The Three Stumbling Blocks for Senior Marketers

Let’s get into the heads of senior marketers… again.

3Q Digital has conducted a study that outlines the toughest challenges top marketers are dealing with. In this Q&A from Forbes, Scott Rayden, the CMO of 3Q Digital, shares insights from the report about what works, what doesn’t and what inhibits and enables success.

marketing challengesThe general themes in the study, “Modern Marketers: Overcoming Today’s Three Biggest Challenges to Growth,” fall around organizational structure, the role of data and the role of agencies.

The Role of Data

When its comes to the all-important data, the findings show that almost 50% of marketers are not happy with how data is tied to marketing decisions and feel it could be used more effectively. Data is the foundation of the customer-centric thinking necessary for effective and efficient marketing strategies. However, data problems stand in the way:

• 46% of senior marketers aren’t satisfied with the amount of data they have access to

• 57% aren’t satisfied with the amount of effort it takes to gather various types of data

• There is more access to less influential data and less access to influential data sources like ROI data and customer’s desired needs and outcomes.

Role of Agencies

Despite the fact that most agencies would say they are working hard for their clients, some 41% of marketers are only “somewhat satisfied” with their agencies and 36% aren’t happy at all. That marks a real challenge for agencies to understand the dissatisfaction and to make some changes to fix the problems. Internally, marketers struggle as well, with a surprising 67% stating that they wouldn’t describe their department as integrated or even efficient. The bottom line? The current relationship structure is preventing both parties from getting the most out of their engagements, the report found.

Organizational Structure

Survey responses suggest that there is a disconnect between senior marketers and their C-suites. Those who were favorable to their organizational structure demonstrate stronger potential for marketing success:

• Three times as likely to rate their organization’s marketing as very effective (37% vs. 12%)

• More likely to view their marketing department as modern (30% vs. 6%), collaborative (64% vs. 41%) and efficient (38% vs. 20%).

Those with an unfavorable view toward organizational structure have a much more difficult time:

• More than twice as likely to be frustrated by the current marketing strategy set by their organization (60% vs. 26%)

• Half as likely to think they are given enough strategic direction to do their job effectively (40% vs. 79%)

3Q makes a number of recommendations as to how to address these issues including, articulating a clear marketing strategy and defining smart KPIs.

In addition, not only have the personal and professional attributes and skills of this new CMO undergone major changes, but so too has the job description. Wharton School professor Jerry Wind, who has studied marketing topics for years, calls out the new approaches a CMO needs to be effective today, including the perseverance to be a relentless champion of marketing and the guts to be a challenger. An important topic since a recent Forrester report found that CEO’s will fire at least 30% of their CMOs for not mustering the skills necessary for the job. Just 3.6 short years is now the average CMO journey.

 Related articles: 

Wharton Marketing Guru Calls Out New Approaches for the CMO

What’s Driving CMO Churn?

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