In the third instalment of the series, I am pleased to feature Sarah Mayo, Marketing Director EMEA at FreemanXP.
How did you find yourself in your current role?
In Autumn last year, I was approached about an exciting Marketing Director role for a relatively new player to the experiential marketing sector, and a long-established provider of exhibition services. Despite being the largest events company in the world, I hadn’t heard of FreemanXP at the time – so I was naturally curious to find out a bit more. The Freeman story is fascinating – family-owned and nearly 90 years old, my interest was piqued. And after meeting a number of the team and hearing about their vision, talent and approach to experience design, I was sold. And as a story-teller – this was the ideal job – I had a brilliant story to reveal to the industry.
What has been the biggest development(s)/challenge(s) you’ve encountered in your industry in the past year?
I think the greatest challenge and opportunity for brands and their agencies in the sector is to deliver truly unique, relevant and memorable experiences that meet the clients’ objectives. This requires deep understanding of the brand and its goals, the competitive landscape, the audience they’re trying to engage with and a good idea of what success looks like from their perspective. To do this effectively requires significant insight, face-time with the client and a strong strategic and creative approach. If pitching, this can be a big investment for agencies.
What do you think will be the next trend(s) for the industry?
Having just returned from Mobile World Congress, mobile is clearly front of mind for me… Themes continue to be personalisation and how mobile is everywhere and everything – infiltrating every element of our lives, connecting us and enabling us – whether it’s through speed, mobility, entertainment, healthcare, down to understanding and managing our pets and homes… This in turn will continue to influence the events and experiential industry – but the watch out here is to ensure that whatever activation is implemented, it needs to be relevant to the brand message, to be truly effective and stand out.
Who or what has been the biggest influence on your career to date?
My first job working for Callaway Golf gave me the passion to pursue and remain within the events industry. I was lucky enough to travel to many exciting places, work with some big names in golf (my favourite being Seve Ballesteros) and learn about events, from literally the grassroots up… Had I taken that job in Canary Wharf for a fund management company, my life might be very different but not the richer for it.
Whether they’re new in the game, or changing career, what advice do you have for others starting out?
Be passionate and enjoy every minute. If not… then ask yourself why not and find a role that you do love. It’s true that the more you put into something, the more you’ll get out of it.
Sarah Mayo – Marketing Director EMEA, FreemanXP
Sarah is passionate about telling stories through the use of words, experiences, and marketing communications. With more than 15 years experience working with global leading brands, she has led some of the world’s most exciting events and campaigns.