Makepeace Marketing – a LinkedIn Reflection

I’ve just been thanking colleagues and friends for their kind messages on LinkedIn which had reminded them of my anniversary.  The key one was 9 years of Makepeace Marketing but it has also been 5 years as associate of McAllister and Co, 9 years working in various roles with Chartered Institute of Marketing and 9 years of p.t. teaching at South Devon College.  So I’ve been reflecting on an interesting 9 years during which the opportunities of digital marketing have truly taken hold for all audiences and there has been huge growth in portfolio careers like mine. Working for myself has been rewarding, rejuvenating and thought-provoking; there’s never a dull day.  The world of the freelance marketer is inspiring, challenging and great fun.  The south west is rich in entrepreneurship and, with a plethora of small and micro business, there is always scope for professional marketers to make a strong contribution to business success.

It’s also been a reminder that it’s time I got some updated profile pictures!


When CSR and KPIs collide

VW a tarnished image‘As far as Volkswagen Group is concerned, bearing its social responsibility has long been at the heart of our corporate culture…’


Those are just a few of the words from the website and they are followed by various references to health, education and a culture which integrates ‘traditional entrepreneurial business values with a modern understanding of responsibility and sustainability’.  So what went wrong?

Organisational culture is a system of shared beliefs, values and behaviours. VW’s  corporate social responsibility words seem to represent the beliefs and values but the behaviours deviated from this.  Were these rogue behaviours, focused on Key Performance Indicators unrelated to CSR or will it transpire that their beliefs and values were not really shared?

It will be interesting to follow the VW story and find out where the dust settles after this collision.


Can charities re-gain our trust?

charity316488932The high profile collapse of Kids Company and concerns about fundraising practices have been in the headlines this year, alongside the very challenging causes that need the support of the third sector. “The last few months will have shaken the public’s trust and confidence in charities.” says Paula Sussex in the Guardian.  She goes on to describe the solution as better regulation, but have charities stopped understanding their customer, the donor?

Aggressive street or telesales tactics and lack of transparency about the funding ‘pie’ suggest that they may have shifted towards a sales-orientation, more commonly exhibited by solar panel (used to be double-glazing) sales people.  Jeremy Corbyn’s crowd-sourcing of 46,000 questions for PMQs shows just how easy it should be for charities to ensure that they are communicating clearly with their supporters and responding to their needs as well as those of their benefactors.

Guardian article


MeaHelf for heros2nwhile here are some fantastic students from Devon who worked their socks off to raise £1,276 for Help for Heroes. I feel sure that this charity will be keeping their trust and support.


South West Coast Path


IMG_1546630 miles – and each step a good reason to visit SW England.  Long distance trails are proving to be incredibly successful at giving visitors a reason to visit, stay longer and develop a strong attachment to an area. The West Highland way in Scotland, the Pacific Crest Trail in western USA (as seen in the movie Wild), the Camino Trail in northern Spain and many others act as magnets to day hikers and long-distance trailers alike.

Research suggests that the South West Coast Path could account for nearly half a million pounds of spend and close to 10,000 jobs in the counties it wraps around. Accommodation providers, cafes, restaurants, ferries and shops along the way all benefit. So too do specialist companies like Luggage Transfers.

It has been my great pleasure to hike some of the SWCP and, in the years to come, I hope to hike it all. An estimate of my expenditure over the years as I cover this is perhaps £10,000. £15 a mile and worth every penny.

Photo : D Makepeace near Prawle Point S. Devon.