Do CMO’s finally understand and care about the science too?

Chief marketing officers unprepared to face the futureInteresting, but expected data from IBM’s Global CMO Study entitled “From Stretched to Strengthened: Insights from the Global Chief Marketing Officer Study” reveals a four (critical) areas that CMO’s aren’t prepared for.

Today’s customers can shop around the globe, find out more than ever before about the organizations they’re dealing with, and share their views with hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of fellow customers. Their expectations — be they consumers, citizens or business customers — are soaring. And they can make or break brands overnight.

The diagram to the left shows how little prepared the average CMOs is. (see a large version here). For example CMO’s are highly unprepared for the data explosion and growth of channels and (consumer) device choices. 

So how are chief marketing officers (CMOs) faring amid such turbulence?
IBM conducted face-to-face interviews with 1,734 CMOs, spanning 19 industries and 64 countries, to find out what they are doing to help their enterprises cope with the fundamental shifts transforming business and the world.

IBM’s interviews reveal that CMOs see four of these challenges as pervasive,universal game-changers:

  • the data explosion
  • social media
  • proliferation of channels and devices
  • shifting consumer demographics.

Additionally, most CMOs are struggling in one vital respect — providing the numbers that demonstrate a return on marketing investment (ROMI) for marketing. The most proactive CMOs are responding to these challenges by trying to understand individuals as well as markets. They are focusing on relationships,not just transactions. Outperformers are also committed to developing a clear “corporate character.”

In the course of IBM’s conversations with CMOs worldwide, an overwhelming consensus emerged. The vast majority of CMOs believe there are three key areas for improvement.

  • understand and deliver value to empowered
  • create lasting relationships with those customers;
  • and measure marketing’s contribution to the business in relevant,quantifiable terms.

Michael Leander Company take on this in brief
We aren’t surprised about the survey findings
. But knowing is one thing, dealing with the facts is something entirely different. For one it shall be interesting to see if we will get a new breed of CMOs. People with a greater understanding of and care of data.

CMOs need to understand that being great at developing and seeding social media marketing campaigns, for example, is a far cry away from achieving real, tangible Return on Marketing Investment. Saying “we care” means nothing if CMOs haven’t got the culture and systems in place to really deliver good to great customer experiences across all touch-points. To effectively manage consumers and business buyers requires the ability to manage individual relationships on a whole different level.

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