All signs point to a rebound for marketing following the end of an economic downturn that hit the profession particularly hard. The revival is just in time for a new magazine aimed at its top executives.
CMO magazine, set to launch in September, is the latest in CXO Media's stable of sleekly designed publications aimed at C-suite executives. Here, the company's editorial director talks to PRWeek about writing for chief marketers.
PRWeek: Why is the time right for a magazine aimed at chief marketing officers?
Lew McCreary: We always look for an executive class whose world is being racked by change. We also look for an executive class where we have some value to offer in terms of remediating an information gap.
In marketing, we see a profession that's in the midst of a powerful transition in the sense that there's greater and greater emphasis being put on being able to quantify the ROI of marketing spend and to apply metrics and more rigor and scientific accuracy to the challenge of reckoning what the value has been or will be in an investment in marketing. Marketing is in the midst of a transformation process, and part of that process is powered by information technology. Our own historical strengths have been in the area of figuring out how to get value out of technology. It just seemed like a natural fit.
PRWeek: Will there be coverage of individual marketing disciplines or do you see them being covered as part of an integrated whole, or both?
McCreary: I think that where an activity fits into an integrated business strategy, it's an important element to touch on. But I can see how we might look at demographics or market research as a set of activities and how they fit into the whole umbrella of other activities.
PRWeek: You've spoken about measurement and ROI, and it was recently announced that CMO's founding editor-in-chief will be Robert O'Regan, who spent time at McKinsey & Co. Was his consultancy experience a major reason for hiring him?
McCreary: No question it's a plus. My emphasis in hiring - and this has been consistent over the years - is to look first for terrific journalists, and he is that. So the fact that he spent four years at McKinsey and steeping in what McKinsey does is an attractive added benefit.
PRWeek: What shape will your information technology coverage take? Do you expect to do reviews?
McCreary: We'll be doing what we've been doing since we launched CIO magazine back in 1987. We write about technology as a piece of business strategy. We don't compare one technology head to head against another. We write about how some smart CMO is applying a technology or doing something in their business. The stories are about getting a business benefit. The technology is just part of an overall strategic goal. We're not writing about the attributes of technology; we're writing about how its potential is brought out in the hands of some smart businesspeople.
Name: Lew McCreary
Company: CXO Media
Title: Editorial director
Preferred contact method: email@example.com