As a continuation of our Smart People Saying Smart Stuff series, Arketians were fortunate to have a member of SAP’s global social media marketing team, Tyrone Webb, Jr., join us. For the lunch-n-learn, he shared his insights into the software world. Tyrone’s talk comes after hearing about media relations, creating content people care about and ensuring you have a proficient online marketing platform.
For starters, many marketing and PR pros working in software may not completely understand the “techy speak” of developers and engineers, making it hard to know what strategy to recommend and proceed with. For Tyrone, understanding the products and industry came after a lot of research and from him asking the right questions of colleagues. So, how can his experience learning about technology for a large company relate to anyone, including those working in smaller organizations?
Know Your Audience
According to Tyrone, his role of running social media for SAP developers required him to learn more about the space and his audience. First, he learned developers don’t like promotion. Instead, they prefer to explore on their own and things that are free.
How (and why) is SAP serving the developer community with free solutions?
Once examples is SAP’s CodeJam—a hands-on coding and networking event for developers—which promotes the collaborative development with SAP technologies, platforms and tools. In addition to recognition, it oftentimes results in SAP financially backing the proposal and forming a partnership with the creators.
But how does this trickle down to businesses smaller than SAP? It’s all about knowing what your audience likes and delivering it.
Mentoring Goes Both Ways
Typical mentoring consists of a more seasoned professional giving career advice to a junior level professional. But it doesn’t have to be this way. In fact, SAP mentors actively participate in their community and promote an environment where mentees can share with SAP executives what they want to see in future software and products.
The setup is more of a Q&A than one-way counsel—and the mentors don’t hold back in questioning. In addition to direct communication with execs, SAP further honors its ambassadors by creating a special shirt to wear at their annual conference where the “mentoring” takes place.
Now, understanding your business may not have the means or needs to create your own conference, the initiative behind SAP’s mentor program can be applied at any organization. For instance, you could create and own a LinkedIn group focused on your industry, host a roundtable of experts to hear from other leaders (Arketi hosts one every year), or have informal happy hours in different parts of town or various cities.
Whatever you decide, don’t be afraid to break away from the average mentor structure.
Be Well Read
Lastly, as in any industry, being knowledgeable in your field not only is important, but helps make your job easier. As PR and marketing pros, it’s imperative for us to read daily, and is a part of his job Tyrone views extremely valuable. The top publications Tyrone reads daily are:
Obviously this isn’t an all-inclusive list of everything he reads—or what you should limit yourself to—but it paints a picture of how to ensure a vast knowledgebase of world-wide events, companies and the topics impacting businesses.
In wrapping up, the big takeaways are to: understand your audience, listen to your customers and read everything. When you make these three pieces a priority in your everyday operations, you’re further setting yourself up for success—business-wise and personally.
Anything you think is also important? Leave us a comment below.