A CMO o chief marketing officer is the leader of an organization and its marketing strategy: an executive responsible for activities in an organization that have to do with creating, communicating and delivering offerings that have value to customers or business partners.
A CMO’s primary mission is to facilitate growth and increase sales by developing a comprehensive marketing plan that will promote brand recognition and help the organization gain a competitive advantage. To achieve their own objectives and effectively shape the public profile of their companies, CMOs must be exceptional leaders and assume the voice of the customer across the enterprise.
The role of the CMO has been much debated in recent years, especially in terms of what the responsibilities of that role are. The parameters of that position must be clearly defined when a CMO joins an organization, otherwise, there may be conflict between the CMO and CEO, which could result in lack of success for both.
The job of marketing is pretty straightforward. Marketing is selling a product or service on a large scale through advertising or other marketing techniques, with the goal of increasing revenue and, ideally, getting a strong return on investment
The CMO or chief marketing officer is the most important position in an organization, as he or she is largely responsible and accountable for the success of a company’s marketing efforts
One explanation as to why this is the case, as pointed out by Harvard Business Review, is that the lack of success of a chief marketing officer in an organization is due to something wrong with the relationship between the CEO and the CMO.
What is a CMO?
A CMO is the chief marketing officer of an organization. The definition of CMO can be described as the chief marketing officer of an organization, who leads the marketing department and is instrumental in creating and implementing that company’s marketing strategy.
The responsibilities of a CMO include strategy, analysis and management. Strategy is the creative process of being a CMO, this is where the full potential of the business is compiled into a marketing strategy aligned with the goals of the organization
CMO role and job description
The CMO’s job description can be discussed and often the CMO and CEO establish and agree on these parameters when the CMO joins the organization.
Typically, the CMO is in charge of all marketing communications, such as advertising and public relations. This area of authority is usually not compromised.
The CMO is the executive in charge of developing corporate advertising and brand strategy, as well as customer outreach. As the most senior marketing position in the organization, he or she oversees these functions across all product lines and geographies of the company.
Other areas for which the CMO may be responsible, but sometimes are not, include branding, pricing, market research and customer service
It is the CMO’s job:
- Research and evaluate the market and the company’s position in it
- Understand the company’s position in the marketplace, using traditional methods as well as newer technologies such as data analytics;
- Overseeing the development and placement of the creative elements that position the company in the marketplace
- Overseeing or collaborating with sales to convert marketing insights into sales
- Determine how and where the company should position itself in the future;
- Developing the strategy to move the organization to that future market position; and
- Execute that strategy.
- Leading the company’s public relations efforts, or working in conjunction with internal and external public relations teams to create a coordinated message
Customer service and customer communication is an important area, as it is crucial in business development. It is much cheaper to keep a customer and upsell them than it is to acquire a new customer. It has the best ROI of any marketing, overall. CMOs know this and that’s why their success in the CMO role starts with what the company already has. This is why having a good understanding of the company’s customer relationship management tool is crucial to maximizing marketing efforts.
The exact role and job description of the CMO will inevitably change depending on the organization and its needs. This is why communication between the CMO and CEO is so crucial, especially during the early days.
The CMO’s job is expected to produce top-line results, with marketing efforts increasing brand awareness, recognition and loyalty that will ultimately lead to increased sales.
As such, the CMO is expected to work closely with (or in some organizations even lead) the sales unit.
what qualifications should a CMO have?
Chief marketing officers generally have advanced degrees in both business and marketing. CMOs, who may also hold the title of vice president of sales and marketing, generally have at least a bachelor’s degree in marketing (although an MBA is often preferred, if not also required). They typically have at least a decade of marketing and/or advertising experience and several years of experience in a management position.
They may also have a strong background in information technology may also hold the position of chief marketing technology officer (CMT). CMOs are expected to oversee the company’s use of analytics platforms to understand customer preferences, priorities and patterns, particularly through user-generated media, and how that information can drive sales.
Of course, CMOs are expected to drive marketing campaigns and customer outreach through existing and emerging social networking sites as well as through traditional channels.
To that end, CMOs must be highly inquisitive and innovative, able to identify emerging technologies that could disrupt their business or industry and also be able to respond to that by leading their C-suite colleagues on how to reposition the company in light of that change
They are expected to have strong leadership skills, project development experience, excellent communication skills and a high level of business acumen.
The CMO must collaborate much more with their executive peers to keep pace, they must also be able to adapt and innovate, as technologies evolve and markets change in response.
In addition, the CMO role today requires a high level of technical aptitude to maximize tools and leverage social media platforms that are essential to marketing efforts. CMOs and their teams can leverage these technologies to reach and influence customers, position their products and challenge competitors at the same speed and scale as customers.
According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a CMO is $174,738 per year. While, according to PayScale, the total compensation for a CMO ranges from nearly $85,000 to approximately $315,000.
Defining salary must take into account the stock and bonuses that many CMOs enjoy. CMOs earn that money through an annual salary, individual bonuses, profit sharing and commissions.
The CMO’s level of experience and the geographic location of the position also influence compensation, as does the size of the organization.
An alternative that is becoming an increasingly popular option among organizations is the fractional CMO, a role where the company does not need a full-time, 40-hour-a-week CMO, but can bring in a 10-hour-a-week CMO to lead strategy and keep the team on track with its KPIs. This is a more viable alternative for companies that have less than $30 million per year in revenue
The CMO role is generally the same in various organizations and businesses. There are differences with respect to what the role will include, such as responsibilities and authority. It is safe to say that hiring a chief marketing officer is not cheap, but nothing of great value ever is
why has the CMO role gained prominence?
Technological advances in the 21st century have elevated the importance of the CMO in many organizations. The Internet, the ubiquity of mobile computing, the Internet of Things, analytics, artificial intelligence and social media platforms have created new ways to reach customers and understand their opinions about products, services and brands.
They have also given a new and much more prominent voice to consumers who can instantly broadcast their opinions to potentially thousands, if not millions, of people.
While the technology-driven changes of the past 20 years have elevated the CMO in many organizations, the position itself is on rocky ground in some respects.
Some companies are reshaping the job in response to those same technological forces, eliminating the CMO role or transforming it into jobs such as chief customer officer, chief experience officer, chief customer officer or chief digital officer. In some companies, the CMO exists alongside one of those other roles.