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The Death of the Demographic: Pete Markey

"The new 40s and 50s are smart and savvy", says Pete Markey, Chief marketing officer, RSA Insurance

Pete Markey is chief marketing officer for RSA Group, a global insurance business with more than 20m customers worldwide. He is responsible for all UK marketing across the RSA and More Th>n brands, as well as sharing marketing best practice globally across RSA Group. His role extends to brand, acquisition, customer and digital marketing. Pete was previously More Th>n marketing director for two years, and head of marketing prior to this.

He has worked at Onetel, the AA and British Gas and is an experienced director, having worked across a range of disciplines including marketing, sales, ebusiness, operations and strategy.

Pete graduated from Southampton with a BA Hons in Corporate Communication and is a CIM chartered marketer. He has been awarded the Drum, MI and Marketing Society Marketer of the Year awards. In 2009, he completed a two-year MBA, and the following year he was made a Fellow of the Marketing Society, and joined its Management Board. In 2011, Pete was named as one of Campaign’s top 10 marketing directors of the year.

Describe yourself in 140 characters or less Former polished and experienced hospital radio DJ nowon a marketing mission, bringing boundless enthusiasm, energy, ideas, passion and creativity every day.

What is the best thing about working in media? You get to be at the very front of the queue for new and emerging concepts, ideas, media and technology. It’s an exciting, organic and evolving space to be in.

Where and how do you get your best ideas? Can’t beat surrounding myself with great people to share ideas and bounce them around. Also love reflective personal time to shape new ideas and concepts.

What is your greatest media achievement and why? Launching the multi-award-winning More Th>n Freeman integrated campaign across TV, radio and online. Radio has played a critical role in success of the campaign – with an iconic voice like this, radio was always going to be key.

What do you think will be the biggest change in advertising in the next five years? The impact of channel and technology convergence, particularly connected TV.

Is age important when it comes to making friends and contacts? Less and less so. Social media is breaking down many of the standard stereotypes of how people connect and interact.

Is the demographic dead? No, butit’s being replaced by far more sophisticatedand intelligent tools.

The soundtrack to my life

Seeds of Love
BLUR Parklife
BON JOVI Livin’ on a Prayer
U2 The Fly

What do you owe the ‘new 40s and 50s’? Crediting them with being smart and savvy forces us as advertisers to continually raise our game.

Are you a breakfast or a drivetime person, and why? Breakfast – radio helps me wake up and get energised for the day ahead.

What is your earliest radio memory? The Simon Mayo Breakfast Show on BBC Radio 1 – as a teenager, it woke me up on many mornings before school.

What’s the best thing about radio as a medium? It’s accessible and personal. The morning breakfast-show presenters become like extended family or friends – you drive into work or return home with them. Some people spend more time with their radio friends and family than their real ones.

What’s your favourite radio advertising campaign, and why? Gocompare – simple message and idea well executed. [The brand] really understood the medium of radio and how to deliver real cut-through.

How would you sum up Smooth? Smooth is pure class – great music and great presenters.


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