1. How did you get your first opportunity in sport?
Bizarrely it came from selling Pringles! I was at Procter & Gamble and worked on the now infamous Pringoals! campaign with Steven Gerrard and Peter Crouch. On the back of that the FA wanted to speak to me about being their Head of Marketing, and it went from there. That’s when fast-moving consumer goods skills started to really be valued in sport, so my 10 years in that industry meant I’d earned my stripes.
2. What is the best sporting event you’ve ever attended?
I don’t think anything can beat the Cricket World Cup Super Over. I still can’t get my head around how well that worked out for us, you couldn’t script better drama. I felt like we’d deserved that as English fans – we’ve had it rough over the years in a few different sports, and it was about time we had our rub of the green.
3. Who has been the biggest influence on your career?
My biggest influence has been a Marketing Director called Renee at Procter & Gamble, who was absolutely relentless when it came to planning and executing. We worked on Pantene together and I learnt more quickly there than ever before, and some of the thinking from that role has followed me throughout my career.
4. I’m a big brand with a hefty sponsorship budget – what sport or event should I invest in?
Women’s football is without a doubt the hottest property. It’s the nation’s biggest team participation sport and yet there is a lot of opportunity being left on the table with a relatively low barrier to entry. There is a real chance for a brand to come in and own the space. Barclays have just picked up their WSL sponsorship, which is a brilliant move for them and could transform the game.
5. Who are three sports industry contacts you’d invite to your dinner party?
I’d invite Kate Bosomworth, Chief Marketing Officer and M&C Saatchi who I think really understands the market, particularly of women’s sport, so that’d be a great conversation. I’d bring Steve Elworthy, the man behind the Cricket World Cup and a truly inspirational guy, and… probably Gareth Southgate. A real meeting of the minds.
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