This past week, Hotwire, in partnership with AMEC, PRSA Silicon Valley and PRSA San Francisco tapped the minds of three leading Bay Area marketers to discuss just that. Kristen Alexander, CMO of Certain; Dawn Crew, CMO of Iovation; and Leila Modarres, CMO of Infostretch all took part in a panel discussion, moderated by Sahana Jayaraman, EVP and Global Head of the Digital Brand Lab at Hotwire.

Here are a few takeaways…

Don’t always worry about leads, they will come 

 Focus on engagement. Comms teams must extract insights from their campaigns and feed it directly to the sales team – as well as the broader business. Equipping your staff with that knowledge is the first step towards pipeline creation.

Your brand is in the hands of the consumer

Your brand is not always how you define it, but how it's perceived by your audience. The CMO plays an integral role in shaping this perception – but it is largely in the hands of the consumer. Customer experience will eclipse other value metrics by 2020 and it is critical for marketers to keep a close eye on this.

It’s all about conversions

As a marketer, you need to show that what you’re doing relates to the end goal. How do you prove that a paid social or email marketing campaign worked? You run the numbers and view the conversion rates. Impressions don’t matter. Downloads do.

Measurement has never played a larger role in our industry. And like they say, you can’t manage what you don’t measure. It’s time for marketing and comms pros to step up to the plate and prove their worth.