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14 Jan

Meet with Drinks, Holborn

19 Jan

Meet with drinks, London Bridge

25 Jan

Travel agents - are they past their sell by date?, Tottenham Court


27 Jan

Meet with drinks, Hammersmith

27 Jan

Engagement through online TV, London Bridge


28 Jan

What’s new in marketing?, Kensington


2 Feb

Achieve a competitive edge in the digital age, Croydon


3 Feb

Sixth Annual President's Dinner, House of Commons

8 Feb

Meet with drinks, Holborn

10 Feb

Penetrating the housing sector, Tottenham Court


23 Feb

Website Usability, Old Street


24 Feb

Meet with Drinks, Hammersmith

3 Mar

Women in Marketing: Digital, Regents Park


8 Mar

Medical Marketing Group Symposium, Regents Park


9 Mar

Meet with Drinks, Holborn

10 Mar

Social marketing in financial services, Old Street


16 Mar

Meet with Drinks, London Bridge

23 Mar

Social Media Marketing, Old Street


31 Mar

Meet with drinks, Hammersmith

A word from Phil Preston - The art and science of marketing careers

Philip PrestonHaving been in marketing for over 25 years I have had a variety of jobs from Marketing Services Manager to Director of Marketing. I’ve also recruited and mentored a large number of marketers. I always tried to make sure that the members of my team were well equipped to do the job and encouraged them to get a relevant professional qualification behind them – MRS, IDM, ISP and of course CIM. It was good for the business and good for their career and personal development.

I'm a great believer in implementing the knowledge gained through professional study, particularly the plethora of strategic marketing concepts that have been invented or discovered by some of the business world's most brilliant minds.

Thinking about it, some can also be applied to “Brand Me”. So in homage to marketing gurus of the 20th Century here is a short Marketing Career Development Masterclass.

The Career Lifecycle

In the same way that goods and services go through different stages of a product life cycle so does a career. Having done the R&D at university and launching “Brand Me” with your very first job in marketing, your career can quickly gain momentum. Over a short space of time it’s possible to rise up the ranks to a relatively senior role but once you are there you can get stuck. The competition for the top jobs can be fierce so your career could even stall, stagnate and eventually die!

CAM FoundationHowever, before you get to this stage maybe it’s time to reinvent “Brand Me”, undertake some more R&D (how about the brand new CAM Diploma in Digital Marketing) and launch a new “Me” product into the marketplace? So what are you waiting for, sign up for the Institute’s Continuing Professional Development programme now.

The Seven Ps

Imagine your boss, company or organisation is your customer, how would you go about satisfying his, her or their needs?

Product: all successful products and services are a combination of features and consumer benefits. “Brand Me” should be no different – as well as the technical knowledge and capability to do the job it’s important to offer the little extras. A sense of humour can go a long way, a passion for what you do and a little empathy for the people you work with can all help establish a rapport with your “customer” and build brand loyalty.
Place: this can either be a physical location, including working in cyber-space, or more importantly the organisation or company you want to work for. Sometimes you have to take what you are given but don’t compromise your principles too much. Do you believe in what the company is doing; do you have a real passion for the brands you are working with; do you buy into the company culture; are you happy that the company has integrity? In an ideal world you should be proud to tell people where you work and what you do.
Price: although money isn’t everything try living without it! Even in today’s uncertain economic climate of unemployment, wage freezes and even pay cuts you shouldn’t be afraid to ask for what you are worth. And if you are a professional member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing you are worth more than your colleagues. Our Croner Marketing Rewards Survey says so – you can read all about it here.
Promotion: it’s good to have ambition but don’t let it become an obsession or else you could end up miserable and alone having trodden on too many people during your climb to the top. With career success comes added pressure and you have to be equipped to cope. This often means you have to be a good people manager and business expert as well so don’t forget to acquire the right management skills to complement your marketing expertise.
Meet With DrinksPeople: the people you work with can have a huge impact on whether you enjoy your job or not – but like family you don’t always get to choose. However, unlike relatives if they really get on your nerves you can change them for a new family. More important are the people you know – friends, fellow students, lecturers, colleagues, suppliers, customers, competitors, fellow members of the Institute and other marketers can all come in handy when developing your career. So network like crazy, both online and offline! And make sure you attend one of the GLR Meet with Drinks networking events taking place regularly at a pub near you.
Process: essentially it’s good to have a plan, and maybe a few contingencies as things don’t always pan out the way you hope. These days your plan needs to be flexible to exploit the opportunities being thrown up by the digital gold-rush – it seems as if everyday some fantastic innovation is going to change the way we do marketing forever. You need to keep pace with the latest thinking but don’t get so carried away that Tweeting or blogging becomes more important than good marketing otherwise you may box your career into a corner.
Physical Evidence: this is what it all comes down to at the end of the day. It’s the nice house, flash car, expensive holidays and other physical signs of a successful career that really count! Or is it the latest blackberry, notebook and other electronic gadgets that are a must-have to do your job that turn you on? The answer lies within – whatever makes you happy. My only advice is to strike the best work-life balance for you and don’t get too carried away by the desire for material things.

The Preston MatrixThe Preston Matrix

Finally I couldn’t let the subject go without referring to one of the marketer’s favourite concepts – the Boston Matrix, or in this case the Preston Matrix. Picture a four-box grid with Ambition running vertically from low to high and Job Satisfaction running horizontally from high to low.

At the start of your career what everyone is aiming for is that elusive top left “Star” where high levels of ambition are being satisfied by doing a job you absolutely love. Inevitably over a period of time this may develop into a “Cash Cow” as you settle into a less ambitious phase in your career but you are not prepared to compromise on job satisfaction or salary. Perhaps this is when your home life starts to become a bit more important to you. Hopefully you won’t slump into the low ambition/low job satisfaction bottom right quadrant of the Matrix and end up in a “Dog” of a job. Perhaps it’s time for a change!

The MarketerIn fact because the face of marketing is changing so rapidly there’s hope for everyone who wants’ to change direction. Top right, in the “Question Mark” area could be just the kick up the backside you need to get your career moving again. For all the latest jobs go to the Institute’s recruitment website at The Marketer Jobs.

Anyway that’s enough waffle and marketing gobbledegook from me. I hope you all have a fantastic year in 2010 and you get everything you wish for out of your career.

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Hurry! Prize draw - win FREE career and CV help

One face-to-face career support session and 5 CV reviews worth over £200 to be won

To kick start your career this New Year take part in the prize draw. Six great prizes to be won. Enter the Prize draw for CV and career help from the Institute’s career advisory service, provided by C2. Closing date 29 January 2010.

CV ReviewsTop prize – one-to-one support

Win a face to face career support session to be held at the C2 office in central London. This subsidised service normally costs members £80. Each session lasts up to an hour. The lucky winner simply books an appointment at the C2 offices in central London with an experienced careers consultant. Prior to meeting they’ll ask you to fill out a career discussion form and email it with your CV to make sure the meeting is geared to your needs.

Plus 5 runner up CV review prizes

Normally subsidised at £28 for members, there are 5 free email advice sessions - which are ideal for CV reviews - to win. Because no matter how many times you have written and re-written your CV in the past, it is always valuable to get an expert opinion to help you improve. Winners can send in their CV by email for a review and constructive critique, provided within 2 working days. With practical, easy to follow feedback you’ll know what to do to improve on the impact of your CV.

Of course even if you don’t win you can still benefit from the Institute’s career advisory service, provided by C2 and subsidised for members of the Institute.

For more information on these services, its best to check them out online. Login to view the member only content, which is where you’ll find the link to the Career and Professional Development Centre.

C2 is part of The Careers Group, University of London – a not for profit organisation that provides career services to universities and colleges. For more information visit www.cim.co.uk/careercentre

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Congratulations! Dominique Didinal - top student for SMIP

Top student Dominique Didinal congratulated by Sir Paul Judge, the Institute's President
Top student Dominique Didinal congratulated by Sir Paul Judge, the Institute's President

Great news! Dominique Didinal, from West Dulwich has won the top student award for the Strategic Marketing in Practice module of the Institute’s Professional Postgraduate Diploma. That means her approach beat 3,000 other marketing professionals from around the world. The award was presented to her at the international graduation ceremony in Symphony Hall, Birmingham in front of 1,400 students and guests.

Dominique, who works as the Marketing Manager for St Pancras International, commented “I’m delighted to win this award and am grateful to my employer Network Rail and my manager for supporting me throughout the process. The completion of this Diploma has enabled me to operate with confidence at a senior strategic level and I’ve already been able to put into practice the elements learnt in the case study through the completion of a five-year marketing strategy for St Pancras International.”

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How I got here

Robert Harris
Winner: Volunteer of
the Year 2009

Congratulations to Robert Harris, European Marketing Manager, Steptoe & Johnson LLP

Nominated by Jo Orphanou, Team Leader, North London branch

Maria Cenalmor
Runner Up: Volunteer of the Year 2009

Well done to Maria Cenalmor, Internal Communication & Engagement Manager, Accenture

Nominated by Louise Elliott, Team Leader, West London & Heathrow branch

Interview with Robert Harris, Volunteer of the Year 2009

Robert Harris, who is a London based marketing manager for an international law firm, scooped the Greater London Region’s prestigious ‘Volunteer of The Year Award 2009’. “Rob was judged winner for 2009 because of his outstanding contribution,” commented Mocky Khan, Chair of the Greater London Region. He has been a cornerstone of the North London volunteer team investing a considerable amount of his time over the years to organise events for members and drive initiatives forward.” Robert was nominated by Jo Orphanou, who Robert describes as “a fine role model for volunteering”. We interviewed Robert to find out more about his volunteer role and route into marketing.

How did you get involved with the Institute?

“I completed the Diploma with The Chartered Institute of Marketing while at University in 1995. But it wasn’t until a few years later that I decided to volunteer. A friend of mine was just about to set up a juice bar so I brought him along as a guest to one of The Institute’s talks with Pret a Manger. We both thoroughly enjoyed the event. When the organisers asked for more volunteers I decided it was time to get involved.”

What kinds of things have you done as a volunteer?

“I started off as treasurer, later I chaired the branch for several years and I’m now happy to work alongside our current team leader running events. Years ago we handled all the event administration ourselves but fortunately with new technologies we now have a centrally managed online booking system and other event support so the role of volunteers is more enjoyable – we plan our calendar of events, liaise with forthcoming speakers and host the events. We’re lucky that in this region we have such interesting and well qualified marketers amongst our ranks and as a result we’ve managed to set up presentations from one of Microsoft’s UK Directors and senior marketing managers from Mars and Easyjet.”

And how did you get your job as European Marketing Manager at a law firm?

“I couldn’t take a direct route. Back in 1995 it was difficult to get a graduate job at all. Instead I took several steps to reach my current position. I started out in marketing for a small telecoms company. It wasn’t my dream job but it gave me some valuable experience. Then the recruitment agent that had got me that initial job mentioned their own accountants were looking for marketing expertise. I got in touch and got the job working for this small firm but this time within the professional services sector. It proved to be a far more suitable environment for me and I worked there for over three years. Then I was able to take a step across to the legal sector. Moving to top 20 UK law firm Denton Wilde Sapte, where I had a bigger role in a far bigger organisation which accelerated my knowledge and experience. I spent six happy years there. Looking for greater responsibility but keen to stay in the legal sector, my next move was to Steptoe & Johnson where I am now. We’re a top 5 Washington DC headquartered law firm and an international player. It’s great to work for a big firm with all the resources and development opportunities that brings and where I can personally make a difference by building our profile in Europe.”

What kind of marketing work do you do?

“I’m responsible for the marketing of the London and Brussels offices. That means working on marketing and business planning for the organisation, and for the specialist practices and partners within it. My role covers PR, development of marketing materials, tenders, pitches, website content, directory submissions, events and seminars. As well as marketing our European offices externally, a key part of my role is internal marketing to ensure those offices have visibility amongst our lawyers in the US.”

What are you especially proud of?

“During my time here the firm has performed well, which is especially pleasing given the market conditions. I’ve had some good results in raising our profile and I’ve managed to raise our visibility within the two most important legal directories, gaining rankings in 15 important areas. Directories in the legal profession are a key marketing tool. New clients usually enter discussions with us as a result of a referral, often checking our credentials in the directories. And a place in the directory has to be earned. I work on our submissions. Then the directory organisations research the market through interviews with ourselves, other firms and then follow up client references. Their investigations result in an assessment of our place in the legal sector, all published in the directory.”

Why have you chosen to work in the legal sector?

“This is a challenging but really good environment to work in, and you get to work across the full marketing mix, whilst being a surprisingly sociable place to work!”

Does volunteering help with your career?

“Yes definitely. For me, it’s all about keeping up to date with new initiatives and networking with other marketers. I work in a small marketing department so my involvement means I’m constantly updating my knowledge. Most recently we hosted a great talk about Twitter – an area that many organisations, including legal firms like my own, want to capitalise upon. But getting involved hasn’t just helped me. When one of our committee of volunteers was looking for a new job, I was able to make an introduction and they secured a new role. Volunteering can work at so many levels.”

What’s your reaction to winning this award?

“I’m delighted. This is a great accolade. It’s gratifying to gain recognition for the commitment I’ve made over a number of years. I’m now planning the next event.”

Join the North London committee of volunteers
Come along to a networking event: Meet with drinks

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The trouble with getting qualified

Top student Dominique Didinal congratulated by Sir Paul Judge, the Institute's President
Polly Grant, MCIM, DipM
Marketing Manager, UK & Middle East Practices, Arup

Polly Grant’s story will inspire you to get there

How did you get started in marketing?

I did a Sociology degree at Bristol University and recognised early the link between behaviour and the way people buy products and services. I saw marketing as the commercial translation of sociology and used this as my pitch to a number of organisations after graduating. It worked and I landed a really fascinating opportunity with a marketing consultancy. This was my route into a marketing career and I have not looked back. I’ve only changed companies twice since to broaden my industry experience and been promoted at Arup where I now work.

When did you decide to get qualified in marketing?

Right from the start, as soon as I finished my degree, I decided to study for my Chartered Institute of Marketing qualifications. I started with the Certificate but I was determined to go right through to the Professional Postgraduate Diploma. I see qualifications as a means of entry into better jobs but the benefits are so much broader than that.

How long did it take from start to finish?

It took me eight years. I got the Certificate in my first year. I took breaks between each qualification level. I also took a break before the Strategic Marketing in Practice module – the SMIP case study. I have always been alert to the fact that you need to get the balance right between your determination to get qualified with the time you have available. I needed to balance work, personal and study commitments carefully and timed the SMIP to fit both. Ironically, and despite planning ahead, when I finally decided to do the SMIP it turned out to be one of the busiest ever times I have experienced at work. Perhaps the lesson is that there is never a perfect time – you just have to get on and do it.

Has it been easy?

I think the first thing you need to do is recognise how tough it is. It takes a huge level of commitment, dedication and sacrifice. You need to realise that it gets tougher as you progress and the SMIP is the hardest thing I’ve had to do – not as a task in itself but because of the conditions, trying to complete it to a deadline whilst working long hours and because it is in a different style, unlike other modules. It was at this stage I faltered which is not like me. I wondered, can I physically do this? I had to remind myself that I could only do my best. That kept me going.

What payback do you get?

To know you have become qualified gives you immense personal satisfaction. It’s a wonderful feeling. Plus you open the door to new and better jobs. A recruitment agency questioned my salary expectations on a previous job move, they were flabbergasted by the increase I expected by changing jobs. But I knew my market worth as a qualified marketer and I was proven right. And I wouldn’t have been promoted to my current job if I wasn’t qualified.

A word from the boss…

““To join my senior team you must be qualified and demonstrate ongoing professional development. In return we will create a rewarding career path that will showcase all of your talents.” Matthew Bythell, Head of Marketing UK-ME, Arup

What do you do at Arup?

Arup is a global firm of consulting engineers, planners, designers and technical specialists. I’m Marketing Manager for the UK and Middle East practices as well as having been recently invited to join a small leadership team. I support 3 Practice Executives. Because our products are our people and their expertise, I feel I should be just as well qualified as my internal customers. I also work on communicating and embedding central marketing initiatives and local best practice across the practices in my region. And I get to work on projects which are not practice or market specific such as climate change initiatives or city showcases of our cross-functional services.

Do you use what you have learned?

At some point your experience and qualifications come together to the benefit of your career, earlier on the benefits are less clear. As I studied for the Postgraduate Diploma and worked in a management position the learning could be applied in practice which has been hugely beneficial. I can often see the difference between those that are qualified and those that are not through their strategic and tactical approach. I’m currently contributing to the development of a marketing plan template, which others in my firm can follow in their practices, directly as a result of my studies. Marketing qualifications are fast becoming a pre-requisite to the best roles.

Polly’s 10 tips for study success

  1. Remember why you are studying. Think about the marketing role you want to have in future and the rewards that this will bring, personally and professionally. Have belief in yourself that you will make it and keep the end in sight.
  2. Write a revision plan that includes time to live (and stick to it). This should set out what you’ll cover on the syllabus and when. Its also most important to have a life plan for your own sanity so plan when you’ll take a night off to see friends.
  3. Use available resources. Talk to colleagues at work and ask questions about their marketing experiences. These will be different to your own. Read publications like The Marketer and the Institute’s Shape the Agenda white papers. Make sure you look at past exam papers, example answers and Examiner Reports in the Learning Zone, and plan the time this takes into your revision plan.
  4. Collaborate. Find a study buddy, swap phone numbers and emails. It’s useful to have someone to turn to, especially prior to the SMIP case study.
  5. Tell your company. Make it known at work and put the right arrangements in place. Your colleagues will be more sympathetic if you get a little stressed and your boss will understand if you need to leave at 5pm to get to your course. You can ask for your studies to be funded too.
  6. Build and brief a support network. It doesn’t help if well intentioned friends keep ringing you to go out and you constantly have to say ‘no’. So tell friends and family in advance about what you’re doing. Explain why it’s important to you and the commitment it takes. Say that you’ll call them. Sometimes it’s down to luck whether your partner or family support you but if you do have this back-up it can make a real difference.
  7. Take a holiday to study if necessary. It is a pain to use holiday to study but it takes the pressure off. It’s especially good before the SMIP, you are so close to completing your studies after all. Some companies offer paid study leave if you ask.
  8. Take a break from study. Time out is really important to keep things in perspective. Don’t try to complete everything at once. Take a sanity break between modules or qualifications. And plan to have some nights away from your books.
  9. Don’t be phased by others approach. Everyone learns, studies and tackles exams in a different way. For example, I used to be unnerved in exams when others started writing straight away. I always take at least 15 minutes at the start to read the paper, collect my thoughts and plan my answers. So keep your eyes on your own ball.
  10. Use the Student Support Group. I know it sounds like a plug but I would genuinely recommend the SSG. Their Syllabus Day brings the whole syllabus in sight. The teaching I’ve had at colleges varies and with some courses its hard to judge where you are in the syllabus and how it all comes together. This day helps you track progress and puts across the content neatly so it’s fresh in your mind. I used the Exam Prep workshops too. You may know the syllabus inside out but if you’re not skilled at exams you could fail. This helps especially if it’s been a long time since you took exams.
Inspired? See more information about studying with the Institute.

New virtual learning option available

From February 2010, The Institute will be offering a new virtual learning option for the Professional Certificate in Marketing and the Professional Diploma in Marketing. It gives marketers a new opportunity to learn and achieve without having to attend classes. To find out more, visit the CIM Academy Team.

Last chance! Professional Diploma and Postgraduate Diploma changes

The Institute is launching a new Syllabus in July 2009 for their Professional Diploma & Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip.) qualifications. Students wishing to complete their current qualification only have one more chance to finish in June 2010. Otherwise you’ll be obliged to switch to alternative new syllabus subjects, and at PGDip. level it could take students considerably longer to complete the new course! The Student Support Group can help

Remember – now four Exam Boards a year

Traditionally qualifications have been based around December and June exam\assignment deadlines to coincide with bi-annual exam boards. From this summer there will be four Exam Boards a year – meaning you can submit work in September, December, March or June - subject to specific CIM college timetables. For further details please visit the Learning Zone.

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Do you know digital? You will

Come to ‘Women in Marketing: Digital’ on 3 March

Ade Onilude of Swarovski, creator of ‘Women in Marketing’.

This year it’s all about digital.

Vital statistics

YouTube: 1 billion views per day (10.08.09)
Facebook: 350 million users (8.12.09)
Myspace: 125 million members (06.09)
Twitter: 60.3 million unique visitors (12.09)
LinkedIn: 45 million users in 150 industries (2009)
Bebo: 34 million registered users & 7 billion monthly page views (2008)
Friends Reunited: 12 million registered users (2009)
UK Internet users: 48 million, that’s 80% of the population (06.09)

FacebookSocial media – big, growing and vital to the marketing mix

In recent research, Nielsen Online found that Britons spent 11.1bn minutes on the top 75 social media sites. Facebook accounts for the vast majority of time spent on social networks – 75%. It’s fuelling growth in the sector and has the largest audience. MySpace and Bebo are not keeping pace with the growth in Facebook’s popularity. Yet the site experiencing 1,959% audience growth in the last year was Twitter.

Internet accessInternet access – convergence and change is on the way

Mobile devices such as phones are getting more powerful and cheaper. So expect to see growth in the volume of people accessing the internet via mobile devices. This will mean that website design will change. And so will search. We’ve become used to searching for information with words – but imagine what Google describe as “a sensor-rich phone that's connected to the cloud, users can now search by voice (using the microphone), by location (using GPS and the compass), and by sight (using the camera). “ And the younger you are the less likely you are to use email – do you need it when msn, iPhones and Facebook let you keep in touch so easily? What about the shift from technology being perceived as a male domain to ‘feminisation’ of the web? Women spend more time online than men. More women shop online. It’s happening.

Are marketers keeping up?

With change on every front, from search to online sales the shortfall in marketers with digital skills keeps hitting the press. Employers expect their marketers at all levels to be digitally fluent. Because the consumers and businesses that make up their customer-base are increasingly fluent in the digital arena themselves.

Women in Marketing: Digital 2010

Immerse yourself in digital on 3 March 2010 from 6pm, pick up 3 hours CPD and boost your digital know-how. Last year over 120 delegates at Women in Marketing event were treated to an inspirational three hours of top quality presentations from leading experts on branding. This year organiser Ade Onliude of Swarovski has created another fantastic line up of speakers to explore digital marketing. The event will again be chaired by Sue Ash, Chief Executive of Ash Communications and keynote speakers are:

  • Sarah Speake - Head of Sales and Marketing at Google talking about the future of search (bottom left)
  • Sally Cowdry - UK Marketing Director, O2 (bottom centre)
  • Tom Savigar - Insight Director at The Future Laboratory on the female web and Womenonomics (bottom right)
Sarah Speake Sally Cowdry Tom Savigar

The event takes place in the heart of London's West End at 76 Portland Place, a contemporary conference facility with beautiful Georgian architecture.

We’re also delighted that JWT will be showcasing one of their newest developments, the JWTwitterclock. Nik Finan told us more. "There are 3billion tweets to date with an average of 900,000 per day, a lot of these mention the brands we build. We had an idea. Why not collate all the tweets that feature our brands every second of every day. We designed a JWTwitterclock. It shows how people are spending time with our brands. Powered by the twitter search engine…the JWTwitterclock takes the time from your computer…it then pulls in tweets that contain any brand we choose to search for….on every day, on every hour on every minute on every second… On each second the tweet featuring our selected brand is displayed on the clock face. Using the JWTwitterclock we can search for any brand any subject…The technology exists to tailor the JWTwitterclock to any region in the world. Proof that people really are spending time with our brands."

We will also be welcoming distinguished guests who include:

  • Lyndsay Menzies - Chief Operating Officer at bigmouthmedia (bottom left)
  • Maggie Berry - Director of womenintechnology.co.uk (bottom centre)
  • Amy Kean - Senior PR and Marketing Manager, Internet Advertising Bureau (bottom right)
Lindsay Menzies Maggie Berry Amy Kean

Book now. The event was a sell-out last year!
Women and men are welcome. Come along and bring a guest.

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The Pitch London 2010: An unmissable day. An amazing prize. Are you up for it?

Have you got what it takes to pull off the pitch of your career? If you're serious about your career in marketing then you seriously need to be part of The Pitch. Everything you’ve learnt about marketing will be put to the test.

The Pitch LondonFriday 26 March. One day – two venues – an amazing prize.

Your team could win:

  • The Chartered Institute of Marketing Shield for a year
  • Membership of The Chartered Institute of Marketing for a year
  • Free membership to The Roof Gardens private members club for one year

The day begins when you and your 2 team-mates are briefed at the Roof Garden, Kensington. Hosted by our sponsors Virgin Limited Edition, you’ll be inspired to develop your solution at this prestigious venue with its flamingo-filled gardens, award-winning Babylon restaurant and private members club. You’ll have a few hours to work on the brief - then you make your first pitch before moving across London to the Square Mile for the Final at the BPP Business School.

Anyone in the Greater London Region studying for The Chartered Institute of Marketing’s Professional Diploma levels 6 and 7 and the new syllabus Professional Post-Graduate Diploma can apply to enter the competition.

If you think you have what it takes then make sure you enter now as places are limited.

Good luck and may the best brains win!

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Is your career a plane crash?
Nigel Wood


Nigel Wood ACIM, works for a major UK Retailer and has a passion for coaching. He has a degree and MBA from Cass Business School, and is an Associate Chartered Management Accountant (ACMA) as well as a qualified marketer. In the last 2 years, Nigel has been actively involved with The Institute’s mentoring scheme and this year he completed coaching qualifications recognised by the European Coaching Institute (ECI). Nigel is currently establishing his own consultancy, coaching and training individuals in the SME sector.

Thought-provoking concepts from Nigel Wood

“Reading a book recently called ‘The Survivors Club’ by Ben Sherwood (Penguin Books Ltd, 2009) really got me thinking. Should we consider our careers in terms of plane crashes? Well, more about how to survive a plane crash rather than using it as a description of a career. A lot of the explanations and theories put forward as to why some people survive disasters and others don’t resonated with what I have seen over the years in career management. Take a look at my brief summary of some of Ben Sherwood’s concepts and take control of your career.

How would you react in a disaster?

Until you have experienced one, you really don’t know. What the analysis shows is that most people react in one of three ways. 10% will be calm and able to think and act rationally. Another 10% will panic and act irrationally. The remaining 80% will simply freeze and let events take over. Guess which group has the best chance of surviving? Yep – the calm, considered 10%.

Take a few seconds to think about your career and the careers of the people around you. How many can you say manage their careers? In my experience most people react to what happens around them and let events unfold. The ones who get the most satisfaction from their jobs think about their careers in a planned, logical way. Can you see where I am heading? The pattern seems to be very similar to the 10%:80%:10% rule. Do I have any evidence or proof? Nope. Does it fit the pattern for every person? Nope. Does it pass the smell test based on what I have seen and experienced? You bet.

Consider your survival instincts

The attributes Sherwood identifies as improving the chances of survival can also provide lessons for how we manage our careers. Just think about your purpose, beliefs, ingenuity, resilience and adaptability.

1. Purpose – Assess your drive, passion and commitment

What is your career aspiration – CEO of a FTSE 100 company or a solid reliable job with great work life balance? There are no right answers – it is about you. The analogy that works best for me is about projects. Projects without a clear deadline or defined objectives tend to deliver the wrong thing at the wrong time. Your career is no different – it is a project in its own right.

2. Beliefs - Use your underlying faith, motivation or beliefs to shape career choices

Faith and hope is about the motivation or belief that for some underpins their purpose. Good examples include the voluntary sector, teaching and the health sector. Personally I would push the analogy one stage further and talk about principles. I did an exercise recently to draw out the principles that underpinned my team – and spookily they came out to be very similar to my own principles. Well actually it shouldn’t have been spooky - it is what I should have expected having recruited and moulded the team. The principles became core to the way we worked – deciding which projects to take on, how to approach different situations. Bringing it back to career management – what principles do you work towards? Would you work for a company you consider “unethical”? Having worked with graduates over a number of years it is interesting how ethics is becoming increasing important in their career decision making. Identifying and consciously using your principles as part of your decision making process is all part of career management.

3. Ingenuity - Harness your natural intelligence to think laterally

Over the years I have worked with many people who have the natural intelligence and ingenuity that makes them stand out. They were not all high flyers – demonstrating that this isn’t enough on its own to mark a career for the very top. To achieve this you need to have self awareness of your strengths – and then to use them. In some situations a manager recognises the ingenuity and puts the individual in a role where they will thrive. But there are many more examples where it isn’t recognised and you end up with a square peg in a round hole and everybody dissatisfied. This isn’t a criticism of the manager – if they have a limited understanding and experience of analysis they are never going to be able to recognise a brilliant analyst – unless the analyst is proactive in getting that recognition. Once again we come back to the question 'are you in control or do you wait for things to happen to you?'

4. Resilience - Assess the strength of your spirit to bounce back and succeed

Resilience and tenacity is not simply about putting the hours in – the hours have to go into the right thing and in the right way. A set back often offers a greater learning opportunity than years of constant success. It is also easy to go for the short cut - there are many people I have seen who are desperate to make an immediate impact and make large scale changes very quickly. The resulting chaos often takes months to resolve. A series of incremental improvements that cumulatively make a big difference over time may have a bigger impact. To do this takes resilience and tenacity. Your career should be treated in the same way. Is one failed interview going to break your career? Only if you let it. Being able to take the set backs, learn and try again is a route to success. When you look back you will forget about the setbacks and only see how far you have come.

5. Adaptability - Tailor your approach to the changing situation

Adaptability and flow is another way of describing flexibility. For me this is one of the most important attributes to look for in a person and can be considered in two contexts. The first is that business increasingly recognises generalists – people with a broad commercial background who can adapt and thrive in a range of environments. The second is the pace of change – not only in terms of the adoption of for example new technology but people. There is an expectation (whether right or wrong) that individuals will move on after around three years in a role. Over the last five years I have had five different managers – with either me or them moving on. For each change one needs to adapt as each individual has a different outlook and approach. And this doesn’t consider your stakeholders who move on as quickly. Your career needs to be considered in this way. With constant change there is only one person who can take responsibility for your career – you. And your approach has to be flexible and adaptable to exploit this. One of the ways to achieve this is to be clear about your purpose – which is where we came in a few minutes ago!

If you think that by demonstrating one or all of these attributes you will survive a disaster – or have a great career, think again! They increase your chances of survival or progressing with your career – they guarantee nothing. And where does lady luck fit in? There is no doubt that in terms of disaster if your number’s up then that’s it. From a career perspective the end result isn’t quite as dramatic. The key message is to be lucky. This is not a flippant throw away comment. If you look for the positives, keep putting yourself forward and giving yourself opportunities to stretch and learn, proactively networking and talking to people, you will be staggered how much luck will come your way. But that is a subject for another day!”

Thoughts from Nigel Wood at info@Hayes-wood.co.uk   www.hayes-wood.co.uk

Make the most of The Institute’s Career Development Pack

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Join the Creative Communications interest group

Next event ‘Engagement through online TV’ 27 January

Did you know that your membership of The Chartered institute of Marketing means you can also join one of our many Marketing Interest Groups?

We interviewed, Ade Onilude, Chair of the Creative Communications group, CIMCOM, to find out more.

Who is this group for?

“It’s for creative professionals. Everyone that’s involved in marketing communication. You might be in design, PR, advertising or media. If you’re a creative type we can help you get connected.”

How can CIMCOM help marketers with their careers?

“By bringing creative professionals together CIMCOM forms the ultimate network for communicators at all levels providing high profile master classes, workshops and social networking events.”

IceniIf someone was thinking about joining but wasn’t sure – what would you suggest?

“Just come along to our next event on the 27th January and see for yourself. It’s called ‘Engagement through online TV’. We’ve persuaded the CEO and MD from communications specialists, Iceni, to share their insights as one of the UK's leading digital production companies. Judging by the awards they’ve won it promises to be really interesting.”

What’s the 27 January presentation all about?

“Business video is now everywhere. So this event is about sharing examples of the latest innovations in video on the web and understanding how it could improve your communications. We’ve got legal experts, Lawrence Graham Solicitors on hand too, to answer any legal questions. Of course it’s a good environment to meet other marketers too.”

Book a place at Engagement through online TV, 27 January

Is there anything else in the pipeline?

“Yes! We’re working on hot e-news for the sector and we’ve teamed up with Trajectory to help communications professionals keep pace with what’s new in mobile marketing. We plan to host a Mobile Marketing Forum event later in the spring.” Email Nicola and you will be invited to attend an evening hosted by The Chartered Institute of Marketing to review initial findings from the Mobile Marketing Forum and to hear about the key issues facing the future of mobile marketing.

Become a member of CIMCOM

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London calling...

The MarketerLooking for a job?

Find your dream marketing job at…where else? … The Marketer Jobs. It’s the recruitment website for The Marketer, the magazine of The Chartered Institute of Marketing.

Have you had a look lately? You can:

  • Search for jobs by salary, specialist area and location.
  • Register as a jobseeker for email alerts when jobs of interest go live.
  • Apply online when you see a plum job.

And if you’re recruiting for marketing staff you can use the site to advertise your jobs.

Don’t forget there are other useful resources from The Institute to help you get the job you deserve.

  • Login as a member to get access to information about the wide array of different marketing jobs out there. The Marketing Workplace – Job Descriptions Guide gives a flavour of many of the most popular types of roles – in agencies and client-side.
  • Find out about potential employers before your interview. Check out the Company Information Factfile.

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Charity partners

Talent 2012ParalympicsGB talent scout

With just under 1000 days to go to the start of the Paralympic Games in London, ParalympicsGB are still looking for talented individuals who could represent GB and make it to the podium in 2012.

If you or someone you know thinks they have what it takes to be part of the British Paralympic team in 2012, get involved.

Social entrepreneursHelp social entrepreneurs be better marketers

Social entrepreneurs can be a great force for good in communities - but often lack top-flight marketing skills. Want to help them make maximum impact?

On 10th February 2010 Media Trust and UnLtd will be running a free networking event - known as Speedmatching - where marketing and media professionals can connect up with social entrepreneurs and volunteer their expertise for good cause. How much time you can donate is entirely up to you. The event will run from 5.30-7.30pm in a central London location and drinks and snacks will be provided. Just contact Daniel Sollé. if you would like to attend or would like more information.

Further information can be found at:

Don’t let prostate cancer hide – Hold a Do Blue Day

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men. One man dies every hour in the UK. So hold a Do Blue Day in March and raise awareness.

Prostate cancerHardly anyone one talks about prostate cancer. It’s hidden because we can’t see it and many people don’t even know what a prostate is or what it does. Prostate cancer awareness month is all about changing that. The more we talk openly about prostate cancer the more lives can be saved. Help bring prostate cancer out into the open during prostate cancer awareness month, March 2010.

How you can help us fight the hidden cancer

By getting involved in March, you’ll be helping us in so many ways. Prostate cancer awareness month helps to make men and the general public as well as health professionals more aware of the disease. It helps raise vital funds to provide much needed support and information for men who have been diagnosed as well as their families. It also allows us to campaign and lobby the country’s key decision makers, because it’s high time that the issue of prostate cancer was in the open, and no longer hidden.

So whatever you do, do blue

For prostate cancer awareness month this March, we’re asking that whatever you do, do it blue! So if your fundraising idea is for an event that last a day, turn it into a Do Blue Day. Pick any day in March and encourage friends, colleagues and family to wear something blue and donate some cash to The Prostate Cancer Charity. How much blue you do is up to you – from pulling on your blue denims to a parading a bright blue hair-do! Have a dress down day, get sponsored and start people talking about the hidden cancer.

Do something fun and different with the colour blue. Just remember, whatever you do, Do Blue.

The Real Man Cup 2010 – 13th March at Wembley Goals Soccer Centre

Real Man Cup 2010This 5-a-side football tournament is open to all men from 18 to 80! Whether you are Wayne Rooney or his lesser known cousin you are welcome to come and play for this coveted trophy at Wembley (Goals Soccer Centre). There will be a prize for the winning team. There will also be a plate tournament for the runners-up in the group stages.

Last year 34 teams competed for the 2009 cup and Ex-Crystal Palace star, Mark Bright, came along to watch the action, he said: “It’s great to see so many men giving up their Saturday for a kick about with a difference. The football skills on display were excellent and the teams were all in great spirits. The Real Man Cup is in a league of its own and has helped make prostate cancer matter this awareness month. I’ve had a brilliant day and feel like I’ve won the tournament myself.”

For more information and to sign up go to www.prostate-cancer.org.uk/football or call Gemma on 020 8222 7630

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