What Keeps Chief Marketing Officers Up at Night


With the vast number of emerging technologies these days, it seems like we all wake up each morning in a brand new world. Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) aren’t immune to this effect, with the explosion of technologies that can potentially disrupt how brands operate. From artificial intelligence to IoT and voice control to mobile ubiquity, today’s CMO must keep up with consumer, marketing and technology trends.

As CMOs are required to keep pace with the evolving business landscape, there are plenty of trends and challenges top of mind. I recently heard OneSpot’s client, Ally Bank CMO Andrea Brimmer, speak about some of these trends and share some solutions for other CMOs to consider.

Keeping consumer attention

With the proliferation of mobile has come an abundance of marketing opportunities. Consumers today are exposed to a non-stop blitz of advertising messages on at least three devices: mobile, laptop or tablet, and TV—often at the same time. This kind of multitasking has led to the average American adult’s average daily time spent on media adding up to more than 12 hours a day.

In today’s ad-driven landscape, consumers are looking for and respond to marketing messaging they find relevant. That’s the way to get and keep your consumer’s attention. But it’s a fine line between creepy and delightful, and a CMO needs to constantly update strategies to navigate that territory.

Being relevant vs. being cool

One strategy a CMO can use to balance individualization against invasion is to focus on being relevant instead of being cool. However, what’s cool changes too quickly to chase; what’s more important is to constantly demonstrate the relevance of your brand by exposing all the ways your offering benefits the buyer.

Today’s marketer is competing for the handful of seconds in the average person’s attention span. Comedian Steve Martin suggests, “Be so good they can’t ignore you.” For the CMO, this means translating your product or service’s features into customer benefits—in a way that is not only genuine, but also engaging, individualized and delivered in the most relevant way to capture their attention.

If my brand went away, would anyone care?

Since the advent of the search engine, fewer brand names are included in product searches every year. For example, between April 2016 and March 2017, non-branded search volume grew in every CPG category.

And voice technologies are compounding the issue. From Amazon’s Alexa to Google Home and Apple’s HomePod, digital voice assistants are predicted to be in more than 55% of households by 2022. When it’s easy to say “buy batteries” or “buy tissues,” the consumer may not even bother to consider which brand they’re ordering.

Mastering content personalization is the best way to capture and hold consumer attention while remaining relevant in a constantly changing tech landscape.

Download our guide: How to Master Individualization to Delight Your Customers for best practices for delivering 1:1 personalized content experiences across every channel.


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