The Continued Rise of Marketing Operations

In April 2017 I wrote about my desire to connect with other Marketing Operations Professionals (MO Pros) and shared that I had created a Slack channel to join if others felt the same. What came of that was the community of MO Pros that many of you know today.  To my knowledge, MO Pros was...

In April 2017 I wrote about my desire to connect with other Marketing Operations Professionals (MO Pros) and shared that I had created a Slack channel to join if others felt the same.

What came of that was the community of MO Pros that many of you know today. 

To my knowledge, MO Pros was the first dedicated space to connect with fellow like-minded peers in Marketing Operations, regardless of your technical background or place of employment.

This community has been the highlight of my career. 

I get to watch our amazing community of passionate, tech-savvy, and strategic leaders and learners who rally together to support each other and elevate the profession in new ways. Every day, I am inspired by the knowledge being exchanged, the cumulative intelligence growing, and connections we are building.

We can all feel the tidal shift happening in our profession and the MarTech industry at large. It’s like a wave swell in the ocean, you can see it forming in the distance and you know … “that’s going to be a big one.” 🌊

It’s exhilarating!

As I recently mentioned, I decided to jump off a rocket ship 🚀 to focus on something I believe is really big! 

That something (as you likely guessed by now) is Marketing Operations and now, alongside the community, I’m going ALL IN.

The momentum of our industry is in motion and now it’s time to see just how big of a splash we can make!

1. With a true community of practice we’ll establish and shape the future of Marketing Operations.

The MO Pros has and always will be a Community of Practice, independent of any direct business or brand affiliation.

We will have a relentless focus on elevating the Marketing Operations Profession and its practitioners. 

Our community will iterate, improve, and build upon the amazing and inclusive community and its programs.

  • We will continue to be a safe place for MO Pros of all backgrounds – and I mean that both from a MarTech perspective and the human perspective 🏳️‍🌈.
  • We will celebrate diversity of thought – HT to my mentor M.H. Lines who champions diversity of thought within her organization.
  • We will continue to improve on what we’ve built:

But this just isn’t enough.

We’ve been underserved by our executives and misunderstood by our colleagues. 

Marketing Operations Professionals: It’s our time to shine.

It’s time for the MO Pro to be recognized as strategic thinkers and not just technical masters of MarTech.

I’m not the only one that feels this way – I know because it’s pervasive throughout the community:

“Acknowledge that [Marketing Operations] is central to overall business strategy and not just window dressing. Take it seriously. Not as marketing support and subordinate to core business.”

…more from this research coming soon btw!

So, now it’s up to all of us – the community of Marketing Operations Professionals to help elevate the profession and give it the visibility it deserves.

Wondering how we can do that together?

Managing Up: The Certified Marketing Operations Professional

I believe together we can define what it means to be a “Certified Marketing Operations Professional”. 

I have an idea on how to craft this technology-agnostic certification program, but I can’t do it alone (duh).

I’m looking for input from everyone on what it means to be a Certified Marketing Operations Professional.

Together, let’s craft a MOPs Certification that:

  • will set a baseline of industry knowledge
  • acts as a conduit to train the next generation of inclusive MO Pros
  • is a springboard to a seat at the executive table
  • perhaps most importantly, puts a crystal clear definition of the value you – the Marketing Operations Professional – bring to an organization 

Ready to contribute to this project?

Please contact Mike Rizzo directly on LinkedIn, email us at certified[at], join our community or join us free on Slack.

While we’ve been underserved by our executives and misunderstood by our colleagues, we have also been woefully underserved by MarTech at large.

This brings me to the second reason why I’m ALL IN with Marketing Operations…

2. Community-led Products & Services

Can you think of any tool that helps you do your job more efficiently or enables you to prove that you’re really good at maximizing the value of the MarTech stack?

It’s time we stop adding more tech to the “Marketing Stack” and use our collective 🧠 wisdom and creativity to build products that enable and support the MO Pro.

I believe our community can achieve this, and thought leaders I follow believe it too:


  • @dharmesh, CTO at HubSpot recently had this to share too:

With very few exceptions, the majority of products in the Marketing Automation and MarTech space have completely failed to build products and features for the Marketing Operations Professional. The industry just keeps giving us more tech to integrate, manage and maintain.

What we need next are tools that are purpose-built for MO Pros to: 

  • build centers of excellence that help us demonstrate ROI and earn us a seat at the proverbial “table” of leadership


  • help us easily and efficiently accomplish work that we NEVER have time for (hang on, I have another fire 🔥 to put out)


  • prove that we’re getting the most out of the technology we’re managing

With the help of some community members, I’ve been quietly cooking up a tool for MO Pros but we still need more feedback. 

If you’re fed up with tools that you have to manage and maintain and want tools that enable you to be successful as a Marketing Operations Pro, please connect with me, and let’s build something… together! 

Our global community is already shaping the future of Marketing Operations and none of what I’ve shared is possible without the support of the amazing MO Pros community, and my mentors/friends M.H. Lines, Naomi Liu, Michael Tucker, Michael Hartmann, Royce Rowan, Tyler Stouder, Jen Spencer, Melissa Miller, Maggie Butler, Nicole Periera, Maggie Paquette, and countless others. Thank you all!

Now, MO Pros, let’s get to work.

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