The results from the annual Marketing Survey conducted by Unisfair reveal interesting findings regarding what marketers see as top priorities for the year 2010 and what they expect to obtain from their marketing efforts. As the study shows, it seems that traditional marketing goals such as customer retention and brand awareness lose ground in favor of the generation of as much as possible sales leads.
One of the surprise articles in the July-August 2010 edition of the Harvard Business Review (HBR) is ‘The Execution Trap‘, written by Roger L. Martin, Dean of the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto and Professor of Strategic Management at the same school. Its publication comes as a surprise as traditionally, HBR has been favoring articles promoting strategy execution and the separation between formulation and execution. The support of the publication in promoting Kaplan & Norton’s ideas over the last 15 years was an important contributor to the ascent of strategy execution as a “buzzword”.
The article clearly states the author’s position right from the tagline: “Drawing a line between strategy and execution almost guarantees failure”. It reviews the recent history of the separation idea, mentioning names of proponents such as Jamie Dimon (now CEO of JPMorgan Chase) and Larry Bossidy (former AlliedSignal CEO). The phrase that encapsulates best some of the challenges in today’s management thinking is: “…[the] doctrine…is as flawed as it is popular. That popularity discourages us from questioning the principle’s validity.”
In a context where marketing practitioners strive to measure the performance of their efforts, the search for new, innovative and simpler, measures that would not only lead to relevant results, but would also require less complex approaches, is of topicality. Introduced by Fred Reichheld (Ritson, 2009), the Net Promoter Score® (NPS) promises to be one of the most popular and employed approach to measuring performance in marketing.
We live in a time when sustainability is becoming a rising priority for companies as a vast number of stakeholder groups such as investors, management and employees try to understand the social and environmental implications of the company’s operational and financial activities and decisions. Sustainability has become “both a strategic imperative and a performance driver” that strives to maximize business impact (Gorbach, 2009)
Although not benefiting from a unanimously accepted definition, Relationship Marketing is a sub-discipline of Marketing defined (Gummesson 2004, p. 136) as ”Marketing based on interaction within networks of relationships”. The classic Relationship Marketing refers to the physical distribution network relationships, with main focus on supplier-customer interactions (Gummesson 1997 cited in Harwood & Garry 2006), the premise being the mutual benefit for both parties and also the commitment to ensure relationship longevity (Harwood and Gary, 2006).