Key messages from the EffWorks initiative about the need to get businesses to invest more in brand building were warmly received at the Australian launch of the B2B Institute, the think tank founded by LinkedIn, an EffWorks partner.
Fran Cassidy, a consultant to the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising, who wrote the analysis in The Board-Brand Rift, into how business leaders have stopped building brands, and a related report on Building Bridges with Finance delivered one of the key presentations at the B2B Institute event.
Cassidy, (pictured in red), the head of Cassidy Media Partnership, outlined how marketing and finance teams could be more aligned in ways that would enable and make more visible the ability of creative and disciplined marketing to help businesses deliver their objectives to secure future cashflows, reduce risk, increase margins and provide sustained competitive advantage and value.
Her advice included:
- Investigating ideas to strengthen the relationship between marketing and finance such as presenting jointly to senior leadership or holding monthly meetings where marketing teams explained the reasons for spending on some budget lines, and not spending on others
- Encouraging marketing teams to use more financial language, such as referring to brand effects as margin protection, and to explain marketing activities in financial terms (such as explaining why acquiring more customers could improve a company’s margin)
- Embracing an evidence-based mindset to help marketers seeking the business case for investment in brand building
- Greater agreement between finance and marketing teams on shared, commercially relevant metrics
These insights were echoed by Jann Schwarz, global director at The B2B Institute, who argued that businesses needed to focus on long-term growth and its drivers, which she cited as “brand, emotion and aligning marketing with finance.”
While acknowledging that short-term sales activation has its role, Schwarz added: “But you don’t win the respect of the C-suite and the boardroom by being very good at tactics. You have to have a long-term vision. You have to build the brand.”
You can listen to a podcast of the event’s speakers, who included marketing columnist Mark Ritson, here.
“Just what the industry needs, great collaboration between clients and agencies on the topics that drive business growth.”
Bridget Angear, Joint Chief Strategy Officer at AMV BBDO
“It’s great to see the IPA in the UK bring the whole industry and particularly the trade bodies together to focus on effectiveness. This new Marketing Effectiveness initiative will enable people across the industry to work together to build on best practice.”
David Wheldon, Chief Marketing Officer, RBS
“Effectiveness is a team sport, so it was great to see the industry in the widest sense, come together. In an increasingly diverse and fragmented world, only by using all parts of the brain will we solve effectiveness challenges and design our campaigns to deliver short and long term value. That’s why what happens next is important – if the IPA can help facilitate progress on this with a long-term initiative around Marketing Effectiveness, we’ll definitely crack it.”
Bart Michels, Global CEO Kantar Added Value and Country Leader Kantar UK
“The time spent at #EffWeek was extraordinarily effective. It was great to hear the diverse views from all areas of the industry. All tied together with the common themes of accountability and effectiveness.”
Andrew Canter, Global CEO, BCMA
“It has been a privilege to be part of the inaugural Effectiveness Week. The agenda is one which we at O2 UK feel passionately about. To see and hear perspectives across the industry demonstrates how the breadth of marketing effectiveness is increasingly being valued within businesses. Data, insight, social, customer experience, test and learn, ROI, these are all fundamentals and were covered expansively at the event”.
Sandra Fazackerley, Marketing & Consumer, Telefónica UK Limited
“The full week of effectiveness events brought into clear focus the need for marketers to use data and insight to achieve the key business objectives of growth and profits. Marketers today are in a better position to quantify their knowledge of customers and measure the ability of investments in marketing to increase brand and shareholder value.”
Chris Combemale, Group CEO, DMA