Implementing a marketing plan is no easy task and research suggests it is not done very successfully. Moreover, when thinking about why a particular implementation program has failed, there is a tendency to focus on just a few known factors. In this paper we list the many possible causes of implementation failure coupled with some real examples. It will help readers appreciate the significance of the implementation challenge, the diversity of the issues involved and help dig down to the underlying causes.

The paper is here: Implementation issues and examples

Implementation capability and culture

“In my experience Capabilities and Culture have been the biggest barriers to execution. With Culture this has been a tribal mentality / hostility the root cause of which has been poor leadership or a misalignment of values.

With Capabilities I refer to both individual skills including leadership failings but also a lack of alignment between outcomes and the processes needed to deliver these. I had an example where there was massive disconnect between the plan to deliver new products and both the processes and measures in place e.g. if all the processes were followed it would have taken 2 years to deliver anything new against a plan that assumed a 9 month period. Plus the control measures for this were non existant which all meant a lack of alignment and line of sight from what happened on the ground to what was in the strategic plan.

The other big issue…is companies having [too] many [metrics] rather than a vital few. I have plenty of examples of this. 20+ key measures…anybody !”

Business Development Director, UK

Constant refinement at Barcelona FC

During his reign as coach of Barcelona Football Club, Pep Guardiola, led them to becoming one of the most successful European football clubs of all time.  His abilities to constantly refine his tactics and learn from others is reported here by Andy Brassell, European football expert, BBC.  It fits well with the ideas of Marketing Navigation.

Constant refinement at Barcelona FC

A unique KAM workshop: London 12th Jan 2012

Earlier this year, we ran a KAM Simulation workshop for members of the world-renowned Strategic Account Management Association ( May 2011 ).  This was rated one of the best workshops at their conference and so we have teamed up with the University of Portsmouth, to offer a similar session in the UK.  My co-presenter is Beth Rogers,  one of the most distinguished KAM experts in the UK (and a long-time colleague of mine).  She has been researching and teaching in this area for over 20 years and already runs KAM courses at Portsmouth Business School.

This is the first time we are offering this course in the UK so please do not hesitate in claiming your early bird discount.

For more information, click on the link below:

Key Account Simulation Day 12 Jan 2012

Simulator Location

Short link:
Full link:

KAM2win Simulator gets top satisfaction scores

The KAM2win Simulator recently scored some of the highest satisfaction scores amongst delegates at the SAMA Global Conference in Orlando.

Click here to see the conference highlights: SAMA Feedback Orlando 2011

SAM Game Winners

On May 16, the top teams in the Strategic Account Management Game were announced at the SAMA Global Conference in Orlando, Florida. The online game was played over three weeks leading up to the conference itself.

Jean-Maurice Mimran (SAFC), Angela Nienaber (US Postal Service) and Derek Stek (CH Robinson Worldwide) won the game. Dan Cox (Siemens) and Bob Erickson (Pall Corporation) came a close second.

The game has five suppliers competing for the business of one global account. The objective is simple: to make the most profit from this account by the end of the game.
The SAM Game Winners, May 2011
All suppliers start the game with the same overall sales, profits and share of wallet with the account (though it varies across different sales opportunities). However, each of the suppliers also has different account strategies already in play which the teams quickly need to get to grips with.
Participants in the game are all members of the strategic account team of one of these suppliers.  Also, in this case, the participants did not know each other before the game started and had to self-organize into effective virtual teams.
In this game, these two teams quickly took control of the situation and ended up battling each other for account supremacy. Both teams did well to assess the customer and competitor situation, develop their own account strategies and execute them effectively…all whilst doing very busy real day jobs!
By definition, a Strategic Account Manager should be good at strategy and these guys proved that they are.
Well done guys!
Posted by Steve Erickson (VP Strategic Marketing, Parker Hannifin Inc) and Ed Bradford (Director, Market2win Ltd)

Lecturer wins Dean’s Award

A Bradford student team on the Market2win Simulator

We are delighted to announce that Martin Haley has won the 2010 Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence at the University of Bradford’s School of Management.

There are around 80 lecturers at the School and only three such awards handed out each year.  The award is based on student feedback on the courses they have undertaken.  Martin says, “It is a great honour to receive such an award and the use of the Market2win simulation has been a significant factor in generating the excellent feedback I have received from students.  We are now using it on both postgraduate and undergraduate courses. We hope to expand its use further within this university and across to our international partner institutions in the future.”

Edmund Bradford, MD of Market2win says, “This underlines the positive connection between using simulations and the student experience.  The best universities like Bradford are developing the right skills of students, not just improving their understanding of a subject.  This will give these students an employability edge when they finish their course.”

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November Strategic Marketer of the Month

We are delighted to announce that the Strategic Marketer of the Month for November is Anant Pagare, an MBA student at Cardiff Business School.

Anant achieved this by playing the online Market2win Game and guiding his virtual company to a superb market success.   In doing so, he demonstrated the right stuff for senior leadership including superior customer insight, situation awareness, strategic leadership and masterful execution.

Anant was glad to be involved in one of our games: “In my opinion, knowledge is of little use without understanding the practical aspect and consequences of application of the theories. Market2win provided a platform where we needed to analyse the market conditions, compete with other companies in a simulated market environment, anticipate the competitor’s strategy and to act accordingly to stay ahead. It was a great learning experience and I’d be glad to get an opportunity again to become a part of it.”

“There were over 300 MBA students playing in several different games” says Edmund, MD of Market2win, “and Anant’s company made one of the highest profits across all the games.  He did this by beating his fellow students, not the computer.  He did exceptionally well.”

Do you want to develop your strategic leadership skills by playing against other real people from around the world – and collect valuable CPD time along the way? For more information about upcoming games go to

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