An interview with Isabella Jiao, Head of Marketing at Tattle.
We sit down with Isabella Jiao, Head of Marketing at Tattle. Tattle is the only improvement-focused guest feedback platform for multi-unit restaurant and hospitality brands.
How did you end up at Tattle and what problem does Tattle solve for its clients?
Having built the marketing team at a previous B2B SaaS startup, I realized that my happy place — as well as where my skills are most suited for — is Series A B2B tech startups that need someone to take their marketing function from 0 to 1, and allow me full flexibility to do my job. And Tattle literally checked every single box that I was looking for. I was able to build their marketing function (from the website, to messaging, to unlocking all the marketing channels), and the team is just the most wonderful to collaborate with. I also have full creative freedom and enjoy a tremendous amount of trust and support from my co-workers. All these factors have made this job absolutely enjoyable. One of the biggest reasons that drew me to Tattle was how strong the product is — and how it's really obvious there was product market fit despite the team being very lean and small. Tattle is a Customer Experience Improvement (CXI) platform for hospitality businesses. To put simply, Tattle automatically sends survey emails on behalf of multi-unit restaurant brands and synthesize the survey submissions into the highest-imapct opportunity for each location to work on that will most likely improve guest satisfaction. There are two key differentiators of Tattle, among many others. One, our surveys are long-form but uncovers the root causes behind guest dissatisfaction. Despite collecting up to 55 data points per survey, Tattle surveys have an astonishing 94.7% average completion rate due to its intuitive design. Second, our platform is improvement-focused. Most restaurant operators simply don't have the time to dive into data reports, so our platform uses algorithm to tell them exactly "Hey, focus on this one action item and you'll for sure see your guest satisfaction and revenue improve". We translate data into actions — and that's highly valued by operators and executives alike.
As the Head of Marketing, what are your main responsibilities at Tattle?
Everything that's related to our branding, product marketing, public relations, and lead generation falls under the realm of marketing. Since we're at the growth stage, our top priority would be lead generation — specifically, how can we get the decision makers at multi-unit restaurant brands to want to talk to our sales team and learn more about our platform. Beyond that, we also want to build a brand around data utilization and enabling restaurant brands to make data-backed decisions. There's a lot of thought leadership and brand building around that long-term vision as well.
To get a bit more technical, what are some of the acquisition channels that have worked well for Tattle and why do you think that is?
It basically comes down to two things: driving as much traffic and awareness to your site and content, and then convert them. It's been a lot of trial and error and even things that work might not work all the time. It's important to tailor your approach to your specific industry. For example, in hospitality, trade shows and trade publications hold a lot of weight in terms of getting people's attention and trust. From there, making the website user experience as easy as possible for visitors to get exactly what they want, and make it easy for them to book a time with our team, will greatly improve the conversion rate.
What role does your Marketing team play when it comes to organising, operating and improving your marketing-sales funnel?
We try to clearly align on goals and targets, and backtrack from there to figure out what campaigns and channels do we want to test and can we afford to test them. The key thing is to test fast and quickly iterate. We closely monitor what works well and double down on it, while cutting back on attempts that don't yield as good of a result. It's all about optimizing the resources you have and making educated bets when it comes to what we want to invest in, and most importantly — what we don't. In addition, we work very closely with the sales team and customer success team to get the feedback directly from the front lines. They give us invaluable qualitative data that helps us intuitively adjust our tests, messaging, channels and more.
At ColdFire, when we look at our clients' Marketing strategies, they vary greatly. Some have found a single, scalable client acquisition process while others thrive on a mix of top-of-funnel strategies. If you had to summarise the high-level LeadGenMarketing strategy of Tattle, what would it be?
There are definitely some standard practices for hospitality B2B tech companies, such as attending trade shows, sponsor content with trade publications, conducting webinars with industry thought leaders etc. that are almost always going to be part of our mix. However, everyone's doing that. So we have to constantly look for ways that help us stand out and set us apart from other competitors. That might include how we set our tone across all our content, what our content strategy is, how do we approach thought leadership content, and what brand image do we want to project that really defines our perceived identity. At the end of the day, I think it's important to set the North Star, set some boundaries and guidelines, and just let your team be creative and experiment — because you never know if something's going to work or not until you test it and quickly iterate from the data findings.
What is a Marketing technique that you've used at Tattle or at previous companies which you believe is underutilized at most Marketing teams - and why?
Really taking a step back and think about why your company exists, and what you believe in. Very often it's very easy to double down on what the chatter is in the space, and just write another blog that discusses the same topic, or just mimic what successful competitors or companies in the space is doing. However, it's so important to set your brand's own personality and core beliefs, and really carve out those differentiating aspects of your brand.
Marketing can happen using combined tools and methodologies. Which has worked better for Tattle and why do you think that is?
I would say anything that really integrates across the tools that other teams use including sales and customer success team. Because it's important to have a unified customer experience across the marketing, sales and post-sales process, and it's going to be a huge time saver when all these teams have a single source of truth to refer to through these integrations.
Has your Marketing team experimented with some kind of cold outbound strategy (like cold email)? If yes what was the general outcome and if no, why not?
Yes and there will always be some sequences that work better than others. Typically the more targeted and personalized the emails are, the more relevant the content, the more successful the sequences are likely to be. We also constantly test and iterate to figure out what persona and what topic and what kinds of audience segmentation works best for us.