The marketing landscape is changing. Today, 70% of Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) are publishing 10x more content than a few years ago to keep pace with the multi-media touchpoints that customers expect from their most beloved brands. They're “living in the age of content explosion”.
"The CMO has evolved into one of the toughest roles, moving from being a pure advertiser to driving return on investment [ROI] for the brand. To carry out our role effectively, we need expertise in creating data-driven and technology experiences,” said Gaurav Bhatia, CMO at PenFed, the US-based credit union.
He adds: “Marketing has also changed. It's become a 24/7 activity on multiple channels that must deliver ROI for the business.”
Understanding the customer
The data from these multiple channel touchpoints at various stages of the customer journey are often siloed, and this is a significant challenge for marketers and agencies, who need to: increase brand loyalty, boost community advocacy, increase engagement, (hyper)-personalize experiences and improve productivity, while integrating all of these seamlessly.
“Today, customers have a lot of choice and it’s a question of how you differentiate yourself in this crowded marketplace. You must be constantly focused on driving value to your brand, while figuring out where your customers are to target them effectively and give them value,” said Bhatia.
“Where we all fall short is not truly understanding what the customer needs are and so our aim is find them where they want to be interacted and engaged with,” he continued.
To overcome this and gain a holistic view of the customer, CMOs and marketing teams need to experiment with new channels, but “there is no silver bullet”, according to Bhatia.
“We’re always experimenting and learning. It’s a constant journey,” he explained.
Marketing and data transformation
Marketing transformation is incomplete without data transformation. This, along with technology innovation, is driving customer and digital experiences.
“As a marketer you must work with data, digital experiences and technology to drive better, more personalized experiences for your customer. Even when they’re acquired, customers require these types of interactions. To do this, it’s important to reduce the friction in your own team and break down siloes. That’s a recipe for winning,” said Bhatia.
Looking ahead to artificial intelligence
In terms of how marketing will continue to evolve, Bhatia suggested that a lot will depend on how organizations adopt artificial intelligence (AI) to drive better experiences, unleash creativity and produce more velocity with marketing campaigns.
"Measuring the impact of what we create is going to be crucial moving forward and I think the AI of today will be different to the AI of tomorrow, so it’s about ensuring you’re ready to respond quickly and stay ahead of the competition,” he added.