CMO 50: Janine Pelosi

Chief marketing officer, Zoom

Zoom got so big in 2020, the brand became a verb. The video conferencing platform helped people stay online for work and school and connect with friends and family while confined to our homes. Chief marketing officer Janine Pelosi, who has been with Zoom for six years, helped the paltform establish itself as the standard tool for virtual collaboration. She is no stranger to video conferencing platforms, having held senior marketing roles at both Cisco and WebEx. But she had her work cut out for her as Zoom grew fast, adding more users in March 2020 than in all of 2019.

Zoom embraced its position as a lifeline during the pandemic through corporate social responsibility, offering free Zoom PRO accounts to educators early on. The platform also provided resources around COVID-19, updated its support center to keep up with increased demand and published “how-to” blog posts and partnerships with brands and organizations. 

As awareness exploded, Zoom partnered with brands and influencers including Dove and Oprah Winfrey on live events, and has weaved its way into a number of other brands’ creative campaigns, including M&M’s Super Bowl spot. It even made its way into the cultural zeitgeist as the star of Saturday Night Live skits during lockdown.

But the past year wasn’t always easy (remember “Zoombombing”?). Moving forward, Pelosi will have to battle “Zoom fatigue,” as people get exhausted with videoconferencing and spend more time outside. Still, there’s no denying that Zoom has changed the way the world connects, and the platform will continue to facilitate corporate culture as we head into a hybrid office and work-from-home environment.

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