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The 10 Capabilities CMOs Look for When it Comes to Creating a Modern Marketing Organization

Steve Olenski
Master Principal Sales Architect

A few weeks ago in London during Modern Marketing Experience Europe, we released some new research. Created in partnership with The CMO Club and penned by John Ellett, CEO, nFusion, the paper entitled The CMO Solution Guide For Building A Modern Marketing Organization looked to shed light on the proverbial trials and tribulations CMOs and marketing leaders the world over go through when it comes to building a modern marketing organization. 

As part of the research we interviewed over 20 marketing leaders of some of the biggest brands in the world. As part of the overall research we uncovered the following 10 capabilities that CMOs pay the most attention to when it comes modernizing their operations. 

1. Customer Insights

There is an increasing desire among CMOs to use documented customer decision journeys as foundational planning tools for marketing. Customer insights specialists must become adept at mining data, asking consumers new questions and seeing patterns of behavior that inform the development of the CDJ maps.

2. Digital Marketing

Creating digital experiences is now a central part of any marketing plan. This has shifted the need for digital marketing expertise to be contained in a center of excellence (COE) to having digital expertise ingrained in the skills portfolios of line marketing and brand managers.

3. Social Media

The unprecedented popularity of social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest over the past five years has had a significant impact on the marketing plans of most companies. As with other digital marketing activities mentioned above, there is a need to build the acumen for leveraging social media platforms within the broader marketing organization.

4. Integrated Engagement Planning

Creating seamless experiences for customers across all touch points has become an increasing challenge for marketers, as has developing plans that effectively incorporate emerging digital, social and data-driven capabilities. Brand managers at consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies who were well schooled in television-centered advertising need to broaden their expertise, and skill-enhancing initiatives are underway at many of those companies. Other organizations that have managed their marketing communications activities through siloed departments are beginning to structure new roles for integrated planning. 

5. Content Development

Marketers are learning that content that consumers and business decision makers find interesting, relevant or entertaining will be engaged with and shared more frequently than general messages broadcast at them. This has led to the rapid growth of content marketing and the investment in content creators.

6. Evaluative Analytics 

All CMOs want to get a better handle on how their investments are performing. By having marketing analysts in an independent marketing operations function, rare data science competencies can be leveraged across multiple brands and business units. These analysts can also bring a degree of autonomy from the program managers who have a vested interest making their activities look as good as possible.

7. Predictive Analytics 

Progressive marketers are not only using data to evaluate the past but to predict the future, to direct their actions and resources where they can have the biggest impact. Common scenarios include predicting those customers who are at risk of churning, identifying customers who are most likely to respond to a new product or a special offer and identifying which happy customers may be open to becoming vocal advocates.

8. Customer Data Management

In order to deliver personalized customer experiences that are synchronized across touch points, it is essential that all relevant information about a customer is connected and available for use in real time. Bringing all the appropriate data together securely while protecting privacy rights can be a major undertaking. It requires funding that spans business units, marketing and IT.

9. Marketing Technology Planning & Implementation

CMOs realize that they can’t simply wait for their IT partners to show up with a crystal ball and divine a solution. This has led to the appointment of a chief digital officer, a chief marketing technology officer or a director of marketing operations to lead martech planning and to work in collaboration with the company’s IT organization to implement new tools.

10. Innovation Planning

CMOs are finding they must dedicate talent to focus on “what’s next.” Marketing must also innovate at the executional level. This requires new methods for testing and learning, experimenting without fear of failure and adopting agile prototyping methodologies.

The bottom line in all of this and why this research is so valuable to CMOs is pressure from the board to deliver business results is mounting. Technology adoption by consumers is accelerating changes in their buying behavior and dramatically increasing their desire for more personalized experiences.

Download The CMO Solution Guide For Building A Modern Marketing Organization to learn from those just like you who are dealing with the same pressures you are. 

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