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New marketing professions

Del: 04/10/2006


We interviewed the engineer Mr. Sergio Meacci, President of the Technical Scientific Committee AISM, to talk about the new marketing professions and the impacts of the reform in this sector.

1. In your opinion, which are the most wanted marketing professionals?

The market has changed greatly in all sectors because of the effect of the hyper-competition of price and innovation. The violent irruption of emerging countries in all traditional manufacturing sectors and the continuous change of needs that solicit and are solicited by the new technologies, constitute mega trends that accentuate their impact on the future, continuously recreating new risks and new opportunities. The strategic, operative management of business and finance companies will be subject to the most frequent changes and to the most attentive monitoring so as to anticipate new competitive and market trends. As for what concerns the rules of marketing and the operative activity of the various figures that refer to marketing, both the innovation of the product and of the business models become fundamental. At the same time more creativity in the introduction of new performances and functions and the new configuration of production models are required – optimizing the choice of sites and stages, even through the delocalisation - of distribution – combining traditional and innovative channels and investing in directly managed retail – and of the logistic function – with platforms that serve in an optimal way, both the sourcing and the delivery of the products.
So, new organisational and collaborative formulas are requested in the business management in order to pursue further effectiveness.
Therefore marketing and its primary responsibility gain priority and importance in: understanding the hidden needs and rising above the clients’ expectations, placing on the market products and services which respond to the clients’ demands that have competitive prices and performances.

2. New roles are being developed in marketing areas. Could you indicate which they are and briefly outline their profiles?

A holistic vision is required and the ability to catch lateral thinking stimuli, associated to a solid planning knowledge, of the sourcing, of the trade and of the retailing, even through directly operated stores, combined with innovative procedures with new value chains. A strategic and operative competence, an impressive mental flexibility, an elevated ability of change and interaction with the company team, even under the management and financial control. Under this aspect new professionals are not so required, but traditional roles, correctly interpreted and managed depending on their complexity, can be valid.
However new roles come forth in the great areas of distribution of the product
: management of traditional and innovative channels, among which the internet and extended use of the IT technologies; management of the clientele relations, with the intelligent use of support systems, from the db to the crm; management of the geographic markets so as to support the inevitable globalisation and placing of new people responsible of macro areas or countries.
As for what concerns the research of clients, the comprehension of the new demands and the research of a continuous tuning in with them, in the western markets, the approach of tribal and experiential marketing gain importance.
Among the market research the mysterious client and the measurement of performances gain importance through the customer satisfaction and fidelity survey, and the setting of performance indicators, that has impact on the awarding system and that is placed in the KPI system of companies.

3. Do you think that the new professions can make the business organisation chart more efficient?

By all means. Not only more efficient, for the further collaborative interaction between marketing and financial supervision, management and general control, but especially more efficient for the decisive course in defining the new ideas that generate new business opportunities and make the company grow.

4. When we speak of marketing, we also speak of New Economy. Which competences are required for the future marketing professionals that work in the New Economy?

The new economy is a way to describe the internet phenomenon which can create misunderstandings. I prefer to define it as an extraordinary ensemble of technologies and procedures greatly innovative in communication and promotion, interpersonal relations, understanding of behaviours, information gathering, diffusion of services and management of commercial transactions. This combination of potentials, with the growing diffusion of the broadband, allows for even more powerful applications and more appealing forms of interactive communication.
The knowledge of the technological and applicative innovation, the monitoring of procedures followed by direct and potential competitors and the observation of what occurs online, are the source of continuous stimoli to understand new demands and offer satisfying innovative services. It is sufficient to think of the actual internet bank, that now has the power to improve the relation between the client and the bank, redefining also the role of the branches.

5. Which are the most paid professions?

Those that manage to create value for the shareholders and the other stakeholders.

6. Reform of the professions: which are the impacts on the marketing professions?

With the liberalisation of the system of independent professionals and the acknowledgement of the non independent associations, we will witness the transformation of the supply of professional services to enterprises and families. The associations, like AISM, besides entering the regional councils – like Lombardia and Friuli VG and the others that will be constituted– may be recognized by a governmental and qualified body, in a regime of free competition among associations, to release the certificate of competence of the associate.
The market will be the only judge of the value assigned, that upon releasing, the association will give consistence and credibility if it is able to become a guarantor of quality, through appropriate processes of training and verification of the competences, according to the Anglo-Saxon model of the institutes.
The impact of the reform may therefore be highly elevated, in particular for the marketing profession, with the purpose of improving the quality and performance of the competitiveness of the country system. AISM, with the definition of the AISM school program and the other training initiatives, and with the adoption of the internal organisational processes, in terms of admission, of qualification of the associates and the verification of it, even apart from the reform hoped for, it already carries out this role, that however coincides with what is provided for by the articles of incorporation and its mission.

                                                                  Deborah Baldasarre


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