The CMO Barometer 2024

Marketing needs new superheroes:

CMO Barometer 2024 Results

The Serviceplan Group, in partnership with the University of St. Gallen and The Marketing Society, has released the results of their annual CMO Barometer study for 2024. This year, the study expanded to include the MENA region for the first time, providing a unique opportunity to compare insights from CMOs in the Middle East with their European counterparts.

The study, conducted in September 2023, surveyed over 800 international CMOs and marketing decision-makers from 11 countries, including Austria, Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the Middle East.

What will be the defining trend in marketing in 2024? Will budgets face drastic cuts, or can we anticipate a slight increase? What skills will become indispensable in 2024's landscape? For its annual study, the Serviceplan Group partnered with prominent Swiss academic institutions, the University of St. Gallen and The Marketing Society, to gather exclusive insights from international brand and marketing managers.

The CMO Barometer 2024: Insights from MENA and Europe

Key findings from the MENA region include:

  1. Artificial intelligence (AI), emotional branding, and content creation will dominate the agenda for CMOs in 2024.
  2. Craft and a good balance of automation, intelligent language models, and emphatic brand measures will be 2024’s most resonant topics in the Middle East.
  3. Hiring and staffing, as well as budget planning, cause sleepless nights for Middle East CMOs.
  4. Resilient and Strategic Superheroes: Adaptability and strategic leadership skills are the best representations of the marketing powers of Middle East CMOs.

The study also highlights the importance of balancing technical skills with soft skills, such as creativity, teamwork, and communication, in the Middle East.


We held an event at the W Hotel, Dubai in February 2024, 'The CMO Conversation with Serviceplan' with some of the leading CMOs of the region who shared their thoughts from a MENA perspective.

See the photos here and watch the highlights video:

CMOs in the region are far more optimistic than their global counterparts.

A notable disparity emerges between the perspectives of the Middle East and the global community. In the Middle East, optimism abounds, with 52% anticipating an improvement in the regional economic situation. Conversely, globally, CMOs and marketing decision-makers lean towards optimism yet exhibit a cautious outlook for the financial year 2024.

In the Middle East, marketing investments are not expected to significantly decrease, as 53% of CMOs foresee a budget increase of 5 to 10%, while 33% plan to maintain current levels. Globally, there is evident prudence in spending plans, with 38% aiming to maintain previous levels and 40% projecting modest increases of 10% or less.

The people are what keep CMOs awake at night.

AI may be the biggest buzz, but people and teams remain the backbone. We see this clearly on the topic of what keeps Middle East CMOs awake at night. Talent recruitment and talent upskilling combined are robbing Middle East CMOs of their sleep.

Khaled Ismail The Marketing Society CMO Barometer Report

Business resilience makes for super CMOs in the region.

While open-mindedness, flexibility, and leadership skills that adapt to highly volatile environments will make for strong global CMOs in 2024, adaptability and strategic leadership will make for regional super CMOs. Reflecting the rapid pace of progress in the region, CMOs in the Middle East will be expected to lead their brands and their teams with a sense of business acumen and the ability to reorient quickly, without sacrificing the indispensable aspects of strategy and innovation.

Natalie Shardan Serviceplan CMO Barometer Report


Detailed results of the ‘CMO Barometer’, with rankings by experts from the Serviceplan Group and further CMO opinions, are available in the report here or hit the download pdf button below. 

We'd love to know your thoughts on the report over in our member only social platform Coffeehouse on Guild. 


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