I applied for a job a few years ago and I got down to the last few candidates. I was very excited as it was a 'big brand' and at the final 'papal nod of the CEO' stage he began to ask me what I thought was an odd line of questioning. It started pretty early into what became the longest half hour of my life. "So Mark, have you always been overweight?" he asked.
With each year came new challenges as my children grew and their needs began to change. The overlap between running a business and running a home became more and more apparent as we all shaped our lives. My realisation through this time was that there are always four things which largely cross-over with running a business and your family home...
Twenty years from now, people involved in marketing will look back on the early 21st Century and smile at how straightforward marketing used to be; a time when all we had to worry about was how to persuade people to want something enough to buy it. There are very good reasons to believe that the nature of marketing is going to change radically over the coming decades... and that it will change for good.
At Raconteur we endeavour to have honest, frank conversations with the best of the best - we feel it's important to know how different field leaders, from advertisers and business people to creatives and consumers, think about the world of marketing today. So we interviewed Heidi Taylor, Head of Government & Public Sector Marketing at PwC...
HD Personality is built to help businesses and organisations deliver customer expectations; what should lead to customer experience and ultimately customer retention... almost all the resources allocated to re-branding exercises, crisis management and PR can be saved; if brands practiced honesty and directness in their communications.
The Tour de France revels in its own history... split into several clear stories - the story of who will win a stage and the races for the yellow, green, polka dot and white jerseys, all split into 21 stages (or indeed, chapters)... the Tour de France is the only major sporting event that demonstrates such complete cohesion between event and brand.
To be a master marketer, you have to be a master of content. But the 2014 forecast study by the CIM reported that only "44% of B2B marketers have a documented content strategy". The numbers suggest that thinking caps aren't on - marketers are pushing out content to tick boxes but floundering when it comes to producing strategic material that helps to achieve real business objectives.
What really matters is how the idea is executed. That's what makes the difference. Things like your brand, your marketing, the attention you pay your customers, and crucially - the passion you have for the idea - are what make your proposition unique. Success is built on people, not products or patents.
This has not been about David Moyes at all. His sad fate would have been the natural destiny of any inheritor of what was clearly a poisoned chalice, made more poisonous by the addition of that lethal factor of self-delusion. Because Manchester United have succeeded in convincing themselves that they are something special; the Biggest Club in the World.
This stems from a major difference between the Middle Eastern and Western cultures; in the UK, ecommerce leads the way, with consumers preferring the convenience and speed of browsing and ordering online to the hustle and bustle of the high street. In the Gulf, however, 'mall culture' remains dominant.