Yesterday I keynoted at MIPTV in Cannes and after my presentation, I sat down with BusinessWeek's Jon Fine to chat a bit on stage. One of the questions he asked me was about P&G, who talk a lot about change and moving away from a TV-heavy media budget, and yet remain a heavy and committed TV-adspender.
My response referenced a newly released study, titled "Define & Align the CMO." The study was conducted by MarketBridge for the CMO Council and amongst other insights, revealed the following:
- ...fully half of all executive searches for CMOs last year were conducted in order to replace departing CMOs, rather than to fill new positions.
- One hundred fifty-two CMOs left their jobs last September, setting an all-time record
- CMO failure was seen as resulting from their having "no real authority or clout in the organization" (59 percent) and "a lack of credibility and respect among key stakeholders" (54 percent).
- 62% of board members disagreed that their marketing leaders were providing adequate ROI data whereas CMOs with greater quantitative focus and measurement emphasis have a significantly longer expected tenure, "greater than 20 percent longer"
In other words, just because the networks are still teaming with 30-second spots, doesn't make it right and more importantly, doesn't mean it's working. Bottom line, CMO's are losing their jobs - left, right and center - only no-one knows why? I find that hard to believe, but let me suggest that it's because of the dogged persistence on using staid and irrelevant approaches which no longer resonate with consumers, coupled with the lip-service to change given by executives at conferences, but never followed up on within the organization.
The CMO study specifically calls out CMO credibility and the demise of the "rockstar" CMO in favor of the geek; the quant-jock; the number-crunchers (sounds like 1984 on Acid: Here's to the geeks; the quant-jocks; the number-crunchers....) and while they may not be going to Cannes any time soon, at least they'll have jobs this time, next year...