A word from a CEO #26

You build a brand one person at a time

I’ve been thinking about something a lot lately.

We now have over 300 people at Drift, and are about to host our third annual HYPERGROWTH event in Boston. And when you move so quickly, it’s easy to forget what got us here. What really helped us build this brand and this community.

And that is this:

We built the brand one person at a time.

We focused on every interaction we had — with anyone we encountered as a business. Whether they were a customer, a vendor, or whoever.

I was reminded of this when I chatted with someone on LinkedIn recently who I’d met back when we were in our Cambridge office.

Back then, this person was delivering food for lunch.

And all I did was treat him like we all want to be treated. I welcomed him as a guest in our office and was nice to him, smiled at him, said hello. And I did that because it was the right thing to do — and was an aspect of the culture of respect I wanted to cultivate at Drift.

What I didn’t know at the time was he was actually the owner of the restaurant, which was a startup just like us. Fast-forward to a few years later, and he now works for a large customer of ours.

And since that day at our office, he has been an advocate for Drift. He promotes us on social media and is an internal supporter at his current company. All because of that one, simple interaction.

It doesn’t matter if you are a business owner, an individual contributor or a manager. If you want to build a business, focus on every interaction you have. And not just externally via marketing, or sales, or social media. But also when someone — anyone — shows up to your office.

That is the one free thing we did that helped us build this hypergrowth business.

Tell me, what was the last great interaction you had with a brand?

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