Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Competencies Needed For Today’s Successful Marketing Team

marketing competencies teamMarketers have a lot on their plate these days.  The discipline itself is changing, driven by the CMO, who is challenged to bring a stronger business focus to marketing and ensure financial returns for the company’s investment. Marketers need to be more analytical, as more data is available to measure business results, while continuing to orchestrate all communications to customers, consumer and employees.

Building a successful marketing team requires a focus on individual competencies and skills.   Here are the six key competencies critical for today:  

  1. Consumer Understanding –  traditional qualitative and quantitative research tools measuring attitudes and interest now must sift through transaction-level detail and social media conversations.  Marketers need to set the goals of research and be very familiar with methods to ensure the outcome is actionable.    
  2. Business Planning – the strategic marketing plan needs to be written, combining the financial objectives of the business, the key strategies and all tactical elements that are to be delivered.
  3. Financial and Business Acumen – Traditional brand managers are accustom to managing most aspects of a P&L, while staff marketer need to stay on top of program budgets and financial performance of those programs. This competency is growing in importance. 
  4. New Product Development (NPD) – the NPD process is the lifeblood of growth for an organization and marketers should lead the process, bringing forward new ideas and validating the ideas with the consumer
  5. Brand Activation and Managing Creative Teams  - Messaging is the most visible of all the marketing competencies and the one that is changing most rapidly due to new digital and social media choices.   Marketers should focus on strategy and preparing briefs while letting expert agencies handle the creative development and tactical execution.  
  6. Project Management –  Marketer must be able to manage projects that have complexity and large cross functional teams. Communication skills should be at a high level to keep everyone moving and management informed.   It is best to hire only those with demonstrated abilities to lead, resolve conflict while driving to hit deadlines as these traits are not easily taught.  

While these competencies have always been important, there is more emphasis on analytical and business leadership and away from creative and direct communication.  The traditional brand management role at larger companies is even being broken into many parts to ensure higher levels of each expertise.  Mid-sized companies however, need to train and develop their people to be successful in all these areas. Marketers who master these skills will be equipped to be the future leaders of business.

1 comment:

Jim said...

One more competency: Stick-to-ivity. "Be like a postage stamp - stick to one thing until you get there." Margaret Carty