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Dennis Spillecke

Senior PartnerCologne

Dennis is a key leader of McKinsey, co-heading the European Private Equity & Principal Investors practice. Formerly, he colead the European Growth, Marketing & Sales Practice. His focus lies in driving and molding growth transformations for our private capital clients.

Dennis is at the forefront of McKinsey’s Private Equity & Principal Investors practice in Western Europe. He helps clients generate significant value by pushing the growth S-curve via top-line levers including pricing, sales, marketing, and product optimization.

Drawing on extensive client experience, Dennis has authored a collection of books, articles, and essays on topline growth. Notable among them is “Marketing Performance: How Marketers Drive Profitable Growth,” a hands-on guide providing insights on crafting relevant messages, executing effective campaigns, ensuring customer satisfaction, optimizing promotions, and ultimately boosting shareholder returns.

Examples of Dennis’ recent work include:

  • full investment cycle partnership with a B2B service company
  • fund partnership for full investment cycle
  • elevating the price position and sales strategy for a top private equity portfolio company
  • leading a comprehensive end-to-end transformation for a leading B2B company
  • directing a top-line improvement program for a prominent SAAS player
  • providing transaction support for diverse asset classes in various projects


Marketing's $200 billion opportunity,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, July 2013

Hiring internally vs. renting talent at agencies,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, July 2013

CMOs in the growth driver's seat,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, July 2013

Marketing at ‘clickspeed’,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, June 2013

The hurdles to effective retail marketing,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, May 2013

Three critical capabilities marketing needs,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, April 2013

Retail marketing and branding,” (video series), YouTube, April 2013

Modern marketing: Science, art, craft,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, April 2013

Published work

Why intangibles are the key to faster growth in Europe,” McKinsey & Company, November 2022

Marketing in the metaverse: An opportunity for innovation and experimentation,” McKinsey Quarterly, May 2022

Insights to impact: Creating and sustaining data-driven commercial growth,” McKinsey & Company, January 2021

C2C e-commerce: Could a new business model sell more old goods?” McKinsey & Company, September 2021

Omnichannel in B2B sales: The new normal in a year that has been anything but,” McKinsey & Company, February 2021

2020 Top picks: Our most popular articles,” McKinsey & Company, December 2020

These eight charts show how COVID-19 has changed B2B sales forever,” McKinsey & Company, October 2020

Rapid Revenue Recovery: A road map for post-COVID-19 growth,” McKinsey & Company, May 2020

The B2B digital inflection point: How sales have changed during COVID-19,” McKinsey & Company, April 2020

Marketing Performance: How Marketers Drive Profitable Growth, Wiley, June 2016

Power Brands: Measuring, Making, and Managing Brand Success, Wiley, 3rd Edition, January 2015

Retail Marketing and Branding: A definitive guide to maximizing ROI, 2nd Edition, Wiley, 2013

Big Data, Analytics and the Future of Marketing and Sales (eBook), Forbes, July 2013

“Marketing’s budget process is broken,” The Economist, June 2013

Experimenting without risk at the digital marketing factory” (PDF–738 KB), McKinsey, March 2013

Steal that Idea: 5 smart ways presidential candidates mine big data,” Fast Company, October 2012

Turning buzz into gold,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, June 2012

Taking social media along the Consumer Decision Journey,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, March 2012

What German consumers want tomorrow,” McKinsey on Marketing & Sales, December 2010


Otto Beisheim School of Management

Otto Beisheim School of Management