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Marketing has been around for as long as humans have had something to sell. As a business practice, though, marketing is a relatively new discipline.

Moreover, during the past 60 years of marketing practice, most every aspect of our profession has changed—including just about every marketing tactic and delivery channel imaginable.

Marketing professor Mark Ritson points out it's hard for marketers to be sure of anything these days: "It has never been a more exhilarating or exhausting time to work in this discipline. Never before has so much happened in marketing with so little consensus around what is and isn't working. We do our business on what appears to be a continually moving and undulating platform of knowledge that constantly contradicts and reverses itself as we cling on for grim life."

Consider these challenging realities for marketers

Short tenures: Executive search firm Spencer Stuart has found that the average CMO tenure among consumer brands was 44 months in 2017, with more than 20% of those CMOs appointed in the previous year and more than half of them first-timers.

Invisible on boards: Of the roughly 9,800 board seats held within Fortune 1000 companies, marketers occupy a scant 68.

First to be blamed: CMOs are themost likely among the C-suite to get axed when growth targets are missed.

Undervalued: In survey after survey, marketing is listed as one of the least valuable professions to humanity, scraping the bottom alongside politicians and civil servants.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
image of Engelina Jaspers

Engelina Jaspers helps business leaders build nimble marketing organizations with customer insight and speed to execution at their core. She is the author of Marketing Flexology: How to Outsmart Change and Future-Proof Your Career.

Twitter: @Ready2Flex

LinkedIn: Engelina Jaspers