GTM 25: Social Impact for Startups

GTM 25: Social Impact for Startups

In this week’s episode, Scott is joined by Bryan Breckenridge and Corey Marshall, the co-founders of VITAL, a company that harnesses impact-powered revenue and culture to accelerate growth.

Corey Marshall is a builder, advisor, and investor with a strong background in CRM Data. He previously worked with Splunk, a cybersecurity startup where he built programs around workforce development, employee engagement and volunteerism.

Bryan Breckenridge is a social intrapreneur who thrives at the intersection of corporate and nonprofit mission fulfillment maximizing social, environmental and economic returns. He has implemented growth and impact strategies and integrated nonprofit networks into core operating structures at Salesforce, LinkedIn, Box, Zillow, and Snyk.

They explore the world of social impact issues in startups, including how and when startups should get involved in social issues, which issues to take on, how to align these with the company’s values and how these help in connecting with the customers for eventual profitability.


(1:44) Introduction of speakers

(2:50) Corey Marshall’s background story

(5:15) The impetus for Splunk

(6:36) Bryan’s background

(9:42) Bryan’s time at Salesforce

(11:08) The truth about the Sales profession

(13:26) Having environmental, social and governance in mind as a Startup

(19:34) Attracting talent that aligns with your company’s values

(22:09) When should a company take a stance on social issues?

(29:11) How should startups establish which social impact issues to focus on?

(36:42) Corey’s story about building strong partnerships through participating in social impact issues

(40:16) Merging problem solving for clients with addressing social issues they are passionate about

(47:39) Strategies that revenue leaders or founders can implement

(53:56) Social impact participation extends beyond sales and marketing

(56:14) How to get in touch with Bryan and Corey


‘What’s been true for me all the way through is that people have to see your authentic desire to make them successful. You have to listen and garner trust, and that’s going to be universal no matter what the regenerative AI turns on, I think trust is still going to be at the core.’ Bryan Breckenridge

‘The reality is, if you can find ways to humanize your product, your brand, your people, your company in a way that is resonant and aligned with folks in other dimensions, than purely software, or purely services, all of a sudden, you have other dimensions of connection with them. What you’re doing is you’re making it applicable to different types of organizations.’

‘Even if you’re at an earlier stage, and really trying to craft your message still and figure out what you are trying to be when you grow up, it’s still really important that you get crisp around what your full value proposition is, as opposed to simply what your product base value proposition is. Because that broader picture ultimately resonates more broadly and deeply with your prospects than you might realize.’

‘When you’re asking (about social impact issues), you’re not just asking your seven-person team or your 70-person team, you’re also asking your first three customers, the types of things that they’re passionate about and you realize if there is an authentic alignment, then suddenly now you’re entering those conversations with your clients and deepening your relationship and your trust with them’

‘Make sure that as you are going to market in whatever segment, you know who your buyer is, you know your ideal customer profile, you know who your user is and understand the variety of motivations that come with those folks.’

‘Compliance effort is about storytelling when it comes down to it. What you’re trying to do is say we are managing some of these very tangible risks by doing things that engage different stakeholder groups, whether they be our employees, our investors, our customers and partners. There is a big world out there that you need to control for, or that you at least need to plan for your engagement. That is how you minimize your risk.’

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Before helping found GTMfund, Scott spent 4 years at Outreach as Director of Strategic Engagement. He was in charge of aligning key relationships with VCs, BoDs, ecosystem partners and community members to drive revenue and strategic initiatives across Outreach. Scott initially ran revenue/partnerships for Sales Hacker (which was acquired by Outreach in 2018). Prior to Sales Hacker, he led and built outbound Business Development teams at Payfirma and MediaValet. Scott also advises for a number of high growth start-ups and is the host/author of The GTM Podcast and The GTM Newsletter. At GTMfund, Scott leads all fundraising efforts and runs the media arm of the firm. He’s also responsible for assessing investments, team management, LP/community relationships and GTM support for founders.

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