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December 03, 2023 • Interview with Authority Magazine


Innovative Inbound Marketing: Fortum Digital’s Unique Tactics

Article Summary

Explore the groundbreaking inbound marketing strategies pioneered by Antonio Castelan, the founder of Fortum Digital Services. This article delves into Antonio’s backstory, his journey from a Houston immigrant family to the forefront of digital marketing innovation. It highlights his unconventional approach to inbound marketing, revealing five unique tactics that have propelled Fortum Digital Services to success. These tactics showcase Antonio’s emphasis on creativity, empathy, and technological integration, offering valuable insights for businesses looking to stand out in a saturated market.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share your personal backstory with us?

Antonio’s journey to digital marketing success began in a modest Houston home, where his immigrant parents’ resilience and work ethic inspired his ambitions. His early fascination with technology and consumer behavior laid the groundwork for his innovative approach in digital marketing, leading to the birth of Fortum Digital Services. This backstory is a tale of turning curiosity into a thriving enterprise, driven by the desire to disrupt traditional marketing norms.
My journey into the world of marketing began as a blend of curiosity and necessity. Born and raised in Houston to immigrant parents, I witnessed firsthand the power of hard work and perseverance. My fascination with technology started with a basic computer at home, where I spent countless hours exploring the digital world. This early exposure sparked a passion for understanding how technology can influence consumer behavior. My entrepreneurial spirit was ignited during my teenage years, leading me to start Fortum Digital Services shortly after high school. It was a bold step, fueled by my desire to innovate in an industry that seemed ready for disruption.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful for who helped get you to where you are?

My path to where I am today was significantly influenced by my father. His relentless work ethic and ability to adapt to new environments, having moved to the U.S. from Mexico, instilled in me a mindset of resilience and determination. One particular incident that stands out was when I faced my first major business setback. My father, seeing my dejection, shared his story of overcoming numerous obstacles when he first started his small business. His words, ‘Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts,’ have since become a mantra for me. His support and wisdom have been a guiding light in my journey.

Can you share with us three strengths, skills, or characteristics that helped you to reach this place in your career? How can others actively build these areas within themselves?

I. Innovativeness has been crucial in navigating the ever-evolving marketing landscape. I constantly challenge the status quo, which led to the development of our unique AI-driven marketing strategies.

II. The ability to bounce back from setbacks, something I learned from my father, has been instrumental. An example is when a significant project failed, and instead of giving up, I used the experience to refine our services.

III. Understanding client needs and consumer psychology has always been at the core of our approach. This empathy enables us to create marketing campaigns that resonate deeply with our audience.

Which skills are you still trying to grow now?

Currently, I’m focusing on enhancing my leadership skills, particularly in the realm of strategic decision-making and team empowerment. As our company grows, the decisions become more complex and impactful. I’m also delving deeper into understanding emerging technologies like blockchain and how they can be leveraged in marketing. Continuous learning is a key aspect of staying relevant and innovative.
Fortum Digital’s guerrilla marketing campaign for a local startup exemplifies Antonio’s out-of-the-box thinking. By integrating subtle branding into intriguing street art, the campaign generated significant social media buzz, demonstrating the power of creativity in marketing. This approach reflects Antonio’s philosophy of pushing conventional boundaries to achieve extraordinary marketing success.

Let’s talk about marketing. Can you share an interesting or amusing story about a time you tried a really out-of-the-box marketing tactic? What was the result?

One of our most unconventional tactics was when we launched a guerrilla marketing campaign for a local startup. We created a series of mysterious and intriguing street art pieces around the city that subtly incorporated the startup’s branding. The campaign sparked curiosity and buzz on social media, leading to a significant increase in brand recognition. It taught us the power of creativity and how unconventional methods can lead to extraordinary results.

What tips do you have to receive buy-in from the CEO and other stakeholders for trying out less conventional tactics?

To gain buy-in for unconventional tactics, I focus on presenting comprehensive research and case studies demonstrating their potential impact. I also propose pilot projects with clear metrics to measure success. This approach allows stakeholders to see the tangible benefits and potential ROI, making them more open to exploring unconventional strategies.

Content is a big part of inbound marketing, but with content saturation making it increasingly harder to stand out, what unique approach has your team taken to make your content truly memorable and shareable?

In the face of content saturation, our team focuses on creating interactive and immersive content experiences. We’ve incorporated augmented reality in our content, allowing users to engage with our client’s products in a virtual space. This approach not only makes our content stand out but also enhances user engagement and memorability.

Personalization is another key trend in marketing. How has your company embraced unconventional methods to deliver personalized experiences to your target audience?

Our approach to personalization goes beyond just using customer names in emails. We use AI to analyze customer behavior and preferences, allowing us to create hyper-personalized content and recommendations. For instance, for an e-commerce client, we developed a system that tailors the shopping experience based on the customer’s browsing history and purchase patterns, leading to increased customer satisfaction and sales.

Can you discuss an innovative strategy your team has used to effectively nurture leads and guide them down the conversion path?

One effective strategy we’ve implemented is using AI-driven chatbots for lead nurturing. These chatbots engage with leads in real-time, providing personalized responses and recommendations. For a B2B client, we set up a chatbot that guided potential leads through a series of questions to understand their needs and then provided customized solutions. This not only streamlined the lead nurturing process but also resulted in a higher conversion rate.
Antonio’s five unique inbound marketing tactics include creating gamified experiences for enhanced user engagement, implementing AR in retail for a personalized shopping experience, utilizing AI for customized menu recommendations in food services, hosting influencer-led niche podcasts for deeper brand connection, and community-driven contests for product innovation. Each tactic represents a blend of technological ingenuity and customer-centric focus, setting Fortum Digital Services apart in the marketing landscape.

What are 5 Unconventional Inbound Marketing Tactics that Work?

I. We created an interactive, gamified experience for a travel client. Users navigated a virtual world, unlocking travel destinations and offers by solving puzzles. This not only increased engagement but also significantly boosted bookings.

II. For a fashion retailer, we implemented AR fitting rooms, allowing customers to try on clothes virtually. This campaign not only generated buzz but also offered valuable data on customer preferences.

III. We utilized AI to analyze real-time customer data for a food delivery service, creating personalized menu recommendations. This approach led to a 30% increase in repeat orders.

IV. Rather than traditional influencer endorsements, we partnered with influencers to host niche podcasts. This gave a platform for in-depth discussions about our client’s products, deepening customer understanding and connection.

V. For a new beverage launch, we initiated a contest encouraging users to create their own drink recipes using our product. The engagement was phenomenal, and the winning recipes were featured in our marketing, creating a sense of community and ownership among customers.

Where do you look for inspiration on creative and unconventional marketing tactics? How do you come up with new ideas?

Inspiration comes from everywhere — from art, science, everyday life, and especially from understanding human behavior. I frequently attend interdisciplinary conferences, not just marketing-focused ones, to gain different perspectives. Brainstorming sessions with our diverse team, who bring unique experiences and viewpoints, often lead to the birth of novel ideas.

If you had to share one ingredient in your ‘secret sauce’ to success with inbound marketing, what would it be?

If there’s one ingredient in my secret sauce, it’s empathy. Understanding and genuinely caring about the customer’s needs and experiences is key. This empathy drives our campaigns, ensuring they resonate deeply with the audience.

Are there any underrated skills or qualities that you encourage others not to overlook?

If there’s one ingredient in my secret sauce, it’s empathy. Understanding and genuinely caring about the customer’s needs and experiences is key. This empathy drives our campaigns, ensuring they resonate deeply with the audience.

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good for the greatest number of people, what would that be?

Listening and observation are often overlooked but are crucial. It’s not just about data and trends; it’s about genuinely understanding the subtle nuances of your audience’s behavior and preferences. Additionally, patience is vital; effective marketing requires time to test, learn, and refine strategies.

Final Thoughts

Antonio Castelan’s journey with Fortum Digital Services is a masterclass in leveraging innovative inbound marketing tactics to stand out in a competitive industry. His approach, rooted in deep empathy and technological prowess, demonstrates how thinking outside the box can lead to remarkable marketing success. From guerilla campaigns to AI-driven personalization, Antonio’s strategies offer invaluable lessons for businesses seeking to make a lasting impact. Discover the full depth of Antonio’s innovative marketing tactics and his insights on scaling a business in the digital age by reading the complete article here –