Bill Muller is the former VP of Marketing at Contract Logix and former CMO of both Visual IQ and iProspect. He has nearly 40 years of B2B marketing management experience within both the professional services and software industries. Boston-based, he is currently seeking his next exciting marketing management adventure and opportunity.
How do you define ‘digital strategy’, from a CMO’s perspective?
A digital strategy is one that employs both digital channel best practices, and strong marketing fundamentals, as part of an larger integrated marketing strategy to produce measurable, repeatable bottom-line results. By measurable and repeatable, its particularly important to measure, and either abandon or optimize very quickly. By larger integrated strategy I mean in concert with non-digital channels, or with initiatives that aren’t as inherently measure as digital.
What kind of mobile device(s) do you have, and what are your three favorite apps?
I have a iPhone X and use Zillow to research my “dream home,” Untapped to check in beers and stay in touch with fellow “beer fans” and Sonos to control the wireless speakers I have in multiple rooms of my house, and keep them filled with my favorite tunes.
What do you think of the emergence of the ‘digital CMO’ discussion?
As a CMO myself there’s certainly a school of thought out there shared by many, that in today’s environment the CDO and the CMO are one and the same. So much of marketing is delivered digitally these days, or is tracked and/or analyzed digitally. Where I think those roles diverge is in creating the overall marketing vision and the messaging to be used achieve that vision — that’s the CMOs role. And frankly that’s big enough. So the necessity for a CDO stems from having to deliver on that vision using that messaging via digital means. And not only does the CDO role demand a mastery of executing digital campaigns, but defining the larger digital strategy from which specific digtal tactics will emerge. For that reason the CDO role has emerged and continues to emerge as a vital role at companies who have marketing organizations large enough to support it.
What advice do you have for aspiring marketing professionals, in terms of how they think about digital trends?
I hate to come off as “old school” — but I think that marketing fundamentals are amazingly important to success — especially today. All the bells and whistles of the latest technology, or the latest great resource for reaching your audience will fail you if you don’t focus first on AIDA (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action). Each of those phases of engaging with a prospective customer has a set of best practices associated with it. Some are universal across traditional and digital channels, and some are digital-specific. Learn those best practices and focus on them before anything else, and everything else will naturally fall into place.
What three publications – in any format – do you read regularly?
I read WSJ and CNN’s feed digitally, and also try to keep up with consolidated content shared via my network within my LinkedIn feed. I tend to really respect content shared by people I really respect.
Connect with Bill Muller on LinkedIn.