CMO, Big Data & Analytics
It may surprise some of you that nearly 50% of searches I’ve conducted in the past nine months have been senior level appointments in insights and analytics for major organizations. The demand in our industry for senior level marketing talent with big data and strategy experience has increased exponentially in a very short time. Increasingly we’re seeing this trend in our client engagements, the research in our marketplace, and articles in the news media. To borrow a headline from one of these articles, “Big data is the future of marketing.”
The increasing power and decreasing cost of technology combined with the advent and adoption of digital data has altered the research and customer information model. Cheaper storage and more powerful processors meant data from a firm’s enterprise system could now be crunched on-demand, in a matter of minutes. Consumer behavior could now be tracked and monitored through their interactions and e-commerce purchases online. The rise of social networks and constant network access via mobile devices led to an explosion of user-generated content and a way for firms to measure consumer sentiment. The challenge very rapidly shifted from obtaining data sources to figuring out what to do with the terabytes of data a firm already had at its disposal.
Enter the new marketing practitioners of big data--individuals with advanced analytic capabilities that are highly skilled translating information to insights from multiple data sources. While organizations have had statistical and analytical resources in the past, there is a heightened need for strategic and marketing savvy leaders that can translate models, approaches and customer information management strategies into ‘English’ for senior management.
Moreover, firms need leaders who are able to build this capability in-house and have had previous experience doing so. These executive level decision makers are expected to translate the analysis and insight from their teams into operational strategy for the firm. With such a strategic emphasis placed on the role of big data in a firm’s strategy, it’s only a matter of time before individuals with the appropriate experience are recruited or promoted into the C-suite.