Strategic marketing expert interview freshchat

Experts roundup interview 2019: Maverick marketers review past and share future goals with Freshchat

Written by on January 17, 2019

January happens to be the first month of the year for a reason.

The month takes its name from Janus, the Roman god of beginnings and endings. He had the power to look both forward and backward at the same time.

Inspired by Janus’ legacy, the Freshchat team is starting this year by reviewing our past and setting new strategic marketing goals for the future. Meanwhile, we also wanted to invite some great marketing minds to partake in this discourse.

Therefore, we took a break from the one-on-one guest interviews this month and rounded up the maverick marketers below and asked them a few questions that prod them deep about their past, present, and future.


Yam Regev interview with Freshworks

Yam is an entrepreneur with over 10 years of experience. His company, Zest.is, is a user-fueled learning platform for professionals. It enables professionals to own their professional growth by consuming the most relevant content, effortlessly.

 

If you had to begin your marketing career all over again, what’s one thing that you would do differently?

Yam: When I was a young CMO in that startup, I was too focussed on top funnel metrics; views, registered users, and newsletter sign-ups were our core KPIs. Retroactively speaking, these were vanity metrics. Looking back, I would rather focus on bottom funnel KPIs from day one: new MRR, expansion MRR, and churn percentage. If you want to focus on mid-funnel KPIs you can focus on daily/weekly/monthly active users (DAU/WAU/MAU).

 

What are the top three things in your marketing bucket list for 2019?

Yam: My strategic marketing plan consists of seven pillars, but not all of them are specific to marketing:

  1. Creating a company-wide culture of learning and self-improvement
  2. Bringing in talent through a remote team model
  3. Focusing every team member’s attention on retention-based growth

 

What would you attempt to do if you knew you wouldn’t fail?

Yam: Advertising on the Super Bowl sounds like a hell of an experience. I would love to try that out.


A copywriter at heart, Doug is the Creative Director and Co-Founder of Velocity Partners. He is a connoisseur of content marketing, analytics, and Lagavulin.

 

If you had to begin your marketing career all over again, what’s one thing that you would do differently?

Doug: Start an agency earlier. It’s way more fun than I imagined.

 

What’s a marketing superpower every marketer should develop?

Doug: Empathy. But if everyone else says empathy, I’ll go with writing with a compelling voice.

 

What are the top three things in your marketing bucket list for 2019?

Doug:

  1. Do a B2B jingle
  2. Do some VR or AR
  3. Get billboard advertising banned in at least one city

What would you attempt to do if you knew you wouldn’t fail?

Doug: Open offices in Austin, Tokyo and Barcelona.


Tyler Lessard interview Freshworks

Tyler is a VP of strategic marketing at Vidyard. Tyler has with over 15 years experience in all kinds of strategic marketing such as content marketing, B2B marketing, sales enablement, branding, and video.

 

What’s the most valuable advice you have received in marketing?

Tyler: Sweat the details! Whether it’s button placement on your website, email subject lines, blog titles or video scripts, small changes can have a big impact and you’re never done optimizing.

 

 

What’s one thing in your marketing playbook that was seemingly important to you a few years ago but is not-so-important to you now?

Tyler: Digital advertising has seen diminishing returns. Its effectiveness is highly dependent on your market and transaction models, but for us, we’re no longer seeing a positive ROI on advertising.

 

If you won a lottery of $1 million budget for your marketing team, how would you spend it and why?

Tyler: I would run amazing in-person events. Maybe one big one, along with some in-market field events. You simply can’t beat the personal connection of meeting prospects and customers face-to-face. And I would produce an amazing video campaign to support brand development.

 

What would you attempt to do if you knew you wouldn’t fail?

Tyler: Produce an epic thought leadership program supported by a video series, podcast series, social videos, and more. I think there’s a big opportunity for businesses to start thinking more like media companies and publishers, even (and especially) if you’re in a B2B or legacy market.


Brian Honigman interview Freshworks

Named a “seasoned digital marketing expert” by Forbes and an “SEO expert to follow” by Search Engine Watch, Brian is the CEO of Honigman Media. He has been featured as a strategic marketing guru by the likes of New York Times, Inc, Adweek, Business Insider, and The Huffington Post.

 

If you had to begin your marketing career all over again, what’s one thing that you would do differently?

Brian: I’d start writing publicly much sooner as it has been one of the best ways of communicating my ideas with others in the industry. Sharing my ideas on a consistent basis for years is what’s helped me land clients, build partnerships and grow my business for the last five years.

 

What’s one thing in your marketing playbook that was seemingly important to you a few years ago but is not-so-important to you now?

Brian: Being consistently active on social media. While I still find Twitter and LinkedIn valuable channel for promoting my work and ideas as a consultant, I’ve reduced how often I’m sharing on these platforms and I’m spending more time on crafting the messaging I do share.

As a business owner, it’s important to continually review what activities you’re allocating time to and understand what results you’re getting. By changing my approach, I’ve seen similar results by posting less often. I suggest every organization review what they’re investing in from a marketing perspective and see what should be increased, reduced or stopped entirely.

 

If you had to give one advice to aspiring marketers around the world, what would that be?

Brian: It’s not only important to do good work, but to communicate the success you’ve achieved and failures you’ve overcome in the workplace. If your boss or potential clients don’t know about the projects you’ve worked on, it’ll be difficult for them to understand your skill set and experience. Share what you’ve worked on to continue to excel in your career.

 

What would you attempt to do if you knew you wouldn’t fail?

Brian: The possibility of failing is half the joy of marketing. If everything went as planned and was guaranteed to be a success then marketing wouldn’t be fulfilling. I thrive as a marketer because I enjoy solving complex problems, even if I’m unsuccessful sometimes.


Tim Soulo interview Freshworks

 

Tim is the CMO and Product Advisor at Ahrefs. He applies and shares his knowledge on digital marketing and other strategic marketing topics that he has gained over the years in his 10 years of experience as a marketer.

 

What’s one thing you would do differently if you had to restart your marketing career again?

Tim: I’d figure out the concepts of finding search queries that are relevant to your business sooner in my career and pitching your business within the article. I would target search queries that people are searching for and narrowing down the entire customer journey into one article.

 

What’s an important skill that all marketers should learn?

Tim: All marketers should learn how to write well or clearly communicate their ideas to the world. This is crucial because in any online interaction, you have to clearly explain what you’re thinking. You need to explain your ideas logically and in simple terms. It’s part of being able to transmit information from your head into the head of readers or people who are watching your video and listening to your podcast.

Manish Nepal

Marketer + Author + Ghost Writer. Fixing things with percussive maintenance since the '80s.