Jonathan Burg is latest of our Moneyball Marketer Demand Generation All-Stars. As senior director of marketing and customer acquisition for Apperian, Jonathan is instrumental in the growth of the company defining the mobile application management marketplace. We had a few minutes to sit down with Jonathan and learn about some of the keys to his demand generation success.
Zak: What is the target audience you are marketing/selling to?
Jonathan: We target both IT and Business leaders who own the success of critical employee mobile apps. Our solution helps organizations securely deploy mobile applications to their BYOD employees.
Zak: How do you segment your audience?
Jonathan: We primarily segment our audience by use case and the persona who is trying to solve the challenges associated with a specific enterprise mobility environment.
Zak: What is your approach to lead stages?
Jonathan: We follow a version of the SiriusDecisions lead waterfall that is aligned to the unique demands of our perpetual demand generation framework. The important part of the waterfall is that it is looked as a communication framework and part of an overall customer journey / lifecycle.
Zak: What does your “technology stack” look like?
Jonathan: We invest in technologies that help us optimize the customer journey. Our stack is made up of solutions that make our web properties easier to find and more sticky, help with data governance and streamline lead processing, drive marketing automation and CRM best practices, and facilitate customer communications and advocacy.
Zak: That’s very comprehensive – nice. Are there any technologies that you may add over the next 12 months?
Jonathan: We are currently working to understand if predictive marketing is right for our technology. We will also be looking at account based marketing tools that align to early, middle, and late stage demand generation.
Zak: What aspect of demand generation do you see as particularly ‘hot’ over the next year?
Jonathan: I think the development of customer advocacy, account based marketing, and predictive marketing tools are going to be hot. Customer marketing and advocacy is a pivotal component of efficient demand generation. By learning from your customers, organizations are also better able to target and predict future customers, that is where account based marketing and predictive marketing will come into play.
Zak: Jon Miller of Marketo has talked about behavioral targeting being an area he expects more marketers to get their head around in 2015. Are you doing any form of behavioral targeting or triggers?
Jonathan: Yes. Because we target by use-case behavior targeting is very important. Based on the type of content our subscribers are interacting with we only send them content that is applicable. We are also boosting our efforts to segment our customers based on how they are using mobile app management so that we can help them become more successful.
Zak: I gotta believe that puts you in the top percentile of marketers of terms of really taking advantage of what’s possible with marketing automation. What’s a marketing program that you’ve done in the past year that has been particularly effective or innovative?
Jonathan: We had an extremely integrated program that pulled nearly every lever - Social, Search, Email, Events, Advertising, teleprospeting, and Direct Mail. We anchored the program with the theme of MobilityPro. We launched the MobilityPro survey and sweepstakes that people could enter via social channels as well as being interviewed live at the events we were attending. We also used an important piece of analyst research to fuel survey responses. Not only did it help increase our Klout score, but we generated significant awareness at our events, received 300+ survey responses helping to create our 2015 Mobility Report, and created a pool of people who wanted to learn how we could help them solve their unique mobile app needs.
Zak: Now that is integrated marketing – congratulations. For the social media component, what are the top social media platforms you’ve found to reach your audience?
Jonathan: Twitter is our social platform of choice to interact with influencers in our market. We do a lot of work on LinkedIn and are starting to build out Facebook strategy.
Zak: We all know content creation is critical to demand generation? How does your marketing team approach content creation? Who owns it? Who contributes?
Jonathan: Our go to market is governed by campaigns, which are messaging frameworks that fuel the development of content created for personas that are focused on specific use cases. We have programs and tactics that align to these campaigns. Our department heads meet to kick-off the campaigns and together outline what content is needed for early, middle and late stage programs and tactics. We assign a lead on each piece of content and support each other to make sure it is completed by the time it is needed. This approach has proved to keep alignment between teams and enhance efficiencies.
Zak: How did you get your start in marketing?
Jonathan: Coming out of an MBA I entered into a marketing leadership development program. I had an affinity for demand generation and creating high functioning teams focused on generating qualified sales pipeline. I haven’t looked back since.
Zak: What do you most enjoy about marketing and demand generation?
Jonathan: I love the challenge of having to think strategically at the c-level one-minute, and being responsible for executing that strategy the next. The changes in altitude required and the diverse challenges encountered every day make the job fun!
Zak: What skills do you see as most important for a demand generation marketer?
Jonathan: The ability to create team cohesion across functional groups is key. Having an understanding of how aligning people, process, and technology can achieve higher-level organizational goals is key. Grit. I’ve not met a successful demand generation pro who doesn’t have fun working hard.
Zak: What advice would you give to any aspiring demand generation marketers?
Jonathan: Focus on the customer experience, whether that’s the customer of your company or an employee you’re working with. If your always focused on the customer you will design programs that make a difference and will motivate your colleagues to accomplish them effectively with you.
Zak: Where can we find you on social media?
Jonathan: You can find me on twitter at @jonmburg or LinkedIn.
Zak: Thank you Jonathan, really insights and you had a really nice example of an integrated program, congrats again on orchestrating that.