Q&A with Paige O'Neill, CMO at Sitecore

Paige O'Neill, CMO of Sitecore is an experienced, data-driven B2B marketer with enterprise and mid-market SaaS experience that ranges from Fortune 100 to late stage startups and stages in between. Her career graph uniquely combines extensive product marketing and PR / communications backgrounds resulting in an adeptness at creating brand stories and differentiated positioning. 

In this thought-provoking Q&A with MEDIA 7, Paige shares her journey into the field of marketing and her unrelenting zest for technology.

MEDIA 7: What inspired you to get into Marketing?
PAIGE O'NEILL:
 My journey started when I was a Ph.D. student at New York University, and I thought I was on the road to become a college professor, but one day I had an interview at a high-tech PR firm for a part time job. The enthusiasm for technology at that agency changed the course of my life. I felt enamored with everything I heard about “PR” – even though at the time I didn’t even know what it actually was – so I dropped out of the Ph.D. program and started a career working for IBM’s PR agency. I loved technology communications, but wanted to tackle messaging from a more technical perspective, which led to my interest in product marketing. The transition from technology public relations to a product marketing role wasn’t an easy one. It’s an uncommon trajectory and there wasn’t a precedent at the company I worked for at the time, so I had to build my own path. In the end, I hustled to prove that I could leverage the skills I learned through my communications-focused position and translate them to a more product-focused role. It took persistence to prove that point.

"Success for marketers is defined by the ability to deliver experiences that are aware and adaptive to individual customers’ specific needs, in a way that is seamless to the end-user."



M7: What is your favourite part of working at Sitecore?
PN:
I love working with organizations during times of change, and there’s a lot of that going on at Sitecore. We are in the midst of a complete marketing transformation at Sitecore that starts with our top-level messaging, augmenting those messages more towards the marketing department. We are doing this through a new visual identity and branding, an expansion of our demand generation function (which is scaling to map to new personas and go-to-market areas), and, finally, a complete digital transformation leveraging Sitecore’s technology to build a new version of our website and align our digital channels to the customer journey. It’s truly a thrill to be a part of.


"Consumers’ expectations outpace companies’ abilities; most organizations are still early in their efforts to transform the business for a digital world."



M7: What do you consider the biggest challenges for a CMO these days?
PN:
 Marketers have had to accept a heavy truth: it is up to consumers, not them, to decide when, where, and how to engage with their company. Success for marketers is defined by the ability to deliver experiences that are aware and adaptive to individual customers’ specific needs, in a way that is seamless to the end-user. In many cases, though, consumers’ expectations outpace companies’ abilities; most organizations are still early in their efforts to transform the business for a digital world. Getting there will take an investment in technology, and we’ll see marketers rely more on things like channel-agnostic services, machine learning capabilities, and data management systems. But marketers are also going to have to rethink their people and processes, so they have the right training and organizational design to make sure they can leverage the power of those technology investments.


"Marketers have to rethink their people and processes, so they have the right training and organizational design to make sure they can leverage the power of technology investments."



M7: The past year has seen Sitecore hiring four women in executive leadership roles. Is the gap between the number of men and women at Sitecore shrinking? How do you see it?
PN: 
Our CEO, Mark Frost, has always had a passion for diversity and bringing women into senior roles, and it’s been great to see him implement his proactive approach to inclusive hiring at Sitecore. As a result, diversity representation is definitely on the upswing - although we prefer to think of it as more than just a numbers game. Rather than having a quota for female hires, we focus on setting benchmarks that will ensure an equal representation of potential candidates for any position. We’re also taking a top down/bottom up approach to ensure that leadership is setting the right example, while every department is just as engaged in diversity practices.

M7: Knowing what you know now, what advice would you give your younger self?
PN: 
Speak up! Articulate your professional goals and don’t wait for someone to notice you and hope they will give you an opportunity. There’s no way for those around you to know what you want, if you don’t vocalize it. I think a lot of time women in particular think if they work hard, someone will notice them, they will earn that promotion or be selected for that exciting opportunity, but I know from personal experience that making your career ambitions known, can pay dividends.

ABOUT SITECORE

Sitecore is the global leader in digital experience management software that combines content management, commerce, and customer insights. The Sitecore Experience Cloud™ empowers marketers to deliver personalized content in real time and at scale across every channel—before, during, and after a sale. More than 5,200 brands––including American Express, Carnival Cruise Lines, Dow Chemical, and L’Oréal––have trusted Sitecore to deliver the personalized interactions that delight audiences, build loyalty, and drive revenue. Visit Sitecore to know more.

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The Modern Data Company Recognized in Gartner's Magic Quadrant for Data Integration

The Modern Data Company | January 23, 2024

The Modern Data Company, recognized for its expertise in developing and managing advanced data products, is delighted to announce its distinction as an honorable mention in Gartner's 'Magic Quadrant for Data Integration Tools,' powered by our leading product, DataOS. “This accolade underscores our commitment to productizing data and revolutionizing data management technologies. Our focus extends beyond traditional data management, guiding companies on their journey to effectively utilize data, realize tangible ROI on their data investments, and harness advanced technologies such as AI, ML, and Large Language Models (LLMs). This recognition is a testament to Modern Data’s alignment with the latest industry trends and our dedication to setting new standards in data integration and utilization.” – Srujan Akula, CEO of The Modern Data Company The inclusion in the Gartner report highlights The Modern Data Company's pivotal role in shaping the future of data integration. Our innovative approach, embodied in DataOS, enables businesses to navigate the complexities of data management, transforming data into a strategic asset. By simplifying data access and integration, we empower organizations to unlock the full potential of their data, driving insights and innovation without disruption. "Modern Data's recognition as an Honorable Mention in the Gartner MQ for Data Integration is a testament to the transformative impact their solutions have on businesses like ours. DataOS has been pivotal in allowing us to integrate multiple data sources, enabling our teams to have access to the data needed to make data driven decisions." – Emma Spight, SVP Technology, MIND 24-7 The Modern Data Company simplifies how organizations manage, access, and interact with data using its DataOS (data operating system) that unifies data silos, at scale. It provides ontology support, graph modeling, and a virtual data tier (e.g. a customer 360 model). From a technical point of view, it closes the gap from conceptual to physical data model. Users can define conceptually what they want and its software traverses and integrates data. DataOS provides a structured, repeatable approach to data integration that enhances agility and ensures high-quality outputs. This shift from traditional pipeline management to data products allows for more efficient data operations, as each 'product' is designed with a specific purpose and standardized interfaces, ensuring consistency across different uses and applications. With DataOS, businesses can expect a transformative impact on their data strategies, marked by increased efficiency and a robust framework for handling complex data ecosystems, allowing for more and faster iterations of conceptual models. About The Modern Data Company The Modern Data Company, with its flagship product DataOS, revolutionizes the creation of data products. DataOS® is engineered to build and manage comprehensive data products to foster data mesh adoption, propelling organizations towards a data-driven future. DataOS directly addresses key AI/ML and LLM challenges: ensuring quality data, scaling computational resources, and integrating seamlessly into business processes. In our commitment to provide open systems, we have created an open data developer platform specification that is gaining wide industry support.

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