Research reveals top five expectations for the new CMO

More than half of global marketing leaders surveyed say they have greater responsibility for revenue growth and 61% say data acquisition is a top priority for 2014, according to new research by Deloitte and the ExactTarget Marketing Cloud, which is part of

The study, entitled, ‘Bridging the Digital Divide: How CMOs Can Rise to Meet Five Expanding Expectations’ identifies five key priorities for CMOs based on a survey of 228 global marketing leaders.

“Today’s CMO must constantly assess and adjust to a host of factors including consumer changes, channels, devices, competitors, brand and market share,” says Lee Hawksley, managing director of Salesforce ExactTarget Marketing Cloud, Australia.

“Many CMOs find themselves with one foot in branding, one in the post-digital world and one hand on a compass trying to figure out what’s next. The role of the new CMO has changed, they are no longer just ‘cost centre’, but vital asset owners, who are responsible for driving business growth.”

The report identified five expectations for CMOs:

Expectation 1: take on top-line growth

  • 53% of CMOs say with the growth of digital marketing, their team’s responsibilities include a greater focus on enabling revenue growth, and
  • 38% of CMOs say they have a larger technology budget to keep pace with the growth of digital marketing.


Expectation 2: own the customer experience

  • 38% of CMOs name an increased role in customer service as an area where the growth of digital marketing has challenged their teams, and
  • however, 23% of CMOs don’t feel adequately prepared to address an increased role in customer service.


Expectation 3: dig in to data-based insights

  • 61% say data acquisition is their top internal marketing priority for 2014, and
  • however, adding personnel with data and analytics knowledge is the number-one area (32%) where CMOs feel least prepared.


Expectation 4: operate in real time

  • 59% of CMOs named flexible and agile marketing processes as a top internal marketing priority, and
  • only 16% use web personalisation frequently today, while 50% plan to do so.


Expectation 5: master the metrics that matter

  • 53% of CMOs say ROI was their most important metric used to measure success, and
  • 52% of CMOs say the growth of digital marketing has led to the need for more qualified data and analytics personnel.


Frances Yu, director, Deloitte Consulting LLP adds, “The role of the CMO has expanded from brand steward to customer champion. CMOs play a key role in driving revenue growth. And, to deliver on those growth expectations, CMOs should chart their own path to provide answers to changing consumer demands, new channel adoption, upgrading technology strategies and marketing talent challenges.”


About the research:  ExactTarget Marketing Cloud and Deloitte conducted an online survey of 228 global marketing leaders. Survey respondents were limited to CMO or Head of Marketing positions reporting to a CEO, president or country/line of business head. Forty-two percent of respondents belonged to a company with more than $1 billion (US) in revenue, with 24% between $500 million (US) and $1 billion (US). The survey was conducted from October to December 2013.