Our Industry Profile takes a look at some of the professionals working across the advertising, ad tech, marketing and media sector in Australia. It aims to shed light on the varying roles and companies across the buzzing industry.
This week we speak to WP Engine country manager ANZ Mark Randall.
Time at the company:
Three years (and six months consulting prior).
How would you describe what the company does?
WP Engine is a platform that allows businesses and agencies of all sizes build and manage their websites more easily.
What do you do day-to-day?
My days start early, scanning my inbox for urgent emails from our Austin HQ, followed by a number of calls with our colleagues over there. After that I’m typically attending calls/meetings with the team or working on presentations/reports and so on. At times I travel a lot, mostly domestically but a couple of times a year to Austin as well.
Define your job in one word:
I got into digital marketing because:
I love how technology is transforming businesses and opening new possibilities for marketers.
What’s the biggest challenge you face in your role?
Digital maturity is relatively low in Australia with a lot of business owners being quite skeptical about the return on investment for web and digital technologies still.
What’s the biggest industry-wide challenge you’d like to see tackled?
Data privacy is a huge issue facing the industry at large. Scandals like Cambridge Analytica have made consumers less trustworthy of what they see and read online. It will be interesting to see how the industry pivots to address this issue. I think we will see a natural shift as the ‘digital first’ generation, Gen Z, increase their buying power. Unlike other generations, Gen Z are not concerned by giving away their personal data for personalised online content.
Previous industry related companies you have worked at:
Early in my career I co-founded a couple of businesses, which was a fantastic experience and taught me about leading teams, finance, sales and operations. I was in at the deep end at a young age. Prior to WP Engine I worked at a couple of infrastructure hosting companies, Bulletproof and Rackspace.
Who has been a great mentor to you and why?
Probably my father above anyone. He listed his business on the London Stock Exchange in 1990, and E&Y’s Entrepreneur of the Year after that. It gave me the motivation and confidence to start and lead businesses, and his advice and support really helped me get started.
Words of advice for someone wanting a job like yours?
Three things (1) Choose the right company over the right role, a growing business with a good culture and strong leadership will always present better opportunities over time (2) Work hard and focus on the short term - the long term will take care of itself (3) Try to learn from the mistakes others have made, so you don’t have to make them again.
If I wasn't doing this for a living, I'd be:
As a child I wanted to be a pilot, but my eyesight wasn’t up to scratch! Later on, I was accepted at Oxford for a law degree, but I took a year off, started working in IT and never looked back. If you follow your heart, you’re likely to end up in the right place.
My mantra is:
The harder I work the luckier I get.
My favourite advert is:
The Australian Cross Burnt Christmas Tree was excellent, touching and powerful in support of a great cause. Such a shame to see the controversy around their donations since.
Music and TV streaming habits. What do you subscribe to?
As a pom and a Liverpool fan, I can’t tear myself aware from the English Premier league this season.
Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?
I once had a normal hairline!
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