Finalists on Middlesex University Dubai’s prestigious Masters of Arts in Marketing Communication (MAMC) programme came face to face with four of the leading lights in Dubai’s marketing avant garde at the recent “MAMC off-site experience” staged at the Kempinski Hotel MoTE.
Rupert Diss, Director of Marketing, Sales and Innovation at Gallery One opened up the event and shared his decades of experience in the field as a marketing veteran with experience both agency and client sides with a captivated audience. Rupert stated that “The Marketing Department is no longer considered the ‘toy-box’ of companies and it is now more measured, monitored and accountable than ever” – so be ready and keep the finance department on side! He also demonstrated that it was mission critical for marketers to champion and seamlessly integrate the marketing function to the Sales Department by removing the decade old silos. This instantly changes the game and moves the marketing function from passive and reactive to proactive, which has significant and measurable results. More importantly the two functions must sit together and share office space.
During his presentation Rupert also defined why the job title ‘Marketing Manager’ is now defunct with the exponential rise of Social Media, where regular customer dialogue is now a given and required to be in real-time too, where many companies are just not structured or set up to facilitate this with age old reporting lines and BPO’s ‘Business Prevention Officers’. Marketing Managers today are now important ‘Brand Journalists’ and Chief Marketing Officers need to update their skills profile and move towards Chief Real Time Officer Responsibilities. Rupert champions the marketing for Gallery One (g-1) which was formed in 2005 by Gregg and Jane Sedgwick. Gallery One has a vision to become the world’s leading branded gallery group, the Company has grown from a single 350 square foot store in Dubai to 10 retail gallery stores in four countries. It continues to expand with the aim to own and operate 100 retail stores in three Continents by 2015 with its latest store in Richmond opening the day of the presentation.
The MAMC is unique in the region and covers the key subjects related to marketing communications as a strategic marketing tool, including an analysis of the core components of marketing communications, such as advertising, public relations and sales promotions. Both traditional and new media forms are examined and their effectiveness analysed in the context of durable products, fast-moving consumer goods, services and social marketing campaigns. Students develop knowledge, skills and capabilities to an advanced level in market research as well as strategic marketing and decision-making. An emphasis on strategic marketing gives delegates the skills to participate in the formulation, implementation and evaluation of organisation-wide decisions related to competition, products and consumers.
Mita Ray of the Market Buzz took to the stage and in an honest matter of fact presentation, told the audiences all about how being a niche marcoms player in the B2B business has its advantages. Mita set up Market Buzz to help small businesses successfully leverage PR to establish a reputation in their key market segments. With over 20 years experience in PR & Marketing, she worked on strategic communications plans for companies as diverse as automobile dealerships, logistic companies, electronics, music, publishing and IT. Mita and Market Buzz are active proponents of social media and encourages clients, colleagues and networking business partners to maximise the use of these creative tools for communication; successfully building it into PR strategies.
MAMC Coordinator Dr. Alun Epps stated that “The MAMC team is keen to get experts in from the “real world” to engage with the students and this event sees over a century of marketing excellence show-cased in a matter of hours. Ultimately, there is an assessment based on the day but it is taken for granted that those present will gain immeasurably from interacting with leading lights in the local marketing community”. Dr. Doug Young who teaches strategic marketing to the students added “The students will now be able to write an interesting story about the real world situations of businesses in Dubai.”
A leading luxury brands professional started the afternoon session off by explaining the very essence of luxury to the audience. He gave the group the benefit of his exposure to luxury goods both in and out of the region. Finally he demonstrated how some of the world’s largest fashion houses maintain their brands and momentum when the markets are in turmoil. Despite the economic crisis, luxury brands are still posting considerable profits with the three largest luxury goods groups having posted double-digit growth percentages at the end of 2011 and the current year looking even more promising.”
Lee Mancini, Managing Director of Sekari, a Search & Social Optimisation Agency then closed off the event. Sekari are the first and only dedicated Search and Social Agency in the region. Dubai SEO [ www.sekari.com/seo ] specialist agency Sekari places Search at the very core of all their digital marketing activities. This dedicated commitment to Search places Sekari in the enviable position of being the market leader in this space. Having delivered Search and Social Optimisation strategies for the past 4 years, Sekari has built the most powerful regional content marketing capability.
The MAMC is in its 8th year of operation at Middlesex Dubai and our alumni list is like a who’s who in the world of marcoms. The course has traditionally been offered on a two year part time basis for the busy working professional and more recently a one year format for the full time student. In January 2013, for the first time, Middlesex Dubai will start a new part-time intake for the MAMC. Admissions for January 2013 start places are now open, so enrol now and reap the benefits!