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Gartner holds CMOs, CIOs accountable

The Magic Quadrant for Integrated Marketing Management by technology research firm Gartner, Inc. is more than just a schematic of vendor attributes. It aims to promote the consolidation of analytical, executional, and operational marketing to determine accountability and improve activity-based costing for campaign management marketing.

“When does one plus one equal three, not necessarily two?” asked Adam Sarner, Gartner research director. “It’s the integration story.”

Sarner coauthored the Magic Quadrant (MQ) along with Gartner research VP Kimberly Collins.  According to Sarner, the MQ comprises a list of criteria to identify leaders, challengers, visionaries, and niche players among vendors, and primarily analyzes companies’ completeness of vision and ability to execute on that vision. “It plots the vendors and helps define the market in terms of where they are [within the] axis points,” Sarner says.

The integration story Gartner is telling through the MQ is also one about marketing accountability. “The main reason why Gartner wants to put this together is for accountability. Marketers aren’t getting the budget for [technology integration] anymore,” Sarner says. “Marketing has to prove that they can close business just like salespeople.”

But accountability shouldn’t be on marketing alone. Sarner says CMOs have to team up with CIOs.

“As they’re sourcing technology, they also have to prove what they’re doing. Right now, the CIO gets a 1 to 2% budgeting increase a year…that’s like zero,” Sarner says. “Marketers have to prove that the budget they’re getting is having a measurable business outcome effect. Both sides need to do this, [and] both sides need each other to accomplish this.”

The need for those measurable benefits increases the importance of attribution. By using technology as a “calculator” for activity-based costing, Sarner says, marketers can measure where profits are flowing in and where they’re lacking.

“You can’t have a bunch of different marketing departments not coming together because you can’t measure that…You have to measure, you have to connect, you have to look at these things as a whole and not a separate solution,” Sarner says. “It’s down to the ones and zeroes. It’s recognizing the cost of every activity you do.”

Sarner says vendors are added and dropped from the Magic Quadrant every year depending on Gartner’s criteria; however he claims that the ones seeing the overall integrated picture are the ones that make the cut.

“I think the ones that are being added are recognizing that they need to bigger than…just an executional tool,” Sarner says. “To do this right, we need all three processes.”

The leaders in the 2012 Magic Quadrant for Integrated Marketing Management are IBM, SAP, SAS, and Teradata (Aprimo).

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