Get to know the new Director of Marketing at MailStore: An interview with Roland Latzel
Hi, Roland. How long have you been with MailStore and what is your job?
I’m pretty new to MailStore! I joined the management team in June, and I oversee marketing. Our PR Manager supports me with communications, and at the moment we’re looking to round out the team with another Marketing Assistant. My task is pretty easy to describe: I use suitable, modern marketing tools and techniques to ensure MailStore’s continued growth and success.
What did you do before you joined us in Viersen?
I started out by completing classic training to become a wholesale and export merchant at a medium-sized company. Then I started studying Communication Design at the university level. Since I already had an affinity for the Internet back then, I interned and freelanced at Web agencies alongside my studies. After completing my studies, I started working as a Web designer at a Web agency, and later held leadership positions as a Creative Director and Senior Consultant at medium-sized digital agencies. Most recently, I was the Online Marketing Manager for European Marketing at a renowned IT company. And now I’m at MailStore. I enjoy working with my colleagues here, who are all really nice, and am happy to help the company maintain and further develop its position as a leading expert in email archiving.
You mentioned ‘modern marketing’ earlier on – what do you mean by that?
Modern marketing combines classic marketing tactics such as events, giveaways, brochures and print ads with promotional activities across digital channels. The idea is to approach marketing with the individual customer – and all of their needs – in mind. In other words, ‘one-to-many’ communication has given way to ‘one-to-one’ communication. Instead of taking a scattergun approach with a ‘more is more’ mindset, we pursue methods that measurably reach each customer along every step of his or her ‘customer journey.’ All of our marketing measures are intended to create measurable added value. Ultimately, the most important things are to bring our product to customers and provide them with a unique customer experience from their very first contact with us, which will encourage them to keep returning to us over the years. The more we know about when, where, and how our software is purchased, at what stage of the purchasing process would-be customers tend to cancel a purchase, and what the main reasons behind making a purchase are, the better we can examine our marketing efforts and adjust them accordingly.
MailStore is extremely successful – how will marketing help the company continue to grow?
You’re right – MailStore has managed to become the standard for legally compliant email archiving within a mere decade. Our existing and potential customers see us as experts in email archiving. Of course, that’s primarily due to the fact that our software is easy to implement and operate, and that it enables legally compliant email archiving. Our case studies demonstrate why IT admins choose MailStore. MailStore’s success is also due in large part to the fact that the company has always made sure to take advantage of the latest opportunities that digital marketing has to offer – even before I came on board. In my experience, that’s not always a given for small- and medium-sized companies, particularly ones in the Germany-Austria-Switzerland region.
Big data is a marketing buzzword – how do you think it affects SMEs?
Yes, big data is definitely a recent buzzword, as are digitalization and Industry 4.0. Big data basically concerns either gathering and assessing meaningful data in a useful way, or analyzing existing data and deriving business and product strategies from it. You can’t get anything out of simply gathering data without rhyme or reason. SMEs typically lag behind the curve in terms of big data. In my experience, German companies tend to be rather late to the game in terms of technical innovations. Companies’ uncertainties and misgivings about data protection are certainly justified – that’s an important topic for everyone, especially legislators, since we’re all still undergoing a learning process. It’s also very important to bear in mind that, in order for new (digital) channels and technologies to work properly, companies often need to make changes to their structure and culture. The employees working in a company’s various divisions need to shift away from a ‘data silo’ mindset to prevent data silos from forming!
…and how can SMEs such as MailStore benefit from big data?
The fact of the matter is that IT is becoming more and more important to businesses. We can’t turn back the clock. Digitalization is going full steam ahead, and data is important across the board. SMEs would do well to see data as an asset and systematically gather and assess it. That way, they can make data-based decisions instead of having to go with their gut. For example, at MailStore we’re particularly interested in learning more about the point at which potential customers cancel or opt out of the sales process. Finding out more about that will allow us to draw conclusions about critical touchpoints along potential customers’ customer journeys, which will allow us to make adjustments accordingly.
Be honest now: You work in the IT industry, but are you also interested in IT outside of work?
I’m definitely a little bit nerdy, even though I work in marketing and not in development. I was really influenced by the internet in its the early days. I’m a child of the 80’s and 90’s, so I grew up with the C64, AOL CDs, and beeping modems. It was thrilling to experience how a totally new medium and means of communication could connect me to the rest of the world in real time.
Before we finish up, we’d like to know a little bit more about Roland Latzel the person. What do you like to do in your free time?
I like to spend my free time with my family. My wife is currently expecting our second child, so family takes up a lot of my time. I also make an effort to work out regularly, collect obscure B movies, and keep up with the latest marketing trends.