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Where Are You Now?

Jamie Mercer

Jamie Mercer

BA (Hons) Broadcast Journalism 2009

Jamie Mercer studied BA (Hons) Broadcast Journalism and graduated in 2009.  Now Content Marketing Team Leader he is responsible for all internal and external copy for the nine brands who work with recruitment company Nelson Frank.

Talking about his role, he explained: “I manage a team of copywriters who create sales brochures, website landing page copy, events collateral, email marketing campaigns, PR materials, and industry-relevant feature articles to drive traffic, brand recognition and conversions”.

Graduating from within a very popular Faculty of Art, Design and Media, Jamie shared with us what attracted him to the University of Sunderland: “When I applied in 2006, it was the first year of the Broadcast Journalism course. I’d originally signed up to study Journalism, but I really wanted to make the most out of studying content creation across audio and video, as that’s where I saw the industry moving (and ultimately what my final year project focused on!).

“The University of Sunderland already had a fantastic reputation for media, and the St Peter’s campus really wowed me when I visited on an open day. Speaking with staff from ITV, who were based there at the time, also sold it to me as a place where I thought I could really hone my digital content craft.

“The course itself was fantastic and gave me thorough practical experience in creating written, audio, and video content for different audiences – something that has stayed with me in all of my roles since graduating.”

One of Jamie’s biggest challenges was graduating in a global recession as job prospects were low in the sector but especially in the North East: “Ultimately, I had to take all opportunities as they came and shaped my roles to make the most of my abilities so I could reach the stage of my career that I’m at now.”

We asked Jamie what advise he would give recent graduates entering today’s job market: “One of the biggest pieces of advice I could give to recent graduates is to look at how you can use the skills you’ve gained on your course outside of the typical job archetypes. For example, I dabbled in broadcasting after university, but ended up working in the charity sector delivering media projects (and gaining a teaching qualification!).

“I now feel like I have tremendous experience with a slightly different outlook, thanks to my career so far. I’m still using all of the skills from my course, but it’s allowed me to work with interesting people and companies and do some challenging but very enjoyable work.”

He added: “I thoroughly believe that you make your own ‘luck’ in life, and I’m a believer in trying to do more, learn more, and going that extra mile – I think if you do this consistently, then your efforts will be recognised and rewarded.”

We asked Jamie what his greatest achievement to date is and the stats are quite impressive: “My greatest professional achievement in my current role has been increasing traffic across our blogs by 307% and our on-site conversions by 304% since 2018. This involved a complete restructuring of the digital marketing team, which we’re reaping the benefits of today. I’m very lucky to have a fantastic team around me to help achieve these goals”

Although very happy in his role we asked Jamie what his future plans are: “At some point, I’d love to run my own business, but there’s still plenty that I want to achieve before considering that.”

We also asked him what he would like to be remembered for: “I‘ll settle for just being remembered. That probably means I was doing something right. That or being able to MacGyver a makeshift Bain-marie with a kettle, a plate and a mug in 5 minutes.”

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