Maggie Chan Jones, SAP

Maggie Chan Jones

Driving Growth

Editors’ Note

Maggie Chan Jones has held her current post since November 2014. Most recently, she served as the inaugural Regional CMO of North America at Level 3 Communications. Before joining Level 3, she spent over seven years at Microsoft Corporation, where she was the Marketing Director of U.S. Cloud Services and Office 365. Prior to her role at Microsoft, Chan held managerial and marketing positions at Sun Microsystems and ADIC.

Company Brief

As market leader in enterprise application software, SAP (sap.com) helps companies of all sizes and industries run better. From back office to boardroom, warehouse to storefront, and desktop to mobile device, SAP empowers people and organizations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively to stay ahead of competition. SAP applications and services enable nearly 300,000 customers to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and grow sustainably. SAP is listed on several exchanges, including the Frankfurt Stock Exchange and NYSE.

How do you define your role at SAP?

How do you define the CMO role today?

CMO today is about driving growth. Today, one not only has to think about the brand in terms of how to engage with customers and driving the best brand experience possible, but also to think about how to help the business to drive growth through the portfolio they have, be it product or services.

When we look at who makes that happen, it’s people. By 2020, 70 percent of the workforce will be millennials. It’s thinking about how to drive towards that future workforce that will be critical.

How do you define SAP’s brand message and how critical is it that it be consistent?

First and foremost, it has to align to the company’s vision, which is helping the world run better and improving people’s lives. That becomes the anchor for us in how we cultivate activities leading to that vision.

In 2014, Bill (McDermott, Chief Executive Officer) talked about Run Simple, which became the operating principle for us and the anchor for our marketing campaign. This past year, we launched the Run Simple campaign globally.

The premise is that complexity is really hurting businesses. Out of the top 200 companies, 63 percent of the executives find that complexity is lowering their profits by up to 10 percent. Our campaign focuses on how SAP helps companies combat complexity so they can run simple.

Has the shift been more towards digital platforms and social media?

It’s definitely important but I also don’t want to minimize traditional marketing executions as well. It’s more about the brand. Having the right mix is going to be important.

How critical is diversity to SAP and how important was it for you in coming here?

It’s absolutely critical. Personally, when I consider joining a company, this is one of the things I look at. We want to make sure that our workforce is mirroring the customer base we’re serving.

We serve 190 countries around the world and there are different cultures and ethnic backgrounds, and we need to have that type of diverse workforce from diversity of thought, culture, and everything else.

Out of my leadership team, we are based out of six countries in nine markets; 50 percent are women and 42 percent are ethnic minorities, myself included.•