The world of marketing has stood witness to a significant shift in recent years, with an ever-accelerating pace. Today, the focus of multiple CEOs is majorly on honing the capabilities of their marketing organization maintaining that pace, to innovate and stay ahead of the curve.

CMOs clearly have one of the toughest jobs out there, with an increasing pressure of steering the revenue growth. As per statistics, smart investors are measuring the success parameter of CMOs based on their ability to drive and stay consistent contributing to top line growth, coupled with their knowledge of data-driven marketing, delivering an on-point return for their marketing investment. Private equities demand pure efficiency, to the point of all-expense justified budgeting. CMOs need to justify their expenditures and can no longer expect the luxury of a year-over-year incremental budget.

The high expectation for marketing to drive revenue boils down to the CMO from every dept. of the organization, right from the CEO levels and moving downward. Multiple CMOs are being asked to report to the CRO or even step into the shoes of one. Taking onus for revenue generation is a risk for CMOs but also, comes with a ton of opportunity for the ones who can navigate this nouveau terrain.

Gone are the days of being a creative CMO. They need to assume a position of leadership, while applying data analytics, personalization, and optimization, driving campaigns and precision targeted activities that are led by the Digital team. In short, CMOs now, need to possess the skill of walking into a CEO’s office with a robust forecast, showcasing revenue generation and predictable and scalable marketing.

Increasingly, CMOs also need to play a bigger role in placing bets at the enterprise level to drive growth. This requires marketing to tap into data intelligence to look for ways to transform the customer experience in partnership with engineering, operations and IT while being accountable for the overall customer conversion in partnership with sales. Aligning marketing and sales is paramount to shortening the sales cycle and increasing win rates. Because marketing and sales are tightly connected at the prospect and customer levels, discussion of the quality of leads vs. the effectiveness of sales just creates confusion and distraction.

For CMOs, this means going beyond lead acquisition to look at lead scoring, lead nurturing and revenue planning in close alignment with sales. Identification of revenue opportunity early in the process can ensure conversion is happening. Ultimately, organizations need to have a single version of the truth: common metrics that represent the full marketing and sales funnel, allowing them to quickly adjust while maintaining synergy. More than ever before, CMOs must lead the transformation needed to help their companies become more data-driven organizations. This means tapping into the right data to better understand the customer journey and hyper-personalize it to deliver the right message at the right time. Brands that do this perform better than brands that don’t.

Predictive analytics enhance personalization and shed light on workable and non -workable parameters in real time. For example, OTT platforms today, based on their customers’ viewing habits can curate a watch list for them and send reminder emails about their favourite show schedules as well. The ability to use data science to personalize CX adds value as opposed to SEO, OWING TO THE saturated search parameters. The CMO’s role continues to be extremely growth-oriented and data-backed as digital disruption has put pressure on sales and marketing to win clients, not just sway them. Brands are vital, but the agility of CMOs bears equal importance as well for the marketers to redirect the experience. All this is in the pursuit of delivering to the customers through real-time insights and experimentation, driving revenue growth.