CMO, VP, and Directors: Demographics and Psychographics

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CMO, VP, and Directors: Demographics and Psychographics

The job responsibilities for a healthcare, corporate, and non-profit executive vary greatly. Marketing to any of these areas requires a strategic plan according to research.

Differences Betwen Corporate, Non-Profit, & Healthcare Executives

The Corporate Executive

  • Harvard Business Review conducted a study on what the corporate CEO actually does during a typical day. On average, they are working close to ten hours days, work almost 80% of their weekends, and average 62.5 hours per week on the job. 25% of this time is not scheduled, indicating how busy and hectic a day can be.
  • Their day is a busy one. 25% of their workday is spent on people and relationships, 16% on organization and culture, and 21% on strategy. They spend 72% of their time in meetings and only 28% of their time alone.
  • They value face time. 61% of their communications are face to face, while 24% is electronic, and 15% by phone and letter. How an executive spends their face time is a signal of what or who is important to them.
  • These executives want to learn how to manage their time more effectively. They feel that they should control their use of email and limit their involvement in routine activities like meeting to make the best use of their time.
  • The typical successful executive has sat down first thing and strategized their day. They have set goals for the day and prioritized what needs to be completed.

The Non-Profit Executive

  • A non-profit is not prioritizing profit, but instead prioritizes social causes or advocating for a particular point. Examples of nonprofit services often include assisting with basic human and environmental needs such as food, water, education, endangered species, forests and wildlife. Therefore, their success is not measured on profits, but results and accomplishing their mission.
  • They spend a good amount of their time seeking out potential donors, corporate sponsorships, crowdfunding, and government grants. They manage a workforce that relies heavily on volunteers and must train them accordingly as they are often the face of the non-profit.
  • An executive of a non-profit will market differently than a corporation will. Their audience is not as targeted as that of a for profit company. They are approaching a broad audience with a message about their product or service. They are also attempting to reach volunteers on a consistent basis with their marketing. This can be tricky with such a broad audience with a diverse set of interests and values.
  • The executive is normally directed by a board of directors that guide the organization. Their chief goal is not so much financial success, but balancing financial concerns along with furthering their message and projects. This makes their role as CEO a little different. They adopt a hands-on role in the day to day operations and less on strategic goal setting.
  • The culture within a non-profit is more community oriented, ans less about financial incentives. Employees are often asked to come up with answers for problems. In a for-profit setting, these initiatives usually have some type of monetary reward. In a non-profit, the reward is not monetary, but intrinsic to their goals.
  • Marketing is essential for the non-profit executive. Public relations, advertising, promotions, and fundraising are all important aspects.

The Healthcare Executive

  • The healthcare executive must be a juggler. They are not only managing the business aspect, but healthcare as well. They are dealing with tight profit margins, strict regulations, and a very diverse workforce. In addition, they must make sure that each employee has the training and support to do their very specific job successfully. Compared to other executives, their time is at a premium.
  • The CEO is responsible for almost every single aspect of the healthcare system they are employed by. A successful executive in the healthcare industry realizes quickly that networking and developing the correct relationships are essential parts of their job.
  • The increasing changes in reimbursement is a constant stressor. The only way they can survive is to combine forces, merge, and consolidate. New partnerships are always being sought out that make the healthcare institution a little more nimble. These partnerships have pulled the CEO or executive away from focusing on profits to focus on managing a very complex web of people and services, while always keeping the big picture in mind.
  • CEOs in the healthcare industry also need to be thought leaders, influencers and innovators. They need the ability to be open to the ideas, innovations and best practices that have proven their worth in other types of industries. New duties in their role require them to build and sustain relationships with stakeholders and leaders inside and outside of their industry.
  • The marketing executive is attempting to collaborate with other senior management to make sure the brand is organized and aligned. They are seeking out endorsements from patients to make their brand more approachable and attractive.

Pay Differences

  • The average non-profit CEO makes 25% less per year than corporate CEOs.
  • The heads of research, education, and rights groups make far more than those in human services and commnunity-based efforts.
  • For CEOs of non-profits, pay is higher in Washington, DC, followed by New York and Los Angeles.
  • When looking at the healthcare industry. They are the top earners when it comes to salary. For the third time in four years, chief executives in the healthcare field led the S&P 500 in terms of total compensation. The typical CEO in the industry made $16.1 million last year, which means half earned more than that, and half made less.

Perceptions of CEOs/Executives

  • A study completed by the University of Toronto discovered that facial features for leaders of non-profits were quite different from those of for-profit corporations. The study consisted of showing participants pictures of the faces of many CEOs and asking them to rate the pictures on dominance, likability, facial maturity, and trustworthiness, as well as leadership, age, attractiveness, and happiness. The researchers then grouped characteristics together, combining dominance and facial maturity into a score they called “power,” and grouping trustworthiness and likability into a score they labeled “warmth.” They found that the high-power crowd tended to raise less money than those that were perceived to be less powerful.
  • Pictures of for-profit CEOs were described as more powerful, whereas the non-profit CEOs were described as warm and fuzzy. This makes sense, as non-profit leaders must rely on their negotiating skills, and less on being authoritative to get things done. They usually excel in areas like persuasiveness, encouraging participation, sharing credit, teaming, and organizational sensitivity.
  • One of their biggest challenges is the transition from fee-for-service to value-based payments. Revenues are constantly on the decline, but wages, supply costs, and pharmaceutical costs are on the rise.
  • The perceptions of healthcare executives are being affected by the rising costs of healthcare, the lack of quality healthcare, and the huge compensation packages that their CEOs receive.

Marketing Executives & Decision Making

Content is King With Any Executive

  • You are dealing with experienced marketers that will tune out most traditional marketing messages. They are not interested in commercials or online ads. They are bombarded with marketing and have tuned out to attempts to grab their attentions. To add to the problems, they are not easy to get to. They have assistants and schedulers protecting their time. So, what can one do to get their attention?
  • Provide them with what they need. Give them relevant content.
  • Selling To The C-Suite is a book that came from interviewing hundreds of executives. They do not mind being contacted, but they want fresh new ideas. They do not want recycled ideas. They know these already. When they receive calls they want to be told about something they need that they will not get from people they already employ.
  • Make yourself and expert. Executives are open to speaking to people they perceive as experts, therefore content on a website should reflect that you are an expert and that you have the answers they need. Make white papers strategic to the clients you wish to market to.
  • A Quartz survey uncovered that they are not necessarily receiving the content they need. They want credible sources. They feel they do not receive enough information on thought leadership. They want proprietary content that indicates you know their industry backwards and forwards.
  • They are accessing large amounts of information on their mobile device while they are on the go. Therefore, make sure it is mobile friendly. 25% of executives say that they've purchased a product or service for their business directly from their mobile device. The same number of executives say they've used mobile to research purchases exceeding $100,000

Relationships Rule

  • According to a study by, the most effective techniques for generating B2B leads include inside sales, executive events, telemarketing and trade shows and conferences. These all involve person to person communications. These in person communications provide much better bonds than impersonal ones.
  • People do business with people, not emails. The human connection is important. It is best practice to schedule events and conferences that put you face to face with the people you want to market to.
  • When making this face to face contact do not try to sell right off the bat, instead be a consultant. Listen to their problems and offer up solutions.
  • Even though relationships rule, do not ignore their digital journey. The face to face will get you noticed and remembered, but 70% of their buying process will be digital.

Making Desicions

  • Key purchase decisions are often made by teams instead of an individual. This opens up your base to target easier individuals, rather than just the executive in charge.
  • Marketing executives have more data than they want on any given day. What they are lacking is insight and understanding. What does the information mean for them? How do they understand threats? Do they even have the time to solve the problem? These are the insights they crave.
  • If they have to educate you on their industry you have failed. Walk in the door knowing everything they need to know. Be transparent about how your business works and make it easy for them to evaluate if it will be a good fit.

Thinking Process

  • Most executives are concerned with issues that are either strategic, long-term, or financial. A project or pitch needs to check off one or more of these issues.
  • Know that your pitch aligns and supports one of their goals. What is the ROI? Projects must address how this makes their bottom line better.
  • A study from MIT Sloan Management Review and Think with Google found that decisions are ultimately coming down to intuition. The study found that 38% describe their organization as intuitive in its decision-making, compared to 27% who describe it as data-driven. (The remaining 35% say their organizations are equally data-driven and intuitive.) Another study on the topic found many business decision-makers saying it’s often necessary to rely on “gut feelings” when making decisions, and that soft factors should be valued as highly as hard factors.

An Executive's Thought on Cold Calls

  • "Returned from 4 days of vacation to 37 voicemails, of which 35 were vendors, and only 3 of whom I have an existing relationship with (to say nothing of the mountain of continuous vendor email). I understand it is a tough gig and you're doing your job, but you have got to find a better way. I simply do not have the 10-15 minutes you are requesting. Be creative, but do not cold call or email with a script and expect a response. And PLEASE do not ask me to share my road map so that you can better see where your solution may fit in that strategy.... that's a quick road to nowhere. "
  • With that being said, how do you get to these people? One CEO shared his thoughts. The only way someone is going to get to him is through an introduction from someone he trusts. He wants to see you building multiple relationships with stakeholders. He prefers you to not get too personal, just stick to business. Do not think your brand is the best and come across arrogant. Strive to not be just a vendor, but a trusted advisor, not one that will push the product even when it is not the best fit.

Marketing to Healtcare Marketing Executives

  • Their marketing department is most likely data driven and they are searching for metrics and performance indicators that align with their strategic plans. They are interested in anything that will help them get through these large amounts of data. They are most likely looking into answer that involve AI taking this information and identifying health risks, monitor consumer activity, and locate needs.
  • They are concerned about making sure their brand is contributing value to the healthcare institution and that everyone knows how to convey the brand image.
  • The marketing executive is spending a good amount of their time focusing on how to personalize experiences for their consumers. It is not a stretch to consider that they would also appreciate a personalized experience when dealing with marketers, rather than a generic message.
  • They are constant collaborators. They are working together to achieve goals all day long. Anything that makes this process smoother, better communication skills, better organization skills, will be an asset.