Welcoming our industry peers
Last Wednesday an impressive turn out of digital marketing professionals, freelance copywriters, online entrepreneurs and career changers keen to break into digital gathered round two long tables in the North Laine Brewhouse for the first Brighton Digital Women meetup of 2016.
Although we had a few informal meetups last year, this was really the launch event for us as it was the first meetup since we launched our brand new website.
Sharing our purpose
We thought a lot about how we positioned the community when we created the new site and, over many a coffee, pored over how we worded our content to best convey our purpose.
Perhaps unsurprisingly for a group founded by a copywriting company owner, an in-house digital marketing expert and an inbound marketing manager, we recognise how important it is for our aims to resonate with our audience of like-minded and ambitious professionals in all areas of digital.
So, first up Alice, Rachel and I gave our digital peers insight into the driving force behind the group: a desire to inspire more women to launch and develop successful careers in digital and ultimately help close the gender gap in digital leadership roles.
An inclusive approach
We also emphasised that this is not just a female cause, explaining that we recognise it as something that will benefit both genders; we all need to get behind closing the gender gap in digital to effect meaningful change.
For us, an inclusive approach is crucial and we are keen that every one of our digital peers, both female and male, can see how they will benefit from being part of the community. Fortunately, it seems that this message is already being heard – whilst most of our attendees were women, we were joined by two guys at the table on Wednesday which was really encouraging.
What we will create
Next up, we gave attendees a flavour of what to expect from us in 2016, outlining the six things we are looking to create as a community – which are as follows:
- A first port of call for mentorship, sharing experiences and opportunities to progress
- A collaborative network to turn to for guidance, inspiration and support
- Opportunities for women to get exposure and build authority in the local digital communities
- The chance to explore the spectrum of career opportunities in digital – from technical, to creative, to commercial
- More role models for the next generation of digital women
- Opportunities for local businesses to show their support for closing the digital gender gap
The next part of the evening was all about finding out about what everyone’s objectives for coming along were and what areas of their skill set they were looking to develop in 2016.
We want people to get the most out of meetups, so future meetups will focus on the themes that were discussed. Over the coming months we are aiming to ensure that all of our attendees’ objectives are met – so that we can all develop our skill sets and become smarter and more successful digital marketers.
So, what were people looking to learn? Here’s a run-down of the Brighton Digital Women’s hot topics that we’ll look to address as a community in 2016:
- How to find a synergy between “outreach” and traditional PR
- How to prioritise your digital marketing strategy as a small business and manage your budget to get the best bang for your buck
- How to benefit from giving and receiving mentorship to move your career forward
- How to master digital project management
- How to navigate business strategy and ethics
- How to put user experience at the centre of digital marketing
- How to influence people online
- How to make best use of personalisation
- How to meet an audience’s needs effectively through compelling content
- How big data can inform decisions
- The future of the Internet of Things and how this should inform strategy
- How to pitch to clients and who to pitch to
- How to best use social media within a digital marketing campaign
- How to make the move from print to digital and the pros and cons this will entail
- How to break down silos by learning more about what our peers in other disciplines do
- How to become a better public speaker
If you weren’t able to attend and have any topics you want to add to the list, give us an email or Tweet us with your suggestions.
We are going dedicate each of our meetups to one of more of these hot topics and we will be blogging about the meetup topic after the event to summarise our learnings.
In the meantime, we will be reaching out to our contacts that have expertise in each of the above areas so that we can organise some speakers for future events to cover these topics more depth.
How you can get involved
As this is a collaborative community, we would welcome your input too, so if you know someone who could speak on one of these topics – or if one of the areas is something you are passionate about and you want the chance to speak about it – don’t hesitate to get in touch.
You can Tweet us @BTNDigitalWomen.
We’ll keep you posted on which topic we will cover first at our next meetup!