Esteban Reyes

David Cummings: Overcoming death traps at Pardot

David Cummings: Overcoming death traps at Pardot

Hey everybody! In this episode, we have David Cummings as our guest. David is the co-founder of Pardot, the marketing automation platform acquired by ExactTarget, and an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year winner. He is also one of the 100 most influential Atlantans by the Atlanta Business Chronicle. He works at General Partner at Atlanta Ventures, and the founder/CEO at Atlanta Tech Village. We shifted from leads provider to software provider David and I talk about how he shifted from content management to marketing automation. Their company started out as leads provider using market automation and lead generation through Google adwords. Lead generation was very promising but the company saw this new direction towards being a software provider instead of leads provider. The initial pivot was really hard. David shares different challenges they had to face including pausing the sales momentum from lead generation for four months just to setup the software that they were going to sell. Founders and managers obviously not knowing if the new direction will work out or no, have to find product market fit or finding the reputable customers for the product. The biggest lesson for me was the importance of culture and team Forming the team must not only be based on skill sets but more on whether the employee fits into the company’s culture. It is about hiring people that fit the type of environment that you want to walk into everyday. David shows practical steps, activities, tips and advices on how to define your company’s culture. Episode Quotes "Entrepreneurs are very often in the field of dreams mode" "The reality is 9/10 you build the coolest mouse trap and nobody cares at all" "Early marketing dollars are really just about getting some customers that care" "Move really fast, make the customer happy... the speed element was really powerful for me" "The biggest lesson for me was the importance of culture and team" "Figure out what type of culture you want to create and be intentional about it" "The misconception is around because it's not New York City it can't be possibly interesting" Listen to Learn 00:38 Episode intro and getting to know David Cummings 05:18 What inspired you to go from content management to marketing automation? 07:29 David's make-it-or-break-it moments as an entrepreneur 10:57 Challenges faced shifting from leads provider to software provider 17:13 Product Market Fit: Who are your customers? How do you sell? 18:57 Most valuable advice and how did it helped you? 20:57 What advice would you give your younger self? 25:00 Practical things to do for founders in defining one's culture 27:31 Misconceptions about building a company in places that aren't obvious (South East) 29:27 Rapid Fire Questions 31:30 Links and Announcements

Duration: 30 min

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