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Marketing: If you want to be an A-level CMO, do this…

Sure, mastering the inner workings of online ad channels can make you a smooth operator behind the scenes.

But if you want to be a top-level chief marketing officer (CMO), Dave Gerhardt says skillsets alone aren’t enough.

You also need to master top notch communication.

Let’s see what he means…

Control the narrative

Marketing is one of the least understood industries. It’s not easy to explain or justify what you do to other departments.

Dave says that by being clear and confident in his communication, he managed to climb up the ladder much quicker than he thought.

So show what you’re working on and demonstrate why it matters. That’s how you’ll steer the entire marketing ship, both internally and externally.

For external communication

Always keep the end in mind. It’s not about what you want to say, but what your audience needs to understand.

If they don’t hear it, or they’re confused or bored, that’s on you.

For internal communication

You’ll have to practice and hone your skills within the team.

Dave lists a few tips to get started:

  • Read a few books on public speaking.
  • Watch 2–3 great public speakers on YouTube, take notes, and recreate their talk outlines.
  • Streamline internal communications. You don’t have to be a CMO yet to start practicing this. Find areas of the business you can own within your team, and start sharing updates on them. Publish short presentations or Loom videos and send them as weekly updates as your managers.

That’s a start that you want to build on.

Keep in mind that if communication is something you struggle with, that could be a reason not to take a marketing leadership role.

You may perform better by being “in the trenches” instead of managing people.

But if you want to become a CMO, just pretend the “C” in your role stands for “Communication.” And you won’t fail.

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