Mandate from Procter's Pritchard: A Purpose for Every Brand

Geoffrey Precourt

To hear Marc Pritchard, Procter & Gamble global marketing officer, you would not have guessed that the world's largest marketer had managed to increase sales seven percent in the first quarter of 2010:

"Welcome to the wonderful world of vertigo," he offered to the keynote audience at the 2010 Association of National Advertisers (ANA) annual "Masters of Marketing" conference. "The world as we have known it is not coming back. Technology is bombarding us…. And the credibility of major companies has been shattered. There's a lot of cynicism and distrust in the world of big institutions, and companies really need to share with people what they value, what they care about. The recession has changed us all."

The tough economic times forced P&G to cut prices in order to keep some of its brands on track against the lower-priced offerings that increasingly appealed to families with squeezed budgets. But, said Pritchard, the lessons from the economic chaos went far beyond day-to-day economics.