Jennifer Stagnaro
February 5, 2021

Pandemic Pivot: Another B2B Success Story

Guest: Jennifer Stagnaro - CMO, HackerRank

If you have a product that would really help customers adapt to the world of remote work, how do you sell it to them while being mindful of budget cuts, layoffs, and a global downturn? Take a page from HackerRank’s book. The B2B tech company’s remote interview solution was just what their primary personas needed, and CMO Jennifer Stagnaro knew that the product needed to be endorsed with empathy and generosity.

In this episode, Jennifer shares how HackerRank transformed the remote interview experience for the better, reaching out with useful, timely content and offering free solutions to customers and prospects in a time of need. These were the seeds that led to the best Q3 in the company’s history. Tune in to hear how they did it, as well as how HackerRank is aiming to diversify the tech space one interview at a time.

What You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • How HackerRank improved the remote interview experience
  • How free solutions and useful content can generate leads
  • How HackerRank is integrating D&I into its solution

Renegade Thinkers Unite, Episode 226 on YouTube

Resources Mentioned

Time-Stamped Highlights

  • [0:27] Drew’s Dinosaur Facts
  • [2:35] Pivoting HackerRank’s Marketing Strategy in 2020
  • [8:54] How HackerRank Improved the Remote Interview Experience
  • [13:56] How HackerRank Planted Seeds with Free Solutions
  • [20:36] How HackerRank Creates Compelling Content
  • [27:56] HackerRank’s D&I Initiatives in the Tech Space
  • [36:14] Lessons Learned: Why Remote Work is Here to Stay

Transcript Highlights: Drew Neisser in conversation with Jennifer Stagnaro

[0:27] Drew’s Dinosaur Facts

“Here's a little factoid that you'll love—they discover a new dinosaur species every week.” -@DrewNeisser #RTU #podcast Click To Tweet

Drew Neisser: Hello, Renegade Thinkers! The path to becoming a CMO is as varied as there are species of dinosaurs. Now wait, wait, I’m not making a comparison here or parallel. It just happens that I’m listening to a fascinating book right now called The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs, who for the record, lasted 150 million years, which is really impressive. Anyway, I’m digressing. We’re not going to be talking about dinosaurs in this episode, in fact, the opposite.

My guest today was actually an applied math major at Harvard no less, yet somehow or other found her way into marketing. Get it? Remember, paths vary. She’s a three-time CMO, first at SugarCRM, then ChargePoint, and since October 2019, she’s been a leading marketer at HackerRank, a technology hiring firm.

In today’s episode, we are going on a journey from the beginning of the pandemic and how HackerRank came through a harrowing period only to have their best third quarter in the company’s history. With that, Jennifer, welcome to Renegade Thinkers Unite.

Jennifer Stagnaro: Well, thank you, Drew. I had no idea what your intro was going to be, I was worried there for a minute that you were referring to me as a dinosaur.

Drew Neisser: Yeah, no, no. You know, I take a lot of chances on this show and make metaphors. But I will tell you this. This book is fascinating. The guy who narrates it, the guy who writes it, is just so enthusiastic. And here’s a little factoid that you’ll love—they discover a new dinosaur species every week.

Jennifer Stagnaro: Every week?

Drew Neisser: Every week!

Jennifer Stagnaro: That’s crazy.

Drew Neisser: That is crazy. And the T-Rex, the superstar of it, actually only lived for 2 million years of the whole dinosaur period. [The period was] 150 million years, so the last 2 million of it.

[2:35] Pivoting HackerRank’s Marketing Strategy in 2020

“It isn't about the company and what we're trying to promote. It's all of a sudden—what can we do to help our customers and our employees?” -CMO Jennifer Stagnaro @HackerRank #RTU #podcast Click To Tweet

Drew Neisser: Let’s go back to March 2020. You’re six months on the job. What was your mandate to that point?

Jennifer Stagnaro: Well, the mandate to that point was to really come up with a great differentiated story for the company and launch a completely new platform in 2020. I was building a whole new marketing team here at HackerRank. We had our plans going for this big launch, and then all of a sudden March and COVID hit.

Drew Neisser: And how far away were you from the launch?

Jennifer Stagnaro: We were about three months away.

Drew Neisser: Three months away, okay. So, you’re pretty far along. You know what you’re going to say, you know your channels, you’ve got the plan you’re working on, your sales materials, and poof!

What were you trying to do, and then what did you do, when you went, “Oh, this isn’t gonna work”?

Jennifer Stagnaro: One of the big ones, obviously, is we were going to do a big in-person event. Thank goodness we had an out clause in what we were doing so we weren’t stuck with the venue.

All in-person events stopped. Trying to figure out how to market to somebody when no one’s in the office, much less our team, and, frankly, everybody wants to hear about your product during a pandemic and nobody knows what end is up. So, what’s the right tone? How do you make sure that you’re being supportive of your customers, first and foremost?

You just have to completely shift your mindset. It isn’t about the company and what we’re trying to promote. It’s all of a sudden—what can we do to help our customers and our employees? Another really important audience when the pandemic hit.

Drew Neisser: Let’s talk about those two audiences, initially, and that certainly aligns with lots of CMOs I’ve spoken to. They knew they couldn’t go out and necessarily fill the pipeline with leads, but they could hug their customers as carefully and as robustly as possible. What kinds of things did you do in that early March, April period to make sure your customers were in as good a shape as they could be?

Jennifer Stagnaro: Interestingly enough, HackerRank’s solution is selling to customers who are hiring tech talent. When the pandemic hit, everybody’s hiring plans were in question. Even for some of the big companies who continued to hire thousands of developers, there was a pause where everybody’s trying to figure out what actually was going on.

We were with one customer doing an onboarding session when the word came out that they literally had to evacuate the building and send everybody home. Our professional services team is onsite of this very large company, and they’re having to quickly shift the onboarding of the software to a Zoom call and didn’t miss a beat.

There was this whole, “How do we help our customers continue as they scatter?” and it really did change our priorities from a product development perspective as well as, from a marketing perspective, how we were going out and making sure that our customers who were continuing to hire had the best tools and best practices at their fingertips to continue to do business remotely.

Drew Neisser: One of the observations I’ve made on the show several times is that initially at least, there were two economies. There’s the cloud economy and then there’s everybody else. The cloud economy not only stayed healthy in the early days of the pandemic, but many of them skyrocketed because—I mean, look at Zoom, look at Slack, look at Teams, look at almost any telecoms or even security, anything that was in the cloud. Those companies, I would imagine, would have needed to keep hiring. In fact, they probably had to increase hiring the number of developers.

So, part of your world is growing immensely, and then part of your world is maybe even on hold if not tanking, which must have been a little bit like, “Okay, which way do we go now?”

Jennifer Stagnaro: Right. It was very challenging too because we had to be mindful from a messaging standpoint; you have to be sensitive to their reality. Like you said, we had many, many customers who are growing, really, really quickly and continuing to push those energies forward.

Ironically, some of them are companies who aren’t cloud-first but had the pressure to move even faster into the cloud because of the pandemic, so there is kind of a segment there. And then you had—frankly, the whole travel industry was really impacted so tremendously that they fit into another category of trying to figure out when the world is going to be able to travel again.

Drew Neisser: Yeah, and that’s an interesting one, too, and a sidebar completely, which is, one of the things that some of the better finance travel companies did was they actually invested in infrastructure to fix stuff, but that’s a side story.

[8:54] How HackerRank Improved the Remote Interview Experience

“We really leaned into bringing those voices in to help other people figure out how to leverage our solution to do a great job at finding tech talent.” -CMO Jennifer Stagnaro @HackerRank #RTU #podcast Click To Tweet

Drew Neisser: I’m curious—as a marketer, I’m imagining that a lot of your job was to get leads in the door so your salespeople could go onsite and close the deal and/or set up physical events where you might be able to get your customers and have conversations and so forth. Suddenly, you can’t close the sale in-person and you can’t get leads from events. What did you do?

Jennifer Stagnaro: We went all digital. We already had a really strong digital platform going, but we just leaned into it. After we changed our product emphasis, we actually flipped our roadmap and accelerated the work that we were doing to help our customers do remote interviews. That was actually a harder part of our product to sell prior to COVID, and then all of a sudden everybody needed it.

As we shifted the priority on the roadmap, we accelerated our messaging, and we did a rolling thunder in April and May into early June and started communicating to our customers—who were the primary audience—but also to prospects, what we were doing on a weekly basis to help improve the remote interview experience.

We leaned real heavily into that, showed all of the new innovations that we were coming out with, brought on some of our customers who were doing a great job of giving tips on how to do a meeting or an interview over Zoom—things that you and I talked about before we started this that weren’t second nature to people, so it was about some of those basics: show up early, make sure that you’re in a quiet place, all of those fun things, look at the camera.

We really leaned into bringing those voices in to help other people figure out how to leverage our solution to do a great job at finding tech talent.

Drew Neisser: This is sort of an irony—people talk about how six years’ worth of digital transformation happened in like three months. You had this product that might have been a sleepy product, the remote interview, and suddenly that’s the star of the show. Well, thank goodness, you had that. Somebody had the foresight to say, “Hey, this could be a big thing!”

When you say you went all-digital, can you speak specifically to a program that you started that you hadn’t been doing before?

Jennifer Stagnaro: It kind of morphed, which is probably a better way to describe it. We had been doing a monthly webinar series, and we were doing a heavy lift with—I probably shouldn’t name the vendor—but one of those popular, webinar heavy-duty platforms. That was how we were doing webinars in the past.

What we did instead was we went to a lighter weight Zoom platform with more frequency on getting shorter sound bites because we knew that people were already starting to get Zoom fatigue. How do we carve up messages in a shorter period of time and turn that into meaningful content for people in whatever form they wanted to consume it?

We did a lot of Zoom interviews with some customers talking about how they were dealing with things, and then we would repackage it into guides and into shorter soundbites to get the messages out through multiple channels to people who needed the information and really help them figure out how they were going to handle it.

SHOW BREAK

Hey, it’s Drew, and I just wanted to take a quick minute in this episode to mention a new peer-to-peer advisory network I started last year called CMO Huddles.

If you’re a B2B CMO, and you wish you could talk to some other B2B CMOs who are as smart as you and capable as you, but you might have an area that you know better than they do or they know better than you do and you just want to have a chat—anyway check out CMOHuddles.com. There’s a link—a little tiny link at the bottom that says, “Talk to Drew.”

Do me a favor. Check it out. This is a place where we’re bringing together an elite group of CMOs to share, care, and dare each other to greatness. CMOHuddles.com.

[13:56] How HackerRank Planted Seeds with Free Solutions

“We came up with, for the very first time in the company's history, an offer to give them free access to our interview product.” -CMO Jennifer Stagnaro @HackerRank #RTU #podcast Click To Tweet

Drew Neisser: We’ve been talking about how important it was at the early stage of the pandemic to not be out there saying, “Hey we’ve got a great product that will save the day, hey!” almost like an ambulance chaser—even though you did have a great product that will save the day.

It sounds like you let your customer be the hero of the story. Talk a little bit about how the customer felt about being featured in these marketing materials?

Jennifer Stagnaro: Oh, they loved it. One of our primary personas is the HR talent team, and they are some of the most helpful warm people you’d ever want to meet. Those are the kind of people who go into those roles. They care about people, so they very much want to share their best practices and help other people and really change how people think and talk about recruiting. They were very, very helpful.

For us, one of the big pieces that we made a decision very, very early on—I mean we started to have the conversation literally three days before our company decided we all needed to work from home. We’re in California; we were fairly early on in the real clamp down here in Silicon Valley.

We got a cross-functional leadership team together and started talking about what we can do for our customers, and we came up with, for the very first time in the company’s history, an offer to give them free access to our interview product.

We were trying to decide whether June was the right time frame. We actually originally thought it was going to be just June, but we extended it through August because it was not long enough to help people actually get some value. We didn’t want them to have to worry about pricing and spending money. Everything was frozen.

We just wanted to get the tool in their hands so that they could actually start picking up these interviews from everywhere, so the leadership team came together. We came up with the strategy for the offer, put together the messaging. There was some real care taken; we wanted to make sure that we were striking the right tone, that we’re here to help you. And then what we did for the prospects was, we just extended a free trial so that we could give them the opportunity to take advantage of the product and see if it works for them. That’s how we came up with it in the early days.

Drew Neisser: Well, this is a ding! ding! ding! moment for listeners—regular listeners to the show—because I talk a lot about the strategies that worked in the downturn.

One is, if you’re lucky enough that you are considered essential that I need you to operate, then you’re going to be fine because they’re going to call you. But then there’s the next level, and that next level is, what can you do for your current customers that will help them in this time of need and plant the seed for future business?

What you just described there is right down that lane. We gave them a free tool that they could use that solved a problem in the short term. You gave them enough time to get used to it, and I’m just going to guess that a large part of those folks became really comfortable with that new tool and said, “Oh my gosh. We can’t live without it. We’ve got to have this.”

Jennifer Stagnaro: Exactly. Our CS team was all geared towards making sure that they were successful and could use it so that they couldn’t live without us and they just made it part of their standard process.

It’s such a great tool that we actually believe that when they go back into the office, there are so many aspects of the product that they’ll continue to need it and use it.

Drew Neisser: Well, the estimates in the world are like 30% of people are never going back to the office—by desire, by the way—and also the whole notion of geography is over. You could have employees from anywhere.

Having a remote interviewing tool and evaluation tool as I understand what your product does, that’s the future of any kind of company. Why would you want to, today, limit your talent pool to those in your market? It makes no sense. So, you’re certainly, as they say, skating to where the puck is.

That was for current customers and we already established that there was a high conversion. Now for prospects, you don’t want to have a deal that’s as good for them as your current customers, but they’re still in a position to—here we are in early 2021 and there’s still a lot of economic uncertainty and the CF-No is still running around saying, “Hey, no new PO. Stop, stop, stop,” unless it’s essential or a quick ROI.

Having a free trial product for prospects allows you to get in the door and prove value and, hopefully, the speed to value is under three months. If the speed to value is under three months, you might get a CFO to say yes. Was that the case?

Jennifer Stagnaro: Absolutely. In fact, in addition to our free trial—our free trials are configured for a two-week period of time, so we actually have another layer to your three-month point—we introduced an interview package in the fourth quarter that you can buy for $25 a month.

It’s limited in functionality to a single interviewer but if you want to use it, you can swipe your credit card and use it very easily. We rolled that product out in Q4 and had really good uptake initially. We’re expecting great things as another way to get on easily to our platform.

[20:36] How HackerRank Creates Compelling Content

“The sizzle for us is often leaning more towards the developer-humor side than the HR-fuzzy.” -CMO Jennifer Stagnaro @HackerRank #RTU #podcast Click To Tweet

Drew Neisser: You used the term before the break, “rolling thunder.”

I’m curious—we’ve talked about how you did these Zoom calls, you recorded them, and then you sliced and diced that. But where was the thunder? Because that’s content, and that’s great, but how did you get that in front of people?

Jennifer Stagnaro: A couple of things we did. We have a blog, so we literally did a minimum of one new feature per week in our blog on remote interviewing. It was not just the features that already existed in the product. Truly, our software team, our development team, was cranking out a really powerful set of new capabilities in the product and taking it to the next level.

The way that we communicated it was, we broke it out into one a week for about a seven-week period of time and culminated in a big reveal. We did a big event with a demo of the overall new platform in May. We did this through both our blog posts, through our email communication, and driving people to our CTA, to come to see it all in action in May at this event. That’s how we drove people to that culminating event.

Drew Neisser: Every marketer has a blog, but not every marketer gets readership of their blog. Is your subscriber base of the blog so great that thousands of HR people come?

Jennifer Stagnaro: We do have thousands on our blog, so we have a really good base, but it’s never enough, of course. For us, we also have quite a robust database that we market to, and we also have monthly newsletters where we can promote through that, so it was really a mix.

We didn’t have enough time—because of the size of company that we are, I don’t have a veritable army of marketers on my team, so in Q3 we were able to supplement that with some very good, targeted SEM that was more specific to that content as opposed to our more general branded campaign. We layered that on in Q3 and had the best ROI in our SEM campaign ever in Q3 as well.

Drew Neisser: And that’s through a combination of timeliness. This was content that people were searching for and probably some good optimization.

One of the things that I have loved over the years, having worked on brands that targeted the HR community, is that these are people who deal with people and often have really great senses of humor and are the warmer people in the room. I mean, to do it in a highly chauvinistic way, they’re often the mom of the organization, even if it’s a guy. That’s part of that job. God, I don’t even know if that’s politically correct, but what about the flavor and the style in terms of your communications with this program? We could just put the facts out there and say, “Hey! You can do interviews better remotely!” and you go, “Okay…” What kind of sizzle and emotional story did you bring to the table?

Jennifer Stagnaro: Well, it’s really funny that you talk about the mom of the organization. I was actually just saying to somebody—I, even as a female executive and consider myself a feminist, sometimes when someone says something like, “Who’s your mother?” Clearly, there’s this image of a mom and what the mom’s role is, so I totally get it, and I’m not offended.

But the interesting thing for HackerRank is, we have two really important audiences. We have the HR side that is responsible for recruiting and talent, but equally, we are supporting them to recruit the best technical talent, so software developers. And those two personas are very, very different. I mean, you probably couldn’t get more binary in terms of persona, so what we understand from a HackerRank perspective is that, in fact, the technical persona is probably more of who we lean towards communicating with from a brand perspective.

You see my logo behind me—do you know what that green box is?

Drew Neisser: That’s like old DOS code?

Jennifer Stagnaro: It’s the cursor. In fact, back when we actually came to the office, the logo in the lobby, it blinks. At HackerRank, because we have a community of 11 million developers, our main persona that we are communicating to is the technical community, so we really do have to walk that fine line between the two because they’re both so important and they have to partner together in order to recruit the best tech talent for their companies. The sizzle for us is often leaning more towards the developer-humor side than the HR-fuzzy.

[27:56] HackerRank’s D&I Initiatives in the Tech Space

“To me, there are just so many people who are under-tapped in the pool of software development that have the capability and they just need a chance.” -CMO Jennifer Stagnaro @HackerRank #RTU #podcast Click To Tweet 

Drew Neisser: We were talking about—I misread this completely—the HR department as a target that’s the buyer, but really, there’s this whole marketplace that you’ve created of developers. I know a lot more about the developer community than, frankly, the HR community, and it is, unfortunately, predominantly male and it’s predominantly white.

Jennifer Stagnaro: Asian, too.

Drew Neisser: And Asian, right. It is severely lacking in minorities. You have done some things to try to help that area and I’d love to talk about that.

Jennifer Stagnaro: Absolutely. Diversity and Inclusion has always been near and dear to my heart personally, having been one of the few women in software engineering when I was an undergrad. In fact, that’s one of the main reasons why I came to HackerRank. Anything I can do to help other women, other groups that are under-represented in the software community. It’s, to me, a lot of fun to do coding and it’s a great job. You can do it from anywhere. It’s protected in a pandemic.

So how do we make it more accessible to more people, whether they’re LGBT, whether they’re black, whether they’re women? We do a lot for vets who code. Moms reentering the workforce after they decided to take time off to raise a family.

To me, there are just so many people who are under-tapped in the pool of software development that have the capability and they just need a chance. HackerRank has this fantastic community where people can come practice coding, and we get a lot of professionals who want to keep their coding expertise.

I mean, one thing I learned as a young software engineer, technology does not stand still and if you want to be relevant in your next job, you better be learning the new technologies.

We have people come back into the community to practice new languages, brush up on their skills, and then take coding challenges, get certified, and have that credential to prove that they’re knowledgeable in a particular skill. From a community perspective, we really do try to reach out to as broad a range of people to come into the community, learn, and get their skills brushed up.

From a corporate side, all of our customers are looking for the best talent, and many of them have fantastic D&I programs where they really are trying to reach talent and broaden the perspective of their engineering organizations. Especially after the BLM movement really caught fire in June, those activities and that passion and interest has really just ramped up even more. HackerRank can help them reach new communities and really build out a more diverse team.

Drew Neisser: This might be a good point to explain—one of the many, many studies have been about how a person’s name can impact whether they get hired or not. Not their skill, but just their name or the color of their skin. How do you all, based on the way you’re particularly remote hiring product works, help navigate through that and help folks that might have been discriminated against stand out?

Jennifer Stagnaro: We have the ability to actually mask the person’s name, so you just see their initials and you don’t know anything about them other than their score.

You can take all of that bias away and just look at the underlying, what does this person know? That’s, frankly, the beauty of software skills. At a basic level, do you know the language, can you solve the problem? The rest doesn’t matter.

Drew Neisser: I’m thinking about so many factors that go into the success of an employee. I mean, yes, having the basic skills to code, but that’s, in some ways, price of entry. There’s teamwork, there’s commitment, there’s attitude, how do you play well with others…

Jennifer Stagnaro: And communicate.

Drew Neisser: …and how do you communicate? So, I wonder, your part is, do they have the skills? That’s a bar that they have to play. I wonder how you fit in or if you have any touch in some of these other areas.

Jennifer Stagnaro: Absolutely so, we call it the planning phase. When you’re really looking at what the job is that you’re trying to fill, the first and foremost, as you said, table stakes, is what technical skills do you need to perform that job and fill that role?

We’ve completed a skills rubric that’s been vetted by industry experts to really get down to what a front-end engineer needs to know, and then our customers modify it based on their tech stack and their company. At a base level, do you need to know basic JavaScript, JS, intermediate level SQL…We make that easy for them to get the technical pieces down.

But to your point, there are also some softer skills, even in the technical realm. For example, in our interview product, one of the things that we have on the list of skills that you want to assess is, what are your design skills? The tech council can come up with a relevant assessment for solving this problem. How do you do it? Do it on a whiteboard and figure out—how does someone think? How do they debug code? If you give them a piece of code, how long does it take them to figure out what’s wrong with the code and why it’s operating in a particular way?

There are some softer things around the actual job of software development, but then there are communication skills, so we also capture what skills people need to be assessing along the way so that they’re capturing and getting a whole view of that person.

Drew Neisser: Do you ever go back after someone’s hired someone through your system based on a rating? Go back and see how it worked out?

Jennifer Stagnaro: Yes, and we’ve been working with our customers to make sure that it predicted the success of somebody and do a feedback loop to how well they listed what they needed to be assessing in the first place.

There is a whole science in the IO psychology world about making sure that these tests are valid and fair, so we have our own chief IO psychologist on our staff who works with our customers to make sure that they can evaluate those things and look at the feedback loop. Where we want to see the world go is being able to predict which candidates are going to be the most successful.

Drew Neisser: Then you really are in some interesting areas because culture at a company has so much to do with what kind of person is going to succeed, and that’s one of the big issues with diversity.

You can hire a diverse workforce, but if the culture doesn’t support them, you’re going to lose them, and they’re going to be unhappy and you’re going to be unhappy, so it’s funny that these things can become self-fulfilling.

[36:14] Lessons Learned: Why Remote Work is Here to Stay

“The biggest lesson to me is that we can be resilient and we can figure out a really productive way of working together, and it isn't about being physically in the office.” -CMO Jennifer Stagnaro @HackerRank #RTU #podcast Click To Tweet

Drew Neisser: As you think back in this crazy last 11-12 months of having to pivot—what would you say as a marketer have been some of the biggest lessons that you’ve learned?

Jennifer Stagnaro: That’s a good one. I think the biggest shock to my system was, when I came into HackerRank, I was trying to figure out how to get my arms around the marketing team that was here. There were some people who worked remotely, there were some people who came into the office every day, and the ones that worked remotely weren’t always here, so I came into this new team trying to get us to gel as a new team, I’m the new leader.

And then this hand grenade of COVID-19 came in. I was convinced prior to COVID-19 that I needed to make sure that my team was in here at least four days a week and that, if they were going to work from home, they could do it on Fridays, so that we all were in the office together the other four days and get everything done.

I swear to you, I am a complete convert and I never thought I would be. I have no interest in coming back into the office, except for a stable Internet connection every now and then, and the team has done such a phenomenal job of coming together, figuring out how to work together in this distributed way. Half of my team now—I have been hiring through this pandemic—live in other parts of the US and I have two members in India. Half of my team has never met each other in person.

We don’t know when we will get a chance to but it’s probably going to be at the end of this year given the way the vaccines are going, so the biggest lesson to me is that we can be resilient and we can figure out a really productive way of working together, and it isn’t about being physically in the office.

Drew Neisser: I hear that over and over again. The one area that, to me, is this real pure creative ideation and collaboration. That’s the one area—and I have to say, I think we’ve solved it on our side. I just miss the water cooler, random speed of it. I’ve had to completely change the way that I ideate with my peers. It’s fine. I just don’t like it as much.

Jennifer Stagnaro: Right. I do think that the ideation pieces the hardest one to do. And, frankly, once we can travel, we’ll come up with a regular cadence of when we’re going to do brainstorming together and we’ll do that physically together. That’ll be our creative flashpoint, which is hard, because you can’t always predict when you’re going to have that creative flash.

Drew Neisser: “Okay, everybody be creative, right now!”

Jennifer Stagnaro: Exactly.

Drew Neisser: Well, I have a lot of takeaways from this episode. I think the key thing for all of the listeners is, one, you know what, god forbid we have another pandemic after this and we’d all love to get back to normal, whatever that means moving forward—but I think that if we were to say that we’re going to go back, that would be such a big mistake.

The forward part of this is we’ve learned to pivot quickly, and we know we can do it. We’ve learned to build and manage teams remotely and we know we can do that. We learned to take care of our customers without having to be on-premise, and we learned to acquire customers without physically seeing them.

That’s amazing. The way I look at it now is, what else is on the plate, what do we need to learn? Be open to that because we’ve gone through so much transformation in such a short period of time and so many businesses have come out on the other end okay. And again, I feel bad ever saying that knowing there are industries, through no fault of their own like travel that just have been decimated and restaurants and all that. I feel terrible, but a number of businesses that might have been stagnant actually made pivots and have been very successful. There’s opportunity right now, and I think it’s inspiring. Jennifer, thank you so much for being on the show.

Jennifer Stagnaro: Oh, thanks for having me. It’s been a pleasure.

Drew Neisser: All right, there you have it. I hope you got a lot out of this episode. If you did, don’t forget to go to your favorite podcast channel and write a six-star review of Renegade Thinkers Unite.

Show Credits

Renegade Thinkers Unite is written and directed by Drew Neisser. Audio production is by Sam Beck. The show notes are written by Melissa Caffrey. The music is by the amazing Burns Twins and the intro voiceover is Linda Cornelius. To find the transcripts of all episodes, suggest future guests, or learn more about quite possibly the best B2B marketing agency in New York City, visit renegade.com. And until next time, keep those Renegade Thinking Caps on and strong.

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