PocureCon Marketing, my report of a unique Marketing procurement conference in London.

Golden BrainI visited ProcureCon Marketing in London last week, and I thought it would be be interesting to share the main outlines.

ProcureCon Marketing is currently the only dedicated multi-day event in Europe in the field of digital and marketing, and is visited by more than 200 professionals from multinational companies such as CocaCola, Mars, Pernod-Ricard, RBS and Astra Zeneca. My Dutch colleagues were also well represented by multinationals such as FrieslandCampina, AHOLD, Nike, and Heineken.

It was very special and inspiring to speak and spar with a variety of international colleagues from the same field. It turned out we also share the same challenges at an international level.

During these days, current topics within the marketing category were discussed through an impressive line-up of presentations and round tables. The quality of the presentations was at a decent level, with some outliers to both directions. Some remained a little superficial during the presentation, which is understandable because of the present direct competitive colleagues in the room.

The main take-outs of this event:

Overall it clearly showed that the marketing procurement function has grown towards maturity and has acquired a prominent spot within many companies. Nowadays, it’s almost everywhere obvious that the business uses procurement to manage agency relations with the purpose of coming to clear agreements on remuneration models, risk reduction and added value.

It was also shown that the time has come, after year after year of cost reduction targets and budget cuts, to focus more on added value and return on investment.

Hot topics those days included:
–        How does procurement work together with marketing
–        How to create value
–        Developments in cooperation with strategic advertisement and media agencies; measuring, benchmarking, evaluation, transparency
–        How to organize digital
–        Coupling and decoupling marketing production
–        How to organize the internal communication

Specific to the subject digital marketing, a notable trend could be observed that showed no clear-cut approach. Regardless of the type of company, the preferred strategy is to choose an existing strategic partner to hand all digital activities to, or to choose for a design of flexible cooperation models with innovative smaller parties.
Lastly, much was said about the ideal profile of the marketing procurement professional.  The bottom line was that the ideal candidate has knowledge of, and passion for marketing and the brand and is also capable to build a strong relationship with the marketeers. The procurement skills come in second place, because they are easier to learn.

My conclusion: ProcureCon Marketing is an absolute must for every marketing procurement professional. It offers a broad range of cases, inspiration and provides excellent starting points for the sharing of knowledge.

The link to ProcureCon Marketing http://procureconmarketing.wbresearch.com

Jolanda Hafkamp

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