SaaS Breakthrough – Featuring Leilani Latimer

demio saas breakthrough featuring leilani latimerAbout Leilani Latimer:
Leilani Latimer leads Global Marketing, Partnerships and Commercial Operations for Zephyr Health, the Insights-as-a-Service leader harnessing the power of global healthcare data to help Life Sciences companies engage the right physicians, accounts, and institutions.

Leilani Latimer is a senior marketing and operations executive who takes products and programs to scale with success in global market penetration, channel expansion, digital transformation and brand advancement.  She leads go-to-market strategies, builds ecosystem technology alliances, drives customer engagement and guides essential support functions to optimize productivity within the commercial organization.

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Show Notes:
Zephyr's Secret Sauce
Joining To Launch First SaaS Product
First Marketing Initiatives Coming In
Customer, User and Buyer Personas
"This always been my experience in enterprise sales, you have a couple of personas and the buyer persona is frequently not the user persona, but you have to sell to the buyer based upon what his or her user is going to be doing."
First Lessons Learned: List Purchasing is Double-Edged Sword
High Touch Industry, High Touch Contact
"This is a high touch industry, it's going to be a high touch contact that you get into a leads database. It's not going to come from a list."
Content Marketing Never Goes Bad
"I've never seen content marketing go bad. I mean, listen, everybody in every industry wants to grow professionally, right? From my experience. And so an educational piece of information at every level of your career is valuable and the person who provided that to you, you will remember."
Funny Channel: Print
Blending Digital and Analog Channels
"Learn your customer and learn the channels that they're using. And as much as everybody wants to go digital, listen, I always tell people marketing is digital, sales is an analog channel and in particular in the industry like this industry where it is still about a relationship and it's a high touch relationship that has an analog channel. So how do you blend your digital channels and your analog channels? How do you make them one?"
Metrics and Key Touchpoints for Success in a Longer Play
"The metrics give you an opportunity to calibrate and change quickly, right? So if something is not converting, if something's not going well, the great thing about the marketing world is all of our automation tools give us the ability to change things quickly."
" I may want to look at the data for the sake of all of the micro data points and things that I can change and again, those switches that I can flip, but from a business perspective, we want to look at the things that give us the information that say I'm going to make a change if if that goes well or if it doesn't go well, if I'm not going to make a change, I shouldn't. I shouldn't waste my time measuring it or putting it in my KPIs."
Roles: Pipeline and Marketing
Biggest Wins: Great Brand Awareness and Broad Industry Recognition
Growth Numbers
Marketing in 2018: Honing, Trimming and Getting More Precise
Lightning Questions

DA (02:56):
Hey Leilani. Thanks so much for joining me today. How are you doing and appreciate you joining me.

LL (03:00):
I'm doing great. Thanks for having me. It's a pleasure to be here.

DA (03:04):
Yeah, it's a real honor to be able to bring you guys on and learn more about what you're doing. In fact, why don't we actually start off with a brief introduction maybe to Zephyr Health and what you guys are doing.

LL (03:15):
Absolutely. So Zephyr Health is a big data and analytics company serving the life sciences industry, so that means pharmaceutical companies, biotech companies, medical device and diagnostics, and our cloud based software solutions Zephyr Illuminate helps these customers really unlocking value from the complex complex data, that they have, let's say in the industry and so that they can accelerate their commercial strategies.

DA (03:40):
Got It. So that was pretty complex. So you're saying you're breaking down the data that you guys have for physicians, accounts, institution, stuff like that?

LL (03:50):
Absolutely. So typically a pharmaceutical company and one of our, one of our customers, they have a lot of internal data. Then they have data that they purchase. And then as you can only imagine, there's more and more data being created in the public realm. So our secret sauce, if you will, is bringing these three very distinct data sources together. They are very difficult to link. The public data is completely unstructured and there's really no way to link it again to a specific health care provider or health care organization, so that is absolutely what we do is help them connect this data and then our analytics ask questions of the data so that we can serve the answers up to our customers and again, help them in targeting and segmenting and really getting their products to the right physicians so that they can ultimately get to the right patients.

DA (04:39):
Wow. That's absolutely incredible. It sounds like you saw a couple major pain points there. That was an industry. Is that how you guys were actually founded? You're just looking at those pain points to bring something that you could look at the insights better?

LL (04:50):
Absolutely. Our founder came right out of the pharmaceutical industry and he was, you know, addressing those problems are facing those problems every day. He thought like, as he was working in the commercial side of Johnson & Johnson, which is where he came from, that he had a ton of data available to him and was spending a lot of money buying data and yet could never get the data that he needed to calibrate the business and make those business decisions and do so in a timely fashion.

DA (05:19):
I think it's easy for us, those of us in Martech to understand the need for analytics and stuff like that. But it's interesting to hear that other outside industries, verticals and stuff like that don't have the same access to data. So I can see why it's so critical for you guys to do that

DA (05:35):
for, for your industry. Now when did you join the team? When, uh, what does that look like?

LL (05:39):
Well, so Zephyr Health was actually founded in 2011, but I joined the team in 2015 when we were getting ready to launch the first SaaS product. So up until then there was a lot of work being done. We've got a lot of machine learning and artificial intelligence connecting the data. And as you can imagine, took a couple of years to build out that infrastructure. So I joined at the very beginning of 2015 and we launched our first SaaS product, Zephyr Illuminate in September of that year.

DA (06:02):
OK, that's awesome. So kind of coming into a new SaaS product, what was your impression coming in? Were you a SaaS marketer prior?

LL (06:09):
Yeah, so I had been working for a, I would say a B2B2C, a large enterprise software company serving the travel and transportation industry. So I'm very familiar with B2B marketing and what I call B2B2C marketing. I'm very familiar with enterprise software. Um, that's absolutely my background. But what was really fun about joining Zephyr is we were, it was really at the very beginning, so I was brought in to build out the entire, marketing and basically marketing department, but also all of our, what I call commercial operations. So sales and marketing operations.

DA (06:45):
That's incredible. And what do you do when you first come into such a barren landscape of marketing and you have so much to accomplish? What is that kind of the first initiatives or things that you're going to start with?

LL (06:55):
Yeah, that's a great question. I mean, it really is. Where do we begin? And I'll tell you, when I started building out the organization I thought, thank goodness we had a website and brand identity, so that was, that was a good thing. But really I started looking at everything, right? So we had to build out lead in demand generation. We had to build out outreach events and PR and communications strategy. We had to build that sales enablement so there was not even a sales tear sheet or a piece of collateral that salespeople can use. Um, so there was a lot to do and I had to hire people. So it was, it was a busy time, but you know, you start with baby steps, right? So to me, when I joined we had also just hired our first sales rep. So I prioritized everything by, you know, what are the reps absolutely need now and then what are some of the things that we can start building, you know, I felt like lead and demand generation, we had reps coming in with, you know, a few people in their Rolodex, so it was more important to get them some sales enablement, product training, you know, some product overview, some basic what I would call basic product marketing, not, not even marchitecture type of stuff, but basic what is the product and what does it do to them so they can start making, you know, having meaningful sales calls and then start building out the infrastructure under that. Start reviewing our, again, our PR and marketing outreach and doing then all of building out, you know setting up an instance of salesforce, you know, the basic stuff and getting things running.

DA (08:29):
When you're coming in that early and you're talking with the sales reps and stuff like that, do you guys have customer personas already written out? Do you know who you're talking to or is it kind of still at that stage you're using those points as educational moments to learn where to attack first and stuff like that?

LL (08:44):
You know that's a great question. That was actually one of the first things that I did. So we had some. The customer success team who was here before I joined had already done a fair amount of persona work based up from, I would say from a customer success perspective, so more on a user persona and so I was able to use that as a starting point to build out the buyer personas because as you can imagine, and this is always been my experience in enterprise sales, is you have a couple of personas and the buyer persona is frequently not the user persona, but you have to sell to the buyer based upon what his or her user is going to be doing. So that was one of the first things we did and that was a great foundation to start. Not even, I mean not just with what I would call the collateral, but exactly the, the testimonials, the use cases and everything that was going to support again, sales enablement, and then what would ultimately be the foundation for how we built out our salesforce instance. So it was great to have that. To me that was a, it has to be a starting point because every contact that is going to be added into a CRM and then you know, into a marketing automation tool, we need to have, you need to have that, that breakdown. Otherwise we couldn't do, you know, here we're selling segmenting and advanced segmentation and targeting and we needed to do advanced segment and segmentation and targeting.

DA (10:07):
That's exactly right. And I think, the other major thing is like, once you kind of understand that I've been the buyer persona, you also can look at those growth channels or your demand gen channels a little bit easier. So, you know, you said you went through all the different steps after you started working with the sales team, you gave them materials and stuff like that. What was the campaign that you initially worked on and how, how did that go? Was there any initial learnings or, or tweakings that you found, you know, unique or special?

LL (10:34):
Well, I'll tell you, and this is a great, you know, this is a great lesson for somebody coming in that early on. So one of the, the early, I would say it was sort of sales leadership and people here, felt really strongly he came from an industry that was, higher volume, so I would say lower price point, right? As far as the product but higher volume. And so when I stepped in they had already signed up for a list purchasing service as far as leads and marketing generation goes. So one of the first things we did for, for outbound was to build out our very first nurture campaign or outreach campaign. And I will tell you, not only did I cancel that list purchasing, before the year ended out, but we then spend, probably a good nine to 12 months trying to then clean that junk out of our database. So great lesson to somebody coming into a new industry or coming into new organization where you really don't have a contact database, you don't have a leads database, right. So you have to start from something. List purchasing is double double-edged sword. It's not something that I would, um, I would do again, but it was a good learning for me because I had never get, I came from a very similar industry but a much more mature, a technology solution, a solution that had been in the marketplace for a long time. So, so lead generation was very much, you know, word of mouth, customer testimonials or salespeople knowing exactly who to go to to try to convert them off of one product onto another product. It was not, you know, I have no idea who to go talk to. So very different approach to the market. But I had never seen something in such a high touch sale. I'd never seen it list by. And so I thought, well that's interesting. I'll try it out. I've never done anything like that. Try it out. And again, now that I've tried it out, I would not necessarily recommend it or do it again.

Speaker 1 (12:44):
A hundred percent. Would you say that you went much more, you know, value based leads, leads that you knew were valuable because they were specific to the customer persona you had versus just saying, hey, we're going to hit everyone?

LL (12:57):
Yeah. And even though we segmented it by persona. So even though we did, I mean the very first nurture campaign we ever did, or you know, outreach campaign was segmented. So that's a good thing. We had a specific use cases for those personas that we're selling. We had, um, you know, I come from a strong, you know, content marketing background as well. So luckily we had a pretty rich content campaign that was, again, one of the first things I did was put the calendar in place of everything and what are the messages going to be and how we're going to message to the different personas and what kind of content we're going to serve up. So we were building out a very robust but beginning steps of a customer journey, right from a content perspective. But, the, the list you were talking about a customer, again that is a very particular customer, you're selling into an extremely high level in the organization and that high level in the organization, again, specific to this industry, you know, has an, has an Admin who picks up the phone so you're not going to be doing outbound calling because you'll never get to the person or again, they have filters on their emails that are going to be very, very robust because it is an industry that is highly privatized, meaning data privacy and the everything around sharing their, it's a very regulated industry, right? So there's blocks on their ip addresses. So a lot of that, you know, wasn't thought about it when we kind of went, that approach was put in place and again it had worked for, um, for this person in, in his other company. And so he wanted to try it. I had never seen anything like that and I thought, well, why not try it? But, um, I think the answer in the end was not the right way to get the right contact in your database. Right. This is a high touch industry, it's going to be a high touch contact that you into a leads database. It's not going to come from a list.

DA (14:56):
Makes a ton of sense. Would you say that there's been marketing channels that you've seen kind of transform both the industry you were in before into this industry and something that's just like a proven channel that you can lean on? Here Lists purchasing and like cold outbound to a purchase list probably not one of those things, but you said before content marketing. Do you feel like that's an experiment that no matter what industry you're going into, if you were starting from scratch, that's something you would dial in on?

LL (15:20):
Absolutely, and I, I've never seen content marketing go bad. I mean, listen, everybody in every industry wants to grow professionally, right? From my experience. And so an educational piece of information at every level of your career is valuable and the person who provided that to you, you will remember. So to me that, that, that content is never, again, if you're in an area of pharmaceutical business that compliance is a, is an issue for you, and I'm going to tell you about compliance regulations in 60 different countries. You're going to find that interesting, right? If we talk about something like open data, which in the United States is, we call it Sunshine Act, but which physicians are receiving how much money from which pharmaceutical companies, where there's a regulation like that in every other country in the world. So if, if that's your job and I'm going to update you on what that regulation that is, it has nothing to do with my product, but it is a piece of content and me telling you data is important and analytics are important and this is a piece of data which physician got how much money from you or your competitor or multiple competitors and what they got it for? Were they on a advisory panel? Did they write a paper with you on some treatment area? That's just useful information and you'll remember me, right? So cantone content marketing, when it's valuable content and you're not doing product push is, is always valuable.

DA (16:51):
It makes a ton of sense. And it sounds like if you're going value first, looking at the persona, what value you can offer to them that again, may not have direct relation with my product, but enough that there's correlation back to what we're doing to help the industry maybe.

LL (17:07):
Absolutely, absolutely. And listen, lots of educating, right? Because this is so. I'll tell you a funny channel that I did not expect to be a channel I will never use again, print. So I know how I forgot that existed until I got to this industry and realized that so many of our buyer personas get magazines, industry magazines, you know, pharmaceutical executive or pharma boys and they get those magazines and they put them in their bags and they carry them on their trip and they read them. And I had forgotten about print. And you know, it's hard get click-through rates with print, right? So, but, but I rediscovered print. And so I think that too is a learning to say, learn your customer and learn the channels that they're using. And as much as everybody wants to go digital, listen, I always tell people marketing is digital, sales is, is an analog channel and in particular in the industry like this industry where it is still about a relationship and it's a high touch relationship that has an analog channel. So how do you blend your digital channels and your analog channels? How do you make them one? So when people talk about Omni Channel Marketing, our multi-channel marketing, I always laugh and say that sounds great, but really the analog and the digital, they, you have to find ways and make ways that they connect with each other. So me doing any kind of, and again, if I buy a page in a magazine, I'm going to, I'm going to write an article, I'm going to do thought leadership. I'm not going to put an ad that I just like, I can't, I can't do it. It's, it's, it's not in my nature. I won't do an ad. I will do, I will. I'd rather buy a page and write an article and have a, an advertorial, um, cause at least I wrote something interesting that maybe you'll read even if it has sponsored, written on the top of it, but maybe you'll read the article. I don't. I think people just flipped past ads, but I can't, I can't, I can't get any kind of a statistic. So being a data nerd, you know, I want data on everything and all I can tell you is that turns into how do your analog channels convert? Cause my salespeople came back and said, yeah, he said he read about us in this magazine and I walked into the meeting and like the magazine was sitting on the table and they said, oh yeah, I read this thing. So it's, it's a hard channel to measure and get your metrics on. But the reality is, is that it paid. It paid off in brand awareness. That is a brand new company. I started hearing rep say it went from the first year of us walking into meetings with people saying, we've never heard about you. What do you do to your two people? Are like, yeah, I've heard all about you and I read this article and then putting the magazine out so you know, you live and learn.

DA (20:05):
You said a ton of great stuff. So knowing your persona where they're at, the channels they are at, creating great conversations, valuable things, not just an advertisement pushing straight to sales. Sometimes you have channels that aren't about direct ROI. Sometimes it's about brand awareness, sometimes about the long term play. And speaking about that, what about like marketing KPIs, what you guys are, you have such a long sales cycle you said, like such an enterprise sale system. What are you looking for specifically from your marketing team to bring as far as quotas and stuff like that and you have all these different channels and like you said, some of them are print, some of them are digital. How do you sit down at the end of the month, end of the week, and overview these things?

LL (20:49):
Well it's a great question and again, as a data nerd, I want to see every single piece of data, but then what I give my team as far as I'm KPIs and metrics, the ones that we're really going to measure and the ones that are going to be our, you know, our touchpoints for success. So to me, all metrics matter in particular because it, the metrics give you an opportunity to calibrate and change quickly, right? So if something is not converting, if something's not going well, the great thing about the marketing world is all of our automation tools give us the ability to change things quickly. So if I want to try retargeting and I see in 30 days it's not working, you know, I can flip switches, right? I can flip things on and off there. We have a number of digital things that we can switch on and off.

LL (21:37):
So I like to see all of the data, but at the end of the day, I think what, what really matters is if I'm trying to measure customer engagement, real customer engagement in our industry, I want to see the same customer come back a few times. Like just because you clicked on something in an email is not engagement. Yeah, you engage once. But that is not an engaged contact. So. So when I think about things like our nurture campaigns, what are things we look at? I looked at how many people opt out. We've been running nurture campaigns by persona and I'm, I'm pleased to say that like 85 percent of these leads they have not opted out. Right? So if you're sick and tired of me and again, given our industry, our nurture campaigns are once a month, once every 25 days, I'm not going to come to you once a week. Right? That, that, that is not my market, but so to me is how many people are opting out. Because if they're not opting out and I'm still getting pretty good open rates, then you're still reading what I'm sending you. Right. So again, I may not be trying not. We're not doing a lot of click bait stuff. That's again, not our, not our market, but so, so to me engagement is now, so you know at the beginning is how can I get these people to stick with me and follow the story that I'm creating for them, right? I, I'm trying to trying to build the storyline and get them to come back for the next chapter of the story or the next whatever the installation of the story, you know, now three years in now what we're trying to do is say, OK, now get them to the point where, you know, in the beginning you were just listening, now you're reading and now you're, you're gonna open up your arms a little bit and say, maybe I'm open to having a meeting with somebody face to face.

So it is, it's a longer play, right? It's not a quick turnaround, you know, whatever. Weekly, monthly. It's a longer play. But to me, that metric of how many people opted out, how many people said unsubscribe, and if I'm finding an 85 percent are not unsubscribing in a funny way, that's a great metric for me. So what I do is again, I get all the data and then I set the goals for the things that matter, the things that matter for existing customers because again, we do all the marketing to existing customers. So you know, are they reading our newsletter and engaging with our newsletter? That's a, that's a key touch point for existing customer engagement and to keep them, again, keep them apprised of what we're doing, let them know about new things, invite them to industry events. That's, that's one metric.

LL (24:02):
But then the leads on the other side, people who we haven't met with yet or we've met with, but we want to really have a real meeting with or meet with them again is keeping them there. So that that's how it kind of how I think about it is again, always looking at the metrics on, this is what I tell my team: make sure you're measuring something that you're going to do something with. Right? So if I get a metric, if I'm measuring something, what am I going to do with that piece of information because again, I may want to look at the data for the sake of all of the micro data points and things that I can change and again, those switches that I can flip, but from a business perspective, we want to look at the things that give us the information that say I'm going to make a change if if that goes well or if it doesn't go well, if I'm not going to make a change, I shouldn't. I shouldn't waste my time measuring it or putting it in my KPIs.

That's so valuable. That's such great advice because it's so easy to get distracted by all the numbers that you can look at. There's so much in analytics so you can review and see, so that's a really, really helpful advice as far as putting the lens of actionable analytics, things that can help you to drive whatever the overall goal is forward.

LL (25:16):
Let me add to that though and just say it's also for the roles, right? So the woman on my team who manages and the digital marketing, right? Some of those are her goals, right? Can you improve our open rates? Can you improve our click rates? Can we get, you know, can we prove that we're with a content campaign that we're getting engagement, whether those are existing customers, new customers, converting customers, where are they engaging with our content? Those are going to be her goals. You know, when you're talking to the board, it's about pipeline. All we care about is pipeline and how much of that pipeline came from a marketing generated activity and, and what I would say on, you know, so there's the macro which is pipeline. That's really all that matters. Did we generate pipeline and if we did, what were the things that were, that generated the most pipeline and in particular for me, how did the hand off to sales goal between sales and the sales and marketing?

Speaker 4 (26:14):
One of the reasons why I own all of our commercial operations is because to me, that hand-off between marketing and sales, you know that handoff can also be a drop of the baton, not necessarily a passing of the baton, and I wanted to make sure that there was no dropping and that there were no gaps. So I like to say there's no airspace between marketing and sales. We are two sides of one coin, and so those, those metrics are how quickly did hand it off, how quickly did they pick it up, and how well did it go after that so that we're not bickering about was it a marketing generated pipeline dollar, was it a sales generated pipeline dollar, doesn't matter. Let's look at what it came from so that we can put our money, our investment money back into those activities that created us the greatest pipeline.

DA (27:05):
Yeah, that makes a ton of sense. Um, and so you're really just putting the team together, making sure that's not the sales team against the marketing team. It's a uniform system of we're moving prospects through a pipeline. So that makes a ton of sense. What about, looking back now, I guess almost maybe almost three years now since you've been a part of the team, since you've grown this from the ground up, what's been the biggest win of all of these different channels? All these different initiatives that you've worked on?

LL (27:32):
You know, it's hard to say. Um, I will say that, that I'm having a very focused brand and I'm PR if we want to call it that, but I, you know, outward facing, I'm very structured and steadied approach. We've gotten great brand awareness and that the, the success metrics for me is we've been recognized. Not only by an industry awards, right, so Pharma specific awards, but also by the broader research groups. So we've been recognized by Gardner, Forrester and Frost and Sullivan and I'm happy to say we don't have the money to pay an analyst, so we can't, we can't be winning that. We know we can't be winning those awards because we're paying an analyst. We've actually never paid an analyst because again, we're too small to do, to engage in that. And yet we've gotten recognition awards from those broader research groups. So our technology and our thought leadership has been recognized and I think that again, it's, it's a, it's a longer haul, but it's a big payoff.

Speaker 4 (28:35):
We have literally racked up some very amazing awards and that to me is, is great and mean our, our founder got the awards, our CEO got the awards, the company wan the awards, those are signs of people recognizing us and I'll tell you, they go a long way with the type of customer we're selling into. I mean, I think the punchline is, is when, um, when you're recognized by the industry, when you're recognized by, even what I would call again the research firms outside of the industry, across industries, but for specifics in life sciences that, that is a, that's testimony too to just having done great work on the content and brand awareness side.

DA (29:16):
Before I actually move on to what's coming. Let me ask this, first of all, over the past three years, you started almost nearly at, at zero. You said you're coming in as the SaaS platform was getting built off the ground. Where, what, what's been the growth numbers, what of all these initiatives kind of turned into?

LL (29:30):
So I'm happy to say that since I started in 2015, we've doubled our revenue every year.

DA (29:37):
Wow, that's incredible. That's incredible growth. And where do you see things changing here in 2018? Where do you see, are you guys going to be changing marketing, expanding more? What are you going to be looking at?

LL (29:51):
Well, for me it really goes back to, to the content, to the personas, to the segmenting and targeting. It's the, to me it's an evolution. So it's about continuing to continuing the customer a content journey, right? So, so getting even better at, um, when I talked about a lot of the work we've done with our database, you know, getting rid of I'm bad leads and some junk that we had in the database that's ongoing. I think we've done a great job this year focusing on making sure that what we have in our databases is good and valid. But as you know, there's a little bit of trimming and gardening that goes on every year, um, with the database. So one side is the data side and making sure that we have, you know, people aligned to the right persona and the second piece is, is just trying to get better and better and better at honing our message for the persona is making sure we're getting them the right use cases that they care about it.

LL (30:49):
It's just perfecting right, getting better and better at getting those messages across. And then I do think, looking at, uh, in some cases focusing more on those channels that we're having success with and those initiatives that we're having success with. The first year I tried a ton of different things and part of that was really to see what sticks and I think each year you get better at seeing where you're getting the best return on your investment. And, and then again doubling down and putting your money into those things that get you better returns. I'm seeing, for instance, contents indication campaigns with one provider work better than another. So. So it's the same content, if you will. One just has better channels or one works better. So to me it's about honing always honing. And trimming and getting things more and more precise, making sure that the messaging and the content is increasing in value as the product becomes more robust because you do all of that in, in the context of an, in synchronization with your product, getting better and better and broader and broader, being able to serve up more and more specific customer use cases and us using those in our, in our content campaigns.

Speaker 4 (32:07):
So that's really the, the focus I would say. And in some cases even events. So, um, I know, you know, people go back and forth on events and I do and I'm very precise about measuring the success we get at events and the sec success, not just being in terms of how many leads did we come home with because I think that's very myopic. But did we get good brand awareness at the event? Did we meet with potential partners at the event and a whole series of other metrics that I measure. So again, I back away from event, um, and decided to put more money into an event that I had better success at and not go to another event. So it's, to me, it's always just honing and calibrating and making sure that we have the fluidity to, um, to, to change, um, but we're still getting the returns that we expect and that they're improving year over year.

DA (33:00):
That's fantastic advice. I think we always have to get better and it's crazy how at the beginning it's so much more difficult as you're just figuring things out than when you're now in like the, you know, scaling phases where you're kind of looking at what worked, what didn't trimming the fat, expanding certain areas and become so much easier. But I think it also is a different skill set. It's a different, you look into the lens or looking at the data in a different Lens. Um, so yeah, I think that's incredible. I'm excited to see, you know, what comes next for you guys. You guys have been growing like crazy in a lot of that probably, you know, to do with all your great efforts. So congratulations to you.

New Speaker (33:34):
What I want to do now is I'm jumping to our lightning round questions. This is just where I ask you a quick question. You can answer as fast as you want. I'm just thinking of kind of the first answers that come to mind, but it's kind of a fun way to, to get some good advice. You're ready to go?

LL (33:51):
Yeah, absolutely.

DA (33:52):
Cool. What advice would you give for an early stage SaaSs company starting marketing today?

LL (33:58):
I would say focus on your go to market. So by that I mean who are you selling to? How much you're selling, the basics of go to market and, and build your 30, 60, 90 day plan around that. I think a lot of technology companies forget that people buy products and they think that a great product, um, will sell by itself and forget that you have to have a robust go to market and also as a direct sales as an indirect sales, partner sales, I think they forget that you actually need a strategy. Um, so I would say hone the strategy or create the strategy and then plan your 30, 60, 90, one hundred and 20 days out. But again, startup is exactly that. You're not thinking about your first three years, you're thinking about 60, 90, whatever. Um, you're thinking shorter term for six months.

DA (34:55):
Hundred percent. Yeah. Well, marketing skill do you think is vital for teams to improve and build on today?

LL (35:02):
I will tell you. Number one for me is be a good writer. I know that sounds funny, but being a good writer goes a long way and because I think content is so important. You know, we read subject lines that entertain us. We read emails that entertainer, we read content that helps us. Good writing goes a long way.

DA (35:26):
Best resources you'd recommend for marketing. Maybe an educational resource?

LL (35:32):
Um, Gosh, I love a marketingprofs. Yeah. I subscribe. I'm a member. I find all of the resources really, really great and I have my team subscribed to them as well.

DA (35:49):
Yeah. Love that answer. What about your favorite marketing tool that you can't live without?

LL (35:54):
I'm not sure it's a marketing tool, but I can't live without salesforce. Again, being a numbers person and that and of course your marketing automation. So we use Marketo for marketing automation. Those, those are just tools, whether you're using Hubspot or Perdot, but I think your marketing automation tool and your CRM, they're table-stakes.

DA (36:18):
Yeah, life blood a hundred percent. What about a brand business or team that you admire today?

LL (36:27):
So I would say I think Marketo and Hubspot are actually doing a great job in particular because as I've talked about the value of content marketing and getting educational pieces, they both provide some very, very valuable educational resources, more than once I've told the folks on my team, you know, go look, look something up on the Marketo community or look something up on the Hubspot community. They have great white papers, they do great webinars. I think there are, and again that builds our brand. Um, I think getting consumer, the consumer branding space, we could go all over the place. I used to love Virgin America and I think they did an excellent job creating more than a brand. They created an experience and as a customer you felt like you were part of an experience. You didn't feel like you were getting on an airline. They purchased by Alaska. But I think in general, when I think about early days of Virgin America, they really were more than an airline. They were an experience.

DA (37:26):
That's a really great consumer one, I totally agree, actually done a lot of research into what they're doing. So that's fantastic answers. Well, I just want to thank you so much for your time. We went over a little bit on today's episode, but I just, you know, I really appreciate you providing so much insights. This is really the first interview we've done really in this high level enterprise area and I think this opened up a lot of eyes to different concepts and, and how you go to market with such a unique product in such a tough vertical. So again, thank you for all you know, everything you share with us, all the education that you shared and really appreciate you jumping on with us.

LL (38:01):
It was my pleasure. Thanks for having me and I look forward to, I'm now subscribing to your podcast and listening to everybody else.

DA (38:08):
Awesome. Really appreciate it. And, uh, talk to everyone soon. Thank you so much.

LL (38:11):
Thank you.

DA (38:12):
What an incredible episode. (...)

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