Forbes India 15th Anniversary Special

Do what you are afraid to do: Spotify's Neha Ahuja

On Storyboard18's Marketing Recoded, the marketing head at Spotify India talks about the importance of behavioural skills, innovation, and gut feeling

Published: Apr 1, 2022 01:26:30 PM IST
Updated: Apr 4, 2022 12:23:37 PM IST

Do what you are afraid to do: Spotify's Neha AhujaNeha Ahuja, head of marketing, Spotify India 

Marketing Recoded by Storyboard18 is a series of interviews with marketing heads at some of India’s buzziest brands. How these marketers define their jobs, which skills they value most and which they feel are overrated are among the questions we ask, to get fast and sharp insights into their minds.

In this episode of the series, Neha Ahuja, head of marketing at audio streamer Spotify India, talks about how the role of marketers has changed after the pandemic, her top tips for young marketers, and more.

Q. Define your job as a marketer?

I make people’s lives musical.

Q. Three important skills every modern marketer should possess.

First, agility is key. Marketers need to be sensitive to their environment. Second, innovation is important. You can’t repeat what you have done in the past. That's a big no.

And last, build your intuition. You have to believe in your gut feeling.

Q. What are the most outdated skills to have as a marketer.

Behavioural skills don’t get outdated. It’s only the functional skills that you need to update often. For example, a media planning skill can get outdated and needs upskilling often.

However, the way you understand consumers and their geography can never be outdated.

Q. How has the role of a marketer changed after the pandemic hit?

Today, I think we're in an online relationship with our consumers. We've moved from dating to online dating. We all need to understand that there are far more options and it's very easy (for consumers) to swipe left. There are low entry and exit barriers. Lastly, it’s not about finding the right match by chance, it’s about finding the right match with the right algorithm and data.

Q. The next big thing coming down the line for the marketing industry.

Consumers used to sit at the heart of marketing strategies. Now, the consumer is on a journey and marketers need to follow them throughout.

Q. What’s the best advice you’ve ever got on the job?

Whenever in doubt, go back to the brand purpose. This advice has helped me as I have grown in the industry through the years.

Q. A piece of advice to those entering the world of marketing.

Do what you are afraid to do.

Marketing Recoded is a Storyboard18 video series featuring modern marketers at some of India's buzziest brands.