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Beyond Boundaries: Exploring Global Partnerships for Cloud Security Excellence with CloudWize

Carmit Haba, VP of Marketing at CloudWize

Embark on a riveting exploration with Harshit Gupta, Director of Business Alliances, and Carmit Haba, VP of marketing at CloudWize. They discuss CloudWize’s dynamic shift towards strategic partnerships with MSSPs in the realm of cloud security. Delve into the intricacies of encryption key advancements, uncovering the pivotal role they play in the contemporary tech landscape. From addressing local community concerns to fostering global collaborations, join us on a thought-provoking journey that intricately weaves technology, strategy, and innovation. 

CloudWize helps you gain maximum security & compliance for your cloud environments, so you can easily guard your cloud. 

Carmit Haba
VP of Marketing at ColudWize

Hello, everyone, and welcome to another episode of Wytpod. My name is Harshit, and I’m the Director of Business Alliance at Wytabs. We are a digital agency specializing in SaaS and e-commerce SEO. And I’ve got Carmit Haba with me today, who is the VP of Marketing at CloudWize. Now, CloudWize helps businesses gain maximum security and compliance for their cloud environment. So you can easily guard your cloud. Okay? So welcome to the show, Carmit. I’m so happy to have you with me today.

Thank you. Thank you for inviting me. It’s such an honor.

Great. Now, let’s start with your journey. Can you share about your being in the marketing realm for so long and how your unique background in organizational development, consulting, criminology, and sociology has influenced your approach to marketing in this really niche tech industry?

It’s I got into this business by accident because I was in my second degree, my MA, and I was looking for a job. My MA is in organizational development. I had a friend who worked in an HR boutique, and she was supposed to send my CV to this place, and someone else sent it to the Ministry of Education. She called me and she said they were looking for a content editor. They got your resume and they want to talk to you. I said, Okay, opportunity knocks. I’m not going to say no. I asked her to tell me a little bit about the job, and it sounds interesting. I said, Okay, I’ll go. I’ll talk. I started there as a content editor, and it was in 2012. That was just the internet starting the marketing stuff, Facebook pages and analytics and everything, SEO, and stuff like that. Everything just started then. I didn’t know anything. I didn’t know about computers, didn’t know anything. I knew a little bit what’s Google. Sure. I started there. I got involved in this, and it got really interesting. I did a lot of small things. Then I finished my degree, and I thought, What am I going to do now?

Then I thought to myself, I love this whole marketing thing online. It’s really interesting. It seems like it has a future in it. I read about it, and I never thought of it. Then there were no courses or stuff.

How many years back was this? Which year are you talking about?

That was 2012.

Okay, that’s early. Well, there’s a lot of things.

There were a few courses, but you couldn’t find them in university. Yeah, for sure. They’re always the last ones to add. I took a chance and went with it. Then I started my second job. It was my real marketing job. The Ministry of Education was really interesting. I learned HTML, I learned a lot of stuff there, but it was really basic. Then I went to a real job. It was junior marketing, but it was online marketing. Then I learned a lot of stuff to do like I did. I learned to use Salesforce and Valdot. I learned email marketing a little bit better. It was in English, it was DBMS. It was also a SaaS company, more like a tech company. I did everything. It was really interesting. Then I continued. It was B2B, and then I moved on to Amadeus, and there I was doing B2C and B2B2C. It was a really big change. Then doing Facebook, PPC, and learning a lot, and doing apps. We had an app, and it was different. It’s different, but it’s not. B2c and B2D and B2B. If you know about marketing, what people want, and what you want to give them, it’s the same thing.

It’s all about people. Then From there, I did a little bit of consulting. I did consulting for startups, for small businesses. Then I moved to TypeMock. I was there for almost three years. That’s also a tech company for developers. I also learn a lot. I have a great team there. We had a few products for developers. It’s also different. It was a company that was already based. They were in the market for 15 years, so they already had a brand, but then they didn’t do stuff for a few years. You had a legacy to deal with. Then from there, I went to CloudWize, and here I am today.

Very well. It’s an interesting journey. One of the common things that you and I have is that during my initial days, I was also focused a lot on generating and taking care of social media because back in 2012, ’13, that used to be the mainstream thing. That is how even my interest in SEO just happened. Yeah, today we are here. 

Also, I want to go back to what you asked me about how psychology, and what I studied influenced marketing, me when I’m doing marketing. I think every marketer would say that It’s a lot of psychology, but I also think that it’s also about sociology. It’s about how we act as a society and not just how a person thinks and uses it because everything we do is affected by the company we’re at and the society we’re at. I think it was very interesting to see that. I think it did give me a different perspective. Also, organizational development is how every department in a company depends on each other. We’re in marketing, and we don’t necessarily understand how we affect support or products, but when you learn organizational development, you see how everything affects everything. To me, marketing is a cornerstone because everything goes through marketing. After all, marketing is the voice of the company. Everything reflects on the outside and comes through marketing. Everyone must align together, everyone’s working together. I think it’s really important.

No, that’s very nicely put. I couldn’t agree more. Every team has their role. There has to be It’s a good synergy between each one of them. The information should flow flawlessly, and every team facilitates you to achieve those organizational goals that you have in mind. Yeah, that’s crucial. Okay, now let’s talk about what I would love to know. Can you provide us with a detailed explanation of the cloud security center of excellence and the various components it comprises? Also, what is the unique set of propositions that you have that outweighs apart from how you get to the competition out there in the market?

Yeah, sure. CloudWize was born in 2019, so we were almost five years old. We started as an observability tool. Then after, I don’t remember exactly when, we pivoted to Security, Cloud Security. We already had observabilities and operation abilities and cost abilities and everything. We decided to get more about security with all the other abilities that we already had. This is what makes it the cloud security center of excellence. A cloud center of excellence means in this simplest term that there’s a There’s a lot of people in that team that work on the cloud. There’s someone to do the cost, CFO maybe, and there’s DevOps, DevSecOps, and everybody’s working together, like the CISO and everything. But they all have their tools and even their language. There’s a miscommunication. What we took, we gave it the same language so everyone can use the same solution, the same platform, and they can use it and talk together and use the same solution with many abilities, and they don’t have to use different tools, even the CSOs. Csos, I respect them. They have so much responsibility and so much work to do. I don’t know how they sleep at night.

Just to think about if someone can hack the cloud and take data, it’s stressful, and there’s a lot of burnout. I think that they need to use a lot of tools. Only for the cloud, they need to use one tool for compliance, the other tool for security, different tools for operations, and even for security, they need API security, they need IAM security, they need so many tools. So they don’t because they can use just CloudWize, a cloud center of excellence. Cloud security center of excellence. This is what we do. It was a bit of a challenge to make people understand because we have so many features. You go to our website, you go to the feature page, and you’re like a list of stuff that we do because we have a lot of features and a lot of abilities. How do we make, how do I make people understand just in one word or one sentence that There are so many things, and this is what they need? They just need one tool. This is why we came up with the Cloud Security Center of Excellence because I think people understand that we have all these abilities in one place.

What I like to call it, I like to think about it as a Swiss Army knife, this little thing that has so many gadgets and stuff in it. Also, this is what we are, this one place with so many things coming out of it so you can use it. What separates us is this thing that we have all those things in one place, on one platform. But we’re also working with MSSP. We want to help small-medium businesses. Small-medium businesses don’t necessarily have the resources or knowledge to secure their cloud. Most of them are working with MSSP. We have the right tool for MSSP to work with because MSSP can generate reports or audits so quickly with their logo white labeling. They can do it fast instead of days and weeks to create just reports and audits on their compliance state, their security state. They can just do it and it takes an hour or something like that. This is a different market that we want to address.

That’s brilliant. While checking your LinkedIn, I stumbled across what you’re doing. I see such a great milestone with your SEO. I saw really good figures, like all that being bumped up to 40%, then a 60% increase in your monthly subscribers. I would love to understand any specific strategies or initiatives that contributed to your success.

Yes. I would like to say that I create more content than ever. I’m using AI, of course. AI helps me create the content, but I have to edit it so much, but it’s still so much faster. My strategy is basically to look at Google Trends and current events that are unique and they feel like a certain breach has happened or something that people need to be aware of and to create content fast. That content is, of course, a blog post, but it’s also to share it on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is the major social media that I’m working with because our target audience is there mostly. We also have Facebook and Twitter, but they’re not so aggressive. But Quora is also great. I love Quora, but our basic target audience is at LinkedIn. LinkedIn always messes around with the algorithm. Now, the company page doesn’t get anything.

Are you able to pay promotions on LinkedIn as well?

No, because I did a few times, and it’s a pithole for money. You don’t see real results that you actually can say it was worth the money. It just feels like I’m bleeding money and I don’t see results. I would rather use that investment of money in other places where I know I can get something out of it.

What are those other places that you feel would give you a better ROI?

I think places that have tools. It’s better because the audience there is more focused and it’s more interested. It is more focused, even more focused than on Google.

Yeah, because the buying intent is when people check your reviews out your profile on such platforms, definitely the buying intent is much more compared to just shouting it out loud on social media. That’s more or less the branding side, I would guess.

Yeah. The competition is high. It’s not just cloud security, but the competition is with every cybersecurity because it’s just one small, relatively small target audience, and there are a lot of tools out there wanting them to use. There’s a really big competition. The competition is good. I love competition, but the problem is that it raises the cost per click.

Yeah, no one loves competition. Come on. Let’s talk a little bit about your pur-do market strategy strategies. To be honest, I would have to focus on the key performance indicators as well, and you can double up to keep our cloud wins, and it may shed some light on those terms.

Yeah. When I first looked at the market. The first thing I wanted to do was to map the user’s journey because I wanted to know which channels I would like to invest in and what persona is the user. Our tool is not under $100. For me, it was very obvious Just that they were not going to purchase online. If you have under, I think maybe $500 is the limit per year, I’m going to say, not per month. After $500, they need approvals from more people in the organization, and they need to rearrange their budgets. It’s not go online and purchase by yourself. It’s not going to happen. How am I going to arrange that journey for the user? What I thought about and what we saw in real life is that the awareness of that persona of the CSOs for cloud security is high. They don’t need me to teach them that they need cloud security I think most people even know that they need something. But there are so many tools, and also the cloud is very agile. Everything is changing and challenging. Everything is like hyperspeed, so they need to adapt to that.

They also need to adapt to new tools and threats. It feels like almost everyone is just reacting instead of taking charge and saying, This is what I need. They just keep pushing back. I figured the awareness level was high. The competition is hard, and nobody’s going to buy. Just look at it, say, Yeah, it’s a great tool, and going to buy it. Even to get them to trial, it’s hard because when you ask them for a trial period, it means that they need to trust me. They need to trust our company because they have to bring their data and all the cloud infrastructure, and they have to know that they’re not just giving it away. It was really about building trust. Building trust was really important. The website, it was when I started, the website was, I don’t know, maybe three or four pages. There was no feature page, even though we did have, even back then, we had a lot of features. But it was really important to show that.

Now, given your love for SEO, I’m sure that was a nightmare for you because you do love content. You come from that background.

Yes, it was painful because It’s not just about the SEO, but also about what people are looking for. They’re not going to get it. They come to the website, they have something amorphic. They don’t understand it. Then they’re searching more. Some people think that if you give a little less on the website, then they would contact you, and ask you for more details. But that’s wrong. Nobody wants to do that. People, if I don’t see it, then I’m clicking X, I’m going out. I don’t want to spend time on someone who doesn’t spend time on me. Yeah, in terms of SEO, it was also not working. Also, the competition was already set. Cloud security is one of the most used app terms there is. I needed to think about other terms. First of all, I needed to work on a website. I did a little rebranding. I don’t like rebranding because it’s a lot of work. Sometimes it’s unnecessary work, but we had to change it because we changed it to class security and we changed everything. I changed the website and then I worked when I changed the whole pages, I worked on the SEO for every page.

After that, there was the blog post. Right now, I can probably create three or four posts a week, but I don’t do that because I think it should simmer a bit, I need to let each one go and have an opportunity to slow down, and I don’t want to overwhelm anything. I don’t want to overwhelm the audience with so much information.

That’s a really interesting take. Most of the NGOs will tell you to go crazy with the content for the fact that the minute you start establishing the moral work content authority and expertise in your space, you get the results because you’re clicking imaging has expertise in that subject matter. But yet here as well, it’s a content creation on the frequency. You’re thinking more about your audience. That’s the way, to be honest.

Also, I think that if Google sees that not a lot of people are interested in the content, nobody’s coming in, then it will rate it a little bit lower because it seems like there’s content, but it’s not interesting to anyone, so why should I promote it? I think it’s also needed in that aspect. Now, I use Google Trends a lot, really, and it helps me to come up with things fast because I see things happening right then. The day after, I already have a blog post and everything ready. It does help with the SEO. Some of the content that I created is still showing, I created it a little over a year ago. It was about ChatGPT security issues. It blew up because nobody talked about the security issues. Everyone talked about ChatGPT. It was really hot stuff. I thought, Okay, I need to write something on ChatGPT.

How many of you are trying to get on that part in this?

I still get hundreds a week. Every day I see people come into that piece, and it was over a year ago. I said, When I wrote it, I thought, There’s no way I’m going to hit any numbers with that because it was a little bit later on, and a lot of people already wrote books about ChatGPT. But I thought I had to write something about security because it’s something that interests me, and it’s really important. I did that, and it surprised me. It was one of the things that I always get I do something and I think, No, it won’t work, but I do it anyway because I always love to see if it’s going to work or not. I thought it was going to be interesting. I thought I was going to read it. It’s going to be interesting. It’s interesting to me, but it was really interesting. It hit.

Yeah, it’s a very interesting angle as well. I think if you have the part, it is speeding out a bit. If you’re seeing a bit of decline compared to when you launched it. I’m in a piece of advice. Do a part in to be fresh. I think that will be a bit of magic. For sure. How much you know, big governance, I think cold outreachings are being one of the channels that you’re using. Now, in today’s age, especially cold email, that is becoming very tough because of a lot of strict rules that are being imposed by these giants. And email providers, Gmail, Yahoo, your Bing. Are you seeing any changes in your matrix, like the performance matrix, when it comes to your cold email outreach? Or is it something which is you as an organization are not getting a negative impact on?

I haven’t experienced a negative impact yet because I try not to overdo I do a campaign, and I do it with a campaign once a month. I’m not overdoing it. It’s cold outreach, and I’m running right now. Yeah, there are limitations with Gmail. You can’t send over 400 emails a day.

Maybe I think for the bulk emailers, that is becoming much trickier. But keeping the frequency low, it’s ok.

Yeah, exactly. Because my target audience is relatively small. It’s really important for me not to annoy them. I don’t say that nobody gets annoyed with me. I bet some do, but I try. I know I’m getting a lot of emails, a lot of cold outreach, a lot. I bet they do, too. But I do see they’re opening the emails, and clicking. This is a good feedback. Also, it’s really important to add that they can remove themselves and ask not to get more emails. I won’t be spammed. It’s better than just sending newsletters as cold outreach. Yeah, that’s not a good practice. I tried it, but I tried it once, and then I thought, Wait, these people didn’t ask me to send them a newsletter. Why am I sending them a newsletter? It’s not good practice. It’s better to send them something that I think will interest them.

That makes perfect sense. I’m still eating these for done voice point. A lot of people don’t follow this. A simple conversation with a group of team members, you are in the database and they flood you with emails. Then that happens. It’s quite a common practice, unfortunately, where that happens. Now, being fluent in Hebrew and English, how does the international flair impact your marketing strategies, particularly in the space you are in at the end of the day? Is there any specific advice that you’ve encountered on this Well it’s Hebrew is very local, and most Israelis speak English and read English, especially in the tech industry.

But it did help when it comes to government, everything that’s government, you have to have it in Hebrew. Sometimes the small, and medium businesses, it’s better to talk to them in your local language. It’s sending them in English. It seems that we’re too far apart, and you want to look them in the eyes and you want to say, Okay, we’re both Israelis. Look you in the eye. Take some stuff. But it also helps with all the collateral to have that in Hebrew as well. It would help if I knew more languages. We had a conference in South Korea, and we translated our brochure there, it was also techy, and we asked people that we knew, who knew Korean to help us just so we could know that the translation was well because it was tech also involved In Hebrew, at least, we know it’s fine.

That’s sorted. Yeah. Okay. Now, I would love to get your insights on any specific challenges that you have faced and who have come, ways, and ways you have turned gun streams into opportunities. Anything on those terms, please.

I think One of the challenges was actually to realize that the competition is high and doing PPC campaigns, I don’t think it’s going to be a waste of money. There’s no money to waste because nobody’s going to reach those highs other than the high competitors. It was a challenge because I’m not going to spend my entire marketing budget on a PPC campaign. Also, the results are Nobody clicks. You can’t be sure that if I was sure that people who are clicking are going to buy, I would. Nobody buys after they click. You have to visit a website a few times at least to even consider it. When it comes to B2B, only 5% of the market is ready to buy. I think it was a challenge. Also, awareness. It’s a startup. We just started doing marketing. How do we get awareness and have people be aware that we’re in the market? The first thing I think was to speak to a CEO to help him understand because besides being my manager, he needs to understand what’s going on in the marketing and what the challenges are that we are facing together and as a company.

Because if I do well if I don’t do well, it also reflects on everyone else. I told him, Look at the competition. It’s insane. I have no power there. He told me, I have this budget, so use that. I told him, This won’t get me anywhere. Just a few clicks. I’m not going to waste money on that. We need to think of other ways to do it. We decided, I thought, Okay, what’s the second best thing or what the second thing that All you need to do is get awareness. I’m going to use the budget for videos and use it on YouTube. I use it on YouTube campaigns to promote it. There, it’s better. It’s a better, it’s also a good audience. You can filter it and get to a really good audience, the target audience that you want. It’s really good. I didn’t use Twitter, but Twitter is also good. I used it in other companies. I used Twitter. It brought nice results. It was like thinking. It was a challenge. We did get awareness Also, you asked me, how I use analytics to change it for the campaigns. I created a video which was a challenge of its own because you want it to be short, but you also have so many things you want people to understand about our product.

It’s not a feature. It has more than six features. People have really short attention spans  What I did, I create one video which was something like One minute & 30 seconds. Then I promoted it to see where people are watching and when they stop watching. It was something like 20 seconds. After 20 seconds, half stop watching, and after 50 seconds, 70% stop watching. I said, Okay, if only 20 I have 20 seconds. In those 20 seconds, I’m going to talk about what I want them to remember because this is what they’re going to remember. This is how analytics helped me to push forward what I wanted people to remember me by.

That’s interesting. Did you, even after gathering this insight and promoting that 20-second video, use that data set of the audience and then read them more to them eventually, even after that, they’re going to need quite a lot more touch points to have them, a sheep that worked on your side altogether.

I do do. I do Remarketing for people. You can do Remarketing for people who watched 70% of the video, and 20% of the video. You can do that. Remarketing is really, I think it’s one of the most important things because some people are watching. If they’re watching for less than 20 seconds, they’re not interested. They’re there by accident. They just didn’t understand what was going on, and they just let it keep going. But at least 20 seconds, they need to have me feel like they’re interested in something. I would rather do remarketing to those people who watched 50% or an app and do different videos for them to watch. We got a lot more subscribers to our YouTube channels. We had a point that we did more videos and tutorials and stuff like that, and people watched and people engaged, and it was really good. It’s a really good platform. It’s not ruined like some other platforms. It’s good for PPC, and it’s good for awareness, and it’s good for engaging. It’s a good platform. I’m all for it.

You said Another thing, Carmit, that I observed, and you have been facilitating it brilliantly, is helping the CEO with the thought leadership in your space. I see a lot of interviews and stuff going around the PR and helping you with your brand name as well as, I’m sure, with your conversions and revenue. Then I’m going to give kudos to you and your team for doing an amazing job facilitating that part.

Thank you. When I hit that wall that I couldn’t use PPC because of the competition, I also thought about what awareness was one thing and trust was the other thing. Trust is every company needs to be trustful. This is, I think, What every marketer would say. It begins and ends with trust. Nobody bites from people and companies they don’t trust. How do you trust people? If they say things that you agree with, they teach you something you didn’t know, or they’re in the business, they understand, they don’t live in a past, they don’t live in a future, they’re here and now, they know what they’re talking about. I think using our Theo, who has a lot of insights, and he’s really smart, and the whole company lays on him. He was the most obvious selection for thought leadership. It’s not easy because he’s really busy, but I want to do it We started doing articles, and I wanted him to push a little bit more and tell a little bit more about his personal experience when talking to other experts in a business and how we developed this product and what we’re going to do and everything.

He was a really good sport. He’s really good. He likes to talk to the audience. He’s good at talking to the audience, really good at that. We had speaking opportunities for him, and he used that. It was really important for us to help the audience to understand cloud security. Not about us, just about cloud security. From there, you can understand why this company was built, because he believes in something. It’s really important to him. We wanted the audience to be in to engage with that. I think most of them do.

Yeah, the story needs to be out there. You currently mentioned that thought leadership helps you build trust and give out that exposure. That company needs to work on. Brilliant job with that as well. I would love to understand what’s new on the plate right now for 2024. What are the new initiatives, marketing initiatives that you’re working on? What What are getting me to pick from you?

We shifted our target audience to partners and MSFs, and we are helping our partners to talk to their SMBs, and small-medium businesses, and help them understand. Working with our partners, and it’s brilliant. I have to say. I love it because I had this partner who asked us. He’s in India, and he asked us to write about encryption keys because he said, This is the hot stuff right now. Everybody’s talking about it, and I didn’t know about it because I’m not local, and he is. He asked us to write about it, and we did. I created an email because I’m the expert on that, on how we solved that problem. We did that. He asked us to do a one-pager. He asked us to write an email. We did that. Then after I sent it to him, I thought, Wait, I can use it for a blog post. It gave me ideas for local communities and people that I was not aware of. I think I want to push for that partnership more. They have the insights that I don’t have because they’re local interesting and very good.

That’s great. All right, Carmit. Thank you so much for taking the time for this session. I’m sharing so much knowledge, past experiences, and wisdom, to be honest. I appreciate your time here. Thank you so much.

Thank you so much for listening and engaging with me and inviting me. Just great. Thank you.

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