When digital marketing hit the scene, marketers had an exciting challenge on their hands. For Naaz Fatima Butt, she immersed herself fully from the start and her efforts led her to move forward with Google.
I always knew I wanted to have a career in marketing - I loved every aspect from developing new go to market strategies and exploring ways to reach audiences to launching new campaigns. I fell into “internet marketing” at a time where it was very, very new to everyone. Not many individuals had experience in it, myself included. Back then, I didn’t even know what URL meant, and it felt like a total accident.
I can say with utmost certainty that I love digital marketing because it is quantifiable and results-driven. Marketing makes both sides of your brain work! You have the opportunity to be creative and innovative while also being analytical and calculated. The best thing about digital marketing is that with the help of Google tools like Google Analytics, you can track your success and calculate ROI very easily. You can see the impact of your campaigns in real-time and the field is always forever changing and growing. You will never be bored!
When I started in marketing, I was very fortunate to be a part of the University of Toronto, BBA Co-op Program. Through this program, I completed co-op terms at both Microsoft Canada and Toronto Hydro.
These internships allowed me to gain valuable work experience, network with industry professionals and learn more about the exciting world of technology. I learned a great deal from our American websites and gurus in the field and brought that knowledge back to the Canadian team.
After graduation, I applied to numerous companies for employment but had no luck! I then began reaching out to my network, professional contacts who helped me get my foot in the door. The saying is very true: “It's not what you know, but who you know.”
Presentation skills are KEY! I worked in a remote role for three years and didn’t have to present to external audiences. When I joined Intuit as their Senior Web Marketing Manager, my first presentation was a complete BOMB! I was very fortunate to have an awesome manager, Brent Chaters, who coached me and helped build my confidence in the storytelling needed for high calibre presentations.
Looking back, I would also say that building more technical expertise in advanced analytics and web design would have also helped a lot. Back then, investing in digital skills was not as much of a priority as it is today. I am so proud to work for a company that offers courses where students can learn the digital skills needed to be successful in today's working environments. I strongly encourage students to learn and explore the courses offered through Google Digital Garage. This will help you figure out what areas you may like or dislike and where you want to focus and grow!
Wearing a hijab has never bothered me, but it bothered many others. I received negative comments and had people tell me I would never go far in my career. I was and am blessed and grateful to have worked for awesome companies where diversity was embraced. The biggest challenge was to stay positive while hearing this sort of negativity by really making sure it went in one ear and out the other!
Then there is, of course, the pandemic, which has impacted us all in many ways. Every business is now working remotely, across countries and continents. Human Resources is more important than ever. Each individual has different needs for how they can best work and manage their personal lives. Mental health is very important, and I see the need for HR to have flexible policies to attract and retain top talent.