Andy Bertera is a scientist by trade, but his talents and career opportunities have led him to the top of his industry in marketing. Andy is the executive director of marketing and sales at New England Biolabs. Previously, he served as the VP of marketing at Promega and the head of global marketing for gene and protein discovery at GE Healthcare.
On this episode, Andy talks all about how to develop a reputation in your market, optimizing the customer journey, and building a marketing team that lasts.
Andy's Background with New England Biolabs - (2:45) - He manages the global marketing efforts as well as the U.S.-based sales team. - Andy walks through the structure of his team and how it's organized. - New England Biolabs is "The Staples of DNA."
Challenges of the Biotech Industry - (6:15) - The regulatory burdens are less than the pharmaceutical industry, but are still quite significant. - They describe themselves as B2B2C. There are B2B and B2C components to their business.
Customer Journey - (9:05) - "When you think of a buyer's journey, really it has a start and an end. And what we should be doing with our customers is building longterm relationships that go through many transactions: daily, monthly, and yearly. They should be ongoing and therefore they don't really have a start or an end." - Andy Bertera - Andy is a data junkie who loves to analyze all the data generated by customer touch points. - At NEB, they don't try to drive attribution to a single source. - "Our philosophy is that the sales happens because of all the different touch points, not directly as a consequence of one or the other." - Andy Bertera - "The relationship drives the renewal." - Ian Faison
Experimental Mindset - (13:00) - "I think marketers should always be experimenting." - Andy Bertera - Andy likes to take marketing tactics that have actually worked to influence him and experiment with using those same tactics. - "I am technically a microbiologist, but to be fair I'll be dangerous if you put me back in the lab today." - Andy Bertera
Thought Leadership - (17:15) - NEB makes sure that the actual developers of products are available to users to provide product support to customers. - This can even lead to collaborations on experiments with scientists from NEB and people who use their products. - "We try to think first about what the impact is on the science. So what is the impact on the actual roles of our customers who are trying to discover whatever piece of research they're actually doing? And by doing that, we always think about putting the customer first." - Andy Bertera - This philosophy leads them to help scientists and provide relevant information, even when it doesn't directly lead to a sale. - For this same reason, NEB has created scientific tools for scientists for free.
Brand Reputation - (24:45) - "Sometimes it's perception vs. reality, but reality spreads quickly, particularly if it's negative." - Andy Bertera - Andy focuses on being humble, genuine, and providing value to the customer. He has learned that if you do those things, customers will become advocates for you. - "We don't say we're only going to have strong relationships with our most profitable customers. When a customer rings up for a technical support question, it doesn't matter whether they're the smallest customer, the biggest customer, or if they have the most complicated question, or the simplest question. They all need to be treated the same. You don't know whether that customer you're talking to today is going to strike it lucky have the next Eureka moment and then be a founder of a biotech next year that's going to be the next major pharmaceutical company. So you really have to think about that longterm in the support that you give to a customer." - Andy Bertera
Building a Marketing Team - (32:10) - When building a team, it's not just about experience and skills. It's about fit as well. Andy tries to optimize for longevity. - Andy thinks it's key to have face time. He likes to bring his employees into NEB headquarters, even for positions that typically work remotely.
Pardot Lightning Round - (35:05) - Most fun app: Facebook - Favorite one day getaway: Maine - Favorite recent book: History of Patagonia - Best advice for first time head of marketing: Build a team that has experience and skills you don't have and will challenge your thinking. Never be afraid to challenge the organization to think differently.
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