FeaturedPeopleSpecial Feature

Marketing Game Changers 2023: Nermeen Negm, Head of Marketing & Communications, Masdar City

Marketing Game Changers is back, to recognise and celebrate those brand-building marketing leaders who have made a huge impact this year.

This exclusive list features the men and women who we feel have shaped our industry this year, and includes a wide array of brands, campaigns and their achievements.

The prestigious top 10 includes four women, three Saudi based brands, an abundance of creativity, plus a strong focus on sustainability.
Nermeen Negm

Number of years in current position: 1 year
Number of years with current company: 3 years
Size of department:10

What is your objective in your current role?

To create such compelling narratives that resonate with our stakeholders so effectively that it fosters a sense of shared purpose and inspires our community to rally passionately behind Masdar City’s vision of a sustainable future. I hope to build a strong network of advocates who actively contribute to and champion our values.

What is your guiding principle?

Good enough is just not good enough.

How do you make agency relationships work?

Transparency – and that’s beyond what is perceived to be ‘a partnership’. I work with our agencies as part of our company, as an extension to my team. I encourage an environment of mutual brutal honesty, where they get exposed to not only our strengths, but also our vulnerabilities, and I expect the same from them.

I really believe that’s what ultimately makes the agency invested in your brand or project; because they are able to make informed decisions, and hence have a true stake in the outcome beyond the transactional relationship.

Who inspires you professionally?

I draw great inspiration from the remarkable women leaders in our region who have played pivotal roles in shaping sustainable initiatives and driving positive change. Our region boasts many accomplished women leaders who have made significant contributions to various fields.

If we just look in the UAE, Her Excellency Mariam Almheiri, the Minister of Climate Change and Environment, and Her Excellency Razan Al Mubarak, the president of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and UN Climate Change High-Level Champion, to name but a few, are committed to environmental conservation and sustainable development which align closely with my personal values and those of Masdar City.

What is the biggest challenge in marketing at the moment?

I think the biggest challenge in marketing right now revolves around navigating the vast possibilities of incorporating AI beyond the confines of ChatGPT. How can we expand our horizons and find practical applications of AI that go beyond the buzz in our marketing deliverable, while maintaining a keen focus on the bottom line?

How can we strike that perfect balance where AI becomes an indispensable ally in enhancing our strategies, without losing sight of the ultimate goal of achieving meaningful, measurable impact in our marketing campaigns?

What is the next big opportunity?

The opportunity I foresee is linked to my answer above. I’m a huge advocate for AI and see in it tremendous positive potential. I think we need more thought-leadership on AI for marketing. The opportunity lies in figuring out how to navigate these uncharted territories. I also think that at the heart of this effort, we need to stay committed to keeping our human touch intact.

It’s about finding that sweet spot where technology enhances what makes us uniquely human. I believe this balance is crucial – embracing cutting-edge technology, while keeping our feet firmly grounded in the essence of human connection and genuine engagement. It’s all very exciting.

What can we expect to see from you and your brand in the next year?

Communicating Masdar City as a beloved family destination, as it is currently a pioneering sustainable urban development and innovation hub for business. We are about to unveil beautifully expanded and enhanced visitor experiences, parks and sporting facilities. Come see for yourself.

Favourite podcast?

You are Dead to Me by the BBC