ValentinesDayOver the past month, we’ve been hearing a lot about the overlapping roles of the CMO and CIO as marketing shifts into the digital space and consumers expect relevant and personalized experiences across all touch points. With the changing market conditions, CMOs increasingly need the technical background to be able to analyze data and draw out insights to inform their marketing strategies. The IDC predicts that “Starting in 2013, after the CMO realizes that he/she does not have the skill sets in place for data analytics proficiency, 50 percent of new marketing hires will have technical backgrounds,” adding that the beginning of the year will see the CMO and CIO as peers but by the end of the year the roles will be cross-functional.

Below, you will find this month’s top articles discussing the increasing need for CMOs to gain technical backgrounds as marketing becomes more data intensive. We present them to you with the hope that they will inspire conversations, questions and feedback.

Five Years From Now, CMOs Will Spend More on IT Than CIOs Do,” Forbes – This contributed article by Lisa Arthur expands on Gartner’s recent prediction that by 2017, CMOs will actually be spending more on IT than CIOs will be, adding that marketing is now a key driver of IT purchasing. The article backs up the prediction with three main points: 1) As marketing shifts into the digital world, it is increasingly technology-based; 2) Effective marketing must leverage the power of big data; 3) Many marketing budgets are already seeing faster growth than IT budgets.

A New Reality Between the CMO and CIO,” ZDnet – Marketing is now inherently technical in nature, as CMOs are now expected to gather and analyze data and implement and leverage IT capabilities to produce unique and personalized cross-channel experiences. Previously, many of these tasks were reserved for the CIO and more technical departments. This piece by Dion Hinchcliffe, the Chief Strategy Officer at Dachis Group, explores the overlap between CMOs and their more technical counterparts and the resulting blur in corporate responsibility. The graphic imbedded into the article shows the shifting balance of responsibilities between the two roles.

The Secret to a Successful Relationship with Your CIO,” AdAge – This contributed piece by Nancy Costopulos, the CMO of the American Marketing Association, discusses the need for marketers to leverage analytics and big data to inform cross-channel marketing strategies. The article predicts that the CMO is rising as a technology power player, and as a result, there is a need for CMOs and their CIO counterparts to collaborate on their shared set of goals. Though the cross-functional role of the CMO and CIO is now evident, this article details the key elements that will make the CMO/CIO relationship work. These include: transparency, trust and reputation management.

CMOs: Are You A Next Generation Marketer?Forbes – This interview with Tim McDermott, the former CMO of the Philadelphia Eagles, discusses the skills and competencies that competitive CMOs will need to gain to remain relevant. Tim suggests that in order to evolve and stay competitive, CMOs need to expand their knowledge and skill set in six distinct areas: rewards and motivation of others; financial knowledge; IT/systems/digital knowledge; analytical/integrative thinking skills; influence and persuasion; and strategic thinking skills. “This rapid change in responsibility is requiring a re-birth of what it means to be a CMO,” Tim suggests.