September 22, 2020Employee Spotlight: Mike Bridges
What makes AtScale stand out from the crowd? Our talented team. In this employee spotlight interview, we’re excited to introduce you to one of our newest members, Matt Zanderigo, Senior Director of Marketing and Business Development.
What is your role at AtScale?
A: I am the Senior Director of Marketing and Business Development and my role is to lead both the Marketing and Business Development Teams to generate demand for AtScale and to establish the market segment for semantic layer software.
How long have you been at the company for?
A: I joined AtScale a few weeks ago. The opportunity came up where they wanted to bring me on here and I was delighted to join. Chris Lynch, our CEO, was a seed investor for Sqrrl and I worked with Paul Lynch (AtScale’s SVP of Sales) – there as well. While I was at Sqrrl, I led the Demand Generation team.
Can you share how you began your career journey working in technology?
A: While completing my undergrad at the University of New Hampshire, I did several internships. My first one was actually at Otis Elevator Company, where I worked in emergency dispatch in a call center. I answered 50 calls per day from people that pushed the emergency button and were trapped in an Otis elevator. That was my first internship which “scared” me into tech.
At UNH, I was part of the Whittemore School, which is now the Peter T. Paul School of Business and Economics. When it came time to declare my focus, I chose Marketing and Entrepreneurial Venture Creation. I got paired up with a mentor who is the founder of Bottomline Technologies, which is a tech company in the Portsmouth area. I connected with the founder and set up an internship there. Originally, I was in Product Management, where I focused on revamping all the product documentation for Bottomline Technologies which was a really good learning experience; it got me technical and hands-on with the actual products they had.
From there, I switched over to Product Marketing at a company in the same business park as Bottomline, called Newmarket International. I was doing Product Marketing and Market Intelligence there; so doing product marketing, positioning, and researching our competition. I provided that to the Sales and Marketing team for enablement.
After that, I competed in the University of New Hampshire Holloway Competition and finished as a finalist. That led to somebody noticing my presentation and wanting me to work for them at Dynatrace. I liked that previous opportunity at Newmarket, so I decided that was the direction I wanted to continue in because I feel like it’s the closest to starting your own company. You have a core responsibility to identify product-market fit and be able to build a story and take it to market. After six months at Dynatrace, I quickly established myself and was promoted to be a Senior Product Marketing Manager. I was focused on our “new-ish” business and went after Mobile Application Performance Management (APM), which is monitoring the performance of your core applications. Around this time, a lot of big web-scale companies in Insurance and Finance started to launch and monitor mobile applications. I worked with a cross-functional team of product managers, evangelists, and engineers to take that Mobile APM solution to market.
Then, Dynatrace got acquired by a bigger company called Compuware. I loved the start-up nature of that company, which led me to look at new opportunities after their acquisition. My next opportunity ended up being with a larger-sized company called Riverbed, where I continued with APM for a year. Various executives from Riverbed transitioned to ObserveIT, so I was eventually pulled over with them early on when they just got a $30 million round of funding. At the time, they were positioning the product as a security camera for your servers for IT troubleshooting. It was an interesting situation, and we pivoted the company to a bigger market opportunity to become an insider threat management solution, which took a lot of work and effort over two years.
It’s a really small world because Josh Epstein, AtScale’s CMO, also worked at ObserveIT as the CMO there, but at a different time. So, there’s a little bit of a connection there even though we didn’t know each other.
After ObserveIT, I went over to join an early-stage company called Sqrrl. They were a technology that spun out of the government that they’re using to do link data analysis. I joined and helped them figure the core use case to focus on, and we decided to establish a market segment around ‘threat hunting’, which was a trend that was happening but it wasn’t very organized or a defined market. We decided to take that and rally around it, and then the company was bought by Amazon Web Services (AWS). I stayed there for three years, the longest I had ever worked at a company. After the acquisition, Sqrrl wasn’t a product in the market anymore; they were rebuilding Sqrrl in the cloud. I decided to move over to the AWS Marketplace team and grow out their Demand Generation Engine to help 3rd party vendors and software vendors sell products that work on AWS infrastructure. While I was there, I helped build the Demand Generation at AWS Marketplace and the business grew rapidly over the last 2 years. AWS Data Exchange, which is part of AWS Marketplace, launched in November 2019 and allowed data analytics professionals to procure third-party data sets to combine them with their first-party data. The opportunity came up to move over there to help establish the demand generation engine for the service and decided to do that. Through that, I became more knowledgeable and interested with the data and analytics ecosystem and software markets. It made me realize how important data is as a strategic asset to every company and what they’re doing to be able to use that data and get it in the hands of more BI Professionals and Data Scientists. That led me to decide and join this team.
What does a typical “day in the life” look like for you?
A: A “day in the life” for me is making sure that we have the right inbound marketing strategy in place, as well as making sure that we have a way to reach outbound to prospects in new accounts to grow our business. We need to create great content and host engaging virtual events to start conversations with Data and Analytics Leaders to build our inbound motion. We also need to start identifying who we want to go after from a prospecting perspective and set up a process for the BDR team to go after those companies and have a message that will resonate with people when they’re reaching out cold. We’re figuring out what we need to do across our teams to be as effective as possible so that we can start generating demand and getting new business opportunities for the company.
What makes AtScale and our solution unique?
A: The idea of leveraging data as a strategic asset across companies has its technical limitations and AtScales allows companies to overcome them. AtScale enables companies to scale data in their cloud data platforms to any/all BI tools for consumption in a new and easy way that will support a new phenomenon to get more data in the hands of all the people at their companies so everyone can access data directly from their cloud data platforms in the tools of their choice to make smarter decisions and help the company be more competitive.
I think the fact that AtScale is positioned in between the Data & Analytics layer, as semantic layer software, sitting between those two things that are so important for companies to be competitive across all the industries. If you think about the companies we’re working with, they have recognized the need to take data and to get it in the hands of all their BI professionals. Customers like Wayfair, Wells Fargo, Chase, recognized that their employees need more data access to continue to be competitive and grow their businesses. I think it’s a unique and existing area to sit in between BI tools upstream and Cloud Data Platforms downstream.
What’s the most challenging part of your job?
A: I think that the most challenging part is to stay focused and prioritize what we need to do as a team. I feel like a lot of times Marketing and Business Development teams drown in opportunity and they don’t focus on breaking through the noise and do the few important things very well. We need to focus and all rally around our new inbound/outbound strategy and be consistent in our messaging around a semantic layer for data & analytics. It’s a little early to determine major challenges, but since we’re a start-up, I think one of the opportunities will be getting the attention, the eyes and ears, of Data & Analytics leaders in an ecosystem that has tons of products and fighting for priority. We are competing for that time with Data & Analytics Leaders while trying to ensure they understand why semantic layer software needs to be at the top of their shopping lists and to prioritize one over all of the other dozens of projects and tools that are available to them.
The most rewarding?
A: The most rewarding part of my job will be when the momentum is palpable, when we grow our current 1k+ registration on our webinars to 2-5k every month, when we have tens of thousands of downloads for our new content, and when it’s attracting all the right people who we need to be talking to. We want our BDR team to feel equipped to have conversations with data & analytics leaders managing a P&L and to be able to have detailed conversations with them about how a semantic layer fits into their stack and is worthwhile prioritizing for their business. Once we can do that, we will want to continue to keep optimizing and have more leads, content, meetings, and opportunities created for the company.
Describe AtScale in three words.
A: Semantic layer software. We’re the leading provider of semantic layer software for data & analytics stacks – we’re working with the world’s most data-driven companies.
When you’re not working, where are people most likely to find you?
A: Mount Sunapee in the winter, Baker Hill Golf course in the spring, summer, and into the late fall.
Thanks, Matt! Interested in meeting the rest of the team? Check out our other interviews: