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Discovering the art of the possible and the ‘why’ behind the tech, keeping the customer at the heart of everything

01st March 2020

Author Richard Brown

A Q&A with Richard Brown, Davanti’s Head of Marketing and Customer Insight

Richard Brown joined Davanti late last year to head up our Marketing Services capability. To ensure that we are helping our customers get closer to their customers at every stage in their journey with them, we needed to build upon our leadership capability in marketing and demand generation alongside the strength we have built over the years in sales, customer-focused technology and consultancy.

Richard brings this depth of experience in helping enterprises get much closer to their customers, and more connected at every touch point in their journey, from acquisition right through to ongoing nurture and support. We’re really excited about the value that Richard and his growing team are bringing to our customers in really getting to the heart of customer experience and helping organisations make their CX vision a reality.

– John Bessey, Chief Client Officer


What does your role entail and how does it helps bring Davanti’s customers closer to their customers?

At heart, my role is all about understanding what our customers’ challenges are, and helping them to get closer to their customers.

My team and I are always thinking about how we can help our customers to get the right messages to their customers, at the right time, in the right way. Our focus is on helping to bring the right technology to the picture to enable this focus across everything our customers do, so they can deliver great brand experiences while being as easy to do business with as possible in our digital world.

Richard Brown Richard Brown, Head of Marketing and Customer Insight


Tell us a bit about yourself… And what gets you out of bed in the morning?

I grew up in New Zealand. My life ambition had been to go to school, go to university, get a job. And throughout that journey I had passion for technology and design, however I didn’t really know what I wanted to do… which resulted in a millennial midlife crisis at about the age of 25.

So, after working for a few years, I “moved” to London (or rather failed to return from what was supposed to be a month-long trip to Europe). It was there that I started to learn more about working with enterprise-scale organisations. I eventually moved back to New Zealand, after a seven-year stint in Sydney.

The thing I’ve always been most interested in, and that has always driven me in my career, is a natural love and passion for technology, in particular a desire to understand how everything works. Even as a kid I’d pull things apart and attempt to put them back together.

Taking it one step further, these days for me it’s all about knowing the art of what’s possible – and why you are doing something in the first place.

During my university days I discovered that you could do some pretty cool stuff with technology, but I became more interested in understanding how people interact with technology, and why they’re using it.

I remember back to my first UX paper at university and the thing that sticks with me even now is that you have to understand what people are trying to achieve right now and what they need to do to be able to move to the next step.

I’m still amazed by what we can do with technology, but the bit that interests me most is understanding how to make it relevant and simple for people to use. So that they actually use – and love – it. That’s the bit that gets me out of bed in the morning and that’s what I’m here to help our clients achieve.


What brought you to Davanti? And what are you most looking forward to in your role?

Over the years I’ve learned a lot about the technology and architecture and strategy around delivering content in content management systems (CMS) and commerce – because people want to sell stuff. And then a lot about digital marketing – because people want to sell more stuff.

With my natural interest in knowing how stuff works and working out how best technology can empower people, I’ve become really interested in the influence of digital marketing on people, how we can use tech to understand what people want and then use this to give them what they need.

I’ve found the strategy and the technology around this fascinating, and the technology in this space is becoming increasingly capable and intuitive, which is really exciting and provides a real opportunity for organisations to really put their customers at the centre of everything they do.

In coming to Davanti, I have an amazing opportunity to discover more of this and bring the benefits to our customers on a daily basis. My focus is on using everything that I’ve learned around digital strategy, architecture, content and commerce and digital marketing, and applying this to real world situations to help our customers get closer to their customers.


What are you most looking forward to in 2020?

  1. Growing and building a great team of people.
  2. Starting to help our clients really make good on their goals for customer-centricity. There’s some amazing stuff happening, and so many of our clients have CX right at the top of their priority list and are starting to make some real progress; 2020 is going to be the year of bringing it to life.
  3. And at the end of the day you need to have fun doing what you’re doing, so working with really cool people is a big thing for me as well.


When you’re not busy helping clients get closer to their customers – how do you spend your time?

For the last 15 months, any spare time has been spent learning how to be a dad to Hugo.

I love being on the water, being out on a boat whenever possible. I always love travelling when I can and taking street photography and discovering street art around Melbourne or Europe.

But these days, when I’m not focusing on helping our customers get closer to their customers, it’s all about relaxing and socialising whenever I get the opportunity.


Richard Brown

Richard Brown is Davanti’s Head of Marketing and Customer Insight, focused on understanding customers’ challenges and helping them discover the art of the possible.