Job Title: Vice-President Of Strategic Marketing
Type of Company: My company provides digital production services (websites, banner ads and software) to medium-to-large corporations.
Education: BA, Psychology, College of the Holy Cross MBA, Marketing, Rochester Institute of Technology
Previous Experience: My background in marketing is in product and brand management, primarily in the cookware and kitchen appliance businesses. I worked closely with designers, advertising agencies and public relations firms to promote the products. In addition, I kept in contact with sales and retail stores to promote the features and benefits of the products. Creating communications plans and products has formed the basis for my current job.
Job Tasks: My role is to develop communication tools that describe the benefits of working with our company. From developing and managing the company's internet site, to writing case studies that explain successful projects we have completed, my role is to present the company favorably to potential clients who are looking for these services. In addition, when a potential client requests specific information, I prepare the presentations that the sales teams deliver. Finally, I manage any external advertising and public relations that we do. This can be anything from TV commercials to press releases to events.
A typical day involves a request from sales for specific information about a potential client or the draft of a presentation to be delivered to a potential new client. I have created templates that match specific industries (retail, automotive, travel) and I work from those to match the facts in the case.
Public relations involves soliciting editors and writers to conduct interviews with our key people as a way of getting our name recognized. But I also draft press releases with our public relations partner on a wide range of topics: new hires, projects released or new business won.
Finally, we are constantly developing new tools to communicate with the market. We will be launching an automated case study tool and a blog in the near future so there are regular meetings with the technology and production teams to check status and provide feedback.
At the end of the day, it's all about showing our company and our brand in the best possible light and making sure that every time we talk to a customer we are promoting our services.
Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The most exciting parts of the job are following a new project from concept to release. The day that a banner campaign launches or a new web site goes live is an extremely exciting time throughout the company. Then the effort to promote that new work begins.
The most challenging times are competing for and losing competitive bids for work. A tremendous amount of work goes into a bid or a pitch and these can be won and lost for many reasons. Getting feedback that the work has been awarded to a competitor is the worst.
Job Tips: In marketing any products or services there are a few things that always stand out. First, use your own products. Be an active consumer of what you are trying to sell. If you are selling web sites, be on the web constantly thinking about the sites you are on and how they work. If your product is a frying pan, learn to cook! Second, begin with the end in mind. When thinking about how to describe a product to a customer, always start with what you want them to think... then work backwards to determine what words, pictures, packages get them to that point. Last... love what you do. If you don't feel passionate about the product, then it will be difficult to project any excitement to a customer.
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