46. How B2B Companies Can Build Stronger Brands for Success | Justin Häne

Slide Ep. 46: Interview w. Justin Häne

How B2B Companies Can Build Stronger Brands for Success

EP46-Justin Häne

Building stronger brands for success as well as sustainable growth is something that doesn’t get much “airtime” in the B2B world. On this week’s episode, we sat down with brand expert Justin Häne (Director, Brand and CommunicationsSoftchoice), who explains the importance of a strong B2B brand, why getting internal buy-in is crucial for progress, the recent changes in the landscape and how we should adapt, and what role emotion plays as well as other points that speak in favor of brand building for B2B companies.

Topics discussed in this episode:

  • Why having a strong brand is important in B2B. [1:49]
  • How to measure branding [7:20] and get internal buy-in. [10:29]
  • An example of a successful brand transformation. [13:00] | [17:08]
  • Why branding is a good investment. [22:28]
  • Justin’s view on how B2B organizations should continue to build and develop their branding under the current circumstances. [30:54]

Companies & links mentioned in this episode:

Transcript

SPEAKERS

Christian Klepp, Justin Haene

Christian Klepp  00:08

Hi, and welcome to the B2B Marketers on a Mission podcast. I’m your host, Christian Klepp, and one of the founders of EINBLICK Consulting. Our goal is to share inspirational stories, tips and insights from B2B marketers, digital entrepreneurs, and industry experts that will help you to think differently, succeed and scale your business.

All right, welcome everyone to this episode of the B2B Marketers on a Mission podcast where you get your weekly dose of B2B marketing insights. I’m your host, Christian Klepp. And today, I am thrilled to welcome someone on the show who has a breadth of experience in the fields of communications, reputation management, journalism and politics across different geographies. He’s worked at both multinational corporations, as well as international public relations firms, is extremely passionate about branding. And like myself has family origins in Central Europe. So Justin Haene. Welcome to the show.

Justin Haene  01:06

Thank you. Thank you, Christian. Great to be joining you today.

Christian Klepp  01:10

Yeah, no, it’s fantastic to reconnect with Justin and I think I believe we have Mr. Steve Brown over at Cadence to thank for this connection and introduction.

Justin Haene  01:18

That’s correct. And shout out to Steve if you’re listening. Good morning, or afternoon now, wherever you are, wherever you’re listening.

Christian Klepp  01:27

Indeed, indeed. So um, you know, I’m really excited to get this conversation started. So why don’t we just kick it off with I guess, a topic that we’re both equally passionate about. And you know, you build a successful career around that as well. And that’s building brands for B2B. Right? So talk to us about why you think having a strong brand in B2B is so important.

Justin Haene  01:49

Well, let’s take a step back and ask ourselves the question, what is brand and if you Google it, and you stay, and you write in what is brand, you’ll probably get as one of your first results, a definition from the founder of the famed Ogilvy advertising firm. But the most simple definition and I actually asked somebody about this, when I undertook a project a couple years ago, I said, how would you describe brand? And how would you explain what it means to people from outside of the branding reputation world? And he said simply this your brand is your answer. Your organizations answer the question, why would somebody choose us? And I think that succinct definition resonates with a lot of people who don’t come from that background. And it’s a very good foundation to start talking about brand.

Now, so why is brand important for B2C brands? And for B2B brands? Well, no, I think typically, we think about brand as being very important for B2C brands. And that emotional connection and resonance that that brands have, whether they’re cereal brands, shoe brands, real estate brands, or otherwise. B2B, it can sometimes be a different story, because people think that their business and their buyers, it’s just about the business and the product or the service or the solution. But there’s actually a really good body of research indicating that B2B buyers have a stronger emotional connection to brand. And I would say probably a different kind of emotional connection to brand than a B2C buyer. If you think about it, though, it makes a lot of sense. So you are a B2C buyer. And you make the wrong decision, right? You’ve built a relationship with the brand, you’ve bought something, and you’ve learned you’ve made the wrong decision. Well, what’s really at stake, you’ve bought the wrong refrigerator, the wrong pair of jeans, the wrong pair of shoes, or otherwise. You’re a B2B buyer. And you’ve built a strong relation with a brand. And now you’ve made a bad decision and what’s at stake? Well, it’s your reputation, your career, and potentially your livelihood. On the other side of the coin, you’ve made a great decision with respect to a B2B brand. And that great decision now has the, the potential to make you very, very successful in your in your job. And these are all things our personal success. And our reputation has a very strong emotional component. So when you think of it from that perspective, of course, brand is important in the B2B context.

Christian Klepp  04:35

That’s really interesting. And in fact, what we’re talking about research, I found one this morning that I’ll throw out at you. So according to research done by Forrester, brand influences approximately 20% of B2B purchasing decisions. So going back to your point, that yes, there is certainly a degree of emotion involved. It’s just not the same type of emotion that we’re talking about. Like, when it comes to B2C, right?

Justin Haene  05:02

Yeah. Well, I mean, I would argue because there is research from McKinsey actually on this is that, that emotion plays, that emotion is equally or more important for B2B and for B2C brands. And you also have to think about, so if you look at this 20% figure from Forrester, and that that brand plays a, you know, has 20% share in the decision making process. But you’ve got to think… you’ve got to think a little bit bigger than that. And think, what role does brand have in all of the other factors that are influencing that decision making process? What role does brand have in the ability of a salesperson, for example, to be really engaged with their company and deliver the right message? What role does brand have in influencing the product developer, a product manager, a solutions manager to put together strategies and execute them in a way that’s consistent with what’s going on with the rest of the organization? And thereby creating more business value? So so this this stuff, I mean, whether it’s the the Forster number, whether it’s a McKinsey number, or anywhere in between, I think the case is really clear. That brand is super important in the B2B space.

Christian Klepp  06:25

Yeah, that’s absolutely right. And, you know, while we’re throwing numbers out there at each other, that gives me a great segue into the next question. And I’m pretty sure you’re gonna have fun with this one, because at some point, or other, as brand strategists, we’ve come across this challenge, from senior managers, or boards of directors, and so forth, like so one of the things that we frequently hear when it comes to branding for B2B are Okay, so, Justin, that’s great, but can it be measured? What’s the ROI? Right? It’s that word. So I think every organization I can think of, is going to have someone or a group of people in fact, so let’s use the plural term here, will be asking you those kinds of questions. So over to you, how would you answer these questions? How would you utilize data to get internal buy-in for organizations to invest in brand building?

Justin Haene  07:20

Well, the simplest, the simple answer is that yes, it can be measured, the more complicated answer is yes, it can be measured, and then there was a lot more that perhaps cannot be measured, or it is more difficult to measure. So I mean, you can measure brand health and awareness with both your external and your internal stakeholder groups, I mean, so externally, you can do brand awareness, brand sentiment, you can use social media sentiment, as a proxy. And you can do a whole bunch of qualitative research, to understand the health of your brand. And you can do the same thing inside of your of your organization. There are many other benefits, though, of having a strong brand that are a little bit more difficult to measure. You know, and part of that I think that the sort of the the evolution of digital marketing and the promise of digital marketing and measurement was supposed to sort of usher in this panacea kind of world where every single thing that we did, we would now be able to measure and attribute and as marketers, we all know that this is not the case. But what I would argue is that a strong brand, coupled with strong and consistent execution of the brand, and when that happens, you’re going to see a lift across the organization. And across nearly every metric, whether it’s sales, whether it’s leads, whether it’s metrics associated with your employer brand, recruitment, retention, numbers, internal engagement, data, but a lot of those metrics and a lot of that good progress, that’s, that’s made against these things. Like that’s coincidental with the development of a strong brand, I mean, so there’s a coincidence and there is a causality, but it’s really difficult to make a connection between everything that you’re doing with your brand, and everything or every every business result because there are… I mean, a strong brand is good if you have a strong brand for example, and a weak salesforce, that’s not going to do too much. If you have a strong brand and strong salesforce and a weak go to market strategy, again, you’re, you’re going to have issues with within your organization. But, but when all of these things come together and you know, strong, strong brand, if you’re a sales lead organization, a strong salesforce, if you have a solid, go to market strategy, then that’s the, that’s the recipe for a winning organization.

You know, when it comes to internal buy-in, I would say that the way that you go about that really needs to be tailored to your audience. So thinking about the personalities of the decision makers and, and the influencers, in organizations, and I would say that many organizations, I mean, people definitely are there, they’re numbers driven, right? Have a conversation with the CFO, and ask that person why or if investing in a brand is important. And, you may get different kinds of answers, depending on that that person. And this is often, can be a source of conflict or misalignment maybe, between marketers or between creative thinking type people, and people wearing more of a business hat. But let’s not lose sight that these are also rational people with eyes and ears that work just the way that ours do. So you can rather than simply coming in and saying, hey, there’s a problem with the with the brand, we’ve got to spend a bunch of money to fix it. You know, you bring forth examples of, here’s what’s going on inside of our organization, here’s what’s going on in the market, and maybe our inability to show up as we want to. And and here’s the root cause. So you present a very clear before and a very clear after. And the kind of associated benefits that you’re predicting. And once you begin to think that way, and form your argument that way, it becomes a lot easier to sell through.

Christian Klepp  12:16

You brought up so many interesting points here as I was furiously taking notes, but you’re absolutely right to say it’s like everything in branding. And in fact, in communication for that matter, right. Like you got to understand who it is you’re talking to, and tailor that approach to that respective audience. So I think you gave a really great example, because we’ve all run into them CFOs people that are numbers driven, so how do you get buy in from people like that, to convince them that it’s worth the investment is one thing. The second thing is, and I believe this is also the point that you were trying to make is that these changes in this progress you’re referring to. This takes time, this is not going to be something that you’ll implement it next week, and then presto, we’ve got the results. Right?

Justin Haene  13:00

Your are absolutely right. So if you think about the journey that an organization is on in the context of a brand transformation, I mean, at the very beginning, I am going to say you start having these conversations about making the case for change. And it gets before that that happens, you need to decide or sort of get clear on what’s the problem, and what’s the change that needs to be made, you make the case for change. And when you then have the ability in your organization to go about making the change, then you start making the change, and you go through the whole process of the brand transformation, if that’s what you’re looking to do. And of course, these things should be grounded in really solid research. And, and everything begins with a solid, a solid brand strategy. And then if you’re looking for example, at changing your visual identity, updating your brand messaging or blowing it up completely and starting from scratch, that begins with that solid brand strategy that’s rooted in data and insights. And, I mean, certainly that’s a process that needs to be done right, it needs to be very carefully managed within an organization ensuring that the right stakeholders are included in the in the process and then of course, working very hard and diligently to execute and bring your new brand to the market. That’s actually just start. It’s hard work. It’s rewarding work. But it is a heck of a lot easier or can be then what comes next, which is bringing your brand or bringing your brand to life. And by that I’m not talking about the brand campaign. I’m talking about introducing that to, and embedding it into the organization, talking about how changes and how an organization is applying the brand, living the brand, thinking of application of the brand, living the brand, change management, asking or telling people to start doing things differently when it comes to design of materials, the kinds of words we use, in our organization, if part of your brand transformation includes new values, for example, introducing those to the organization and, managing dissent. That’s really the complicated part, the one that the part where you need the most patience and the thickest skin, frankly, and the fortitude to see it through.

Christian Klepp  15:54

Absolutely, absolutely. And I would even dare say it’s situations like that, where your background and communications and maybe even crisis management to a certain degree would come into play. Right?

Justin Haene  16:06

Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. I mean, the communications portion when introducing a brand is very, very important and telling a good change story.

Christian Klepp  16:16

Yeah. Yeah, that’s right. That’s right.

Hey, it’s Christian Klepp here. We’ll get back to the episode in a second. But first, is your brand struggling to cut through the noise? Are you trying to find more effective ways to reach your target audience and boost sales? Are you trying to pivot your business? If so, book a call with EINBLICK Consulting, our experienced consultants will work with you to help your B2B business to succeed and scale. Go to www.einblick.co for more information.

Yeah, we had a bit of a discussion about this before, you know for the for the next question. But give us an example. Now, whether it’s from your own professional experience, or something that you’ve seen out there in the market that you’ve seen, where a B2B organization witness positive changes, because of a strong branding, or in fact, even a rebranding initiative?

Justin Haene  17:08

Hmm. Well, let me share actually a story of our own organization as well. So we undertook a brand transformation a little while ago, and a lot of it sort of followed the same path that I described earlier to you. And something very interesting happened, when we shared the brand with our organization, we undertook this process to… I won’t say reinvent the Softchoice brand. And Softchoice, by the way for those who don’t know, it’s a B2B technology company. And we’ve been around for 31 years and, and there’s a really interesting heritage with the company, but the brand had gotten tired, we didn’t want to do with the brand, though is to try to make Softchoice into a company or a brand that it wasn’t, we simply wanted to the brand to articulate the very best version of itself, the very best version of Softchoice. So we introduced the brand back in January, there was a new logo, new strategic positioning, and, and narratives like all technically brand new. What we heard from a lot of people afterwards was, like, this is exactly the kind of Softchoice I know and love. I haven’t heard these words before. But like, I recognize myself, and I recognize our culture, and I recognize our company, in what you’ve just shared with us, whether it’s strategic messaging, the story that we told about the new logo, people sell themselves and, and the organization in this and I think, you know, that’s how we did it right. We probably… what didn’t complicate things as much is we didn’t, for example, like changing Softchoice’s name was never on the table, like those kinds of things are typically more and more controversial. And sometimes they’re I mean, they’re done for business reasons. They’re done for other reasons, think of a, you know, renaming of Philip Morris, for example. There’s a very clear reason why that company did that or whether you’re, you know, spinning off for you how you’re entering a new market or otherwise, or all sorts of reasons to change a name. Sometimes companies, I’ll use air quotes here they rebrand and by that they introduce a new logo and visual system to the company. They say, Aha, new brand. And what happens then is that people usually just make fun of the new logo. It’s not taken, it’s not taken seriously. Or they may introduce new positioning into the market, and some new messaging. But there’s no excitement about a new logo or visual system. And the change really isn’t as sort of clear or crystallized to the market.

Christian Klepp  20:18

Fantastic. Yeah. And clearly, like from what you’ve been talking about in the past couple of minutes, that was a rebranding exercise that went really well. Not just because it was well received, I’m sure to a certain degree also because of your, your own efforts. But also, because it resonated with the respective target groups. So I’m just going to throw this additional question in there, Justin, having gone through this exercise yourself, what were some of the greatest takeaways from that, from that initiative for you?

Justin Haene  20:56

I mean, personally, one of the biggest things I learned was about myself, which is that I love doing this. And finding something that you love doing that you’re good at doing and that somebody wants to pay you to do is not a bad trifecta to be in. I learned that sometimes there is a bigger appetite for change than you may have anticipated. Just because things have been going a certain way, for a certain period of time doesn’t mean that everybody’s okay with it. Perhaps, they just haven’t recognized the problem in the way that that you have, or have seen some of the more acute implications or  maybe there just hasn’t been a catalyst for change. And so whether you’re talking about a rebrand or a product redesign or new marketing strategy, or otherwise, I think, organizations, and people always need to be critical in a in a very constructive way. And think about, how can we do better? And how can we do like, right by our people and our customers and our shareholders or otherwise?

Christian Klepp  22:17

Absolutely, absolutely. And I love how you brought up catalyst for change, because that’s certainly kind of originally from different sources. And it might even be not just a catalyst that can be catalysts, right?

Justin Haene  22:28

Sure.

Christian Klepp  22:28

So yeah. We spoke about this a little bit already in the past couple of minutes. But I’d like to get your thoughts on this article that I read online. Source: thedrum.com. So it highlights things that you’ve already mentioned, that highlights the risks of how having short sightedness can sometimes damage the potential growth of B2B brands. And so the article then lists four arguments in favor of brand building, and you brought some of these up. So the first one is, you can’t argue with the facts, right. And we dropped a couple of like statistics already, right. So brand building will build market share and the bottom line, but again, it’s for the long term. The second one is brand building will attract new customers. And it’s a good way to assure current customers who are equally as important that they have made the right choice in working with you, right. The third point is you need to become, to your first point, the brand of choice, you need to give people a reason to work with you or to choose you right. And then the fourth one is, again, something you brought up using the power of emotion to ensure that people engage with your brand. So some thoughts on the above, what would you add to convince those who are still skeptical about like, putting budget into longer term brand building? What would you add?

Justin Haene  23:53

Well, they’re good, they’re good points. It’s perhaps something where I it’s not really where I would add to your points, but more kind of elaborate or validate them. And so yeah, you’re right brand building will build market share and the bottom line, but that happens over time. You know, if you compare, for example, investments in brand to investments and in demand gen. Absolutely. investments in demand gen pay off over a shorter period, investments in brand pay off over the long term or kind of medium to long term. And the takeaway from that is that you don’t choose one or the other. You design and you execute on a solid demand gen strategy, supported by a strong brand, like that’s the recipe for growth. You’re absolutely right that a strong brand. And by that I mean, a strong brand jet strategy, but also excellent and consistent execution of the brand I mean, that assures your customers that you’re a serious organization, and that you’re trustworthy and that you have your own house in order. Yes, brand building will attract new customers. But not if these new customers don’t hear about your brand. And so this is, strong where having a strong brand with a strong demand gen strategy, is so important. And if you’re a sales lead organization, it’s about ensuring that your sales people at the field understands what the new brand is, that if you have, and you should have clean, crisp, relevant messaging to the market, that they are equipped to, to deliver those messages. I mean, those will be your single, biggest and most influential, sort of carriers of your brand story. If you are a sales lead organization with a more modest marketing advertising budget. It’s important though, as well, you know, to look at the journey of the of the modern B2B buyer, right? Even the B2B buyer from companies who are sales lead organizations, right, so more and more of the B2B buying journey is being done online, B2B buyers are discovering organizations and engaging with organizations more and more well before they speak to a single salesperson. So that brand story needs to be you know, well told by real people who are having real conversations, whether in person or on the phone with, with customers and prospects. And it needs to be told really well and consistently over digital channels too.

Christian Klepp  26:58

Those are some really great points to bring up and especially the bit about, like, you know, how to adjust the approach based on an ever increasing online or virtual world. And we’re gonna circle back to that one a couple minutes. But what I did want to ask you was just like, putting some of these, these, these insights, and these points you highlight it together, what would be your, you would say, your key steps that B2B organizations need to take when it comes to building a brand, the right way.

Justin Haene  27:32

Building a brand the right way. I mean, it begins with a solid brand strategy, and brand positioning, and that begins with solid research. So understanding your customers understanding the market, and what the market is looking for, understanding your company’s place in that market, and your and your and your capabilities. And, and from there developing a brand positioning that is relevant, and that you know to be true about your organization. So that’s, that’s where you start, and if you don’t start there, probably nothing or not much that you do will be will be any good. Yeah, yeah. And then from there, whether you’re building a new visual identity, whether it’s a new logo, whether it’s new strategic messaging, everything is grounded, everything is grounded in those in those insights. That’s, these are the prerequisites.

Christian Klepp  28:35

Yeah, well, that’s a that’s a really great answer. I was just about to say that, like, you know, if you don’t do those things, what tends to end up happening, rather, is it just becomes this very execution driven exercise or people start firefighting, right? Like, you wait to the point where you, you have to draft the press release, and then you think about the brand messaging? It’s a little bit late. Right.

Justin Haene  28:59

Exactly. Whether you’re drafting the press release, writing marketing, copy, writing social media copy, product naming architectures. Do I describe the solution? What words should I use? You know, do I write in really accessible human language? Do I write in very technical language? You know, all of these, all of the answers to questions like this are answered for you if you’ve developed a strong brand foundation. And if you don’t do that, I mean your output will be just frankly bad and inconsistent. And people will keep on reinventing things as they go along and wasting their time the company’s money, and they won’t be viewed as ineffective or they won’t be rather viewed as effective in the organization.

Christian Klepp  29:56

That’s absolutely right. That’s absolutely right. You know, Justin, we had this conversation on a previous call. And, you brought up some of these points earlier on. I promised, we’re not going to talk about COVID. But let’s talk about, like, what’s been going on in our space in the past, let’s say 12 months or so. Right. And, you know, short stating the obvious, a lot of it, as you know, has migrated online. And so we’re basically working in an increasingly, at least for the time being socially distant, virtual world. So what changes have you seen in your area of expertise as a result of a pandemic? And how do you think B2B organizations should continue to build and develop their branding under the current circumstances, which looked like they’re not really going to change?

Justin Haene  30:54

Yeah, not going to change. So I will, I will say the C word and so COVID. Well, I mean, COVID has disrupted our lives in the near term, and I think a lot of people don’t recognize, it’s just accelerated changes or trends that would have taken place at some time in the future. And, and certain things that probably hasn’t changed, I do think in many respects, the world will bounce back, people at some point will work in offices have family barbecues, and we’ll, we won’t go everywhere, wearing masks and staying six feet away from each other, especially thinking about the hordes of unvaccinated people north of the US border that have a different story than in the US. So, you know, we’re still sort of in a state of disruption, I think, when it comes to the world of work, what won’t change is the world of hybrid work and comfort that people have working out of their own homes, it’s a lot easier when the when the kids are in school, rather than in your face, but that’s a great example of things that won’t change so much.

I think what’s a little bit more interesting in this respect, is how the world of remote work has actually changed corporate culture. And the question of how has the world of remote work changed corporate culture. In the I think some organizations you hear a lot about remote work, there are other organizations like Amazon, for example, that are going to seek to maintain primarily an office culture, and then you have companies like Shopify, who are now remote work by default. Regardless of any of these types of work models, what I find quite interesting is how are people engaging and interacting with their peers differently because this has happened. And what we’ve seen is actually a coming together of people in our organizations. People building in some cases, stronger emotional connections with one another, and getting to know one another more deeply. And in the same way that now people are expecting more from their own employers when it comes to emotional connection. And you know, all sorts of data around people wanting to see their companies like reactive to important social issues. And kind of that further blurring of the lines between work and life. It’s not just blurring of the lines of work and life when it comes to your work hours. But the role of a company that you work for and the people that you work with, in your own life, sort of personal life. This has been this has been really interesting to see and in the same way that you know, people are building more emotional connections with the people that they work with. They’re also building more emotional connections with the companies that they buy from and the people that work in those companies right so you can build that emotional connection with the brand, but then that’s also the person that you’re the salesperson on the other side of the phone or the other side of the video call. You know you have conversation hey, what’s going on in your world? Hey, Oh, is that your kids screaming in the background? Oh, yeah. Here’s their coloring on the walls or or whatever. So people, I think in many respects, like they’re just, they’re getting more real with each other, which is really interesting to see.

Christian Klepp  35:09

Yeah, no, that’s, those are definitely some great insights. And I love the bit where you, you brought it up at least three times if I remember correctly about emotional connections, because as you’re trying to establish those stronger emotional connections with people due to the lack of well, seeing each other in person. All the more like, and that that builds a strong case, also for brands to be able to replicate that experience just in a different way, of course, but how do you establish that strong connection with, especially internally? or externally?

Justin Haene  35:45

Yeah, that’s a that’s a, that’s a challenge. It’s where we are brands have to be authentic. And then from a practical perspective, you can’t be a human brand. By telling people that you’re a human brand. You simply have to be it by virtue of the way that you show up. And you know, that that can be difficult to get right.

Christian Klepp  36:12

Yeah, that’s without a doubt. Yeah, I think you’re gonna have a little bit of fun with this next question, Justin. So it’s like, talk to us about one thing that you think people should start, and one thing that you think people should stop when it comes to brand building for B2B.

Justin Haene  36:29

Hmm.

Well, I think people in organizations need to be more straightforward and to the point. And they need to be more useful to their audiences. Like I’ve said before, your two most important currencies at work are your time and your reputation. And I think that if a brand’s promise, either directly or indirectly doesn’t help the audience see how this brand is going to either benefit their own and or their company’s reputation, then the brand isn’t terribly relevant. Now, if the brand can’t communicate that in a really efficient and easy to understand and relevant way, then now they’re wasting their audience’s time. So you’ve got to get those two things. Right. And so I’d say this is almost like the answer to both of your questions: What should they start doing, and what should they stopped doing.

Christian Klepp  37:49

Yeah, well that’s certainly some great advice. Justin, it’s been such a great session. And they It was a was a really fun conversation. Please do us the honor. And just tell us a little bit about yourself.

Justin Haene  38:00

Yeah, so my name is Justin. If you are in Switzerland, which is where my family is from, you would say Justin Hannah. In North American, we’ve sort of done the Anglo pronouncing the name, Justin Hay, which is probably how 90% of the world knows me. And so I work for Softchoice where we’re a technology company based out of Toronto, and I lead brand and communications there. I grew up in Canada. But I’ve been to a few places in the world, I said, sort of late teenager, I spent a good three quarters of the Year in Canada’s Arctic. But I began my career in Sierra Leone, which is a small country in West Africa, working in the NGO world. From there, I moved to Switzerland, and I took a job as a journalist with the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation, and had the opportunity to work on some really interesting stories, both in Switzerland, as well as around the world, whether in North America, Southeast Asia, Middle East, West Africa, then I fell in love with the Canadian girl and I moved back to Canada, in 2010, which is where I’ve been since having done some work in in politics as well as in the agency world and, and financial services. I’m living kind of close to downtown Toronto got a family with a bunch of kids and we’re having a really interesting time in COVID. But all in all, just had have had the opportunity to do a lot of interesting work with really good with really good people. And having a lot of fun in that respect.

Christian Klepp  39:49

Amazing. You know what, Justin it’s funny. It’s both funny and fascinating. In fact, I’d say I’m fascinated by how diverse Toronto is. Right? Like your story certainly is interesting. And I met somebody yesterday that had had a similar background as well, German speaking, lived in different countries as well. And I think that’s one of the allures of this wonderful city that we live in.

Justin Haene  40:12

Toronto is a really super city. I said to my wife, when we were sort of negotiating my move back to… I’ll come back to Canada, but I won’t live in Toronto, and that was not having grown up in Toronto. But Toronto really, really is a very good and livable city if you don’t take into account the price of housing. But it’s a great place to be.

Christian Klepp  40:38

Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. Justin, once again, I mean, this has been such a great session. Thank you so much for coming on. And you know, being so generous with your time and sharing your experience. What’s the best way for people out there to you know, get in touch with you.

Justin Haene  40:54

They can find me on LinkedIn, I’m probably the only Justin Haene likely the world or at least the only one. The only one on LinkedIn. In Toronto. That’s where you can that’s where you can find me and I will say I am. I’m always open and eager to having conversations with curious people about whether its brand reputation or otherwise. So looking forward to connecting

Christian Klepp  41:21

Or if people want to connect with you and learn Swiss German.

Justin Haene  41:25

Yeah, the small majority of people who will find a sort of practical use case for Swiss German, you can get in touch with me as well.

Christian Klepp  41:36

Fantastic, Justin, once again. This has been so insightful and thought provoking. Thanks again for your time. Take care, be safe, and we’ll talk to you soon.

Justin Haene  41:45

Thanks, Christian. See ya.

Christian Klepp  41:47

Bye for now.

Thank you for joining us on this episode of the B2B Marketers on a Mission podcast. To learn more about what we do here at EINBLICK, please visit our website at www.einblick.co and be sure to subscribe to the show on iTunes or your favorite podcast player.