Kevin Price, Host of the Price of Business on Business Talk 1110 AM KTEK (on Bloomberg’s home in Houston) recently interviewed Justin Talerico.
About the interviewee
As a co-founder and ion interactive’s chief executive officer, Justin leads the company with a marketer’s perspective. Based at the firm’s Florida office, Justin brings a 20-year track record as a successful digital marketing entrepreneur & user advocate.
Before co-founding ion interactive, Justin was the founder and CEO of ion, an all-digital marketing communications firm for clients such as Samsung, Siemens and Bliss Spa. Prior to that, he was the creative director for the Fairweather Group, a travel & hospitality conglomerate with Caribbean resorts, magazines & retail and trade travel agencies.
A passionate user advocate in post-click marketing, Justin has written for the American Marketing Association, E-Commerce Times, MarketingProfs, iMediaConnection, .Net Magazine (UK), DM News and others.
Justin has a BS in advertising from the University of Florida and is a professional member of the AIGA as well as the Usability Professionals Association.
Tell me about your firm (number of employees, location, type of companies you work with, etc.).
ion interactive is a marketing apps platform that generates leads & revenue with engaging, highly interactive, digital marketing experiences that can be created and tested without developers.
Marketing apps are very different from mobile apps in that they work everywhere — mobile, tablet, desktop — and they do it without having to be installed and maintained.
We differentiate brands, increase engagement & improve conversions in content, social, email and advertising. Our Software as a Service (SaaS) platform creates and tests marketing apps. Hundreds of brands (B2B and B2C) and agencies use our platform to fundamentally improve the agility & results of their digital experiences. Customers gain speed to market, creativity, user engagement, conversions and revenue.
ion interactive is headquartered in Boca Raton, FL with an office in Boston, MA, where our engineering and marketing technology teams are based. There are 60 employees between both offices.
What type and size of companies do you have as clients?
Our customers range in size and industry vertical. We have a solid mix of B2B, B2C and agency customers who utilize our platform. Because we also offer services, our customers use us in different ways based on their needs.
We have approximately 200 customers including Anthem/Wellpoint, Dell, DHL, eHealth, General Mills, Iron Mountain, Kabam and Performix.
What comes to mind when you see this topic?
Nowhere is the need for app-like experiences more pressing than in marketing. Rather than inundating users with static content from white papers, blogs, and articles, ion interactive’s customers turn their content into useful and engaging experiences. White papers become participatory learning apps; pricing spreadsheets become interactive calculators; a blog post on best practices becomes a step-by-step self-assessment tool; and a solutions brief becomes an online configurator.
Apps gained popularity with smartphones, as small software programs that provided users with interactive utilities and entertainment. But now, people have come to expect more sophisticated, app-like experiences from companies at many other touch points on the web — without having to install more software on their devices.
The noise in the market is not concentrated in one industry and marketers everywhere need to be vigilant about differentiating the user experience and interactions with their brand. If they don’t engage their audiences, they risk losing them to competitors.
What are the best practices when it comes to this issue?
One of the best parts about marketing apps is that you don’t have to be an engineer or developer to create them. Whether you are a non-tech marketer or one who likes to dabble, marketing apps can be easily woven into your user experience to capture attention and invite interaction with the brand you represent.
The most important part of the process is knowing your audience. Just creating and launching random marketing apps on your site isn’t going to cut it. Figure out what content your customers like to consume and feed into that. Maybe they like quizzes or contests. Maybe they would prefer to navigate through an interactive white paper where they can pick and choose sections and chapters rather than thumbing through a 20-page document.
Between your content and your audience, you should have great inspiration! There’s no silver bullet and it’s not a one-size fits all solution. Know your audience, know what makes them tick, engage them and always be innovative!