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The end of the dispensable CMO

The end of the dispensable CMO Peter Platt

Up until recently the lifespan of a CMO was 18-24 months, but things are starting to change. During her keynote presentation at the iMedia Agency Summit in Scottsdale, Arizona, Alicia Hatch, CMO of Deliotte Digital, shared insights on how the role of the CMO is changing and increasing their importance in the executive team.

As Hatch pointed out, the world is changing. "Branding is Everything" is no longer the rallying cry for the marketing department. In today's world, "Everything is Branding" -- from the thread count on the sheets at a hotel, to the way customer service responds to a call (a tweet, an email, a review) has an impact on your brand.

The definition of your brand has shifted to be led by public opinion, experience and interactions. Hatch pointed out that CMO's need to focus on all aspects of the brand, from "plumbing to poetry" and recognizing the fact that the value of a customer is much more than just the commercial value of your transactions, but also in the value of their publicly shared opinion. In fact, the CMO is no longer just a cost center but now can also be a revenue generation engine.

The CMO is now managing a complex world of in-house resources and a changing and evolving partner eco-system to deliver on all the requirements of their role today.

Hatch's list of important priorities for the CMO included:

Marketing ROI measurement and planning
It's not enough to report marketing metrics, the CMO needs to focus on the business impact. "Marketing metrics are fatigued; the executive team is looking for more insight," she said.

Data integration
CMO's are now taking on responsibility for data and are more involved in technology decisions, infrastructure and staffing.

Targeting and personalization
CMO's are responsible for the consumer experience and who the customer is. Simple demographics no longer apply, the CMO directs the voice of the brand in today's economy.

It's clear to see that the CMO of the future is becoming indispensable, tenure is growing, and there's a bright future ahead.

Peter is a 25+ year veteran of the agency business and has been involved in Internet marketing since the early 1990s. He was also one of the first 100 people certified in the Google AdWords program in 2004. Peter’s experience brings together a...

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