Jimmy Edge has worked his way up to a managerial position in one of the worlds most well known software companies, Symantec. He took 5 from hanging 10 and gave us a refreshingly candid interview.
Very briefly, your biography please.
From Wales, went to university in Bath, in my life I have worked as a waiter, fisherman, lifeguard, newspaper reporter, washer upper, oil refinery worker, barman, archery instructor and builder. Now living in San Francisco working in digital marketing for a big tech company.
You’re from Wales, so why San Francisco?
Less bar fights, and a chance to explore a new part of the world. Also, I got a job here in Silicon Valley. I’d argue it isn’t a valley at all as the mountains are about 50 miles apart. It’s just a bit of flat land near some mountains.
List all of your responsibilities at Symantec, in order of how much each one excites you.
#1. Programmatic advertising — I use all the data that the internet collects to target online ads at specific groups.
#2. Conversion optimisation and website personalisation — every person who comes to our websites see a slightly different thing depending on the company they work for, where they live, what their job title is etc. This information is again collected behind the scenes and used to tailor web experiences so visitors have less messing about to do and are more likely to buy. It’s basically like if I walked into Tesco Express and they quickly shoved all the fruit and vegetables in the back room and replaced them with chocolate Hobnobs and surfing magazines so I could just get my shopping over and done with.
#3. SEO and PPC — everyone knows about these ones.
#4. Social media — Social Media can be annoying to work with. People always talk about creating a ‘new strategy’ but then do what they would have done anyway. Everybody seems to be an expert!
For people wanting to work or progress in your field, tell them something really useful.
Before you do anything make sure you know how you are going to track it. Never listen to anyone who wants to sell you something.
Tell us about a website.
I like the BBC website, it’s got news and sport together in one place.
What helps you with stress?
Surfing, running, being on top of work.
How do you keep up to date with new stuff?
I go to conferences and events about digital marketing, and network with people who can teach me something.