It’s no secret: marketing punches below its weight in the Boardroom. CEOs and other board members perceive that marketers lack commercial credibility when compared to their peers.
Marketing in the Boardroom helps marketers to be more commercially credible and thereby more successful in the Boardroom.
Ruth Saunders explains the importance of marketing in the Boardroom, and why marketers often struggle to engage the Board. She then shows how to develop compelling marketing strategies that the Board will buy into, offering a mix of practical solutions and varied case studies drawn from her years of industry experience. In the final section, she helps marketers better understand the Board mindset and language, demonstrating how to win over the Board members’ hearts, minds and confidence.
Marketing in the Boardroom is an important book for any aspiring marketers who are moving up the career ladder, particularly those who are writing or giving presentations to the Board. It is also an important book for their organizations, particularly those that struggle to give marketing the support it needs to create customer-led strategies that will drive business growth.
Table of Contents
Part one: the importance of marketing in the boardroom
1. The marketing issue
2. The ideal marketer
3. Creating the ideal marketing team
Part two: creating marketing strategies that the board will buy
4. Choosing who to target
5. Choosing what to support
6. Choosing why to be in business
7. Choosing where to market
8. Choosing when to engage people
Part three: getting the board on-board
9. Winning the board members’ minds
10. Winning the board members ‘hearts
11. Winning the board members’ confidence
Ruth Saunders is a joint founder and leading partner of Galleon Blue – a consultancy that merges commercial thinking with marketing and branding to help companies maximise the value and return of their brands.
Ruth Saunders uses her years of experience as a strategy consultant, marketer, advertising planner and market researcher to help clients develop, get Board buy-in to and implement innovative marketing strategies that deliver tangible business growth. Her work includes developing commercially actionable customer segmentations, developing innovative brands from scratch, creating new brand positionings for growth, building strong global brands, streamlining brand portfolios and architectures, conducting brand migrations, optimising the customer and brand experience and increasing marketing spend effectiveness. She is also a trainer, speaker and coach.
Prior to setting up Galleon Blue, Ruth was a
• Marketing and branding consultant at McKinsey & Co and Prophet
• Strategic advertising planner with Saatchi & Saatchi and Mustoes
• Marketer and Market Researcher with packaged goods companies, Procter & Gamble and Mars Inc.
• Graduate from Birmingham University, with a Batchelor’s Degree in Statistics, followed by a post-graduate Diploma in Marketing.
"Is your marketing team frustrated at losing yet another brand plan, strangled at birth by your Board? If so, then this book is for you. In easy to read stages, it lays out how to win over the minds, hearts and confidence of the Board – so that your plans are not just approved but also backed through any early in-market turbulence. It works – as one marketing star recently said of Ruth: 'I have learnt more in two hours than I have in fifteen years'." Hugh Burkitt, CEO, The Marketing Society, 2003-2016
"Ruth’s book is one of the most actionable management books that I have read in a long time. Her easy to follow approach to engaging with the Board will enable you to nail your pitch when it matters most." Mark Evans, Marketing Director, Direct Line Group
"Boards are often populated by smart, left-brained, financially literate thinkers, whereas the best marketers bring at least as much right-brained intuitive and creative thinking. Ideas are often 'lost in translation'. Ruth's unique background, as an Agency Strategist, Client Marketer and Management Consultant, enables her to help marketers interpret and articulate those ideas by speaking the language of the Boardroom. She is bi-lingual. Read her book and she can help you to be too." Nigel Gilbert, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, TSB Bank PLC.
"Ruth Saunders has built a successful consultancy business by teaching marketers how to communicate their strategic proposals more convincingly to their company’s Board. Against my advice she’s decided to reveal her trade secrets in this book…so I suggest you buy it if you’re a marketer who wants to improve their strike rate when pitching to the Board." Hamish Pringle, Director General, Institute of Practitioners in Advertising, 2001-11
"There are few moments as daunting for any CMO than entering a boardroom with the aim of getting buy-in to ideas that require a leap of imagination. Ruth Saunders has superbly captured the vortex in which the analytical mindset of a commercial board meets the entrepreneurial creativity of marketing. Ruth provides the tools and advice needed to handle the challenges from more logical minds with confidence. She knows what she is talking about. I have seen her do it." Jan Gooding, Global Brand Director, Aviva
In the boardroom, it is marketing’s responsibility to ensure that the voice of the customers that the company and its board are serving is heard and acted upon, to help guide the company to success. Having a plan to win in the boardroom is fundamental to achieving this. Ruth's book gives you a great plan of how to win in the boardroom – which you, your consumers and board will be grateful for." Michael Inpong, Chief Marketing Officer, Muller Group
This book is a must read for any marketer wishing to break out of their silo and impress in the board room. Full of real life case study examples, tips that I now know really work, and insights that I wish I had had earlier in my career, Ruth’s book will help you understand the language of the business and Boardroom, and be successful at the top table." Pete Turner, SVP Sales & Marketing, Avast
"I always knew I didn’t know something, now I know what it is, and now I know why I need Ruth." David Magliano, managing director, membership, marketing and consumer revenue, Guardian News and Media
"Marketing teams need to recognise that Boards have many commercial investment options and that marketing strategies compete with many alternative choices. Ruth explains how Boards assess these alternatives, clearly explaining how marketers should approach preparing for their Board conversations and ongoing relationship. This advise is really excellent, very simple to follow and a must read for all senior marketers who want to succeed with the Board". Robbie Millar, Global Director, Innovation & Brand Propositions, SABMiller (ABInBEv)
"The Saunders text is focused and superbly articulated and clearly demonstrates the author’s command of the marketing subject matter. The focus on the boardroom and the interplay of board members and key marketing staff is a subject worthy of attention. The substance of Chapters 2 through 8 provides readers with a wealth of information and the richness of the case studies presented. Some case studies in these chapters suffer from brevity. These cases could be expanded, thus enhancing the text. The low point in reading this text occurs in Chapters 9 and 10. The content iseems somehow different in quality and force of presentation. However, the concluding chapter (11) returns readers to the beauty of this work. The Saunders presentation has a place in the literature of marketing and marketing research. Strongly recommended for both graduate and undergraduate business collections." J. B. Kashner, University of the Southwest
Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty.