An unspoken rule of many corporations is that the CFO doesn’t get along with the CMO. While working for the same common corporate growth goal, the Finance and Marketing functions are staffed with different personality types that inevitably clash.
A well-oiled corporation is one in which marketers and finance people slowly get in sync.
But how can a marketer make a CFO happy? Here are three ways of answering that puzzle. I recently discovered at Mars, the machine is oiled precisely.
Show the happy CFO the numbers in a new light
Finance people are in love with their numbers. They collect them, control them and know them by heart. But for Finance, in general, a number is just a way to check progress against a target.
First, show them you have mastered your ROI numbers, and then you have permission for more. Show them how, for marketers, a number could be a recognition of a real advantage in the marketplace, a deeper connection with a large number of consumers, or permission to be bolder in your future communication strategy.
Tell a story! Do your job!
Show them the fantastic progress in how we decide
Don’t underestimate the level of awareness someone from Finance, a happy CFO, or a controller has on what advertising looks like in 2020. Yes, their kids might be playing with TikTok, or they might use Instagram, but you need to remind them what marketing looks like today. We focus away from good old TV and Print magazines into a multi-media world that is consumer-relevant and incredibly diverse.
Illustrate the transformations: show them how you better understand deep consumer behaviors using innovative technology, show them how people consume media today, and demonstrate your expertise in the advertising ecosystem.
Focus on feelings. Make them happy.
At the end of the day, we are all emotional beings. And so are the happy CFO.
Take them on a journey away from the numbers into a world of experience.
Play a song, show an emotional ad, what moves consumers – should move a colleague too.
Make them experience your brands similarly to your consumers, and bring that experience to the room.
Don’t be surprised when they look differently at the numbers going forward.