The Drum's 'Unsung Heroes' series is a celebration of the people in the industry who slog hard behind the limelight for their companies, brands, and clients. As they are seldom in the spotlight for their contribution to the success of campaigns, this is their time to shine.
The adtech industry in Japan is still not well understood and the content available is often highly complex and technical, targeted at industry experts. Maiko Cohen, a marketing associate at Taptica, a mobile adtech firm, creates content for the platform that simplifies what it does and how it helps brands implement marketing campaigns across multiple channels.
Why is your job important?
Taptica is an international company headquartered in Israel with global offices in 7 countries. This creates a lot of challenges in marketing – what works in the US or Europe doesn’t necessarily work well in Japan or China.
My job is to help align the corporate branding and messaging to the needs of the local Japanese market. In order for Taptica to have a strong reputation in Japan, we need to think about how the Japanese understand what is that we do and try to convey these messages both visually and in writing to the local audience.
Our success in doing this directly affects how successful we are in meeting our business objectives.
What is the hardest and stressful part of your job?
Bridging the gap between US/European culture and Japanese culture and then successfully localizing our corporate messaging and brand isn’t an easy task. Even when we’ve refined our localized messaging, I often have a hard time creating the text and visuals that accurately convey what we want to say.
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
When all the pieces– the strategy, research, implementation and my own experience – come together to create a successful marketing campaign, it’s an incredibly rewarding experience. Knowing that I was able to successfully communicate our messages and influence the way people think about Taptica and what we do brings me great joy.
Firstthing that comes to people’s minds when you tell them your job?
It sounds a little silly, but a lot of people I speak to think that marketing is all about being active on social media and keeping up-to-date on pop culture.
How would you correct/explain to them what you do then?
I explain to them that while I like being up-to-date on everything from pop culture to the latest industry trends, it’s not all I do. If they want to hear more, I tell them a little about my day-to-day work and how marketing can influence how we all think and act.
Is there anything you want to change in your job?
If I had unlimited hours in the day, I would take the time to do deep dive research on our industry and all its specific segmentations. Japanese culture is very detail focused – the more information you can provide, the better – so I would love to spend more time getting into the nuts and bolts of the latest trends, discovering previously unknown connections between various segmentations and conveying these details to our target audience.
Which was the campaign that you worked on, that you are most proud of?
In Japan, the ad tech industry is still not well understood and the content available is often highly complex and technical, targeted at industry experts. I’ve had the opportunity to create content for Taptica that simplifies what we do and how we help brands implement successful marketing campaigns across multiple channels.
I’m proud to help make the ad world more accessible to a larger audience and I enjoy being part of the thought leaders in the local market.
Who is someone you want to emulate in your industry?
Shintaro Hirato, the chief executive officer of Jakore. He understands the complexities of working with multiple cultures – American, European, Asian and Middle Eastern – and has made a career of bridging the gaps between them.
He always amazes me with his ability to help global companies implement successful business strategies across multiple markets.
If you weren’t a marketing associate, what would you be?
If I weren’t in marketing, I would want to work in sales because I greatly enjoy speaking with people and engaging directly with customers. I also previously worked in sales in Japan and I always really enjoyed it.