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How the C-Suite benefits from better Marketing Operations

How the C-Suite benefits from better Marketing Operations

As the area of Marketing Operations continues to mature and expand its influence across multiple areas of the organisation, it's important to connect the dots on how this function impacts key stakeholders at the C-Suite level.

Simply put the main purpose of any Marketing Operation function is to improve the effectiveness of marketing - be that through people, processes, technology or data, in order to better achieve the businesses stated goals. While this function is marketing focused, the goals it is trying to achieve are often set at the highest strategy level, and it is on marketing to deliver on those goals rather than set them.

Effective Marketing Operations enables marketing to run like a business. Much more than simple automation, the operations function is instrumental in transforming marketing into a revenue and growth machine for a company. As this transformation occurs it directly impacts key stakeholder roles such as the CMO, CFO and the sales and executive team. Let's explore how.

The value to a CMO

  1. Deliver on the business's financial goals 
  2. Run marketing like a business
  3. Increase credibility across the organisation

Marketing has a massive impact on business performance, and most of that impact comes from a CMO's thinking and strategy. It's a big responsibility. However as CMO's have led the charge on marketing transformation in their desire to increase revenue and profits, they have often been blocked by their more traditional methods - applying what would be considered 'right-brain' thinking to what is in actuality a 'left-brain' problem.

In many organisations the CMO still doesn't report on any kind of long-term financial metrics, leaving marketing disconnected from the organisations financial goals. But this is changing rapidly. The application of Marketing Operations frameworks and technologies, and the inclusion of 'left-brain' marketers those roles focused on technology (integration and optimisation), data (understanding and producing actionable insights and process optimisation) within the overall marketing division has enabled the modern CMO to truly move the needle on the organisation's revenue line.

Companies with well-formed Marketing Operations functions have been proven to deliver greater revenue contribution that those without. The combination of technology, marketing and analytics have provided the CMO with transparency into how the marketing teams efforts impact the pipeline and closed business, across the entire marketing and sales journey. Any CMO who can produce credible revenue numbers and can accurately forecast marketing's impact on revenue is supported by a slick marketing operations function.

A well-designed marketing operations function provides the CMO with the tools and data they need to run marketing like a business. This level of visibility enables the CMO to better evaluate its marketing activity against key business objectives to ensure the highest return, while also empowering the CMO to identify where and how to apply limited resources to optimise marketing ROI. Without an effective Marketing Operations function, this level of visibility simply isn't possible.

Once a CMO can produce this kind of revenue growth, they gain greater credibility with the entire executive team. This modern CMO then becomes more actively involved in the creation of company-wide strategies, increasing their voice and impact across the organisation.

The value to a CFO

  1. Better business predictability
  2. Increased control

The stereotypical relationship between the CFO and marketing has the CFO viewing the marketing function as nothing but a money pit, and marketing budgets as a cross they have to bear. However, times are now changing, with Marketing Operations bringing these two disparate business functions closer than ever before.

The CFO, for the first time, now has visibility into how marketing's activity directly impacts the profit line. As the Marketing Operation function matures within an organisation it delivers more tangible and actionable revenue results measured across the entire marketing and sales pipeline. With this level of insight, marketers can not only measure past performance in relation to revenue, they can also predict future performance more accurately. 

This level of transparency and clear process allows the CFO to understand and work with marketing to better impact overall company performance, which is critical when looking at the size of most marketing budgets in comparison to revenue.

The value to sales

  1. Increased revenue and achievement of targets
  2. Right content at the right time to close sales

Marketing and sales have a history of rubbing each other the wrong way. Until recently each business division was siloed from each other with little to no collaboration, causing no end of frustration for both teams. Over the past decade, the explosion of digital channels and increases in marketing automation has started to close that gap, with both teams making greater efforts to work together. However, for most organisations, this increase in collaboration hasn't actually moved the needle when it comes to increasing revenue. One of the main reasons why this initial collaboration hasn't succeeded is that there is still no true alignment between marketing and sales in relation to the customer journey.

One of the more exciting benefits of an effective Marketing Operations function is how it creates a highly beneficial relationship with sales, bringing both teams into alignment while providing transparency into how marketing activity impacts customer actions and sales in real-time. It all comes back to aligning marketing with the overarching sales goal: closing deals and hitting revenue targets. When the marketing team uses a Customer Journey-Driven Marketing framework supported by effective Marketing Operations this alignment is assured, and the sales team is the ultimate winner.

By providing sales with real-time insights into how marketing activity is driving customer action across the customer journey, the sales team can become more competitive and close more deals at a higher value. Sales productivity improves, and sales targets become easier to achieve. This is all made possible through effective Marketing Operations.

The value to executives

  1.  A reliable way to drive company growth
  2. Build a better relationship with customers in the digital landscape

The adoption of Marketing Operations globally is playing a key role in demonstrating to the executive team how marketing can become a stronger revenue and growth tool for the organisation. As Marketing Operations leverages technology and smarter processes to achieve business objectives, the function of marketing becomes the key driver of revenue and company growth. Many companies now view marketing as their singular growth engine, supported by effective Marketing Operations.

Today's executive teams are faced with a digital landscape where the customer is firmly in control. The right Marketing Operations function provides an executive team with a single source of truth for the customer journey, enabling real-time customer insights to drive better decision making. This is the ultimate role of the Marketing Operations function, and at the end of the day is where it will have the biggest impact on the future of the business. 

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