December 21 2017
There are few things more personal than a person’s playlist. That’s why Cecelia Munthe – Head of Customer Engagement at Deezer – has such an interesting role. It’s not just that subscription-based businesses require particular skills to bring retention strategies to fruition, but it’s also the elusive contradiction between business and something as innately personal as music. It’s intervening with your customers’ spare time and shifting towards a more D2C (direct to customer) ideology, where companies maintain direct relationships with their customers.
The challenges, obviously, are tremendous. PostFunnel picked Cecilia’s brain to learn a little more about what’s going on backstage – on the creative process, the newest technology trends, and more.
Cecilia is our proud debutante for the Post Funnel Powwow – Where from time to time, we’ll have smart and light living room style conversations with marketers from various industries all over the world. Let’s start:
Describe your career trajectory thus far
“After earning a degree in literature, I started writing content for a bingo site in Sweden, which introduced me to CRM. During this time, I was responsible for customer emails and the brand’s website. After a couple of years, I moved to their London office to become the Global Coordinator of the CRM teams. From there, I moved to another gaming company, Gamesys, where I worked as the B2B CRM Manager and then wound up at Jackpotjoy brand. One-and-a-half years ago, I moved to Deezer as the Head of CRM, and I’m now working as Head of Customer Engagement looking after the CRM and CS teams.”
What appealed to you about Deezer?
“I’ve always wanted to work in an industry I’m passionate about, and second to my love of literature, is music. So, when Deezer contacted me, I saw an amazing opportunity in a cool, young company in the digital space. Deezer was the challenger brand in a crowded industry, but I saw a lot of growth potential and a chance to shape my own team and drive the kind of customer engagement I’ve always dreamt about.”
How do you encourage creative thinking within your organization?
“I hold a lot of workshops, weekly discussions and open meetings with my teams to encourage them to think creatively. One of my most successful tricks is drinkstorming, where we’ll go to the pub, have a pint and discuss what we want to do going forward. Stepping outside of the office and holding a drink in their hand tends to loosen people’s tongues. Another trick that works really well for me and my team is ‘walking meetings.’ We’ll leave the office and walk around during our one-on-ones.”
Technology really changed the marketing world in the past decade or so. Where do you feel that change the most?
“When I started my career, it was all desktop and emails. The growth of smart phones is the biggest change I’ve seen so far. Most of our customers access Deezer on their smartphones, so we need to be able to take that into consideration and communicate with them through their device of choice.”
What do you consider to be the biggest challenges for customer marketers today?
“Reaching your customers with a relevant message in a format that interests them. It really is the customers’ world. You need to keep ahead of technology advances in the business. For instance, if your customers are using a voice-controlled device, you need to be in that space as well.”
Your social media pages (especially your twitter) are light, engaging, and on brand. How did you devise a social strategy that would capture Deezer’s essence? Do you have tips on how to spark customer engagement?
“We have a brand and PR/Social team working together to make sure our content remains on brand for our users. We create most of the content in house, and we target different demographics based on insight such as their interests and how they engage on social channels. I was always thinking about how can I better [get to know] my users. It’s really important – Forget what you think you know and really dig into the data, surveys and any other information you may have. For our customers, commuting hours are a popular time to listen to music. For our football channel, Saturday mornings seem to be the time when a lot of users open their emails.”
If you hadn’t chosen this career path, what you would be doing instead?
“I’d work in publishing, read books for a living and choose the next big name in literature.”
If you could trade places with any other person for a week, famous or non-famous, living or dead, real or fictional, who would you choose and why?
“Harry Potter. Because who doesn’t want to fly on a broomstick and chill out at Hogwarts?”
At the moment, who is your favorite artist?
“I have a lot of love for Swedish electro pop, it takes me back to my roots. Currently, one of my favorite artists is the Swedish band Galantis.”
Lastly, what kind of advice do you wish you were given when you first started, and what advice would you give to the younger generations?
“I wish someone would have told me to not take things so personally. Many decisions concerning you and your job are just business. My advice is to learn your numbers, to understand that budgeting and basic KPIs are key, and to learn how to say no and to recognize your own value.”