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p. 66-68 / CUSTOMER BONDING
Tilt to Markets Manifesto
The 2nd European sales & marketing effectiveness in Chemicals

BOGDAN COMANITA
MarketChemica Inc.
68 Cloverlawn, Toronto, ON, M6E1H5, Canada

KEYWORDS: strategic and tactical marketing and sales for the chemical industry
Abstract: Some of the best European marketing & sales professionals in the chemical industry met on October 22/23 in Frankfurt under the auspices of the 2nd European Sales & Marketing Effectiveness in Chemicals forum. Top executives from DSM, Solvay, Bayer, BASF, Evonik and many other global companies shared their marketing and sales insights in an effort to help the industry cope with the “commoditization” tsunami. The main message is best summed up by the title of the opening speech held by professor Niraj Dawar from Ivey School of Business: TILT. Indeed all the dominant industry players are “tilting” their centre of gravity towards uncovering customer needs, creating customer value, delivering value and of course capturing value. Mr. Mauricio Adade, Chief Marketing Officer Royal DSM concluded the workshop with the observation that the chemical industry must look beyond the industry and adapt the Business-to-Consumer marketing and sales practices to the Business-to-Business environment. The present article is the first in a series of articles covering this seminal event. It discusses the philosophy behind the Frankfurt thought-leadership forum and highlights its delivery structure centred on value discovery, value creation, value delivery and value capture. Future articles will zoom-in the content of the presentations that were grouped around these four marketing and sales topics.

The “European Marketing & Sales Effectiveness in Chemicals” has its roots in Chimica Oggi - Chemistry Today’s Customer Bond column, the only column dedicated to marketing and sales in the chemical industry. As founding editor of the Customer Bond column I know first hand that Chemistry Today is very proud of this pioneering contribution to the chemical industry media. Four years later, the Customer Bond agenda was validated by the consensus of the 2nd European Marketing & Sales Effectiveness in Chemicals Forum: the industry has finally recognized the need to tilt its resource allocation to the company/market interface.

It was a personal privilege for the author of this article to chair the first day of the Forum that took place on October 22/23 in Frankfurt. Indeed, I was in the unique position to share in the opening remarks the historical connections between Chemistry Today’s Customer Bond column and Fleming’s forum on marketing & sales in chemicals as well as point out the synergistic effect of these two channels on the transformation of the industry.
When the Customer Bond was only a project back in 2010 it seemed that there was a publication dealing with every single imaginable aspect of chemistry and chemical technology but none, not a single one, dealing with marketing and sales for the chemical industry.

It was as if marketing and sales didn’t matter in our industry! As if molecules sold by themselves! As if chemical products could have been sold only by the excellence of chemical technological processes alone! Clearly, marketing and sales processes were irrelevant to the chemical industry audiences. They appeared almost like an afterthought barely dangling to the perceived core activities of the industry: the discovery of the molecule and the manufacturing of the product.

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