A new member's experience of the JCI UK Marketing Academy 2014

When I told my colleagues at work that I was choosing to spend my weekend at a conference 

they thought I was crazy. But I did. Along with another 17 young enthusiastic members of JCI who 

travelled to Birmingham to take part in the JCI Marketing Academy 2014. 


The JCI team brought us a weekend of high quality, engaging and valuable training in marketing. The 

weekend started with warm welcomes, lots of networking and weird tea.


Speakers on day one included our very own Kate Senter, the JCI National President, who talked 

about PR and gave us tips on how to create the best content. She was followed by Dave Reed 

from marketing agency, Planet 9, who got us all clued up on Social Media. JCI Senator Amanda 

Fitzsimmons kindly joined us for the day. Her presentation made us aware of the balance between 

stakeholder engagement and the marketing mix. The day ended with pizza and a few drinks around 

the city centre!


Day two began with a few blurry eyes but lots of enthusiasm. We were given more fantastic 

presentations by Kirstie Draper, the JCI National Marketing Director, who showed us the importance 

of consistency in branding. National Web Director Paul Thwaite also gave us a tour around the JCI website 

and gave inspiring ideas for showcasing content on our chamber pages. Sofie Sandell, who has been 

a member of JCI for 10 years, ended the weekend. Sofie used her expertise in digital marketing to 

give us an inspired talk on how to provide information that reaches your audience in a world where 

we get “too much information (TMI)”. 


The JCI team created a really informative and fun program and they made sure that we were all 

getting the most out of the weekend. I learned so much and laughed all weekend!

If you are a JCI member and you haven’t yet been to the Marketing Academy, then I highly 

recommend it. If you are not a JCI member, I recommend becoming one, just so you can go to the 

Academy…you’ll be hooked!


Izzy Maxwell Watts

New JCI Cambridge Member