MarTech Edge Interview with Jan-Henrik Behrens, VP Online Marketing, IONOS | Martech Edge | Best News on Marketing and Technology
MarTech Edge Interview with Jan-Henrik Behrens, VP Online Marketing, IONOS

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MarTech Edge Interview with Jan-Henrik Behrens, VP Online Marketing, IONOS


Published on 21st Nov, 2023

Welcome, Jan! Could you share how your background in economics enables you as the VP of online marketing at IONOS?

My education in business administration and e-commerce helps me daily in making marketing decisions. Online marketing has a high impact on the economic future of the company. Having internalized business processes here is an important factor in thinking entrepreneurially.

In what ways does IONOS serve as a 'one-stop shop' for all digitalization requirements?

We are a one-stop shop for SMEs in particular. Our new structure allows us to grow with our customers while meeting the needs of professional web users. This starts with a domain name and a professional email address, continues with entry-level products such as website builders and collaboration tools, and can be extended to an enterprise platform, depending on individual needs.

Small and medium-sized businesses are a significant focus for IONOS. How do you tailor your online marketing strategies to cater to the specific needs of SMBs?

Yes, that’s right. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of many economies, which is precisely why we are passionate about supporting local entrepreneurs through our products. This is reflected in our online marketing communications, where we emphasize these very qualities. Understanding the specific problems or challenges that an SME faces is crucial as a starting point. After we’ve truly understood these issues, we approach our communications with the intent to solve them. We also fine-tune our marketing strategies to specifically target these small businesses to reduce inefficiency. Our aim is to engage in sharp, clear communication that provides a solution to the exact problems they face, directly addressing the needs of our intended audience.

Can you share a few examples of online marketing campaigns under your leadership that garnered unprecedented positive results? What distinct approaches did you employ for each of these campaigns?

Our products are generally not purchased impulsively. We can see this in the data. Users often visit our pages several times to gather information, perhaps comparing them with other providers or collecting information before deciding to make a purchase. This initial phase, the beginning of a customer journey, is very important for convincing a potential customer about us.

At IONOS, we’re currently in a dynamic phase, heavily investing in our brand. This investment is having a significant impact on our online marketing strategy. We’re supporting this branding phase with a comprehensive 360-degree approach to digital marketing. In every marketing channel, we aim to guide the user through every stage of the customer journey with targeted communication. This starts from the brand-driven awareness phase and extends all the way to the conversion-focused purchase phase. We’re leveraging all the tracking technologies available to us. Our goal is to achieve maximum brand penetration in the market while also attracting a lot of new customers. We’ve successfully managed this balance in several European countries over the past few years. As a result, we’ve been able to build our brand very profitably, which is why we plan to continue investing in our brand in the future.

Can you provide insights into the latest offering from IONOS, the AI website generator, and how it enables professional website development in no time?

AI is rapidly redefining the way websites are built. With the new Website generator for IONOS MyWebsite Now, SMBs can now create a complete website with a homepage and up to four subpages. All they need to do is enter their company name, industry, and a short description, and it will generate three design options for businesses to choose from. They select their preferred option and simply edit & expand it. Here again, we use AI tools to automatically generate images from a simple text command. SMBs can also choose from 12 different tones to find the perfect tone for their website content. In addition, the IONOS MyWebsite Now offers an AI SEO text generator to generate search engine-optimized headlines and text.

What criteria do you consider when evaluating marketing technology software?

Aside from the obvious factors such as features and price, we also place a strong emphasis on data security and the location of data storage. At IONOS, we are very conscientious about data security, and this is reflected in our choice of software.

The digital marketing landscape is constantly evolving. What recent trends or innovations in online marketing do you find particularly relevant to IONOS?

One of the biggest trends is TikTok. It’s not exactly new, but the consistent increase in reach is quite impressive. What is interesting here is that it operates very differently from other video platforms. One has to adapt to it, and then it is possible to reach any target group on TikTok. Furthermore, the development of internet privacy is a major issue. Google aims to improve internet privacy by phasing out third-party cookies from its websites. Firefox and Safari no longer support them either. These changes will have a significant impact on banner ads.