ThingLink, the leading provider of smart visual media solutions for online education and publishing welcomes Zach Tussing as the firm's Chief Revenue Officer (CRO). In this role Zach is responsible for annual revenue growth and the related KPIs including lead generation, conversion, and churn. Zach brings ThingLink over 15 years of experience from working in business and sales executive roles at the intersection to education, technology and media. In this interview we asked Zach about his career well as what he sees interesting in edtech and ThingLink!
What brought you to ThingLink?
ZT: “One of my former colleagues knew about ThingLink, and to me the work the team was doing was really impressive and intriguing. I joined a couple of the Thinglink Education webinars hosted by Louise Jones and was immediately impressed not only with the product and the team but also by the enthusiasm and creativity of the user community. Through those connections I began to do a little side consulting with the team and got really excited by the prospect of the company and the chance to join the team on a more permanent basis.”
Tell us about your experience in the edtech industry?
ZT: "I have spent the past 15 years working directly for and with a wide variety of education technology and publishing companies. I spent over 10 years as employee number one and board member for a bespoke software development and product company. During my tenure I held several roles but was primarily focused on sales, marketing and partnerships as VP of Sales. Our initial work was across industries including healthcare, publishing, finance and education. During that journey we decided to productize a software solution focused on P-20 education clients, and develop several key marketing partnerships including Microsoft and Pearson. We had very successful growth with US domestic clients as well as various ministries of education. In 2013 we were acquired by a US based publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, after which I spent 2+ years working across the company to deliver on clients' needs. Over the last 5 years I have spent time as VP of Sales and CRO at two education services and SAAS companies, Teachstone and Boclips. These roles gave me further exposure to both the US and the global education and media markets."
What's exciting in edtech right now?
ZT: “As challenging as Covid has been in all aspects of society it has forced organizations to look at how they engage with learners, With the increase in data, machine learning and differentiated learning we are seeing the power, and challenges, or how some online resources are used. This forced remote learning has changed the way learners and educators interact and forced the edTech space to evolve.”
What is exciting about ThingLink?
ZT: “Thinglink is amazing. The number of clients across the Fortune 1000 as well as the millions of education users make it very uniquely positioned and has proven its value to a wide variety of users globally. I am really excited about bringing what I have learned across industries to help deliver on our product promise. By working across client and internal team I am hoping we can make the right adjustments to better serve our clients and grow our team to meet our potential. With ThingLink and our 350 million annual users the challenges are everywhere, but so are the opportunities. I wake up energized and have not had this much excitement about the potential of a company in a long time!”
Connect with Zach about partner opportunities via LinkedIn and @ztussing onTwitter.