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Businesses that have a deep knowledge of their customers outperform their competition by 60 percent, according to recent industry research. Much of this responsibility rests with the Chief Marketing Officer.

The top attributes of a CMO – as identified by a survey of 1,500 chief executive officers – are communication, creativity and flexibility. How can you, as a CMO candidate, become an analytically driven communicator who creates a clear vision that engages both internal and external customers?

As you take your career to the next level, how can you ensure that an organization is the right fit for you?

CMOs drive value for their companies and these factors drive a CMO’s success:

A Collaborative Environment

A creative, flexible and cooperative environment is necessary for a CMO to drive innovation. The biggest obstacle to companies generating a return on their innovation investment is lack of collaboration within the organization, ineffective communication and lack of customer insight. The best CMOs work hand-in-hand with their senior leadership to avoid these pitfalls.

  • You will need to use internal data to develop new ways of reaching various customer segments. This requires that you have effective partnerships, not only with your CEO, but also with your CFO, CIO and COO. Your success is impacted by what they think about marketing. Ask to meet with each of them and delve into their experiences and attitudes. Determine whether the environment is marketing-friendly before you consider coming on board.
  • Investigate the marketing operation’s key spheres of activity. Make sure all the necessary components are in place and funded for success. Marketing in the digital age is automation connected to a CRM platform and a global database. Look carefully at a company’s digital marketing investment as you judge potential career opportunities.

A Commitment to Communication

An effective CMO listens actively in order to connect with internal and external customers. You need to be a strategic partner to your CEO based on your deep market knowledge. This is achieved via data mining that stimulates your organization to more readily embrace change. The end goal is to market products that accurately echo the voice of your customer.

  • Marketing is a communications center based on how a company can better serve customers from the outside in. This contrasts with the more traditional, linear model. Be sure there is understanding and agreement around your role in making it happen.

Clarity and Focus

Ensure total clarity around your role as CMO. Get a clear understanding from senior leaders regarding what your job is meant to be and how your performance will be assessed. One CEO may be focused on creative, while another emphasizes product pricing and placement. This illustrates the need for a thoughtful discussion about what a company values most, what the CMO role actually entails and what you personally expect.

  • Examine the company and its management culture in detail. Ask tough questions and determine if leadership and company philosophies are customer-centric. If the C-suite is not clearly customer oriented, then your chances of success may be at risk.

The marketing recruitment leaders at BrainWorks have deep expertise and can provide critical insights to advance your career. We can help you leverage your accomplishments and make the right match – more efficiently and successfully. To learn more, read our related posts or contact us today.


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