Next week Yahoo is expected to make its move in layoffs, reports Kara Swisher in ALL THINGS D. Those cuts will primarily be in marketing and product development. As those pushed out of journalism or not making good enough money in executive communications might think twice before retooling for marketing.
The vulnerabilities of marketers in organizations are not new. When I was enrolled in 1 of those entry-level Dale Carnegie public speaking courses during that severe recession in the early 1990s, there were plenty of jobless marketers in class. After all, it's a line of work in which outcomes could always be counted.
What is new is the increased competition in every category + the volatility created by digital technology. The function of marketing seems configured for a roller coaster ride. Today the numbers are good. Tomorrow they plunge. We in providing content are experiencing that when we contract to work for brandname media companies where page views, comments, and more are tracked in real time.
Even staid businesses like law have high churn among their Chief Marketing Officers. Some get the ax, some seek positions elsewhere. On help wanted sites there are always ads for marketing experts. In LAW 360, management consultant Richard L. Upton reports that there was a point in 2010 when 25 major law firms had vacant CMO slots.
The world of work isn't going to become less competitive or less tethered to developments in technology. Therefore, marketing will remain a hit zone. Those entering this area of expertise have to be realistic that they have to produce the numbers. They also have to do that in ways which the organizational culture finds okay.