Milestone Research of Telco and Brand Marketing Leaders Reveals Strong Interest in Strategic Partnering Around Customer Insight, Engagement and Revenue Growth

SAN JOSE, Calif. (Aug. 30, 2017)—New research from the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council reveals that brands and communications service providers will need to become tightly coupled in order to truly fulfill their shared vision of delivering a more gratifying, valued and relevant omni-channel experience for customers.

The milestone study, dubbed “Getting Serious About the Omni-Channel Experience,” reveals a healthy interest among brands for tapping the upgraded digital infrastructures, subscriber access and enormously valuable data repositories of mobile network operators and telco carriers as they seek to deliver a more consistent, unified and enriched experience across all digital and physical channels.

More than 80 percent of brand marketers surveyed by the CMO Council in the first half of 2017 say their brands are extremely, very or increasingly reliant on global customer connectivity, secure digital communications, real-time customer interaction and multi-channel content delivery.

Almost half of non-telco marketers surveyed by the CMO Council see a potential leadership role for communications service providers to provide brands with an optimized framework for omni-channel engagement. Only 11 percent do not, and 40 percent are uncertain.

In contrast, 56 percent of telco industry marketers believe that non-telco companies are out-performing telco operators and communications service providers in delivering a true omni-channel experience. This compares to one quarter who do not.

Surprisingly, just 4 percent of subscriber-reliant telco companies believe they are giving their customers a consistent, personalized and contextually relevant experience across all traditional and digital channels by leveraging persistence of information, respecting the privacy of customers, and aligning the business needs with IT. On the non-telco side, the picture is just as dismal. A nominal 1 percent of brand marketers say they have a complete omni-channel management (OCM) model in place.

“Less than 10 percent of telco marketers believe they are highly advanced and rapidly evolving when it comes to being more data-driven, customer-responsive and digitally adaptive,” notes Donovan Neale-May, Executive Director of the CMO Council. “More than 25 percent list functional integration; cultural, technical and operational hurdles; and resistance to change as obstacles to evolving to a true OCM model.” 

The research shows that more than 50 percent of telcos have partnered with non-telco brands on marketing and promotional campaigns; nearly 70 percent of those report very positive, productive and fruitful relationships with good outcomes.

The CMO Council is teaming with the Open ROADS Community to create an actionable framework for more effective and consistent engagement across all customer touchpoints and channels of digital interaction. The aim of the initiative is to advocate a common model, implementation roadmap, and best practices and processes for evolving to a higher level of customer experience, value creation, retention and business performance.

“Omni-channel isn’t a simple one-way street. In fact, our very name reflects the complexity of omni-channel transformation: Real-time, On-Demand, All-online, Do-It-Yourself, and Social,” explains Trevor Cheung, COO of Open ROADS Community and Vice Chair of The Open Group. “Delivering the ROADS experience is an experience requirement and an architectural principle and it cannot be a single department fix. Marketing, technology, and customer service must work together. We believe the mindset, culture, and really the whole ecosystem needs to work together. This is necessary to handle the new consumer generation, but also the new business generation.”

The report from the CMO Council and its Customer Experience Board includes findings from an online survey of more than 250 brand and telco marketing leaders, commentary from a CMO Roundtable at the 2017 Mobile World Congress, as well as insights from interviews with senior marketers at a cross-section of companies. These include KIA Motors, British Telecom, T-Mobile, Visa, Verizon, Royal Bank of Canada, Singtel, Deutsche Telekom, Airtel and Telekomunikasi.

The full report includes:

  • Key areas where telco marketers say they are partnering and adding value to brand marketing campaigns

  • Top reasons why brand marketers are turning to MNOs and CSPs to help address omni-channel and customer development needs

  • Challenges, constraints and barriers to partnering

  • The data that CSPs can provide…and the data that brands desire most

  • The omni-channel champions: the brands that marketers most admire

In-depth interviews and detailed charts and data from both non-telco and telco marketers are included in the 91-page full report, now available for download for $199. A complimentary executive summary is also available. Download the report today by visiting

About the CMO Council

The Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council is dedicated to high-level knowledge exchange, thought leadership, and personal relationship building among senior corporate marketing leaders and brand decision-makers across a wide range of global industries. The CMO Council's 12,500-plus members control more than $500 billion in aggregated annual marketing expenditures and run complex, distributed marketing and sales operations worldwide. In total, the CMO Council and its strategic interest communities include more than 65,000 global executives in more than 110 countries covering multiple industries, segments and markets. Regional chapters and advisory boards are active in the Americas, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, India and Africa. The council's strategic interest groups include the Coalition to Leverage and Optimize Sales Effectiveness (CLOSE), Customer Experience Board, Digital Marketing Performance Institute, Brand Inspiration Center, Marketing Supply Chain Institute, and the GeoBranding Center. For more information, visit

About the Open ROADS Community

The Open ROADS Community is a forum dedicated to accelerating digital business transformation. The Community’s core constituents are digital service providers, joined by digital industry participants and all firms which grow their businesses from an internet-based ecosystem. The Community achieves its goal by serving as a cross-industry incubator for identifying new digital business models and revenue opportunities, including creating, sharing and implementing best practices for addressing those opportunities. The ROADS acronym stands for five tenets which define the deep levels of personalization and quick service delivery expected by digital consumers today: Real-time, On-demand, All-online, Do-It-Yourself, and Social. For more information, visit