Get to Know the 3Q CRO Team
Published: October 11, 2018
Author: Kelly Whelan
As a member of the 3Q marketing team, I am in the exciting position of tracking and promoting success from teams across the company. There’s a lot to be impressed by at 3Q, but one team that’s really stuck out to me over my last two years here is the 3Q CRO team. Their unique use of strategic customer research combined with high-velocity, high-impact testing has consistently produced measurable, business-altering wins for a customers across a range of verticals from B2B to finance to retail.
For this post, I’ve interviewed each member of the team to showcase what drives their passions, what it’s like to work with them (either as a future client or talented marketer looking to join the team), and what makes them different from other CRO agencies in the space. But first, a few introductions:
The 3Q CRO team currently consists of four members (soon to be five; we have another member starting this month):
Jeremy Epperson (VP of Conversion Optimization out of Mountain View, CA):
- Head of the team
- Prolific speaker in the CRO space
- Has earned the nickname “the Beard”
Lindsay Fowler (Associate Director of CRO out of San Diego, CA):
- Keeps the CRO wheels turning
- Dog and cat mom to Daffodil the Papillon and Fancy the cat
- Was once booed by 600+ people for cutting power during movie in the park night (but has never been booed by a client)
Anthony Nguyen (Web Development Director out of San Francisco, CA):
- Beloved by clients
- World traveler & food connoisseur
- Formerly known as “Taco Baby”
Cristi Alvarez (CRO Analyst out of San Diego, CA):
- Data-gatherer extraordinaire
- Animal lover, but hater of spiders
- Standup-paddleboard yogi
… you? Check for job openings here..
And now, onto the questions:
How did you get started with CRO?
Jeremy: I started with CRO out of necessity. I was running an ecom company and people weren’t buying my stuff. No matter what traffic I drove to the site, the conversion rate was pretty bad. What I didn’t realize is that the site was terrible. I was looking for solutions to fix the site and what I stumbled on changed the course of my life. CRO was the perfect blend of satisfying my curious nature, focusing on continual improvement, and finding ways to grow a business.
Cristi: Prior to joining 3Q, I obtained my Bachelor’s in Marketing at SDSU, and after graduating, I pursued a career in sales. I worked in many different industries – from real estate, to pharmaceuticals, to cars, and technology. After working in sales for a few years, I began to realize that I was more passionate about understanding human behavior and why we do the things that we do and how our actions and words can influence people one way or another.
This has now translated nicely into my role as a CRO Analyst at 3Q Digital. I get to study online human behavior and understand why people make certain purchasing decisions or what points of friction they come across along the customer journey. Helping our clients understand and connect with their customer base is a truly rewarding experience!
What would you recommend to a team trying to get conversion optimization off the ground?
Lindsay: I think starting with research is the critical first step. People get excited about conversion optimization and maybe want to move forward with button color tests just to say they’re testing. The best foundation for a strong experimentation program is researching the customer experience to generate actionable hypotheses. While you’re doing the research, you can also search for a tool that suits your needs. After those two activities, you’ll be in a good spot to actually start running A/B tests.
Anthony: Prepare for a shift in mindset. Testing is a humbling experience where certain flows that make no sense to us may actually be the preferred approach for the users. Figure out your budgets for tools and determine whether a specific tool will work for you. Optimizely can be costly but there are many other platforms that are more affordable such as VWO and Google Optimize.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned?
Lindsay: “Always be testing” and “Done is better than perfect.” Lots of times people get caught up in the minutiae and miss out on valuable testing opportunities. If you’re working on a big overhaul, run lower-level-of-effort tests in the meantime. There’s no reason not to be constantly tweaking your user experience!
Jeremy: Exponentially growing businesses is difficult. Everyone wants to do it, but few companies possess the expertise and ability to pull it off. Observing how hundreds of companies operate behind the scenes has been really enlightening. My most important lesson would be that the process is everything. Tactics, tests, development are all just pieces, but the real power behind growth is having a structured and proven process that drives results.
What is the most valuable thing you offer to clients?
Anthony: Our expertise. The team has a broad breadth of experience from B2B to B2C. From corporate to agency work – we’ve done it all. We also come from very different positions. I come from a technical background, while other members come from more testing or marketing backgrounds.
Jeremy: The approach we take to CRO is pretty unique, even compared to other top CRO agencies. It took me a decade to dial things in to being this efficient and effective after tons of tweaking and plenty of mistakes. We allow clients to skip all of that and move right into creating a high-functioning and revenue-producing CRO program in months instead of decades.
What’s the coolest test you’ve run and why?
Jeremy: I’ve run over 2,000 tests so I have forgotten about a lot of them. I did test an alternative flow to reduce the friction in collecting contact info for leads with the largest mortgage site on the web. The winning variation accounted for an additional $40 million in revenue and transformed their business in a number of positive ways. It actually generated so many leads that they couldn’t possibly keep up with the demand.
Lindsay: I don’t know about the coolest, but my favorite tests are where we challenge underlying assumptions about the LP experience. A great example is a LP that had TONS of content. Everyone was convinced this was what users were looking for, but after some research we realized people weren’t actually engaging with it. We drastically simplified the page and ended up increasing conversion. Sometimes we get in our own way or user motivations change, which is another great reason to always keep testing!
What’s your favorite thing about working with 3Q CRO?
Anthony: Absolutely being humbled by the data! We do get things right many times but there will also be times where we miss the mark. I especially love those times that we miss the mark because they can be very humbling. When you come across an obvious pain point that you are certain once remedied will lift conversions – but it winds up falling flat? Those are good times.
Cristi: The work that we do in CRO is really interesting, however, my favorite thing about working with 3Q CRO is the people. I feel so lucky to be able to learn from Lindsay, Jeremy, and Anthony – all veterans in the CRO industry (and in my opinion, the best!). It really is a collaborative team environment where the lines of communication are always open and you are encouraged to use both your analytical and intuitive minds to solve problems and make decisions.
Why should someone join the 3Q CRO team?
Jeremy: They are going to work with and learn from some of the best in the industry. Also, the team is full of amazing people. We work as peers with mutual trust and respect. We also have great rapport and a fun dynamic. We work hard and are passionate about what we do, but we also make sure we are enjoying the journey!
Lindsay: CRO really gives you the best of two worlds. You get to use analytical skills and really get involved with the data, but you also get to use that creative part of your brain when solving problems and coming up with hypotheses! We’ve got a team with a lot of experience, too, so we’re always teaching each other new things and learning new things together.
Interested in getting the 3Q CRO team involved in shaping your growth journey? Reach out here if you want to learn more about working with us, or view our jobs page to learn more about working for us.