Why I Joined Forecast: Frances MacPherson, Head of Demand Generation

Frances MacPherson

After 8+ years’ marketing experience in the tech industry helping startups and scaleups drive growth, I was ready for a new challenge that would take my skills to the next level. Here I am, three months into my role as Head of Demand Generation at Forecast, excited to share my journey so far and why I chose Forecast as my next destination.

 

My journey so far

Prior to joining Forecast, I’ve worked with and helped grow some amazing tech startups. My career actually began as a temp doing Sales Support at HR tech company Reward Gateway, but less than a month in, I was hired full time and made the transition to marketing. I was responsible for building our UK events programme - which was key to the marketing strategy - and was later adopted by Australia and the US. I stayed with the company for three and a half years, supporting their sale for $220m in 2016, then it was time to move on.

As much as I loved event marketing, I was eager to expand my skill set and get more involved in marketing automation, which I knew was crucial to the success of any scaling SaaS business. With that I moved to Cloud IQ as Sales and Marketing Operations Manager where I got to take advantage of my technical mindset and learned the importance of adopting a full funnel approach ensuring continuous sales and marketing alignment. Working closely with the sales and marketing teams, I developed their inbound strategy and was promoted to Marketing Manager.

My last role before joining Forecast was Senior Marketing Manager at DueDil, where I focused on demand generation. I worked with a bigger team ensuring that our marketing engine was always performing. What I’ve learned about myself during my years in marketing is that I’m very much a generalist and I enjoy looking at the bigger picture as much as I do zooming in on the detail.

 

Why I joined Forecast

What really stood out for me about Forecast was the company’s journey, their mission and their ambitious goals.

From my first interview with Dennis Kayser, Forecast’s CEO, I was inspired and knew I wanted to be part of that story. Whenever someone creates a business based on their personal experience, it’s going to resonate, and Forecast has real-life examples behind why it was built. Dennis’s quest to fix the system of managing projects and programs, a system that wasn’t fit for purpose because of the lack of advanced technology, really caught my attention. 

In line with that, the investment in product and technology really set Forecast apart. From a commercial standpoint, it’s always great to know that what you’re marketing and selling is driving value, and that the product is continuously progressing and evolving along with customer needs. Forecast’s product led approach shows that first and foremost the team is committed to building a platform that really will change the way people work forever.

This investment is already paying off, as Forecast managed to double the business in just six months during the global pandemic. Being growth oriented, and enjoying the excitement of working in a high performance environment, made me realize this was an opportunity I did not want to miss, and hearing Rob’s vision for the commercial team at Forecast really inspired me.

Last but not least, the team and culture was a major selling point for me. The commitment and drive of everyone at Forecast shone through during the interview process, and in my first three months. Working with a team of people who are passionate and proud, direct and honest, and delivering amazing work with oomph, is empowering. 

I also love the way despite all the hard work everyone at Forecast makes it fun. Our weekly wins meeting on a Friday is a highlight for me as the team come together and celebrate each other's wins. Team meetings are more than those stale zoom calls everyone’s probably been a part of at some stage or another, everyone’s very open and has a laugh with each other. This kind of company ethos is rare and I think absolutely key to growing a successful business. 

To everyone who’s starting remotely in a leadership position, I’d recommend making sure that you’re spending time with all the different business areas and aligning on the goals you’re delivering on. There’s no shortage of things to be done in a startup world, so it’s important that you’re aligned from the outset and prioritizing goals based on what delivers the most value. Communicate with all teams, make it clear where your focus lies, develop your plan, and get buy in from all sides!

 

What I’m excited about

In terms of the marketing function at Forecast, I feel like we’re starting from a place where we can do so much. The most exciting parts are figuring out what we should focus on that’s going to have the biggest impact on our growth as a business. So far, we’ve built a solid foundation and have been growing organically which is great.

It’s impressive how the business has scaled today based on that, and now’s the time to accelerate that growth and take the next step to becoming a market leader - all whilst putting our customer at the core of everything we do. We have to make sure we’re continuing to serve our customer’s needs now, anticipate how they might change in the future, and make Forecast the go-to company for building a more profitable business.

As a marketing team, we are actively hiring to support that growth, and I’m excited to see us grow together as a team and support the business in reaching its full potential. I can’t wait!

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