XT … Marketing for Growth (first chapter)
Marketing is a structured process of targeting and engaging new and current customers in order to generate sales. Marketers, therefore, play a crucial role in generating revenue and they can play an equally important role in how revenues translate into profit. This is a guide to how marketers can improve their commercial focus and become more in uential drivers of business growth. Businesses grow by becoming better at what they do, and by being smarter or more ef cient, and this involves developing and improving products, processes, people and standards of service. Part of the marketing role is to pick up on changing customer needs and behaviour and the forces at play in markets – and to do so ahead of the competition. If marketers do this well, they will increase their business’s prospects for growth, and their in uence and impact within the business.
This book focuses on the role of marketers – and the tools and methods available to them – in identifying and achieving pro table growth. It puts marketing and marketers at the commercial heart of a business with responsibility for strengthening the links between a business’s operations and its customers. It examines each part of the growth life cycle, starting with the use of analytics to de ne the nancial size of the prize and to measure the impact of marketing. It explains how to identify the more potentially rewarding customer targets, de ne more relevant and differentiated customer propositions, and make sure that employees deliver what is promised and that customers become greater advocates for the brand. It reinforces the need for marketing activities to be directly underpinned by strong commercial nancial outcomes.
Marketing for Growth
For marketers tired of being viewed by some as a “cost”, the challenge is to take more responsibility for the commercial results of the company. By becoming more nancially uent as well as more accountable and responsible for the commercial outcomes, they will gain greater authority and in uence. This may require the development of new skills as well as an attitudinal shift, whereby they see themselves and behave as asset managers making investment and return decisions.
About this book
Each chapter is designed to stand on its own, and together the ten chapters are intended to form a convenient handbook of insights, methods, frameworks and tools for marketers to help them drive growth in their organisations. The chapters deal with the following:
1 Customer value management describes the importance of linking marketing activities with commercial outcomes and outlines the main ways that marketing can increase revenues and pro ts.
2 Return on investment: measurement and analytics de nes the many different ways to statistically quantify the effectiveness of marketing activities and help predict future returns. The huge amount of customer data that is now available means marketers can make fact-based decisions about new business growth opportunities; prioritise which will deliver the best nancial returns and decide how to best spend their marketing budgets.
3 Barriers to growth describes the biases that reduce the effectiveness of decision-making by business leaders, providing simple techniques that can help overcome these human traits that might limit growth.
4 Targeting customers and external stakeholders de nes the different ways of identifying the most valuable customers. Analysis of demographic and attitudinal characteristics helps make sure that new products and services deliver what customers want or need. Targeting a speci c segment or part of the population helps companies to manage their resources and gain the best return on investment.
5 Market opportunities for growth de nes ways to analyse business growth opportunities and prioritise investment in them. In order to arrive at an appropriate balance of risk and reward, this should take account of the needs of current and future customers, and the nature of current and future markets.
6 Proposition de nition describes how to create a brand proposition that will be compelling to new and current customers. It looks at the importance of a proposition’s practical and emotional relevance to customers, its differentiation from the competition and its authenticity, and how the proposition must be re ected in the actual customer experience.
7 Brand portfolio growth describes how an organisation’s brands can be managed to maximise its overall growth. This might be through a single master brand or a range of different brands for different customer segments.
8 Growth through employee engagement outlines the positive difference a high level of employee commitment and engagement makes to the performance of a business. It explores the importance of clear vision, shared values and common behaviour, and describes how to create and manage an effective employee engagement programme.
9 Growth through customer engagement de nes the most effective ways to engage and in uence potential and current customers. It describes how digital and mobile media are having a dramatic effect on how companies connect with their customers and it outlines a framework for improving customer engagement.
10 Growing service-based brands looks at the particular dif culties faced by service businesses and how marketing can help overcome them. It highlights the importance of process design, pricing strategy and frontline employees in dealing with the various issues.