Carlota Pico recently spoke with London-based Michael Ranmi Akinle, head of growth for the EMEA region at Clari, a software company offering a revenue operations platform for sales analytics and forecasting. Michael talked about the essential skills for success in today’s marketing world, Clari’s innovative solution to bring people together during lockdown, and why marketing is becoming more personalized than ever before—plus how you can become indispensable at your company.

Watch the full conversation in our YouTube video above, and listen to our podcast and read our recap below.

Key takeaways

  • One of the essential skills for modern marketers is empathy. When your job is to communicate with people all day long, sometimes you can come off as “robotic.” Taking a step back to empathize with your audience and tap into your emotional intelligence is vital, especially during difficult times. 
  • Clari has found unique ways to take their events online. Instead of hosting webinars, the company created “Master of Revenue Roundtables,” virtual roundtable events where people can engage in discussions with their peers.
  • An important factor that investors consider when approaching a company is the brand’s alignment with their values. Companies need to clearly communicate their brand values in order to attract the right people and develop a sense of trust.
  • Brands should focus their energy on personalizing their platforms and messages as much as possible. Humans are the ones buying products, so you have to forget about B2B and B2C and focus on human-to-human marketing instead—it’s the future.
  • One way to become a high-value employee is to not just be a “yes person” who always goes with the flow. It’s better to be a problem solver who creates solutions, innovates, tests, and challenges the status quo.

Marketing is not just the marketing department of an organization. It’s the marketing professionals, sales development people, sales representatives… it’s everyone.

Rapid-fire recs

An influencer or role model who you admire?

It’s not some senior executive somewhere—it’s my fiancé! She works in digital marketing and she’s built a really successful brand from scratch. She’s great at using social media and knows how to monetize it—she just gets it.

A publication or book you’d recommend?

Linchpin” by Seth Godin and “High Performance Habits” by Brendon Burchard. As a professional, it’s really important to constantly educate yourself and figure out how you can become more valuable to your organization. What COVID-19 has taught us is that things can change overnight. You want to become indispensable at your company, so they think, “No matter what, we can’t lose this person.” That’s why these books are important to me and why I’d recommend them.

Your favorite app at the moment?

I’d have to go with Instagram. I love it because you can really get an idea of a person based on their Instagram profile, which I think businesses are going to leverage in the future for recruiting, if they aren’t already. Showing your “human side” and creating personalized content is essential in marketing, and Instagram is the ideal app for doing that. 

Connect with Michael and Carlota on LinkedIn.

This post was edited by Mary Kresge, a freelance content creator based in Madrid.

For more insights into human-to-human marketing:

To read the full transcript, click on page number 2 below.