Hot off the Press: Empowered CMO Network 2021 Report

Last year was, how should we put it… weird?

At times, CMOs were on overdrive modifying plans, reinventing workstreams, and watching out for the wellbeing of employees, customers, and other stakeholders. 

Other moments? So mundane! Like, eating a sandwich and re-watching The Green Mile on cable for the 27th time mundane. 

If nothing else, 2020 was ripe for profound reflection and reassessment. 

So when it came time to reconvene women B2B marketing leaders for our Empowered CMO Network gatherings, as we’ve done the past few years alongside co-sponsors SEBA International, Medallia, Allocadia, PathFactory, and Blast Media, it was just a matter of how, not if. Being COVID-confined and tested beyond measure warranted therapeutic professional networking. But more so than that, it felt like a sure-fire way to expose seriously profound insights on the direction of marketing.

We weren’t wrong. And we’ve got the report you can now download to prove it. 

Available now and available free, The State of B2B Women CMOs - 2021 is the amalgamation of over 100 trend-forward women marketing executives remarking, reflecting, and riffing on the role and trajectory of CMOs in modern business. In many ways, it revisits the very definitions of what it means to be a CMO and succeed today:

  • Redefining roles — It’s time for capable Chief Marketing Officers to rebrand themselves as Chief Market Officers, reinforcing their larger mastery of the field and feel for the market rather than just their ability to oversee tactics and activities. Relatedly, CMOs need to have a stronger presence with and on boards, leading governance’s constant understanding of the ever-evolving market instead of making show-and-tell cameos to present campaigns or pipeline particulars.
  • Redefining purpose — According to a recent Gartner study, more than half of consumers now expect action on the part of brands related to social issues. Disparities in race and gender have come to the business fore, and CMOs more often than not are leading or advising on D&I matters. Moreover, how can female CMOs not only step into roles too seldom occupied by women (CEO, Chairperson, etc.), but spread their power to others who may have the deck stacked against them? 
  • Redefining niches — CMOs, fluent in the voice of the customer, need to be regularly attuned to customer intelligence. How do data and insights direct strategy, and when do you know it’s time to dump projects because the market doesn’t care about them? Plus, why might it be important for CMOs to shift some of their focus off generating demand and revenue in existing markets and instead on to category design where they carve out and monetize entirely new markets?
  • Redefining moments — Life is full of moments, some of which make or break careers. As one of our Empowered CMOs put it, the initial public offering is “the corporate equivalent of your wedding day.” Learn tips for nailing the IPO from those who’ve been there and done that, more than once in some cases. 

If you’re a current or aspiring CMO or B2B executive, we invite you to download the ebook, soak up more insights in our TalkingSense™ Empowered CMO series, and stay tuned for future opportunities.

About the Author

Aaron Berstler

Aaron Berstler writes content for 6sense. He has 20+ years of experience providing marketing and communications consultation services to B2B companies in SaaS, life sciences, health care and professional services.

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