I graduated from the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences of National Chiao Tung University, mainly studying anthropology and sociology. When I was seeking a job after graduation, there are three factors that I attached the most importance to: first, resources, whether the company can provide complete training for new employees; second, the prospect of the industry and the product, because this has a lot to do with personal growth; third, whether the job is challenging. I had participated in several entrepreneurship challenges in my student age and witnessed many zero-to-one processes. Based on all these factors, I then made up my mind to enter a "mature startup", and iKala became a perfect option for me.
An AI-powered Influencer Marketing Solution
In the past, my understanding of influencer marketing was limited to sponsored posts, and I can only recognize mega influencers. After joining KOL Radar, I was surprised to see that there are more than 100,000 KOLs in our database. KOL Radar builds up precise and outstanding performance influencer marketing with data, which is very different from most agencies who choose KOLs based on mere experience. That's why I like this data solution so much, and I want to know how to create new products based on innovative technology and use it to solve the customers' problems.
The duty of a salesperson at KOL Radar is mainly selling AI influencer marketing services. Via cold calls and constant engagement with enterprises, we find, clarify and create new customer needs. I think the most fulfilling thing is to win big brand customers. At first, I was still ignorant, but after joining some sales pitches with my team members, I learned to be a good salesperson, and I can undertake the task alone now. Most large brands already have long-term cooperation with specific vendors, so if I can gain their trust and persuade them to switch to our services, I can feel a great sense of accomplishment.
I think the most important characteristic for a salesperson is the ability to communicate with both internal and external stakeholders, as well as managing customer expectations. In the past, people simply take KOL as an advertising endorser, but now it has become a new marketing channel. Some brand owners who are not familiar with influencer marketing only care how much monetary return can a KOL bring, but in fact, they need to set different marketing goals at different stages, then choose the KOL accordingly to get the best result. How to balance customers' needs and the service we can provide is one of the important skills for a salesperson.
Building a Steep Learning Curve in an Open Working Environment
As a ten-year startup, iKala has passed the zero-to-one stage. In particular, KOL Radar has a leading position in the field of influencer marketing. Often when contacting new customers, they will have a sense of trust because of our high brand awareness. This also allows us to have more opportunities to reach customers from different industries.
What I like iKala most is its flexibility. With "freedom and responsibility" being our core value, as long as one can meet the company's goal, there is room for working hours, locations, and ways of doing things. In addition, the company offers complete training for new employees. In the first 1-2 weeks, there will be on-boarding orientations to introduce what each team is doing and what the advantages of our products are. There are also courses related to sales techniques, which are very helpful to the development of my professional skills.
From Humanities to Artificial Intelligence
Here at KOL Radar, we get to be exposed to many industries; on the other hand, we have to explore different industry knowledge and the customers' product in a short period of time. The training in the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, and my previous experiences of joining entrepreneurship challenges allow me to take in a large amount of information, and transform it into useful insights. However, since we position ourselves as "sales consultants", how to ask the right questions to find the real pain points of customers is what I consider challenging in this job.
For me, the essence of "AI Empowerment" is that users can easily use and benefit from AI without knowing the complex technology behind it. KOL Radar is just the AI solution that is created based on customers' needs. Therefore, to our customers, AI is no longer an unreachable technology, but what can really solve their problems.
I really like what my professor at university said: "Taiwan has been talking about AI for years, but if we don't understand the society, how do we continue to develop AI technology?" Working at iKala allows me to give full play to the field of social sciences. On the basis of data, I can further observe social phenomena, explore the context behind things, and make the best use of my academic training to create different values in this technology company.