Break Free B2B Marketing: Sruthi Kumar on Creating Memorable Experiences
This may be of some interest.
Marketers are in the business of attracting attention. All of our tactics, our strategies, our goals boil down to: Did we get someone’s attention and inspire them to take action?
The key to modern marketing is that we have to earn that attention. There will always be someone on who is louder, funnier, more talented, or just less shameless than your brand is willing to be. The only way to truly capture and sustain someone’s focus is to earn the right to their time.
How do you earn attention? By providing remarkable experiences. By showing you care about your audience, you know who they are, and that your brand is here to help and to entertain them.
For our latest Break Free video, we talked to a marketer who is helping marketers offer more memorable experiences. Sruthi Kumar is the Senior Marketing Manager at Sendoso, a platform that coordinates direct mail and gifting campaigns for personalization at scale.
Sruthi and I sat down to talk about experiential marketing in all its forms: Event marketing, direct mail, content and beyond. We also dig deeper into the philosophy of marketing. Should marketers specialize in a certain aspect of marketing, or should we be taking a more holistic approach? Can left-brained content folks and right-brained strategy folks get along… and really, is it that simple of a divide? Sruthi has some inspiring thoughts on all of the above.
Oh, and along the way, Sruthi shares how she built a marketing department from the ground up, taking Sendoso from a small start-up to competing with the big brands.
[bctt tweet=”I think what we’re really trying to do is bridge that online and offline experience. @sruthikkumar” username=”toprank”]
1:00: Direct mail plus digital marketing for unforgettable experiences
5:45: Marketing to delight your audience
7:40: Building a marketing department from the ground up
11:05: Tactics for earning attention at marketing events
18:15: Marketing requires creative and analytical thinking
So tell me a little bit about Sendoso. What is it? What do you do?
We’re a sending platform, so we really help our customers reach their customers and prospects in a meaningful way by sending company swag, direct mail, sweets and treats, handwritten notes, the whole nine yards, in order to make really human connections with their prospects and customers.
Do you feel like this going back to a more simpler form of marketing compared to digital marketing? Do you feel like that’s more effective as our world gets more digital?
So I actually think they go hand in hand. What we’re trying to do is really bridge that online and offline experience. So not to say that digital marketing does not work. I’m a marketer. I run our field marketing team, we use digital heavily, but it’s just about bringing all the channels together to create that seamless experience for the end user, and that person that you want to book a meeting with or have a signed contract with or whatever else you need from them.
[bctt tweet=”It’s about bringing all the channels together to create that seamless experience for the end user, that person who you want to book a meeting with or have a signed contract with. @sruthikkumar” username=”toprank”]
We are moving to an ABM approach when we are doing our events, because sometimes you get to large audiences and it’s hard to really get in contact with anyone. The beautiful thing about our product is that anyone can use it in any vertical. It’s direct mail: If you’re selling, you can use it. If you’re trying to reach an audience, you can use it.
We do the double funnel approach at Sendoso. We do have demand gen tactics while we also have ABM tactics as well.
I had an interview that was my first internship as a marketer. The CMO asked me, ‘Are you analytical? Or are you creative?’ And I was like, ‘I don’t know, I feel like I’m a little bit of both.’
And she said, ‘You can’t be both.’ And I just want to call her now, because you have to be both. I may not be the most analytical person on my team. But I get to work with this marketing ops manager. We built our team together, and she’s very analytical. I get to learn from her and understand how would my MOPS person do this. And that’s the cool stuff that you get to take with you.
As a marketer, you should be well rounded — you’re a content marketer, but you could put a demand gen campaign together.
We just love this binary of left brain versus right brain. But then you get this idea that oh, well, the creative types are just sitting up there in their beanbag chairs with the lava lamps going, ‘Oh, wouldn’t it be cool if we did this?’ And then on the other hand is a bunch of robots who are crunching numbers. For some people, those things are going to overlap into a circle and some are somewhere on the continuum, but you can’t be just one or the other.
[bctt tweet=”People ask, ‘Are you analytical or are you creative?’ But you have to be both… As a marketer, you should be well rounded: You’re a #contentmarketer, but you could put a demand gen campaign together. You’re not just writing. @sruthikkumar” username=”toprank”]
With all those marketing activities that we’re supposed to do, some people are just doing the check-boxes. That’s totally fine, but I think you should bring your personality into it. I think so many of us are so scared. Like having our corporate voice, but I think our personal voice should be in there too.
I think the only reason why Sendoso did stand out in the early days is because we got to incorporate so many of our early founders’ and members’ own personalities into the brand. And even the way we pitch our product today is by the voices of our sales team and our marketing team, our co-founders and c-suite. So I think it’s just about being okay with being yourself and incorporating that into your whole corporate brand.
[bctt tweet=”I think the reason Sendoso did stand out in the early days is we got to incorporate so many of our early founders’ own personalities. It’s about being okay with being yourself and incorporating that into your corporate brand. @sruthikkumar” username=”toprank”]
Stay tuned to the TopRank Marketing Blog and subscribe to our YouTube channel and podcast for more Break Free B2B interviews. Here are a few to whet your appetite:
- Break Free B2B Marketing: Gary Gerber on Scaling ABM without Losing Focus
- Break Free B2B Series: Hal Werner on the Intersection of Marketing Creativity and Analytics
- Break Free B2B Series: Adi Bachar-Reske on Taking the Lead in the Evolution of B2B Content Marketing
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