Consumer Planning and Brand Development Director

NW10 7HQ, London (Greater)
14 Aug 2019
11 Sep 2019
Contract Type
Full Time


Diageo is the world’s leading premium drinks business with an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, beer, and wine categories. These brands include Smirnoff, Guinness, Baileys, Johnnie Walker, Captain Morgan, Tanqueray – to mention a few. Diageo is a global company, with its products sold in more than 180 markets around the world.

Consumer Planning

Our role as Consumer Planners in Diageo is “to lead the total business with ideas and insights that sell more.” Our stakeholders expect us to leverage our unique skill at leading the business to make the right strategic and commercially savvy evidence-based decisions within the ever-changing context of our consumers, shoppers and customers’ lives.

Our function is rooted in a ‘Planning’ philosophy and mindset. We have an industry recognised track record of thought leadership, beyond functional research expertise, strongly influencing brand building thinking and how we do marketing at Diageo.

The role

There are two key elements to this role which will enable Diageo to win in the future.  We recognise the potential for Diageo to be more flexible and agile in how it deploys resource against the biggest, long term, strategic projects, and it is in this spirit that the role is conceived, pioneering new agile ways of working with the potential to shape our working culture.

1)The first element recognises the importance to Diageo of harnessing emergent brand and marketing thinking across the organisation at scale.  As the the owner of our brand growth model and DWBB content expert, they contribute to our mission to be the best marketing organisation in the world bar none.

The incumbent will be a highly innovative black belt in brand, innovation, and marketing thinking and practice.  They need to have a strong external radar to understand how to incorporate cultural changes in the environment in which we operate alongside recognising the implications on consumer behaviour and brand building of advances in psychology, behavioural sciences, neuroscience, data science, and marketing theory and practice to ensure we are finding and acting on new opportunities to grow our brands.

In the most recent past these have included addressing the implications of big cultural shifts such as gender representation, the need for greater creativity, and evolving our brand model from being overtly purpose focused to being more holistically consumer and brand-centric.  Over the medium term, this has included applying advances in marketing sciences (the Ehrenberg Bass institute/Next Gen Marketing/Les Binet), and behavioural economics (Dan Aierly/Daniel Kahneman) to our brand building thinking.

They are responsible for evolving and delivering our marketing business planning across all GBTs and markets – ensuring we have the highest quality plans which will ensure consistent growth across Diageo.

2)Secondly, this role has a significant contribution to make in enabling Diageo to be a more consumer-centric business.   Key to Diageo’s success will be delivering consistent growth across the full portfolio of our brands and markets.  Greater consumer-centricity will enable us to identify and act on consumer insights, the changing environment, and to better balance future opportunities for growth with the need to deliver short term performance.

With a focus on Nigeria, EABL, ARM, and South Africa, representing 12% of Diageo’s NSV, this role will be deployed to apply consumer planning expertise to some of our most critical business opportunities and challenges.    The types of projects covered will typically include things such as consumer-centric portfolio questions, identifying and acting on foresights, codifying how the business responds to multi-market opportunities and challenges, identifying future growth opportunities including evaluating potential acquisitions, as well as addressing significant brand and innovation opportunities and challenges as they arise.  

In market resource will continue to focus on and own the specific in market opportunities. Projects focused on by the Consumer Planning Director will be longer-term and more strategic in nature, discrete from the operational work carried out by the in-market teams focused as it is on core portfolio and brand planning within the context of a 1-2 year horizon.  The flexible nature of the role means however, the resource may equally be deployed against significant opportunities for Diageo outside these markets as the need arises.   

The incumbent will drive change both through thought leadership, but also through working directly with the MLT, markets, and GBT to work out the implications for what we need to do, and the specific actions we need to take.

The incumbent will be a highly innovative black belt in brand, innovation, and marketing thinking and practice, able to recognise and build alignment for new opportunities.  They will have a deep understanding of the day to day roles of marketers in global and in-market teams and be able to influence across the matrix and with the most senior marketers in the business.   They will be a dynamic agent of change for the whole marketing organization, and DWBB champion.

Primary responsibilities

  • The incumbent will be responsible for ensuring that our marketing practice remains leading edge, with a specific responsibility for ensuring the content codified in DWBB is best in class.  To deliver this they will work closely with the Global CP Director, CMO and MLT, and central learning and development team.  This group will be their primary stakeholders.
  • Identify and lead the development and implementation of key initiatives which support the change agenda in marketing and ensure that we are ahead of the curve in terms of our understanding and ability to address changing consumer dynamics in how we approach growing our brands.
  • The design, evolution, and implementation of marketing business planning (Diageo’s annual brand planning process).   The incumbent ensures the delivery of best in class plans consistently by working closely with GBTs and markets.
  • Flexible project focussed resource including but not limited to:
    • Leading and sustaining the cultural transformation to being a consumer-centric business – understanding the current situation and managing the appropriate change including ensuring we have the right tools, budget, process, capability, and behaviours to ensure consumer insight is being considered during key business decisions
    • Identifying and acting on opportunities and challenges from foresights and disruptive forces – leveraging a range of consumer and cultural inputs to ensure the business is clear on future opportunities and what action is appropriate to take, going much deeper into the consumer and cultural implications of things such as sustainability, women, ageing population, etc.
    • Long term consumer-centric portfolio thinking – bringing broad inputs from consumer research such as the consumer choice framework and brand guidance system, modelling, competitive understanding, to bear on long term thinking on where and how we participate and shape socialising for the future
    • Leading key local market and multi-market strategic projects as required, especially where consumer planning expertise including consumer and cultural insight development, brand & innovation strategy, behavioural economics, consumer & shopper research, data analytics, measurement and evaluation are required to define an issue and understand what intervention is appropriate to take

Your profile

  • Degree level education with 15+ years’ experience from a consumer planning/insight background, with deep client experience essential, but agency experience also desirable. 
  • Significant and proven leadership experience with evidence of driving sustained cultural and behavioural change at scale within an organization, leveraging diverse inputs including data and analytics, behavioural science, and consumer learning. 
  • Innovative and creative but also intellectually rigorous in the thinking. 
  • Great communication skills and ability to interact with those of a variety of different backgrounds and levels of seniority, as well as different cultures and perspectives.    Local languages an advantage 
  • Strong ability to simplify the complex in order to ensure that our brand building tools and frameworks are fully understood and used. 
  • Brilliant at spotting external opportunities, simplifying them, experimenting, and working out how to apply them to the organization at scale. 
  • They need to be able to influence GMs and the regional president, marketing directors, CMO, MLT, markets, GBTs, customer marketing, external agencies, and the global CP team to ensure our brands are on the leading edge of harnessing external opportunities.
  • They will have sensitivity to operating in different cultural contexts.   Local languages an advantage.

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