Stephen Callender, founding partner of sales promotion agency Black Cat and the man behind the launch of Lymeswold cheese, is to become chairman of the Marketing Society this week.
Callender has been vice-chairman of the society for the past year and was the only member nominated as chairman prior to the society’s official meeting on Wednesday. He succeeds Stephen Robertson, the marketing director of B&Q, for the next year.
A member of the society since 1982, Callender has been involved in marketing for Unilever, Spillers and Diary Crest, where he successfully launched the now defunct Lymeswold cheese – claimed to be the first new cheese brand for 200 years. He was also managing director of sales promotion agency KLP before setting up Black Cat.
He says: “I reckon this is going to be a record year for the society… [It] is probably better placed than any other group to champion the role of marketing. The most important thing that we will be trying to do is put marketing on the media map.”
Membership of the society is at its highest ever – 3,200 members – all of whom must have the equivalent of at least five years’ experience as a marketing manager, or board directorship in a service company.
The society is also about to announce an arrangement with IBM to stage a series of debates, workshops and seminars on the role of technology in modern marketing.