The Altruistic Side of Marketing

Sure, marketing ultimately is about generating revenue. But along the journey to profit, marketers are all about helping others look good.

Externally, the work marketers do helps consumers feel that they’ve made a good choice through their purchase decisions. The meaning of “good choice” will vary. It may refer to anything from feeling smart to feeling a part of an exclusive club. For example, a thrifty shopper who joins a loyalty program may feel savvy as a result of her savings. Or a technophile may feel like an expert by being among the first invited by a company to try a new tool. These positive feelings potentially create a virtuous cycle in which customers are likely to buy more, recommend, and advocate.

Internally, marketing leaders are there in part to help their teams look good. They do this in a variety of ways. This includes such actions as creating an environment that supports experimentation, risk-taking, and growth; providing coaching, training, and mentors; and tracking performance and measuring success. Marketing leaders are also there to help make the company look good in such areas as communicating the brand promise, successfully engaging customers, and driving revenue and growth.

The Direct Marketing News 2015 Marketing Hall of Femme honorees are among the marketing leaders who are equally focused on the success of their company and customers (see “18 Chief Marketers Who Put the ‘Excel’ in Excellent,” page 16)—in other words, helping them look good. They’re data-driven, employee- and customer-centric marketers who also have a flair for the creative side of the marketing equation. They’re authentic and open, and have an insatiable appetite for learning and growth. It truly is an honor to celebrate the inspiring accomplishments of these chief marketers.

A common thread

As different as their journeys have been and their stories are, they do share several common attributes. They use data to build their strategies around customers; they support their employees’ advancement; and they are anything but risk averse. Instead, they’re all about being courageous and moving swiftly, but wisely forward.

Consider this from honoree Lori Wright, CMO of TIBCO Software: “Be bold. Don’t do a lot of little stuff that makes minimal impact. Come up with one big platform idea each year and swing for the fences—you won’t always connect, but when you do, it makes all the difference in the world. People won’t remember the little things—but they’ll remember the big bangs.”

Indeed, DMN selected the Marketing Hall of Femme honorees in part based on the big bangs that mark the highlights of our honorees’ careers. We also consider their leadership style, approach to marketing, and recent results. Selecting only 18 women from the more than 80 nominees was no easy feat. Their achievements were simply remarkable.

What set the honorees apart? Ultimately, their leadership and marketing strategies and the success they’ve had as a result. As 2015 honoree Alicianne Rand, VP of marketing at NewsCred, so succinctly put it: “Strive for something huge.” That’s exactly what DMN‘s 2015 Marketing Hall of Femme honorees did. And their career, company, customer, and staff successes show just that.

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