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Veronica does a monthly interview with key members of the nesma network this month she caught up with Chris Lucarelli at Cal Partners about the benefits of winning awards.

Judging awards is always tricky and the standard of entries at the North East Marketing Awards is always extremely high.

This year it was a pleasure to share the responsibility for judging the North East Marketing Awards Marketer of the Year with Chris Lucarelli from Cal Partners and Sasha O’Neill from Bellway. Afterwards, I sat down with Chris and had a chat about being in a winning team himself last year.

What role do you think Awards ceremonies such as this play in supporting Marketing as an industry?

They shine a light on the region’s fantastic talent, I was privileged to be a judge and see the great work going on in the North East with national and even global reach. As well as recognising individual achievements, industry awards highlight the value of building, maintaining and acknowledging the accomplishments of a strong team.

Your company won the Marketing Agency of the Year (Under 20 Employees) category last year. What made you stand out?

The judges recognised Cal Partners’ pragmatic and results-driven approach, demonstrated through a track record of success for our clients. The judges fed back, ‘Challenging the norm of marketing activities in a highly traditional sector, they showed effective and efficient deployment of limited client budgets and highly creative use of resources.’ The judges commended our commitment to staff development, including the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) pathway, ‘personal qualifications of the team reflect the desire to evidence professional credibility’. With so many marketing channels, tactics and tools, including digital, having professional CIM qualifications is a differentiator, assuring clients that every decision has a core of marketing experience, expertise and training sitting behind it.

How did your team feel about being a finalist?

As a new agency, less than three years old, we were all delighted. When we saw the other nominees made up of established agency names with amazing clients, we, of course, thought that we stood no chance, but at least people would see who we were, and we’d have a fun night out.

And then winning?

We genuinely did not expect to win. The team and I were shocked and happy. We were also overwhelmed by messages of support from fellow marketers and our clients.

Steven Lynch, Digital Marketing Manager, Parkdean Resorts, receiving the Marketer of the Year Award at the 2019 North East Marketing Awards from Veronica Swindale on behalf of Jonathan Alcock.

Would you recommend getting involved with awards like this?

There is cynicism about awards, but at the end of the day, what’s the harm? Whatever happens, you can have a great night out and catch up with likeminded people. Commercially, the awards process raised our profile and reassured existing and prospective clients about our work.

So, what did winning the Marketing Agency of the Year award in 2018 mean to you?

I felt very proud of, and for my team when picking up the award. Whilst the night itself becomes a distant memory, knowing that we won the award gives us the confidence and resilience to keep pushing on through the day to day challenges that all businesses face.

In 2007 Chartered Marketer, Chris completed the CIM’s highest level qualification, the Professional Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing, winning the Top Student Award globally presented by the then CIM President, Lord Heseltine.  In 2016 Chris completed the Digital Marketing Institute’s Post Graduate Diploma in Digital Marketing.

These were exceptional results for him as an individual and we are extremely proud to offer similar opportunities to Marketers in the North East, Cumbria and Scotland.

Image – Chris Lucarelli receiving the Marketing Agency of the Year (Under 20 Employees) award on behalf of his team at the North East Marketing Awards 2018.

If you have time to have a cuppa with Veronica, please get in touch.