This week, thousands of marketeers from all over the country descended on Tobacco Dock, East London for this years’ Festival of Marketing.

This is a celebration of every aspect of marketing, aimed at both in-house marketers and agencies. Tobacco Dock was filled with stands, stalls, demonstrations, innovations and above all, some world class marketeers looking to share their knowledge. We went along to see what all the fuss was about.

I was a little overwhelmed at first, when I downloaded the app. What should I see? What will I enjoy most? Who will I learn the most from? There was so much going on.

Well, I made some right and wrong decisions. There clearly was a huge amount of effort made by every single person exhibiting or speaking there but the way to a marketer’s heart is not always free food followed by an obvious sales pitch.

That being said, there were some talks that really resonated with me, with a deeper message for the audience to take away, offering insights and advice that we could learn from and use in our roles as Marketeers. There were some great brands telling wonderful stories of transformation, and industry leading experts passing on their knowledge and expertise that in-house marketers can use to enhance their teams and agencies can demonstrate to their clients.

Some of the key messages for me were consistent from many speakers; Brands must be transparent, consistent and authentic to be successful; It is as much about development of audience mindset towards brands as it is about brands evolving; To drive conversation, there needs to be elements of entertainment or value, or both; And brands need to have a purpose and be clear on what that purpose is.

Obvious statements you may say, but how many brands are actually doing it?

It was brilliant to reinforce my knowledge and come away confident in knowing we are doing it well.

The highlight for me came from a fierce debate between Mark Ritson and Byron Sharp. Both at the top of the marketing food chain and with extremely different views. Proof to me that there are no hard and fast rules to marketing but actually, an in-depth knowledge of your brand, product and your audience, alongside data & insights, with the addition of forward thinking and creativity are the ingredients needed for marketing success.

 

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