The Queen’s Marketing Association Conference (Q-MAC 2013)
By: Sarah Adnan
The Queen’s Marketing Association Conference that took place from January 10th to the 13th in Kingston, Ontario was a valuable networking opportunity that allowed me to not only make connections with industry leaders but also inspired me to strive for bigger and brighter achievements. Marketing leaders and Chief Executives Officers from various companies including: Starbucks, Coca-Cola, Koodo, Campbell’s and many more were present at the conference for the purpose of recruiting students. Each day of the conference was filled with workshops, seminars, keynote speakers and evening networking cocktail receptions that gave students a chance to leave a lasting impression on industry professionals and get themselves recognized.
The field of marketing is all about cutting through the noise and getting yourself heard. Similarly, in order to nail a job in such a competitive industry, it is crucial to start making connections from now and look for internship opportunities that will equip a young individual with the required work experience and knowledge.
One of the highlights of the conference occurred on the third day when organizers took the delegates who came from universities all over Canada on a tour to Queen’s University. I was quite excited to walk through the beautiful hallways of Queen’s University as I had heard great things about it. The architecture and design of the university were reminiscent of a Parliament building or an art gallery. While at the university, the organizers had prepared a mini case challenge for the delegates where we were split into teams of four and given a case to solve. Not only were we given limited time to organize our ideas for the product assigned, but we also had to present our marketing strategy in front of a panel of company executives and the rest of the delegates. Although it was challenging, I absolutely enjoyed tackling a mini case challenge and proposing my ideas to actual leaders and brand managers of the company. This was definitely one of the greatest practical and beneficial parts of the conference.
Overall, there was so much to be learnt from the conference. I had the chance to meet brilliant young minds from all over Canada which only inspired me to work harder and shine brighter in a field I have decided to pursue a career in. I was exposed to marketing techniques and strategies discussed by brand managers of companies such as Coca-Cola, which taught me that anything is possible if the golden plan is executed effectively. There is no point of having a great idea when it doesn’t have means of effective execution to support it. I also realized that as a marketer in today’s growing economy and technology, it is not sufficient to rely on traditional marketing strategies but to take risks and challenge one’s thinking to into creating innovation methods and techniques.
I encourage all students interested in marketing to try to attend the QMAC conference next year!