Marketing is changing.
Why modern marketers need to think of the bigger picture to leave a lasting legacy.

If you attended the CleverTouch and Pardot workshop this week, you came away with one distinct message: the world of marketing is changing.

But how?

If done correctly, and using the right tools, it should be more strategic, joined-up, long-lasting, consistent, and intelligent. It should be less about one-off campaigns and ideas, and more about infrastructures that are built to last.

Both Autologic Diagnostics and Intersystems, CleverTouch and Pardot customers, talked about the need for the shift in marketers being seen as the “colouring in” department, to a team of business strategists encompassing a whole new skillset when compared to marketing specialists ten years ago. These skills now go as far as to include data scientists and forensics, accountants and lawyers, driven by a need to understand new technologies and the way people buy and the challenges this entails.

On the subject of marketing automation technology, CleverTouch founder Adam Sharp cited the question asked by so many senior managers within organisations: Why do we need MA if we have a CRM? The perfect marketing automation system should be foundation to building a long lasting marketing nurture campaign and journey, where CRM and targeted data forms the bedrock. An MA system focuses on user behaviour whereas the company's CRM is limited to the intelligence the company itself holds. “Actually,” as Adam said, “MA should have come around five years before CRM.

"One thing that hasn’t changed is the importance of prospect and customer data. Super precision marketing was a term used. “If you can’t see your customer, don’t go after them”, said Nick Eades, marketing director at Autologic Diagnostics. Also, how can you build the right content, if you don’t have the right view or understanding of your customer’s remit and issues?

Another issue that seemed to resonate with the audience was the fundamental misalignment between sales and marketing when it comes to the question: what is a lead? This has to be understood and qualified by both sales and marketing if the right expectations are to be created, and results achieved.

On a tactical level, for those embarking on a MA implementation, as many were at the event today, customers offered some key pointers to ensure optimum performance and success: share the process with the whole team, don’t be afraid to test, start simple, benchmark your results, get the data right, and phase the roll out.

Statistic pf the day came from David Klanac, director of Pardot EMEA. Summing up the benefits of marketing automation over email blasts he cited: relevant emails delivered by marketing automation drive 18 times more revenue than email blasts (Jupiter Research.) ‘Nuff said.

In summary, one of the biggest challenges of marketers clearly to come out was killing off the business’s "so what" response to marketing campaigns for good. To achieve this, a joined-up, consistent, and rolling campaign infrastructure needs to be built, with rich data and insights, which is also scalable in its nature and built to support business growth. It seems that although the technology has evolved, too often marketers are still seen as subservient service providers rather than influencers on business strategy. It’s time for marketing to understand and embrace the wider skill sets and technology to build future teams of business strategists that happen to be marketers too.