How Quest Nutrition Feeds It’s Lean, Mean Marketing Machine

How Quest Nutrition Feeds It’s Lean, Mean Marketing Machine

by Shawna Ryan

It’s time for the title match we’ve all been waiting for! A fight to the finish!

In this corner, weighing in with data and metrics, we have the Tech and IT departments. In that corner, the champs from the marketing department are here to defend their heavy weight title of value in word of mouth marketing. It’s no holds barred! The techies want their ROI and they’re not going down for the count without a strict count of attribution. Metrics says you can’t count the value of building experiences. These two don’t want to come out with a loss!

Let’s Get ready To Rumble!

Ok, you get it. Marketing and IT do NOT get along. So, when I saw someone from the tech side at one of our GDS marketing events, I was ready for battle.

“Why in the world did you want to come to the CMO Digital Insights Summits?” I rather bluntly asked Peter Huh, CTO of Quest Nutrition.

Good thing Huh is the most agreeable of pugilists. He answered with a hearty laugh.

“We have a big challenge trying to integrate all of the operational side of technology into marketing and leveraging metrics,” says Huh, clearly prepared to answer a question he must get a lot.

He tells me that he’s there to represent the tech aspect of the marketing side of things and this jaded reporter assumes he’s here to tear down all the marketers with a fear filled tirade. I’m waiting for him to tell me if they don’t shape up and find their future in ROI and metrics, his tech army will happily leave them behind. But this jaded reporter would be wrong. Very wrong.

“It’s one of our biggest challenges as a company and I know we’re not alone in that challenge. With the emergence of digital technologies we now can directly measure ROI and effectiveness in engagement and how to leverage that is kind of a lost or nonexistent art, so it’s important to have technology people in marketing to understand how we can leverage that to a large extent.”

Huh says Quest Nutrition’s meteoric rise in its just 6 years of existence meant that they had to work  backwards and figure out a marketing strategy to sustain their initial success—a tactic also coincidentally implemented on the GDS Group LinkedIn. His unique scenario has given him a different perspective that has him proposing a cease fire. So, can we give peace a chance? Is it even possible? It appears this self-proclaimed “techie” actually has a healthy fear of being overtaken by the numbers as well.

“I have a fear of metrics!” exclaims Huh. “Ironically, I’m not a huge supporter of metrics driven decisions. There has to be a human element and judgement to it. It’s interesting that while you have to leverage metrics as much as possible, you can’t 100% swing the pendulum the other way and just do nothing but metrics based decisions. That’s what scares me and my job is to moderate that a little bit and really understand how do we look at the information in an intelligent way and see what works and what doesn’t work.”

He then hands me a Quest Nutrition Protein Cereal bar, which I scarf down in 3 gluttonous bites. I’ll accept your peace offering.

Shawna Ryan
Master of Ceremonies, Editor

Shawna is a 2 time NY Emmy Award winning story teller who has taken on the role of anchor, reporter, producer, writer, photographer, and editor in the past decade. She has worked as an on air reporter and anchor for local news with companies such as NY1, News12, Newscorp, FIOS, The US Open, and Cablevision's Optimum Channel. She has also been an emcee who has led events for The Weather Channel, The History Channel, The Smithsonian Channel, National Geographic, and the Discovery Channel.