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Marketing Maturity: Doing More With Less

By Michael McCune | April 26, 2019 | 3 Comments

Marketingdigital marketingDriving Digital Business Transformation for Industry LeadershipMarketing Organization and Operations

How can marketing teams agree to stop doing something in order to free up resources (dollars, time, cognitive load) to do something new.

Marketing Maturity

Marketing “Maturity” is of those concepts that leaders latch onto as a proxy for performance – which it isn’t.

Just as a wealthy family can occupy a great house and still experience dysfunction, a marketing organization can have all the modern bells and whistles and still fail.

I like to think of maturity as an insurance model: it can diminish the risk of under-performance, and equip an organization to attain it.

The key is to not over or under-insure yourself. And that is why I’ve become such a fan of our Score Diagnostic.

Score Diagnostic

Marketing organizations are full of ideas about what they want to do, much less on what to stop doing.

We assess the maturity of a marketing organization through a series of binary questions: you either do “X”, or you don’t do “X”. Based on the things you do, we can assess your organization’s maturity.

The chart below is one of the outputs of our diagnostic. It force ranks an organization’s functions using a simple equation of maturity vs importance.

The marketing functions on the left are operations the organization wants to spend more resources on, and those on the right where they want to spend less. It is an unusual picture for the leadership team to review as a whole.

At the end of the day, maturity is about money. You don’t want to under-insure important things, but you also don’t want to over-insure. That said, many marketing organization lack a way of fostering discussion on re-allocation.

Doing More With Less

Marketers gravitate to doing the new and often fail to stop doing some of the old.

Doing less of something is not a common conversation because someone has a vested interest in continuing to do what is being done.

When teams collectively recognize the need to re-allocate resources for overall performance, it makes doing less more plausible.

Can doing less be celebrated? Perhaps not. But at least you can use output from the Score Diagnostic to increase the odds of pivoting your organization to be mature where it matters.


Leave a Comment


  • You said, “Marketers gravitate to doing the new and often fail to stop doing some of the old.” — in my experience with B2B marketers in the tech sector, the big challenge is still talent related.

    Few marketers aspire to become Content Marketing practitioners, while the majority just want to purchase paid media and thereby outsource the real work to agencies.

    My point: they focus on ‘maturity’ by doing the easy things first, and indefinitely postponing their own skills development needs.

    • Michael McCune says:

      Thank you for your comment.

      Talent issues impact most business functions in the manner you portray.

      Marketing is already on the hook for showing direct business impact and so tries to focus talent on related efforts.

      With automation growing,’easy thing first’ actions will diminish and I think we’ll see even more aspiration from front-line marketers.

  • Milan parai says:

    Thanks for sharing the post! I appreciate your Effort!

    Keep it up!