• Adam Conner

SAP CMO Alicia Tillman on Managing Authentic Experiences

Updated: Nov 25, 2019



On today's episode, SAP Chief Marketing Officer Alicia Tillman joins Adam Conner for a conversation on how the enterprise software juggernaut aims to stay relatable at all times.


Today, you'll learn:

  • Alicia's journey to SAP and what authenticity means to her

  • How SAP translates listening and invoking feelings into business as a B2B brand

  • The power of partnerships with influencers and brand ambassadors like Karlie Kloss as part of SAP's marketing mix

  • The power of purpose

Be sure to stay subscribed for more content and thought leadership like this, and do please leave a rating and review on iTunes if you like what you hear.


Reach out to Adam Conner on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/adamjconner/ or via email at adam.conner@govivoom.com with suggestions for guests, content, or general interest/feedback.


Find more at https://www.podcast.vivoom.co/.


Enjoy!


Music: "Streetview" by Jahzzar is licensed under a Attribution-ShareAlike License (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Transcription


Alicia: Consumers want to feel as though they have an emotional connection to the brands in which they're purchasing or partnering from, and marketers have a really big leading job in being able to create that emotional connection with the brand. 

Adam: That is the voice of Alicia Tillman, the Chief Marketing Officer at SAP, and she's my featured guest on today's episode of Authentic Influence. I'm your host, Adam Conner, and today we'll be talking more about how the tech giant has aimed to become more relatable and specifically we'll talk about Alicia's journey to this point. Over the last four and a half years, we'll talk about how she views authenticity. We'll talk about how SAP leans into listening and emotion and turns it into business as a B2B brand. Little different from B2C, but I think you'll find that the tactics and strategies are pretty similar regardless. We also talk about some of the ways that she is creating partnerships, like a recent one with Karlie Kloss and we also get into the topic of brand purpose, which she cares very much about. Lots of different things all under this umbrella, but plenty of insights to be delivered. So for now I'll step away and let you have the interview. This is our featured guest for the week. SAP’s Alicia Tillman.

Adam: Okay everybody. I'm here with Alicia Tillman from SAP really excited to have this conversation. Alicia, thanks so much for coming on the show. How are you doing today? 

Alicia: I am doing great. Thank you so much for having me today. 

Adam: Yeah, it's a, it's a pleasure. I can't wait to dive into the aspects of, of what authenticity means to you. What you're doing at SAP. Obviously experience, uh, is a huge aspect of what you guys are all about and experience management. A big piece of the pie too. So we're going to talk about a lot of that. But I want to set some foundation first for our listeners who may not know all the ins and outs of SAP who exactly runs on itself. I see everybody runs on SAP, but I want to know your journey to this point. How'd you get here? 

Alicia: Great question. So I've been at SAP for four and a half years now. I started as the head of marketing with one of the divisions of SAP as our procurement division of a company that we acquired several years ago, a company called Ariba that is, uh, operates in the procurement and the sourcing space. And so I came on board four and a half years ago and I was asked to leave marketing to help turn around the innovation engine, how we operate, how we go to market. And that required a fair bit of rebuilding the marketing team. And so I was in that role for about two and a half years. And then for the last two years I have served as the CMO of SAP and SAP is, is a global technology company. In fact, the largest enterprise software company in the world. Um, we are about a $30B company. We have 450,000 customers, uh, over a hundred thousand employees and we've been around for 47 years. So it's quite a legacy of a company. Um, and you know, I'll have to say I'm quite honored and humbled and proud every day that I have an opportunity to be able to lead the marketing strategy for the company. 

Adam: Well, that sounds like it's a great journey and I mean, shoot, becoming CMO first of all of the largest enterprise software company in the world, amazing role. But secondly, uh, Forbes gave you a little hat tip this year being part of the world's most influential CMOs, one of the top 50. Oh, that's an incredible honor. 

Alicia: Yeah. It was, uh, at the, uh, annual Cannes Lions marketing festival, that takes place every year in the month of June. Um, marketers from all over the world come together and celebrate creativity and, and honor creativity in the industry. And I was honored to be named the 14th most, um, uh, powerful CMO in the world… it's hard to have a title like that. Um, but I, I, um, I don't take it lightly because, you know, I think a lot of that is, it's probably representative of the work that, that as a team, you know, I've been able to lead and be part of in marketing and in SAP. And I think we've, we've made some incredible moves as a brand. Um, you know, we've taken a very strong position and a point of view on certain things that I think really matters. Uh, and we've also worked hard to really stay core to who we are and that matters most importantly to the consumers in which we interact with and we want to partner with. And so I'm, I'm super proud so thank you for bringing that up. 

Adam: Oh, it's a pleasure. Um, because it's always an honor for me to talk to these people. Uh, probably not as much as the honor that they themselves received as you yourself received and what you felt around that. But just to be in the limelight a little bit myself or maybe just in the, in the side frame via this interview is a great thing. But I know that you have been, uh, prioritizing, you know, uh, keeping SAP true to itself and that notion of staying true, uh, especially within the context of being authentic. And this podcast, I know you have a number of perspectives there and we're going to talk about some of the things that SAP is doing new. Again, we're going to talk about experience management. We're going to talk about the power of purposes of brand in a little bit, uh, all in the realm of, of what's going on new and what to look forward to. But I want to start with a quote that you recently gave. Um, and it was actually a quote that I think you put in a post on LinkedIn when you were, it was another interview that was very, very recently. But you had said this, you said “Continuously aim for authenticity because that's what makes a brand relatable.” So I want to start with this rather umbrella question of how important is authenticity, especially in this day and age, to a brand like SAP. And then for a little extra credit, which maybe I'll ask again in a second. What do you think brands get wrong about that? But I want to start with how important it is for SAP to be authentic. 

Alicia: Yeah, no, it's a great question. And I, I had shared that quote recently, um, because it's really important, um, not only to SAP but, but frankly every company needs to realize the importance of this. Um, authenticity. You know, if I were to start with a definition of it, um, is really about, um, being true to your beliefs, um, being true to, uh, you know, and I'll, I'll, I'll say certain things like, you know, being true to where you've come from being true to your values, um, being true to what motivates you and inspires you. Um, and that, that, that often is tied to, um, in a company perspective, really going back and understanding why you were founded as a brand. And every brand has a story of how their story began. And you know, when I was at the marketing festival at Cannes, uh, in June I refer to this as I talk to it as a Napkin story. And what I mean by the Napkin story is most founders, they recall the time when they were sketching out the vision for their company. And, uh, more often than not, it's a scribble on a Napkin. You know, they were sitting in a restaurant and a bar or somewhere with a close friends, a future colleague, a partner, and they were sketching out the vision for what they could build an it was a sketch of a dream and it's a sketch of a belief of something that they thought they could create that was going to be a new introduction to the world or it was a way of doing something differently and better. And you know, all typically with a vision to change something on some level. And you know, that is truly what authenticity means. And, and often when I, when I talk to companies or fellow marketers who ask me about the definition of, of purpose or authenticity, I share that story because, um, you know, and everybody always laughed because they can recall their founder or their CEO recounting that moment when the vision for the company was sketched out on a cocktail napkin. 

Alicia: And I always say, go, go find that story because we live in a crazy world today. I mean, we've got challenges in our environment, in our economies. We've got, you know, challenges politically across the world. Um, you know, our, our relationship, you know, across country, within our country, there's challenge everywhere. And I think more than anything, people are seeking the truth. They're seeking trust and they're seeking partnerships with those that embody that. You know, who, who focus on speaking truth and are focused on trusted relationships. And that holds absolutely true for a brand. And when you've been around for 47 years and you're dealing with technology, which is an enabler in a company, especially in our business, we're in the B2B space, um, we have to be trusted. We have to be truly seen as an enabler to help others achieve their goals and understanding why we were founded and what that vision was. And staying true to that. That's really what customers want today when they have that critical choice at the point of sale as to which brand they're going to choose to put their investment towards. So that's why it's so important to SAP. 

Adam: Consumers always have that, um, emotional connection, sentimental connection, almost unconscious, especially at that point of sale like you just said. So I totally agree with that point. And I, I'm interested, I'm interested to know this, here's a good segue because I know that recently you all placed an ad in the Wall Street Journal. Alright? This was an open letter in response to an open letter from recalling this correctly about somebody who had written about all of these good and bad experiences they've had, which are sort of your typical, I mean, if it weren't an open letter, you would think it was like a subject list for a comedians like hour of content. But it was like, oh, I like the breakfast at the hotel and I don't like the convenience fees when I'm buying something online. And he goes back and forth on these positive and negative opinions on everyday consumer experiences and you responded or SAP responded to this, got a lot of buzz put SAP in a really nice light. I want to know because obviously you were listening to that consumer and I want to understand how you translate listening and invoking feelings, which I know you have opinions on. So that's why I'm sort of stoking the question here. How do you do that into businesses as a B2B brand because you're not necessarily sell, I mean you're selling to the same people that have these experiences, but these are not the same experiences that necessarily having with SAP enterprise software. So I'm curious how you translate it. 

Alicia: Yeah, it's a great question. Um, and what I would say is whether you're in the consumer space, and you're dealing with things like the free waffle maker, um, and the free breakfast, you know, at your hotel stay or you know, the size of the tomato that's appearing on your cheeseburger, which is, you know, often what you know, a lot of consumers care about. And, you know, we obviously as consumers care about so much more, but, um, you know, we're also a consumer of, of the technology that our businesses are asking us to use. And so I think the, the definition of consumer is a very broad one. And even though in business there's typically a very small handful of people that are making decisions on which technology they're going to ask their employees to use. Um, there's still though at the other end of that is, um, you know, are your employees who are consuming that technology and one of the things that we've found, especially in the past decade, is there's been a tremendous rise of employees, um, having a voice on truly what they want to see from the technology and the systems that their companies are asking them to choose. In fact, you know, many employees are basing decisions today, um, as to which company they're going to work for, uh, based on the types of technology and systems that they're going to be asked to use to perform their roles. And that's because technology is such a big part of enabling us as employees to get things done today. And you know, if we're not using an email system that is intuitive or you know, a marketing automation platform that is really going to happen to help me progress leads more effectively through the funnel. Um, you know, on and on and on and, you know, finance or accounting systems and what have you in these technologies, the backbone of any operation. Then employees just, they simply just don't want to work at companies that don't, um, give them the technology that's going to help them be effective. And so that has to be front of mind for any company that is in the B2B space. And certainly as, as I think about how I market, I have to not only market to the decision maker whose corporate priorities are often about, you know, how I can give technology to my employees to, you know, save money, help them be more efficient, help them be more effective, help bring more transparency into the work. But as an employee, I want to be more productive, be more efficient, be more effective. And so I have a dual strategy to appeal to both the consumer of the technology as well as the decision maker of it. And this piece that we took out in the Wall Street Journal at the beginning of this year was really an attempt to kind of bridge the two together because oftentimes it's a little bit of a conflict and a rub between the company making decisions on behalf of employees when they're the ones expected to use the technology every single day. And the whole theme of, of this campaign is the future of business has feeling because businesses are often blamed for not having feelings and being very mechanical in how they operate and not necessarily selecting tools and technologies and systems that really appeal to exactly what an employee needs to be able to operate effectively. And so taking out a consumer based angle here, which we did with the Nick Vitaly spot that you were referring to, it gave us more mass appeal and it allowed us to sort of demonstrate that look, consumers are tired, they're tired of repeating what is common experience gaps that are not being solved by companies. And it's time for companies to start listening because there's so much choice that exists today in the marketplace in terms of whether it be where employees shop or where they work, um, that we have to, as companies get closer to what our employees or our consumers want so that we can be creating experiences that match to their needs and therefore they can be a customer for life. And so that's essentially where I think we have a tremendous opportunity as companies today. 

Adam: That whole aura of experience in feelings. It's obviously very important. I've spoken about this with others and listeners will know with folks like Karen Walker at Cisco and Linda Boff at GE, you know, even in a B2B landscape, this is still very, very important. Now I want to ask you, Alicia, because I know that experience management has become, um, a priority for you and for the business. So the question is broadly like, how do you foster environments in which your own customers, people who are already relating with SAP today, how do you foster environments in which they can be sharing their own feelings about their experiences with you? Because I'm sure that there are millions of stories that are being told. Um, and I'd love to know how you're capturing some of that. 

Alicia: Yeah, I mean, I would say a few, few specific ways. Um, we have a very robust events platform strategies. So we do very large scale events and then we do very small, very targeted events. Um, and these events are really designed for our customers. For our customers to come and learn from us, but then to share their experiences, share their experiences directly with us, but also others within the SAP community, whether that be partners in our ecosystem or other customers so that everybody can learn from each other. And so that's one way that I would share. Then we have a lot of user groups. Um, so we have very specific groups that are designed within the company, um, that are targeted as specific users of our technology because there's many different use cases of our technology. You could be an HR practitioner using our technology to help employees manage performance effectively, um, through an integrated technology system. Or you can have a head of procurement that is, has deployed our procurement network to help the buying and sourcing process run effectively across the organization. And so we have various user groups that we've created that are not only designed to help, uh, optimize the technology, but to once again share, um, share opportunities, share best practices with the wider community as well. And then the third piece I would say in a bit more of an open forum is our social media community. So we have a tremendous presence on all of your core social media communities that exist out there. And it's an open forum at any time for customers to not only share their stories, to share their feedback, of which we have tremendous listening, uh, groups that are there to take on board what they're hearing and what they're learning so that we can respond appropriately. But that's also a very good mechanism that's always on and, and there for a customer to share their experiences so that we know whether we're meeting expectations, exceeding expectations in what we have the opportunity to learn from that. 

Adam: So you've got a lot of stuff going on and it's all around capturing what I have, what I've read up on is that x data that, what is a consumer or a customer or anybody feeling as they go through an experience with a product, with a service, with anything. And, um, I, I'm, you know, having read a little bit about experience management, I know that something that you are diving into very, very deeply right now, which, um, is a really interesting business model, I will say. Um, but listeners, I'll leave you to a re listen a little bit more about that combining x data and o data and, and I may ask you another question about this, Alicia, in just a moment, but I want to shift gears just for a second. Let's talk about a recent partnership that you just struck with Karlie Kloss. So obviously supermodel business dynamo only 27, incredibly influential person. Um, very, very impressive. What's the power of having such influential people like Karlie as part of your marketing mix going forward?

 

Alicia: Yeah, no, thank you for the question. And um, so as we were designing our marketing strategy for this year and we were really focused on the, the space of experience management and it's really about the essence of, of what all companies are focused on, on behalf of their customers. Because we believe that at the end of the day, business is going to be won or lost based on the quality of your experience. And I know that's probably simplifying how to win, um, quite significantly. But really if you're not offering memorable, uh, unique differentiated experiences with your brand, then chances are your customer is going to go out and shop for a brand that will. And so that's a really big part of what SAP’s technology helps to enable, which is to allow your operation to run at your best and ability for you to get access to employee feelings and sentiment and feedback in, in a real time fashion so that you can react appropriately, anticipate what is needed so that you can design an effective experience that will allow you to keep that customer for life. And as we've worked to evolve this strategy and tell this story, we've wanted to really expand the way in which SAP brings that story to market, but also the circle that the SAP brand is showing up in. Uh, we historically have sold technology as a brand to the CIO suite decision makers within a company. But as we've evolved our technology, we also have evolved, um, who the, the, the buyers are within a company as well. And especially with what I was sharing a few moments ago, there's so much influence into that decision making today. Employees are our influencers. Um, and we, we need to be mindful of that. And so we want it to also, um, think about how we can partner to bring that story into these new circles of influence. And so we established this partnership with Karlie Kloss who is extraordinary on so many levels. I mean, not only is she a global supermodel, she's a TV personality, she's a brand ambassador. Um, she's a social media maven with millions of followers on social media. And beyond that, she's also a truly authentic and genuine person who believes that in every interaction or every brand that she supports or every supermodel engagement or our work that she does on TV, she brings her authentic self. And that's what helps drive engagement with the work that she is doing day in and day out. And so we partnered with Karlie, um, to help, um, Uus expand our story into, um, a deeper circles of influence, but then, but to also tell our story a bit differently. And one of the things that's also, uh, beautiful about what Karlie has started is she created this organization called Kode with Klossy, which is really focused on how to teach young girls coding, which is something that she went back to school for a while. She was at modeling to learn how to code because she believes so much in it as a skill. Um, that is really at the core of, of how we drive progress on so many different things in the world. And we're partnering with her on Kode with Klossy because it's something that's important to SAP as we continue to focus on gender diversity, especially in the technology industry, really helping to promote, um, girls and their education around stem so that it can help them, um, as they begin their careers to pursue careers in engineering or software development or whatever it may be. Um, so between that and her ability to help us tell our story a bit differently, it's just a beautiful partnership that that felt like a good way for us to bring our marketing strategy forward this year. 

Adam: Certainly a way to reach a new types of people, show SAP in a new light, certainly work with somebody who is very influential like that, um, can bring a lot of positivity and with such a good cause as well. And I'll talk about purpose here in a second a little more broadly, but stemming from working with people who are, you know, in that sort of influencer bracket, I'm interested in what you had just said there about, you know, uh, getting stories told and amplified part of managing experiences, at least as I see it, is the ability to funnel those experiences back into a community to be able to increase the influence that you have. And that's sort of what this show is all about, learning how the best brands in the world and their leaders are doing that. So I'm curious, what are some of the ways that, you know, you or the companies that SAP serves amplifying and funneling the experiences that they are having with SAP back into the community. And I'll preface by saying, of course, you know, you see the, well one sees the classic like blank runs on SAP, SAP Hana is powering blah blah blah. All of that I've seen over the years. I'm curious as to your take, especially as today that seems you're taking on these partnerships. What are some of the ways in which you're these experiences and putting them back into the community to show the authentic influence that SAP can drive? 

Alicia: Yeah. And, and one of the things that we introduced earlier this year to really, um, help it be understood what our philosophy is on this. And you touched on it and I'm just a little bit earlier when you referred to x plus o. And essentially what this is representative of is experiential data meeting operational data to enable you to run at your best in this experience economy that we're all living in and trying to compete in. And historically and certainly the space that SAP is in, we've been in the space of helping companies run at their best operationally, which is representative of the o data aspect of that equation that I just shared. And this is about creating applications and systems to allow all parts of your company to run effectively on top of a very strong, um, technology foundation. So whether it be HR or marketing, sales, procurement, finance, these are all core functions of a company that SAP offers technology to, to help all of those functions run at their best. And so that's the business that SAP has been in. Earlier this year, we acquired a company called Qualtrecs. It's a beautiful company that was founded about 15 years ago with a aim of enabling companies to get closer to their consumers by understanding truly what their feedback is with each and every experience that they have with the company's product portfolio, with their brand, with the employees that they're interacting with. And how they do it is through many different, um, capabilities. Whether it's surveying capabilities or looking at social sentiment by looking at all the different means in which I consumers are out there communicating about their experiences. They take on board tremendous sources of data to be able to deliver intelligence back to a company to know how well they're meeting expectations for their consumers with each and every experience they have. Now, the beauty of that, which is x data, is now when you have access to that, it allows you to funnel it back into the operational side of your business. So the operations of your business are truly running based on what the consumer wants. It allows you to anticipate it so that you can build your operations around it so that each and time you're delivering an unmatched experience but enables companies to then win in the experience economy. And so that's the x side coming together with the o side to be able to truly win in the experience economy. And that is in essence what we're trying to offer an introduced, um, as to with brands. And you know, I spent a lot of time out there talking with marketers in particular because I think that marketers have an incredible opportunity to truly be the voice of that customer so that they can help their companies really realize that and use it to help formulate what the overall operation is that they're going to deliver to the customer. And, and I think marketers have a great opportunity to lead in that regard. And the more that we can show the power of experiential data coming together with operational data, it creates this, these tremendous stories that we have an ability to funnel back into our communities, to truly show companies how they have an ability to run at their best today in the experience economy that we're all living in the intersection of all that data to create better experiences for people. And especially to be able to funnel that into parts of the business that didn't have it before.


Adam: Incredibly important. Whether the end goal of that business is consumption of something or perhaps maybe contribution to a cause. And I'm teasing the penultimate question here, which is about causes and specifically purpose. You've talked at length about power of purpose as a brand and specifically you mentioned last month that you'd like to hear more of the what and the how specifically when it comes to achieving change in this way. And I know that it was a forward looking statement, but I'm curious when it comes to purpose, what are some of your ideas for that? What in that how, 

Alicia: Yeah, it's a great question. And you know, I'll, I'll, I'll tell you that when I became the COO of, of SAP two years ago, one of the things that I did when I first began was to really look back on why the company was founded. And I did that because number one, I wanted to make sure that marketing was representing the authentic vision of SAP, but also because I really wanted to understand the purpose, the purpose of the company, and what we believed that we would be able to achieve by building SAP. And what I found was that our founders had established a vision that we were going to create technology to help the world run better and improve people's lives. And this was a beautiful purpose that not only spoke to the day to day operation that our technology would help to support. But if your company is really running at its best, then everyone has an ability to deliver more effectively towards the change that the world needs to see. And as a company, we've always built our technology around three core pillars that we've wanted to help enable. And that's an economic change, environmental change, um, and also change that's really going to help drive to, um, a higher good environment, economy and society. And these are such core pillars for us in terms of how we innovate. And as we introduced our new brand narrative that we wrote, um, two years ago, it really focused on messaging the authentic purpose that we have as a company, which is to really work hand in hand with our customers to enable their purpose around change and truly how change can help, um, others prosper. And the reality is the one thing that we found as we were really focused on driving towards purpose and enabling companies to find their purpose is that purpose really matter. And you know, it's linked to authenticity. It's linked to growth. Um, you know, 83% of companies that have purpose at their core over-perform on revenue, growth and link everything they do to brand purpose as opposed to only 31% of under-performers who don't have purpose at its core. And so we established that in our narrative as point 1. The other thing that I would say in terms of the how is partner for purpose as well. Um, so we talk about how we, how we partner for purpose to help enable our customers, but we also partner for purpose with those that are in our ecosystem as well. So I'll give you a great example. Earlier this year at the World Economic Forum, we introduced, um, a new initiative that we created together with one of our technology partners who was Google cloud. Um, we got our teams together, our two marketing teams, um, Allison Wagenfeld, who's the CMO of Google cloud and I and our team got together about six months prior to the World Economic Forum in Davos, which takes place every year in January. And we said, look, we have brands that have very similar missions in the world. Um, and we also have purpose at our core, um, is there something we can put our brands behind that really can show action into things that really matter, whether it be in society, um, economically or, uh, as it relates to the environment. And so we came up with this competition that we put both of our brands behind where we did a call for social entrepreneurs who had an idea around the circular economy, which is something that the UN is calling for plans on how we can help promote a circular economy, which aims to help, um, you know, continue certain things in our economy to help drive improvement in our environment. So how can we keep certain items still circulating, um, you know, through the environment so that we can promote, um, change over time. And we did a call for application. Uh, we had over 200 social entrepreneurs that put ideas forward. Some, you know, have businesses that, um, they've already begun to introduce themselves into the market and others were some early stage ideas. And we selected an organization called Tapalytics that is focused on waste management and how to create and how to keep certain, uh, waste management items in our economy that help to promote, um, more sustainable energy sources. Um, you know, in our environments. So a beautiful idea. And we put, um, not only financial capital, we put our products, our technology behind this idea to help it thrive much more effectively. And we put mentorship from both of our companies. And I share this as an example because we talk a lot as companies, as individuals about change we want to see in the world. And I think now we need to really start to put action behind that. You know, what are we specifically doing to now make change a reality? And I think in, in our case, the best way to do that is through partnership and, and looking at companies that, that share common views like we do. And this is just one example that I would encourage all companies to think about is who can you partner with to, to truly bring ideas forward that are going to be meaningful to people so they can see real change beginning to occur. 

Adam: And that advice or that recommendation or that suggestion is, um, a wonderful segue into how you take this on personally as a leader. Now, this ultimate question is one of advice as well. Our listeners are largely marketers and students of the craft and they're curious to know from these leaders that I discuss, uh, these topics with how they became more authentic marketers in a way to learn. So my last question is this. Um, for the folks out there who are, could be in Fortune 100 businesses, they could be sole proprietors, it doesn't really matter based on your experiences, what can they be doing to just start down this path of becoming a little bit more authentic in the way they strategize and storytell? 

Alicia: I think it's, I think it starts with really understanding why your company was founded. And, um, I know that companies grow and, and they may grow through acquisition. They may switch tracks or add things into their value proposition. There may be leadership changes and so that may impact, um, perhaps the path of the company is on. But I'm still a believer that what does remain intact is ultimately a belief of what, of what the founders thought the company was going to be able to improve in the world. Um, and that made me something small or that might be something very, very large, but all of it is defined as purpose. And I would encourage everyone to spend the time, look through your archive, find your founders, um, and or the early employees within a company and talk with them, really learn from them in terms of why the company, what the beliefs were, what they, what they thought they could change and capture that and make that part of your company's story. Um, because as I said, even if, if your value proposition has changed or evolved, I still believe the passion for why a company was founded is still very relevant. And it should be part of your story and regardless of what industry or segment that you may be in, the reality is at the end of the day, consumers want to feel as though they have an emotional connection to the brands in which they're purchasing or partnering from. And marketers have a really big leading job in being able to create that emotional connection with the brand and going back to why you were founded or what your beliefs are or what you think you can change and how you believe your company can enable that, make that such a core part of your story because it matters. It may not be going into the depths of describing the features and the functions of your product or your service and there is a time and a place for that. But I think more importantly, before you get into that level of detail about your product first tried to draw that emotional connection and in doing that, look back on the early passion the founders had for your company and make that a part of how you tell your story. It's what we've done at SAP. It's something I'm very, very proud of. I think it helps to ignite a culture internally. Um, and I think it helps to also ignite trust with your customers and that really needs to be priority number one before you can get them to a place where they'll feel comfortable buying your products. And so that would be my greatest advice that I would add Adam to the listeners here on the call.

Adam: From following the foundations, the feelings will flourish, they've done it for 47 years, SAP, they continued to march on as a leader in enterprise software and especially by combining that x and that o. Alicia Tillman, thank you so much for coming on the show and sharing your insight. It was great to chat with you.


Alicia: Thank you so much for having me today.