The 2020 report is the 8th annual list from Forbes. The list uses date from news reports, websites and social networks to measure influence. 427 global CMOs were eligible for consideration this year. The assessed time period was from February 15 to June 30, 2020.
Forbes noted, "It's our eighth annual special report that assesses measures of influence—defined as the impact a chief marketer's actions and words have on his or her internal organization's motivation and performance, corporate brand perception, broader marketing and advertising trends and, ultimately, corporate financial performance, including stock price—while this year also evaluating influence as impact on corporate, industry or community response to the Covid-19 pandemic and the racial-justice movement. CMOs wield influence in several ways, as we've tracked in previous reports, with bar-raising advertising and marketing campaigns or via a highly visible role representing their companies on social media, at public events or in the media. Still others cultivate and share a particular expertise—around customer experience or digital transformation or sustainability—that establishes them as thought leaders on that given topic. This year, 427 global CMOs were eligible for consideration. To be eligible for evaluation, CMOs or their brand must have appeared on at least one major brand or marketing list in the past year. To make the Top 50, a CMO must be in the top 20% of CMOs on at least three different indicators of personal, industry or internal influence, or show extraordinary impact visibility on the conversation around Covid-19 or Black Lives Matter."
Stephanie ranked #2, under Phil Schiller, who is the Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing for Apple.
Forbes wrote the following about McMahon on the list:
McMahon is an outspoken and highly visible executive at WWE, a company in an industry often mired in controversy. The daughter of WWE CEO Vince McMahon, she is a former WWE Superstar herself, and she's a big proponent of WWE Superstars growing their own brands via social media. She has also championed women's equality in the WWE.
This year she spoke out about making the events that went on during the pandemic safe for fans and Superstars. In June she also reportedly shared what she and the company are doing to eliminate racial inequality on The Female Quotient—and partnered with FQ founder Shelley Zalis to create a discussion series called "Women in the Business of Sports."
Below is WWE's congratulatory announcement on McMahon making the list:
Stephanie McMahon named World's No. 2 Most Influential CMO
Stephanie McMahon has been named to Forbes' list of the world's Most Influential Chief Marketing Officers.
The WWE Chief Brand Officer is No. 2 on the annual list of the top 50 CMOs around the world who are redefining industries and creating a more diverse and equitable future within business, culture and society.
"[S]he's a big proponent of WWE Superstars growing their own brands via social media," Forbes wrote. "She has also championed women's equality in the WWE."
McMahon joins senior leaders from from Apple, Google, Microsoft, Proctor & Gamble and more on the prestigious list.
Join WWE in congratulating Stephanie on this honor!