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The State of Our Marketing Departments in 2013

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The marketing industry has gone through an evolution over the last decade. Just take a look at what job postings look like now, compared to what they looked like in the 1990s. Even the role of Chief Marketing Officers has changed and seems to be going one of two different directions in businesses, either phased out or growing into a more complex position than it used to be. Chief Marketing Officers are now required to be both strategic and operational. They must not only focus on consumers, but on business stakeholders to create links across businesses by aligning brand strategy and business strategy.

Marketing is not a stagnant industry. It used to be if you knew traditional marketing you could follow the same principles from businesses to business and see a great deal of success- this is not the case anymore. Marketing is ever-shifting and always evolving. We have to stay educated and knowledgable about the tools and strategies that are available. In the last few years the marketing industry has seen a rise in social media, big-data analytics, mobile marketing and inbound marketing.

We have the capabilities to review real-time data and information about our target markets, but our target markets have also become harder to reach. We have to be relevant in our marketing and we must be able to reach our customers where they are. Today's Chief Marketing Officers are required to not only understand, but do the following five things:

  • Understand and master all areas of digital media. Consumers are connected, but they are also distracted. We have to be "transmedia" in order to reach them.
  • Lead and understand attribution. You have to know marketing investments impact the company's bottom line. As marketers we are required to know exactly what works and why it works.
  • Trigger and cultivate customer influence by creating long-term brand advocates that will recommend you in the digital space.
  • Know the value of content. We are not just marketers, we are publishers and we must think like publishers. As marketers we must create content and content includes articles, graphics, and videos.
  • Mine customer data. We have the ability to capture data from our websites, social media channels and mobile applications. It's not enough to just capture the data. You also have to know how to read it and analyze it to increase your marketing and remarketing capabilities.

What does this mean for the state of marketing departments around the world? We will continue to see a rise in the following marketing positions both within agencies and businesses:

Chief Content Officer - The person in this position leads the content marketing initiatives for businesses. Content is the only way for a brand to be remembered and it's the job of this position to come up with the content that creates that memory. Content is marketing by exchanging value and being able to exchange that value on the customer's terms by identifying and using content opportunities.

Content Strategist - Content is becoming an asset for businesses. It has to be managed efficiently. Businesses are creating more content than ever before and it's the job of the content strategist to manage that ever-growing library of content.

Inbound Marketing Strategist - You will being to see this role top the list in marketing departments. This is the position that will assist with content creation, lead generation, online optimization and data analysis. With the growing importance on content and data these positions will be vital in businesses that really want to succeed in their marketing efforts. The Inbound Marketing specialist postion will replace the search engine optimization position, because you will see that role be folded into this position which is much more broader. This position will be responsible for content creation that is centered around technical and outreach-based strategies in marketing channels like organic search, social networks, and blogs. The results of the inbound marketing strategist will be measured using analytics and conversion optimization.

Social Media Managers - Social Media Managers will continue to manage, leverage, and grow the online presences of businesses by implementing strategies and tactics that improve the overall social media presence. In a research study done by HubSpot called 2012 State of Inbound Marketing 43% of B2B companies and 77% of B2C companies have acquired a customer Facebook, and 40% of B2B companies and 55% of B2C companies have acquired a customer through Twitter.

Marketing Operations Manager - Marketing Operations Managers serves as the glue of the marketing department. They are required to monitor, measure, and analyze the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and initiatives as they relate to overall company goals. They work closely with sales and manage the relationship and communication between marketing and sales. They assist in making projections on the quality of sales and marketing pipeline and work to find efficiencies that will help the company work better as a whole.

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