Corporate life abounds in truisms. One of my favorites is, "if a project is to succeed, it needs an executive champion" Another is the need for Business and IT alignment.
Unfortunately, not all truisms are true in real life.
MarTech projects are too often plagued by the lack of alignment between Marketing and IT. Instead of anticipated success, you end up with Tandemonium, or a condition where chaos ensues because the stakeholders are pushing forward in different directions.
Figure 1: Are your MarTech projects suffering because Marketing and IT are not on the same page? Image adapted from the LDS media library.
Dissecting the Disconnect
There are several reasons why a disconnect can arise between Marketing and IT.
- There is some truth in the stereotype that IT is conservative while Marketing is more aggressive
- When pitching CMOs, vendors underemphasize (or avoid altogether) the technical complexity involved in MarTech projects
- Marketers also sometimes underestimate the level of integration or data requirements because the software is pitched as a SaaS solution.
Many enterprises think "If it's in the cloud, it must be simple."
Net result: You may underestimate the level of IT intervention and support required to make your MarTech initiative successful.
To clarify: I am not suggesting that IT should take the lead in marketing technology projects; the Marketing team should definitely head up the effort. But if you care about alignment do this first: bring IT on-board during early strategic decision making, then into technology selection stage, and throughout the project lifecycle.
The fusion of Marketing and IT resources is one of the twelve factors we assess in RSG's RealScore Effectiveness Framework. It can range from Marketing flying completely solo to Marketing and IT singing "We Are Family." Here's a snapshot of one of the key measurements
Figure 2: Assessing the level of Marketing and IT alignment in your organization. Source: RSG RealScore
Where do you and your teams stand on this? How do you measure compared to your industry peers? You can find out by taking the RealScore diagnostic.