SmartBear has been around for a decade now and largely remained under the radar — but that’s about to change.
The software development toolkit provider finds itself in the enviable position of feeling both like a nimble startup in hypergrowth mode and an established, stable company. Today, SmartBear is building and equipping its marketing department to spread the word about all it has to offer. We stopped in to see what this new, supercharged team has planned for the future.
EMPLOYEES: 500+ globally, 230 locally.
WHERE THEY DO IT: Somerville, overlooking the river.
WHAT THEY DO: SmartBear makes tools and hosts open-source communities for software development, testing automation, API management and collaboration.
NOTABLE PERKS: 100 percent of medical deductibles are paid by the company, and there’s a generous fitness reimbursement plan.
Courtney Cunnane, VP, Demand Generation
It’s Courtney’s job to lead and inspire the team that gets the SmartBear story out to their target audience and generates leads.
BEYOND WORK: Courtney is into yoga, running, baking and traveling, although recently, most of that has been replaced by running after her two toddlers.
What’s it like working on the marketing team right now?
The marketing team is in an interesting place right now. We have some people who have been on the team for years, but also a whole lot of new people — not to mention a whole lot of new roles to fill. I'd say that the team's culture is still being built, but there's a really strong foundation of collaboration and drive. On this team, it seems like there's a constant conversation going on, be it brainstorming or talking about the Celtics. People are friendly, open and smart, which makes this a great place to be, as well as work.
What other teams do you interact with regularly to be successful?
I interact with the product, sales and information systems teams every day, as well as with the entire executive team. It's critical that I understand what's happening across the business so that I can give my team guidance. I'm impressed with how eager people are to pull other departments into their projects. We know there's so much knowledge and value walking around this office, and we want to include it whenever we can.
On this team, it seems like there's a constant conversation going on, be it brainstorming or talking about the Celtics. People are friendly, open and smart, which makes this a great place to be, as well as work.”
What are some of the things you’re excited to accomplish with the team this year?
I’m really excited to build out my full team. We have six open roles right now, and once we fill those, then we will be a team of about 20. I’m also looking forward to accelerating our marketing plans for some of our newer products. We have a great track record of driving growth through innovative marketing, and we’ll definitely be doing more of that. By 2020, we'll have a fully staffed team that can get the SmartBear story out and engage buyers the right way, at each point in the buying process. And, we're going to have fun doing it.
Cynthia Gumbert, CMO
Cynthia is in charge of shaping the vision, direction, and culture of the team. She helps deliver on the company's larger goals and overall strategy.
BEYOND WORK: Cynthia likes to spend time with her husband and two teenage boys. Be it skiing, golfing, biking or gardening, you’ll find her outside.
What about SmartBear got your attention? What about the company got you excited and made you want to join?
Before I became a marketer, I was an engineer and what got my attention about SmartBear was the technology. It's disruptive, smart, easy to access and use, and overall, way ahead of the competition. When I started looking for a new job, SmartBear seemed like a hidden gem. The headquarters are in Assembly Row in Sommerville and have these gorgeous views of the Mystic River. I had been following the company for a while and watching its portfolio of products and global presence grow. With its growth and massive following among developers, I knew it had the potential to become the next big Boston tech hit — the next Hubspot or Drift.
I love that SmartBear is a medium-sized company that's growing very fast. There are a lot of opportunities for anyone to come and make an impact quickly. There are a lot of exciting projects, and we work at the pace of a startup but have the benefits of scale and stability you get at a larger company.
The marketing team is in the process of growing — why should someone join the team now?
Right now, the team is a mixture of people who've been here for a long time and those, like me, who are very new. And, of course, we have a lot of open positions, so there should be a lot of new faces here in the near future. This has made a lot of opportunities not only for people just joining the team but for those already in place. Team members have had the chance to step up and take on new challenges that may not have been there if we weren't growing so quickly. I've always had a passion for mentoring younger, talented people who are entering the workplace, and there's a lot of room for me to do that here.
I also love that SmartBear is a medium-sized company that's growing very fast. There are a lot of opportunities for anyone to come and make an impact quickly.”
Where are things going on the team in the next couple of years?
We are breaking down the boundaries between the marketing team and the rest of the company. My philosophy is that every employee and every user of any of our products is a potential marketer. At our core, we need exceptional marketers who are driven by data and results, creativity and smart investments. In the future, more of the team's job will be to uncover, curate and amplify the great stories and ideas for content and interaction that come from anywhere. With this community approach, we are doubling down on the company's mission to let developers more efficiently plan, build, review, test and deploy software.
Ryan Pinkham, Associate Director, Demand Generation
Ryan drives the demand generation strategy for the company's SaaS products. As such, he manages a team of demand generation managers across the U.S. and Europe.
BEYOND WORK: Ryan is obsessed with golf, which has recently taken over his weekends.
You’ve been with SmartBear for a couple of years now. What was your role when you joined the team?
I joined SmartBear in a content marketing role, which is what I had been doing since I started my career. In the first year that I was here, SmartBear acquired one of the most popular open-source projects in the API development space. That was then launched into a new commercial product, which opened up a role to manage demand generation for the new product. SmartBear completely changed the course of my career, and I have spent the last four years getting the best possible education I could ask for. I've also been able to step into a leadership role on the team, and I get to work with other marketers looking to build their careers in demand generation. It's been incredibly rewarding.
As you moved roles and have grown professionally, did the company support you?
I was lucky to have a great support system as I transitioned into new roles. When I first switched into a demand generation role, I worked with the CMO and CEO to help set the strategy for the product. That helped me develop a whole new set of skills and taught me a lot about working with a company's leadership team. As SmartBear has grown, we've done an amazing job hiring talented leaders. I'm better at my job and a better manager today because of the leaders I've had the chance to work with and learn from.
SmartBear completely changed the course of my career, and I have spent the last four years getting the best possible education I could ask for.”
What are some of the projects new hires will be working on this year?
We have some teams that are at a stage where new hires will completely redefine how we think of a particular area of marketing. We are acquiring and launching new products, so new hires will have a chance to be involved in bringing new products to market. We need new leaders who will bring their experience to help shape our marketing strategy. We need people who are looking to learn new skills and contribute in new and innovative ways. It's a great time to be a SmartBear.