Employee Spotlight: Q&A with Emma Wilson, Our Senior Marketing Manager

Keeper Solutions has been expanding rapidly in the past 12 months. Our team has almost doubled in size to over 80. We’ve made some key hires in our delivery centres in Costa Rica, Serbia, Romania and Croatia, to support our growing list of international customers in Europe and The United States. We’ve also been adding to our senior management team here in Ireland. 

Someone who joined our team recently is Keeper Solutions’ Senior Marketing Manager, Emma Wilson. Emma is an award-winning marketer and digital specialist. She is the vice president of Network Ireland Limerick, and will be taking over the role of president in the new year. In seven years at Azpiral, a world-class loyalty software company, she established a marketing department and then played a huge role in helping the company achieve significant international growth.   

We sat down with Emma to find out a little bit more about her career to date, her motivations, and work habits. We started off by asking what first prompted her to start a career in marketing.

Lahinch Beach, Co. Clare, “The place I spent most of my summer”

Emma:  I studied a BA in Economics and Sociology at the University of Limerick. Both subjects were broad enough to leave me with options to manoeuvre into social care, psychology or business, all of which intrigued me.

During my time in college, I interned in a software company. I gained experience in the business world and when I was due to graduate from university they offered me a position in marketing. 

With no previous marketing experience, I relied heavily on YouTube tutorials and Google to help navigate my way round! After a couple of months, I enrolled in the Digital Marketing Institute of Ireland and completed a postgraduate diploma in Digital Marketing. Since then I have enjoyed my journey of becoming a marketer. There are so many aspects of the job I really enjoy!

What are you most proud of in your career to date?

Emma: It’s difficult to pick out one stand-alone thing. I am particularly proud of rebranding a company in my early career and growing it to be the strong and distinct brand it is today. 

What is something that you’ve taken up or tried to do more of since the start of lockdown?

Emma: I’m a pretty active person. I love the outdoors and also enjoy other people’s company. I found some of the lockdown restrictions difficult. It meant no hikes, swims or going home. 

My friend decided that because we couldn’t go to the seaside we shouldn’t miss out on the benefits of cold water so we took up open-water swimming in a river just 15 minutes from my house. I go twice a week and I’m really enjoying it. My friend has taken it one step further and created an Instagram page to encourage people to join us. We’ve had lots of new people join us and it’s been great.

When lockdown restrictions eased and we were allowed to travel again, I, like many others embraced the staycation and took the opportunity to discover Ireland. It’s definitely something I want to continue to do. 

You can follow @the_chilly_dippers on Instagram for some pretty views at O’Briensbridge.  

O’Briensbridge, Co. Clare or better known as the ‘Chilly Dippers HQ’!

What is something you’ve changed your opinion on in the last five years?

Emma: Over the last five years the most prominent change has probably been my opinion on what success looks like. I had a very narrow mindset about success both personally and professionally but over time and through lived experiences I’ve realised success is very much down to personal preference and what makes you happy. 

In your last role, you helped your company to grow their brand internationally. What were the key challenges and have you learned most from that experience?

Emma: My previous company was heavily focused on expanding across European markets. The key challenges with this type of expansion was the proof of commitment to the country. This included things like having an office or a sales team based in the country. 

Although English is the language of business across Europe, Azpiral did find building relationships and trust with its target audience more difficult without a native speaker.

In digital marketing, keywords are hugely important for organic search and often a keyword in English would vary so much across countries it made it difficult to optimise digital advertising and a lot of research was required.    

Surfing in Lahinch – “Well trying and failing…over and over. “

What are your favourite productivity apps?

Emma: Quite simply – my calendar. If it’s not in the calendar it does not happen. 

What motivates you?

Emma: I enjoy a challenge, continuous learning and I believe in the power of people. These really help motivate me to try new things. I think it’s important to live and learn.

In the various organisations that I’ve been part of I’ve seen that people can do anything they want if they have the right mindset and support. That is something that really excites me.

What books (or books) have most shaped your way of thinking? 

Emma: The most recent book I read was James Clear, Atomic Habits. That really changed how I think about my day-to-day routine, daily habits and how they all contribute to your goals and overall life. He’s straight talking and funny so it was an enjoyable read.

Outside of work, what are you passionate about?

Emma: Outside of work, you’ll find me on a pitch or a court somewhere playing hockey or tennis. Otherwise you might catch me in the stands watching rugby or GAA matches. 

I am a member of Network Ireland Limerick, a women in business networking group. I love attending events with them and being part of such a supportive community. Other interests include travel and spending time with friends and family. 

Lenny the Labrador cross-supporting the Tipp hurlers and making his T.V debut – this image was shown on Virgin Media’s Six O’ Clock Show

What makes you most excited about working with Keeper Solutions?

Emma: Keeper Solutions is at a really exciting stage in its journey. I’m excited to contribute to its international expansion and all that comes with it. I’m also delighted to be part of a company that truly values people, innovation and the environment. Using an NFT to mark a significant milestone in the company and give back to their employees is something quite special. It shows that Keeper Solutions is not afraid to think outside the box!

A huge thank you to Emma!

For more employee spotlights check out:

Can You C# The Future? An Interview with Kristijan Kralj

Employee Spotlight: Q&A with Keeper Solutions CTO, Nick Holme

Employee Spotlight: Q&A with Giovanni Bonessa From our Costa Rica Centre