B2B Revenue Acceleration
B2B Revenue Acceleration

Episode · 1 year ago

69: How to Stand Out in a Crowded Market w/ Lewis Henderson


CISOs are bombarded with companies all making the same promise: 100% protection. How about technology companies took an honest tack for a change?

Being straightforward about your abilities — and eschewing impossible absolutes — will help you instantly cut through all the clamor.

On this episode, I interview Lewis Henderson, VP of Product Marketing at Glasswall, about standing out in a crowded market. 

What we talked about:

  • Creating your own category (content disarm reconstruction)
  • Identifying invasive spear phishing
  • Using storytelling to promote your customers’ successes
  • Transparency and humanity are more important than absolute language

Check out this resource we mentioned during the podcast:

If you’re wondering why Operatix, we’d love to tell you. Check out our lead generation team here.

To hear this interview, and many more like it, you can subscribe to The B2B Revenue Acceleration Podcast on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or on our website.

You're listening to be to B RevenueAcceleration, a podcast dedicated helping software executives stay on thecutting edge of sales and marketing in their industry. Let's get into the Shew, I is welcome to the BTB revenueECCELERATION podcast. My name is DANCEVECAN. I'm here today with LouisHenderson vpo threat intergence at lassro Les. How are you today very goodthanks for having me good thanks for coming on? It will be on horrendouslyRanium Wendy Day outside in UK, so today we'll be talking about how tostand out in a crowded market. But before we go into that conversation Os,can you please introduce self to our audience and tell us more aboutyourself and the company you represent, which is of course glassful yeah sure Ithink one of the first things is what is a vpof threa intelligence and andwhat does that Rorld sort of entail? And then I go on to you know who we areas a company, so it my role in threat, intelligence technology, companyslightly different from the people that we actually sell to so someone. That'stypical customer of ours would be very interested in their own ecosystem interms of syte threats. Looking to analyze those threat intelligence whenYoure Technology Company is actually getting that fifty thousand foot yeaacross all of your cassic customers. You know looking at events thathappening across the industry. You know sidberth threat, side of Rish trendsand consolidating all of that into something that your customers can bothunderstand and then action on as well. So I have a quite a privileged rolereally because I have access to a lot of our customer data, but it's how Iuse that dator and translate it into something t, that's really usable forthem and, in addition to Thaut helping our customers and future prospects,understand our product value, so threat intelligence. You know I'm a geek bynature and quite nerdy, so I love it and I love all the data and I liketalking about sort of figtside the threats and bi a vangelist about that.But the roles quite critical because you know yes, I'r tepology actuallydoes something. But you know the threntintelligence roll helps me,communicate, t the market and communicates us or future customers, soglass wil as a companies or a UK based sider security company and over the last or the fifteen years,or so we've been developing a technology that is fairly veily, unique and sortof fairly stand out and as a company we just emerged from about five years orso from work deep within intelligence services across the globe, oopened onTha, the UK and us and our technology. Doesn't I cearly very simple, ferlyelegance, which is instead of trying to identify malware and sanbox types oftechnologies? Hat didn't identify the bad stuff il follow. You know I tenaltege just revolves around vilent document security, so very, very simply,wo take a file we take it apart and we rebuild a new, safe, plean version ofthat original file in under a second and then get that onto a user. So usecase, for that is that we have that technology concept into an emailsecurity platforms that as a Sassoffering as a cloud offering andsome other use cases, especially within intelligence services. Take thatconcept and apply in environments where you may wish to secure a highlysensitive network O of users and protect them in a protective bubblefrom from the Internet SA, for example. So we feel t the technology is fairlysimple and fairly elegant, but clearly there's lot of science behind it. Soone of the tricks in how we talk about it is how do we make this simple andyou know, and human readerble s possible a as the language of is okay,interesting thanks for that and of course, throughout your career, youhave mainly worked within the security space, which you mentioned. Glass willbe a distruptive solution between know its very crowded, there's lots of new,exciting vendors and teojust comng to market all the time, whether it'shighly back to US companies, you play companies, Israeli benders, obviouslythere's a loot that will come from different angles from your experiencethroughout your career in the industory industry. What is e the secret or whatsimportant for vendors to do to make it...

...through such a crowded market andultimately differenta yourselves yeah I'd like to say I had the secret. I canprobably just say thisis: This is our experience and this is kind of howwe've got about it. So ut I've been with glass war for about just over fiveyears, but I've actually been insideer security for about twenty years, and Ithink over the time you know that the language that Sidosecurity Technologiesv have used used to be one of absolutes. So it's interesting to still see thatbeing used today and I think that's something that that you know should beencouraged to be phased out. When I say absolute, I mean you know plames of ahundred percent protection. You know for all Vectos all manner of differentthreats. It's just it's just not the case, and I actually my personal storyyou know prior to glassball is I actually got out of the CYBA securityindustry, because after fifteen fifteen years or so at that point I becamequite disillusioned because I you know I was working for technology companiesthat could't nactually deliver on the marketing promise. So for me you knowexiting the industry was. Was You know? I didn't feel great about it, but alsofelt better, because I wasn't basically, you know taking technologis that Ididn't have total faith in and that faith stemmed from the messaging. Youknow that it was. It was taking something to market that you werereally emphasized to say I it worked to the tune of a hundred percent or itgave absolute protection. So certainly I wouldn't necessarily say it's asecret, but I think the recipe of how we've been successful. You know in theintelligence services definitely, but certainly with our customers been inthe legal sectors, just approach them very, very differently and be beoutfront and be honest. You know our technology only does file and documentsecurity. We don't do anything else and I think, just being really outfront andreally Rey clear with your messaging. You know it certainly helped us overthe sor last last last few years and it helps in that initial piece because ithelps you focus and makes the messaging quite simple, but also you know thatthen carries all the way through to the customer experience. You know just justso that everyone understand exactly what page ore on in the value you haveto Wadd as well, so to being really really clear, bing really really simpleand just being completely honest about you know, the claims around yourproduct is that's work for us, so you know like I said it probably isn't,isn't a secret, it's just a formula and it seems to Prework for Ur Sav the lastfew years yeah and we're talking befor this as well, and I think one of theother things that you mentioned was around actually how you've beenpreating a lot of noise through your deatten blogging as well. So obviouslythat's another, I guess channel. If you like or tactic that, can help youdifferentiate. You Know Nontraditional Marketing Way, Pat Yeah. Definitely soI think so. We've been really fortunate. Have a guy called dennists cruise joinus, so he's he's OURC so on or vpof engineering. But what he's brought? Isthis really disruptive force for good in terms of lifting the lid on a teamof really really talented people? And you know this is this is not sales.This is not marketing. This is just allowing a team of individuals who allreally really talented and know the stuff to just talk and share ideassafely in the public deman and previously an IT's a bit unusual for ateology company and certainly for us. We sat on you know our own intellectualproperty and patents, and, and you know over the years you get protective overthat stuff. So that's that's! That's okay, but you shouldn't have to youknow, lift you know, put a lid on the entire company and it's reallyimportant to start to. Let people actually talk, so you know for mepersonally, I'm going also going on my own journey in terms of openness andtransparency, so I'll be talking about a whole bunch of stuff that isn'treally related to our call messaging good example of that is, I'm actuallyagain being a bit bit of a nerd. I actually quite like crafting powpoin,you know, so I'm going to be writing a blog about how I created a power pointdeck out of our corporate color game and how I make it easy for users to beable to just you know, rightly kind of layout without them having to constructsomething all themselves and that's...

...nothing to do with our car tenology,and it's just trying to bring out this this human side of the business. Butthere's this really really other positive side of doing this. Is thatonce you get a team of people being a bit more transparent and openingsharing and blugging- and that's really important- is that suddenly you knowthey, they also get their pears out there. You know what you're doing isreally exciting. You know certainly from Ou perspective. We think it'sreally exciting and that excitement also attracts talent but also attractsideas and advice and guidence from people that are just there to help youand for no other reason for that as well. So it's really interesting towatch US kind of go through this process of been rulyreally closed,working with intelligente services to being now really really open about ourmethodology. Without you know, corrupting or doing anything you know to you know, take away from ourintellectiual property, so so yeah, I think you know openthiss transparency.You know certainly for us as a company- and we haven't been doing this verylong. You know e admitted these are all en we're all going through learningcare on, so they have to do it, but but no it's going to work forst and it'sjust really exciting to see us dough that well interesting, and youmentioned that your products being developed things for something likefifteen years. So clearly, over those years they'l there woill have been newcategories great it new buckets of compesitors that you may have been putup against over those years, even when perhaps not not having a product hisreleased to the market. But U know what we hear is that a lot of market os saythat you should create a new crack category as a startup or a as adisruptive technology. So you don't actually have competitives. If that isa strasty that the company chooses to follow. Do you think the full productshould be n, updated or adapted to create a new market? Or do you thinkit's a a case of actually just shifting the messaging and shifting how youMarkin and you'll go Tomo Yeah? Some interesting point? Actually, I thinkfor us we created a technology that has created a market segment. So I think ifwe say look, cyber security is actually a massive market. I mean this is nowyou know gone Beyon, the multibillions and it's heading towards you knowtrillion dollar market, certainly, certainly in a few years so whist wewouldn't say you know we created a market, we certainly we certainlyentered a market segment and it's really interesting actually becauseGartner kind of beat us to it a little bit so back in, I think two thousand NDfifteen. We started a relationship with gardener and the way our technologyworks is fundamentally very different, really any other sidfer securitytechnology. So we're not going to get intosothe technicalities andfundamentums today, but the way that we described our technology to gardenermeant that we didn't fit inside any box or any quadrant for that matter. It wasjust something: a complete H, new concept, tof them. So you know that wastwo thousand and fifteen. We started relationship with them and thin abouttwo thousand and sixteen. They came up with this really ellegant phrase anddescription that perfectly you know, describe us as a technology. So for USThees, a bunch of you know geeks. Basically, just you know developingthis technology and trying to get this tenalgy in front of people. They did amuch better job than we could have ever done and came out with this phrase ofcall content, dison reconstructionol see te ar to use the acronym and it hasa whole paragraph. You know describing it and it's really neat and it's reallyelegant. So in a way our technology created this. This market segmentcalled CDR, which was actually quite interesting, so we almost you know wedidn't go out and purposely do that. What we've done since is actually thatolly that one of the methods that I've tried to do. As you see many many Cybothreats have their own category and I think probably the one. That's all thetwo that are probably most famous a ransom were and in particular fishing,and I think these become so mainstream. You know generally an enormous lother,general public actually know what these are. You know taxs are happening sooften people understand that fishing is someone you know trying to reach them,typically through email and even that evolved over time. So you know fishingis one thing that the general public can understand, but when you start totowards Thi liktimalle technical...

...audience that we have siver securitypeople that fishing category in its own right evolved into something calledspear fishing- and you know t the general definition of spear fishing is.You know an attack on a company where they're trying to get the users toclick on lings, open, email, attachments, kind of do all that thatsort of standards of e fishing stuff, but this was very much from an attackerto to a single organiation, and what I saw was an opportunity for us to createanother extension of that as well. So again, my in my rol as vpo threatintelligence. Like I said, I get to see all I customer data, I get to see allthese trends and one of them I noticed, and then this is also reallyinteresting, a good good case of looking at all your customer data andtrying to use it as a positive. You know out in the marketplace, so what Isaw in a monthst, all our Dato, which is based on militiaus email,attachments, O seventy percent of represented a completely unique event,and this was unlike a lot of other types of cybretacs that I'd seen. Soyou know, for example, I think a good example of the the one O cry. Ransomwere on our NHS in the UK. You know that was a global event. That was onehacking group that managed to disrupt. You know a lot of machines across theInternet and almost what I was seeing in our data. It was almost like thecomplete opposite of that. You know these were militious email attachmentscoming from a single email address, you know going to a single recipient with acompletely unique email attachment. When I say unique, I mean the Datasetwas twenty five million email attachments, so you're talking about aoneand twenty five million incident and like as from a customers perspective,which I always try and put myself in their shoes like how unearthy you'regoing to protect yourself against that. But how are you going to spot it? Also,from my perspective like? How am I going to define this? So you knowtaking that extension O of fishing which, which you know morfed intospirfishing as she came up with a new threat, category called evasivespearfishing, and it was the only way that I could elegantly describe whatwas happening. You know around all these unique events and it's reallyinteresting from our perspective. So you know I basiv spar fishing and whatis done for us and coming up with this new category meant the you know, thepress and the media were interested and start to write about it, because it wassomething new, something they hadn't heard of and they wanted it explainingto them. I think that's really interesting from a Marketiorperspective is that you know yes go and spend time with the GEEKS. You knowin your company sit and talk to them about o now, what's really going on andwhat they find interesting, because the Likelyhooda is that that your audiencepotentially will also find that interesting as well, because you knowwho is your audience as is certainly you now sider security people, and if Ifound this interesting, they probably would to so yeah. Definitely from a from a sortof marketing and SORTF messaging perspective. You know take time to goand speak to your developers. You know take time to get someone to look atyour data and see how you can translate it, and something really interestinghappened when I started to write about evasive befishing in the public demain,because you know I've written this this, this mini white paper, this Briletin,it has, you know, had stats and it had some very basic inphographics, becauseagain our marketing isn't that sophisticated, let's face it and whatstarted to happen is that other people were taking this and translating itinto their language, their design, language. So good example, US company,the Russha, pretty good friends with now, took what I'd, written and createdinfographics but infographics in their own branding. You know in their owniconogophy an o. What sort of really interesting stuff you know referencingus as a company, but they really wanted to use this material amonks theircustomers as well, and in addition to that, you know that we also saw youknow the press pick up on it, and you know I' like to say that you know weall you know like to have a bit of a legacy. You know you spend long enoughtime in the industry. So for me one of my legacies that I can sort of leavebehind al most. Is this: This new threat O categry, that we we created asthis small UK company that seemed to...

...get sort of picked up and get peopletalking so so yeah. I think you know there's a couple of things out of it.Yes, you know, create a category there's an extension s, something thatpeople can associate with and already understand, certainly build on that anow spend time going through. You know areas of the business that you may notalready talk to people so start talking to people in the Corrador. If you workfor a big company, you know in a smaller company, just just tartaskingpeople to find interesting. You just never know what you may find and andit's by these sort of almost like these happy accidents of just me one day,looking through our data and noticing this sort of trend that that lend tothis categories or Bein created so so yeah. I would. I would like to sit hereand say it was all genius and it was all planned, but it really wasn't sogood, so yeah, no its work for us and it you know, said it's something alittle bit different, interesting and obviously you've shared your examplethere around how you in a niche market creator, even more niche castory. Ifyou look at the kind of broader sideof security, landscape and tha,potentially an outsideside security, but from a Otet, we look at thetechnology industry from a marketing perspective. What are the key trendsthat you're, seeing whether it's somethiny that you're applying yourselfto something that you really respect? Another company or part of the industryt for doing what ware some of the trends that you're typically Seein, theMon? What I mentioned a keywod earlier- and I think that's that sort oftransparency, and with that comes this, this honesty, INI's, really refreshingand I think of yous o our audience are generally really well educated, UN,let's base it their salaries range between four hundred thousand and fivemillion right. The these are, these, are you know, chief informationsecurity officers in some pretty big companies, but also somit, it directors,inso nots of big companies so and- and I think, thetheyre just completelysaturated with so many messages o. What I war referred to earlier is t theseabsolutes. You know this is promises of a hundred percent protection. You knowfrom Sye of security perspective and just completely fatigued by all of this,and also there's this very, very robotic sides. All these companies thatare just pumping out the same messages and it's very, very confusing so vorythink of the audience from a from a plober security perspective is actuallyvery difficult to distinguish a hundred companies that are all saying the samething. But if you look at the company WHO's actually talking publicly andopenly about their methodology in terms of development, you tend to get aslight Imar human sight of e business. So for us, it's really working to getour development team, all writing their own blogs and getting that out publiclybecause it starts to create something more than just the technology, and I'mnot talking all these abstract things a Broun, so te brightend is just you know,we're powered by a bunch of human beings. You know there isn't somealtolomous sort of robot in the background and and yeah- and I thinkyou know people do genuinely by from people and just being open andtransparent and hon EST is, is certainly got that shift towards us.You know, as a small company that you know shiftwords that sort of slightly more human eemen, and this is, as I said, withoutcompromising any of our intellectual property. What we're talking aboutpublicly is just here's, what we're doing his, how we build really robustcloul services and then, like I said you know, I'm blocking about powerpoint.It's got nothing to do with with you know our technology, but you know inthe hope that if I talk about this, you know our own people oure on employeesare going to actually use what I created an indisisions that someonemight beol these are these guys are actually like quite cool. They don'treally talk about. You know complete nerdy, sybageek stuffl, all the time,and and that's that's coming through in all these sort of bloks again, you knowjust going and doing something a bit off the wall. Like you know, forexample, recently we posted a linked in picture of myself and one of ourmarketing guys with a banana stacco ball. You know as a way to do somethingdifferent and there's a way to do something. You know a bit away from theboring stuffy stuff that we, you know...

...that we probarly sort of pushed outrecently approbably for reference that that banana starts the always theartwork that sold for a hundred twenty tousand dollars. But, interestingly,you know I took a picture. There was a picture of me an award ceremany wherewe wont a few it awards, and I just on the spair of the moment, decided tojust pull appose that I wanted to not just wonder that the shareholders wouldbe interested in which is me to this. You know stupid higkick and I wasreally excited and happy in the moment, so I had that picture, but also I wrote ablug about. Why did this award actually mean so much in that moment, and it wasreally because we put so much hardwork and effort into the years that psortpreceeded. It felt like a really cool moment, and that was me sorfcelebrating it on behalf of the company, because I know that everyone of thecompany's really excited- and I did think twice about putting it on socialmedia, but it actually got over unerthink, no lylynly, five thousandviews and a whole bunch of like people. Just saying this is great. This is likesuch a such a cool picture and there's the similar one with the one that wetake. The Bananas of the wall. You know is just this crazy movment and we justthought you know. Let's just do this and the point that O that we'rerecording this today, you know we did it yesterday and its about two and ahalf tousand purs already and like really positive views and comments, andyou know people just like seeing that that human side and and like I said youdon't have to do it in every post. You know there is a serious side to what wedo. You know we have some extremely serious sort of customers, but I thinkyou know when you go out, you know publicly. Commerciall you're allowedyou're allowed to kind of have a have a a human being. Actuallysort representthe company and and yeah that is just like I said hat that's working reallywell, and you know, Abot of everything else is actually been a bit of fun, aTho. I think you know that that that's really important tha woat and thatshines through so the people that have been you know seeing US actually havinga bit of fun and being a bit off et of will really respondin positively to itas well. Absolutely, and- and I guess, as last questionor point, if you likefrom me, would be making marketing fun, making a bit of annoise doing thingsslightly differently from your traditional marketing. I think inparticular, in Sidescurit bace becoming ever more important. Talking to a lotof our clients are in the space. They find it difficult more and more thesedays to get public references o make case, dellies that you can talk about,which of course, would I believe, would make someone in your position. It wouldmake your life more difficult, at least together nit the name out there from aglassal technology perspective sor in just case getting the nameo Ga for willbit an exactly and one of the so, for example, our customers are to call themsort of risk of verses and understatement, so Yo w. We have tothink along the lines of critical National Willen fror structure like Tet.You know electricity companies, some of the world's you know leading law films.You know family funds, I mean you know what at stake behind our technology ismassive, but of course you know with a risk, ofverse type of customer, youwill never be allowowed to mention the by name publicly. We reach some of ourcustomers through partners. So, yes, we can mention them and we do that. That'sSOR, no problem. So the way I found myself, you know I found myself a bitfrustrated because you know we've got one case thudy and it's a really goodcase study with a global technology company brand. But I can't writeanymore and it's been this really sofustrating thing. So one o what I've,basically Ben Doing Git a background and we will be publishing these thesAso to the point in this recording they're not out yet, but they what Icall Customer Success Stories and I've written them in such a way that eachone is no more than two paragraphs. Each paragraph you know paragraph oneis about presenting the problem. You know th the SCENARI OEN and laying itup, and then paragraph two is about how we helped our customers overcome thatproblem and then getting creative with a title. So one of them is you know?How do we keep the lights on in Canada? N is a really cool story about how westop ransom, where reaching one of our customers, while simultaneously anotherorganization of I N W similar similar level, actually got hit with BrandsonWeire. So it's nice to always have that. Here's, how we helped our customer andthat duality of is what happens. You...

...know if you, you know, you know whathappens when you, when you don't have this particular technology, itwas good,to have that example. But I think what's really really important. IsWriting these in really plain English and which is something that I strugglewith so again, like being a bit Geiky, I can get a bit overly technol gupt.You know technical and lose people, so my measure and the way that I do thatis sometimes I open sauce these stories. I let a whole bunch of people read thembefore I go before I post them publicly and in doing so with a range of peoplewho were non technical. That certainly helps me. You know make me better atwriting. Make me better. You know how do I, how do I kind of Umpick somethingthat's actually preycomplicated and and talk about in plain English and I thinka proof of that was our PR team and RPR company their copyright. You know readthrough these: I've got for that that I've sort of crasted in the backgroundand he came back actually making soppre minor changes, but interesting thessaid these are really cool. You know and that that's the exact response Iwanted to trunket. So you know if you are constrained in this in this way,and you may not have a bunch of customers that you can either talkabout or you may not. Aeven have a bunch of customers. Ther probably issome really really interesting stuff that you could sort of still writeabout, but but again you know the writing. Style has to be really reallysort of plain English and I've found ways that, if I can, if I can, shareand be open with the stories with a bunch of people before they go public,it really helps gete your point across about you know what you were trying todo. Originally: okay, EXCELLENT COOL ALL RIGHT! Well, I think we'reapproaching the end of our conversation today. So I really appreciate theinsihes and appreciate your time. I guess a last sort of finishing pointfrom your side is: If anyone wants to connect with you to learn more aboutglass wall or continue this conversation or indeed open up anotherconversation. What would be the best way for them to get in touch with youand the company Yeah we're apart from searching up, you know: Bonala takes awall picture. You know all that sort of time, so lined in really good don onLinkedin loise Henderson under glass wall should be sort of Feily, fairlysort, searchble and obviously throughout our website, lassalSolutionscom. So, there's a whole bunch of people you can sort of reach outthrough that, but link tints, thinteins, really goods really easy, and I'm onthat publicly. Okay, fantastic well once again appreciate your time. Leusis been great ammy on the show super thanks. forvor me, operadics has redefined the meaning ofrevenue generation for technology companies worldwide, while thetraditional concepts of building and managing insize sales teams in househas existed for many years. Companies are struggling with the lack of focus,agility and scale required in today's fast and complex world of enterprisetechnology sales see Ow operatics can help your company accelerate pipelineat operatics, dot net you've been listening to B, to b revenueacceleration to ensure that you never miss an episode subscribe to the showin your favorite podcast player. Thank you so much for listening until nexttime.

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