Email Peeps #4: Naomi West
Tell us a little bit about yourself and how did you get to where you are today?
I kicked off my career in marketing as a side hustle (fun) in 2015 while working in legal recruiting (boring). Myself and two others worked on an app (called taskiapp) focused on pairing up restaurants and hospitality organizations with one-off staff placement. My role, recruitment and onboarding of both businesses, and “taskers”. During this 4-year tenure, I was convinced I discovered marketing automation technology and that by the use of email I could engage and nurture subscribers automatically instead of sending 1:1 emails — a complete game changer for my workload.
When we closed up shop and disbanded, in 2019, I moved to London, UK, and joined Braze as a Customer Onboarding Manager. This role continued to push my education of marketing automation tools forward. I absolutely loved working for Braze, and made some of my current best friends (as well as met fantastic customers) while in that role. I moved back to Vancouver, BC at the end of the year joining Later as their first email marketing specialist with a vast degree of best practice knowledge
Although I loved a customer-facing role at Braze, my true passion is implementing strategy myself, and sitting with GTM efforts, so getting back into the swing of things in an in-house role was an exciting next step for me.
Since 2019, I’ve hopped around in various SaaS roles, and with the hit of covid in 2020, accelerated my email consulting side-hustle in an effort to fill my extra free time (and not spend all my money shopping online). My most recent consulting gig, for Parcel, transitioned into my current full time role with the acquisition of Parcel in August of 2022 by Customer.io.
I’ve spent the past 3 years in in-house roles, learning and working with the best tech stacks money can buy, and across many tools in my consulting biz that have allowed me to see many sides of the coin. In total, I’ve worked in over 25 ESP’s, with a handful of deep-linking tools, customer help desks, CDP’s, and analytics dashboards. It’s an ever-evolving industry that continues to give me learning opportunities and new challenges.
What’s your advice for new email marketers entering the market in 2023?
Take time to learn, and celebrate those learnings. The best piece of advice I’ve ever been given by a former manager is that I need to be able to say “I don’t know” and feel comfortable doing so. Marketing is an industry that is always changing. So carve out time to learn, test, and then celebrate and share those learnings as accomplishments.
Email has so many aspects to it — it can take years to understand the basics of it all let alone become an expert. Strategy, development, design, deliverability, just to name a few are all different verticies. If you’re a new email marketer, start by being comfortable with not knowing all of it, and dive into various aspects through blog articles, webinars, conferences, and connecting with other emailgeeks in the space.
On the celebrating accomplishments note, it can be so beneficial to build an internal brand for yourself in any role, and by sharing your learnings, launches, and accomplishments, it’s a great way to build your resume and set yourself up for success in your role.
- Old 2015 Apple Display that I bought off of Facebook Marketplace when everyone went fully remote in 2020. It’s heavy, but I love it.
- Logitech Brio Webcam
- Wireless Apple Mouse & Keyboard
- Work Macbook
- When I travel, I travel with an espres.so display (it’s amazing)
- Years into the pandemic and I’m still working from my kitchen table! Admittedly, I sold my desk and transitioned to the kitchen table as I wanted to create a better work life separation after hours. So after 5pm and on weekends, the display monitor and laptop go away and I can create a better boundary for myself. Someday in the future I would love to have an office of my own.
- I live in Parcel, and Customer.io all day
- Screen.studio – a new discovery, but primarily I use this for creating videos outlining how to use Parcel. I’m really excited to use this more frequently in 2023!
- Sanity (our CSM)
What piece of work are you most proud of?
Most recently, I put on Parcel Unpacked. A two-day virtual email conference that gathered over 700 regsistrants! I am shocked that it had that much reach. The community response was fantastic, and I’m grateful everyday that I get to work with such a talented group of individuals that are all equally interested in sharing the intricacies and challenges of emails strategy and development.
How do you spark creativity?
Conversing with other email creators. I love chatting about challenges, quarterly email goals, and tools. It highlights areas of opportunity for me, which then usually sparks new ideas, writings, or tools that should be built!
What email marketing tool can you not live without?
I know this is cliche, because I work on Parcel, but, Parcel! The accessibility checker was what originally wowed me. Everyone should take 5-minutes and run their emails through it to see how they stack up.
If I had to choose a second tool, it would be Mixpanel to understand how my campaigns and marketing efforts influence the product behaviour of our users.
Follow Naomi on Twitter –> @emailfromnaomi