Marketers ‘lack influence’, says CIM report

Marketers are concerned about their lack of influence on key commercial activities such as strategy and business development, according to a report from the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

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Marketers feel they ‘lack influence’ in the boardroom

The CIM’s latest quarterly Marketing Confidence Monitor, which is supported by Deloitte, found fewer than half (45 per cent) of UK marketers have guaranteed involvement in the development of new products and services.

Almost a third (30 per cent) reported a low or no chance in being involved in the development of corporate strategy and one in five (20 per cent) said they were unlikely to be involved in significant changes to customer service or the wider customer experience.

The report found these issues are reflected in the access marketers are offered to senior executives. While 60 per cent of marketers are given regular, structured access to their organisation’s most senior team, more than 25 per cent reported only having the chance of occasional “airtime” with their most senior colleagues.

Anne Godfrey, CIM chief executive, says businesses will only survive disruptions such as economic turbulence and channel fragmentation when they put they customer “back at the heart of their decisions” and invest in new ideas, opportunities and ways of working.

“That’s where marketing plays a crucial role, out of the box labelled ‘communications’, ‘advertising’ or ‘promotion’ and at the heart of corporate strategy development and all aspects of customer experience,” she adds.

Nick Turner, partner in the marketing and insight practice at Deloitte, says having influence is “not a birth right” of marketing. It has to be earned through “an appreciation of the customer” and an ability to “orientate the business around these insights”, he adds.

In spite of worries about their influence in the boardroom, marketers have become increasingly optimistic about economic  prospects and business performance over the next 12 months.

The overall marketing confidence index – which takes account of the economic climate, job security, pay prospects and budget forecast – has increased more than three points since January and has more than doubled over the the past six months.

The CIM Marketing Confidence Monitor is produced from a weighted survey of more than 1,700 UK marketing professionals. 

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