An area of marketing metrics where I am relatively positive about the future is what we might call customer recording. Such efforts tend to work best where there are contractual, or pseudo-contractual, relationships. Given these conditions exist we can go a pretty long way to understanding the value of a customer. Armed with this knowledge one can improve a lot of marketing decision making.
That this area is both clearly useful to marketers and relatively easy to explain the importance to non-marketers suggests that management accountants have a lot of opportunity to help marketers use and improve marketing measures. Kohsuke Matsuoka has done a review of the interface between custiomer measurement in marketing and management accounting. I think this is extremely positive, and I would love to encourage more scholars to look at this interface. Marketers have data and real management problems to address around customer investments. Management accountants have expertise in measurement and a mission to deliver the sort of managerially useful numbers that marketing managers desparately need both to make decisions and to justify the decisions they make to external audiences.
Matsuoka focuses on “…three accounting weaknesses (the lack of revenue milepost information, revenue sustainability measurements, and intangibles capitalization)” (Matsuoka, 2020, page 1). These are then related to marketing concepts. The hope is that marketers can help management accountants tackle the limitations of their craft while management accountants help improve marketing accountability. The paper then goes onto look at Revenue Accounting, Customer Profiability Analysis and Customer Lifetime Value. All ideas (that should to my mind be) of equal importance in managerial accounting and marketing.
I can only hope more management accountants and more marketers will work together. I think — as a former management accountant and current marketing professor — we have a lot to offer each other.
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Read: Kohsuke Matsuoka (2020) “Exploring the interface between management accounting and marketing: a literature review of customer accounting.” Journal of Management Control 1-52.