Next NYC Spotlight: Marketing for Marketers

Nov 14, 2023
Next NYC Spotlight: Marketing for Marketers
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Fresh off of YC Summer Batch, Mutiny raised a Seed round in the fall of 2018 as a no-code AI platform that helps marketers convert their top of funnel demand into revenue, without engineers.

Born in Iran, CEO and Co-Founder Jaleh Rezaei’s parents taught her “that circumstances, as difficult as they might be, didn’t have to define you” and to “think unconventionally and push the limits of what she believed possible.” Read more about Jaleh’s founding story here

Today, more than 50 million people have seen a website personalized by Mutiny. The platform is used by some of the fastest growing SaaS companies in the world, including Snowflake, Amplitude, Carta, Brex, Segment, Notion, and more

To learn more on how to market to marketers, we spoke with Ryan Narod, Head of Marketing at Mutiny, who joined in 2021 just months before Mutiny raised its $18.5M Series A at $2M ARR. Prior to Mutiny, Ryan focused on marketing to developers (a much different motion - IYKYK) as Head of Marketing at Radar and Product Marketing Lead at Google. 

One thing Ryan has learned from his own personal marketing career: “As a marketer myself, I can skip a lot of the persona work because I fundamentally understand the user. From there, I can set the bar for ‘is this content I would read or an event I would want to attend?’ It’s a big unlock to fully understand the user and be able to work with technology that you can wrap your arms around.”

Check out more of Ryan’s top learnings below:

Weekly Reporting Creates a Culture of Accountability  

When Ryan first stared at Mutiny, he was a bit intimidated by the fact that he owned 100% of pipeline for the company and had to report targets weekly. 

While many naysayers will tell you that focusing on weekly goals can bog you down in the weeds and make you lose sight of long-term goals, Ryan quickly learned that “the person who hits the weekly target, hits the quarterly target, and so on.”

Due to this cadence, his team has become more accountable for their success metrics. There's no room for procrastination or delaying decisions. If they fall short of their target in a given week (which is ok!), the key focus shifts to how they can quickly adapt and iterate to improve their performance for the following week.

Marketing Isn’t Rocket Science and Neither is Measuring Success

To Ryan, “marketing is not rocket science.” In any interview or brainstorm, if you hear something that you don’t understand, chances are it’s overly complicated and shouldn’t be executed.

Hiring: Focus on simplifers, not overcomplicaters. To do this, he asks candidates to walk through their greatest win step-by-step. If anything is too vague or fuzzy, it’s a red flag. 

Measuring Success: Every marketing campaign should have a hypothesis. Ask what success and failure looks like. Again, this should be relatively simple and often doesn’t require complex tools to measure. It’s as simple as filling in: If [X number] of people do [Y activity] in [Z time frame]...that is success. To track more of the marketing funnel, Ryan and his team built a dashboard template that gives you a full view into the health of your marketing program - see it here

“Trust Me” Building Community Is Worth It

When Ryan first started ramping up Mutiny’s marketing engine, they were executing a lot of one-off campaigns that generated a substantial number of engaged folks who expressed interest in learning more about Mutiny and staying connected, but weren’t ready to buy the product just yet. Traditionally, these people would be put in a nurture campaign, but Ryan didn’t feel like “a fancy email sequence would cut it.”

His approach to a nurture campaign involved creating a community where individuals are consistently offered events and experiences, without any expectation of giving something in return. Additionally, Ryan learned the importance of balancing the desire to grow, while maintaining a high level of quality. In other words, communities with 50,000 members can often be too crowded for individuals to gain meaningful value. To address this, he hosts intimate weekly Zoom meetings focused on various marketing tactics.

Tying It All Together with an Epic Campaign

This year, Ryan and the marketing team wanted to make a big splash in lieu of any product launches or funding announcements. While most companies were focused on attending conferences, Mutiny wanted to do something no one had done before.

Enter “Surv-ai-vor.

This marketing campaign is a play on the TV show “Survivor” that entails an educational, gamified and virtual series, including a season premiere and nine episodes with marketers on various tactical topics. Each episode is followed by a challenge where people can earn points and compete to win a cash prize of $10,000. While probably the most creative campaign in Ryan’s career, it’s also one of the most complicated.  

What went well: 

  • They pushed the boundaries of what a fun and multifaceted campaign can look like.
  • They received rave feedback and over 4,000 sign ups. 
  • The campaign's fun nature really rallied the team together.

Ryan’s biggest lesson: 

  • Don’t underestimate how hard it is to do things outside of the box. 
  • Getting the team’s buy-in was important – to do this, they brainstormed, white boarded, and voted on the campaign together.

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