Marty and Erika are each accomplished marketers in their own right. When they work together, complimentary styles result in something greater than either could deliver alone.
We left our corporate careers in medical devices and built the kind of company that we’d want to do business with.
Matchstick helps our pharmaceutical and medical device clients shine through highly polished, professional strategic marketing services and engaging, practical skills building. We team with companies that are global market leaders as well as start-ups who are looking to change the world.
We are a small firm with big-company experience and polish.
Our work style energizes teams, generates novel ideas and motivates others. We’ve developed new markets, created and launched new products, built brand names, and spearheaded successful marketing programs.
Clients say our real skill lies in framing complicated problems clearly and vividly. We clarify the issues and free people up to do their most creative work. Our clients value that we treat their business like it’s our own. Matchstick’s approach delivers high-touch, custom-tailored solutions that reflect the unique challenges of each client.
Erika’s engaging style enables her to bring diverse perspectives together in unanticipated ways. Able to relate to people across functions and cultures, Erika bridges communication gaps, engaging teams to do their best work.
As a corporate marketing leader, she was constantly challenged to deliver more innovative solutions. This motivated her to spend years honing her creativity skills. She became a certified trainer for The Six Thinking Hats and Lateral Thinking. She now teaches these two practical skill sets and routinely uses them in Matchstick’s consulting engagements.
Erika is always asking “So what?” to understand why something is important. This focuses teams on solving the right problem. With groups, she uses creative thinking techniques to explore solutions from every angle and generate new ideas.
Clients are often surprised at how much they accomplish when Erika grabs the marker. In front of a flipchart, she inspires people to be their most creative. By urging movement from idea to action, she leaves teams with a clear idea of where to go next.
In 20 years of marketing at BD and Merck, Erika conceptualized developed, and launched market-shaping products to improve the safety of both patients and healthcare workers. She also worked to secure passage of ground-breaking state and federal healthcare worker safety legislation through advocacy and market development.
Erika continues to advocate and educate around many other public health issues. She is currently working with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Safe Injection Practices Coalition to promote patient safety by preventing the spread of infection.
Erika has a BA in Communications from Montclair State University and an MBA from Rutgers Business School. She is a named inventor on a US patent.
StrengthsFinder 2.0 Strengths: Arranger, Positivity, Maximizer, Communication, Input
Marty marries his engineering and marketing expertise to help his clients expose new points of differentiation, develop market shaping strategies, and invent new product and service solutions. He brings a fresh perspective to strategy, market analyses, competitive positioning and innovation.
Marty reduces complex problems to a digestible form so that teams can find their way forward. He is a master at using analogies to bring issues to life. His vivid, often humorous comparisons help teams grasp the heart of complicated problems quickly.
With experience in engineering and marketing at Stryker Orthopedics and BD, Marty has a unique view of both implantable and disposable medical devices used in institutional and home-based patient care settings. He has experience developing, launching and positioning market leading devices and drug-device combinations.
Because of his extensive work in safety and parenteral drug delivery, Marty is frequently engaged by thought leaders regarding emerging efforts to prevent cross contamination due to reuse of patient injection supplies. He is actively involved in the Safe Injection Practices Coalition and has participated in numerous Centers for Disease Control (CDC) expert panels on the subject.
Marty has a BE in Mechanical Engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology and an MBA from Columbia University. He is a named inventor 10 patents and numerous unpublished patent applications.
StrengthsFinder 2.0 Strengths: Personal Responsibility, Activator, Arranger, Input, Ideator
We won't take your money if we don't think we can do an outstanding job.
We generally serve the med tech and the life sciences industries. Will we engage in other areas? Yes, particularly if we think the work will be fun and interesting, but only if we know we can add value.
We're always transparent about what you're getting for the money you spend with us.
Generally, we work on a project basis, not hourly. We'll take the time to understand what you need and define a clear scope for our engagement.
You'll understand what we'll deliver at the conclusion. If you change your focus during the project, that's no problem. We can re-scope it; that happens all the time.
We're not the least expensive option...
...but we've never had a client tell us they paid too much for what they received. Our clients tell us a dollar spent with us is better than a dollar spent anywhere else. We wouldn't have it any other way.
We built the kind of company that we want to do business with. We hope you do, too.
- We listen to everyone; good ideas come from anywhere.
- We are transparent in our activities and intentions.
- We treat our client's business like it's our own.
- We have fun at work.
- We seek out and work with good people.
- We inspire each other to be our personal best.
- We take personal responsibility for our actions and work.
- We seek to give something of value back to our community.
Our Story: Leaving Corporate
Why did we leave two well-paying corporate jobs to start our own business?
Not because we got laid off. Not because we needed something to write on LinkedIn as we were job hunting.
We made a purposeful choice to leave corporate...on our own.
Over the last few years, we've come to realize how important our families are in the big picture. The kind of schedule demanded by our corporate jobs didn't allow the family focus we wanted. With so many competing demands, we didn't feel that we were doing our best, most fulfilling work.
We knew we had developed some very marketable skills during our nearly two decades in corporate. We began to imagine the company that we could build, and the meaningful work we could do. Over time, the idea of Matchstick developed.
We needed a plan, but didn't know where to start.
Escape from Cubicle Nation quickly became our dog-eared, go-to for several months. Fast-forward through lunches with mentors, countless blogs, magazines, lawyers, financial planners, spreadsheets, insurance, retirement plans... the more we learned, the more doable it looked.
Erika left BD in July 2010 and hasn't looked back. Marty left less than a year later as the business grew, took on more clients, and had more work than one person could handle.
Our clients are a fantastic group of people. They trust us with their businesses, let us do great work, and give us the ultimate vote of confidence by referring us to others. We've had fun working with you. Thank you for your support and for helping us be successful.
Lots of people asked how we managed to pull this off. We were actually surprised to find no resources that speak to how to leave a professional, six-figure job and do your own thing.
We're putting together an eBook to share what we learned and help you think about your own plans.
Add your name to this list and we'll send you a note when its' ready with a download link.
(We promise not to share your email address with anyone, including your current employer!)