This article from Kathryn will make you feel inspired and hungry in equal measure..
BA (Hons) Media, Film and Video Production
What is involved in your day-to-day work as the Digital Marketing Manager for wagamama?
All sorts! It’s a diverse role. A typical day can involve reviewing designs for a marketing email, briefing our agency on a new social media campaign, building new pages on one of our websites or diving into data to see what our customers are actually doing and how they are interacting with the brand. All this informs an ever evolving strategy to ensure the business continues to do as well at its doing right now.
What have been your main career achievements to date?
I’ve had a lot of what I would call achievements; to me that’s successfully creating a piece of work that you’ve worked hard on and are really proud of. I’ve been lucky to do that for some great brands such as London 2012, Chase Distillery, Harley-Davidson and of course at wagamama. Although I have to admit winning awards and getting industry recognition is brilliant to – I was lucky enough to get an award for the wagamama website which I re-designed and relaunched in 2015.
How has your qualification from Bucks helped your career?
My degree really sparked my interest in digital. I particularly enjoyed the video production modules and I naturally gravitated towards digital jobs after I graduated. Having a degree in a relevant field gave my first employer, a TV editing company, the confidence that I knew my stuff, and without that start I wouldn’t be where I am now.
Upon reflection, what skills did your qualification give you that help in your job?
A good understanding of a wide range of and sometimes seemingly irrelevant subjects. I’ll be honest, at times I would think ‘how is learning about this relevant to the real working world?!’ but when I started working, it fell into place. The tutors knew why they were teaching us that! Although ‘being digital’ is relatively new, its rooted in traditional media, and having a solid understanding in that makes me better at my job today.
What advice would you give to a student who is about to graduate into your role/industry?
Be a sponge. This industry changes fast and you need to keep up. Read blogs and articles, tinker with your own projects so you can learn by doing and, of course, get real work experience if you can. It might be badly paid but it’s a foot in the door and it’ll give you the edge over other candidates when you’re job hunting after graduation.
Are there any misconceptions about your role/industry that you would like to address?
Well it’s marketing + advertising right, so it’s all agency meetings over a beer and making sure you pick the right shade of blue? Afraid not! Well, picking the right shade of blue can mean the difference between £25,000 of sales and £75,000 of revenue, but knowing how to make that decision means knowing some psychology. And maths is needed to crunch the numbers and analyse your campaigns. A creative flair is also useful. A great digital marketer is a part-creative, part-technical multi-tasker!
What advice would you pass on to your first year self?
Absorb as much as you can, even if it seems irrelevant. Trust that you’re learning something for a reason. I promise it will fall into place later on!
Also, make sure you have an active social life. Uni is just as much about gaining great life experiences and making solid life-long friendships.
Are there any other fond memories of your time at Bucks New University you’d like to share?
I think I did Uni right. I went to a lot parties, drunk a lot of alcohol, made who-only-knows-how-many fancy dress costumes, worked some really menial and badly paid jobs, got into some debt, made (almost) every lecture, finished all my work on time, nailed my dissertation and graduated happy.
I gave myself a solid foundation for a great award winning career AND amazing friends for life. A group of us are actually meeting up next month 16 years after we graduated…
A message from Bucks New University Alumni Service:
Kathryn, thank you so much for this insight into your career, and for the advice for current students to make the most of their time with us and achieve their dreams.
Hopefully once our other graduates have dragged themselves away from their local branch of wagamama they will follow suit!
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You can find out more about courses relevant to this testimonial from these links:
- BA (Hons) Film and Television Production
- BA (Hons) Marketing
- BA (Hons) Advertising Management and Digital Communications
- Postgraduate Courses