Marketing Agility: Conceptualization, Research Propositions, and a Research Agenda

Posted: 3 Jun 2019 Last revised: 17 Aug 2020

See all articles by Kartik Kalaignanam

Kartik Kalaignanam

Moore School of Business (University of South Carolina)

Kapil Tuli

Emory University - Goizueta Business School

Tarun Kushwaha

University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School

Leonard Lee

National University of Singapore (NUS)

David Gal

University of Illinois at Chicago

Date Written: August 10, 2020

Abstract

Changes in the way customers shop accompanied by an explosion of customer touchpoints and fast-changing competitive and technological dynamics, have led to an increased emphasis on agile marketing. The objective of this paper is to conceptualize and investigate the emerging practice of marketing agility. Toward this end, the authors synthesize the literature from marketing and allied disciplines and insights from in-depth interviews with 22 senior managers. Marketing agility is defined as the extent to which an entity rapidly iterates between making sense of the market and executing marketing decisions to adapt to the market. It is conceptualized as occurring across different levels in organizations and shown to be distinctive from related concepts in marketing and allied fields. The authors highlight the firm challenges in executing marketing agility, including ensuring brand consistency, scaling agility across the marketing ecosystem, managing data privacy concerns, pursuing marketing agility as a fad, and hiring marketing leaders. The authors identify the antecedents of marketing agility at the organizational, team, marketing leadership and employee levels and provide a roadmap for future research. The authors caution that marketing agility may not be well-suited for all firms and all marketing activities.

Keywords: Marketing Agility, Agile Marketing, Sensemaking, Iteration, Experimentation, Speed.

Suggested Citation

Kalaignanam, Kartik and Tuli, Kapil and Kushwaha, Tarun and Lee, Leonard and Gal, David, Marketing Agility: Conceptualization, Research Propositions, and a Research Agenda (August 10, 2020). Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise Research Paper No. 19-22, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3386430

Kartik Kalaignanam (Contact Author)

Moore School of Business (University of South Carolina) ( email )

1014 Greene Street
Columbia, SC 29208
United States

Kapil Tuli

Emory University - Goizueta Business School ( email )

1300 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30322-2722
United States

Tarun Kushwaha

University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School ( email )

Chapel Hill, NC 27599
United States

Leonard Lee

National University of Singapore (NUS) ( email )

1E Kent Ridge Road
NUHS Tower Block Level 7
Singapore, 119228
Singapore

David Gal

University of Illinois at Chicago ( email )

1200 W Harrison St
Chicago, IL 60607
United States

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