I joined Team Shoe Zone in May 2020 – after finishing my English literature degree I started my role here as a store marketing administrator. It was a bit of a weird time thanks to everything political and pandemic related, but nonetheless the whole marketing team made me feel welcome immediately and made sure that I was thoroughly clued up and comfortable prior to starting my day-to-day tasks.
Working in store marketing, I have to make sure that all of the Shoe Zone shops have the correct posters on display and communicate any display or promotional changes with them to ensure that stores are set up for success from a marketing point of view. I’m the store’s first point of contact for all things display related and I also have to work with a variety of external suppliers when ordering the new season’s publicity. The most rewarding part about my job is definitely when we receive great feedback in terms of store marketing, and being able to actually see the implemented marketing do its job to translate to store sales is pretty cool too. There’s also a creative aspect to my job when deciding on display changes and merchandising which I particularly enjoy, every day is different and it definitely keeps me on my toes.
2020 being what it was, we never knew what the next day would bring, which meant that there was a bit of a switch up as different departments in head office needed more support than others because of the national lockdown. As it was announced that all non-essential shops had to close, sales from our online store started to rocket, which meant that the volume of customer service queries closely followed. I was asked to help out in the department for a while, and my responsibilities quickly went from posters and uniform to chasing up courier services and dealing with customers directly, it was a whole new ball game. The customer services team were great and got me trained up to work on the website’s live chat, where I would answer customer queries as and when they came. This gave me a completely different understanding of another side of the business, clueing me up on everything customer service related which meant that I had a greater knowledge of the ordering and shipping process from our online shop.
And then 2021 came along, bringing us the gift of another year and another lockdown… As our shops temporarily shut their doors for a third time I began to be trained in the digital marketing department. The team showed me how our website works and introduced me to the whole new world of social media, where my responsibilities included updating the company’s socials. I’ve also been taught how to write product descriptions and page headers in order to optimise where we rank according to search engines, which was a little tricky at first as there were lots of technical terms I’d never heard of before. It can be quite daunting when there’s quite a lengthy process involved in undertaking new responsibilities, which can be frustrating when you don’t immediately know exactly what you’re doing. Perseverance and positivity are my two friends who really help me out with this (along with everyone in digital marketing of course!); it’s important to remember that it’s all a learning curve that may take a while to get, but is so rewarding in the long run.
I’m currently really enjoying my time working in digital, seeing the social side to marketing is giving me a real insight into all the various aspects that contribute towards outstanding marketing. Despite the conditions that got me here, working in different departments has provided a great understanding of all of the separate elements that fit together to form a successful business, all of which come from these different departments working together in unison. Not to mention all of the new skills I’ve learnt by being trained by the team. On top of this, the people who I work with have been brilliant, not only continuing to do their jobs so well but putting up with my (probably very annoying) persistent question asking while training me too, and I’ve found that being in a work environment surrounded by people passionate about their jobs is both inspiring and motivating.