Ninety-five percent of chief marketing officers (CMOs) believe their companies should take the lead in finding solutions to key societal and cultural issues, according to a survey by Gartner, Inc.
Gartner surveyed 381 CMOs and senior marketing executives during September and October 2020, and found that their organizations have already taken concrete action (see Figure 1) to demonstrate a firm commitment to societal change.
“CMOs play a unique role in helping their organizations understand and respond to societal, cultural and political trends,” said Jay Wilson, vice president analyst in the Gartner Marketing practice. “As a result, marketing has taken on the responsibility of using the brand’s platform to build awareness of societal issues and communicate support for movements. However, there is some misalignment of consumer expectations of brands and the actions they report having taken.”
Gartner found that 44% of consumers report that their highest expectations of companies is for them to ensure their own policies and practices align with a cause, but only 37% of CMOs report taking that action. Twenty-four percent of consumers say one of brands’ top two priorities should be donating money to cause, yet 46% of CMOs report donations as a top action taken.