Grow Your Marketing Department: 5 New Roles to Watch

By Adebisi Adewusi

In recent years, the structure of the marketing department has drastically changed. 2019 won’t be the exception

It wasn’t too long ago that marketing teams had no need for data scientists or chief marketing technologists. With the Age of the Customer and the fast-changing digital environment, everything changed. Marketing went from selling goods to creating value in a new, analytics-led world.

This shift in priorities created the need for specialized skill sets among hires. 33.8% of marketing leaders say the right talent is the most significant driver of organic growth.
To deliver exceptional customer experiences and increase customer loyalty, marketing teams will likely welcome several new types of members in 2019.

Check out these new roles to watch out for this year.

Chief Experience Officer

In 2018, many brands missed the mark on creating a positive customer experience. Nearly half of consumers say brands didn’t meet their expectations, and customer experience index scores showed CX flatlining for the third year in a row. This year, more brands will appoint chief experience officers who’ll own the entire process — from outreach, to retention, and beyond.

CXOs will understand customers’ needs and wants and use those insights to pinpoint problem spots along the journey, identify new business opportunities, and carry out strategies focused on customer satisfaction and increasing lifetime value. As CXOs lead the shift into a customer-centric business model, they must educate employees about their customers, the company vision, and their role in providing a satisfying CX.

Customer experience will be a do-or-die affair in 2019, and CXOs are the captains in charge.

IoT Officer

From beacons to automated checkout, retailers are investing in the Internet of Things (IoT) to create richer shopping experiences, reduce costs, and generate revenue. McKinsey estimates that IoT’s potential economic impact in retail environments will range from $410 billion to $1.2 trillion annually by 2025.


Consider how many data bytes IoT devices produce daily (5 quintillions). This growing mountain of data makes retailers using IoT a prime target for hackers, and it’s projected that by 2020, IoT will spark 25% of all cyber attacks.

In 2019, many IoT-connected brands will welcome an IoT officer to secure their customer data from hackers, shape marketing messaging around customer security, and improve the customer experience by optimizing and securing IoT-gathered data.

Chief Diversity Officer

In 2017, a Barkley and Futurecast report found that general audiences and young demographics in particularly favored ads that highlight diversity.


We don’t need another tone-deaf ad to prove that Millennials and Gen Z’ers don’t tolerate racism or cultural appropriation. The chief diversity officer (CDO) is responsible for ensuring that campaigns celebrate and respect the cultures represented in their campaigns. CDOs see the world from the consumer’s view, approve creatives, and offer perspectives that creative teams may not address.

Above all, their role centers on catering to inclusivity, as multicultural groups weigh in with a $3.2 trillion market share. Millennials want to feel understood — and nearly half will pay more for brands that they feel really speak to them.

With an understanding of cultural nuance and the importance of authenticity in diversity-themed campaigns, CDOs ensure that creative teams get multicultural messaging right, avoid cultural appropriation, and ultimately monitor whether brands authentically and respectfully connect with consumers and cultivate meaningful, lasting relationships.

In an increasingly diverse world, CDOs help marketers abandon cookie-cutter perspectives for more thoughtful, empathetic campaigns.

Machine Learning Engineer

80% of consumers are more likely to purchase from brands that offer personalized experiences. Following personalization’s impact on consumer behavior, engineers specializing in machine learning will discover a seat at the marketing table in 2019.

As 7 out of 10 consumers prefer content and ads tailored to their personal interests and shopping habits, machine learning engineers are responsible for creating algorithms and accessing data pipelines to deliver high impact, personalized recommendations at scale.


Machine learning engineers will analyze signals to anticipate customer needs in real time, reaching the right customer at the right moment with on-point messaging and within the most optimal context.

Other responsibilities include designing and building machine learning models and large-scale systems to predict users’ engagement and analyzing data in real-time to discover the most important customer journeys.

While machines won’t completely take over the marketing department anytime soon, machine learning engineers will help their team address issues by finding patterns in data sets and harnessing it for continued growth.

Brand Safety Officer

Following reoccurring episodes of ad misplacement on digital platforms such as YouTube and Facebook, brand safety is a hot topic in marketing. In 2017, 75% of brands reported experiencing at least one unsafe exposure in the preceding 12 months, and in 2018, YouTube saw major brand safety issues.


In 2018, 58% of advertising decision-makers reported feeling more concerned about brand safety than they were in 2017, paving the way for brand safety officers in 2019.

Brand safety officers will create strategy focused on protecting consumers and ensuring that their organizations advertise in a digital environment where content aligns with organizational image, values, and messaging. It’s an important role, considering 48% of consumers said they would boycott or rethink purchasing from a brand if it appeared next to offensive or concerning content.

It will be up to brand safety officers to educate other stakeholders — including marketers — on brand safety parameters such as whitelists, blacklists, negative keyword lists, and regulatory restrictions, while developing a protocol that encourages adherence to safety-related policies.

New Year, New Roles

This year will see the introduction of new roles across marketing departments. A few additional positions to look out for: director of freelancing (as brands outsource specialized work to freelancers) and voice developers to lead the voice movement overtaking the marketing industry. If you’re recruiting in 2019, adopt recruiting best practices, stay authentic, and clearly express your value proposition to attract top new talent for these developing roles.

Originally published at on February 23, 2019.




PostFunnel, by Optimove, covers the intersection of data, technology, design and innovation in retention marketing, helping practitioners to excel at their work

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Post Funnel

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PostFunnel, by Optimove, covers the intersection of data, technology, design and innovation in retention marketing, helping practitioners to excel at their work

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