The increase in new channels and technologies has dramatically changed the environment in which marketers operate. But the way in which marketing is taught, understood and operates has not really changed. This is not sustainable. We need a new unifying framework as a reference for what marketing has become.


01

Organisations need to adopt a new model to blend classic and digital marketing. Here’s how to do it.

02

What are the dangers of not defining a new marketing model?

03

What are the objectives of M3?

04

Historic marketing models & the new M3 approach

05

Mapping classic and digital marketing disciplines to M3

06

The three outcomes of M3

01 Organisations need to adopt a new model to blend classic and digital marketing. Here’s how to do it.

The increase in new channels and technologies has dramatically changed the environment in which marketers operate. But the way in which marketing is taught, understood and operates has not really changed. This is not sustainable. We need a new unifying framework as a reference for what marketing has become.

Alongside this need for a framework, there are new requirements for marketing competencies and capabilities around domains of expertise like data and analytics, customer experience, content, multichannel and personalisation, which are neither properly understood nor being met. This is acknowledged in the marketing industry but not reflected in any definitive model.

Due to these changes and the rise of digital, the marketing function is going through an existential crisis: it is not clear on its own remit; does not know what skills it needs; how to organise itself; and it struggles to resolve a dislocation not only in how it interacts with other business functions but within itself with ‘digital’ vs ‘traditional’ schisms.

In 2013, we launched the Modern Marketing Manifesto articulating our belief that the marketing discipline should embrace digital and classic marketing. The Modern Marketing Model (M3) now creates a new framework for applying this thinking within organisations.

The visual of the model below shows the elements of marketing brought together in a new configuration; this white paper provides the context and rationale for this approach.

The Modern Marketing Model is a unifying force which fuses digital and classic marketing into one future-facing framework. This informs marketing’s remit, required competencies and organisational design.

M3 defines marketing in the digital age.

02 What are the dangers of not defining a new marketing model?

Chief marketing officers have the highest turnover in the C-suite, as we are reminded by The Trouble with CMOs, recently published in the Harvard Business Review. They are in office for an average 4.1 years, compared to eight years for a chief executive, according to Korn Ferry analysis.

The relationship between the CEO and CMO is also troubled. A global survey by the Fournaise Marketing Group in 2012 set out the scale of the problem, revealing that 80% of CEOs do not trust, or are unimpressed with, their CMOs.

Why do marketing leaders have such short average tenures in their jobs? Because of poor job design resulting from confusion around what marketing actually does. Without a clear reference like M3 to help clarify an organisation’s expectations of what the marketing function does, we will continue to see turmoil that is damaging value.

If we cannot reconcile digital and classic marketing, then we will see further organisational silos, duplicated work and a lack of clarity and focus around roles and responsibilities which leads to inefficiency, frustration and bickering. Opportunities are missed and the growth that marketing – and the business – wants to deliver will be stymied.

For academia and providers of marketing education, it is important that what they teach is relevant and current with what the marketing industry and employing organisations require from their teams. We must encourage educators to update their courses and curricula with reference to a model like M3. Otherwise we will see more marketing students complaining that “studying marketing at university was a frustrating waste of time”.

03 What are the objectives of M3?

The Modern Marketing Model seeks to:

  • Answer the question: “What is marketing?” now we’re in the digital age
  • Change and improve how marketing is taught and understood both in academia and in the workplace
  • Reduce confusion and fragmentation in the marketing industry by uniting existing different models and elements into one framework that fuses classic and digital marketing
  • Inform the role and remit of the marketing function within organisations to improve how it works both within itself and with other business functions
  • Provide a reference to ensure the necessary competencies and capabilities are addressed in creating a ‘future fit’ organisational design for the marketing function
  • Provide a model that covers not just the ‘marketing mix’ (where former models such as the 4Ps focus) but other important areas like strategy and brand
  • Ensure the model works not only for large advertisers but also, for example, for small business-to-business organisations which may have no media spend. Previous models have been too skewed towards big brand advertisers in the FMCG space. This model seeks to be relevant for both product and service businesses; and B2B and B2C.

04 Historic marketing models & the new M3 approach

The graphic below (click for larger version) outlines how popular marketing models have evolved over the last sixty years, culminating in the ten elements of the Modern Marketing Model.

The table below (click for larger version) goes into more detail for each element of M3 and what competencies are required:

What elements have changed and why?

The table below gives a brief explanation of the most obvious changes that M3 brings and some of the reasoning behind them.

05 Mapping classic and digital marketing disciplines to M3

Following are the core classic and digital marketing disciplines:

Classic marketing disciplines

  • Advertising
  • Brand management
  • CRM & Loyalty
  • Database marketing
  • Distribution
  • Events and experiential marketing
  • Market research
  • Marketing strategy
  • Packaging and labelling
  • Partner marketing
  • Pricing
  • Product/service development
  • Promotions
  • Public relations
  • Retail & shopper marketing
  • Sponsorship
  • STP (Segmentation, Targeting & Positioning)
  • Telemarketing.

Digital marketing disciplines

  • Affiliate/performance-based marketing
  • Content marketing – includes copywriting, video
  • Conversion rate optimisation (CRO)
  • Customer/user experience
  • Digital analytics and measurement
  • Digital data marketing – schemas, feeds, APIs, metadata, machine-to-machine data
  • Digital display advertising – includes retargeting, programmatic
  • Email and eCRM – includes marketing automation, personalisation
  • Mobile marketing
  • Online PR – includes online influencer marketing, reputation management
  • Paid search marketing (PPC)
  • Search engine optimisation (SEO)
  • Social media marketing – includes community building, collaboration/co-creation, social CRM, social customer care, social monitoring/listening

In the table below, we have mapped the classic/digital marketing disciplines that are most commonly used for each element of M3:

06 The three outcomes of M3

We hope to see the following three applications of M3:

1. Organisations discuss M3 internally to clarify their expectations of what the marketing function does, how it is structured, and how it works with the rest of the business as well as with external suppliers.

2. Talent and HR professionals review the recruitment, training and development needs of their organisations for digital/marketing resources with reference to M3.

  • Read Econsultancy’s How Marketers Learn report for more on how best to help your marketing teams learn and improve their capability.

3. Academic and digital/marketing training organisations assess their curricula and course offerings with reference to M3 and update their content accordingly.

Marketing's chance to lead

The impact of ‘digital’ has perhaps been felt first, and most keenly, by the marketing function. However, if marketing can also be the first to transform itself then marketers will be in a good position to lead the transformation of the whole organisation.

If marketers can lead the move towards adopting M3 principles within their organisation, then we believe the trend towards marketers becoming CEOs will accelerate.

About the author: Ashley Friedlein is co-founder of Econsultancy, part of Centaur Media, which also includes Marketing Week and Oystercatchers.

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