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Exclusive Interview with Tammy Kahn Fennell – CEO of MarketMeSuite.com

Exclusive Interview with Tammy Kahn Fennell – CEO of MarketMeSuite.com

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By: Philippe SHOCK Matthews

Tammy Kahn Fennell

As an Internet Marketing Technologist, I thought this year would be the perfect time to feature some of the innovators, Founders and CEO’s of Social Media Marketing, Internet Marketing and Search Engine Optimization with our launch of our new Technology Profiles & Reviews Channel, featuring  the Founder and CEO of MarketMeSuite.com, Tammy Kahn Fennell!

MarketMeSuite was launched in early 2010 by a mild mannered tech whiz, Alan Hamlyn, and enthusiastic NY’er, Tammy Kahn Fennell. After working remotely, Fennell moved her entire family to the UK, so she could be with the tech team. They now work as a team of 4 from an office in Gorleston near Norwich and are creating a global success story.

Graduating with a degree in Strategic Communications from University of Wisconsin’s School of Journalism, Fennell has been putting her marketing expertise to work since 2003. Late 2009, after spotting trends and recognizing the future in social media, she co-founded the popular social media marketing dashboard, MarketMeSuite.com. The company now has a fast-growing global customer-base of businesses and consultants. She also runs WeAreSocialPeople.com, the community driven blog. Submit articles and you may just see them published!

MarketMeSuite was a paid only solution , but the team recently released the dashboard completely free, and have since attracted thousands of new users worldwide.

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
First off, my condolences for the sudden loss of  your “furry daughter,” Skoda who was your office mascot.

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“She got sick  and started vomiting blood, 15 hours later she died. Five vets were left scratching their heads. They said she must have had something quite serious that just went undetected for a long time. We’re pretty devastated, she was such a great dog. I truly loved her.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
Where were you born and raised?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“I was born in New York, Long Island to be exact. I was raised there until college. I went to the University of Wisconsin, and spent a semester in London during that time.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
What was it like moving your family to another country?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“Well, my husband is british, so that helps. I’ve lived on and off in the UK since I graduated college, but January of 2011 was the first time I “officially” moved. It was hard! Not because of any major cultural differences — british people are pretty similar to americans, but more just all the planning to move! It took 6 months to get our dog cleared, and that was no easy task, and we moved over with 17 suitcases. We didn’t bring that much in hindsight, and we were lucky enough to find a great semi-furnished house. But yeah, it was hard! I wouldn’t wish a cross-atlantic move on my worst enemy!”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
How did you adjust to a new way of living?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“I joke with the people back at home when they ask “What’s it like living in the UK?” — I say “well, I spend my days in the office and the nights with my little boy, so I’m not sure if it really matters if I’m in the UK or Alaska. I’m so busy I wouldn’t likely notice the difference.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
Why did you develop MarketMeSuite?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“MarketMeSuite was a joint brainchild of me and my unbelievable talented business partner and co-founder, Alan Hamlyn. We developed it for the same reason most people start things… We saw a problem we had in our own business and we realized we could solve it. In our case it was finding a good social media lead generator for our own businesses.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
You have a degree in journalism; how has that helped you with MarketMeSuite?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“It’s a degree from the school of journalism, but it’s actually in strategic communications (and Philosophy, just to get my money’s worth out of college!). Strategic communications is basically marketing and advertising, so I guess I’m one of the lucky ones who can actually say I use my degree. Though, in all honesty I’m pretty sure the Philosophy degree taught me more. I focused on logic in philosophy, and I think a lot of running a business is being able to think critically and reason!”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
What are the new trends for the new year you see coming and how will MMS meet the trend?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“Content curation is a big trend. Watch that phrase “social curation” as you will be seeing it a lot. The social sphere is becoming very cluttered with more networks than most people can keep up with, so there will be a lot of innovation around solving that problem. I think we’ve cracked it for small and medium businesses with MarketMeSuite version 4, which takes a different approach to Social Media Management, Monitoring, and Marketing. It feeds everything through what we are dubbing the “Social Inbox” so that you can filter, manage, engage, store — in a word “Curate” your social world.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
How do you use MMS to market MMS in the Social Space?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“In our current version “reply campaigns” has been invaluable to be able to keyword and geo-target potential users. I show that feature off a lot, and more often than not the “test” one I am sending as an example winds up becoming a MarketMeSuite customer. Version 4 will take this to the next level with an entire section dedicated to leads.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
What is the first thing someone should do when launching a social media marketing campaign using MMS?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“Set up searches. Start seeing what’s out there by setting up a geo-targeted search. You’d be surprised how many leads could be right outside your door that you just didn’t know about.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
Did you always want to be a tekkie?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“Haha, no. Before this I ran an e-commerce business selling Antiques and Collectibles. I always had a passion for emerging technology, so I guess in some ways maybe I always had an inclination to do something like this. What I have always wanted to do is run a successful business. I grew up in a family business, I think business just runs through my veins. So when I was able to combine business acumen with an emerging technology (namely, social media) and I could use may marketing skills? It was too perfect not to do and I’ve really been enjoying it.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
Are you nerddy by nature or naughty by nature?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“I have embraced my inner geek, often quoting star trek references, which is pretty scary. Naughty?! I think I have a bit of a “challenge the status quo” streak so if that’s naughty then sure ;)”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
What makes MarketMeSuite different from your competitors?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“MarketMeSuite has always been focused on turning good curation into viable leads, and our newest version is really taking that to a new level. MarketMeSuite is called “marketme” for a reason — it’s not all about pulling stuff in (although it does that quite well) but it’s about getting out there and starting conversations, managing the marketing effort, and ultimately improving your bottom line.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
What are some of the new upgrades you have coming out for MMS?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“Version 4 is web based, so that’s a big change and one I’m really excited about. We have taken a different approach. V4 is a sandbox where cross promoting can thrive. It’s not geared for one network over another. It’s a more unbiased approach to social marketing.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
Why did you make it free vs. fee?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“It’s currently free, but we will have paid upsells when we launch version 4. We thought it was very important to have a strong free offering to show people what we have, and get people excited. Version 4 will still have a very strong free offering, but those businesses who want more power, more analytics, more ROI, there will be paid plans which we were upfront about from the beginning of going free. Our community is great – during this period of going free I’ve lost count of how many emails we got with people saying ‘I feel guilty for not paying you!'”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
Who are the other three team members of MMS?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“Alan Hamlyn is my co-founder and CTO. Bill Nunney is our Lead Developer, Nikki Peters is our community support manager. We also have a couple of great interns, Matt Harris who interns in the tech department and Trish Baden who helps out with community management. We are a VERY hard working team. There is such a level of commitment from each of us, and that, and that alone, has been the driving force in any success we’ve had.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
What are some of the unique features that MMS have?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“Our approach to a lot of what we do is unique, so, for example, in version 4, when you create a geo-targeted search you don’t just stop there, you can then turn those searches into leads and work it through your team flow. Our inbox approach is unique as well. When we were deciding how best to approach our new version it dawned on us all of a sudden… “what would make v4 super easy for everyone to get the most out of it?” Alan had an “a ha” moment when he said… ‘hey, everyone can use email…'”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
Why did you create MMS to be a software download verses server or cloud driven?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“At the time we liked the idea of a downloadable piece of software. One of the only major clients at the time we launched was tweetdeck, so we knew people were comfortable with it, but now, we see the need for web based, which is what v4 is. Just to clarify, MarketMeSuite has always been on the cloud, as in you can access your data from multiple computers.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
One of the features I love in MMS is the “Reply Campaigns” can you share with us how that works and why it is important?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“When we first developed MarketMeSuite (then MarketMeTweet) would you believe that was the ONLY thing we were going to do? The entire suite has grown around reply campaigns. It’s important because the Twittersphere is noisy, and Reply Campaigns is like running a targeted google adwords campaign on Twitter, minus the automation of course. We just make it super easy for you to find the people talking about what you’re looking for, in a certain location if desired, and then having the “templates” to reply just helps make the process so you’re not doing social media 24/7. This feature is really going to grow in version 4, with templates giving way to “reply macros” and the leads section becoming the “new” reply module.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
What about the “Keyword Following” application within MMS, can you explain why you added this component?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“There are some people who are a bit shy. They aren’t quite ready to reply to people talking about certain topics but they still want to listen, and often when you let someone know you are listening, by following, they will follow you back.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
What are “Dotted Tweets” and how should they be used?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
“Dotted Tweets are a way to organize your content either among your team, or really whatever follow you give it. In v4 dots will give way to flags, but think of it like in gmail when you color code certain messages. It’s a way of helping curate.”

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
What is your Twitter handle?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
@tammykfennell

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
Do you have a Facebbok page?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
facebook.com/marketmesuite

Philippe SHOCK Matthews
Obvious question, how can people find and download MarketMeSuite?

Tammy Kahn Fennell
http://marketmesuite.com 🙂

 

 

 

 

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About Philippe Matthews

2 comments

  1. I had a blast, thanks for interviewing me 🙂

    Tammy, CEO @MarketMeSuite
    Connect with me on Twitter @tammykfennell

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