Marketing Strategy

A critical component of business success that is often left to chance

Marketing is critical to business success

As a business starts, marketing is often underdeveloped. It's a cost center that doesn't contribute clearly to the bottom line. This dynamic contributes to the blurring distinction between sales and marketing. Developing a strong marketing strategy is crucial for the long term success of an organization.

My work in marketing was heavily influenced by the faculty at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, and the program at IBM I was hired into after completing my MBA. The Marketing Leadership Development Program (MLDP) at IBM was designed to make marketing more distinct from sales. Working with the Kelley School of Business IBM adopted a rigorous approach to marketing plan development that is strongly aligned with business development planning. A big contingent of marketers were officially moved into sales and the core that remained were dedicated to fundamental marketing work like realigning the brand image of IBM and coordinated efforts to better define what IBM stands for. It was a challenge since IBM is a very strong sales culture, but these were important changes for IBM to embrace. Years of IBM success can be linked to this foundational work, but eventually the sales machine dampened the impact of the program as I, and as many as 15,000 of my colleagues, were leaving IBM in 2009. 

Marketing in its purest form manages the development of the marketplace for your products and services. This includes brand development and getting the company high in the consideration set for potential customers. The blurring with sales starts when marketing is called on to support sales efforts and marketers try to get credit for their contribution to the bottom line. Marketing gets pulled in the other direction, towards public relations, for an equally natural reason, as white papers and content marketing get added to the mix of messaging by a company. Marketing teams gravitate towards sales and lead generation for the job security. The temptation is to also facing public relations teams to gravitate towards sales via marketing for similar reasons.

Pranzare draws on experiences across the spectrum from sales, marketing and public relations to craft marketing strategies suited to your business. Years of experience in journalism, business development and design, and sales influence our work to help grow your business.