Executives and business users from all industries are embracing social, mobile and cloud technologies to enhance their day-to-day operations. Marketing technology specifically has experienced tremendous growth and innovation due to social media, mobile device usage and Web 2.0. Within the next five years according to Gartner, marketing will see CMOs spending more on new digital technology than CIOs.

As IT capabilities become more accessible to business users, marketing departments have shown they are ready and willing to adapt. What could be better than a real-time case study or demographic analysis tool? Marketing analysis from a logistical point of view is centrally about assessing data regarding the people who keep a business profitable.

Digital outreach and web monitoring are becoming central components for marketing operations. Tracking and monitoring technologies and the analytics tools for extracting insight from demographic and customer interaction data, require a certain level of technical knowledge. Without the IT functions, marketers cannot accurately assess digital marketing.

In order to prepare for the growth of digital marketing and IT tools that are central to their operation, CMOs and marketing teams are going to need IT knowledge to do their jobs.  Listed below are top technologies that marketers are harnessing to learn more about their customer base and make smarter business decisions:

  • Data Streaming and Application Data: Data streaming from Facebook and Twitter as well as application data from mobile devices, provides marketers with a wealth of data to mine and analyze. It once took weeks to conduct a study involving two dozen people regarding brand notoriety and like-ability  Now with Facebook powered market research tools like Wisdom, boasting a network of over 19 million people to work with, demographics can be analyzed at a moment’s notices.
  • Advanced Data Analytics:  How does a CMO assess which leads are directly coming from specific online outreach efforts? Through advanced data analytics and customer relationship management technologies, enterprises can connect and establish direct relationships with customers to better understand their feedback and consumer needs. Marketers are beginning to adopt data analytics applications and dashboards for business intelligence purposes. Adapting to the workflows associated with new digital marketing outreach such as social media, requires new tools and perspectives.
  • CMS and CRM Solutions:  Code free content management systems (CMS) and customer relationship management solutions (CRM) are specifically designed for marketing in the era of Web 2.0 and beyond. Especially in regards to social media, new social media management software solutions are able to quantify and manage social media outreach. It is now possible for instance, to attribute sales and leads directly to a set of interactions on a social media channel or blog backlink.
  • Web Design and Development:  Aesthetic layouts and functionality are central to how customers and potential clients interact with a business webpage. Marketers must heed the importance of a well-designed webpage that is intuitive and provides a seamless user experience. Webpages are often the packaging for products and services, without knowledge of mouse tracking software or web analytics tools for assessing traffic, marketers will not be able to gain insight from assessing webpages. Marketers should also be able to translate the technologies business value while collaborating with the IT team.
  • Marketing Attribution and Digital Breadcrumbs:  Demographic information as well as transaction and interaction data stemming from user actions on smart devices and online communities, provides real-time insights regarding marketing metrics and marketing attribution. The long sought after means to quantify social media and web marketing efforts is upon us. Meaning that leads and sales can be analyzed to detail which channel led customers to the point of sale, making it possible to shell out credit precisely where it is do.

In order to extract optimal value from such technologically advanced tools, marketers must understand and speak the IT language. Without an understanding of how the back-end processes work, digital marketers are essentially performing their duties with a hand tied behind their backs. If you plan on being a marketing professional in 2015 without any IT technical knowledge, you may want to adjust your career path.