ABM Misconceptions — A Blog

My name is Kevin, and I am a metadata.io Customer Success Manager. After having launched thousands of paid social campaigns for a hundred or so B2B companies, I’ve come across a common misconception — that the most effective advertising starts with a small and loosely defined “target” account list. I’ve come to report that this strategy is missing a few key details.

Most companies approach ABM the way most sellers of ABM solutions write about it: they pick a small list of companies, tailor messaging specific to their profiles, and close revenue. In theory, it’s very logical. Personalized ads catch attention. Messaging specifically related to your business will always close more business than broad generalizations.

The problem most companies face, however, is where to begin that hyper-targeted messaging. Marketers oftentimes approach their sales team with a simple request to provide a list of companies they think would be a good fit. “A good fit” can be defined in many ways — firmographic, technographic, location-based, or they just have a lot of money to spend (think Fortune 500 list).

What happens next? Sales teams provide marketers with a list of their dream accounts, the white whales with infinite budget and sexy logos to boot. That’s all fine and dandy until it comes time to actually generate leads from this list. The problem we see with many customers and their ABM strategy is that it looks a lot like a child’s Christmas list turned disillusioned teen’s dating profile. They want to go out with the best looking, most out-of-their-league companies in the market without even asking if they’re single. Sometimes, no matter how good your pick-up line is, no matter how many roses you sent to their front doorstep, they might be dating someone else!

You may be saying to yourself, that’s not what I read on a blog of a company that sells ad personalization software! I wonder why.

The best account-based marketing strategy does include personalized outreach, but that is after a very wide net is cast and intent is understood. To assume Deloitte is interested in your startup because you managed to fit their name in a line of copy is delusional. But to generate eight leads from a smaller, more interested company, research those eight people, and send them personalized messages and sometimes even gifts makes far more sense. After all, “A guy don’t walk on the lot lest he wants to buy.” Stop trying to flag down cars on the freeway and start dealing with the people that have their hand raised. 

CPMs, CPCs, CPLs — these are all scary acronyms that eat budgets like PacMan. Marketing could spend hundreds of dollars to ensure your ads target the biggest companies in the world. But do those companies really need your product? To me, it makes far more sense investing those top-of-funnel dollars on campaigns that allow you to at least sift through trends of interest. From there, your willing and able sales team can do what they do best — create highly targeted messaging to close business, otherwise known as account-based marketing.

Kevin Joyce,

Customer Success Manager

September 2020 – Product Updates

LinkedIn Native Targeting from Metadata Platform

LinkedIn Channel Filters for Audiences

1st Demand Generation Platform to offer this!

Now, you can build custom audiences based on LinkedIn criteria like Industry, Location, Job Title etc directly from our platform.

These criteria can be directly defined for our Dynamic and Account List audiences (LinkedIn only) or they can be defined separately using our LinkedIn Firmographic snippet and grouped with other types of audiences in campaigns.

We also provide the ability for you to estimate the size of your audiences based on the criteria you define in LinkedIn Firmographic snippet before you create them to give you an idea of the size of audience your Ads could appear to.

Facebook - Native Targeting from Metadata Platform

Facebook Channel Filters for Audiences

1st Demand Generation Platform to offer this!

Now, you can build custom audiences based on Facebook’s criteria like Industry, Location, Job Title etc directly from our platform.

These criteria can be defined using our Facebook Firmographic snippet and grouped with other types of audiences in campaigns.

We also provide the ability for you to estimate the size of your audiences based on the criteria you define in Facebook Firmographic snippet before you create them to give you an idea of the size of audience your Ads could appear to.

New Data Source: HG Insights

You can now use a new data source, HG Insights, to build your technology based audiences.

Display Reports

Now you can monitor the performance of your Display Experiments from our platform.

It helps you understand performance of your Creatives and Experiments used in Display Campaigns and also see overall performance of all campaigns under Channels in Multivariate Reports.

Updates to Account List Reports

Now you can see Impressions and Clicks for your Account List added to reports giving you a clear idea of their performance.

LinkedIn Ad Preview from Metadata platform

Enhanced LinkedIn Preview Ads

We have enhanced LinkedIn preview ads to include dynamic elements, as well as the CTA button to give you a good preview how your ads will appear to your audiences.

Pacing report from Metadata platform

Optimization Group with Pacing Report

Now available to users

You now have the ability to create and manage your Optimization groups for campaigns, thereby giving you the flexibility to create groups according to your requirements.

You can also review each Group’s performance under Pacing or overall performance, thereby giving you an up to date visual idea of how your campaigns are performing overall and across channels with respect to Spend and Monthly budget. It also gives you an overall idea on your Leads, CPLs, CPC and CTR.

20+ New Features and Fixes

  • Improvements for Leads enrichment to check current professional email when enriching a Lead’s business email
  • Inline edits for Optimization Group and Pacing
  • UI enhancements to Password reset and account creation page

Being a Marketer Is Hard.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise, but CMOs increasingly have the shortest tenure of all C-Suite executives.

As a marketer, your feet are being held to the fire by growth-obsessed CEOs and their investors, who demand you deliver more while your diva sales team continues to throw temper tantrums over the quality of your work. Every decision you make is scrutinized and needs to be approved by Finance, who requires you to show an ROI justification before they let you spend your own budget. And finally, IT gets to dictate what tools you can and can’t use.

Your work is among the most visible in the org, bringing scrutiny to every tiny mistake. Can you even imagine a world where every product bug, sloppy sales call, or budget error received the same blowback as that one typo in that one email?

The good news: there are technology and vendors who can help you out.

The bad news: there are over 8,000 of them, they are starting to blend together, and they can’t seem to play nicely together. OH! Then there’s those 8,000 SDRs who have you in their 8-12 touch Outreach sequence. (That’s 96,000 cold calls, templated emails and Linkedin requests per year!)

Like I said, being a marketer is hard, which is why when ABM came along in the early 2000s promising a smarter way of doing things, we all lined up.

Let’s be honest.

As marketers, if we had 1 superpower it would be storytelling. Mostly we use our powers for good, but like in the schoolyard game Telephone, sloppy storytelling can also blur the line between fact and fiction. That’s how we find ourselves in a situation where ABM continues to rise and CMO tenure continues to fall.

At its core, ABM is about smarter targeting and execution, but we’ve always done that. Even before the Internet, if you were marketing a financial product you’d place your ad in The Wall Street Journal and not Cosmopolitan. With the rise of digital, we gained access data. We can be more targeted and measure the effectiveness of our activities like never before, as cited in the 1993 Peppers and Rogers book, The One to One Future, which is widely credited with branding Account Based Marketing.

Initially, the results were great. Suddenly we were generating Named Account Lists, forecasting which accounts would be our best customers, and focusing all of our activities around them. The accounts in our target lists had higher ASPs and shorter sales cycles–Success! At long last our impacts were measurable and our efforts were vindicated. Here was tangible evidence ABM worked, so what did we do? We doubled down. Suddenly CMOs were given fat budgets and huge bonuses, we got more decision-making power and autonomy, and everyone lived happily ever after.

Except that didn’t happen. So what went wrong?

Assumptions

As marketers and as an industry, we either made poor assumptions or lost track of where the facts ended and our stories started.

We put all of the largest and best accounts on our named account lists. Of course the largest accounts were going to spend the most, and of course the ones with the most pain were going to buy the fastest. That’s not ABM, that’s just common sense.

Next, we focused on surrounding these accounts with brand-awareness activities. You know the ones I’m talking about: expensive gifts, swanky in-person events, ad spam, and personalized content.

We basically called ‘dibs’ on all the best accounts and took credit any time a deal closed, because we couldn’t measure the impact of all our efforts. Maybe we sourced it, maybe we influenced it, maybe we had no impact at all. Who was to say? All of this activity was supposed to lead to higher revenues and lower CACs (aka Profit), but again it didn’t. So what did we miss?

We’re at a Crossroads

We all know we’re missing a Phase 2. We might blame something else like data cleanliness, product-market fit, attribution, sales, or outside factors like pandemics or competitors, but we’re not the only ones who have noticed something isn’t right.  

In the last few years, the way marketers have been measured and compensated has changed drastically. More and more, I’m hearing that marketers are responsible for a sourced pipeline number, or even revenue. Those vanity metrics like account engagement, lift, and impressions are a thing of the past.

Despite our best intentions, our ABM story outgrew the data and the secret is out. This is why our CEOs are raising the bar. This is why you’re seeing the rise of performance and growth marketing titles over brand. And this is why you’re starting to see a divergence between historically reliable sources like industry analysts and customer review sites.

Most notably, TOPO is starting to advocate for the Double Funnel approach, emphasizing equal parts ABM and Demand Gen. While G2 broke ABM into 8 subcategories, Forrester isn’t adapting to this new reality. In fact, their latest ABM New Wave report still seems to measure ABM on the old vanity metrics and their grid seems to be the exact opposite of what real marketers are saying via G2.

This disconnect is so profound that the CMO of one of our customers, Virtana, took the time to write an article highlighting the tectonic shift B2B marketing is undergoing.

Modern marketers like Scott Leatherman understand the traditional all-in-one ABM tool is already antiquated. It’s slow to implement, hard to execute, and nearly impossible to measure any tangible sourced revenue.

Time matters

Average tenure of a CMO
Photo credit: https://www.b2bnn.com/2019/01/editors-note-b2b-cmos/

CMO tenure is slipping, pandemics are raging, and we live in a culture obsessed with instant gratification. This means immense pressure on marketing leaders to deliver meaningful results right now. Switching a core system like a CRM, MAP or ABM platform can be a huge project, and today requires buy-in from Sales, IT and Finance. At a time when marketers likely have little to no social capital, it’s non-starter. Maybe your budget just got cut or you had to downsize your team, but did your goals change?

It doesn’t matter how insurmountable the odds are–you have to deliver, or you have to start updating your resume. You need to figure out what works best for your business and double down on what needed to happen yesterday.

This is exactly why our customers are so passionate about Metadata. Our automated experimentation delivers these answers, and by the time you’re analyzing these insights your budget has already been shifted to double down on the winner. This new generation of marketers knows what they need (results)—and don’t need (fluff)—from their platforms.

Why It Works

Without having the luxury to build the core tech stack of your dreams, having tools that seamlessly plug and play means you can spend your precious time executing, and less time onboarding and configuring a massive tool. That means ROI in weeks, not months or years.

We lay out a trail to guide your strategy and execution, and then make it very efficient for you to track, pivot, analyze, and test—all the things we need to do as marketers while removing all the friction with experimentation.

That means your team can spend less time on tedious tasks like campaign setup, UTM tagging, and sifting through spreadsheets of data, and more on the value adding activities like understanding your customers, adjusting messaging, or rolling out more effective GTM strategies.

All this to say: with Metadata, you can do with more with less. With demand automation you can deliver leads that will satisfy even the most vocal sales diva, while lowering your CAC for your penny pinching CFO and sourcing more pipeline for your CEO.

By Marketers, For Marketers ep 4: Perpetual Demand and ABM History

In this episode of By Marketers For Marketers, Jason and Lauren Goldstein, CRO and Principal at Annuitas, talk through the history of ABM.

When did marketers “discover” ABM?

While Account-Based Marketing has existed for as long as marketing itself–the idea is interchangeable with personal, focused marketing–the term “ABM” has only been recently used to describe personalized marketing.

• A century ago: management consultant Joseph Juran coins the “Pareto Principle“, which is that 80% of outcomes are attributable to 20% of all inputs. In business, it becomes important to identify which inputs are most productive.

• In the 60s, IBM uses more personal marketing to deepen relationships with its top clients. “Achieve more with less.”

• In the 90s, Richard Koch identified the 80/20 rule as the most effective approach for sales organizations.

• In early 2000s, ITSMA (the IT Services Marketing Association) was the first thought leader to talk about ABM as “a PROVEN approach to building relationships with your most valued customers with highly targeted marketing interactions that demonstrate your in-depth understanding of their business.” ABM is recognized as being a more cost-effective approach to maturing relationships. It’s effective for attracting new customers, accelerating the current pipeline, or, most importantly as it is 3-5x more costly to acquire new customers, growing footprint with current customers.

Today, the 80/20 rule is particularly good for marketers to understand because our resources are so limited. Often, there are lots of parties involved in decision-making, and long sales cycles mean that random marketing is an inefficient approach. Selling a more complicated product calls for a deeper journey, and a strong ABM framework is crucial.

Why does it seem like ABM has become a bandwagon term in the last 5 years?

In order to achieve scale with ABM, you really need to use technology to create a personalized experience. We used to have to gerry-rig technology to give customers this experience, but now there are so many good SAAS companies that allow for personalization, so we’re hearing about it a lot more often. Technology isn’t a strategy in itself, but it’s a great enabler when you have a strategy.

People associate ABM with engagement, assuming it will turn to revenue, because in the early days engagement is what platforms promoted, and they defined ABM as what they were good at doing. Conversations about ABM technologies obscured the actual process of ABM. ABM should be about building relationships. Whether you use one or a dozen platforms, is your strategy centered around solving your customer’s problems? Are you working alongside them in the long run to help them grow?

What are some good ABM strategies?

Again, technology itself is not a strategy. Good strategy has:

  • a well-defined ICP. You should define beyond their size and role–more important is their mindset and attitude. Everyone has access to the basic filters (industry, headquarters, company size…), so you’ll have to be more creative about finding additional intel. What social media do they use, where are they posting ads, where do they want their message to be heard, what is their funding round–intent data and social media activity can provide you with this information
  • build a meaningful conversation to address the needs of accounts, and be able to pivot and evolve based on their involvement on your website and engagement with content. Orchestrate sales and marketing processes around this buyer journey, at an individual level
  • a goal beyond getting the campaign out the door–be able to measure and optimize launched campaigns to see where you need to adjust the messaging

What is Perpetual Demand-Generation?

Perpetual Demand Generation is a go-to-market strategy centered around a theme customer’s care about. Companies are getting better at creating content, but 82% of the time they deliver it at either the wrong time or wrong place. The notion of being “always on” means recognizing the right time and place to have the right conversation. When people become sensitive to this, they gain 1.7% or even as high as 3% conversion from the top-of-funnel to closed-won, as opposed to the average .3%.

What has the biggest impact on conversion rate?

Time, relevance, and a focused team. In early days, we looked at engagement and clickthrough rates, and didn’t pay attention to who made it through the funnel. Now, it’s essential to optimize what works by looking at data. This is a process and mindset principle, rather than a technology problem. When you spend more time optimizing and experimenting, you’ll find that you need to do less work overall.

Often, management is the biggest barrier to adopting this mindset. It’s flipping marketing on its head and retooling the process to be buyer-centric, which can be scary. But ultimately is far more predictable and sustainable. Think of data-driven ABM as a corporate growth initiative, as opposed to a marketing campaign.

metadata.io Raises $6.5M for Series A

Industry’s First Autonomous Demand Generation Platform Disrupts Traditional ABM Space

San Francisco, CA, Sept. 9, 2020 — metadata.io, the autonomous demand generation platform, today announced it raised $6.5m in an over-subscribed Series A round, led by Resolute Ventures. There was additional participation from Greycroft, York IE, Stormbreakers, as well as notable entrepreneurs, including Mark Organ (founder of Eloqua), Ilya Volodarsky (founder of Segment), and others. In addition, over a dozen Metadata customers (e.g. UIPath VP of Growth, SocialChorus CEO, etc) and key employees invested in the round.

Launched GA in 2017, Metadata’s latest capital raise brings its total funding to over $10 million. The new funding will allow Metadata to expand its product capabilities, meet the increasing momentum of customer demand, scale its go-market motion and achieve category leadership. Metadata was recently ranked as No. 233 in the 2020 Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies in America Annual List, reporting an impressive growth rate of 1869.18% revenue growth over the past three years. 

“It’s time to transform B2B marketing and place AI and automation, instead of humans, at the center of execution,” said Gil Allouche, founder & CEO of Metadata. “CMOs today are faced with a flood of data, channels, and tools to make their jobs easier, yet the actual marketing execution is too slow, manual, and error-prone. It’s still hard to generate a predictable pipeline for sales and show ROI for marketing investments. We solve this problem, taking the bottlenecks and guesswork out of their demand generation campaigns by getting the right content in front of the right people and building that predictable flow of MQLs and pipeline.”

Metadata is an advantage for marketing teams as it increases their execution capacity by 100x and sets the entire martech stack on autopilot by connecting existing tools and putting them to work.  Experimental marketers from companies like Zoom, Drift, Pendo, Udacity, and Vonage have experienced as much as a 4.5X ROI in as little as 90 days using Metadata. Metadata’s rapidly growing customer base continues to praise the technology for helping achieve B2B marketing results beyond the scale and scope they previously thought possible. On average, Metadata customers paid back their investment within just seven months compared to 17 months from competing platforms.

“From early on, Metadata always put their customers first, creating a technology that truly empowers B2B Marketers and changes the way they execute marketing strategies. It’s a game changer for marketers and should be a standard component of all B2B marketing stacks,” said Gary Nakamura, SocialChorus CEO and Metadata investor. “At SocialChorus, we need precision, we look to Metadata to generate qualified pipeline efficiently to meet the needs of our growing business.  We have been thrilled with the results.”

The company recently appointed Olivier L’Abbé as president and expanded its leadership team with deep martech expertise with the additions of Clay Bentley, VP Sales, formerly of G2 and Jason Widup, VP Marketing, formerly of Tableau Software, as well as the addition of Bill Portelli to its Board of Directors. The Company has also consistently ranked high on the past three years of G2 Reports, most recently named in the top leadership position in the G2 Summer 2020 Grid® Report for Account-Based Advertising Software.

Metadata launched a new product recently, MetaMatch, a proprietary technology that allows B2B advertisers to build custom audiences on Facebook, LinkedIn and Programmatic Display using firmographic, technographic, and demographic data from their proprietary database of over 1.4B profiles. 

“Metadata is disrupting the traditional ABM space as we know it and redefining how we look at marketing in a customer-centric way,” stated Mark Organ, CEO and founder of Influitive and Eloqua. “Metadata isn’t another marketing technology. From the origin of the company transforming marketing operations by eliminating tedious manual work, to today, creating a category that transcends demand gen, it is enabling the autonomous marketer to be a reality. It is the marketer that’s needed for the future.”

“The team at Metadata is driven and passionate as they make a breakthrough for B2B marketers. They have developed the patented technology that executes thousands of B2B campaigns in a matter of hours,” said Kyle York, Co-Founder, CEO & Managing Partner, York IE. “Metadata instills confidence for marketers to know that their programs will consistently and reliably deliver marketing KPIs with minimum time and effort by automatically optimizing campaigns for pipeline impact at a velocity that is not humanly possible. They are giving B2B marketers the teams that they need and results that tie to revenue.”

About Metadata

Metadata is an autonomous demand generation platform that automates the most critical but often tedious tasks in marketing to help companies efficiently scale their demand generation efforts. Through machine learning, a proprietary corporate-to-personal identity graph, and automatic optimization to revenue KPIs, Metadata’s platform generates demand from target accounts and converts them to customers much faster than legacy methods. Innovative B2B marketers at Zoom, Pendo, Udacity and Vonage rely on Metadata to create harmony between marketing and sales by lowering costs and saving time to  ensure marketing drives revenue. Drive outcomes today at https://metadata.io/ 

Media Contact

York IE for Metadata

Kate Campbell

Kate@york.ie

The future of the marketing technology landscape is autonomous

Today marks a big milestone for Metadata as we announce the closing of our $6.5m Series A.  

This marks a new stage for our company as we transition to our go-to market motion, and strive to introduce our technology and practice to the public, leveraging our early adopters as our advocates.

Companies like Drift, Pendo, Zoom and 100+ others trust the Metadata platform to execute hundreds of experiments, fine-tune their marketing mix, and produce a predictable pipeline that translates to revenue. 

It’s been a long road to reach this point, but the need for augmenting human marketers with 100x execution capability is taking off. 

We are excited to join the Resolute family, and welcome new support from York IE and Stormbreakers. I’m also proud to have entrepreneurs such as Mark Organ and Ilya Volodarsky share our vision and invest in the round. Finally – I’m humbled by our customers (UpKeep, UIPath, and SocialChorus to name a few) and employees who participated and put their trust in the company.

Over the last six months, we’ve been tracking ahead of our goals: inbound demand, demo requests and pipeline have surpassed our expectations by 2-3x. While the world changes, we are changing with it. Metadata is at the center of the digital transformation, replacing clunky legacy procedures with new, agile processes, and putting AI and experimentation at the center of operations.

In today’s world, being able to adapt to change, leverage data, and be truly experimental is key to staying ahead. This agility is written into Metadata’s DNA: it’s practiced throughout the company, and evidenced in our product and customer success. With artificial intelligence becoming more of a status quo, I am very excited about our opportunity!

The time is now

In our industry, the most dramatically changing field is audience targeting. In the last few months, the work environment drastically changed, exposing the weaknesses of traditional IP- and cookie-based targeting. Our technology was positioned better than any other to adapt to this charge. With this funding comes confirmation from the capital markets that we are doing the next big thing. 

The $6.5 million raised in this round will allow Metadata to broaden its potential as an autonomous demand-gen platform. In an industry of over 8,000 martech vendors, Metadata raised this round during a downtime, while many other vendors saw declines, wrestled with underfunding, and experienced longer cycles.  We are on a path to change the status quo, transcending the constraints of traditional demand gen and enabling autonomous marketing to become a reality. Our recent funding solidifies the notion that we are heading in the right direction, shaping an autonomous martech landscape for the future.  

When we started Metadata four years ago, we focused our efforts on our technology and customer development. Today, after perfecting product-market fit and bringing in exceptional talent, our demand has sky-rocketed and isn’t showing signs of slowing down. Because of this accelerated momentum from customer demand, we are able to fuel our go-to-market motion and to establish category leadership.

Metadata is synonymous with demand gen. We aren’t just another marketing technology. We’re disrupting the traditional ABM space and redefining how to look at marketing in a customer-centric way. We’re removing human error from the equation and replacing it with AI automation that matches the scale needed in today’s marketing technology. 

B2B Marketer Obstacles and Why ABM Isn’t Working Optimally

Technology is only as good as its user. The move to automate is more than a way of removing some of the tedium from marketing–its bigger goal is to improve reliability. We have found that human error is often the biggest barrier to scalability and optimization. If you can eliminate the mundane tasks most vulnerable to mistakes, you can free up time for the marketer to focus on what they do best— strategic and creative tasks.

Our value prop is to replace the monotonous parts of ABM, and transform B2B marketing through AI and automation. Instead of manual inputs primarily operating sales and marketing technologies, AI and experimentation are driving the car, increasing the accuracy and versatility of performance.

Metadata doesn’t compete with the other marketing technologies; we enhance their operations and maximize their utilization. Too many companies invest in middleware that takes advantage of their martech stacks but ultimately adds little value. Metadata generates an ROI on every previous investment. 

How To Transform ABM As We Know It 

Since Metadata’s inception, we have strived to disrupt the marketing space. We injected experimentation software into account-based marketing, long before marketers ever realized how essential experimentation might be. In the first two years of existence, we chose the ABM marketing archetype as the first use case. Our goal is to apply this technology not just to ABM, but to brand awareness, sales acceleration, general demand generation, and other sectors of the marketing ecosystem. 

Meanwhile, the ABM category is consolidating. We saw this with the Demandbase Engagio acquisition. We should anticipate more acquisitions in the space, as more incumbents look to become an “all in one” unified platform and absorb smaller, differentiated competitors. While ABM consolidates into fewer players, new categories will arise. The intersection of AI, Data, and RPA (e.g. UiPath & Automation Anywhere) creates a perfect environment for autonomous marketing technologies: platforms can operate many of today’s mundane and repetitive marketing tasks at a speed, scale, and accuracy that humans simply can’t.

To the Future 

This latest investment is a vote of confidence that people beyond marketers believe in Metadata. It’s a validation of the path that Metadata is setting. Their demand is the real proof–the increase in customers in the last three months speaks most strongly to their belief in what we do. We’re crossing the chasm, from visionaries and early adopters to pragmatists. 

The future of the marketing technology landscape is autonomous at its very core. It will become the status quo to implement Metadata as the execution layer to connect the marketing stack. It is the marketer that’s needed for the future.

Confessions of an “Imposter Syndrome” Engineering VP

I was a young mom of an almost 3-month-old infant. Despite the sleepless nights, the constant diaper changes, and breastfeeding, I was thrilled when, in November 2017, I landed myself a new opportunity: VP of Engineering at Metadata.

I remember the conversation I had with my husband when I learned that I got the job: “Do you think I can do this? I don’t know what I am getting myself into.” With my previous technical manager job, I felt that I stood a good chance: I knew how to manage an offshore team of 5, break a monolith system into microservices, and deliver projects on a quick turnaround. Little did I know, Metadata would challenge me in ways I could never have guessed.

My first week, everyone at Metadata had their business cards printed. Holding my card in hand, I read my new title: Emily Hoang, VP of Engineering. I felt a sudden flash of fear that I was unqualified for such a position, and worried that my new coworkers would see through my facade. I thought back to the times my male classmates, colleagues, and school counselor told me that I would not be able to succeed as an engineer, let alone as a leader, because engineering was and still is not a field for women

The challenge arises

The Metadata platform was built by 3 different engineering teams: an Isareli team, a Ukrainian one, and the current global distributed team. When I first started, I was assigned to lead the Ukrainian team, which consisted of 10 members and an on-site manager. I was the product manager, the production support, the semi-coder, and the engineering manager; the go-to person when the system broke, since, due to the time difference, I was the only one on the whole team available to help.

I didn’t know how to balance my work and my family. I was asked to stay until 8 or 9pm 2-3 times a week. Being a new mom, I felt completely guilty for not spending enough time with my kid. It seemed that the most I could do was to rush home each day to make it on time for the baby’s bedtime. After he fell asleep, I ate dinner, worked a bit more, slept and woke up again at 5 am for scrum. I was completely burnt-out and there were long nights when I only wanted a way out. But I refused to admit defeat. The support and encouragement from my friends and family kept me going. I wanted to be a role model for my child and to prove that women can conquer both the workplace and the home. 

Come October 2019, I lost the entire Ukrainian team in a blink of an eye. While they were mainly let go due to financial constraints, as the team leader I couldn’t help but feel responsible. Suddenly, I was the only engineer, the one and only commander on the battlefield, with no support in sight. My feelings of loneliness and fears of inadequacy felt heavier than ever. I remember sitting in a conference room in the dark, crying to my husband on the phone. When I left, I accidentally set off the building alarm since I was the last one out, and nobody realized I was still there. 

Building a new team

In July 2018, Olena Dopiro was appointed VP of Product. I believe that this was one of the best decisions Metadata ever made. Olena is not only smart, hardworking and driven but also has a keen sense for helping people see their strength. Having another woman in leadership helped me strengthen my self-confidence tremendously. On many occasions of having to deliver complicated features on a tight deadline, Olena always trusted my instinct to provide creative solutions as well as lead the team toward success. With her help, I started recruiting new engineers. Little by little, we began rebuilding the team: we grew from 2 to 12 members in a year.

With the support of new team members, I once again found myself a leader. This time though, something felt different: because Olena and I had chosen engineers who were as inspired by the product as I was, they were eager to learn from me, and excited to collaborate. I no longer had to face challenges alone–now I had a “work” family who would stand besides me, trusting and supporting each other. 

“You are a source of inspiration (and fear)“- Aida, QA. I feel well-respected and loved by my work family.

In the span of one year, we successfully migrated to 3 cloud platforms, increased security, completely reskinned the user-interface, and transitioned to microservices infrastructure. I took the team’s success and failures as my own. I grew from a self-doubting engineer into a fierce leader who could make critical decisions instantly, and I learned to take ownership of our failures to push us towards improvement. 

Gil Allouche, our CEO, said that he no longer had to worry about the engineering team as he had previous years, and that he trusted that the engine of the company was finally in good hands. I thought of how far I had come in my brief three years here: looking around at what we had built, I realized that I had proven wrong those who doubted me. 

Leading At Metadata Today

I have made countless mistakes in my time here at Metadata. But without Metadata, I would not be the person I am today. I feel both humbled by and fiercely proud of all the battlefield scars I have earned while here. I love the team and the product we built. All of my success will not be possible without the support of my family, especially my husband and the toddler who would not stop singing his “Twinkle twinkle little stars.”

There you have it. The confessions of a 5’2, female, broken-English, self-conscious Engineering leader. I am proud of my accomplishments as a leader, a team player and a multitask partner and mother at home. While I still have so much to learn and improve upon, I know for a fact that it doesn’t matter what difficulties are thrown at me: I can meet any challenge, and I don’t need to do it alone. I am not weak; I am resilient.

 

Emily Hoang, VP Engingeering

Lily Roosevelt on “Why I joined Metadata”

Why did I join metadata?

I joined Metadata because it came with the opportunity for growth. Which is funny because I think that is the same reason why many of our customers work with us. It’s cool to be aligned in that way. My success is your success and vice versa.

I’ve noticed a lot of parallels between how we run our customer relationships and how I am treated internally. This is something I love about Metadata. Consistency across the board. Because, at the end of the day, we care about the data and we trust the data to help us make the best decisions.

I’ve found four pillars that support this data-driven approach and have supported my experience as a new hire: alignment, measurement, authenticity, and coaching. 

While learning a new job and creating new relationships, so much of the ambiguity of this newness is tolerable because these pillars provide enough structure to allow me to be psychologically safe, that is, to trust my team, and to trust the data. These pillars are also things  which we pass onto our customers –  because we know that growth is hard and it gets a little bit easier with structures to lean on.

Alignment and Measurement

First things first. What are we measuring and how are we measuring it? From my first day, I’ve known what my goals are and how I am measured. This intrinsically means that I also know what I am working towards. There is something to reach for which will not only benefit me but will also benefit my organization, and ultimately my customers. Talk about alignment.

When first getting to know a customer, there are four points that I hit to ensure I best understand what they need: 

  • What matters to the customer, and where are they hurting?
  • What is a fair metric to measure their success, and how might they be measuring their investment in us?
  • What does success look like for them, and what is the path that we need to take to get there?
  • What internal initiatives are they running, is my POC leading the charge on any new strategies?

We often see our Metadata customers charged with being the stewards of a whole new demand generation strategy, and so much of what they are doing internally is creating alignment amongst their team and the greater organization. I’ve found that I can best serve these customers by making sure they have the data to back them up when they need it.

Alignment takes trust and collaboration. If the client’s team can center around clear metrics and KPIs as the standard through which to judge their demand gen program, everyone can have greater confidence in their efforts and get excited to get on board.

Authenticity and Coaching

My day is filled with honest conversation, collaboration, and problem solving both during internal meetings and customer calls and it is freaking energizing. In each and every instance, we are working to build something great. I find this to be exciting and strive to pass that excitement along to everyone with whom I work. These conversations are a lot easier and a lot more fun to have if people feel that they can be themselves. One of the best pieces of advice I’ve gotten is to lead with vulnerability in order to get others to share with you and trust you. Something as easy as sharing something unique or unexpected about yourself when meeting someone new for the first time does the trick. Sharing feedback, ideas, and opinions are all things that are unique to each and every individual and they are so valuable because they are so individual. I’ve found myself to be in an environment that takes the time to understand each person’s goals and it makes us better at our jobs.

Again, these are values that are paramount to pass along to our customers so they, like I, know that they can ask for help and raise a hand to deliver feedback. There are times when I am guiding my customer and there are times where they are guiding me. I recently gained more context on the unique criteria for a customer’s target buyer. This customer took the time to share what they’ve tried in the past to find these people and what challenges he’s run into. Now we are better equipped to collaborate on our approach going forward and not repeat the same mistakes. Metadata is a continuous feedback loop and it gets smarter and smarter over time because it learns from its inputs. I model my relationships after this process. Because who doesn’t want to get better? The longer we work together, the more open communication we have, the better results we deliver. Who doesn’t want to grow and crush their KPIs?

I joined Metadata because I knew I would be well-supported in my personal and professional growth. Because I am well supported by my leaders and teammates, I am able to support our customers. You’ve got a deep bench when you work with Metadata.

Lily Roosevelt, Customer Success Manager

Demand Generation vs. Lead Generation: What’s the Difference?

The terms “demand generation” and “lead generation” are used interchangeably, so it can be confusing to understand how they differ.

Moreover, both demand generation and lead generation are relatively similar, although their goals and processes make them distinct. So, they look similar, sound similar, and share similar characteristics… but they’re not the same thing?

The short answer is no.

Both processes are vital when it comes to creating a successful marketing strategy, but you’ll only be able to maximize your efforts if you understand the differences between demand generation and lead generation.

Need a refresher? Here’s everything you need to know about the differences between demand generation and lead generation.

Demand generation defined

Demand generation is the bulk of all marketing. It’s bringing attention and awareness to your brand or product through various processes.

Demand generation can be broken down into three phases: create demand, identify demand, and nurture demand.

Each phase feeds into the next and creates a never-ending marketing loop whose ultimate goal is to get people interested enough in your product or service to buy it. How you create demand will depend on your business.

For example, you might create informative blog content on your brand’s website in hopes that someone who might need your product will see it. Or, you may consider paying for advertisements on the web.

There’s no right or wrong way to pursue demand generation, but it may take some trial and error to find the most effective route for your business.

Lead generation defined

Lead generation is a part of the demand generation process. However, although it’s a part of demand generation, they are not necessarily the same thing. 

On its own, lead generation leverages the awareness generated by successful demand generation strategies and helps to transform them into real ‘leads’ or those who are interested in your product. 

These leads are then nurtured and aided in the process of moving through the sales funnel.
It’s easier to think of it in terms of a road trip. If demand generation is the trip, then lead generation is the vehicle.

Together, demand generation and lead generation help get customers from point A to point B, from awareness to interest.

There are many strategies that can be employed for lead generation. These strategies often include creating “gated content” for those who are aware of your business.

Gated content serves the primary purpose of getting contact information from interested parties.

For readers, the price of content can be as simple as an email address. However, for marketers, that email address is invaluable as it presents a direct line of communication with a potential lead.

Demand generation vs. Lead generation

It’s obvious to see why demand generation and lead generation are often confused for one another. They both utilize similar methods such as content creation, and both rely on brand awareness.

So, should you prioritize demand generation or lead generation?

Well, if your goal is to maximize the effectiveness of your marketing strategy, then you’ll need to master both demand and lead generation.

Demand generation makes people aware of your business’s products and services.

It essentially plants a seed in their head, they may not do anything with the information at first, but eventually, they may use it.

Demand generation is broad, though people may know about your brand, there’s no guarantee that they will actually pay for your services or product. 

That’s where lead generation comes in. 

Lead generation takes those who are already aware of your brand and transforms the awareness to interest. From awareness and interest, customers move through the processes of consideration, decision, and purchase.

In short, demand generation and lead generation are the fundamental starting steps to making a sale.

How do demand generation and lead generation work together?

Lead generation depends on successful demand generation. Though subtle, the difference between awareness and interest is significant. 

Demand generation creates awareness, and lead generation creates interest. The result is qualified leads that have a greater chance of making a purchase. 

Here’s what that looks like in action:

  1. Demand generation: A business puts out an SEO-friendly informative blog post related to their business that begins to rank on the first page of Google’s search results page. Readers gain valuable information on the subject.
  2. Lead generation: At the end of the blog post, readers reach a CTA offering a free e-book on the topic they just read about with more insights. Readers click on this offer and are asked to submit their email address where the e-book will be sent. The reader then becomes a prospective lead.
  3. Lead nurturing: The lead is nurtured via emails related to the business. These emails include information about the brand’s service or product. One of these emails catches the attention of the lead, and they click on the offer.
  4. Completing the sale: The customer makes a purchase!

Though there are many more factors to consider in this idealized portrait of successful marketing, it’s clear that the two most important aspects of this marketing strategy are demand generation and lead generation. 

Key takeaways

Marketing is never straightforward. In fact, it’s quite chaotic! 

Demand generation and lead generation are two extremely valuable features of any successful marketing strategy.

The goal of demand generation is to generate awareness, and the goal of lead generation is to take that awareness and transform it into interest.

With both of these strategies in place, businesses have a chance to turn leads into paying customers.

metadata.io Named Leader in G2 Account-Based Advertising Software for Summer 2020 Report

Highest Satisfaction Scores for Overall Customer, Features, Integrations and Campaign Planning

San Francisco, CA, Sept. 2, 2020 — metadata.io, the autonomous demand generation company, today announced it was named in the top leadership position in the G2 Summer 2020 Grid® Report for Account-Based Advertising Software.

This continues the recent accolades for the company, moving up since last year’s report and being named in several Summer 2020 reports as a leader or high performer. The top score is sourced from actual customer feedback and includes: estimated ROI, meets requirements, user adoption and likelihood to recommend.

Metadata was named a Leader based on receiving a high customer Satisfaction score and having a large Market Presence. metadata.io received the highest Satisfaction score among products in Account-Based Advertising. 99% of users rated it 4 or 5 stars, 99% of users believe it is headed in the right direction, and users said they would be likely to recommend metadata.io at a rate of 93%. Additionally, Metadata customers noted that they achieved positive ROI within just seven months compared to 12 – 31 months from competing platforms and the industry average of 16 months. Metadata is also in the Marketing Account Intelligence, Account-Based Analytics, and Account-Based Orchestration Platforms categories.

“Our customers are using Metadata to drive change in the industry, embracing autonomous software technologies to improve the way they execute their demand generation and ABM programs and leveraging technology to pinpoint audiences that are most likely to buy through scaled experimentation,“ Jason Widup, VP Marketing, Metadata. “We value our relationships with our customers and are honored to see this leadership spot from G2 for the Summer 2020 report and high scores for Metadata across repeated G2 reviews. We look forward to continuing to help our customers achieve faster ROI and leverage Metadata to efficiently scale their demand generation efforts.”

Metadata’s autonomous demand generation software is a massive advantage for marketing teams as it sets the entire martech stack on autopilot by connecting existing tools and putting them to work. Metadata’s rapidly growing customer base continues to praise the technology for helping achieve B2B marketing results beyond the scale and scope they previously thought possible.

G2 Crowd’s Grid is based on real, unbiased user reviews and rates platforms algorithmically from product reviews shared by G2 Crowd users and data aggregated from online sources and social networks. The G2 Crowd ranking takes into account several factors buyers should consider including product attributes, vendor market presence, customer satisfaction, G2 Net Promoter Score® and the quality and age of reviews. Vendors in both reports are ranked by customer satisfaction and market presence. A few headlines from customer reviews include:

  • “Paid Social Experimentation and Pipeline Effectiveness on Autopilot”
  • “For anyone evaluating ABM platforms – Metadata needs to be on your shortlist”
  • “Great value add for DG teams looking to scale”
  • “metadata.io Perfects ABM Audiences by Adding Faces and Names to Them”
  • “Stopped leaking wasted marketing spend”
  • “Metadata is a no brainer for B2B and ABM marketers!”

“Marketers are under constant pressure to show ROI, automate processes with marketing software, and deliver results of campaigns,” said Kara Kennedy, Director of Market Research, G2. “In G2’s Summer 2020 Grid® Report for Account-Based Advertising, Metadata received an overall high customer satisfaction score. Reviewers gave the product high marks for features related to integrations, testing, and digital advertising. Metadata also provided the fastest time to ROI of any product in the report.”

About Metadata

Metadata is an autonomous demand generation platform that automates the most critical but often tedious tasks in marketing to help companies efficiently scale their demand generation efforts. Through machine learning, a proprietary corporate-to-personal identity graph, and automatic optimization to revenue KPIs, Metadata’s platform generates demand from target accounts and converts them to customers much faster than legacy methods. Innovative B2B marketers at Zoom, Pendo, Udacity and Vonage rely on Metadata to create harmony between marketing and sales, lower costs and save time, and ensure marketing drives revenue. Drive outcomes today at https://metadata.io/ .