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Commonwealth Bank - Meet the tech savvy CMO

Holly Morgan | June 9, 2017
As the CMO mandate widens, the channel is chasing a new type of buyer - but what makes marketing tick?

Ultimately however, and to further reiterate, Shortt's primary focus is based on two core principals - customer satisfaction and the customer experience.

"Continuous improvements in technology and investments in technology are a significant lever we use to improve customer satisfaction and experience," Shortt added. "There are times where the technology looks interesting and we trial it without certainty of business outcomes.

"An example of this is our partnership with UNSW on Quantum Computing. Other times, we use technology to solve business challenges such as machine learning capability to accelerate benefits."


Focus on tech

Over the last several years, the industry has witnessed an expansion of the CMO mandate, from what was largely a promotional role to what is now often seen as the growth engine for the business.

Crucially however, it's playing out in the numbers, with Gartner research driving this point home as CMOs take on more formal responsibility.

In more than 30 per cent of organisations, at least some aspects of sales, IT and customer experience now report into the CMO.

With new responsibility creates new buying power and new levels of preference for marketers keen to utilise emerging technologies in different ways.

"We use all the technologies you would expect such as big data, customer master data repositories, analytics software, decisioning engines, CRM capability and programmatic media tracking stack," Shortt added.

More broadly however, Shortt said CommBank is building an innovation ecosystem around its customers through partnerships.

"For example, since acquiring Take Your Money Anywhere (TYME) in 2015 our team in South Africa has developed strong local partners in Pick n' Pay, the second largest retailer in the country, and African Rainbow Capital, our investment partner," Shortt added.

"With innovations in biometric capture and self service on-boarding, it takes four minutes to on-board a new customer from any of our 685 kiosks across South Africa.

"This is the type of innovation driven by technology that we'd like to see developed in other markets."

Vanessa Brennan Partner, PwC
Vanessa Brennan Partner, PwC


Selling tech to the CMO

"Marketing and technology departments are realising their dependencies on each other," observed Vanessa Brennan, partner at PwC.

"Everyone is trying to be customer- centric. It's the buzzword we hear all the time and organisations now are using technology in different capacities to engage with customers in a number of ways."

From a technology standpoint, Brennan cited data as a crucial tool in the marketing kit bag.

"The more you know about your customer, the more the customer journey becomes critical," she explained.

Furthermore, Brennan defined omni- channel as the second most prominent phenomenon trending among PwC customers.


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