My name is Nicola Anderson, and I’m the VP of Marketing at GoCardless.

I have been in digital marketing since 2000, although originally was all set to train to be a vet. On realizing it was no longer the career of my dreams I switched to Zoology and then on the offer of a Ph.D. studying tadpoles decided I’d had enough of academia and ran away to London to see what the future held. Little did I know then that a temping job at a sports internet company (football365) would lead to a career in digital marketing.

Outside of work, I really enjoy mentoring and coaching and run several meetups. There are some great networks supporting women in digital and tech such as Circle and Ada’s List which I try and support as much as possible. I do loads of yoga, including a class at work – it’s my form of meditation – and have a slight addiction to all things adrenaline. I’m looking forward to testing out the new London Zipwire next weekend.

I met Alex Theuma at a tech event in Paris and was sold on SaaStock after about 5 minutes of conversation. I’d been hunting high and low for an event similar to SaaStr in Europe and couldn’t find one. Then as if by magic Alex and SaaStock appeared….as soon as I heard his vision I was hooked and booked to sponsor just a few weeks later.

I hold many wonderful memories from SaaStock 16. Announcing our partnership with Chargebee with our stands right next to each other, which was delightfully unplanned. Listening to an incredibly insightful fireside chat with Robin Wauters and Des from Intercom and sitting on a panel hosted by the inspirational Elizabeth Yin.

I left with great new connections and friendships, many of whom have since been a fantastic source of support and advice like Andrew from Idio and Patrick from Price Intelligently.

Everyone’s honesty, openness and willingness to share stood out from war stories and what to avoid, to recommendations and ideas on how to build a successful SaaS business. We had some fabulous nights out – make sure you don’t miss out on the parties.

The agenda for this year looks strong, and I’m really impressed with how seriously SaaStock take diversity – I’m working with them to improve it this year.

I’m very interested in the talks on scaling sales and marketing teams as well as International expansion. In particular, I’m looking forward to Bill Macaitis talking about unicorn growth strategies, the panel on crossing $10M ARR and hearing Liz Cain talking about the incredible growth of Netsuite.

I’m also looking forward to catching up with the great and the good of the European SaaS ecosystem during some of the fabulous SaaStock evening events. We’ve decided to kick things off early with a warm up party hosted with Algolia and on the Sunday night, so I hope to see some of you there.