Jet Cooke is Head of Marketing for End Investors at Fidelity International. Whether for workplace or personal investors, her purpose is to help customers reach their life goals and navigate what life might throw at them along the way (financially of course!).
What is your career history?
I became a film producer after taking an Arts degree. Studying behaviour and psychology as part of this led to an interest in advertising so I moved from movies to marketing! I started in a small agency and learnt all I could
about larger FMCGbusinesses, and then moved to corporate client side. I’ve been in Marketing now for over 30 years and I’ve worked across telecoms, charity, banking and asset management.
Because it is a blend of art and science, and it rewards the brave. It’s so easy to produce a sea of sameness in a category, and great brands are built on emotions and differentiation. And because no two days are the same, and no two brands are the same.
What excites you about the future of Financial Services?
Digital disruption, and the importance of brand is increasing in a sector that has been very institutional in its business model e.g. make it and push it out to sell. Listening to customer needs and addressing emotional dynamics as
well as mastering technology in an ever-changing environment means you have to be on the front foot. Marketing could transform this sector if we all get it right.
What worries you about the future of Financial Services?
Digital disruption (again!), and the fact that, unlike other industries, CMO roles are few and far between in this sector. Those that do have a consumer banking part of the business that has demonstrated the worth of a marketing voice high up in the organisation. Digital won’t win the agenda alone, neither will technology. Those that combine these strengths with a strong brand (and a service level to match) will be the winners. The CTO and CMO need to be the best of friends!
What’s the best advice you have ever received?
‘Culture eats strategy for breakfast’ How a marketing function feels valued within a business is crucial. You may have the best strategy in the world, but if you can’t win the hearts and minds of other areas of the business then you won’t succeed.
What advice would you give a marketer starting out today?
If you are not excited by the marketing you are producing then your customers won’t be either! And focus on being as commercial as possible; understand the business model of your company and where value is made and
retained against your brand, as well as how it is changing. Don’t become the ‘colouring in department’ or the ‘sales support’ function, as this undersells the contribution Marketing makes to the bottom line. Also move across industries, be brave and learn about each business model and how to transfer your skills early on in your career.
If you could have any mentor, who would it be?
Philip Kotler, the author of my first marketing text book that pulled together the science and the art. I still have it…yep, with all my scribblings in! I think it’s now in its 15th edition and is the world’s most widely adopted textbook in graduate schools of business. It stood the test of time. He was also the founder of the World Marketing Annual Summit, dedicated to finding ways to improve marketing, human conditions and the quality of life. It makes you feel proud to be in Marketing.
What marketing skill will you develop over the next few years?
Mastering any new black box technology that promises targeting but no one can tell me how the algorithms work. As Warren Buffet said, ‘If you don’t understand it don’t invest in it’. This is the same with any new marketing
technology that promises to be the next big saviour.
What lessons could we learn from other sectors?
Digital and technology enables companies to enter your sector and become your biggest competitive threat. I saw this happen in telecoms, and I feel the same disruption is happening in financial services. So, watch this space….
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