Pure Storage CMO is big on Golden Rule: “Treat people the way you want them to treat you”

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In June of last year, Jonathan Martin was named Pure Storage CMO, charged with leading the data flash storage company’s brand, communications, events and demand-generation strategies.

“The team at Pure is small, but mighty,” says Martin, “Their efforts and determination inspire me every day.”

Before celebrating his one-year anniversary with the brand this summer, Martin led the launch of Pure Storage’s inaugural user conference in March – an event that attracted 1,500 attendees. In addition to the user conference, Martin’s team also launched the Pure Live event series, a seven-week worldwide brand-awareness initiative that will include events in 40 cities, spread out over 28 countries.

“We hope it raises brand awareness in the countries we are hosting events, drives demand and allows us to leverage our loyal customer advocates for future opportunities,” says Martin, “Our customers sell our product better than we do.”

Prior to joining Pure Storage, Marin held marketing and product executive roles at a number of leading software brands, including EMC, HP, Salesforce and VERITAS. He’s a member of the Marketing 50, CMO Council and Forrester’s CMO Group, and avid STEM education supporter – serving on the board at The Tech Museum of Innovation.

Apart from his professional affiliations, Martin also devotes time and effort to support the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of San Jose. He is a graduate of Staffordshire University where he earned a degree in computer science and applied science.

Get To Know:

CMO @ Pure Storage

  • Age: 45
  • HQ: Mountain View, California
  • First Job: Loading concrete mixes on a building site – my summer job while at university
  • Apple or Android? Apple
  • Hobbies: Anything to do with motorcycles, playing the guitar, cooking & being outdoors
  • First Car: Gold VW Polo

What mobile device can you not live without?

My iPhone 6 Plus.

Which apps do you use most often for work?

Evernote, it helps me stay organized.

What social media network or website do you frequent most when you’re not working?

Twitter, I enjoy the breadth of the feed, and that I can get so much information from one place that is useful for my personal and work life.

What’s the first thing you check on your phone in the morning?

Text messages – if something is urgent it will be in a text.

Take me through your typical workday.

I start my day at around 5:00 a.m. and the first thing I do is take care of my dogs. I ride my motorcycle to work and start my workday at 6:00 a.m.

Getting in early gives me time to check my email, prep for the day and meetings until 7:30 a.m. On average, I am in meetings from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., but there are days that the meetings don’t end until 7:30 p.m.

After work, I try to disconnect for at least an hour in the evening and cook dinner, spend time with my wife and dogs and play the guitar.

What has been the most exciting work development during the past year?

Joining Pure Storage and building an amazing marketing team.

What does your desk look like?

I actually hate having stuff on my desk, I like it minimal. I only have my helmet and my coffee cup.

Pure Storage desk shot

How many miles have you traveled in the last 12 months?

I’ve traveled about 170,000 miles in the last year, and my favorite is always coming back home.

What work challenge keeps you up at night?

Keeping up with the growth of the company.

Can you tell us about a campaign or work project you’d like to do over?

I would want more time to plan Pure Accelerate and double the attendance. We can make something that was great even better.

Tell me about the people who have been most influential in your career.

The most influential would be my dad for his work ethic.

The second is Geoff Squire from Warburg Pincus, he is an incredibly successful businessman, but the most normal person you’d ever meet. I had the pleasure of working for him at Openvision.

What traits does a person need to succeed in your position?

First off, having a blend of creativity and science, mixed with the ability to focus on the important when everything is urgent.

Most importantly, to treat people the way that you would want them to treat you and ditch the ego!

Can you tell us something about yourself that your team would be surprised to know?

I collect guitars and currently own 86.

Why did you go into marketing?

It was actually by accident, I started my career in presales and the company I was working with merged with another company that needed product marketing, so I took on that role and stuck with it.

What other career would you like to try?

The lead guitarist for Guns N’ Roses.

Outside of your company’s efforts, what ad campaign or video caught your eye recently?

I loved the Volkswagen Darth Vader commercial from a few years ago. It was funny and tied to the iconic Star Wars brand that is widely recognizable.

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