Marketing is all about offering customers a connected & personalized digital experience at the social platform of their choice.
Full-Stack Integrated Marketer
What’s your current position & how did you reach here?
Zara Baker - I am a San Diego based integrated marketer working at the intersection of technology, creative and media. For the past 14 years I have been building brands and helping companies solve business problems through digital technology. I have gained success by debunking marketing myths through client education and by providing a dedicated solution for business problems.
Which social media platform is working best for your brand at the moment? Why do you think that is?
Zara Baker - I am a huge fan of omni-channel marketing and firmly believe in customizing content to different social platforms. Facebook is one of my favorite social platform. I utilize Facebook groups and sponsored posts to increase audience growth.
What have you found to be the most effective marketing tactic/platform, beyond social media?
Zara Baker - One of the most effective marketing tactic to promote my business is speaking engagements. I love interacting with live audiences and share valuable information while responding to their questions on the go. This helps me create a loyal audience that believes in what I do and open doors to many new consulting opportunities. I make sure to keep my audience engaged through inbound marketing and by sharing interactive content on social media channels.
What are you actively focused on learning about these days and how?
Zara Baker - I am actively focused on learning the growing impact of artificial intelligence on business and workforce. From facial recognition tools powered by neural networks to identifying required skills in an automated workplace I aspire to utilize this trend as an opportunity. The key question is; while the changes that AI could bring are not yet fully understood, we know it can change the world how can we maintain a proper balance of relying on machines and algorithms to handle some tasks while keeping the "human element" alive in your workforce.
If you had the time to add one more project or tactic to your marketing, what would it be, and why?
Zara Baker - I would love to create and drive a marketing strategy for SpaceX, a company that designs, manufactures and launches rockets and spacecraft. I have always been fascinated by space and ideas about life on another planet and I believe this passion would help.
What has been your biggest challenge recently and how did you overcome it?
Zara Baker - One of my biggest challenges has been digital disruption and its growing impact on users. As I mentioned earlier that I am a huge fan of omni-channel marketing and I firmly believe that a brand can't maximize its share of voice without actively sharing content on existing and new social and digital platforms. But it's a time intensive job and there are some aspects that can't be automated and needs a human touch. I overcame this challenge by conducting a thorough research on every content sharing and social platform to understand it's target audience and started customizing my content to that audience. This strategy has helped me a turn this challenge into an opportunity by offering engaging experiences to my clients on their favorite platforms and in a medium they understand.
What is a key metric you’re measuring these days, and why?
Zara Baker - I measure many different types of metrics as marketing metrics vary from business to business. A KPI of success to one business might not be important to another business. It all depends on the marketing objectives and what the client wants to achieve; increase in sales, audience growth, client retention or acquisition. Personally, my favorite metrics are KSV (Keyword Share of Voice), I mean digital marketing is the game of winning attention and matching your business solution to the audience's search intent and LTV (Life Time Value) as it enables me to ensure my client that I have created sustainable success for their business.
How do you prioritize your tasks/projects for the day/week? Do you use any special methods or frameworks?
Zara Baker - I follow a strict but simple routine. I start my day early, at around 5:00 am in the morning and spend an hour working out while reading business news. After checking my meeting schedules I make a priority list of tasks to be accomplished. I use Hubstaff as a project management tool and make sure to respond to emails by the end of the day, unless an urgent response is needed.
How have you / your brand been engaging with your customers/audience/users/fans lately?
Zara Baker - I engage with my audience on a regular basis. I dedicate an hour everyday to respond to different digital marketing related questions on Quora, Facebook Groups, Twitter chats and several other conversational platforms.
What problem are you focused on solving for your customers/audience/users/fans? What is their biggest need that you (or your company) are helping with?
Zara Baker - I am focused on helping my clients identify the right business problem so I can provide them with a solution that's customized to their business. I think one of the biggest challenges that I often hear from my clients is time allocation to grow business and lead teams and that's where I come in as a full-stack integrated marketer with a professional team to build a marketing management system from the ground up.
Which tools do you use the most for tracking and managing the success of your marketing business?
Zara Baker - I use Google Analytics to track website traffic from different marketing channels and TrackMaven to measure business success
What are the best tips you were ever given when conducting a social media campaign?
Zara Baker - "Patience is a virtue" was one of the best tips I was given by one of the most followed social media consultants. Another important tip shared by a highly successful internet celebrity is "people say Facebook doesn't work as they don't know how to use it." For the past 10 years I have created many successful social media campaigns that reached >10 M in target audience and I firmly believe I achieved this success as I used both tips. Social media is a world of uber opinion sharing platforms and the only way to increase your brand share of voice is to share valuable and engaging content to reflect
What is your #1 tip for a newbie in marketing?
Zara Baker - My #1 tip is to have a PDP (Personal Development Plan) to become a successful digital marketer. Don't think a college degree will prepare you to enter a dynamic field like digital marketing where a single algorithm update can jeopardize your strategy and can in turn affect outcome of the results you promised a client or employer. As a seasoned digital marketer I welcome you to the world of information evolution and revolution. So, fasten your seat belts, stop getting surprised, keep learning, keep testing and experimenting ,don't get discouraged and keep your eyes on the prize as if you are a result-driven marketer the financial rewards are pretty amazing.