1. Before we dive into your role at the Commonwealth Bank, what has your career journey looked like so far?
I started my career journey in my second year of uni and have to admit that it hasn’t always been smooth sailing! You really have to give everything a shot and go for what you really want.
It all kicked off when I got accepted for a paid internship in admin and events with a company previously called AIM (Australian Institute of Management).
I was then accepted for an unpaid internship in a media agency called Wavemaker/Team Red working on the Vodafone account, where I eventually secured a full-time role within the team.
Following my time at Wavemaker I moved to another media agency called UM. At UM I worked across a variety of clients, eventually interviewing with ING (who was one of my clients) and landed a secondment role working in their marketing team.
I really enjoyed my time at ING and working in the banking sector, so I knew this is where I wanted to stay. I started looking and applying for roles and, after my contract ended with ING, was offered a role to join CommBank!
2. Transitioning into work, what the heck does a Marketing Manager @ Commonwealth Bank do?
It really depends on what team you’re in as CommBank has many marketing teams – I’m a Marketing Manager in the 1:1 Customer Communications Centre of Excellence team.
How is the marketing function structured?
As mentioned, there are many marketing teams within CommBank, all with a different focus. Within the bank there are:
- Product teams who will look after a particular product of the bank (e.g. Home Loans) – within that team there are marketing managers who assist with campaigns relevant to that product
- Marketing teams for advertising with more of a focus on mass media
- Team focused on direct 1:1 customer communications which is usually more personalised and targeted (the team I’m in!)
What does your role entail?
My role focuses on what the ‘next best communication’ is for our customers based on their data/customer journey.
I work in partnership with CommBank’s x15 Ventures and assist them with getting in touch with CommBank customers who we feel would benefit from one of the x15’s new start up offerings.
This can include; coming up with the strategy (e.g. channels and target audience), the creative and project managing all stakeholders to get approvals to ensure that the campaign has the green light to go live in-market and on time.
3. What’s an example of a campaign that you’ve worked on and what was your role in bringing it to life?
Project Name: x15 Venture Launch Project (unable to share name of Venture yet!)
What is it?
A new x15 Venture is about to launch an offer in-market that should hopefully drive conversions and bring in new customers for them. For CommBank, this is a partnership that shows how we can assist customers beyond banking.
What’s your role?
My role is to assist the x15 Venture team with the strategy, targeting, channels and the creative used in the campaign to ensure that we are reaching the right audiences, at the right time and place.
I want to ensure that the product is relevant and resonates with the customer. I’m also a gatekeeper to the CommBank brand and help ensure that all our communications align with the brand.
4. What do the entry level pathways for marketing in the finance industry look like?
I know that a lot of the Big 4’s offer great Internship and Graduate programs. However, these are very competitive and if you can’t land one of those positions, please don’t get discouraged.
It’s not the path I ended up taking but believe in yourself, give yourself time and you’ll get to where you want to be eventually!
My advice would be to find similar roles/positions in other companies that would offer you the same opportunity to learn and build your skills. Use this as a base to build your resume and get experience before moving into larger companies.
5. What’s one thing you recommend an aspiring marketer do right now?
If you’re reading this article, you’re on the right track and this is exactly what you should be doing – I’d highly recommend reading, reaching out and talking to people who work in the industry.
Often people have an idea of what a role entails but the reality is often completely different, a ‘marketing’ role is so diverse and differs in every company.
If you can, get in touch with those working in marketing and have a chat about what they do and what’s new in the industry. This can also give you a competitive advantage when you go for interviews as you know what to expect, helping you feel more comfortable.