THE Marketers Association of Zimbabwe recently held a breakfast meeting which saw hundreds of delegates witnessing the accreditation of 42 marketers who had graduated from the 2012 edition of the Marketers Winter School held in Nyanga.
The marketers were awarded the coveted Marketing Practitioner status. Officiating at the event, Minister of State in Vice President Joice Mujuru’s office, Sylvester Nguni, urged the newly accredited marketing practitioners to hold their profession in high esteem and regard.
“Marketing is not all about getting rid of a company’s products, through conning the customer to buy the product, whether they want to or they don’t, or whether it meets their needs or not” Nguni said.
“It is an integrated process through which companies build strong customer relationships and create value for their customers and themselves. In essence, professionalism in marketing is concerned with identifying the customer, satisfying the customer and keeping the customer.”
He challenged companies to recruit marketing personnel who are qualified and professional if they were to realise value from the marketing function.
“Companies should invest in recruiting and developing professional and trained marketers in order to expect meaningful results from the marketing function. There is need for companies to realise that marketing is not advertising, and advertising is not marketing per se, but to recruit and develop marketing personnel who are able to fully execute the marketing processes and instill a marketing-oriented culture in an organisation and ultimately increase their market share and brand equity,” he said.
This year’s Winter School was divided into two groups. The first class comprised Marketing Practitioner aspirants whilst the second group comprised the second level Marketing Practitioners on Continuous Professional Development.
Agrippa Mugwagwa of FBC Bank, Alistair Carlisle of Barker Ogilvy and Albert Katsande of OK Zimbabwe were awarded Honorary Marketing Practitioner status for their outstanding work in the field of Marketing.
IMM’s Helen McIntee and Nigel Tattersall were present at this year’s breakfast meeting, top Kenyan marketer, Susan Omanga, presented a paper on “How to make PR work for you” at the breakfast meeting.
Minister Nguni went a step further in educating marketers on what marketing was all about.
His main worry was marketers who confused marketing for advertising.
“Marketers should desist from identifying marketing with advertising … there is more to marketing than advertising.”
Marketing involves a lot of things and it is the most important department within an organisation.
The minister’s speech was not confined to marketing departments only but to the whole organisation.
He concluded by thanking the introducers of broadband to Zimbabwe saying it was helping the marketing industry in a big way.
Helen McIntee emphasised creating relationships within the African continent. She asked why, since African people could marry across countries, couldn’t they merge and come up with something as Africans?
McIntee further encouraged marketers to partner with the Marketers Association of Zimbabwe and come up with one board for Zimbabwe.
Before according the marketing practitioner status to candidates there was a presentation from top Kenyan marketer Susan Omanga.
Her presentation was entitled “Making PR work for you” This presentation was helpful to both marketing and public relations practitioners.
Presentation of certificates to winter school graduants was done by Priscilla Sadomba and Omanga.