Synergistic’s Growth Strategy Approach Gets Harvard’s Seal of Approval



· 6 min read
Synergistic POV

We understand that growth is a perpetual business priority for our clients, but it’s always nice to find that Harvard agrees.

With proprietary research and input from the Association of National Advertisers, the Harvard Business Review surveyed more than 100 marketing leaders and 21 CEOs from a range of industries and from companies of different sizes. They also looked specifically at marketing dynamics in Fortune 500 companies.

The results of this research are clear: Companies that make the decision to put marketing at the core of their growth strategy outperform the competition. Specifically, those who view branding and advertising as a top two growth strategy are twice as likely to see revenue growth of 5% or more than those that don’t (67% to 33%). This is true for both B2C and B2B companies.


Since our inception, Synergistic has been offering “Growth-as-a-Service” for companies with aspirational goals that want to supercharge their growth efforts. And we do it by partnering synergistically with existing marketing + sales teams to place business objectives and customer needs at the center of a powerful marketing + media strategy that solves problems and unlocks potential.

In fact, Synergistic was born out of a need that turned into an opportunity that became a mindset.

What began as a super-group of believers on a mission to help others grow, has itself grown 10X because of a strong dedication to getting growth done.
From upstream strategy to downstream conversion (and every stream in between), our growth engines are always revving and ready to provide the will that finds the way – providing the can-do solutions to your most pressing

We Get C-Suite Alignment

For CEOs and companies who aren’t using marketing to drive growth, it’s time to hit the reset button, and the Harvard Business Review explains how:

1. Define What You Need

Do you have an innovation-led growth strategy? Are your customer relationships strong? Do you have the right capabilities, people, and tech to build a world-class brand? If you don’t know what marketing can do, you can’t know what it should be doing. That principle sounds obvious, but the practice is far from ubiquitous.

When HBR asked CEOs and CMOs in the same company what marketing’s primary role was — brand building, customer experience, digital growth, loyalty, or sales support — half the time, they gave different answers.

In addition, almost half of CMOs ranked branding and advertising as a top-two growth tool; fewer than 30% of CEOs agreed. Two-thirds of the time, these leaders didn’t agree or weren’t sure that they had the same definition of what marketing return on investment is. Fewer than 30% of CEOs thought their CMOs were highly effective at driving growth.

All this is more than a failure of communication — it’s a fundamental disconnect. CEOs have a responsibility to provide their marketing leaders with a compass they can use to read the strategic map. Together they must create a marketing measurement framework that connects company-wide outcomes to marketing growth strategies.

2. Nominate a CCA (Chief Customer Advocate)

Unlocking growth is a team sport. At a minimum, the marketing, digital, product, and finance functions have to work together. Different players will execute different parts of the growth agenda, but you need a growth unifier whose task is to represent the voice of the consumer. In effect, that person is the quarterback.

In many companies, custody of the customer is fragmented. For example, two-thirds of CMOs in HBR’s survey said that there was more than one customer C-level role in their company. That can be a problem because when everyone owns the customer, then no one does.

3. Become a Growth Coach

With a star quarterback in place, CEOs need to embrace their role as the coach. Their job is to draw up the strategy, not to toss the ball down the field.

CEOs should have a handle on the challenges and opportunities of modern marketing. Is the marketing strategy aligned with the overall growth strategy? Too often, the answer is either “no,” or “not enough.”

Again, the HRB survey results were revealing. Fifty percent of the CEOs said they were very comfortable with modern marketing and only a third of CMOs agreed that they were.

Marketing today is more than branding and advertising. It is a multi-dimensional and technical discipline. Consider: the number of marketing technology solutions has been doubling every year, with more than 11,000 in 2023 alone.

The evidence is clear: Growth leaders generate 80% more shareholder value than their peers over a 10-year period — and marketing can be a growth accelerator.

Synergistic can help put your marketing (and growth!) into overdrive because anything less results in leaving money on the table.

To learn more about putting marketing at the core of your growth strategy, reach out today – we can’t wait to hear more about you and your business goals.


About Synergistic

Synergistic is a fully integrated marketing + media partner built to deliver business + brand growth by driving synergy between solutions + sales.