The introductory post to this piece can be found in this link: “Redefining Challenges of Todays CMO”
Today’s Chief Marketing Officers (and all marketing professionals as a whole) operate in a very demanding environment where more and more new skills are needed for them to succeed. Digital transformation efforts triggered major changes in traditionally siloed organizations and one of marketing’s most important share in this transformation is to cultivate an understanding of data driven practices through use of marketing and advertising technologies.
According to CMO Spend Survey 2018 – 2019 by Gartner although CMOs decrease their spending in labor, paid media and agencies, investment in marketing technology has surged to 29% of marketing budgets.
This year’s survey showed that, although the overall marketing budgets stayed calm and flat, the allocation of this budget has changed significantly. What’s more, the survey suggests that 29% of CMOs revealed they’re deploying either a social analytics platform or a lead management platform. Some key findings of the study can be find here.
As no audience journey is linear and all audience attention is fragmented today, we marketers need to hook on micro-moments to deliver our messages. In such an environment, tracking and putting meaning to every digital footprint of audiences and orchestrating the customer journey with a consistent “experience” becomes one of the critical jobs of marketers.
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Keeping in mind that 2/3 of advertising budgets are allocated to digital according to the same Gartner survey, leaving traditional channels at only 1/3, this enables CMOs to track audience digital footprints with the right tools and processes when in place.
Having said this, a new definition for data must be welcomed widely in the marketing community: “Data is not only a record in the CRM system (or even Excel), but when somebody implies data, it also includes all unstructured and anonymous data on digital behaviors, i.e. clicks, views, locations, etc.” So, today, it is crucial to start analyzing, understanding and categorizing anonymous digital asset visits and connect these behaviors into known leads and then to sales opportunities. Gartner’s “Hype Cycle for Digital Marketing and Advertising” may provide some significant point of view for all CMOs to take into account for planning their future investments.
So, today, it is not only about analytics, but also about initiating the journey through Data Management Platforms (DMP) and orchestrating the advertising channels, then tracking the digital asset visits, converting these visits into known leads, while orchestrating these leads’ engagement with the brand through known (email, SMS, push) & anonymous channels (advertising). Cross channel orchestration, lead management and lead nurturing & scoring should be the influential keywords in every CMOs agenda. This would lead to efficiencies in advertising budgets, prevent paying more “tech tax” for targeting every time you select a segment in big advertising platforms’ targeting panels, stay relevant in offers for the target segment, catch the micro moments, talk to the right person, at the right time, through the right channel and manage the leads’ full journey from anonymous visits to a closed sale.
This new blend of understanding prospective customer behaviors and efficiency in advertising through a conversion tracking approach is the heart of every CMOs role today. Data driven decision making can be achieved not only via CRM, but through all means of digital marketing, using technology as an enabler.
The biggest pitfall in this new era is to invest and await technology to do the job by itself. On the contrary, the CMO must invest in himself/herself and his/her team’s skillsets to understand and fulfill this journey. If the marketing leader cannot understand what’s going on in this domain, he/she’ll not be able to maximize the value out of this new age. Thus, not only the chief marketing officer, but also all new marketing professionals need to be data-driven and technology marvels.