The marketing field is faced with several challenges that for many firms will require transformation in capability and charge. Among them are the following five.

1. Marketing needs to lead in substantial or transformational innovation that will result in new offerings that define new categories or subcategories. Marketing focused on “my brand is better than your brand” strategies supported by incremental innovation and conventional programs rarely create sales growth because markets have a lot of inertia. The only way to grow is through big idea innovation that will create enhancements or augmentations of the offering that will be regarded by customers as “must haves.”

2. Marketing needs to be strategic rather than tactical and needs to earn an influential place at the executive table. Marketing should own three key drivers of strategy: customer insights that should enable growth initiatives and be the basis for strategic resource allocation, the value proposition or the key to strategy, and the brand strategy that should both inform and enable the business strategy.

3. Marketing needs to get control of the product, country and functional silos to foster cooperation and communication rather than competition and isolation.Firms no longer have the luxury to see opportunities for consistency and synergy lost. It is especially important to overcome functional silos and create integrated marketing programs where some functional areas accept a supporting role, even when that is not what they are accustomed to.

4. Marketing needs to inject energy and involvement into their brands. Brand equity across the world has been declining for over a decade. The exceptions are those brands with energy. Energy is an imperative. If a brand cannot provide product energy like Apple, Dove, Hyundai and others have done, their need is to create or find something with energy and attach the brand to it.

5. Marketing needs to be elevate its game tactically.With the fragmentation of media options, the dynamics of social media and the proliferation of brands and offerings, there is much clutter and complexity. Nothing less than great marketing and exceptional offerings will break a brand out. This means marketing needs access to creative tools, people willing to innovate and a broad array of marketing modalities.

There are many more solutions to these challenges, but if marketing can influence or deliver real innovation, a marketing-influenced business strategy, control of the silos, energy and involvement and great tactical marketing, it will be relevant to the organization and see success in the marketplace.