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SaaS Marketing Perspectives: Isabelle Papoulias

By November 19, 2019 December 2nd, 2019 Industry Perspective
Isabelle Papoulias, CMO at Mediafly

For our latest installment of SaaS marketing perspectives, welcome Isabelle Papoulias, CMO at Mediafly. Isabelle leads marketing strategy, awareness and demand-gen initiatives for sales enablement software company, Mediafly. 

KIM: Explain Mediafly in a few sentences.

ISABELLE: Mediafly provides sales enablement technology – a combination of content management and sales presentations tools – along with advisory services that create dynamic, interactive, value-based selling experiences. B2B sellers use our tech and services to engage prospects with tailored, relevant insights in every interaction.

Common challenges we solve for our clients revolve around making the right content more easily accessible to reps at pivotal moments in their conversation to influence prospects into action, as well as giving marketing teams visibility into how the content they create is used by reps and whether it helps close deals.

KIM: How does Mediafly currently market itself?

ISABELLE: We are the typical B2B high growth marketing engine with multiple personas in the buying process, a range of Entreprise to SMB prospects and a long sales cycle. We use a combination of brand building/awareness and demand gen efforts that consist of both inbound and outbound. Although there’s been progress in the last two years, the sales enablement category is still growing and not well known. In fact, 93% of companies are still not using sales enablement technology, according to CSO Insights, so education and awareness-building is still needed to successfully feed the funnel.

KIM: Your background is in advertising and sales. How does that inform your role as CMO?

ISABELLE: While my background is from ad agencies, I joined Mediafly as a sales rep. That helped me uniquely when I was asked to lead marketing because I knew first-hand the Mediafly sales experience and what I felt worked and didn’t, and whatwas missing from the marketing/sales relationship. So, I was able to hit the ground running on the immediate priorities to support sales. The way this has influenced me for the long run is to always strive for a “sales first” mentality. Yes, my role is to build the brand and do all the marcomms things that marketing does, but the North Star for me is – will this help the sales team? How am I creating markets for sales? Am I doing my job as Chief ‘Market’ Officer? I won’t say we have everything figured out – there is still plenty to do – but we have certainly made a lot of progress and the collaboration between sales and marketing is getting stronger every day.

KIM: How is your success measured as a SaaS marketer?

ISABELLE: Pipeline, pipeline and more pipeline…and revenue. No surprises here.

KIM: How does PR fit into the SaaS marketing mix? 

ISABELLE: PR is big for us. It goes a long way in building awareness and credibility, and ultimately, the perception of Mediafly as a leader in the category. Per my previous comment, because we are playing in a nascent category, we need to create awareness of the problem as well as the Mediafly name so that when sales (back to sales support!) reaches out to a prospect they have already heard of us. PR is the air cover. We want them to have a positive predisposition of us as a company in our space to want to engage and take the conversation further. I should say this is important across target audiences beyond prospective buyers – like potential investors too. Two years ago the Mediafly brand was not known – today we often hear “I have heard of you, I know who you are.” What PR can do has exceeded my expectations.

KIM: How do you measure PR’s impact on Mediafly’s success?

ISABELLE: Sales enablement technology is a crowded, confusing market, so we use PR to stand out in the crowd. Because of the stable of competitors we race against, we track share of voice (the sheer volume of coverage vs. our competitive set). Share of voice tells us a lot about market perception. 

We also track average Domain Authority of coverage, traffic driven to our website from coverage and key message penetration. So, we’re answering the questions: Do the stories we earn impact our SEO? Do they drive demand? And, do they reach the right audience with the right message?

KIM: If you could market any other business, what would it be?

ISABELLE: Something related to fitness or dance – because these are my passions. In the tech space – I really like what HubSpot, Uberflip and G2 are doing.

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About Kim Jefferson

As a VP at BLAST, Kim’s decade of media relations experience guides strategic direction for account teams and clients. The intersection of her genuine passion for news media and tech allows her to find the hook in clients’ stories. She’s a mother to one angelic human child and one devilish canine child, and she spends her free time wrangling the two of them and watching TV dramas with her husband once they’ve gone to sleep.

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