ANA/‘BtoB’ event focuses on changing role of marketing

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Santa Clara, Calif.—B-to-b marketers on Thursday discussed the changing role of marketing and strategies for dealing with challenging times at the Business-to-Business Marketing Conference, produced by the Association of National Advertisers and BtoB.

“In today’s environment, we need to be in a mind-set of continuous marketing reinvention, to be ready to build sustainable relationships for tomorrow,” said Bob Liodice, president-CEO of ANA.

During the conference, new research was released on the changing role of marketing, based on a survey of 383 marketers conducted by ANA and BtoB and fielded by research firm Guideline.

The survey found that nearly half of b-to-b marketers are primarily responsible for strategy and business development today, compared with about one-quarter of b-to-b marketers that were primarily responsible for strategy and business development three years ago.

Also during the conference, marketers from such leading companies as GE, Siemens and Charles Schwab & Co. discussed how marketing has changed at their organizations.

“We were very siloed and had to look at ourselves differently,” said Tom Haas, CMO of Siemens Corp., who spoke on the company’s global reorganization.

Jacqueline Woods, chief segmentation leader at GE, talked about the importance of adapting the marketing organization to meet changing conditions.

“We have to reinvent ourselves every 15 years,” Woods said. “We are constantly looking at our portfolio, asking, ‘Does this make sense today?’ ”

—Kate Maddox

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