Marketing Maestros: Nigel Kwan of SpotX on the power of B2B media

Nigel Kwan is an award-winning marketer with a passion for digital transformation and the power of programmatic marketing. Having previously worked at News UK and Microsoft, he is currently VP of Marketing at video advertising platform SpotX and based in Singapore.

What media channels do you see as most important and best value when it comes to marketing spend and activity? 

Owned and earned channels, particularly organic social like LinkedIn and trade press PR. We’re a B2B business operating within the niche programmatic industry where there’s a limited pool of customers, so most of our marketing efforts focus on awareness and consideration rather than lead gen. Hosted events (pre-Covid) work very well due to the fragmented nature of the APAC region. Being in-market demonstrates commitment and investment which customers appreciated even if you don’t have an office.

How important to your brand is the news media (both B2B and B2C)? 

B2B news media is crucial. We operate in a niche industry with a few dedicated titles that most people read. Due to the ever-evolving nature of programmatic and the complexity, a big focus of marketing is to continually create written content like opinion pieces for PR that we regularly pitch to trade editors.

What for you is the key to any successful marketing campaign – what actually makes a ‘good lead’? 

The programmatic market is competitive and commoditised and we have to compete with Google and Facebook. Often, it’s less about a new lead and more about unlocking spend from existing customers. For example, most of our customers on the buy-side are media agencies who buy media on an advertiser’s behalf. We work to encourage first-time spend from new clients within the agency as well as increased spend from existing clients.

How important is technology in modern marketing? 

For us technology in marketing helps take the pain out of the fundamentals like newsletters and collateral design/production. Again, marketing in our industry is focused on driving preference, so we don’t necessarily need to the efficiencies martech provides when driving cost-efficient leads and moving people through the funnel.

What’s been your proudest achievement in your current role? 

Nurturing and managing a leading marketing team that makes a real business impact with limited resources. Reenergizing and elevating our brand so we are consistently seen as the top video supply-side partner across APAC.

What are the biggest pain points in a marketing campaign? 

Attributing the impact of the various marketing channels on the bottom line.  How do you evaluate the impact of a client attending an event vs reading a newsletter on a deal being signed?  Content creation cannot be automated, it takes focus and time to write good quality thought-provoking content, often hard to do in a frenetic work environment.

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