31: U.S. Olympic Committee CMO Lisa Baird is in it for the long run

Lisa Baird

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Lisa Baird was named CMO of the United States Olympic Committee in 2009. Prior to that, she served in brand and marketing roles for Proctor & Gamble, GM, IBM and the NFL, among others.

With the Olympic Games occurring years apart, Lisa touches on how she maintains focus on long-term marketing goals: “The better and more articulate and more precise your mission and your purpose is — that needs to act as your long-term guide, says Baird. “You should measure everything you do against ‘Are you fulfilling that mission and purpose?’ … Putting the right measurements in place for the long term help you to keep that true north on your compass.”

But even though her goals invariably seem to reside on a distant horizon, she avoids the predictive, instead focusing on something she believes will remain constant: “Marketers who always focus on their customers’ or their stakeholders’ problems — and listen to them and solve their problems — will always win.”

Highlights from this week’s “Marketing Today” podcast include:

  • Managing the balancing act of athletes trying to make a living and Olympic sponsors who make things run: Baird talks about IOC Rule 40. (4:47)
  • Keeping the flame alive: Maintaining focus on the Olympics during off years. (7:58)
  • Who’ll win the Olympic jump ball for 2024: Los Angeles, Budapest or Paris? (10:11)
  • Trying to please everyone: The art of listening in a sea of stakeholders. (11:49)
  • Going for gold: Measuring marketing success in the land of not-for-profit. (14:42)
  • Baird discusses sponsor and license partnerships and their role in helping the U.S. reach the medal podium. (16:20)
  • You can’t always rely on metrics: “Human beings are spontaneous; they can surprise you.” (23:15)

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