Detroit Engineered Products (DEP) – with footprints in Europe, China, Korea, Japan, and India, this company is at the forefront of providing engineering solutions and product development services to some of the major OEMs in the world.
Spearheading DEP’s promotions in its global expansion efforts is its Chief Marketing Officer, Shirin Hameed – a b2b product veteran with over 13 years of experience in leading comprehensive marketing projects in the tech domain. Shirin has in the past worked with Tata Technologies and National Instruments and she is currently leading the marketing team at DEP and its product lines globally.
In an candid interview with ProdWrks, Shirin decodes marketing in the age of big data and shares her learnings from a decade long career heading product marketing in Detroit Engineered Products.
(This interview has been edited for clarity and length.)
1. Can you walk us through your journey to becoming the CMO of Detroit Engineered Products?
2. Kindly brief us about DEP, its specializations, its journey, and its momentum thus far...
Detroit Engineered Products is an engineering solutions provider and product development company incepted in 1998 in Troy, Michigan, USA. We use the accelerated and transformed product development process, accomplished by utilizing our proprietary platform, DEP MeshWorks, which rapidly reduces the development time of products for all segments.
3. What do you think is DEP’s contribution to the world of product development?
4. What are some of the latest trends in product development where you see DEP playing a significant role?
We have our foot in a world where everything is digital, and data is king. The use of big data in all stages of the product life cycle is increasing, and in product design and development as well. We are seeing decisions both on the consumer and company side being driven by data. A component that helps companies in the product development stage that DEP can bring considerable value to is the use of virtual validation and testing using digital twin technology.
5. What are the biggest market drivers for your products?
DEP works with companies on creating innovative solutions to real-world problems. We have a long history in the automotive industry, being headquartered in Michigan, we have worked extensively with leading automakers in the US, Europe, and India. DEP works with companies across industries like Automotive, Aerospace, Defense, Biomedical, Energy, Electronics, Oil & Gas, Consumer Products, Heavy Equipment, etc.
6. As a modern-day CMO in a cutting-edge B2B product industry, what does your daily routine look like?
7. Can you share a few lessons from your marketing journey for upcoming product marketers?
One of the key things for a marketer is to learn to balance between short-term results and long-term goals.
Very often we tend to get caught up in the short-term results which are more measurable and gratifying, but one has to keep the end goal in sight always, never ever losing track of the company’s vision and consumers’ priorities.
An analogy I like to revisit is ‘while you should measure what you caught, never lose track of what you were fishing for in the first place.’
8. What role do you see India playing in DEP's plans?
9. What are the best marketing practices to adopt in 2023 for product companies looking at revamping their strategy?
One key thing I would like to recommend to all companies is that the earlier you involve marketing, the better. Very often I see in companies that marketing is given the product and then asked to spin its magic – this is counter-intuitive. Involving marketing from the conceptualization stage can result in a better-packaged product and a more robust marketing campaign.
Another key aspect that can really help companies is the consolidation of tools across departments and functions. Companies are swimming with data, and if we are able to get teams to consolidate their data, and get this data to talk and work with each other, it can result in far more effective data-driven focused marketing and data-driven companies in general.
10. Can you please share your marketing strategies in DEP?
One of the strategies that have worked for us is the increase in ABMs (Account Based Marketing), which has helped with our expansions globally. An interesting campaign was when we launched our IC sensor – our in-combustion cylinder sensor, which helps to measure and thus control vehicular emissions and help companies adhere to emission norms.
A campaign that is close to my heart is when we showcased our product development capabilities a few years ago, through an innovative e-scooter that we reversed engineered and added some innovative features. It was showcased at the Auto Expo as well. Every major launch of newer versions of our flagship CAE platform (DEP MeshWorks) is an exciting time for DEP, our clients, and our partners globally.