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New Three Cities Marketing Manager Talks Trends And Challenges!

Eugene Boniface, 41, is a man with a clear passion for what he does. Recently appointed as the Marketing Manager for Three Cities Hospitality Group, Boniface is fighting against an industry slump to produce marketing campaigns that are as memorable as they are measurable.

We spoke to Eugene about his new appointment, his goals for the future and why he is so clearly passionate about the Three Cities Group.

1. What is your educational history?
I studied through Wits and I studied in the Netherlands on Prince 2.

2. What is your work history?
I have worked as the Water Park Manager at the Valley of Waves in Sun City, the Key Accounts Manager at Sun International, the Event and Promotions Manager at Sun International, the Events and Promotions Manager, Mind and Mood Manager and Complex Brand Manager at Tsogo Sun, Suncoast Casino and finally, the Marketing Manager at Suncoast Casino.

3. So you now are the Marketing Manager at Three Cities Hospitality Group. How do you feel?
Well, this is my first month in my new position – and I must say I am relishing the challenge. I view this as an opportunity to grow my marketing skills in a dynamic group that has huge future prospects!

4. What are the most important responsibilities of a Marketing Manager?
I would say that you must remain creative, be open to learning and be measurable in your endeavours.

5. What do you envisage for your role at Three Cities – what are your goals?
I would like to assist in developing a brand that is seen as the leading hotel group in the country. I also want to grow our existing footprint and influence new and innovative marketing trends.

6. What do you like most about the company?
The Three Cities Hospitality Group is a young, dynamic, driven and focused place to work. Here an individual can make a difference!

7. What three main changes would you like to institute as the new Marketing Manager?
I would like to bring in an aspect of measurability – how do I know my marketing campaigns have the audience reach and impact that I had planned? I would also like to break down the silos – and cultivate stronger working relationships within the sales team. I also want to push creativity and innovation!

8. What are your long-term career goals?
Eventually, I want to be in a position where I can not only influence others but also teach others.

9. What are the challenges facing a marketing manager of a hospitality company?
Currently, the entire industry is in a slump; budgets are tight and marketing spend is very often cut or is seen as simply not viable. To counteract this, I need to put into place good strategic planning and measurable campaigns. It is only in this way that we can differentiate our products from the rest of the market.

10. What marketing tools have you noticed work best in reaching a specified audience?
The digital format has become the craze; it is quick, can be measured and remains cost effective. The medium however needs to fit both the target market and the message therefore traditional marketing tools still play a role!

11. How do you ensure that more people are made aware of the Three Cities brand?
We run a number of campaigns; some specific to a product, others aligned to the wider brand. However, whatever the campaign, the tone of voice and look and feel are always maintained to protect, enhance and showcase the Three Cities brand.

12. Describe the day in a life of a marketing manager?
Lots of coffee, loads of emails and heaps of fun! Marketing is such a diverse field that no day is typical or the same. We travel; we meet different people and we plan strategies around a number of complex business related issues. It’s great!

13. What are your favourite and least favourite parts of the job?
My favourite part of my job has to be the diversity. My least favourite? Definitely the paperwork.

14. What Three Cities marketing campaign sticks out for you the most?
I would say the re-launch of the Royal Hotel stands out in my mind.

15. What South African marketing campaign do you think is most memorable?
I would be silly not to say the 2010 Soccer World Cup! I still get goose bumps!

16. There must be great perks to being the marketing manager of a hospitality group! Do you get to travel to Three Cities properties regularly?
Yes, travel is a big part of my job! It is a huge plus and something that I love to do. I’m looking forward to doing loads more travelling in the future!

17. What is your favourite Three Cities property and why?
In each of our four sub-brands we have a selection of amazing properties that appeal to me for different reasons. That is what makes Three Cities unique; we have city based offerings, resorts, game lodges and an exceptional collection of boutique and top end hotels catering to all your requirements and moods. I honestly believe they are all special and worth visiting.

18. Is there anything else you would like to add?
I look forward to the new challenges in my career I know that this is exactly where I am meant to be.