Linking the driver of stakeholder value to shareholder value

Professor Malcolm McDonald addressed a packed lecture theatre at MMUBS with a presentation which opened with the strong message: ‘The only corporate objective is profit’ and that ‘Any strategy statement that cannot explain why customers should buy your product or service is doomed to failure.’

He warned that although this isn’t rocket science, as we’ve been in a growth market for so long marketeers had forgotten that the only line is the bottom line and that he asserted, was the way into the boardroom.

He urged practitioners to get back to what matters, and whilst there was a current preoccupation with all things digital, marketeers should not take their eye off the ball.

‘Where are the customers? What are customer needs? How can you have a social media strategy when you don’t have a strategy? What are we doing? We need to get ourselves back in the boardroom.’

Understanding the customer and having a grip on the financial impact of marketing activity he suggested provides the key to taking a seat at the top table.

Professor Malcolm Macdonald has just released a new book ‘Marketing and Finance’ which brings together for the first time CIMA and CIM joint acknowledgements.

MMUBS and the CIM will next be hosting the evening lecture’ The evolution of Google – how digital is driving growth’ on Thursday 14 November. Register your free place at http://www.cim.co.uk/Events/EventDetails.aspx?crid=57680

Rise of the PR Graduate

At last, according to this article by Anne Gregory, The Days of the Glorious Amateur are Over, our industry employers are starting to see the value of PR graduates.

I have, for several years, been extremely frustrated to read features in PR Week that harp on about how PR Graduates are unnecessary to industry, while at the same time I receive countless requests for good PR graduates from employers, and read studies from academics such as Alison Theaker that track the meteoric career rise of PR graduates in the US compared with their non-cognate colleagues.

Europe, and specifically Britain, at last appear to have cottoned on to the incredible fact that studying a subject for several years of your life might actually make you better prepared to fulfil the requirements of your work than not doing so – amazing!!

Progress at last… and very good news for our graduates at MMU.

Cosmo Careers

Hello everyone,

Last night I attended the Cosmo Careers Masterclass in Manchester. It was for people interested in working in fashion, whether it be designing, PR, journos etc…. So I met some fab people & saw loads of fabulous outfits!

On arrival we had champagne and mingled with everyone for half an hour. Then we were taken into the lecture theatre where we saw an amazing panel of: the Cosmo editor, a designer for Missguided, a buyer of luxury labels, a PR from BooHoo, a fashion journalist who is known for her Catwalk to Curvy column in Cosmo and finally, a PR from Gorgeous Couture. We also saw out fabulous goody bags laid out ready for us (see pictures below).

The talk began with the panel introducing themselves and then editor Louise asked the panel a series of questions which would give the audience some great insights into the industry and their best advice and tips. We were given insights into where they began and how they worked their way up, tips for CV writing, interviews…. A whole raft of information. It was all so inspiring!

At the end of the session, they opened up for the floor for half an hour so that we could ask them any questions we may have. This was great and made the session really personal.

Even though some of the information given didn’t directly apply to my field of PR (if it was a design question for example), it didn’t matter! You could apply a lot of the information to the PR field anyway and it was valuable to get an insight into the fashion industry as a whole too.

It was a thoroughly enjoyable night which ended with the opportunity to walk up to the panel at the end of the session for any final questions. One of the main bits of personal advice that has stuck with me is to always be open to learning new things. I think sometimes when you are going to interview, you feel like you need to know everything, where in reality- you don’t! The industry is constantly changing so there is no way that you will ever know it all.

Definitely keep an eye out for future Cosmo Careers events- you meet a fantastic panel, people and walk away with some priceless advice!

Thanks for reading,
Saffron xo

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Euprera’s 2013 Congress

Last week saw me attend Euprera’s (European Public Relations Education and Research Association) annual congress, which this year was held in Barcelona.

Hosted by the Ramon Llull University in central Barcelona there was a mixture of Parallel sessions, keynote speakers, such as Robert Health and social activities. Thursday kicked off with a guided tour around the world famous Sagrada Familia, now I have visited it several times before but it was still every bit as interesting this time as the first time. If you ever find yourself in Barcelona I would highly recommend it.

As the rest of the congress unfolded there was a wide variety of topics discussed from CSR programmes, grassroots campaigns to the effective use of social media from academics across Europe. My turn came on Friday afternoon when I presented a research paper which looked at whether positive relationships between PR practitioners and journalists can be build via social media.

In a nutshell my research found that social media (in particular) Twitter is an incredibly useful tool for PR practitioners to use for media relations purposes, but there are specific rules and contexts that need to be observed for maximum benefits to be gained. This ignited some interesting discussions with academics that were undertaking similar research.

All in all a very worthy conference for PR academics to discuss the most current areas of research and a date worth putting your diary for 2014.

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