By Matt Heinz, President of Heinz Marketing
“How I Work” is one of my favorite recurring features in Inc Magazine as well as via Lifehacker’s This Is How I Work Series, and recently several sales experts (including Anthony Iannarino, Dave Brock and Trish Bertuzzi) participated as well.
Periodically moving forward, we will feature a new B2B sales, marketing or business leader here answering what have become the standard “How I Work” questions. You can catch up on everyone we’ve featured thus far in the “How I Work” series here.
This week I’m thrilled to feature Kevin Hurley, head of marketing and growth at Nudge. Kevin has been managing demand generation programs for years with companies including Careerify, Northcloud, Pivotal Labs and more. A Marketo Certified Expert, Kevin is also co-founder of Paycase Financial.
Suffice it to say, Kevin gets stuff done. Here in his own words is how he does it.
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Current Computers: I’ve been fully converted to Apple products for the last 8 years. Both my work and personal laptops are MacBooks. I’ve also fully switched from a traditional mouse to the Apple Magic Trackpad – love the hand gesture short cuts when working on multiple screens.
Current mobile devices: iPhone 6.
What apps/software/tools/ can’t you live without? I’ll try and limit my response here as I’m known to adopt a lot of software to get sh$% done.
Segment – I get a lot of help from our product team to get Segment setup, however it’s a critical tool for any SaaS marketing stack in my mind. This is basically the foundation of all of our marketing analytics and event tracking as it integrates with nearly every modern marketing tool. I tell segment what data I want to track and then I can flip a switch to push that data into any other marketing tool.
Intercom – We currently use Intercom at Nudge.ai for customer support, marketing automaton and to manage user profiles much like a CRM. I can build complex communication workflows (emails, in-app messages and push notifications) to drive user engagement without being all that technical. I believe Intercom will continue to evolve and be one of the most important tools for any SaaS marketing stack.
Nudge.ai – I use Nudge.ai for both professional and personal growth. It’s by far the easiest way to get news and social insights on the people and companies I care about in my inbox (Nudge Daily Outlook) and as I write emails (Nudge for Chrome) without lifting a finger. This makes it incredibly easy to maintain strong relationships with prospects, customers, colleagues and friends by reaching out when important things happen in their lives. I also use our Collaboration feature to see who in my network has strong relationships with contacts before I reach out.
Twitter – I’ve been a big fan of Twitter ever since I started my career in marketing and it continues to prove as an effective channel to start a conversation with individuals that would typically be outside of my professional reach. Twitter is also integrated into Nudge.ai so I get a filtered view of Tweets from the people I care about vs. the firehouse effect of a traditional Twitter feed. I can learn a lot about someone by looking at their last 5 Tweets and start a conversation in seconds.
Evernote – I use this for managing my to-do list and taking notes. I’m not very organized with my usage, however it’s easy enough to cross off tasks and search for what I need.
Adobe Illustrator – It’s been incredibly useful as a startup marketer to understand how to use Illustrator for simple branding and graphic design. I can create blog post images, email headers and even resource guides on the fly. I like being able to have control over the brand even if my designs are only used as a reference point for the professional designers.
Alright…I could go on and on but that’s probably enough for now.
What’s your workspace like? I keep a very clean workspace with 1 external monitor, laptop stand and external Apple Magic Keyboard and Trackpad. I can’t work with any clutter. Same setup at home. I’m also known to lock myself in a meeting room for a few hours each day to perform deep work. I’m a huge believer in getting at least 3 hours of deep work in each day. If I don’t do this, I find it very hard to get started on larger projects that require strategic thinking.
What’s your best time-saving shortcut or lifehack? Professional – Using Upwork for simple yet time consuming tasks can be incredibly useful in the marketing world. Researching all of the upcoming events in our industry, cleaning up data and even getting our product training videos produced can all be completed using experienced Upwork freelancers at a fraction of the cost of an agency or new marketing hire.
Personal – I listen to Audible during my commute and at the gym. This has allowed me to learn at an accelerated rate and finish books that I’ve always wanted to read. There are still certain types of books that won’t work via audio, but I find the majority do. I also turn up the listening speed to at least X1.25 to consume them faster.
What everyday thing are you better at than anybody else? It’s always been easy for me to have a conversation with anyone – regardless of their background. Being genuinely interested in a wide range of topics from music, travel, sports, food and business makes it easy to spark an authentic conversation with anyone and naturally connect on topics they care about. This has definitely helped in both my personal and professional life. This is also why I’m a strong believer in what we’re building at Nudge.ai.
What’s your favorite to-do list? I keep a running task list in Evernote where I carry over unfinished items to a new note each day. It’s simple and effective. Basically the same process as using a notebook, however I’ll save some trees and reduce the pain of trying to read my chicken-scratch-like handwriting.
What do you listen to at work? If I’m doing deep work, I listen to brain.fm as it helps me focus without the distraction of vocals. During the rest of the day, I have Soundcloud open and listen to upbeat electronic music to fuel my energy along with a few cups of coffee.
What are you currently reading? I just finished listening to “Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance” on Audible. Regardless of your profession, this book is incredibly relevant and a huge motivator. From stories on raising children to how NFL coaches train to win the Super Bowl, this book will teach you a lot on what it means to have grit. I’ve always believed that having grit was a huge competitive advantage for me.
What’s your sleep routine like? It’s pretty bad. I’m usually up until 1-2AM on average with my most productive time starting around 10PM. There’s not much hope for me ever becoming a morning person.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? Shortcut your path to success by learning from individual who have already accomplished great things. I’ve been told something similar to this statement from a few different folks early on in my career – I’ve been lucky to have some great advisors and mentors. It’s important to have a sounding board of individuals who are each experts in their own field. Even if you don’t take their advice, you’ll have more than one POV.
Anything else? Honoured to be invited to participate in this interview and hope that my responses provided you with at least 1 new idea that you can explore to become more successful in your role. I’m always open to connect with like minded folks, so please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for any reason.
I’d love to see answer these questions: Ryan Holiday