How Mirko Cuneo of Nextre Engineering and Nextre Digital advises entrepreneurs to get back to work with innovation.
Tell us about you, your career, and how you founded Nextre Engineering and Nextre Digital.
Mirko Cuneo: To date, I’ve assisted Italian small and medium-sized companies in embracing digital transformation and incorporating it into their operations.
At the age of 18, I launched my first digital venture. Since then, my journey has been one of growth, punctuated by missteps that have taught me valuable lessons. I’ve done everything in my life to accomplish specific objectives, and I can now say that I’ve accomplished more than one, but I believe my path is far from over.
My more than two decades of sales and commercial experience have led me to develop a variety of businesses, including the present ones. Today, I am the CEO of Nextre Engineering, an IT consulting, e-commerce, app development firm, and Nextre Digital. This digital agency provides comprehensive marketing solutions, from strategic planning to ongoing maintenance.
In addition, I offer to consult and coaching to business owners and professionals who are stuck and want to find new strategies to build their companies.
Do you have small habits that made a meaningful impact on your life and business?
Mirko Cuneo: I have personal experience with market shifts and uncertainties, which has prompted me to consolidate my personal business technique.
Sales, marketing, and personal performance improvement are the three key areas I first focused on and which I believe any entrepreneur must master.
If entrepreneurs and professionals want to keep up with the market and the world of work, they must be students for the rest of their lives. As a consequence of this, and because I am an inquisitive person, I read a lot of books, attend refresher courses, and try to learn something new every week to continue improving as a person and a professional.
Another positive habit that I have developed is finding time to unplug from work to do something else that I enjoy. For example, I go horseback riding in my spare time and spend time with my daughters. It’s remarkable how children can inculcate a sense of humor and creativity in their children, two essential aspects that I can then apply to my daily work.
How does Nextre Engineering and Nextre Digital market its product/services online?
Mirko Cuneo: Inbound Marketing is the strategy we employ to market our services. It’s a method for finding potential customers, drawing them to the brand, and then working to turn them into contacts and, finally, actual customers.
This type of promotion differs in that it is based on creating high-quality content that is appealing to consumers and meets their demands. The goal is to build a relationship with customers so that they trust the brand and desire to learn more, eventually leading to business relationships. It’s all about providing value to users to grow the user base, bring them to a sales funnel, and then nurture them over time to become loyal and even brand promoters.
It’s an intriguing technique that allows you to establish a continuous cycle of new consumers by managing acquisition investments and trying to increase existing customer loyalty at the same time.
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to manage your online marketing?
Mirko Cuneo: The main program that I use in my company is HubSpot and through which I pass all of my actions. A customer relationship management system (CRM) includes all the tools and integrations you’ll need to manage your marketing, sales, and customer service efforts.
Obviously, having just one software program is not enough; nonetheless, this is the method employed by my experienced team, which includes experts in SEO, SEM, Content Marketing, Digital Strategy, Social Media Marketing, and other fields. So, we manage communication and marketing through various channels: the website, blog, and social media, but the word of mouth and public relations are still valuable. To ensure that your brand marketing is a success and that you get tangible results in terms of income and customers, I feel that using all available channels is the best solution.
However, having a team of people, in addition to the required entrepreneurial talents, is the key to a successful organization. Each of them must be responsible for their own activities, and then they must learn to work together to attain common and shared goals.
What is your hiring policy/process, and how do you retain your employees?
Mirko Cuneo: When I’m looking for new teammates, I consider experience, professionalism, and skills on the one hand, especially if I’m seeking senior figures and the individual’s attitude on the other.
An entrepreneur, or anyone in charge of a team, in my opinion, must be able to assess the potential of their collaborators. In my selection process, I also consider people’s personal attributes, which I believe will help them develop particular professional skills.
Furthermore, I founded the Academy within my company, which offers training courses for young boys and girls who wish to begin their careers by studying the most popular programming languages. These are theoretical as well as very practical pathways aimed at preparing people to manage real projects right immediately.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Mirko Cuneo: Our direct competitors are other medium-sized Italian software businesses and other digital agencies. We work hard to secure our brand, make ourselves known and respected, and build our success stories every day.
We continue growing and making our way into the Italian market by specializing and enriching our abilities, skills, and services that we can give to our consumers.
Personally, I’ve never stopped in my life; I’ve constantly set higher ambitions for myself, which has helped me to achieve progressively distant objectives. I’ve brought the same determination and perseverance to my company, and this is how I have built it and, especially, I’m growing it with the help of my team.
Your final thoughts?
Mirko Cuneo: The time we’re in is putting our abilities to the test. First, there was the pandemic, which is still ongoing, and now there is the war in Ukraine, which is upsetting the global equilibrium. Entrepreneurs and businesses face difficult circumstances, and some enterprises are struggling to stay afloat. The business world has come to a screeching halt and is now attempting to take up the pace despite dealing with the global crisis.
Customers, like everyone else, are reviewing their spending. Therefore we need to be able to re-engage them and re-establish their trust. In order to do so, a modern business system must be able to support the developments that are taking place.
I want to tell entrepreneurs that they should get back to work with innovation, which means finding new methods to do things and having the confidence to try them out.