An interview with Claudia Urquiola, Head of Marketing & Communications at Nauta Capital
We sit down with Claudia Urquiola, Head of Marketing & Communications at Nauta Capital. Nauta Capital is a Pan-European venture capital firm investing in early-stage technology companies.
How did you end up at Nauta Capital and what problem does Nauta Capital solve for its clients?
Believe or not, I started my career in fashion PR. I quickly realised that fashion was something I preferred to enjoy vs. work in. From there I moved to corporate PR and after nine years of working for my clients, I became the client and move in-house. This time to the world of internal communications, and then within the same company to external communications around cybersecurity. Wanting a new challenge and to go back to my early PR days of helping B2B companies, I found a role where I can both support in raising awareness of who we are and act as an advisor to our portfolio of start-ups. Nauta provides early-stage European B2B software start-ups with the funding to achieve growth. Our teams, myself included, also provide the guidance and resources necessary to succeed.
As the Head of Marketing & Communications, what are your main responsibilities at Nauta Capital?
My goal is to support Nauta in finding innovative start-ups that will become the challenger brands of tomorrow. This includes raising awareness of who we are in the ecosystem and our investment thesis. Within my remit is the definition of our marketing strategy, execution of key initiatives across our owned channels (website, social media and newsletter), events & sponsorships, media relations, fundraising and supporting our portfolio through an online community.
To get a bit more technical, which methods work best for making people aware of and interested in Nauta Capital , and why do you think they work so well?
In the online world, we have found that LinkedIn is core to our strategy. The engagement of key audience groups has solidified for us in the last year. When comparing to other social media platforms, engagement is is tenfold and has been increasing month-on-month. Because of it's importance, we regularly evaluate how we maximise the impact we have on that channel. Second to that, our ecosystem is built on relationships, which is why a good event strategy can go a long way. More recently, we have been testing out the different technology that exists in the event management space. Overall, I feel that anything that can enable you to have a personal touch goes a long way. We have also noticed that more frequent, yet smaller more intimate gatherings help us foster better relationships with others in the ecosystem. After three years of virtual meetings, it's time to go back to face-to-face.
At ColdFire, when we look at our clients' Marketing strategies, they vary greatly. Some have found a single, scalable client acquisition process while others thrive on a mix of top-of-funnel strategies. How would you summarize the high-level marketing-related strategy of your organization, and what key elements contribute to its success?
We have a mix of channels and activities that help increase our top-of-the-funnel leads, but as a small company we have limited resources and a small team. So success for us means maximising results, being adaptable and nimble and being smart. This means keeping track of what is working and what isn't. If it's not working, own it and move on. If it's working, then why and how do we translate that to other channels or how do we continue to maximise impact.
What marketing tactic have you employed at Nauta Capital or past companies that you feel is often overlooked by marketing teams, and what makes this technique effective in your experience?
A motto that I learn early in my career and have maximised it to the fullest extent possible is reuse, repurpose, (re)share. One piece of content can have many uses. If you are a small team, think smart how you can reuse the creative, repurpose the content, (re)share the message to maximise impact. I worked in and with large established corporates that just throw money at an agency to rehash an annual Black Friday creative, when they still had relevant and perfectly useable creative from the previous year that had never left OneDrive. Or I have seen small companies bend over backwards to fill social channels with new content, without considering re-sharing (granted with new copy in the post) content from a few months back. Don't forget many of your posts only get seen by a fraction of your followers, chances are they may have not seen the link to that report 4 weeks ago.
Has your Marketing team experimented with some kind of cold outbound strategy (like cold email)? If yes what was the general outcome and if no, why not?
We regularly approach founders via LinkedIn. Sometimes its hard to find their contact information or they may still be using a personal email address. Also, LinkedIn offers an immediate way for them to validate this is a legitimate request or interest. In the last few months, we have evaluated and considered other outbound strategies, but have not decided on anything yet. As a team and department, we are always open to experimenting and testing new strategies, however, always with the idea to determine if its the right fit and if it works. If it does we look at whether it can be incorporated into our regular activity, if it doesn't then we look for the next opportunity to experiment.