With this being the last Journal of Strategic Marketing newsletter for 2021 – we’ll be back at the end of January 2022 – it is an appropriate time to detail the exciting changes taking place at the Institute of Marketing Management South Africa and its IMM Graduate School.

The ambitious plans for the Institute for Marketing Management involve the creation of the largest network of marketing professionals across the continent. Aided by partner organisation, the African Marketing Confederation, the aim is to “uplift, grow and promote the marketing profession, including the areas of media, advertising, branding, market research, customer service, public relations, digital marketing, sales and business development” while supporting and inspiring marketing professionals at every stage of their careers.

Membership of the Institute of Marketing Management incorporates certain tiers that come with specific benefits for both individuals and corporate companies, which will form a solid community for alumni/students of the IMM Graduate School and the greater marketing industry.

The plan also includes vital, practical elements such as offering a job placement service to both corporate and individual members. The IMM Graduate School’s renowned qualifications in marketing, supply chain and business have created a pool of talent in various levels of their careers. 

Membership of the IMM comes with a range of benefits too. Monthly IMM Friday networking events will cover latest industry developments. An annual marketing conference is planned, which will provide a platform for industry experts to address topical issues, and for marketing academics and researchers to present papers covering new theories and research results. The event will also host the Marketing Excellence Awards, recognising achievements and contributions to the marketing industry each year. 

An Executive Think Tank will be formed, offering IMM Platinum Corporate Members an opportunity to meet and share insights and perspectives. This is designed to ensure marketing’s brightest minds collaborate and exchange ideas on how to best serve the industry.

While the Journal of Strategic Marketing will serve the South African side of the IMM’s members and a range of C-Suite executives across industry, the Strategic Marketing for Africa magazine will cover the business of marketing across the continent. 

The business of education, of course, continues. The IMM offers a bouquet of online programmes, developed by industry specialists, which are both practical and relevant. Workshops will also be presented, designed with specific industry needs in mind.

Exciting times lie ahead for the Institute of Marketing Management and its members. But in the meantime, as we learn to live alongside Covid-19, this issue of the Journal of Strategic Marketing covers the way in which business understands the minds of consumers in this changed world and how brands and agencies have adapted. 

GeoPoll’s Ricardo Lopes analyses the findings of research into South African consumers over the past 18 months. It’s not pretty, as we also live alongside multiple levels of fear brought about by the pandemic. Marketing Grit founder, Noeleen Bruton, delves into the complex world of digital strategy that massive adoption of technology has brought to the fore. SAB Corporate Brand Director Sphe Vundla shares how the company managed multiple agencies and multiple brands in a sector that had to deal with rolling alcohol bans and massive uncertainty. And Ornico’s Oresti Patricios advises businesses that have adopted an ecommerce model how to stand out and retain customers in an increasingly competitive space.

We hope you enjoy the read.

Here’s to marketing the future.