“Believe in your passion! If you are a creative person, never think your ideas are crazy, they might just change the world”Jeannie Beetge
Jeannie is the Senior Marketing Manager for Central Developments Property Group. Her work ethic is impeccable! She thrives on making her clients happy by listening first and then taking the necessary actions. She’s also an awesome mom and is a testament that women can play multiple roles. Not all heroines wear capes! Welcome to this segment of Women In Marketing
THE JOURNEY TAKEN
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your career in marketing? How’d you end up at Central Developments Property Group?
After finishing school, I did not have a clear picture of what I was going to do, I started working for a family business as a receptionist for 5 years and thereafter I started working for my uncle’s medical company. During this time I realised that I felt completely isolated from the world and that I needed to move on as I was craving interaction with other people and that I was not made to sit in an office the entire day.
I started working for Central Developments in 2012 as a marketer at a retirement estate and boy oh boy was it life-changing! Finally, I was able to live out my passion and by living out my passion and working for such an amazing company I was assisting many people in finding their perfect retirement home. 2 years after starting at Central Developments I was promoted to the marketing manager role and since then the growth has been incredible.
What have you learned at Central Developments Property Group that you had not learned at previous companies?
Wow, where do I start! Central Developments is nothing compared to previous companies! They have an entrepreneurial approach, strong principles that I have implemented not only in the workplace but in my personal life as well.
Everyone in the company is like family! We all think alike, we all have a passion for marketing but most of all we are all super proud of our company! They always push you to do your utmost best, they encourage you to pursue your goals, they listen to your ideas even when they sound absolutely crazy! They embrace creativity and new ways of working.
We have amazing leadership in our company, this by far is what stands out to me.
What made you fall in love with the world of marketing? What particular moment in time pushed you to pursue this as a career? After all, we all wanted to be Doctor’s growing up, right?
Making a difference! Working with elderly people has completely changed my outlook on life. Listening to their life-stories, knowing that I am now part of that story is incredible. After selling my 1st home to an elderly lady in one of our developments seeing how grateful and happy she was when she moved in was so rewarding, I knew then that this is what I wanted to do!
I wanted to meet new people, listen to their stories and their needs and help them find exactly that! Marketing is not just about selling a product, it is really listening, understanding and giving your clients what they need/want.
ENTERING THE WORKPLACE
What does your typical day of work look like? How does your calendar look and are you a coffee or tea kind of person?
O I am a coffeeholic 🙂 a typical day at work for me… I always start off with a quick motivating chat with my team just to remind them what our main aim and goal is. Meetings, client management, strategies, market research, client appointments, admin. My favourite part is obviously meeting new clients 🙂
Forbes has an annual ‘The World’s Most Influential CMOs’ report. For the year 2019, one of the key highlights from the report was that 31 of the 50 CMOs were women whilst there were 19 men. In your opinion, is this a positive representation of gender equality?
Yes, this is really positive, personally I feel it shows great growth and that fewer companies are discriminating against gender.
Systems around remote work and video conferencing are increasingly becoming a staple to most organisations. To illustrate this, according to the infographic created by Visual Capitalist, Zoom is now worth more than the 7 biggest airlines in the world at a whopping market capitalization of just over $40bn. Working from home/remote working is an aspect of modern-day work that has been long overdue. Why do you think most organisations who are seemingly able to convert to this way of work have struggled to convert? Furthermore, how have you and your organisation structured your work since the COVID-19 pandemic? Any key lessons?
As I work on a retirement estate, going completely digital was a really tough thing to do, elderly people love the interactions, they love seeing the actual house they are buying. But under these extraordinary circumstances, we have been successful in selling and renting properties by scheduling virtual appointments or even the good old WhatsApp video call.
As a mother, how has the COVID-19 pandemic influenced the way you work? Furthermore, should organisations be cognisant of mothers? Is enough being done to cater to new parents, specifically mothers?
It is not easy trying to work at home with a 2-year-old, they want attention, they want to play, eat and drink but most of all they WANT to touch that shiny laptop on the desk and when mommy says “NO” they do not understand, have you seen a 2-year-old throw a tantrum 🙂 currently I need more motivation to stay calm and focussed than coffee 🙂
I am however coping and have adapted in this new way of living, I have set goals and deadlines and come hell or high waters I will finish my work. I am extremely blessed to work for a company that fully supports and understands especially now that I have a little guy to take care of.
I have spoken to many women who work for organisations who are not cognizant at all, do I think we should be treated differently just because we are parents? No, BUT, I think all organizations should realise that we are all human and sometimes just like the COVID-19 pandemic life happens.
What have been some of Central Developments Property Group biggest successes in marketing over the past 12 to 18 months?
We are market leaders in the property industry thus the years of working with different types of clients gives us a great indication of what our clients look for when it comes to marketing and what triggers them to visit one of our projects. We have successfully developed, sold and rented 1000’s of houses and apartments all over Gauteng. Our marketing strategies are built in a way to cater to every single persona and messages are personalised to get them interested.
BCG published its innovation report for 2019 and at the core of its selection criteria are companies that have successfully married Artificial Intelligence in their products and services. According to you, what makes something innovative? How do you define innovation at Central Developments Property Group?
Innovation to me means changing/restructuring or transforming something into something life-changing! Using creative thinking to make something that works so much better. Central Developments thrive on innovation. We are always growing at every level, always looking to better everything.
At the time of publishing, an article from The Digital Marketing Institute estimated that the influencer marketing industry will hit the $10bn mark by 2020. Whether it is B2B or B2C, it is evident that brands and organisations have had their own success with this model of marketing. How will the COVID-19 pandemic affect this industry going forward and do you believe there is still a place for influencer marketing?
I don’t think this is a market that could ever die. Digital is great but people especially South Africans like the personal interaction with the seller. I do think we will take some time for the economy to recover from this pandemic but as South Africans, we can turn it around and make the biggest success out of anything.
What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?
Any editing app/tool
2020 AND BEYOND
What are you currently reading? (What do you read, and how do you consume information? Physical book vs eReader?)
Not currently reading anything but a good read – ‘YOU ARE A BADASS: How to stop doubting your greatness and start living an awesome life’ – by Jen Sincero
What is on your Netflix watchlist/How do you relax?
Nothing beats a good old Horror movie, I have just finished ‘Sons of Anarchy’ – great series!
A unique message for all young professionals in the marketing industry
Believe in your passion! If you are a creative person, never think your ideas are crazy, they might just change the world 🙂
What haven’t you solved? What challenge is on your plate?
Life 🙂 I still have not been able to find a healthy balance between work and personal life, it is a daily struggle and really not an easy challenge. Especially now with the pandemic!
Tag the one person whose answers to these questions you would love to read
Shayla van Loggerenberg is part of my team and has a very bright future ahead of her
Any bucket list items (professional as well as personal)?
I would love to travel the world! I absolutely love reading and exploring all cultures 🙂
Who are some of your female heroes?
Something you do better than others – the secret of your success?
I never back down, if I want something I go for it, if I fail I try again! Always believe in yourself, it is ok to fail, it is how you get back up that makes the difference.
Which superhero/heroine or literature icon exemplifies your personality at work and at home?