Make the Right the Budget Ask
With budgeting season right around the corner, I've found that increasingly, if you don't ask for the budget there's not usually extra money laying around for you to grab. Finance is generally not in a giving mood, and with a challenge in finding ROI for marketing programs, it's rare that you're going to just get money.
So make the right ask when you do need the budget. The old school way was to put everything in a V1 and then get about half of what you asked for. But today's budgeting is pretty sophisticated and metrics driven--so you can't go in and ask for the moon.
So ask for what you can justify and be deliberate about it. Be able to back it up with numbers, outcomes, and impact. And then stand behind it. If it's the right ask and gets you the pipeline you need and it's reasonable, finance will likely turn its attention elsewhere.
That doesn't mean that you'll get everything you ask for, but it will ensure that when the cuts come, you're in the right position to understand the trade-offs and impacts of reductions vs. just lopping off 10% across the board.
That's the mark of a mature CMO who's in command of their business.