Name: Josie Taylor

Age: 25

Job title: Assistant brand manager

Company & location: Kellanova, Media City UK

Education: Newcastle University, Comms and Media (BA Hons) & International Marketing (MA)

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? I have always had an interest in anything creative. Growing up I loved art and design and bringing my ideas to life. I found a love of marketing through an optional module during my BA university studies, so I decided to take it one step further by completing a masters in marketing, and ultimately found my career path.

Why did you decide to go for a career in food & drink? The fmcg market is always changing, it’s fast-paced and reactive to the current climate (be that economic, food trends, or cultural events). I like the timelessness and history of the industry, as well as the fun and exciting places it can go.

Explain your job to us in a sentence (or two): No two days are the same. My role as assistant brand manager involves a lot of cross-functional work between sales and marketing, meetings with internal and external stakeholders and working closely with the team of whatever project I’m working on at the time, to make sure we deliver on time, on brand and with positive impact.

There’s always some time for fun as well – as an activation marketing team, we get together regularly for catch-ups, team days and even trips away!

“We have such a jam-packed plan for the remainder of the year. The fun never stops and there’s so much variety within my role”

What does a typical day look like for you? I usually log on at 9am if I’m working from home, or if I’m in the office I’ll aim to get there for 8:45am so I can have a bowl of cereal for breakfast! As with any job, there’s always some emails to respond to and meetings to attend, but outside of that I am able to manage my own diary and work cross-functionally to deliver our marketing plans and bring our amazing brands to life in stores. Kellanova also offers hybrid working which enables me to have flexibility with my work-life balance.

Tell us how you went about applying for your job: I was really lucky with finding this job. There aren’t many household brand head offices in Manchester, so I had my shortlist of where I’d love to work – Kellogg’s being one of them.

Patience is what rewarded me! I would have a look at the job platform for Kellogg’s every now and then, and I also signed up to their job notifications. One day I got an email with a posting for a brand activation exec role. I applied, had some conversations over the phone and then an interview with a task was set up. I found out about two weeks later that I got the job.

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What’s the best part about working for a food & drink company? The best part has to be the opportunities it brings.

Working in food and drink isn’t just about the products, it’s about connecting with our consumers. An example of this is through our amazing partnerships. I’ve been lucky enough to work on two huge partner projects for Kellogg’s in the UK.

When I started this role back in 2022, I worked on our Merlin partnership, launching it into its 13th year. More recently, I’ve been involved in a new project. Kellogg’s is launching a multi-year initiative of kids’ football camps, in partnership with the EFL, Manchester City, Celtic and Rangers. The scope of this work has been huge, and for the past year or so I’ve been working closely with our senior brand manager to bring this partnership to life. We are so excited to see this hit the market this month and for Kellogg’s Football Camps to kick off this summer!

And what’s the biggest misconception people have about working in food & drink? That it’s boring! We have such a jam-packed plan for the remainder of the year, but also looking into 2025 and beyond. The fun never stops and there’s so much variety within my role.

What advice would you give to other young people looking to get into the food & drink industry? Each company is different and does things in a different way.

My first job in fmcg was with a start-up company, and my remit was entirely different to my current role, despite still working in marketing. The industry is always changing and you need to be adaptable to that. I really enjoy the fact that this role allows me to think outside the box, so don’t be afraid to do the same.

What’s your ultimate career dream? I definitely want to stay in marketing – I’ve found my calling and I know it’s something I’m passionate about.

One day, my ultimate goal would be to have the opportunity to lead a brand, or portfolio of brands within fmcg.

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