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What did I want to do when I left school? I hadn't really got a clue. I had signed up to go to college to study four languages as it was something that I picked up really easily, however before I was due to start and prior to receiving my GCSE results I cancelled my place at college, convinced that I wasn't going to get the grades that I needed to do the A Levels that I wanted to do. I don't know whether this was fortunate or unfortunate really, however I passed my exams with flying colours.
I spent the whole summer not doing a lot really, trying to think about what I wanted to do with my life. As summer was drawing to an end, I constantly had my mum on my case for me to get a job as I wasn't at school no more and needed to earn my keep. I enrolled onto a YTS scheme and the put me into a Admin and Accounts position at a local business, which I spent two years there and obtained several NVQ in Administration and Accountancy. I was quite happy with that because at least I had obtained the equivalent to what I would have got if I had gone to college.
I still hadn't got a clue what I wanted to do, I didn't want to be an administrator for rest of my life but that looked as if it was they way I was heading falling into various administration roles and then ending up a call centre for two years which I hated. Looking for another job, I stumbled across another admin position for a local reputable company in which I went for the interview and it was actually a Marketing Assistant position. I hadn't really got a clue what marketing was, and when I was offered the job, I just took it to get away from the call centre.
You can kind of say that I accidently fell into my profession, and after 3 months I decided that marketing was my chosen career. I decided to pursue this further and went to University Part Time to do a HNC, which was really good as it gave you a good all round background into anything to with business. It covered area's including Strategic Planning, Marketing, Financial Planning, Law and many other options. I began to get more and more interested in my chosen subject and realised I was very good at. Working in a Marketing position giving me hands on experience. for another two years, I undertook a double diploma through the Chartered Institute of Marketing.
I've have been in a Marketing position for 9 years now and have progressed immensely. I was made redundant from the job that I fel into, and thought I needed to take my career to the next level and input my strategies into companies in order to take the forward.
I am now in my first higher managerial Marketing position and have built the company that I work for up from nothing with turnover increasing dramatically within the three years that I have been there. Results were achieved within the first month, as they had not marketing structure in place at all, now we have a five year plan in place with what I see as very achievable results and that will take my Company forward.
I am loyal and dedicated to my position, i have more of less free reins when it comes to implementing new tactics into the business. Initially the company, had one very basic website, with no kind of optimisation at all, now we have eight sites, to target various markets and are the leader within the industry, and known for our reputation. E-commerce was something that had only just came about when I took my qualifications and wasn't part of the syllabus, so I have found that I have educated myself a lot in this form of marketing, however it was proven successful.
I complete competitor analysis on a regular basis, to ensure that my company is in the forefront and first point of contact when someone requires our products. Competitor Analysis is when you analyse the industry that you work in, who are the key players, what are their strengths and weaknesses, what are they doing that possibly you aren't, and how do you fit into that analysis. It gives you the ability to rank competitors within the industry, and give you more of an insight into their businesses. Aided with useful information from Companies House and Business Link which majority of information is readily available, and available for a small fee, in depth reports can be built that can take you company forward.
I have recently worked in conjunction with an American company to fulfil a branding project, which was really exciting and also new to me. Branding is extremely important. There are many elements that need to be implemented to ensure that a product is going to sell, get one thing wrong and it can all turn into a big flop. Its not all about how the packaging is designed and whether you have the coreect logo, its whether that that product with the image that you have designed will fit into the industry, create awareness and interest and take off. With a good marketing strategy behind it helps and a decent budget and with the brand that we launched in July 2007, it has proved to be an extreme sucesss and we have now entered our 8th country with this particular brand and with another couple that I am working on at the moment. Not only has it taken off in the UK, it has also taken off in the other countries too, with unfortunately demand being more than supply at the moment, however this is always a problem that you can come across, which can be easily overcome pretty soon.
Advertising is a very important part of my job, but advertising in the wrong places can be bad. Identifying your target market and advertising in appropriate publications where you are going to attract your readers and create more business and awareness. Advertising campaigns can be bland. The industry that I work in, some of the adverts that are produced would not appeal to me at all, however I tend to spend a little more and feature someone that is recognised within the industry, which works fantastic. There are many rules within the industry that I work and have to be careful in what I advertise, claims are very important and should not be used, if they could offend people. CAP regularly vet adverts to ensure that they are UK compliant. Content needs to be the point in any advertising campaign. Depending on what product is being advertised depends on how the campaign should be approached. Readers do not want to be overcome with information, they need to be lead in and want to know more about the product or service. Adverts don't have to be attractive however they need to be interesting and capturing. In a Marketing role, you do need to be creative, although you may not design your advertising campaign yourself, its the concept that you need to come up with. I do a lot of design myself however, which my colleagues always seem impressed with, however I know myself when I am not happy with something.
There are so many more elements to my job, and at the end of the day every day is different, never the same, which is great. There is plenty of variation and always new things that can be implemented. I thrive on my success and the success of my Company. The results that are achieved by the tactics thats I have implemented give me job satisfaction on a daily basis, and I look forward to what new strategies I will implement as the business goes forward and the industry progresses.
If anyone is thinking of a Marketing career, I would recommend it highly. Its not just an office job as such, its a profession and a very good one at that. I am so glad that I stumbled upon it.