What Makes a Best-in-Class Email Program, Nielsen's ID Graph, and Measuring Video Ads | Nov 30, 2020
Play • 34 min
eMarketer principal analysts at Insider Intelligence Jeremy Goldman and Nicole Perrin discuss how the pandemic changed email, what consumers want from it, and how to build a best-in-class campaign. They then talk about Nielsen's new ID graph, measuring digital video ads, and how out-of-home advertising is doing.
In Depth
In Depth
First Round
Plaid & Dropbox’s Jean-Denis Grèze’s playbook for building an engineering culture of ownership
Today’s episode is with Jean-Denis Grèze, Head of Engineering at Plaid, which securely connects your bank to your apps. Before joining Plaid, Jean-Denis served as Director of Engineering at Dropbox, and even had a stint in law school and one year as a lawyer under his belt before diving deep into the world of CS. While he says becoming a lawyer was a “four-year detour he probably didn’t need,” there’s a lot to be said for how it’s shaped his engineering career and management philosophy. As he puts it, he strongly favors pragmatism over perfection, and it’s something he hammers home within his engineering teams. In today’s conversation, Jean-Denis pulls on threads from across his career to weave together a modern playbook for engineering leadership — and the hard-won lessons that stick with him. He also shares his insights on why his engineering org doesn’t have titles, the one question he asks every engineering manager candidate, and how his team prioritizes technical debt and keeping the lights on versus sexy, brand-new projects. Today’s conversation is a must-listen for technical leaders or those who are eyeing the engineering leadership track. From motivating a team to tracking the right KPIs, Jean-Denis has got tons of great tactics and stories from his time at Plaid and Dropbox for you to learn from. You can email us questions directly at review@firstround.com or follow us on Twitter @twitter.com/firstround and @twitter.com/brettberson
57 min
Below the Line with James Beshara
Below the Line with James Beshara
James Beshara
#87 — #DeepDive — Dylan Beynon — The Innovative Future of Psychedelics
https://bit.ly/Go_BelowtheLine  James talks with the CEO and founder of mindbloom CEO Dylan Beynon about how his intimate familiarity with mental illness was in many ways the catalyst of his drive for success, and how experimenting with MDMA 11 years ago ultimately led him to the forefront of the research and legalization of psychedelics. James and Dylan discuss the evolving perception of psychedelics, both in general and as a legitimate means of psychotherapy, and some of the specific medications and their corresponding encouraging results in treating various psychological ailments. Mindbloom _https://mindbloom.co_ Harvard Mental Illness Study _https://www.health.harvard.edu/mind-and-mood/the-prevalence-and-treatment-of-mental-illness-today_ The Information Pathology by James Beshara _https://jjbeshara.com/2018/11/20/the-information-pathology-2/_ Mental Weatlh by James Beshara _https://jjbeshara.com/2020/06/04/mental-wealth/_ Drug Harm Scale _https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drug_harmfulness#/media/File:HarmCausedByDrugsTable.svg_ About your host, James: James Beshara is a founder, investor, advisor, author, podcaster, and encourager based in Los Angeles, California. James has created startups for the last 12 years, selling one (Tilt, acquired by Airbnb), and invested in a few multi-billion dollar startups to date. He has spoken at places such as Y-Combinator, Harvard Business School, Stanford University, TechCrunch Disrupt, and has been featured in outlets like the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Fortune Magazine, and Time Magazine. He’s been featured in Forbes, Time, and Inc Magazine’s “30 Under 30” lists and advises startups all around the world. All of this is his “above the line” version of his background. Hear the other 90% of the story in the intro episode of Below The Line. You can email James questions directly at askbelowtheline@gmail.com or follow us on Twitter @ twitter.com/gobelowtheline — “Below the Line with James Beshara" is brought to you by Straight Up Podcasts LLC.
1 hr 38 min
Marketing Today with Alan Hart
Marketing Today with Alan Hart
Alan B. Hart
Agile Research with Rob Holland CEO at Feedback Loop
On this 242nd episode of "Marketing Today," host Alan Hart speaks with Rob Holland, the CEO at Feedback Loop, a technology growth company that provides rapid consumer feedback through its agile research platform. We begin the interview with Holland's upbringing in Staten Island and eventually to the West Coast, but wherever he went, it never seemed to be permanent. Holland believes "being comfortable with mobility has been a real game-changer," allowing him to adapt quickly to new environments. We then move to Holland's financial background and how it helped him when making the transition to managerial positions. Though he started in finance and eventually found his way to the marketing side, Holland has "always been connected to the consumer in some way." Holland then dives into Feedback Loop, defining agile research as a tool that "provides directional guidance early and often to guide decisions that might otherwise be made by opinion or rank, rather than data." Holland has seen first-hand that "the whole idea of getting rapid consumer feedback to solve rapidly changing needs in very dynamic markets has never been greater," and it's not going to go away anytime in the foreseeable future. Lastly, we end our conversation on the current polarizing state of the world and how "it's forcing marketers and brands to take sides in places that they really have no need to get into." Marketing teams need to tread lightly! Highlights from this week's "Marketing Today": Rob grew up in Staten Island before heading to the West Coast after high school, though he has remained a Mets fan. 1:20 Both sides of Alan's wife's family are your typical Italian family from Staten Island. 1:49 Throughout his career, Rob has stayed connected to the end-consumers the entire way. 2:38 Starting in finance, Rob moved into market analytics, where he began to climb the management ladder. 3:16 Rob's operational finance background gave him an advantage when he made the transition to the management side. 4:11 Find someone who knows the finance side of the company, as it will always be an advantage. 5:50 Feedback Loop provides an agile research platform that serves teams that want to do their own research. 6:06 The Founder of Feedback Loop recognized the lack of ability to get rapid consumer feedback. 7:16 Over time, Alpha's platform (prior name) evolved and grew with its customers and product development teams. 8:10 After so much growth, Alpha stopped describing the platform accurately, so the company changed its name to Feedback Loop. 8:56 Rob has seen the impact of the constantly evolving market on Feedback Loop and the marketing research industry as a whole. 10:48 Research teams are having a hard time trying to keep up with the shifting market, and that's where Feedback Loop hopes to help. 11:36 Agile research provides small chunks of information quickly to inform incremental decisions. 12:45 The rapid feedback provided by Agile Research is most comparable to using windshield wipers during a storm, allowing you to keep moving forward. 13:55 Product teams and research teams need buffers, and Agile Research provides those controlled parameters. 15:05 Feedback Loop works with consumer-faced businesses of various sizes across a variety of industries. 17:25 Farmers Insurance, a client of Feedback Loop, created Toggle, a direct-to-consumer product that allows them to connect to younger generations. 17:48 Due to COVID, the behaviors and expectations of consumers are changing rapidly. 20:50 Feedback Loop is working with brands that are being forced to re-evaluate because of the massive shift that the world is going through. 22:17 Industries that had pre-understood truths have to re-evaluate what those truths are and show consumers that they are adapting. 23:40 Moving around often while growing up gave Rob the flexibility to adapt to new environments very quickly. 25:25 Looking back, Rob would have taken more calculated risks by moving faster through his career. 27:06 Apple and Amazon are brands that Rob likes to stalk and watch grow by continuously surrounding their consumers. 30:22 Digital transformation has shown maturity by blending things that you can't touch and feel with real physical products. 33:48 Differing political and socio-economic views are sucking companies into black holes right now. 35:00   Resources Mentioned: Feedback Loop Rob Holland Agile Research at Feedback Loop Farmer's Insurance and Toggle Case Study Rhino Case Study Staten Island Karate Kid Ralph Macchio Miyagi (Pat Morita) com – Design your custom planner Apple, Amazon, Amazon Prime Marketing in the #FakeNews Era (book) by Peter Horst Marketing Today episode with Peter Horst on book Subscribe to the podcast: Listen in iTunes (link: http://apple.co/2dbdAhV) Listen in Google Podcasts (link: http://bit.ly/2Rc2kVa) Listen in Spotify (Link: http://spoti.fi/2mCUGnC ) Connect with the Guest: https://www.linkedin.com/in/rob-holland-9800ab1/ https://twitter.com/feedbackloopcom Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart: http://twitter.com/abhart https://www.linkedin.com/in/alanhart http://twitter.com/themktgtoday https://www.facebook.com/themktgtoday/ https://www.linkedin.com/company/marketing-today-with-alan-hart/   Support the show: https://www.patreon.com/marketingtoday See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
40 min
The Twenty Minute VC: Venture Capital | Startup Funding | The Pitch
The Twenty Minute VC: Venture Capital | Startup Funding | The Pitch
Harry Stebbings
20VC: Databricks CEO, Ali Ghodsi on The 3 Phases of Startup Growth, How to Evaluate Risk and Downside Scenario Planning & Who, What and When To Hire When Scaling Your Go-To-Market
Ali Ghodsi is the Founder & CEO @ Databricks, bringing together data engineering, science and analytics on an open, unified platform so data teams can collaborate and innovate faster. To date, Ali has raised over $897M for the company including from the likes of a16z, NEA, Microsoft, Battery, Coatue, Greenbay and more. Prior to Databricks, Ali was one of the original creators of open source project, Apache Spark, and ideas from his research have been applied to Apache Mesos and Apache Hadoop. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn: 1.) How Ali made his way from fleeing Iran as a refugee to living in a Swedish ghetto? What was the founding moment for Ali with Databricks? 2.) How does Ali think about and evaluate risk today? Why does Ali always make his team do downside scenario planning? How does Ali think about his relationship to money today? Why does Ali disagree with gut decisions? What is his process for making decisions effectively? 3.) Stage 1: The Search for PMF: What are the core elements included in this phase? What types of leaders thrive in this phase? What type struggle? How can leaders sustain morale in the early days when it is not up and to the right? Who are the crucial hires in this phase? 4.) Stage 2: Scale Go-To-Market: What are the core roles needed to expand GTM fast and effectively? Why should you hire sales leaders before marketing leaders? Why is hiring finance leaders so crucial here? What mistakes are most often made here? How do the board resolve them? 5.) Stage 3: Process and Efficiency: What are the first and most important processes that need to be implemented? How does Ali need to change the type of leader he is to fit this stage? How does one retain creativity and nimble decision-making at scale and with process? Item’s Mentioned In Today’s Episode Ali’s Favourite Book: Good Strategy Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why it Matters As always you can follow Harry and The Twenty Minute VC on Twitter here! Likewise, you can follow Harry on Instagram here for mojito madness and all things 20VC.
42 min
Ben Gilbert and David Rosenthal
Special: Acquired x Indie Hackers
As regular listeners know, we typically cover some of the biggest companies who often receive the most media attention (see Airbnb and DoorDash). But today's episode is a little different. In our conversation with Courtland Allen of Indie Hackers, the largest community of startup founders, we dive into the stories of underdogs. What happens when there are millions of people doing small business entrepreneurship? How does anyone having access to the globally addressable market of 3 billion internet users open the door for the niche-est of products? We tell the story of Courtland’s own “Indie Hacker” journey, how he came to found Indie Hackers itself, and the lessons learned along the way. If you want more more Acquired and the tools + resources to become the best founder, operator or investor you can be, join our LP Program for access to our LP Show, the LP community on Slack and Zoom, and our live Book Club discussions with top authors. Join here at: https://acquired.fm/lp/ Sponsors: * This episode is supported by Teamistry, a great new podcast from Atlassian that tells the stories of teams who work together in new and unexpected ways to achieve remarkable things. It's one of our best new podcast discoveries in 2020 and we think Acquired listeners are going to love it. Our thanks to Teamistry for their support, and you can listen here: https://link.chtbl.com/teamistry?sid=podcast.acquired * Thank you as well to Kevel and to Capchase. You can learn more about them at: * https://www.kevel.co * https://www.capchase.com Playbook Themes from this Episode: (also available on our website at https://www.acquired.fm/episodes/special-acquired-x-indie-hackers ) 1. As long as you don't quit your journey, you're still in the act of succeeding. * Indie Hackers was Courtland's seventh company. Before it, Courtland had started six other companies, each with a few thousand dollars in revenue but never as big as he wanted it to be. Looking back, Courtland has realized that everyone has a certain number of companies they need to start before they succeed: for some, that number may be one, for others, 36. For him, that number was 7. So his advice? All you have to do is not quit before you get to that number. 2. The journey is as important as the destination. * While Courtland was working on some of his earlier companies, he was miserable. A few of those working years felt like a complete blur. But sometime before he started Indie Hackers, he realized that in order to keep going until you succeed (see playbook #1), you must structure your life so that it's easy for you to not quit. In other words, you have to make the journey fun — almost like the emotional counterpart to Paul Graham’s famous “default alive” concept. With this reframe, Courtland began to enjoy the journey — enjoying the new people he met and the new things he learned. This mindset helped him level up as a person. Instead of worrying and asking "am I there yet?" he was able to enjoy the building journey. 3. Stories are always paramount. * As we discuss so often on Acquired, stories can be an incredibly powerful force, and their value is one of the core theses/value propositions of Indie Hackers. One insight Courtland came to from Hacker News was that people didn't want to just read comments about people who didn't succeed. They wanted high quality, verified stories that were trustable in some way. * Indie Hackers sends a survey out to users 6 months after they join the community. One of the questions the survey asks is, "would you have started your company if not for Indie Hackers?" 15-20% say they would not have started without some story or interaction on Indie Hackers! 4. Don't try to create budgets — sell to people that already have them. * Courtland originally tried to monetize Indie Hackers via advertising, and shared advertisement opportunities with the Indie Hacker community. But he soon realized that these smaller businesses weren't exactly the best customers to sell to. Eventually, he transitioned to selling to enterprises, and was pleasantly surprised by how much easier it was to sell. * The sales process simplified is: educate, then win. If you're selling to someone with a budget, you essentially bypass the education step. 5. Utilizing platforms, like everything in business, has tradeoffs. * There are no hard or fast rules in business. Everything has tradeoffs. Platforms may help with distribution but make it harder to build a brand and also create risks and dependencies. For Courtland, it was important for Indie Hackers to have its own brand. Additionally, he already had a distribution strategy (Hacker News). Hence, it made sense for Indie Hackers to be its own site, as there were many risks but few benefits to using some other platform like Medium. 6. Trust and mission alignment are critical in acquisitions. * Acquisition terms are about much more than just the purchase price. Sometimes, other considerations are more advantageous than cash (e.g. equity), and there are creative ways to align their incentives. * For Courtland, it was crucial that he retain freedom over his time and control over the direction of Indie Hackers. Hence, it was — and still remains — key that Patrick and Courtland's relationship have a high degree of trust. 7. Acquisitions can enable established brands to take bigger risks. * “Intra-preneurship” can be difficult because the initiative is constrained by internal processes and standards as well as external expectations. Hence, you can often take bigger risks through an acquisition. Google video versus YouTube is a great example of this. 8. There is an infinite number of "indie hacker" opportunities. * There is no end to the number of niche problems that can be identified and served. Big businesses and platforms create massive opportunities to go for the long tail. New businesses can build on top of these platforms or build for these platforms, creating tools to help people use them. For example, there are thriving tools business ecosystems today for Stripe, Shopify, WordPress, and still many more use cases yet to be addressed. Links: * Indie Hackers: https://www.indiehackers.com
1 hr 49 min
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