GMT042: Building Unbounce’s Marketing Team from 1 to 35 Employees with Georginia Laudi

Hiring marketers can be a hit or miss. Building a high-performing marketing team from 1 to 35 employees that scales a SaaS company’s annual recurring revenue from $1M to $15.6M in 5 years with no major funding is even harder! That’s what Georginia Laudi (aka Gia), the former VP of Marketing at Unbounce (2012-2017), did exactly. As an early employee, she built a team which surpassed targets and more than doubled acquisition in its 2nd year.

In this episode, learn how creating a customer journey map helped her get buy-in from the Unbounce founders as a non-technical marketing hire. She also shares her hiring strategies and mistakes she made as she grew the marketing team at Unbounce. Also, find out why Gia doesn’t look at resumes when hiring for marketers.

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SaaS is about building long-term relationships. Strategic partnerships are so critical, especially in SaaS. – @ggiiaa Click To Tweet
What You’ll Learn in This Episode
  1. Why it’s important for companies to create their customer journey map
  2. How Gia scaled the marketing team at Unbounce from 1 to 35 (and some of the mistakes she made)
  3. The four areas of marketing that Gia hired for
  4. Why Gia doesn’t look at resume’s when hiring for marketers
My Takeaways from This Episode
  1. Throw out every generic way to think about your customer’s experience. We get so caught up by the latest frameworks – pirate metrics, reverse churn, ABM. Every SaaS company’s customer journey will be different. There is no cookie cutter approach to trying to understand your customer’s journey
  2. Strategic partnerships are so critical, especially in SaaS. SaaS is about building long-term relationships and retaining them. This is something that I hear over and over again from the marketing leaders I’ve talked to in this podcast. This is the most under-utilized “growth hack” – build authentic relationships.
  3. Have a side-project that you’re super passionate about that you can practice marketing tactics. This helps sharpen your marketing skills. At the same time, it helps show to potential future bosses and (possibly) investors, that you’re passionate about what you do.
About Georginia Laudi

As a strategic advisor, Georginia Laudi helps high-growth SaaS companies, like Appcues, Sprout Social, Friendbuy and more, scale. She also co-hosts Forget the Funnel, a workshop series that helps early-career SaaS marketers become respected leaders (and, in turn, help their company succeed).

Georginia is also the former VP of Marketing at Unbounce (2012-2017). As an early employee, she built a team which surpassed targets and more than doubled acquisition in its 2nd year. For their 900% revenue growth, they ranked 14th in the Deloitte Fast 50 in 2016. She helped take the company from 15 to nearly 200 employees (marketing, from 1 to 35), and from $1M to $15.6M in Annual Recurring Revenue in 5 years with no major funding.

 

Show Notes
  • 3:50

    Gia’s career journey

  • 6:55

    What kind of companies Gia advises

  • 9:18

    Why did Gia leave Unbounce

  • 10:00

    How Unbounce found Gia

  • 12:30

    The difference in east coast vs. west coast tech scene

  • 14:23

    Why is mapping your customer’s journey important for marketers

  • 15:52

    Gia’s step-by-step process for creating a customer experience map

  • 18:03

    Gia’s pre-requisites before creating a CX map

  • 22:23

    How do you get buy-in from leadership to do customer research

  • 24:25

    Gia’s process for doing customer research

  • 31:26

    How did Gia apply this process of creating customer experience maps at Unbounce

  • 33:45

    What were the customer success milestones at Unbounce

  • 35:23

    How did Gia scale the marketing team at Unbounce from 1 to 35 employees

  • 37:01

    Some of the mistakes that Gia made when growing the marketing team at Unbounce

  • 38:48

    How did Gia hire her first marketing hire – generalist or specialist?

  • 39:40

    The four areas of marketing that Gia hired for

  • 41:31

    Why Gia doesn’t look at resume’s when hiring

  • 44:04

    How can marketing hires get buy-in and build in-roads with founders and leadership executives

  • 46:50

    How did Forget the Funnel come about

  • 50:00

    Why Gia offers women and underrepresented founders one hour consultation worth over $600

  • 53:45

    Where you can find Gia online

Links

Music By The Passion HiFi www.thepassionhifi.com.

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