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27 June 2022
CEOs think CMOs can do better
Accountability, C-Suite relationsManaging the marketing functionUnited States
The majority of US chief marketing officers receive a “B” grade from chief executives with regards to their overall performance, a study* finds, with many needing to improve in terms of thinking big and understanding corporate finances.
Overall performance scores
Chief executives were asked to rate their CMOs on a similar spectrum to that used in the academic world, with “A” grades being the best and “D” the worst.
Only 16% of respondents gave their marketing lead an “A” grade for overall performance, while 55% scored a “B”, 23% got a “C” and 6% received a “D”.
Similarly, just 16% of CMOs were afforded an “A” grade for their ability to drive company growth, while “41%” received a “B”.
Areas for improvement
Exactly 25% of CEOs regarded marketing heads as possessing “above-average” skills when it comes to decision-making.
Another 51% suggested that their CMO “plays safe” and avoids risk, whereas 27% thought marketers “play big” and inspire other members of the C-suite.
While 53% of chief executives agreed their chief marketer understood profit-and-loss statements and balance sheets, 47% did not have this confidence.
Just 49% of CEOs concurred with the statement that the CMO “is on my side [and] I trust them,” the study found.
*The study was conducted by Boathouse, a full-service agency based in Boston. Its chief executive (CEO) panel was made up of 150 corporate leaders from enterprises in the United States. The sample was evenly split between three cohorts in terms of annual company revenue: companies earning between $250m and $500m ; from $500 m to less than $1bn; and over $1bn.