Professional services marketing has come along way in the past 20 years.  One of the most notable shifts has been from a comms-led approach to a focus on business development.  It is in most firms a sophisticated function.

There is also a common belief that professional services marketing lags behind our friends and colleagues in the FMCG or wider B2B sectors. 

Judging by the front cover of the current edition of Marketing Week I would argue not. 

A little over 20 years ago I made the move into legal PR, joining Wilde Sapte - a firm that has long since disappeared. 

Whilst we were called the Marketing Department, we were labelled 'The Colouring-In Department', and our role was 'events and umbrellas'.  It was the place to head to for a gossip and a drink.

I cannot imagine many marketing or BD teams accepting that label now.  It offended then, and even more so now.

Yet, in the back of many fee-earners' minds I am sure there is the niggle of 'what exactly is it our marketing team does?'

At the heart of the argument is strategy versus execution.  And that, it appears, is an industry wide issue.  Perhaps our FMCG cousins should spend a few weeks in the professions - I am sure there is plenty they can learn.