Soon after being bitten by a radioactive spider, a young Peter Parker learns with great power comes great responsibility.
Corporate chief marketing officers (CMO) should also come to appreciate the connection between authority and accountability. That’s according to a new survey conducted by Accenture Strategy that found the CMO is the most likely member of the executive team to be fired when a company fails to hit its growth target.
Is this fair?
Absolutely — when you ask the CEO. The survey results reveal 50 percent of CEOs view the top marketer as the primary driver of “disruptive growth.” This involves launching products into new areas, expanding service models or increasing revenue through inventive approaches to data.
Yet, the more than 800 CMOs who also participated in the same study spend only 37 percent of their time on innovation. The majority of their effort is focused on managing traditional marketing activities.
The take-away from this study is it is imperative for CMOs to realign how they invest their time. They still need to set the path for brand, communications and demand generation programs, to be executed by their team and supporting vendors.
However, the CMO must assume the mantle of growth through innovation. This is a wonderful opportunity to be more meaningful and relevant in the organization. Plus, their boss expects it.