IBM research into mobile media and working partnerships criticised by its staff

Channel News

Company’s own staff claim research is marketing ploy

A survey by IBM that suggests IT and marketing departments need to work together to take advantage of mobile devices and social networks has been mocked by its employers.

The research by the company has ironically been called a “marketing ploy” by one of IBM’s marketing staff and a way to gain “recognition in the quiet season,” while IT workers have said the findings are “hardly groundbreaking.”

The comments come as the company released the results of its State of Marketing 2012, report, which found amongst marketing executives, 46 percent intended to use mobile Web sites and 45 percent were targeting mobile apps.

In the survey of 350 marketing professionals in a range of industries, more than half of respondents who listed their companies as high-performing, pointed to good relationships between marketing and IT departments.

The study noted that this was 10 percent higher than other companies, and that the high-performers were three times more likely to actively create a companywide customer Relevant Products/Services experience across channels.

However, these claims were shot down by an IT expert in a highly creative agency, who told ChannelBiz: “IT and marketing aren’t usually two departments we”d put together when talking about pairings in the workplace. We’re usually the ones that are called if a PC isn’t working or data has been lost- the fall guys- if you want to put it simply.

“However, with the creative teams suddenly waking up and realising tech and IT is a valuable part of a client’s ad and marketing needs- as well as their own- we’re suddenly flavour of the month.

“IBM’s research isn’t groundbreaking, nor is it something I think many companies will use as their bible, it’s just research which backs up the evolving world and introduces the mobile space. I imagine our team are slightly phased that they didn’t think of it for one of their clients,” he added.

One of IBM’s own marketing staff was also unsure of the company’s suggestions telling ChannelBiz: “Ironically I think this may be a marketing ploy by my employers to get recognition in the “quiet season.”

Anyone who works for IBM, and probably big organisations knows that putting these ideas in place are impossible. We have bigger things to think about in a climate such as this. However, what I will say is that our team have been encouraged to look at mobile ads- albeit with a small budget to do so.

“We don’t have time to liase with our IT teams who are usually busy with other projects, so I’m not sure how IBM expect us, and other companies to do this, especially since its never been traditional for our paths to cross.”

Others were however more complimentary with one marketing exec claiming: “Traditionally these two departments have had nothing to do with each other. However as technology and advertising changes, it seems that these departments have more in common than we thought.

“Creatives and those in the marketing industry are coming to rely on the expertise of those in IT to help them build apps and ads relevant to todays markets. I’m not a huge fan of IBM but I have to say it’s got a point.”

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