Skip to content

Month: September 2016

Building a Startup Sales Team

Marketo Retrospective Part 7 As part of a series, I am doing retrospective lessons from my 9 years at Marketo. Today, I focus on Building a Startup Sales Team. I think this is an area that Marketo really shined and set the benchmark for thousands of other companies in the past 10 years. In the beginning of Marketo there was one sales executive (VP) and two sales reps (Scott and Nick). The product was this new UI for Google Adwords that did NOT do well at all. The sales guys were unhappy and not making their numbers. The executive stayed in their…

UX and Technical Debt

Marketo Retrospective Part 6 As part of a series, I am doing retrospective lessons from my 9 years at Marketo. Today, I focus on product development. Specifically about a philosophy I have around maintaining products after initial innovation. When you have a startup, the first innovation is complete free from existing customer complaints. It is pure in that sense. It is only after you deliver that first product and customers are using it that you start to accumulate UX and technical debt. Technical debt is a concept in programming that reflects the extra development work that arises when code that is…

Brand, Culture and Recruiting

Marketo Retrospective Part 5 As part of a series, I am doing retrospective lessons from my 9 years at Marketo. So far, the learnings have been in fits and spurts. Also, not much complaining so far.  Today, I’m thinking about how Brand Identity evolved at Marketo and specifically how it related to culture and recruiting. DISCLAIMER: I have always been on the product team, so my perception is colored in that way. I know alot less about how sales people perceived the company. 2007, The Startup Startups in the Bay Area usually have a particular vibe about them. If you…

UI Frameworks (2006-2016)

Marketo Retrospective Part 4 As part of a series, I am doing retrospective lessons from my 9 years at Marketo. I learned alot of things and this is my way of processing all of that experience into bite-sized nuggets of wisdom. Today, a little deep dive into how the client-side technology has evolved. UI Frameworks In 2006, I was introduced to jQuery and it changed my whole outlook on web development. When I joined Marketo at the end of that year, I was looking for something LIKE jQuery, but specifically designed for enterprise applications. What I found was YUI-Ext by…

Remote Offices

Marketo Retrospective Part 3 As part of a series, I am doing retrospective lessons from my 9 years at Marketo. I learned alot of things and this is my way of processing all of that experience into bite-sized nuggets of wisdom. Today, here is what I learned about remote offices. Sales Offices Marketo had many sales offices around the country and even around the world. After a certain amount of people, it totally makes sense to distribute. It’s much better to close a deal in Australia if you actually live down under. Having centralized sales may be useful to some,…

UX Follow-Through

Marketo Retrospective Part 2 As part of a series, I am doing retrospective lessons from my 9 years at Marketo. The time was filled with good and bad and everything in between. Looking back is the best way to learn and do better in the future. This time, I am looking at UX follow-through. UX Follow-Through In the beginning, I designed the Marketo Smart List and said, “It is good.” Well, that’s not true. It actually sucked at first. People don’t remember how buggy it was in 2007/2008. Also, the interface lacked much of the elegance it has today. The…

The Power of a Single Word

I am a firm believer in retrospectives. How can you expect to improve without looking back at what you did? I am going to do a series of lessons learned from my 9 years at Marketo. Doing one giant post will be too long, so I’m breaking it up. This is Lesson 1. The Power of a Single Word Early research (2007) led me to understand how Salesforce.com labels different core entities. The one that was most important was the word “lead”. In speaking with SMB companies, the word lead meant “a person”. When they went to a conference, they collected…