- Hyatt Hotels Corp. plans to eliminate its global chief marketing officer position in a shift of its corporate leadership and operations team, according to a press release.
- The changes include forming a customer services portfolio at the executive level, aiming to merge guest and customer engagement functions with marketing under a new chief commercial officer role. Hyatt president and CEO Mark Hoplamazian said in the release that the changes will make the company more agile and better able to meet the demands of the "rapidly-emerging consumer, industry and competitive developments."
- The new structure is scheduled to be completed in Q2 2018. Until then, current CMO Maryam Banikarim will lead the company's marketing strategy.
To better address the current and future marketing landscape, a growing number of companies have chosen to replace their CMOs or eliminate the role completely. Companies need executives who can handle new, disruptive technologies and quickly adapt to changing customer behaviors. Instead of a traditional CMO, some companies are adding a new role to their C-suite — the chief media officer. The number of professionals with this or similar job titles has grown nearly 150%, according to a Digiday analysis of English-language LinkedIn profiles.
Last year, Coca-Cola took a route similar to Hyatt's when it eliminated its global CMO role and combined its marketing, customer and commercial leadership strategies into one function. The soft drink brand also appointed a chief innovation officer to focus on research and development as a standalone position. The position most closely approximating that of a CMO is now chief growth officer.
Historically, CMOs were responsible for branding, marketing and generating leads, but that's changed to include fully understanding consumers' needs and translating that across multiple channels and touch points to connect with potential customers. CMOs now need to account for changes in buying habits, study audience diversity and how and where to best reach audiences for the most impactful interaction.
The office of the CMO is known for being been a revolving door. Forrester predicted that about 30% of CMOs would lose their jobs in 2017 because they lacked the skills needed to digitally transform their companies and integrate customer experience. In 2016, the average tenure for a CMO was 42 months, down from 44 in 2015 and about half that of the average CEO tenure, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.