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Susan Joseph


Susan is an independent digital communications and user experience strategist. She helps companies discover their brand voice and grow their business.

Shubharthi Ghosh


Shubharthi is currently part of the strategic marketing team at Regalix. His expertise mainly lies in the account-based marketing and programmatic advertising space.

Priscilla Thomas


Priscilla is a content writer who has worked for Infosys Technologies and other technology startups in India and abroad.

Moulishree Srivastava


Moulishree is a freelance journalist with over 7 years of experience, she writes research-based analytical stories on technology and business.

Avanish Tiwary


Avanish is a Bangalore-based journalist who writes on business with a specific focus on technology companies.

Priyanka Bhatacharya


Priyanka has covered every aspect of the IT industry as a tech journalist since its early days. She is now an independent writer, working on subjects like digital marketing, enterprise technology and high-performance computing, among others. 



A freelance content writer, S. Sahu was the former editor of TCS's house magazine at Tata Consultancy Services. He developed tech marketing collateral for the company and helped compile and edit books and journal articles on TCS's technology innovations. He also ghostwrites print and online publications. 

Prajwala Hegde


Prajwala is a Bangalore-based freelance journalist who writes on social issues, stories of human interest, and art and culture, among others. 

Rajesh Nanarpuzha


Rajesh Nanarpuzha is an Assistant Professor of Marketing at IIM Udaipur. Previously, he has worked as a brand manager in Dabur, and as a business consultant in the retail and consumer goods domains at Cognizant and Tata Consultancy Services. Rajesh has an MBA from IIM Indore and a doctorate in marketing from IIM Ahmedabad.


Priyokumar Singh Naorem


He is a passionate UI & UX designer who thrives on creating engaging creative solutions.


Dyuti Mittal


A freelance illustrator, artist, graphic novelist and designer. She has designed and illustrated several book covers. Her personal illustrations so far have attempted to seize the fleeting absurdity and mood of places, things and people she encounters in a childlike, intuitive and expressive manner with closure, beauty and innocence – the things that she desires.

Sumakshi Singh


She is an artist and an educator who has taught and lectured at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Oxford University, the Victoria and Albert Museum among other institutions. Her installations, paintings, thread work and sculptures have been exhibited in Saatchi Gallery - London, C24 Gallery - New York, and Museum of Contemporary Art – Lyon, among other notable galleries and museums from around the world.

Purna Chandra Mahato


Purna Chandra Mahato is an artist based out of Rourkela, India. Trained in painting (fine arts) from Pracheen Kala Kendra, Chandigarh, Purna has participated in many prestigious exhibitions and artist camps. His paintings explore various aspects of colour, shade, textures, and strokes, while keeping to abstract themes; they strive for a spontaneity that is enjoyable to spectators.

Parul Gupta


A commerce graduate from Delhi University, Parul pursued a masters in fine arts from Nottingham Trent University in the UK. As an artist, she is interested in line as a subject which has led her to follow architectural lines in built environments. She says she is also interested in how we perceive the environment that we inhabit and what happens when a subtle shift is made in things which we have been used to seeing in a certain way. We present six of her artworks here.

Shweta Malhotra


Shweta Malhotra is a graphic artist and designer from Mumbai, based in New Delhi.
After working with ad agencies and design studios for close to 8 years, she branched out on her own and currently works independently.s Her overall design aesthetic is minimal, bold and graphic, a response to the maximalist visual language prevalent in India.

Rithika Merchant


Rithika Merchant (b.1986) received her Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts from Parsons the New School for Design, New York in 2008. She has exhibited extensively since her graduation. Recent exhibitions include a duo show “Reliquaries: The Remembered Self” at TARQ, Mumbai; “Language of the Birds: Occult and Art” at 80WSE Gallery, New York; and group shows at Summerhall, Edinburgh and Artry Gallery, Kochi. Her work has been included in multiple group shows at Stephen Romano Gallery and The Morbid Anatomy Museum, New York. Born in Mumbai, she now divides her time between Mumbai and Barcelona.

Aniruddh Mehta


Aniruddh Mehta is an artist based out of Mumbai, India. Trained in graphic design from the London College of Communications, Aniruddh is a self-taught illustrator and currently works as an independent freelance designer. He believes in finding the right balance between art and graphic design. He has worked closely in collaboration with Bhavishyavani Future Soundz, Qilla Records, Taxi Fabric, Adidas, Dell and United Colours of Benetton. He also goes by the moniker, ‘thebigfatminimalist’ and his style ranges from bold minimal forms to more intricate pieces exploring patterns and geometry.

Paramesh Jolad


Paramesh is an artist who enjoys working in both the realistic and abstract style of painting. He loves working with water color. Featured in this issue are a set of water color works that he has created exclusively for us on the subject of digital transformation.

Chandrashekhar Thakur


Based in Mumbai, Chandrashekhar Thakur is a Senior Art Director and Illustrator at Truebil.com and the Founder of HAPPiNESS For You. He loves working with new styles of art and considers illustration to be his forte. Chandrashekhar has completed his BFA from DY Patil College of Applied Art.

Concept and Direction

Nimish Vohra


Head of marketing at Regalix, Nimish drives research in emerging technologies and customer experience, and takes a keen interest in creative arts.


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Rajesh Nanarpuzha is an Assistant Professor of Marketing at IIM Udaipur. Previously, he has worked as a brand manager in Dabur, and as a business consultant in the retail and consumer goods domains at Cognizant and Tata Consultancy Services. Rajesh has an MBA from IIM Indore and a doctorate in marketing from IIM Ahmedabad.

Marketing, at its core, is a process of understanding consumer needs, to design goods and services that satisfy these needs better than existing competition. In product categories such as consumer goods, marketing concepts such as market segmentation and targeting are tools available to marketers to identify consumer segments to whom products and services can be appropriately positioned. This is necessary in product categories typified by a large number of potential customers.

In contrast, a defining characteristic of B2B markets is the limited number of potential customers on offer. The focus, in B2B markets, has therefore been on developing customer relationships. In this quest, ‘Relationship marketing’ has evolved into ‘Key Account Management’, and now stands at ‘Account-Based Marketing’ (ABM). Irrespective of the terminology in use, the underlying insight is the acknowledgement of the importance of each customer account in B2B markets, and the need to devise customized marketing approaches for individual customer accounts. By focusing on these ‘market segments of one’, ABM, when done right, could be a key source of competitive advantage. Even though the advantages of ABM are clear to senior management, the move to Account-Based Marketing, in most B2B organizations, is a gradual transition with the potential for many pitfalls. Many firms struggle in this transition. In this article, I delve into academic research to identify pathways to success in this quest.


Barriers in moving to ABM

Through an ethnographic study of an organization in the process of transition to a key account-based structure, Pressey et al. (2014) identify potential barriers to a successful transition to a customer account-based organization.

a) Threats to the status quo – In this transition, employees tend to perceive threats to their existing status and authority. There could also be apprehension that these changes could lead to an increase in labor and effort in existing job roles. Also, the authors point out that employees might perceive these changes as an attempt by the senior management to subjugate and control other employees.

b) Risk of resource redistribution – Employees could perceive transition attempts as a means of reprioritization of organizational objectives. There could, therefore, be apprehensions that resources will be redistributed and consequently, diminished.

c) Employee cynicism – Pressey et al. (2014) point out that a key barrier to successful transition to a key account-based structure is entrenched cynicism to such moves. This is particularly manifest in organizations where similar behaviors in the past have resulted in unsatisfactory results. In scenarios where the strategic need for such changes is not visible to the bulk of the organization, the transition to an ABM structure is especially difficult.


Interventions for success

For organizations moving to a key account-based structure in B2B settings, Davies and Ryals (2009) point out that this transition is a continuing process which requires a long-term commitment to gradual improvement. For improving the odds of success, the authors focus on four key requirements:

a) Installing a champion – Very early in the transition process, there is a need to have an ABM champion for the process. The champion should provide a clear rationale for the need to change, and should pioneer an account-based thinking in the organization

b) Designated managers – There should be a set of designated Account managers who have the requisite skills for ABM. A common mistake committed is to consider ABM as an extension of the existing sales organization, and a reluctance to invest in developing ABM specific skills.

c) Building a business case – As the transition gets underway, improvement in performance measurement methods will follow, leading to a better understanding of program effectiveness. This, in turn, should lead to the creation of a business case for the program, which focuses on the lifetime value of accounts.

d) Building account identification criteria – As the transition progresses, the organization will arrive at a set of account identification criteria. This will ensure that resources are meted out proportionally to a reduced set of customer accounts which offer maximum returns.


CMO implications

The road to transitioning to an ABM structure is littered with many failed implementations. The challenges to the organization are both internal and external to it. In such implementations, CMOs need to identify the potential sources of resistance within the organization and have clear plans to counteract them. It is also important that CMOs commit themselves to a prolonged state of flux as the organization reorients itself to a new way of working. By following best practices discussed here, the pain of transition could be lessened, and the fruits of Account-based marketing could be harvested earlier.


  1. Pressey, A. D., Gilchrist, A. J., & Lenney, P. (2014). Sales and marketing resistance to Key Account Management implementation: An ethnographic investigation. Industrial Marketing Management, 43(7), 1157-1171.
  2. Davies, I. A., & Ryals, L. J. (2009). A stage model for transitioning to KAM. Journal of Marketing Management, 25(9-10), 1027-1048.