Marketing investment strategy
Mr. Palmer will be responsible for developing a "global, enterprise-wide focus on marketing to accelerate the company's progress in generating insights that drive all aspects of its business," Kimberly-Clark said in a statement. Mr. Palmer also will establish a "long-term marketing investment strategy to ensure that business initiatives are backed by compelling, high-return marketing programs."
Kimberly-Clark spent $451 million on advertising globally last year according to financial reports and $161.5 million on U.S. measured media, according to TNS Media Intelligence.
Though K-C has rebounded from share losses to Procter & Gamble Co. in its key Huggies and Pull-Ups diaper business, it has lagged its main global rival's growth overall in recent years. That has led some analysts to conclude the company needs a stronger focus on marketing -- particularly since Chairman-CEO Thomas J. Falk came from a finance background in 2002 when he succeeded former Chairman-CEO Wayne Sanders, who began his career as a marketer.
Heading to Dallas HQ
Mr. Palmer, who reports directly to Mr. Falk and will be based at the company's Dallas headquarters when he starts in late October, will work closely with K-C's existing marketing organization, a spokesman said. He'll oversee a "marketing center of excellence" that includes insight generation, talent and best-practice development and shared services in market research, media planning and agency management.
The Australian-born Mr. Palmer was most recently managing director for Kellogg in the U.K. and previously was president of the company's natural, frozen and warehouse-club businesses. From 1996 to 2000, he was with Coca-Cola Co. in marketing and general management positions for the Minute Maid division and as region director for Coca-Cola in Australia. He began his career in consulting, doing that for six years before joining Mars Confectionery Australia in 1992.
WPP Group's JWT handles advertising and sibling MindShare Worldwide handles media planning and buying for Kimberly-Clark globally.