How CMO’s can keep themselves in the Boardroom

As a CMO you have the opportunity to position yourself as the customer expert, building relationships and demonstrating your value to all departments and becoming a key influencer in the C-suite.  There are some key skills required to ensure you have maximum influence with your peers[1].

Strong communication skills – you need to be able to articulate to the rest of the board the value of marketing.
Customer centricity – you understand your customer better than anyone and need to share your expertise with other departments to demonstrate your value across the business.
Ability to provide a holistic view of the customer and be the voice of the customer.
Show the rest of the business the customer journey map – knowing what your customers wants and needs are and how and when to engage with them.  This provides the opportunity to explore customer’s interactions with other departments in the business and their experience to inform the rest of the business.
Data and analytics have to be embraced to build customer expertise but as the CMO you also need to be able to present this data to the rest of the C-suite executives in a way they can relate to and understand.  Insights need to be tailored, highlighting the impact for different departments from financial to people focused, to gain a high level of support from the rest of the executive team.

Deloitte highlights that being able to effectively communicate with sales and finance is of greatest importance for a CMO[2].

This creates a challenge for you as a CMO in order to ensure a balance of analytical data focused approach without a negative impact on creativity.  Reviewing the skills within your team is a good place to start – identifying the gaps and encouraging collaboration between analytical and creative mind sets.

In the last 5 years, we have seen the role of the CMO evolve and its importance has heightened within the business.  Those who are strong communicators with the ability to understand their peers and stakeholders and communicate their message effectively to this varying audience are the most successful.

[1] Redefining the CMO, Deloitte Insights, January 2018

[2] The CMO Shift to Gaining Business Lift, Deloitte and CMO Council, December 2016