Cmo panel uber, tourism australia, australian sports commission, salesforce on modern marketing leadership – cmo australia data recovery houston

Stronger commercial accountability, data and technology savviness, and the ability to better influence the company culture are significant changes CMOs have experienced in their roles over the last five years. And they’re striving to be braver and take more risks as a result.

To honour CMO’s 5 th birthday as a brand, marketing chiefs from Uber, Tourism Australia, Australian Sports Commission (ASC) and Salesforce participated in a panel discussion at our special event on 23 May to discuss what’s changed about the remit and strategic approach to marketing in recent years. They also shared how they’re coping with demands to be technologists, customer custodians, change makers and commercial and growth contributions in their organisations.

“Five years ago, we were all aware of digital disruption – it started changing things and behaviour dramatically.


But one of the things we did probably incorrectly is we went so heavily into measurement,” Tourism Australia CMO, Lisa Ronson, told attendees. “I’m not saying it isn’t important, but just because you can measure it, doesn’t mean it becomes effective.

“We forgot about the customer a bit; that we are emotional beings and we have to be emotionally engaged before we make a purchase decision. You can’t just serve a banner ad and hope for the best. This change is a positive thing – we ran to one end of the boat, and we’re now balancing that out.”

Data and technology has been a game-changer in this regard. A big plus for Tourism Australia has been the ability to define who the target audience is – the high-value traveller – then go and get them using behavioural targeting, Ronson said.

“In the past, trying to find those people on the basis of behaviour was really hard. When I worked at Westpac, for example, we had a clearly defined audience but we had to go back to demographics in media in order to try and reach them. Now we have data and technology to know exactly who they are and find the global answers in those groups,” she said. “It’s really exciting as it means we spend every dollar more efficiently.”

Uber director of marketing A/NZ, Steve Brennen, saw his marketing approach driven by the same motivator it always has been: To be customer led. But he agreed the tools are very different today versus five years ago. Specifically, the marketer’s dream of being able to personalise at scale is being realised through data and tech innovation, raising interesting dichotomies between human and machine in marketing teams, he said.

One way Eyres is looking to achieve this is by finding ways of utilising the group’s high-performance athlete data points to drive customer engagement and commercial impact. This is seeing the ASC seek new partnerships with like-minded organisations which could be health insurers, software providers, manufacturers and more.

With a Government mandate to take on physical activity across the entire Australian population, the ASC is looking to extend out from its emphasis solely on high-performance athletes and participation to also include initiatives for 0-5 year-olds, over 65s, and more.

“We have 600,000 children and sports camps coming through our facilities and we’ve made that shift to realise these are our customers and to engage with them on this basis,” Eyres said. “They’re future athletes, advocates and ambassadors. We’re reframing our business accordingly.” Salesforce APAC product marketing lead, Derek Laney, cited the shift from tech provider to partner and advisor as a key evolution in the last five years. What has arisen, however, is a shortage of skills in market to use tech tools effectively.

“That has been our change in focus at Salesforce in the last 12 months – to stop selling, start training and finding ways to scale and grow skills. That’s really what’s limiting our growth. The limiter is the skills to adopt the craft,” he said.

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