CMOs Beat Themselves Up Over Poor Performance

An interesting piece in BrandWeek about a new Accenture survey that shows how CMOs are taking a hard look at what they and their companies are doing (or not) to make it through this seemingly endless recession:

Only about two in ten surveyed said their companies very effectively use most channels to reach, influence or interact with customers. The most effective channels cited are in-person contact with front-line employees and encouraging existing customers to recommend corporate products and services. Beyond those, however, less than 20 percent of respondents said they effectively use digital channels like corporate Web sites, online communities, online advertising, and mobile and location-based marketing; traditional advertising such as print, television and radio; and direct mail and telemarketing.

Marketers gave themselves the lowest marks in leveraging digital channels, monitoring and optimizing marketing's contribution and using channels strategically. Accenture found survey results were "surprisingly lackluster" in customer analytics, offering innovation, customer engagement and marketing operations. Only 23 percent of the marketers surveyed rated their performance as above average or better in all four areas; one-third described themselves as below average or weaker in all four areas.
Survey respondents identified six issues as the most common barriers to performance improvements: inefficient business practices, which was cited the most often; lack of funding and other resources from senior leadership; poor integration with other functions; lack of technology or tools; required workforce skills; and access to key customer data. The majority of marketers also felt their teams need to learn how to work more closely with corporate departments like sales and customer service. Nearly half say they should be working more closely with their chief executives.
Those execs stand to learn from peers at companies that grew revenue last year. They invested more heavily in marketing ROI and productivity, achieved above-average innovation capabilities and reported more effective use of digital channels, Accenture said.

Looks like we've all got some work to do. Now if only the CEOs and CFOs would give them some budget to work with, maybe they'd start hiring the agencies to make it happen!


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