Can you please describe your first steps in Sales and why you have decided on marketing and sales?
Yet being a student of the marketing department I tried myself in different areas including marketing and sales. At that time I clearly understood that a diploma without real experience doesn’t worth a lot, so I was ready to work for free, to be a volunteer, get engaged in different projects, combine full-time studying with a 40-hour workweek just to gain the necessary knowledge.
Before getting involved in a new project, I always checked if I would be able to obtain new skills or develop existing ones that could be useful for me in the marketing sphere. Why marketing? Marketing itself is a very broad discipline - there is a place for creativity, communication, psychology, public speaking, analytics… so even if your interests change you can always find here something to be passionate about.
Work in sales is my new challenge. It is closely connected with marketing and it allows me to communicate directly with clients and to see things from a different perspective. This is what makes it so valuable.
What type of sources are you recommended to learn more about sales?
I think to start it would be good to read a few books that explain the basics of marketing and sales. You can start with Philip Kotler, also known as the father of modern marketing. He wrote a lot of books, you can begin with Principles of Marketing, Marketing 4.0, Marketing Insights from A to Z.
In marketing and sales everything changes very fast, approaches and strategies that worked yesterday may not work today. That’s why it is important also to follow online blogs to stay up to date. Here are a few blogs that I am following:
- Social Media Examiner: Michael Stelzner - everything about social media - LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube...even Clubhouse.
- The Ahrefs Blog and Backlinko - everything about SEO.
- Hotjar blog - how to learn more about your customers, UX, heatmaps.
- Saas Marketer - everything about saas growth.
- Chargebee - growth insights on saas
- Lenny’s Newsletter - everything about business growth (product, growth, people management).
- Ladder - the latest growth strategies & marketing tactics.
- Growth Hackers - growth strategies.
- Hubspot blog - a great source of info for marketing and sales.
- Neil Patel’s Blog - everything about digital marketing.
- Adobe Blog - insights, expertise and inspiration for digital leaders
- CXL - conversion optimization and marketing blog
- Marketoonist - a content marketing studio that uses cartoons to show modern marketing and sales challenges.
- Medium - you can subscribe to the topics you are interested in and receive updates about new articles in your email.
- Online courses - Coursera, Udemy
- Podcasts - Everyone Hates Marketing, Duct Tape Marketing, Growth Marketing Toolbox, Marketing School, Online Marketing made easy with Amy Porterfield, This old marketing, Marketing Scoop by SEMrush, The science of social media by Buffer, etc.
I think this list would be useful for those that just start as well as for already experienced marketing and sales professionals.
Of course, in choosing the best sources for information a lot depends on the type of the market (B2B or B2C), a direction in marketing (content marketing, PR, SEO, social media marketing, email marketing, influencer marketing, offline marketing, etc.) and sales (lead generation, closing, online, offline, etc.) you are working in. It is hard to be an expert in everything, so it is good to focus attention on an area you are interested in.
How did you start to search your first workplace and how did you join PushPushGo?
My first job as a Marketing Assistant I found via the university I was studying in. Sometimes, when former graduates are looking for new employees for their companies, they gladly send offers to the university they finished. So, I didn’t think too long, I sent my CV, had the interview and got a job :)
When I was looking for a new job in Poland, I subscribed to plenty of newsletters from different job portals and one of those was with an offer from PushPushGo. I liked the job description, responsibilities, the friendly manner it was written… and here I am😃
Work and Development
When is the best moment for a tech company to start to think about hiring salespeople?
I think to hire a sales and marketing team, there should be ready MVP and validated at least with a few successful deals.
It would be good to provide a newly hired specialist with some info about the clients: who is your ideal client, what problems your product solves, what barriers they may have, how long is the sales process, etc. And of course, having a positive benchmark will help to sell the product faster.
Also if there is a need to choose where to invest first, marketing or sales, in my opinion, it is good to start with sales when your target market is enterprise and big companies where in order to sell, it is important to build one-to-one relationships.
If the product implementation is fast and easy, the target audience is the SMB or B2C market, the cost of the tool is not so big, it is better to start with marketing to scale and automate the process of client acquisition.
What are your main KPIs to measure in sales/marketing?
Here are a few Key Performance Indicators that should be tracked:
- Conversion Rate (prospects, trials, sales per market)
- Conversion Time
- Monthly sales / Sales growth
- Average deal value (in general / per market / per segment)
- Churn Rate
How do you measure the efficiency of your work?
When we speak about sales, of course, the most important is conversion and if sales targets were met. Here are some of the KPIs that I follow:
- Response rate
- Number of SQL generated
- Number of meetings
- Number of trials started
- Number of new clients
- Time of the deal in the pipeline and number of follow-up attempts
- Deals lost (by reason)
- Feedback from the clients
What are the main clients you're working with?
We focus on companies with monthly traffic of 100K+ visits from different sectors: publishing, e-commerce, telecommunication, finance, marketplaces, automotive, travel, etc.
Speaking about geographical focus, PushPushGo works all around the world. However, I work in a team whose principal market is Latam, Spain, Portugal, Brazil and recently South Africa. Here are some of our clients from these regions: Decathlon Portugal, Teletica Costa Rica, Essential Nutrition Brazil, TVN Chile, Farmalisto Colombia, SuperSport South Africa, etc.
What do you read and how do you take care of growing your skills?
For sure, blogs that I already mentioned at the beginning. At PushPushGo, every employee has access to the company Kindle account with a lot of different books about sales and marketing, also recently we implemented the practice of doing online courses on Udemy.
Also, after spending all day in front of the computer, it can be difficult to read from the screen for me. So, I prefer to listen to audiobooks. For example, currently, I am listening to Petr Panda “Texts that are believed. Short, clear, and positive” and I am looking forward to starting “Challenging customer” by Brent Adamson that is the next book in the line.
Besides, as we work with many clients overseas, it is important to speak customer language. That’s why I also have Portuguese classes. It opened me many doors that without the language skills would be unreachable.
What was the biggest fuckup in work so far and how have you coped with it?
Hmm… difficult question :) not that I didn’t have fuckups, I would like to share here some funny story, but I just don’t remember 🤔
However, instead, I can share a life lesson that I learned a few years ago.
It is essential to keep a work-life balance in order not to burnout. It is important to know your limits and your resourcefulness.
A few years ago I took too much for myself: finishing university, working 6 hours on the project and also a 4-5 hours job without weekends and all of this in different countries, traveling regularly 20 hours one-way in the bus during winter. Just in 4 months I totally burned out, it cost me my health and energy, it took me many months to recover and I’m still in the process.
So, now I always remember to have “me-time” and think carefully before engaging in a new project.
What types of software are you using in your job?
- Similar Web, Similar Tech - to estimate website traffic.
- Similar Sites - to find similar companies.
- BuildWith - to check what tools the site implemented.
- Linkedin - to find employees of the company.
- SalesQL, Hunter.io - to find prospect email addresses.
- Streak - email tracker
- Woodpecker - for mass-campaigns
- Gmail, Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Calendar, Google Drive - to manage work and files
- Pipedrive - to manage deals
- Zoom, Google Meet - for meetings with clients, prospects and colleagues.
- Hola VPN - to browse clients sites from other countries that are not working in my country.
- PushPushGo App - during demo-presentations for clients
- Canva, Adobe package - for design, presentation, graphics.
- HitFilm Express - for video edition.
- Photopea - online image editor.
- unDraw - bank of free illustrations.
- Unsplash, FreePik, Pexel, Kaboompics, Flickr - stock photos
- Flaticon, Noun Project - bank of icons
- Vecteezy - vector images
- gradientsguru.com, eggradients.com, grabient.com, uigradients.com, webgradients.com - gradients
- colorhunt.co - color pallets
- GetResponse - for newsletter, landing pages.
- Dato CMS - site and blog content.
- Majestic - backlink analyzer.
- Campaign URL Builder - to add UTMs.
- ThumbTube - LinkedIn Profile Finder
- Lightshot - to do screenshots
- Nimbus - for screen recording
- Grammarly - for grammar checking
- Slack - to communicate with the team
- Momentum - for a good mood and a great start of the day 😊
What is your main success in your job so far and what was the biggest challenge and how have you coped with it?
Facing different challenges and overcoming them is what makes work interesting and gives a feeling of growth. I was lucky to have an opportunity to try different things for the first time - organizing webinars and making presentations, preparing for the exhibition and speaking in front of many e-commerce professionals on the stage in Berlin…
But probably the biggest challenge was when I started to work in sales directly with clients and making demo-presentations. Before my first meeting, I was super nervous😅. I spent all weekend practicing the speech and still was afraid that something may go wrong.
Fortunately, it went pretty well and gave me the courage to try more, even in Portuguese :)
Being an introvert and work in sales or marketing adds a little bit of adrenaline to the office work🏄🏼♀️😄 Although, I still have a lot to work on, such small victories motivate to reach for more.
Do you see any trends in the near future in sales and marketing?
Here are some of the trends that I noticed working with companies from different industries (e-commerce, publishing, telecommunication, finance, etc.) and different countries:
More and more businesses around the world understood the importance of digital presence. It may seem that digitalization was always a trend but it was never before on such a scale as it is now. During the last few months, companies that didn’t have a site - created one; those that didn’t invest in marketing - started to do it, those that invested - started to invest more online.
On one hand, for businesses it is important to understand their own customers, companies are more interested in having a unified customer journey and providing them with an omnichannel experience. Expanded analytics about customer’s interests, behaviour, characteristics… is in focus now. On the other hand, the omnichannel experience is already something that customers expect to receive from the brand.
Following on from the previous point, being able to personalize offers is extremely important to winning customers over from the competition that is quite severe online.
Faster, better and more available internet
Telecoms around the world are working hard to make it possible to access the quality Internet for all stratum of society. Implementation of 5G, growth of Fixed Wireless Access (FWA), improvement of energy efficiency, etc. contributes to the growth of the number of internet users. At the beginning of 2021, 60% of the world population already has internet access and it continues to grow.
The number of mobile users was growing already for many years and will continue to grow. However, now more users use their smartphones to make purchases, read the news, stay in touch with friends, etc. This means an increase in mobile ads spendings, investments into the development of mobile applications and the mobile-first approach gets more essential today.
The legislation is forcing companies to respect users' privacy. GDPR in Europe, LPDP in Brazil, POPIA in South Africa, PIPEDA in Canada, PIPL in China, PDPA in Singapore… I think it is just a matter of time when other countries will implement similar laws.
Privacy is also something that customers expect from brands.