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This initiative and report  is the product of a partnership between the Chartered Institute of Management Accounting (CIMA), The Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and Professor Robert Shaw.

The seeds of the project were sown at a meeting at the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) headquarters in London in the summer of 2005. The meeting lamented that in the 21st century there was still a lack of proper accountability by marketers and an embarrassing dearth of marketing seats around Britain’s corporate boardroom tables – a travesty for such a critical business function that is often misunderstood.

The agenda moved on to the wider question of proving the value of creativity in marketing, the effect
of good creative marketing on profitability and how it’s measured; indeed how  marketing budgets should be justified and planned as essential working capital.

The concern was that many companies don’t have the right blend of marketing and accountancy acumen to establish the value of their marketing campaigns and plans or account to shareholders on the effectiveness of marketing spend or investment.

Further research led the DMA to the work of Professor Robert Shaw, the author of Marketing Payback: Is Your Marketing Profitable?, which encapsulates the best practice in marketing measurement.

The challenge became this – is it possible or practical to create a universally applicable marketing measurement and evaluation model which could be embraced and implemented by any commercial organisation, ranging from global corporates to SMEs (small/medium enterprises), from profit making organisations to non-profit making ones?

The DMA did not want a theoretical solution or just another business book. They wanted a solution that could work in practice and knew that a cross-functional working party was needed including experts in other spheres. CIM and CIMA welcomed the opportunity to address this frustrating business challenge.

The challenge has been brilliantly met over the last two years. Return on Ideas has been shared in beta format with many senior business luminaries, and greeted as a fresh and incisive business approach.
In summary, this guidance paper describes an attitudinal and operational framework for creating the best working practices interms of:

  • harnessing the marketing imagination to create value adding ideas
  • predicting how much financial value these ideas will contribute
  • delivering and demonstrating that value really was created
  • establishing learning that will improve future ideas, predictions and results.

This is not to say that every organisation is incompetent. We all have successes and failures. Our challenge to
business is this – be honest with yourself, how much of this best practice do you undertake, and how much could you? Are you climbing the ladder from mediocrity to superiority?

Welcome to our change management movement to create ‘responsible marketing’.

Robert Keitch, Director of Media Channel Development The Direct Marketing Association
Charles Tilley, CEO, The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants
Roderick E. Wilkes, Chief Executive, The Chartered Institute of Marketing

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