CMOs Under Pressure to Deliver During Economic Course Correction

6 Oct 22

SBI 2022 CEO Survey Finds Many Chief Marketing Officers Get Vote of No Confidence from their CEOs; Uncovers Urgency to Generate a Plan for Driving Performance.

Dallas, TX, October 6, 2022 – SBI, a Go-to-Market Growth Advisory, announced today survey findings that reveal CMO vulnerabilities in the current economic climate. In response, the Advisory provides recommendations for CMOs to drive efficiency and successfully lead during challenging times.

SBI’s benchmark data reveals that CMOs started 2022 with optimism anticipating a 31.2% increase in revenue and a 22.4% increase in budget from 2021 to 2022. Now, despite a shift in market and economic conditions, many CMOs are holding onto the belief that demand will remain strong and have yet to pivot their strategy to a more focused set of growth bets.

“Recessionary environments are ripe for cost-cutting and budget scrutiny, putting pressure on CMOs to show clear ROI for their programs and people by quickly and proactively applying focus and discipline,” explained SBI CEO Mike Hoffman. “During recessions, a focused approach to growth is more successful than trying to remain agile or hedging one’s bets across investments. It is what high-growth companies do differently than their competitors.”

According to SBI’s Annual CEO Growth Planning Survey, only 33% of respondents are confident in their CMO’s ability to drive success for their organization. Facing a downturn and a lack of confidence from their CEOs has put CMOs in a vulnerable position. It is imperative that they take immediate action to drive efficiency and successfully lead the productivity pivot within their organization. SBI identified the following eight steps to correct course:

  1. Stop waiting for customer insight from others.
  2. Stop spreading investments across too many channels and segments.
  3. Stop sparring with commercial peers over pipeline influence and marketing tactic effectiveness beliefs.
  4. Resist the temptation to revert to old ways of marketing.
  5. Start experimenting to boost pipeline velocity and opportunity conversion rates.
  6. Start aligning with customer segments that are in most need of your solutions now.
  7. Start investing in full-funnel enablement for buyers and sellers.
  8. Start assessing your team for under-utilized skills and offer opportunities to grow professionally.

For a thorough explanation of the eight recommendations and detailed tactics, please download SBI’s Key actions CMOs need to take now to drive growth.

About SBI

SBI is a Growth Advisory offering collaborative consulting, advisory services, and the world’s most comprehensive set of go-to-market benchmark data. Our team of strategic implementers have owned and operated the marketing and sales functions at the world’s most successful growth companies. Our approach is based on an intimate understanding of the buyer-seller journey. Working as an extension of our clients’ teams, SBI applies relevant data and insights to deliver impactful strategies that generate significant ongoing top-line growth. Visit to learn more.

* SBI’s Annual CEO Growth Planning Survey of CEOs included interviews with CEOs from 120 companies representing a mix of public and private companies, predominantly in the tech and business services sectors, ranging in size from $100M to over $10B.


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