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6 key marketing ops predictions for 2022

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6 key marketing ops predictions for 2022


2021 was the breakout year for marketing operations. The marketing function that was once behind the scenes is now stepping onto center stage, largely driven by the need to manage digital and data, not to mention the heavy migration to a remote-first work environment. Companies were forced to make hard pivots in their marketing strategy, and they needed strong marketing operations muscle to do it. It was an absolute pleasure to see marketing operations come out of the woodwork, and I don’t see any signs of its emergence slowing down. 

What will next year, 2022 bring for marketing operations? 

Here are my key predictions. 

1. A rise in VP and director-level marketing ops roles

How many VP of marketing ops do you know? Marketing operations leadership roles tend to be in tech startups and firms in the marketing tech industry. But as the perception of marketing ops changes, larger, more established companies will bring on (or promote from within) marketing ops leaders to oversee this vital function.

A 2021 survey by BrandMaker showed that a top priority for CMOs is better tech stack integration, a key responsibility of the marketing ops function. As the need for marketing tech management skyrockets, 2022 will be the year more companies bring on marketing ops leadership. 

2. Formalized training for marketing ops

Companies are struggling to fill their high-paying marketing ops positions. Why? The demand for technically savvy marketers far outweighs the supply. There are two reasons for this: First, marketing ops has historically been considered “back-office work”, a perception that is rapidly changing. Second, there has been a large chasm of missing formal education and training when it comes to learning the core skills of marketing ops.

Digital marketing has only been recently added to college curricula around the world, and you would be hard-pressed to find any class that covers marketing operations. A quick Google search for “marketing operations training” offers few results, none of which are part of an accredited business degree program. While there have been many paid training options for specific marketing platforms such as marketing automation, there has been a dismal lack of education around marketing operations as an overall function. This is an area that’s ripe for disruption and will soon change in 2022.

3. Marketing ops will overtake advertising ops

What’s the latest with advertising operations? While advertising has always taken the largest portion of the marketing budget, the function itself has not been trendy as of late. Today’s hype in B2B focuses on topics like ABM, community-building, and product-led growth. While advertising will continue to be one of the most effective ways to get in front of an audience quickly, it needs to be strategically aligned with other parts of the marketing mix to drive true impact.

According to Statisa, global digital advertising spend will rise to $645.8 billion in 2025. As more advertising ops professionals begin pushing to exert more influence on the business and more marketers start seeing how ad ops fits into the overall marketing organization, a solid place of this function seems to be merged with marketing operations. 

4. Account-based marketing will be owned by marketing ops

For many organizations, account-based marketing has seen a steep rise and a sudden plateau. According to Google Trends, search volume for ABM peaked in August 2021 and almost halved in volume by November 2021. Marketers are quickly realizing that many of the principles behind ABM, such as alignment, targeting, and hyper-personalization, are really just good marketing best practices.

Rather than hire ABM leaders, marketing teams will soon see that marketing operations can smartly fit ABM as one of the many strategies that marketing employs throughout the year. In addition, marketing ops has the data and Martech ownership that can really bring ABM to life.

5. Marketing ops will become the first or second marketing hire

When have organizations historically brought on a marketing ops hire? It’s typically been an afterthought – a reactive last-ditch effort to try to fix chaotic data and processes. But more marketing leaders are starting to see that facilitating tech and data is the key to scaling and optimizing marketing. Even Dave Gerhardt, former Chief Brand Officer at Drift, commented that were he to start over, his first or second marketing hire would be an operations professional.

The marketing teams that have brought in MOPs early are the ones winning today. They are reaping the benefits of the prior investment in tech and data, and are now seeing marketing work in a strategic, orchestrated way. 

6. Data privacy will become a marketing ops core competency

While already a top priority for enterprise organizations, data privacy will take a front seat in 2022. According to Capgemini, 48% of CMOs state that better compliance with regulations is a top business priority. Many marketers are struggling to understand how to make their campaigns operationally compliant in a way that protects customer data, and ensures their marketing adheres to customer consent.

Marketing ops professionals with this knowledge will be sought after, and data privacy will become a core competency for ops teams across the globe.

The common thread

The common thread behind all the predictions? It’s that marketing operations will continue to grow in size, scope, and importance as long as the need for marketing data and technology grows. The companies and individuals that invest in developing that marketing ops muscle will see big dividends in 2022 and beyond. 

Which of the 2022 predictions do you think will come true? 

About The Author

Darrell is an award-winning marketer and Martech professional. He was named one of the top Martech Marketers to Follow in 2020, won the Fearless Marketer award in 2018, is a 2X Marketo Champion, and is a certified Salesforce Administrator. He has consulted for several Fortune 500 companies including General Electric and Abbott Laboratories and currently leads marketing operations at Amazon Web Services where he helps empower hundreds of marketers to build world-class customer experiences. Darrell is a frequent speaker at martech events, and regularly posts thought leadership content on Linkedin and Twitter.



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ActionIQ rebrands and launches CX Hub

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ActionIQ rebrands and launches CX Hub


Enterprise customer data platform ActionIQ has announced the launch of a new product, CX Hub. The company has also rebranded as AIQ. The CX Hub is designed as a set of modules offering self-service access to customer data, allowing users to build audiences and orchestrate experiences at scale.

After eight years of growth as a CDP serving B2C, media and other sectors, the changes represent a “new approach to our product and brand,” said CEO and co-founder Tasso Argyros in a release. The modular framework will ingest data from any source, integrate with any activation channel, and also allow components to be used with a third-party CDP.

The modules. CX Hub is comprised of four solutions:

  • Customer data platform.
  • Audience center.
  • Journey management.
  • Real-time CX.

The Hub is also designed to be accessible to business users with a friendly UI and extensive automation capabilities.


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Why we care. This is a significant development in the CDP space — a space that has been transforming rapidly, with many of the early established CDPs being acquired and ingested by more extensive suites such as digital experience platforms.

ActionIQ, one of the leading B2C CDPs, is now describing itself as “the leading CX solution.” It seems to be future-proofing itself by extending its capabilities across orchestration and execution channels, not by acquiring or building those solutions, but by seeking to provide modular integration between its (or a third-party’s) customer data management tool and orchestration and execution channels.

Sometimes we wonder how many independent, traditional CDPs will be left standing a year from now.

Read next: Deep changes in the CDP space


About The Author

Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space.

He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020.

Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.



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Old Navy to drop NFTs in July 4th promo update

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Old Navy to drop NFTs in July 4th promo update


Old Navy will update its yearly Fourth of July promotions by saluting the metaverse with an NFT drop, going live June 29.

In honor of the year they were founded, the retailer will release 1,994 common NFTs, each selling for $0.94. The NFTs will feature the iconic Magic the Dog and t include a promo code for customers to claim an Old Navy t-shirt at Old Navy locations or online.

“This launch is Old Navy’s first activation in web3 or with NFTs,” an Old Navy spokesperson told MarTech. “As a brand rooted in democratization and inclusivity, it was essential that we provide access and education for all with the launch of our first NFT collection. We want all our customers, whether they have experience with web3, to be able to learn and participate in this activation.”

Accessible and user-friendly. Any customer can participate by visiting a page off of Old Navy’s home site, where they’ll find step-by-step instructions.

There will also be an auction for a unique one-of-one NFT. All proceeds for the NFT and shirt sales go to Old Navy’s longtime charitable partner, Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

Additionally, 10% of NFT resales on the secondary market will also go to Boys & Girls Clubs.

Support. This activation is supported by Sweet, who’s played a major role in campaigns for other early NFT adopters like Burger King.

The Old Navy NFTs will be minted on the Tezos blockchain, known for its low carbon footprint.

“This is Old Navy’s first time playing in the web3 space, and we are using the launch of our first NFT collection to test and learn,” said Old Navy’s spokesperson. “We’re excited to enable our customers with a new way to engage with our iconic brand and hero offerings and look forward to exploring additional consumer activations in web3 in the future.”

Read next: 4 key strategies for NFT brand launches

Why we care. Macy’s also announced an NFT promotion timed to their fireworks show. This one will award one of 10,000 NFTs to those who join their Discord server.

Old Navy, in contrast, is keeping customers closer to their owned channels, and not funneling customers to Discord. Old Navy consumers who don’t have an NFT wallet can sign up through Sweet to purchase and bid on NFTs.

While Macy’s has done previous web3 promotions, this is Old Navy’s first. They’ve aligned a charity partner, brand tradition and concern for the environment with a solid first crack at crypto.


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About The Author

Chris Wood draws on over 15 years of reporting experience as a B2B editor and journalist. At DMN, he served as associate editor, offering original analysis on the evolving marketing tech landscape. He has interviewed leaders in tech and policy, from Canva CEO Melanie Perkins, to former Cisco CEO John Chambers, and Vivek Kundra, appointed by Barack Obama as the country’s first federal CIO. He is especially interested in how new technologies, including voice and blockchain, are disrupting the marketing world as we know it. In 2019, he moderated a panel on “innovation theater” at Fintech Inn, in Vilnius. In addition to his marketing-focused reporting in industry trades like Robotics Trends, Modern Brewery Age and AdNation News, Wood has also written for KIRKUS, and contributes fiction, criticism and poetry to several leading book blogs. He studied English at Fairfield University, and was born in Springfield, Massachusetts. He lives in New York.



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Are you still using spreadsheets to manage your work? Take our poll

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Are you still using spreadsheets to manage your work? Take our poll


Earlier this year, revenue orchestration platform LeanData released a report suggesting that lead management remains a “heavily manual” process. Based on a survey of more than 1,700 sales, marketing and operations professionals, the results showed that, despite all the talk of digital transformation, the number two challenge for revenue teams was too many manual processes and not enough automation (the number one challenge was insufficient pipeline).

LeanData, which partnered with Sales Hacker, Outreach and Heinz Marketing in conducting the survey, is interested in that result, of course, because lead management is precisely the process they offer to automate. We were struck by the contrast with Scott Brinker’s recent statement that we are arriving at a post-digital-transformation era: “(C)ompanies are no longer planning to become ‘digital.’ They are digital.”

And then we got the results of our 2022 MarTech Career and Salary Survey. Among the surprising nuggets to be mined from our findings was that 77% of respondents identify spreadsheets as the tool they spend most time (10 or more hours a week) working with. That doesn’t mean that spreadsheets are a marketer’s most important tool, but it does suggest that manual processes remain a key part of daily life for marketing managers and staff.

We wanted to extend the opportunity to all our readers — B2B, B2C, agencies — to give us a reality check on spreadsheet use. MarTech is marketing, we like to say, and certainly today’s marketing is fundamentally data-driven and digital. But is it too soon to say that marketers are working in a digital and largely automated environment?

Download the 2022 MarTech Career and Salary Survey here


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About The Author

Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space.

He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020.

Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.



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