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Community can come in various shapes and sizes, but regardless of the form it takes, it’s critical for personal and corporate wellness. Leaders who are a part of a community (like MTM) know firsthand that it has the power to enrich lives.  

Through our conversations with 60+ marketing leaders on MTM Visionaries in 2022, we have found that leaders who are plugged into communities are quick to foster it within their teams, helping them overcome daily obstacles and the customers they serve. Here are a few snippets of conversations we’ve had on the power of community. 

 Find the MTM Visionaries Podcast On AppleSpotify, and Amazon, or check out the recaps in the following links.

Find Friends in a Competitive Industry 

Taj Alavi, Global Head of Marketing, Spotify

“Before meeting Andréa [Mallard, CMO of Pinterest], I heard of her through shared friends, and through emails, I told her I hope one day we could meet. We were both at the Cannes Lions Festival, and I proposed the idea to her—Pizza, Wine, Cannes, can you do it?! She said yes, and it turned into a three-hour dinner at a little pizza shop. We had so much fun and found that we share much in common.   

When people ask, how do you build your career? Is it one mentor? Is it one person? No, it’s 100% the village you surround yourself with, and sometimes that means getting out of your shell to make connections.” 

Taj Alavi, Vice President, Global Head of Marketing, Spotify 

Build Community with Personal Connection 

Kenny Mitchell

“As much as we can deliver value to our community around something  they care deeply about, we consider that a major success. It is important to connect with fans and consumers in good times with fun, but also in tough times with honesty and candor.  

Long format also works in Snap as consumers care deeply about the world and community around them. The NFL led a lot of those important conversations, especially around social justice, and have been very transparent about the hard part of being athletes with beyond-the-field personal recovery moments.  

Snap’s audience have found personal connection and this serves as a great reminder that social media isn’t purely entertainment. It’s community building.” 

Kenny Mitchell, CMO, SNAP 

Deborah Wahl, Global CMO of General Motors

“The pleasure of marketing is all about connecting with people. If you’re not passionate about human connection, you don’t want to be in marketing. You’re missing the whole point if you’re not experiencing or enjoying this about your job. I always say we have to be fast and flexible, but, by all means, we should be all about having fun and sharing deep connections; that’s the core motivation of marketing.” 

Deborah Wahl, Global CMO, General Motors 

Kalen Thornton

“Culture has evolved and changed, especially company culture, due to the pandemic. We’ve started having conversations and asking what drives culture. Why did being in the office before help people feel more connected and balanced?  

For us, one of the driving elements of culture is being able to live the brand, like going to a Chicago Bulls game or a local event. It’s not about necessarily going into another day in the office, but finding other ways to connect with the community. As a leader, we aim to give our teams permission to live as a tightly connected team and on their own accord.” 

Kalen Thornton, CMO, Gatorade 

Marcel Marcondes, Global Chief Marketing Officer of of AB InBev

“It excites me that AB InBev can take the beer industry to the next level, helping everyone grow together. After going through the pandemic, I think we’re all waking up to the fact we are humans. The most important element for today and tomorrow is the acknowledgment that we are people, and that we work to serve people. This mindset is what will drive the growth and development of our industries. 

As leaders, we can put people back at the center of the industry, and by doing so, we can serve our consumers better and drive more growth; this is what it means to be a relevant business.” 

Marcel Marcondes, CMO, Anheuser-Busch InBev 

Give to Communities in Need 

Lara Balazs

“At Intuit, we have always said that we are here to serve the communities around us, and we want to serve those who need it most. As a global tech platform that powers prosperity, we want to do that not only for our customers, but for underrepresented and underserved communities. 

We have a program called Prosperity Hub School District Program, where we go into underserved school districts to teach kids how to be financially ready and develop today’s skills employers seek. Supporting our customers, giving communities in need access to our products, and creating jobs is the core of our mission.” 

-Lara Balazs, EVP, CMO, and GM of Strategic Partner Group, Intuit 

Form Communities Around Your Product 

Fernando Machado, CMO of Activision Blizzard

“I appreciate how gaming is known to bring people together, and it’s where technology, entertainment, and creativity meet. The gaming world is evolving daily and is more accessible than ever; the challenge as a marketer is to evolve faster than the industry. 

Marketers have endless opportunities to partner with other brands, blur the lines between real and virtual worlds, and engage communities built around these games. We must continue to innovate, experiment, try different things, partner with other brands, and find creative ways to improve the experience for players and the community.” 

Fernando Machado, CMO, Activision Blizzard 

More Insights You May Enjoy…

For more insights from our 2022 MTM Visionaries Replay, click here to see what other common themes surfaced. 

2022 Visionaries in Review: Everything We Learned about Marketing This Year

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Visionaries, hosted by Nadine Dietz, airs every week and is brought to you in partnership with The Wall Street Journal. Each week, two new visionaries share their game plan and how that impacts today’s teams, talent, and hybrid work environment.     

Marketers That Matter® Is A Community of Top Marketing Executives Coming Together to Pioneer the Future of Marketing, Sharing Real-Time Experiences, And Solving Current Challenges. 
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