Brave New World Of Marketing

Now more than ever, operations management could be key to your company's success.

InformationWeek Staff, Contributor

September 12, 2003

2 Min Read

MarketingCentral's software focuses on resource management, especially the project-management component that includes scheduling and calendaring functions, marketing-project templates with pre-defined task lists, discussion forums, and workflow with a browser-based markup tool.

MarketingPilot provides low-cost, rapid implementation marketing-resource management. It has a basic content repository, multilevel project-management functionality, task-oriented workflow emphasizing tasks assigned to various marketing-campaign design participants, and marketing and accounting budget functionality for tracking all cost components.

MarketSoft offers marketing-resource-management, lead-management for sales and partners, referral-management, and cross-selling software aimed at multichannel campaigns executed by multiple business units. The MarketSoft DemandMore Projects and DemandMore Programs software emphasize the program and project-management element of marketing operations.

SmartPath's Marketing Resource Management Solution provides project-management functionality, including scheduling, calendaring, electronic project folders, budgeting, and resource management. Collaboration is encouraged by allowing team members to share electronic-project folders containing all pertinent project data, providing templates for budgets and bids that can be shared with external vendors, and enabling project tasks to be automatically allocated based upon process rules. (See "Marketing-Operations-Management Vendors" for more details on each product.)

Inevitably, other marketing-automation and customer-relationship-management vendors will need be forced to offer this functionality. As this market evolves, expect software to emphasize the development of out-of-the-box client interfaces tied to specific roles in the marketing process, as well as enhancements to collaboration features that will facilitate the development and approval of content for marketing campaigns. Finally, with the emphasis on strategic and financial planning, marketing-operations-management soft- ware will likely provide integration with the financial applications of enterprise resource planning vendors, as well as business-intelligence systems.

Meanwhile, marketing executives may wonder about the type of go-forward strategy that should be adopted. For now, the best approach is to be proactive and begin to establish the marketing operations requirements in your own organization, both for supporting the strategic goals of your business and for tracking resources and costs. As you complete requirements, you'll probably find that even more products in the market can meet your needs effectively.

DoculabsBill Chambers is a principal analyst, Gaurav Verma is a senior analyst, and Christine Klima is a technical editor with Doculabs, a technology research and consulting firm that helps organizations plan for, select, and optimize technology for their business strategies. They can be reached at 312-433-7793, [email protected], and

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