Getting Started with Splunk: One Splunktern’s Story

In this next installment of our “Meet the Splunktern'' series, we’re featuring Karni Beth, our summer Customer Success Marketing intern. From hosting webinars to creating onboarding guides for our customers, Karni’s summer was surely a summer of growth and development. Read on to learn more about Karni and her journey at Splunk.

Following my third year at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo studying marketing strategies and collaborating on simulated campaigns with my peers, I had the immense privilege of stepping into Splunk’s (virtual) office to begin my summer as a Customer Success Marketing Intern. As I logged into Zoom on a Monday morning in June, I was nervous yet determined to leap into the world of tech marketing. I joined the Customer Success Marketing organization and was given the task of planning and executing programs that boost customer retention. Specifically, I was to compile and publish a series of guides that enhance the onboarding process for customers acquiring Splunk products, enabling them to gain value within their first use case. While guiding customers in Getting Started with Splunk, I too was kicking off my journey aboard the Splunk rocketship.

The Customer Success Marketing team was officially formed earlier this year, with the goal to “nurture and optimize our customer’s journey through Splunk”. The team’s responsibilities included onboarding, adoption and service, renewal/retention, expansion, and upgrading to cloud. I joined the programs subteam, where I worked with Melissa Perez and Whitney Sink (my managers, mentors, and teammates) to create programs tailored to the onboarding and adoption stages of a customer’s journey. In this role, I hosted webinars and filtered Splunk’s YouTube channel for outdated content in addition to creating the Getting Started pages for Splunk Lantern.

To compile the series of Lantern webpages, I familiarized myself with Jennifer Swallow and Kaye Chapman’s vision for the Product Learning Guide section of this site and learned the MindTouch software. I then determined in which form they could be most approachable, beneficial, and concise. After developing a template, I reached out to Product Marketing Managers, Subject Matter Experts, and the Customer Success organization to compile the information most essential to getting started with each of Splunk’s products. This involved gathering resources produced on each onboarding step, including white papers, Splunk Docs, blog posts, YouTube videos, and webinars. Finally, I contacted Technical Writers, Product Marketing Managers, Project Managers, the Education team, the Public Sector Marketing team, and Regional Marketing teams to collect feedback on the final draft of each page.

By the end of my summer with Splunk I had completed eight Getting Started Pages with three others in progress. My greatest highlight was working with the variety of impressive and diverse professionals; getting to know these sharp and enthusiastic Splunkers brought Splunk’s vibrant culture right into my bedroom office. In addition to their valuable contributions to my project, the collaborators frequently took the time to personally get to know me and offer insight and advice through coffee chats. Importantly, in my time as a Splunktern I got to know the Splunk customer, too. I particularly enjoyed moderating live webinars on Twitch, LinkedIn,Youtube, and ON24 where I got to personally interact with customers. This enriched my understanding of the project, therefore elevating the marketing materials I produced. In thirteen short weeks, I was empowered to manage the entire Getting Started pages creation process, including leading many calls to gain stakeholder input. In this time, I grew as a marketer, a project manager, and a leader.

A photo of our team happy hour!

Another important lesson from my summer is that getting started can be difficult. In the first days of my internship with Splunk, I felt isolated by the virtual setting and weighed down by imposter syndrome. As I dove into this project, however, I found myself connecting with coworkers through (virtual) offsite meetings and Splunktern activities (including two art classes!) and grew to love all things “Splunky”. Guiding customers in Getting Started with Splunk, it turns out, allowed me to feel at home with Splunk myself. Thanks to this transformational summer, I am inspired by lessons from Splunk’s customer-first mindset and feeling energized and equipped with the tools to build a career in marketing.

Want to learn more about the Splunk Internship Program? Visit our Splunk University Recruiting Facebook Page and LinkedIn, or check out open Splunktern opportunities.

Katia Ratkovich
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Katia Ratkovich

Katia is Splunk’s Global University Recruiting Manager. She is responsible for developing and implementing strategies to attract and retain top university graduates to create a diverse, global workforce. Additionally, she focuses on how university recruiting plays a critical role in achieving a diverse and inclusive environment and co-leads the planning some of Splunk's major diversity initiatives. Katia is a member of Splunk’s Women in Technology group and sits on the D&I counsel. 

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