Moments with marketers: Sharon Williams

Marketingmag.com.au chats to Sharon Williams – the CEO and founder of Taurus Marketing. If you would
like to see a certain
marketer profiled, please email your suggestion to Kate Kendall, online
editor, on kate.kendall@niche.com.au.


1. What do you do?

I am the founder and CEO of Taurus Marketing, an integrated B2B PR, marketing and creative agency. Taurus caters to clients from smart entrepreneurs to major ASX-listed corporations.

I set Taurus up in 1995, working with first client Peter Kazacos of the KAZ Group and helped build the KAZ brand into the largest Information Communications Technology (ICT) company in Australasia, bought by Telstra in 2004 and most recently Fujitsu.

I put my focus into strategy for clients, the marketing, PR and creative falls out of this which I leave to my specialist team.

2. What was your first job?

I was selected as a management trainee at Marks & Spencer in the UK when I was 18. This gave me exposure across all areas of a business and gave me a great foundation to build from – I still hold the training and development I learned at M&S close today.

3. What did you study?

I finished high school in the UK, went straight into my role at Marks & Spencer and turned down university. I was keen to start earning a living and learn on the job.

4. Describe a typical day?

I rise early and review overnight emails from home. I get to work around 8:30am after getting my three children off to school. My day consists of meetings with clients, prospects, journalists and my team as well as regularly presenting on TV.

I am a member of three boards which means I have luncheons with the top corporate leaders in Australia about twice a week.

I am a big believer in work/life balance for myself and my team so I try to leave work at a reasonable hour to see my children. After work, I squeeze in a run at our local park with my son and we have a chat.

My evenings are spent with my children, helping them with homework or at work related functions or socialising. I also enjoy the theatre and the arts and have a glass of wine or a scotch most nights.

I’ll check my emails in the evening to see if there is anything that needs attention, tuck the kids in and head to bed.

At the weekends I cop out, I rest and run the children around. I will often be on patrol at the local beach as a surf lifesaver.

5. What is on the agenda for 2009?

Survive the recession, continue to grow our client base and continue to deliver strategic results for clients. We will be launching a new division within the company and innovating the marketing space in 2009 – watch this space!

6. What brand do you love the most? Hate the most? Why?

As stereotypical as it may be I admire the Virgin brand. The little guy fighting against the big guys, with the force of quality and value to the customer on its side. The diversification of the brand is unparalleled.

Hate is a strong word – Taurus prides itself on a ‘No Bull’ approach, which means we focus on honesty, integrity, loyalty, quality and value and respect other brands that commit to excellence. There are many brands out there that promise the world to its clients and generally under deliver a lot of the time – let’s just say I’m not a fan of any brand that promises a load of bull.

7. What do you believe has been the most significant moment in the history of marketing?

I believe the online revolution and the way we are communicating with customers to be the most significant moment in marketing history. Customers are determining more and more how they want to be communicated with and the rise of online social media is transforming how we do this; communication channels are now transparent and entwined. It’s exciting to think what the next five years will bring – my children’s world will be completely different. 

8. Where can people find you?

You can find Taurus on our webpage http://www.taurusmarketing.com.au which features our news and events as well as the Taurus blog.

We can also be found on: