Q’s Story

A personal story from TMF founder, Quentin Crowe.

Quentin Crowe, Founder, The Marketers' ForumThe UK education system was a let down for me.

At school, there were a couple of outstanding teachers, but very rarely did I feel truly engaged.

At university, most lecturers did not appear to even enjoy lecturing.  I was never genuinely inspired.

Years later when I decided to study for my CIM professional qualifications at night school, I was never challenged to really think.

Like many marketers I drifted into marketing.  I studied (a little) Economics at university, and then took the first job I was offered in the City at Lloyd’s of London.

It might seem an odd thing to say, but I was lucky to find myself working in insurance, an industry that was just starting to appreciate the importance of marketing.  I was the first marketer in my organisation and one of the first in the Lloyd’s community.

As a result, I had almost had to make it up as I went along.  There were no senior marketers to guide, support and nurture me. So, inevitably I made many mistakes. I look back now and wish I had access to some wise marketers I could have leant on for advice.  It was a tough and time-consuming way to learn my trade, however much I loved it.

I was lucky though. Unlike many marketers who hit glass ceilings, I somehow found myself sitting on a board of directors; even though I never really felt I belonged there.  Other directors simply did not understand marketing and were at best ambivalent.

It took me many years to realise that I was not alone.

I discovered that many marketers find themselves in jobs they are not fully qualified to do.  Some marketers find that they have too narrow a range of expertise, particularly those from a digital background. Others struggle to convince senior management about the importance of marketing. In short, marketers often underperform through a lack confidence.

All of which means I have a great deal of empathy for many of the marketers we work with. This understanding has shaped the way we work and the services we provide.

When setting up the Marketers’ Forum back in 2004 I wanted to create something different to typical marketing consultancies and traditional CIM study centres.  I was very clear about what I did not want.  I did not want to be a quasi-academic institution.  I did not want ‘marketing school, academy or college’ in the brand name. I did not want clients to perceive us as just a CIM Exam factory – however excellent our results may be.

To be congruent, we had to walk our own talk. Our business had to do more than teach marketing qualifications; we had to operate as a professional marketing consultancy as well.  We also had to provide a range of skills courses, coaching and mentoring services.  These elements now make up The Marketers’ Forum Group activities.

In summary, I wanted an organisation that provided a range of marketing services:

  • Consultants that create innovative solutions for organisations like yours
  • Coaches and mentors that nurture your individual marketing talent
  • Courses that provide you relevant marketing skills as well as excellent academic results.

So what does this all mean for you?

A promise that we will engage, challenge and inspire marketers like you to be the best you can be.

We look forward to working with you.


Quentin Crowe
Founder, The Marketers’ Forum
Email: quentin@themarketersforum.co.uk | Tel: 0844 272 5837