September 28, 2022

Build Brand Awareness via Demand Gen with Elliot Volkman

by Breaking Through in Cybersecurity Marketing

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Build Brand Awareness via Demand Gen with Elliot Volkman

September 28, 2022 Breaking Through in Cybersecurity Marketing


Show Notes

Elliot Volkman, Director of Brand, Content, and Community at Drata, joins us in this episode to talk about demand generation strategies, also known more casually as demand gen. Demand gen consists of targeted marketing programs to drive brand awareness and build interest for qualified leads in products, services, and more. Tune in to our discussion with Elliot to learn how demand gen intersects with sales enablement, brand, content, and even community. 

Timecoded Guide: [03:52] Demand gen vs. brand message

[07:40] The goal of demand gen in an organization

[14:48] How demand gen ties into content and community members

[22:45] Key metrics and KPIs to track brand awareness

[31:04] Experimentation and demand gen  

How does demand gen differ from and bring focus to brand awareness?

Elliot believes that a lot of C-level executives mistake brand awareness for traditional marketing or product marketing. Brand awareness is more about what customers see when they encounter your company via search engine. Product marketing is instead about targeting specific personas. Demand generation fits into brand awareness because it’s designed to drive customer’s awareness of your company and build interest in your products, rather than directly marketing those products to them through product marketing strategies.

“The most important and critical aspect that organizations fail to pay attention to is building your brand, especially building voice and messaging around it that resonates.”

What is the goal of demand generation if not to drive sales?

A lot of organizations have an executioner and a product marketing lead, with various jobs for each role. Demand gen’s job is to take the webinars the executioner makes and the messaging the product marketer makes, and then guide those towards business alignment and increased brand awareness. Elliot emphasizes that demand generation drives sales, but does not drive lead generation. Demand gen is not supposed to chase leads the way a product marketing manager might, it’s instead supposed to build awareness.

“I think there's two aspects of demand gen, depending on the organizational size and what they do, but at the end of the day, the demand generation strategy does have to drive pipeline.” How does demand gen tie into content and community?

Oftentimes, in Elliot’s opinion, marketing can rely too much on technology. While technology is critical, you don’t have to educate anyone on why it’s important. Demand gen focuses more on humanizing the brand and building something fully centered around the customer. You rely on internal experts to build a community that ties everything together from marketing to security to visuals, and beyond. And in the end, the customer should be the hero and should feel like one in your demand generation strategy.

“It’s about focusing on people, focusing on processes, and embracing technology, of course. At the end of the day, having our customers be a voice is absolutely critical to the success of our future.” What are the KPIs to track brand awareness?

There may be numerous ways to track brand awareness, but Elliot explains that the main KPI is organic traffic to the website. The byproducts of increased organic website traffic include organic increases in demo requests, nurturing people through the buying process, and acting as fuel for the engine of marketing campaigns. There’s no direct selling in a demand generation strategy. You can avoid those most-hated marketing tactics, like when you cold call or appear in their already crowded email inboxes. Demand gen is all organic and based on nurturing the customer.

“We're not trying to brainwash people by any means, we're actually able to help educate them along the way. We build a relationship through that education and through those materials, and then, maybe they'll check out what our product does, or they've decided to download something, and we can continue to nurture them.” 



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