Five Minutes With: Jodie Sangster, GlobalDMA Chair, ADMA CEO

What are your biggest opportunities and challenges for the next 12-24 months?

The biggest opportunity now in marketing is the ability to operate in real-time with customers on a 1 to1 basis. We’ve been talking about it for years, but now it’s possible. The brands that win will be the ones who focus on customer experience and the pillars that surround it: using data, content, creativity and technology to their best ability to generate that 1 to 1 relationship.

The current challenge our industry faces is the burgeoning marketing technology landscape. There’s just too much martech out there. My members are confused about what technology to invest in and how it all fits together. As an industry, we need to simplify this and quickly.

What are some unmet needs in marketing technology landscape?

This is twofold: In Australia, we need more clarity around the marketing technology landscape. We really haven’t had a place to gather to learn about marketing technology in a vendor-neutral environment. In addition, many marketers feel their businesses lack a structure and the right skillset to enable the technology to be used to its fullest potential.

That’s why my team and I have developed a new event in Australia called techmix to teach marketers about the martech landscape. They’ll learn how the tech fits together, what works and what doesn’t, see demonstrations of tech in action and hear stories from brands who survived the implementation process.

What keeps your members up at night?

Three things:  first, that marketing is evolving so rapidly business executives feel they can’t keep up. Second is the lack of skills on the marketing team to get the most out of technology and also areas like analytics. Finally, it’s that cluttered martech landscape. A lot of CMOs tell me they don’t understand all the technology and yet they’re expected to have an informed opinion about it. That’s very difficult when a few years ago technology wasn’t part of their remit!

What social network do you anticipate accelerating growth in the next year?

My money is on Facebook because they are so innovative with their products and services. They are very clever in how they’re connecting businesses and consumers together through the Facebook platform. I also think LinkedIn is a Trojan horse that should be watched with interest.

What’s the hardest thing to educate members about?

That technology will not solve all their problems. It’s merely an enabler.

2015 will be all about:

2015 will be about learning how to cope with the technology by really getting to grips with figuring out how it all works. It will also be about unlocking the true value of data. Companies have the data and now they are looking to better derive insights from it so they can create better customer experiences and interactions.  This is where understanding the technology can help.

Jodie Sangster is the CEO of the Association for Data-driven Marketing and Advertising (ADMA) and the Institute of Analytics Professionals of Australia (IAPA). Jodie also chairs the GlobalDMA, a consortium of 27 marketing associations. She is based in Sydney.

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