Strategic Design | marketing & branding thoughts by Nick Rice

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CMO Top 10 List

In light of the previous post discussing CMO short tenures. From CMO magazine...

10. Defining the essence of the brand is something a CMO can't delegate.
Our opening speaker, Charlotte Beers, former under secretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs, spoke eloquently about the importance of brand and the CMO's role in nurturing it.

9. In uncertain times, people look for touchstones of trust. But trust cannot be bought; it must be earned. Dean Barrett, senior VP of global marketing for McDonald's, offered that McNugget in the context of the company's efforts to redefine its global brand.

8. The "CEO's CMO" has three primary traits: Know the value chain; be a disruptive innovator; and speak the CEO's language. Carter Cast, president of Wal-Mart's online business, explained that these qualities help set the great CMOs apart from the simply good ones.

7. The CMO also must be conversant in the language of IT. This call to action came from a speaker who oversees both marketing and IT: Tom O'Toole, Global Hyatt's senior VP of strategy and systems. As the distinctions between the two functions become increasingly arbitrary, O'Toole reasoned, it's critical that the CMO understand basic technology concepts.

6. But don't let technology drive your marketing programs. Both O'Toole and a panel that discussed emerging technology cautioned attendees that CMOs must use technology as an enabler, not as a solution to an ill-defined problem.

5. Do things before the bureaucracy inside your company kills them. Steve Hayden, the vice chairman of Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, provided this bit of agency wisdom during a case study with Silvia Lagnado, Dove's global brand director, on the Dove "Real Beauty" campaign. There was plenty of early resistance inside Unilever about the initiative, but the proponents pushed on, and the campaign was a rousing success.

4. Focus inside the box. To build a robust marketing organization, CMOs must invest in internal functions such as marketing operations and performance measurement, according to Rich Vancil, vice president of IDC's CMO Advisory Research service. Vancil was referring specifically to high-tech companies, but his message applies across all sectors.

3. Everything communicates—and everyone contributes to the success of a brand. Everyone in a company needs to be immersed in the brand message you're trying to convey. The need to believe in brand message so they can convey it naturally and effectively.

2. Innovation is a creative process that must involve all business units to be successful. Diane Gulyas, DuPont's chief marketing and sales officer, spoke in her closing keynote on the role that marketing and other functions play in this B2B giant's steady stream of innovation. Such creativity, she added, requires structure.

1. It's not what you say, it's what your customers hear. Beers set the tone for the conference with this comment during her opening keynote. A simple message, but one that CMOs often forget.

technorati tags > CMO, Top 10, marketing, VP, executive, business, branding

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