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CMO branding! Like everything, the role of the modern Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) keeps changing. From a greater responsibility for impacting sales to higher expectations around ROI, CMOs have a lot going on — particularly those at small- to mid-sized businesses (SMBs) who usually have to do more with less (that hasn’t changed).

The good news is that SMB CMOs can leverage the brand strategy to meet those challenges, even when capital and human resources may be limited. How? Use the brand strategy to give the entire company what they need to contribute to meeting the marketing agenda.

Engagement. When employees rally around a brand, everything improves for the better: the work ethic (people work harder), customer service (renewals get easier), territorial barriers drop (getting data from other departments gets easier), and customer perceptions (word of mouth gets louder), to name a few.

Governance. Governance — sometimes known in the pejorative as Brand Policing — is a four-letter word to many, but it should not be. A well-thought-out brand governance program can create more qualified brand decision makers (more hands on deck) as well as drive consistency (reduce marketing material time to market costs).

Brand Education. Providing the resources people need to understand the brand makes them better able to represent it to customers and prospects (drive conversions) and contribute content (less your team has to do).

And finally, the most important one: in any organization, especially those who are prone to chasing the latest shiny object, the brand strategy provides an agreed upon roadmap that keeps everyone focused and on track.

When demands grow, take a moment to see if there are ways your brand strategy can help. After all, it all starts with brand.

— Douglas Spencer

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