(cross posted from CMO 2.0 Conversations)
Yesterday I had the opportunity to interview Will Prest, the CMO for Transamerica Retirement Management, for yet another great CMO 2.0 Conversation (these are proving a ton of fun for me – hopefully for you, our listeners, too). Will and I talked about some of the issues and obstacles around creating a new “challenger” brand within a larger company and in an environment that is heavily regulated.
From a marketing perspective, Will faces unique and interesting challenges. While retirement investment decisions may be some of the biggest decisions in one’s life, most people procrastinate and actually spend very little time making those decisions. Unlike the tax world, where you have to pay your taxes every April 15th, the retirement market has no such deadlines. For most people, retirement investment decisions are, surprisingly perhaps, not top of mind. Add to that the fact that the products one can choose from are fairly complex and you start understanding the unique marketing problem he faces – how do you get people’s attention in a space like that and how do you alter their behavior when you know that current behavior is not in the person’s best interest?
Here again we covered a wide variety of topics, including how:
- you switch market penetration strategies when your initial plans prove harder to achieve than previously thought
- to reach people when they increasingly make buying decisions based on information that does not come from the company
- to insert branded content into conversations that you do not control and in a heavily regulated space
- you can get customer and market insights into your product innovation process
We also talked about the importance of the company culture in allowing a startup to flourish by trying things, failing fast and learning.
You can listen to the CMO 2.0 Conversation over at the CMO 2.0 Conversation site. We will also be posting transcripts of the interview soon.