Tuesday, May 30th, 2017 | 6 min read
The marketing industry is unrecognizable from what it was 20 years ago. Social media has leveled the playing field between customers and marketers, and it’s given way to an unprecedented variety of new platforms.
As a result, many CMOs are forced to play catch-up. They don’t just have to change their customer experience strategies; they also have to restructure their teams and rewire their technologies.
That’s why we released a new whitepaper showcasing how top organizations like IBM, Microsoft, Nasdaq, and LVMH build marketing strategies of the future. It combines original research and firsthand accounts from leading CMOs to uncover just how they survive – and thrive – in this brave new world of marketing. Here are five valuable insights these CMOs had to offer.
“Here’s the rub: every company is structured 1980s style. For decades, we’ve been building out complex processes and robust silos. But now we’re waking up to a new dawn in business – and we’re all realizing that we need to operate in a non-siloed way. Every company out there is undergoing digital transformation right now. But real transformation can’t just be a new piece of software. It has to be mindset transformation, organizational transformation, and technology transformation.”
—Grad Conn, General Manager and Chief Marketing Officer of Microsoft USA
The takeaway: There’s no quick fix for adapting to the digital transformation. If CMOs want their companies to succeed, they need to do a complete audit and overhaul of their structures and processes. Old processes used to put the brand first; new processes must focus on the customer.
“For us to be successful, we need to know what clients across our entire network think, feel, have issues with, and want more of. Then we can take out the subjective viewpoints and get aligned on delivering a great experience for our clients.”
—Jeremy Skule, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of Nasdaq
The takeaway: There’s no blanket solution for delivering superior customer experiences. Each customer has a unique history with your brand and a unique set of needs. CMOs must build strategies for listening to these customers, documenting their conversations, and following up with personalized interactions.
“Having a thoughtful approach to customer identification and customer profiling is critical. Moving forward, we need to first be thinking about how we continue to unlock insight and data. Second, how can we connect all the things we’re learning back to individual customers to form richer profiles? This is where AI and cognitive learning become super critical, because you can only make connections between number one and number two when you have systems that can cultivate all this information, find the right insights, and turn them into meaningful action.”
—Michelle Peluso, Chief Marketing Officer of IBM
The takeaway: CMOs must develop a unified view of each customer. To do this effectively, they’ll need to coordinate and communicate with departments across the organization. This way, sales, customer care, IT, and marketing will all have the data they need to build meaningful customer relationships.
“Part of my job is to be unapologetically customer-centric, which means constantly saying ‘I don’t really care how it used to be done. I don’t really care how hard it is to move IT systems from where they are today to where they need to be … In the current landscape, it is not acceptable that a young startup has better tools than you, or the local coffee shop has a better mechanism for payment than your store does.”
—Ian Rogers, Chief Digital Officer of LVMH
The takeaway: It’s time to join the new era of marketing technology. Throw out your old-hat systems and techniques, and acquire tools that will help you deliver value to each customer. Your technology should collect data from across touchpoints, build unique audience segments, and let you target the right people at just the right moment.
“What customers are saying on social is what they’re saying to the world. It’s a conversation that’s taking place about you – whether it be your brand or your product – and you’re not leading the conversation.”
—Doug Palmer, principal at Deloitte Consulting LLP
The takeaway: This digital transformation is happening with or without you. Customers now have the power to share their experiences with millions of people in real time. If you don’t start joining the conversation now, you won’t just let your customers lead the way; you’ll let your competitors take over as well.
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