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Destinee Alderete – Good Communication, Virtual Tacos & Working Backwards

August 2, 2021

Destinee Alderete – Good Communication, Virtual Tacos & Working Backwards

Destinee Alderete – Good Communication, Virtual Tacos & Working Backwards

How Uplifting Each Other, Improvising & Social Media Has Become the Major Part of the New Normal


This week's entry in the Rediscover Marketing is our one-to-one with Destinee Alderete, the Director of Operations and Marketing at TensorIoT Inc.

As we see, everything is changing at a fast pace – especially when it comes to businesses and technology; we observe that the organizations are struggling to exploit the power and possibilities of Intelligent Edge Computing. With more and more people wanting to become smarter, TensorIoT is here to help.

TensorIoT was founded to help companies leverage advanced technology like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning(ML), and connected devices (the Internet of Things, or IoT.) Since the majority of computing is moving to the edge, properly utilizing cloud services and technology gives businesses powerful tools to gather information and unlock insights to improve their processes and make the company “smarter”.    

TensorIoT is an AWS Advanced Consulting Partner with extensive experience working with large multi-vendor teams to provide end-to-end implementation on projects related to IoT, Edge Computing, Machine Learning, and Application Development.

Founded by a former AWS employee, TensorIoT has delivered successful projects to clients from startups to Fortune 50 companies through its offices in North America, Europe, and Asia. TensorIoT is customer obsessed and the company’s global team has adopted the AWS leadership principles as their own. With deep experience delivering complete end-to-end solutions from edge devices to end users in IoT and data engineering to automated ML pipelines, the TensorIoT team of AWS certified architects and developers accelerates customers’ realization of their technology and business goals.

It definitely sounds like an intelligent company, doesn’t it? So, how did TensorIoT deal with the curve balls during the pandemic? Of course, intelligently! 

During our interaction with Destinee, she enlightened us with the simple yet clever steps they've taken to go on. 

Know Who Destinee Alderete Is:

Destinee Alderete is a native of Southern California. She went to California State University, Fullerton, and earned her degree in communications with an emphasis on public relations. She spent her last semester at school in an internship working with Powerhouse Communications and their client, Del Taco. After graduating, she started working for Dewey,McDonald & Carrillo, Inc., a full-fledged investment tax firm, as their director of operations and helping lead their marketing communication. She worked there for two years before starting to work with TenserIoT. 

In 2018, she joined TenserIoT as a Business Operation Specialist and then got promoted to Director of Operations and Marketing

Slack, Virtual Tacos, Communication, Motivation & Working Backwards:

Destinee explained that one of the biggest keys in any relationship (personal or business) is good communication, a point we totally agree with. In uncertain times, maintaining good communication becomes even more critical. She explained that at TensorIoT, they maintained productivity through weekly remote meetings where the team discussed current campaigns, future campaigns, upcoming deadlines, and made long term plans for future marketing and company milestones.

She believes that keeping company morale high and developing a supportive workplace culture are two essential elements to effective company leadership. To meet these needs, Destinee and her team utilize remote tools such as holding weekly virtual happy hours on Fridays to help employees connect with each other and have a fun relaxing close to the work week.

Another interesting morale tool that Destinee shared was her use of the ‘HeyTaco’ integration for Slack, their company’s daily communication platform. The ‘HeyTaco’ integration allows employees to give their colleague(s) virtual tacos to help incentivize them and let them know if they're doing a good job. People receive tacos for a wide range of personal successes, from completing a project to helping out another employee or being a good co-worker. 

Destinee says, "HeyTaco is a fun tool to encourage employees to support each other and give kudos for going above and beyond. Our employees can redeem these virtual tacos for days off, gift cards, expensing a movie rental, just stuff like that. I think this helps keep the morale alive during all this craziness and connects a remote team through shared appreciation of little successes."

Shifting to one of the main questions, we asked her how she shifted focus or her team's perspective to keep them ahead of their goals. 

Destinee explained that TensorIoT follows the practice of ‘'Working Backwards.' She said that Working Backwards is a common practice at Amazon Web Services (AWS) and explained how this method works:

"One needs to start with their goal. Once you decide, you start at your goal, and work backward from there. So, for example, when completing a campaign to highlight one of our new products, called 'SmartInsights,' we looked at our goal, i.e., to have more eyes on our product, register for a demo, and a webinar. Then we worked backward by looking at the steps needed to take to get there. So, how can we achieve our goal through marketing and creating content, making a registration page for a webinar, drafting email invitations, recording the webinars, etc.? We started at the goal and set incremental deadlines. From there we knew the steps we needed to take and the deadlines we needed to meet, to meet the final deadline and goal by a certain date."

Intriguing, isn't it?

Customer Retention v/s Customer Acquisition & Balancing Them To Increase Profits:

We asked Destinee to share her opinion on balancing customer retention and customer acquisition, and we loved the simple strategy.

Destinee says that customer acquisition and retention are equally important for marketing leaders to keep in mind. Research shows that a 5% increase in retention marketing can lead to a 25%-75% increase in marketing profits and KPIs. Therefore, retention marketing is essential for successful businesses. Customer acquisition relies on the ability to research and attract new customers and audiences.

She thinks that the perfect balance is using a Retention Campaign to attract new customers through content optimization and retaining new audiences by keeping them updated and informed on what the company is doing through ongoing engagement.

Future Plans & Advice to the Business & Marketing Leaders:

Destinee shed light on what her company is looking forward to in marketing. 

She says that TensorIoT is looking into 'Affiliate Marketing' since the marketing team primarily utilized standard PPC and inbound marketing. Destinee says that her company plans to branch out and see what KPIs her team can accomplish through affiliate marketing.

Besides discussing their current business strategies and future plans with her, we asked Destinee to give one piece of advice to a business during a transition to this new normal time. 

She emphasized that for a company, leadership should ensure that employees feel heard and supported, especially during these times that are scary and frustrating for everybody. Almost everyone was working from home for a long time, and, naturally, they got used to remote working as their new normal. 

Destinee says that with things stabilizing now, we are switching up the game again, and for many people, it becomes uncomfortable; even the C-level executives feel that way. She believes that the most crucial part of keeping the business going is that everyone feels that their concerns, ideas, and voices are heard.

Social Media and How It Benefits the New Economy:

Destinee shared her thoughts on how social media has become a bigger player because of the pandemic. She thinks that social media was already a big player in marketing and advertising before the pandemic struck, but believes that the pandemic accelerated social media use by the companies that were previously hesitant to invest in social media strategy, much the same way the pandemic forced companies to reevaluate what positions could be done remotely. 

Destinee recommended three things that the marketing leaders should keep in mind in this new economy:

  1. Marketing leaders need to be flexible with long-term brand growth. Covid and the pandemic eliminated mapping out campaigns and events years in advance. Companies were forced to create and assemble campaigns to meet the requirements, which rapidly shifted agendas, whether supporting social distancing, supporting BLM, etc. The pandemic brought out so many other social changes that it shifted the way one did long-term campaigning.
  2. We are coming into a fourth industrial revolution with technology and digitization. Technology assists the growth of the industries, and TensorIoT is right in the middle of what we are calling 'Industry 4.0' – where businesses are becoming more intelligent. We are in a time where marketing leaders need to capitalize on new technology and trends.
  3. Ensure that we are doing conversational and personalized marketing, especially video marketing, which is more effective now than ever before. A lot of human communication and interaction during the pandemic led people to want more personalized and less generic advertising. Therefore, video marketing has become equally important with a shift to consuming marketing campaigns via social media on phones. Videos get the same information to the consumers faster with a higher retention rate.  

The Takeaway:

Destinee has shared quite exciting insights into how things went on smoothly at her company, their strategy, and so much more during the pandemic. 

As we came to an end with her amazing interview, we concluded the discussion on a note about mentorship and working with peers. 

She says that mentorship is very important and believes that industry professionals with similar roles and interests should stick together and help one another. Destinee also believes that visible leaders in the industry should look to give others a helping hand. It is great to be seen and contacted on LinkedIn by people who want to connect with other industry leaders, as this helps develop a network of like-minded professionals who can bounce ideas off each other and mutually support each other’s professional growth.

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