Econsultancy: Please describe your job: What do you do?
Zoe Gove: I’m the Head of Client Performance for Mention Me, a referral marketing SaaS business which is shaking up the way retailers and ecommerce businesses think about referral marketing. Managing a team of client success managers, I’m responsible for ensuring that each of our 250+ clients are happy, that their referral programmes are reaching peak performance and additionally offering support on meeting GDPR requirements.
I am responsible for ensuring that our business is growing through our existing client base, and personally remain the partner for 25 businesses including Eve Mattress, Joules, First Utility and ZipCar.
I interact with the engineering team to keep up to date and to be able to brief clients and my team on new releases, and the sales team when they’re working with high priority clients.
E: Whereabouts do you sit within the organisation? Who do you report to?
ZG: I report in to Simon, our Head of Client Success. Simon is part of the senior management which includes our founders, Andy (CEO) and Tim (CTO).
E: What kind of skills do you need to be effective in your role?
ZG: The ability to build a rapport quickly is something I’ve found goes far when you’re overseeing such a huge portfolio of clients. Hand in hand with this is ensuring that I’ve always done my homework into their business, their sector and the market. Our product and platform are impressive, but ultimately we provide referral as a service and so the service that my team delivers is critical to our clients’ success.
Keeping my awesome team and senior management happy, can be a balancing act, but it’s crucial to ensuring that the team are motivated and deliver.
Being comfortable with looking at huge datasets, for multiple clients, and deriving meaning from them, is critical. In addition to advising on incentives and AB tests, I provide analysis and benchmarking alongside sharing of best practice.
Finally, but crucially, I am insanely organised – this is everything!
E: Tell us about a typical working day…
ZG: Inbox overload faces me each morning. In such a client facing role, and as the first port of call for any issue externally or internally, I need to ensure that I’m on top of this every day.
Reviewing the portfolio – checking if my team need help with anything. Client meetings, attending prospect meeting with sales or strategy planning meetings with existing clients.
Internal meetings – we do a lot of cross team projects. As a fast growing tech business that started up in 2013, our CEO is passionate about mixing teams up to brainstorm different and better ways of doing things.
E: What do you love about your job? What sucks?
ZG: The main overriding thing that I love are the people and culture. With regular team events from movie night, to poker, to wider company events like Crystal Maze and paddle boarding down the Thames, we’re tightly glued. Incorporated in this is my role in building a dynamic team around me. Hiring is so important, getting it right is really rewarding.
I love building long lasting relationships with my clients, and witnessing referral become a key part of their marketing strategy.
The opportunities and career progression is another thing I love. I hosted a workshop for 60 brands on how to promote their referral at our annual client event this year – and loved it! I would likely not have been given the chance in a larger business.
Keeping up with my inbox sucks! I spend quite a bit of my time going out to meet clients and managing the team, so when I get back my inbox can seem quite overwhelming. Luckily I have an amazing Operations team, so they’ll have dealt with everything urgent before I even get a change to look at it.
E: What kind of goals do you have? What are the most useful metrics and KPIs for measuring success?
ZG: My ultimate goal is that all of our clients are engaged and love using referral. That they get quality customers from it and we account for 10-25% of new customer acquisition.
Client health is everything for me. Personally I look after 25 of our clients, but with my team we are responsible for over 250 so it’s really important that I have a good handle on how everyone is doing.
On an account level the metrics that matter to me are the lifetime value of the customers we bring to clients, the share rate and the conversion rate.
E: What are your favourite tools to help you to get the job done?
ZG: Amity, the cloud-based CRM platform, is essential for my portfolio level health.
Our Mention Me platform – we’re continuously updating and improving this, often in response to client experience and requests, so its slick performance makes my job far easier.
E: How did you land in this role, and where might you go from here?
ZG: Bit of a weird one, I spent the first 5 years of my career in a top management consultancy firm. Deciding this wasn’t for me, I went travelling for 9 months and then started thinking about what I wanted to do. This role actually came through my network, Simon (my boss) worked at the same consultancy as me, though we never met. I joined as a Client Success Manager, and then took on more and more responsibility until I became Head of Performance. My biggest challenge currently is the growth of my team. I’m expecting the size of the team to triple in the next 12 months.
E: Which growth hacks / referral marketing do you admire? (would be good to have at least one example from a non-client)
ZG: Uber’s code sharing.
Dropbox’s gamification of referral.
Use of social influencers to grow a brand really quickly, Sand and Sky is a great example, also Missoma.
Our client Hush, rewarding to see referral working so impressively to both drive new customers and reward advocacy.
E: Do you have advice for anybody who wants to work in your field?
ZG: Get in as much client experience as you possibly can.
Expose yourself to data, analysis, trends.
Immerse yourself in your industry / sector, build knowledge, so you can really be trusted as an advisor – to clients and your teams.
Organisation – if you’re not naturally an organisation nerd, then use tech tools to help you. Slack helps stop you from getting bogged down on internal emails. Bullet Journal is a tool I’ve found useful in the past.
Culture – this is so important – get experience in larger companies and smaller – to make sure that you’re the right fit for the environment. Working and flourishing in a startup culture is so different to a multinational large corporate.