Enterprise marketing management is a fundamentally different way of looking at your business. It is, literally, the management of all activities that influence how customers think, feel and behave toward the enterprise. Not just about individual brands, but also about the entire portfolio of brands owned by the enterprise. It requires:
… integration and accountability in action on relevant customers insights across key enterprise constituencies such as marketing, sales, service, manufacturing, finance, human resources (HR), information technology, and so forth, increase the profitability of the business (“Enterprise Marketing Management,” Dave Sutton and Tom Kline, page 7).
An important dimension of enterprise marketing management is “integration.” There are many opportunities for integration across the functions of your business that you’ve never thought of because we all were trained to operate in functional silos. Here’s a simple example of the near global failure to take advantage of integration in traditional financial and marketing management. Every public company has two significant proprietary enterprise marketing assets: the corporate brand and the stock market ticker symbol. Take the case of Southwest Airlines for example. Every investor who has bought the company’s stock knows its ticker symbol is LUV. But few consumers know this. Why? Because they’ve never bought the stock. It may be held in a mutual fund, but customers don’t know it. Picture this. Every day hundreds of Southwest 737’s take off with a cabin full of passengers laughing at the steward’s last joke while looking right at the company’s logo (with its heart in the middle of a winged insignia). If LUV were to appear in the middle of that heart it would do two things: make passengers aware of the stock’s brand name on Wall Street and suggest that it might be a good idea to buy a share or two. But LUV doesn’t appear in Southwest’s logo? Why? It’s just another example of the separation between traditional marketing and financial management.
Marketing can’t achieve real accountability until it’s plugged into corporate financial statements. These are the single most important documents in your company’s flow of information, both inside and outside the enterprise. You’ve got to look beyond the market segment P&L. How can marketing possibly plug into the corporate income and cash flow statements? Good question. A first step would be for everyone that wears a marketing hat to get a user ID and PW to the company’s financial databases like COMPUSTAT or EDGAR Online. You can’t be plugged in if you don’t have a key to the kingdom! The next step would be to get your hands on a copy of Sutton and Kline’s book. They have redefined the domain of marketing. Because of this one book the discipline will never be the same. Their new take on enterprise marketing finally will achieve the broad reach across organizations that has been so elusive until now. “Enterprise Marketing Management” does even more for Chief Marketing Officers. It gives them a road map into the boardroom, with step-by-step directions for reclaiming their rightful place at the table.