#B2Bstorytellers: interview with Tim Cawsey, Gemalto
Telling integrated stories to business audiences is a tough challenge for marketers. Not because anyone disputes it’s a good idea to do so; nor is it technically challenging. What it is, frequently, is an operational nightmare. Upskilling and getting a disparate team onto the same page, to execute the same story, in different regions through the funnel and across different channels… that’s tough.
This is why we’re gathering a #B2Bstorytellers panel together on 19th September, at 4pm BST / 8am PST / 5pm CET, for a global virtual and in-person chat on the issues that matter to communications and marketing directors. Whether drawing on different marketing disciplines, understand your audiences better, delivering through-the-funnel storytelling, or finding the best ways to extract the stories that matter, we’ll get insights from the coal-face and discuss them with any marketer or comms professional with a point of view and a Twitter/LinkedIn/crowdchat account.
Anyone can join online here (register now using your Twitter or LinkedIn account, add the event to your diary, and follow the chat for regular updates)… but if you’re free, a member of an in-house marketing or comms team, in London, and want to join us for the virtual chat in person so we can continue it over drinks, we’d love to host you at our offices in Southwark. Leave a comment or email me to register for that.
Kicking off our #B2Bstorytellers panel post series, (cl) Gemalto’s head of content and brand Tim Cawsey (aka @factboytim) shares his perspectives below. Look for more in the coming weeks from (cl) @CherryGray_UK of VMware, @risrach of Tipalti and @elmapeters of Saft.
Tell us about yourself and your role
I work in the Corporate Comms team of a 15k person European Tech company called Gemalto. I look after brand and content for the group as well as leading our social media strategy. I report into the Head of Corporate Communications and have a team of three people who manage our Corporate Reporting, Branding, Social Media and Content Marketing.
How has your relationship with marketing changed over the years?
The arrival of digital and our ability to measure success over the last 5-6 years has helped us to increase collaboration with marketing and get them on board with our communications activities. We create a lot of content with the aim of better explaining our company and shaping the right image. To make this as relevant as possible we focus on the core business topics from an issues perspective. By dove-tailing our efforts with our marketing colleagues who are running more lead gen campaigns we manage to increase traffic to our different online platforms and fill the top of their funnel.
What new skills have you acquired as comms and branding has become more involved with driving impact for the business in terms of leads and pipeline?
Since 2010 we’ve been continually adding digital skills to all of our communications people. As we launched our blog and took our printed magazine online we’ve worked hard to make our content work better in this context. This starts with analytics to understand which type of content is getting the most traction and also SEO in order to increase its findability. We’ve also worked increasingly closely with the demand generation team to support conversion and over the last couple of years with the falling organic reach on social we’ve done more paid advertising on various platforms.
What do you think the role of comms is in helping marketing shape narratives to engage your customers?
Through all of the new skills we’ve picked up thanks to the digital transformation of our job we’re better equipped to understand customers’ information needs and predict which type of content would work best. We also have more chances to try things out, optimise and drop something if it isn’t working thereby creating a much more iterative process.
What do you think needs to happen to enable marketing and comms work more closely in lock-step?
Success! We’ve managed to have many more conversations with our marketing colleagues thanks to being able to prove the success of campaigns we’ve supported. It’s also a good idea to go back to the basics and share objectives so that both teams are pulling in the same direction.
If you had to kill/kiss/marry a marketing discipline, what would it be and why?
I’d kill conferences and exhibitions if I could, they’re a 20th century tactic with dodgy ROI. I’d kiss any marketer who comes to me with clear and simple objectives, targets and a list of SEO-friendly keywords for their campaign – they’re few and far between. And I’d marry story-telling, as whatever the topic or channel, content is still king.