Let's Get Digital—Featuring Kathy Hollenhorst & Gino Giovannelli
What is digital transformation and why does it matter to business leaders, entrepreneurs, and professionals? In this pilot episode for "In the Key of D" host Kathy Hollenhorst and co-host Gino Giovannelli help frame-up the big questions around using digital, how to get started, and preview the fascinating topics we'll dig into with our guests.
Meet Our Hosts
Kathy Hollenhorst & Gino Giovannelli
Kathy Hollenhorst and Gino Giovannelli are longtime colleagues, business partners and friends. They began working together in digital transformation nearly 20 years ago through their collaborative work for Radisson Hotels; where they were tasked with developing innovative e-commerce solutions for the company-at a time when using digital was mostly an unknown, unproven strategy for business leaders. But Kathy and Gino shared a unique passion for lifelong learning and the amazing ways digital could make businesses better. Beyond business, these two share a connection over music. Gino plays the drums and percussion in several bands around the Twin Cities and Kathy loves to break out a good tune on her harmonica from time to time--always in the key of D, of course.
For more information on Kathy and Gino’s individual backgrounds and expertise, click here.
In this episode we cover:
- Gino Giovannelli Introduction (1:00)
- How Gino defines digital transformation (1:45)
- How do you keep all the moving parts of digital straight? (3:30)
- What are the upsides in favor of digital transformation? (6:06)
- What is holding companies back from doing digital well? (8:58)
- The importance of vision and strategy; leadership's role in digital transformation (12:34)
- Who benefits when a company goes digital? (15:40)
- Rapid Fire! Fun facts and fast answers with Gino (18:50)
- Closing Thoughts - How do we stay current with digital? (21:35)
Links & Resources
- Download our "Wheel of Digital Transformation" Visual
- Malcolm Gladwell’s Revisionist History podcast
- Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown
- Simon Sinek's A Bit of Optimism podcast
- The Digital Marketing Podcast from Target Internet
- Why We Buy by Paco Underhill
- Connect with Gino on LinkedIn
- Connect with Kathy on LinkedIn
- [On digital strategy and action] Think big, start small, move fast.
- [On learning how to use digital] "Immerse yourself in situations where you're forced to figure it out...Don't ask yourself if you HAVE done it; ask yourself if you CAN do it." - Gino Giovannelli
- There are 2 main buckets of digital transformation: 1. People (enablers, process), 2. Touchpoints (customer experience, responsive design, technology, analytics)
- The biggest winner of digital transformation is the customer.
Making the Change From the Middle with Jim Cuene
One primary goal of digital transformation is to streamline the consumer experience. And while technology is the key enabler, real change often happens at the cultural center of an organization. The marketers and leaders in the middle might need an outside champion to unlock digital’s full potential within a company. Jim Cuene is the Founder & CEO at Fahren, a consultancy that offers expert talent, guidance and advising to large organizations that are seeking digital transformation. In this episode, Jim lends his wealth of digital knowledge to incisive conversations around making cultural shifts, balancing slow leadership with fast action, adhering to the leadership stack, and why there’s never been a better time to be a marketer than right now.
Stand It Up, See What Happens with Jake Miller
Jake Miller is a human mission statement. The Founder and CEO of Fellow embodies his company’s mission to help people brew ridiculously good coffee by offering the best gear and guidance on the market. Fellow has seen incredible growth in part because of Jake’s steadfast belief in human-centered design and valuing relationships over transactions. Digital has enabled entrepreneurs like Jake an opportunity to start conversations directly with customers and it’s transforming almost every industry. He joins the podcast to discuss getting as close to your customer as you can, using digital to creatively market and sell physical products, and how taking the right risks can pay off.
How Understanding POEMs Drives Digital Integration with Adam Dince
Can you hear that? It’s your data speaking, and Adam Dince wants you to listen.
From the early days of building websites to leading digital experience teams, Adam’s career spans over 20 years of digital marketing evolution, with a focus on using organic and paid search to reach the right person at the right time with the right content. Adam is a lifelong student of data who wants to know what can be learned about the customer through search behavior and history. Adam joins the podcast to discuss the necessity of an omnichannel digital marketing strategy, best practices for reaching customers online; the evolution of paid, owned and earned media; and his pivotal 80/20 social listening rule to help grow your audience.
Giving Freedom Within the Guardrails—Featuring Kymm Bartlett Martinez
Every brand wants to go viral. But as a marketing or business leader, how do you know when your messaging is going off the road? Install guardrails, says executive Kymm Martinez. Staggering success has followed Kymm from her work with CPG giant General Mills to her current role as VP/Chief Marketing & Communications Officer at the University of St. Thomas. She understands that as digital evolves, trendsetting marketers must pay attention to cultural transitions, take risks on experimental channels, and understand brands as more than just products, but also as the people who use the brand. In this episode of In the Key of D, Kymm shares a wealth of insight on leadership and fostering creative freedom that stays between the rails.
Making Easy Things Even Easier with Cole Ranzau
Knowing and anticipating what your customer needs from digital experiences is easier said than done. For business leaders first entering this evolving world of user experience strategy and the “tech stack,” it can feel like climbing an ominous mountain. Thankfully, Cole Ranzau, who leads an experience strategy team at Strategic Education, Inc. (SEI), joins the podcast to help us get our footing on how to use digital to create compelling experiences. Cole digs into using focused data and analytics to tell engaging stories, breaks down his “3-Headed Attack” for solving UX challenges, and explores why the “making easy things even easier” mindset is pivotal to building successful digital experiences for customers.
Going Over-the-Top with Pete Harrison
Startups don’t have the luxury of being sluggish out of the gate. Analytics are more rigorous, budgets are more constrained, and investors are watching the clock. It’s not so much “less is more” as “do more with less and do it quickly" for these small to midsize businesses working to launch their company and products. Pete Harrison, seasoned startup advisor and digital marketing leader, joins the podcast to share his insights on leveraging digital channels and testing to get to market more quickly. He explains how OTT (over-the-top) TV Advertising (ads for streaming TV) compares to Linear TV Advertising (ads for broadcast TV), plus why and when to use these channels.
How a 153-Year-Old Startup Goes Digital—Featuring Steve Yaeger
For the Star Tribune, delivering quality journalism to the people of Minnesota for 153 years has made it the largest newsgathering force in the Midwest and one of the most touched newspaper brands in the US. But the advent of the digital age has brought the challenges of adapting to changing reader behavior, an accelerated news cycle and the prospect of a print-less future. How do they navigate these massive global shifts? Steve Yaeger, CMO at the Star Tribune, joins the podcast to talk about the award-winning media brand’s digital transformation journey, customer acquisition, and the company’s focus on long-term sustainability.
If You Host It, Will Anyone Actually Come?—Featuring Wendy Blackshaw
When you’re a leader in uncharted territory—like trying to plan a mega-event during a pandemic—what do you do? Make your own map. Brand visionary and dynamic leader Wendy Blackshaw has been making her own map using digital tools throughout an adventurous career. Wendy joins the podcast to talk about how digital has changed what’s possible in marketing, her experience building mega-event brands (including Super Bowl LII & the upcoming NCAA Women’s Final Four 2022), and why trusting your team of experts is vital to successful outcomes.
Bridging the Divide—Featuring Aaron Keller
We are living in an increasingly digitized world, but we'll always be physical beings. Good design is no longer either only digital or only physical—it must function in both spaces, harmoniously. Capsule co-founder & CMO, design philosopher and author Aaron Keller brings his thoughtfulness to the show to discuss digital design theory and practice, sustainable packaging, and why designers must see the consumer as a human being first.
Keep the Talent, Lose the Fear—Featuring Darin Lynch
What’s the secret sauce for creating a digital culture that promotes company flexibility, talent retention, and fun? Hint: It’s not just a pint of Irish beer (although that can help). Award-winning business leader & Irish Titan CEO/Founder Darin Lynch joins to talk about how weaving digital and technology throughout your business practices can nurture a culture that keeps the best talent around, drives change, and promotes scalability for businesses, while also fully enjoying the journey.
Evolution Not Revolution - Featuring Stuart Harris
“Go big or go home” doesn’t equal success for companies undertaking digital transformation. It’s so important to hit smaller, measurable goals before swinging for the fences. As Group President of Digital Transformation at Emerson Stuart Harris knows, companies must have a clear strategy before deploying new technologies. He joins the podcast to discuss the key aspects of driving digital change and how Emerson is helping their customers evolve dynamically.
Welcome to the Sh*t Show-Featuring Andrew Eklund
Ciceron CEO Andrew Eklund has captained his crews through multiple major economic storms over the past 20 years, and has stayed afloat by being adaptive and innovative. He joins the podcast to discuss why “economic reinvention”—using digital channels—is key to business survival in times of crisis, how to empower a fast & nimble team, and most importantly: why he loves the band Phish.
Small Bets Placed Often—Featuring Jen Swanson
Digital transformation is not a toaster, you can’t just plug it in and expect it to work. It’s also not a big budget project that you wash your hands of after the end-date. So, what is it? One way to think of it is as a series of small bets, placed often. Founder and principal of her own highly-successful consulting business and former VP of Digital at Optum, Jen Swanson joins the podcast to discuss digital risk and reward, how she helps companies integrate digital into their business strategy, and why projects end but products endure.
Measure Twice, Cut Once—Featuring Andrew Benson & John Dusek
When Shakespeare wrote "To thine own self be true," he might have been talking about Andrew Benson and John Dusek, who together co-founded Straight Line Theory, a company focused solely on user experience (UX) research and design. Andrew and John join the podcast to help us understand what UX design is all about, the challenges of developing digital products that are easy to use, and why users should influence technology, not the other way around.
Why Sears Could Have Been Amazon—Featuring Craig Herkert
Dust from the Digital "big bang" is still settling. Global retail executive & Advisory Board member Craig Herkert knows the digital world is in its infancy and that change is just what business leaders and professionals sign up for. Craig joins the podcast to talk big picture: adapting to survive, the ethics of moving with—not in front of—your consumer, and why Sears failed to become Amazon.
Let's Get Digital—Featuring Kathy Hollenhorst & Gino Giovannelli
What is digital transformation and why does it matter to business leaders, entrepreneurs and professionals? In this pilot episode for "In the Key of D" host Kathy Hollenhorst and co-host Gino Giovannelli help frame-up the big questions around using digital, how to get started and preview the fascinating topics we'll dig into with our guests.