The relationship between marketing and procurement has often been tumultuous since “marketing procurement” appeared on the scene more than two decades ago. The good news is, the relationship has improved. In a growing number of companies, procurement and marketing professionals are now working together as a cohesive team. But recent research also shows that many companies have more work to do to build a productive partnership between their marketing and marketing procurement teams.
This summer, the World Federation of Advertisers published an important report about the current state of marketing procurement and how the function needs to evolve to reach its full potential. The Project Spring report is largely based on a survey of senior marketing procurement VPs and directors conducted in 2018. Respondents were affiliated with 65 companies representing more than 16 industry sectors.
It’s probably not surprising that most participants in this survey were confident that marketing procurement is viewed in a generally favorable light by other parts of the business, including marketing. Twenty-five percent of the respondents said marketing’s perception of marketing procurement was extremely positive, and another 62% said the perception was somewhat positive. However, 92% of the respondents also said that the way marketing procurement is viewed in their organization could be improved.
Delivering Value Beyond Cost Savings
Demonstrating that marketing procurement can deliver value beyond cost savings has been a long-time goal and a persistent challenge for marketing procurement professionals. Most marketing procurement thought leaders agree that providing benefits beyond just cost savings is critical to improving how other business functions perceive the marketing procurement function.
The Project Spring survey identified several factors correlated with greater organizational recognition of the broader value that marketing procurement provides. Here are four of the factors that I found particularly interesting.