Recently, the folks here at Flawless Inbound sat down with the Marketing and Communications Manager for a multi-million dollar Information Technology company. We had the opportunity to ask him about the challenges that Marketing
Managers for IT companies face today, his views on the Inbound Marketing methodology, and where he thinks the marketing field is headed next. His insights are enlightening in a number of ways, but perhaps most importantly, they give us a first-hand account of the obstacles that are present in the modern world of marketing, and how solutions are being found through new approaches and systems. Please note that our interview subject has kept his identity anonymous in order to comply with his organization’s corporate policy.
What do you think the industry will look like five years down the road?
With IT in general, I think that it’s no secret that a certain portfolio of vendors and manufacturers drives the industry itself. As marketer’s, we need to be conscious of their investments and put effort into the communication mediums that matter. The advent of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or whatever is next, will dictate the way that you market. To be successful in marketing you have to market to where the attention is, and because the attention changes year over year, if you’re not marketing on that medium you’re basically off the map. I think that things are going to look really different in just a few years’ time.
Could you please share a positive experience that you’ve had during your tenure as a Marketing Manager for a major IT company?
One positive experience that I have had has to do with the implementation of inbound marketing at my company. We have shortened our sales funnels and have basically added another layer to sales in general. My goal in the last eight months has been for our company to never do another cold call ever again. This is a huge gap that sales people need to be able to overcome. You must also realize that traditionally the sales team has viewed marketing with a certain stigma. They believe that marketers are there to create aesthetics, whether that’s brochures, posters, ads, etc. I think marketing is much more than that, and can add significant value that actually increases a company’s bottom line – much like we are doing today.
What would you say is a major challenge in IT solutions companies today?
Probably the biggest challenge is being able to differentiate yourself amongst your competitors. Your competitors are basically doing the same thing as you are – they are offering similar products and services, it’s really up to each company to package offerings in a unique matter that adds value. One way that we “add value” outside of IT is our new approach to HR. I have the philosophy that people want to buy from a place that they want to work for. I don’t think that anyone can really argue that. With a company like Google, you love their products, so you assume that it’s a great place to work, or vice-versa. Similarly, our marketing team has partnered with our HR team on unique recruitment efforts that will ultimately improve our ability to sell by becoming an “employer of choice” – and it’s a cool way to leverage our social network.