Marketer of the Year poll 2007

This shortlist has been compiled from nominations by members of The Marketing Society. But who do you think should win? Make your voice heard by emailing your vote to topmarketer@haymarket.com. The winner will be revealed at The Marketing Society Awards for Excellence Dinner at The Hilton Park Lane, London, on 18 June.

JENNELLE TILLING, VICE-PRESIDENT OF MARKETING, KFC

Since assuming her current role in 2005, Tilling has played a crucial part in driving KFC's remarkable turnaround. She has overseen a reappraisal of the chain's core target audience and meal occasion, building the marketing calendar around the findings to improve effectiveness.

Innovations such as child-friendly boneless meals have been successful, and it has all been accompanied by smart TV and outdoor communications that targeted mums preparing the evening meal.

In 2006 KFC began to experience sustained growth for the first time since 2003, peaking at 30% year-on-year growth in April. Average ticket prices rose steadily, partly as a consequence of a rise in the number of family meals being sold, but also because its new positioning enabled KFC to sell products at a premium. Average transaction spend rose by more than 60p over 2006.

PAUL REYNISH, EUROPEAN MARKETING DIRECTOR, SUBWAY

A testament to the work achieved by Reynish is that Fred de Luca, the owner and founder of the Subway chain, says the UK operation is its global marketing standard.

Activity over 2006, including a 'Sub of the day' deal and swipe-card payment system, helped boost footfall by 17.5% and sales by 17.4%. Spontaneous awareness of the brand has doubled, while its 'Under 6' subs, containing 6g of fat or less, have played a key part in distancing Subway from harmful fast-food associations.

Last year Reynish oversaw the chain's first national ad campaign around an 'Eat fresh' message. He has also led from the front in-store, devoting a day a month to take his team behind the tills.

There are now more than 800 Subway franchises in the UK, and with an opening every day, the chain is set to overtake McDonald's in store numbers by 2008.

PHIL CHAPMAN, MARKETING DIRECTOR, T-MOBILE

Since arriving two years ago, Chapman has spearheaded a new vision for the mobile operator. He has driven a stream of innovations including Mates Rates, U-Fix and Street Check, an initiative that allows people to check the signal strength in the postcodes where they use their phone most.

Flexible tariff Flext caught consumers' imagination in 2006, with 1.3m signing up within 11 months of launch against an annual target of 300,000. It lifted T-Mobile's share of the £35-£39.99 contract market to 29.3%.

Chapman has also overseen the creation of an integrated communications campaign spanning TV, the internet and events, and has helped build a credible live music strategy by organising Street Gigs and developing TV show Transmission with Channel 4. His achievements in the UK have seen Chapman handed additional responsibility for the company's brands across Europe.

ROISIN DONNELLY, DIRECTOR, CORPORATE MARKETING, PROCTER & GAMBLE

Donnelly has had another great year after working hard to incorporate Gillette into P&G's stable during 2005/06. The merger has brought a group of staunchly masculine products to what had been a women-oriented stable of brands.

Over the past 12 months Donnelly has driven year-on-year growth across the FMCG giant's extensive range of brands, with loyalty and trial hitting record levels. She has helped the firm take a lead in ethical marketing - nappy brand Pampers, for example, tied up with Unicef for an awareness drive, resulting in the donation of 7,461,234 tetanus vaccines to the charity. Donnelly also oversaw the environmentally friendly Ariel 'Turn to 30' energy-saving campaign.

Committed to bringing through the next generation of marketing talent, Donnelly ensures she takes time to oversee the training of P&G marketers.

SUZANNE DOUGLAS, CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER, HEINZ

Since arriving last summer from Heinz Australia, Douglas has made her mark on the UK side of the food business. She has overseen a shake-up of the Big Soup brand, focusing on young consumers' desire for a healthy alternative to fast food and repositioning the product as a hunger-buster. With young people in mind again, Douglas launched the Big Eat ambient food range to compete against Unilever's Pot Noodle.

Outdoor has been used effectively for the flagship Heinz Tomato Ketchup brand to demonstrate its simple ingredients, while Salad Cream, another iconic brand in the company's stable, kicked off its relaunch activity at the end of April with TV and print ads under the new strapline 'Pourable sunshine'.

On top of all this, Douglas has also completed a review of Heinz's £12m advertising business.

MARK BAINBRIDGE, MARKETING DIRECTOR, RECRUITING GROUP, BRITISH ARMY

Against the backdrop of an unpopular war in Iraq, Bainbridge has launched a series of successful initiatives over 2006. The year started with a recovery campaign for the merged Scottish Infantry, which raised interest levels from 0% to 18%. An ad shot in Chile and the UK generated 30,000 new infantry enquiries within six months, while an officer campaign through digital, TV and print touched on the moral dilemma of balancing military service with the ethics of foreign policy.

The main push of the year was the 'Everest West Ridge' campaign. A team of soldiers was filmed making its way up the notorious route and their experiences were developed into a multimedia campaign. A documentary has since been syndicated to TV networks worldwide. The work resulted in nearly 60,000 enquiries and more than 10,000 applications to join the Army.

SUSIE MOORE, HEAD OF BRAND AND MARKETING COMMUNICATIONS, O2

Moore has made her mark across every aspect of the mobile network's marketing communications and was a central force in last year's brand refresh. Her enthus-iasm and drive has seen her take on a raft of international work, and in the past year she has been integral to the brand's launch in the Czech Republic.

The year saw O2 become the UK number one in terms of both customer satisfaction and customer numbers.

The company has defied predictions that it would struggle to compete with established rivals and developed a strong relationship with its customers - its churn in the valuable contract market is at an all-time low of 24%.

The opening of the former Millennium Dome as music and sports venue The O2 this summer is set to take the brand's recognition to new levels.

TIM SEAGER, MARKETING DIRECTOR, SCOTTISH & NEWCASTLE

For the third consecutive year, Seager has delivered sales growth for a business operating in a mainly flat market. Scottish & Newcastle is now more profitable than its three main competitors combined.

An aggressive new product development programme during 2006 saw three significant brand launches: Bulmers Original, Foster's Twist and Jacques. Foster's Twist, which launched in July, was the result of a lengthy research process as the brand sought to expand its market penetration. It has become one of the biggest four-pack bottled beers in the grocery sector and is available in more than 10,000 on-trade outlets.

All core Scottish & Newcastle brands have been supported by advertising, and its 'Free bet' promotion with Ladbrokes.com beat targets to sell an additional 31m pints during the 2006 World Cup.

RICHARD TOLLEY, MARKETING DIRECTOR, DAIRY CREST

Tolley has overseen a long-term initiative that transformed Dairy Crest from a commodity business to a strong brand.

Its Marketing Excellence Programme, which combined a focused development initiative for marketing staff and a new process and model for brand positioning, has yielded positive results. Milk drink Frijj experienced a year-on-year value sales increase of 6.9% in the year to 7 October 2006, according to ACNielsen, while cheese brand Cathedral City grew by an impressive 24% over the same period. The firm's overall retail sales have grown to £123m, an increase of 125% over four years.

Tolley is viewed as a key part of the Dairy Crest management team and as a result played a significant role in the company's purchase of French spreads firm St Hubert, its biggest acquisition.

DAVID PATTON, FORMER SNR VICE-PRESIDENT OF COMMS EUROPE SONY

Bouncing a load of balls down the streets of San Francisco is not the most conventional way to market a new consumer electronics product, but Patton has always favoured unconventional communications. His instinct was right, and the 'Balls' ad for Sony's Bravia TV brand went on to be not only a critically acclaimed and popular ad, but also a commercial success, propelling the brand to the top of the LCD TV market. The eagerly awaited follow-up, directed by Jonathan Glazer and featuring a Glasgow housing estate and 70,000 litres of paint, did not disappoint.

Crucially, this creativity has had a commercial impact. Tracking results show that Bravia is now by far the most famous LCD TV sub-brand in the UK after only two years on the market, and despite its premium price, is the top-selling LCD TV.

ANDY DUNCAN, CHIEF EXECUTIVE, CHANNEL 4

Under the stewardship of Duncan, Channel 4 has bubbled over with bright ideas as it, in common with other broadcasters, has had to work hard to cope with shifting ad budgets.

Channel 4's video-on-demand service, 4OD, gives viewers access to downloads of their favourite new shows and classics. The model blazed a trail, leaving ITV to play catch-up with the relaunch of its ITV.com portal several months later.

Last year also marked FilmFour's move onto Freeview. The relaunch as a free channel was backed by the most ambitious cross-media marketing campaign in the history of Channel 4, and featured A-list talent including Ewan McGregor, Ray Winstone and Dame Judi Dench.

The first night was the most successful digital channel launch in UK history, with 804,000 people tuning in to watch Lost in Translation. Its audience share of 16- to 34-year-olds has gone on to exceed targets by 40%.

Channel 4's revenues have grown by 8% since 2004 and it is well placed to exploit digital opportunities.

JUSTIN KING, CHIEF EXECUTIVE, SAINSBURY'S

King's ambitiously titled recovery programme, 'Making Sainsbury's great again', is living up to the high standards implicit in the name. This March the grocer announced its ninth successive quarter of like-for-like sales growth, with total sales for 2006 up by 6.6%.

Consumers have been tempted back by marketing activity built around the 'Try something new today' proposition and communicated in the long-running series of ads featuring celebrity chef Jamie Oliver. Sainsbury's has regained its reputation for good quality food, with the expansion of its organic range proving successful. King has also rolled out a number of green initiatives to capitalise on increasing interest in the environment, and the supermarket is now a major retailer of Fairtrade products.

King has been behind an internal revolution, too. Last year he established an employee programme aimed at improving levels of engagement and turning employees into brand advocates.

JAMES KYDD, MANAGING DIRECTOR OF MARKETING, VIRGIN MEDIA

Kydd has had a year to remember. Previously marketing director of Virgin Mobile, where his celebrity-focused strategy helped establish the challenger brand, he landed the top Virgin Media marketing role last summer. Here he has gone from strength to strength. One of his main highlights has been managing the brand's £20m launch campaign featuring Hollywood star Uma Thurman.

His new role has brought him one of the biggest challenges of his career in the form of BSkyB. Few people would relish taking on the might of Rupert Murdoch's empire, but Kydd has risen to the challenge with aplomb. Although there is still some way to go as its fight with BSkyB moves to the High Court, Virgin Media is widely considered to have won the PR battle with its consumer champion positioning.

Never one to dodge controversy, Kydd recently announced that Virgin Media is to fill the shoes of Carphone Warehouse by sponsoring the forthcoming series of Channel 4's Big Brother.

MAURICE BREEN, MARKETING DIRECTOR, C&C GROUP

The success of Magners cider is one of the big marketing stories of recent years. Its sales leaped a dizzying 393% in the year to Septem-ber 2006, placing it second only to Scottish & Newcastle's Strong-bow in the category. Owner C&C Group's profits rose 85% in its last financial year; growth has been held back only by a shortage of manufacturing capacity. Overseeing this success has been Breen, who has been with the firm since Magners' launch. He drove the innovative 'drink over ice' strategy that has generated enthusiasm in a formerly lacklustre category. Ads have mixed catchy, classic tracks with a seasonal theme, creating a distinctive image.

Testament to the strategy's success is the fact that it has spawned copycats in the cider market and beyond, with products including Bulmers Original and even Champagne brand Piper-Heidsieck aping its approach.

Breen has used a clever mix of TV, outdoor, sponsorship and public relations to support Magners' proposition of taste, quality and tradition.

PETER WOOD, CHAIRMAN AND MARKETING DIRECTOR, SHEILAS' WHEELS

The larger-than-life Wood has once again excelled in his creation and marketing of a financial-services brands with his latest venture, Sheilas' Wheels.

The multimillion-pound ad campaign's singing 'Sheilas' have struck a chord with the nation's female drivers, as have benefits such as £300 handbag and contents cover, a 24-hour counselling line for drivers suffering trauma on the road, and a network of repairers trained to follow a non-patronising, female-friendly code of practice.

Figures released a year after the launch reveal that Sheilas' Wheels is signing up customers at a rate of more than 2000 a week and has achieved well over 100,000 policies in its first 12 months, surpassing its own targets.

Wood is also behind the phenomenally successful Esure. It was he who decided to call on the services of his friend, Michael Winner, to promote the brand. He recently re-enlisted Winner to give the brand a lift after 18 months of ads featuring the animated Mr Mouse.

CRAIG INGLIS, SALES AND MARKETING DIRECTOR, VIRGIN TRAINS

Inglis has played a big role in reversing poor perceptions of the Virgin Trains brand, which is 10 this year. The 'Return of the train' campaign has been followed by savvy communications to consolidate its positioning as a dynamic, progressive train operator offering comfortable travel.

Spotting an opportunity, Inglis made attempts this year to leverage public concern over carbon emissions by promoting train travel as an eco-friendly alternative to flying through a multimedia ad campaign. In keeping with the cheeky attributes of the Virgin brand, it gained national media attention and wound up British Airways with a guerrilla marketing stunt on one of BA's planes.

Virgin CrossCountry expects to carry a record 20m passengers a year and has raised its share of the London-Manchester route against airlines.

Stagecoach, which has a 49% stake in the train company, recently raised shareholder return from an estimated £400m to £700m, partly because of Virgin Trains' improved prospects.

To vote for your favourite marketer email topmarketer@haymarket.com.

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