Prateek Mathur is a Marketing Leader, who believes in using Marketing as a strategic lever to drive innovation. Prateek has a deep understanding of driving innovation in areas of business applications, with a background and experience pans across Marketing, Product management, Application development, and implementation.
Excerpt From The Vision Board Interview With Mr. Prateek Mathur.
You spend a decade you know in the corporate side and b2b marketing side. You started your career with uh I think a business application consultant and now you know you're holding you know in senior leadership role at SAP. I'm sure that you know there are lots of ups and downs ,i know there are some learnings or somewhat the success mantras you know basically that you want to share with the community?
Oh, absolutely and first of all thanks so much for having me & the entire effort i must compliment you and your team and the kind of uh you know effort that you’re doing in this uh you know for the fraternity, i think it’s commendable it’s absolutely commendable and it’s uh such an honour for me as a student of marketer to be actually here contributing in my own little way. So uh yeah your question is um i think yes uh a lot of people ask me this question like you started your journey as a consultant and I’ve gone through different career changes but then why marketing and i think i would uh you know for me
marketing is like yoga , uh for business right yeah and uh you know let me explain it a bit maybe just in a minute right and see as yoga is for a human right what it does it basically is it said it's a unification of mind body and soul right, so it's marketing now marketing is the unification of business strategy which is your mind & it's your body which is your momentum and market execution that you do right which is the body and soul which is about creativity and innovation.
So i think this is the only role which actually, brings these three aspects all together so beautifully in a balanced manner and i think that’s what i uh personally uh really love about marketing. And the other aspects uh that I would want to talk about to marketers uh that are listening to this is that the other important aspect when you do yoga is you know you keep your north star as divine mostly yeah that’s the here your divine is your customer right exactly so i think it’s a beautiful parallel that I draw for myself to really you know whenever I’m in a mix of fix or whenever i need some sort and i need to get back to the basics uh look nice look at the problem from 30 000 feet, this is the mantra that i use really to look at, okay these are the three aspects which needs to be unified in certain way and now then starts thinking about the problem and how do i solve it keeping north star which is your customer in mind. So that’s that’s my probably the philosophy if you can call it for the way i understand marketing.
I know you mentioned that you know you you've been through this entire journey, you spend decade so but how do you see that uh especially in the b2b marketing that is evolving ,especially you know that earlier I believe that b2b market is all about the events and you know basic very very technical level of engagement but now we see it's evolved a lot. So, what's your point of view?
I think uh it’s because the shift in the north star you know which is the customer and that’s where the realignment happens you know so if you really see your customers behaviour and the way it has evolved and changed um over a period of time it’s tremendous. Customers have moved, they are more empowered now. Earlier there was a time when customer used to depend on vendors to inspire them to educate them to bring the knowledge that they need to be able to make the right decision for their organizations but that’s no more the case anymore. 70 percent of our decisions when we engage with our customers is already done, we know that right we all know that as marketers which means so that kind of demands a lot of change in the way we operate and engage with our customers today as well. So of course, there were these events and other kind of activities that were relevant and they’re still relevant to a great extent right now but they in the entire buyer’s journey they have their place now, so i think that’s how that’s why it has evolved, Content has started playing a very crucial role in the whole journey now, engagement on digital of course, so uh making yourself available when a customer needs you right is so important right and be able to then take the customer through that journey, nurture the entire need in a way i think that’s very important for us as marketers to be able to align and uh so i think that’s the reason why it is changing and yes it has evolved a lot you know ,the budgets the way it were earlier for us in terms of and of course COVID has acted as a catalyst as well there you know in a great extent, COVID has kind of you know come it’s uh it’s now 100 digital in that sense right even um and the content as i said earlier has uh now attained even more importance because it’s the space itself is so crowded, so how do you differentiate yourself and that’s why that’s where the creativity aspects uh come in right like how creative you are about taking your message and what’s your differentiators how you’re engaging with the customers.
How important do you feel the organization or the marketing leader should empower their employees to face the failure and so that you know they can think beyond and they don't get stuck to the tried and tested method because that is not going to work. Now a days it’s completely digital digitally as you mentioned it's completely crowded you can’t just apply what you know work maybe five years back. So, marketing leaders they are playing a very very critical role in this space so what's your point of view?
Absolutely i think there’s something that you could learn from the way the startups operate. I engage with a lot of start-ups and i get a lot of opportunity to learn from them. I think it’s not about uh the fear failing, it’s about failing smart right and i think that’s the word and today if you compare the world the world is digital now right and uh and that’s there are the tools available to compare it with, okay let’s look at cameras you know there was a time when you have to have those reels and failing in those and having not the right shot, i do a bit of photography and started with that Yaashika camera which used to have a real you know and it was very expensive to make mistakes with that, right but today you can take 100 shots and figure out okay which are the 10 best out of it which you could really take out. So i think that’s the so the amount of testing that you can do about with your messaging the ab test I think that’s the cost of failure has drastically come down now and there’s you could get quick responses and i think it’s about failing smart ability to do as many tests small tests as possible get your messaging right and then really scaling it out and investing heavily in what you think is what it is working for your customers so i think the world has shifted and it’s to the advantage of the market it’s unfortunate that some of our marketers are still uh you know we are bounding ourselves with our traditional mindsets and unable to leverage what is available.
Yor Top 3 marketing tips for SMB?
So, 1st as a CEO, even if you don’t have a full-time marketing uh organization, dedicate one day of a week where a CMO have. 2nd is uh think of marketing as a strategic leaver right engage and even if you it’s not about investment in the budget that you allocate it’s about how you engage with your customers right and uh use that to build a marketing function. Uh correct so uh use social platforms use um you know and be out there. The 3rd important thing is that, make sure that your back end is aligned to what you’re opening up right and in social media it’s very easy sometimes for Smb’s to open up a social media engagement platform but really don’t know how to manage it, customer queries in whatever you know so you get a lot of feedback inputs and queries on the platform if you’re not responsive enough your brand takes a hit so it’s so while it is right now available it doesn’t cost much as well so you can invest in it but invest in it carefully and ensure that you have our backend engines in place to be able to uh you know sustain that and use it to build the plan otherwise the impact could be counterproductive and detrimental to the brand itself.
So now especially you know that our community members that you would mention in the beginning uh you know they're all you know aspiring marketeers so they just started their marketing career. So one question that every time you know that uh we get from this community that i know how we can make it to the top management of a global brand. What are the key aspects that you know or we should keep in our mind?
I think i covered that right the key aspects that you cover in your growth journey is at different levels like you know i go back to what how I started uh the session where marketing defining marketing as a Yoga. There are three aspects, constantly work on those three & i think that’s the important aspect at whatever role you are playing one aspect could be more important than the other but you can’t ignore the other & your business strategy why which is why your business exists right that’s the WHY of your business so keep an eye on that, ensure that you’re using that effectively in your marketing communication. Secondly uh the execution right the different mechanism, tools, technologies that are coming to keep you agile that’s very important keep yourself ahead on what’s happening around there and finally creativity and innovation. I think these are the three important aspect i feel any market here in my personal opinion if you if you are constantly developing on these three aspects your growth journey is assured.