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AMAs

Dayna Rothman is BrightFunnel’s VP of Marketing and Sales Development. She has almost a decade of experience in B2B marketing technology, authored Lead Generation for Dummies, and has won industry awards for her work in marketing.

Previously, Dayna was VP of Marketing at EverString and also led content marketing at Marketo for over three years. She has a BA in English from Southern Connecticut State University and an MBA from Golden Gate University.

She will be live on Oct 19 starting at 930 AM PT for one and a half hours during which she will answer as many questions as possible.

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  • PM

    Pierre Martinow

    about 2 months ago #

    Hi Dayna,

    Thanks for giving us the chance to learn from you.

    I am very curious about your experience with
    1. effective messaging (which messaging works for you and which response rates do you get),
    2. which data is relevant to enhance your ICP,
    3. to which grade you automate email personalization,
    4. which trigger events you use in your email marketing,
    5. your experience with opening rates and response rates of your emails campaigns,
    6. building lists of leads, do you split responsibilities into lead generators and SDRs or do you have your SDR's doing both - research (building the list of prospects) and outreach?

  • KR

    Kamil Rextin

    about 2 months ago #

    Hey Danya, saw you speak at the Uberflip conference last year. Thanks for doing this. Question: How do you balance the long game (Brand) vs the Short Game (Leads/Opps/MQL's)?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi Kamil,
      I think that is a great question and certainly a challenge--especially since me and my team are pretty focused on driving funnel acceleration. However, with certain programs that we do--digital ads for instance--I set aside a specific budget that is for "brand". As in, I am not tracking ROI down to conversions through the sales funnel. The brand bucket enables me to run ads and engage in other brand building activities that don't need to be associated right away with leads. Of course, at the end of the day, what you do for brand should align to revenue--but you can't always track that accurately. We do the best we can with tracking by leveraging UTMs, programs in Marketo, and our own platform--so we can tie back true first touches even if someone didn't convert right away. I don't do a ton of pure brand activities, but when we do brand, I will make sure that the team still sets goals--whether it is website traffic, shares, etc.

      5 Share
  • MG

    Marc G

    about 2 months ago #

    Hi Dayna,

    I am very keen to hear from you what are the strategies you have used to drive virality? On a second note, would love to learn what are your weapons of choice (marketing stack) and how you connect them to pass data/info to each other.

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi Marc,
      We deploy a variety of multi-channel campaigns to drive virility. However, when it comes to really generating buzz around the brand I have seen a lot of success deploying programs that are themed around popular pop-culture trends. For instance, during Game of Thrones we released a weekly video series called Between Two Dragons where each week we filmed a video where we discussed our marketing lessons learned from that episode. We promoted that through weekly emails, social, and ads. That program did incredibly well and it has been coming up as a successful engagement with closed deals. Also for Dreamforce this year we are doing a Westworld theme (OK we love HBO shows. LOL). And that theme is consistent with our booth and our happy hour party. We created a microsite as well. So far, and we just launched this, we have gotten a lot of buzz and interested. We have almost 600 registrants for our party, which is great! Dreamforce is a very challenging conference, since it is very noisy, so you have to stick out. Creative ideas that are relevant to our audience has done great for us.

      Re: your second question. Here is my stack--Salesforce.com for CRM, Marketo for marketing automation, BrightFunnel (of course) for attribution and measurement, Uberflip for our content resources center, Terminus for account-based ads, Outreach for sales automation, Sendoso for direct mail, EverString for predictive, Clearbit for data enrichment, Lean Data for lead routing.

      4 Share
  • JP

    John Phamvan

    about 2 months ago #

    Hi Dayna,

    a. What tools are you using at BrightFunnel for experimentation & analytics right now (other than BF, obviously)? Where does your data live?
    b. What collaboration tools does the team use?

    Thanks!
    John

    4 Share
    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi John,
      Aside from BrightFunnel, we are also using EverString for predictive analytics. This is probably the most "experimental" platform we use for data. With EverString, we do a variety of different things--we have three different models built that map to the company size segments we sell into. We use predictive scoring to apply a score across our database to determine company fit, and then we score every incoming lead with predictive (we also score on a variety of other elements, but predictive is included in that calculation). Additionally, we have built our target account lists using the models we built in EverString. So far it has been working well.

      Today our data lives in Salesforce.com, Marketo, and in our own platform BrightFunnel. These three platforms are very tightly synced. We then can measure all of our program performance and target accounts in BrightFunnel.

      For collaboration, we use a tool called Wrike. This is a project management software that helps keep the team aligned on projects.

      2 Share
  • AA

    Anuj Adhiya

    about 2 months ago #

    Hey Dayna - so cool to finally have you on!

    I think its very cool that you've written Lead Gen for Dummies - and have a few Qs around it.

    a. What was the trigger for you to write the Lead Gen for Dummies book?
    b. What was the biggest impact professionally and personally of writing it?
    c. If you had to go through that experience again, what would you do differently?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi Anuj,
      Thanks for the question! Here are your answers:

      A) Wiley, the publishers for the Dummies books, actually reached out to me directly when I ran content at Marketo. They liked my experience at Marketo and viewed them as a leader in lead gen. I was incredibly excited to author my first book and Marketo was very supportive.

      B) Hmm...biggest impact professionally. I wouldn't say it has had a huge impact professionally on it's own. During the time I wrote the book there was a lot of exciting stuff going on for me. Content marketing was becoming incredibly popular, I was doing a lot of speaking, Marketo went IPO. So the book was the icing on the cake. It is definitely something that has gotten people interested in me and is a great feather in my cap. But I think the combination of those elements have helped my career trajectory. For personal impact, I really enjoyed writing it. It was great having the deadlines and feeling like I was doing something important and substantial. Writing a book is an incredible opportunity that not everyone gets, so just to see it published was a huge accomplishment for me.

      C) If I wrote the book again, I don't think I would do anything differently. Wiley has a very specific process and format, so I had to be very thoughtful in following their style guide. So, not a ton of wiggle room. For myself, in order to ensure I hit all of the deadlines, I made sure that I allotted time outside of work and had a solid process for tackling each chapter. I would probably do the same thing if I wrote another book.

  • GH

    Glen Harper

    about 2 months ago #

    Thank you for joining us today, Dayna.

    1. I haven't seen anyone else that has the title you have, ie. Marketing & Sales Development (it tends to be one or the other).
    Can you talk about what the "Sales Development" aspect of your role entails?

    2. I see your team also has a VP of Sales & Customer Success (Zack Cass). Can you talk about how you coordinate the sales aspects of your role with what Zack does?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi Glen,
      Thanks for your questions!

      1) In addition to managing the core marketing function, I also manage our Sales Development team, whose job it is to qualify inbound leads, outbound prospect, and set qualified meetings with our AE team. Although it is not too common yet for this function to sit under marketing, I believe you will start to see it more and more. I view the SDR team as an extension of our multi-channel marketing strategy, except they are able to provide a more personalized touch. Our SDRs prospect using a variety of different methodologies like email via a sales automation tool, calling, social selling, video, and direct mail. A lot of those outreach strategies align very well to marketing programs and messaging. So the SDR team is highly integrated to what we do at the top and middle of the funnel. Additionally, when it comes to Account-Based Marketing, SDRs are fantastic for running those personalized plays to target accounts.

      2) Zack and I are incredibly aligned. I think that the fact that the SDR team is under marketing helps this alignment. Additionally, my entire team is goaled on revenue. So while top-funnel metrics like leads, MQLs, etc are important, what is really important at the end of the day is pipeline and revenue. So having all three teams aligned around business goals helps maintain alignment. We also use our own platform internally to promote alignment. Our AEs can actually see within BrightFunnel how marketing has engaged with their opportunities and target accounts--so there is a lot of visibility there. And then, because Zack also runs Customer Success we have really solid full-funnel alignment.

      2 Share
  • AL

    Arsene Lavaux

    about 2 months ago #

    Hi Dayna,

    Thanks for doing this AMA.

    1) Do you think the Warriors are going to win again this year?
    2) What is your favorite way of qualifying a B2B lead from registration to Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) to Sales Qualified Lead (SQL)?
    3) Which predictive metric or set of metrics in terms of product engagement to conversion do you believe to be most effective from your B2B experiences?

    Merci beaucoup!

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi Arsene,
      Thanks for your questions. Here are my answers:

      1) Of course the Warriors are going to win!! :)

      2) Once a lead comes into our system we score it in Marketo using a variety of different scoring inputs:
      -- Behavior--different conversion points have different scores based on relevance, buyer journey stage, etc
      -- Demographics--we also score on demographics such as role, company size, industry, etc
      -- Predictive--all incoming leads are assigned a predictive score based on how closely they map to our model
      -- Target accounts--we have a pre-determined list of target accounts. If a lead comes inbound from a target account that lead will automatically MQL

      All of these elements are combined to reach our score threshold.

      Once a lead hits MQL, that lead gets sent to the corresponding SDR. They will either disqual or put it in their prospecting cadence. Once a lead is converted by the SDR that lead becomes an SAL. The SDR will prospect the lead until a meeting is booked. SQL is our meeting stage. And then the AE will determine whether or not that meeting should be an actual opp.

      3) I am actually not sure what you mean in terms of predictive metrics for product engagement to conversion. Can you clarify?

      2 Share
  • TN

    Tri Nguyen

    about 2 months ago #

    Hey Dayna
    What is BF's biggest growth challenge currently? How are you (thinking of) addressing it?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi Tri,
      Great question! I think one of our biggest growth challenges right now the juxtaposition between our growth goals and available resources. As a startup we have very aggressive growth and revenue goals. However, from a resources perspective, it's hard to make that math work. I have a small team and a relatively small budget. So, much of my and my team's work is focused less on generating a large number of leads at the top of the funnel and more on how to optimize and accelerate what we already have in the middle of the funnel. So instead of running broad-based lead gen programs, we focus paid spend on target accounts and run creative campaigns to our database, segmenting by buyer stage, role, and company size. We have gotten pretty optimized, which is great, and last quarter our conversion rates from stage-to-stage were impressive. Because of the focus on the middle of the funnel, even with a smaller budget, we are seeing more opps and deals, larger opps and deals, and faster sales cycles. So by focusing energy fixing the funnel leaks, we can be a much more effective and impact marketing organization.

      2 Share
  • MD

    Mark Anthony de Jesus

    about 2 months ago #

    What is BrightFunnel's "a-ha moment"?
    What happens during the demo (and perhaps even after) that gets people to it?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Most marketers we demo to have never seen this type of data. They are generally trying to pull attribution metrics from their CRM--which is limited to first touch metrics like what sources a deal. Additionally, in B2B there are larger account decision teams. And because of the limitations of the CRM most marketers only see one opportunity contact instead of everyone on that deal that interacted with marketing. As a result, marketers are used to see only one marketing touch attached to one opportunity contact. However, that is only a small fraction of the picture. Buyers and buyer groups interact with marketing multiple times across the buyer journey.

      The "aha" moment is when we can show the marketer the difference between the data they are used to seeing and the possibilities of marketing attribution. All of a sudden, they can see how impactful their marketing programs have been across a full account. Plus, they can quickly see how these programs tie to the ultimate business outcome--revenue. In the demo, we have a few screens we go to where we show an opportunity history page. We show what you can see with SFDC and then what you can see with BrightFunnel. It ends up being a critical moment when a marketer realizes that she can truly track every successful touch across a deal cycle.

      2 Share
  • JF

    Javier Feldman

    about 2 months ago #

    Hola, Dayna,
    a. Why doesn't BF display pricing on its site?
    b. Was there ever a time where it was displayed? If yes what was the reasoning at that time to display it? What prompted its removal and the move to the current status of not showing it?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi Javier,
      The pricing was never displayed on the site and is customized based on your unique business use case. Pricing depends on company size, users, features and functionality that is needed, and if there is custom implementation needed. As far as I know, it was never listed. It is something that we are actively discussing as we continue to build out the website and our offerings.

  • DO

    Danielle Olivas

    about 2 months ago #

    Hi Dayna!
    I noticed that the BrightFunnel site does not have a live chat widget. Why is that?
    It stood out to me because its so rare to not see one - especially on sites like yours.

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Yes! I have been asked to add chat or awhile now actually. LOL. I just haven't gotten around to it. But good remember to look into it for Q1 :).

  • SK

    S Kodial

    about 2 months ago #

    Is there anything you learned in your MBA that you found directly applicable to your roles that followed?
    What do you think was missing from the curriculum that would have prepared you better (and are there any programs out there that do this currently)?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hmm...good question!

      I use some of what I learned in my MBA program, but not a lot TBH. However, I did learn a lot of valuable skills on how to work in groups and how to work with different types of people at different skill levels. My MBA program was cohort based, so I worked with a group of 5 people throughout the entire program. Almost all of our projects were group-based. In our group everyone had different skills. We had some folks that were very strong, others that needed help in certain areas, and others who didn't do their full work load. Learning to work with those different personality types has helped me quite a bit in my career. Not only in management, but also in working with my peers. Rarely will you be working in a bubble on your own projects--so it is important to know how to work with and around everyone's unique skills and process.

      There was actually a lot missing from the curriculum, I believe. Especially as it pertains to modern marketing. What I learned in my MBA classes around marketing was so basic. It was nothing that could prepare you for what marketing in today's environment is really like. Schools need to add courses on technology and today's marketing strategies. I remember when I was at Marketo, we wrote these really long content pieces called "Definitive Guides", they were very lengthy and on all different topics related to modern marketing. I had many professors reach out to me asking to use the guides as textbooks for their courses. This was great to see!

      2 Share
  • MT

    Manny Tafoya

    about 2 months ago #

    Great to have you on, Dayna! What is BF's most successful acquisition channel currently? Can you talk about a couple things that you are doing within that channel that you think is different/unique?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi Manny,
      So for acquiring net-new leads our website and tradeshows are our number one channel. For website, we have a variety of different conversion points--our demo request and we have a lot of thought leadership content. I think that people are interested in attribution, relate to our website messaging, and generally want to know more. By keeping the content updated, I can continually drive traffic there. For tradeshows, the opportunity to have face-to-face conversations with people is critical. At a tradeshow, a customer can really experience our brand and our people. What works for us at tradeshows are intriguing themes, great promotion leading up to the event, a full meeting schedule for our AEs, and we will often host ancillary events , like dinners or parties, to connect on an even more personalized level with our prospects and customers.

      For funnel acceleration, believe it or not, direct mail is one of our best performers! Our SDRs, AEs, and customer success team all leverage direct mail. We use a platform called Sendoso that syncs to SFDC and the reps all have a direct mail budget. We provide them with a variety of direct mail options that they can send and we also encourage them to get creative, learn about their prospects, and send highly personalized gifts to people. This works very well for getting meetings and accelerating a buying decision.

      1 Share
  • SS

    Sibil Samuel

    about 2 months ago #

    Hey Dayna,
    I would love to know your take on ABM? and How you would set it up? What measurements helps to drive the ABM model?

  • DH

    Dani Hart

    about 2 months ago #

    So excited to have you here, Dayna!

    What is BrightFunnel's North Star Metric?
    How have you managed to rally & align the team around this key metric?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      BrightFunnel's north star metric is revenue--which is the business' north star metric. Of course, we have lots of other metrics around customer retention, usage etc. However, revenue is what aligns the business. The whole revenue team--across sales, sales development, and marketing is all goaled on revenue. Because at the end of the day, it doesn't matter if you generated 10,000 leads that don't go anywhere. What matters is actually moving the needle for the business. If you have goals aligned to revenue it is important to enable your entire team to understand measurement and pull the reports they need to rally their programs around what drives revenue. BrightFunnel helps quite a bit with this. The platform is easy for my program managers to log into and provide a lot of data on program performance. By analyzing the programs and content that drive revenue, my program managers can continuously optimize and tweak what they do based on results.

  • JD

    James Dunn

    about 2 months ago #

    What is the best way for someone to be considered as a Dummies book author (assuming a certain level of experience/expertise is a given)?

    • DR

      Dayna Rothman

      about 2 months ago #

      Hi James,
      I am not 100% sure how Wiley works with their authors these days, but back when I wrote the book they sourced authors. So they have folks on their team that research an industry and find appropriate writers. Not too sure how to get on their radar. Also not sure if that maybe has changed. I wrote the book several years ago.

  • PD

    Porus Daruvala

    about 2 months ago #

    Hi Dayna
    Can you share an experiment that was a really big win or led to some breakthrough insights?
    Thx!

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