The so-called ‘Digital Revolution’ has taken our eye off what customers want and, as a result, profits have fallen. In a world of continuing Recession, global Competition and Brexit, the future belongs to the organisations who can get closest to their customers and keep them longest.
Paul Fifield – “one man in his time plays many parts …”
There was a time when I would have proudly said that I was in Marketing. Those days have gone and today the word marketing only means Advertising, Promotions and Digital. Worse, marketing has become a cost centre in most organisations.
Real Marketing was never designed to be a cost centre, indeed its primary purpose was – and to my mind still is – optimise profits by focusing all the resources of the organisation on its only source of cash flow and profits: The Customer.
Obvious when you think about it – Yes. Easy to implement in practice – No.
As a left-over from the turn of the century, most organisations and the senior managers have been seduced by the ‘Efficiency’ mantra, egged on by a greedy city and short term analysts. Although no company has ever been known to shrink to greatness, cost control is the cry of the day – and still nobody seems to be able to differentiate between a genuine ‘cost’ and a ‘big number’.
The future belongs to either:
1. The new businesses whose owners and managers haven’t been to business school but intuitively know to take their lead from the external market and what customers want to buy.
2. The minority of established companies who are brave enough (or desperate enough) to throw away the rule book they know doesn’t work and start to co-create their future with their customers.
I try and support Group Two companies, and the senior management team, as they make the journey from ‘Inside-Out’ to ‘Outside-In’ focus. I am also a co-founder of The Winchester Strategy Group.
|1. The Advisor
Existing & past clients have come from many sectors: Agriculture, Aviation, Banking, Brewing, Business Services, Computing and Software, Construction, Domestic Appliances, Economic Development, Education , Financial Services, Food processing, Health & Medical Services, Housing, Hotels and Catering, Legal services, Online gaming, Public Services, Publishing, Retailing, Telecommunications, Tourism, Travel, Utilities, Veterinary Pharmaceuticals, Web services.
|2. The Speaker
I have spoken at events around the country and overseas for many years. The events have been for groups such as Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), the Institute of Direct Marketing (IDM), Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA), Cambridge Marketing College (CMC), Veterinary Marketing Association (VMA), Institute of Directors (IoD), Professional Services Marketing Group (PSMG), Professional Marketing Forum and many others. My talks tend to be provocative, with more serious questions than glib answers, designed to make audiences think for themselves rather than follow any particular line or agenda.The subjects vary according to the particular needs of the group.
|3. The Writer
Marketing Strategy 3rd Edition The latest version, contains the ‘SCORPIO’ model of market strategy and is designed for the seasoned practitioner who values an overview. Market Strategy Masterclass The most comprehensive book I have ever written, it is based on the edition above but includes much more detail and hints on practical implementation. Collected Essays in Marketing Strategy An eclectic collection of essays and ‘thought pieces’ on understanding and connecting with customers in a variety of environments and circumstances.
|Book 24 Is currently in production, but the gestation period is quite long. Coming to grips, not with how the business environment is inexorably changing, but how to present this in a way that will encourage and support practitioners as they change the practices of a lifetime. We all need to let go of the treasured tools and models of the past and open our minds to the new needs of tomorrow’s customers.|
4. The Teacher
I have always taught alongside my main in-company business. I have taught at a number of institutions including the Chartered Institute of Marketing, Cambridge Marketing College, Loughborough University, Henley Management College, Brunel University, Duke University (US), and the University of Bath. I am currently Visiting Professor at: University of Southampton, Southampton, UK and College des Ingenieurs, Paris, France.
Please assemble your own Biography from the paragraphs below:
Paul Fifield has been involved in developing and implementing Customer Strategy since 1980. Over the years he has worked with clients in a wide range of industries including Agriculture, Aviation, Banking, Brewing, Business Services, Computing and Software, Construction, Domestic Appliances, Economic Development, Financial Services, Housing, Hotels and Catering, Online gaming, Publishing, Retailing, Telecommunications, Tourism, Utilities, Veterinary Pharmaceuticals, Web services and others.
A sometimes outspoken champion of Customers & the importance of having a clear strategy for future business development, Paul has written widely on the subject. His books “Marketing Strategy” and “Marketing Strategy Masterclass” have become standards for practitioners as well as a set text for many MBA and MSc courses. – He continues to maintain links with the academic world; he has served as university external examiner as well as senior examiner at the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) and now supervises a small number of PhD and DBA students for light relief. He is currently Visiting Professor at the University of Southampton and the College des Ingenieurs in Paris.
Today the whole concept of “Marketing” has been devalued – it has come to be synonymous with Advertising and Promotion. Paul has never subscribed to this view, believing firmly that REAL Marketing is a strategic activity aimed simply at driving Customer Value to enable Premium Prices – and outstanding profits. It is a simple concept but not one that is easy to implement.
Dr Fifield has three children and lives in Winchester. He holds a degree in Business Studies as well as an MBA and a PhD in Marketing Strategy, both from Cranfield University. He was elected a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (FCIM) in 1988, elected a member of CIM Council 1999-2001 and the CIM International Board of Trustees 2002-2004. He is also Visiting Professor at the University of Southampton and the College des Ingenieurs in Paris as well as a Fellow of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufacturers and Commerce (FRSA).