A perceived lack of financial and business acumen is keeping CMOs out of key strategic decisions.
Given that few board members have active marketing experience, it’s critical for CMOs to demonstrate their impact and value in the boardroom. But it’s not just in the boardroom that perceptions need to be elevated. It’s also with their CEOs and C-suite colleagues, who may believe marketing is just about billboards and advertisements.
CMOs are often kept out of key strategic decisions due to a perceived lack of financial and business understanding. CMOs and the companies they work for suffer when they are unable to operate strategically or do not have a seat at the table. Instead of delivering the results they are capable of—improving predictable revenue, sales velocity, pipeline, and net retention, to name a few—they’re stuck with haphazard marketing activities.
As a result, many CMOs have rebranded themselves as Chief Market Officers. They shift focus to where they can have the biggest impact by dropping the “ing.” Let’s look at the three ways Chief Market Officers can set themselves apart:
Know everything there is to know about the market
This isn’t merely a collection of marketing insights. To make an impression in the boardroom, it is crucial to fully comprehend market research, analyst information, and consumer feedback. These kinds of insights are critical for overall corporate strategy, category design, and go-to-market strategy, but they can also help with day-to-day decisions.
The product and market alignment are the main elements driving success for high-growth organizations. These are market-related categories, not marketing-related categories.
Market insights are similar to bumpers in a bowling alley: even if one makes a mistake, the bumpers ensure that at least a few pins are knocked down. Market insights, when used as a guide, will result in some victories, regardless of the marketing techniques employed.
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Create meaningful customer experiences
Branding is more than just designing a logo. It’s how individuals interact with a company on a daily basis. Chief Market Officers can think big picture to improve those experiences and provide the kinds of results that are valuable to the executive team when they are acting as market experts.
To do so, CMOs should first gather insights on the buyer’s journey. The better they understand the customer experience, the easier it will be to optimize it and remove high-friction aspects. Second, customers should be the one to lead; one size does not fit all. Many marketers make the mistake of attempting to lead customers through their journeys and nurture tracks. The true buyer’s journey, however, is far less predictable and linear. They should take a wide lens to the consumer experience, instead.
Why is customer experience crucial? Because it has a direct impact on a company’s success: businesses that improve their customer experience see an increase in revenue.
Leverage market insights to boost revenue generation
Chief marketing officers maintain a laser-like focus on revenue. Playing small and selling the company short by focusing just on revenue attributed to the marketing team is a mistake.
To diagnose problems and allocate resources to maximize performance, a Chief Market Officer dissects the funnel for data on conversions, cycle times and average selling prices.
The move Chief Market Officer may appear insignificant, but it is significantly more than just a title change. It’s a shift in the way CMOs think, operate, and communicate. It’s also necessary if they wish to be taken seriously and have the impact they are supposed to have within a company.
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