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A Day in the Life

A Day in the Life: Ian Forrester, SVP, Research & Analytics at Whalar

Ian Forrester is SVP of research and analytics at Whalar. He is on a mission to bring some rigour to research and insight in influencer marketing and shares what his working day looks like.

Ian joined Whalar at the start of 2019 on a mission to bring some rigour to research and insight in influencer marketing. After ensuring Whalar’s basic data house was in order, he conducted the world’s first neuroscience study on influencer effectiveness and, more recently, launched the world’s most advanced influencer brand uplift and creative reports. He shares what a typical day looks like.

5am: Up and at ‘em. I’m up at the crack of dawn, feeding my two small pugs and then doing 10 mins of mediation. I find this really important, allowing me to settle my mind in preparation for the day ahead. 

6am: Exercise. Since gyms closed during lockdown, I have been exercising at home using the Les Mills on-demand app. I tend to do a mix of HIIT and weight training, the combination of which keeps my body guessing what’s coming next.

7am: Pug walk. Out with the puggies for a walk in a South London park for an hour and a half. I use this time to absorb some nature and listen to audio books.

9am: Daily planning. I’m at my home office desk, planning the day. I’m quite geeky, using Trello to colour code and prioritise my tasks. This means I never miss an important deadline and I get a little sense of satisfaction each time I move a task to the ‘DONE’ column.

10am: The insight team huddle. My team and I regularly huddle, discussing priorities for the day and anything requiring team input. Regular team comms mean we can pivot quickly to urgent tasks and we all pitch in to help team members in need. 

11am: Focus time. Every day I block out time for deep work. I find having scheduled time to work with zero interruption is critically important. It’s during this time when I am in the flow and am the most productive.

The tasks I perform during focus time vary massively from day to day, but include: 

  • Defining Whalar’s insight strategy (including our insight product development and the next steps required to generate unique influencer data)
  • Working on thought-leadership pieces with research companies or academics
  • Using Whalar Blue, Whalar’s proprietary database of influencer performance data, to write articles for industry publications

3pm: Client presentations. A portion of my day is normally spent presenting our insight solutions or results to clients. This could be part of a pitch, or to strengthen an ongoing relationship. 

5pm: US support. A number of team members based in NY and LA means I’m often doing calls and presentations in the late afternoon/early evening UK time. 

8pm: Relaxation. I’m sometimes out with friends but more often than not during these odd times, I relax watching the latest series on Netflix. I’m currently glued to Dark and (when that gets too dark!), Schitt’s Creek.

10pm: Bedtime. Luckily I naturally don’t need much sleep, but I can’t stay up much past 10pm if I’m going to be fully rested by my 5am alarm!

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