This question gives you a chance to share your knowledge of creative marketing processes and related common preferences or objections that customers might have. Your answer should be both technical and solution-oriented.
While the ability to scale a service up or down has obvious financial advantages, do not focus on price too much in your answer. It's more dignifying to a customer not to emphasize budgetary limitations unless they do. This will also tell your interviewer that you can sell on value and not just on price; an important skill for a representative selling premium products.
Marin Software Interview Questions
We let customers scale up or down on creative support needs like design, testing, and application use. They can choose to fully outsource these needs or receive training to handle them in-house. Why is this a great selling point?
This question gives you a chance to share your knowledge of creative marketing processes and related common preferences or objections that customers might have. Your answer should be both technical and solution-oriented.
"When selling marketing solutions, you'll find that companies can appear the same from the outside, but their internal needs vary greatly. This could mean that that one client needs full-scale support because they have a lean internal marketing team that can't handle any tasks related to their ad campaigns, while another company may need partial support because their team has analysts and web developers, but they don't have people talented in concept and design. Being able to lean on an agency just in the areas of need allows customers to avoid redundant advertising expenses while they focus on the areas where they can make the strongest contribution."
"Some marketing teams want to employ the latest strategies and tools, but they don't have the skills to do so in-house. Their in-house staff might be so large that it doesn't make sense to use outsourced services, or it could be that financial backing is slim. Either way, they are looking for ways to stay up to speed at the lowest possible cost. In either case, investing in training for existing staff provides a solution that will repeatedly pay off. They'll be able to handle backend, design, and other advertising tasks proficiently, and at the same time limit agency engagement to a strictly as-needed basis."
Tell me about your greatest work accomplishment.
Talking about your greatest accomplishment will give the interviewer a strong idea of where you place your values. It will also show the interviewer more about your personality, how you like to be motivated, and how to coach you in the future. It is okay to brag a little bit when answering this question. Show that you are proud of yourself and your career accomplishments!
"The greatest accomplishment in my career was graduating University as an honors student while still working full time in a related field. I was top of my class, and working full time. This showed me that I am able to dedicate myself to my career, and reach the goals that I set for myself. It felt great to accomplish so much and be recognized for my dedication."
"I have many accomplishments that I am very proud of. Overall, I would say that my greatest work accomplishment is the positive reputation that I have in this industry."
Marin Software seeks to hire those with strong problem solving skills. When were you able to successfully resolve a problem in the workplace?
Problem-solving and dispute resolution are critical skills to possess. Display to the interviewer that you are capable of problem-solving within the workplace. Talk about a time when you were creative, proactive, and displayed the leadership qualities required to resolve a workplace issue.
"In my most recent position we had a consistent problem with employees showing up late for their shifts or calling in sick at the very last moment. Rather than the typical documenting and reprimanding style that management usually takes, I decided to track the results of an accountability reward system. For 180 days, my employees were rewarded for coming to work 10 minutes early. Also, for every month with zero sick days, a bonus was added. In the end, we awarded those with perfect attendance a $600 bonus. The bonus' cost us less money, in the end than the cost of lowered productivity due to absent employees. The program was a success, and upper management chose to keep it implemented for another six months. We will re-assess in December, but it seems to be working very well."
"I was working in a clinic where the primary population was low income. We had a lot of concerns with patients not showing up for appointments when expected. The staff wanted to start double-booking patient time slots. Instead, I got permission to spend a day in a highly-rated clinic serving the same population. Instead of scheduling, they had these 'drop-in mornings' with a common waiting room. I took these methods and incorporated them into our setting. We did that twice a week, and it completely solved our scheduling problem."
Marin Software offers powerful tools to enhance audience targeting in addition to their core service. How do you convince a customer that they should elect to add them to their package?
The purpose of this question is to find out what your technique is for selling additional services, or upselling. You should able to sell additional services without making your core product sound incomplete, and at the same time make the customer understand that they'll miss an opportunity to maximize results without them. Your answer should incorporate sales strategy and demonstrate your knowledge of audience targeting tools.
"I would convince my customer that they should use our audience targeting service by explaining that when planning for ad campaigns, their message reaching the right audience will make the difference between good and excellent results. I would ask my customer what their current method for audience targeting is. Their answer will help me understand if they already have an audience planning process, ideal customer profiles, audience segments, user interest insights, and how they pivot on their data. I'll listen for areas where they can improve. Afterward, I'll explain that there are even more ways to enhance their strategy. With data, they'll see how our tools can make their performance exceed expectations."
"Knowing how to convince a customer to add a service is about understanding their needs. When it comes to audience targeting, most companies have a good idea of who their audiences are. While speaking with them, I need to listen for areas where they want to optimize. The best way to upsell a customer is to show them areas of opportunity they're missing out on. For example, do they currently have an audience plan, and way to compare it to campaign results? Do they have audiences segmented out and can they monitor how each segment interacts with their ads? Does their current plan allow them to reach the right members of their audience at appropriate times? If the answer to any of these is no, it's my job to show them how our tools will deliver in those areas while providing numbers to justify the additional cost."
A client you're pitching tells you that they know performance tracking is important, but it's their least favorite thing to do. How does knowing this help you to provide value to them?
Listening and being able to solve problems are important when it comes to providing value during the selling process. The interviewer wants to know if you're the kind of sales representative that simply follows a presentation script or if you'll actually listen to your customer to know what product or service features you should educate them on most.
Don't answer this question with the main focus being performance tracking; instead, answer with providing value being your main focus.
"When a customer tells me directly or indirectly that I have a solution to their woes, I provide value to them by probing to get as many details as possible. In this case, I'd want to know why performance tracking is their least favorite thing to do. Is their reporting process too manual? If so, our automation tools will resolve that. Or, has the customer told me that the metrics data is hard to decipher, which makes it difficult to share with other team members in a way they can understand? In that case, I can walk them through our dashboard which is easy on the eyes and simple enough for anyone to understand. Whatever their issue is, I will listen and get to know more so I can talk to the relevant aspects of our service."
"When I know that my product will deliver relief to a customer, I provide value to them by explaining how it will address their specific pain points. I need to have built rapport with them and made my presentation conversational rather than talking at them while I rush through slides in order for this to work. If they have told me they don't like performance tracking because it takes too much time, I'll explain how our product will help them to do it faster. If they're frustrated because their system outputs their data in a way that's not useful, I'll show them our tool which will allow them to easily pivot data and consider it from different angles. Lastly, if the customer tells me they dislike performance tracking so much that they end up letting it fall through the cracks, I'll show them how our tools can automate the process, and how using them to stay consistent will be beneficial to their bottom line."
What questions do you have for me?
It's always a great idea to have questions ready for the interviewer. Review the company website and other online resources to ensure the questions you are asking are not mundane, or redundant. The last thing an interviewer wants to hear is a list of questions you could have found the answers to from simply watching a video on their company site!
Here are some sample questions:
- When would you like to have this position filled?
- How long has this role been vacant?
- Is this a replacement search or a newly created role?
- What is your favorite part about working here?
- What is the company's primary goal for this position in the next 12 months?
- Is there anything from my background and experience that I can clarify for you?
- What do you see as the biggest change in this industry over the past 3 years?
- Is there any reason why you would not hire me?
"Thank you for asking - I do have a few questions. What is top of mind when it comes to filling this role? In addition, what types of career growth opportunities would follow this position? And lastly, do you have internal candidates who are also interviewing for this position?"
Can you describe a time a client required a customized marketing solution, your role in the process of creating and deploying it, and any collaborative efforts involved?
The interviewer asks this question to understand your level of experience with selecting or creating the right marketing technology for a client's needs. From your answer, they'll try to determine if you already have skills that will allow you to immediately be an asset to them in this area of their process.
To answer this question, you should first confirm that you have experienced working with a client that required a custom solution in the past. In summarized detail, you should explain what your role in the client's project was, their technology need, and how you determined that it would require a custom solution. You should concisely explain who else was involved to build the solution - analysts, developers, or 3 party vendors, e.g.
Finally, explain how you were able to test the solution and successfully roll it out for use with the client.
Do not talk about projects where you had minimal involvement or focus on team efforts saying 'we' when referring to action taken. Say 'I' and talk about your direct involvement in a project. The interviewer wants to hear about your contribution and expertise.
"Yes, I was an Account Manager to a client that wanted to measure and compare key metrics from different sources. We reviewed the features on all of the tools we had at the time, but none allowed us to see all the data in one place. I explained the problem to our analysts on staff who found a way to pull raw files that contained the data from our system. They automated a process where it would regularly transfer and sort into Excel. They also created an easy interface where I, or any basic Excel user could access and manipulate the data.
After they created the tool, I tested it with them for two weeks to make sure it was working correctly. I then shared it with our client and we were able to use it throughout their campaign."
"Yes, my current employer has clients that need to track audience engagement on their website and social pages. As a Marketing Coordinator, I am tasked with admin duties like maintaining the systems they've selected to track results. When clients want to add or subtract features to suit their needs, I read through program FAQs or contact the software program helpdesks to walk me through the configuration of the features. I'm continually responsible for reporting and ensuring the reports allow us to see results in the way the clients prefer based on their feedback."
If you could start your career over again, what direction would you take?
A hiring manager will be able to tell a lot about your personality by learning about your other career interests. If you could do anything over, what would you do, and why?
"I certainly do not regret the direction I have taken my career; however, if I had to completely start over in a new direction I would likely pursue my Degree in Education and become a teacher. Both of my parents were teachers and they seemed to have a very fulfilling career. I enjoy coaching and leading others so, any tasks in my current career that related to these skills, are very welcome."
"I am very satisfied with the direction my career has taken. If I could change anything I would perhaps have furthered my education to include a more unique focus; however, I have no regrets!"
If brought on for a sales position with Marin Software, you may need to adapt quickly in order to appeal to the needs of consumers. What are some key factors you considered when crafting an ad or sales pitch to appeal potential customers?
Marin Software works with a diverse set of clients who have different interests, lifestyles, and needs. You will need great listening skills and the ability to perceive what your client needs are. This way, you can best craft your sales pitch or advertising to appeal to that client.
The interviewer wants to know how you adapt to address your client's key pain points, needs, and desires. Talk about how you crafted your ad or sales pitch to address a need, solve a pain point, or appeal to your client or clients.
"When speaking with potential clients, I ask key questions and take time to hear any unique challenges they may be facing. I then suggest the best product or service to solve their problem, explaining in detail how our product or service will improve their day to day life."
"In my last position, my client produced waterproof flashlights. A large number of our customers were campers. In my advertising, I used natural imagery, and a rugged outdoors look. I used keywords, such as 'Mountains', 'Great Outdoors' and 'Hiking' to appeal to campers. I explained in my ads how a waterproof flashlight was more durable and would work outside, in the rain, wind, and snow, where other flashlights would fail."
What is your current salary?
A potential employer will often base their offer on your current salary. You should be transparent about your most recent earnings and be prepared to back up any salary requests.
"I am currently earning a base salary of $78,000 plus a car allowance of $900/month and health benefits. I am looking for a competitive salary in my next position."
"I am currently making $100,000 per year with two bonus opportunities. I am looking for compensation that is aligned with the role and provides opportunity for growth."
Our company values employees with an entrepreneurial spirit. Do you believe your approach to sales and career goals are a match for this kind of culture, and if so, why?
The interviewer will ask these questions wanting to know if you have experience working in an environment similar to their own. They would like to hear some details related to your working style, short and long term goals, and how you've been able to grow a business, with examples of why you would be a fit in their organization. Your answer should match elements of their overall culture. You can also incorporate numbers related to your achievements to substantiate your claims.
Do not answer this question without doing research on the company and the people that work there. This is a crucial part of successfully answering culture-fit questions in an interview. If you're not entirely sure what their culture is, you can let them know you've done some research but would like some more information, then ask them to describe it to you briefly before you provide an answer.
"I think that my approach and long-term goals are definitely a match for your company. I've held a position with a company where the environment was highly entrepreneurial. I started with a very small book of business that I was expected to grow with very little training or direction. It was up to me to ensure I understood the company's objectives and target customers to effectively prospect. I also had to stay highly organized and consistent in the absence of a real process or system. I provided feedback and worked with the management to establish flexible processes and goals that helped me and our small team stay focused yet agile. After two years, I had grown my business from 35 to 300 active customers that were placing orders on a regular basis. I'm looking for the same kind of rewarding experience again, and even better, I eventually see myself leading newer sales professionals to the same success."
"My goals are very well aligned with your culture and the direction of your company. When I hear you say that you value employees with an entrepreneurial mindset, to me, that means that you are very growth-focused. As a salesperson whose job is to bring revenue to a company, I've experienced both the hunting and farming aspects of sales, but the hunting activities are where growth really comes from. I enjoy being a hunter more than anything. I have taken a number of positions where there were little to no existing sales and called on prospects over and over again until they finally recognized my company's name and felt comfortable enough to buy. My goal after that was to continue to stay in front of those customers and build long-term partnerships, but I never lost focus of going after new opportunities. In my current position, I've increased sales by 10% or more year-over-year. This year I'm on pace to grow my accounts by even more."
Marin Software understands that managing social media marketing efforts can be difficult and time consuming for its clients. What are some different social media marketing tools or technology available to marketers?
Marin Software's hiring managers are interested in candidates with some knowledge or experience with social media marketing technology or tools. Knowledge of current offerings in the industry will help Marin Software better address unmet needs of current and future clients.
Begin by talking about some general categories of tools and offer up specific examples of each. Remember to touch upon the benefits these tools may offer marketers.
"As a developer, my work with corporate marketing departments gave me an understanding of different tools available to marketers to help them manage social media marketing efforts. There are platforms that help them track and manage their marketing on different social media channels in one place. A popular product in this category is Buffer - a tool which supported by many third party applications. Another type of tool is related to social media content management. Buzzsumo is an example of this type of tool as it, using data, helps determine worthy content topics and identifies the best social media channels to post the content on."
"Working in the marketing technology industry, I have been exposed to many different tools marketers use to manage their social media marketing. There are tools that help marketers create content including Canva which is a user friendly graphic design application allowing the quick creation of visuals for their social media channels. Other tools help with the scheduling of social media content. Edgar is an example of this type of tool as it allows marketers to schedule content on different channels and redistribute it at scheduled intervals to followers who may not have viewed it earlier."
Reporting and analytics are crucial for Marin Software to monitor and gauge results, and demonstrate ROI to clients. What is an example of a report you've created for a client and how the data from it helped you to plan the next steps of their campaign?
Here, the interviewer wants to make sure that you understand the importance of measuring and delivering results to clients who need a return on their investment, and that at some point, you've been responsible for monitoring and reporting on activities and outcomes. They also want to see if you are an analytical thinker, how you react to data, and what kind of data you're most familiar with.
You can answer by providing an example of a report you've created to track and show marketing activities, and key results. You may choose to tell them about reporting on a campaign that was successful or not and explain adjustments you made for increased success.
Do not talk about reports that you've administered without having responsibility for at least two out of the three following elements: gathering, reacting to or putting the data into presentation form.
"One of my client's goals was to increase the number of purchases completed through their website. They had no clear direction on how to do it. I added a sophisticated analytics tool to the back end of their website to see where traffic on their website was originating from, and to analyze the behavior of customers from the different sources. After compiling the data for a set time, I put it into a simple format to allow my client to see two metrics: Traffic Sources and Completed Sales. This report helped us to realize that most visitors that actually made purchases came from one social media site, so we decided to increase the budget for paid advertising there in order to reach more potential customers."
"I'm usually working with a number of clients who are on similar programs at the same time. The repetition in these programs allows me to suggest the most useful KPIs that they'll want to see on a weekly basis. For these clients, I find it efficient to pull high-level reports from our system that include website and blog traffic, click-thru rates, and other data to compare week-over-week results. We have quick calls with them to review every Friday and dig further into the data, what's caused fluctuations of any activity and if needed, adjust our course of action."
A sales position at Marin Software includes follow up calls and emails with our customers. Occasionally a customer may have a complaint about the product or service they received from us, explain how you would respond.
More than likely, positions at Marin Software will have an involvement in sales. Marin Software will want to assist their clients and help them achieve better performance on their advertising platform. Unfortunately, in any business, it's near impossible to have 100% customer satisfaction. Therefore, Marin Software will want to see how you handle customer complaints.
Handling customer concerns is an integral part of many sales roles. Describe how you can turn a negative situation into a positive while listening to and addressing the customer's interests.
"I see negative feedback as an opportunity to highlight our brand's dedication to customers. I respond to the feedback by validating the customer's concerns, apologizing if needed, and offering several suggestions for a solution to the problem."
"In my previous role, a customer sent an email to our office, she was dissatisfied because she had placed an order by mail, and the package had arrived damaged. I apologized to the customer for the inconvenience and took action quickly to correct the situation. I let the customer know that we would be speaking with our shipping agent regarding the incident, and would immediately ship out a replacement package free of charge."
What marketing tools do you work with regularly and how do you stay current on development updates and new product releases?
Your interviewer wants to know how familiar you are with the industry's applications. They also want to know if you intentionally stay up-to-date on new programs, tools, and product developments.
You can list the most popular tools you currently work with or have worked with in the past, and mention whether you have worked on proprietary systems. Mention any skills with less common programs that are in demand.
Avoid mentioning programs that you haven't worked with for 3-5+ years, or any system you aren't comfortable enough to have a user-level technical discussion about. Also, don't mention proprietary systems by name unless they were built on a well-known framework where your knowledge could transfer.
"I've worked on CRMs like Salesforce and SAP, and other proprietary programs. I'm also very familiar with Wordpress, and content automation services like Buffer and Social Pilot. I take time out to review product release emails I receive to stay aware of new features in the programs I use regularly. I read new tool reviews on blog posts that I come across while researching new solutions for my clients. I also watch at least one video per week on my free time about marketing strategy; this is another way to hear about new tools and tricks this."
"Currently, I'm working in a number of customer relationship databases, design tools for content creation, content management system, marketing automation and analytics tools. I follow industry leader newsletters, listen to podcasts, and occasionally visit tradeshows to stay on top of upcoming technologies in my field."
Marin Software believes that results should be measured to determine the success of marketing efforts. What are some key performance metrics you look at to decide whether marketing efforts have fallen short of, met, or exceeded expectations?
When working a sales position with Marin Software, rejection is a part of the job, what are your coping strategies for handling rejection?
At Marin Software we seek to hire individuals who have ambitions of growing their career. Where do you see yourself in 3-5 years?