This past May, Waterloo startup FunnelCake won the first Dreampitch Toronto, a touring pitch competition put on by Salesforce. The company, which provides a platform for sales and marketing teams to track their funnel, from initial lead to revenue, beat out two other startups at the event, taking home $100,000. Aside from the cash, the win also included a trip to San Fransicso for DreamForce–the company’s annual marquee event, which this year saw over 172 000 attendees. Techvibes caught up with FunnelCake there, amongst the mayhem.
Apart from the obvious monetary boost, Dreampitch was an opportunity for Marko Savic, FunnelCake’s CEO, to pitch more than 8,000 prospective clients, giving the company the kind of exposure very few startups receive.
“One of the first things we got right away was a whole bunch of leads,” says Savic. “It was really great for helping give us a burst of lead generation, grow the pipeline, grow the customer base.”
Dreampitch also helped boost FunnelCake’s brand as an employer, an important factor for a growing company, especially one in the Salesforce ecosystem.
“Within the community for hiring, it’s been a lot easier to have employees leave a bigger company to take a bet on a tiny company, because they feel like there’s something real here,” Savic explains.
Fittingly, FunnelCake has doubled in size in less than six months. Savic sees the company’s vision as a main attraction for new talent, and he’s now focused on developing a strong corporate culture with values that support the continued growth of the company.
“My VP of development likes to say, ‘Everyday you wake up and choose to come to work.’ It’s an active choice you’re making. Everyone we’ve hired is highly skilled, they can go get a job anywhere else,” says Savic. “We can be competitive by giving you a mission, giving you values, a place where those eight hours you spend every day are enjoyable, with people you like, and you’re able to feel productive.”
Maintaining that culture as the company grows is important to Savic, who already understands the time, focus, and strategy that goes into managing teams of varying sizes.
“Whether you’re five people or one hundred people you’re always trying to hit some giant growth metric. The pressure doesn’t really let up. It changes, and the type of people you have change. It’s, how do you create these enduring values that everyone is going to follow?” Savic explains.
The company has developed a strategy for identifying strengths and weaknesses and using them to their advantage. This kind of system helps further develop culture by recognizing pain points and rewarding great ideas or efforts.
“When we make mistakes that we didn’t respond to well, we’re trying to come up with a value that helps us respond better to them in the future,” says Savic. “It’s all based on your organization, or even down to your team and the segment – their historical performance. This deal doesn’t look like anything you’ve ever won. So how can you change what you’re doing to make it more likely you’re going to win it?”
This has a lot of parallels with FunnelCake’s platform, which provides increased visibility for marketing leaders into lead performance, giving them insights into how to make the most of their funnel.
The tool can help to create more effective managers, providing them with coaching moments for their teams. To that end, FunnelCake recently published a white paper on using red flags to coach your team, and plans to continue developing more content as they grow.
“We’re focused a lot on lead generation, content, and building out our sales team,” says Savic, adding that while FunnelCake is focused on getting implemented on a wide range of the Salesforce customer base, they have their eyes on one lofty, long-term goal.
“We want to be the system that every sales and marketing leader uses to manage their team,” he says. “And giving value to our customers is what’s going to drive that.”