About

TC Photo 9 HRTim Calkins helps people build strong brands.

Tim is a marketing professor, author, speaker and consultant.

His newest book is a guide to creating and delivering powerful business presentations. It is titled How to Wash a Chicken: Master the Business Presentation. You can read more about the book here.

Tim is Clinical Professor of Marketing at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. He teaches courses including Marketing Strategy and Biomedical Marketing in the full-time, part-time and international executive MBA programs. He is also co-academic director of the Kellogg on Branding executive education program.

He has received numerous awards for teaching excellence. In 2018, he received the Top Professor Award from Germany’s Kellogg-WHU Executive MBA Program. He won the Lawrence G. Lavengood Outstanding Professor of the Year Award, the top teaching award at Kellogg, in 2006 and 2013, making him one of just four people in the award’s more than forty year history to have won it twice. He also received the Sidney J. Levy Teaching Award, two Kellogg Faculty Impact Awards, and the Kellogg Executive MBA Program’s Top Professor Award four times. Poets & Quants included him on its list “Favorite MBA Professors of 2016.”

In addition to How to Wash a Chicken, Tim is the author of Defending Your Brand: How Smart Companies Use Defensive Strategy to Deal with Competitive Attacks (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012). Expert Marketer Magazine named Defending Your Brand the 2013 Marketing Book of the Year. He also wrote Breakthrough Marketing Plans (Palgrave Macmillan, 2008 and 2012). He is co-editor of Kellogg on Branding (John Wiley & Sons, 2005) and Kellogg on Branding in a Hyper-Connected World (John Wiley & Sons, 2019).

Tim manages Building Strong Brands, a blog on brand strategy. Inc.com, the Web arm of Inc. Magazine, included the blog on its list of “Six Blogs That Can Teach You More Than an MBA.”

He has published more than a dozen Kellogg case studies including Crestor, MedImmune: FluMist Introduction and Genzyme: the Synvisc-One Investment Decision. He has authored more than two dozen articles on marketing topics.

Tim is an expert on Super Bowl advertising. He created the Kellogg Super Bowl Advertising Review in 2005 and has led the event ever since. Over the past ten years, the program has generated more than five billion media impressions.

He has served as a judge for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association’s WOMMY Awards, the Native Creatives Awards and the EthicMark Awards.

In addition to teaching at Kellogg, Tim works with major corporations around the world on strategy and branding issues. His recent clients include Eli Lilly, Hearst and AbbVie. He is managing director of Class 5 Consulting, a marketing strategy firm.

Tim is frequently cited by the media. He has been quoted in publications including Business Week, The Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. He has appeared on all of the major television networks.

He serves on the board of the Alliance Française de Chicago and completed two terms on the board of the Lycée Français, Chicago’s French-International School.

Tim began his career at the consulting firm Booz Allen and Hamilton, where he worked on strategy projects. He joined the marketing team at Kraft Foods in 1991. During his almost 11 years at Kraft, he led brands including Miracle Whip, Taco Bell, Parkay and DiGiorno. He was responsible for the launch of more than two dozen new products.

He received his BA from Yale and his MBA from Harvard. Tim lives in Chicago with his wife and three children, and no chickens.

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Conversation Across the Site

  • emitahill { Great analysis. I hadn't pinpointed the corporate enemy as clearly as you have here. But it follows over her earlier role in the Clinton administration... } – Elizabeth Warren's Savvy Marketing Strategy
  • Kathy Kraas { Let's hope the differentiation catches fire. Fingers crossed, fingers crossed. She still has much to do to penetrate very specific voting blocks. Hopefully she reads... } – Elizabeth Warren's Savvy Marketing Strategy
  • emitahill { Hilarious and accurate lesson, Tim. I already watched and loved Colbert's take on it. But DT heeds no lessons and observes no facts that contradict... } – Learning from Trump’s Weather Map Fiasco
  • jnemery { Well, you are right about the relationships, but you are wrong about the hogs not being better. A 4-H hog is hand-raised, the feed carefully... } – Learning from a 4-H Market Pig Auction
  • Anne { As soon as I found out Clorox bought Burt's Bees I knew they were going to start polluting the products! Come on...it's Clorox. Why would... } – Clorox Stumbles with Burt's Bees
  • emitahill { That's a devastating story and just as many smaller dairy farms are shutting down. Read Madeleine's story about Leelanau Cheese on FB. It will be... } – Fair Oaks Deals With a Brand Crisis
  • Read more Comments »

Collaborate with Tim

Tim helps companies around the world build great brands. To schedule a program or event click here. To learn more about Tim’s books, click here.