From the start, Camila Campos‘ career has been a tapestry of style, determination, and reinvention. Like many in the ever-evolving digital world, Campos embarked on her journey with an eight-month stint as an assistant fashion stylist at Clarin. This began a decade-long journey that eventually led her to a wholesale and e-commerce coordinator role at Renli Su, a prestigious London-based clothing brand. Yet, Campos’ story is more than just a series of job titles. It’s a testament to a successful career transition driven by passion and a relentless pursuit of excellence. Through ten years filled with enriching experiences at renowned retail brands such as Zadig & Voltaire, Gucci, and Issey Miyake, Campos’ love for fashion remained unwavering. Her journey, however, took an exciting twist as she realized the need to thrive in an ever-changing, fast-paced digital landscape. This is perhaps the factor that sent her on an upward career transition path. It led to her seeking out upskilling and signing up for a Professional Certificate in Digital Marketing from Imperial College Business School Executive Education through Emeritus. We spoke to Camila Campos in detail about this transition and what possibilities upskilling unlocked for her.
Understanding the Need to Adapt to a Digital World
Campos’ professional journey began in her home country of Argentina, where her love of fashion ignited her career. Over the decade, her path led her to the bustling world of London’s clothing brands, ultimately culminating in her wholesale and e-commerce coordinator role. However, the global pandemic brought a profound realization — even industries as deeply rooted in tradition as fashion had to embrace the digital world’s critical importance.
“I was almost starting from zero. I had some sales and commercial experience, but I lacked the necessary marketing skills. Many e-commerce roles I pursued required a basic understanding of marketing,” she says.
This revelation sparked her determination to explore the uncharted territory of digital marketing. She recognized the need to adapt her skill set, facilitating her career transition from the traditional to the digital sphere and ensuring her competitiveness and relevance in this ever-evolving landscape.
Why Sign up for a Professional Certificate in Digital Marketing?
Camila Campos in her work showroom.Campos’ inclination toward digital marketing was rooted in her early fascination with fashion. She initially pursued studies in fashion PR and even dabbled in fashion design. However, she soon realized that her strength lay not in meticulously designing collections but in styling and the art of creating personas around existing fashion. This realization led her to change her course to fashion styling, a path that would ultimately shape her career in retail.
Her passion for retail was evident not only in her career but also in her fashion inspirations. She cites Coco Chanel as a figure who influenced her perspective on fashion. Chanel’s edgy and pioneering approach, which challenged traditional gender norms and introduced trousers and suits for women, resonated with her practical, tomboyish style.
With her impressive achievements, Campos’ was determined to find a reliable platform to gain the necessary skills. This brought her to the Professional Certificate in Digital Marketing offered by Imperial College Business School Executive Education via Emeritus, which she felt covered all the relevant subjects. “It’s a course for someone who may want to work with marketers. Even if you’re not doing it yourself, you must know what they’re doing. Coming from a sales background, it felt natural to be inclined to this program. I find consumer behavior very interesting,” she says.
The Power of Upskilling
Campos shares her experience in the digital marketing program, highlighting its merits and challenges. While she found the course well-structured and enriching, she admitted it was challenging. For someone with extensive experience in sales, practical aspects of marketing were familiar terrain—however, the technical and data-driven aspects required focused attention, particularly the data analytics and AI modules. Campos also faced particular challenges with specific reviews and feedback from faculty members. Undeterred, she navigated these hurdles independently, showcasing her determination to succeed in digital marketing.
Campos’ journey underscores the importance of aligning skills and interests when transitioning to a new career. A course that builds upon prior knowledge and experience forms a solid foundation for understanding marketing principles and practices. In Campos’ case, her prior sales experience provided a firm grounding in marketing, facilitating her learning process in digital marketing.
Furthermore, the program’s alignment with her interests enabled her to explore the fascinating realm of consumer behavior. Despite the technical challenges, Campos highly valued the program’s integration of RStudio, a data analysis and visualization tool, and its strategic approach. These elements enhanced her learning experience and effectively prepared her for a successful career transition in the digital marketing field.
Regarding her experience with the coaches, Campos fondly recalls,
“I got along with (Dr.) Karen Howells. She was the one who led our workshops. We worked together in a group, and later, when it was time for the final project, each of us was assigned a tutor, and she was the one who guided me. It was a great learning moment, and I am grateful for her guidance!”
Balancing Work and Studies
“I would always ensure that I had productive days to dedicate to the course,” she says of nailing the tricky balance between being a productive employee by day and a student by night. It requires effective time management, dedication, and a steadfast commitment to your goals. For Campos, navigating this challenge meant careful planning and a strategic approach. Her senior position, however, added to the pressure of finding the right balance, mainly due to the varied shift patterns.
Campos successfully transitioned her career after applying to over 150 jobs and partaking in 30+ interviews. She now holds a role that blends wholesale and e-commerce at Renli Su, demonstrating her adaptability and practical application of her upskilling journey. Her current position plays a pivotal role in enhancing her company’s online presence, and she aspires to launch her venture in the future, drawing inspiration from her exposure to the intricacies of the fashion industry. Her newly acquired digital marketing expertise equips her with the skills to navigate the evolving landscape of online commerce effectively.
How to Stay Relevant in a Demanding Field?
“Starting a career in digital marketing can be difficult at first. The trick is to be always looking for the next thing to learn and keep at it.” Camila Campos’ inspiring journey from the fashion world to the realm of digital marketing illustrates the power of upskilling in unlocking new career opportunities.
While a career transition might initially seem daunting, change is always within reach and often just a course away. If you, too, are on the path of career transition, don’t let self-doubt hinder your progress. Instead, leap and explore Emeritus’ diverse selection of online courses and upskilling programs. Campos’ upskilling journey from sales to marketing is a powerful reminder that change is always within reach. All you need to do is leap.
Written by Krati Joshi, Interviewed by Manasa Ramakrishnan
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