After nearly 6 years of absorbing the hustle, bustle, and electric vibe that is Joburg, it’s now official, I’m heading back to my home town – Cape Town.
At the end of July I am going to be leaving BMW South Africa, one of the best places that a digital marketer can wish to work at, to head up client strategy at my previous company Quirk eMarketing.
Before I go any further, I’d like to point any of those interested in being the Interactive Marketing Manager at BMW South Africa to this page: Position: BMW Interactive Marketing Manager.
I’ve learned an incredible amount at BMW. Moving from agency to corporate was a massive culture change which was mush easier to handle than I initially expected. I think it has much to do with the open-minded approach the company has to digital. As a technological innovator, BMW really encourages the culture of innovation to filter through all areas of the business and I felt it.
As the first “emarketing specialist” to be placed in the position, I’m really proud to have pioneered a few changes to the way we use online as a channel to generate leads as well as build communities. A couple things that I focussed on in the last few years:
- Relaunching BMW.co.za in 2007 with completely re-written (initially provided from the international HQ), search optimised source code. This re-write became a pilot for what you see on BMW.com today.
- Being an advisor to BMW HQ in Germany on natural search optimisation.
- Piloting BMW’s “foray” into Facebook with the BMW SA fan page (which incidentally is up to just under 7.5k fans)
- Supporting the launches of the following: 1 Series 3 & 5 door, Coupe, and Convertible, 3 Series Coupe and Convertible, M3, 7 Series, X5, Z4 Coupe, and new Z4 Roadster.
The experience I’ve gained in working on the strategy side for a brand like BMW has been invaluable. To work with a company that has such “brand gravity” as i like to put it, gives you such brilliant opportunities to experiement with smaller little projects. Passionate brand advocates (and there are many of them!) are always quick to adopt and provide honest (and prompt) feedback. The potential for pushing the boundaries from the social marketing/media side is endless.
Whoever takes the reigns is guaranteed to have an amazing experience.
Moving back to the company I joined as a usability/jack of all trades type in 2002 is really exciting. I joined Quirk as the 5th team member and soon disovered that this was a different type of agency. The amount of encouragement to learn and share information is certainly what positioned Quirk as a company that was ahead of the curve in terms of emarketing thinking. I even remember an IM conversation I had with Rob soon after I joined BMW about the fact that I thought that Quirk was perhaps a little too far ahead of the curve, so much so that it would be difficult to sell services to customers for problems (and opportunities) that they didn’t even know they had at the time.
I was wrong.
The dedication to the culture of innovation and education hasn’t died and the company has expanded (both business and staff wise) at an unbelievable rate. I think the quirkstar compliment is nearing 60.
The opportunities in the eMarketing space are incredibly exciting and to (re)join a team that is rocketing upwards and onwards is a fantastic prospect.
So there you have it. My last day will be somewhere near the end of July. We’re hoping to place someone to start in August. So if you or anyone you may know that is truly passionate about driving an amazing brand into the future, please click here (or share the link via: Twitter and/or LinkedIn).