We had a blast at SaaStr’s Spring Soiree at our new(ish) Co-Selling Space home last night. There were grilled cheese sandwiches paired with tomato soup from American Grilled Cheese Kitchen, delicious cocktails served with flair from Sharpshooters, and swag bags filled with goodies for every attendee.

By far, the highlight of the evening was the content, as we saw Intercom CEO Eoghan McCabe join Jason Lemkin onstage for an informal fireside chat, while our CRO Dayna Rothman led a panel on marketing, sales, and SDR compensation with The Bridge Group’s Sally Duby and Mixpanel’s VP, Marketing Emma Dunstone.

This morning on Twitter, Jason shared his own learnings from his chat with Eoghan. Here, we highlight five more takeaways last night’s event:

  1. The evolution of sales and marketing: During Intercom’s early years, Eoghan told us he was confused by the roles he perceived sales and marketing to play within the organization (he even went so far as to tell Jason he would never hire sales and marketing headcount!). But as time went on, he realized those functions had evolved to fit the software industry they were now playing in, and that they actually did play a crucial role: engaging and educating prospects and facilitating the product to help customers succeed.
  2. Learn how to continuously reinvent yourself: Just like pop stars, said Eoghan, the best companies are able to reinvent themselves in order to stay relevant. Don’t stay stuck in familiar ways just because they worked in the past—always be doing your homework around your market’s biggest challenges, and then iterate and change everything from your product roadmap to sales playbooks accordingly.
  3. “Software is still eating the world”: You heard it here first, folks—according to Eoghan, the opportunities for thoughtful software companies are only expanding. This is especially true for the software companies selling their problem-solving technologies into non-tech industries.
  4. Use variable comp to reduce friction between sales and marketing: For a lot of companies, sales and marketing alignment can seem like a pipedream. Sales wants more leads, marketing doesn’t think sales is doing much with the leads that they are driving, and nobody really wins. Dayna Rothman and others on our comp-centric panel told the room that if you implement a compensation plan that aligns your whole revenue team (marketing, sales, and SDRs) around the same key goals—driving quality leads that build solid pipeline and result in more closed-won deals—you ensure everyone is working together. On top of salary, compensate marketers and SDRs on how much they’re contributing to pipeline and revenue, and (of course) sales on how much they close.
  5. Product marketers are so hot right now: The highest paid marketing roles are of course a matter of supply and demand, and what’s in demand will change every so often depending on what’s going on in the industry. In today’s startup environment, according to Emma Dunstone, product marketing managers and marketing operations people are the hardest to find (correction: good product marketing managers and marketing operations people are the hardest to find), which means they’re raking in the most. The lesson here isn’t just around salary: if you’re lucky enough to find a product marketer or marketing ops person who is killing it, hold on tight!

Stay tuned for even more content from our Spring Soiree! We’ll be posting videos of last night’s fireside chat and panel soon.

And be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to stay on top of all of SaaStr’s awesome events.

And Jason’s 140 seconds of Top Learings here!:

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