Thinking strategically about startup marketing — Lessons learned at Salesforce, Box, LinkedIn & WeWork

Robin Daniels
Feb 19 · 6 min read
Robin Daniels speaking at WeWork Global Summit

Are you tactical, strategic, or epic?

As you think about going to market with your product and how to tell the story of who you are and why you’re the best, always think about what operational level you’re working on, and be honest with yourself. Every company needs a good amount of tactical execution to grow, however, no company in the history of the world becomes best in class by only focusing on tactical marketing. Yes, that blog post is important, so is that website update, and that competitive deck for your sales team. But they are all tactical things to keep the business running.

Use the marketing trifecta

The marketing trifecta is simple, but something to always keep in mind. The goal with the trifecta is to ensure you’ve covered all your bases when you’re thinking about your marketing activities.

It’s marketing’s job to ensure sales have what they need to be successful. It’s not marketing’s job to close deals.

Finally, and this is especially important within B2B and sometimes B2C: enabling and activating sales. You can have an awesome message in the market, and an incredible journey, but if your sales team is not trained to engage with customers AND if they don’t have the right assets, you will fail. You need to make sure your sales team is knowledgeable, has the right pitch decks, competitive information, customer stories, market information, and pricing details. It’s marketing’s job to ensure sales have what they need to be successful. It’s not marketing’s job to close deals. While in B2C, you might not have a sales team, you still need to ensure that it’s easy for prospects to buy your product and that they have the right information to make informed choices.


It’s all about aptitude, hunger, and dedication

Finally, a little bit about hiring. When you’re growing a business, nothing is more important than the team you hire. They will literally be the difference between success or failure, mediocre growth and becoming a rocketship. It starts with you having a clear vision of what you want to become, and then it’s about hiring an amazing team. I look for a lot of things, but I’m really into aptitude, hunger, and dedication. Aptitude is about finding hyper smart people who are quick learners and can play a multitude of roles, because having fixed employees is something that will slow you down. You need speed, agility, and a willingness to grow, learn, and always do whatever is needed to create greatness.

byFounders

For founders byFounders VC fund investing in the next generation of Nordic and Baltic entrepreneurs with global ambitions.

Robin Daniels

Written by

SVP Marketing @ WeWork. Formerly at LinkedIn, Box, Vera, and Salesforce. I love tech, movies, California, my family and friends, and running.

byFounders

For founders byFounders VC fund investing in the next generation of Nordic and Baltic entrepreneurs with global ambitions.