Campaign is showcasing the six chief marketing officers shortlisted for the World Federation of Advertisers' Global Marketer of the Year award. Read on to find out why Deutsche Telekom's chief brand officer has been nominated.
Schwingen argues that such metrics demonstrate that engineering excellence is no longer enough for Deutsche Telekom to thrive. "In the end, our business is not primarily about solving technical questions but about fulfilling implicit goals for customers.
"Telekom is an incumbent in much of Europe but an insurgent in the US. We are not just selling the same Whopper everywhere in the world and offering more breakfasts here and there"
The full programme will see the marketing team take on media strategy leading the whole process. "We need to educate our people and we will maybe need different people with different skills. There is a lot to learn, it’s a great challenge," he says. "We can save a lot of money not by reducing budgets but by getting better performance."
As a telecoms marketer, Schwingen also has more than one eye on the future. He believes that the industry needs to move on from focusing on the next big smartphone. More near-future opportunities such as voice suggests that personal connected fashion could be one area of long-term opportunity. Deutsche Telekom has even set up a fashion fusion programme to encourage developments in this area.
For today’s multimarket brand, he recognises that strategy needs to be adjusted market by market, even as brand positioning remains the same. Those making the leap from local to regional or global roles need to be mindful of cultural and positional differences.
"Telekom is an incumbent in much of Europe but an insurgent in the US. We are not just selling the same Whopper everywhere in the world and offering more breakfasts here and there," he says.
The result is that if you go into a Telekom shop in New York, Germany or Romania it will feel similar.
Moving from a local role to a regional or global role, however, also requires a different approach. When people move from the markets they suddenly find that they are in conflict with their former colleagues, "people in their market are no longer following them".
What they have to learn, he says, is how to convince former colleagues and deliver collaboration through transparency, something that often goes against our human instincts, explaining what and why you are trying to achieve.
"Transparency really kills. People often try to hold back information because information is power. This is crazy, it’s so human but giving full transparency is the best thing you can do," he says.
- Glory Zhang, chief marketing officer, Huawei Consumer Business Group
- Jane Wakely, chief marketing officer, Pet Nutrition at Mars
- Raja Rajamannar, chief marketing & communications officer and president – healthcare business, Mastercard
- Marc Pritchard, chief brand officer, Procter & Gamble
- Keith Weed, chief marketing & communications officer, Unilever