Monday, March 28, 2016

Learning The Customer Journey from Local Superstars - Sales and Marketing Conference Wrap-Up

On March 24th, I joined more than 200 sales and marketing peers at Google in Kendall Square for the annual MassTLC Sales and Marketing Conference. The theme was Next Generation Customer Journey, a relevant topic that is unifying focus across demand generation, content strategy, and customer success.

A packed agenda included tactical and management topics designed for the mixed-level audience of local leaders. Hands on experts from companies like Rapid7, SmartBear, Carbonite, and HubSpot showed the success path for lead nurturing, content strategy, customer marketing and predictive analytics. A panel from Acquia, Dyn, Continuum, and Demandbase also discussed best practices and lessons learned for Account Based Marketing.

Lastly, there were management focused breakouts including an HR driven perspective on developing teams and leadership style by Kiersten Kaye from Dassault Systems, the strategy and mechanics of a rebrand from Brainshark's Robin Saitz, articulating a persuasive message from Brian O'Keefe at Articulus and mapping content to the buyer’s journey by Gary Deasi and Ryan Pinkham from Smartbear. And of course, some great networking between sessions in the beautiful Google office.

Here are a few of the presentations:

Rapid7's Predictive Analytics Strategy - Alison MacLeod

Brainshark's Rebrand - Robin Saitz

Smartbear's Mapping Content to Buyer's Journey - Gary Deasi and Ryan Pinkham

Some highlights from the breakout sessions I attended:

Kiersten Kaye, an organizational conflict expert, shared her leadership and team building experience and helped the group understand the path to building high functioning teams. She showed how she applies several frameworks to develop teams that grow from a collection of individual contributors to a cohesive family unit. I loved learning about the journey through internal conflict resolution into an accountable high performing and interdependent team.

Jackie Shydlowski presented InsightSquard's approach to influencer marketing featuring Influitive, a tool that helps build community advocates who champion your products for the next generation of customers. Jackie is a hands on leader who clearly enjoys her work. InsightSquared's community of over 700 advocates shows how powerful this approach can be, and the contribution Jackie has created for her sales, product, and customer success teams.

Robin Saitz had the rare opportunity to rebrand Brainshark after taking the CMO reigns last year. Robin shared her process including agency selection, tough decisions along the way, and building a community of brand ambassadors. It was fascinating to get the inside scoop and see the resulting positioning, visual brand, and web deliverables.

What was your favorite topic and what did you learn from this event?

What topics will draw you to the next Sales and Marketing conference?


The MassTLC Sales and Marketing community is a peer-to-peer group focused on meeting the various needs of sales and marketing professionals of tech companies and beyond. The cluster’s event content focuses on best practices and strategies that help drive revenue. Topics include marketing strategy, analytics, and automation; sales strategy, process, operations and enablement; lead gen and nurturing and more. The community hosts two specific peer-to-peer groups:

(1) CMO Peer Group
(2) Demand Gen Professionals Peer Group.

The purpose of these groups is to connect and have honest, insightful, and candid discussions with peers on the challenges and opportunities organizations have in driving high quality leads and pipeline. The goal of the meeting time is to get out of the office and connect with others just like you who are facing similar challenges.

MassTLC’s next session is their demand gen peer group meeting scheduled for May 5th at Continuum Managed Services.  Ben Austin, Sr. Product Marketing Manager will be facilitating a conversation on driving customer growth through content to get the most out of your existing business.  Details and registration are here.  You’ll need a passcode for this one as it is open to demand gen professionals of MassTLC member companies only.  Email christine@masstlc.org for the passcode. 
Thanks to sponsors DemandBase and Evergage.  It wouldn’t have been the same without your support!

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