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Marketer Insight: MapR CMO talks Successes, Strategy


After inviting MapR Technologies to tell our audience about How Big Data is Changing PR, we knew they were the perfect fit for our video series, What’s Your Story? Powered by Cision.

Our series is hosted on Google+ Hangouts on Air and we interview those in the marketing, public relations and media industries about best practices, emerging trends, pitching tips and more!

We invited CMO of MapR Technologies Jack Norris to our inaugural What’s Your Story? interview. Below is the full video interview and abridged transcription:

Q: What is a marketing success you have experienced?
In the last couple years, we announced a partnership with Amazon and Google. Defining Hadoop in the Cloud with two undisputed leaders, it’s a reflection of the whole company, our technology and our team.

Q: What has been a marketing challenge?
A: Sharing the customer’s experience – particularly if you’re seen as a competitive advantage and driving unique capabilities –  [customers are] frequently reluctant to talk to the press, reluctant to have case studies public. It’s a real challenge to give other companies a glimpse of what you can do when some of your most significant use cases are private.

Q: How did you overcome that issue?
A: Using industry talks and talking in general about generic use cases, those are all ways to get some of the information, but nothing competes with learning directly from the customer – and the power of that is hard to underestimate.

Q: How has marketing evolved in the 20 years you’ve been in the field?
A: Marketing has moved further and further into the sales cycle. Initially, we were really focused on top of funnel and handing over leads. Now with marketing automation and deep integration with Salesforce, there’s a lot more visibility into marketing programs and how they impact the sales cycle. And there are more marketing programs we do to influence people in portions of the sales cycle. The second change is the way we communicate and the way we interact with customers. We moved from talking at you with short ads and graphics to conversations, whether it’s social media or more interactive sessions via webinars.

Q: What are some of emerging strategies and tactics you apply in your marketing efforts?
A: I think it’s really about reflecting reality. Marketing’s job is not to get in the way, it’s to amplify what’s happening. The successful programs are the ones that take the reality of a product or service and help additional prospects understand that and move to take advantage of that. And that’s really what we’re trying to do, represent the voice of the customer and try to get a lot of different interactive materials out there so people can experience and understand things and move the company much, much closer to customers and prospects.

Q: Where do you think the industry is headed? 
A: It may sound a little self-serving since we’re the leading distribution for Hadoop, which is a robust big data platform, but I see the industry moving to using big data to interrupt what’s going on in the market, to adjust programs and to really fine-tune what they spend.

To be featured in Cision’s What’s Your Story? series, email lisa.larranaga(at)cision.com.

About Lisa Denten

Lisa Denten is the Social Media Manager of Cision U.S., where she leads social strategy, coordinates the blog editorial calendar and manages public relations campaigns. She regularly hosts Cision webinars, was chosen as a #FollowFriday guest on industry blog Spin Sucks, and has spoken on panels for Inbound Marketing Summit and Publicity Club of Chicago. She worked in the newspaper industry before joining Cision in 2008. Connect with her on LinkedIn or Twitter at @lisaml15.

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