Warwick Marketing Conference

Today, I attended the Warwick Marketing Conference, organised by the Warwick Marketing Society of my school. It was a full day event filled with amazing speakers. Just to mention a few speakers, Ryan Den Rooijen from Google talked about how content creation is changing; Howard Nead from IPG Mediabrands spoke about how marketing principles have not changed but technology has changed how things are done and Abigail Brown from Cancer Research UK talked about marketing to beat cancer and shared many interesting examples. I’ve learnt so many things today that it is impossible to type them all out in a blog post. Hence, I would like to share one of my most important takeaways from today – Taking actions.

Taking actions

The answer to the question above is simply (well, not so simply) taking actions. I strongly believe that taking actions to develop one’s passion in marketing will help a student get a marketing job that he/she is interested in. When I say taking actions, I do not mean simply reading up about marketing and applying for internships; but real actions where you hone your skills and exercise your creativity, such as practising content creation through blogging, promoting your society and events in school and volunteering to help small charity organisations with their marketing. This is similar to how designers always create their personal portfolio of designs, because they can show prospective employers or people who are interested in their design services what they have done.

This is not just my opinion but it was also mentioned in today’s conference by Jackie Jobes, who is in charge of graduate recruitment from IPG Mediabrands and Sarah Ellis, Head of Corporate Responsibility and Society at Sainsbury’s.

Someone asked about the importance of internships when applying for a marketing job and the Jackie from IPG Mediabrands answered that internships are not the only thing they look for. They are also keen to know about what have you done in your personal time to develop your passion in marketing. She even said that, “We expect that you have a blog.” With the rise of content marketing and the fact that almost every company has a blog nowadays, I can understand why they have such expectation. Hence, she suggested applicants to link their CVs to their own personal portfolio or website.

UPDATED 09/03/2014: Jackie added that it’s not just about having a blog but also ensuring the quality of the blog.

Then, a student asked Sarah Ellis from Sainsbury’s if experiences in a (likely unknown) startup is considered to be valuable, compared to experiences in a well-known corporation when applying for a marketing job. This was her reply:

This reiterates not just how valuable startup experiences are, but also the importance of actually doing something in the field of marketing for someone who is looking for a marketing job.

If you are interested in starting with internet/online marketing, do check out this really informative guide created by Eric Siu of GrowthEverywhere: The Beginner’s Guide To Becoming A Full Stack Marketer. He included several great resources where you can start learning about the various aspect of online marketing such as SEO, PPC, Copywriting and more. Read and take actions!

To end off, here’s a quote from Sarah Ellis:

So in summary,

[Tweet “If you want to get a job in the marketing field, start practising the art now.”]

P.S. If anyone wants my notes from today, let me know and I’m happy to share it.
P.P.S. In my next article, I will write about what I’ve learnt from taking actions. So if you are interested, hang out or subscribe to my articles (: