With an average tenure of only 17 months, CMO’s need all the help they can get, not only to succeed but to survive. There has never been a better opportunity for ad agencies to step up and take on the role of strategic partner!
There is not a CMO out there right now who has not already cut his overhead costs as deep as realistically possible. For the past 18 months or more, their game plan has been batten down the hatches and unload as much overhead as possible, as they try to survive the economic recession.
Well, the game is changing and changing quickly. The C-Suite is already shifting its focus from cost cutting to recovering market share and top-line growth. This shift is starting to put increased pressure on these CMO’s as the corporation looks to them for growth leadership.
To be successful they must be able to understand both current and potential customers better than anyone else. The next critical step is to take those insights and translate them into unique and powerful new products and customer experiences. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, they must create more effective and efficient ways to market their products or services. Communications innovation is absolutely critical to achieve success and who better to provide that innovation leadership than the right ad agency?
While breakthrough product innovation is a fundamental requirement and remains an essential component of every company’s go to market strategy, there are many communications innovations that are equally as powerful and effective. It could be as simple as innovating the customer experience, discovering new customer segments or needs, innovative pricing or new payment options or leveraging networking and building a brand following and community.
The opportunities are out there and the time is now! Whether you are the incumbent agency or one that is looking for an opportunity to break into that new client, there has never been a better time than now. However, a quick word of caution. Do not go rushing in without doing your homework and armed only with traditional marketing ideas and solutions. To succeed you will need to demonstrate exceptional insights, creativity and media/channel delivery innovation.
This is your opportunity to establish your rightful place as a valued strategic partner. Focus your approach on how you can help the CMO recover top-line growth and avoid the temptation to deliver another one of those presentations about how talented your agency is. Remember Radio WIFM (What’s in it for me?).