The Kula Ring

A podcast for manufacturing marketers

The Kula Ring podcast is essential listening for manufacturing marketers who want to grow their digital presence and compete online.

Sponsored by Kula Partners—an agency committed to helping leading B2B manufacturers craft digital experiences that transform how they engage buyers, serve customers, and outpace their competition—The Kula Ring podcast features conversations about marketing, sales, and technology with top manufacturing executives from across North America.

The Kula Ring podcast is co-hosted by Kula Partners principals, Carman Pirie and Jeff W. White, both of whom are frequently sought after for their digitally-focused B2B expertise. They regularly share their insights with audiences including conferences like B2B Online and HubSpot’s INBOUND, the Gardner Manufacturing Marketer blog, and other podcasts focused on B2B marketing and technology.

Episode 111

How a Manufacturer Standardizes Product Data for CX

Featuring Cynthia Kellam, Global Senior Director, Digital Customer Experience at TE Connectivity.

How can manufacturers with various product portfolios gained from mergers and acquisitions ensure their products are discoverable both on their website and third party domains? In this episode of The Kula Ring, Cynthia Kellam, Global Senior Director of Digital Customer Experience at TE Connectivity, shares how customer experience research led her team to standardize product data in order to improve organic searchability.

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Episode 110

How Manufacturers Can Prioritize Networking at Virtual Events

Featuring Christopher Barger, Senior Director of Communications for SME.

In-person tradeshows and conferences are cancelled for the foreseeable future due to the pandemic, and the exclusive, time-boxed structure of virtual events has presented problems for interactivity. In this episode of The Kula Ring, Christopher Barger, Senior Director of Communications for SME, shares how his team has adapted SMX with virtual networking components and shares why networking should be prioritized in virtual environments.

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Episode 109

Facing the Competition with Strategic Digital Marketing

Featuring David A. Stark, Digital Marketing Transformation Growth Leader.

Legacy manufacturers that previously dominated their verticals now have to contend with new entrants who know how to create focused messaging in digital spaces. In this episode of The Kula Ring, David A. Stark, Digital Marketing Transformation Growth Leader, talks about the value of shifting from a tactical to a strategic digital marketing strategy as competition increases, and how to bolster branding with a strong digital presence in order to reach prospects.

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Episode 108

Manufacturing the Next Generation of Workforce Skills

Featuring Mike Nager, Business Development Manager for the Festo Didactic Solution Center.

As online education becomes the norm and companies like Google no longer require a degree as a job prerequisite, what will educating the manufacturing workforce look like beyond 2020? In this episode of The Kula Ring, Mike Nager, Business Development Manager for the Festo Didactic Solution Center, talks about the role of niche technical education in providing hands-on training for manufacturing technologies and how Festo Didactic is adapting its strategy into the digital space after the pandemic.

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Episode 107

Effectively Translating Marketing Goals Into the Digital Space

Featuring Jaclyn Wallace, Director of Marketing for Nederman Division North America.

Marketing plans developed last year for 2020 look drastically different now because of the pandemic—not just in the tradeshow arena, but also how new markets are identified. In this episode of The Kula Ring, Jaclyn Wallace, Director of Marketing for Nederman Division North America, covers a variety of topics including how the pandemic is forcing marketing and sales to effectively adapt into the digital space, how customers are driving new business, and the importance of knowledge extraction.

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Episode 106

Integrating Marketing into the Manufacturing Enterprise

Featuring Heather Smriga, Marketing Communications Manager of EaglePicher Technologies.

In lean manufacturing environments that focus on product development, how can organizations prevent marketing from becoming an afterthought? In this episode of The Kula Ring, Heather Smriga, Marketing Communications Manager of EaglePicher Technologies, shares how the company’s Voice of the Customer research is fueled by feedback across the enterprise and provides insights on how leveraging different talents in the organization improves their approach to marketing strategy.

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Episode 105

How a B2B Manufacturer Leverages Data Sharing to Improve CX

Featuring John Joyce, Global Marketing Director of Brennan Industries.

Customer demand for real-time data is driving manufacturers to build web-enabled systems to share information more efficiently across channels. In this episode of The Kula Ring, John Joyce, Global Marketing Director of Brennan Industries, talks about how he helped his organization make data more accessible to their distribution channels and partners. He shares insights on how leveraging data improves customer experience and the role of the marketing department in implementing customer-facing technology.

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Episode 104

What is the Future of the U.S.-China Supply Chain?

Featuring Rob Atkinson, Founder and President of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF).

Leading up to the ManufacturED Summit on October 21, 2020, Jeff and Carman talk to Rob Atkinson, Founder and President of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), on how U.S.-China relations are affecting manufacturers, particularly North American firms with supply chains in China. Rob shares insights on how manufacturers are economically decoupling from China while participating in a global supply chain that supports U.S. interests.

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Episode 103

5G, AI, and More: A Preview of the ManufacturED Summit 2020

Featuring Stephen Gold, President and CEO of the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI).

Leading up to the ManufacturED Summit on October 21, 2020, Jeff and Carman talk with Stephen Gold, President and CEO of the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI). MAPI is the organization behind the ManufacturED Summit. Topics that will be covered in depth at the Summit are previewed on the podcast, including 5G’s impact on manufacturing, the future of the U.S.-China supply chain, and AI as a puzzle piece for Industry 4.0.

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Episode 102

Game-Changing Lessons from The Kula Ring’s First 100 Episodes

Featuring Jeff White and Carman Pirie, co-hosts of The Kula Ring.

In celebration of the first 100 episodes of The Kula Ring, co-hosts Jeff White and Carman Pirie reflect on three game-changing lessons shared by podcast guests over the years. First, reconsidering marketing projects—apps, Ecommerce builds—as iterative, evolving “products”; a conversation with Monique Elliott, former Chief Marketing Officer at ABB Electrification Products, Industrial Solutions. Second, they highlight Greg Palese, VP of Marketing for Klein Tools, and his interview on connecting your brand to higher-tier issues, not just “quality” broadly. Finally, the co-hosts touch on Lisa Butters, GM of GoDirect Trade at Honeywell, and how a legacy manufacturer can drive innovation.

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