Best Practice

A Guide to the Modern Marketing Model (M3) and Organisational Structures

By Sean Donnelly,

Many marketing leaders have been forced to rethink the structure of their marketing teams in order to take advantage of the new capabilities and tools that are available to the modern marketer. Many have also done so as a result of changes in the wider business landscape. In response to these changes, Econsultancy has published a new unifying framework for modern marketing called the Modern Marketing Model (M3). M3 is designed to reconcile classical and digital marketing and provides a clear reference to help clarify an organisation’s expectations of what the marketing function does.

Econsultancy's 'A Guide to the Modern Marketing Model (M3) and Organisational Structures' report provides insight into the changing structure of the marketing organisation.

The report has several objectives:

  • To understand how companies are structuring their marketing organisations to compete in this accelerated new world. This includes examining the remit of marketing in terms of its influence on leading organisational change.
  • To examine common organisational structures and how these structures might be understood by marketing leaders through the lens of the Modern Marketing Model (M3).
  • To suggest a number of ‘enlightened’ organisational structures that marketing leaders can use as frameworks for leading change within their own organisations.

Econsultancy would like to thank the following people for their contributions to this report: 

  • Colin Lewis, CMO, OpenJaw Technologies
  • Andy Evans, CMO, Sovrn
  • Nancy Furber, Senior Marketing Services Manager, Cancer Research
  • Neil McKinnon, Head of Marketing, Infectious Media
  • Attila Jakab, CEO, Infectious Media
  • Tom Daniell, Retail & Marketing Director, Aviva
  • Paul Jocelyn, FLPI, Jocelyn Consulting
  • Simon Swan, Head of Digital Strategy & Transformation, The Met Office UK
  • Chris Dobson, Chief Executive, The Exchange Lab
  • Mark Evans, Marketing Director, Direct Line
  • Tony Preedy, Director of Marketing & International Development, Lakeland
  • Lawrence Mitchell, Chief Customer & Marketing Officer, SumoSalad
  • Russell Gould, CEO, Vesta Property 
  • Alison Lancaster, Interim Marketing Director, House of Fraser 
  • John Smith, Former COO, Burberry & CEO, BBC Worldwide (Oystercatchers Club, January 2018) 
  • John Rudaizky, Partner, Global Brand and Marketing Leader, EY (Oystercatchers Club, January 2018)
  • Frank Arthofer, Global Head of Digital and New Business, Formula 1 (Oystercatchers Club, January 2018)
  • Lindsay Pattison, Worldwide CEO, Maxus Global & Worldwide Chief Transformation Officer, Group M (Oystercatchers Club, January 2018)
  • Neil Perkin, Founder, Only Dead Fish and Co-Author of Building the Agile Business

New for June 2018 - Fast Track to Modern Marketing Online. This new online course is based on the Modern Marketing Model (M3) and taught by Founder of Econsultancy Ashley Friedlein. Find out more and book your place.

Contributing Authors


Sean Donnelly

Senior Research Analyst, Econsultancy

More reports from Sean Donnelly

Seán Donnelly is a Senior Researcher at Econsultancy. A strategic thinker with deep knowledge of marketing, Seán works on delivering industry-leading research, briefings and reports for the digital marketing sector.

Prior to this, Seán worked at Dublin City University (DCU) where he was responsible for industry engagement. In this role he led the delivery of over 150 digital marketing, ecommerce and elearning applied research projects with Irish and international businesses.

Seán was at the forefront of digital marketing training in Ireland. He led a digital outreach project from DCU called Techspectations which aimed to increase digital participation in society. Techspectations delivered more than 15,000 seats of free digital marketing training through a syllabus of free digital marketing workshops and bootcamps at DCU Business School, attended by professional marketers and SME owners. In addition, Seán worked closely with Irish based technology companies to garner support and participation by having them deliver product specific workshops as part of the Techspectations programme.

Seán continues to work in education as a part-time lecturer on DCU’s MSc in Digital Marketing programme.



Ashley Friedlein

Econsultancy Founder and Centaur Marketing President

More reports from Ashley Friedlein

Ashley Friedlein is co-founder of Econsultancy and president of Centaur Marketing, which comprises brands such as Marketing Week and Creative Review. He is also chairman of real-time business Ably and a member of the digital advisory board for Age UK.

Table of contents

1. Introduction

  • Objectives
  • Methodology
  • Executive summary
  • About Econsultancy

2. Foreword

3. Overview

4. The Evolution of Marketing

5. Modern Marketing Model (M3)

6. The Convergence of Traditional and Digital Marketing Disciplines

7. How Are Marketing Organisations Structured?

8. Designing Modern Marketing Organisations

9. Other key points for the management of modern marketing organisations

10. Is Your Marketing Modern?

11. Appendix


  • Pdf Disabled A Guide to the Modern Marketing Model (M3) and Organisational Structures (2.68 MB PDF)

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