Michael Martin: From a Marketing Strategy to a Global Movement

How do you market to consumers when their preferences, loyalty and activism around your products begins to redefine your organization and your brand? That’s just one of the questions Michael Martin, general manager, North America for sporting goods company Vibram, has had to face head on as his company’s “FiveFingers” footwear has begun to influence the larger running world.

In an exclusive interview at the World Innovation Forum, Martin sat down with ExecuNet for a conversation focused on innovations for the marketing function, the creation of a new customer base, and the best ways to prepare for growth when a product takes on an unexpected life of its own.


  1. How do you begin to innovate the marketing function? (0:45)
  2. How do you redefine what the market looks for in a new product or service? Are you inventing a customer? (2:00)
  3. What are the best ways to push products in a new or innovative way? (3:00)
  4. To what extend must customers co-own or co-create a movement? (4:20)
  5. What does an organization, or a marketing leader, have to do to generate followership among consumers? (5:00)
  6. How do you measure success and reward innovation? (6:00)

William Flamme

William Flamme

William Flamme is ExecuNet's Marketing Content Manager, where he is responsible for developing engaging career, job search, and leadership insight and delivering executive-level content across the various properties under the ExecuNet brand. Prior to joining ExecuNet in 2008, Will earned a master's degree in education and taught fifth grade and sixth grade. As a teacher, he deepened his appreciation for the written word and mastered skills necessary for managing writers who sometimes view deadlines as homework.

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