As a revenue marketing team, we’re on the hook for highly visible and measurable pipeline and revenue goals. Writing this at the end of our quarter and fiscal year, it’s easy to focus on numbers, trends, and those dreaded pipeline trouble spots.
We’re on the hook for highly visible and measurable pipeline and revenue goals.
However, after talking to some amazing peers, I’ve come to recognize that most of us are in the same boat. We see revenue flow needs, and sharpen the pencil to solve the issues. I’m lucky in that regard for many reasons, but I’ll focus on just two.
First, I’ve got an amazing business partner in Patrick Cameron who heads our sales team.
When we have issues, we talk it through and decide on plans together. There’s really nothing that makes success feel more attainable than to have a good partner working on the solution. When we see numbers we don’t like—we work on it together. The work itself may still be hard, but at least our sales and marketing alignment isn’t a barrier to innovating and leading change.
Many of the innovations we pursue come from this partnership.
Second, I have a team of marketers that are truly the best I’ve ever worked with.
Talented and driven people are naturally drawn to start-ups. It’s a great place to explore careers, stretch your skills, and do things that haven’t been done yet. Not only do I love it, I’m also blessed to have one of the most amazing marketing teams around me who share this passion.
Talented and driven people are naturally drawn to start-ups
So how does this a revenue marketing team show up every day to work together through tough challenges, meet high expectations, and innovate along the way? Here’s our secret sauce:
1. Great People
To be innovative as a company you need to hire great innovators.
At Kapost, we pride ourselves in hiring the best. We look for the people who aren’t afraid to ask hard questions, who are constantly pushing the envelope of what’s possible, and, above else, we look for people who can connect with each other and our customers—as regular people.
When you have a team built on trust and a willingness to collaborate you can optimize communication, resulting in an openness and appreciation for new ideas and inventions.
We facilitate this trust in a few ways:
Hire and cultivate the right people.
If you want your people to invest in your company, you need to invest in them. At Kapost we do this through our Tour of Duty program, a mutual benefit program set up to help our people accelerate their careers while helping Kapost meet it’s business goals in the process.
Set goals with room to invent.
Setting goals and high expectations is important.
Give your people the opportunity to test new things by setting achievable goals and allowing room for failure. Take care to give ideas enough time to work. Take equal care not to drown your team in so many metrics that they spend more time analyzing than executing.
And if (and when) something doesn’t work, adjust. Learn from it and move on.
Lead (push, pull, whatever) people to collaborate with each other.
As leaders, we need to encourage our people to collaborate together to come up with new ideas and ways of doing business. Set your people free—give them goals and let them figure out how to get there. If they aren’t talking to each other, throw them into a room together. This is how they will tap into their greatest potential and deliver the best results.
Wine, aka have some fun.
Create some social time for the team to hang out and see each other as people. I prefer to do it with wine, but we plan a variety of out-of-office activities—whether it be a meeting at a brewery or an afternoon spent in a puzzle room—to create opportunities for our team to connect outside of work, further cultivating that trust.
2. A Driving Force
Necessity is the mother of invention—and there’s nothing like a deadline to drive what’s needed for action.
Process, structure, deadlines—scary words, right? Not really. In fact, with a solid foundation for process and some structure, you actually free up your team from a lot of organizational tasks, giving them more time to think, create, and invent.
Give your team the framework and deadlines they need to get the job done, but let them invent how to get there.
3. Share Results
Want to know a secret about innovation? You have to try, test, fail, and iterate to crack open something new.
But it’s like a tree falling in the forest. If you have great plans, and don’t know whether they worked or not, did it make an impact?
Having just spent the day in the numbers, I’m seeing good changes driven by my team, more engagement with the awesome marketers we serve, and a strong interest in cool programs like the Kapost 50 Webinar Series and our webinar with Sirius Decisions’s Erin Provey. I also see where we need to focus more—like teaming with our terrific sales team to understand the way we marketers think.
At Kapost, we like to know.
Through sharing information and results freely from team to team, we cultivate a sense of oneness and open ourselves up to reality of the big challenges we face—and we do it together.
So sure, we have our days of strife, struggle, and frustration—days where the numbers are shy and the wine is short—but it’s our commitment to our craft, our customers, and to each other that keeps us motivated to innovate and compete above our weight class every single day.
Let me end with a thanks to my marketing team. I try to say it a lot—how much I value and respect you even when we’re under pressure to deliver—but it’s never really enough. So here it is for all to see.