Interview

Member Spotlight: Rob Schmidt

  • 3 April 2023
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Member Spotlight: Rob Schmidt
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This month we had the privilege of chatting with Rob Schmidt, an entrepreneur with multiple eight and nine-figure businesses whom specializes in digital marketing.

As a Zapier Certified Expert and founding partner of Outliant and Winona, Rob shared with us how Outliant leverages Zapier to stand out from the competition, enabling his team to think outside the box and find unique approaches to build wildly successful companies.


Hi Rob! Tell us how you came across Zapier and what you initially began zapping! 

I learned about Zapier in 2015, when I was working with Crunchbutton. It was recommended to me by a colleague, Nick Hunter, who had stumbled upon it online.

After he sent it to me, I quickly started using it a lot. It was like, “hey, this looks like something that would be useful!” 

We created a lot of Zaps for marketing automations and operations purposes. We also managed large ambassador programs at universities, automating the process of shipping out swag and marketing material and keeping ambassadors up-to-date about different things going on.

Our first Zap was adding Google Sheets entries to a Mail Chimp list. It’s hard to say which one exactly was the first one, since I’ve worked with thousands of Zaps since!”

 

Fair enough, we know the feeling! 🙃

You’ve been in the automation game for a while- how has Zapier grown with you and with your businesses as they’ve scaled? 

As a Zapier Certified Expert and successful entrepreneur, I have used Zapier throughout my career to increase efficiencies, reduce staff and perform at a higher level. At Offset Solar, we integrated our entire company using Zapier, automating millions of tasks, especially on the marketing and operations side.

I have also helped close to 200 solar companies with Zapier-related work as one of the first experts in the experts program.

“At Outliant, we began doing Zapier integration projects ranging from $300 to $2000, and now focus on projects in the 7 figure range. We started with 10 people in 2019, and we’ve grown to just over 200 people in 2022.”

 

😮 Wow, that’s incredible! Are there any specific workflows that Outliant has implemented that really stand out to you?

A large portion of our recruitment platform is on autopilot through Zapier. We used Zapier to create an automated follow-up workflow that sends notifications to applicants, relieving our dedicated team of 20 people from the task of manually tracking candidates and follow-ups: 

  • 👉 Utilize Aircrew.io to handle 1000+ candidate applications  
  • 👉 Use Webhook by Zapier from our ATS to set up interviews by sending a scheduling email with a Calendly link
  • 👉 Delay by Zapier waits 3 days to cross-check if an applicants email address has scheduled & attended an interview 

 

If you could tell people one thing they may not know they can do with Zapier, what would it be? 

One thing I wish other people knew they could do with automations is integrate with any API, regardless of whether or not they have a Zapier application. I also like Zapier's Explore All Apps page. Not only is it a great resource for discovering new, awesome apps, but it’s also an ocean of automation templates. The most useful thing about this page is that it helps you identify more use cases than you can even imagine.

Just pick a pair of apps, and it will show you all the possible combinations. No complex analysis needed – just peace of mind. 

 

Music to our ears! So what’s in store for Outliant? What can we expect? 

Our long-term goal is to grow our agency to be similar in size to Deloitte or Accenture, but with more creative thinking, agility, and startup mentality. This includes collaborating with enterprise clients while still working with startups and forward-thinking technology, and driving technology forward to improve businesses through digital transformations and technological improvements.

As far as I’m concerned, Zapier is ubiquitous. It’s Table Stakes in a sense; it’s always going to be a tool in the tool belt. No matter how much development we do, there are always going to be times where it makes more sense to use an integration platform, especially with testing process improvements.”

Zapier and integrations are useful, no matter the size of your business. And ultimately, you can replace custom development, to a large extent, with integration platforms. Zapier enables all departments to better implement technology in their processes.

Thank you, Rob! So excited to see what the future holds for you & the Outliant team!

 

🌟Fun fact: Rob is from North Carolina (as is this author) and while one of us is a UNC Tarheel and the other is a WFU Demon Deacon, we both agree that we would be hard-pressed to cheer for Duke. 


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