The future of marketing and sales practices is a one-day event for senior management in marketing, sales and operations hosted by the Cranfield Centre for Strategic Marketing and Sales.

For well over 25 years, Cranfield School of Management’s professoriate has been at the forefront of thought leadership in marketing and sales. We convert innovative research into leading business practices, share them with senior management, and publish the results in world-class journals such as the Harvard Business Review, Californian Management Review, MIT Sloan and the Journal of Marketing.

Our marketing and sales professors are hosting this one-day interactive conference, addressing the future direction of strategic practices. In addition to our Cranfield speakers, the conference will also feature speeches from distinguished industry leaders drawn from our own alumni network and other sources. Delegates will be able to debate the issues raised during Q&A and breakout sessions.

Content and focus

We will focus primarily on managing the changes in strategic marketing and sales practices that result from global disruption, whether driven by:

  • technology,
  • volatile economies,
  • supply chain security,
  • the rise of ‘populism’,
  • global warming, or
  • changing customer purchasing patterns.

At Cranfield we focus on the practical application of marketing and sales and address:

  • Core customer-facing processes: includes customer insight and relationships, innovation, brand management and key account-based marketing.
  • Capabilities: the skill-sets of executives, the capabilities of their marketing and sales teams, and structures for cross-functional integration and agility.
  • Assets: brand identity and equity, customer portfolio management, front-end business models and service culture.
  • Tools: CRM, big data management, market research, social media and traditional communications.

Sponsorship and ticket information

Headline event sponsor: £2,500

Our headline event sponsor will be recognised throughout all event marketing, printed and digital, leading up to and surrounding the day, with the following benefits:

  • Two tickets for full event access.
  • Logo and headline sponsor recognition on all event materials.
  • Headline sponsor recognition in all promotional materials including link to sponsor’s homepage on the event webpage.
  • Headline sponsor recognition with social media promotion surrounding the event.
  • Premier ‘front row’ seating on the day.

Hospitality sponsor: £1,000

By sponsoring our drinks reception, our hospitality sponsor will benefit from:

  • Two tickets for full event access.
  • Logo and hospitality sponsor recognition on all event materials.
  • Hospitality sponsor recognition in all promotional materials including link to sponsor’s homepage on the event webpage.

Exhibitors: £500

Exhibitors are welcome to host a stand during our drinks reception where they can showcase their business. This includes:

  • Two tickets for full event access.
  • Space for one exhibitor table and event stand at the drinks reception.

Expression of interest for sponsorship

General admissions

Tickets for this event are being offered on an ‘early bird’ basis followed by standard bookings later on in the year.

Group bookings are also welcome.

‘Early bird’ concession (bookings before 28 February)

General Admission: £149

Cranfield Alumni: £99

Standard tickets (bookings from 1 March)

General Admission: £179

Cranfield Alumni: £119

Group bookings of five tickets or more will recieve 10% off the total cost.

Register Now


The Royal Academy of Engineering, Prince Philip House, London.

Who should attend

The conference has been designed primarily to surface insights on the future roles and practices of senior marketing and sales management and to foster debate across functions within the firm about the fast-changing dynamics of customer management.

Besides appealing to senior management from sales and marketing, decision makers in customer service, operations and supply chain will benefit from attending too, particularly if part of a firm's cross-functional team seeking to create and offer breakthrough practices at the front end of their businesses.


Professor Paul Baines, Professor of Political Marketing, Director, Executive MBA, Head of the Strategic Marketing & Sales Group, Cranfield University.

Professor Simon Knox, Emeritus Professor, Cranfield University.

Professor Hugh Wilson, Strategic Marketing, Cranfield University.

Fiona Blades, MESH.

Professor Malcolm McDonald, Emeritus Professor, Cranfield University.

Dr David Walker, Founding Partner of HAPPEN! Innovation Agency.

Professor Stan Maklan, Professor of Marketing and Technology, Cranfield University.

Event Programme

09:00-09:30 Arrival and Coffee
09:30-09:45 Welcome- Professors Paul Baines and Simon Knox, Cranfield SOM
09:45-10:15 Unilever on Marketing and Sales Practices
10:15-10:45 Managing Brand Touch Points in Real Time Professor Hugh Wilson and Fiona Blades (MESH)
10:45-11:15 Creating and Selling Value Professor Malcolm McDonald
11:15-11:45 Coffee, Networking and Exhibitors
11:45-12:15 Expert Panel (Chaired by Professor Simon Knox)
12:15-13:30 Lunch and Networking
13:30-14:00 Keynote speaker to be announced
14:00-14:30 Innovation beyond Disruption Dr David Walker Founding Partner of HAPPEN! Innovation Agency
14:30-15:40 Breakout X-functional x7 teams each with a SOM facilitator
15:40-16:00 Refreshments and Exhibitors
16:00-16:30 Summary and Futures Insights Professor Stan Maklan
16:30-17:00 Close and Next steps Professor Simon Knox
Refreshments and Nibbles on the Roof Terrace