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Insightful Marketing: Data, Analytics and the B2B CMO

Watch these marketing leaders discuss data, analytics, the B2B CMO and the key skills needed to succeed in the industry today.

Insights are an important aspect of developing a strategic and effective marketing campaign today. B2B CMOs are expected to incorporate their data collection and analytics skills in order to target the right people. 

How has the relationship between marketing and the rest of the business evolved and what are marketers doing now to improve efficiency, using data and analytics for more insightful marketing.

With Lea Sellers moderating, the speakers of this roundtable include:

  • Angela O’Connell, Marketing Lead, Plaid
  • Emma Roffey, VP Marketing EMEAR, Cisco
  • Oliver Pilgerstorfer, CMO, IFS

Insightful marketing

Moderator Lea Sellers began the debate by asking the panelists of the roundtable how marketing’s relationship has changed with the rest of the business.

Marketing Lead at Plaid, Angela O’Connell, believes marketing is becoming more data-driven. She argued that “big strategic decisions” taken from campaigns are now rooted in insights and data from consumers and clients. “When we’re doing product launches, there’s much more of a focus on making sure that we have surveyed the end-consumers”, she explained. 

While Angela believes the relationship has changed, VP Marketing EMEAR, Emma Roffey, stated that this isn’t the case at Cisco. 

“We’re certainly using data more and more. Those insights we’ve invested heavily on data and insights team”, she said. Emma has been focused on taking data intelligence and putting those into actions. She hinted that while it hasn’t changed, “we’re well on our way in those sort of motions”. 

In agreement with Angela and Emma, CMO at IFS Oliver Pilgerstorfer, believes marketers have got a brand reputation. He remarked that marketers are “artists in the organization rather than the scientists”. Oliver welcomed the increased focus on data as the stakeholders in his organization mainly care about growth-driven numbers. He believes that insightful marketing and being data-driven allows marketers to have that “next level of credibility”. Oliver wants to instill this idea of making informed decisions using data into the culture.

Key marketing components

One of the key questions marketers need to ask themselves is, according to Emma: “Is our marketing being effective to the business?”.

She explained that business partners would want to know if they’re getting a return on investment. Being able to identify what is driving growth in the business is also key to Emma. In addition to this, she focuses on how far influence can take the company and where the company is making an impact as a brand. 

When considering the key components, Oliver thinks back to having the right psyche in the organization, which he considers hugely important. “You need to set a culture within the business”, he said. When hiring people in the organization, he wants them to understand why having that appetite for insightful marketing is important. 

In order to achieve this, Oliver noted that marketing leaders need to be transparent and over communicative with their teams. “If people aren’t talking about data and wanting that insight, it’s an alarm bell from the start”, he said.

While urging marketers to instill this culture of being data-driven, Oliver pointed out one of the drawbacks of this method. 

Rushing the team to give you numbers and not going through the right stops and checks results in incorrect data. “That could be a really dangerous position to be in. When you create such a culture of intensity on data that actually, you miss the full picture”, he said. 

Emerging data marketing talent

Building on Oliver’s previous point about being digitally focused and being data-driven, Angela said: “I think a lot of it comes down to mindset”. 

She believes there has been a lot of coverage on the growth mindset and wanting to test new things. According to Angela, this involves not accepting the first answer you get and trying to see if they’re improving. This mindset, she argued, would help marketers get insights from data.

Adding on to Angela’s previous point, Emma recalled a quote from an instructor on a data course. “In conversation he said ‘do you think it or do you know it? Come to me when you know it’”, she said. Emma wants the whole team to take responsibility for the data and get comfortable with it. 

Evolving the CMO-Client relationship

Lea asked the panelists whether they thought innovation has changed the relationship between CMOs and clients. 

Angela thinks that increased innovation in technology gives us access to more data. She believes that the assortment of ABM tools at hand could be used to track how marketers are engaging with their clients. “There’s a tendency to ask ‘what’s the next shiny tool we can integrate into our marketing tech stand’”, she said. Her advice was to step back and make sure the tools you have at hand work. 

Marketers can get carried away with investing in these new pieces of innovative technology according to Oliver. He reported that people are always looking for more efficient ways to carry out their tasks. On the other hand, he stated that marketers need to stay grounded as they have limited budgets to work with. “Every time you make an investment in a new piece of shiny kit it’s a risk”, he said. 

Watch the roundtable above to discover more insights from these top marketing leaders.

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