In this month’s edition of our Employee Spotlight series we talked to our Senior Marketing Manager, EMEA, Sophie Parry-Billings. Sophie shares the biggest changes she’s seen in affiliate marketing during her career, her daily routine for a successful day, and more about the Turn the Talk initiative she helped launched in 2019.
Can you tell us about your role at AP, and how you ended up working in affiliate marketing?
I’m the Senior Marketing Manager for the EMEA region. My focus is on our brand and marketing strategy in the EMEA region, ensuring we grow our reach and support new business acquisition. I cover all areas of in-house marketing function meaning no day is the same – which I love. My team covers everything from content production, to demand generation right through to events and award entries. There’s certainly a lot to juggle, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
How did you find yourself in the world of affiliate marketing?
After graduating from University I completed some marketing and PR work experience and it was then I knew I wanted a marketing role. I loved how you could be both creative and strategic and the variety of opportunities in the field. I started applying for a range of inhouse marketing roles and secured a job at affiliate network affilinet working as a Marketing Executive. Six years later,I’m still in the industry. I really like the close-knit nature of our industry, there is a ton of supportive people. and You can always guarantee you’ll bump into someone you know at an event.
What has been the biggest change you’ve seen in affiliate marketing during your career?
I think the biggest shift I’ve seen is the move towards partner marketing. When I started out in the affiliate industry more than 6 years ago this wasn’t a term I heard a lot, but now it’s the new buzzword. This is something Acceleration Partners is really focusing on especially as we move into 2020. We believe that partner marketing is the future of our industry and we want to ensure our clients are at the forefront of this. Actually, our CEO and EMEA Managing Director just did a podcast on the past, present, and future of partner marketing, and what it means. I’m really excited to see what new and exciting partners come into our industry as a result of this.
What’s your daily routine for success?
I’d like to say I follow a set morning routine each and every day, as I know many successful people do this. But the truth is I don’t. Working remotely has allowed me to gain back time each morning and evening that used to be lost going back and forth on the Underground (I definitely don’t miss that). I like to use this free time to do something productive especially in the morning. Some days I like to go to a yoga class or other days I’ll do a few household chores. One routine that never changes for me is I always go for a walk during the working day. I think it’s so important to reset and have time away from your desk. I often find I have my best ideas or come to the best solutions when I take a break and grab some fresh air. I also always start my day reviewing my to-do list and planning my focus areas for that day.
Can you tell us a little more about Turn the Talk, the initiative you launched with Connected Path this year to recognise the need for more diverse representation in the affiliate industry, and what you’ve learned from it to date?
Being part of the Turn the Talk initiative in 2019 has certainly been a career highlight and I’m really proud of what the whole team has achieved. We started Turn the Talk as we felt that diversity was an issue that prevailed across the affiliate industry. The mission is to empower individuals and broaden voices across the performance marketing industry. This year the initiative has launched a website, released an industry first report on diversity and hosted a public speaking seminar. Turn the Talk has had a lot of interest and we certainly see a desire for continued support and more events in 2020. It’s been great to see some many people enthused by increasing diversity and supporting the initiative from speaking to attending to sponsorship. I think there is still a long way to go in terms of turning the needle when it comes to diversity but working together as an industry, I think this can be achieved. Diversity is so important to ensure we listen to a broad range of opinions and perspectives.
How does working remotely accommodate your lifestyle?
Working remotely has really helped me to juggle the demands of both my personal and professional life. I feel I have a far higher quality of life now that I work remotely. It’s not just the remote working, but also the flexibility. Being able to change locations to work really helps me boost my productivity. Some days I work from home, other days at a coworking space, and others at a local coffee shop. I find changing scenery regularly helps me focus and be more productive.
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