They serve one of the hottest (and most important) roles in tech. We’re tipping our hats to some of the best demand gen marketers in Boston.
In charge of executing a company’s go-to-market strategy, marketers at expansion-stage businesses are often the key drivers of business growth. In fact, they’re typically tasked with simultaneously building brand awareness, nurturing prospect relationships, and generating qualified sales pipeline — all while justifying the ROI of every program, strategy, or investment they make.
Piecing all of those elements together requires incredible focus and execution, as well as an amalgam of new age marketing skills that often toes the line between art (old-school creative thinking) and science (technical and analytical operations expertise). And, not surprisingly, finding marketers who possess all of those skills is no easy task.
Increasingly, however, technology companies are exploring new ways to carve out roles for those types of marketers — typically under the umbrella of demand generation — and investing heavily in filling those seats with a new breed of marketing talent.
The Top 10 B2B Demand Gen Marketers in Boston
Wondering what that talent looks like? Scroll through the list below of the 10 best demand generation marketing professionals in the Boston area, along with their favorite growth tips, tricks, hacks, or tactics.
Jay Acunzo, NextView Ventures
What He Does
Jay is the Director of Platform & Community at NextView Ventures, a VC firm investing exclusively in seed-stage startups, and author of Content Marketing for Startups, a visual blueprint. He’s also a co-founder of Boston Content, the area’s largest community group for content marketers. His career includes roles at Google and HubSpot, in addition to a stint in sports journalism.
Jay’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
“A huge pain point facing B2B content marketers is coming up with an unending amount of ideas to fuel your strategy and generate qualified visitors. What’s hard about brainstorming is that (1) you need to think up ideas on-demand that are (2) relevant to your specific audience and (3) seemingly unending, since content marketing is about consistency.
“A year ago, I created a small visual aid that walks through a six-step process for generating ideas that hits all three. It force-frames your brainstorm with a few criteria, making the process seem less loose and open, and it bases every new idea on a topic or headline you place at the top – one that you know will resonate with your audience. Start to finish, it should take maybe 5-10 minutes, then repeat as needed. Learn more about the approach on pg. 23 of my Growth Guide.”
Rebecca Churt, OpenView
What She Does
Rebecca is a growth strategist focused on top of the funnel at OpenView Venture Partners. She owns content strategy, website optimization, inbound marketing and SEO. In addition to demand creation, Rebecca consults OpenView’s portfolio on best practices around inbound marketing and content marketing strategy. Prior to OpenView Rebecca was at HubSpot for 5 years. As an industry veteran Rebecca has successfully developed and implemented new marketing opportunities for 350+ businesses – from the Fortune 500, to start-ups, and non-profits – serving B2B and B2C industries.
Rebecca’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
“I love to use Google Trends. It’s a great, free, tool to use when doing keyword research. It gives you a good sense of what the search demand in a given market has been like over specified period of time, even allowing you to compare different keywords/topics against each other in order to determine popularity and relevancy over time.”
Connect with Rebecca on Twitter @RChurt.
Doug Ellinger, Bullhorn
What He Does
Doug is the Senior Director of Marketing at Bullhorn, the leading provider of software to the third party staffing and recruitment industry. He leads the company’s global demand generation and customer lifecycle marketing efforts. Previously, Doug ran marketing at Auction Holdings, a Boston-based e-commerce auction marketplace, following a stint in the digital marketing group at L.L.Bean in Freeport, Maine. Doug has over fifteen years in digital, e-commerce and direct response marketing in a variety of B2C and B2B roles.
Doug’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
“Cross-promote content offers in every thank-you email and thank-you page following a completed form. It’s an often overlooked tactic for hooking your prospects into further engagement with your company and your content.”
Connect with Doug on Twitter @dougellinger
Blake Harris, OpenView
What He Does
Blake is a growth strategist at OpenView Venture Partners. He supports the portfolio’s sales and marketing teams to develop demand creation strategies, tactics, and metrics required to fuel rapid growth. In addition to demand creation, Blake consults OpenView’s portfolio on best practices around marketing operations and marketing technology. Prior to OpenView, he worked at Brightcove — a B2B SaaS company — where he contributed to the company’s tremendous growth in various marketing roles.
Blake’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
“Nurturing is not just for leads. I’m seeing more advanced SaaS marketers use nurturing post-sale to reduce churn by monitoring product usage and other retention warning signs, identify up-sell opportunities, build advocates out of customers, and reduce the burden on traditional account management resources.
“Get started by using your marketing automation platform to create a nurture track triggered six to three months before the start of a customer’s renewal focused on validating the customer’s choice and highlighting success. Take it one step further by using more than just email — incorporate tasks for an account manager to call the customer and hold them accountable for completion.”
Connect with Blake on Twitter @BHarris.
Claudia Hoeffner, Acquia
What She Does
Claudia is Senior Director of Demand Generation at Acquia. A standout analytical marketer with deep expertise in building successful go-to-market plans, Claudia has transformed Acquia’s demand generation engine and driven bottom-line growth. Claudia previously worked at DemandGen — where she was the lead consultant for high profile clients such as Swiss Post Solutions, Concur, Cisco, and Dell in both EMEA and APAC — and Eloqua, where she built the company’s demand creation program from the ground up and drove approximately 70% of new business through the marketing channel. Over the course of her career, she has earned numerous awards, including Forrester Research Groundswell Award, The Stevie Award, Eloqua Markie, Marketo Revvie, and others.
Claudia’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
Here is one of my favorite tactics in four steps:
Connect with Claudia on Twitter @claudiahoeffner.
Ellie Mirman, HubSpot
What She Does
Ellie leads HubSpot’s inbound marketing funnel team, focused on inbound lead generation and nurturing. She manages a team of marketers responsible for all inbound channels, including email, social media, search, mobile, comarketing, and paid media. Her specialties lie in lead generation, email marketing, sales and marketing alignment, and marketing analytics. She has launched many of HubSpot’s marketing initiatives, from the email program to customer research, and loves to work at the intersection of Marketing, Sales, and Product.
Ellie’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
“Replace your monthly newsletter with a focused email on a single, valuable offer. While you may think that a newsletter with many links to multiple pieces of content would garner more clicks, traffic, and leads, a dedicated email around an individual call to action is often more effective. It allows you to more clearly communicate value across the subject line and email copy and streamline the path to what you ultimately want your recipients to do (click, download, convert, etc.).”
Connect with Ellie on Twitter @ellieeille
Cheryl Morris, Nanigans
What She Does
Nanigans‘ first marketing hire, Cheryl seeded and grew the company’s marketing strategy and efforts through hyper-growth over the last three years. Prior to Nanigans, Cheryl was part of the original team that built Bostinnovation into a venture-backed new media startup and spent two years in management consulting at Market Platform Dynamics driving digital marketing, pricing and platform strategies for the world’s largest payments companies.
Cheryl’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
“People crave insights. So particularly for startups at the early stage without much of any recognition, use this as a lever to elevate your company and brand. Never underestimate, for example, the power of telling stories through your data and coupling the timing of those stories with broader industry events, earnings announcements or broadly covered news.”
Connect with Cheryl on Twitter @CheryllMorris
Lucy Orloski, Localytics
What She Does
Lucy has been an inbound marketer for over eight years. She got her start in lead generation running large-scale paid search campaigns. In 2009, she joined HubSpot to teach HubSpot customers to be successful with inbound marketing. After more than three years building HubSpot’s Services team, she went on to be Marketing Director at several Boston SaaS startups. She’s currently running demand generation for Localytics.
Lucy’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
“Using early-stage alternative CTAs on late-stage landing pages to convert more total traffic!”
Connect with Lucy on Twitter @elleyo
Matt Solar, Applause
What He Does
Matt Solar is the Sr. Acquisition Manager at Applause, a company that helps companies deliver digital experiences that delight their customers.
Matt’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
“Ongoing funnel analysis is critical. Too many B2B marketers focus simply on the front of the funnel, such as cost per action or cost per lead metrics. To really understand where your customers are coming from you need to work on getting insight further along the funnel.
“At Applause, we try to map out the conversion rates at every funnel stage, from anonymous visitor to customer, and dig into each step individually. Our goal is to better understand what we could be doing to improve the funnel effectiveness and where our Sales team is getting the most opportunities and bookings. Our model is far from perfect (attribution and data cleanliness are an ongoing challenge) but we love the analysis and learning we can extrapolate from the exercise.”
Connect with Matt on Twitter @MattSolar
Brian Whalley, InsightSquared
What He Does
Brian is Director of Marketing at InsightSquared, leading the company’s content marketing efforts. A veteran of the Boston startup scene, Brian has also held marketing leadership roles at Tracelytics, Kinvey, and HubSpot. Brian has a degree in Political Science and Linguistics from UMass Amherst.
Brian’s Favorite Demand Gen Hack
“Use Facebook Ads with ‘Custom Audiences’ to get stories from your company in front of writers you’d like to have covering your company. They’ll be more familiar with your brand and message when you engage with them, and they’ll never know that you were deliberately targeting them.”
Connect with Brian on Twitter @BWhalley
Photo by: Werner Kunz