Classcraft: Marketing

2013 - 2021


I led Classcraft's go-to-market strategy as it's acting CMO for over eight years. We originally started with a SaaS B2C model selling to teachers. As the company grew and we shifted to selling to schools and districts, we pivoted the department to a B2B marketing operation that supported a sales team. We grew the user base up to +9M users in 165 countries and got the product in hundreds of schools in the US.


Our marketing strategy was comprised of many elements: brand management, content marketing, sponsored content, co-marketing with partners, thought leadership, social media, PR, performance marketing, in-person and virtual events, and account-based marketing. Below you will find different examples of each.

Brand Management

We worked consistently for years to build a brand that represented collaboration, engagement, and most importantly, fun. We initially created the logo to appeal to early adopter teachers who typically played video games themselves. As the company grew over time and we started selling to schools and school districts, we modernize our visual esthetic to make the brand more accessible to a mainstream audience. We ran yearly brand audits and spent a lot of time thinking about how the brand reflected the mission and values of the company throughout all our different initiatives.

Content Marketing

We found tremendous value in doing content marketing, initially to teachers and eventually to admins. Our efforts were centralized through a dedicated resource hub that showcased webinars, blog posts, guides, white papers, etc. We spent a lot of time optimizing our SEO efforts to elevate the rankings of relevant keywords and growing our organic inbound traffic.

We also partnered with prominent influencers, typically experts in pedagogical practice, gamification, and social emotional learning, to produce high-quality thought leadership content. These would often be webinars and blog posts but in some instances, we even went as far as creating a podcast and hosting virtual events in partnership with Google Education to highlight best practices. Here are a few examples from Chris Dede from Harvard and Jean Guesdon from Ubisoft.

We also worked with educational influencers who produced sponsored content on our behalf.

Co-promotion with Partners

Classcraft built out powerful integrations with partners like Google Education and Instructure's learning platform Canvas. We leveraged those partnerships to co-market new initiatives and broaden the reach of Classcraft's brand.

Social Media

We developed an enthusiastic community of teachers on social media by celebrating their wins in the classroom and sharing their students' transformational experiences. You can see some examples by clicking on the adjacent images, one of a teacher who's Tik Toc post went viral, and another one of a typical back to school campaign.

Public Relations

We used PR in a few different ways over the years through a mix of national and industry specific coverage (see USA Today (earned media), and Edsurge (sponsored media). We initially kept external agencies on retainer with limited success and eventually we moved our efforts in-house.

Performance Marketing

We did a lot of performance marketing, specifically with Facebook and Google ads. We found that in the early days when we were focused on growing our teacher user base, creating targeted lookalike campaigns was particularly effective. Eventually as the company pivoted to B2B, Google search became a stronger channel as it allowed us to capture administrators' attention when they were looking for solutions for specific behavioral issues. A lot of energy went into optimizing our efforts through A/B testing and fine-tuning our targeting.

Sales Support

We worked closely with Classcraft's sales team to provide them with all their sales collateral, be it interactive pdf brochures or fully built-out exhibits for conferences all over North America.

Public Speaking and Conferences

I personally spoke at many conferences representing the company as it's co-founder and President. I also supported our sales team at our exhibit booths as one of the founders. Pre-covid, the company attended 30-40 conferences a year including SWSX Edu, ISTE, ASU+GSV, and Games for Change.

Marketing Operations

I oversaw the implementation of many marketing tools and processes over the years. Initially, we were exclusively focused on marketing to teachers and thus had a more B2C setup. We used SEMrush, Google Analytics, Mix Panel, Sprout Social, and Active Campaign. Then when we started adopting a more B2B approach by selling to schools and districts, we overhauled a lot of our processes and with it most of our tools. We built out Hubspot to be at the core of our marketing operations, implemented Asana business to manage all our production, and started using Hopin for virtual events during the pandemic.

Other work