Believe it or not, marketing is still a male-dominated industry, that doesn’t mean however that women aren’t playing vital roles within the industry. If you didn’t know, Alix Digital is a fully female business, made up of five amazing gals full of passion, insight, expertise, and drive to succeed. 

For International Women’s Day, we thought we would share our stories on being and becoming the women in marketing that we are today.

Each of us are at a different point in our marketing career, from Alix our Managing Director down to me, the newest Marketing Assistant, but despite this, we each have a different story to tell and experiences to learn from. We hope that our stories will inspire and empower you to keep going, get that promotion or make the side step you are holding back from.

Read on the find out how we entered the industry, the challenges we faced along the way, and the positive surprises we experienced.

Alix Charles – Our Managing Director

How Did You Enter The Industry?

I’ve loved advertising all my life, but I didn’t necessarily recognise it until I began working for a shop. As it was a commission-only role, I started teaching myself tricks on how to get more people into the shop. I loved the cause and effect of seeing more people coming in after seeing an advert, flyer, social media, etc. I didn’t know it at the time, but what I was doing was marketing. 14 years later and many years in marketing roles I’m still just as passionate about marketing and seeing the positive impact it has on business.

What Challenges Have You Faced Along The Way?

The biggest challenge for me, as it is for many working parents, is juggling family life and work life. I had my little one when the business had been running for just 2 years. Making sure the business was in a position to run without me for a few weeks was terrifying. Getting the work/life balance is still a challenge but it’s much better than before I became a mum.

What Positive Surprises Have You Experienced? 

It’s not necessarily a surprise, but one thing that’s really nice to see is the level of respect people have for me and my business. When I started the business, I did worry a little about being a blonde female in a male-dominated industry and that I may not have been taken seriously, but it’s not been the case.

Emily Sophia Davies – Digital Marketing Executive

How Did You Enter The Industry?

I’ve always been a creative person from a very young age and my dream career since I was a child was to be a graphic designer. I gave this a go for many years but I didn’t get the buzz of satisfaction from my work as I would rarely get to see the results of my campaigns. This is when my interest in digital marketing peaked, my current role has a great balance of using creative innovation and strategic thinking and I get to analyse my results- yay!! 

What Challenges Have You Faced Along The Way?

Like many sectors, marketing is male-dominated. Breaking into it as a young woman with a valleys accent, I do believe has had an impact on people taking me seriously. I am lucky enough to have a very strong female figure in my life (my mother) who lets no man, woman, or god get in the way of what she wants. So, if I’m ever feeling unsure of my worth within a role/experience I like to think “what would my kick-ass mam say to me or do right now” and that normally makes me chuckle and feel more at ease to voice my opinions and stand alongside my views. 

What Positive Surprises Have You Experienced? 

Every day comes with a positive surprise in digital marketing, I love it when I’m proved wrong or a B test wins. I have a soft spot for the B test as I feel like it’s the underdog that everyone is expecting to fail.  As women in tech maybe I resonate with the B test as I’ve felt like an underdog throughout a lot of my career. As I get older, louder & more sure of myself I’m starting to realise that being a B test may not be so bad, because winning when no one expects it and it really matters feels pretty amazing! 

Gemma Tooth Phillips – Digital Marketing Executive

How Did You Enter The Industry?

Starting my career path in Construction I continuously found myself gravitating to the creative elements within roles. I was asked to explore more in marketing for a new construction supplier and I loved the world of opportunities. Dipping my toe into marketing was the start of my journey and as there was a wealth of knowledge that I was eager to tap into, I knew I needed to immerse myself in the marketing world full time to get the most out of it.

What Challenges Have You Faced Along The Way?

The mum guilt challenge is REAL! Having a career of my own motivates me each day, although the guilt of not being at home for all of the pre-school runs and spending precious time with my little one can really question…Is having a career really worth it? The answer to that for me is…Yes, if I can find a balance. With flexible working, working from home and part-time hour options, I have found a balance that works for me.

What Positive Surprises Have You Experienced? 

How far I have come since starting my marketing journey. It always amazes me how I started with minimal marketing knowledge thinking…” I will never grasp this!”, to today, managing numerous client accounts, training employees as well as delivering external training.

Saffron Waite – Digital Marketing Assistant

How Did You Enter The Industry?

My first taste of the marketing industry was at 15 for work experience at a Marketing & PR Company; the placement was fast-paced, resulting in me learning a lot. I enjoyed the creative and business aspect of marketing, which fueled me to study marketing at university. Then I re-entered the industry after my degree with a social media position which I thoroughly enjoyed. My manager was very supportive and gave me room to be creative when managing the social media channels which built my confidence substantially. 

What Challenges Have You Faced Along The Way?

At University it was predominantly male-based in terms of lecturers which can be daunting as a young woman however, this did not impact the knowledge I learned and helped me be more precise and confident when talking. Hopefully, as the industry grows it will result in more women teaching marketing as this will help the female students have more of a variety of role models in the industry. 

What Positive Surprises Have You Experienced?

During my time working in the industry, I found that people respected me even from a young age which is great for giving me the ability to grow in my roles and produce creative work confidently. The Marketing Industry in my experience is a field that is open and inviting to newcomers with colleagues giving me valuable guidance from the start. This has helped me become self-assertive in my work and grow my knowledge of marketing.

Eve Price – Digital Marketing Assistant

How Did You Enter The Industry?

I am still very new to the industry, taking my first marketing role just 3 months ago. Before that, I  worked in HR and Training & Development, which began with an apprenticeship in business admin at 17 years old and progressed into employment as a Staff Development Assistant. I didn’t like the idea of uni and chose to enter the world of work instead. Somewhere along the line, however, I realised that I wasn’t enjoying what I was doing and the thought of doing it forever scared me. 

I decided that I wanted to pursue a career in marketing. I loved the idea of being creative and innovative at the same time and being held accountable by analytics and results. I didn’t however have a degree or much relevant experience. With this in mind, I started studying marketing with the CIM. Unfortunately, after the first module, the university pulled the course, which cut my studies short. Luckily the module I got to study was digital marketing and this confirmed my interest, making me determined to make the jump into the industry. 

Still in need of a degree, I began studying Business Management with Marketing instead. I also volunteered as a marketing officer for a student union in order to gain some experience. A year into my studies I was eager to get into the industry rather than wait to finish the course. After scrolling through job boards in search of the right opportunity, I found an ad for Alix Digital. Now I have been in the role for 3 months and I’m loving it! 

I guess my message is to not settle doing something that you dislike or don’t see a happy future in and when you make that decision, don’t give up despite setbacks because there is always a way – even if it takes a little longer. 

What Challenges Have You Faced Along The Way?

My biggest challenge was trying to sidestep into the industry without a degree or extensive relevant experience. This didn’t stop me from entering the industry but it made it a lot harder as the opportunities were limited. I needed to juggle working full time with studying and volunteering in order to demonstrate my abilities and dedication. At the time this was quite disheartening and made my previous 5 years of work experience and education feel unvalued. 

Even at just 19, I felt quite trapped in a job I disliked and unable to change path but with patience, determination, and the confidence to jump on the right opportunity, I did it!

What Positive Surprises Have You Experienced? 

How fast I have developed new skills and an understanding of the industry. I thought it would take me longer to be at the stage I am at now, but I am really pleased with my progress so far and am quite surprised at how quickly I have adapted to a new role and a new industry.

Don’t get me wrong, I still have a lot to learn but I am excited and eager to keep going!

We hope that you have taken something from our stories and are now equipped with some more insight on how to get into or progress within the marketing industry. 

Happy International Women’s Day 2022 from us all at Alix Digital!!