Andre Azer joined StudentUniverse as our Vice President of Marketing last month. We sat down with him to talk about what plans he has in store for marketing at StudentUniverse, the biggest differences between marketing to students versus general travelers and what makes a successful marketing program.
- What is it about working in marketing at StudentUniverse that intrigued you?
That’s easy, the two P’s! People and Potential. I wasn’t sure about StudentUniverse at first, but every time I spoke to someone new I liked the company more. It’s extremely hard to find smart people who are driven, and at the same time completely down-to-earth and totally welcoming. This applies to the whole company really. So, when I look at that intelligence and combine it with the right people, I feel like the sky is the limit.
- What can we expect to see that’s new/different in StudentUniverse’s marketing under your leadership?
I’m totally a data driven person, so I expect that how we look at data, understand it, own it, and then action it will be slightly different. I’m also a huge proponent of testing, learning, iterating, and moving on to the next. I hope to see us become fearless of change and leading the company to the next big thing.
- What are the most important considerations when marketing to students that are different from other segments of travelers?
Budget matters to most travelers, but for students it probably matters even more. As marketers, we always need to remember that and put ourselves in the consumers shoes. What makes sense to an affluent 45-year-old, doesn’t make sense to a 20-year-old with limited time and money. The way we communicate, the time and place, the ever-changing nature of this consumers demands, all look different than with other travel segments.
- What do you use as the most important indicators of the success of a marketing program?
I’m a simple person, sales growth and cost per acquisition efficiency leading to positive ROI. Success isn’t completely black or white though. There are several marketing programs/channels that just don’t meet those criteria and still hold value. It’s important to find the right mix.
- What segments of marketing do you allocate the most budget to?
Whichever segments are driving the best sales growth and cost per acquisition efficiency.
If you want to chat further with Andre, you can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.