5 minute read 20 Jun 2019
robust production

How a healthy marketing-finance dynamic is vital for future businesses

By

EY Global

Multidisciplinary professional services organization

5 minute read 20 Jun 2019

Our CMO CFO Connection Report finds the connection between CMOs and CFOs is crucial to unlock new value and growth.

The digital world is creating opportunities for marketing that would have been unthinkable just a few years ago. Marketing technology (martech) and growing proficiency with data are helping chief marketing officers (CMOs) to better understand their customers, track engagement and drive growth.

As they connect marketing with customer experience, they are creating more value than ever. CMOs are placing bigger strategic bets and investments, requiring a significantly larger budget to pay for an effective data-driven strategy and to deliver outstanding customer experience. This new connection is reliant on a strong relationship with chief financial officers (CFOs).

Our CMO CFO Connection Report uncovers why, despite their conflicting priorities, the relationship between CMOs and CFOs plays a vital role in driving business growth and adding value.

The evolution of finance and marketing

EY’s 2015 report, Partnering for performance, found that more than half of CFOs (54%) believed collaboration with CMOs had increased¸ noting that in recent years, CMOs and CFOs have been establishing the foundations necessary for their relationship to succeed. However, it’s the organizations who are proactively building upon these foundations who are effectively driving growth.

  • Our CMO CFO Connection report, is based on findings from a survey of 304 senior marketing and finance leaders, conducted with Longitude in early 2019. Responses were split almost evenly between marketing (150) and finance (154). CMOs and CFOs each represented 50% of respondents within their respective areas of the business. We also carried out in-depth discussions with several marketing and finance chiefs.

Why building a healthy marketing-finance dynamic is critical for business growth

More than two in three respondents (67%) agree, for instance, that the cultural differences between finance and marketing are becoming more, not less, pronounced over time. They point to tensions arising from the two functions’ conflicting expectations around ROI and the use of qualitative and quantitative metrics.

Cultural differences between marketing and finance

67%

Agree that cultural differences between finance and marketing are becoming more, not less, pronounced over time.

According to our survey, 90% of marketing and finance leaders believe that the two functions need to work more closely as their businesses pursue digital transformation.

According to our latest survey 90% of marketing and finance leaders believe that marketing and finance need to work more closely as their businesses pursue digital transformation. 83% assert that their company’s marketing activity would be more effective if marketing and finance were more closely aligned. 

CFOs and CMOs collaborate frequently today due to necessity however, if they can forge a deeper strategic relationship, they can learn from each other’s respective talents and strengths and drive growth more effectively.
Janet Balis
EY Global Media & Entertainment Advisory Services Leader

Moreover, 59% of finance respondents, compared to 49% of marketers, believe that their organization has a long way to go before it can measure the lifetime value of a customer. Evidently, there is a mismatch in what marketing and finance believe is possible with today’s tools and methodologies. Yet they both have a vested interested in bridging that gap.

We've identified three key areas of strain between CMO and CFOs and provides actionable insights to help find common ground and understand opportunities of value creation together.

  1. Diverse approaches to martech
  2. Conflicting metrics for ROI and performance
  3. Changes to data privacy and regulation

The good news is that there is a clear willingness to make the relationship work. Our report outlines how marketing and finance leaders can lead the way forward within their teams and across the organization as a whole.

Summary

Learn how to overcome the challenges CMO and CFOs face when forging effective relationships in our report.

About this article

By

EY Global

Multidisciplinary professional services organization