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How to Transform into a Modern Marketing Department

Pity the modern CMO, out there every day trying to break down silos and align internal teams and external partners.

A new eMarketer report, “The Modern Marketing Department 2018: Evolution Through Digital Transformation,” recognizes that marketing departments are at the forefront of digital transformation, paving the way for the entire organization. CMOs and marketing leaders are in a prime position to determine what internal changes must be made to propel a transformation effort forward. And one of the most challenging tasks is aligning outside partners with how your team works.

The ecosystem of third-party partners is only getting more complex as technology proliferates: creative, media, digital, research, communications, management consulting firms, data partners and marketing/advertising technology vendors.

With so much choice, CMOs worldwide outsource a good number of marketing services, according to Newbase’s January 2018 survey.

In some cases, outside partners, especially management consulting firms, guide marketers through an actual transformation. “Agencies can come in as partners in digital transformation efforts,” said Vicki Godfrey, senior vice president of integrated marketing at Dun & Bradstreet.

Ad agency Huge works with many clients to train those clients’ workforce on how to use the systems that the agency sets up for their businesses. That onboarding is done in multiple stages, according to Thomas Prommer, Huge's managing director of technology. This training enables clients to work together with the agency in what Prommer called “co-creation.”

However, it also points to the evolving needs of marketers in their relationships with third parties. It is less about the agency “dictating about how things are going to be built," Prommer said. Rather “organizations understand that to be successful, it is no longer sufficient to rely on external help.”

In the latest episode of "Behind the Numbers," eMarketer analyst, and author of this new report, Jillian Ryan talks about how CMOs and marketing leaders are in a prime position to determine what internal changes must be made to propel a transformation effort forward.