Ben Burton shares his industry insights and career journey. In our quick fire industry insights series, Alice Weightman, CEO and Founder of The Work Crowd, asked Ben Burton to share his insights and the secret to his success.
Ben started his career in broadcast journalism, working with the likes of the BBC and ITV. He made the move into Corporate PR in 2008, quickly rising through the ranks to become Managing Director of Weber Shandwick’s corporate PR division in 2015. Weber Shandwick is a top 3 Global PR & Communications agency with the philosophy of ‘engaging always’ at their core.
Working with some of the world’s largest corporate companies, Ben helps to build corporate reputations. He firmly believes that 'to effectively engage, companies must tell a compelling story, integrated across all channels, that resonate with multiple stakeholders.’
Talking about his defining career moment that helped him get into the position he is in today, Ben stressed the importance of having the right network and the support of colleagues and friends. After all, former colleagues and clients were the drivers behind Ben’s transition into PR.
‘Ever since I moved into PR, I’ve been able to work with some fantastic colleagues who have been very welcoming. They have helped me understand how I could transfer some of those skills I developed in journalism, particularly broadcast journalism, and use them to support and achieve good results for clients.’
Weber Shandwick is very much at the forefront of integrated thinking when it comes to their approach. Needless to say, Ben has seen the industry take shape and evolve at an incredible pace. Talking about delivering on truly integrated campaigns, Ben stressed the need for flexibility and multi-disciplinary teams and creating a more agile workforce fit for modern business.
‘I want a great team, but I also want to be able to bring in and switch on or off the right skills and capabilities for the project I’m delivering. This is why freelancers, short term contractors, coupled with the agency role that people play within a team are all so important to a client.’
Talking about the future for the industry, Ben believes ‘integration is key. To ensure the best outcomes, we sit down with clients and other agency partners from within or outside of our group to make sure that we have a combined and collaborative team to deliver the best results. It’s about creativity and it’s about integration to make sure that all channel options are available to us and that we are engaging with the client and delivering the value and ROI they are looking for.'
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