Confectionery giant Mondelēz has revealed the strategy behind its major marketing shake up, and it’s all about being “fast, focused and fearless”.

The company behind such household names as Cadbury, Oreo and Philadelphia had been slow to meet changing consumer needs, being hampered by static and outdated work practices and insufficient investment in new tech, but it now spends 40% of its marketing budget on digital.

One of the major changes made six months ago was to bring its four regional chief marketing officers under a global CMO. Debora Koyama, the CMO responsible for business in Europe, explained to Marketing Week what the “fast, focused and fearless” mantra means.

“[We have to be] much more agile, given the speed everything is moving, advancing and changing – much more focused on external trends, consumers and technologies,” she said. “And fearless is how we really become much more open to test and learn, to experiment, to potentially fail and learn.”

It’s a process that was already under way even before Koyama joined. Last year, Kunal Lohia, ITS Marketing Capability Deployment Lead, outlined how “failure gives an invaluable feedback loop” – and his team is now required to annually showcase two examples of their failure in order to detoxify the word. (For more, read WARC’s report: How Mondelēz learned to fail.)

The restructuring has also changed the way Mondelēz works with agencies. Koyama revealed the company is increasingly looking at opportunities to work with startups and new platforms, beyond the media and creative agencies it already works with.

She herself is currently working on the company’s “Digital Accelerator”, a platform that aims to engage brands and marketers with the latest technologies, including voice, AI, and augmented and virtual reality.

Part of the new marketing structure also makes each CMO responsible for one of five objectives to help transform the company into a modern business, Koyama said.

These are: capabilities (its digital transformation); community (strengthening its marketing community); celebration (communicating what it is doing best); complexity (simplifying the business and becoming more agile); and careers, to attract the best people to marketing.

Part of that transformation also entails assessing what are the key competencies for today’s marketers. “I’ve been in this business for 25 years and I truly believe this is one of the most exciting times to be a marketer,” she said.

Sourced from Marketing Week; additional content by WARC staff