North East Connected

Business School of the Year invites local companies to learn from top marketing experts

newcastly business school largeNewcastle Business School at Northumbria University is joining forces with a range of leading marketing professionals to host a special one-day conference for local businesses to gain a unique insight into modern marketing methods in an ever-changing consumer environment.

The event, titled ‘Learn from the Marketing Experts’ takes place on Thursday 7th July at the Business School.

Delegates will meet senior representatives from major regional, national and international brands including Lookers Motor Group, Santander, differento/ogy and Websand, who will present their perspectives and personal experience on the world of modern-day marketing in practice.

Heike O’Leary, Marketing Director at Lookers, will be giving delegates an insight into the merger of two established brands in the motor industry. She said: “This is a great opportunity to share how the Lookers and Benfield brands have come together through acquisition in a relatively short period of time.  My brief was to optimise the brand perception of the new owners, to educate our stakeholders and protect existing revenue streams during the transitional period.

“I will share how a comprehensive joined-up marketing strategy embraced the cultural synergy of both companies to preserve the best of Benfield and promote the established values and financial strength of Lookers plc. Today Lookers plc represents 31 brands across 160 dealerships, employing over 8,500 staff with a turnover of over £4 billion and selling over 200,000 cars per annum. It was some challenge.”

Other topics include cutting-edge approaches to advertising research, digital marketing techniques and the challenges posed by upcoming changes to data protection regulations.

Mark James, another guest presenter and Director of Insight at differento/ogy, a consumer research company with offices in Newcastle and London, said: “I’m looking forward to taking delegates through the use of cutting-edge and emerging technologies to challenge the status quo when it comes to market research. Gone are the days of using time-consuming focus groups and lengthy questionnaires to ask consumers to recall their past behaviour. By using smart and digital technology including facial recognition we can measure consumer behaviour and engagement on the go, in real-time and present it in a much more efficient and engaging format for clients.”

Dr David Hart, Principal Lecturer in Marketing at Newcastle Business School and Co-Chair of the conference, explains: “As well as offering a platform for academics to share and discuss their fascinating research, we wanted to use the Academy of Marketing Conference as an opportunity to reach out and engage with the wider North East business community.

“Our ‘Learn from the Marketing Experts’ event features a range of fascinating practitioner speakers who will give delegates a relevant, real-world insight into current issues and the best use of modern-day marketing techniques.

“We hope that by inviting the local business community to hear from the experts they will also discover the benefits that working more closely with the University can bring to their own organisations. We operate an extensive outreach programme which sees the Business School working in partnership with a range of multi-nationals, SMEs and small businesses to help them unlock value in their operations.”

Newcastle Business School currently holds the title UK Business School of the Year in the prestigious Times Higher Education (THE) Awards. The event also marks the final day of the 2016 Academy of Marketing Conference which is one of the largest and most influential in Europe and heralds a prestigious first for Newcastle Business School as the host organisation. Over 300 global marketing experts will use the three-day conference to focus on ‘Radical Marketing’ as an emerging concept.

North East companies can register to attend the Academy of Marketing Conference 2016 – Learn from the ‘Marketing Experts’ event online at:

Attendance is £20 per person with a full lunch provided. For further details please contact Dr David Hart, Conference Co-Chair at:

The event is supported by both The Chartered Institute of Marketing and John Wiley and Sons.

Northumbria University has an enviable global reputation for delivering some of the best business management education in the UK which enables individuals to achieve leadership, management and career potential through research-rich, business-relevant academic education.

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