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Life as a Head of Digital

To shed some light on ‘what a career in social media looks like’, we are catching up with a range of Social Media Professionals to showcase career journeys and paths into the industry. This series is inspired by the upcoming Social Media Week Bristol; which is designed to upskill, inform, explore ideas and opportunities and further the conversation on key issues in media, marketing and technology.

Here our chat with Alex Saxon, Head of Digital at Home to find out about his career in social media so far.

ADLIB: How did you get into digital marketing? What has been the career path that led you to it?

Alex Saxon: So, having graduated from Southampton Solent University studying Design Communication, I started out as a ‘web designer’ (that should give you a clue as to how long ago) with my very first gig pitting my design and HTML wits to the test creating the Volvo Ocean Race website. After a while, my hands got less dirty moving to Project Management and now strategic direction and implementation.

Over the years I’ve worked with so many big brands on everything from email builds to massive (and hugely complex) CRM campaigns, from game builds to apps and data driven websites to experiential installations.

ADLIB: What does a typical work day/week look like for you now (if there is such thing) and what do you like most about your job?

Alex Saxon: There’s no such thing as a typical day as I could be strategising on social media engagement for a proposal one day, to liaising with clients and vendors on a complex platform build the next. I’ve done everything from build emails and play with holograms to run workshops across a dozen different countries… one thing is always constant though, and that’s the quality and quantity of work (and banter) from my colleagues at Home!

ADLIB: What avenues would you recommend to people within social media to keep their skills and industry knowledge up to date?

Alex Saxon: The very nature of social means there’s so many people out there saying and doing soooooo many smart things, you just need to keep on top of it – and that’s the hard part! I tend to curate content useful for what I’m working on from various people across Twitter and LinkedIn using Hootsuite. I then collect useful information and add it to a Trello board for future reference / add to my overarching plan and where I see trends going in the future [insert villain laugh here].

ADLIB: Briefly, what are the top 3 skills you believe it takes to succeed in social media?

Alex Saxon: You need a plan, you need to be creative and you need to be agile!

ADLIB: And finally, what piece of advice would you give your younger self, just entering digital marketing as a professional? Is there any advice that could have helped you along the way?

Alex Saxon: Be brave. Be bold. Never stop learning and keep busy. Also, don’t touch that – you don’t know where it’s been!

Thanks so much for sharing!

Alex will be speaking at Social Media Week on the 11th June for the sold-out Big Social Breakfast at Home – bringing outside social strategies in, with guest speaker Martin Fitzpatrick.