Providing Secure Enterprise Messaging Solutions

Interim VP, Marketing, 2004- 2005


Situation Summary

In early 2004, there were some personnel changes in Sigaba's Marketing group as a few individuals decided to pursue other career opportunities. Sigaba's CEO planned to hire a COO soon, and wanted to allow the future COO to choose his own VP Marketing. MarketSavvy was hired on an interim basis and took on overall responsibility for marketing as a key member of the executive team and advisor to the CEO. The challenge was to rebuild the marketing group as quickly as possible; put a structure in place for effective product management, and kick-start some lead generation programs.

Laying the Foundation

  • Key achievements in product marketing included reorganizing the function and splitting it into two roles, one strategic and the other tactical. This change in structure created a new foundation for successful product marketing at Sigaba.
  • The director of product marketing* is instrumental in defining product direction and needed functionality for the coming years. Leading roadmap discussions with key customers and keeping up with market trends, the director of product marketing is mainly concerned with ensuring that Sigaba is first to market with needed functionality.
  • The product marketing manager* interacts daily with the engineering group leads, keeps up on the competition, oversees current development schedules, enhancement requests and MRD responses.
  • SOPs were put in place that improved the interaction among Engineering, Marketing and Sales. Standard procedures include regular meetings to enable the effective flow of communication and a logical, published approach to the creation of MRDs.
  • MarketSavvy drafted a roadmap and, more importantly, got the stamp of approval from both Engineering and the Master Scheduling team. Besides documenting the Nov. 2004 release features, it also outlines the new functionality to be added in 2005, as well as the Company’s direction beyond that.

Key achievements in marketing communications included:

  • Augmenting our many lead generation programs with a telemarketing person* to qualify new leads and work with Sales to identify the best leads and ensure that they are contacted promptly by a direct sales rep.
  • MarketSavvy re-wrote all the company's datasheets to update the content, more strongly emphasize differentiators, and upgrade the look.
  • We recruited a top-notch director of communications* and worked together to develop a multi-faceted outbound communications campaign aimed at the financial services industry.
  • Messaging was developed to target banks, specifically. This campaign consists of direct mail, email, web site content, presence at the retail banking trade show, pre- and post-show telephone campaigns, an in-booth survey to support the push and a new white paper on secure messaging for banks.

*Although personnel recruitment is not one of the key services offered by MarketSavvy to our clients, I recruited some very talented professionals in record time, without the use of paid recruiters.

General marketing

  • A detailed win/loss investigation was conducted to ensure that we understand both why we win deals and why we lose them. That information is extremely useful: some of the results influenced the product roadmap, other results caused us to focus on getting additional information to the sales team so they could overcome objections more effectively.
  • Prior to the pending next release of our secure email product, the marketing group designed and delivered an extensive training session, primarily for the direct sales team; some channel partners attended, as well.

MarketSavvy's Final Contribution

As secure email and secure chat applications are becoming more like commodity sells than ever before, we turned our thoughts and energy into elevating our strategic positioning and re-defining the playing field. Work is in progress now (Q105) to develop that story around Sigaba's fundamental, significant advantages. The final effort by MarketSavvy on behalf of Sigaba is one of message development and creation of supporting arguments leveraged in repositioning the company in 2005.