Thursday, November 5, 2009

CMO turf wars?

This is my response to an article in today's Ad Age Daily by Scott Davis regarding the challenges of the modern CMO.

The CMO won't have clout until the entire organization realizes that the entire organization is on the hook for marketing outcomes today.

The quality of the product and the usage experience is exposed for the world to see thanks to peer-to-peer opinions shared online.

Same for the "social integrity" of a company. How an organization treats its customers, employees, community and environment are all on the radar.

People more and more rely on this type of information to make purchase decisions. What has traditionally been defined as "marketing" can't really blunt the effect of a black mark on (in the case of a resort destination) or indifference when a musician's guitar is smashed by luggage handlers (in the case of United).

Likewise, regularly delighting customers (and doing right by them when you screw-up) often has an exponentially positive impact on a brand power, sales and profits.

Even the most politically adept CMO can't succeed if his or her organization does not see the bigger picture. Bringing that reality in focus, not waging turf wars or power grabs is the role of the modern CMO.