2021 Honorees

Laur Fiatoa

Director of CRM

“When your team sees that you have faith in their abilities, everyone is working toward a common goal without fear.”

Tell us about where you work and what you do there.

I am the Director of CRM at Helix Sleep. I come from a long tenure in digital performance marketing on both the agency and brand side. Using the best practices from digital and growth marketing, I now oversee the strategic expansion of our CRM department in both external messaging and internal customer insights and analysis.

How would you describe yourself?

I am a really good dog mom, a loyal friend, a devoted partner. I love to cook for my family, and FaceTime my friends with a glass of wine. I am an ardent advocate for racial justice, LGBTQ+ rights, feminism, and inclusion. I’m a queer woman of color, currently living in Harlem with my girlfriend, Kerry, and our puppy, Remy.

What is your leadership style?

I believe that when you give someone enough traction to get going, and you layer on top a sense of true ownership and responsibility, they quickly rise to the occasion and may find new and innovative ways to complete tasks or spur brand new ideas.

I see the potential in every person I’ve hired and foster their professional growth by providing educational support and a foundational understanding but then turning over the keys to them, to take the ball and run with it.

But most importantly, I foster trust. When your team sees that you have faith in their abilities, and trust them to get the job done, everyone is working toward the common goal without fear or hesitation. And that’s where the magic happens.

What do you think has been your biggest professional success so far?

Building a new department from scratch. When you are working at a startup, you are always cognizant of duplicative resources, you keep teams tight to be more efficient, etc. So, to create a business case for an entire CRM department meant I needed to take a small arm of our growth strategy (in this case, primarily just sending drip emails and promotional blasts) and systemically test and scale the program to prove what I already believed it could be.

Honestly, I wasn’t too sure if it was even possible in the beginning. I hadn’t seen anyone do it before. I just knew I was dedicated to the task and a hard worker. I quickly realized that this would take time and continued diligence, which meant I had to find perseverance amidst the uncertainty. When my case was made, and the request was approved, I was so relieved that it was all worth it. I always knew I had the hustle but learned how to tap into that resolve and faith to see it through.

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What goals do you have for 2021?

I want to take our data architecture and tech stack to the next level and really hone in on deeper customer insights and optimize our cross-sell strategy between our sister brands (Birch Living and Allform).

What do you think is the next big trend in eCommerce?

Customer personalization (on-site, SMS, email) is going to become even more important in a cookie-less world. We will have less insight to broad audiences which will drive up the value of known prospects captured from on-site campaigns.

Name an eCommerce brand you admire and why.

The Black Home. Everything about the brand is done with intention and authenticity to elevate Black designers, Black creators, and Black families. Neffi Walker is a true creative and that experience and love is evident in all of her work and every product that is promoted and sold on her site.

What do you geek out over?

True crime documentaries, interior design, finding small boutique stores when I’m walking around, and Beyoncé.