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24 July 2017

The role of IT in the marketing department

It is fair to say that in most companies, the ambitions of the IT department and those of the marketing department differ quite significantly.

While IT professionals are about building durable computer networks that are effective and cost efficient, marketing like to look beyond limitations in the pursuit of the next big thing.

As technology has begun to play a bigger role in the marketing function however; the importance of IT cannot be underestimated. So how can these two dissimilar styles interact with each other to maximise a company’s marketing potential, and where does IT fit into the marketing department?

Marketing uses a lot of IT systems such as Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Data Warehouses and Content Management Systems (CMS). These are often large scale projects and it is the responsibility of IT staff to support these marketing activities.

As mobile apps are becoming ever increasingly important to marketers, IT is required to implement the necessary software to support these activities. IT also has an important role to play in keeping abreast of changing technologies, alongside maintaining an awareness of how these might be of benefit to future marketing strategies. 

Merging traditional and online marketing strategies

In many large and small companies, traditional marketing and internet-based marketing are still seen as two separate activities. This is an incorrect assumption and any promotional activities outside the web should be run in conjunction with internet-based activities such as social media campaigns. The role of IT is largely an advisory one in ensuring that the marketing department are familiar with relevant apps and how they can be utilised to merge all aspects of the marketing strategy.

Other areas of marketing that requires IT to function include Big Data, Marketing Automation (including web personalisation and behavioural email marketing) and improving website design.

Content Marketing

In recent times the role of content marketing has increased in importance. It offers a great opportunity for a company to engage with customers and provide them with expert knowledge. As well as increasing traffic to the site, it also increases brand awareness and has SEO (search engine optimisation) benefits. All of this requires an IT department to incorporate new technologies – from calendaring and approvals to marketing automation and freelancer integration.    

While IT and marketing may quibble over what is possible and what isn’t, the benefits of the two working together are undisputed.

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