Fifteen industries. Sixteen languages. Twenty-three countries. That’s the result of three recently merged customer bases across the company.
Kira Kletti, our multilingual customer marketing manager, is learning how to connect with 350+ enterprise companies—all from her desk in Germany.
We caught up with Kira, who made the unique switch from product to customer marketing when our three entities merged in 2021, to learn what’s on the horizon, what surprises she’s seen on the job, and what it’s like being a part of in-person events again after all this time.
How does a product marketer end up in customer marketing?
I spent a year and a half as product marketing manager at BrandMaker. When the company merged with Allocadia and Hive9, there was an opportunity to put all of my product experience to use in a new way alongside our customers.
After all, the nucleus of the relationship with our customers is our product.
The goal is to develop our solutions according to our customers’ needs, enabling them to get the best out of their customized solution. Therefore, product marketing and customer marketing have plenty of overlaps and work hand-in-hand in our marketing organization. For both teams, it’s essential that we communicate the value of our product in a comprehensive way in order to meet customers’ expectations and needs.
So, I’m now the interface between marketing and our customer-facing teams (especially customer success). In order to provide a seamless experience for our customers, it’s essential that we have common processes and a mutual understanding of every customer’s current situation, challenges, needs, and use case.
We want to provide a customer-centric experience, offering a wide portfolio of activities, content, and events so that customers can learn from each other, learn more about us, and use our solutions in the most optimal way.
What’s the best part of the job?
Because we were coming together as three companies, I knew I would be able to work with marketing customers across the globe from three different product lines. (Through the acquisition, we now have more than 625,000 customers at 350+ different enterprises.)
I also just love being in marketing, which is a big advantage—we’re all kind of in the same boat, experiencing similar situations and learning from each other.
I gain insights from marketers from all over the world and across different industries. They often have similar or sometimes completely different challenges, which inspires me as a marketer to help them develop their personal brand and share their knowledge and success.
What do customers want?
We’ve been hosting a mixed bag of in-person and virtual options for our customer base. We aren’t doing any massive events yet, so the in-person events are smaller, more intimate settings.
If you’re going to leave your house for what may be your first event since pre-pandemic, we want to make it worthwhile. From what I’ve observed, customers just want to connect with others, sharing their stories of success and learnings with their peers. We’ve been behind our laptops for more than two years, so it’s refreshing to hear another human being tell you something new.
We recently had our in-person and virtual user group series, where customers learned more—directly from our product leaders—about our product vision, short-term roadmap, and combined marketing operations solutions across the BrandMaker, Allocadia, and Hive9 platforms. We’re now getting ready for our next round of user groups in October.
In May, we were on-site at Forrester’s B2B Summit in Austin, where several customers presented their marketing success stories, which drew substantial crowds and seemed to really resonate with the marketing leaders in attendance.
We also just hosted some fun events in New York, Silicon Valley, and London, where customers and prospects connected during mixology classes and vineyard wine tastings.
We want to provide interesting experiences in whatever format our customers are looking for.
What’s surprised you about your new role in customer marketing?
It’s surprised me how many customers—with massive responsibilities in their organization—have made the time to talk to me and share their stories.
Everyone is such an expert in their field, and they’re trying to elevate their work and profiles within their companies. I think the role of marketing ops is evolving, and our customers are hungry to share their expertise with their leaders to help inform strategy (instead of just fixing things as they break).
Right from the start of my new role, I began to meet so many people and hear their stories. Whether through our advocacy or community programs, user groups, or virtual and physical events, it’s been such a fun ride.
What do you want to tell customers?
I’d love them to reach out to me: email, phone, Zoom, Slack, wherever. If I could be speaking to five customers a day, that would make me immensely happy. I want to hear their stories, their feedback, and their ideas. We’re looking at creative and more organic ways for them to share their stories and best practices with each other.
We’re just getting started, with so many more great programs to come for both customers and prospects in the long term. Stay tuned!
Some of our team celebrating Customer Appreciation Day at our Vancouver, B.C., office