However, if you want to build a modern marketing organization, teaching technical skills is not the only answer (although those skills certainly matter!). As important as data is, it is not the most important, nor the central element in modern marketing.

In fact, the core of modern marketing is mindset. Specifically, instilling a customer centric mindset is what makes marketing modern.

Customer centricity is an approach or attitude, as well as a set of principles and practices. However, while easy to say (or even agree with), true customer-centric marketing is often elusive.

Modern marketers must first embrace the fact that modern marketing is not simply a sum of all digital and classical disciplines. It’s a specific set of skills and knowledge on top of those specialty areas. It’s a set of principles and approaches that put customers at the center of all a brand does in the market.

Customer value becomes the central tenet of every organizational function – from marketing to sales to product to IT to customer service. From there, a marketer who specializes in any area – from brand, to product, to advertising, to search, or to analytics – can become a modern practitioner.

Econsultancy launched the Modern Marketing Model (M3) last November, as the first model in three decades to address the wide scope of skills and approaches essential for modern marketing. Moving beyond Lauterborn’s 4C’s (introduced in 1990, and the most recent model prior to M3), the model defines marketing in the digital age.

m3 modern marketing model

M3 is derived from three core principles, which are the foundation of any high performance marketing team. Essentially, modern marketing is:

  1. Customer Centric. Modern marketing puts customer experience at the core of all objectives and partnershipsThat means marketers must collect, analyze and apply data insights throughout the customer journey in a continual, dynamic loop.
  2. Integrated. Modern marketing is a blend of classic and digital disciplines and marketers are expert both in their specialty and at modern marketing.  That means they have deep knowledge in one specialty/channel, and also innovate and advocate for improved customer experience.
  3. Nimble & Innovative. Modern marketing is responsive and agile, using technology strategically and effectively to create personalized experience. That means marketers master technology and data insights to reach, surprise and delight people who connect with the brand. Mindset is just as important as skills.

These core principles uphold the M3 model, and reflect the complexities and interdependencies of how marketers must work, as well as how organizations support and energize high impact marketing teams.

You may have noticed a frequent refrain in this description. M3 is just as much about HOW to work, as it is a set of WHAT work (skillset) is required for modern marketing. This reflects a long-held truth: That marketing has long been a “whole person” profession – part art, part science – where coding is just as essential as copywriting.

Are you ready to recognize the importance of modern marketing in your organization? Have you created an operating model and the encouragement necessary for marketers to perform in a modern manner?

Take a look at our M3 overview and use it to discuss your current approaches. We’d love to hear what questions and ideas it prompts for you and the team – get in touch via @stephanieSAM on Twitter, or email

Econsultancy also runs an online course, Fast Track to Modern Marketing, designed to formalise your existing skills, and give you the confidence that you know your stuff – and how to prove it at the highest level.

Stay tuned for part two of this series – applying the Econsultancy Modern Marketing Model to your business.  #ModernMarketing