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What Will CMOs Contend With In 2020?

4 minute read
Dom Nicastro avatar

Predictions can backfire. But it is the season for crafting ideas and thinking about the future. Today we skip over 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 and go right to 2020 — and what life will be like for chief marketing officers and marketing teams.

The CMO of 2020 will have art designers that focus on UX and create interactions through design. She will use historical blended data and apply it against predictive modeling for instantaneous presentation of content. She will realize that data will continue to be the form of power and currency for consumers.

Chris Chodnicki, co-founder and executive director of strategic partnerships and alliances for Baltimore-based marketing technology integrator R2i, shared that insight into the marketer's world of 2020. 

Leveraging No-Cost Tech

They’ll certainly be no shortage of technology for CMOs in four years. Ashu Garg of Foundation Capital predicted the MarTech industry will rake in $120 billion yearly by 2025. The International Data Corporation has the industry at about $20 billion now — and growing fast.

headshot of chris chodnicki
It’s not all about the paid marketing tech. CMOs and marketing teams must also be experts in leveraging no-cost distributed publishing technology platforms such as Periscope (the live video streaming app for iOS and Android), Instagram (400 million users according to Statista) and Snapchat (fifth richest company backed by venture capitalist valued at $1 billion or more, according to the Wall Street Journal). 

“Data will be the new form of power and currency for consumers,” Chodnicki said. “We are all becoming our own brand by creating, curating and publishing content, consuming media and social interactions. Add IoT, iBeacon technology and no-cost distributed publishing technology platforms such as Periscope, Instagram, and Snapchat and consumers have the means to barter for their lifestyle and buying data like never before.”

Organizations, Chodnicki said, need to understand the value in this data.

“It goes beyond,” he added, “trading financial incentives for loyalty. This will also create challenges for organizations.”

Changing Org Charts

What about the actual marketing organizational structure of the future? HubSpot in 2014 produced a series of typical marketing organizational charts, including this one, the “Inbound Org.”

graphic by software company hubspot showing what an "inbound" marketing organizational chart looks like

Chodnicki told CMSWire the future marketing org chart will evolve rapidly as the demand for faster experimentation, results and measurable attribution and ROI demand increases with the technology spend. He cited already-created roles like CDO (chief digital officer, a well-recognized, established role now), CSO (chief strategy officer), CXO (chief experience officer) and CIO (chief innovation officer).

Learning Opportunities

Maybe, as some say, there are too many of these titles

“Traditional technical workers are finding their way onto marketing teams as opposed to traditional IT teams,” said Chodnicki, citing roles like data scientists, analytics specialists and marketing solution architects. “Art directors will hire specialized designers that focus on UX and creating interactions through design — something we call form meets function. With the velocity that technology and consumer use occurs, marketing teams will be always pressed.”

Data, Data Everywhere

CMOs and marketers will grapple with data forever. No prediction on that’s going to shock the world.

“It’s a constant challenge for marketers to keep up,” Kevin Dodson wrote in November on CMSWire, “but one issue stands out as the biggest pain point — lack of insight into what’s working across it all. And that boils down to how we manage and use data.” 

The 2020 CMO will be dealing with yottabytes of data, according to Chodnicki — or a billion petabytes. (bite off all you want here).

“Today we are dealing with terabytes of multi-dimensional data and streams of feeds that are growing exponentially,” Chodnicki said. 

“This has created a whole new market for data visualization tools and highly advanced ways to blend data and apply algorithms, all of which are gaining more importance to the every-day marketing team. Companies will create their own unique algorithms and apply those real-time. Use of historical blended data will be applied against predictive modeling for instantaneous presentation of content.”

Title image by nimishgogri

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