CMO Insights: Christelle Flahaux former Vice President of Marketing, Domo

April 25, 2017

This week’s guest on CMO Insights is Christelle Flahaux, former Vice President of Marketing for Domo.

In this video, Christelle discusses

  • How data and analytics drive marketing initiatives at Domo
  • The relationship marketing and sales have developed and how Account Based Marketing is a big part of their work together
  • The changing roles in marketing and the importance for less siloed areas in the marketing department

Learn more about Christelle from her LinkedIn profile and follow both Domo and Christelle on Twitter (links to their profiles where applicable)

For more great CMO interviews like this one, please check out our CMO Insights Playlist on our YouTube channel.

Full Transcript

Jeff Pedowitz:

Hi, welcome to revenue marketing television. I’m your host, Jeff Pedowitz, President and CEO of The Pedowitz Group. Today, we have Christelle Flahaux, Vice President of Marketing for Domo, one of the world’s leading business intelligence providers. Christelle, welcome to the show.

Christelle Flahaux:

Thank you. It’s great to be here.

Jeff Pedowitz:

Thank you. So of course, coming from Domo, one of the first questions that I want to ask you is what do you guys measure over there? I mean, were there some of the most important metrics that you’re being asked to be accountable for?

Christelle Flahaux:

Yeah, I think one of the fun things about being a Domo is that everything is around analytics, right? And we’re able to pull some reports that typically are challenging when you look at all the different marketing technologies that are out there. So I get to do fun things like a dollar spent to ACV. I get to do fun, trending things, but I think the most critical thing that we measure from an overall health of the business and especially in my area is around contribution to pipeline right. And attribution. So what exactly are we doing? What programs are affecting, what people and you know, that’s a hard thing to measure, but that does help us figure out what, what part of the marketing mix we need to use to influence the existing quarter. And then all of the stuff that is coming down the pike in the other quarters.

Jeff Pedowitz:

So over your time at Domo, since you guys are so good at measuring things, have you found the KPIs that marketing executives are being accountable for? Are they changing or

Christelle Flahaux:

Yeah, I mean, I think they’re, they’re expanding, right? I think we’ve gone through a very interesting time in marketing where we weren’t measured at all and it was more art than science. And then we swung the pendulum to trying to measure everything with the Dawn of things like armature and exact target and in the early days of marketing automation. And now I think we’re moving more into a yeah, all those metrics matter. And the serious decision with waterfall matters and conversion rates matter. But now really looking at how we affect target accounts, are we going after the same thing sales are going after and you start moving to more engagement metrics versus the hardcore waterfall type of metrics that we’re used to.

And I think that’s a big struggle for a lot of marketers to make that shift now because it’s different technologies, different tools it’s sitting down or having a lot of sales and marketing alignment, which is always difficult, no matter what you do. But the reward is definitely worth it. You know, the conversations I have with my sales organization are very, very different now because it really is about, okay, we know we have a set of accounts. We want to go after, how are we going after them? And by channel, by activity, by a sales engagement and sales and marketing starts to blend into one team versus this handoff concept that we’ve had for so long.

Jeff Pedowitz:

How often do you meet with sales and go over these things?

Christelle Flahaux:

Great question. All the time. It feels like, like I think I meet with salespeople more than I meet with my own team. But we have a weekly, a weekly sales and marketing sync. And we also, we used to have a daily one where we would look at lead flow just to make sure that the inside sales team had enough to work on what was happening, where they converting the right way. Now we’ve kind of moved back to more of a biweekly cadence on that, but every week we meet with the senior leaders of sales and marketing and talk through what’s working and what’s not working. Sometimes the conversations can get heated. Sometimes they’re very vanilla. And you know, you tend to have a better relationship with the sales organization if you just keep that cadence.

Jeff Pedowitz:

So tell me about one of the heated exchanges. What was that about?

Christelle Flahaux:

The interesting thing, you know, we, we rolled out account based marketing about eight months ago. And again, you know, it’s, it’s new, it’s different yet. It’s been around for a really long time. Right. I look back at my career and I was doing ABM 10, 12 years ago, field marketing for the enterprise. Right. And going after certain accounts and doing different things and fun mailers, like, you know we’ll send you the big Bertha head cover. And if you take a meeting, you get, you know, you get the golf club,

Jeff Pedowitz:

Hang on again. I think we have a cut in the connection.

Christelle Flahaux:

Can you hear me now? It froze for a second. Oh, okay. Oh, that’s great.

Jeff Pedowitz:

Good. pick it up from the big Bertha.

Christelle Flahaux:

Oh, the big Bertha. Yeah. You know, ABM has been around forever. I remember running campaigns 10 years ago where you would send the big Bertha head cover. And if you took a meeting, you got, you got the golf club. So we’ve been doing it for a long time. Technology’s finally caught up. But the one thing that still seems to be a challenge is agreeing on the accounts and who we go after. Right. Is it a sales decision only accounts that we go after? Or is it a marketing decision? Is it because it’s the right industry? Is it because it’s the right use case? That starts to become a heated conversation because you’ve got sales leadership that has an opinion, you’ve got marketing that has an opinion opinion based on who they’re calling and where they’re getting their inbound leads from. So takes a while to get to agreement. I was joking around with the guy who runs account based marketing for me. And I’m like, this feels like climbing Mount Everest. Like why is it so hard to just agree on accounts and like lock them in. But finally we, you know, we got, we got to a resolution based on industry and we use technology to help us. Right. We used EverString, we used Engagio to show the data on who were best bets versus sales reps, thinking that they know better because they’ve been in that territory for a while.

Jeff Pedowitz:

So you mentioned a couple pieces of ABM technology. How is MarTech changing, how you approach marketing and how has it helped you scale? I mean, are there critical pieces that you guys look to? What is your stack look like?

Christelle Flahaux:

Yeah, so it’s interesting. That’s a lot of what I’m speaking about today at the brand forum down here in Australia is MarTech has grown so much. I think Scott Brinker just published the 2016 one and we’re almost at 3,800 marketing technologies. Five years ago, we were at 150. And I remember being at Marketo at that time when that all started to come out and it was like, Oh, wow, there’s so many marketing technologies out there now. And that was only about 150 of them. So now it’s, it’s crazy. And, and marketers are now put in a position where they have to become the conductor of all these technologies and all these technologies are cloud. And how do you kind of connect them all together and have a full view of the customer? And most enterprises are running between 60 to 80 pieces of technology and marketing alone.

Everything from social media to analytics, to your marketing automation solution and all the add ons that come with it. And it becomes a lot more complicated. For me for, you know, I, like I said, I’ve been at Domo for eight months, nine months now. And you know, I added three technologies around ABM, right. I had it EverString. I added Engagio and we’re in the process of adding another one right now. I am, you know, and for, I’ve had this conversation with a couple of people, you know, marketing automation for everything. And I know, you know, you feel this way, you’ve benefited this in, in your business. Right? Marketing automation did a lot for us as marketers. And I was a huge bandwagon hopper early on in the day, but for more Caddo was even, even a thought. But what marketing automation did for marketers is it made us be single threaded.

So, you know, we look at one person and the last time I checked, you can’t sell. There’s just one person at a company and, you know, ABM now and the technologies that that surround it, allow us to actually look at something at an account level. And I think that helps us have a better conversation with the sales organization, because that’s a language they understand, right? They don’t understand a lead. I mean, they do, but there’s never enough of them and they’re never good enough and it’s one person. But when you start talking about an account, you can level the playing field and start talking about teamwork and how you both get into the account, not how you tackle one lead and then hand it over. So I think ABM is a forcing function for sales and marketing alignment and the technology that’s out there.

Now, you know, we use the other one where we’re looking, we’re using as Terminus. You know, what Terminus has been able to do around the digital space and targeting and targeting, you know, within the pipeline based on the buying stage, you look at what PFL has done, right print for less and tying all that technology together with something like a direct mail so that the sales rep knows when to call. That to me is a huge shift in how we do marketing. It’s less about inbound and it’s more about outbound. Not that inbound goes away, but outbound does become a lot more important in your marketing mix of what you can go do, you can’t rely on inbound all the time anymore.

Jeff Pedowitz:

Very good advice. So as you look at your team and cause you’ve been in this game a while how are skillsets changing? How was the structure of your teams change? I mean, as you look to source and develop talent in 2017.

Christelle Flahaux:

Yeah. I think it’s changing in the sense that, you know, people are coming out of school with more of a, a knowledge around technology, right. When I graduated or when I got into the workforce had no idea, right. Salesforce wasn’t even a thing. And there were no classes on how to do inbound and no classes on how to do demand gen in, you know, the true sense of email marketing. And I think that mix is changing where people do have an understanding of what technology does from a marketing perspective and how it helps as far as how we organize a marketing department you know, you have this concept of a demand center and serious decisions has talked about this for awhile, but I think that becomes more and more prevalent, right? Where you take people that have expertise or knowledge around email, best practices or digital or paid media or social.

 And you put them together into a demand center where you can execute on an integrated campaign and you have more of this engine type of concept versus having program managers that are off kind of doing their own thing. So that has to become more aligned. And I think the lines blur for content to write content is not something that just comes out of product marketing anymore. It’s, you know, you have campaign people or social people that can create content and do a fantastic job. So the skillset around marketing I think, is expanding. And I think the org is actually starting to condense. So you don’t have these siloed the silo departments that are off doing their own thing and just handing you off a piece of content and say, okay, here you go. Here’s a white paper, go do something with it.

Jeff Pedowitz:

So you talked a lot about ABM, both from technology, as well as alignment and PR and M and approach and process. Are there other processes that you are working on more today than say you with a couple of years ago?

Christelle Flahaux:

I think for us right now, and maybe this is just a, a factor of, or Domo is in there and they’re growing up phase you know, we, the field marketing team is pretty big at darn well and they’re executing on things like plans on a page. So we literally have a marketing plan for every sales rep. What this does is aligned to the field marketing manager, aligned to the rep. You know, you sign off on the document, you know, what events you’re doing, you know, what programs you’re executing, what accounts you’re going after. You know, that to me is a concept that not a lot of companies kind of adopt. And it’s been, it’s been interesting to see the sales team’s reaction. Some of them are super excited about it, cause yeah, I have my own marketing plan, but then you have some sales reps.

 

You’re like, Oh wow. Now I’m held accountable to actually working with my marketing person. Which is, it’s an interesting dynamic, but I think that’s something that instead of having a holistic marketing plan to go after for the entire organization, how does that actually relate to a sales rep? And what does it mean? And that’s a different skillset than, than most marketers have, cause they don’t necessarily want to deal with salespeople. And we’re doing that right now. I’m putting that in place and it’s been, it’s been interesting to watch, but now there’s accountability and we all have a common destination which is, which is great.

Jeff Pedowitz:

That’s that’s great. So how about approaching the customer? So, you know, for years marketers move to top of the funnel, right? Driving a lot of demand, getting leads out to the sales team. Are you focusing more on life cycle engagement programs? You know, that needs, let’s say you might have a couple of years ago.

Christelle Flahaux:

Yeah, no, I think this is definitely something that’s out there now too. You’ve got ABM, but you’ve also got this, you know, and it’s sacrament, Terminus talks about this, right? Flipping your funnel and there’s now the bow tie funnel because it doesn’t stop at the purchase. And how do you continue to talk to the customer? In a way that’s not salesy, that’s educational, but that also produces upsells and cross-sells and all that. So part of ABM for us is actually the customer piece. So it’s not just centered on net new name acquisition, but it’s actually looking at deals that have a small footprint and making sure that we’re communicating with them to either have an event at their office to expand the account, or we start using Terminus and display ads around that particular domain so that everyone knows that they’re a demo customer and how can they benefit from Domo?

And that’s, that’s a full time job that, you know, the, the concept of customer marketing and getting the most out of the white space at an account is very personalized or customized. You have to not only deal with an account rep, but you have to deal with a customer success manager, let’s say and you have to do it right. Cause you can’t, you can’t piss off the customer either. So that does, yeah. Would totally be bad for business. But a lot of people don’t care. Right. And you know, you think you can blanket it like you would with, you know, your net new name, acquisition staff, and you can’t cause it has to be personalized. It has to be a message that matters and that resonates. And for me, if I look at what I want to go higher in 2017, I want to hire somebody that just runs customer campaigns. And not just communication. I have somebody that runs global customer programs but that’s more on the user groups and the references and loyalty. I want somebody who’s actually going to drive air cover and marketing campaigns into our customer base so that we’re just not letting people sit there and struggle with the product and not use it to its full extent.

Jeff Pedowitz:

Great advice Christelle. Thank you. Thank you so much for being on the show this afternoon, and look forward to doing this again sometime soon.

Christelle Flahaux:

Awesome. Thanks so much.

Jeff Pedowitz:

Thank you.

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