Digital transformation at 165-year-old health insurance company Aetna doesn't happen overnight. But CMO David Edelman facilitates growth and transformation at the company by applying iterative, agile principles to evolve workflows and foster constant collaboration between teams. Edelman spoke with eMarketer’s Jillian Ryan about why and how he updated marketing processes to move the company forward as part of eMarketer’s May report, "The Modern Marketing Department 2018: Evolution Through Digital Transformation."
How important is it to transform marketing processes in a digital transformation?
For our transformation efforts to scale and for Aetna to see growth, there were processes that needed to change. For example, a marketing goal is to generate leads at scale. But that is for naught if we don’t have a process to deliver those leads to sales.
We needed better cross-functional collaboration between marketing and sales so that the sales team could act on those leads. We built internal processes that provided sales with more context about the leads and their past marketing touchpoints.
Building that workflow takes a lot of legwork out in the field—it's not all digital. A lot of it is about co-workers simply collaborating. Making the change requires really getting out there physically and working the new system.
Building that workflow takes a lot of legwork out in the field—it's not all digital.
Do you see resistance to new processes, and if so, how do you approach that?