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Episode 287: Getting Companies Invested in the Digital Transformation with Tom Burg at Alpha

Episode Summary

As SVP of Marketing at Alpha, a rapid consumer research platform, Tom Burg has always pushed his clients to think digitally. Now, this is even more imperative — Tom’s team aims to find the best ways to reach and interact with people virtually.

On this episode of Tech Qualified with Justin Brown, Tom Burg talks about the ways he and his team are pushing the bounds of their marketing strategies, especially given the changing spaces of human interaction.

One way he has done this is by taking advantage of their podcast, which has been streaming for four years and has an established listenership. The podcast has been a great way to attract clients.

“If people are taking the time to listen to the podcast, generally they’re going to be a pretty good fit for our business.”

They are currently working on an experimental webinar program as well, which will focus on how to navigate the world today.

Guest Profile

  • Name: Tom Burg
  • What he does: As SVP of Marketing at Alpha, a rapid consumer research platform, Tom aims to get companies to seriously consider digitally transforming their business, spearheading content-production programs like a podcast and webinars.
  • Company: Alpha
  • Podcast: This is Product Management
  • Key Quote: At this point, we're working as a marketing team to really think about, how do we deprioritize in-person physical types of marketing and how do we prioritize things that might be more virtual.

Key Insights

  • To get early adopters on board, third-party validation is important, Tom says. You shouldn’t tell them that your company is great. The key is to get clients who are familiar with your work to go on the record and talk about you. At Alpha, Tom has done this by getting clients to go on stage with them — do video case studies, talk to the press and talk to other prospects about them.
  • Tom says they are putting together what he calls the “Last Mile Kit,” which is all the late-stage buyer journey material customized to the client. What this basically says is that they know the time investment required, and if done right, it could transform their business.
  • Where content is concerned, Tom says they are looking at it less as specific posts and webinars and more in terms of what can educate people. Doing this requires relying heavily on a talented team to provide good, rich stories with substance — whether that’s through webinars, events, workshops or text content.

Episode Highlights

  • Highlighting current client needs
“We’ll put a little more accent right now on client retention, client support and client education. Because we’re an online research platform, we’re finding a lot of our customers are now using our platform to do COVID-19 research and understand consumer sentiment, preference and behaviors.”
  • Using podcasts to attract ideal clients
“You’re starting to see product management be more of a strategic leader within an organization. You’ll see the podcast that we have reflects that, and it’s been a very nice demand generator for us, from a numbers perspective. It might not be the one that drives the most leads, but I would say it drives the most qualified leads, cause if people are taking the time to listen to the podcast, generally they’re going to be a pretty good fit for our business.”
  • Webinars that are useful, now
“If we have an opportunity to produce webinars, we’re going to do them for our clients first, navigating the landscape we’re in today. It’s just thinking about how to reframe how they work, whether it’s working from home, how they support customers or how they support thinking about prospects.”
  • Being a sea of change
“We’re fortunate to be in a business that I think is becoming more of a line item for companies. Four years ago we were the world’s first online on-demand user insights platform. Nobody had a line item for that. The way in which companies would do customer feedback or focus groups was very old school, and to basically imply that we could get them 3 or 400 respondents within three days time was kind of a sea change for them.”
  • A team that balances short and long-term
“I think that the team as constructed is pretty well-balanced between short and long term. We have enough content and the ability to create enough content that if we need a particular item, we can turn that around really pretty quickly. So, we’re mobilized for speed.”
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