Aetna exec bridges the gap between marketing and technology worlds

In an effort to bridge the gap between the marketing and technology worlds, companies have begun to emphasize the role of chief marketing technologist (CMT).

Take Aetna, for instance. The insurer's CMT, Joseph Kurian, says the single biggest obstacle to overcome in order to form a relationship between the two entities is conflict, according to an article in the Customer Strategist Journal, a publication of the management consulting company Peppers & Rogers Group.

Kurian works to ensure leaders in the marketing space understand the marketing and technology hybrid known as MarTech. Most importantly, the bottom line is to bring value to Aetna customers while also serving the insurer's business goals.

As CMTs are no longer a rarity as they once were, Kurian says that "a CMT needs to be strategic in their planning process and understand the broader view of what needs to be done in the company." At the same time, he adds, "strategy is not enough. This role still has a great deal of proving to do to the rest of the organization."

The CMT position is an important one, Kurian notes. No matter how companies engage with their customers, technology plays a huge part in selling products. The traditional way of doing things is ill-suited for such an endeavour, he adds. 

The health insurance industry, as Kurian points out, is the perfect example of how companies need to transition away from a business-to-business model and instead focus on a business-to-consumer model. Now, insurers like Aetna must pay attention to the digital customer experience and how they can engage consumers in a positive way.

As the shift to consumer-centric healthcare speeds up, other insurers have worked to enhance their company's leadership development. Recently, Cigna realized the need to better connect its leaders with employees and external stakeholders--ultimately, the insurer wanted execs to approach conversations creatively while having the consumer in mind, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.

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