Which Brands Had the Most Effective Marketing Strategies in 2014?

Lorna Gill Posted by Lorna Gill

Who were this year’s most influential CMOs, and which of their companies marketed themselves most effectively? Let’s take a look at them and learn from their strategies. 

According to “The 50 Most Influential CMOs of 2014,” a joint report from Forbes and Appinions, Apple’s Phil Schiller has topped the list of the most influential Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) for the third time in a row.

Based on data collected between July 26 and October 14, 2014, the study covers the top 500 companies on from the Forbes Global 2000 Largest Companies list, including only organisations that conduct business in English-speaking countries.

Commenting on the study, Appinions CEO Larry Levy said, “This year’s report shows that CMOs that cultivate a platform and leverage their brands can gain a powerful platform to distribute their messages to the marketplace.”

The study evaluates each brand’s sphere of influence, their top executives, and their CMOs. It takes their opinions both offline and online into account, as well as the magnitude of the reactions their comments generate. The study measured the influence of the CMOs’ opinions not just in terms of the size of their audience, but also in their direct effect on forms of content sharing like retweets, blog posts, and social shares.

Top Influential Brands and CMOs of 2014: Online Marketing

According to the report, the most influential brands in the online marketing space were, in descending order: Facebook, Google, Twitter, Youtube, and Amazon. The top CMOs for online marketing were Barb Rechterman (GoDaddy), Ariel Kelman (Amazon), Lorraine Twohill (Google), Blair Christie (Cisco), and Mark Addicks (General Mills).

Domain name provider GoDaddy usually ranks highly in search engines due to its risqué, attention-grabbing advertising campaigns. The company may also have gained increased interest starting in June, when it filed for an IPO.

Facebook ranks number one in every segment except big data, despite heavy spending on advertising on its own platform.

Top Influential Brands and CMOs of 2014: Mobile Marketing

The most influential brands in the mobile marketing domain were Facebook, Google, Yahoo, Twitter, and eMarketer. The top CMOs were Schiller, Khaled Elkouly (Etisalat, mislabelled “etistat” in the study), David Christopher (AT&T), Ken Dixon (Verizon), and Kristin Lemkau (JP Morgan Chase).

We want to note that Phil Schiller enjoyed more influence than the other five CMOs combined, likely as a consequence of the iPhone 6’s recent release.

Top Influential Brands and CMOs of 2014: Overall Marketing and Advertising

The most influential brands in the overall marketing and advertising space for 2014 were Facebook, Samsung, Google, Apple, and Red Bull. The most influential CMOs were Schiller, David Lauren (Ralph Lauren), Tim Mahoney (GM), Martine Reardon (Macy’s), and Scott Moffitt (Nintendo).

Schiller had the most actioned opinion, which detailed the specifications of the iPad Air 2. Beth Comstock of General Electric (ranked eighth overall) earned the second most actioned opinion in speaking on the need for brands to more quickly and imaginatively reach their customers.

Martine Reardon of Macy’s proved notable for two distinct comments, both on her company’s charitable contributions, which include the “Shop for a Cause” campaign and Macy’s affiliation with the Pink Pony campaign for breast cancer. Overall, Reardon ranked 13th.

Number One Overall: Phil Schiller, Global Marketing Vice President at Apple

Schiller also topped the list in the previous two years that the study was conducted, according to Appinions’ proprietary ranking algorithms. His reign at the top is at least partly due to Apple’s prominence in the marketplace and its history of great marketing campaigns, as well as an iPhone launch date falling within the survey’s window of data gathering in all three years.

Comparing Apples to Apples

Schiller’s quotes tend to act as a media magnet; over the course of the study’s data window his opinions and reactions appeared in various news outlets more than twice per week. This popularity reflects general public interest in the launch of a new iPhone model and the iPad Air 2, both consumer devices that attract a digital-savvy audience fond of sharing their brand loyalty.

Making a Change for 2015

One thing every company in the survey definitely had in common was an awareness of the intense competition in the online marketing and PPC advertising space, an area in which there’s no excuse for failure. If your company doesn’t possess all possible information on its competitors’ actions, there is no room for improvement and only an increased chance of inexplicable failure.

Competitive insights are essential to gaining a competitive edge, and if there’s one thing you can do in the new year, it’s procuring the right tools to analyse your competition.

Adthena is the right tool for that job, and one of the only options that is fully qualified to do so.

About the author

Lorna Gill
Lorna Gill
Lorna is responsible for acquisition marketing at Adthena, communicating their award-winning product and generating demand. She has developed her career in fast-paced, start-up environments, including two tech track 100 companies and is passionate about translating technical information into stories that excite and delight.