CMO's Corner: The Super Powers of 10 Marketing Teams
July 17, 2017
Inspired by the recent buzz around the Wonder Woman blockbuster, I reflected on all the remarkable women who are making the impossible possible in my CMO circle.
I quickly noticed that behind every wonder woman is an empowered team. So, I was motived to ask a selection of top female marketing leaders in my network about what makes their teams successful.
I posed the question, “What is your super power when it comes to building brand experiences that inspire?”
Below are the personal philosophies and methods of ten female leaders as well as my own:
Focus on Your Customer
Emily Culp, CMO, Keds USA:
As a team, our super power is being manically focused on our Keds consumer (and doing this for 101 years). By thinking through every moment of her day— the music she loves, the places she travels and the fashion she enjoys— we can ensure that the lens we apply to all our brand experiences and product offerings truly inspire her.
Sheryl Adkins-Green, CMO, Mary Kay, Inc.:
There is nothing more powerful than the belief in one’s self. Mary Kay Ash often said, “If I can help just one woman each day discover how great she is, it will be a great day.” This simple goal has grown over the last 53 years into a super-powerful community of millions of confident Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultants who are enriching women’s lives in nearly 40 countries around the world.
Jennifer Dominiquini, Chief Marketing & Digital Sales Officer, BBVA Compass:
Our super power is having a crystal-clear brand purpose that all our associates believe. In our case, it is all about creating opportunities for a bright future by helping people stay in control of their finances and make better financial decisions. When you work towards a WHY it makes brand building easier because people know what the brand stands for and why the brand is so meaningful.
Jennifer Francis, Executive Director of Marketing and Communications, Philadelphia Museum of Art:
The powerhouse who was Maya Angelou said: "If you're going to live, leave a legacy. Make a mark on the world that can't be erased.” I think she sums my personal philosophy up in the following: "Precious jewel, you glow, you shine, reflecting all the good things in the world. Just look at yourself. Develop enough courage so that you can stand up for yourself and then stand up for somebody else.”
Carol Kruse, CMO, Cambia Health Solutions:
At Cambia Health Solutions our Cause is absolutely our super power—for our brands, our consumer experiences, and our marketing team’s motivation. Waking up every morning and working for a 100-year-old start-up that is focused on transforming healthcare to be more person-focused, seamless, and economically sustainable, creates a focus. Our super power, for my team and I is to prioritize improving consumer communications and experiences. Our “Live Fearless” campaign even includes capes!
Elaine Leavenworth, SVP, Chief Marketing and External Affairs Officer, Abbott:
Our super power is the power of health. We come to work each day to help people live the best life they can through the power of health. We work to keep your heart healthy, nourish your body at every stage of life, help you feel and move better and bring you information, medicines and breakthroughs to manage your health. We're inspired by the stories of people powered by health and we share them at lifetothefullest.com.
Barbara Messing, CMO, TripAdvisor:
My team's superpower is that we use our x-ray vision to really see what global consumers want, dive into the insights using the best of both qual and quant, and then we create bulletproof experiences to solve their travel problems. All on our invisible plane of course.
Diana O'Brien, CMO, Deloitte:
Our Deloitte team brings powerful brand experiences to life by going beyond what’s expected, being unafraid to try new things, and challenging each other to be their best. Their super power is courage. The courage to look again, see what others don’t, and create new possibilities. That sets them apart and it’s how they make an impact that matters to each other, our clients, and our communities.
Melanie Marcus, CMO, Surescripts:
Here at Surescripts, I’m fortunate to work for a healthcare IT company whose purpose statement is literally to “increase patient safety, lower costs and ensure quality care.” That purpose inspires the team every day and the portfolio that delivers on that purpose statement is our super-power.
Heather Vandenberghe, CMO, Westfield US:
First and foremost, I hire people who are smarter than me and trust them to do their jobs and do them well. Our collective goal is to integrate throughout the organization to truly understand our business needs at all levels, and to use this knowledge to transform the marketing landscape. I have found my greatest success as a marketer is when I am also the customer – together with my team, we put ourselves in the customers’ shoes to create the most compelling brand experiences that we know will resonate.
Siegel+Gale is a renowned strategic branding and design firm. As a marketing team our super power is the ability to connect brand leaders with the right experts at our firm to help them build world-class brands. A corollary of this is connecting CMOs with each other in person and through the content we create. For example, the panels and roundtables that we convene across the world are applauded for the quality of guests and conversations.