SalesTechStar Interview With Michael Schwalb, GM Of Partnerships And Data At JW Player
Michael Schwalb, GM of Partnerships and Data at JW Player shares a few pointers on optimizing video use in sales and marketing while talking about the impact the growth of video will have on advertisers in this chat:
Tell us about your journey through the years, Michael…
Like many professional journeys, mine has been filled with fantastic experiences, including some of the highest highs, the lowest lows and learning lessons that I will keep in practice for a lifetime. I’ve spent a fair amount of time with larger organizations – however, the bulk of my career has been focused on helping cutting edge video technology and digital advertising companies grow from a revenue, operations and business development standpoint. While I’ve been fortunate enough to be part of several highly successful organizations, the most valuable takeaways have been the lifelong relationships I’ve been able to develop and maintain throughout my career.
What are some of the biggest sales / customer learnings you’ve come across over the years?
Always under promise and over deliver on products, services and deliverables. When you think you have enough pipeline, triple it!
Understand how your competition operates, but focus more on executing on your own plans. Build out a skillset to sift through customer noise vs. valuable customer feedback. Always keep the focus on building as accurate a forecast as you can while still keeping in mind that a forecast will never be able to pinpoint the accurate.
Take us through your role at JW Player: how have you seen customer behaviors / consumption of video products and ads change over time and especially during the pandemic?
As GM of Data and Advertising at JW Player, my role focuses on the data our team collects and how it can help video advertisers target their audiences more effectively and ultimately achieve their specific campaign goals. From a consumption standpoint, video has been one of the fastest growing segments within digital media both for consumers as well as advertisers. At the start of the pandemic, video consumption went parabolic and advertising dollars started to quickly evaporate due to global uncertainty.
As of today, the curve is not as steep (in comparison to the start of the pandemic), but we are still seeing a massive shift to digital video. The exciting part about our customer growth is the new verticals (elearning, faith, fitness) that are rapidly adopting video as an integral part of their business. In addition, advertisers are coming back in full force taking advantage of the newly developed ad supply and advanced targeting capabilities.
In what ways do you feel this will change further in the near-future as marketing and sales teams get more accustomed to using different online mediums to gain customer traction?
I think the change in marketing and sales will be continued with double digit percentage growth in the usage and investment within video platforms. We are already seeing new and creative ways to address consumers through video at both the top of the marketing funnel as well as being highly effective at bottom funnel conversion.
A few thoughts on how customer teams (marketing / sales) can optimize using video delivery for pitches, prospecting, ads, etc to deliver better messaging?
After going through quarantine and having video permeate every industry and every organization, video has already rooted itself as a primary marketing and sales tool. The executions will continue to evolve and become more personalized. Video will support built in functionality to accelerate business productivity. It enables customer teams to reach an exponentially wider audience through site sound and motion, and tailor the messaging to each subgroup. The stories told are more impactful and the responses received are much more positive.
A few thoughts on what you feel today’s partnership models should evolve into in the B2B/Tech world?
I think the two areas that would accelerate growth in partnership growth are transparency and equality. Almost every B2B partnership begins with a certain level of opaqueness and this can lead to uncertainty and lack of trust during the lifecycle of a partnership. Ultimately, due to the lack of trust and transparency, most B2B deals start with some level of inequity. B2B partnerships are truly valuable and experience material growth when both partners can lay down their real cards.
JW Player pioneered video on the web over a decade ago and continues to innovate as the world’s largest network-independent platform for video delivery and intelligence. Media companies including Fox, VICE, Insider Inc., and Univision, in addition to hundreds of thousands of creators of all types and sizes, rely on JW Player to deliver and monetize their content across all devices. JW Player’s massive global footprint of over 2 billion unique devices creates a powerful data graph of unique consumer insights and generates billions of incremental video views. The company is headquartered in New York, with offices in London and Eindhoven..
Michael Schwalb is the GM of Partnerships and Data at JW Player.