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Redefining Marketing: What it Means to be a Modern Marketer

Andrew Jones

Marketing has changed substantially in the past few decades. With the proliferation of CRM, ecommerce, cookies, loyalty programs, etc. marketers have more customer data than ever. And just in the past few years, the widespread adoption of social and mobile technologies has brought more complexity, yet also the potential for even greater insight into the customer journey.

The result of this goes beyond an update in marketing tactics, but a redefinition of marketing. Wikipedia tells us that, “Marketing is the process of communicating the value of a product or service to customers, for the purpose of selling that product or service.” Today this definition of marketing is dated and incomplete.

Modern Marketing is about more than just communicating value, but about building customer relationships based on the experiences we create for them. Customer (and prospect) interactions today are two-way, with individuals more empowered than ever. Those customers need to be reached with consistent, personal messages and experiences across channels and devices—but while research shows that companies are thinking about this, few know how.

Charlene and I recently spoke about this topic with a small group of Oracle customers in Napa. The slides from our presentation are below:

The Modern Marketer today has 3 primary objectives:

1. Provide consistent, exceptional, personal experiences
2. By leveraging the right customer data
3. Delivering the right message, at the right time, in the right channel

To which we added a fourth point at the end, because marketing today goes beyond just the marketing department:

4. Through an organization of Modern Marketers

In the presentation, we discuss what it takes to do this today and how it's being done. While the marketer still has to define the customer experience, technology is necessary to understand the customer and the mechanics of experience delivery. Oracle and others recognize that the needs of marketers are substantially changing. Seamlessly integrating multiple large acquisitions will be challenging, but it’s no less than the task CMOs are facing on their own.

Our colleague Brian Solis just published a report on Digital Transformation, which discusses many of these changes. What are you seeing as the new skills required of the Modern Marketer? How are their organizations supporting their development? What technology works--and what doesn't?