Marketing Society reviews membership

The Marketing Society has appointed its first marketing director and hired an agency to target prospective members, as it looks to toughen its criteria for membership.

Under chief executive Hugh Burkitt, who joined in April, it has appointed integrated agency Harrison Troughton Wunderman to handle its membership marketing, and picked Fidelity Investments marketer Diana Marsland to be marketing director.

The Society has taken an interim decision to close its doors to new members as it revamps its membership scheme. From the new year, membership of the organisation will be by invitation only.

Burkitt said the decision came after he, president Keith Weed and chairman Chris Macleod consulted senior members about its future. "If it is to work well, we need the best marketing people to be joining," Burkitt said. "So we have made the qualifications for joining much tougher."

Harrison Troughton Wunderman's task is to target the people it feels are right to join. The agency's first job will be to produce a membership benefits pack. Burkitt said he sees the agency as "a partner for the foreseeable future".

Marsland joins from Fidelity Investments, where she was marketing communications director. Prior to that she worked for Halifax on its e-marketing.

The Marketing Society has about 3000 members. Other agencies it uses include The Marketing Store, which worked on its retail forum.

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