Interested in a career in marketing? We caught up with a local marketing controller to find out more about the role…..

What does your company produce? 

My company produces a range of beers. 

How long have you worked for your company? 

I have worked here for seven years and in total, I’ve been working in food and drink, mainly in Scotland, since 1996.

Describe a tyipcal day in your role 

My job is great because it involves a lot of variety so it’s hard to pin down a typical day. The main purpose of a marketing controller is to lead a team to create and implement brand plans which will increase demand. Mostly that means thinking about consumer behaviour, who we really want to buy our products and what it is about our products that will particularly appeal to them.

Depending on the answers to those questions, we might end up working on new recipes; with designers on new packaging; with PR, advertising or promotional agencies on campaigns to get our brand noticed; and always with our company’s sales teams to get them excited about going out and selling our products.

My job involves travelling to meet our importers a few times a year, which gets me out into the pubs of Moscow, St Petersburg or New York (as well as some offices there too).

There are, of course, less glamourous parts to the job: processes and procedures that need to be followed, about a billion emails a day to deal with, sometimes lengthy conference calls with colleagues based elsewhere and of course budgeting and managing the money. But overall it is a true honour!

What is the best bit about your job?

The best part of my job is that you get to come up with ideas and somewhere down the line, after a bit of hard work from a lot of people, they end up being something real in the world which folk you’ve never met will interact with, see, hear about or buy. For example, the ideas for new beers often come from me. It’s really cool being able to go into a pub and buy your friends a pint of a beer you invented, and even cooler when strangers like it so much they post pics of it on their Instagram.

What is the biggest challenge? 

I think most marketing people would tell you that the biggest challenge is that there’s never enough money to do all the stuff you want to! You learn ways to deal with that and create good lean plans!

What would you recommend to someone interested in a career in marketing? 

It’s a lot easier to enjoy this sort of job if you’re marketing (or selling) a product that you care about. Try to speak to as many people who are involved in it as you can. I think sales is a great place to start a marketing career as it helps you understand the people who are the key to your success.

Apart from that, my advice is pretty general: keep an open mind, don’t be afraid to be creative but do try to make decisions based on facts and be respectful of others’ views and experiences.

Copyright © 2016 - 2019 East Lothian Food and Drink Limited