- Jun 24, 2022
- Earl DeMatas
Wilfred Sam-King, a Business Growth Specialist at SMK Solutions, reminisces on pursuing the CM designation and the support he received from the Black Talent Initiative.
Black Talent Initiative
I heard of the CM program first through LinkedIn. However, it only became a reality when the Black Talent Initiative encouraged me to pursue my CM designation. The Black Talent Initiative (BTI) is a community of brilliant black people that strive to bring equity to all aspects of professional life. As a member of the BTI, I learned they would cover my tuition for the CM designation and knew this was an opportunity I couldn’t afford to miss. I submitted my application and was ecstatic when selected as a recipient. The BTI provided me with a chance to strengthen my marketing skills and impact my community. My success in the CM program is a testament to my work ethic and one of my strongest support systems, the Black Talent Initiative.
My mentors in the Black Talent Initiative encouraged me to join the program and pursue marketing excellence. The Black Talent Initiative’s mission is to champion an equitable system for Black Canadians in business through resources, mentorship and, most importantly, opportunities. The BTI aims to reshape careers for Black Canadians through a community of established professionals, resources, and networks. One of my supporters is Hugh Lawson, Director of Business Development at Staples. He believed in me and the work I was doing in my community. He spoke to me before the start of the CM program to help me set realistic goals and push myself to achieve my hopes and aspirations during and throughout the program. One day I hope to become one of the most respected CMOs in the world. As a former internationally ranked long jumper and track athlete, I am very competitive and bring that competitive spirit and work ethic into the CM program.
Bridging the Gap
What excites me most about my CM journey is developing the ability to come up with creative and financially sound marketing decisions. I have been able to work with my accountant not only to create more efficient budgets but to pinpoint my campaign’s return on investment (ROI). I now understand how to effectively use qualitative data to bridge the gap between marketing results and accounting principles.
Rich Course Content
While I have not faced many challenges, I believe the CM program is hugely supportive. The program covers a significant amount of content, and sometimes requires a significant focus on time management. One exciting aspect is that the heavier the unit, the richer the course content is and the more applicable.
Direct Marketing Experience
I would advise post-secondary students to keep the CM program in mind as a future option. The more experience they have, the more applicable the course material will be in the real world. I believe marketing is one of the greatest forms of entrepreneurship. There is very little overhead, and you can offer your services in exchange for a tangible experience. The amount of experience, knowledge, and information you can acquire from primary and secondary sources is outstanding. I would recommend post-secondary students build out campaigns for their favourite brands and get comfortable being simply creative with unlimited budgets.
Use Your Creativity
In university, marketing assignments were strictly theoretical. In contrast, the CM program combines theoretical and practical applications. I love the CM program because it focuses on innovation while emphasizing digital marketing. It prepares you to use your creativity to tackle projects and solve real-world problems.
Business Growth Specialist