Had the following conversation with three different CEOs over the past month. Each one started like this, We have a great set of products but absolutely no marketing strategy to support them.
Sound familiar? Is this something you or your Sales Leader say about your companys lack of marketing?
B2B Chief Marketing Officers and marketing organizations alike have been whipped into a frenzy over the past couple years with demands to transform their outdated operations and get with the times. What sort of demands you ask?
Heres a short list of the topics on the top half of every CMOs to-do list, right now!
Get the point?!
Not wanting to get caught flat footed by their boss, Chief Marketing Officers dutifully spin as many plates as possible at once, dilute the effectiveness of their best internal resources, outsource and contract where they feel it makes sense and crank out the volume. At the end of each month these same CMOs present their departmental dashboards to the executive team, demonstrating an overwhelming array of seemingly impressive charts, graphs, tables, trend lines and other PowerPoint candy (they are marketing you know) that proves their doing all the right things. Most of it is mumbo jumbo to the rest of the executive team so they all keep quiet when question time rolls around. Off the hook for another month, the CMO takes their seat.
Despite all this marketing activity its not unusual for the CEOs and Sales Leaders at these same companies to lament their company’s lack of traction with real prospects. Heres something we are finding in many of these situations: Marketing is skipping the foundation work necessary BEFORE implementing ANY of these tactical activities. Meaning, the CMO has specifically defined with their CEO and Sales Leader the following:
Our experience is that only UNTIL this foundational marketing work has been completed and documented can a CMO build an effective marketing plan, budget and KPIs to measure the marketing activities they decide are optimal for their company.
Until then, they are just making noise.