The significant updates and additions that have shaped Venditan Commerce in 2023.
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As we approach Christmas, it's time to feature Andy Flynn in our series of 'Meet The Team' articles. Andy recently celebrated his first anniversary, having joined the company in November 2022.
Hello, Andy! Let’s get straight into it - tell us a little about yourself.
Hello! I'm the Head of Digital Marketing at Venditan. While my primary focus is on our inbound marketing strategy, I also offer consultation and support to our clients, typically regarding their SEO strategies. There’s a nice balance to my role and I’ve really enjoyed my first year here.
I'm rapidly approaching the age of 30, and I'm unsure about how I feel about it! Seven of those years have been dedicated to a career in marketing, following an attempt at a Geography BSc at The University of Sheffield.
I quickly found that academia wasn’t for me, and I left, venturing into event promotion, local business and sports marketing before embarking on an apprenticeship with The Juice Academy, which played a crucial role in unlocking the career I am now building.
What’s one thing that people may not know about you?
I can say that I’ve performed at The Bridgewater Hall in Manchester, which I’m led to believe is quite the accolade for musicians. As part of the Sixth Form Choir, we butchered Take That’s ‘Greatest Day’ in front of a packed audience of pupils and parents.
Like most, I did it to get the day off lessons, but it was a cool experience.
What does your average day at Venditan look like?
I’ll start by tackling smaller tasks and client support before shifting my focus to whichever long-term project or priority I'm currently working on. This becomes my head-down focus throughout the afternoon.
I’m failing miserably at bringing my own lunches in, which is dangerous when you’re based in central Manchester.
I've been making a conscious effort to understand what conditions my brain needs to be productive and focused. I think it’s good to try and practice consistent working habits and a solid routine, particularly when working hybrid between the office and home.
The time of day seems to be crucial for me. I find it much easier to concentrate as the day progresses, so it’s housekeeping tasks first, followed by chunkier work that needs headphones in and no distractions… The music just can’t have any lyrics, that’s another one I’ve come to learn about myself!
What’s the best piece of advice that you could give to a junior or apprentice digital marketer who is just starting out?
Digital marketing is so broad, so I would discuss their skills with them. What are your strengths and weaknesses? Are you naturally creative? Do you enjoy data and analytics? Do you live on social media? How are your copywriting skills? Are you interested in pure marketing psychology?
At an early stage, aligning a career with natural strengths is a big opportunity. If you haven’t found your strengths yet, then try and pursue your main interests within the field of marketing.
While apprenticeship schemes offer a fantastic entry into the industry, caution is needed in selecting courses. Fast-tracking into a role that only partially matches your skills may hinder your long-term progression.
In short, if you’re amazing at copywriting, pursue copywriting, and try and find the best path to progress in that field.
Are there any eCommerce or retail trends you find particularly interesting in 2024?
You only ever really saw it in blockbuster films, but CGI is becoming increasingly accessible now and I’m interested in how brands are going to use it to create advertising content.
This video of a ‘The North Face’ jacket on Big Ben went viral last month.
It was later debunked as CGI created by JD Sports, but not after driving millions of impressions and countless backlinks.
What I love about this is how it feels like any other authentic social media post. It doesn’t feel like an advert. It’s produced in mobile dimensions, only runs for a matter of seconds and has no sales call to action or brand ownership attached. I suspect it’s a quite unique example of shock and awareness marketing using advanced CGI.
Give us an example of something you have learned since joining the team here at Venditan.
I recently celebrated my first anniversary, and my time at the company has been a fast-paced journey of getting up to speed with the Venditan Commerce ecosystem and understanding how we serve our customers. It's impossible to pinpoint one specific aspect, as I continue to learn daily, and every bit of knowledge is highly beneficial in supporting our marketing efforts.
What does a typical weekend look like in the life of Andy?
I follow Altrincham FC home and away so it’s fair to say that football dominates my life and dictates my emotional state.
If I’m not at a game, I enjoy hiking and visiting castles and other historical sites - particularly those across the border in Cymru - so I’ve quite a mixed bag of interests covering a full spectrum from football hooligan to medieval nerd!
And finally, to the future! What are your long-term career goals?
I’m fully focused on continuing to develop the inbound strategy for Venditan as we continue to add to our recently relaunched website. Rightly or wrongly, I don’t think too far ahead to the future and I don’t have any long-term aspirations, I just want to continually get better at what I do and that should stand me in good stead.
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