B2B Revenue Acceleration
B2B Revenue Acceleration

Episode · 1 year ago

92: Revenue Generation X Brand Building w/ Efrat Fenigson

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Deciding whether to focus on revenue generation or on brand building can feel like the two halves of the brain being at war.

The truth is that organizations need to nurture both building their brand and generating revenue at the same time. But how?

In this episode, we interview Efrat Fenigson, VP Marketing at Mindspace and Co-founder at G-CMO, about revenue generation versus brand building.

We talked about the left side & right side of the brain, actionable strategies for sales & marketing alignment, and the case for building brand.

Check out this resource we mentioned during the podcast the G-CMO podcast is Marketers In Capes and G-CMO has even more podcast resources.

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

You were listening to be tob revenueacceleration, a podcast dedicated to helping software executives stay on the cutting edge ofsales and marketing in their industry. Let's get into the show. Hi,welcome to be to be a revenue acceleration. My name is aim with you andI'm here today with Effrat Fedisen, VP marketing at mind space, andconfounder GCMO. I want you to do today affront. I'm very well.Thank you. How are you? Yeah, great, great, great, great. So I'll discussion today will be around revenue generation versus Brent building.All right, so I'll do CEOS and CFOs are going after marketing people witha stake and say you're spending so much money in red building. Why ismy money back? But but before we go to the conversation, would youmind just introducing yourself to audience explain maybe a little bit more about mind space, but also your organization, or your group, Gcmo, and what youcreate it? Absolutely so. I'm based out of Israel right now, talkingto you from Tel Aviv, and I've been around take and marketing for thepast twenty years, and it started as a computer software engineer and moved slowlyto business and marketing. I've worked in many tech companies and ran marketing organizationsin various types of startups or larger organizations. I have GCMO, which will willdiscuss in a moment, which is a community of Israel's top one hundredCMOS from global company. So G stands for global and I have a videocast and a podcast which I run with a friend and we talked about marketingand strategy's in Hebrews has for the Israeli audience and I'm an advocate for personalbranding. Personal branding for me is a passion and I have a community onfacebook for four thousand people and we talked about personal branding a lot and Ilet her about it too. And at Mine Space, I'm the VP ofmarketing. I joined the company in the beginning of the year, so coupleof months before corona time, so very that's occasion, very specially, verysmooth sailing into them and buying space. Is a global company with dirty offices, thirty branches around Europe and the US. We have sixteen cities that were locatedin in Germany, for example. We have eight offices in the Netherlands, in the UK, in Romania, in Poland and in the US.Basically we provide flexible spaces for companies of all sizes, whether you're startup ora large enterprise. We provide different types of flexible offices, whether it's asmall suite, a small office or private suite or a whole floor for acompany. We also have some casual spaces for meetings or recordings or event spaces, and minds is a very unique company because the emphasis is strongly on ourcustomer service, which is very high in its stand dirts, and also ourdesign and art, which we're advocates for, and each location is beautifully designed,very differently from one another and also very, very much adapted to thecity that we're in. So we're not in the cookie cutter approach. Eachlocation is totally different and I love that company because it has such unique brandand values, and we will talk about that more because that's that's the session. So does the session. Yeah, I'm a setup. I've seen thelook of Jare a must mesurface and it looks really, really good. Youknow, I've got to say the funiture and everywhere a bit jealous. I'mtrying to pick up somebody's from my own living room now. Yeah, we'reglad. It's okay, this is this is it. It looks really good. So I fact, we know that finding the right balance between brand buildingand river, you generating activities in marketing is kind of a common challenge andseems to be faced by many be to be market all about the worlds.Yeah, do you relate to that? First and where do you think?What do you think the right balance is between both the building the brand andthe more longer known rover and you generating...

...as such, in the short termactivity is not scially generation. Oh yeah, so I totally relate to that andI think that each marketing department probably has that phenomena of splitting it itselfto the left side of the brain and the right side of the brain.That's how I like to look at it, and I think that on the leftside of the brain we're looking at demand, general ration, Lee Generations, things that are in shorter cycles and will allow us to create revenue ina shorter pace, and we will be very much driven by acquisition and creatingrevenue. Our review will be more short term view and we will do alot of paid and guerrilla and and short term campaigns to satisfy this left sideof the brain. And then on the right side of the brain, willtake care of our brand identity and reputation. Will look at organic tools and tacticslike content marketing, like pr like brand campaigns, and our main goalwould be to generate awareness and be top of mind with our audiences and andhave our audience identify with the personality of our brand. And I think thatit's a very long term process and the results are seeing with time and ittakes time to see them, but I think that when that right side ofthe brain is properly in placed, it definitely complements the left side of thebrain and allows it to function in a lot in a much better way.So I definitely relate with that statement and I think that in order to havea good operating marketing machine and your organization, you should nurture both these left sideand right side of the brain. I think young startups, I've beenworking with a lot of startups in my career, and I think that youngstartups put more emphasis on the left side of the brain and they're going forokay, how can we acquire new customers, new investors and and what do weneed to do in order to generate that demand, which is very important, no doubt, and it needs to be there. But they neglect,I think, the right side of the brain, and that's something that Iwould say for younger startups, if they can start thinking of who they are, what's the identity of their company, what kind of messages, what kindof values they want to convey to their audiences, that from a very earlystage, that would help their target audience to connect with their company in amuch stronger way and will allow them to do their core left side of thebrain work in a much more efficient way. Yeah, that makes sense. Thatmakes perfect sense, and we know that's marketing, marketing, engineeral orcontrove, is value in generating revenue. If there is no cruise alignment withcells, okay, so illn't you get that true collaboration between marketing and cells, particularly when it comes to something like branding? Wow, you know,branding may sounds probably more on the cell side of the conversation are but brandingmysels like that nice fluffy activity maybe for service guy, and that's really whatwe'll get us, commission at the end of the mount so to question.I'll do you manage that alignment and I'll do you get that by it?How do you get their buy and how do you make I'm absolutely great,great questions. I think it's also super relevant right now when we're in thiseconomical crisis time and companies are way more sales driven than they were before becauseeveryone got hit in some way in this crisis. So I think that thepressure in a way is put more on marketing right now to justify the budgets, to justify the positions, to justify the head counts, and if marketingteams will not be sales oriented, I think it would be a great challengefor them. So now more than ever, I think that this question is sorelevant because if you don't create that alignment with sales, you are ina problem. And yes, that's CFO...

...and that cro of the organization.How do you make them your partners and how do you align with them ina way that when you ask for that budget for brand building, they'll bebought in? And so I think the first thing I'd say about that iscommunication. First of all, internal communication in the company, educating the company, and I'm not just talking about the CFO in the cro but I'm talkingabout all your sales rits, all your field representatives, whatever their positions are, whether their customer service or maintenance, whatever it is. They need tobe bought in to the concept of okay, we generate business and we bring revenue, but we also help this company be who it is, yeah,and what it stands for work. And once they feel that the identity ofthe company is quite clear and the messaging is clear for them and the kindof brand work and brand campaigns that we generate make them feel proud. Ithelps them sell, it helps them do their work better right, and soif they understand that that right side of the brain, that brand building workis work that is essentially helping sales, then they will support it. Soit starts with education and communication, and I do a lot of internal communicationinside the company to always, and I encourage my cot my team to dothe same, to always communicate first internally about stuff that we're doing, letthe other employees know what's coming out in one day or in two days,and then launch it and then they see and then we talk to them aboutit. So they're always like part of our work and they're experiencing our workas part of the company's work. Now, on a more tactical stage, weas marketing we build our goals right up from the sales goals. Somy goals from my team are the closed one opportunities of sales. They don'tget goals from me for s qls or, you know, and qls. Theyget goals from me on how many sales, how many workstations have wesold in our spaces, because those are the sales goals and when the marketingteam and the sales teams are aligned on the same goals it's much easier todrive to the same place. So even people on my marketing team that havebrand related positions, they know that ultimately their work is supposed to drive sales, even if they're measured on other things like they're measured on, for example, engagement or traffic or whatever, because they're doing brand stuff. They knowthat in the end of the day the goal of organic traffic is to seehow many one deals we got out of organic traffic. You know what Imean. So I may not I may not give them the bonus based onthat, but they know that in the end of the day that's what we'relooking at. Now. The other thing is that I align my team onthe sales goals all the time. So quarterly or every six months, everytwelve months, they know what the sales team's goals are and they know,as a result of that, what our goals are. So there's constantly discussionsabout that. There's also some small stuff that I do to just keep itin existence all the time. For example, I have a daily sales force reportthat is being sent to the whole marketing team to look at a tablewith all the deals that we've signed in the previous day, so they seein which location it was, what we sold, how much it was soldfor, who's the customer, and it keeps them much closer to the fieldto what we're actually selling and what we're actually doing. Now, you wouldsay, you would argue that's sales work right, like why would they care? Because they started it, like I have the lead source there and Ihave you know when it started and which location, so they can feel proudthat their work is actually contributing to the bottom line of the company and theyall get it every morning now. As...

...a result of that, the managementteam also was so excited about this report that they also asked to get it. So the whole management team is now seeing this report every morning and mymarketing team. That's another small thing that I do. The other thing isI constantly show our work internally. So whenever we succeed with something or welaunch a very nice campaign, I make a point of communicating that by emailto the whole company and by a slag and then obviously social media, etc. So they're constantly seeing our work. It's not like I would be verysurprised if someone came to me or one of my team members and say,what is this thing you're working on? Why didn't anyone tell us? Likeeverything it, we have very high level of visibility, so there are nosurprises and everyone knows how to anticipate our next steps and their next steps.As a result of that, I make sure that there are weekly synchronization meetingsbetween M team members and the field sales rips. I have ongoing sync meetingswith our head of sales and I think the Nice thing about this close collaborationis the fact that they see us as partners because when they want to nowlaunch a new sales initiative in their market, they come to us first, likethey speak to us. They consult with us and we do stuff togetherand we support them. So I think that we managed to create a realteam environment between sales and marketing in the different markets that we work in orfor the different products, and it's you need to do a lot of smallthings that will aggregate to a good collaboration. But if, if what drives you, I'm going back to the beginning, if what drives you is that thesales and the marketing teams are really sharing the same goals and the samemeasurement, then I think that's the starting point to align sales. Certainly right. First of all, thank you so much for going for that, becausethis is proper, in the strenchy type of advice of what you are doing, like, not just like a theority call over view of what should bedone, but that's what you are doing. You know, I was listening very, very attentively, and what comes to my mind at the end ofall those things that you went through is really, you know, to getyour brand out, you need to build the your own branding timidly. Youknow you are speaking about being a massive advocate for pussonal Brending, but that'stechnically what you are doing with in your organization, at your level, themarketing team level, and that the cells and marketing team walking together a level. Okay, so you've got different level of branding there and I really likethat because it does actually does make sense. And my next kind of question isbut management, because I was I feel ashamed to say it but I'mgoing to say it anywhere. What's kind of particularly when we first started atoperatics, really earlier on, I was not a big believer in branding.I just so that you know, branding will come from world of mass.Yeah, branding will come from we do a good job for someone, thatsomeone will speak to their friends and then you go to someone else, etc. Etc. And then the fund starts ringing and that's okay when your momentbok shop, small business. But then as time went by, the ambitioncan of change. And I think I've said that origin on a few ona few podcasts. But one day, funnily enough, he was preserved withan Israeli company that are now clients of us. Actually just become a clientsrecently, two months ago, but I met with the CEO in London andthey said, look about a lot about you. I've got a lot ofgood things about operatics, but really the only thing that I'm not sure itis can of afford your services, and that, for me, is kindof okay. This is it? So all the monetive invests in brand buildingis that sentence was like, okay, I've got the realization of what itmeans. Now it's putting me in that category where maybe the world of Mossesas hell, but also all the other things that we've done, the waywe communicate about the success, because technically, what you are doing, internally,what you just went through, is...

...what a company should do for thatbranding is to speak about what they're doing, communicate, not wait for someone tocommunicate, not wait for someone else to do something. Everybody should communicateus from the cleaner. The cleaner should say that I'm happy to go andclean that company. It's a great company to clean. Fall up to thesee you, you know, and everybody should really push that message out andI think we're really at what we actually then it's in walking progress, butwe are much better at it. But Gudy, Tech Mountains to move toconvince me. So I'd like to unders on your if it's just me,that was an issue for my own company and my own boat or neck.Or do you also face that? We see over, we see sweet whatpeople are like. Is a a CFO or CEO? What that kind ofyou know, is a technique or technical minded or finance minded, and don'treally get the concept of branding until they actually see it. Yeah, soyou hit the nail on the head. It's not just your problem. Manypeople don't get it. Well, don't. Don't get it because they think likeyou, that you know it will come if it needs to come andwe're doing a good job. It will come from other people, and Iagree with you that there's nothing better than word of mouth. That's the bestmarketing method heads down. However, in order to get to the word ofmouth, you need to work. All right, it doesn't happen very quicklyto get to word of mouth and in order for people to start talking aboutyou like that customer of yours heard about you from many different people. Thattakes some work and if you don't put who you are in a very clear, in a very compelling way out there, other people will not start doing itfor you without any incentive or, you know, just because you're niceand they had a good experience. I mean, some of them will doit, but it's the only like the minority early adapters, most people wantto do it. So if you give people the tools and if you givethem the messages and you give them the visual tools and you teach them what'simportant and what's valuable and what you would like them to say about you,they would probably do it because you give them everything and then it's very easywork for them to do. But you need to give it to them,because most people are too busy and they don't have time to do your workfor you. Right. So there's a way to push in a way wordof mouth to drive it, and I think that every person can relate tothat, whether there is CFO or a CEO or a technical person or asalesperson, can relate to the fact that the best way to be convinced isif someone told you about something and gave you a good recommendation. So ifyou can communicate clearly to your peers and to those tough people that the workyou'll do is will is essentially a driver for word of mouth, they willcollaborate with you. Yeah, and and you're absolutely right that a brand forfor the marketing team and a brand for sales and marketing and a brand fora person who does the work is as important as the brand of the companyitself. Yeah, right, and and it all starts with like clarifying foryourself who am I? What are my values, what's my personality, mycharacteristic? How would I like to be perceived? WHO's my target audience?And then go for it. So in this O caase, like my targetaudience is my employees in the company, right, yeah, right, yeah, or am I my C level calling? Yeah, and I think you knowalso work. Some company comes shot and let's let's point on the topic, is they always have one person that is the print build. So yousee a lot of companies, while the CMO is the bread builder and that'ssuper active. They share a lot of things, lichten and stuff like that, but then nobody, it's like his is on his own, you know, and I think that's that's okay. But and what we're trying to doat Paratix is structurally say to our guys, you know, because we've got alot, lots of very appem plays. You know, we've got people whoare ready appear from every stage in the companies. People would get thebottoms of people are in the middle,...

...some people at the top. Thepeople tend to be relatively happy and we try to keep them happy. Thisis important. APIC customers, you know, I pick. I'm sorry, happystaff, uppy employees makes up customers right, but were trying to encouragethem to communicate more and so well, don't be shy. No, speakabout your experience on linking. Be Honest, be ourself. We don't need towrite something for your marketing. Don't need to put that things together.You re sharing something like that. That podcast, the Piezode, for example, is it's not really brending from me. For for me, branding is yousaying about your experience as an individual within the company to the rest ofthe world and saying is telling about something that you've ad shived. Okay,obviously in the respecting DNDA, but that will give identity, that will givecharacter, and I will give you know. I think what I would be seekingfor if I us to recast is that's what people care about. Peopledon't care about your new white paper earlier on, your podcasts and things likethat, unless they happen to know someone or it's of interested them or thetopic is of interest to them and they are doing some self education at themoment. But, quite frankly, when you look at those social network butI'm speaking about Clinton in the particular Yah, it's crowded. Yeah, provided sowhat you are looking you are looking for real emotion, really connective youknow, and that's what we are trying to do at the moment, theexercise of emotional connection, emotional brain building through guys. Just speak about yourexperience, because what you tell me is beautiful. I love to hear itinternally. Now let's go and share it with the world, and that's whatwe're trying to get an example, I must give you an example about exactlywhat you're talking about. The other day we had one of our community managers, community sales managers in Poland, receive a book are of flowers to theoffice from one of our customers and their company called think, from Sweden.They do like a financial payments. Yeah, and it's a large company think.So they sent her a book of flowers to say thank you for thebeautiful process she took them through to sign their listener office. So there arecosts, they're happy customer, right, and they sent our flowers in theend of the process us, after they signed a contract, saying that theytook I don't remember if it was fifty or a hundred people office in Poland, and they send us the I mean the team in in Poland sent usthe photo of the lady with the flowers and I told them straightaway or areyou sending it to me perfect please uploaded to, first of all the Polandlinkedin page, and we have a Polland facebook page, but to your individualpages and be proud of your work. Yeah, they asked for some help, so I gave them a little bit of text to put and they uploadthe photo of her with the flowers and we tag think and we said thankyou and they all did it and then I did it as well, andthen the whole company, almost the whole company, did it. Everybody knowsabout it photo and they posted it and it was one of the most successfulposts we ever had on Linkedin. Imagine like twenty or thirty different people sharedit, the same photo, and so it was like burnt in people's minds. And then the story of how a customer is saying thank you after asales process. You know, it's something quite unique, pretty powerfulia and alot of other people said like in the Commons, wow, this is oneof the best, you know, proofs there are for who you are asa company. Like you don't need to do much more than that. Yeah, so it's about listening really and and giving your employees the power to doit, like listening to what is happening in the field and then once somethinghappens and there's a trigger, you just encourage them to use their power.And absolutely, but there is there is that sort of resistance, I think, from people. Well, I was speaking to one of my stuff aslike look, this fantastic. You should share that on Linkedin as our Idon't know, I don't know from and I was like, you know,I follow you on instagram. I can see your dinner pretty much every day, which I don't care about. Right, that's not really bread. Birthday,if you want to actually share that stuff, this is the sort ofthings you want to share. This is meaningful. But there is a resistanceof Oh, that's a bit of cloud. What would my calling think about me? What other people would think about...

...me? What actually I think?You know, in the business world it is nice to be nice. Ithink it's also something a fantastic message to would think out as a company,right, because that act of kindness is something at text two minutes right,to get someone some flowers, you just need to get your card ready,gone the website, booth of you go. That's beautiful from them. Whether donethat in their company is also a great advocate for that company brand,because doing that is such a gesture. You know, it's a simple things. Doesn't catch trust money next someone's Day. We make sure that your stories wouldbe good after very simple thing like a thank you or please, youknow. But anyway, we could get on farther, because that's I'm startingto get another episode and personal branding, because you're caught your way. Haveto is your employees. Problem is something that everyone has and it's that balancebetween being humble and, yeah, fraid of how you'll be perceived. Andpeople are just too busy being humble and they don't understand that during that timethat their humble, many other people are like cross saying the higher way withshowing off their achievements and they're losing business. So yeah, there's a whole otherepisode we should do about. Well, before that, you go do I'vegot one question for you. So I know that you're the the confronderof GCMO, which is a community that brings together Israel stop CMO from globalcompanies, startups and VC's. It would be great if you could tell usa little bit more about GCMO and what motivated you to stop that community.Yeah, good, good one. So GCMO, we started the community abouttwo, two and a half year, two and a half, three yearsago, and we started very small because we're a group of CMOS that justneeded someone to consult with. Sometimes you don't have anyone else in the companythat shares the same problems and challenges, so you go to colleagues and soa few, few of us just came together and it started building and beforewe knew it were one hundred people from some of the biggest global companies inIsrael. You probably know some of them, like and dogs or you know patricksvariants. A lot of tech, but not just so the stream glassesUSA like. There are a lot of consumer be to see, but alsobe to be and basically we wanted to position Israel, Israel's top marketing executives, as world leaders and marketing, because many people know Israel to be verygood with developing technology, but they don't know enough how we're good with alsodriving that growth of the startup nation with the way we tell stories and theway we do mark getting. So that was the first goal. The secondone was to create a community that will support and provide a think tank forus as Cmo so we can consult each other. And the third objective wasto create a networking and career development platform for the CMOS, because it's alsoit's a small country. We have a lot of positions that are coming outand marketing and we can help each other with advancing in our career. Soone of the things that I'm really proud of is the fact that, Iforget to say we have a what's up group for the scare people. Yeah, and we talked daily in the whats up group. So imagine a what'sup group that on a daily basis. You have discussions, not every week, every day. So one hundred people like buzzing with questions to each other, like who used operatics before? Can you recommend them? Can you giveme a good vendor for PR in Japan? You know, how do you managea team with bonuses or whatever kind of question you can think about,it's being put there and just people help each other. And so we dodemos together for platforms, for marketing technology platforms, for example. We doacademic programs with universities where some of our CMOS are speakers at those programs,helping the next generation of marketeers to learn about global marketing. We do speakingopportunities and various conferences, round table sessions to consult with each other. Weprovide career support, so when someone is leaving a position, they tell theforum that they just left so people know...

...that if there's an opportunity, theywill connect them or we, as the founders, we help people that arein between jobs to get opportunities. So it's a really unique experience. Wehave the the what's up group on a daily basis. We have one totwo professional sessions a month. Right now it's on zoom because of Corona,but normally it's once or twice a month in someone's office just host the wholecommunity and we get sponsored by Google, for example, or other branding agenciesthat want to host us and and do things for us. So I thinkit's a very powerful tool for us as individuals. CMOS, but also forus as a group to get better offers from various sources, from better stakeholders. But also, I think the best thing is just the fact that youcan, you know, pink someone and get an advice and get help withinminutes. So see these of employees go in and out of the group everyday, like, yeah, here's a great guy who does S. Dris a great guy who does growth, great lady who does, you know, communications and PR who wants to hire them such as. So it's abeautiful tool. And DCMO is. Yeah, it's a great community. So youcan follow us on social media. We have are with social media.I will we are. Will notice that's that's qreat and that I like thatK's Infiat. We see lots Mestrin, like you know, people getting toget and there is a very strong community the rest of the watch take example, and I think it's it's a great way to go. Boy, wereinterviewed several times about the model and how we did it, because just toshare the the knowledge with other countries. We may take it international one day, but for now you go dream big, and I would say also that wehave a podcast called the market tears and Capes. It's in English,so you can find it on the market here in capes like ship Ross andcaps. Yes, and one of our members is actually the host of thepodcast. His name is a done and he interviews a different GCMO member everymonth. So it's it's very interesting, wonderful. Well, thanks for whatif FRAT. It was wonderful to have you on the show today. Asyou say, we probably in another session to speak about off not branding.But before we we get going, last question I ask is if anyone wantsto get in touch with you to discuss month space, to discuss GCM?What? What's the best way to connect with your friends? I think theeasiest is linkedin. I'm on twitter and facebook as well, but linkedin iswhere I do most of my professional stuff, so that's okay. There you go. So that's a frat fending sun, which is FEENIG S N, andif Rad ef are at. Very simple. It was wonderful to haveya on the shows. Thank you very much for coming today. Thank youfor having me. You've been listening to BEDB revenue acceleration. To ensure thatyou never miss an episode, subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast player. Thank you so much for listening until next time.

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