HomeThe HeroesBD HeroesIs Chartered Marketer status the ‘Hollywood blockbuster’ of professional services marketing achievement?

Is Chartered Marketer status the ‘Hollywood blockbuster’ of professional services marketing achievement?

From Mission Impossible to Harry Potter, Star Wars to Rocky Jack Osbon shares his journey to chartered marketer status and the parallels of the Hollywood blockbuster theory of equilibrium.

You’re a chartered what? Many outside of the professional services marketing bubble will be familiar with a chartered surveyor. Or perhaps a chartered accountant. But a chartered marketer? Not so much.

The chartered marketer status comes from the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) and recently celebrated its 25th anniversary. It’s the top accolade you can receive in marketing, with international recognition and your name in a worldwide directory.

The process of achievement is much like a Hollywood blockbuster. In fact, many of these films follow Todorov’s narrative film theory of equilibrium. It contains the same five formal elements that are encapsulated in many films. You can read more on Todorov’s theory here.

Taking five cult film franchise examples, we dissect achieving Chartered Marketer status using this theory. (Warning – potential blockbuster film spoilers ahead!)

Stage of film: Running up those Rocky Steps in Philadelphia (Rocky)

You’ve probably been doing a lot of the hard work already without realising it. You’ve been running up those Rocky Steps. All of the learning on the job, creating ideas on the commute and reading book recommendations from peers has been great and you feel like you’re going along well.

But something inside you says you want more. Maybe a qualification? Or should we persevere with what we’re already doing. This is where the disruption begins.

Disruption of the equilibrium
Stage of film: “You’re a wizard, Harry” – Hagrid tells Harry Potter (Harry Potter)

And so the journey begins. We’ve done our research and been presented with alternative paths, much like Harry Potter at Hogwarts – and not only with Hagrid, but also the famous sorting hat (“not Slytherin!”).

We can sign up to do a post-graduate CIM qualification or we can work and attain enough years’ experience to be awarded an Associate level membership at CIM. Our equilibrium has been disrupted, we need to make a choice and begin to recognise what we must do.

Recognition of the disruption
Stage of film: “Your mission, should you choose to accept it” (Mission Impossible)

After choosing our path, and a mission given to us, we’ve accepted and now we recognise what we must do. Hitting Associate member level means we need to complete a chartered CPD programme for two consecutive years.

The portal gives us a system to easily log our activity and helps identify skills gaps using subcategories and matrixes – a great visual tool. Certificates, webinars, events and research all contribute towards it. After two years of 35 hours CPD for each year, we now need to resolve this disruption.

Attempt to resolve the disruption
Stage of film: Frodo destroying the One Ring in Mount Doom (The Lord of the Rings)

The final boss! Can we make all this hard work pay off and can Frodo restore peace once again? We need to complete a multiple-choice test based on the professional marketing competencies set by CIM. It all comes down to this moment.

And we do it! We hit the criteria and we pass the assessment. The disruption has been resolved.

Return to a new equilibrium
Stage of film: The Rebel Alliance has defeated the Galactic Empire (Star Wars)

We made it! We’re a chartered marketer. The Rebel Alliance has defeated the Galactic Empire and the celebrations begin. We get our certificate, digital badges and proudly share this news with our friends, families, and colleagues.

We feel more confident, we are ready to demonstrate this return on investment in our approach to better professional services marketing. We have our new equilibrium.

Bonus Post-Credits Scene
Almost by design, the sequel is already underway. In fact, the learning never stops. And we must maintain our status by evolving, but we already do that anyway. The CPD style now changes to a minimum of four big activities and a write-up of self-reflection in relation to them.

We realise Todorov’s narrative film theory is not linear, it is in fact circular.

Jack Osbon is a is a chartered marketer in professional services.

Matt Baldwin
Matt Baldwin
Co-founder – Coast Communications

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