Would IBU to go ‘off brief’?

(15 Posts)
NoisyBrain Wed 31-Oct-18 07:05:08

I have a second interview for a Marketing Manager role on Friday, for which I’ve been asked to prepare a 45 minute presentation for the CEO critiquing the company’s current website and social media activity. For context, the company only started doing any kind of marketing activity about a year ago and it is still very much an immature part of their business.

I get that the website and social media is/will be important marketing channels, but must admit I’m a little surprised that a) that’s ALL they’re asking a potential Marketing Manager to talk about and b) they’re expecting me to fill 45 minutes with it!

If I were in their shoes I’d be wanting to know how the MM would go about developing a marketing plan to get them where they want to be, including all the channels they’d use, and that they were capable of strategic thinking as well as the day to day stuff.

I’m thinking of touching on that, to show that I’ve thought of the bigger picture. Or do you think they really want me to go through their website and social channels in minute detail and point out how it could be improved?? Incidentally I already know they’re having a new website built so I suspect they want to see if I highlight the same issues that their web agency presumably has.

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CarryOnScreamingValenta Wed 31-Oct-18 07:14:17

I'd make the website/SM the focus of the presentation but frame it as part of a wider strategic plan - so 'top and tail' your detailed analysis with the bigger picture and as you go through details about the digital marketing, relate them back briefly to your overall plan.

ShotsFired Wed 31-Oct-18 07:26:10

It sounds to me like they want to do a website review and are using you as a jumping-off point to get the donkeywork done.

I would outline the major things that stood out to me, and then maybe pick one to drill down on and use that to segue into other ideas and experience you have for that role.

DearPrudence Wed 31-Oct-18 09:31:27

45 minutes is ridiculously long for an interview presentation.

I think it's fine have to talk about the website in the context of a broader strategy. You can critique it to an extent but you'd have to talk about who it's aimed at and what the company wants the user to know, think or believe about the company. Then you can assess how well you think it does that based on your assumptions about the marketing strategy and customer/user segments.

If I was interviewing I would definitely want to hear how you as a marketing manager would make sure that the marketing strategy is clearly defined and expressed through a marketing and social strategy.

Nightmanagerfan Wed 31-Oct-18 09:42:24

I would start by talking about the changes in marketing over recent years and the fact that digital is integrated into any marketing plan and can’t be separated out - lots of business people still see it as a separate function - eg we should have some social media presence but don’t see the need to join it all up. So yes I think your approach is right. I’d cover: optimising website for sales, content creation and plan for social, remarketing, using goals on google analytics, adwords etc.

Though they are trying to get some consultancy for free, which would annoy me no end!

TwitterQueen1 Wed 31-Oct-18 09:53:27

You're right of course OP. I would perhaps start with the website & social stuff being the digital shop window for the company and focus on how everything has to be in place behind the scenes before you can present a truly cohesive 'display'.

So, for the social elements on the website, start with how they're pushing their social channels and then talk about the strategy behind it - purpose (clicks, brand, engagement etc) content calendar, responsiveness, disaster recovery etc.

For the website in general - maybe throw lots of questions at them disguised as assumptions, eg "I'm assuming you've got a clear picture of what you want your website to achieve and how it represents the company's mission statement..."

Sounds to me like the classic situation where someone on the senior management team believes they know all about marketing, whereas they clearly don't....

NoisyBrain Wed 31-Oct-18 12:12:00

Thank you all so much! You have helped reassure me that I do know what I’m talking about smile

TwitterQueen1 I think you have hit the nail on the head!

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Alfie190 Wed 31-Oct-18 19:19:47

I think they could be trying to get some free consulting from you!

NoisyBrain Fri 02-Nov-18 15:43:18

Just by way of an update...
The '45 minutes' was a case of the recruitment consultant getting her wires crossed. A further conversation with her clarified that this was the intended length of the whole interview.

Anyway, I included the strategic/planning stuff (obviously I used a better word than 'stuff'!) and they said they were very impressed with how I'd given them more than they'd asked for, and the content as a whole. I should hear back some time next week when they've seen the other second interview candidate.

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ScreamingValenta Fri 02-Nov-18 17:32:25

Fingers crossed for you!

HollyBollyBooBoo Fri 02-Nov-18 17:34:55

Definitely extend the brief, always go above and beyond.

As a side note, will the job be big enough for you? Our sound light years ahead of them?

NoisyBrain Sun 04-Nov-18 16:39:47

I got the job! They were so impressed with me that decided they didn't need to see the other candidate again.

HollyBolly As someone who tends to suffer from Imposter Syndrome your last comment has put a big smile on my face, thank you smile

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ScreamingValenta Sun 04-Nov-18 16:56:30


HollyBollyBooBoo Sun 04-Nov-18 17:13:46

Amazing! Well done you! Good luck with it.

RainbowsArePretty Mon 05-Nov-18 08:42:33


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