CMO Benchmarking


New study reveals valuable benchmarking insights for marketing leaders

CMO research collaboration between CMO Club and Deloitte

Explore the CMO study composed of benchmark data from 401 CMOs and one-on-one interviews with top marketers of brand leaders in a wide range of industries.

Key findings

Insights from a new CMO study of more than 400 marketing organizations across the globe illuminate how top CMOs and companies are organizing and operationalizing their marketing functions to succeed in today’s disruptive business climate while providing a roadmap for critical planning and decision-making needed to ready and evolve modern marketing organizations for the future.

Deloitte and the CMO Club developed the comprehensive study of marketing organizations today to explore how the near-decade-long evolution of the CMO role itself and the ever-increasing demands from the business on the function have evolved reporting structures; span of control, scope, and functions; outsourcing and insourcing strategies; talent and succession planning; and performance measurement for modern marketers and their organizations.

The study captured benchmark data from more than 400 CMOs from across the globe and from wide-ranging industries. As they continue the evolution from storyteller to business leader, CMOs face a relentlessly expanding, morphing role in leading their marketing organization. Likewise, the marketing organization itself is undergoing a similar transformation.

By studying and building a baseline of data around marketing organizations and operational structures, the benchmarking report provides valuable insights for marketing leaders to compare and measure their roles and organizations to their global marketing peers, determine critical decision areas to address their biggest challenges, and establish a roadmap to evolve their marketing organizations for success in the future. Key highlights from the report include:

  • CMOs are gaining ground in the C-suite. Marketing leaders undoubtedly have a seat at the head table—and should focus on what to bring to the C-suite table to be recognized and drive value for the business. Seventy-one percent of CMOs indicate their role is considered part of the C-suite, 59 percent report directly to the CEO and 27 percent report to the COO or president.
  • CMOs and marketing are accountable for more than ever. In today’s dynamic business environment, the scope of accountability in marketing is expanding. More than 50 percent of CMOs surveyed indicate they are responsible for 11 or more areas of marketing activities and identified still other activities they’d like to bring into marketing’s purview to further drive success.

Is your role considered in the C-suite?

  • CMOs are fostering credibility and collaboration by measuring marketing’s effectiveness. CMOs report the top three measurements of success in the eyes of their CEO are awareness (51 percent), sales and revenue (31 percent), and media ROI (29 percent). A critical element to gaining influence and a voice in strategic discussions is effectively conveying those results across the C-suite.
  • CMOs are identifying and recruiting talent they need to evolve their organizations. Marketers know the talent and skill sets they need to take their organization to the next level. Three primary skills emerged as the critical for the future: data science (78 percent), analytics (68 percent), and user experience (60 percent).
  • CMOs are tapping internal and external talent. CMOs are flexing by building in-house capabilities, tapping external agencies, and working with a hybrid of both. CMOs report partially or completely outsourced creative (60 percent) and insights and analytics (31 percent), while 14 percent report no outsourcing. 64 percent of CMOs report having an internal agency, while more than one-third of respondents report using a hybrid model.
  • CMOs recognize there’s a leadership void to fill. One glaring talent gap revealed is finding an immediate successor for the CMO. A full 61 percent of respondents said they do not have a direct report who could step into the CMO role tomorrow.

Do you have a direct report that could step into the CMO role tomorrow, if needed?

CMO Benchmarking survey: The CMO’s impact

About the survey

The CMO Club Benchmarking Study is a comprehensive research collaboration between the CMO Club and Deloitte to create an insightful benchmarking study exploring the organization and operations of the marketing function today. The study captures benchmark data from 401 CMOs across the globe, averaging nine years of cumulative CMO or head of marketing experience. The survey data was contextualized with insights from more than 20 CMOs participating in the CMO Club’s Fall 2019 Summit roundtable session and, additionally, with seven in-depth interviews from brand leaders in a wide range of industries.

The evolution of marketing organizations

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