Cover Story: Direct Marketer of the Year: Pamela A. Evans, Senior Web Marketing Manager, IBM Software Group
The industry almost lost one of its brightest direct marketers to the field of journalism. A recession redirected IBM's Pamela A. Evans into communications and marketing—the launchpad for a dynamic career that has brought her to the forefront of the industry's current evolution.
Evans earned her undergraduate degree in English from Georgia Southern University in 1974. "I wanted to work for a newspaper, but when I graduated from college, there was a recession," Evans recalls. "I went back to my hometown of Augusta, Ga., and there weren't any jobs at the daily paper. But there was a job at the CBS TV station." There, Evans created locally produced 30-, 60- and 90-second television commercials. "I did soup to nuts—local client meetings with the sales team, copywriting, talent, music, props, and then on location or in the studio working with the production team."
In 1976, Evans went on to work as a corporate communications manager for Fuqua Industries, a holding company that acquired, reorganized and then sold companies. Evans had the flexibility to run the communications programs across the network of the 21 companies J.B. Fuqua owned at the time, and, at the same time, she completed her MBA at Georgia State University. "The job included wearing a number of different hats and gave me an opportunity to dabble in advertising and marketing. It was during that time that I decided I wanted to pursue a broader communications career path by combining public relations and marketing," says Evans.
Her writing and communications skills are what gave Evans an edge in the marketing world. "Writing is a good skill to have—everyone writes," she says. "And communications is key for whatever you pursue, because every day we're convincing others of the value of online strategies, social media, marketing plans or some other approach to reach our customers more effectively. So, it's been extremely valuable for me to have that background."