Sarah K. De Ita, CPSM | Corporate Marketing Director at Binkley & Barfield, Inc. | Sponsorship, Mentorship, and Programs Committees, SMPS Houston
SMPS Member since June 2000
How has SMPS helped you in your career? SMPS has been invaluable to my career in so many ways! From the moment I joined, I was welcomed with open arms and gained key relationships and knowledge that have provided a guide for my marketing passion and now 17+ year career.
What is the biggest benefit of being active in SMPS? I think the biggest benefit is the strength of the group and the support it provides by recognizing Marketing for A/E/C firms as a true profession supported by the CPSM Certification. I will never forget one of my first supervisors (and biggest advocate), Peggy Denton, gave me the Career Ladder Guide book from SMPS. I read the book from front to back, making notes and highlighting my career track. It has served me well throughout all these years and I still have it to this day! At some point, I will hand it down as she did so it can continue to help others like me looking for guidance early in their careers.
How has certification benefitted you? Certification has boosted my career by providing further credibility to my resume and experience. Additionally, it provides an opportunity for continuing education and access to key resources that keep me up to date on best practices within the industry.
Can you offer a helpful hint for fellow SMPS members? I think the best way to leverage membership in any organization is to be visible by staying involved and taking advantage of the organizations resources. Building relationships, volunteering on committees and expanding educational knowledge are a priority in a successful career! You never know who you are going to meet or what important knowledge you are going to learn that may push you to that next level! It’s a true investment in your future.
Describe your typical work day. There is no typical work day! Each day is a juggling act of meetings, proposals, marketing programs: website updates, social media, newsletter development, tradeshow planning, project and employee photography, branding initiatives, collateral material updates, press release distribution, you name it! I think that’s why I enjoy what I do so much, each day is different and brings a new challenge.
What do you love most about your job? The empowerment I’m given in my role as Corporate Marketing Director to create a vision and strategy for my own department. I truly believe empowerment is the key to allow employees to do their job to the best of their abilities and the positive effects trickle down to all facets of productivity, creativity, job satisfaction, loyalty, etc.
What would you do with a year off? Spend more time with my 5-year old daughter Julia! She is my mini me and we both love shopping, baking cookies, swimming, creating art projects, watching movies, joking around and being silly. We have a blast together!
What do you enjoy most about Houston? There are so many great things about Houston that make it unique– its diversity, dynamic food scene, the traffic (kidding). As a native Houstonian, the city’s strong economy has continued to serve me well throughout my career. I have been fortunate to have never been laid off and have been able to build my career here at some leading A/E/C firms in the city. I hope I can continue to do so for many years to come!
What’s the one thing you already own that you can’t live without? I am and always have been a water bug so I would have to say my pool! The Houston summer heat is unbearable at times so if I’m not at work and the sun is out you can bet I’m by some water (the pool, a lake, the ocean or a river) with a cold drink!
Where do you find inspiration? Everywhere! SMPS is my primary go-to for continuing education, however I’m also a regular at Houston Interactive Marketing Association (HIMA), American Marketing Association Houston (AMA Houston) and HOW Design Live which provide great insight into what marketers are doing in other industries.