Maturity models are a simple but powerful tool applied across an ample range of business disciplines. Originally emerging out of quality management and software engineering, these conceptual models help assess the quality of certain processes or strategies; and identify opportunities and actions needed to move to the next stage in maturity (Wendler, 2012). However, there is a lack of such a useful tool in the vast marketing management area of knowledge. Marketing textbooks and research are mostly focused on describing a set of definitions and proper conditions for marketing decisions, rather than having discussions on the way managers should make marketing decisions to improve the impact of those strategies (Wierenga, 2011). This needs to change.
Managers who are properly guided in the marketing strategy formulation process are benefitted by minimizing intended-realized marketing strategy gaps. They also tend to maximize the ability of the marketing strategy to achieve business goals and increase the quality of that business process. The proposed theory intends to answer two key questions: How could managers systematically improve their ability to assess the maturity of their current marketing strategy formulation process? How to develop marketing plans that, because of their content, result in an increased ability to be implemented and a potentially higher success rate? To answer these questions, I propose an integrated 5-stage Maturity Model that will help managers identify the maturity of their current marketing strategy, and determine proper areas for improvement, either in the formulation process or its content.