The COVID-19 Crisis Will Cost CMOs in a Big Way, But Leaders Can Prepare

June 4, 2020

According to a recent report from Forrester, “The 2020 COVID-19 Crisis Will Stun US Marketing”, the road to recovery following the eventual end of the pandemic will not be smooth. That will come as no surprise to CMOs and business leaders already facing the reality of a much-changed world every day.


The report delves into a few potential recovery scenarios, with the most likely being a mid-2021 recovery (with a 60% probability), and the most optimistic being a late-2020 recovery.




The report indicates that a mid-2021 recovery is the most likely, but that prediction comes at a cost, with budget cuts likely to continue to deepen. However, despite the fact that this may mean smaller team sizes, there is still a promise of success for CMOs and business leaders who can pivot and adapt.

What might some of those adaptations look like? In considering the most likely recovery scenario, the report offers a number of key insights and predictions.


Digital will take the lion’s share. With offline media going unseen, the report estimates an increase in the “share of search, social, banner ads, and display video to 61% of all advertising by 2022.” One of the biggest upsides to digital? The flexibility it offers.


Efficiency and optimization will be key drivers. CMOs and lean marketing teams will turn increasingly to automation opportunities to streamline processes. In line with the earlier stated belief about necessity as the mother of invention, it’s unsurprising to note that “Automation tends to advance in economic shocks [...]”.


CMOs and business leaders will adapt. Faced with challenges including smaller budgets and smaller teams, organizations can and will adapt if they expect to thrive under new circumstances - and that’s a good thing. Per the report, “One bright spot: Constrained resources and drastically different customer habits will force innovations that will push marketing beyond where it was in 2019.”


Ready to dig deeper into the other critical insights this report has to offer? Access your complimentary copy.


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