Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Tuning-in to Queens

Tune-in? Who listens to radio anymore? Well, I might. :) Queens Radio anyway.

When I accepted the position at the Queens Campus Bookstore I thought I didn't know anything about digital marketing. Until this point in my career I've snickered at the position of marketer from my broad-stroked advertising and big-budget design background. The funny thing is, I've been marketing myself digitally this whole time and didn't even realize it. I've been selling myself through LinkedIn.com, Blogger (adsportfolio.com), Facebook (facebook.com/andrewdeansutton), my Twitter account (@andrewsutton), my company's website (g33kdesign.com), my podcast (www.jedivshobbits.com), and, linking them all together, my Google profile page.

Since 1995 or so, I've been surfing around the web as a power-user. I'd poke my nose into various RSS feeds, newsgroups and chat rooms. I'd read blogs or design myself a web page or two, open up a new account on any number of curious startups like amazon or myspace just to see what they're all about. Before 1995 I was connecting to Bulletin Board Systems with my computer to read tech articles and play online text-based games. The digital world has been my playground since there's been a digital world to play in.

Needless to say, I know what I'm doing. Which is good and has put my mind at ease. However, every day since I've accepted this position I've been trying to tune-in to the digital scene at Queens and I'm being overwhelmed! Each day I find another twitter feed, RSS feed, news source or social site to watch. Queens is bursting at the seams with digital media!

So the question is: How am I, with the bookstore, going to break in?

Wish me luck!

Monday, June 27, 2011

One more week.

I feel like I have just been buckled into a roller coaster. We are slowly tracking up the massive inclined rails and, while I can see the peak and I know what’s coming, the suspense is excruciating.

I am wearing a safety harness, so that’s comforting. I received some excellent news for my career today. I’ve passed the examination and portfolio interview and now qualify to apply for membership with the Registered Graphic Designers of Ontario (R.G.D. Ontario). Membership will look fantastic on my resume and finding out I’ve passed has made the weight on my shoulders a little lighter.

As the peak of the coaster approaches I can’t help but think of the fast, out of control feeling to come. In the next few weeks I’ll be leaving a comfortable job of four years that hasn’t given me much grief. (With a glowing letter of recommendation.) I’ll be saying goodbye to Ottawa and moving back to my ‘hometown’, Kingston. We’ll be giving the keys to our house to complete strangers as tenants. That, I have to admit, disturbs me somewhat. We have our second property that will need some ‘sprucing up’ before we can hope to ask for rent that will exclude the wrong class of people. I also don’t have a home to move my family into right away. So, for the first time in my life, I’ll be couch hopping with my wife and two kids. One week at my brother and Millie’s house and one week at Randy and Mary Ann’s house (my in-laws). Hopefully after that we’ll be moving into our new home and we can start to put down roots.

All this is happening because in exactly one week today I start my new career in marketing at the Queens University’s Campus Bookstore. I have to admit I am more excited about this job than I have ever been over the previous two. I think the challenge is fuel for my fire. Every minute of packing and preparing has been one hundred percent worth it.

I am continuing to read and brainstorm and think about this new position and I am planning to arrive on the scene with really great ideas and ready to initiate them. I’ve spoken to professional marketers in my circle. They’ve given me great advice and I am very interested to see what I can do with it.

Next week I will have a real update. This week I’m packing my house and preparing my mind!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A new year. A new perspective.

Ok. I'll be the first to admit that I've let my blog slip over the last year or so. I was fired up at first but then I didn't think it was getting me anywhere and that blogs weren't important. However, many things have now come to pass that are making me think otherwise. Thus, I am promising a weekly update of my career for, what I hope will continue for, the rest of my career.

I recently accepted a position at Queens University Campus Bookstore. This means, after 10 years, I will be leaving Ottawa. I am very nervous as I feel I understand the design/advertising industry in Ottawa and I am not sure if that same understanding will translate. Fortunately, I am not going to be working in design or advertising; at least not in a primary capacity. I will be a digital marketer. Confused? So was I. I had to do some research and, quite frankly, I was shocked at how much digital marketing entailed.

I thought the usual 'advertising avenues' would suffice; Google AdWords, Facebook Marketing, email newsletter and we're done. I couldn't have shot lower if I tried.

I bought a copy of Strategy Magazine. I will definitely be subscribing. I also read "Everything I know about marketing I learned from Google" by Aaron Goldman. I am currently reading "The new Rules of Marketing & PR" by David Meerman Scott. These books are opening my eyes and blowing my mind.

I now have big plans that will involve a lot of work. I am excited about how success will be gauged with actual response. I am going into this job with little experience in marketing and public relations. However, when I'm done I'm hoping to emerge with a shiny new addition to my resume; "Andrew Sutton – Advertising, Graphic Design, Marketing & PR". Won't it be wonderful.