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Quick Who am I?
After 15 years working directly in the property sectors in sales and marketing roles, my “day” job is running The Digital Marketing Bureau, an agency focusing on marketing for the now and next – PropTech is a passion and takes up every spare second but is increasingly becoming a part of my everyday work; not least because of my conference speaking.
I was recently voted and nominated as the most influential person in PropTech by LendInvest
I am very lucky to be married to Jo and have two boys (Sebastian and Edward). We live just south of London with cows and sheep for neighbours and, whilst I am obviously a lover of technology, I am equally a lover of the traditional. I like to read actual books, preferably with a pint of ale (only ever in a jug) and have a father who is a morris dancer (really). I am also a published author of a beekeeping book, an admirer of chess and the oldest board game in the world, Go and am trying desperately to get back to my competitive swimming days
Longer Who Am I?
I was initially introduced to the property market through working for a Real Estate firm in London, Foxtons. Known for its innovative marketing and for being the largest agent in the area, it provided a fantastic education into the domestic property market, one that still provides a lot of interest for me today. I started off as a Negotiator in the Battersea office learning my trade in a particularly busy market. I was then promoted directly to Lettings Manager of the Putney Office overseeing its expansion from just 6 members of staff to over 20. Overall it was a fantastic learning experience over many years and I always look back on this time fondly.
Foxtons were (and are) always ahead of the game and this was where I got my first taste for the power of technology. I was there when we went from “Day Books and applicant cards” to fully automated CRM systems. It was hated by the sales teams but I could see what was happening and loved it. I still put my achievements at Foxtons down to my acceptance of the technological changes that others just weren’t interested in.
I then moved into the world of International Real Estate with Atlas International, one of the largest and leading international companies in this sector. Atlas International has been in the industry for over 30 years and this experience taught me a lot about property markets all over Europe, the US and also Asia. I was employed into the role of UK Sales Manager and within a year had been promoted to head up the European Sales and Marketing.
It was in this role that my love for digital marketing and technology was further expanded. In the largest of recessions, we cut our budgets globally and I had to find a new way of working. Social Media really resonated with me and so I orchestrated a company wide campaign to help everyone understand exactly how it worked. My passion was personalising a large brand and helping people speak with people. The concept of information sharing was new back then and so we put about a huge content marketing campaign to give all information away online and doing it with a far more personalised approach.
Equally, technology was a driver for communication, one of my great passions in a sales team. Running geographically sparse teams I had to find a way around how that worked. Equally, we were launching products internationally and the sales teams had to wait nearly a month before they saw any of the details – everything was in a foreign language, straight from a builders plans. It was a nightmare. Building an internal intranet system to be multilingual and fast (we reduced the time to under 48hrs to deliver new products to the front line, and working with new voice conference technology, we managed to halt the slide in sales and actually underpin the business in the tough times. Technology, and the understanding of the benefits that it can bring, really helped solve a huge issue.
Again, like my time at Foxtons, it was a fantastic learning experience which still teaches me something each and everyday.
All of this training has led me to wanting to share information and discuss finer points about the industry with people who have a similar interest and passion.