Monday's Musings: The Four Personas Of The Modern CMO In A Digital World


Marketers Face Massive Challenges In Making The Digital Shift

In interviews with over 100 digitally focused, modern CMO's, Constellation identified shared common challenges in the transformation of their roles.  More importantly, with the support of new digital business models, an emerging set of challenges highlight the need to move beyond the classic 4P's.   The top 20 modern marketing challenges (not in order of importance) include:

  1. Delivering on a creative to commerce vision
  2. Improving marketing automation and optimization
  3. Adjusting to fragmentation of channels, segments, and trends
  4. Investing in audience development
  5. Targeting with precision and less false positives
  6. Dealing with data driven approaches
  7. Building for intention driven design in customer experience
  8. Developing in-house ad networks and programmatic strategies
  9. Mastering data and data management platforms
  10. Re positioning the corporate brand for a digital world
  11. Empowering communities and audience development
  12. Attracting and retaining the right skill sets for digital marketing transformation
  13. Identifying new agency and consulting partners to augment efforts
  14. Improving internal employee engagement
  15. Building a culture of behind the brand promise
  16. Creating a P2P model
  17. Aligning marketing strategy with marketing technology
  18. Proving ROI
  19. Crafting compelling contextually relevant content
  20. Getting ahead of the latest disruptive technologies

Modern Marketers Address Four Distinct Personas

As the head marketing role evolves, Constellation identifies archetypes of the modern CMO.  Using an approach that considers marketing strategy versus marketing execution and audience development versus audience acquisition, four distinct personas emerge (see Figure 1):

Figure 1. Four Personas of the modern CMO

@rwang0 4 personas of the modern cmo

  1. Brand marketers focus on share of influence.
  2. Demand gen marketers focus on conversion rate optimization and click-thru-rates
  3. Community marketers focus on active member engagement
  4. Internal communication marketers focus on employee satisfaction and engagement

The Bottom Line: CMO's Must Manage The Priorities Of The Four Personas

While few CMO's can bring all four personas to the table, modern CMO's bring on lieutenants to balance out their weaknesses.  Given each of the personas must perform to a different set of metrics, CMO's must identify which areas they need to prioritize.  For those prioritizing on audience acquisition, brand and demand generation tend to gain focus.  For those focusing on audience development, communities and internal communication  projects are prioritized.  The modern CMO role will require he or she to manage the portfolio against changing business models and the digital transformation ahead.

Your POV.

Are you ready to transform marketing? How will you develop the four personas of the modern CMO.  Add your comments to the blog or reach me via email: R (at) ConstellationR (dot) com or R (at) SoftwareInsider (dot) org.

Please let us know if you need help with your Digital Business transformation efforts. Here’s how we can assist:
  • Developing your digital business strategy
  • Connecting with other pioneers
  • Sharing best practices
  • Vendor selection
  • Implementation partner selection
  • Providing contract negotiations and software licensing support
  • Demystifying software licensing




Reprints can be purchased through Constellation Research, Inc. To request official reprints in PDF format, please contact Sales .


Although we work closely with many mega software vendors, we want you to trust us. For the full disclosure policy,stay tuned for the full client list on the Constellation Research website. * Not responsible for any factual errors or omissions.  However, happy to correct any errors upon email receipt.
Copyright © 2001 - 2016 R Wang and Insider Associates, LLC All rights reserved.
Contact the Sales team to purchase this report on a a la carte basis or join the Constellation Customer Experience