Nick Pearce, CEO
Alexander Daniels Global
Marketing Apprentice Birmingham
If we were at this point now, in 12 months, I would be happy. But the fact that we're here after only two or three months is just incredible.
Who was handling your marketing before you joined the Academy?
We had a marketing executive who’d been with us for three and a half years and she was leaving. We needed a replacement, which we thought about trying to hire ourselves, but the challenge was to find the right person. I had the call with James at exactly the right time, we were thinking of hiring and I wanted to explore a different avenue for us to acquire a digital marketer.
The need for us was somebody who could continue to work on what the previous marketer had done in building the brand and the identity of the business, as well as working with an outsourced marketing company for certain elements such as SEO. We wanted more inbound inquiries coming in from clients so there were a number of tweaks that were needed for the new digital marketer also.
Our marketing team was one person, we’d become so dependent on them that in losing them we were going to basically stop marketing. We needed somebody who could come in quite quickly and, as best as they could, hit the ground running.
Why did you decide to go with the Working Knowledge Academy and an inexperienced marketer rather than bringing in somebody with experience?
The programme provided the right platform to be able to recruit somebody at that level who could learn and grow with us. What I really liked was how structured the programme is. One of my fears was that we’re a busy small team, and I’m not an expert in marketing, so I was worried about how I’d manage and develop someone. But with the programme, they have a mentor who provides that learning and development support as an expert alongside the work that they’re doing at the Academy.
The programme provided the right platform to be able to recruit somebody at that level who could learn and grow with us.
Sophie’s been with you nearly three months now. When did you know you’d made the right decision?
It was probably in week two or week three, to be honest. I was so impressed with how fast Sophie integrated into the team.
After the first masterclass Sophie did, we had a debrief and were on the phone for about an hour and a half. The amount of ideas that came from it that we could immediately implement was just brilliant. I was thinking at the time that she’s going to be busy for the next 12 months with this alone.
And this continues, so quite quickly Sophie embedded ideas into the business as well as taking responsibility for managing the relationship with the outsourced agency we use for SEO. She took it upon herself to kick-off some strategic marketing projects, as opposed to purely the tactical day-to-day stuff.
We’re now in month three, and we’re at the point of implementing the first of those projects and that was really well received by the team when she presented it.
If we were at this point now, in 12 months, I would be happy. But the fact that we’re here after only two or three months is just incredible.
Where do you see the future for the business now as a consequence of having Sophie on board and enrolled in the Academy?
Sophie’s identified how we create a deeper relationship with our customers, all touch points we would have with them and she’s working on developing that. Not only will she help us to potentially acquire more clients, she’ll help us to have better relationships with those clients and help us to get more of the types of clients that we want. I see huge potential benefit from the work that she’s doing.