Our latest Leadership Spotlight features India Plumbly!
India has extensive experience working in the global luxury industry, partnering with pioneering tech and innovation in industries such as Fashion, Film, Beauty and Lifestyle. In addition to working across various industries, India’s career has also seen her work in Europe and other parts of the world; helping the Swarovski founding team establish a new head office for APAC in Singapore.
In this Q&A, India discusses her career journey to date, why exploring new technology options in the digital industry ‘are almost never exhaustive’ her success in launching 6 events across 3 major cities, what it was like to work in the industry at a time when Ecommerce and social media were just taking off and her interest in the future of digital identities.
Why did you join the Digital Leaders Club?
It’s often difficult in our line of work to focus on what forum to join for easy exchange, learning, and support. Marketers are consistently targeted to attend roundtables and conferences as a means to share knowledge and expertise, which is wonderful but often time-consuming. What DLC does is cut through the noise quickly, it's led by your peers and gives us all an opportunity to share our own journeys to success or failure and discuss our pain points in real time. It’s a highly efficient support system in the often turbulent landscape of digital marketing.
What's your career journey been like to date?
Looking back what stands out is that I've been incredibly lucky to have supportive mentors and collaborators that have challenged me throughout my career. I began at Swarovski as the sole Marketer for a start-up within the business (there is no education in your career like a start-up to build passion, imagination and resilience). I then took a leap in 2012 by joining the founding team to establish a new head office for APAC in Singapore for Swarovski where I was working with an incredible leader and spent 9 years of my career on the digital roadmap, business development and GTM in SEA, China, Korea, Japan and the Middle East.
It gave me in-market global experience, which was invaluable when I returned to the UK in 2021 to lead the Digital Marketing for Charlotte Tilbury. My most recent role has been overseeing the Marketing and DTC channels for No.7 Beauty Company brand, Aromatherapy Associates. My roles in luxury have spanned Fashion, Film, Jewelry and now Beauty, for which I feel very fortunate.
What do you love about working in digital?
Our options are almost never exhaustive in exploring new technology, insights and trends to better inform our investment and innovation. Digital transformation gives the flexibility to test and learn without (in some instances) big budget commitments and with a direct line to customers. It holds us more accountable to our customers and our supply chain more visible, ultimately transparency and accountability are attributions as a consumer myself I hold in high regard from the brands that I purchase, so want to ensure my teams are delivering the same.
Have you had any interesting moments in your career so far?
Being in marketing at a time when social media and Ecommerce were just starting to take shape for brands, I was able to watch and learn as it evolved and ultimately led the transformation.
Have you had any challenges in your career to date; and how did you overcome them?
I spent a large part of my career launching in new markets and adapting strategies for success without losing sight of the big picture. Digital partnerships would span the likes of Meta and Douyin through to Tencent and Shinsegae, there was a lot at stake so it was critical to adopt an approach to find the right route to reaching the right communities and consumers within them.
Tell us about your best success story
Launching 6 events across 3 major cities and 2 countries in 6 weeks to celebrate Swarovski's anniversary was a huge highlight, but too close to call with launching the first skincare range from Aromatherapy Associates in nearly a decade.
What’s it been like transitioning to a hybrid setup over the past three years?
I’m a parent so I’m perhaps going to be stating the obvious. The average expectation of a 9am - 5pm (particularly in the UK) does not support the working parent. The hope is hybrid working has given us some semblance of balance, choosing our most productive working window and making time for the people and pursuits we value most. I'd prefer to focus on cultivating great culture, nurturing healthy team dynamics, and supporting performance over monitoring time spent.
What's the coolest/most interesting trend you're excited about?
Maybe not a trend, but the development of having a protected 'digital identity' enhances everyone's trust, data safety and security. Also AI as a benefit rather than a curse...how it can free up more time for us all rather than making us all sound and look the same.
How would your colleagues describe you?
The eternal optimist, and perhaps a little impatient.
What are your hobbies and interests outside of work?
I run to keep my head clear and I love to head out horse-riding when I have the luxury.
What's your plan for the future?
Now that I've relocated back to the UK, I want to explore more of Europe, showing my kids this side of the world as much as possible.
What would you be doing (for a career) if you weren’t doing this?
An undercover private detective solving unsolvable mysteries or I think I would love to be working in a VC seeking out new brands for investment.
Connect with India on LinkedIn