Name: Jo Scales
Degree and university: Leeds University, graduate in English Literature (2001)
Distinction ‘Professional Diploma’ from the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) (2007/8) Worldwide top student for Marketing Research and Information (2007/8)
Job title: Senior Account Manager, KiS Marketing
What do you actually do? KiS Marketing is a full service agency; I work with companies to plan and implement successful marketing campaigns dependent on their particular needs. I do this by segmenting and targeting relevant client audiences and positioning a service or product best to meet those customers. This could be working with our team of designers to create a whole new brand and suite of literature, researching and booking a media campaign, designing a website or writing press releases, or the script for a new DVD. It’s a really fast-paced environment that constantly changes dependant on the demands of our client base.
How did you find out about your particular course? With no on-the-ground marketing experience, my current Managing Director was keen for me to understand the theory behind the work I was doing on a day-to-day basis. He recommended the Professional Diploma in Marketing as a good broad base, covering theory and practical application of Marketing Research, Planning, Communications and Management, over 18 months of evening classes.
Would you undertake further training to progress your career? Considering the competitiveness of my sector and the current worries about the economy, additional training not only shows willingness to learn to an employer, but will also put you one step ahead of your competition. My next step will be to invest in further e-marketing and ‘online’ training, two mediums which are becoming more and more sophisticated, and replacing traditional and out of date media and marketing investment.
Why did you decide to go into this sector? What do you like most about what you do? I previously worked as an executive for an advertising firm and whilst I loved the account management side of things, the most impressive work and the loudest laughter always came from the mysterious marketing department downstairs. At KiS Marketing, I get the best of both worlds as I can utilise my creative side, love of the English language, account management, and organisation skills in one role.
People think that Marketing is a glamorous profession – they are right to an extent, but to get ahead in a career that appeals to so many graduates, a serious marketer must really know their theory and latest sector news too.
Are there any downsides? Having to write creatively or think of innovative ideas on demand is difficult but the more you understand a client the easier this becomes over time. Clients can be very demanding so it’s important to strictly manage their expectations as much as possible.
What strengths do you need to make a success of what you did? Good time management and personal motivation were key in juggling a sometimes 50-hour working week with a course that was as demanding as my English degree. Sacrificing weekends and evenings to write essays during term time was often near impossible, but the end result was definitely worth every hour not spent in the pub!