Natasha Sephton-Pike, Regional Marketing Manager at HARTING is the latest marketer to take part in our marketing expert series. From Natasha’s view on the biggest change to B2B Marketing in the past 3 years, to the hobbies she likes to do in her spare time, we asked Natasha a variety of questions to learn everything we could about our latest marketing expert: 

  • What do you like to do in your spare time?

I love to go on walks with my dog, Raspberry Beret (yes, she is named after the Prince song). The muddier and wetter the better is her motto!

  • What music do you like? 

The dog’s name gave this away; I am huge fan of Prince. He was an artist I grew up listening to and I just fell in love with his songs, his clothes and his voice! His performances and lyrics just blow me away. He truly was one of a kind and paved the way for many other artists to come.

  • What other career would you have chosen if you weren’t in marketing?

I would probably have worked in some form of caring capacity, either with the elderly or disabled adults. I enjoy caring for people and helping to enrich their lives, the elderly is a section of society that can often be overlooked and not heard, which is really quite sad. I try to support elderly people in my local community and getting involved with organisations such as Contact the Elderly are a great way to help.

  • What do you think have been the biggest changes to B2B marketing in the past 3 years?
  1. Big data opportunities
  2. Social media
  3. Changing audience demographics – particularly in an environment marketing to engineers, the skills gap here presents a unique challenge for how we communicate across this wide split in age and experience.
  • What do you think will be the biggest change in the way you approach your campaigns in the next 3 years?

Data driven marketing campaigns to support our customer journey – incorporating our historical learned data about our customers and their interactions with us with external market data to produce tailored material across multiple channels, delivered to the right people at the right time.

  • What are your 3 biggest marketing challenges?
  1. Time to stop and think and celebrate – As marketers, we can often be stuck in the role of project planning and execution, always under time deadlines and running from one project to the next. We find it hard to stop and think ahead; think freely and creatively but also to celebrate our success.
  2. Evaluating “the latest marketing trend” – What could help us, what is noise? It can be difficult to decipher the value from the noise with new technologies, tools and methodologies developing all the time. As a busy marketing department, understanding and testing what can help you be more efficient and effective is a tricky challenge.
  3. Proving marketing value – Having systems and processes in place companywide that supports the journey to linking marketing campaigns and interactions with sales. The marketing department must own this ROI project but need support from all areas of the company who are customer facing to truly get a clear picture of the customer journey and how marketing plays it part.
  • What do you think is the most effective and least effective marketing activity you, or your company, undertakes (in terms of ROI)?

It is difficult to say, all our activity supports the overall goal of achieving a positive ROI. Some channels we use are easier than others to measure KPIs against such as digital trade press advertising, email marketing and website performance. Other activities such as PR, printed trade press and to some extent exhibitions, can be harder to measure KPIs against. Recording which touchpoints our customers interact with along their journey is the most important ROI activity that we do, we can see the whole picture, not just a snapshot of the quick and easy KPIs we can measure.

  • Can you explain how you define and measure success for your campaigns

For each campaign we have a series of goals and supporting KPIs to measure how well we have achieved our goal.

  • If there was one wish you could make to improve your company’s marketing activities, what would it be?

Greater customer and industry research to support a deeper understanding of our customers and to deliver improved tailored content.