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364: Building Authentic Connections with a Skeptical Audience with Nate Burke, Chief Marketing Officer at Axonius

364: Building Authentic Connections with a Skeptical Audience with Nate Burke, Chief Marketing Officer at Axonius

Nate Burke is the Chief Marketing Officer at cybersecurity solution provider Axonius. Axonius is Nate’s fifth startup and his third in cybersecurity. He was Axonius’ first US employee, starting before they had a product, which allowed him to develop relationships and lean into the “solve, don’t sell” mindset that really sets Axonius apart. Nate wanted to join a company that was simply solving a big problem that was getting worse and where he loved the founders. He found his perfect fit at Axonius and is now working to deliver on their promise of “controlling complexity.”

In this episode, Alan and Nate discuss Nate’s approach to marketing to one of the most skeptical audiences ever, cybersecurity professionals, and how Axonius is doing it differently. Axonius tackles one of the most fundamental problems in cybersecurity: understanding what businesses have. They aim to be the system of record for all the digital infrastructure in a company and refuse to use FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) to market to their clients. Although that is the typical cybersecurity marketing play, Nate and Axonius understand that no one likes buying based on fear, so they choose to lean into the novelty of honesty and delivering on their promises to stand out and build trust with their skeptical audience. In addition, they focus on building relationships with collaborators like Olympian Simone Biles and cross-fit athlete Amy Bream to differentiate themselves in the market.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How to build trust with a skeptical audience
  • What makes a great salesperson?
  • How Axonius is subverting the marketing norms in their industry

Key Highlights 

  • [01:40] RSA Tattoo Story
  • [04:40] How Nate became CMO at Axonius
  • [06:20] Why Nate left the marketing program in college
  • [09:00] What does Axonius do?
  • [11:40] Why the fundamentals are so complicated
  • [13:00] How to approach marketing to the most skeptical audience
  • [16:00] Where cybersecurity marketers fall short
  • [16:55] The benefits of joining Axonius early
  • [18:00] Solve, don’t sell.
  • [21:20] The opposite marketing approach Axonius is taking
  • [23:50] How Simone Biles and Amy Bream embody “controlling complexity”
  • [27:15] The importance of emotional appeal in B2B marketing
  • [29:45] Trust based on integrity
  • [31:15] It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you ask for help.
  • [34:05] What AI really means for marketing right now
  • [37:20] Brands to watch
  • [39:05] The opportunity to be unique and honest 

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