As a CMO (Chief Marketing Officer), you find yourself on an ever-changing battlefield every day. Novice or expert, you have a tough gig. It is imperative that you have the best practices and tools to ensure you
But how does one measure success? One important way is enterprise value change. Let’s look at the enterprise value formula to start:
Enterprise Value = Market Capitalization (total stock value) + total debt – (cash & cash equivalents)
By now, you must be asking: how do I
As CMO, you are the first line of defence for your company. You are shaping the perception the public has of your business. You must understand that you are running an engine for sales and company value growth day in and out. It is not enough to put your head down and work hard alone. You have to marshal people and platforms, while putting together a great plan, to succeed.
We have combed the internet and digested a lot of research so you don’t have to. Continue on for a list of a great places to start, how to create goals, and more.
There is No “I” in Team
No matter how much work you put in, if you are not marshaling the strengths of your team you are likely to lose the battle. Your marketing efforts can and will intersect with other priorities within your company.
Make your fellow C-suite’s goals your own. Your CFO (Chief Financial Officer) & CIO (Chief Information Officer), especially, will thank you for it. But, do not limit yourself to working with those two of your counterparts.
For example: your CFO controls your budget. Embrace your CFO and make sure that you can show your work. Find out how your CFO measures success and ensure they see yours.
Additionally, it is common for CMOs with skin in the game to receive as much as 20% higher than those that do not. Own part of the profit and loss responsibility for greater accountability. Your budget will increase with your responsibility.
While working with the CFO was a great start, wrangle in your CIO for even greater success. Work with your CIO on your company’s technology spend. Aim to improve the customer experience and enhance the brand and you will up your chances of success.
Don’t forget to look to other forward-facing departments as well. Sales, support, and service can all be valuable in your efforts. Improve and streamline customer experiences and operations with them to increase value.
Know Your Value Drivers
Once you have sat down with your C-suite, the marketing team, and other department heads, it is time to build your plan. Your goals must highlight what makes your business different than your competitors.
Your ultimate goal is to create value for customers both now and in the future. By creating lasting value and staying relevant in your customers’ mind, you will have won the day.
Take a hard look at your team: do you have the skills in place to pull off your marketing strategy? Do you have the right platforms, both in-house and out, in the digital world?
Does your marketing strategy allow for your cost of customer acquisition to decrease over time? As you build out your pipeline, and test for success, you should find a better way to reach and hold on to your customers.
You must address the above questions before you build your final marketing strategy. This honest look will allow you to reason what you can achieve with your current tools.
If you find that you don’t have what you need, your strategy will need refining. Better yet: find the skilled help and platforms you need and buy them.
Build Your Marketing Strategy
Building a marketing strategy always boils down to something like this:
- Know your target customer
- Decide how to reach them
- Break down your sales funnel
- Have defined goals and chase them down
A shotgun approach to marketing never works as you cannot market all products to all people all the time. Pick a target customer market and drill down to know everything there is about who wants to buy your service.
After you have educated yourself on your customer, decide which way you wish to reach them. Know the demographics of the social media, data driven, and more platforms you are working. You have to make sure that you use the right tool for the job.
Every sales funnel follows the AIDA format: Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action. Map out your customer’s journey with this format in mind. You want the process smooth and easy for anyone entering your funnel.
Having SMART marketing objectives is a must; you can find out more about SMART here. Define your objectives using this criteria for maximum results.
When you build your marketing strategy, you want to ensure it can handle some tough analysis. A great list of questions, like these, will allow you to really get the best value for your work.
Start With Short-Term Marketing Tactics
Your plan should aim to be long-term. But do not discount the many short-term strategies you can use to boost your success. Short-term marketing strategies create temporary boosts to traffic.
Why are they valuable?
If you are a startup business, have a new service or product, or if the previous strategy was sparse or nonexistent — you need to get the process moving. The short-term boosts to your flow will let you and your team see some measurable success to build on.
Some great examples of short-term tactics are:
- Run a reduced pricing promotion
- Offer a contest (works especially well with social media channels)
- Offer a group discount or deal
- Take advantage of pay-per-click (PPC) advertising
- Display your product or service at a trade show
- Start up an email blast or newsletter
Of course, these are just some examples. You have to look at all of the available tactics out to determine your best path forward. You can also look for a partner to help you craft an aggressive start to your efforts.
Once you have your initial strategy mapped out, make sure you share it with your C-suite and other teams. These strategies create ways for you to measure your approaches. Make sure you can leverage the metrics with your team to further your long-term plans.
Follow Up With Your Long-Term Tactics
Okay, so you got the ball rolling — time to work on your long-term plan. The reality is that you cannot plan for a year from now. You have to look 5 or 10 years out as you build out your marketing strategy.
Long-term tactics benefit you in numerous ways such as:
- Creating trust
- Creating lasting value
- Retaining those new customers you on board
- Being flexible
- Making you/your company an authority on any number of subjects
Your long-term tactics will likely show small, but measurable, results over long periods of time. Keep track of your metrics and change up your campaigns if they are not performing.
Here are some examples of long term tactics:
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Content marketing (this compliments your SEO efforts)
- Public relations (PR)
- Continue your newsletter efforts
- Engage with social media
All the above are not something you kick out once and call it done. You must create large volumes of content in a timely fashion. Use testing to make sure that your message is coming across the best way.
You have to have a road map lined up for your team to follow. And, of course, always expect the unexpected during your journey.
Marshall Your Tools for Success
Okay, let’s check a few things off our list:
- We have discussed who to work with
- How to build your plan
- Short- and long-term tactics
Now it is time to look at tools to aid you in your efforts.
Your goal with every dollar you spend is to receive at least €9 in gross sales in return. You need a team in the digital space to help you reach your goals.
All things digital are a huge aid in maximizing your marketing spend. Going directly to your customers ensures your marketing dollar is being better utilized.
Further, data driven tech is of great benefit, especially when it comes to costs and confidence. Your company cannot afford to be anything but quick to change. In today’s market, access to data is a big way to keep your business nimble.
So, what tools to look for? Whether they are on your team, or a partner, is up to you.
Find someone to create content and work some SEO magic. Finding a full time writing staff can be tough and may not be supportable internally. Any sized business can benefit from a great partner.
Do you have a team to creating social media content? These bite sized messages, in a variety of formats, are difficult to create. If you don’t know the different platforms you can end up in the weeds.
You must have a PPC advertising expert. Like the first two items, PPC advertising requires a knowledge of how to use the system. It is not easy for a layperson to dive into!
The above scratches the surface on what you and your company may need in a partner or employee. Get team members, partners, and solutions that best fit your needs and get the job done.
The Value of the Ultimate Tool: Data
Data is the tool that deserves its own section: it is that important. We hear about data all the time and are unlikely to fathom how much is out there.
But, when harnessed, data can be the silver bullet in your proverbial gun.
Why is it that powerful?
Data is being generated at a rate that boggles the mind from a huge variety of sources. Information collects from Social media, the internet, cell phones, and more. As you read this article more collects non stop.
Newer tools allow one to gather all this data and apply what you find to your benefit. This creates insights for you to take advantage of.
What kind of insights are we talking about?
Way back I mentioned learning about your customer. In every manageable way data collection can help you with this.
Behavior prediction is now possible with access to data of the now and past. If you know how your customer will act in the future you can be better prepared.
The speed of data is near, if not fully instant. This allows you to keep your finger on the pulse of what your customers think about you in real time.
You can save money. While you may spend more up front, over the long term you will save money mining the data with a partner you can trust.
When you do your homework, it is clear that data will save your bacon!
The Bottom Line: You Need a Data Partner
Whether this is your first day as CMO, or your 1000th, your never ending fight is worth it.
If you remember that you cannot do it alone, and that asking for help is a good thing, you have a great chance to succeed.
You will spend a lot of time analyzing your marketing strategy over the coming years. Don’t be afraid to change things up if it looks like they are not working.
It should be obvious that bringing in an agency that has access to data, and knows how to use it, will put you over the top. You cannot afford to ignore such a powerful tool in today’s world.
In conclusion, the right team and plan will get you heading in the right direction. What will put you over the top is someone with the right tools and playbook.
Talk to a Growth Strategist to see if you qualify for a free growth audit and start your journey forward today!