Collin, VP of Marketing at Influxis, is a 19 year veteran marketing professional with a history in the automotive industry, ad agencies and entertainment.
So what do you love about Influxis? What made you come here?
I came here because of the potential and the cutting edge technology; we’re always innovating things. So that’s why I knew this company was going to go somewhere.
How long have you been working with Influxis?
Over 4 years.
Do you have any highlight moments that stand out to you?
VidCon. Showcasing our tweet-powered, web-robotics Plinko in front of 4,000 attendees on the mainstage at VidCon, and that we built it in-house, and that I actually built it.
With your own hands?
Nice! I understand you have a degree in Aerospace engineering. How did having that degree help with this project?
Yeah, I am a certified rocket scientist in a way although I haven’t done anything with the degree. I loved going to USC though. Fight on! I think my engineering background helped me in the designing process. I could at least picture how various parts could work together.
So going from engineering to marketing is a pretty big leap. How did that happen?
I realized I am not a 100% math-driven person. But I like to walk the fine line between art and science, which is marketing. Because in marketing, you need to have an analytical mind to understand the market but also a creative mind to transform a strategic idea into a memorable message that stick with consumers.
How involved are you with the messaging for Influxis?
I strategize with the executive team for the overall branding and work with the marketing team for all related marketing messages.
Do you have a favorite campaign or marketing message that you’ve done at Influxis?
Yeah, the full page ad for our new branding message “Pure Streaming Joy” in the 2014 Streaming Media Sourcebook. It was inspired by Bill Bernbach’s legendary Volkswagen print ads.
A very minimalist approach. What most inspires you about the minimalist approach?
It’s very difficult to make something simple. Because you need to be creatively disciplined.
What does it take to be creatively disciplined in your opinion?
You need to have a very clear creative objective, and steadfastness in convincing the executive team until they get tired of you and say yes. <Laughter>
Is the executive team at Influxis a hard bunch to convince?
Yeah, 99% of the time. Just kidding! Do I still have a job? <Laughter>
So the executive team namely Richard and Jerry have helped the business from the ground up. It must be hard to wrestle creative direction from them. Do you find yourself often on the same page or in different books?
Because we all have the common passion for innovation, I think we’re on the same page most of the time. So, even if there is some creative difference, we agree on the fundamental message and work it out in the end.
So does that mean you guys all like the same beer?
Most definitely! Chimay in an ice cold goblet. <Laughter>
I’ve heard that because Influxis would often sponsor free beer at conferences and sometimes even an open bar at a VIP party, some people thought that Influxis was a beer company. In the 4 years you’ve been, do you still get people asking if Influxis is a beer company?
Not really, but I’d be more than happy to design a microbrewery for Richard and Jerry with my fluid dynamics knowledge, although it’s very much faded into history. Bernoulli’s equation anyone?
I’m sure they would love that. So now with Flash being a fading technology and the fact that the Influxis was so closely tied to it during its prime, how challenging has it been to redefine the brand as a more tech agnostic company?
It was very challenging, but at the same time it was in a sense easy. When we look at our past target market, which was primarily developers, it was difficult to pivot their mindset from recognizing us as a Flash company to, let’s say, an HTML5 company. But at the same time, because our brand awareness in the general market was so low, re-branding ourselves as a tech agnostic and an innovative company was easy. It was like drawing a new picture on an empty canvas.
What is your target market now?
We are focusing more on “larger” customers, such as top digital agencies, entertainment companies and brands.
It would make sense that the target market would change being that the technology changed and also there is so much more competition in the video streaming industry, with even free options. It would seem that Influxis would have had to pivot to survive. Do you find that Influxis really offers something completely different from say the likes YouTube, UStream and so on?
Yes, indeed. Our biggest differentiating factor is in interactivity. Beyond traditional streaming, we are enabling our customers to be able to engage their audience in real-time with various interactive streaming solutions, such as web and social robotics, creative UGC, live collaboration and social media-powered interactivity.
That sounds awesome, and I’m sure readers will want to learn more. What are some ideas that Influxis customers have done?
Our case studies page showcases 30 unique interactive streaming projects for top brands. We even love to ideate fresh new interactive streaming ideas specifically for our clients, and this way, we can demonstrate our creative capabilities along with our technological capabilities.
Lastly, since you’re Korean, what Korean food and drink do you recommend people need to try at least once in their lifetime?
Be adventurous and try barbecued small intestine (gop-chang) and Soju (Korean sake of sort). You will thank me for it! If you want to know a hot Korean BBQ place, give me a holler! <Laughter>
Connect with Collin on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/collinhosanglee