Meet the Pickle Jar Communications team: Simon Fairbanks
Meet Simon Fairbanks, our newest Senior Content Strategist. We asked Simon a few questions to get to know him a little better.
What is your role at Pickle Jar Communications?
I’m a Senior Content Strategist.
I advise universities, colleges and schools on how to get the most out of their digital content, whether that be webpages, email communications, or social media activity.
What attracted you to a career in content strategy?
I love content. Good content tells a story. Good content strategy is story-telling.
An effective content strategy gets the most from each story by asking important questions. Who is telling the story? Where are we telling the story? How is it being told? When is it being told? Are we telling too much or too little? Who will enjoy our story the most?
As a content strategist, I get to ask these questions and make each story as impactful as possible. Happily, the education sector has a lot of good stories.
Where do you sit on the original content strategy quad?
As a content enthusiast, my strengths lie in the Substance quadrant. However, I love the mechanics of story-telling, so I have a growing interest in Structure too.
I also enjoy working with people. I’m a Resource Investigator (Belbin) and Extrovert (Myers-Briggs) therefore I edge towards the two People Components too.
Why did you want to work for Pickle Jar Communications?
I first saw Pickle Jar Communications present at an event eight years ago. They immediately struck me as a company which shared my interest in content and communication, as well as my passion for the education sector.
Over the years, I remained impressed by Pickle Jar Communications’ wealth of expertise, sector-wide knowledge, and generous insights into upcoming digital trends. Better yet, they never sacrifice creativity and personality in their approach. I feel that my own approach to content strategy is similar to the Pickle Jar Communications ethos, therefore the opportunity to join them as a Senior Content Strategist was an exciting prospect.
Also, I firmly believe in the education sector and all the good it can do, whether that be inspiring young people or delivering world-changing research. I have a greater chance of helping the wider sector by working for an international consultancy like Pickle Jar Communications.
Where have you worked previously?
I have worked on four different campuses in the West Midlands, most recently the University of Birmingham (my alma mater) and previously the University of Warwick, Coventry University, and the University of Nottingham.
I have typically focussed on marketing, recruitment and events activity, but I have also spent time working in Students’ Unions.
Where and what did you study?
I studied BA and MA English Literature at the University of Birmingham.
What is the best thing about the education sector?
Students are an incredibly diverse demographic, but they all have one thing in common: they are studying. The clue is in the name.
Each and every one, regardless of their differences, is keen to know more about a subject, to open their minds, to acquire knowledge, to better themselves. I find that inspiring and reassuring.
How do you spend your weekends?
Writing, running and entertaining my two young children. It’s hard to say which is the most exhausting!
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I would love to follow in the footsteps of Tracy, our Pickle Jar Communications CEO, and deliver engaging talks at conferences across the globe.
If you’d like to consult with Simon, or any of the Pickle Jar Communications team, on an upcoming project, please get in touch for a no obligation chat.