We speak to Sarah Robson, Marketing and Communications Manager for TRO. She tells us about how she got into marketing and her journey through the industry, and shares top tips for people looking to hone their marketing skills, and insight into marketing strategy.
Tell us about where you work now, your role and what you love about it.
I work at TRO – The Shared Experience Agency and have done for nearly five years. TRO have been in the business of live events and experiential marketing, creating incredible award-winning experiences for clients such as BMW, MINI, British Airways, Lucozade and Molson Coors for nearly forty years now!
How did get there? What’s been your journey?
I studied Festival and Events Management at Napier University and then participated in the Mountbatten programme in 2016-2017 whereby I completed an internship and acquired a post graduate certification, whilst living in New York for a year! I knew I wanted to pursue a career in events, given my previous experience, so upon returning to the UK I applied to become an Account Executive at TRO. I worked on some incredible brand experiences with BMW and MINI including a 6-month stint on the Formula E team where I was able to travel to some bucket list worthy places such as Mexico City, Sanya and Monaco.
After approximately three years in the project team, I put forward a case to switch roles and work on the New Business and Marketing team in TRO. After all the experience I had gained from working on the live events, I felt that my strengths may have been more suited to that side of the business. I was lucky enough that TRO supported the move and I haven’t looked back since!
Marketing is massive. What does marketing really mean, and what can it encompass?
Marketing is easy to define but what it encompasses, is an endless list. The breadth of tasks that are covered will really differ depending on whether you’re in-house or working within an agency and the type of company you work for.
As I work in-house, I view TRO as my client. It is my responsibility to think about how we are promoting ourselves and our services. For my job specifically, I work on our social media, website, award entries, case studies, press releases and so much more!
How did you choose the area of marketing you work in?
I love what TRO does and the world of experiential marketing so being able to get creative with how we talk about the work we do excites me. It was an easy transition for me because I’m passionate about what TRO do – it makes it an easy sell!
Can you share a few top tips for people looking to hone their skills in marketing?
- Get into the nitty gritty of what your company does – I have to say my project experience has been invaluable to my role in the New Business and Marketing team. Not every marketer gets that opportunity, but I would always recommend getting under the skin of what your company does because it allows you to build relationships with key teams and it ensures you’re creating more rounded content.
- Creativity – Creativity won’t be essential to every marketing role, but I always think it’s an important trait to have. Creativity allows you to push boundaries and to be innovative, which is imperative given the everchanging digital world we live in! Look for inspiration, set aside pockets of time to think creatively and try and apply it to your work or at the very least share it with your team as you never know what one idea might lead to!
- Staying on the pulse – This will differ industry to industry but with experiential marketing rapidly growing and evolving, it’s important for me to be on the pulse of trends and our competitor landscape to better inform our marketing strategies and comms plans.
- Put yourself in the shoes of your audience – In everything I do for TRO, I am constantly thinking about how it will potentially be perceived by our target audience, whether that be a social post or award entry, it is imperative to try and objectively look at the output and question: am I telling enough of a story? am I representing the brand effectively? am I selling us, our services and our key messaging in some shape or form?
You will have content pillars and commercial objectives in the back of your mind but you need to make sure whatever content you are creating resonates with the target audience whilst ticking internal boxes!
What makes a good marketing strategy? Are there any common must-haves?
There are lots of must-haves that might range depending on the type of campaign you are launching but some fundamentals are:
- Objectives & goals – When creating any sort of marketing strategy, it’s key to set key goals and objectives so you establish from the outset the purpose of the campaign and what you are collectively trying to achieve.
- Target audience – Whatever stream of marketing content you are creating, you will promoting it to a particular audience. Establishing who that audience are, how best to target them and then crafting the message to suit, is essential.
- Evaluation – It is imperative to determine the success of any campaign. By doing this, you can establish what worked and what didn’t and evolve the strategy for the next campaign. Measuring your success and ROI will be crucial but it’s also important to adapt strategies for future campaigns.