Marketing Strategies CMOs Must Try to Drive Growth in 2021


The year 2020 has already disrupted the world forcing companies to create significant adjustments and changes in how they conduct and market their business. We are now halfway toward 2021 and as the months crawl by, marketers need to continuously adapt and create new strategies — whether it may be in digital marketing, account-based marketing, or lead generation services. Below are some examples of strategies marketers need to look out for in the coming year.

Prioritize brand strategy

In a CMO Survey conducted by Gartner, brand strategy has become one of the top three strategic priorities in the coming year. Thus, there’s no better time than now to audit your brand.

  • What do your customers think about your brand? 
  • What does your brand stand for? 
  • Are your customers willing to pay premium because they know and trust your brand?

Remember it’s not just about the aesthetics but the whole experience you provide for your customers.

Going all-out digital

Marketing experts agree that businesses will be more reliant on online services, and this transformation is most likely going to be permanent because of the pandemic. Nearly 30 percent of companies have dedicated their budget to digital marketing even before COVID-19 happened. According to the same survey by Gartner, companies have directed 80 percent of their multichannel budgets to digital advertising. 

However, there is a downside to this digital rush. As companies hasten to go digital, they forgot to create a digital strategy, causing them to have difficulty measuring what’s effective and what’s not. 

There’s no doubt digital marketing will dominate but before you go all-out with it, make sure to do a proper audit so you can strategize effectively.

Becoming more agile

Flexibility is very important especially during uncertain times. If there’s one takeaway we can get from all these, it’s becoming ready and willing to implement new systems and processes whatever the situation calls for. 

Being agile does not just mean going with the flow at the last minute. Rather, it means:

  • Preparing ahead of time so you’re ready to face any disruptions
  • Being aware of the perfect timing and moving fast when it’s time to move
  • Responding appropriately to different pressures 
  • Making quick decisions if the situation needs it

The key to being agile is learning to listen well to your audience. If you learn to listen, every little nuance in your customer behavior will become a clue whether it’s time to move or stay still.

Marketing with empathy

According to a CMO Survey, customers are now looking for brands they can fully trust. If you are to evaluate your brand, how do your customers think about you? How does it measure with your competitors?

As trust becomes a valuable necessity to retain and win customers, marketing with empathy is a must. Everyone is hurt and your customers badly need all the help and encouragement they can get. If you can genuinely translate that empathy to action, your brand can thrive. As UK Marketing Manager of Gazprom Energy Sarah Parry said, people will remember those companies who responded positively and negatively to the crisis.

Preparing for budget cuts

Let’s face it – we all have been hit hard financially. As of this writing, more than 70 percent of businesses all over the world have already made a budget cut. Nevertheless, the pressure to deliver with less is much greater. 

CMOs should anticipate more budgetary pressures in the coming year; thus, they need to plan now. You can be optimistic but it is not an excuse to take a risk on your budget hoping everything will go to normal soon.

The Survival of the fittest

According to Darwin’s Theory on Natural Selection, only those organisms that are able to evolve survive. The same goes true not only with the present situation we are in but for always. If your brand and your message will not evolve with the times, you will fossilize. Thus, there’s no other way but to change and move forward.