Roger Martin agrees–marketing strategy is business strategy

In a previous post, “Marketing strategy is business strategy” September 14, 2012, I wrote, “It puzzles me that some corporate executives still view business strategy as fundamentally different from, and somehow more crucial to organizational success than marketing strategy.” I then went on to discuss why marketing strategy “is” business strategy and outlined three factors that have led executives to the erroneous viewpoint that it is not.

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It seems that Roger Martin, the University of Toronto’s Dean of the Rotman School of Management, has come to the same conclusion.

In his “Foreword” to, FLUX–What Marketing Managers Need to Navigate the New Environment by the Marketing Faculty at Rotman School of Management, Mr. Martin observes:

 If we go back to 1986, it was much easier to draw a bright boundary line between strategy and marketing. Strategy was about industry and competitive analysis and marketing was about the 4 Ps. I remember it well from business school a few years before!

Now I can’t tell where strategy stops and marketing starts–or vice versa.  Both are about creating a distinctive and powerful tie to the customer, and continuing to migrate and maintain that potent connection through the rapid and unpredictable changes in our global economy.

What’s the way forward?

It is time for business school academics, corporate leadership, and the marketing community with its various stakeholders and media observers to rethink their marketing-strategy-versus-business-strategy paradigm and consider the point Mr. Martin says so simply: you “…can’t tell where [one] stops and… [the other] starts.” In other words: marketing strategy “is” business strategy.

About ashleykonson

STRATEGY CONSULTING | EXECUTIVE COACHING | CORPORATE TRAINING | KEYNOTE SPEAKING | Ashley Konson is the Managing Partner of Global Brand Leaders Inc., a new kind of brand consulting company dedicated to making brands and their teams leaders across the globe. He is a Brand Leader, Business Consultant and Award-Winning Educator, and a recognized thought leader and fervent advocate of the premise that strong brands and businesses achieve and sustain their market positions because they are strong Inside out™.
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5 Responses to Roger Martin agrees–marketing strategy is business strategy

  1. Considering Marketing should also be leading the definition of the corporate (or product) brand, it is impossible to extricate the two. If you subscribe to the notion that the “brand” defines customer engagement, new product development, segmentation, employee training and rewards and even potentially evaluating M&A, then Marketing leads the most crucial filter for anything the organization does.

  2. I have always said the same thing about brand strategy. It’s all the same.

    • ashleykonson says:

      Thanks for your comment Will. In my opinion the similarities between marketing strategy, brand strategy and business strategy are profound and the differences negligible.

  3. Excellent post, Ashley.
    We are of like mind and thanks to Hilton for pointing me to your blog.

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