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Read Q&As with the top B2B marketers today in Drew's Ad Age column. 

Ad Age

  • June 05, 2020 11:28 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Listen Here | From Renegade Thinkers Unite, Episode 191: B2B Values to Solve Any Marketing Challenge

    When do company values matter? Just ask today’s guest Peter Finter, the SVP and CMO at Couchbase: “It’s when you have to make a hard decision, that’s when values matter.” Speaking with conviction, Peter knows what it takes to prepare a business to take on any challenge. This conviction was made clear in Couchbase’s nearly seamless response to the COVID pandemic and how it took care of employees, customers, and prospects.

    In this week’s interview, Peter shares the six unique values of the open-source cloud database company that they’ve brought to life in the recent months across the spectrum of their ecosystem, starting with “Be a good human always.” With a commitment to personalizing marketing through things like employee talent showcases on Zoom and a free community edition of their software, Couchbase’s priorities are evidence that the human, purpose-driven B2B brand will always outlast the two-dimensional, poster board one. 

    For full show notes and transcripts, visit

  • May 06, 2020 11:31 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Given a chief marketing officer's to-do list—brand building, demand generation, employee communications, crisis management—it's counterintuitive to add additional responsibilities. But that’s what Mika Yamamoto insisted on when she took the dual roles of CMO and chief experience officer at F5 Networks—an application services company with more than 5,300 employees in 43 countries and many Fortune 500 clients—one year ago.

    Realizing that marketing is more effective with a fulfilling customer experience, Yamamoto—whose background includes GM and strategy positions—leapt at the chance to bring both roles together. For Yamamoto, the organizational challenge boils down to whether an activity removes friction or adds delight. And one of the strategies to managing her double duties has been radically simplifying measurement.

    F5's Mika Yamamoto discusses the benefits of being both CMO and CXO on Ad Age. 

    Read the full Q&A on Ad Age: How Marketing Can Be More Effective with a Fulfilling Customer Experience

    Listen to the Episode: Why CMOs Should Be CXOs Too

  • April 24, 2020 10:39 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Listen Here | From Renegade Thinkers Unite, Episode 185: What a CEO Wants in Their CMO

    We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: no CMO can succeed without the backing of their CEO. Countless CMO guests on the show have talked about how crucial it is to have that top-down support, and on this special episode, we’re joined not only by the CMO of Wasabi, Michael Welts, but also by his CEO, David Friend. With a strong working relationship that most would envy, they talk about how they’ve built their brand and grown their customer base from 1200 to 15,000 in just two years.

    The key thing David was looking for was a “simplifier” CMO, and with Michael, he found just that. Through bold marketing, Michael and his team developed a strong value proposition, “1/5 the price of Amazon and 6x faster” and based their sales strategy around the three Wasabi “peas:” price, performance, and protection. Tune in to this week’s episode to hear how to build a B2B demand gen machine, measure metrics outside of revenue, and have the CEO-CMO relationship that dreams are made of.

    For full show notes and transcripts, visit

  • April 17, 2020 1:16 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Listen Here | From Renegade Thinkers Unite, Episode 184: Why CMOs Should Be CXOs Too

    Now more than ever, people want simplicity. They’re looking for simple solutions to complex problems, simple language to describe complex ideas, and simple experiences in an increasingly complex world. That’s why this week’s episode, recorded pre-COVID, is so poignant. Mika Yamamoto, the CMO and CXO of F5 Networks, joins us to share the ways she has transformed how they do business by asking one simple question: “Does this remove friction or add delight?”

    Mika discusses the advantages of combining the CMO and CXO roles, they’ve given her a unique end-to-end perspective that has ultimately led to innovative, measurable changes for F5’s employees, customers, and prospects. With the battle cry “code connects us all,” tune in to hear all about how to best measure customer satisfaction (spoiler, it’s not NPS) and how to align your employee’s day-to-day interactions with the larger goals of the organization.

    For full show notes and transcripts, visit

  • April 03, 2020 10:48 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Listen Here | From Renegade Thinkers Unite, Episode 182: How Talkdesk Led the "Business Continuity" Curve

    It’s impossible to have business continuity during a crisis if your contact center software is only designed to run on-premises (on-prem for short) and your employees can’t come into the office. This has become a serious issue for many companies in the recent weeks, because if your customers can’t reach your service team, it stops business in its tracks and, ultimately, adversely affects your brand.

    That’s why Talkdesk, a cloud-based contact center solution, made it their mission to bring on-prem operations home quickly so that businesses could continue thriving while protecting their employees. Their first of many crisis-centered products launched one week before “business continuity” started trending, and Talkdesk CMO Kathie Johnson joins us this week to talk about how her team’s agility, commitment to goodwill, and holistic view of business put Talkdesk front and center in the conversation.

    Pulling together a new, recession-conscious product development team is just one way to retool your growth engine during a downturn. For more examples and tips, check out our recent guide to B2B demand generation.

    For full show notes and transcripts, visit

  • April 01, 2020 11:35 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Kathie Johnson was only a few months into her role as Talkdesk’s CMO when the COVID-19 pandemic struck. Before the crisis, Talkdesk was enjoying growth in a traditional industry, providing cloud-based software for contact centers—rooms filled with customer service representatives answering questions over the phone and via chat. Before the pandemic, more than 3 million people in the U.S. worked on location providing customer service. Now they had to do it from home.

    There was no playbook for something of this magnitude, which Johnson knew was a challenge for Talkdesk, whose cloud-based solution could help. Convening a SWAT team from product development, operations and marketing, it took the company just days to develop a product that would help customers and other contact centers to continue operating.

    CMO Kathie Johnson discusses how Talkdesk enabled clients and other companies to stay connected to customers on Ad Age. 

    Read the full Q&A on Ad Age: Cloud-Based Software Helped Call Centers Remain Open—from Home

    Listen to the Episode: How Talkdesk Led the “Business Continuity” Curve

  • March 27, 2020 1:12 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Listen Here | From Renegade Thinkers Unite, Episode 181: Collaboration in a #WFH World

    Stack Overflow, an online Q&A community for developers, has a clear #WFH advantage—they’ve operated with a largely remote workforce for over a decade, and they’ve done it well, simultaneously growing their business and earning a spot on numerous Best Developer Website lists. That’s why, in response to COVID-19, they’ve made it their top priority to share their #WFH best practices and anticipate the challenges that more traditionally in-office businesses may be facing.

    On this week’s episode of Renegade Thinkers Unite, we’re joined by Khalid El Khatib, Stack Overflow’s VP of Marketing, to discuss the things companies can do to not just keep their teams connected, but to continue collaborating and innovating as they work from their new home. Tune in to hear his well-informed take on virtual socializing, the future of events, and the wealth of resources and tools available as we navigate a virtual world.

    For full show notes and transcripts, visit

  • March 25, 2020 11:41 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    As offices around the world go remote, employees are familiarizing themselves with the basics, including setting up a home office and maintaining a routine. Organizations with little experience working remotely face a steep learning curve to continue business as usual.

    At Stack Overflow—a question-and-answer site for programmers—40 percent of the work was already conducted remotely before the company went fully remote on March 9. Khalid El Khatib, VP of Marketing, discusses how he and his team are leveraging their knowledge and extending their Q&A-style tools to create a database with best practices about working remotely.

    Question-and-answer site for programmers shares best practices on working from home, including tools to stay connected on Ad Age. 

    Read the full Q&A on Ad Age: Stack Overflow Lends Its Expertise to the #Wfh Movement

    Listen to the Episode: Collaboration in a #WFH World

  • March 13, 2020 11:10 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Listen Here | From Renegade Thinkers Unite, Episode 179: CMO Mathematics with Service Express

    Joshua Leatherman has been CMO at Service Express for 9 years now—during that tenure, revenue has grown from 30 million to 130 million, marketing efforts now contribute a whopping 70% of qualified leads in their sales pipeline, and their NPS score is currently at 90. Behind these impressive numbers is a lot of hard work, gaining executive buy-in, inspiring staff with an employee-first organizational purpose, and building a customer experience that drives satisfaction and referrals.

    Leatherman is an expert on the metrics that matter, both the impressive ones listed above, and the ones that you look at behind the scenes to get there. It’s not about the number of meetings, it’s about the number of quality meetings; not the number of prospects, but the strategy behind how prospects are brought in and engaged. In this episode, you’ll get an up-close look at CMO math as Leatherman discusses how they calculate ROI and the essential steps to building a revenue-generating marketing engine. For more on measuring metrics that matter, check out chapter 10 of our B2B Brand Strategy Guide.

    For full show notes and transcripts, visit

  • March 06, 2020 1:25 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Listen Here | From Renegade Thinkers Unite, Episode 178: Why Dell Boomi is Booming

    According to a Gartner Report, Dell Boomi leads the way as an innovative strategic partner for its clients in the Enterprise iPaaS category, with over 8,000 customers and a churn rate below 3%. That’s the biggest compliment you can get, especially if you’re a company with a large service component. What role did marketing play in developing these relationships and garnering this reputation? Drew sits down on this week’s episode with Mandy Dhaliwal, Dell Boomi’s CMO and certified sommelier, to discuss how she kept Boomi’s marketing initiatives grounded in company strategy in order to modernize engagement across the board.

    When she joined in 2018, Mandy hit the ground running: she developed a company purpose within a six-week period (during a holiday, no less!), presented the positioning at the annual sales kickoff, and oversaw a complete rebrand with a clearer customer focus than ever before. This week’s Renegade Thinkers Unite is packed with remarkable insights. Check it out! Additionally, for a closer look at building a company purpose like Dell Boomi’s, take a look at chapter 3 of Renegade's guide to effective B2B brand strategy.

    For full show notes and transcripts, visit

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