- Jun 09, 2023
- Earl DeMatas
Shelley Mayer, CM, Founder and President of Ramp Communications Inc., discusses lifelong learning, the credibility the CM designation brings, aligning yourself with trusted colleagues and pushing yourself.
Brand Manager, Consultant and Founder
As a brand manager at Toyota Canada from 2001 to 2009, I led everything from masterbrand, car, parts and service marketing to dealer meetings, and tactical advertising. Shortly after, I entered the arena as a consultant and founded Ramp Communications in 2011. We started by providing marketing, brand and design services to small businesses and charities. Our passion for social impact led us to focus exclusively on that sector. Ramp aims to help companies and non-profit organizations scale their social impact through strategy, brand, and communications. While networking over coffee, a colleague told me about the CM designation and suggested I consider it. It was new and exciting because other types of professional services had clear standards, making it easier to explain the unique expertise that comes with the profession. That’s always been a gap in the marketing field until the CM designation launched.
Without a clear professional standard, anyone can call themselves a marketer. It’s great that the CMA offers a training component and consideration for practical work experience. Lifelong learning is one of the philosophies I live by; there are always new developments in our profession. I think having CPD requirements on an ongoing basis is a crucial element of the program so that folks with the designation stay at the top of their game.
I include the designation after my name and highlight it in my bio and LinkedIn profile. A trusted professional association like the CMA behind the designation and those who have attained it lends to its credibility. People sometimes ask what the CM stands for. I always take advantage of any opportunity to introduce the Chartered Marketer program to marketers interested in elevating their knowledge and enhancing their skillset.
I’ve encouraged several team members to pursue the designation, and our company has supported them throughout the process. It might be challenging for young marketers at the beginning of their careers, but the designation adds value. The professional development options at the CMA are excellent. If we can raise professional standards, it will help the profession grow and benefit us all.
Things change quickly in marketing, which is why staying up-to-date is invaluable. A robust range of professional development opportunities is priceless to marketers and future marketing leaders. It’s also essential to align with a community of like-minded professionals which can reveal networking, mentorship and many other opportunities. My peers within the CMA are among my most trusted colleagues, and I’ve always been able to count on them for support and guidance.
It’s imperative to stay current with what’s happening in the profession. The CMA provides a host of influential events and sessions to do that. Being part of the CMA NFP council for several years allowed me to push myself to develop thought leadership pieces on important topics. I’m grateful for the opportunity to share insights into cause marketing, utilizing data and insights for branding, reconciliation and decolonizing our thinking as marketers.