From starting out with an internship to working for LinkedIn and eventually co-founding a digital marketing company of his own, Gary Wong reveals his journey to success and how he ended up doing what he loves.
How did you end up sitting where you are today?
KPMG was my first job, and after one year, I realised that it is not that kind of company and job that I truly enjoy. So I took the risk of joining a startup and worked for them for three months without being paid.
That's when I fell in love with digital marketing and, from then on, I started my journey as a digital marketer. I went from startup to agency and eventually joined LinkedIn for three years. Working at LinkedIn helped me shift my interest and passion toward B2B marketing, serving over 200 clients and managing over $800K quarter over quarter.
What kind of work does your role involve?
Now I am co-founder of a company called the[in]academy through which we educate and help people execute their personal brand and B2B marketing strategies. I focus on the B2B marketing space.
I help my clients develop their digital B2B marketing strategies to bring them revenue from the money they spent - not just leads. I also create the marketing and content plan for the[in]academy, building our presence in the market.
What gets you excited about your industry?
I work in B2B marketing, though a lot of people actually prefer B2C. This is because, in B2C, you can see people directly buying your products because they saw your ad, and you can easily measure the impact of your marketing activities.
But in B2B, things are way more complicated, which is what I like about it!
You need to truly understand the pain points from the audience. You need to know who are the people who will be making decisions, how to convince them differently, and how to track results that showcase the impact of marketing. Because in B2B, no buyer will see your ad and ask for a demo. And all these challenges made me fall in love with B2B marketing.
What's the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Focus on controlling your inputs. We can only do things that are in our control, and these are the inputs. We should focus on producing our best inputs, then outputs and results will come later when we do the right things.
What's the best way to support aspiring leaders in your field?
I use LinkedIn to share all my experiences and knowledge. It is the primary channel that I use to communicate all my learnings, failures and to educate people about B2B marketing. I intend that by showing them I fail too, and failing is good because you can learn from it, they will go out and try more things.
I am always happy to jump on a Zoom call and talk about my career in B2B marketing, so feel free to reach out to me!
How do you keep up to speed with what's happening in your industry?
Podcasts. I am in a slack group with all APAC marketers, and I interview marketing leaders. You can learn a lot by being in the market every day, executing campaigns, seeing what works and what doesn't.
What was the most challenging project or situation you've overcome?
Back then, at a startup called Goxip, we had some challenging app install numbers that we needed to hit. We tried tonnes of stuff from Facebook ads, Google ads, Youtube ads, but none worked to bring us the number we wanted.
Eventually, we worked together and explored using influencers. We handpicked a bunch of influencers, worked with them to create videos, contests and competitions. By doing that and boosting their posts, our app installs skyrocketed, and we became one of the top 5 fashion apps in Hong Kong at that time.
You finish work today and step outside the office to find a lottery ticket that ends up winning $10 million. What would you do?
I would take my whole company for a trip. Invest in some real estate so I will always have passive income, then go back to doing stuff I like - building a revenue-driven B2B marketing agency and maybe opening a jazz bar where I can play the guitar.
How do you switch off after a day at work?
I usually would play my guitar, walk my dog and read a little.
If you had one wish for the future of your industry, what would it be?
That a magic solution existed to solve all the revenue attribution that marketing was able to create!
What book or podcast should everyone know about?
The State of Demand Gen
The DGMD Podcast
Some Good Content
How should people connect with you?
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