The application of Marketing Operations in marketing as a discipline is maturing and increasingly becoming a key part of larger enterprises and even smaller businesses. Some of the best practices of MarOps however, can be applied to smaller businesses, especially the ROI and financial management elements.

Building a MarOps role or team can help bring greater credibility across the organisation. Since time immemorial, marketing has often been seen as a money sink where people dress cool and get creative. That’s not marketing, that’s wasting company money. Serious marketers never have taken this approach. And today, marketing is increasingly employing analytics and even driving corporate metrics for growth.

Marketing is the more creative aspect of business. But the demand has grown to shift from being a cost centre to a revenue centre with an increased demand on quality analytics. For most marketers, this has resulted in applying right brain approaches where left brain approaches are needed.

This is where good Marketing Operations best practices and processes comes into play. The trick is to find someone with good marketing skills who also has a mindset for financial management, data management and critical thinking. That’s a tough mix. A MarOps team or person can run the P&L statements while understanding how and why marketing makes the spends it does. This can help the CMO or head of marketing to make better budget decisions, but also defend the budget and improve relations with the CFO.

A good MarOps person or team can also help refine and improve workflows so that those implementing the strategy have the tools to execute. Additionally, a MarOps approach can help foster a tighter relationship with the sales team, improving what is often a tense relationship that can lead to finger pointing and blame come results time.

Over time, a MarOps team can become the interface between the marketing department and other departments, improving budget sharing, data sharing and cross-functional initiatives.

The best practices and roles of MarOps teams will differ across industries and businesses, but well planned, can be a great stress reliever for the head of marketing.

Giles Crouch is a Chief Information Officer (CIO) and digital anthropologist. He uniquely ties his deep knowledge of technology, marketing, design thinking and digital anthropology and as a polymath he helps clients seeking digital advantage in today’s complex world. Giles' initial years in business were in marketing communications in the technology sector. He also co-founded the Ice Awards for creative in advertising in Atlantic Canada. Giles has been regularly interviewed by international news media on topics such as social media, blockchain, artificial intelligence and their impacts on society. He is a passionate practitioner of design thinking and digital anthropology (netnography). Giles is prolific writer and public speaker, lecturer and keynote. He has also completed over 300 netnographic research projects since 2009. His secondary engagement is as Group Publisher with HUM@NMedia Inc., a Canadian health and wellness focused media company.

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