This study focuses on the managerial issue of should social enterprises (SEs) become more marketing oriented. It adapts the Kohli et al. (J Mark Res 30:467–477, 1993) MARKOR marketing orientation scale to measure the adoption of marketing by SEs. The items capture Vincentian-based values to leverage business in service to the poor as a measure of a Vincentian marketing orientation (VMO). A VMO is an organisational wide value-driven philosophy of management that focuses a SE on meeting its objectives by adopting a more marketing orientated approach to serve the needy and poor in a just and sustainable manner. SEs that exhibit a VMO seek to understand and respond to both the needs of their beneficiaries and stakeholders. They are constantly generating, disseminating, and responding to environmental, beneficiary, and stakeholder information and develop their business propositions to more effectively and efficiently meet the needs of the poor, while guided by a philosophy of leveraging business for social good. This study of SEs in Australia found that a VMO is strongly and positively correlated with social, economic, and environmental performance. These findings suggest that SEs may benefit by leveraging marketing capabilities to better serve their beneficiaries and stakeholders.