Our Future Marketing Leaders show the industry is in safe hands
It is my great pleasure to introduce you to Marketing Week’s inaugural Future Marketing Leaders, sponsored by Digitas.
Marketing Week is as much about celebration as it is criticism. And it is with the former in mind that we have decided to launch Future Marketing Leaders - a celebration of 10 individuals on the rise, who have already made their mark in their organisations and beyond. They are a cohort we expect to achieve even more in the years ahead.
Every year for the last five, we have unveiled the Marketing Week Top 100 – this year also sponsored by Digitas – a list of marketing leaders at the top of their game in the most senior position in their organisation. As valuable as it is to identify these exemplars of effective marketing leadership, we also wanted to present to you examples of marketers who we feel have a fighting chance of being the Top 100 of tomorrow - people who have achieved much and are set to have a big impact on their brands, colleagues and even the industry in the years to come.
They were chosen based on nominations from Marketing Week Top 100 members, and judges of the Top 100. From those nominations, we arrived at these 10 on the basis of their contribution to their business, their influence in driving change, their commitment to raising the status and stature of marketing and their leadership achievements and potential.
Practically, they needed to have been in marketing roles for a maximum of 15 years, be in a brand-side role and not be the most senior marketer in their business.
You can see the list here, where you can find out more about the backgrounds of the 10 chosen, as well as some of their thoughts on the marketing universe. From the opportunities and challenges for marketing and marketers in the years ahead, to their advice for the next generation of marketers, we have grilled them for their thoughts on marketing, now and in the future.
On the latter, it’s really refreshing to see them as excited by marketing’s past as its future.
For example, Tesco’s George Rivers’ wonderfully sober take on technology: “There’s no doubt that technology will impact how we do our jobs, but it has to be used to augment the fundamentals, not replace them.”
Elsewhere, Little Moons’ Anna Draper offers this on AI: “We should all be mindful about a slide towards defaulting to AI for creative solutions at the expense of the human imagination.”
Neither of these statements is a rejection of technology, more an appreciation of the extent it to which it can help, as well as a reminder of what marketers do best – strategy, creativity and empathy.
Jen Berry, UK CEO of our partner Digitas, puts it well when explaining the significance of this new project: “We're always looking to the future and we really believe in the power of the next generation. Developing the inaugural Future Marketing Leaders list has been such an important part of our partnership with Marketing Week. Congratulations to all those who made the list this year – we can't wait to see the impact you will have.”
The future of marketing is in safe hands.