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Audrey Masset

Understanding your audience and localizing messages to get close to them

How did you come to work in marketing?

I'm French and have been living in Spain for 15 years. I have a strong knowledge of the main European countries, having lived and worked in several of them, which has given me a deep understanding of cultural differences and market dynamics. I am a Marketing Executive with more than 10 years of experience, specialized in driving sales in Europe, mainly in the B2B sector, especially in SaaS companies. I am a very curious person and as marketing is a constantly evolving field, I never stop learning. I completed my Masters in Business Management in France and then went on to specialize further in Spain, including a Masters in Digital Marketing and some courses in ABM and CRM Marketing. My focus is on client success, adapting to the changing trends in marketing.

Throughout my career I have never confined myself to one industry. I have changed industries several times: retail, healthcare and technology, adapting marketing strategies for each. Consistently reaching the end customer is essential across all industries, and it's equally important to understand your customers' needs and pain points to market effectively.

What I value most when choosing a company to work with is the project itself. I look for companies with a vision for market leadership, resources and a strong focus on internationalization because that is what motivates me.

What professional accomplishment are you most proud of?

In my career, I take a global view of my achievements. Every time I work with a company, I have clear objectives, such as the execution of a project in the medium term, from two to five years. For example, at my previous company I was tasked with expanding the marketing department, internationalizing the brand in Europe and digitizing the business. I didn't necessarily have 100% of the experience to do this, but the challenge motivated me to learn and achieve it with my team. Changing positions doesn't mean doing the same thing over and over again, but learning from your experience to tackle new challenges. The value I bring comes from overcoming challenges and learning new skills that can be transferred to other companies.

✨ Pearl of wisdomThis process is about more than just translating content. We also have to adapt the message and consider cultural differences. It is essential to educate our internal team about these differences and show them how they affect our strategies.

What has your experience been like in EdTech?

In 2019, I joined Blackboard as Marketing Manager for Southern Europe, including Spain, France, Italy, and Eastern Europe. In 2020, I was promoted to manage the go-to-market strategy for all of Europe. At the end of 2021, Blackboard merged with Anthology, and I took on the role of Head of Marketing for Europe and Africa in March of that year. My focus was on increasing brand recognition and demand generation in those regions.

What is the biggest challenge that you’re currently facing in your role?

In Blackboard - Anthology, my main challenge was acting as a bridge to connect and align the culture and mission of a U.S. company to a marketing strategy for Europe. These two regions have different cultures, and my task was to create effective communication and alignment between America and this region. Although it is a challenge, it’s work that motivates me. I have experience in the United States as well as Europe, which allows me to understand both cultures and work on effective communication between them.

This process is about more than just translating content. We also need to adapt the message and consider cultural differences, values, and business practices for each region. It is essential to educate our internal team about these nuances and show them how they affect our strategies. We also have to work on personalizing our messages and understanding the needs of our clients in each market. It’s a process that takes time, but the positive results push us to keep moving forward and help us satisfy all our clients in all markets.

✨ Pearl of wisdomWorking for a technology company also means being immersed in an environment of constant innovation and change, always focused on improving and on satisfying our clients. This aspect motivates me a lot and makes me aware of the responsibility to play an important role in the education of the next generation.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

My job encompasses marketing in its totality, which means working on an essential team. In my role, I see myself as a project manager, since marketing requires collaboration with various teams, such as sales, operations, and global marketing. This collaboration affords me the opportunity to understand different perspectives and departments within the business. I love working collaboratively with the different departments in the business and I value the experience of working in a diverse, international environment, where I can learn from diverse cultures and people.

On top of that, in both tech and EdTech, our mission is to care for our clients during their digital transformation. We have the technology and the experience to simplify our clients’ lives, allowing them to focus on their true purpose. For example, in education we provide technological solutions so that institutions can concentrate on teaching and preparing students for the future. During the COVID-19 pandemic, this digital transformation became even more evident. That was when I realized that my passion lies in the tech sector, where I can see the impact we have on the community by facilitating online education and maintaining contact between students and teachers. Working for a technology company also means being immersed in an environment of constant innovation and change, always focused on improving and satisfying our customers. This aspect motivates me a lot and makes me aware of the responsibility to play an important role in the education of the next generation.

✨ Pearl of wisdomAs head of Marketing, I think making key decisions is based on a deep understanding of our audience through data analysis. Understanding their buyer-persona, needs, and pain points is essential for adapting our communication and content.

What do you think is the most important thing to keep in mind when it comes to marketing for an EdTech company?

As Head of Marketing, I think making key decisions is based on a deep understanding of our audience through data analysis. Understanding their buyer-persona, needs, and pain points is essential for adapting our communication and content. My focus is on the impact, especially on the ROI, and that requires continual monitoring and adjustment of our campaigns on various channels. Most errors come from not carefully analyzing the identification of the buyer persona and the client’s pain points.

What has worked best for you in carrying out ABM (Account-Based Marketing) initiatives in EdTech?

To have a positive impact with marketing, I believe it is critical to avoid focusing on a broad, generic audience. Often, due to budget constraints, there is a tendency to use a generic approach and global keywords such as "tech". However, the results will be more effective if you target a more specific group, as you do with ABM strategies. ABM involves close monitoring, creating a community, and generating high-quality content. Personally, I’m an advocate for inbound marketing and I believe that content plays a fundamental role. It must be informative, educational, and attractive, able to grab your audience’s attention. With solid content and good identification of your target audience, it can have very positive results.

✨ Pearl of wisdomTo have a positive impact with marketing, I believe it is critical to avoid focusing on a broad, generic audience. Often, due to budget constraints, there is a tendency to use a generic approach and global keywords such as "tech". However, the results will be more effective if you target a more specific group, as you do with ABM strategies.

What is the most important skill or ability for working in marketing today?

Skills are important, but what is really essential is a person’s motivation. In the current environment, there is a lot of value placed on areas like retention, demand generation, and digital marketing. However, selecting a specific skill would depend on the needs of the business and the current team. In my experience, in interviews, I prioritize a person’s motivation above any specific technical skill, since skills can be learned and developed, but motivation is innate and fundamental.

✨ Pearl of wisdomIn interviews, I prioritize a person’s motivation above any specific technical skill, since skills can be learned and developed, but motivation is innate and fundamental.

What do you recommend for making marketing decisions?

To make effective decisions, it is essential to understand the project from the beginning. This means having a marketing briefing that establishes the goals, objectives, and metrics before starting any campaign or project. These metrics can go beyond numbers and include qualitative goals as well like improving the brand image. Rigorous planning is key to any marketing project, and evaluating the results compared to the objectives is fundamental. Effective communication with both the working team and other departments is essential. The ability to explain and present the project in a way that will involve and interest others is key to success.

✨ Pearl of wisdomEvents continue to be vital, along with digital marketing, but the overload of online information has increased the importance of a focus on inbound marketing.

Do you believe there is an ideal marketing mix for the industry?

The marketing dynamic has changed significantly, especially after COVID-19. Before, in-person events dominated (80%), but afterwards there was a transition to online events. However, this has led to saturation and reduced quality. Events continue to be vital, along with digital marketing, but the overload of online information has increased the importance of a focus on inbound marketing. Personally, I prefer to use all channels available, from emails to social media, understanding the needs of the client and offering relevant content.

✨ Pearl of wisdomCustomer’s conferences are key. They give us the opportunity to interact with them, understand their needs and challenges, and work together to find solutions. Establishing this direct link is critical to addressing their pain points and moving forward effectively.

What are the most relevant events for an EdTech company?

We collaborated with various types of events in Europe, North America, and Africa, especially those focused on higher education like Times Higher Education. These events are aimed at CIOs, deans, IT directors, and academic faculty, offering a variety of focuses. The international conferences are also useful, although more oriented toward northern Europe.

Customer’s conferences are key. They give us the opportunity to interact with them, understand their needs and challenges, and work together to find solutions. Establishing this direct link is critical to addressing their pain points and moving forward effectively.

🔥 Rapid fire questions
Inbound or outbound?
Inbound
Marketing or sales?
I'd say marketing, but for me, marketing's success is only possible in close collaboration with sales.
Hubspot, Pardot, Eloqua, or something else?
Hubspot and Eloqua.
Specialist or generalist?
In marketing, you specialize at the beginning and then generalize when you take on more responsibility.
Ed or Tech?
Tech, because in the end we work to support the digitalization of our clients.
Do or think?
I’d say think about what to do, and then re-do what you have thought through.
Quantity or quality?
Quality.
In-person or virtual?
In-person.
Agency or in-house?
I’d say both, but since I’ve been talking to you more about localization and go-to-market strategy, we need an agency.