Marketing takes over IT, sales takes over marketing

Reengineering Greener Grass

The start of this new quarter has proven to be a tipping point.

We’ve now heard of several leading enterprises that are undertaking a major restructuring of marketing, IT, and sales to better align themselves with the market forces of the 21st century. Under this new organizational structure — code-named “Greener Grass” at one Fortune 500 firm — the following changes are being implemented immediately:

Marketing will now officially take over IT. This shift was inevitable after the claim that by 2017 CMOs would spend more on technology than CIOs became so widespread that CIOs found it nearly unbearable to work with their wide-grinning CMO counterparts who kept repeating it again and again and again.

One CIO reportedly exclaimed, “Oh, for Pete’s sake — these are the people who still get confused when the flight attendants ask them to turn off their wireless transmitters!”

CMOs seem more giddy about the transition though, with one of them saying, “Wait, you mean I can have whatever SaaS-y tech things I want? Nobody will say no? Hoo-boy, where’s that super cool diagram with all those toys I can buy.”

At the same time, however, sales will now take over many of marketing’s previous responsibilities — most notably all social media. One SVP of Worldwide Sales remarked, “Salespeople mastered so-called social media marketing — you know, actually talking with people — 100 years before marketers discovered Twitter and Facebook. You want someone to like you? Follow you? Get an expense account.”

All mid-funnel marketing activities known as nurturing, as commonly executed through marketing automation systems, will also report into sales. Added that same SVP of sales, “As soon a couple of marketing operations people started making noises about getting paid commissions, we knew they had to be assimilated.”

But what will become of displaced CIOs? Perhaps a clever new opportunity.

At least several CIOs have banded together to launch a new venture, Big Data for Big Bucks LLC, that aims to be the largest service provider to CMOs. Stated one of the founders, “They’re going to have to spend that budget somewhere. Frankly, we’re the only ones who know how to make this stuff work. And with ‘big data‘ in our name, we’re pretty sure they’ll find us irresistible.”

No chief digital officers could be reached for comment, as they were all out playing golf with their CEOs.

Update: The analyst responsible for the original claim about CMOs eclipsing CIOs with their technology budgets, which precipitated all this reshuffling, has issued a statement: “Didn’t anyone get the joke that I released that announcement last April 1st?”

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