Marketing Mavericks: Mars Wrigley’s Michelle Gazzola

Marketing Mavericks: Mars Wrigley’s Michelle Gazzola

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Marketing Mavericks was a supplement in the latest mag, featuring some of Australia’s most daring and bold marketers. Today, we’re bringing you Mars Wrigley Australia’s portfolio director of gum and mints Michelle Gazzola.

Absolutely Fabulous Minty Chewiness

Michelle is a passionate marketer, most probably, she suggests, because she loves a good challenge and solving problems. Currently the portfolio director of gum and mints at Mars Wrigley Australia, Michelle began her career at Coca-Cola as the trade marketing manager, which was what sparked her passion for marketing. Since then, she’s spent 15 years in the industry, working across fast-moving consumer goods businesses in both local and national roles.

My first job was in sales at Coca-Cola and I remember always being so excited by the marketing plans. It’s what kick-started my marketing career. I wanted to be the person shaping the strategy, comms and innovation plans versus simply executing them.

The most innovative campaign I’ve worked on at Mars? It’d have to be an OOH and social campaign we ran for EXTRA to get more under 30s to chew gum. It’s scientifically proven chewing gum helps maintain focus, so we wanted to target 16-29 year olds who were studying. With Clemenger and MediaCom, alongside Campus Group, we designed a campaign to communicate this message on university campuses. Initial results were great and we’ll be scaling up the campaign this year.

A brand that makes me jealous with rage it’s that good would have to be Veuve Clicquot – nothing says celebration better. From its champagne provenance, to its distinctive use of brand assets and colour across all packaging, activation and campaigns, this is a brand which knows exactly what it stands for and is set up to continue to be a powerhouse consumer brand.

Reflecting on what always works, and what doesn’t work, I’d have to say empowering and giving your team responsibility and ownership for their work. You can’t do it all by yourself, so don’t pretend you do! It’s also important to always be crystal clear on your objectives, and what you need to achieve.

The best piece of advice I’ve ever received is be bold and be brave. It’s so easy to play it safe, but that’s not fun, is it?

Favourite ad of all time?

Yellow Pages – Not Happy Jan. Redundant product, but that phrase remains so entrenched in Australian culture.

Do you write an acceptance speech before award nights?

Of course! Always better to be prepared.



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