Discover the inspiring story of Aliénor Dutilleul-Francoeur's rise in the marketing world of AB InBev. From GMT Trainee to leading major brand strategies, Aliénor shares her journey and insights. Dive in for a dose of inspiration and expert tips! 

I’m Aliénor Dutilleul-Francoeur, French born and bred! I grew up in an entrepreneurial family, which impacted a lot my mindset and love for business. On top, I have always been passionate about brand building and story crafting, so I specialized in Marketing during my studies at EDHEC Business School. I have been working for 7 years at AB InBev now: I started right after Business School with the Graduate Program GMT in 2016 and it has been love ever since! Indeed, I adore learning new skills and taking up new challenges, and ABI always has been the perfect partner for this craving! After the 1st year of Graduate Program, I regularly had different opportunities. First, in the Commercial department: starting with Trade Marketing for 1 year, then Sales Team Manager in Paris for 1 year, and Commercial Strategy Lead for craft beers for 1 year – my plan was to build strong business skills, then to join the Marketing team - which I did in 2021 when I took up the role of Corona Senior Brand Manager in France. It has been an amazing roller coaster since the brand became the #1 priority of the country, and I truly enjoyed myself, defining the strategy and Marketing plan of such an iconic brand! Now, I am currently moving to a new challenge in the Marketing team to manage the biggest brand in France: Leffe for BNFL (Belgium-Netherlands-France-Luxembourg). I am very excited by this fully new brand territory! 

What made you choose the MVP/GMT programme at AB InBev at the time? ;

When I was a student, I was advised by my Career Centre to apply to Graduate Programs which they described as “the gold nugget”: hard to get but very rewarding since one is identified as a Talent in the company. Consequently, I applied to several, and AB InBev’s GMT presented the strongest appeal to me! First, because I love the mindset of the program which is about getting a 360 view of the company: I enjoy understanding how things work and I felt this was a unique opportunity to discover how every pieces of the business come together despite their specific problematics. Second, I adored the recruitment process: it was super challenging and stimulating, so I felt that ABI was the company which would allow me to grow the most! 

What are your tips for a relentless visibility of our brands in the field?; 

I have 3 tips for a relentless visibility in the field: first, listen to the people that are in the field! Collaboration is key and our Sales Team and Clients are the true experts: take feedback and benchmark about what is working and what is failing, then work from there! Second, simplicity is key! Our consumers are bombarded with hundreds of messages each day, so we need to be easy to see & understand to come through. Finally, work with consistency: brand building takes time and goes with repetition, so be patient!  

Can you share an example of a successful collaborative project or initiative that significantly impacted brand operations or brand growth?;

Corona is very well-known for its iconic lager beer Corona Extra, and in 2022 we expanded the Corona portfolio by adding 2 new beers: Corona Sunset, the beer with Mexican spirit and Corona Cero, the non-alcoholic lager beer. Launching 2 innovations in one year was a huge challenge and it took all teams: Marketing, Commercial, Sales, Supply to work in an extreme coordination to ensure the best launch possible! We can now see the results with Corona Sunset bringing 95% of the flavoured beer segment growth, and Corona Cero having an amazing repurchase rate of 37% - well above the FMCG innovation benchmark! 

Sources: Nielsen - France 2023; Kantar World Panel - France 2023

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