Riding the wave

Riding the Marketing Automation Wave

Eloqua Product Manager, Egan Cheung, recently posted a great chart on the ‘It’s All About Revenue’ blog highlighting the growth of Eloqua and Marketing Automation skills among top managers.  It’s unclear whether this growth is caused by the promotion of people with Eloqua skills to management positions or simply the expansion of the Eloqua customer base.  Nonetheless, he posed the question ‘can Eloqua skills help get you promoted’?

In my experience the answer is ‘yes’.  I’ve been involved with Eloqua since early in my career and it has certainly allowed me rapidly grow and reach my goals.  Some of this is due to my capabilities as an individual and my ability to go days without sleep but I can’t deny that timing in the marketing automation industry lifecycle is a major factor in my growth.

As the Eloqua customer base continues to grow it creates demand for those with Eloqua skills.  At a micro level it may not require anyone with Eloqua skills to buy the system but it often takes many people to use it.  Existing employees are often trained on the platform but there are still many new positions opened when organizations start using Eloqua.

At this point in the journey it appears demand for Eloqua skills out-weights supply significantly.  A thriving Eloqua job market that continues to grow despite difficult economic times supports this.  The strong demand for skills is working to ‘pull’ qualified people up the career ladder to fill the demand instead of forcing them climb up on their own.  I have certainly experienced this pull and have witnessed many people pulled into higher-level positions (often with different companies) simply due to their Eloqua background.

Assuming Marketing Automation follows the typical industry lifecycle I expect the market will eventually plateau allowing supply and demand to reach equilibrium.  When this point is reached it will be harder for skilled individuals to move up quickly since there will be fewer new jobs and consistent competition for the existing jobs.  The CRM industry is a good example of this.  When CRM exploded, driven by Salesforce.com’s cloud model, it was almost impossible to find qualified people to administer the system.  Now that the supply of qualified people has somewhat caught up to the demand the job market has become much more ‘traditional’.

It’s entirely possible that the Marketing Automation industry will pivot before we hit the plateau and we’ll continue to enjoy the trip up.  Either way, it continues to be an exciting time in marketing with lots of opportunity.  Keep riding the wave!