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Meet the team behind CloudM in our new series; Great Minds Make Great Tech
For the second in its series, we want to introduce our favorite Marketing man with a plan, Connor Hall. During our conversation, one thing that became abundantly clear was this: though the tech industry demands technical minds, it also requires an equal measure of creative flair to take the innovations of tomorrow to market.
We’re going to dive straight into this one. Hold on to your hats, folks!
I’m the Digital Marketing Manager. I use the power of the digital world to help CloudM generate new business, build our recruitment profile, and promote our brand. I use digital tools to generate leads and sales.
Straight out of university, I got a job in sales because I needed the money and I hated it. I hated every second, and I was looking for a way out. I came up with a business idea, built a business plan, found an investor, and quit my job. When my business partner and I were promoting ourselves and our app, businesses were impressed by our marketing. They approached us. Whatever you’re doing for you, do it for us because everyone knows who you are. Off the back of that, our tech and digital agency developed. We had two businesses: an app and a tech & digital agency (where we built websites and applications for other businesses alongside other digital marketing). That’s how I got into tech.
Once you can sell something, it opens you up to a lot of opportunities. Even though I didn’t enjoy my background in sales, I can now comfortably write copy for the right audience, which is an essential part of my job. I’m more comfortable on the phone in any situation. My experience of owning my own business pushed me out of my comfort zone. I ran events, festivals, tech clinics, and even a TEDx event. It exposed me to a lot of public speaking. These are skills that help when I’m presenting in meetings with large groups, when I’m on company calls, or when I need to speak in the office.
I’d never even thought about marketing until I was developing the app. We need to market this app somehow, I said to my business partner. I went into Google, typed ‘digital marketing course’, and took the course I found. I’d go to the library in Oldham every day. I had no money because I poured it into the app, so I walked 45 minutes to the library and 45 minutes back every day. While I was there, I studied this digital marketing course while we were trying to develop this app.
I found my passion for marketing, however, I felt like I wasn’t being challenged enough in my businesses, or with the businesses I was working with. I wanted to branch out into a bigger, global business at the forefront of technology. Because of the app, software marketing is what I specialized in and I wanted to continue to work in an innovative software business, with big customers on an international scale. CloudM ticked all those boxes.
If a job comes up at CloudM, go for it. There’s no better place. The culture at CloudM is not just something that is said, but it’s something that's lived by everyone who works there. Everyone is trusted to get on with their work because everyone is good at their job. If there are areas you need to learn, you’re supported through that because personal development is really valued at CloudM. The benefits bank is great. You have the freedom to learn, grow, and excel because everyone’s trusted to get on with their work. You’re looked after because it's a competitive industry. Work-life balance is so important and CloudM lives by that.
I like all the pillars. We live by them all. Try New Things is my current favorite because we’re all trying new things every day at CloudM. That’s true from the Marketing team, to Customer Experience, to Sales. The ship turns quickly because, even though we’re working with these enormous businesses and growing rapidly, we’re still nimble enough to change.
Family and friends are always surprised by the freedom I get. They work more traditionally where they have to be in the office at 9, their lunch hour is at a certain time, and then they leave at 5. When I explained I can go in when I need to go in, work online flexibly, take my lunch when I need to take it, and work from home or in the office, they were surprised by the amount of freedom we get. Obviously, the unlimited annual leave, company holidays, getting little parcels in the post, food packages, all these little extras and added value that CloudM gives us are brilliant too. Even though a food package in the post isn’t a massive gesture, it's just a token to show you’re valued. A lot of companies aren’t like that. They don’t put their people first. CloudM does.
… Well, there’s been a few. I’ve had a really good time at CloudM. I won an award at our Mid-Year Kick-Off in the Try New Things category, which was an exciting surprise, but a big highlight for me was launching the new website. We had a website before and it did okay, but it was really behind the times. I led the project to launch the new website, and at the time, the team was smaller. I had our in-house Designer and Frontend Developer, and I was the go-between. I had to translate the designs between the two of them, so we could take those designs to build the new website. I had to do that key translation from design to dev. I had to understand the vision of the designs, but also to understand what the capabilities of the dev team were, and then guide the team through that process. It was a really big project that, ultimately, resulted in us performing a lot better, doubling the leads that we used to have. Leading on that project has been a highlight for me at CloudM.
If you put more in, you’re going to get more out of it. What I demand from my peers is effort. If we don’t know how to do something, or if we need to learn something, I demand the maximum effort you can put in at that time to learn that something new. You might have a bad day and only be able to put in 75% compared to usual, and that’s fine. But I live by that. I like effort.
We’re at the forefront of the information age. You’re exposed to knowledge that a lot of the population doesn’t know about. You get those insights. That’s what I like about tech. I like that it's at the forefront of industry, of everything that we do. It’s essential.