To continue my plug for the work of my colleague Peter Kim… In his report, “Reinventing the Marketing Organization,” Pete makes a key – and somewhat controversial – recommendation. That is: firms need to shift hard $$ from media to technology in order to build a platform that supports delivery, monitoring and management of the comprehensive customer experience. Although I never had the guts to come right out and say that marketers should shift media dollars to technology in order to build the platform, my own research has long centered on the development of such a platform that we call the Marketing Technology Backbone (here’s a link to a free reprint). In short, we define the Marketing Technology Backbone as:
A technology infrastructure that supports an integrated approach to marketing strategy, development, delivery, and measurement across the marketing mix.
Not a bad ideal, but certainly easier said than done! I’ve worked with many companies to develop this vision – both while with Forrester and in my prior life as a consultant – and I have to admit the path is full of mine fields. But, from my perspective, the biggest mines are rarely the technology itself. More often, I think it’s the organizational barriers that create the biggest stumbling blocks.