Five Lessons Learned by a CEO- Doron Ben David

Limor

Doron Ben-David is a highly versatile and accomplished entrepreneur with a wide range of expertise in various fields. With a passion for innovation and a background in technology, he has co-founded multiple successful companies, such as Indoor Robotics and Israel Robotics.

Before becoming an entrepreneur, Doron served as CTO for Avantis Team and Israel Aerospace Industries, where he gained extensive knowledge and experience in the aerospace and high-tech industries. His diverse skill set and entrepreneurial spirit make him a highly respected figure in the business world.

In a one-on-one interview, we discussed his journey as an entrepreneur, challenges, successes, and even about the future of robots.

Read the full interview for insight, useful advice, and tips to help you on your entrepreneurial journey.

Please tell our readers about yourself. How did it all begin? Who motivated and inspired you to be who you are today?

Since I remember myself, I was hooked on Space, Robotics, Physics, and, basically, understanding how the world works. Thanks to my father, I had access to electronics, computers, and mechanics ever since I was a child.

How did it all begin?

I always knew I will someday do something which is more than a hobby, but I understood I have some experience to gain in real-world applications first.

I was lucky to join the IMOD at a young age and be involved in the development of cutting-edge technologies. This certainly built me for the challenges I’m facing today at Indoor Robotics.

How did the idea for your current business come about?

Once I decided I’m going to do something in robotics, I’ve started mapping activities that are dull, dirty, dangerous, or difficult for humans to perform. I’ve sorted those into buckets based on the type of activity and the market value.
After doing that, I’ve run an analysis on what can be transformed into a robotic solution in the means available today (providing an immediate tangible value was my #1 priority).
As the market of cleaning robotics was quite a red ocean, filled with sharks from all over the world – I’ve chosen the market of remote monitoring.

After playing with some ideas, I understood a robot in this field should better fly, to avoid obstacles and different types of surfaces in a better way, and provide visibility in high ceiling use cases. That was when the idea of Tando was born.

What challenges are you facing these days?

The main challenge we face is growing. We just started commercializing our technology last year and building the organization in the correct way to support the customers is a challenge. When we had no customers, we had no one to disappoint – now, we set ourselves the highest bars of customer satisfaction.

Do you believe there is a method or formula to becoming a successful entrepreneur?

I don’t believe in a one-size-fits-them-all kind of formula for founders. I do believe there are certain “must-haves”s for an entrepreneur. The hunger to see your baby blooms, the ability to pivot all the time and in all scales, the ability to get decisions in a super uncertain environment, the ability to survive this mental rollercoaster… Keeping sanity while navigating the business…

doron

What has been the most satisfying moment in your entrepreneurial journey thus far?

Having someone I don’t know approaching me in a random environment, telling me he recognizes me from Indoor Robotics and that he thinks our solution is going to change the world. 5 years ago, we had to spend a whole effort explaining to skeptical people why they need a drone to monitor their indoor environment – and today, people come to me at conferences to give me more use cases for our product.

make it official

How would you describe the critical elements of starting and running a successful business?

A startup company is all about solving a real-world problem that people are actually willing to pay for. Once you get that in place, you reach your product-market fit, and from that point – the challenge changes from proving to scaling.

What’s next? Where do you see yourself and your business in 10 years?

10 years is forever for a startup company. I would say that for Tando, I hope that in 10 years I will see it installed in my neighborhood supermarket.

Is there any advice or tips you would give to young entrepreneurs?

The best tip I ever got from a fellow entrepreneur is not to listen to tips… Obviously, he meant to listen, but make your own interpretation and don’t blindly follow other people’s advice.

Other than that, the usual suspect tips for an entrepreneur:
1. Don’t get in love with your solution. Always make sure you solve an existing pain and that people are willing to pay for that solution.
2. Don’t get insulted when you get a “no” from a VC. Work in a data-centric manner to analyze those “no”’s… understand the pains of the people you come to ask for funding. Ask them what KPIs they expect to see. When will they feel comfortable meeting you again… and improve your pitch. Always.

3. A startup requires 100% of your time. You sleep it, breathe it, live it… basically – it’s always there. It means that it’s there when you are on a family vacation. It’s there when you have a newborn baby, and it’s there when you are ill or just bumped. Understand it BEFORE you dive into it. Understand it’s going to be like that for years… make sure your close environment understands it as well.

4. If you decide to start a company – go for it all in… 100%. I know almost no successful entrepreneurs who built their successful business “on-the-way” while doing something else…

5. And derived from the previous tip – make sure you are not hungry for money when you start. In the first year(s), your company won’t be able to pay you what you should get. That’s why you have your equity… you’ll always prefer to pay someone else before taking a salary of your own…

Why B2B Startups need to invest in marketing, especially now

Ma'ayan
Blog Start-Up Tips

Being a B2B start-up is incredibly challenging, especially, in today’s volatile business climate filled with uncertainties. 

Budget allocation to support growth is a high-priority issue for B2B startups, and marketing is often the first place most businesses reactively cut back when the economy slows down. However, this is a misguided mistake. Any cut in spending will likely only impact short-term nominal savings while putting brands at a disadvantage heading into the bounce-back period (which will happen eventually). 

So how should B2B startups weather the storm of slashed marketing budgets and downsizing marketing departments and still maintain growth in the long run?


The Importance of Marketing for B2B Startups during a recession – 

To flourish as a B2B Startup, you must advertise your company by increasing brand recognition, generating leads, and driving sales. Otherwise, your business will quickly cease to exist – before anyone had a chance to care you existed in the first place. This holds true during a recession as well, although strategy and focus might shift to achieve growth.

Marketing is the growth engine of your Startup. And when you are fighting an uphill battle, you don’t turn off your engine. 

Somebody famous

Research repeatedly shows that during a recession, those who maintain or even increase their marketing expenses come out of the crisis faster and on top stronger. 

Here’s why:

  • Stand out: By continuing to market their products and services, B2B startups can differentiate themselves from competitors who may be cutting back on marketing.
  • Save on media costs: with competitors cutting back, the demand for paid marketing goes down. Good news for those still in the game who’ll benefit from negotiating fees with vendors and attaining lower media costs.
  • Reach new customers: Marketing can help B2B startups reach new customers who may be looking for solutions to the challenges posed by the recession.
  • Strengthen brand: By advertising and promoting their brand precisely during this time will significantly increase their chances of retaining potential customers’ attention and maintaining their strong brand identity.
  • Maintain relationships: Not only will this help them with their existing customers, but also with those who might not need their product or service now, but will need it in the future, and will remember the brand when that time comes.
  • Clean house: The slowdown is a chance to invest in improving existing marketing infrastructure. This could be anything from a website’s ‘face-lift’ in appearance, a slew of new engaging content, or “back of the house” improvements to the marketing tech stack such as Hubspot workflow automation improvement, deeper lead nurturing sequences, and more. 

Therefore, investing in marketing during a recession can be crucial for the survival and long-term success of B2B startups. The key is not to slash but to balance and optimize for reach, efficiency, and frequency considering short-term and long-term goals together, and your current position –

Why B2B Startups need to invest in marketing, especially now
Source: www.bain.com

Cost-effective marketing for B2B startups during a recession 

Some cost-effective marketing strategies that can help your business maintain visibility while also attracting customers without breaking the bank:

  • Utilize social media: Social media is a cost-effective way to reach a large audience. Use platforms like Facebook LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram to share updates, promotions, and engaging content. This will help build your brand and connect with potential customers and provide them with valuable information about how your product or service can solve their problems.
  • Email marketing: Email marketing is an affordable way to reach your existing customers and keep them informed about your latest products, services, and promotions. You can also use email to provide valuable content that can help build trust and loyalty.
  • Referral programs: Offer referral programs to your existing customers to encourage them to refer their friends and family to your business. You can offer discounts or other incentives to those who refer new customers.
  • Partnerships and collaborations: Partner with other businesses that have a similar target audience to your own. Collaborating on marketing campaigns, events or other activities can help you reach new audiences and build your brand.
  • SEO: Invest in search engine optimization (SEO) to improve your website’s visibility on search engines. This can help drive more traffic to your site and increase the chances of converting visitors into customers.
  • Content marketing: As previously mentioned, a content marketing strategy that includes blog posts, videos, infographics, and other types of content can help educate your audience about your products and services, build brand awareness, and position your business as a thought leader in your industry.

Full stack marketing for B2B startups during a recession 

Beyond budgets, all of the above-mentioned strategies still require experience and skill upon execution in order to be truly worthwhile. For many B2B startups, this becomes the next big challenge – who will create all this wonderful brand awareness on a budget?

Many startups find the answer lies outside their company by using outsourced marketing services. There are several benefits of hiring an external full-stack marketing service if you are a B2B startup under financial strain:

Expertise: A full-stack marketing service has a team of experts with a wealth of experience in various industries. They can provide insights and recommendations on the best marketing strategies to help your B2B startup weather the recession and stand out from the competition.

Cost-effective: Hiring an external marketing service can be more cost-effective than hiring a full-time in-house marketing team, especially for a startup with limited resources. A marketing service can also provide access to specialized tools and resources that may be too expensive for a startup to invest in.

Flexibility: A marketing service can provide a range of services that can be tailored to your startup’s needs. This flexibility allows your startup to focus on its core competencies while leaving the marketing efforts to the service.

Faster Results: Marketing service hubs have the experience and resources to execute marketing campaigns quickly, which can help your startup see results faster.

Measurable Results: A marketing service can help you track and measure the results of your marketing efforts. This data can help you make informed decisions about future marketing strategies and investments.

Overall, hiring a full-stack marketing service can help your B2B startup navigate the challenges of a recession and emerge stronger on the other side.


So, what’s your battle plan?

The Power of HubSpot: Transforming Gaviti’s Marketing and Sales Strategy

Neta

Who is Gaviti ?

Gaviti is an accounts receivable collections software created to help collections teams get paid faster. The innovative solution optimizes the complete collections process, from automating highly personalized dunning emails to perfecting task management. 

Mission of Partnership:

Gaviti contacted SAGE Marketing to strategize and execute their marketing activities and leverage HubSpot for automated campaigns and maintaining positive customer relationships

Intro: 

Danna Cahana is the Marketing Manager of Gaviti, a collections platform for SMEs. 

Back in 2020, After conducting extensive research, Danna realized that they needed a comprehensive solution for managing their marketing and sales efforts to enhance customer relationships and drive business growth. As a result, she decided to implement HubSpot and reached out to SAGE marketing.

Gaviti had an overwhelmingly positive experience with the HubSpot implementation and optimization services provided by Roman (our Marketing Automation Expert) and his team.

HubSpot became their single source of truth, providing an all-in-one solution for all aspects of the company’s operations including marketing, sales, customer service, and more. 

gaviti

But don’t take our word for it, hear it from Danna:

What has been the impact of HubSpot on your business processes?

HubSpot was our holy grail. Most employees in our company would use HubSpot every single day. We used both the marketing services and sales services. So from the very beginning of a users journey, to closing a deal, and even renewing services, everything was tracked on HubSpot. Only through the use of detailed reports and analytics, we were able to properly review our efforts and could make adjustments to improve. Without HubSpot, we would have been totally lost. 

As a Marketing Manager, how has HUBSPOT helped you with lead nurturing and conversion?

With HubSpot, we were able to create multiple email sequences according to a lead’s action – such as whether a lead downloaded an eBook, or scheduled a demo, or attended a webinar.

 For each event, we managed to create personal and tailored emails and increased our open/click rates. This was simple to make with HubSpot’s workflows, which not only allowed you to see a complete sequence very clearly, you could also derive results for each campaign separately. 

How has HubSpot helped your sales and marketing teams collaborate better?

Since HubSpot was the single source of truth for the whole company, it made it extremely efficient for the Sales and Marketing team to work smoothly together. 

There was never arguing about results, because we all referred to the same numbers. And it made it a lot easier to track Sales work on my own without having to double check with the team. 

Lead Scoring tools

HubSpot’s lead scoring was a great tool for our SDR team, especially when Gaviti had hundreds of leads every week, but only four people on the SDR team. It’s impossible to properly reach out to every lead without some sort of classification. Roman and his team created the lead score with the best practices. Afterwards, the SDR team would use this list to focus on their ‘hot leads’ and then their ‘cold leads’. 

dont wait

Let’s look at the numbers

As a result, the company saw outstanding results – 

Email Campaigns

  • 19.81% average open rates, with top emails reaching 45%
  • 5.61% average click-through rate
  • Increased leads by 400% in the first 18 months
  • Nearly 20% of new leads were generated through sponsoring several live webinars and one-on-one meetings with financial executives
  • Grew MQLs by 5x from paid gated activities every month using gated assets such as ebooks, white papers, case studies leading to landing pages, etc.

“It was excellent. We spent 2 years with SAGE’s HubSpot support. Usually requests were handled immediately, and if we had issues, we were always able to hop on zoom calls and get to the root cause.We had many best practices implemented just because of SAGE’s HubSpot team. “ 

Would you be able to describe your experience working with SAGE and their level of professionalism?

They were extremely professional in terms of responsiveness and expertise. They definitely knew what they were doing, especially in regards to HubSpot best practices. Working with SAGE made the whole process seamless. 

Were there any specific areas where you felt Roman provided exceptional service or went above and beyond to meet your needs?

The great thing about working with Roman and his team was that they would often teach or explain the solution rather than merely resolve the problem. I think everyone at Gaviti learned a lot about HubSpot through all our training and process together working with SAGE. 

 Danna rated the level of support and communication as excellent and is very likely to recommend the HubSpot services to others.

Five Lessons Learned by a CEO- Dudi Malits

Limor

Dudi Malits is a seasoned marketer with 13 years of experience in the field. He is the founder and CEO of a company that specializes in providing PR and organic LinkedIn content services to over 60 tech and financial companies. Among his clients are reputable companies such as Pepsico Labs, Deutsche bank, Elron, Sony Semiconductor, Sentinel one, and Upstream. With his expertise and impressive client list, Dudi is undoubtedly a sought-after professional in the marketing industry.

Please tell our readers about yourself. How did it all begin? Who motivated and inspired you to be who you are today?

To be honest, it all started by chance. When I was in my early 20s, I worked in the entertainment industry in Tel Aviv. But when I realized it wasn’t my thing, I felt lost. Luckily, I had many media contacts, and a friend who partnered in a public relations office offered me a job. He said, “Come work for me. You’ll call reporters, pitch them stories, and they’ll be interested in hearing from you since you’re known in the industry. This way, we’ll get media coverage for our clients.” And it worked! We got published articles about our clients. Although it wasn’t an easy road, I eventually established my own firm and carved my path to where I am today.

How did the idea for your current business come about?

Once I started my own business, I was eager to take on any client who would work with me. Together with another girl who agreed to join me (I still don’t know why), we worked in a small and stuffy office on Mesgar Street in Tel Aviv. As time went by, I learned what worked best for me and what didn’t. I figured out which types of people I preferred to work with and which ones I didn’t. Most importantly, I discovered my strengths. I shifted my focus towards high-tech and finance, which fascinated me, and I started offering services to companies where I knew we could add value and have the edge over the competition.

Can you describe/outline your typical day?

I’m a stickler for time management and plan my days meticulously. With a team of 25 people in the organization, we have clearly defined roles. As for myself, I primarily focus on business development and marketing. That means I have a variety of marketing and business development tasks to tackle on a daily or weekly basis, along with managing finances, handling professional matters, and meeting with potential clients. Additionally, I enjoy working on the strategic aspects of our clients’ businesses and attending strategic meetings. One unique aspect of my day is that I wake up early every morning to work long hours and still have enough time to pick up my kids from preschool 🙂

How would you describe the critical elements of starting and running a successful business?

Wow, that’s a big question! Here are some necessary ingredients, in my opinion:

A strong intuition about the market’s needs and how your abilities, service, or product can meet those needs.

A more structured test to validate your intuition.

Paradoxically, I’d say a certain degree of naivete, even stupidity, or ignorance can be helpful. If I had the knowledge and understanding that I have now, I’m not sure I would have made certain choices that ultimately led me to where I am today.

A solid grasp of finances. Regardless of how great your idea is, if you don’t understand how to finance it and manage money, it won’t last.

For entrepreneurs like me, it’s essential to strike a balance between our inclination towards business development and the need to be discerning about which ideas to pursue. Not every idea is worth pursuing, so it’s important to assess what’s most promising, what the costs are, how long it will take, and so on.

The ability to respond quickly. In my experience, success in business often hinges on how quickly you can adapt to changes in the market. Many people resist change, but those who can pivot quickly are more likely to succeed.

What strategies would you suggest for B2B companies to maximize the potential of Social Media?

My suggestion would be to operate from private profiles and take advantage of the increased visibility that content from such profiles tends to receive. Write in a way that’s authentic and non-commercial, and try to understand the motivations of your target audience when they’re using social media. Communicate with them in a way that speaks to those motivations.

What do you think is the importance of marketing for startups at the beginning of their journey?

Marketing is incredibly important, as it can help a company achieve a variety of goals. As an organization grows and evolves over time, its target audience changes and becomes more diverse. In the early stages, a new venture needs investors. As it progresses, it may also need to market to potential customers. Later on, as the company grows, it may need to focus on marketing to potential employees (through employer branding), as well as to stock market investors, integrators, and other stakeholders in the supply chain. Good marketing can help a company achieve all of these goals.

Tell us about a success story that makes you proud.

In this section, I’m expected to talk about some of our achievements. We were able to change a headline in a leading financial newspaper for a bank we work with, which was a great success. We’ve also created numerous successful advertisements for international projects that we work with. Additionally, we’ve had the privilege of working with many leading customers. We’ve also had a post on LinkedIn that received millions of exposures and was highly successful. However, for me, success is measured by the organization I’ve built. With 25 great people, we’re considered one of the best and largest marketing agencies for tech and finance. It’s all the more impressive since we all work remotely. I’m proud of our excellent service and the fact that we’ve built a unique organization that sets us apart from others in the industry.

What’s next? Where do you see yourself and your business in 10 years?

Looking ahead to the next 10 years, I find it difficult to predict. As the market continues to evolve and AI progresses, we must stay current and adopt new tools and technologies to enhance our capabilities. While it’s important to stick to what we know and do well, we must also be willing to experiment with new ideas and approaches until we find what works.

Is there any advice or tips you would give to young entrepreneurs?

I think the main thing I neglected to do at the beginning of my journey, which I would recommend to everyone, whether they are entrepreneurs or employees, is to look ahead at their career path in the next few years and understand where they want to go. Don’t start a profession or occupation by chance; think things through and direct yourself towards a place where you can excel and develop your skills.

Cybersecurity spotlight: Israel’s Top 15 industry influencers to follow

Blog Influencers

With a new year around the corner, now’s a great time to refresh where you’re getting your cyber industry news.

One of the greatest ways to learn about an industry is to hear insights from its top experts. 

And the cybersecurity field is certainly not lacking in experienced, knowledgeable specialists that can help you optimize your cyber strategy. 

New data from Momentum Cyber found that in 2021, cyber startups raised an unprecedented$29.5 billion in venture capital, more than doubling the amount raised in 2020. 

This flourishing industry will only continue gaining relevance and spotlight as the need for security increases. 

Luckily for you, we’ve gathered the top 15 cybersecurity influencers breaking new ground, so we can all learn from their experience and know who and what to keep an eye out for. Without further ado, these are the top cybersecurity influencers to follow in 2023: 


1. Assaf Rappaport

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Assaf Rappaport, Co-founder and CEO at Wiz Photo: LinkedIn

Wiz is on a mission to help organizations create secure cloud environments by identifying and removing the most critical cyber risks. The company recently received a valuation of $6 billion, making it the fastest growing cybersecurity company to date.

For Assaf Rappaport, being Co-Founder and CEO at Wiz isn’t his first entrepreneurial rodeo. After his time as a software engineer in the IDF and as a consultant at Mckinsey & Company, he co-founded a cloud security company, Adallom, which was acquired by Microsoft in 2015. Now, Assaf is taking cybersecurity to new heights with the startup that everybody’s talking about


2. Dean Sysman

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Dean Sysman, CEO and Co-Founder at Axonius  Photo: Fast Company

Enabling companies around the world to control complexity, Axonius’s cybersecurity management platform enables asset inventory, uncovers security gaps, and automates action. Founded in 2017, the company has received plenty of recognition, including landing on the CNBC Upstart 100 list and Forbes 20 Rising Stars.

Axonius’s CEO and Co-Founder, Dean Sysman, is a distinguished cybersecurity expert and entrepreneur. Not only has he been selected for the Forbes Israel 30 under 30 list and won the EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award, but he also previously founded another cyber company called Cymmetria that was acquired by private equity in 2019. Keep an eye on this one – we know we will!


3. Adi Sharabani

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Adi Sharabani, CTO at Snyk Photo: silicon republic

If you’re in the world of cyber, you’ve likely heard of Snyk, the Developer Security Platform empowering developers and security teams around the world to build secure applications. With over 1,200 customers and $775 M in funding, Snyk is paving the cyber path.

Leading the company’s tech innovation journey is Adi Sharabani, CTO of Snyk. With various impressive experiences under his belt, including as CEO and co-founder of Skycure and leader of security for IBM software products, Adi provides the cyber expertise needed to continue pushing Snyk to the forefront of the industry.


4. Yuval Lazar

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Yuval Lazar, Cyber Security Researcher at Pentera Photo: LinkedIn

Pentera’s state-of-the-art automated security validation solution allows organizations to test the integrity of all cybersecurity layers in real-time, at any scale. With a variety of awards under its belt and a recent $150 million C round, Pentera is the highest-valued company in its category.

Yuval Lazar, security researcher at Pentera, plays a key role in the company’s success and is a major player in the cybersecurity industry. She was named on the list of the “Top 25 Women Leaders in Cybersecurity,” and is sure to continue breaking new cyber ground in the future.


5. Lior Div

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Lior Div, Co-founder, and CEO of Cybereason  Photo: Cybereason

If you’re looking for protection against future cyber-attacks from industry experts, look no further than Cybereason. Made up of minds from the military, government intelligence, and enterprise security, Cybereason has raised $664 million to date and answers pressing needs to protect against cyber and ransomware attacks.

Lior Div is the brilliant co-founder and CEO behind Cybereason. He received an IDF Medal of Honor for outstanding achievements as a commander and leader of an elite cybersecurity unit, and before Cybereason, he was the founder of another cyber company called AlfaTech.


6.Guy Tytunovich

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Guy Tytunovich, Founder and CEO at CHEQ Photo: techbullion

CHEQ is paving the path for Go-to-Market security (GTMSec) with its groundbreaking solution that protects companies from invalid traffic. With over 14,000 customers around the world and an array of awards in their portfolio, CHEQ is sure to go places. 

Leading the company to the forefront of the industry is Guy Tytunovich, its Founder and CEO. Guy has founded multiple startups in the past, all along the intersection of cybersecurity, AI, NLP, and martech. He was driven to launch CHEQ in order to “safeguard the world’s leading brands through the use of new, cutting-edge technology.” 


7. Keren Elazari 

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Keren Elazari, Founder of Leading Cyber Ladies Photo: HiCue Speakers

Founded in 2015, Leading Cyber Ladies is a movement that aims to achieve greater diversity, representation, and equality within the cybersecurity field. Leading Cyber Ladies hold various cyber meetups all around the world to provide opportunities for members to speak about their work, network with other women in cyber, and create a welcoming community. 

Keren Elezari is one of two co-founders of Leading Cyber Ladies, as well as a security researcher, distinguished public speaker, and industry analyst. 

Her op-ed essays and columns have appeared in distinguished publications, and her TED talk has helped shape the global conversation about hackers and their growing role in our digital society, making her a leading cybersecurity influencer.


8. Ilan Barda

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Ilan Barda, Founder and CEO at Radiflow Photo: securitycurrent

Radiflow, a global vendor for Industrial Cybersecurity offers products and services to detect, monitor, and mitigate cyber risk in ICS environments. 

The company supports end-users and channel partners to provide a fully managed lifecycle of ICS cyber management solutions, such as cyber-OT risk assessments, automated cyber threat detection platforms, and continuous MSSP services. Founded in 2009, Radiflow has offices and partners in Europe, the USA, and APAC. Its field-proven solutions are deployed in over 7,000 sites around the globe.

Ilan Barda, Founder and CEO at Radiflow, is the mind behind this successful company, which has been granted several prestigious awards for its excellence. With years of experience in telecommunications and cybersecurity, Ilan, together with a talented team of security professionals and developers, has led Radiflow to new heights and continued success. The recent sale of a partial ownership stake in Radiflow to the Sabanci Group will allow Radiflow to expand its presence and solutions’ deployment in EMEA and the US.


9. Michael Bargury 

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Michael Bargury, Co-founder & CTO at Zenity Photo: LinkedIn

Zenity, founded just a year and a half ago, is the first and only security governance platform for low-code/no-code applications. The platform creates a win-win environment where IT and information security can give business and pro developers the freedom and independence they want in order to continue pushing their business forward while retaining full visibility and control. 

Michael Bargury, co-founder and CTO at Zenity, is a cybersecurity expert who founded and headed security product efforts at Microsoft prior to launching this entrepreneurial venture. As leader of the OWASP community effort on low-code/no-code security and with 15 patents in the cyber field as well as regular blog contributions on DarkReading, Michael is the epitome of cyber innovators. 


10.  Amit Bareket

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Amit Bareket, Co-Founder and CEO at Perimeter 81 Photo: smashing security

Perimeter 81 is a holistic, cloud-based solution and the world’s first Cybersecurity Experience (CSX) platform that radically simplifies cybersecurity. 

Founded in 2018, it allows organizations of all industries and sizes to support the immediate desires of digital nomads with a purpose—while still granting IT teams the ability to manage it all safely. 

Amit Bareket, co-founder and CEO at Perimeter 81, is an experienced cybersecurity expert with extensive knowledge in system architecture and software development. With multiple patents, an award from his alma mater, and previous entrepreneurial experience, Amit is definitely a cybersecurity expert to look out for.


11. Shaked Levy

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Shaked Levy, Head of Cyber and Information Security Services at KPMG Edge, part of KPMG Israel Photo: LinkedIn

KPMG Edge, part of KPMG Israel, is a team of advanced tech professionals with extensive knowledge of cyber architecture and solutions. Through a combination of expertise and state-of-the-art technologies, they help businesses around the world meet critical challenges. Serving global powerhouses like monday.com, Microsoft, and Google Cloud, KPMG Edge is taking cybersecurity to a whole new level.

As Head of Cyber and Information Security Services at KPMG Edge, Shaked Levy oversees the organization’s creation and implementation of innovative cyber offerings. With extensive experience in the security and IT industry and several senior executive positions under his belt, Shaked is one of the rising cybersecurity stars on everyone’s radar. 


12. Itzik Kotler

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Itzik Kotler, Co-Founder & CTO at SafeBreach Photo: SafeBreach

SafeBreach is the pioneer in breach-and-attack simulation (BAS), empowering organizations to be proactive about security by combining the mindset of a CISO and the toolset of a hacker. Having just closed its $53.5 million Series D funding in November 2021, SafeBreach plans to expand its market footprint to new geographies and evolve its offerings in response to client needs. 

Itzik Kotler is SafeBreach’s co-founder and CTO who has years of experience in the field and has been called “one of the finest minds in information security research and development.” Not only does he advance SafeBreach’s business and technological sharpness, but he is also a security researcher and frequent speaker at conferences.


13. Galina Antova

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Galina Antova, Co-Founder at Claroty Photo: Forbes

Claroty empowers industrial, healthcare, and commercial organizations to secure all cyber-physical systems in their environments: the Extended Internet of Things. Backed by the world’s largest investment firms and industrial automation vendors, Claroty’s unified platform is deployed by hundreds of organizations at thousands of sites globally. 

Galina Antova, co-founder and Chief Business Development Officer at Claroty, is one of the world’s leading experts on OT cybersecurity. With unparalleled experience leading growth strategies to address the challenges of protecting against cyberattacks, Galina is one of the top cyber security experts in the field and an amazing person to look to for innovative inspiration.


14. Amir Jerbi

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Amir Jerbi, Co-Founder and CTO at Aqua Security Photo: techbeacon

Aqua Security is the largest pure-play cloud native security company, providing customers the freedom to innovate and run their businesses with minimal friction. With a great deal of industry recognition and a $1 billion evaluation after their Series E round, Aqua Security is sure to continue skyrocketing and breaking new ground in cloud native security.

Amir Jerbi’s love for container technology is what led him to co-found Aqua Security, where he helps customers achieve the full potential of security for cloud native architectures as CTO. With more patents than you can count on one hand and years of rich experience in the cyber field, Amir is certainly someone to keep an eye on.


15. Boaz Gorodissky

Israel's Top 15 industry influencers to follow
Boaz Gorodissky, CTO & Co-Founder at XM Cyber Photo: xmcyber

XM Cyber is leading hybrid-cloud security posture management by enabling companies to rapidly respond to cyber risks affecting their business-sensitive systems. The company has received several industry awards recognizing the innovation and effectiveness of its solutions and has raised a total of $49 million since its inception in 2016.

Boaz Gorodissky is CTO and co-founder at XM Cyber, as well as a 30-year veteran of the Israeli Intelligence Community. In his previous role as Head of Technology, he re-organized and headed technology divisions and oversaw thousands of engineers and a large-scale budget. With such an impressive portfolio of experience, he certainly provides important insights into the field of cybersecurity.

There you have it. The cybersecurity industry is full of famous cybersecurity experts who are shaking up the game by leading with innovation and determination.

If you’re looking to stay sharp and up-to-date on all the latest and greatest goings-on in cybersecurity, make sure to check out these top 15 Israeli cybersecurity influencers on social media.

Because in general, social media influencing and cybersecurity do go hand in hand.

And if you’re looking to grow your business, bring in more leads, and establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry, consider partnering with a startup marketing agency like SAGE to help you gain an upper hand in your industry.

From Seed Round to Sensational: 360° Marketing

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Creative storytelling: the competitive advantage of successful B2B companies

Sharon
Blog Start-Up Tips

The great David Ogilvy is known to have said, “Within every brand is a product, but not every product is a brand.”

A brand is not a logo or a catchy slogan, as many people often think. A brand is a story. And just like good stories, it’s the way they resonate with the audience that creates the magic.

Your brand is the entire identity of your company, and although branding has always been a vital part of any successful business, in today’s cacophonic environment, you need to work much harder in order to stand out. Any B2B company that doesn’t have cohesive branding isn’t going to stay in someone’s mind for very long. 

Jerome Bruner, one of the most influential psychologists of the 21st century, found that we are 20 times more likely to remember a fact when it has been wrapped in a story, simply because a story triggers our emotions, helps us relate, and infuses an emotional connection. This is simply the way our brains work. 

 

Storytelling is hardly a new phenomenon. It is an integral part of the human existence. From early cave drawings to oral stories passed down from one generation to the other, to the formation of language and print, stories have always been a central core of the human experience. Hardly surprising then, that storytelling has always been the central pivot of good marketing. From print ads to TV commercials, every brand has a unique story to tell, and the way brands choose to communicate their vision and values shapes the way they are perceived.  

Yet too many B2B companies underestimate the power of storytelling in their B2B marketing strategies. Whether in cybersecurity, fintech or data analytics, more often than not, we see chewed up jargon wrapped in too many facts and data instead of creative, engaging stories. As Dave Harland notes, this commonly overused terminology does nothing for your marketing efforts. 


Recognize yourself in any of these “famous five”? 

  • Our automated/AI/ smart/agile/ technology
    (oh, as opposed to everyone else who is still drawing on cave walls. Phew!) 
  • We are experts/leaders/best in class/revolutionary platform 
    (good thing to differentiate yourself from all the others who are obviously amateurs…) 
  • The platform/solution/business you can trust 
    (now, think about who always says: “you can trust me” in movies. Yep, it’s the bad guy) 
  • We provide outstanding/groundbreaking/innovative service 
    (self-love is great, but let others be the judge) 
  • We are passionate about cybersecurity/big data/IT solutions 
    (Umm…maybe it’s time for a better life work balance? Be passionate about your partner, lover, or both. Your soccer team, your politics. Well… you get it)

Any B2B startup’s marketing efforts should first and foremost appeal to people’s emotions. That can only be achieved through the art of storytelling. Incorporating creative storytelling in B2B marketing gives your company a human feel, making it much more attractive, relatable, and memorable in customers’ minds. It serves to build a long-term relationship with your audience and turn them into loyal customers.

The irresistible power of storytelling is a strategic business tool, notes Harrison Monarth, a leading global marketeer and New York Times bestselling author. This is not to say that facts and figures are not important, but they alone will not create an emotional bond with your audience. Instead of hard selling through self-boasting tactics, B2B startups need to focus on the tremendous value that creative storytelling brings to their service or product, and how it will serve to build their brand.  Think of storytelling as the sum of all parts which will serve to:  

  • Communicate your values, engage, and forge an emotional connection.
  • Help your clients better understand your offering. 
  • Provide a competitive advantage that drives growth. 
  • Build a memorable brand. 

At Sage Marketing, we specialize in creative storytelling for startups in the fast lane. From creating brand names to developing your brand strategy and formulating captivating brand messaging, we do it all. 

Every great brand was once just an idea. What sets the best apart from the rest is not how good their story is, but how they choose to tell it. 

Tell us your story, and we’ll spread the word around.

8 Essential tips to get PR done right for your startup

Limor
Blog Start-Up Tips

As a business owner, you know that public relations is essential. But that’s easier said than done, right? After all, how exactly do you run a successful Public relations (PR) campaign for your startup?  

If you’re just starting, this guide to startup PR strategies has all the information you need to get started and essential tips to increase your chances of gaining media coverage.

PR can be a powerful tool for raising awareness of your company and its products or services, but keep in mind that it’s not something that will happen overnight. After all, PR is more than just press releases. It’s about establishing relationships with the right people who can help you spread the word about your brand and build strong relationships over time.


Marketing and PR – What’s the Difference?

There’s a lot of confusion about what marketing and PR are, and the two terms have been used interchangeably so much that it’s become almost impossible to tell them apart.

But what does marketing mean? And how does PR differ from marketing?

I like to think about Marketing vs. PR this way.

Marketing provides a holistic view of the company from different angles and through dozens of mediums. It helps you create a cohesive message for your brand by creating content that resonates with your audience at every stage of their journey. Marketing can be communicated through your brand identity, social media strategy, paid and organic ads, or dozens of other mediums.

PR, on the other hand, helps you communicate with your target audience through objective, third-party (and therefore trustworthy) sources like news outlets, blogs, or other content creators.

As Sarit Lamerovich, CEO and founder of Sage Marketing, says, “When a journalist writes about a company, it helps to shape image, build a reputation and is considered trustworthy. It builds brand validation, endorsement, and credibility. Your reputation is a sum of everything you do plus everything is said or written about you.”

So how does PR work? The obvious answer is writing press releases, securing interviews, and speaking engagements. But it’s not just about getting your name in the news (although that’s part of it); it’s also about telling the world who you are and what you stand for.

So how does PR work? There are press releases, interviews, and speaking engagements. But it’s not just about getting your name in the news (although that’s part of it); it’s also about telling the world who you are and what you stand for.

You can use a variety of mediums to achieve this goal: online media sites, industry groups, newspapers, magazines, YouTube, podcasts, and the list goes on! But no matter where you put yourself out there—whether through an interview or by sending out press releases—you need to have some sort of strategy in place before you start talking with anyone. 


1. Define your goals

A successful first step in your startup PR strategyis identifying what you want to achieve. After all, how will you know if it’s successful without a clear objective? Here are some questions below to help you define your goals.

  • Are you looking to increase brand awareness? 
  • Do you need to grow your share of voice (SOV)?
  • Do you want to get the attention of investors? 
  • Are you seeking exposure to your work environment?
  • Maybe you need to build trust by being featured on a leading content source. 

Whatever your reason for engaging in a PR campaign, those goals must align with all other aspects of the campaign. Ultimately, how you define success and your goals will impact the story you tell. The key is to define those goals before you begin to accurately determine how well the campaign meets them once it is completed. 


2. Know your audience

To start a successful PR campaign, you must define your audience, better known as your target market. This group of people will benefit most from your product, service or newsworthy item.

To find out your target audience, ask yourself questions like: What do these users care about? What motivates them? Who do they look up to in society? What media do they consume regularly, and where do they consume it?

Once you’ve figured out these answers, try getting to know them better by following their favorite Twitter accounts or Instagram influencers—anything that will help you understand their interests and desires will be valuable information for planning PR campaigns.


3. Make time for relationships! 

PR is so much more than just sending press releases or pitching stories, it’s about building relationships with journalists.t. You can start off by sending weekly updates on your company’s activities to journalists who cover relevant topics so they can use them in their stories.

It’s also important to remember that journalists are people like everyone else. They have interests, they have questions, and they have lives outside of work. If you want your pitch to be taken seriously, you need to show them that you understand their world as well as your own—and that means being human when you’re communicating with them!


4. Craft your message

Once you have your goals and target audience firmly in mind, it’s time to craft your story. To establish a successful PR campaign, you need to know exactly what message you’re trying to send. 

If your company is launching a new product or service and you have access to the right people in the media, it’s relatively straightforward. All you need to do is share the latest exclusive news so they can post it to their readers.But if this isn’t your situation (or even if it is), chances are that crafting messages for public consumption will require some hefty work.

A good place to start is by considering why this message might be helpful to your audience: 

How does it relate to their needs?

  • Does it provide information about something relevant in their lives?
  • Does it inspire them with an idea or two?
  • Will it impact their business in positive or more efficient ways?

Compelling messages build on the core elements presented above: they are relevant to your audience, specific and clear, easy to read and understand, and (most importantly) actionable. Overall, a successful message will help get your point across. 


5. Choose a target media sources

Now that you’ve done your research, it’s time to decide which publication is right for you. Remember, the goal isn’t just getting views on your story; it’s getting the views from the people who matter to your business. Choosing the target publications with the right audience is crucial.

Media relations professionals might consider local over national audiences, print over broadcast or trade over general media. Defining your media for your story can make or break your success.

For example, if you’re in retail, don’t pitch your story to a publication (digital or print) specializing in technology just because they have more readers than the fashion magazine down the street. It won’t help you reach your target audience and may even hurt your reputation as an expert in retail.

Also, keep in mind the kind of tone and style of writing used by this publication. If their articles are humorous or sarcastic, you might not be wise to approach them with an overly earnest pitch (unless that’s how your business operates).

Don’t neglect Podcasts –  Many of today’s mainstream podcasts are fresh enough to be accessible and interested in interviewing startup founders. That makes podcasts one of the best places to invest in PR efforts. We recently published a post titled – The best startup podcastsin 2022. Give them a listen!


6. Pitch your story 

If you have a great opportunity to pitch to an editor, the first thing to remember is that they don’t know you. They don’t know your company or your product. You need to give them a reason to care!

  • Use a PR pitch checklist (or template)
  • Be concise
  • Be clear and direct in your writing style
  • Personalize the pitch by including relevant facts about the publication and its audience—if possible. If not, don’t sweat it! Just make sure you’re clear and focused on each point so they’re not left wondering what’s happening with this weird email from someone they’ve never heard from before… Also, try being interesting/creative if possible! Two birds with one stone!

This leads me to the next point…


7. Follow up

Follow up with editors who have opened up dialogue with you about your story. How will you know if they’re interested in sharing your news if you don’t follow up?

Make sure to send a follow-up email if the editor hasn’t responded within 24 hours since you first reached out. In this email, recap the details of your initial pitch and ask if they have any questions or concerns. Most importantly, remind them of why you’re reaching out in the first place: to share your news.


8. Celebrate your wins! 

When running a PR strategy, it can be tempting to think that every press release should be a major story. But the truth is, not every press release needs to be a major story. When something goes well for your company, celebrate it! Spread the word about what went right so other people will want to work with/buy from/partner with you too!

In our experience, one of the best ways to do this is by writing an employee spotlight blog post about the employee who made the success happen. This type of blog post can be written in any style you like—you don’t have to follow any particular format—but we’ve found that highlighting employee achievements helps build up your brand and makes employees feel appreciated.


Conclusion

I hope this article has helped you better understand the PR process. Put these strategies into practice for your business, or reach out to us to manage your campaign; we’re always here to help take your brand to the next level.

If you want to learn more about how we can help you with your public relations needs, reach out to us anytime!

Inbound vs. Outbound marketing for B2B startups

Blog Inbound vs. Outbound Start-Up Tips

Like most things in life, B2B marketing is complicated. It is multifaceted, constantly evolving, and has many different categories and subsects. 

Of those, one common categorization is the discussion revolving around inbound marketing vs. outbound marketing. If you’re unfamiliar with the concepts, that’s A-okay; we’re going to delve into it.


What’s the difference between inbound marketing and outbound marketing?

Outbound marketing and inbound marketing are terms that describe the difference between whether your marketing activities proactively reach out to your customers (outbound) or focus on creating content that draws them in (inbound).

Due to its nature, outbound marketing tends to be more intense and wide-sweeping, while inbound is more subtle and focused on nurturing the incoming leads over time.

Both marketing concepts present their strengths and purposes for furthering a B2B company’s goals for brand awareness and lead generation. And although they utilize different tactics, they are often most effective when used in combination.

Source: CIENCE


Let’s work it out: Outbound

Outbound marketing was born first. This is what most people think of when they think of marketing – things like:

  • Newspaper ads
  • TV commercials
  • Radio ads
  • Direct emails

With the tech age came new, modern outbound tactics like:

  • Pop-up ads
  • Banner and display ads
  • Cold email marketing
  • Cold calling 
  • Social media outreach (mostly LinkedIn)

Outbound marketing “pushes” information to consumers in its target audience for the purpose of grabbing their attention and converting them to a lead.

In today’s oversaturated market, where each industry is awash with impressive competitors and a wide range of offerings for consumers, outbound marketing is an extremely vital tool for early-stage B2B start-ups to capture the attention of their target audiences, increase their brand awareness, and grow.

But, just like all things, there’s doing something, and then there’s doing something well. 

How do you make sure you fall into the latter category?


Conduct thorough research

The beauty of outbound marketing is that you get to choose exactly who you’re pitching to, especially with more pinpointed activities like LinkedIn outreach, cold calling, and email marketing. 

However, this means that in order to have high outbound success rates, you need to be methodic in who you target. So, be sure to conduct thorough research on your target audience, where they spend time online, their challenges and pain points, and what they’re looking for in a product or service like yours. 


Personalize your messages and customize your content

Not only will conducting thorough research help you choose the right people to pitch to, but it also means you’ll be able to properly customize your messaging to appeal to them. Why?

Because you will have taken the time to understand what makes them tick, what their pains are, and how your product solves that pain – and you will build your messaging to address exactly that.

A perfect example of this is account-based marketing (ABM), which is when companies pinpoint specific target audience members who are ideal potential customers and then conduct outreach to them with customized messaging.

ABM is a key piece of outreach that can ensure high-quality leads are being educated about your brand and entering the pipeline.


Analyze & adjust to optimize target personas

The final thing you want to make sure you do is analyze your results as you conduct your outbound and use those insights to fine-tune your target audiences and personas.

This is key because it can take time to pinpoint your perfect messaging, and it can’t be done without testing and analysis.

Unfortunately, some outbound results are slightly difficult to measure, but using A/B testing for activities like LinkedIn outreach messages and cold call scripts are a great way to overcome this.

Remember – outbound marketing is an excellent way to bring in leads from a broader audience and target potential customers, so long as it is conducted with tact and attention.

Integrating your outbound tools with your CRM can facilitate this by enabling you to create clean databases, funnels, and movement from outbound to inbound campaigns.

Source: Encharge.io 


Diving into it: Inbound

As I mentioned earlier, inbound marketing is a strategy that involves creating unique, engaging content to entice potential customers to take an interest in your company. 

Marketers build their inbound marketing activities by combining various of the following materials: 

  • Social media posts
  • Email newsletters
  • Blog posts
  • Infographics
  • White papers
  • Polls
  • E-guides 

Unlike outbound, inbound marketing aims to gently, over longer periods of time, increase brand awareness, educate your audience about your solution, and nurture them into happy, paying customers.

Inbound is a fantastic way to organically (and cheaply) target relevant audiences and increase your potential reach, but only when done correctly. Here are best practices for inbound marketing:


Best Practices:


Be consistent

A major key factor to maintaining successful inbound marketing activities is to stay consistent

Publishing one blog post per year, one social media post every two months, and a poll when you feel like it is not going to give you the results you want. 

Build a social media Gantt filled with engaging content that focuses on your target audience rather than your product, hire a content writer to craft a blog or two each month containing highly ranked SEO terms in your industry, and quickly create a monthly newsletter in HubSpot to share exciting news and industry trends with your audience.

You can choose a variety of inbound activities, but whatever you pick, make sure that 1) you’re consistent with it and 2) that it provides real value to your audience. 

That’s another thing; don’t create content simply for the sake of checking something off your list – invest time and thought into it so that you really catch your audience’s attention.

Invest in a good CRM

Did you notice that I mentioned HubSpot

You’re gonna wanna have that, if you don’t already.

A good CRM is going to take loads of tedious tasks off your plate when it comes to executing your inbound marketing tactics.

HubSpot enables marketers to quickly build attractive, personalized marketing materials like newsletters, as well as keep track of incoming leads as they move through the funnel.

Know your customer

A last key tip to executing a successful inbound marketing strategy is to know your customers well.

Since inbound is all about drawing your target audience in, you need to know what their pains are and how your product solves them so that you can effectively grab their attention.

This includes knowing your ideal customer profile (ICP) and target buyer personas, which means researching the following characteristics:

  • Title
  • Role
  • Motivations at work
  • Skill set
  • Pain points 

Once you figure these out, you need to wrap that information in a beautiful, creative bow and put it out for them to stumble upon.


There’s no “I” in 360° Marketing.

Now that you’ve heard the differences between outbound and inbound marketing and best practices for each, I’ve got a secret for you – you can’t only pick one.

The most successful startups these days are using a combination of both strategies in order to build their brand awareness, fill their pipeline with relevant leads, and grow in their prospective industries.

If you’ve only utilized inbound up until now, it’s vital that you start incorporating outbound strategies. Mixing in some email marketing, cold calling, social media outreach, and ABM-based tactics will give your lead generation machine the boost that you’ve been looking for.

Remember: outbound enables you to bring in leads from a broader audience that you may have missed otherwise if only utilizing inbound.

And likewise, if you’ve only used outbound until now, there’s no time like the present to start mixing in some inbound.

If the prospect of tackling both inbound and outbound overwhelms you, consider partnering with a startup marketing agency that can do it for you.

This is SAGE GoHo’s area of expertise – combining both techniques with smart cross-marketing, omnichannel activities that can take your startup brand awareness and lead generation to new heights.

Sound interesting? Contact us to learn what Sage can do for your inbound & outbound efforts, or, schedule a short discovery call with one of our experts, it’s free:)