The Influencer Series: Daniel Incandela

 In Digital Marketing, Interactive Content

The digital world is constantly changing. As new channels and technology hit the scene, marketing efforts have become more disjointed. Multiple departments are required to collaborate in order to execute a campaign. It often seems like an overwhelming task staying organized and sometimes in all that shuffle the core objective, connecting with your consumer in a meaningful way, gets lost in the noise.

daniel-incandelaDaniel Incandela, the Senior Vice President of Marketing at Return Path

has built a career by coming into organizations and reinventing the way they approach digital marketing. He believes the key to success is building an overarching digital strategy that encompasses all departments.

After graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology, Incandela worked first with museums as a New Media producer with the Indiana State Museum, then as the Director of New Media at the Indianapolis Museum of the Arts. That background in creative endeavors has followed him into his marketing career. In fact, he believes that experience with creating compelling content can be the difference between winning or losing a client.

“When you’re trying to win business against other companies, it’s those little touches that are somewhat undervalued but can make a huge difference,” says Incandela.

Creating those “little touches” is achieved by staying connected to your storytelling roots. Even though marketing in today’s digital world can feel so far removed from your customers, it’s important to keep their experience at the top of your mind when crafting campaigns that will be compelling to them. Keeping messaging simple and authentic will help ensure that you’re offering customers value instead of ending up in their spam box.

Not allowing your overarching story to get lost, even as content bounces around between departments, is the key to keeping your content relevant and your customers engaged. As marketing companies become more fragmented, it becomes easier to lose sight of the big picture. So how do you keep it all straight? Enter the newly trending addition to the C-Suite: The Chief Digital Officer (CDO).

“What’s happening with the trend of CDOs right now is that a lot of technology strategy is siloed and it can be kind of scattered. The CDO is coming in to really drive cohesive digital strategy across the entire company,” Incandela explains.

The CDO helps drive consistent brand voice and marketing objectives across the entirety of the digital space by functioning as a bridge between siloed departments, like marketing, copywriting and design, that might otherwise not communicate often. This big picture digital strategy is the key to ensuring you provide the right customers with right content at the right time.

So how can you implement an overarching digital strategy? What does a marketer need to survive in this disjointed landscape? According to Incandela, it’s pretty simple.

While bringing in someone to develop and manage overarching digital strategy like a CDO can help keep all the pieces straight and ensure a consistent brand voice, Incandela thinks every marketer should push themselves to cultivate a skill-set that is fundamentally digital in order to keep up with our constantly changing field.

Remaining relevant in the digital space can help you do more than just learn new technology. Foster your creative and storytelling instincts by consuming media that inspires you as well. Incandela has found that, “Following a ton of websites which I check on a daily basis just for inspiration and looking at things other than software companies,” has contributed to his success.

He’s not just pushing the digital Kool-aid, he’s drinking it too! Despite his busy life, Incandela manages to keep active profiles in every corner of the digital universe, from Pinterest to Flickr, Linkedin to Twitter, and even Tumblr and Snapchat! Although he’s quick to explain about Snapchat, “I don’t use it, I don’t really even understand the appeal, but I’d better at least be familiar with it so that I can be ready for the next thing.