Corporate statements and the need to balance traditional marketing thinking

In order to be a professional and strategic marketer one of the things you need to constantly assess is the world around you; you have to remain relevant to your target audience, re-adjusting and blending what you know to be true with the latest pieces of information that you choose to believe; you also need to have the conviction of your thoughts and be prepared to act upon them for the benefit of the company. Doing so demonstrates to the organisations that pay your fees, not only your commitment to your beliefs but also that you can remain ‘progressive’ and relevant.  There are several marketers I enjoy hearing the opinions of: Professors Malcolm McDonald and Jonathan Deacon are two, Thomas … Read More >

GDPR ‘Traffic Lighting’ – A Business Differentiator for the Consent Process

  We spend the vast majority of our time supporting SME businesses who rely on us to provide them with recommendations, observations and thoughts on how to continue building their businesses and their brands. One of the most significant subjects has been the new GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and in particular the matter of consent. In January 2017, we ‘kicked’ this subject around for a good couple of months whilst we assessed (as best as we could at that time) how much needed to be done to remain compliant. It soon became clear that these firms could choose to follow hundreds if not thousands of other firms and do nothing (believing they were already compliant), or to take the … Read More >

Attend as my guest – CIM event exploring Artificial Intelligence

A Farmer and his new way of working

No one can have failed to notice the sheer number of stories that seem to make their way onto the front pages almost every day. Personally, I love seeing technology evolve but from an ethical perspective I do wonder what this will do to the job market and perhaps more importantly, what it’ll do with our own sanity if the human race isn’t kept busy. Are we simply going to re-train people (assuming there’s work for them to re-train in of course), or are most of us going to become shareholders in businesses and generate our livelihoods from the profits these firms generate? I’m wondering more than ever now because in the last few weeks’ I’ve been surprised about the … Read More >

GDPR – Ignorance is no defence

If you’ve heard about this and are already preparing your business congratulations, if not then you really need to be aware of the changes coming our way that will most likely affect all businesses in the UK in 2018. So what is GDPR? It stands for ‘General Data Protection Regulation’ and it is designed to bring all European countries into line on matters of personal and commercial data protection enforcing such policies on all member states (surprisingly not all have robust policies). Of course it’s long overdue bearing in mind how much has changed with managing personal data since the Data Protection Act of 1998 was brought into being in the UK. Many consumers are in the dark about how … Read More >

Leaders of Today and Tomorrow

I remember a few short years ago coming across several businesses who told me about the problems they encountered when offering internships, or student work experience as it was known then. They complained about everything the students did; how they didn’t dress appropriately, that they didn’t speak to customers properly, that their time keeping was poor, pretty much everything in fact. At the time I remember thinking that my sympathies were with the employer, after all, here are a handful of business owners who are trying desperately to promote their businesses during challenging times and now they have this to cope with? But several years later I’m fairly sure that the majority of these failures lay at their door. Over the … Read More >

Digital Work Experience for a Young Student

We’ve got a really great opportunity for a young person to show any future employer just what they’re capable of and where they might hope to progress with their career in digital marketing. So if you know anyone who would love to secure this chance, please feel free to show them this blog and get them to get in contact with me.  We’re working with a client in the traditional skills sector, a cabinetmaker to be precise who produces stunning pieces of free-standing furniture and interior joinery. They don’t sell their designs through a catalogue or retail chain, instead everything they make is made to order (referred to as bespoke) so it’s rarely the case that they ever make two items the … Read More >

‘The Magic of Christmas’ and a lesson in marketing

As we approach the festive holidays I thought I would share with you a personal story that I encountered whilst shopping for Christmas gifts with my family recently. The story centres around two well-known high street brands, Clinton Cards and Boots. In shopping for Christmas gifts for my youngest son, one retailer let me down in my quest to retain ‘The Magic of Christmas’,  whilst the other lived up to my expectations and can be rightly proud of doing so.   Picture this. Two of my family go off in one direction whilst I and my eldest son charge off to secure a coveted Christmas gift for our youngest family member. The item was available at a different retailer and having made … Read More >

The Great Divide

  Since October 2010 we’ve been pleased to be able to lend our professional support to many local secondary school children within our area as part of a scheme to bring commerce into the classroom amongst the 13 to 18 year age groups. Introducing mentors from a wide range of companies at this stage can help to influence the students’ choice of subjects at GCSE or their thoughts of a career.  Led by the session facilitator, businesses like ours work with between six and sixteen students to: coach them on interview techniques, introduce practical examples from our industries, work with them on a series of case studies and give short lectures about our professions. What is pleasing and makes these … Read More >

Don’t give up on the kids!

In October 2010 I received an email through our Chamber of Commerce asking if local businesses would be prepared to invest some free time helping schools improve their students understanding of ‘real world’ business. You see there was a gap in the students education and as a marketer I understand this message clearly, but I’ll come on to that more in a moment. The problem the teachers were having was one of frustration; they can teach the subjects but placing the knowledge into commercial situations was less easy, most teachers of course are career teachers with little experience of commerce. As a father of two boys in what was then Years 8 and 3, helping our local teachers connected with a … Read More >