Poll: McDonald's and Google Top P&G for Brand Mgt.

A poll of 106 chief marketing officers at The CMO Club shows that McDonald’s and Google have passed Procter & Gamble among CMOs as the benchmark for brand management.

I had heard for years, ever since starting out at Adweek in 1987, that Procter & Gamble was “Brand Management University.” Working your way through P&G’s system on brands like Crest and Tide was the training you wanted for just about any job inside or outside of marketing.

As P&G has a new CEO, Robert McDonald (how ironic, since McD’s passed P&G), and it is 22 years later, I wondered if it was still true. Of 106 CMOs who responded, 34% said McDonald’s was the new benchmark in brand management as far as they were concerned.

Thirty-percent chose Internet juggernaut Google. Twenty-eight percent said P&G was still the master of marketing’s domain. Six percent said Toyota.

Brand New Day and the CMO Club, working together on a weekly poll, made the question multiple choice and selected the four companies to choose from.

A few Quotes from CMOs in the club who responded:

“It’s McDonald’s and they should be an inspiration to GM or any large company with a tired image. A few years ago, they had lost their way and the result was lagging performance. But they got back to their core equity of good food for a value. A sharp focus was put back on insuring customers got their food served hot & FAST. And, they invested in their stores providing a clean, family friendly environment again. The result has been strong results and excellent stock performance.”

“McDonalds has been the most consistent in all categories- advertising, delivery of what they promise, top tier marketing partnerships and alliances, value for the price, and the list goes on. When you look at their history, their slate is so clean. They are focused and have only one single brand to worry about.”

“McDonalds. A terrific case study of the revitalization of an American icon, that didn’t happen by accident. Rather, it occurred as an outcome of a disciplined focus on marketplace and customer research and broadening their product portfolio to appeal to a broad cross-section of today’s consumers. They’ve done extremely well during the recession, as they did a lot of the heavy lifting a handful of years ago, and are now positioned very well for continued growth.”

“By creating valuable tools that I use at home and at work, (gmail, google docs, etc), Google never has to fight for my attention. To the contrary, Google is such a part of my day that I would have to make a concerted effort to not interact with its services. For that reason, Google is my benchmark — effectively raising the brand management bar for all.”

“P&G is the most advanced on this list and has multiple brands that are managed effectively.”

“P&G has really reinvented Brand Management and elevated the practice to a new level. They have adapted the old model to integrate customer marketing, and built an innovation discipline that is a model for all industries. I think all of the companies listed have done an excellent job managing their brands. P&G stands alone in the practice of Brand Management.”

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