marketing. Regardless, we are delighted to observe a balance between marketing, technology, and business domains, all three of which are essential for success in the role, in our view (see Figure 2). There are alarming deficiencies in current skill sets Advertising technology, system per- formance and resiliency, and several omnichannel-enabling technologies are featured in the bottom ten of self-assessed current skills, with infor- mation security coming in dead last. This lack of skills is of huge concern in light of recent, massive security breaches across industries, the extreme scale at which digital businesses must operate during periods of high demand, and the ever-increasing requirements for brands to imagine and deliver immersive and pervasive experiences. The future of the CMT role The most important future job skills, according to our survey, include marketing, technology, and business skills (see Finding #6). In addition, when we examined the largest skill gaps (differences between stated future importance and current self-assessment), big data techniques and technologies emerged as the skills with the widest gap. The absolute de- ficiencies in current skills, the gap be- tween current and desired future skills, and the under-representation of STEM academic backgrounds reinforce our view that today’s marketing technolo- gists must level up their technology chops with great urgency. The gap between marketing and technology is real, even for marketing technologists While 94 percent believe that market- ing and IT skills could be combined in a single person, respondents identified a stark polarity between marketing and systems integration expertise. Most technology archetypes are less likely to describe themselves as “marketing experts” and marketing archetypes don’t think of themselves as “systems integrators.” This subtle indi- cation of how respondents described who they are may be indicative of the culture gap that must be overcome for the role to attain its highest potential. In our view, the CMT role must strad- dle both functions as a native, rather than majoring in one and minoring in the other. Business Skills Marketing Skills Technology Skills FIGURE02
  6. 6. RESEARCH 1 Findings and analysis Although most organizations may have a CMT, they are certainly not all alike or interchangeable. The CMT role is pervasive, with Gartner recently reporting that 81 percent of large organizations now have a CMT. But the roles are not alike. The July 2014 edition of Harvard Business Review defined the CMT role noting, “CMTs are part strategist, part creative director, part technology leader, and part teacher.” Our survey findings took this analysis one step further, providing deep insight into the ratio of those parts in the current cadre of professionals. We asked our survey respondents to rank their skills in relative, not absolute, terms. We also asked them to choose from monikers they might use to describe themselves professionally. Analyzing these data sets, we found clear evidence that the population of marketing technologists is fractured around distinct areas of expertise. We identified six different archetypes of marketing technologists by identify- ing distinct clusters of skills (rank your strongest/weakest skill…) and attitudes (I think of myself as…). Sorted by size within the overall population, the six archetypes are: Marketing Mavens: Self-reported skills Professional self-description: I think of myself as... Mavens view themselves as professional marketers, business consultants, and customer experience specialists. They are the oldest (43% are 45+ years old) and have the highest mean salary ($149k). THE MARKETING MAVENS (26%) The largest single group. The skills and attitudes of this group show that more than one in four marketing technolo- gists have a much stronger marketing orientation (and, conversely, a weaker technology orientation) than we had previously assumed. This group’s key skills are dominated by marketing strategy and positioning, and (to a much lesser extent) marketing opera- tions. They think of themselves as mar- keting experts, business consultants, and customer experience specialists. Marketing Strategy and Positioning Marketing Operations Management The Ability to Persuade and Negotiate Marketing Channel Strategy and Connections Planning Website Testing and Optimization A Marketing Expert80.8% A Business Consultant61.6% A Customer Experience Specialist41.1% An Entrepreneur38.4% A CRM Expert27.4% 79.7 20.5 20.4 17.0 11.8
  7. 7. RESEARCH THE DATA DIVAS (17%) The second-largest group loves its data. Member skills are grounded in marketing operations management, CRM, data science, analytics, and modeling. They scored themselves highly in managing big data – one of the biggest skill gaps identified by the overall survey population – and they are also proficient in data management software/systems. With their expertise in systems; tag management; CRM tools; and data science, analytics, statistics, and modeling, they know how to acquire, integrate, and make data perform. Sixty-eight percent of members of this group said that they are the primary marketing technologists in their organizations – the highest of all the archetypes – reflecting the impor- tance of data-driven marketing. Data Divas: Self-reported skills Professional self-description: I think of myself as... Data Divas have much stronger sets of skills in database marketing, system inte- gration, and data scientist related skills than the other archetypes. They were the most likely to be the primary marketing technologists in their organizations (68% reported being the CMT). Content Curators: Self-reported skills Professional self-description: I think of myself as... Content Curators specialize in content creation, content management, and the cus- tomer experience. They are also the youngest, with 42% being under 35 years old. THE CONTENT CURATORS (16%) If you want to tell a story – and efficiently disseminate it to your consumers – this is the group you want. With consid- erable expertise in content creation, content optimization, marketing strategy and positioning, and content and digital asset management platforms, this group helps your brand converse with customers. Marketing Operations Management Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems and Platforms Data Science, Analytics, Statistics, and Modeling Marketing Strategy and Positioning Data Management Software and Systems A Marketing Expert55.3% A Database Marketing Specialist53.2% A Business Consultant53.2% A Systems Integrator51.1% A Data Scientist, Statistician, Analyst A CRM Expert A Customer Experience Specialist 42.6% 42.6% 40.6% 35.0 34.0 31.7 17.4 16.8 A Marketing Expert64.4% A Content Management Expert57.8% A Writer or Content Creator53.3% A Business Consultant46.7% A Customer Experience Specialist35.6% Marketing Channel Strategy and Connections Planning Content Creation, Copywriting, and Content Optimization Marketing Strategy and Positioning Content Management and Digital Asset Management Systems Website Testing and Optimization Website Design, Including Responsive and Adaptive Design The Ability to Persuade and Negotiate 45.6 39.8 24.6 23.4 21.6 17.2 16.0
  8. 8. RESEARCH THE INFRASTRUCTURE ARCHITECTS (16%) This is a classically trained cohort of technologists, with expertise in developing enterprise marketing platforms. With a deep understand- ing of technology architecture and selection, software development, and content and digital asset management platforms, they describe themselves as the IT specialists, systems integrators, and business consultants that deploy marketing technology at scale within an enterprise. Infrastructure Architects: Self-reported skills Professional self-description: I think of myself as... Infrastructure Architects are much more aligned with technology. Information technology, systems integration, and even developing/coding scored highly. They are also the most male (89%) and 40% had an undergraduate technology degree (versus a 25.3% average across all archetypes). THE EXPERIENCE ENGINEERS (15%) This group pushes boundaries at the intersection of technology and experi- ence. They have remarkable proficien- cies in the technologies (e-commerce, front-end, and mobility) that directly touch the customer experience. Experience Engineers: Self-reported skills Professional self-description: I think of myself as... Experience Engineers play a hybrid role – blending depth in IT and SI (system in- tegration) skills – but also have breadth in the form of customer experience. They have considerable skills in mobile app development, e-commerce technology, and other core competencies, as well. Enterprise Architecture, Tech Selection, and Lifecycle Management Software Design, Programming, and Coding Content Management and Digital Asset Management Systems Software Development Operations and IT Operations Front-end Technologies (e.g., HTML5, Javascript, and CSS) Visual Display of Data Iincluding Infographics and Dashboards 46.8 31.6 23.3 17.1 An IT (Information Technology) Specialist73.3% A Systems Integrator64.4% A Business Consultant60.0% A Software Developer, Coder, or Programmer35.6% An Entrepreneur A Customer Experience Specialist 33.3% 33.3% 11.4 9.0 An IT (Information Technology) Specialist46.3% A Systems Integrator41.5% A Business Consultant39.0% A Software Developer, Coder, or Programmer39.0% An Entrepreneur A Customer Experience Specialist 31.7% 31.7% GIS, Geomapping, and Geotargeting Website Design Including Responsive and Adaptive Design Content Management and Digital Asset Management Systems Design and Development of Mobile Apps and Platforms E-commerce Technologies and Platforms Front-end Technologies (e.g., HTML5, Javascript, and CSS) Software Design, Programming, and Coding 33.9 29.8 21.5 17.0 17.0 13.6 12.9
  9. 9. RESEARCH THE MEDIA AND MARKET- ING ANALYZERS (10%) A rare breed in our survey, this type has significant skills in research, consumer insights, and strategic planning. They think strategically about segmentation and connections planning. Media and Marketing Analyzers: Self-reported skills Professional self-description: I think of myself as... Our final archetype is also the smallest. Media and Marketing Analysts bring strengths in advertising, business, and customer experience. They tend to be younger – 45% are under 35 years old – and are the most likely to have a graduate degree – 59% have a graduate degree, of which most (71%) are in business. The existence of these archetypes shows us that today’s marketing tech- nologists do not have equivalent com- petencies. In fact, the differences in the ratio of skills between the archetypes are quite large. One immediate implication for brands looking to appoint a CMT is that they must be more specific in creating a job description – the term “marketing technologist” is simply insufficient. Lacking specifics when casting the role will increase the odds of professional failure. For instance, recruiting a Mar- keting Maven when the job situation calls for a Data Diva or Infrastructure Architect will require additional senior team members with complementary skills to build out a capable marketing technology function. We recommend an outline of the specific skills required, followed by a determination of which primary and secondary (or more, if needed) archetypes fit best. Brands with stable business models should be able to define their needs succinctly (e.g., evolve and manage the marketing automation infrastructure). By doing so, they will be able to focus on the archetypes required, which will increase the likeli- hood of finding experienced candidates who can fill the roles effectively. Of course, employers concerned about changing consumer behavior or digital disruption to their core business will need a “unicorn” with breadth and depth across multiple or each of the archetypes to lead the marketing technology office. In this case, expect the candidate pool to be much smaller and the search to take longer. Marketing Research, Consumer Insights, and Competitive Intelligence Marketing Strategy and Positioning Advertising and Marketing Communication Development Market Segmentation and Psychographics Marketing Channel Strategy and Connections Planning A Marketing Expert An Advertising Expert A Business Consultant An Entrepreneur A Customer Experience Specialist 72.4% 51.7% 44.8% 37.9% 31.0% 58.4 47.3 24.1 16.6 13.5
  10. 10. RESEARCH 2Archetypes are split evenly between marketing and technology disciplines. Marketing archetypes are more likely to operate as a team, while technology archetypes are more likely to play the role of Chief Marketing Technologist. In our data, we found a roughly even split between marketing and techno- logy orientations (see Figure 3) – 52 percent of the respondents are cla- ssified in one of the three marketing archetypes (Marketing Mavens, Con- tent Curators, or Media and Marketing Analyzers), while the remaining 48 per- cent are in the technology archetypes (Data Divas, Infrastructure Architects, or Experience Engineers). Interestingly, those with a marketing orientation are far more likely to ope- rate with a team rather than as the sole marketing technologist. We hypothe- size that marketing-oriented archetypes need additional technology support in order to realize the marketing technology function. MARKETING ARCHETYPES (52% OF RESPONDENTS) Marketing-oriented archetypes tend to be self-taught in technology, have more marketing academic training, and be equally divided by gender. They are slightly more likely to report to the CMO than any other group (33.9 percent report to the CMO versus an overall average of 31.4 percent). TECHNOLOGY ARCHETYPES (48% OF RESPONDENTS) Technology archetypes are younger, are more likely to have STEM degrees, and are more likely to report to non-marketing leaders (e.g., the CEO, CIO, or “others”). A full 55 percent of the three techno- logy archetypes reported that they are the CMT, a moniker roughly equivalent to the Chief Marketing Technology Officer (CMTO). In contrast, only 35 percent – a full twenty percentage point change – of the three marketing archetypes report themselves to be the Chief Marketing Technologist. Our hypothesis is that today’s techno- logy archetypes (Data Divas, Infra- structure Architects, and Experience Engineers) possess more of the skills needed to align the marketing team, technology vendors, service providers, and corporate IT. Our recommendation for brands? Evaluate your CMT’s ability to be the glue between these teams, including his/her ability to represent the interests, viewpoints, and concerns of the different stakeholders without bias, to see the big picture while not missing key details, and to show his/her gravi- tas as a cross-functional leader. The six archetypes have two main areas of focus Our six profiles are evenly split between marketing-focused and technology- focused archetypes – consistent with the blended nature of the role. Data Divas Infrastructure Architects Experience Engineers Technology 48% 17% 16% 15% Marketing Mavens Content Curators Media Marketing Analyzers 26% 16% 10% Marketing 52% 16% 10% FIGURE03
  11. 11. RESEARCH 3Marketing technologists most likely work for the CMO. They also have marketing titles. Our respondents report to a marketing function most frequently. Just 8.6 per- cent of marketing technologists report to the CIO; most report to the CMO (31.4 percent), CEO/President (23.9 percent), or CDO (Chief Digital Offi- cer)/CSO (Chief Strategy Officer) (5.3 percent). In sum, 69.2 percent report to the C-suite. CMTs are similar, with just 5.5 percent reporting to the CIO. In our view, this distribution of report- ing relationships is supportive of our thesis that the marketing technologist is broadly the equivalent of a CIO or Chief Technology Officer (CTO) dedicated to marketing, and the CMO or CEO needs a trusted advisor skilled in technology and marketing on his/her team. Current job titles are predominantly in the marketing domain (see Figure 4). CMTs were 7 percent more likely to have a marketing title. We also found that the title of “Marketing Technolo- gist” is rarely used and made up only a small fraction (11 percent) of CMTs in the field. Participant job titles – Overall and CMT The most common title for a marketing technologist is a marketing title such as Director of Marketing or Marketing Manager. CMTs are even more likely to have marketing titles than overall respondents. And a formal Marketing Technology title is quite rare. 6050403020100 Given the title variance and reporting to IT by exception rather than norm, we recommend that the individual tasked as the CMT: has explicit objectives; is socialized with all con- cerned stakeholders; is tasked to align marketing and technology concerns; and owns the blueprint for how marketing technology is deployed and will evolve in the context of the enter- prise technology estate. Business Title • CGO/CSO/Director/VP/Manager of Strategy • Project Manager/Account Manager/Director/ VP/Manager of Business, Product, or Applica- tion Development/Strategist Technology Title • CTO/CIO/Director/VP/Manager of IT • Director of Market Automation • Director of CRM • Director of Analytics • Market Automation Specialist Marketing Technology Title • Marketing Technologist • Marketing Technology Consultant • Marketing Technology Manager Marketing Title • CMO • Director/VP/Manager of Digital Marketing • Marketing Manager/Director/VP/Manager of Marketing Technology Marketing Technology Title CMT 55.9% Overall 48.9% CMT 16.5% Overall 23.2% CMT 18% Overall 16.8% CMT 11% Overall 7.1% Overall 7.1% FIGURE04
  12. 12. RESEARCH 4 However, we are concerned that prepa- ration in computer science fundamen- tals, systems and algorithmic thinking, statistics, and data science are hard to pick up on the job absent curricula, coaching, and skill roadmaps for which there is no industry consensus. The marketing technologist is, by its very moniker, a technical and marketing role, and those recruiting or planning their own careers must have a strong grounding in the fundamentals of both. We recommend that both brands looking for CMTs and aspiring CMTs themselves evaluate their skills across the archetypes to understand existing gaps, and then create development plans or source additional talent to fill those gaps. Areas of study for marketing technologists Marketing technologists are a highly educated group, with 92% having at least a bachelors degree – compared to 29.5% for the general U.S. population. Undergraduate areas of study include liberal arts, and, at the graduate level, skew toward business. Only a quarter of today’s mar- keting technologists have STEM degrees. Predictably, technology training is done on the job, not in school. Surprisingly, three in four marketing technologists do not have a traditional STEM degree. Approximately 25.3 percent have a STEM undergraduate degree, while 18.8 percent have a STEM graduate degree. Instead, the most common academic majors for marketing technologists (see Figure 5) are business and business administra- tion (13.7 percent of undergrads and 41.4 percent among graduates). Once in the workforce, “marketing manager” is the #1 job leading to a marketing technologist role, followed by web/CRM/automation platform technology management. But when we group all responses by domain (see sidebar entitled “What Were the Previous Jobs of Marketing Technolo- gists?”), the technology/programming domain emerges as the most com- mon prior job focus, followed by the business/management and marketing/ communications domains. Almost half of all the respondents had a prior role in technology, and primary marketing technologists skew higher – 53.5 percent report having a technical/ programming role prior to their current primary marketing technologist role. Our conclusion? Today’s talent has cross-skilled themselves, especially in technology, on the job. This is understandable given the paucity of cross-discipline academic programs. Business or Business Administration Marketing Communications Computer Science Information Technology Engineering Science or Math Social Sciences (Economics, Sociology, Psychology) Art and Other Majors (Net) AREAS OF STUDY Undergraduate Graduate 41%14% 16%11% 8%9% 14%12% 3%9% 2%4% 5%10% 11%31% FIGURE05 We are concerned that preparation in computer science fundamentals, systems and algorithmic thinking, statistics, and data science are hard to pick up on the job absent curricula, coaching, and skill roadmaps for which there is no industry consensus. - Sheldon Monteiro
  13. 13. RESEARCH 39%Business/Management Background Business/management was also a popular job category, and we observed prior general management roles described as consulting, managing teams, and project management. 37.3%Marketing/Communica- tions Background While marketing background/ marketing manager/marketing is the single most common (historic) role for marketing technologists, the marketing/ communications category as a whole ranked below technology- focused prior roles. Web/CRM Management/Automation Platforms Web Developer/Programmer/Software Engineer IT/Tech Background SEM/SEO/Search Engine Management Background in MobilePlatforms/Apps 20.7% 14.5% 14.1% 4.6% 3.7% 2.9% E-commerce 01 02 03 04 05 06 Consulting/Management Consultant/User Experience Consultant Management Background/Manage a Team Account/Project Management Sales/Lead Generation Business Development/Strategy/Research Strategy Analytics/Business Analyst/Business Background Market Research/Research and Development 10.4% 9.1% 9.1% 8.3% 7.5% 5.4% 4.1% 01 03 04 05 06 07 02 Marketing Background/Marketing Manager/Marketing Digital/Interactive Marketing Digital Producer/Graphics/Animation/Video/Audio Engineer Communications/Market Communications/Database Marketing Background in Social Media/Social Platforms 22.4% 13.7% 4.6% 3.3% 3.7% 01 02 04 03 05 01 02 03 04 05 01 02 03 04 05 06 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 4 We asked respondents “How did you transition into the marketing technologist role? That is, what were your job responsibilities and role before your current market- ing technologist role?” 46.9%Technical/Programming Background Technology/programming is the dominant background for mar- keting technologists. Specifically, we found focus areas in web/CRM platforms, web development, and general IT/technology. WHAT WERE THE PREVIOUS JOBS OF MARKETING TECHNOLOGISTS?4 RESEARCH
  14. 14. RESEARCH 5Marketing technologists are stron- gest in core marketing skills, and weakest in information security and system performance/resilience. Our respondents say their strongest skills are marketing strategy/position- ing, followed by marketing operations management and website design (including responsive and adaptive design). At first glance, this is great – a mix of strategy, operations, and tech- nology, in that order (see Figure 6). Our concern? Operations – the second strongest skill – is ranked 2.5 times weaker than strategy, while technology – website design (responsive and adaptive) – is ranked almost three times weaker. Given the demo or die mode in which most digitally native competition operates, marketing technologists must be as proficient in the details of execution (operations and technology) as they are in strategy. System performance and resiliency, advertising technology, and several omnichannel-enabling technologies (e.g., in-venue/in-store experience tech- nology, physical computing and IoT, tag management, and geotargeting) all featured in the lowest ten self-assessed current skills, with information security dead last (see Figure 7). Of all our findings, we were concerned with this one the most. In our view, marketing technologists must envision and lead the delivery of omnichannel experiences that are integrated, scal- able, and reliable. This, in fact, is a core mandate of the role. Further, the bottom ten list also included some core mar- keting topics, such as loyalty programs, internationalization, media, and ad-tech. In light of recent massive security breaches in many industry verticals, the extreme scale with which digital busi- nesses must operate during periods of high demand, and the need for brands to imagine and create immersive and pervasive communications and experi- ence, the lack of needed skills in these areas is worrisome. Our recommendation? Understand your weakest skills and source help from specialists to mitigate risks and avoid blind spots. Consider immediate audits in gap areas and strategy retainers for forward planning. Current job skills: Strongest skills In these data, we were particularly surprised at the strength of marketing strategy/positioning and the relatively balanced set of current strengths across disciplines. Current job skills: Weakest skills We were startled by the importance of several of the skills on which marketing technologists evaluated themselves poorly. Information security, particularly, is of growing importance, yet was the weakest job skill in the study. 38.1 15.6 13.3 12.3 12.2 Marketing Strategy/Positioning Marketing Operations Management Website Design Including Responsive and Adaptive Design The Ability to Persuade and Negotiate Marketing Channel Strategy/Connections Planning In-venue/In-Store Experience Technology Physical Computing and the Internet of Things Tag Management and User Management (United User Profile) Loyalty Programs Media Planning and Buying International Marketing/Translations/Legal Issues Digital Ad Networks and Real-Time Bidding System Performance and Resiliency GIS, Geomapping, and Geotargeting Information Security/Firewalls/Encryption/Data Recovery 0.6 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.4 0.3 0.3 0.2 0.2 0.1 FIGURE06 FIGURE07
  15. 15. RESEARCH 6In the future, desired skills span marketing, business, and technolo- gy, but mind the data gap. We asked our respondents which job skills were the most important for the future success of marketing (see Figure 8). Of the top five skills important for the future, two are marketing-related, two are technology-related, and one is business-related. This supports our view that the marketing technologist must span marketing, technology, and business. However, the technology- oriented skills are narrower than we’d anticipated. We also compared responses for “skills ranked important in the future” to those for “skills they have today.” By doing so, we identified specific skill gaps and their magnitudes (see Figure 9). The most significant skill gaps are seen in target market identification; CRM systems and platforms; data science, analytics, statistics, and modeling; and big data and marketing segmentation. The list indicates that leveling up is required on both the marketing and technology sides. But by far, the most significant absolute gap is in big data: techniques and technologies for hand- ling data at extreme scale. We recommend a careful analysis of skills needed for the future of your business, and building these skills through development, talent sourcing, and retainers. In particular, given that data centricity will dominate marketing for the foreseeable future, we suggest additional emphasis on acquiring data science and data management compe- tencies within the marketing techno- logy function. Marketing Technologist skill gaps When we compared the most important skills with their current strengths/ weaknesses, we identified a set of skills with the greatest gaps, shown below. It’s notable that the biggest gaps span technology, marketing, and business skills. JOB SKILLS Target Market Identification Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems and Platforms Data Science, Analytics, Statistics, and Modeling Big Data: Techniques and Technologies for Handling Data at Extreme Scale Market Segmentation and Psychographics IMPORTANCE TO FUTURE SUCCESS5 2 3 6 7 9 GAP -20 -7 -6 -27 -8 STRENGTH OF TODAY’S SKILLS6 22 10 12 34 17 FIGURE09 Most important future job skills When we asked respondents for the top skills for future success, the top two skills which emerged were traditional marketing skills, although technology skills rounded out the next two slots. 0 20 40 60 80 62.1% 44.3% 43.9% 43.9% 42.9% Marketing Strategy/Posi- tioning Target Market Identification Website Design Including Responsive and Adaptive CRM Systems and Platforms The Ability to Persuade and Negotiate FIGURE08 5 Importance to Future Success: Lower numbers are more important. 6 Strength of Today’s Skills: Lower numbers are stronger.
  16. 16. RESEARCH With the shift from analog to digital, from communications to experience, from story “yelling” to the Storyscaping approach, companies need a new breed of technologist. This new breed sees around corners, paints the big picture, and “gets” marketers, ad types, and marketing. They are scrappy innova- tors who also understand scale and complexity, and who are awesome at influencing people. For all the hand-wringing about Chief Marketing Technologists (CMTs or CMTOs), talent that gets both marketing and technology is rare. While marketing technology talent is in very high demand, there is an enormous industry skill gap. SapientNitro decided to do something about it – by creating a CMTO University within our agency. The CMTO University is an internal lead- ership development program dedicated to growing some of our best technolo- gists and focusing on three core topic areas: technology, marketing, and com- municating with influence. It is a year- long experience that combines elements of a corporate leadership development program with the rigor, challenge, and learning of an executive MBA. Modeled as a cohort-based program, our students are selected through a competitive application process which includes a formal application from the prospective student, agency business sponsorship and references, and a re- ference interview with a SapientNitro client who has worked closely with the applicant and can attest to his/her prowess. SapientNitro technologists hailing from any of our global offices at the Vice President, Director, and Senior Manager career levels are eligible to apply. Participants are required to com- mit to investing an extra ten to fifteen hours every week over the course of the program year, in addition to their de- manding jobs. In our most recent cohort, fewer than one in three applicants who applied were admitted into the program. The curriculum includes four inten- sive workshops, conducted in different SapientNitro locations around the globe, with “interim” periods between the workshops (see Figure 10). Each inten- sive and interim has a specific focus; activities include group projects, weekly individual assignments and discussions through an online collaboration tool, and semi-weekly virtual classroom sessions (with presentations) held over the weekend. GROWING UNICORNS: SAPIENTNITRO’S CMTO UNIVERSITY RESEARCH
  17. 17. RESEARCHRESEARCH Sessions are taught by SapientNitro thought leaders across the globe, in- dustry and academic external experts, and by the participants themselves as their skills and knowledge are honed. Throughout the program, participants are assessed for progress, share feed- back with their peers, and receive per- sonalized coaching from the program faculty. The curriculum is designed and delivered in collaboration with Hyper Island, a leader in digital learning and executive training. Students must also complete an inde- pendent study project, the capstone experience of the CMTOu program. Similar to a thesis, the independent study demonstrates competency in a specific aspect of critical marketing technology as well as the opportunity to creatively communicate thinking. Intensive (4+ days, over weekend) E-meet (3 hours, Sunday, virtual) OCT JAN APR JUL FIRST INTERIM • Marketing Technology Breadth • Physical Computing • Marketing Theory SECOND INTERIM • Marketing Technology Depth • Individual Development Planning THIRD INTERIM • Independent Study • Work Emotional Intelligence • Marketing Theory FOURTH INTERIM • Complete Independent Study • External Conference Proposals • Plan for Influencing SapientNitro CHICAGO • Marketing Fundamentals for a Digital World • Group Dynamics • Influence Skills ATLANTA • Marketing Deep Dive, Culture, Practice • The Storyscaping Approach • Influence Skills LONDON • Authentic and Fearless Communication • Pitching and Story Practice • Design Aesthetics INDIA • Conference Thought Leadership Presentations • Evangelizing the CMTO Role Participants select a topic and then de- sign, plan, and complete this work with the assistance of internal and external advisors, including several industry luminaries. Each student is required to present in public at a conference held during the final intensive. This program also imparts the tools to ensure that the graduates continue to stay on top of what’s next – a critical skill in the digital world as many mar- keting technologies become obsolete and new ones rise in importance. Our clients reap the benefits through the work we produce, and our participants see the impact of their collective transformation throughout the program, both in the curriculum and on client work. Program Schedule The CMTOu is a year-long, internal leadership development program. The curriculum includes four intensive workshops, conducted in different SapientNitro locations around the globe, with “interim” periods between the workshops. FIGURE10
  18. 18. RESEARCH Conclusion The rise of the Chief Marketing Technologist is bridging the worlds of marketing and IT. In these data, we see a new picture emerging of the market- ing technologist. This first-ever analysis of the professional population gives us a remarkable view of six discrete archetypes, their skills, and where in the organization they sit. Importantly, we have a clear view of the skills and attitudinal gaps which employers must recognize when hiring and that the profession (and, ultimately, academia) must address. We can logically infer from the data that marketing technologists are cultivating their skills on the job. That’s great news. But, it should be deeply concerning to both marketing technologists and the brands that rely on them that the largest skill gaps are in areas of significant opportunity (e.g., targeting, CRM, and data) and high risk (e.g., information security, performance, and resiliency). Academia has yet to create programs for hybrid talent that must operate at the intersection of marketing and technology. The need for marketers who understand technology, data, and algorithms is as pressing and urgent as the need for technologists who have a grasp of marketing, advertising, and the art of growing customers. Against this backdrop, we believe it is critical for organizations to invest in ongoing training and skill development to grow marketing technology talent. As an agency, our clients often ask us to play advisory CMTO roles. To fulfill the demand, we founded our own CMTO University. We decided to challenge, rather than coddle, our best technologists. We go deep by teaching marketing, business, applied influence, and persuasion skills, modeled in the style of an executive MBA. For busines- ses that want to thrive, and increasingly those that want to survive, grooming leaders with relevant skills to operate with competence and confidence in the age of the customer is the single biggest investment we can make in our future. About the survey The survey was an online questionnaire distributed through two primary channels – chiefmartec.com and the 2014 Boston MarTech conference (August 18–20). Sur- vey responses were collected from August 15 to September 8, 2014. The majority (76 percent) of respondents were based in the U.S., while 24 percent were based outside the U.S. (mostly Europe and Canada). A total of 280 surveys were completed. The distribution of the sample appears to be representative of the marketing technology community, as defined by the blog and attendees from the 2014 Boston MarTech conference. SapientNitro sponsored the study and worked alongside Decision Analyst, a market research firm, to design and execute it.
  19. 19. SapientNitro® , part of Publicis.Sapient, is a new breed of agency redefining storytelling for an always-on world. We’re changing the way our clients engage today’s connected consumers by uniquely creating integrated, immersive stories across brand communications, digital engagement, and omnichannel commerce. We call it our Storyscaping® approach, where art and imagination meet the power and scale of systems thinking. SapientNitro’s unique combination of creative, brand, and technology expertise results in one global team collaborating across disciplines, perspectives, and continents to create game-changing success for our Global 1000 clients, such as Chrysler, Citi, The Coca-Cola Company, Lufthansa, Target, and Vodafone, in thirty-one cities across The Americas, Europe, and Asia-Pacific. For more information, visit www.sapientnitro.com. SapientNitro and Storyscaping are registered service marks of Sapient Corporation. COPYRIGHT 2015 SAPIENT CORPORATION. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. INSIGHTS WHERE TECHNOLOGY STORY MEET The Insights publication features the marketing intelligence, trend forecasts, and innovative recommendations of boundary-breaking thought leaders. The SapientNitro Insights app brings that provocative collection – now in its digital form – to your on-the-go fingertips. Download the full report at sapientnitro.com/insights and, for additional interactive and related content, download the SapientNitro Insights app. Hilding Anderson Director Research Insights, SapientNitro Washington, D.C. handerson@sapient.com Hilding is the Editor-in-Chief of Insights 2015, and a Di- rector of Research and Insights at SapientNitro. He helps set the thought leadership agenda across the agency, and advises global clients on emerging trends. Scott Tang Head of Global Consumer Industry Research, SapientNitro Chicago stang@sapient.com Scott leads a team of researchers that supports SapientNitro worldwide through secondary and quantitative analysis on topics regarding consumers, industries, and all things digital. Sheldon Monteiro Global Chief Technology Officer, SapientNitro Chicago smonteiro@sapient.com Sheldon leads global technology capabilities, engineering, quality, methods, devops, and tools. He sponsors and is a senior faculty member at SapientNitro’s CMTO University, an in-house executive development program to grow SapientNitro’s marketing technologists.

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