Digital business is carving out a bigger and bigger place in the C-Level management. Proven with a quick glance at the backgrounds and titles occupying your own company’s C-Level Team.
If you need any more confirmation, then Korn Ferry’s Top 15 for 2015: The most in-demand C-level positions for the year ahead is a must read. It lists Chief Innovation Officer, Chief Cyber Security Officer and Chief Digital Officer among the top five most in-demand positions for 2015. Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) make the list as well.
In other words – data and technology are going to be all of our bosses before long. While the Chief Marketing Officer position is still firmly entrenched in the modern C-Suite, the position is rapidly evolving, and as the C-Suite becomes more digital, so too must the CMO.
11 Tips to Keep CMOs Relevant
Get Digital. Now.
Future CMO’s will still understand that marketing campaigns need to utilise digital channels and be underpinned by digital optimisation techniques, however it’s hard to overstate the scope of the shift to digital. For example, Gartner projects that by 2018 digital businesses will require half as many business process workers. While needing 500% more key digital business jobs, compared to traditional models. With these radical increases it will be completely impossible for CMOs to stay afloat without riding the proverbial high digital wave.
Why ROI Should Rule
The days of CMOs saying “Oh, the ROI on that campaign was just for Branding, it’s not that important” are gone. With smartphones, in-depth analytics and user-centric tracking ushering in an era of unprecedented measuring. The CMO of tomorrow (and of today) needs to be able to measure and to prove that campaigns are working. Running Marketing Campaigns without clear-cut ROI is a one-way track to zero.
Embracing Data Domination
Who doesn’t want to be data-driven? Data helps to optimise processes, maximise returns and allocate resources. Our Data-driven world, though, will soon give way to a data-dominated one. Data will no longer assist marketing campaigns, but instead will dominate them.
Teradata, anlaytics and data warehouse provider wrote “Real time relevance is moving to become table stakes & the quickest to move will win,” in its 2015 Global Data-Driven Marketing Survey. In other words, CMOs who see data not as seasoning, but as the entire meal, will be the ones getting ahead.
While digital advertising expenditures are expected to eclipse $160 billion this year – which is huge. It will still only account for 30% percent of total advertising spending according to Magna Global. In the next four years that number is projected to rise, but still only to 38% of total spending. Therefore the focus shouldn’t be ditching offline campaigns, but instead start incorporating data-dominated principles into your offline world.
Many experts are now hired in diverse team set ups, which is a very positive thing. However, this also means having to align those individual experts towards a joint goal – a company goal. In general, leaders/managers should always also be assistants for the team.
It’s important to note that in a digitally-oriented team your experts might even need stronger assistance because of their dedicated expertise in a specific technical field. Managing will become less important and assisting will become the new management. The more focus put on online and online business by your company, the more global the business will become; Core competencies, time zones, cultures. The number one task for a good CMO is the ability to bring everything together.
Education and Social
Ten years ago even the most progressive and data-driven CMO would have had no idea about so many things that we take for granted today … like Twitter. In 2005 Bitly didn’t exist, the iPhone was two years away. and Facebook was in its infancy focused specifically on college/university audience.
It’s impossible to forecast each and every evolution in digital marketing but it’s not impossible to stay up to date with the newest trends and if not anticipate what’s next – at least be at the forefront of adopting what’s next. That means staying current on the social trends like Twitter, LinkedIn and whatever platform appears next. You really don’t need to tweet your every thought or Instagram what you ate for lunch, but being present on social media will let you see what trends are developing in real time instead of after the fact.
It’s no secret that the definition of marketing continues to expand. Analytics, for instance, is now an essential element of marketing, as are web design, social media and so much more.
In order to micromanage all these trends, information and data a CMO would need at least 36 hours a day! That’s why Future CMOs will delegate, delegate, delegate. Delegating will increase efficiency and make your business scalable – Let the experts be experts.
It’s All About Perspective
Everyone has different skill sets and knowledge bases. For example people outside the Marketing team know different things than the CMO or the Marketing Executive. Obviously.
What isn’t always obvious to a lot of CMOs is that this external knowledge can mean a huge boon for the marketing team. When you bring external perspectives into the team you can ensure more “Eureka” moments … or at least “Maybe that could work” moments. Virtual, interdepartmental teams facilitate cross-pollination of ideas.
(Re)Connecting with the CTO
A new and exciting challenge is that the CMO will have more budget to spend on IT than the CTO himself/herself. While it may seem like a lot of money to play with remember that the CTO has more experience in picking the right ventor, tool or partner for the job. Make sure you collaborate, make friends and take advantage of his/her extensive knowledge and experience.
Listen to your Customers. Seriously.
A statement as old as data domination is new. Take notice because it’s more important than ever. Customers, or readers, or audience, or viewers, or whatever your target group looks like have infinite choices.
With that choice they have the power to influence others. They’re also active on social media and you can’t underestimate the power of negative marketing. Keep using data. Use analytics. Ensure you put your customers at the centre of what you do because if you don’t, you can be sure someone else will.
Breathe and Relax
The real truth is you can’t achieve everything in life. Not in your personal life, not at work – you just need to focus on the important stuff.
For CMOs the important stuff boils down to optimisation. Work out which factors you’re able to improve first, step by step and with smart decisions. Besides, even though the world seems to be spinning faster than ever, you will probably have more time to act than your predecessors. Another article by Gartner projects that by 2020 the life expectancy of people in the developed world will increase by a half-year. This is thanks to the widespread adoption of wireless health monitoring technology.