Applying Nunchi throughout your marketing with Sarah Kim

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This incredible guest has nearly two decades of experience in government technology marketing leadership across multiple verticals. They were recently recognized as WashingtonExec’s 2023 Chief Officer Award finalist for CMO of the year. Sarah Kim is the Chief Marketing Officer at Iron Bow Technologies and a Federal Partner Advisory Board Member at Dell Technologies.

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Sarah joins Host Chris Mechanic to share the five keys to nunchi, how to use emotional intelligence to improve your marketing campaigns, and the importance of spending time in person with your customers.


  1. Nunchi is a Korean word that refers to your ability to see and feel emotions, moods, body language, and verbal & nonverbal cues. A good English equivalent is the idea of EQ or emotional quotient.
  2. Emotional Intelligence is not just the awareness of how others are feeling, it is also the ability to take that awareness and turn it into action immediately. For example, it is your ability to take in non-verbal cues and pivot your behavior in response to someone else.
  3. There are 5 parts to Nunchi, the first of which is prioritizing your self-awareness. This is at the heart of Nunchi. If you don’t actually understand your own motivations and behaviors, it’s impossible to understand others.
  4. The second part is to focus on your customers’ emotional motivators. You must keep their pain points in sight. Your campaign messaging, visuals, and approach need to be grounded in your customers’ emotional motivators.
  5. The third aspect is to use plain language. While big words might matter to internal stakeholders, your customers don’t care. Don’t assume your customers are well-versed in the technical language of their problem or your solution. 80% of people scan text, while only 16% actually read word-by-word.
  6. Becoming the “trusted advisor” within a niche or industry is achieved by being approachable by speaking and writing in plain language.
  7. The fourth part is “Zooming Out.” Look at things from many points of view, such as the perspectives of your customers, channel partners, board of directors, employees, etc. This will give you a more holistic view which will help you identify blind spots.
  8. The fifth part is to meet people where they are. Pay attention to how your customers are consuming information and how they want to be engaged.

Quote of the Show:

  • “If you don’t actually understand your own motivations and behaviors, it’s impossible to understand others. So that’s step one in achieving a strong nunchi.” – Sarah Kim



Ways to Tune In:

Sarah Kim

Sarah KimCMO, Iron Bow Technologies

Chris Mechanic

Chris MechanicCEO & Co-Founder

Podcasts Info:
Creative + UX

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