Ricky Wheeler

Fighting the marketing buy-in battle



Ricky Wheeler




Global Marketing Director

Join Darren as he speaks to Ricky Wheeler, the Global Marketing Director at cube19. Ricky has been doing marketing for 20 years, beginning his career at a web design company and running events as a DJ on the side. Both aligned into event management and marketing which turned into a marketing role at Broadbean for 8 years, where Ricky crossed paths with Darren. He is now the Global Marketing Director at cube19. 


The Summary

Do you mind giving us a few of your favourite marketing campaigns whilst working at Broadbean?


Those were the days where there was a lot of print advertising via magazines delivered to recruiters. That started with a 'love the bean' campaign and they developed that idea. It was all about standing out from the crowd and they positioned themselves as the young, cool, new kids on the block. They hired young, inexperienced people with Ricky being the marketing director in his early 20's. It wasn't until the company had grown after 3 years that they started hiring 'adults'. 


Your marketing has changed and 'grown-up' since moving to cube19. 


cube19 helps people use data to make their business more effective. They believe data is the key to elite performance. The marketing is very different, they are targeting CEO's and people with a data mindset and it always comes down to value. So from a marketing perspective what do they get from our emails, visiting our website or our social posts? So the 'rules' of marketing remain the same but the full on marketing stuff that Paiger can do is less applicable at cube19. They still have fun and get personality into their marketing it's just a different vibe and marketing to the specific persona. 


Has your marketing been affected by covid 19? 


2020 wasn't without it's challenges, as you'd expect some of cube19's customers and prospects were hit. There were some industries that weren't affected and still needed to continue being serviced so overall we had to make some maneuvers around the service but they had a record sales year. 


Back in 2019 they came across a challenge and really they see companies under 3 categories: the data curious, the data conscious and data driven. The product they had in 2019 was very much catered for the data driven and it was almost too much for the other 2 categories. So changes were made to less commitment, time and cost packages which were launched in early 2020. These customers sign on and go through the data curious to data driven mindset. So the covid year success was ultimately due to understanding these categories. 


Whats the relationship between sales and marketing at cube19?


At cube19 everyone knows they are an extension of the marketing team. You have to be realistic that marketing can't do everything. At cube19 the customer success team write a lot about how to use the product, the sales team are committed to certain aspects of social in terms of liking and posting via scheduled posts and that goes right up to the CEO that they are committed to helping marketing to be effective. It's fair to say that cube19 work a very skeleton marketing team with a limited marketing budget but that does not mean they aren't a powerful marketing function because everyone helps. From a marketing perspective it requires commitment too. There is a lot of reporting to be done, likes, clicks, leads generated, website visits, performance and getting the content eyeballs. It's not just a we'll put stuff on the website it's way more than that, showing how that blog written affected the business performance is key. 


What's your advice to someone who feels like they are fighting a marketing buy-in battle?


You need to bring it business objectives, especially in a recruitment business your trying to find new clients, get new jobs and generate good candidate leads. So if you align the outcome your looking for with what success looks like it'll change your mindset to is this thing giving value. Once you get into that mindset it'll make you question if that activity is the best way to hit the target. You'll get their buy-in by discussing the targets and showing through data how that target will be hit. Asking can I have your candidate data, can I monitor your social stats. Ultimately aligning business goals as you will start to gain respect and moving the team away from 'the colouring in department' (get your t-shirt for charity with this slogan here.) 


What's your views on the term 'marketing girl'?


Having been referred to as a marketing guy for part of his career Ricky isn't offended by the term, it's more what the term represents like getting asked to do pointless tasks which aren't marketing like PA, office manager jobs. They deserve respect.  


Historically in the recruitment industry 'girls' were hired within support, office management etc. But we're in a totally different place now but there is still that historical view in some agencies of the 'marketing girls'. But the forward thinking staffing agency have really changed their perceptions. 


What role does social media marketing play at cube19 at the moment? 


Social media is huge because of where our customers live and spend time so we must represent our brand on a company and personal level well. It's one of our awareness streams and we'd miss it if it's not there.



Do you think you have a story worth telling...
Contact [email protected] to grab a Beer with Darren!