Let’s talk Marketing!

Business, Isabela

As prospective students, you all might have different ideas about what marketing means and why you want to study it. You will probably be even more surprised to find out through your degree that marketing hasn’t got a clear definition; it’s described in many ways by a variety of theorists who have studied its aspects and adapted the theory according to the context.

Marketing is more complex than anyone would think, myself included. The degree is fascinating and brings the geek out in me! So why am I writing this blog post about marketing as you are all going to learn about it anyway in your courses?

Well, sometimes, people want to know more details about their course, in order to become more enthusiastic or disappointed in the worse cases. The main reason why I want to talk about it is because I can relate from a student perspective. There are three main things that I feel you need to know or be interested about:

  1. Creativity – You don’t have to be the best at art or design to study or do marketing but you need to be able to spot the difference between a bland presentation and vibrant packaging that makes you buy the product even if you don’t need it.
  2. Vision – Understand the market and the values of the product or service, how would consumers see it and why should they buy it?
  3. Communication – Some of us are born leaders, some are team workers and some of us are the geniuses in the company that think of the stuff other people have missed. We all fall into a category but you probably don’t know it yet.

I hope it’s all starting to sound exciting because that’s what I was hoping for when I started writing!

I’ve heard someone say recently marketing is not glamorous but hard work and I disagree completely! Surely there is no particular job in the world that doesn’t involve some kind of work, it might seem more glamorous than others but that’s probably due to peoples’ opinions and some marketing involved.

Marketing can be applied to almost anything and everything, from toilet roll to America’s Next Top Model because they all need some kind of connections to make themselves known. Some will be on the supermarket shelves and others in magazines. For me, marketing is about getting out there, even if you work for a catering company, electricity company, automobile company or in the clothing industry it doesn’t matter. You are the front face that customers want to see.

Surely Facebook and Twitter are the most used social media sites for our generation but imagine how many companies use them to promote their business and increase sales. It might not seem straightforward but it’s true, customer service has moved nowadays into the online era. We, as Marketeers need to move at the same speed with the technology and that’s the best bit about the job. We never stand still and do boring jobs but we move along and have fun with the times!

So, can you see now why Marketing hasn’t got a definition? #coolMarketeers

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Societies and how to get involved

Business, Isabela

Before I finished my placement, I was asked by the committee board of the Business and Entrepreneurial Society if I’d like to join them as the Treasurer. All the students leading the Society were going on internships and placement during summer and there was no one to take over the following term. It sounded like a great idea and so I joined as the Treasurer.

Every Society has to start up with the main three board members in order to exist, Society President, Secretary and Treasurer. Each role is varied from each other. The President will make sure to look after the members and probably be involved 90% in the creative side, trying to bring the members ideas to life. The Secretary will ensure that there is sufficient assistance for the President and be the middle man between the members and committee where necessary as well as President’s right hand. In comparison, the Treasurer will look after the financial side, and ensure that the Society account is looked after. For example, when students join the Societies, the top-up fee goes into an account, which will provide funding for any activities members would like to happen.

Usually in Freshers’ Week, most of the Societies have a stand where they ‘sell’ themselves. You are able to browse and see what Society interest you most. Then, once you have paid the Society fee of £7 for the whole year, you can just pay the top up fee and join any other Societies you want. This way, you can pick and choose who you want to join, i.e. our Society – The Business and Entrepreneurial Society and the DJ & Mix Society.

Useful facts to know about joining a Society:

  1. It’s more useful than you think – by joining a Society you’re not only enhancing your free time by doing fun stuff but also you’re relaxing your brain to learn and study better. By joining a more academic focused society – i.e The Business and Entrepreneurial Society, you will do activities centred around work experience so you can establish contacts and network constantly.
  2. The dates when you can join a Society are between September and June within an academic year, although most students will make their decision during the Fresher’s Fair.
  3. You have the opportunity to set up your own Society if you wish so. The Students’ Union support any new Societies bearing in mind you adhere to their policies and regulations in regards to Society set-up purposes.

My personal advice would be to take as much advantage of the Fresher’s Fair as possible. Not only will the Societies will be pitching to you, but you will get a better idea of what suits you best, and instead of spending your student loan on nights out, try to spare some money to have fun with new people and enjoy your time at Uni. Do not forget, there’s also the Refreshers’ Fair for when you come back for your second semester in January with freebies and other things available. You might drop out after the first year, a lot of things change and maybe you want to join a new Society, nothing stops you, it’s entirely up to you. Also, from my point of view, you could easily join some sports Societies which will feel like going to the gym and keeping fit for less than the gym price. Alternatively, if the gym is your favourite, we have a Gym on site at Kedleston Road, so do enquire for the prices, they will be discounted for our students.

If you want to find out more information about the Students’ Union and the Societies before coming to University of Derby have a look at the link below:

http://www.udsu.co.uk/societies/

There’s also the Facebook Page for the Students’ Union if you want to have a look, we have had our Graduation Ceremonies lately and pictures are everywhere, this might be you in three years’ time!

https://www.facebook.com/udsupage

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Places around Buxton

Emily B, HRSM

Bakewell

Bakewell is about 20 minutes away from Buxton and is easily accessible by bus or car. It is a beautiful historic town which is the home of the famous Bakewell Tart, which of course is widely available to purchase there! There are lots of shops, restaurants, cafes and things to do and see. It is home to a huge agricultural show which is the largest of its kind in the UK. It has a fair, a food hall and hundreds of competing animals. The town is well worth a visit!

Ashbourne

Ashbourne is a quaint town about 30 minutes from Buxton, it is on the Transpeak bus route and easily accessible by car. It has some lovely little shops, cafes, restaurants, walks and is home to the ‘Shrovetide’ football game which sees spectators play football in the streets over an 8 hour period, with the goals 3 miles apart! A very interesting watch!

Carsington Water is a reservoir just outside of Ashbourne which is home to water sports such as kayaking, wind surfing, canoeing and sailing. There is also a great cycle route around the reservoir, for the keen cyclist and the not so keen! It is a great place to get some fresh air, with cycle hire facilities or water sports hire facilities, it really has it all! There is a café, some shops and a visitor centre to explore too!

Matlock Bath

Matlock is a really fun place to visit and is best described as the seaside in land! Easily accessed by bus or car, it has fish and chip shops, amusement arcades, a mini aquarium, a mining museum and its own version of Blackpool’s illuminations that run for a couple of months in the year. It also has the ‘Heights of Abraham’, cable cars which take you up a cavern system, a fossil display and of course a lovely tea room! Matlock also offers some English heritage in the Form of Masson Mill. Richard Arkwright built it in 1783 and it is still a working textile museum today with shopping village and restaurant. Matlock is my favourite place in the Peak and I would recommend a visit!

Derby

Derby is the closest large City to Buxton and is home to an Intu Shopping Centre, with over 190 shops inside and outside, along with a food court, cinema and tons of restaurants to choose from. There is also a darker side to Derby as it is reported to be one of the most haunted cities in the country! Ghost Walks around the centre and the Derby Gaol are popular and an exciting experience. If ghosts and the paranormal aren’t your thing, The Assembly Rooms is host to plays, pantomimes, live acts and stand-up comedians regularly.

There is plenty to do for free in Derby too; there are lots of great outdoor spaces to explore such as Darley Park, Markeaton Park and Locko Park. Derby Museum is an interesting place to visit as it covers WW1, the Egyptians and Derby’s own heritage such as Joseph Wright.

The night life in Derby is a really good night out. There is somewhere for every type of music lover. From Mosh, for the indie, rock and drum and bass crowd to Walkabout which plays pop, current music and some classics and many more places to choose from. Both host student nights in the week and offer discount on the night out with drinks offers and reduced entry! There are loads of other great pubs and bars to choose from. There are independent places which brew their own beer or chains such as Revolution and Wetherspoon’s.

Alton Towers

The UK’s largest theme park is less than 25 miles away and can be reached in around 40 minutes by car. During fresher’s week, a trip to Alton Towers is arranged for free, transport included! If you have never visited before you are in for a treat as it is home to amazing roller-coasters, the log flume, a mini sea life centre, a 4D experience and live shows. A day out not to be missed!

My journey to Derby University

Business, Isabela

Coming to University can be for some a daunting experience, it certainly was for me! A lot of Universities were offering courses in Marketing but something drew me to the University of Derby. The big glass building inspired trust, reliability and the sense of modernism which were the main characteristics I wanted in my University of choice.

I can still remember my first day at Derby, enrolling as a first year student, butterflies in my tummy and not really sure what to expect. But as soon as I entered the classroom, a sense of certainty took over, the lecturers were relaxed, and we were reminded that we are “here to have fun as well as studying” which have helped the three years to fly by. One things for certain – I’ve never regretted choosing Derby.

When I chose Marketing and Advertising, my future career was clear – a job in Public Relations. So far, so good, by choosing similar subjects I’ve ensured that I’m building a strong foundation to get to the career I want. Though I wasn’t studying a specific PR course, I have absolutely loved my degree!

Business degrees are not simple business, but you are shown all sides to a Business in your first year, you initiate yourself in projects and report to understand Marketing and Advertising in your second year and in your third year, you go full out.  Third year scares everyone, but actually is your chance to prove how much you’ve learned and come out a keen apprentice ready to take on any Marketing job, because Derby University isn’t just a learning opportunity but a skills machine.

One particular thing that attracted me to Derby was the placement option within my degree, which I found enticing and immensely useful. The job market is changing quickly and the more skilled you are the quicker you advance. The placement means that between second and third year you go out in the marketplace and work for 10 months or more to gain the skills you need and see what are your best abilities. However when you come back into third year you’re a changed person. Not only do you know a lot more but you can do a lot more. The best thing of all though is it all reflects in your assignments- when it counts the most out of the whole degree.

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Why was Derby right for me?

Emily B, HRSM

The main reason I chose the University of Derby was due to the variety of entry routes offered. This was perfect for me as I didn’t study traditional A Levels. By offering a foundation degree programme or an Access course, Derby enables people from all walks of life to study here.

After completing the foundation programme, I enrolled onto a full time Tourism Management degree at Derby, at the Buxton Campus. Ranked as the No. 1 UK University for degrees in Tourism, Hospitality, Events and Spa Management, it was obvious that continuing my studies at Derby was the right choice!

Now in my 2nd year, I have visited Ireland and Malta as part of the degree course, experiencing the tourism business first-hand. As well as the academic parts of these trips, we also got free time to explore and to give everybody a chance to get to know each other which helps to build a great community.

Regular opportunities to meet important industry employers such as Visit Peak District means I have already gained industry specific skills, making me as prepared as possible for my career ahead.

The lecturers are really engaging and are always there when you need extra advice or to point you in the right direction of some helpful contacts. You learn on a wide range of platforms, with spontaneous day trips not an uncommon occurrence, making the learning style varied and really enjoyable!

Once I have successfully completed my degree, I hope to move into the education side of tourism by becoming an education coordinator, liaising with schools and groups at a busy visitor attraction.  96.7% of last year’s graduates were in jobs or further study within 6 months of completing their degree, which is definitely a figure to boast about! Thanks to my degree and the support I have received whilst at Derby, I am confident I will be ready for the next challenge ahead of me – full time employment.