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The Role of the CMO

The Role of the CMO

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Do you hope to someday take on the role of the CMO? The CMO, or chief marketing officer, is the highest-level marketing position that you can attain while working for a company. CMOs have been the topic of many discussions in recent years due to their growing popularity. Companies and corporations recognize the importance of marketing and the role of marketers has grown within many businesses. Whether you are simply curious about the role of the CMO or aspire to be a CMO yourself, we will tell you everything you need to know about the role of the chief marketing officer in the corporate world.

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What Is a CMO?

CMO stands for chief marketing officer. It is the highest-level marketing position in a company. A CMO is an important part of any company and determines the brand’s direction and marketing strategy and leads the marketing team.

A CMO is part of the “C-suite,” which is the blanket term that refers to all the corporate executive positions with the world chief in their job title. For example, some other C-suite positions are chief executive officer and chief financial officer. The CMO works closely with the other C-suite positions.


What Is the Difference Between the Role of the CMO and a Marketing Director?

There are a lot of marketing job titles out there, from marketing assistant to digital marketing manager and even brand ambassador. So, how does a chief marketing officer differ from other common marketing leadership positions? A CMO differs from the title of “marketing director” or “marketing manager.” Though a CMO may have many of the same responsibilities as a marketing director, marketing manager or other high-level marketing position, a CMO is an executive who will need to keep pace with the other C-executives.

What are the Responsibilities of a CMO?

The role and responsibilities of a CMO can vary, depending on the executive, the industry, the size of their team, etc. However, generally, the chief marketing officer is primarily responsible for driving revenue by increasing sales through marketing activities. The following are some of the typical responsibilities of a CMO:

Create and Implement Marketing Campaigns

The primary responsibility of a CMO is to develop and execute successful marketing campaigns. Typically, a marketing campaign begins with a particular tone or message that they want to communicate about a brand, or a new product or service launch. Then, the CMO will work with their team to create a focused content marketing strategy.

Oversee Market Research and Analyze Metrics

One of the most important aspects of a marketing campaign is reaching consumers in the correct target market. CMOs conduct or oversee market research and data analysis regarding their target audience, the custom experience and sales funnel, and market and industry trends to determine the best way to reach their audience – and make sales.

Oversee All PR and Public-Facing Communication

Many CMOs closely supervise all of the company’s public relations efforts, including any public-facing communications or messages from the brand. This includes social media accounts, email marketing, newsletters, web pages, and print publications. The job of the chief marketing officer is to ensure that all these communications are on brand and aligned with the current marketing campaign.

Work Closely With Other C-Suite Positions

The CMO also collaborates frequently with the other C-level executives in the company, such as the CEO (chief executive officer), CIO (chief information officer), COO (chief operating officer), CPO (chief product officer), and CFO (chief financial officer.) These roles frequently work together to make important decisions related to product pricing, new product and service development, and the brand’s direction, goals, and progress.

What Qualifications are Necessary to Become a CMO?

Are you wondering, “How can I become a CMO?” While every chief marketing officer will take their own unique career path, there are several different high-level requirements in order to reach the elite position of chief marketing officer at most companies:


At a minimum, most CMO positions will require that a candidate has a bachelor’s degree in business administration, business development, marketing, or a related field. (Keep in mind, however, that it is possible to work in marketing without a marketing degree!) Chief marketing officer positions at high-profile companies might also require additional education, like an MBA degree, other relevant master’s degrees, or an additional business certification, like Certified Marketing Management Professional or Professional Certified Marketer.


As you may have guessed, CMO is not exactly an entry-level position. The role comes with a lot of responsibilities, so typically the chief marketing officer job description will require a minimum of 10 years of experience in marketing departments. Ideally, at least half that time will be spent in some kind of leadership role. Potential employers love to see the effects of your efforts: for example, have your marketing skills demonstrably increased sales for your previous employer or company? (If you want to improve your resume, this is a great fact to add!)

Technical Skills

Any CMO must have knowledge and understanding of several different technical skills relating to marketing. Some of these might include design software, search engine optimization, email servers and programs, social media channels lead generation and sales management tech, and CRMs (customer relationship management software.)

Leadership and Communication Skills

An excellent CMO will always have excellent leadership, communication, and interpersonal skills. These talents are all important for leading their marketing teams, solving conflicts, motivating their employees, and working well with the other high-level executives at the company.

The Role of the CMO in Corporate Culture

The chief marketing officer is a relatively new role in the corporate world. As of 2019, there were more than 68,000 chief marketing officers employed in the United States.

Rise the Corporate Marketing Ladder With an AMA Membership

If you aspire to one day be a chief marketing officer, becoming a member of the American Marketing Association is one small step in the right direction. The AMA is the essential community for marketers to connect with the resources they need to be successful. Join the AMA today!