Marketers who aspire to become Visionaries must undergo five Shifts, to:
1. Going beyond merely designing and executing the marketing plan, to focusing on driving business strategy. To get there, the marketer must use customer insights as a secret weapon, operate with a profit-and-loss mindset, and earn organizational credibility and trust.
2. Acknowledging and capitalizing on the fact that brand building has changed radically. Shift from trying to control the message to galvanizing the network. Understand that consumers and other stakeholders are constantly influencing and driving the brand forward and work diligently to harness the power of this network.
3. Leading the way on innovation-supporting strategies. Visionary marketers think less about incremental improvements and more about new business models, new customer experiences, new pricing, and new channel strategies that means the innovation imperative is always being fed.
4. Thinking and actions that inspire marketing excellence versus managing marketing investments. Visionary Marketers are motivated to maximize investments made across all the marketing levers, no longer tolerating or finding useful a siloed focus on marketing communications alone.
5. Creating an environment and culture that is relentlessly customer focused. Visionary marketers are selfless when it comes to looking at growth. Their emphasis is on finding ways to organize and serve in a way that optimizes the customer experience versus what’s expedient for internal, operational purposes.
Making the shift is a major statement, a necessity, a symbol and a transformation – all at the same time.
And the five shifts are equally important to marketers and to the businesses behind them and their executive teams.
They represent an opportunity for marketers to rebrand marketing’s role, function and overall positioning in the company from being just a sales enabler to being a value driver across the enterprise.
For the company, these shifts enable deeper customer insight, more meaningful revenue and margin streams and a return on all marketing and sales investments that go well beyond the expected.
Let the transformation begin.