Head of Marketing and Communications
Head of Marketing and Communications
I’m responsible for building brand and reputation across all aspects of our business, including West Country Dental Care, Brighter Dental and Brighter Smiles. I plan, lead and execute integrated marketing campaigns with a special focus on clinical recruitment and patient/customer acquisition, and I manage our public relations and stakeholder engagement activity, aiming to building lasting and mutually beneficial relationships. I also manage our external and internal communications, including through our ‘Weekly Diary’ and Impact publications, as well as our digital and social media channels, and coordinate our engagement in national initiatives such as those relating to oral health, employee ownership and social enterprise, working closely with our marketing agency Fuel Communications.
I love being in an environment that genuinely makes a difference in the community and therefore find initiatives like Brighter Smiles and Smiles At Sea so much fun! I also really enjoy working in partnership and with colleagues right across our business, learning about the contribution each person and team makes to our patients and our business, and together identifying marketing and business development opportunities that have the widest possible impact.
The biggest challenge in this role is finding enough time to do everything that I aspire to achieve!
Prior to joining Smile Together I spent 17 years with Plymouth University in various marketing, communications and external engagement roles. I headed up some exciting cross-institutional initiatives during that time such as the University’s 150th anniversary in 2012 and the Heritage Lottery and Big Lottery Funded restoration of Drake’s Place gardens and reservoir and its operation as a community space. Before joining the University I spent 10 years managing marketing and communications at Bond Pearce Solicitors and saw the firm grow from a leading west country practice into a significant national legal entity.
I really enjoyed the marketing modules within my BSc Business Studies Degree at Manchester and went on to achieve my Chartered Institute of Marketing Diploma and subsequently Chartered Marketer accreditation. I succeeded initially in front line sales and business development roles but, realising that these roles were frequently reliant upon marketing and communications excellence, I quickly transitioned across!
I love the ethos here at Smile Together – the genuine dedication and desire everyone has to make a difference to those patients who need us most, within a business model that aspires to be different. As an employee-owned social enterprise team members have a genuine voice in the business, and our vision and mission are underpinned by meaningful values. It feels really worthwhile working hard and investing so much of ourselves in this business – I’ve found it a supportive and collaborative environment where I’ve been encouraged to introduce my own skills, experience and ideas to influence how the business is developed.
Outside of work I enjoy supporting my two children, riding my daughter’s horse Prince, and helping out on our family farm www.farmerjames.co.uk
Cats or dogs? Both, in fact all animals!
Surfing or sunbathing? Surfing – I’m not very good at sitting still!
Manual or electric toothbrush? Manual since my daughter nabbed my electric toothbrush
Cornish cider or gin? Gin!
Mini or VW Campervan? Campervan
Peace and quiet or loud and lively? Peace and quiet (if I can find it)!
Flossing or interdental brushing? Interdental
Full on roast or salad? Roast
Football or rugby? Rugby – real men!
Rock or classical? Rock
Under cover or outside in the elements? Outside