For years it has been an honor for Empowering Pumps to invite people to nominate industry professionals for our #PumpTalk Community to shine a light on the professionals behind the critical infrastructure that we rely on a daily basis. We are proud to have Deepak Sivanandan as this month’s #Pumptalk Celeb. He is the Senior Director of Product Marketing, Market Intelligence, and Enterprise Risk Management at Flowserve in Dallas and has tons of insight to share with us.
How did you get started working in your field?
I started as mechanical engineer working in telecommunications. I pursued an MBA in Marketing at The University of Texas and found there were several opportunities in that field for oil and gas. The one thing that excited me the most was Emerson as a supplier of control valves and more. It was a great opportunity to bring together my new marketing skills with my technical experience in the oil and gas sector that was growing quickly at that time. I got an opportunity to expand on my business skills since I was a product management leader. I had an opportunity to learn different things. Since then, all the products in flow control have become a natural extension of my background and skills.
What do you love the most about your job? What are you most proud of?
I am currently a marketing leader for product marketing. What I really love about this job is that it gives me the opportunity to use my expertise with the products. As both a mechanical engineer and marketer, I can get into the shoes of my customers and figure out what goes into their decision making process. Marketing may seem to be all flashy promos, but there is actually much more to it than that. It is about understanding how a customer thinks, what their current issue is, how they are trying to address it, how your product can solve it, and how the product adds value to their business. It’s a fascinating job to think from these different angles with a particular focus on how you can package the product for easy consumption in their operations.
I am really proud of the way that in the last four years we have introduced approximately 25 – 30 new products into the market. These introductions are not just the usual product highlights but were launched with an understanding of what our customers need and are looking for. I looked at them as how can we come up with solutions for them. I am proud they really landed with our customers.
What advice would you give to someone considering this line of work or new to the field?
Marketing is not about being flashy; it is much more than that. Marketing is about understanding and utilizing your expertise to meet the needs of each customer. You work closely with them to come up with a solution that is going to add incremental value to their business. Anyone with a technical background who wants to begin a line of work on the business side should consider marketing. It provides a unique opportunity to combine your experience and package it in a way that will communicate the value to the customer. For example, no one knows what a product can do for the customer quite like the engineer who worked on it. They know all the details including what the product can do, what it was designed for, and more. It is a great advantage compared to someone who is just learning about the product at its launch. Marketing is a great field, especially in the B2B arena, for technical experts looking to expand their line of work.
Can you talk about a project you recently worked on?
I was heavily involved in the launch of Flowserve’s IoT solutions under the Red Raven brand. The project is unique in many ways. The Internet of Things is a novel but the hugely popular technological concept that is highly valued across both B2B and B2C sectors. We designed it for flow control space because it can help customers make informed decisions on their processes. Our IoT offerings stood out from the competition because we offered not only a way to remotely monitor the health of assets, but our tech can also provide them with predictions on future performance. This is an excellent tool for any customer who is looking to increase operational reliability time while reducing ownership cost.
I am proud because I was involved right at the beginning during the concept level through the life cycle and into engineering and product management. We had to come up with a special branding, and I got to be heavily involved in the Red Raven concept. There was opposition and skepticism surrounding the name and its ability to highlight its offering. However, leadership came along and produced strong support after spending awhile thinking about how the name connected to what the product does. It led to a hugely successful launch in January of 2021. I am very proud to have led this team.
Anything else you would like to add?
We are at a critical changing point where the digital offerings of any B2B are going to take on a new meaning. This is especially true with continuing COVID restrictions on travel, fewer face-to-face meetings, etc. Digital tools will become more prevalent. We at Flowserve are all embarking on the journey to offering greater digital offerings such as virtual trade shows, expanding our social media, webinars, virtual press conferences, and more. This trend would have happened anyway but the COVID crisis accelerated it. It is an exciting trend for digital marketing, lead generation, sales pipelines, and many others.
Listen to the episode of the Empowering Industry Podcast in which Charli interviewed Deepak Sivanandan.