An interview with Heike Hoppmann, HEAD OF PRESS RELATIONS at AX SEMANTICS
We sit down with Heike Hoppmann, HEAD OF PRESS RELATIONS at AX SEMANTICS.
How did you end up at AX Semantics and what problem does AX Semantics solve for its clients?
I love writing and technology. So it was a perfect match to work at a company that offers both spheres: text creation through technology. AX Semantics developed a software as a service that quickly generates tens of thousands texts in 110 languages such as product descriptions from structured data and set-up rules. It transforms manual writing and translating into a software-based workflow with autonomous publishing and updates. That’s how AX Semantics enables e-commerce companies to create precise, localized, and engaging product descriptions without a human in the loop. This not only eliminates the bottleneck of content creation but also significantly accelerates time-to-market and reduces translation costs.
As the Head of Press Relations, what are your main responsibilities at AX SEMANTICS?
My overall goal is to make sure that our content and the things we do really matter out there. What do I do to achieve that? I design our editorial planning, organization and processes. I develop formats and strategies to make our issues more visible. For example, over 70 customer stories have been created on YouTube because we gave them a stage. As always, the budget is tight - so smart ideas are always needed.
To get a bit more technical, which methods work best for making people aware of and interested inAX SEMANTICS , and why do you think they work so well?
The best way to create interest in us is not to talk about ourselves, but to let others tell their story with AX Semantics. I believe that authentic, honest stories create positive feelings in prospects - and only others can tell them. We are lucky that our users and customers are fans. We give them a stage and they enjoy talking about their experiences with AX Semantics. There is a second big factor: content that immediately moves our target audience forward quickly. It pays to spend time and resources on really good, in-depth, helpful content.
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?
Our core strategy is to engage and persuade prospects and customers with content that really matters to them. We focus on the assets we have and play them on an account-by-account basis. I also believe that dynamic and increasingly complex markets require not only agile organizations, but also agile strategies. So we create an interplay of all channels - paid, earned and owned - that work individually and can shift focus at any time. We strive for scalability in all of our marketing efforts.
What marketing tactic have you employed at AX SEMANTICS or past companies that you feel is often overlooked by marketing teams, and what makes this technique effective in your experience?
I think a lot of people overlook and underutilize the assets they already have. We have an exciting new technology, we have fans, and we have a lot of content. We have a small budget for it and a niche topic. To get the most out of what we have, we look closely, take note of exactly what is happening around us that is good for us, and develop automated, scalable processes to make more of it happen. My part of that is just seeding the idea throughout the organization. It's as simple as that.
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?
Yes, we've experimented with this and have had mixed experiences. The important thing with cold emails is to still appear personal and not directly want to sell the product. We initially aimed to be noticed. We seemed to have done well with this, as we've had surprisingly many positive follow-up reactions. However, we've moved beyond that stage now; it's not about our target group becoming aware of us, but about them using our technology for their content task instead of doing it differently or not at all. In this phase, we continue to expand our contact base and focus on nurturing them through our mailings.