Positive new challenges for the CMOs of today

New tools, technologies, market dynamics and an expanding remit are increasing the pressure on chief marketing officers, but gearing them up for promotion. Includes interviews with TalkTalk, ERM, Direct Line and Deloitte.

Originally published in a special report in The Times on 05 September 2016.
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The role of the chief marketing officer (CMO), and indeed of marketing itself, has been under debate for years. Is it more art or more science? Does it warrant a seat at the top table or is it just a sales-support function? Is it a strategic role or is it ultimately just about advertising and communications, or colouring in, as many have put it? Marketing and its leaders have been suffering from a crisis of identity for years, but it seems that’s now coming to an end.

Consider the collision of forces hitting organisations over recent years. Rapid advancements in digital technology, fragmentation of channels and media, industry and category disruptions, an explosion of data, and growing political and economic turbulence. In the face of this perfect storm of uncertainty, the portfolio of capabilities and skillsets within a marketing function has had to expand significantly.

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