Yale SOM students got a behind-the-scenes look at brand management when Anthony van Dijk YC '03 and Chetan Parekh '06, brand managers at Procter & Gamble, discussed this pivotal role during a September 11 talk sponsored by the Marketing Club.
Noting that Procter & Gamble pioneered the brand manager role in 1931, van Dijk described the position this way:
In brand management, we recognize one person or two people on the brand who are the CEOs of the brand. Everything strategic executive, creative, and analytic has to stem from that one or two people who are recognized as the true leaders of the brand. And they touch everything: budget, product supply, R&D. They are the central point of contact for the brand, and that's what brand management is. Because at the end of the day, it's thanks to those people if the brand succeeds. And if it fails, it's their fault.