Chief marketing officer tenure shortest in over a decade: 4 things to know 

The average tenure of a chief marketing officer in 2020 fell to 40 months, the shortest it has been since 2009, according to a recent report from executive search firm Spencer Stuart.

For its 17th annual CMO Tenure Study, Spencer Stuart analyzed the tenures of CMOs from 100 of the most advertised brands in the U.S. as of Dec. 31, 2020.

Four things to know:

1. Along with the drop in average tenure, the median tenure for CMOs shrunk to 25.5 months in 2020, the shortest on record.

2. Some of the decline in CMO tenure was fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic; the search firm attributed the drop in median tenure to transitions of several notable and long-time marketing executives in the field.

3. More than half of companies (63 percent) promoted internal candidates to the CMO role in 2020, with the percentage even higher at 84 percent for first-time CMOs.

4. Virtual onboardings spurred by the pandemic also drove the increase in internal CMO hires, with CEOs and boards prioritizing candidates with previous experience within the organization so they could better understand the business and marketing objectives as soon as the job started.

Click here to view the full report.


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