Hey everyone 👋
I’m excited to introduce you to another member of the Drift team.
I know you’ve already met Fernanda Lavalle, Shannon Donovan, Josue Villanueva, and Catherine LaMacchia.
On this edition of Inside Drift, I want you to meet Mary Mitchell, Conversational Marketing Advisor for Enterprise on Drift’s sales team.
I met Mary on my very first day at Drift. We were in the same onboarding class and hit it off right away. Beyond having an incredibly cool background, she’s also just an all-around awesome person to be around.
Ready to meet Mary? Let’s go ⚡
Editor’s note: The following has been edited and condensed for clarity.
Kaitlyn Martins: Let’s start with the basics. Can you tell me a little bit about what you do here?
Mary Mitchell: I work with the Enterprise Sales Team. We’re focused on the adoption of Drift and conversational marketing among the largest companies in the world. We also focus on some new and interesting industries outside of our original ideal customer profile (ICP), like financial services, manufacturing, and large consulting firms.
KM: Can you tell me a little bit more about your background and how you came to work at Drift?
MM: I spent a good deal of my career in B2B advertising and lead generation, helping marketers fill the top of funnel if you will. There was minimal “targeting” by industry and job role and content, but it was barely more than “spray and pray.” I was excited by the disruption and focus that account-based marketing could offer to B2B, so I joined Demandbase in its early days.
The startup community in Boston is an exciting place to be, and the more I learned about Drift, the more I knew I needed to be a part of it.
KM: When did you know you wanted to work in tech?
MM: When I graduated college as an English major, I wanted to be a journalist. A few people in my network suggested working for tech journals unless I wanted to live in my parents’ basement. So that’s what I did. It didn’t pay well, but it paid me enough. And more importantly, the job got me in front of all kinds of interesting, fast-growing companies in the tech space. It pushed me out of my comfort zone and helped me get a crash-course in tech. What can I say? From then on, I was hooked.
KM: What does a Conversational Advisor at Drift do?
MM: Shhhhh…we sell! But like everything else at Drift, we want to do it with a more customer-focused, human touch. So a big part of our job is being able to talk about how other customers have been successful and advise our new customers on how to be successful with conversational marketing. My ultimate goal is to become a trusted partner that my customers – real people – can turn to for help.
KM: What does a typical day at your job look like?
MM: I wish I could say I spend 100% of my time with customers, but there is a lot of preparation that goes into effective calls and meetings. Here are some of the activities that make up my days at Drift:
- I strategize with my BDR partner on which accounts to go after; we research contacts on LinkedIn and take note of what they care about so that our sales approach can be entirely personalized.
- Often, I’ll join my customer success partners on calls so that we can help move our existing customers to greater health and keep them coming back for more.
- To stay sharp, I like to keep up with industry events and newsletters to know what our target customers care about.
- I help prepare my SE partners for demos and technical conversations.
- I “manage” my prospects by keeping them focused on the purchase timeline and developing a customized business case for bringing Drift into their companies.
A big differentiator for Drift is that the whole company uses our products (I like to call it drinking our own champagne ?). People on many different teams at Drift are sharing with their networks how they’re using our products, and it’s exciting to see how this widespread employee advocacy helps us engage with customers at every step of the buying process.
KM: What attracted you to Drift in the first place?
MM: Drift has a great brand and loads of customer enthusiasm. But being in sales, what really stood out to me was the company’s direct value proposition in helping solve a fundamental marketing and sales problem.
Now that I’m a part of the team, I love being able to share with my prospects and customers how measurable Drift is against conversions and business outcomes. Everything comes down to this. The only way to keep customers is to have demonstrable business value.
KM: What was your dream job as a kid?
MM: Training dolphins ? Growing up, I visited SeaWorld in Florida every year with my grandparents.
KM: What’s your definition of success?
MM: I feel successful when I feel effective at what I do. When I leave a meeting or a call and know in my gut (and my heart) that I put my best self forward. I don’t think you can do that without loving what you do and getting support from the people around you. I had lunch with a customer last week who said, “I love this, I love having lunch and reconnecting and having a real conversation with you.” I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face after that.
KM: What’s your favorite part about working at Drift?
MM: I have lived through many different cultural norms of the sales profession. I’ve worn the navy blue suit and stockings when calling on the likes of IBM, and I’ve memorized endless robotic presentations when there was no room for an individual voice. I love love love that Drift is all about authenticity, and that being your “best self” doesn’t necessarily mean being “perfect.”
KM: What’s your favorite book?
MM: Not sure this is going to make our CEO David Cancel’s must-read list, but my favorite book is Make Way for Ducklings. It’s the first book I remember that was read to me, then I went on to read it to my kids, and it’s still on the shelf in my family room even though my kids are all grown up now.
KM: What podcasts are you listening to right now?
MM: Okay, I have to give a plug to Drift’s HYPERGROWTH Podcast Network. There’s something for everyone.
KM: What’s something people don’t know about you?
MM: I practice yoga every day.
KM: Last question. Any advice for people who are trying to figure out their own career path?
MM: Seek out mentors and don’t be afraid to try different things. The right “path” is generally a winding road – not a straight line.