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8 Key Attributes of the Modern Marketer

Aug 21, 2013

What does it take to be a new marketing leader? What will we look for in the CMO of the future? This infographic is our take on the skills and experiences that define successful leaders in this new era for marketing.

We were inspired by our most forward-thinking customers and influencers. By analyzing the successful digital strategies they have built, we looked for patterns. The Anatomy of the Modern Marketer visualizes the 8 key attributes we identified.

Flexible Thinkers

Modern marketers make their own luck. They plan well but they’re agile enough to respond to serendipitous opportunities. They can rapidly react and innovate in changing circumstances. In the past, they relied on analytics to understand how they track against a plan. Today, they use real-time analytics to constantly ask different questions of their data, using the answers to evolve their strategy.

Lori Marino, Senior Manager, Digital & Social Media at Raytheon says:

A marketer must create relationships because they are what matters most!

The Face of the Company

They’re at the forefront of the community. They build and nurture relationships with people who can move the needle for their company. It’s not just about talking to influencers, it’s about being one of them. Their ability to deliver on this premise is part of the recruiting criteria.

Eyes on the Prize

While they are tuned in to metrics, they see beyond impressions and promoter scores. Their eyes are focused on the end goal. They engage in a web of activities and they measure success differently. They are looking at the outcome but do not try to tie every action to numbers and impressions.

Ears Wide Open

They listen to people and data. While the social noise around their brand can be deafening, they use tools to navigate through all the sound and take away clear, actionable messages – about the brand, its products and the industry as a whole. With this knowledge, they can then tailor their messages in a way that is productive and meaningful.

Rachel Miller, Customer Engagement Manager at Nimble says,

The key to creating a community is an understanding that what you hear is much more important than what you say.


They are talking with people, not to people. They’re educating, not broadcasting. The message they want to communicate is not centered around product features but around the vision behind them. It’s about what the product is trying to enable.

People at Heart

They connect with customers and build relationships with them. They seek to develop a good sense of the community and what they need. It’s not just about increasing awareness. It’s about developing empathy and a deep understanding of customer needs in order to provide real value.

Getting Their Hands Dirty

They are crafty and resourceful. Creative confidence is their strongest asset. They prototype rapid experiments, learn and adapt. They iterate in public and create change through continuous experimentation.

David Smooke, Director of Social Media at SmartRecruiters says,

Marketing is personified storytelling. Know your 1 hour story, your 1 sentence story, your 1 word story - then just go about your day - and market share will come to you.

Ideas with Legs

They have a good understanding of technology – how different tools work together and the possibilities they offer to execute their creative ideas.

Get your copy of the Anatomy of the Modern Marketer →

We’d love to get your thoughts. What does it take to head up the marketing department in your organization? What are the skills and experiences necessary to make a great marketing exec? The comments are yours.

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