Discover Malt’s successful journey with Spendesk, a fast-growing scale-up specialized in corporate expense management. Stephanie Bowker, Head of Marketing, explains how Malt helped her marketing team scale their content production while meeting the requirements of ongoing international expansion.   

About Spendesk

Spendesk is a fintech scale-up that accompanies businesses in the optimization of their professional and operational expense management, by integrating an invoice processing tool. 

Co-founded in 2016 by Rodolphe Ardant, Jordane Guily et Guilhem Bellion, in the Franco-Belgian eFounders incubator, Spendesk began its adventure with a virtual payment card based around a simple workflow. Additional payment methods and other features were later added. In less than one year, the company went from 20 to 120 collaborators, demonstrating intense growth. The company developed a SaaS platform that centralizes and manages professional expenses. This is done by providing businesses with physical and virtual payment cards with validation workflows, automated payment services and a billing and payroll system. 

After multiple successful fundraising rounds in 2020, Spendesk launched its strategy of globalization. Today, Spendesk has 3,500 clients. They conduct 50% of their business in France, followed by Germany, their fastest growing market, and then the U.K. 

Choosing freelancing to support hyper-growth at an international scale 

Spendesk’s marketing team faced new challenges related to its hyper-growth, including the need to run more recruitment campaigns, while producing more multilingual content without having the necessary expertise in-house. 

The internal marketing team, supervised by Stephanie Bowker, is made up of 15 full-time employees working on five topics: events, content, performance, product marketing and branding. This team was having difficulties meeting the high expectations brought about by the growth they had been experiencing. 

Turning to freelancers enabled this fintech company to increase their marketing team’s productivity. Stephanie Bowker believed this shift was necessary to reduce the delay of production and reach the company’s ambitious objectives.  

“Freelancers are boosters above all.” 

Spendesk sees freelancing as an “additional resource”: It’s not a resource that replaces, but rather strengthens their internal marketing team. 

“It’s not about whether or not we call upon freelancers. It’s about which projects, as you grow, require more creativity or a certain specialist that your team doesn’t have. On top of that, it’s about getting help to manage a growing list of projects.” 

According to Stephanie, freelancing is a broadly adopted and recognized best practice within Spendesk. 

“We already knew the power of freelancing. It’s been part of our strategy from day one.”

A desire to increase production of multilingual content 

Freelancers, whether in-person or remote, are hired for three main reasons:

  • To create German, UK or US English (and soon, Spanish) translations of product pages, blog articles and website updates 
  • To increase and accelerate marketing content production 
  • To help manage increased design needs (motion or editorial design). 

The project framework defines whether the Spendesk team should hire an expert (skill or industry sector), a generalist or even a native speaker and writer (for content targeting a specific international audience). 

Choosing Malt for our freelancers’ responsiveness and accessibility 

Known as a platform for agility and flexibility in the the recruitment of freelancers (notably thanks to their ability to hire a freelancer in less than 24 hours), Malt was already an important part of Spendesk’s external sourcing process

Stéphanie Bowker explains that Malt was so easy to use that she was quickly operational in navigating the marketplace to find talented experts able to respond to any need (quality, quantity, competency and production rate). She particularly appreciates how simple it is to send project briefs, as well as the accelerated onboarding process for newly-recruited freelancers. These are features that fulfill her team’s need to scale up production during busy periods. 

Stéphanie notes that at the peak of international expansion at Spendesk, she was very busy with her responsibilities and needed to be continually monitoring important ongoing projects. To succeed, she needed competent experts to join on key projects. She also needed to ensure that the content being produced for new international markets was quality and accurate in three different languages.. 

On Malt, a freelancer’s skills are proven by detail listed about past professional experiences as well as recommendations from those past clients. This makes Malt a secure platform that guarantees the freelancer’s autonomy and expertise. With Malt, Stéphanie was able to delegate certain projects to freelance experts, and free herself to focus on helping the members of her internal marketing team with high added-value projects. 

Strong momentum in inbound marketing

Thanks to recurring missions through the Malt platform, freelancers were able to easily integrate into Spendesk’s internal marketing team. 

With Malt, Spendesk was able to complete 20 different projects in a single quarter. In addition, the freelancers’ high level of productivity allowed the fintech scale-up to develop content for all of their inbound marketing conversion funnel stages, adapted to each of their key personas.

Future milestone: prioritizing open innovation with external freelancers 

Spendesk knows the value of using freelancers to reinforce their teams’ productivity, while encouraging innovation. With freelancers, Spendesk can benefit from the strength of adding complementary experts to the internal team they have in place.   

“We don’t limit our thinking to simply driving greater productivity with freelancers. We want to allow ourselves to think wider about what we need to achieve and how we give ourselves the means to achieve it”. 

That’s why Spendesk will continue to work with between one and four freelancers on an ongoing basis, to support their new projects in content marketing and other departments.