Q&A with Jeanne Hopkins, CMO at Lola.com

MEDIA 7 | October 24, 2019

Jeanne Hopkins, CMO at Lola.com has profound expertise in data-driven, high-velocity customer acquisition and marketing organizations and inbound-based lead gen programs to support global demand for high-growth SaaS companies.

Jeanne is also the co-author of "Go Mobile"​, the #1 best-selling mobile marketing book. She has been named to Sales Lead Management Association "Top 50"​ 3 years in a row and "20 Women to Watch" in 2015/14/13 & 2011.

MEDIA 7: What inspired you to get into marketing?
JEANNE HOPKINS:
 After graduation, I took my first job in the accounting department at Baystate Medical Center. At my annual review, I was told that I was too “noisy” for an accounting department. I went on to work at Milton Bradley Company’s in-house advertising agency, MB Communications, as editor of their in-house newspaper, and later recruited to LEGO Systems to do marketing programs. I found myself at a self-funded start-up tech company in 2000, where I was running an inside sales team and building digital properties to generate leads. I moved into software, digital marketing, and lead generation at companies like MarketingSherpa, then HubSpot, SmartBear, Ipswitch (now Progress Software) – it’s all been a fantastic journey.

M7: How is agile technology transforming corporate travel around the globe?
JH:
Small and mid-sized businesses have to be fast and efficient amidst growth, and booking, re-booking, and managing business travel can seriously impede efficiency and productivity. Finance teams are trying to manage, control, and get visibility into expenditures. Travelers are trying to do their jobs and don’t have time for expense reports. And travel arrangers (executive assistants and office admins) have plenty on their plates. Finally, there are tools that are addressing these direct needs at small and mid-sized businesses. Consumers have had the ease of booking travel through sites like Kayak and big businesses can afford the services and fees associated with high-end travel agencies. But the middle segment has been left out. Now, agile tools like Lola.com are making it really easy for corporate travelers to book, re-book, and take the task of expense reports off the table. And finance teams are able to set up travel policies in minutes, and easily manage, control, and get visibility into expenditures. The corporate travel market is huge, and agile technology is making it much easier for travelers and companies all-around.


"The corporate travel market is huge, and agile technology is making it much easier for travelers and companies all-around."

M7: How does Lola.com ensure a hassle-free modern business travel experience with transparent spending for its customers / business travelers?
JH:
It’s a simple super app to use. For travelers, it has a large inventory of flights and hotels that allows users to avoid having to go between tabs or other sites to compare fares, and it saves preferences, loyalty programs, and payment options in the same place. Traveler profiles are automatically stored so users can book with one click, and the 24/7 support team ensures easy booking and re-booking due to delays and cancellations. Seriously, when someone is in the air, missing their connection due to a delay, many times, Lola.com support has them re-booked on another flight before they land.

For finance personnel, a corporate travel policy can be set up in five minutes for more control over spending, and employees automatically know what they are allowed to book. Takes the guesswork out of the booking process. All data resides in one place so there is complete visibility into travel spend. And we integrate with other tools like Expensify – receipts are automatically sent to Expensify for easy expense tracking and reporting. No messing with receipts (or missing receipts either).


"For finance personnel, a corporate travel policy can be set up in five minutes for more control over spending, and employees automatically know what they are allowed to book."

M7: What trends do you foresee in the ‘Travel & Expense Software Market’ in future?
JH:
Certainly, we are seeing “Bleisure” travel on the rise – those looking to combine business travel with leisure time. Busy people who travel with their jobs want to get the most out a business trip, and many times, even look to extend a business trip last minute to enjoy the area or do something in particular. So companies are looking for faster, agile tools that can respond to quick changes in plans. Companies are also focusing more on keeping their travelers happy and productive on the road, and don’t want them to get caught up in the red tape of corporate travel. So, the trend is simple, faster, more agile tools to make arranging and managing travel a great experience for all.

M7: As the co-author of ‘Go Mobile’, what tactics do you believe modern marketers must focus for successful mobile media marketing campaigns?
JH:  
That book was launched in 2012 and was probably ahead of its time. While at HubSpot seven years ago, I saw the growing influence of mobile search on our blog and website and wanted to make sure we recognized its impact. Today, marketers know that Google prioritizes mobile search and it is imperative to truly understand the need for content that can be delivered in a mobile setting. The ability to auto-fill a form is critical now. The ability to read your email and respond is imperative now. The ability to print from your phone is important - whether an eBook, a recipe or instructions. Your mobile device is your computer now. It wasn’t perceived as that urgent a requirement until 18-24 months ago.


"Companies are focusing more on keeping their travelers happy and productive on the road, and don’t want them to get caught up in the red tape of corporate travel. So, the trend is simple, faster, more agile tools to make arranging and managing travel a great experience for all."

M7: What is your favorite part of working at Lola.com?
JH:
The people. Transparently, everyone really values working alongside each other – all smart, motivated, driven, fun teammates who want to make Lola.com the best workplace ever.  I take a quote from Netflix on how I feel, “Loosely coupled yet tightly aligned.”

M7: What is your superpower or spirit animal?
JH:
 GSD. I just like to get stuff done. I use lists, reminders, notes, etc. to try and stay on top of all that needs to be done. More than anything, I want my team and the company to be successful. I enjoy working, and I enjoy success and - most of all - I enjoy making mistakes and sharing what I did so that others realize that you won’t die from a typo. It’s all fun and I enjoy laughing most of all (remember, I am a loud individual).

ABOUT LOLA.COM

Lola.com makes Agile Travel Management real by providing a super simple way to manage, book and report on business travel, saving employers and travelers time and money. Happy employee travel experiences within a policy can be set up in five minutes. Lola.com uses machine learning and 24/7 support to help travelers easily book trips, while empowering managers to create policies, view budgets and expenditures, and monitor their globetrotting team efficiently. Based in Boston, the company was founded in 2015 by Paul English, co-founder of the travel booking site KAYAK, and is led by CEO Mike Volpe, previously CMO at HubSpot. For more information, connect on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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VIAVI and VMware Announce Testbed as a Service for RAN Intelligent Controller Testing

Viavi | November 25, 2022

Viavi Solutions Inc.today announced that it has signed a partnership agreement with VMware to drive standardized frameworks and metrics for RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC) testing. This testbed as a service will enable mobile operators to introduce programmability to the RAN and help accelerate the adoption of Open RAN. The RIC is a cloud-native central component of an open and virtualized RAN network, enabling the optimization of RAN resources through analytic processing and adaptation recommendations. The RIC takes advantage of native and third-party xApps and rApps – microservice-based applications operating in near-real time (near-RT) and non-real-time (non-RT), respectively – to enable operators to automate and optimize RAN operations at scale to reduce the operator's total cost of ownership, and to introduce innovative new services. VMware is focused on attracting and collaborating with a vibrant ecosystem of partners to help its operator customers adopt Open RAN with complete confidence. VIAVI has the most comprehensive portfolio of Open RAN test solutions in the industry and plays a leading role in defining test processes in the O-RAN ALLIANCE and Telecom Infra Project (TIP). The two companies will work together to demonstrate compliance with RIC-related requirements, assisting CSPs in validating the solution in the lab and scaling the solution to production. The industry-leading VIAVI TeraVM RIC Test and the VMware RIC will form a joint testbed as a service for testing, profiling, and validating third-party xApps and rApps. In addition to the framework, the two companies will work together to drive industry consensus around testing methodology and performance metrics. By having pre-built test cases and a standardized test method for the RIC and xApp/rApp, operators can reduce the time it takes to validate the solution in their lab, meaning they can move to a production environment faster. "Open RAN, by definition, depends on strong collaboration to drive innovation, and that's a perfect way to think about this partnership between leaders in their respective fields, The RIC represents a huge opportunity to the industry: Applying AI/ML techniques allows operators to simplify the management of complex 5G configurations and dynamically optimize the network to cater for new use cases, energy efficiency, and changing traffic patterns." Ian Langley, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Wireless Business, VIAVI "We're excited to work with VIAVI on helping move the industry forward to accelerate the adoption of Open RAN," said Lakshmi Mandyam, vice president, Service Provider Product Management and Partner Ecosystem, VMware. "Our companies share a vision of what it will take to address the challenges hindering adoption by simplifying the path for CSPs to test, profile, and certify third-party xApps and rApps through a common framework. VIAVI's leadership in Open RAN testing and VMware's leadership in RIC make this an ideal collaboration." About VIAVI VIAVI (NASDAQ: VIAV) is a global provider of network test, monitoring and assurance solutions for communications service providers, hyperscalers, equipment manufacturers, enterprises, government and avionics. VIAVI is also a leader in light management technologies for 3D sensing, anti-counterfeiting, consumer electronics, industrial, automotive, government and aerospace applications. Together with our customers and partners we are United in Possibility, finding innovative ways to solve real-world problems.

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H3C AD-WAN Solution Helps LiveCom's Global SD-WAN Operation

H3C | December 07, 2022

According to Omdia's report, the compound growth rate of the global SD-WAN market will reach 11.9% from 2021 to 2027, and the market size will exceed USD 10 billion by 2027, continuing to lead the enterprise network service market. In recent years, as the epidemic accelerated the digital transformation of the industry, more and more enterprises have chosen cloud, and the demand of enterprises for campus networks, data centers and wide area networks has increased rapidly. The SD-WAN (Software-Defined Wide Area Network) has attracted the attention of more enterprises and service providers because it helps enterprises to achieve quality cloud in a more flexible connection mode, while reducing the cost of WAN. Although the SD-WAN has a broad market prospect, in fact, the existing SD-WAN solutions cannot fully meet the customer demands. Presently, in Chinese market, most manufacturers lack the capability to optimize end-to-end network resources, so it is difficult to provide a complete set of solutions. In the international market, the solutions of some manufacturers are realized through mergers and acquisitions, which causes problems such as high prices, difficult operation and maintenance, long development cycle, etc., which greatly affects the deployment progress of the SD-WAN. Based on the insight into the industry pain points, H3C AD-WAN solution, with the concept of "application-driven network", carries out innovative explorations around technical architecture, business experience, security protection and control, operation and maintenance management, business model and other fields, offers new features such as new service modes, WAN optimization, multi-cloud connection, end-to-end SRv6, SASE business automation, etc., and helps the customers build full-scenario, whole-domain and full-lifecycle intelligent WANs, which can better meet the requirements of the operators in the "post-epidemic" era for end-to-end control, operation, and maintenance for SD-WAN construction. This solution has now been applied to overseas market. H3C and LiveCom Cooperate Closely to Explore New SD-WAN Modes In March, 2021, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology issued the Action Plan for Coordinated Development of the "Double Gigabit" Network (2021-2023), proposing to adopt the SD-WAN technical solution to optimize network transmission quality. As encouraged by this policy, the three major domestic telecom carriers have invested in the research and development of SD-WAN intelligent dedicated lines, and the WAN architecture has also turned to SD-WAN in an all-round way. LiveCom is an international carrier that has long been dedicated to cross-border communication information services. With the global business expansion of LiveCom, the number of POP nodes deployed overseas and the volume of business carried by the backbone networks increase. Therefore, the forwarding delay, site deployment, network resource optimization, business operation and maintenance management of its global network are facing greater challenges. In order to further enhance its competitiveness in the global market, LiveCom needs a powerful partner to help upgrade its SD-WAN services in an all-round way, and it is just the right time to cooperate with H3C. After testing SD-WAN products of several manufacturers, LiveCom made a long-term cooperation decision with H3C in less than three months due to the strong advantages of H3C, such as advanced and steady products, professional technicians, and comprehensive service coverage. In the cooperation mode in which H3C provides overall solutions and products, and LiveCom provides lines and technical support, both parties have finally provided customers with high-quality bandwidth operation services based on SD-WAN solutions. At the application level, in the headquarters and branch scenarios, H3C provides hardware products and SD-WAN controllers for deployment, which help LiveCom to establish multiple POP points around the world and deploy branch routers for enterprises. In addition, through the northbound API interface of the SD-WAN solution provided by H3C, LiveCom can customize the display interfaces according to the actual needs of customers, and comprehensively improve the customer experience in operation and maintenance. During the cooperation, both sides have gradually formed a benign and interactive cooperation mode through joint efforts. In the early stage, with deep experience in hardware and solutions, H3C organized pre-sales and after-sales training for LiveCom's technicians in operation, troubleshooting, and calling northbound interfaces of the routers, so as to help them enhance their experience in operating large and medium-sized SD-WAN networks. Besides, H3C provided mature cases for LiveCom, and engineers from both sides jointly deployed the SD-WAN platform. LiveCom was responsible for giving feedbacks of new customer demands to H3C, and both parties jointly analyzed customer demands to provide improved SD-WAN functions and services and solve the problems of the customers.

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