Need inspiration? Look to your keyboard

Three little letters next to your Caps Lock can make all the difference to your product. More

GLR student
comes top of the
world in tough
Diploma paper

Maria Hooper tells
us how she did so
well in her Analysis
& Evaluation
module. More

Experienced
marketer? CIM
GLR needs YOU

If you bring the best
out in people and give
sound advice, you
could be the perfect
mentor. More

CPD for freelance
and independent
marketers

When you become your
own boss, how do you
justify your own training
budget? More

How do you talk about sustainability to your customers?

What are the keywords to use and avoid in your environmental copy? More

Are you not entertained?

Entertainment marketing expert tells us how things are changing in the industry that gives us TV music and video. More

Be someone who gets involved!

Cycle 350km through rural China for The British Paralympic Association. More

Win a straight-talking book on creativity

We've got 5 copies of 7 Keys to Creative Genius to give away. More

What they didn’t teach me at Business School: event review

Delegates get great advice from top marketer. More

11 March

Women in Marketing: The Ethical One, Central London

12 March

Integrating DM into an electronic age, Central London

20 March

Speaking to the MySpace generation: Social Networks and Meaningful Interaction, West London

3 April

Network: Meet and Drink, Hammersmith

15 April

Career MOT: Get your dream job, Newport Pagnell MK16

19 April

How to pass CIM qualifications, Central London

22 April

Meet with Drinks, Central London

1 May

Network: Meet and Drink, Hammersmith

13 May

Integrity is not an option: The Future of CSR, Newport Pagnell MK16

21 May

Meet with Drinks, Central London

View archived copies of GLRNEWS Got something to say? Want to write for GLR News? Email the editor



Experienced marketer? CIM GLR needs YOU

CIM GLR needs YOU posterOr to be more precise less experienced CIM GLR members need you – as a Mentor. Entering its 4th year, the GLR mentoring scheme has really taken off and the demand for mentors is now higher than ever. You don’t need previous mentoring experience just an ability to draw the best out of people and a willingness to helpother members achieve their goals.

Zoe GellMentor profile

Chartered GLR marketer Zoe Gell has been a Mentor for just over a year now: with nine years marketing behind her, she wanted to help other members. Zoe tells us about her role as a GLR Mentor.

On becoming a Mentor: When you first start out in marketing you are maybe unsure of what to expect or have career issues you need to talk through. I never had that kind of support as an entry level marketer and I became a Mentor so I could give something back.

I enjoy problem-solving and it’s very rewarding when your advice means that your Mentee gets the result they wanted. Over the years I have had to make decisions that I haven’t always known to be the right or wrong one. If I was in that situation again, having someone from my own profession to talk to and discuss things with would be extremely valuable.

On how mentoring develops the Mentor: Mentoring helps me to remember the basics. I helped one studying member through her postgraduate revision; talking through theories with her reignited some theories that I had completely forgotten about. Though I work in the property sector, mentoring for the CIM has given me a wider understanding of the issues that all marketers face within the industry and that has enabled me to feel better equipped in my job.

On how to be a good Mentor: Mentoring is not about fixing problems but helping your Mentee work towards fixing them. I would definitely recommend mentoring if you want to guide a fellow marketer through some fundamental career decisions.

Start by just having one Mentee and see how you find it. Don’t agree to two or three Mentees before you’re sure you can be there for them. Mentees rely on you for your experience and advice and if you can’t be there for them by email, phone or face-to-face, then it isn’t really fair.

Did you know…

…Mentoring can help you retain your Chartered status: you can claim up to 21 CPD hours per year under the category of mentoring and coaching.

On a Mentor’s time commitment: To date mentoring has probably taken up 1-3 hours a month which is the equivalent to one or two coffees after work. Philip who runs the mentoring programme is very aware of how many Mentees people have and he makes sure that we are not overloaded.

If you would like to know more about being a CIM GLR Mentor, please contact Philip O’Brien.

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GLR’s student comes top of the world in A&E module

Maria HooperStudying for the Professional Postgraduate Diploma, GLR’s Maria Hooper came top in her Analysis & Evaluation paper in last summer’s exams. She shares her top study and motivation tips with us.

28-year old Maria lives in St Albans and works as Marketing Manager for Tour & Andersson Ltd in Dunstable – a manufacturer of hydronic balancing solutions for waterborne heating and cooling systems in large commercial buildings.

1. Prepare for a tough paper

I heard that the pass rates for Analysis & Evaluation were very low, so I gave it my absolute best. When the CIM called I was certain they were going to tell me that they had made a mistake and I didn't get an A but really a B! I was amazed that I came top in the whole world - I had absolutely no idea I’d done so well.

2. It’s not over till it’s over

I am still waiting for my exam results from the second module and by the end of this year I will have finished the 4 modules. I will need to ensure I study even harder for the remaining ones! Even though I’ve done well in the A&E module I won’t be letting up on the study regime. I advise taking one paper at a time being totally focused on what you’re doing at that particular time – don’t worry about the next paper or the last result. I was very happy about my decision to only take one module at a time as well which meant I could be totally focused.

Maria Hooper3. Get all the support you can for your weak subjects

My least favourite area was having to memorise the financial ratios. I asked our Finance Director to help me apply this part of the course to real work scenarios to make it more practical. Also tutors at The University of Hertfordshire were very good at giving relevant pointers of what the CIM is looking for in the exam and equally what they are not looking for.

4. Applying your learning helps with motivation

I liked Marketing Strategy most as I could see the live application of it to my work; as Marketing Manager I could apply everything I learnt directly. This is a real motivator when you’re trying to balance work and study. Overall I think my work has benefited immensely, as I incorporate everything I learn into what I do daily and seek continuous ways of improving our strategies and processes.

5. Study, sleep and exercise!

I only have one tip for work-life balance: sleep lots and do lots of exercise, especially when things are stressful. Your mind needs to relax in between all the information you are taking in.

6. Gain confidence from your studies

My studies have helped me gain more influence in our business strategy as the course insists that you demonstrate sound judgement which can be measurable and have an impact on bottom line performance for the business. With this thinking in mind a marketer is able to gain much more credibility and this has certainly helped get my point across, as well as increase my own peace of mind that I am making the right decisions.

For other support tools and study tips, log in to Learning Zone at www.cim.co.uk or check out www.studentsupportgroup.co.uk for free articles and revision guides.

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Look to your keyboard for inspiration

Computer keyboardIf you are looking for product or process innovation, Change Guru Paul Sloane suggests you take inspiration from the middle row of the humble computer keyboard. The letters A S D represent Add, Subtract and Differentiate. What can you add to your product, what can you take away and how can you differentiate?


Let’s look at how Ryanair used this approach to take on the established airlines. Michael O’Leary, the founder of Ryanair looked at the whole business process of passenger flights and built a new model. He started by subtracting all the frills that meant extra cost. He subtracted:

  • Travel agents - book direct over the Internet so the middlemen are cut out
  • Tickets - show your passport and quote your reference number. Printing costs gone
  • Allocated seating - choose a seat when you get on the plane, just like a train or bus
  • Free drinks and snacks - if you want a drink you have to buy it
  • Customer care - Ryanair has one-tenth the number of customer care attendants per passenger mile compared to BA. If you have a complaint the answer is generally ‘Hard luck but what did you expect with such a cheap flight?’

Then O’Leary added some new ideas with the aiming of supplementing revenues:

  • Advertising on the outside of aeroplanes
  • Deals with hotels and car hire companies whose tickets are sold on Ryanair flights

Finally, Ryanair differentiated its approach with:

  • Smaller regional airports who offered low prices to get the traffic volume that Ryanair could bring
  • Cheap in-house marketing featuring controversial advertising (one ad featured the pope) and outrageous PR stunts
  • Buying aircraft cheaply – by choosing times when demand and prices were very low

Ask yourself what can you take away from your current business process in order to save cost and simplify operations? Can you un-bundle your product into separate components? Can you strip out costs or processes that not all customers want? Can you bypass a middleman on the route to your customer – as Direct Line, Amazon and Ryanair did? Egg and First Direct offered online banking and made it cost effective by cutting out all the branches that burden the traditional banks.

What can you add to increase the value and attractiveness of your proposition? Is there an equivalent to a little bag of salt added to a packet of crisps that would make your product tastier for consumers?

What can you do to differentiate your approach? If you are competing with strong well-established market leaders then a 'me-too' approach will not get you far. Coca-Cola and Pepsi dominate the soft drinks market. When Virgin Cola competed head-on it struggled. The more successful new entrants have used lateral approaches and differentiated themselves: Snapple with fruit drinks, Tango with black cans and in-your-face advertising and Red Bull as a stimulant mixer.

Next time you are faced with the challenge of how to refresh your product offering, remember the answer is literally at your fingertips. A-S-D!

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Continuing Professional Development for freelance and independent marketers

Marc DukeA growing proportion of CIM GLR marketers are taking the plunge and ‘going freelance’. We spoke to CIM member Marc Duke – an independent marketing consultant working in GLR – about how a marketer’s CPD requirements change when you start working for yourself and how membership and services from The Institute become more crucial than ever.

GLR News: How do you keep your skills fresh and up-to-date as an independent consultant?

MD: There is a fine line between spending all of your time trying to keep up to speed on the latest trends and actually doing the day job. There are times when I will see a really interesting article I will print it off and read it on a train or while waiting for my PC to warm up. I also tend to do a lot of skim reading so I get a sense for what is being covered without wading through long articles.

I read journals and e-newsletters like GLR News for topic-specific material. I read blogs of individuals and companies in my area of specialization and I have subscribed to a couple of marketing chat forums as well. I tend to find that a trend will be discussed and it will take a good few months until the concept enters the mainstream which means it is not too hard to keep up.

GLR News: How do you manage to keep up your own CPD as a marketer when training can be relatively expensive?

MD: It’s a case of being creative. CPD points can be gained for a number of different things not just training. Having a mentor, attending industry events (major trade shows often cost nothing to attend), and reading are all ways I keep up my CPD count.

There are times when I am prepared to pay for training especially if it is directly linked to generating new business. I see it as an investment like buying a new PC or advertising. I find that a lot of the CIM events are very reasonably priced too. I have run training courses in the past so I am very particular in selecting courses that offer me real value, and directly impact the way I work as soon as I have left the room. I once attended a training course which lasted an entire morning, I felt most of the contents could have been covered in 30 minutes! Be selective and use trusted suppliers.

GLR News: What do you say to clients when they call on you for skills you don't have or areas you don't excel in?

MD: I am big believer in ‘honesty is the best policy’ and that ultimately if you are being a little too creative about what you can do you will be found out! I try to be really clear in terms of what I can deliver, by when and for how much. I also don’t feel too comfortable about claiming to do things that I know others can do better than me and in a more cost-effective way. The golden rule for any consultant is to understand what the client wants and deliver it to time and in budget.

In the long-term, trying to be jack-of-all trades will damage your reputation, unless of course you have developed a very strong network of specialists who you know and trust can deliver the goods. GLR events are good for making contacts like this, particularly the networking evenings such as Meet with Drinks.

GLR News: What role does The Institute play in developing your skill set as a freelancer?

MD: I receive the CIM weekly news email, which I always scan. I like to be aware of what events are being run. I also read The Marketer cover to cover. I also read the CIM Greater London Region e-newsletter GLR News which arrives every 2 months. Being a freelancer is about being flexible and I see the CIM as a valuable resource, which I can dip in and out as and when I need it.

To plan your Continuing Professional Development, visit see the CIM website and read about CPD and Chartered Marketer status or look through the list of long and short CIM training courses. Attending events in GLR can also count as CPD hours so take a look at what’s on in your region.

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How do you talk about sustainability to your customers?

New research from Futerra Sustainability Communications shows that many companies are using the wrong words to talk to consumers about green issues.

More than most, marketers know that words matter. Words bring ideas alive, make new concepts familiar, and can change the way we see the world. A company can spend days or weeks pondering a single line of text in an advert or on a product’s packaging. In some cases, millions are spent on market testing one word.

Yet when it comes to talking about sustainable development most of us struggle on with an inherited terminology cobbled together from science, economics and academic debate. Futerra’s research shows that the terminology surrounding sustainability is, at best, invisible to the majority of the public and, at worst, alienating.

GLR News highlights the top line results for you here. Click the table to see the full report.

Words that sell overview table

Futerra will be speaking on communicating sustainability at Women in Marketing: The Ethical One.   It starts at 18.30 on 11 March at The Commonwealth Club, London. Call 01628 427120 to book a place or pay on the door at the event.

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Are you not entertained?

GLR Fellow Gavin Miller is a marketing consultant specialising in the entertainment sector. Here he shares part of a report he has produced on the future of keeping us entertained…

We are already seeing traditional structures crumble in the entertainment industry: the well publicised problems at EMI; the direct-to-consumer première of Broken Violets on iTunes; the launch of Hammer Films’ first movie in 30 years on MySpace; the move by Madonna out of EMI and into a ‘live events’ company and the ‘pay what you want’ pricing strategy behind Radiohead’s latest album.

Back to marketing basics

Back in 1998, marketing guru and author Peter Doyle wrote: “What satisfies customers today will not satisfy them tomorrow… nothing is more certain than a firm’s current products, technology, distribution channels and market position will become obsolete”. So it is with marketing in the entertainment sector today where businesses and individuals will need to focus on four key points to operate successfully.Home theatre

Firstly, they will have to appreciate what’s happening in the whole entertainment and wider marketplace and not just the specific market or ‘discipline’ in which they operate. Secondly, they must make understanding the consumer their number one priority and use that understanding to shape distribution and marketing strategies.

Thirdly, they must challenge creative convention in developing innovative and relevant communications to both engage consumers and drive sales. And fourthly, they must reconsider the structure of the industry to establish a new, non-linear business model that shapes the creation, distribution and marketing strategy of content (in any format) across platforms and, importantly, at the moment content is conceived.

Product and place inseparable

The rapid and radical change and growth in new channels means that understanding consumption has never been more important for entertainment companies. At the core is the need to keep abreast of how new digital platforms affect traditional routes to market and the entire new ones they create and how consumer behaviour changes as a result. Interestingly, the line between marketing and distribution will become increasingly blurred. Marketing and distributing to consumers in the digital age will become one and the same.

Apple iPhoneThere is now an opportunity for entertainment companies of any size, to leverage both the marketing and distribution of content at the same time and across multiple platforms. As a result the rights model will need to change in terms of both definition and ownership. The opportunity for some content creators is to retain the rights they are currently giving away across all platforms, and for all content creators to create content pieces to support the marketing of the product which can be used to leverage distribution.

From push to pull model

Entertainment executives traditionally tend to operate in their particular categories or silos, but with the recent explosion of entertainment choices in the everyday lives of consumers (film, restaurants, music, sport, TV programmes, computer games, books, magazines, holidays, the internet) a broader view of what’s happening in the wider marketplace will be beneficial.

To operate successfully in today’s market, entertainment businesses need to develop a cohesive and collaborative content creation, distribution and marketing strategy, and to understand the wider entertainment choices available. To that end, they need to look at a vertical model that matches consumer behaviour — competition for consumers now lie across multi-entertainment platforms.

Apple iPodAnd it is not just what consumers choose to consume but when and how they choose to consume it that has changed entertainment almost beyond recognition. The last five years has seen Freeview, Sky +, iTunes, podcasting, Video On Demand, DVD rental by post, the BBC’s iPlayer, subscription TV to name but a few.

Mobile and social media

Mobile marketing is also expected to grow to $11bn by 2011 according to Informa. The value chain over the last five or six years has grown to include all sorts of technology and content participants: mobile portals, CRM, location-based services, aggregators, advertising agencies, digital agencies, operators, broadcasters, content creators (ring-tones and alerts for example) and many other ‘specialists’ to boot.

Control is now in the hands of the consumer and they’re exercising it in environments that we’re only just beginning to notice. If you haven’t heard of Scoopt, Digg, Dopl, Moli and Binweevils, you soon will: these sites will soon be joining Facebook, Myspace and the growing throng of popular social networking sites that made social media the buzz phrase of 2007.

To offer innovative and compelling content in 2008 and beyond, marketers need to reconsider the traditional structures, establish new non-linear content models and above all, think about consumers at the start of the creative process.

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Reader Prize Draw

7 keys to creative genius bookEver read a fascinating book on creativity but ended up none the wiser by the last page? Few books on this subject actually contain much of practical use. 7 Keys to Creative Genius cannot be accused of being over-complicated or theoretical. In his highly readable, no-nonsense, northern-lad style Ayd Instone explains, among other things, how the brain works when you’re being creative, how you can focus your mind and how you can question familiar rules and concepts to generate novel ideas. Just reading this book makes you want to get your crayons out...

We’ve got 5 copies of this book to give away to GLR News readers.

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Cycle China with The British Paralympics Association

The British Paralympics Association is offering a unique fundraising cycling challenge in China with an amazing opportunity to attend the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games.

This September you could be cycling 350km through rural China visiting the breathtaking Great Wall, and discover the fascinating beauty, people and culture of a country immersed in history and ancient traditions.

The Great Wall of ChinaExperience the excitement and thrill of the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games with tickets to the Games and a chance to see our ParalympicsGB Team in action.

At the same time your fundraising will help to ensure we give Britain’s top disabled athletes the best possible chance to fulfil their dreams of Paralympic success in Beijing. Britain is one of the most successful Paralympic nations of all time and with your support The BPA can keep UK athletes on the podium.

The closing date for applications is 26 March so get your skates on.

Download the information sheet and be someone who gets involved!
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'What they didn’t teach me at Business School’: Event Review

Stack of booksGLR’s Central London team recently organised the first in a series of lectures from senior marketers at London Metropolitan University. Over 80 CIM members attended Raoul Pinnell’s ‘What they didn’t teach me at business school’. John Sweeney reports:

Raoul PinnellRaoul, who's marketing career include spells as Marketing Director of Nat West Bank and Chairman of Shell Brand International, enthusiastically outlined his thoughts on how to approach ten thorny business issues not included on the syllabus of Europe’s leading Business Schools. These insights included how to respond when your clients are verbally abusing you and ways of delivering bad news to your boss. At the heart of Raoul's message was that marketers must remain steadfast in championing the customer especially when the going is extremely tough. Here’s an extract:

Customers

We are taught that the customer is king, that customer-centric companies win. We are encouraged to have rafts of staff dedicated to identifying consumer insights. But what about the value of your own experience? At Nestlé we had tastings and samplings several times a day and were encouraged to buy and try, our and competitor products at home. Before I joined NatWest I went into a branch to open an account. I believed that I should use and experience the product and service that I was going to be promoting. It was hard to open an account. Over the coming weeks, I found the queues in the branch challenging, and was horrified when Direct Debits didn’t stick, and call centre staff were clearly trying to get rid of me as quickly as possible. Awful direct mailings landed on my doorstep – clearly with little knowledge of my income, lifestage and likely wants. I shared the outcomes of these experiences with my director colleagues who were aghast that I should bother to use the bank – they didn’t. They used a private bank in the group so they had no direct experience of the pain of our customers. Also in the same bank, I was called in by the chairman one day, to explain why we were getting such a mauling in the press for bad service. The answer was that our research over many years confirmed the assertions of the press. The problem was that somehow the data didn’t get to the Board – or they didn’t listen.

Lesson: Become a consumer of the product or service you market. Challenge and expect all Board members to do the same.

The lecture was preceded by a buffet and networking event and the evening was rounded off with questions from the floor. Questions for Raoul continued long into the night as we adjourned to a local bar. Attendees clearly valued Raoul's knowledge and experience and the Central London Team thank him for his time and contribution.

Look out in your inbox for CIM event bulletins containing details of the next in the Lecture Series, which is being planned for late April or May.
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