This five part series is designed for all those marketers around the world who are aspiring to lead a marketing function.
The objective of this series is to share insights, experiences and ideas for passionate marketers who want to grasp what it takes to be in charge of marketing, especially in these amazingly progressive times where marketing has attained a more strategic role.
The series could be seen to be oriented towards B2B, but many marketers see the lines with B2C blurring. So grab a coffee, put your feet up and read on.
A couple of weeks ago, Centaur Media plc, owner of Econsultancy and Marketing Week among other things, appointed Andria Vidler as the new CEO.
Andria’s previous roles include chief executive of EMI Music UK & Ireland and MD of Magic Radio and Capital Radio. So plenty of general management and leadership experience.
But she has also been Marketing and Business Development Director at BBC Sport, CMO at Bauer Media, and is a Council Member for the Marketing Group of Great Britain. So a marketer who has become CEO.
Once upon a time, when the internet was in its corporate infancy, a set of decisions were made that have affected the development of online retail ever since.
Here, i explain those decisions, and the rise of the tech-savvy CMO.
It is not so much a revolution but a rapid evolution and digital transformation.
The growth of digital media, the convergence of paid, owned and earned media practices and the rapid growth and adoption of mobile and video have fueled change in the way we work in 2013.
If you add to this equation the technological changes and innovation and the catalyst that is social media and content marketing it becomes apparent that dealing and adapting to change is a digital marketing necessity rather than the option that it used to be.
The rise of smartphones and tablets has ushered in a huge shift in how consumers engage with brands.
These changes have fundamentally altered the path to purchase, which used to be a linear process, into a much broader mix of browsing and discovery, with social recommendations and easier access to information driving the online buying process.
Most notably, this shift is changing the way IT and Marketing, two divisions that have often worked in silos, must operate in response.
Underscoring the importance of these changes, Gartner recently reported that future ecommerce success depends on improving the customer experience, with top CIOs now ranking it as the largest opportunity to implement technology in driving business innovation.
Even though it is impossible to have a conversation today with a CMO or other marketing leader that doesn’t address digital strategies and tactics, it is easy to forget that the term “digital marketing” did not even exist 10-15 years ago.
In the rush to drive likes and tweets, pins and favorites, ratings and reviews, marketers often overlook traditional tactics, which are still an effective way to motivate desired behaviors among consumers.
And as the land grab to gain digital mindshare continues to pick up steam, it is becoming ever more important to differentiate your brand by offering compelling solutions to consumers across all channels -- both digital and traditional.
Some people refer to the two sides of marketing as art & science but I prefer the term a colleague of mine established: magic & logic.
The term magic works for me as it is about creating an event, an interaction that is able to establish some form of emotional connection.
But logic is increasingly important to a brand as it strives to be consistent and successful in delivering to the needs and expectations of its customers at every point of interaction.
I believe a good marketer needs to be competent in both.
For our fifth JUMP interview, we had a chance to speak with Mike Sands, president and CEO of BrightTag, who will at the JUMP conference on January 30, 2013 in New York.
Before Mike Sands joined BrightTag, he was part of the founding team at Orbitz acting as both CMO and COO until they were acquired. In an earlier position, Sands was what he called a rebel at GM when he fought to spend 2% of the budget online, around the time with you could, in his words, literally buy the internet by getting banner ads on hotwire.com.
Unfortunately those early days are gone, and now sites are bogged down by miscellaneous code and third party script as marketers try to be smart about advertising online. This has brought about the new future of tag management including companies such as BrightTag who are trying to improve the safety, security and speed of ecommerce sites today.
This was the question a newly-appointed CMO asked me recently. It’s a tough question. Almost as tough as the “What does good look like?” question we get asked all the time in the realm of digital marketing and ecommerce where reliable benchmarks or accepted best practice are hard to come by.
The challenges and opportunities around the future of the marketing function are well known. Dealing with ‘big’ data and analytics, figuring out how social media fits in, integrated online and offline marketing, delivering a seamless customer experience across channels, working more closely with “IT”, moving from broadcast to dialogue, globalisation, innovation, personalisation, more agility, attracting and keeping the right talent.
But how do you create a marketing function best placed to embrace these challenges and opportunities? As ever, the answer is “it depends”. But rather than end with that consulting cop out, I wanted to draw out some of the insights we believe we at Econsultancy have observed.
That's CXO as in "Chief Experience Officer" though perhaps more often called Chief Customer Officer.
A quick check on LinkedIn shows very few CXOs outside of agencies though many more Chief Customer Officers.
But job title semantics aside, the key theme is 'customer experience'. Is it overhyped? Or is it the future of marketing?