Global editor-in-chief, Campaign
There can surely be nobody working in marketing or with marketers who doubt the role a great marketer plays in building businesses, driving profits and boosting the economy at large.
Yet too often marketers remain in the shadows of our industry, either reluctant or unable to claim the limelight for their work and showcase their own talent. So perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that too many corporate boardrooms still regard marketing as a cost rather than an investment, too few marketers still make the transition into top management, and marketing is still too infrequently involved in a company’s strategic decision-making. This much we have sound evidence for. The increasing belief that marketing is failing to attract the best graduates may be based more on anecdotal supposition than hard facts – but given the failings listed above, it would be no wonder if that was exactly the case.
So it’s never been more important to shine a bright light on the achievements of the most effective and influential marketers; they might not all enjoy public applause but our industry and those coming up behind need powerful, inspiring marketer role models like never before.
You’ll find 100 of the very, very best over the next few pages – the women and men who are building brands, serving consumers, improving bottom lines, fuelling economic growth and proving the enormous value of marketing as a business imperative.
But even the world’s best marketers have role models too. This year, our top 100 achievers voted for Unilever’s Keith Weed as the clear winner of our Marketers’ Marketer accolade. From his impeccable governance of some of the world’s biggest brands to his mission to drive a more responsible, sustainable business culture, Weed enshrines the values of marketing excellence and the opportunities of marketing to make a lasting difference.