Lindsay Tjepkema has drawn a straight line from A to B—to B2B. She’s spent her entire career in marketing. She has a Master’s degree in Integrated Marketing and has spent over fifteen years in B2B marketing, including leading the marketing teams at enterprise SaaS companies.
It was in this role she discovered a lack of resources for B2B podcasting, so she set out to co-found her own company, Casted, a decision she doesn’t regret. “It’s been a wild, amazing rocket ship journey,” she says. “And I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
In this edition of Founders Journey, she discusses her decision to leave a good corporate job to start her own company, the key steps she took developing the product, and how the most important part of being a founder is getting comfortable being uncomfortable.
More information: https://www.casted.us/
Lindsay Tjepkema is the CEO and co-founder of Casted, the first and only marketing platform built around branded podcasts. With more than 15 years of experience in B2B marketing, she’s a dynamic leader who’s had tremendous success building and growing marketing teams on a local and global level.
After launching a podcast for a global martech SaaS enterprise, Lindsay saw the tremendous opportunity for brands in podcasting, as well as a huge void in the tech landscape with the lack of software to support marketing teams in leveraging these shows as part of their content marketing efforts. This led her to start Casted to help marketers unlock the full potential of their content by harnessing the power of podcasting. The company has since gained rapid traction among brands that wish to create greater connection with their audiences through authentic conversation.
Today, with Casted, marketers can access, amplify, and attribute their brand podcasts while engaging their audience, increasing sales alignment, and quantifying podcast value with metrics that matter.
DISCLAIMER: Below is an AI generated transcript. There could be a few typos but it should be at least 90% accurate. Watch video or listen to the podcast for the full experience!
Lindsay Tjepkema 0:00
Got to find people who are nearly as passionate as you are, you know, because it is everything if you’re going to pour so much of yourself into it. And as founder you’re you’re going to be super, super passionate about about this thing that you’re doing.
Alexander Ferguson 0:22
Welcome everyone to UpTech Report. This is our Founders Journey. This is a second part of our interview, very excited to have Lindsey again, CEO of Casted with us. And UpTech Report is sponsored by TeraLeap learn how to leverage the power of video at teraleap.io. And in our first part of our discussion with Lindsey, it was really interesting to hear this new solution they’re building which is a b2b podcasting solution. So b2b Focus, which I think is is has been lacking, which is the reason why you built it in the first place. So now I’m excited to hear more about your journey, you know, how did you get to where you are today?
Lindsay Tjepkema 0:56
Sure. So we talked about kind of in part one, I started out, I spent my whole career in marketing, right. So I’m one of those weirdos that actually went to school for marketing and has a master’s degree in integrated marketing and remarketing nerd and kind of obsessed, turns out is a good thing. Because, you know, I, as I was heading into what ended up being a founders journey, I started a podcast as part of our overall content strategy, this global enterprise business that I was working with, and I was a marketing leader there. And just I saw a problem and a huge opportunity to solve it. And that was enter in and around b2b, podcasting. It’s a huge opportunity. I don’t have to tell you, I mean, you’re a human, anyone who’s listening is a human, and podcasting is everywhere. But even within that, there’s a huge amount of growth happening in b2b podcasting. And I knew that firsthand, I was one of those b2b podcasters. And there just wasn’t the software. It just didn’t exist to serve me or our teams. And so I set out to change that.
Alexander Ferguson 1:58
And you said, actually, also the first part, I asked what would you wish you had known or you know, now is said, Just do it, don’t jump in, don’t be afraid now. making that leap from from an employee or working inside of a company to now being the leader of an organization. That’s, that’s a whole nother step. I’m curious of insights that you’ve learned of that process. So far, first, funding, any common mistakes that you think people have made, and any lessons learned there on getting funding, acquiring that to be able to launch?
Lindsay Tjepkema 2:31
Yeah, cash, I think I’m kind of zooming out from that. But also a huge part of that is, is a huge part of being a founder is just being getting really, really comfortable being uncomfortable. And the second you learn anything, it changes, right? And I think that that’s absolutely true for funding, it’s, you know, you go into it, and if you’ve never done it before, you’ve never done it before. So how in the world, do you know what a pitch is going to be like, or what the process is going to be like? Or you’re working with investors that do this all the time? And, you know, what is this signal mean versus this other one. And so as soon as you start to figure it out, hopefully you close the round, and you move on, you get back into, you know, the business. And, you know, and then the next round is obviously is going to be a little bit different. Because you know, series A is different than seed and Series B is going to be different in Series A. So getting really, really comfortable with being uncomfortable. And I think that’s possibly a mistake that founders make is feeling like they should have it all figured out, as opposed to just continuously looking to learn, before even diving and learning from others. And then continually learning from yourself and your own experiences. And just having that enough awareness to kind of step back and say, How is it going? How can I learn? How can I be better?
Alexander Ferguson 3:48
Now, once you have the funding, then building the right team is one of the next big steps. How big is the team now? 20. We got with that development? Any recommendations or thoughts of how do you hire the right people, when you’re when it’s each hire is so crucial, and potential mistakes one could make in that effort for
Lindsay Tjepkema 4:10
us, and for me, I mean, even going back to identify my co founders, right, so I’ve got two co founders. And from day one, it’s been about passion. I didn’t really realize that at the time, but continuing to hear myself as I was having conversations. You’ve always but I think especially when you’re starting a business, you have got to find people who are nearly as passionate as you are, you know, because it is everything. If you’re going to pour so much of yourself into it. And as founder you’re you’re going to be super, super passionate about about this thing that you’re doing in this thing you’re building from nothing. And then your first step is to find partners that share that passion and share that vision. And then as you’re so right every person you add to the team has got to share that passion. And that drive because startups are hard, and they’re messy, and they change. And you’re asking a lot of people and you’re, you’re asking them to be flexible and adaptable, and to just come along for the ride and to push hard. And unless they share that passion, that vision, it’s, it’s going to be even more stressful than it needs to be.
Alexander Ferguson 5:20
You’ve got after the mid market enterprise arena, any insights you can share for those who are thinking about going after that same market? The trial, the pros and cons to it, as well. So what’s your immediate what you’ve learned over the past year to going after that market? Sure. So that’s
Lindsay Tjepkema 5:39
kind of where I’ve lived my whole career. And so I know it really well. In fact, I am or I was our target. Audience, right. I was marketing leader and an enterprise SAS business and that that was us. So I think my advice there, maybe it’s not a specific to mid market or enterprise. But it’s more broadly to knowing your audience is make sure, don’t assume even that. So this is a good point. Even having lived for 15 years as my target audience, I didn’t assume that my problem, in my opinion, and my perspective was universal. So I spent the first six weeks two months interviewing, I talked to 75 or 100, different marketing leaders across b2b, some b2c, even mostly mid market enterprise, but a lot of small business to some with podcast, some without, and just asked a ton of questions. Because I didn’t want to assume that my experiences should be what drives the product, it certainly should influence it, and I had a strong opinion. But if we were going to build something, I didn’t want to do it in a vacuum. So I think that’s super, super important. Whether it’s mid market or enterprise to do not assume you know, your audience and make sure you know, your audience.
Alexander Ferguson 6:51
Did you do that before after the funding did like when you were inside gathering? Or did you continue through? Well, how did that work?
Lindsay Tjepkema 6:57
So it was early, early days. And so we had some startup capital, we’re part of high alpha venture studio. And so we had kind of a nest egg to work with. And so those are my early days. And literally, as I was doing interviews, one of my co founders that heads up product was starting to build and starting to map out, you know, roadmap, and translating those interviews into what should what we should build. And then my other co founder, who heads up revenue was saying, Okay, this is, these are the pain points. This is our go to market strategy, because this is our this is our messaging. And this is how we should be, you know, approaching people. So those were, that was the foundation, right? And then it continues like, never stop. Again, never assume you know, your audience and make sure you know, your audience. So ever since it’s been, what kind of feedback can we get from our customers? How should that influence pipeline or roadmap? And how should that impact the way that we’re approaching, you know, prospects? And even you know, our current customers?
Alexander Ferguson 7:50
What challenges do you see going into 2021 in the marketplace and the environment that we’re in COVID kind of sticking around? What do you see the challenges for you coming up?
Lindsay Tjepkema 8:01
Gosh, I think, I don’t know, if they’re really specific to 2021, it’s, it’s, momentum has been a big part of our story. Since day one. I mean, you know, jumping in running fast, bringing in customers in revenue, and building a customer base, building out product and continuing to be exciting and accelerating. And that’s been, that’s been interesting in 2020, you know, we’ve done it, and I think 2021 is just keeping that momentum going. And that’s, you know, that’s, again, part of the founders journey is, is doing that no matter what, right, and looking at the indicators all around you outside the business, looking at what’s happening inside the business, like it was happening with your customers, and being able to see down the street and around the corner is about what could happen and planning accordingly. And so, you know, I have every intention of continuing the, the acceleration of our momentum, regardless of what 2120 21 throws at us, it’s, you don’t even it’s like, you don’t want to talk about it, right. It’s like, let’s just let’s just let it like, let the calendar page turn. And let’s just not just not say anything, like nobody look around. Listen, movements.
Alexander Ferguson 9:06
Forward. Yeah. Well, speaking of forward, last question for you, what kind of tech innovations do you predict we will see in the near term and long term next year or two, and then 510 years?
Lindsay Tjepkema 9:17
And so I think it’s like, broadly speaking, broadly speaking, so I think, you know, I think we’re gonna continue to see, I mean, 2020 has changed the world, obviously. I mean, it’s, it’s an understatement. I think we’re going to continue to see ways to connect people, people are wired for connections, I mean, human to human connection is is what we are literally wired for. And that makes it’s a basic human need, which makes it a basic business need. And businesses have struggled this year, obviously, again, understatement with finding ways to continue to connect with our audiences and build and maintain and strengthen those relationships. And I think, you know, podcasting has been a great way to do that, which is why we’re seeing such growth among b2b You know, podcasting. And I think in 2021 will see this this groundswell this wave that was already coming before 2020 That has really grown with a pandemic, continue to to gain speed and to gain strength in 2021 As people say, Okay, this is a really great way to connect with our audiences is a great way to fuel strategy and it’s something that the big the big names are doing and some of the, the other companies that that look to them for leadership will follow suit so
Alexander Ferguson 10:34
well, thank you so much Lindsay for sharing your insight and this this journey that you’ve been on. I appreciate that the momentum and seeing where you guys go next, definitely everyone, check out part one of our interview to hear more about casted or go to casted.us to learn and get a demo and see how it works. Thanks again, everyone for joining us, our sponsor, today’s episode is TeraLeap. If your company wants to learn how to better leverage the power of video to increase sales marketing, head over to TeraLeap.io and learn about the new product customer stories. Thank you everyone, and we’ll see you next time. That concludes the audio version of this episode. To see the original and more visit our UpTech Report YouTube channel. If you know a tech company, we should interview you can nominate them at UpTech report.com. Or if you just prefer to listen, make sure you subscribe to this series on Apple podcasts, Spotify or your favorite podcasting app.