It’s that time of year when every IT leader turns into a gypsy, peering into their crystal ball to predict what the New Year will bring. With so much soothsaying swirling about, it’s easy for tech CMOs to get lost in macro trends and lose sight of organizational-specific expectations.
So, we asked IT board members representing brands of all stages a direct and important question: given the past 3 years of rapid change and another forthcoming year of uncertainty, what performance expectations do you and your fellow board members have for marketing departments in 2023?
Sean Banks – Partner at TTV Capital
Board Member: Carputty, Hurdlr, Medxoom, PTO Exchange, Observer at MX, SamCart and Taxbit
“Everyone is concerned about macroeconomic conditions heading into 2023, but as I reflect on the advice we always give our portfolio companies, not much has changed. On the marketing side, we’ll still advise early-stage startups to optimize spend in order to deliver meaningful impact for the business. We’ll recommend that marketers do more with less, ‘fail fast’ with tactics that aren’t working, and continuously evaluate ROI.”
Sarah Fay – Managing Director at Glasswing Ventures
Board Member: Labviva, Narrative I/O, Ziff Davis
“More than ever, marketing and sales are intertwined. Gone are the days when a sales person can easily engage a prospect by email or phone call. Sales are made on the buyer’s terms – with educational content, demos, and data that indicates relevant buying behaviors. We are not only employing these new sales processes across our portfolio but we are investing in companies like Reprise and Trender.ai that are accelerating these new sales processes.”
Sabrina Horn – CEO, Horn Strategy, LLC, and Professor, Emerson College
Board Member: 4Crisk.ai, Dieu Donne, Boston University Alumni Council
Advisor: Dogly.com, Hobart William Smith Council, Illuminate Ventures, JEGI-Clarify, KloudGin, TadHealth
“In the current economic environment, IT companies, especially young startups, should focus on lead and revenue generation, closing deals, and actual cash in hand. The must-haves of marketing should be entirely focused on supporting and enabling that. Building awareness through thought leadership, boosting credibility, showing ROI and reliability, will be key.”
Amir Memon – Principal at Advent International
Board Member: Nielsen IQ, Encora, Ansira
“In 2023, the boards I’m on are looking at the marketing function as a key driver of existing customer retention and revenue growth. While marketing has historically been held to MQL and SQL goals, IT brands need to shore up their existing customer base as we head into a year of economic uncertainty.”
Gary Peat – General Partner at Valor Ventures
Board Member: Allelica, Relatient, CareWork
“In 2023, Valor sees real, fundamental change happening. Specifically, marketing and sales are finally realizing the promise of automation and will be able to add new logos with more speed and efficiency. For example, AI-based tools like Saile.ai, which essentially enables companies to replicate their best sales people. As a result, in the New Year, boards will have greater expectations on their sales and marketing departments to run highly optimized customer acquisition sales and marketing processes. Which increases sales cycle speed – with greater frequency and accuracy.”
Michele Perry – Operating Advisor at ElsewherePartners
Board Member: BurstIQ, greymatter.io, Learnsoft, Physician360
“With a lot of uncertainty as we enter 2023, we’re looking at very focused marketing, taking advantage of a less noisy market to reach buyers in the most cost-effective way. Fighting the common urge to cutback on marketing in times of uncertainty. But realize that buyers with a budget have that budget due to a pain point they need addressed.”
CMOs at global tech brands need a strategic software marketing agency partner that has experience helping companies go to market and report value up to the board.
Alloy’s team is fluent in the business dynamics that growth-stage and mid-market tech companies face today, as well as what’s needed to tackle the opportunities on their horizon.