Customer engagement agency Rosetta, owned by French advertising giant Publicis Groupe, announced today its hiring of Joe Lozito as the agency’s new CTO. Rosetta’s former CTO Brian Lucotch left the company in February, and Rosetta is now filling the six month vacancy.
As CTO, Lozito will manage Rosetta’s Technology Practice—the basis of the agency’s content, commerce, customization, and device solutions—and oversee more than 400 technologists. He will also lead the development of Rosetta’s Innovation Labs, a think tank for customer engagement and commerce innovation.
Over the long term, Lozito wants to unify Rosetta’s domestic and international teams to create a consistent vision that describes what Rosetta does from a tech standpoint in a “succinct, cohesive way.”
Currently, the Rosetta teams work “in a way that is focused in specific locations—teams working with teams from a geographical standpoint [or] sometimes across geographies,” Lozito says. “We at least need a unifying vision that is then supported by all these different technology experts we have across the US and across the globe.”
To accomplish this, Lozito intends to streamline communication and collaboration between Rosetta’s national and international technologists.
“It’s difficult to have a deep software engineer and a frontend engineer rally around that same battle cry because they come from very different places,” Lozito says. “The frontend guy has a very creative visual eye. The backend guy is also creative, but he’s really into deep engineering and coding. They’re technologists, but they have different focuses on skills. I feel like I want to come in and get those folks to understand that they’re all working for this one Rosetta.”
This consistency is necessary in part because of the changing role technologists now play within marketing. A few years ago, they were primarily the executors of somebody else’s vision, Lozito says. Now, they’re part of the creative process from the very beginning. But the increased role of the technologist also creates new challenges: Lozito points out that marketing timelines are typically short whereas software development timelines are “long and rigorous.”
“Being able to squeeze and find out how you can be nimble and agile enough to do software development within a marketing timeline is always the biggest challenge we have,” Lozito says.
Before joining Rosetta, Lozito worked at Publicis-owned agency Digitas for six years, where he first served as Digitas’s technology group director and then served for two-and-a-half years as SVP of technology for North America.
At Rosetta, Lozito will report directly to its Chief Operating Officer Mark Taylor.