Career Growth – Insight From AdRoll’s New President
How Vibhor Kapoor continues to grow with and within our AdRoll business unit.
Hiring great people and helping them grow is a core value here at NextRoll. It’s represented by our Owl Culture Creature and one we strive for at all levels of our business – from hiring up-and-coming interns to mission-driven executive leaders.
This was recently exemplified at the highest level of our company, as Vibhor Kapoor was promoted to President of our AdRoll after just over a year of serving as the Business Unit’s CMO and, later, also as CRO.
We chatted with Vibhor to hear more about his personal career growth and how he supports the growth of Rollers on his team.
Tell us a little about your career trajectory and what encouraged you to join NextRoll as AdRoll CMO.
After earning an Undergraduate degree in technology in India, I started my career in Sales and Account Management. The next two decades spanned taking various roles in sales, customer success, product, and operations across many industries and geographies. I had the fortune to work in India, Singapore, Connecticut, and Wisconsin with outstanding organizations like Hewlett-Packard and General Electric.
After completing an MBA from Northwestern University, I spent a decade at Microsoft in Seattle during its formative years in the Cloud business sector and several years building expertise in SaaS with Box and Adobe in Silicon Valley. I jumped at the opportunity with AdRoll, motivated by the vision to help D2C marketing teams succeed irrespective of size, budget, and expertise. I was also driven significantly by the collaborative, resourceful, and inclusive culture, as it resonates a lot with my own beliefs.
What skills helped you grow through your career?
Curiosity and resilience.
While the roles and positions I have taken have had a clear functional area, I have always had the curiosity to look at challenges from a multitude of angles – this has naturally exposed me to solving holistically and building broader perspectives. As an example, working in Product but thinking about the interplay with marketing, sales, and financial performance gives you a very different view versus being singularly focused. This approach has helped me to build a richer experience.
Additionally, staying flexible and open has often created pathways for me that would be considered non-traditional. Growth is non-linear, and being resilient with a longer-term lens has helped me chart my own path.
How has our growth-centered culture at NextRoll inspired or supported you?
We live in a very dynamic world, and our marketing technology industry is going through major shifts. Keeping a growth mindset is central to success, and NextRoll has really embraced that as a business and people imperative. We are in the midst of a transformation, and we have been very dynamic in making business decisions and aligning talent to objectives. My journey from the CMO to a broadened role of CMO plus CRO to President is a clear testament to how the culture at NextRoll has supported my growth.
How has the AdRoll platform grown or changed since you joined?
As I stated earlier, our industry and customers face major shifts in marketing and digital advertising. In our pursuit to help D2C marketers do their best work irrespective of size, expertise, or budget, we have broadened our value proposition as a marketing and ads platform.
Our vision is to enable D2C marketers to save money and drive growth with one platform where they can design, launch, measure, and optimize multi-channel campaigns. AdRoll more than doubled its platform SaaS revenue in 2022 and brought innovations to market to help digital marketers succeed in this challenging macroeconomic climate.
How do you motivate others to learn and grow within the AdRoll business unit?
The tenets of leadership that are key to me are purpose, inspiration, and trust.
We can all get caught in the “what” and “when” and spend little time on the “why.” Flag planting can be very powerful and helps teams do their best. Leadership is a lot about outlining the “why,” bringing the inspiration to be on the journey, and coaching along the way. Building trust with one team mindset is also key. I try my best to exercise these principles every day and believe they are fundamental to personal growth.
What advice do you have for folks who aspire to executive-level roles?
In the early stages of your career, focus on building functional skills in the area in which you have a deep interest. As you move further along in your career, maintain curiosity about other functions and other work that happens in an organization.
I also suggest building skills around questioning, deep reflection, and critical thinking.
Finally, build skills in influence – you don’t need to be a manager, leader, or executive to exercise it, but it is fundamental for career growth. But first and foremost, with every job that's given to you, focus on delivering what is at hand. One of the guiding principles that has stayed with me for a very long time is best expressed in this statement from Theodore Roosevelt – “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”
See Vibhor’s leadership in action by learning more about AdRoll, a marketing and advertising platform that helps DTC brands grow revenue and save time on one streamlined platform.