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How Nimble CMOs Invest Their Marketing Budgets

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How Nimble CMOs Invest Their Marketing Budgets

Boston Consulting Group,

5 min read
4 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Your marketing department doesn’t spend money. They invest money.

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Imagine your company’s chief marketing officer presenting a plan for the annual marketing budget and sticking to it. Constant shifts in technology and the perpetual evolution of your customers’ preferred media sources require a more complex approach to marketing, and recognition that the marketing budget isn’t a line-item expense – it’s an investment, and should be managed as such. The Boston Consulting Group offers tips for marketing investments in this special report.


Nimble CMOs (chief marketing officers) assess marketing expenditures with an investor’s mind-set.

If you see 2020 and the COVID-19 crisis as an anomaly, and long for a future that looks like the predictable past, you’re likely in for disappointment. If anything, it may be best to consider the experiences of 2020 as a training ground for a future that will continue with uncertainty and disruption. 

For marketing departments, the lesson is that marketing expenditures must be managed much the same way investments are. This means collecting data and measuring outcomes, adopting a scenario-planning approach to address unpredictable modern business terrains, embracing new analytical models and taking a flexible outlook. When partnered with a similarly nimble CFO, a CMO who champions these new ways of marketing can improve marketing efficiency and profitability between 20% and 40%.

The CMO-as-investor would benefit from assessing marketing...

About the Authors

Jessica Apotheker, Wei Han, David Ratajczak, Thomas Recchione, Neal Rich and Ray Wu are professionals with the Boston Consulting Group.

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