The topic “Gender Roles in Advertising” already sounded quite potent. So when our provocative speaker for the evening, Eika Chaturvedi Banerjee, took us on a fascinating journey through time, mythology and literature we sat with rapt attention. We heard stories of the Old Earth; the origins of civilisation and the beginning, as it seemed, of gender roles. She talked of the remains of those times - ancient idols and figurines – one depicting an ancient goddess. The goddesses’ biggest asset was her apparent femininity - wide hips and full breasts. Does physical appearance play a role in defining our gender role? Eika thinks so. She spoke of the greatest premium that various civilisations believed women had, from fertility in the East to innocence and virginity in the West.
Having been the UK's most influential network of senior marketers since 1959 and, expanding successfully into Hong Kong (2014), Singapore (2015), Middle East (2016) and New York (2017), we're delighted to have officially launched in India. Our mission has always been to inspire bolder marketing leadership and, working out of India, we aim to become the place for discerning senior marketers to learn, develop and share best practice, mirroring that of our brilliant networks around the world. With a programme of exclusive world-class events, global Excellence Awards, online Clubhouse and quarterly journal Market Leader, we aim to inspire and challenge wherever we go. OUR CHAIR Virginia Sharma, Director Marketing Solutions at LinkedIn leads our India network.
One of the most striking features of our industry is that while the junior ranks are dominated by women, as you move up the pay scale we gradually fade away. By the time you get to the boardroom we are practically invisible. Some would have us believe that this is just how life is. Women are less ambitious than men, they rule themselves out of jobs, they are more focused on raising a family, it has always been like this, always will, and it isn’t such a problem. They will then likely cite one of the handful of women who have broken through the glass ceiling and are leading an organisation.
I don't think I've been on a university campus since the 1990s, and it's a damp, misty November night when I arrive at Lancaster University, The Times & Sunday Times University of the Year 2018. It's slick: flood-lit sports courts, speed bumps and RIBA-endorsed eco-architecture. I've travelled here to discuss The Marketing Society's theme of 'Bravery' with a team of marketing undergrads. Clever bunnies. Noticeably girls (big up to brave Alex, the only guy in the group) with aspirations to join Unilever, Coke, maybe a well paying Swiss company, or advertising. I present my own case for 'Bravery' at the front of class; chat through the decline in brand trust; whether or not 'Bravery' is the right word; the steps our industry is making around gender, mental health, inclusion. And in the spirit of Open Space, have no idea what's going to come up. Our discussion ranges from everyday racism to the need, or not, for better customer service in discount grocers.
Aron Gelbard is co-founder and CEO at one of the UK's most talked about start-ups. Most known for their letterbox friendly packaging, Bloom & Wild have found ways to create a loved and trusted flower delivery brand in a commodity market. Rapidly growing the business 20x between 2014-2016, Bloom and Wild are forecast to double revenues in 2017, and with $8.56M in investment raised, are set to expand operations from the UK and Ireland, into France and Germany in September 2017. We sat down with Aron to learn the lessons for challengers from their journey so far.