PathFactory Is A Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ Company: Here's How We Got There
Today is an exciting day for PathFactory. We have been recognized by Deloitte as one of Canada’s Technology Fast 50 companies, which means that we are one of the 50 fastest-growing tech companies in this country over the past four years. PathFactory ranks 19th on the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 with 1161% in revenue growth from 2014 to 2017.
Naturally, when a B2B marketing software company like ours gets recognized, we get questions about what is fueling our success. Of course we love to talk about our incredibly ambitious team, our innovative product, the confidence of our investors, etc. It’s all true, but that is not the whole story.
We’ve become one of the fastest-growing technology companies in Canada because we’ve remained laser-focused on solving our customers’ biggest problems and ensuring they adopt PathFactory to the degree that they can generate highly demonstrable value from their relationship with us – not just in terms of the ROI on their marketing efforts, but also in their individual careers. These are the reasons our customers partner with us, grow their business with us, and advocate for us.
Solving big problems that can’t be solved
If there’s one thing that unites every single one of PathFactory’s employees, it’s our obsession with finding creative, innovative, and impactful ways to solve the Big Problems that our customers – primarily enterprise B2B marketers – didn’t think could be solved. Luckily, these kinds of problems are not hard to come by in B2B marketing and we are curious people who like to try new things.
Despite the proliferation of marketing technology over the last few years, marketers still struggle to deliver the right content to the right person at the right time in the buying cycle. Account-based marketing is at the top of every marketer’s priority list, but achieving the kind of personalized experiences that B2B consumers have come to expect in the age of Netflix and Amazon has remained out of reach. And most marketers still don’t have access to the data they need to manage their leads effectively, let alone the insights they hope will inform their entire marketing strategy. Just to name a few.
At the nexus of so many of these problems is one thing: a crucial first-party dataset that marketers just can’t access with their current tech stacks. Without the ability to know how buyers are consuming their content and what the content those buyers are consuming is all about, it’s impossible for B2B marketers to overcome those challenges. So, that’s where we decided to focus.
Building the world’s first Content Insight and Activation Platform
It probably would have been faster and easier to build and sell a plug-and-play content display widget, standalone ABM tool, or an analytics dashboard. But none of those things on its own would truly solve the Big Problems our customers are facing. We decided very early on to take a holistic platform approach because it was the best way to build the dataset that would unlock everything else.
PathFactory’s Content Insight and Activation Platform analyzes content as well as the data marketers already have in their marketing automation and CRM platforms, and uses it to personalize the experience for every single buyer. Like Netflix, as each buyer consumes more content, PathFactory collects that data in order to recommend the next piece of content that would be most relevant to them. We also give marketers and salespeople a ton of insight about exactly how those people are consuming content.
Building a platform like this creates all kinds of challenges for the rest of the business, however. No matter how great the software we build is, new platforms are notoriously difficult to market, sell, and get customers to adopt, especially in a crowded landscape like marketing technology. While sorely needed, PathFactory was brand new. We’re not replacing anything that marketers already use and, as a result, our potential customers often don’t know what to compare us to.
Starting out, we knew we couldn’t out-market everyone else in that crowded landscape. And we also knew we couldn’t sell to just anyone who might give us their money without risking high churn rates and negative word of mouth. We had to take a different approach.
Customer adoption first, then everything else
While I’m incredibly proud of the product development, marketing, and selling PathFactory has done, the real key to our growth has been our focus on customer adoption above almost everything else. Not just within the customer experience function, but across the entire organization. For example, we have made difficult and sometimes unpopular choices to maintain that focus, such as prioritizing certain feature sets over others, and targeting all of our marketing efforts toward a small subset of B2B marketers who give off the right demographic, technographic, and behavioral signals.
Our hard work wasn’t done once those ideal buyers became customers. We knew we had to help them get as much value out of the platform as quickly as possible, and that we should help them discover ever more expansive uses for PathFactory within their marketing strategies. Every week, every month, every quarter, and every year that our customers worked with us, they had to unlock better outcomes and greater value. We have made unusually large investments in supporting our early customers, and we have obsessed over the details of their usage, strategic adoption, and value extraction of our product.
Along the way, we were incredibly self-aware that we might be investing in customer adoption at the expense of sales and revenue growth. In the end, however, it turned out that customer adoption was actually the key to unlocking faster revenue growth for PathFactory.
For the majority of our customers, PathFactory is now a critical piece of infrastructure in their marketing technology stack. When our customers change jobs and join new companies, PathFactory is often the first piece of technology they absolutely must buy after their marketing automation platform. We have an industry-leading advocacy rate, with 50% of our customers acting as advocates for us and sharing their expertise with the wider B2B marketing community.
Growing our revenue 1161% in just four years is only possible because we have partnered with each and every single one of our customers in service of better returns on their marketing efforts as well as the advancement of their careers as marketers. We are so proud to work with some of the best marketers in the world and we can’t wait to see what they achieve next.