Warning sign

As leaders of B2B organizations, we know that growth is not just a goal; it’s the lifeblood of our businesses. 

At some point along the journey, we face a pivotal crossroads where a gap in strategic marketing leadership becomes evident. This signals a critical juncture that prompts the question: Is it time to make a transformative move?

Eight warning signs that your B2B organization might be standing at that crossroads.

1. Leadership Lacks Marketing Expertise 

When your marketing is being led by someone without an in-depth understanding of the field, it’s akin to steering a ship without a compass. 

Ineffective leadership can present as poor communication, not using sound judgment, or not being able to prioritize objectives within the marketing organization.

When this happens, even the most talented marketers in the field will lack direction and can venture off course.  Expertise matters, and it’s a fundamental pillar for successful marketing strategies.

2. The Quest for Defining Healthy Growth 

Amid the complex landscape of B2B operations, deciphering what constitutes genuine and sustainable growth can be perplexing. Also, it can be difficult to determine how to quantify that growth and glean useful insights from that data.

If this challenge resonates, it’s time to consider recalibrating your marketing approach.

3. Misunderstanding Marketing’s Role 

In B2B contexts, marketing isn’t just about promotion; it’s a strategic driver of business objectives. 

To name a few important objectives, B2B marketing is crucial in defining the customer journey, personalizing the customer experience, and increasing brand loyalty.

You might miss substantial opportunities—and revenue—if your organization views marketing as an afterthought.

4. Venturing into Uncharted Waters 

As B2B organizations evolve, they inevitably explore uncharted territories. Whether entering new markets, launching novel products, or embracing fresh segments, having robust marketing guidance is indispensable for a smooth voyage.

Knowing when to take calculated risks comes down to industry expertise and a deep understanding of the intended audience.

A powerful leader can define a single “North Star” to head toward—even if the road seems uncertain. 


5. The ROI Conundrum

Are your marketing investments yielding the anticipated returns?

Do you have a clearly defined budget that is giving back as much as you have invested? Do you know where and how your investments are being used and if there are better avenues to try?

If your answers are riddled with question marks, it indicates that a revamped marketing strategy—and leadership—is warranted.

6. Mergers and Acquisitions on the Horizon 

B2B landscapes are dynamic, and growth often involves mergers, acquisitions, or both. These endeavors necessitate a strategic marketing compass to navigate the complexities of integration and expansion.

The right leader can help define new values, reevaluate the market, establish a consistent brand voice, and continue to serve your customers—while defining and allocating high-value projects among the team.

7. Potential vs. Experience 

Possessing a capable marketing team member is an asset, but their potential might only be tapped with seasoned experience and mentoring. 

Strong leadership will consider team members individuals with unique skills rather than a job title and job description. Elevating their effectiveness requires the right leadership.

8. The Revolving Door of Marketing 

High turnover in the marketing realm is a red flag. While individual attrition reasons vary, this has a clear effect on group morale.

Your remaining team members may feel uneasy or uncertain about their—and the organization’s—standing.

If you’re witnessing a revolving door of marketing professionals or determined to make the next hire count, it’s time to pause and strategize.


Next Steps

As a fractional CMO, I am dedicated to empowering leaders in the B2B arena. With a passion for facilitating growth, I’ve collaborated with numerous organizations to chart their marketing trajectories.

Let’s talk about your areas of untapped growth and pain points you might be experiencing, so you’re in the best shape possible to attract and keep customers, develop your team of talented marketers, and forge a clear path forward.

Feel free to book some time with me to talk through your goals in more detail. Together, we can set your organization up for success, so you can thrive in today’s competitive market.

Chad Person


Chad is an accomplished B2B marketing executive with more than 20 years of experience leading marketing and sales initiatives for B2B enterprises with a special emphasis on professional services.  

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