No other C-Suite role has evolved as much in the last decade than that of the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO).
Affected by radical changes in consumer preferences and exponential advancements in technology - not to mention a wildly disruptive contextual environment; the people at the top of the marketing function are under just a pinch of pressure to deliver.
Complicating the task even further is the universal phenomenon of there not being a congruent definition (weirdly) as to what marketing is; where the boundaries exist of the role and which elements are in, and out, of the discipline.
Perhaps however, all of this confusion is because what's being overlooked is what marketing is meant to deliver; customers.
The CMO role, performed successfully, should be 'predictably delivering a happy community of loyal customers to the business.'
How you achieve this is by: (1) designing and communicating a compelling and evolving brand narrative (internally and externally); (2) fine-tuning the customer experience and actively managing the relationship the brand has with those customers; (3) ensuring that a culture of relevant, forward-orientated innovation is an embedded part of the company's mindset; (4) tracking the hell out of the quality of the relationship with customers using appropriate data sets and metrics and using these insights to improve the future deployment of resources; and then, (5) developing a deep intuition (using foresight) as to where you need to be guiding your beloved customer next, critically informing the organisation as to what innovation is needed to address these emergent needs based on conjecture.
Marketing is a proxy for the quality of the relationship a brand has with its customers, because of this it is a discipline built on a foundation of uncertainty.
Unlike all the other professions that make up the senior leadership of an organisation, it's a role that demands the asking of the right questions rather than having all the right answers.