Last week I was in a meeting with a group of clients when the subject of accountability came up. Specifically, the conversation was focused on the measurability of digital marketing. I was surprised to hear someone lamenting the good old days “when you couldn’t measure what we were doing.” Heads nodded in agreement.
I’ve heard that one before, but not recently. It was a shock to see so many people still feel that way.
I used to work in those “good old days,” and I didn’t like it. That’s why I left the agency business in 1989 vowing never to return. Of course I did return ten years later when the promise of digital marketing started to become a reality. I much prefer our role today: Develop and implement a program, then find out if works. If it doesn’t, stop it or change it. If it does, invest behind it.
We’ve all read that CMO’s have an average life-span of 23 months. Of course, that’s just an average. Many last longer. I suspect those that last longer are the ones that relish accountability — that are truly focused on driving business results for their organizations. The average CMO tenure is driven down by those that don’t fully embrace accountability.
And that’s as it should be.