Chief Marketing Officer Topics of Interest
Popular topics that are of interest to today's chief marketing officers (CMOs) include the evolution of the marketing industry, technology and digital communications, internal collaboration, customer centricity, big data, online advertising, and social media.
POPULAR TOPICS OF INTEREST
- Edelman Intelligence, a global research and analytics consultancy firm, recently used natural language processing (NLP) to determine emerging patterns in media conversations. It analyzed media conversations involving 56 distinguished global CMOs to understand the topics that interest these executives the most.
- Based on this analysis, the topics that interest CMOs the most are as follows: industry evolution, technology and digital communications, internal collaboration, customer centricity, big data, online advertising, social media, storytelling, and collaboration with agencies.
- According to Edelman Intelligence, conversation topics can be classified into the following categories: data ecosystem (41%), communication management (38%), and internal and external collaboration (21%). Data ecosystem encompasses topics such as industry evolution, customer centricity, and big data, while communication management encompasses topics such as social media, digital communications, technology, and online advertising. Internal and external collaboration encompasses topics such as collaboration with internal teams and collaboration with external agencies.
TOPIC 1: INDUSTRY EVOLUTION
- Industry evolution represents 17% of CMO conversations.
- This topic covers how the marketing industry has evolved, how new data and insights have enabled this evolution, and what the current trends are.
- CMOs express interest in this topic likely because they recognize how important evolving market dynamics is. Just like other C-suite executives, CMOs know that evolving market dynamics, along with new distribution channels and changing customer needs, should be taken seriously. Most CMOs understand that, given the way the industry is transforming, they should consider shifting their focus "from products to experiences."
TOPIC 2: TECHNOLOGY AND DIGITAL COMMUNICATIONS
- Technology and digital communications represent 15% of CMO conversations.
- This topic covers the manner by which CMOs regard and utilize technological advances and digital communications.
- Interest in this topic is likely caused by the inevitable shift to digital forms of marketing and the emergence of various marketing technologies. Twenty-four percent of CMOs say they plan to focus on improving their digital marketing capabilities. Also, according to Chris Hummel, CMO of United Rentals, "there's so much technology out there for marketers that it's almost paralyzing."
- Brent Feldman, CMO of B.Good, says he spends a lot of time pondering technology and how it can enable brands to serve customers better.
- Technological investments are top of mind for 41% of CMOs. Also, #digital, #tech, and #digitaltransformation were three of the hashtags CMOs most commonly used in 2017.
TOPIC 3: INTERNAL COLLABORATION
- Internal collaboration represents 15% of CMO conversations.
- This topic covers how teams within an organization and members within a team collaborate and cooperate with each other, and how these relationships promote diversity.
- CMOs are interested in this topic for a couple of reasons. First, most of them believe that aligning and collaborating with others in the C-suite is important. In fact, 74% of CMOs indicate that, when they talk with other CMOs, aligning and collaborating with others in the C-suite is one of the discussion topics they find most pressing.
- Second, some CMOs view internal collaboration as a challenge. For example, Eric Reynolds, CMO of Clorox, says work structure or how work flows between teams, internal agencies, and external agencies is a pain point.
TOPIC 4: CUSTOMER CENTRICITY
- Customer centricity represents 14% of CMO conversations.
- This topic covers the value of hearing out customers and developing customer experiences that are both seamless and personalized.
- It appears CMOs are interested in topic because they recognize the growing importance of both understanding what customers what and listening to what customers say. They know that, in this age of social and digital media, it is imperative to work closely with customers.
- Twenty-six percent of CMOs intend to focus on unifying and uplifting the experience of customers across channels. Also, consumer centricity was one of the most-discussed topics among CMOs at the recently held Consumer Electronics Show (CES).
- Both Andrea Brimmer, CMO of Ally, and Brent Feldman, CMO of B.Good, indicate that they are focused on customer centricity.
TOPIC 5: BIG DATA
- Big data represents 10% of CMO conversations.
- This topic covers how important big data is and how best to collect and utilize big data.
- CMOs express interest in this topic likely because better collection and utilization of customer data are part of their top priorities. Twenty-six percent of CMOs report a focus on better customer data collection and utilization.
- According to Karen Jones, CMO of Ryder System, data remains a challenge. The amount of data brands have access to is growing, but brands are having a hard time mining through this data and determining which data is important.
TOPIC 6: ONLINE ADVERTISING
- Online advertising represents 9% of CMO conversations.
- This topic covers the development and use of online advertisements, plus the associated strategies and challenges.
- Interest in this topic appears to stem from the fact that, among CMOs, there is a growing consensus that they should take a tougher and more proactive stance on the matter of digital ad policing and brand safety. This is amid reports that ads were being displayed next to extremist or inappropriate content, and that personal details of consumers were being used without their consent.
TOPIC 7: SOCIAL MEDIA
- Social media represents 8% of CMO conversations.
- This topic covers the outlook for social media and the manner by which CMOs and brands utilize social media.
- This topic is of interest to CMOs because they recognize the way social media has transformed how people consume media, how they get entertainment, how they present themselves to the world, and how they connect with other people. According to Kristin Lemkau, CMO of JP Morgan Chase, "social media is the single biggest cultural change of our lifetime."
- #SocialMedia was one of the hashtags CMOs most commonly used in 2017.
- According to Riham El-Lakany, CMO of Freddie Mac Single Family Business, leveraging social media effectively and integrating social media with marketing strategies remain "a challenge and an opportunity."
To identify the topics that are of interest to today's CMOs, we consulted recently published sources that list the topics that are top of mind for CMOs, the priorities of CMOs, the points of discussion among CMOs, and the topics that emerge in media conversations involving CMOs. Articles released by Edelman Intelligence, Marketing Charts, The TradeDesk, Forbes, and the CMO Council were among the sources we examined. Of these articles, Edelman Intelligence's write-up about what is in the minds of CMOs was the source we found most useful. It readily lists the nine topics that CMOs find most interesting, and it readily identifies the percentage of CMO conversations that each of these topics represents. To explain further why these topics are of interest to CMOs, we presented additional insights from Chief Marketer, Raconteur, and IBM.