Cover of IBM CMO study

by Paul Goater | Comments: 0

An unparalleled study into the psyches of global CMOs flags their interest into more granular customer analysis.

In October, IBM released the latest in its series of C-Suite surveys – this time, 1,700+ leading CMOs were interviewed about what was keeping them awake at night.

The foremost concern in the minds of today’s CMOs? Delivering value to empowered customers.

More individual customer data into the marketing mix

The report cites increased capabilities in analytics, social media and an explosion of market segments as driving forces behind CMOs desire to get under the skin of customers.

Not as demographics (the old way):

Traditional sources of information are important, of course. However, most of them have one big drawback. They can only show customers in aggregate, offering little insight into what individual customers need or desire.

But rather as psychologically-motivated individuals (the new way):

In short, new digital data sources can provide crucial insights into how customers and influencers think and behave. But to scale this effectively, organisations need to consider building fundamentally different relationships. They need to enable employees to engage with customers and provide customers and other constituents the ability to help one another.

The issues of scale, relationships and enablement all relate to data, technology to collect, interpret and act on data and the skills to deploy it.

More than two-thirds believe they will need to invest in new tools and technologies and develop new strategies for managing big data.

Marketing tools that automate best practice with data

Ideally, tools will automate the process of turning millions of practices into a body of best practice based on decisions made by individual shoppers.

That’s the logic that we deployed in DesignHub. Here a marketer may have access to thousands of brand identity elements, messages and promotions for use on-shelf, in-aisle or on-pack. Each plucks the on-brand elements he wants for his or her specific activation.

The data bit comes in when all of these choices are aggregated. Marketers’ preferences are automatically collected and formatted into intelligence within the platform. The next time the marketer builds a promotion he or she can respond to what’s been used before, how often, by whom and how successful it was.

In essence, applying data demands little more than collecting a series of decisions and reflecting them for future decision-makers. Under the hood, however, it requires a new form of cloud technology and a new kind of infrastructure.

For today’s CMO, we believe data-driven tools that make it easier to make smart decisions throughout the organization are key. IBM’s survey seems to agree. Interested in the full report? Download it here.

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