Winners 2023

Marketing (supplier & retail) 2023

DENNETT JOINED THE Pendragon dealer group in 2015 and has been identified as future upper-management material after three promotions and some impressive results. She currently oversees Pendragon’s Customer Experience Centre at the company’s headquarters in Annesley, Nottingham. In 2022, she was instrumental in almost doubling the centre’s profitability from the previous year, according to her nomination, after cutting overheads and boosting revenue. That was achieved by driving more service bookings as well as generating sales leads for dealers. Dennett’s path to future success is being driven by mentoring from Cath Rowe, Pendragon’s director of digital marketing. “Dennett has great leadership skills, delivers when she says she will and ensures the customer sits at the heart of the team’s work,” said Catherine Rowe, Pendragon’s director of digital marketing, in nominating her.

Marketing (supplier & retail) 2023 nominees

Sarah Armstrong, Brand marketing manager, Lookers

ARMSTRONG JOINED THE Lookers-owned Northern Ireland dealer group Charles Hurst in 2016 as a junior marketing executive and has had five promotions on the way to her current role, which she began in 2020. She oversees marketing strategy for the group’s premium brand sales, winning Bentley’s Marketing Retailer of the Year award in 2022. She was also instrumental in helping the group’s Maserati franchises exceed their registration targets in the first quarter with a campaign that came in under budget.

Maria Birchall, Marketing manager, Alphera Financial Services

BIRCHALL WON PROMOTION to her current role within BMW’s finance arm in 2021 as a result of her strong performance as acting manager for the unit’s insurance arm. Her role is to improve the ‘digital journey’ of Alphera’s 250,000 customers and, as part of that, she launched a new website and helped to create a new corporate identity that was rolled out globally. She also manages Alphera-powered Rolls-Royce Financial Services and Aston Martin Financial Services “to exacting luxury standards”, according to her nomination.

Danielle Charlton, Head of CRM, Vertu

CHARLTON JOINED VERTU as email coordinator in 2020 but has subsequently helped to transform the dealer group’s customer relationship management function after bringing it in-house. Since she streamlined the process of how Vertu keeps in contact with customers, email open rates have gone up from 29% to 57%. She has also automated a lot of the contact processes and in three years has introduced over 40 automated ‘journeys’ across four different brands.

Ellie Cohen, Head of marketing, Citygate

COHEN ARRIVED AT this south-east dealership group in 2020 as group marketing manager before being promoted in 2022 to her current role, where she is in charge of marketing across many channels for the group’s 16 retailers, five bodyshops and five trade part outlets. She impressed by overseeing an update of the company’s corporate image, changing the logo, website, uniform and tone of voice within a three-month deadline. Cohen is also responsible for internal communications and helped launch a new careers website.

Ellen Gregory, Retail marketing director, Vertu

GREGORY HANDLES A £13 million budget to oversee brand strategy as well as marketing for new cars, used cars, Motability and aftersales across Vertu’s three retail brands of Bristol Street Motors, Macklin Motors and Vertu Motors. Her work has seen Bristol Street Motors consistently in the top three dealership brands for awareness in the UK. Under her management, all three brands now sit under one team, helping her increase efficiencies.

Alice Davis, Ford national marketing leader, Pendragon

DAVIS WON PRAISE from Pendragon for a recent success in turning Ford’s decision to axe the Fiesta supermini into sales-generating ‘Farewell Fiesta’ dealership events. The resulting activity created social media posts with a reach of over 120,000, almost 1000 customer visits to Ford dealers within the group and a sales increase of more than 30% compared with expectations for a normal month. Davis joined Pendragon in 2016 and has had three promotions since then, the most recent in 2019.

Evie Kalo, Marketing director, Evios

KALO’S FIRST TASTE of the UK’s electric vehicle charging scene came in 2015 when she joined Chargemaster (now BP Pulse) from BMW in Germany, where she helped to launch the i3. She moved to the Netherlands in 2020 to join Shell’s NewMotion charging unit, before returning in 2022 to oversee marketing at both Evios and its Anderson EV division, which she helped the company to take over in October last year. “It’s rare to find someone of any age with Evie’s breadth of experience, influence, achievements and ambition within the EV industry,” her nomination read.

Kieran Nizzer, Group marketing manager, Holdcroft Group

NIZZER HAS BEEN responsible for overhauling the digital marketing strategy of this north-west-based dealer group, cancelling radio advertising and switching to an 80% digital campaign. Nizzer also overhauled the company’s website in 2020 with a budget of £70,000 to better help customers search for new and used cars, as well as book servicing. Still aged under 30, Nizzer has won the trust of management to build a team around her digital plan. “In automotive, it has to be a one-team approach to ensure the marketing strategy comes full circle into sales, online service bookings and part sales,” she says in her nomination.

Jayna Patel, Customer insights manager, BMW Financial Services

PATEL HAS IN the past two years moved from an analyst role focused on used cars to a managerial position in which she has helped to “change the way we use insights to steer the business”, according to her nomination. She has improved her knowledge with Chartered Institute of Marketing courses and has helped relevant divisions to boost their net promoter score, which tracks customer sentiment.