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In a world of cutting-edge tech like generative AI (GenAI) and customer demands for personalization, today's CMOs have an unprecedented opportunity to help steer their companies toward success. But just like their C-suite counterparts, marketing executives are grappling with soaring costs and economic uncertainty. Most customers now expect more value for their money along with an exceptional experience, putting pressure on marketing budget decisions.
While creative thinking remains crucial, forward-thinking marketing leaders who at times shape cross-functional collaborations and harness the power of data and analytics have an edge over the competition.
US CEOs in PwC’s 27th Annual Global CEO Survey say they expect generative AI to fundamentally change how businesses compete and create value. And CMOs are leading the way as our recent Pulse survey showed 81% expect to use GenAI to change their business model. It’s an opportunity for CMOs to demonstrate their role as growth catalyst and show CEOs the revolutionary power of new technology.
The influx of new technologies like GenAI has expanded the breadth and depth of knowledge and capabilities available to marketing leaders. By translating analytics into insights, you can deliver enhanced and personalized experiences that cater to the ever-fluctuating behaviors and preferences of your customers. Elevate your customer journey by leveraging data, creating individualized connections and anticipating evolving needs. As responsibilities begin to overlap with your technology leaders, collaborate on a shared vision that drives outcomes for your business.
Navigating endless options to find the combination of technology that can increase value and push your business forward is paramount. Equipping yourself with skilled talent to power these innovations is equally crucial. As a CMO, you’re under immense pressure to drive sustainable outcomes. But you can get on the right track faster if you consider your existing resources and invest in fewer, high-quality solutions rather than simply more. Be sure to evaluate your tools frequently to help mitigate overlapping technology and inefficiencies. And as your technology delivers data, keep an eye on evolving regulations at home and abroad such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) or the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). Collaborate with your data officers to be sure that these valuable assets are in compliance.
Now, more than ever, lines are being blurred across the C-suite, and CMOs can carve out a role as innovator, strategist and growth-driver. The modern CMO weaves their influence through the fabric of the C-suite, strategically supporting all facets of the business. From working with the CEO to tell your company's story to activating the new tech capabilities with the CIO, you thrive as the driving force behind reinvention. Prioritize collaboration with each and every member of the C-suite who interacts with your customer.
Industry leading CMOs understand technology is no longer a mere luxury –– it’s an essential component of successful marketing. But demonstrating results and an ROI on these investments can be crucial. Work with your CFO to help identify the metrics that matter most to your company and illustrate marketing’s positive impact on revenue. It’s particularly important in this challenging economic environment when companies continue to face cost pressures and factors like inflation that rattle customer relationships and disrupt marketing strategies.
When nearly two-thirds of CMOs think consumer trust is at risk with new tech-enabled products and services, it’s time to refocus. Trust can impact the bottom line, and organizations have a responsibility to build it. Marketing leaders –– who are in direct touch with customers far more than their C-suite peers –– can help protect and expand it. You are the foremost brand steward, and it’s your job to nurture and enhance the relationship with your customer. But this effort should extend beyond them. Be sure to consider the level of trust between employees and employers because the employee experience plays a pivotal role in delivering an exceptional customer experience.
Leading with purpose in a society with such diverse –– often conflicting –– perspectives can be challenging. But it’s important to confirm your messages related to trust, purpose, values and climate resonate consistently across all channels and touchpoints. As your company’s transformation efforts take shape, consider their impact on consumer trust. GenAI, for example, can transform your business only if it’s trusted, which requires a Responsible AI Toolkit. As CMO, you can help communicate your company’s safeguards and compliance efforts. Transparency can go a long way in building trust, reinforcing it at every turn.
Customers have more options than ever –– and less time to choose. If you fail to meet their expectations, they can swiftly take their business elsewhere. Loyal customers hold the key to long-term growth, and marketing leaders recognize the need for a customer-centric approach. Investments in attraction and retention are taking center stage, with more than half (54%) of CMOs increasing budget in customer loyalty and retention in the year ahead, despite a challenging market.
CMOs can leverage tech such as GenAI to create hyper-personalized customer content, journeys and experiences that fortify your brand and foster unwavering loyalty. There have been huge leaps in marketing technology, and these innovations come at a time when there seems to be a disconnect between executives and consumers on how loyalty is defined, when it’s won and where it’s lost. Understanding how your customers make loyalty decisions throughout their journey can help turn loyalty into a growth engine.