Minute with A Marketer: Susan Dillon, MassMutual
In this month’s Minute with a Marketer, we chat with Susan Dillon of MassMutual. Susan shares how the leading mutual company is improving its lead generation and distribution processes to increase its value to customers.
Q: Can you share a little about your role with us?
I manage MassMutual’s paid search marketing. MassMutual is a mutual company that provides products and services that help people meet their financial goals, including life insurance, disability income insurance, long term care insurance, retirement/401(k) plan services, and annuities.
Q: What do you think is the biggest area of opportunity for today’s marketers?
We, as marketers, have a great opportunity to learn from consumers about their likes and dislikes for products, brands, and services through search, social media, review sites, blogs, etc. The challenge (and opportunity) is harnessing this data into actionable insights.
Q: What do you think is the biggest challenge marketers currently face?
The fractured nature of today’s marketplace and the empowerment of consumers have inspired companies to shift their focus away from promoting products through mass media channels, and instead, toward providing relevant content whenever and wherever they consume content. If companies aren’t taking consumers’ interests, preferences, and needs into consideration, consumers may ignore them (best case scenario) or be left with a negative impression of that brand (worst case scenario).
To do this, many companies have made major changes to their organizational structures to hire more technically-savvy marketers to understand how to create and analyze all types of data and campaigns: print, search engine marketing, email, social, video, etc. to improve their digital presence and make it work smarter for their brands. Today’s marketers need to understand the impact of all the different channels and consolidate disparate data sources into one holistic view to enable better, more informed decisions.
Q: What do you think will emerge as the biggest marketing trend of 2017?
I believe that marketers will continue to increase their social media and search budgets, especially through more mobile-targeted spend. Additionally, many may enhance their digital presence, not just to promote their brand, but also to sell direct to consumers.
Q: If you had unlimited marketing budget, what would you do?
I'd focus attention on our analytical tools and talent to help ensure that we maintain our keen attention to analyzing and leveraging consumer data to inform decisions and drive actionable insights.
Q: Is there one thing you are most proud to have accomplished in 2016?
My team reengineered our lead generation and distribution processes earlier this year to enable us to send leads directly to our servicing advisors and receive feedback about the quality. We did this in an effort to increase our value to consumers and ultimately, sales conversion rates.
Q: What business advice would you give to your younger self?
Life is a marathon, not a sprint, so best not to get too up or down about one’s accomplishments or failures. Appreciate the successes when they come, but also, don’t get too hung up on each failure, just learn from them.
Q: Who was your role model growing up?
My mom. She was, and still is an inspiration to me. Her talent, intelligence, strength, and beauty (inner and outward), has always kept me grounded and motivated me to achieve more in my life.
To find out what other senior marketers shared, check out previous Minute with a Marketer Q&As here.