Case Studies: Marketo
Customer Marketing Manager
“The near-instant engagement that ReadyTalk’s integration has enabled us to do after each webinar is a game-changer."
ReadyTalk Integration with Marketo
Using Webinars to Engage Prospects and Boost Sales
Marketing automation innovator Marketo knows a thing or two about how to engage with customers and prospects. After all, the San Mateo, California-based company pioneered the world’s first integrated solution for social marketing automation and has won numerous awards, including being named the #1 Marketing Software Vendor on the INC 500 and one of “America’s Most Promising Companies” by Forbes.
A key element of how Marketo engages with customers and prospects are the thought leadership webinars it produces on a weekly basis. As Marketo’s marketing content program manager, Dayna Rothman organizes and chairs webinars on many marketing-related topics, highlighting best practices and sharing Marketo’s own experiences with social, event and content marketing campaigns.
Running webinars smoothly and professionally is an absolute priority given the visibility they create. Yet, Dayna recalls one embarrassing incident when she managed her first event at Marketo using a well-known webinar vendor.
“Their software was not very intuitive, and I didn’t realize that there was a passcode that I needed to send out with the email invite,” says Dayna. “The webinar was about to start and no one was able to log in. When customer service told me there was nothing they could do, I realized we needed a vendor that could provide better support.”
DEFINING A BETTER WEBINAR SERVICE
Dayna and her team mapped out the criteria they wanted in a webinar service. They realized that technical issues would occasionally crop up no matter which vendor they chose, so the new service had to offer customer service that was easy-to-reach and experienced enough to troubleshoot those issues.
Having reliable audio operators assist during webinars was also on the short list. The vendor Marketo had been using barely offered this service; Dayna’s team was required to reserve an operator far in advance, and often the representative would be late to the event.
“When I moderate an event, I need to pay attention to the content and can’t afford to troubleshoot technical issues like log-ins or audio problems,” says Dayna. “It got to the point where I was anxious before every webinar.”
The Marketo team also wanted a solution that was easy to learn and use. Often, the experts who presented on the webinars were from outside the company and unfamiliar with the platform. A simple interface would go a long way in helping newbies get up to speed quickly.
One issue with the former vendor was that before a new person could present slides or other material, the previous presenter would first have to assign control to him or her. This “passing the ball” was an awkward procedure that interrupted many events. Moreover, if the chairperson’s internet connection terminated for any reason, the entire event would screech to a halt. No one could present until the connection was fixed.
During their search for a better webinar solution, Dayna and her team contacted ReadyTalk. From the initial sales call, Dayna realized she had found a vendor she could partner with. “Everybody I talk to at ReadyTalk conveys an unmistakable desire to address your concerns and ensure your success,” says Dayna. “The first time I saw their product, I could tell it was what we were looking for.”
The simplicity of ReadyTalk’s webinar interface appealed to Dayna. Another bonus was that webinar attendees did not have to download any applications or software to join events. Presenters need only to download a small app that self-installs on Windows and Mac platforms.
But what really sold Dayna and her colleagues was ReadyTalk’s robust operator-assist support. “We can always get an operator with minimal advance notice, and ReadyTalk has never left us in in the lurch,” says Dayna. “Plus, ReadyTalk provides live training whenever we need it, though at this point, I now train the presenters myself—it takes only a few minutes.”
Before every webinar, a ReadyTalk operator checks audio levels and broadcast connections with each presenter. As attendees log on, the operator helps remedy any problems that might arise. At the same time, a ReadyTalk event manager is online with the Marketo moderator and all the presenters, conducting a brief dry run to make sure that everyone understands the flow of the event. The event manager continues to monitor and provide technical support for the event to ensure everything goes smoothly.
For customers starting out or wanting additional support, ReadyTalk event managers can set-up and customize a full range of webinar activities including scheduling, registration, invitations and follow-up emails and post-event surveys.
ReadyTalk also fully integrates with Marketo’s own tools and applications, streamlining the process of promoting webinars and following up after events. Dayna can now create invitations using its own Marketo forms, enabling the company to present a consistent, branded appearance in all its communications.
As invitees register for events, the information is automatically forwarded to ReadyTalk, where a unique URL link is assigned that enables the recipient to join the webinar with a single click. Marketo forwards these links to attendees in a confirmation email. ReadyTalk integration also syncs detailed attendee information with Marketo marketing applications, enabling the company to follow up with its audience within 45 minutes of a webinar’s ending.
“The near-instant engagement that ReadyTalk’s integration has enabled us to do after each webinar is a game-changer,” says Rick Siegfried, Marketo’s marketing programs specialist. “This capability enables ReadyTalk to pay for itself, which is a beautiful thing.”
Marketo’s marketing group also appreciates another ReadyTalk advantage: easy to implement webinar recording capabilities, including online editing tools. Dayna can easily modify programs, add or delete music, and then download events in popular formats like MP4 and Flash.
“Our former vendor stored videos in a proprietary format, which prevented me from editing them,” says Dayna. “I used to have to send all the video files to our creative team to convert and edit, which took time. With ReadyTalk integration and instant video availability, we can follow up on events quickly with video links, which improves our opportunity to make a sale.”
To share webinar content as broadly as possible, Marketo posts videos of each event on its YouTube channel, as well as on its own site. Since moving to ReadyTalk, webinar registration has soared from an average of 750 to a recent event that pulled in almost 6,000 registrants.
To keep content fresh, Marketo promotes different themes throughout the year. A recent webinar, for example, focused on how to sponsor, promote and follow up on an event. ReadyTalk contributed with a segment on webinar best practices.
THE BUSINESS ADVANTAGE OF READYTALK
ReadyTalk’s technology has enabled Marketo to make webinars more effective than ever. The handy chat feature enables the chairperson and presenters to view audience questions or chat with the other presenters. This flexibility lets presenters and the moderator communicate whilealso drawing on audience questions when appropriate to keep interactivity flowing.
Since moving to ReadyTalk, Marketo has noticed that very few customers are complaining to their account executives about not being able to access live webinars. Similarly, sales reps are no longer badgering the marketing group about when their prospects will receive presentation slides or videos of the webinars.
“ReadyTalk has replaced the tedious process of importing videos, pointless emails and a lot of waiting after webinar events, with a seamless flow of leads and great ROI,” says Rick. “Their superb support during events, instantly-delivered attendee information, unique join URLs, and generally great attitude blow the other vendors out of the water.”
The ability to follow up quickly after events also enables Marketo to showcase its own lead management software, which includes the ReadyTalk integration.
GOING THE EXTRA MILE
With its webinar program going full-bore, Marketo considers ReadyTalk not just a service, but also its business partner. ReadyTalk’s team-based culture extends beyond offering accessible customer support—it’s a commitment to providing a personal touch that lets customer know they are not fending for themselves.
“We feel that ReadyTalk really looks out for us. When we forgot to include the broadcast audio code in an invite, my ReadyTalk rep called first thing in the morning to remind me,” says Dayna. “ReadyTalk keeps on top of everything for us and helped us to avoid an embarrassment. I really appreciated that.”
Using ReadyTalk, Dayna and her team no longer are anxious before webinar events. They now focus on the content being presented knowing that ReadyTalk will be there to take care of the unexpected.
ReadyTalk’s user-friendly interface, operators and event managers who attend every event, responsive customer support, and easy integration with Marketo’s marketing automation application enable Marketo to deliver successful, professional webinars that impact the bottom line.