The State of Today’s Enterprise Landscape & What’s Working in the Space
In this episode, join host, Shahin Hoda, in his chat with Craig Rosenberg, Chief Platform Officer at Scale Venture Partners, about working in the current enterprise landscape.
Tune in to learn about the role of PLG in your go-to-market plan, the power of events and experiences, as well as the importance of content sharing and how it can make an impact on your relationship with enterprise partners and customers.
This episode’s guest:
Craig Rosenberg, Chief Platform Officer at Scale Venture Partners
Craig joined Scale in 2022 to help build and manage their Go-To-Market Platform. The Scale GTM Platform delivers critical expertise to help software companies drive efficient hyper-growth.
Prior to joining Scale, Craig was Distinguished Vice President in the Sales Practice for Gartner. While there he advised revenue leaders on their strategic decisions and wrote innovative research on new GTM strategies such as revenue operations and account-based strategy. He joined Gartner in 2019 as part of the acquisition of TOPO where Craig was the co-founder and Chief Analyst.
Craig was a Magna Cum Laude graduate of UCLA. When he isn’t talking about GTM strategy, he is spending time with his wife and three young boys.
Conversation segments on this episode:
- [1:28] Today’s enterprise landscape
- [12:53] The Big Three - a selling methodology
- [22:27] The role of PLG in the strategy for enterprise
- [26:08] What you should stop doing when working with enterprise clients
- [28:58] “Moving to the left” - PLG
- [32:18] What’s on the enterprise radar?
- [35:15] Making the most of content
- [37:28] Rapid Fire Questions
Resources mentioned in this episode:
About the Growth Colony Podcast
On this podcast you'll be hearing from B2B founders, CMOs, marketing & sales leaders about their successes, failures, what is working for them today in the B2B marketing world and everything in between.
Hosted & Produced by Shahin Hoda, Allysa Maywald & Alexander Hipwell, from xGrowth
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Episode Full Transcript
[01:28] Shahin Hoda Let's dive right into the meat and potatoes of this. The first question I have is, what is your take on the enterprise landscape today? What is happening from your viewpoint?
[01:42] Craig Rosenberg Well, I would say overall, right, the landscape across every sort of segment is changing. I don't think there's any denying that, right? We're coming out of some heady time. So you know, no matter what, we are going to have to be prepared to adjust. But there are some things that I think are actionable, right? Kind of change that we're starting to get our hands around that allows us to be actionable. So I'm not sure what order to go in. So you're going to help me with this.
[02:14] Shahin Hoda Let’s do it.
[02:16] Craig Rosenberg So one is the can kicking. So like, then, I'm going to give you another bullet point that might go with that. But, you know, when I talk to sales leaders, revenue leaders, et cetera, like they're sitting on these big fat pipeline forecasts, right? So not a pipeline. I think you and I know where opportunities are just created, but things that are down the line are getting kicked into other, I met with a revenue ops guy the other day and he's like, I just wish we'd lose the deals.
[02:46] Craig Rosenberg Because the pipeline is growing out things where they're kicking the can, right. And so stay with that because there's some other things happening that might tie back right? Which is, I think the stakeholder map is really important in enterprise. Because we've always believed that. We've always known that. You know, it's funny. It's like part of I don't know where this is but if you ask someone who sold ERP, let's say 25 years ago, they tell you there's a complex stakeholder map that you have to sell to an enterprise. I feel like it's always been there.
[03:18] Craig Rosenberg And, you know, it's funny because I can SAS we would be able to sell into the point, right? And then everyone's like, hey, in Gupta Enterprise, there's all these stakeholders. Now the stakeholder map has grown. We know that, right? That data has been there actually for I don't know, you know, five years, right? I don't even, I'd have to, you'd have to help me on like Gartner has a good handle on the number of stakeholders.
[03:41] Shahin Hoda I think it's at 12 or something right now. Yeah.
[03:44] Craig Rosenberg But you got two things happening now. So one is you've got stakeholders, you know, there's more sign offs and most of those sign offs don't care about what you're buying. And that's makes the landscape hard, okay? And so for example, you know, there's companies that I've been working with where they can get, you know, the call it the user, even a director level, right? Beneficiary of your solution, selling tech, right? And that person says, I'm going to do this. And they bring in their sort of local stakeholder map. And those folks are like, yes, we're going to go do that. And then the deals eventually get killed.
[04:31] Craig Rosenberg OK, so one is because it has to go to new sign offs, your buyer who's like a walk with what you do normally, right? So like if you're for example, you and I live in the world of marketing, a demand gen person like can tucks total inside baseball. By the way, do you guys use the term? I doubt they use the term inside baseball.
[04:51] Shahin Hoda No, we don't. But it's alright..
[04:51] Craig Rosenberg Like nobody else.
[04:53] Shahin Hoda Oh no, actually, baseball is getting big here. It still is getting big here.
[04:57] Craig Rosenberg But inside baseball is like talk that only you and your, the people that play baseball. No. And it's like, so this group, like, you know, and like marketing, they as our example, they know marketing automation. They talk the talk. They know what in this and then they go, let's say now they have to go get a sign off. Whether it's someone in finance, whether it's a group on the other side of the world, et cetera, that now has the sign off and those people don't understand the value of what you're trying to do.
[05:27] Craig Rosenberg And that includes the seller and the internal buyer. And then, of course, finance those, you know, now that, you know, there's deals with like, that are like 10K and the CFO signing off, right? You can't go in there and talk inside baseball. I can't be just like you're the value that just you see, like you have to as a buyer, you have to go and be able to sell that internally to people that don't understand your business or care what you do or even someone who kind of understands your business.
[05:55] Craig Rosenberg So now we have this thing where the stakeholder map has gotten more complex with more people that don't care about what you do. And so that makes it harder for the buyer to buy things. And as a result, sellers, we have to go figure that out. I know you're going to want to revisit that before you do let me throw on this. The other thing is the shadow stakeholders. There are more people now that are touching deals that we don't know about and we didn't expect. And as hard as we work, right, you know this like a really good enterprise rep, like they drill down and they figure out who's part of the buying process. They do it better than anybody.
[06:34] Craig Rosenberg You know, the guys from my generation or the people from my generation, part of me who worked selling enterprise software they didn't just, like, ask the question. They would drill in, they would question, they would probe, they'd figure out the map. And now you could do that and you'd still miss, like someone along the train that basically can nullify the deal. So I think those things, I think everything I just said goes hand in hand, you know? And so, those are important to embrace, I think. And then there's some marketing once. Would you like to talk about those? I know you love marketing.
[07:14] Shahin Hoda Let's umm, there's a lot there to unpack. Okay, you talked about the pipeline. And hey, man, we just wanted to lose some stuff and get that pipeline smaller. We’ve talked about the stakeholder man and the shadows stakeholders because I think even from a marketing perspective, those are important. Because marketing needs to think about, you know, how do I make sure there's brand awareness? How do I make sure that there is recognition? How do I make sure that all parties are touched and addressed?
[07:53] Shahin Hoda Let's unpack that pipeline component that you talked about right at the beginning. So talk to the CRO, or you said someone in Rev Ops, they're like, man, I really hope we lose some of this pipeline. Let's talk about that in terms of like, what is happening there and what is the impact of that to organisations trying to land enterprise?
[08:15] Craig Rosenberg Well, I mean, look, you know, essentially what he was saying is I have so much pipeline that we can't predict whether it will close or not, right? And that's the issue is, you know, this person's like one of the best rev ops guy I know. And he is amazing at forecasting. And he's like, you know, the can gets kicked, gets kicked again. You know, we have interested parties here, but getting it over the finish line, often times even with your best rep you know, is, you know, difficult, right? And so it's not that they don't want Net New pipeline, right. They're always going to be on, you know, trying to drive that new pipeline. The issue is that they're holding a lot of deals now in.
[09:04] Craig Rosenberg Three years ago, if a sales rep was holding too many deals, we'd just go through and be like, go, go, gone, gone, right? We understood enough about the buying process that we could say, hey, you know, like, why are you wasting your time on this, okay? But now the buying process has changed, okay? And we have to literally figure out once again, like, what really is a buyer and what is it now? I will still say that, like, a lot of the fundamental enterprise sales tactics have to come into play, that the level of discovery and we're going to learn, you know, we're going to continue to learn more about what makes a real deal and what doesn't because we used to know what it is and now we have to re figure it out.
[09:47] Craig Rosenberg But you know, how we how we qualify a deal, how we do discovery against a deal, and then more importantly, how we build a use case and business case that allows us to speak to multiple people in the stakeholder map. So it goes back to what we're just talking about, right? You might have a deal in the pipeline and it's just someone who literally doesn't have anything to do with it might be the whole I mean, there's just a lot of reasons for hold up right now. And it's like it's the buying environment.
[10:20] Craig Rosenberg So, couple of things that I think. So one, you brought up marketing. Look, we have to acknowledge a wide stakeholder map and one that we, you know, we just have to make good guesses, right? So marketing should be like as you know in today's world, on the marketing side, mindshare is critical, right? You have to be in and some acknowledgment with these folks as they just go about their day to day lives. You know, it's why we love targeted advertising. We love LinkedIn advertising and just, you know, being able to sort of, you know, be there whether they know, right, we're in their head or not.
[11:02] Craig Rosenberg And that has to expand. You know, obviously, we have to spend the majority of the time with what we would call like the entry point. These are the folks that are most likely to start a sales process with us. We want to spend a lot of time there. But on the other hand, we have to be thinking from a product marketing perspective on these other potential stakeholders and shadow stakeholders, et cetera. And we have to think about how we can continually influence that. That's from a, their cover perspective.
[11:30] Craig Rosenberg The other thing we have to do is we have a big product marketing challenge right? Which is one, you know, how do we build the messages or like an agility in our message that allows us to be able to build value prop and use case for folks that are sort of either not involved in the day to day of what we're selling and become part of the stakeholder map. And more importantly, can we build a business case that makes sense for the CFO? That is, you know, I'm just to be simple on things you can do. It's like, look, can you, you likely can't necessarily share the same deck with the same stakeholders, right? We have to be thinking about them differently.
[12:17] Craig Rosenberg So that's like a product marketing, like how sales engages with them perspective. And then likely that can be translated into air cover, right? Which is like when we get into their, you know, into their orbit, you know, is there something that would make them believe that what we're selling is important to them? So those are big implications, right, to, you know, that are of this current buying cycle. And, you know, the folks that are, I'm seeing a lot of this where we're understanding we need a use case, of course, that you immediately go to like some convoluted ROI model. You can't do that.
[12:53] Craig Rosenberg We have to build something purpose-built for the finance group. We have to. And it's not just, it is in ROI model, it's a business case. It's got to make sense. It's got to be bulletproof. And there's another thing I'm going to bring back to you, which is so, a guy I work with, Robert Taylor has come up with this really simple selling methodology called the Big Three. Which is, can you identify the Big Three challenges that are preventing the organisation from achieving their goals? Now, everyone knows this, okay. But the issue is, there's so many different things flying around that people are sort of wandering away from that core idea that we just need these things that will resonate throughout the process, right?
[13:40] Craig Rosenberg So, you know, that challenge has to be strategic and holding the organisation back from doing something that they want to do. Because that’s the second part is. The finance people, yeah, everyone thinks, well, they just want to know ROI model. No, they want to know that that ROI model is tied back to the big strategic objectives that the organisation is trying to achieve and will pave the way to do that. You don't, you can't do that unless you understand the, the big three along the way.
[14:08] Craig Rosenberg And you take the big three. Okay, then let's say another disparate group becomes involved in our sales process. We still- we’re going to import the big three to them. They're going to have different implications to their business, right? Like it may not be the same. And we have to be able to adjust and we have to be able to understand those personas quickly and be able to deliver something that makes sense to them.
[14:34] Craig Rosenberg Okay, and I know I'm doing a million things and you have to build Champion content and champion content is, I think the word I want to attribute to the phrase I think is Steve Hayes from years back did this I'd have to think about. But anyway, look, that's content that you give your champion because they're about to go sell what they want in the organisation. They need help. Because that's why our deals are getting stalled because they can't sell it, right?
[15:11] Craig Rosenberg And they're not always going to let you in, you know, despite who say, hey, well, why don't we go in and talk to you know, we have to be able to enable them to be able to go talk to the different groups if they could even frontrun to finance whatever that might be. So everything that we build for our sales team is actually should be something that can be personalised and used by our champions, okay? So anyway, big changes to the sales process there and people are adjusting.
[15:40] Shahin Hoda Having a value proposition for finance. I mean, it's very interesting to say this. I was speaking to someone in the Singapore office,you know, HQ in the U.S. and we're talking about $15,000 and she's like, no, yeah. And we were talking about like, you know, they were looking at the SOW and she's like, my CFO will not approve this. I need to do something else. Something else is not important. But the fact that she said CFO, I'm like, it's $15,000. That's, that's all it is. it's not 150. But she's like, yeah, the CFO will review this and this is a thousand person organisation.
[16:26] Craig Rosenberg Yeah.
[16:28] Shahin Hoda And maybe a little bit larger and I was just blown away. I'd never heard of that before at that price range. So it's very interesting of building a value proposition for the finance and then building champion content because it's really hard and it's very hard for marketing, it's hard for the salespeople, it's even harder for marketers because they're not on the front line and the salesperson is like, man, I can pitch, but for me to enable you to pitch and then I have to explain that to marketing. So marketing can enable me so that I enable you. Geez, that is a tough, tough task to accomplish. Do you have any advice on that front?
[17:16] Craig Rosenberg Are you leading me now on the sales and marketing alignment path because
[17:21] Shahin Hoda I'm just, you know, I'm just saying, I'm just saying we don't have to call it that.
[17:24] Craig Rosenberg No, but it is. It's like it's been our way. We've been talking about it for 20 years. I do, you know, I think I may have said it on your show. I used to believe a certain amount of friction was actually useful and maybe I still do, but actually what I'm seeing is the folks that are going to are fighting through the current changes in the buying environment are aligned because you have a bunch of things you have to change if you think about it, like product has to know, understand kind of what's happening. Because I have another comment that I left out. I just stopped for parking. I'll bring it back in a sec because it's a critical one.
[18:00] Craig Rosenberg And as you said, look, sales, we have to learn fast from what's happening on the front line with sales. You know, a perfect example is just marketing and product and everyone listening to call recordings because, you know, you gotta be you always tell people, we got to be careful. If you ask someone, hey, would you buy this? And they say, yes, you still don't know. You have to ask it. Great, send me the order. Once you put people on that, right. And you're actually moving from like market research or whatever.
[18:28] Craig Rosenberg By the way, I love market research. Don't get me wrong. You just have to take that next step to really find out what's happening. And that's when you ask someone for an order and you learn from that. We know this, right? Great marketers are listening to the call recordings. Great product folks are listening to the call and we're learning. We got to do that now because the front line is where it's at. That's where we're learning everything. You know, look, there's a lot of data out there you can take. Like Gartner actually, they have great data on just what's happening in the blind community.
[19:00] Craig Rosenberg We have to take it all in and we got to be able to just but we have to do it together because as you said, it's actually you know, I tell salespeople all the time, we got to get marketing involved because, is it really, I mean, let me ask you, what's better? You get a cold intro internally to some stakeholder that you haven't met before and they have no idea who you are or you go in and they have some idea of who you are and they have at least a glimmer of the value prop.
[19:30] Craig Rosenberg Because one of the things definitely that's happening today is like from a marketing perspective, you do, you know, this idea of branding and community and, you know, getting customers out there is we we need people that have a general understanding of what you do because things are so crazy out there. And that requires that we, you know, that we work together. Last thing though is like my winner. But I stop because I know you have to pull me back all the time.
[20:01] Shahin Hoda Let's do this.
[20:02] Craig Rosenberg Yeah. This is his superpower on the podcast is dealing with a guy like me. The other one is, you know, basically but I'm not going to say they're scared, but like your buying environment, you know, to sell to them today, it's way better to de-risk as much as you can because that's also one of the issues. We used to get people over the top and that they act, you know, just trust me, we'll go do this, right?
[20:31] Craig Rosenberg I mean, the guy had 40 grand could put it on his credit card but now someone 15K to the CFO. We talked about the mechanics of what you got to do, champion content, business, well it has to look less risky. Because the buying environment today people aren't taking risks so you have to de-risk it. Now there's many ways to de-risk it like one of them is instead of trying to get a $1,000,000 deal today take the 15K, right? And build.
[20:58] Craig Rosenberg So the land and expand which I'm sure you too and a lot of for your customers today that land and expand was like just a really sort of product led sort of right type of growth thing that we thought oh my God this is really great but it's actually critical for these times it's one way to de-risk the deal right? And we have to think of lots of ways to de-risk the deal. I think, you know, doing a smaller deal is like a common one and that's a good one, right?
[21:24] Craig Rosenberg You can deliver value and grow from there because now you've de-risked that they can prove the value. The other one, you know, looks like people are doing deeper dives into the products that people feel really comfortable with, right? I was looking at a company the other day, TestBox. I don't know if you've seen them, but like they put companies into an environment so they can go and put in data and go test it and figure that stuff out. Like that's a real thing right now, right?
[21:56] Craig Rosenberg You have to have really solid POCs. Everyone thinks of it just as a free trial business. And that's not true. We need everything we can depending on your buyer. We have to understand enough about them to figure out what are the things that will de-risk them. One of them is like, will this product work for me? Just prove it, man. Just do it, you know? And so you could do that via a paid POC. You could do that in some cases with just some form of very directed trial. And yeah.
[22:27] Shahin Hoda Yeah, well let's, Craig, let's unpack, this is one of the things I wanted to unpack with you. A couple of years ago, PLG was all the rave and people were talking about, hey man, these enterprise, like these old school sales-led motions are going away and PLG is taking the world. What is your take on that? You know, what is your take on the development of PLG and the role that PLG plays today? And has it, do you think it's replaced? Is it going to completely replace the other motions that were there? Well, I'd love to hear your thoughts on this.
[23:06] Craig Rosenberg Yeah, I don't, yeah. I knew right when I said PLG, I went on I was going to come back on me on this one. You know, I love PLG, but I don't, you know, there's like it's going to be part of your go-to market. I think when we look at the, you know, let's say our portfolio and others that we talked to, I mean, most organisations are going to have two or more go-to-market motions, right? For example, and I'm not saying this is always true, but like a lot of enterprise, you know, getting into them is less likely to be a PLG motion,
[23:40] Craig Rosenberg You know, or could a percentage of it. Feel like you're going to have to go and do sort of a sales-led enterprise motion or marketing-led price motion or whatever that is in order to attract that segment. So I feel like it depends on the segment, right? So like developers, for example, their preferences for some form of PLG, right? So there's going to be some organisations where it might lead them up to a certain point. But in every, you know, it depends on the segment, right? What is going to happen in the segment and how would they react?
[24:15] Craig Rosenberg Okay, one other thing on PLG, you know, it works really well with a very specific user that you can focus on the target user. So like for example, when we were working here, you know, at Scale, we were developing, you know, stakeholder mapping and buyer persona work that we wanted to do with the portfolio. You know, my EIR CMO's, Matt Amundson, Cindy Sloan, they were just like the worst target user, right? So it's like we used to have decision makers, you know, all these sort of classics and like, no, you know, in a particularly in a software sense or PLG sense, there's got to be this target user that we can, we know like we build it for them because we always start with them, you know, and they're the ones who take it in.
[25:02] Craig Rosenberg And you have these like big, you know, a lot of the PLG stories and you know, come from this idea that, you know, you have this user that you continue to market to and they share with their friends and they can ease their ones with a predisposition to download and try things. I think there are exceptions like, everyone's got, there's exceptions like box is an exception, right? You're going to have Docusign and exceptions and you're going to have PLG all over the place, right? Because like, you know, I'm not a technical user and I'm most likely going to go to the site and be like, oh my God, I can use it. Or, you know, and just started with it. But in most cases you're going to want to identify that target user.
[25:41] Craig Rosenberg And so no matter what, you know, so like a lot of complex, some of these complex software products that don't have a target user that has a predisposition for free downloads or for, you know, whatever that might be. They're not likely to be PLG or maybe there's another part of your market that is. It really depends. But the main thing is it doesn't necessarily eat the entire go to market in most cases, you're going to have two or more.
[26:08] Shahin Hoda So you might need to think about multiple GTM models for your organisation. What do you reckon today marketers need to stop doing if they're going after enterprise?
[26:24] Craig Rosenberg So interestingly, we're doing a little demand gen event for Scale and we're having people take all the channels and they're doing start, stop, continue. And we just want to see, kind of what they're doing now. That's a channel perspective. You're sort of talking about it also from a strategic perspective, but I'll start like the interesting things I'm seeing from what I'm hearing. So I still need to do more to really understand kind of what's happening, which is so, you know, you have events to present to people. I also have events I can go learn from them. But you know, an example is, you know, we're hearing less effect in this around PPC, around landing page centric content.
[27:09] Craig Rosenberg And, you know, by the way, as you and I both know, getting enterprise people that matter to download or fill out forms was always hard, right? It's, you know, and for now, you know, we're seeing that definitely less you know, less effectiveness there and seeing more effectiveness, with things like, you know, taking the content that used to hide behind a gate and putting it on LinkedIn and giving it because you have to have this air cover and you have to get these folks where they are. I think that's really important.
[27:40] Craig Rosenberg Like if you know this landing page centric point of view, which, by the way, was kind of, you know, wasn't waning. It was also one thing we would do, but not everything we would do. I think now it's really important. So, you know, I think I'm not going to say stop because we just talked about this, every business is unique, right?
[28:04] Shahin Hoda It depends. Yeah
[28:05] Craig Rosenberg Yeah, but, you know, we're just hearing different things.
[28:08] Shahin Hoda That's the consultant in you, Craig.
[28:09] Craig Rosenberg Yeah. Yeah, it depends. But you know, webinars, I mean, everyone's going to still do them but you're not you know, the less and less are, you're going to get a thousand people, you know, like the playbook changed, you know, and so and everyone asks for lists like we it does depend, right? You got to understand less, you know, now actually do look at the data and figure out what's working and what's not and, you know, let's make sure that we're doing the right things. I think I don't want to say anything definitive there because PPC might work really well for one company. But, you know, just some of the data people aren't seeing as great of results as they used to. So that's, you know, definitely that's coming true. On the marketing side.
[28:58] Shahin Hoda One of the things that you talked quite a lot about and you've brought this up multiple times is moving to the left and the fact that that is that was important before and that that's happening even more. Can you dive in a little bit deeper into that and explain that a little bit more?
[29:16] Craig Rosenberg Well, I think when people think about product led, they think about only free trials. And I think we should think about the fact that what we're seeing here and what we're addressing is a product centric buying environment. I mentioned it earlier, like they need to see it and feel it to feel really good to be de-risked, right? And so one of the big things I remember actually moving to the left, Reprise, right? Which is a company that does demo automation software. They were the ones that brought that to my attention, right. Which is this idea that the buyer wants to get to the product faster than they ever have before.
[29:55] Craig Rosenberg And the move to the left is this idea that solutions consultants and sales engineers who used to be able to wait until sales had done numerous, you know, sessions of discovery and, you know, put together a complex use case and told everyone, well, we want to see the product. Whoa, whoa. Before we do, we have to go do all this. Now, they want to see it and it's coming in earlier. So like moving to the left is really from them. They're describing this idea that this is the product demo, right? The ability to see the product. And in many cases, on an enterprise level, the people that have to deliver it right. That’s the move to the left.
[30:34] Craig Rosenberg If you took a continuum of the sales process and with left to right. Right, we're moving solutions, consultants, and systems engineers up, you know, farther to the left in the sales and buying process. That is a thank you. That's another change that's happening that we have to address. And that's why I brought it. You know, it does tie back to product led. Like I said, I think, you know what, now that we're talking about, I'm going to make this a big thing that I'm going to write about, which is like just thinking about product led is actually just like part of this idea where we have a much more product centric buying community, particularly in tech and the ability to feel and it comes off, there's all these emotions that tie back to it, right?
[31:18] Craig Rosenberg This need for things to be de risked and actually just being used to, being able to see the product, being burned right before. And like, you know, those things are all sort of, you know, coming together here. But also, you know, like, I mean, we have some buyers that, you know, more and more the buyers you know, are in, want to know more about the product and want to be able to see it. And it also stems, you know, I'm not sure I agree with that, but it's also because sales can deliver the value prop. I don't know that. You know, I think even sales deliver a great value prop that we'd still be moving to the left so the buying community is much more product centric than they've ever been. And I think that's really important to embrace. That changes your sales LED motions like moving to the left and it has an effect on a lot of things. And I think thank you for bringing that up. It's really important.
[32:18] Shahin Hoda We talked about what some of the organisations should consider doing less of. What are some of the things that are on your radar that you're like, you know, we should definitely test this a little bit more and maybe even double down on it. Some of that maybe channels, maybe strategies when it comes to enterprise, what comes, and we've we've talked about a few things, but is there anything specific that you think is worth talking about?
[32:43] Craig Rosenberg I mean, It depends. No, you know, we had Megan Eisenberg at our Go to Market Summit, and, you know, she's been like a legendary demand gen CMO. You know, she just went out there and you know PPCs working less, content syndications working less, and what's working is like dinners, right? Executive dinners in and going with hand and hand sort of experiences with their buyers. You don't go to an event just to a trade show. You have to pre seed the event with meetings, right?
[33:20] Craig Rosenberg So she's like, if we go and we just do a booth and hope it works out, does it work? If you go to an event and you're actually the SDRs are coming in, everyone's coming in and we're ensuring that we're going to have meetings and setting things up and having those executive dinners, those things are working better, I think. You know, a lot of CMO's would take what I just said and go, Yeah, I'd do that. But you know, that's not exactly true.
[33:46] Shahin Hoda Do you? Do you?
[33:48] Craig Rosenberg That's not exactly true. So I think those are parts of the changing environment. And I told you, like, you know, Scott Alber, my old business partner was like, you know, he's put all his chips into LinkedIn and it's working amazing, right? He's delivering this like provocative content, thought provoking content on LinkedIn. He's building this massive following as a result. I think he's you know, I don't even know. I mean, I just following him now and he's doing like a piece of content a week that's, you know, adding new people that are following him. And I think we're seeing that more and more like LinkedIn, we're both free and paid is like a critical channel for you on the B2B side. I think there's other parts to it, too.
[34:33] Craig Rosenberg We're seeing more multichannel. So you know, video, right? Those types of new mediums that we can use to reach people, not boring videos, but interesting you know, topics that people want to learn about. But I would say the big one is like just this quadruple down on LinkedIn as a platform for reaching your buyers, I think is really interesting.
[34:56] Shahin Hoda I love it. Yeah. The concept of zero click, you know, have your assets and content live on LinkedIn rather than just using that as a channel to drive people to your own assets that are your own digital assets. That's I think it's a very strong movement and yeah.
[35:15] Craig Rosenberg You can't do it like wait, hold on before you go, I got one for you. So nobody will do this. I mean, including me, I won't do this, but as part of content sharing, I'm like, we should share our webinar deck. Like, could we drive better webinar engagement if we just sent the deck? Might be for the webinar. You do that in a sales call, you'll do that in our presentation. Why wouldn't we do that if we believe that the, you know, like we're going to hide the ball? I mean, I think part of this is like this new mentality from a marketing perspective and a sales perspective that we got to stop hiding the ball.
[35:50] Craig Rosenberg We got to be transparent about everything. We got to let them into the product we got to give them all that content that we were trying to hide from them. I don't know, just a really tactical comment, but I'm thinking like, what about on webinars? Just give it away before and let's see if they show up and are more engaged as a result or you know, it does put a lot of the, you know, the importance of the speaker and being charismatic and engaging and having insights that they can't get anywhere else becomes more important. But still, anyway. All right. Sorry.
[36:20] Shahin Hoda Just, yeah, I think the marketers would be playing with their jobs. I think that's the risky part. I've done all this work and if I share this, Craig, and if they don't show up, I'm going to come back here and I'm going to reach out to you. We're going to share your contact details at the end of this podcast. So if anyone wants to have a conversation with Craig after they try these tactics, feel free to feel free to reach out.
[37:28] Shahin Hoda OK. OK, we are. I want to I want to do some rapid fire questions as well. Craig and and dove into a couple of couple of topics there. So first thing is what is what is one resource? This could be a book, a podcast a talk, whatever it is that has had a fundamental impact on the way that you work, where you live. What comes to mind?
[37:55] Craig Rosenberg Well, there is a a really good sales and marketing go to market book out there. It's called The Jolt Effect. It was made by Matt Dixon, who was one of the coauthors of the Challenger sale. And it kind of looked at what we talked about, you know, the, you know, the trepidation in the buying community and how you overcome it.
[38:17] Craig Rosenberg The shadow stakeholders like this, latency that we're getting at the end of the in the middle and the end of the sales cycle. And he looks at that. It provides insights on what you might be able to do. It's a it's a really good book. I read it with when it came out and they were like, you got to get on this webinar. And I read it again. I mean, it's just it's got some great things. I think that's the one I would say that's a good resource. There's lots of talk and.
[38:42] Shahin Hoda What are you reading? What are you reading now? Craig, this is more of I don't usually ask this, but I just want to know what's on your radar now.
[38:51] Craig Rosenberg Oh, my God. Do I have the book is I'm getting so old. I forgot. I'm so my wife, my stepfather in law just passed away. I got to look this up. But he was an avid reader. He would read like eight bucks a day. And so when. Yeah, I know he was incredible. And he when he was in hospice, you know, I went saw him and he was still, you know, like lucid entirely.
[39:15] Craig Rosenberg He's like I used to always ask him, like, give me a book. And he used to give me these books that were just so hard or it would take me like a year to read them. And this time he points to these like paperbacks. You know, they look like things you would get, you know, on the way from a, you know, on an airplane or whatever.
[39:32] Craig Rosenberg And I'm telling you this story, and I don't I'm so old. I don't remember the author. I may have to look it up. But anyway, he said, go read that. And I'm like, it's like he he must you know, he must not be himself. And I sort of reading and just titling it. So I've been net net I've been do it on fiction just for fun because, you know, the days are long.
[39:53] Craig Rosenberg And so what's that thing that can tune me out for the rest of the day? And it's, it's that. So I apologize to everyone I can't think of. Oh, I got it. C.J box the author is C.J box, and there's their stories set in, I think Wyoming. You know, I'm not going to say that we have the next guy named Shakespeare, but, like, I've just been reading, and then, you know, he just passed.
[40:18] Craig Rosenberg So I have all the books, and so I've been reading them, and I've been doing it. I told them I would, you know, read it the first one, and i did. And, yeah, just it's a good way to, you know, definitely check it out.
[40:30] Shahin Hoda C.J box. Yeah. Fantastic. Fantastic. OK, all right. Question two if you could give one advice.
[40:36] Craig Rosenberg On a random business one.
[40:39] Shahin Hoda Yeah, absolutely. Yeah.
[40:41] Craig Rosenberg I recommended this to someone i was talking to. I've been recommending this one for a year, which is the psychopath test. It sounds crazy. You think I'm joking? In a really weird way. People are like, oh, my god, I'm going to guess it's actually this guy who sort of takes there's a there's a test to figure out if someone's a psychopath.
[40:58] Craig Rosenberg And yes, guys, it's a great story where the author sort of takes that and tests it around all these different sort of potential use cases for a psychopath. But like someone say, well, why would you recommend that to the business community? Because like, it is really interesting to understand that if a fair amount, not a big amount, but just, you know, like a small percentage of really successful politicians, business people, et cetera, actually fail the psychopath test.
[41:28] Craig Rosenberg They're psychopaths. And it's really interesting book. It takes like one plane ride to read. So anyway, there you go. Because you want to read about Wyoming folks and.
[41:37] Shahin Hoda No, I appreciate it. I'll definitely check both of them that actually all three. So all right. Next question. Next question. If you could give one advice to B2B marketers, what would it be?
[41:50] Craig Rosenberg I would just say I can't get too specific guys, you know, but like I would say, the old playbook of, you know, what we did, you know, you and I did with them ten years ago. Right is has changed. And so it's time to literally put everything back on the table and rethink how you approach things. And I think that just admitting that is really important, right?
[42:16] Craig Rosenberg Because we can't just do the thing where we're just driving people to landing pages and taking them to our numbers. To the board. Either we used to get away with it even though people told us not to because it was it would still work. Now it doesn't work as well. And so we have to rethink. And I think part of that is testing new things across new mediums.
[42:37] Craig Rosenberg I think just really sort of using the data and the and the and analysis you might set up for a customer and actually looking at it, looking at what's working and what's not working for real, I think that's the new playbook. And I'm looking forward to hearing all the new innovations against the new playbook. You know, it's going to be cool.
[42:57] Shahin Hoda All right. Question three Who are some of the influencers thought leaders do you follow?
[43:03] Craig Rosenberg Man, I'm here. I'm not good on time. OK, well, I mentioned Scott Alber. You see our business partner, amazing LinkedIn feed. Definitely. Listen to the guy that I love from a sales perspective is a guy named Dave actually and a marketing perspective is a guy named Dave Brock. He's been around for a long time. He's just got a really great perspective.
[43:22] Craig Rosenberg He's at Times controversial. I like him because not everyone reads and that's the entire I love that. On the sales side. On the marketing side, I'd say there's two things. Two new, I'd say new, right? So everyone that are my friends that are influencers, I apologize, just want to provide for you. So I like Dave Gerhard Scott the paid sort of podcast newsletter.
[43:44] Craig Rosenberg I think that's really great. And then I've been listening to Lenny's podcast. Have you done have you done this? He's a growth marketing guy and.
[43:51] Shahin Hoda I know of Lenny's podcast and I haven't I haven't got into it yet. So you're commended.
[43:58] Craig Rosenberg Yeah. I mean, the way he structures it, you get some really actionable stuff out of it. And so, you know, so I'm not sure he's the influencer as much as he is the facility writer of influence. Yeah, but it's just, I mean, if it's just really good stuff and I just got turned on to it. So I just kind of listening to it now.
[44:22] Craig Rosenberg And I think, you know, it's just had some really great actionable things.
[44:27] Shahin Hoda Great pointers, great pointers. OK, last question. What's something that excites you about B2B today?
[44:32] Craig Rosenberg Well, first of all, I think, you know, all the things that I described before, you know, enterprise marketing and sales has actually always been hard and that's important, like selling software and marketing software is hard. We didn't we forgot that for like three years, maybe four, right where it was. It's not you know, look, it's always but it's kind of back to normal, right?
[44:53] Craig Rosenberg Where like the the best will succeed in world class. We'll succeed in this scenario. And so what am I excited about? I think we finally have new storylines in go to market that are emerging and being proven. They're not just ivory tower things that, you know, you throw against the wall. And as I mentioned, I think it was an early one.
[45:15] Craig Rosenberg The playbook is changing. I'm really excited to see what that looks like. That's marketing, SDR sales, all this. I will be part of that change. So maybe not today. I think we're learning is starting to leak in here. But like I is going to be part of that change. And it's, it's, it's actually amended me to say not like today.
[45:26] Craig Rosenberg It is already changing how we work and that's like exciting. We're going to do things differently because I felt like we always talked about doing things differently, but we didn't was kind of slow now it's not slow. We have to we have this convergence of a changing buyer environment, which is going to force us to change the playbook.
[45:56] Craig Rosenberg And we have new technology that's exciting that will allow us to be more efficient and more effective. You know, like generative AI, and I think we should be excited about what that's going to look like. And so that's to me, that's what gets me excited.
[46:12] Shahin Hoda Boom, you heard it here, people. Craig, this is an awesome conversation and really appreciate it and and doing round two. I'm looking forward to round three.
[46:23] Craig Rosenberg Oh, and let's go.
[46:25] Shahin Hoda Let's do it already. Already. But no, thank you so much. For all the insight. Thanks a lot for, for all the all the tips and in and the the golden nuggets that you’ve dropped, so and thank you for your time.
[46:38] Craig Rosenberg Thanks for having me. Let's do it again. Round three.