Why did you start Spark Your Channel? What was it about Spark Your Channel that makes you want to invest so much of your time in it?
After 20 years in the channel including 11 running an agency that helps Partners drive demand with their Vendors it was clear there was a huge gap. We are the only through-channel marketing automation for the IT channel leveraging multimedia content. Video is without a doubt the most heavily used and responded to content today and Vendors and Partners alike are thrilled when they see a demo.
What’s one piece of information you know now that you wish you had known when you started your company?
You know, it would have been convenient to know that we were going to launch 3 weeks before a pandemic totally shut down the economy for a few weeks. The good news is we are the only platform allowing channel partners, channel sales, and channel account managers to leverage video. The use of video has increased 400% in the midst of quarantine.
What do you like to do in your free time away from Spark Your Channel?
Between being the founder and chairperson of an 11 year old agency called Channel Maven, having a two and four year old, and being the wife of a fellow entrepreneur/founder/CEO of Good Day “free time” is relative. Luckily I’m an early riser so I love hiking right outside my back door in Boulder, doing pilates, and spending time with my family.
Which entrepreneurs do you admire and why?
There are so many but Sara Blakely immediately pops into mind. She took $5,000 and an idea and turned it into a billion dollar company. She also gives back and pays homage to where it all started, her red backpack. She was told “no” thousands of times and proved that hard work and passion behind what you’re working on really can pay off.
I’d also say Richard Branson, he’s had to pivot publicly numerous times and always does so with grace and transparency. I also greatly admire both of their philanthropic endeavors.
I’d also like to note entrepreneurs I’ve learned how NOT to do business from. I won’t mention them by name but I think it’s important to learn from others mistakes so you don’t do the same.
What are the most important traits for an entrepreneur?
I genuinely feel that entrepreneurship is something you’re born with somewhere deep down. It can manifest itself in different ways. I come from a long line of entrepreneurs and was always surrounded by them growing up. My childhood wasn’t all sunshine and roses and I attribute a lot of my drive and independence to my “fight” response, and “flight” I guess, of having to ensure I never needed to depend upon anyone. My husband wasn’t surrounded by entrepreneurs and had a much more idyllic upbringing and yet we’ve both build successful, respected million dollar businesses. I think the common factor is unrest, passion to make something your own and being completely in love with the process. Even if it makes you stressed/crazy/lost in the moment.
Heather is founder and CEO of Spark Your Channel, an innovative demand generation company that helps businesses, their channel partners, and their sales teams drive more revenue. Follow Heather on Twitter @HeatherMargolis!
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