Today's most effective marketing campaigns have one thing in common: a very well structured content strategy at their core.
But what does having a strong core content strategy actually mean?
And how can you apply it to your business development efforts?
On this episode of Evolved Sales Live, host Jonathan Fischer sits down with marketing expert and co-host of the Cheat Codes podcast, Obaid Durrani, to discuss what it actually means to make good content, how you can generate the greatest audience response, and the exact steps you can take to execute a content marketing strategy that will absolutely crush it in 2023.
Don't forget to follow us on LinkedIn for more engaging sales insights and discussions! Happy watching!
Obaid Durrani is experienced in content marketing, inbound sales, storytelling, art direction for motion graphics, brand building, and demand gen. Early in his career, he grew a content writing service from $800k ARR to $7.2m ARR in two years. From there, he bootstrapped a 5-person content/animation team to $35K MRR.
Throughout his career, he’s scaled website traffic from 0 to 150k+ monthly visitors for 6 B2B SaaS companies, created animated explainer videos for billion dollar companies, generated $274k in new MRR through LinkedIn for a B2B marketing agency in four months, closed over $1M in inbound sales, and directed a video game trailer for PlayStation.
Obaid continues living out his belief that brands should create memorable experiences for their audience through interesting, insightful, and entertaining content. He’s currently building out Easy Mode, a framework, community, and advisory program for B2B SaaS companies that want to create scalable media engines.
Check out the transcription of this webinar episode below!
Jonathan Fischer 0:04
Welcome back to the Evolve sales leader recorded live every Friday right here on LinkedIn. I'm Jonathan Fisher. Many of today's most effective marketing campaigns have one thing in common. They all have a very well structured content strategy at their core. But what does that mean? And how can you apply it to your business development efforts? To discuss this topic in detail we have with us today Obed Kanda Ronnie Obed is a marketing expert and prominent online thought leader, with a background as creative director and content marketing specialist for several prominent tech startups. Obed is the co founder of easy mode, a marketing consultancy. And he also co hosts the Cheat Codes podcast. In our conversation, we're going to cover what it even means to make good content, how you can generate the greatest audience response, and the exact steps you can take to execute a content marketing strategy that will absolutely crush it. Obed Great to have you on the show today. Welcome.
Obaid Durrani 1:04
Thank you very much, Jonathan. I really appreciate that. It's awesome to be here. I'm super excited.
Jonathan Fischer 1:09
Well, and the premise today is we're going to tell the listener exactly how to build a fantastic content marketing strategy. Tell us first of all, how did you arrive, the insights insights that you will be sharing with the listener.
Obaid Durrani 1:20
Um, so it's been a few years in the making. About four, four or five years ago, I used to run a content marketing agency that specialized in 2d animation. So on one hand, we would do content strategy, and on the other we would do animated explainer videos and brand art styles and things like that. So in that time, I worked with a ton of different, you know, SASS clients and whatnot, I spoke to a lot of different leaders on topics like creativity, and you know, what it means to make good content and whatnot. From there, I joined refined labs as associate creative director, and one of my main responsibilities was to come up with creative strategies with our SAS clients. And so just based on these last few years, I've been able to pull together some insights on that. And then there was a time period that I dedicated to just analyzing high performing content assets to see like, what variables they had in common and how we as marketers could sort of emulate that content.
Jonathan Fischer 2:31
Well, in your analysis, no doubt, you've seen the good, the bad, the ugly, or a lot of companies getting it wrong out there and your view,
Obaid Durrani 2:38
um, I wouldn't say they're getting it wrong, I would say that a lot of companies are afraid to sort of try and really give it the time that it's due, and give it the effort and investment that it's due, I think a lot of companies want to go this route. And even when leadership is bought in when you know, senior managers in the marketing team and the creators are bought in. But if you know, it always comes back to the whole ROI situation. And it's just like, are we seeing, you know, some sort of ROI on this, and I've seen a lot of companies just pull the plug on these types of campaigns, within, you know, two to two weeks to like three months, and you have to be able to give it the time that it's due. And the other thing that I see companies do wrong is they jumped to they jumped to certain types of content before other types of content are well established. And we'll dive into that today, how there's, you know, top down content, middle down, middle out content and bottom up content, and a lot of companies will try to shoot for that bottom up content before the other two are established.
Jonathan Fischer 3:55
Well, I'm looking forward to getting those terms defined for the listener. But what I'm hearing you say is maybe a couple of things at once. On the one hand, it sounds like Well, there are some good things happening in marketing. There may be some missed opportunity here. And it requires setting expectations properly to engage in the right, to get the to get the best results out of a true content based marketing campaign. Is that kind of what you're saying?
Obaid Durrani 4:17
Absolutely, yeah. It serves different purposes. A good comprehensive content marketing strategy will serve different purposes. So you have to define what those purposes are beforehand, before you can even get into the tactics or the strategy. And those purposes should be built on your business's objectives. And so, there's a whole lot to sort of unpack here which we'll dive into and dive into all of it after this bit for sure.
Jonathan Fischer 4:48
Okay, and we are good. Definitely good to dive in a friendly reminder to our live audience. Hey, we're here in real time, take full advantage. send in your questions. Don't wait to the end. Send them into the chat. And when we get to the end of the main copper session we will circle back and you can have real time answers from our guest while we're together here this evening. So let's dive in a bit. How do you how do you build a framework? I assume there is some sort of a framework or a template like how, what are the first steps go ahead and lead in if you would?
Obaid Durrani 5:15
Absolutely. So it's a framework that I've created with my colleague, Todd Clauser. It's, it's something that we've broken down into eight parts, with those parts being mindset, purpose, strategy, ideation, creation, distribution, performance, and iteration. One, we're a bit limited on time in terms of diving deep on all of these parts. So I'm gonna go over the parts that you can take away and implement right away after this event. But those parts being mindset, purpose, and strategy. And so if we, if we can, I'll jump, I'll just jump right into part one, which would be mindset. And this is to help you and your marketing team, your leadership team, get into the mindset of content creators. And the purpose of this entire framework is to is to help companies build sustainable media engines through in house creators. And we'll dive into how we can do that. So the first part of this framework is mindset. And what it really sets out to do is to provide an answer for the question, what is good content? Because you hear it all the time, right? Just make good content, make good content, but it's like, what does that even mean? So to figure it out, I asked myself, What is one content asset or one type of content that we would all agree on that? Yeah, that's good content. So I thought, okay, Superbowl commercials, everyone loves Superbowl commercials. Okay, but why? Right? Like, why do we all like Superbowl commercials. So when I gave that some thought, I was like, alright, well, one, they usually show you something new or reveal something. So it's like new technology or a new car or something. bringing that to a b2b SaaS context. I saw that as, okay. It's insightful. So you're showing them something new, you're providing a unique perspective or advice, you're making them ponder or wonder giving them a new approach, right? So it's insightful. The second reason I felt that Superbowl commercials work well is because they're usually funny, or, you know, they have some kind of emotional appeal. So I chalked that up as entertainment, right? Humor, drama. And the last reason I felt that we all like Superbowl commercials is because it's usually when they do something different, or build these commercials on really creative or unique concepts. So in other words, they're usually interesting, so insightful, interesting and entertaining. I saw those as the variables of good content. But now when we come back to our world, it's like, okay, on one hand, somebody could write an awesome blog post, and like, that's good content. And they could write a awesome LinkedIn post. And that could be good content, or they could record a video of themselves talking about something. And as long as it's, you know, they're providing insightful substance that could be content. But on the other end of the spectrum, you have things like corporate bros, cold call reenactments or gonggar, clickup Superbowl commercials, like we mentioned. So it's like, they're all these varying degrees of resources involved in the making of this content, right? Different levels of like budget, different levels of timeline, stuff like that. So now, how do you sort of like categorize this content in a way that you can better understand it to create that way. And so what Todd and I did is we broke it up into three groups, type one, type two and type three. So type one content is your insightful substance. So for your content to be any level of good, it has to be first built on insightful substance. This could be your you know, awesome. LinkedIn posts, your awesome podcast episodes, blog posts, things like that. From there we go to type two content, which is insightful substance presented in an interesting format. So an example of that would be do even resume from winter or headspace has animated explainer videos on meditation or, you know, the periodic table of SEO infographic, you're taking that substance, but now you're presenting it you're delivering it in an interesting or unique manner. And then type three. The last one is insightful substance presented in an interesting format and built on an entertaining concept. And this is where you know, your commercials and funny skits and marketing songs or whatever else you can cook up. This is where all that stuff comes in. And it's really crazy, because the more you see content this way, the more you can break down like high performing content assets in this sort of methodology like lavender Joe, everyone likes lavender, Joe, and you can, you know, it's first you just see it, and you're kind of like, oh, yeah, there are funny videos of this guy in a green suit, going around in a park pitching his ebook to people. But once you sort of see it from this mindset, the type one type two type three concept you can identify like, what's the insightful substance? What is the interesting format? What's the entertaining concept? And so seeing content that way and helping helping yourself like analyze content that way goes a long way in coming up with good content yourself. So
Jonathan Fischer 11:09
that would that also be a way to maybe structure your workflow, like, would you begin with as your first building block something insightful, then look for ways to make it more interesting. And then, you know, you can raise the bar higher and look for ways to even go for the entertaining. And with that also maybe translate to like your budget or complexity in terms of what types of assets you can create, like the most insightful substance you can write, as you say, that's simply copy. So that can land up blog post or whatever it is that on track, and what would you say to flesh? Absolutely,
Obaid Durrani 11:39
that's absolutely one way to do it one way to look at it, it's a super effective way to do it. For example, we're just going a little bit off topic here. But for example, if you think of how we all talk about repurposing content. And the way that we talk about repurposing content is like, Okay, you write a blog post, and then you can take that and turn it into a Twitter thread, or you can take that and turn it into LinkedIn post. And we sort of go about it that way. But once you see content in this, from this perspective, let's say you have a topic, I'll just give you a real example. So one of the parts of this framework, it goes into a concept called substance and delivery, where substance is the insights that your content is built on. And delivery is the format and the concept you present it in. So for just this topic, substance and delivery, I've created a straightforward LinkedIn post words, just a text post of me explaining it. So that could be your type one content, just straightforward and cyfle substance. I've also created videos of me, like live streaming myself playing video games, while talking about that topic. So you could bucket that in the Type Two Content, insightful substance presented in interesting format. And then I've also wrote, it's gonna sound funny, but I've also wrote rap songs about this topic, I've turned all of my thoughts into this topic into lyrics. And then I've, like, wrapped those lyrics over a beat, it's on Spotify, people like it, which is still really funny to me, I'm
Jonathan Fischer 13:26
gonna resist the urge to start beatboxing right now, just for the sake of everyone's mental health. But I'll confess that I have the urge, but
Obaid Durrani 13:33
you'll put me on the spot. But, you know, just just looking at it that way. So I was able to take one topic, this topic of substance and delivery and create multiple, totally different content assets out of that topic, rather than saying something like, Okay, let me just write one blog post on it. And then I'll just take that blog post and turn it into Twitter thread, PDF, carousel, something like that. So I would say, going back to your question about having this as a way to sort of like outline or framework, your content, you could definitely do it that way as well. One thing that I do want to make totally clear, though, is that this isn't some sort of like progression system, where you have to go from type one to type two, type three, depending on your objective, depending on your goal that you're trying to accomplish. Type one just may be what's best suited for that topic. And for that goal, you may not need to do the type three entertaining stuff. So it's always going to be based on your goals, your objective, your timeline, your resources. And that's going to dictate how you go about this content. So
Jonathan Fischer 14:51
what also sounded like in the examples you gave that it may be what I said before, isn't always true. I was the assumption that I was making. Was that well, you He needs to be slick, you know, slicker, better production quality needs to go up the ladder. But honestly, the examples you gave were pretty low budget, if any budget even in your colleague, Todd Clauser has done things, I mean, holding you're holding your smartphone and doing doing selfie videos can be in that category. Is that on point? And? And how does that interplay with like, like, company brand? Is that are there some risks that can be that need to be encompassed in how you implement on that? What What are your thoughts on that?
Obaid Durrani 15:28
Yeah, totally. So for the first part, that's, that's actually really cool that you brought that up and identified that because in part five of this framework creation, it's broken down into four sections. And one of those sections is something that we call effort and payoff. So there's high effort and high payoff. And then there's also low effort and a high payoff, in terms of a content creation perspective, from the perspective of a content creator. So and low effort doesn't mean like, hey, let's just be lazy. So high effort is, is you know, what you mentioned that higher production value, there's more budget involved, there's more resources, resources involved, and it could be high payoff. At the same time, there's also low effort and high payoff, for example, will aid gherkin now from lavender, Todd Clauser. Now from lavender, they make these hilarious marketing videos, Todd does will make these hilarious sales videos. And, you know, Todd, for example, had this series called The worst marketer in the world, where it was a parody of the DOS AQIS commercial, the most interesting man in the world, and he had like the same voice over and he like, dressed up like him. And he told me, the way that he came up with, like, the first 30 videos is, he just made a list of the 30 tactics that he thinks marketers should stop doing. And each one of those tactics became the topic for one of his worst marketer in the world videos. And he told me that it eventually took him longer to get into character, like put on the suit and comb his beard and whatnot, than it did to actually record the video. So and you know, that content was great for his career, and great for his, you know, LinkedIn following and content and whatnot. So that would definitely be something that we would tuck under the low effort, high payoff range. So it's awesome that you mentioned that there is there is that sort of, you know, process as well or not process but like, sort of methodology as well.
Jonathan Fischer 17:45
Well, and then again, is the the other question I asked, which is, you know, some some companies have a very carefully crafted brand, and that they should, obviously, right. So their persona, is you if you will, in terms of their marketing brand may not comport extremely well with super casual marketing efforts. In every case, I wonder, do you have thoughts on that? Can't can there be a both and or do you kind of have to be there's limitations there? If you'd speak to that just a bit?
Obaid Durrani 18:12
Absolutely. I think, I think it's a both and and I think, I think that's the way it should be. And it's a, it's something that we all sort of have to build towards over time. But I think the most important thing is, is you can't start building, you know, the entertaining stuff first before, you know the strategic stuff and narrative stuff, and all that is established. So just to sort of, because this is what part two is about. So I think part two will shed a little bit more light on this. And the and the difference between part one and part two is where Part one is not a progression system where you go from type one and type two to type three. Part two of this framework is a progression system, you have to go from top down to middle out to bottom up. And so what that means is part two of this framework is purpose, right? Where Part one was mindset. Part two is purpose. And we put this here because before you get to tactics before you get to content creation, before you even get to your strategy, you have to understand what the purpose is behind all the content that you'll be creating. And so we have a we have three different purposes here. So the goals that we're you know, hoping to accomplish with our content. And like we mentioned, that's your top down narrative, your middle out tactical implementation and your bottom up evangelism. Now, your top down content is meant to reach the leaders and decision makers at your target organizations that can drive company wide change. So this content can be your strategic narrative. This is where You know, your unique point of views come in. And this can be delivered through formats like podcast episodes through webinars, things like that. So that's your top down content. It's the content that's meant to reach the leaders and decision makers, at your target organizations that can drive company wide change. And then from there, we have your middle out content. And this is the content that's meant to reach the folks within a target org that are going to tactically implement that change. Right? For example, like, yes, leadership, and the C suit, C suite are all bought in on, hey, let's transition from lead gen to a demand gen model. But they won't actually be implementing that change within their company, right, you have senior managers and other leaders, etc, etc, that are going to carry that out. So your middle out content is meant for them. It's meant to reach the people within an org that are going to tactically implement that change, that you know, that change your shooter suggesting in your narrative, the old game, new game, all that stuff, right? Then finally, you have your bottom up evangelism. And your bottom up content is meant to reach the people within a target or are the end users within a target org, that are going to drive awareness and admiration from the ground up. Right. So this really helps with the whole product, lead growth motion, right. And this is where you're, you know, your funny skits and your Todd, Todd Clauser style videos, your will akin style videos, you know, your lavender Joe type stuff comes in. And that's why it's last, right? You have to implement the top down if and because it's also like a resources thing, right? Like, let's say, we're talking to so many companies right now that are at various stages of growth, right? You could be a 10 million ARR company right now with, you know, seven marketers on your team, you could be a 2 million ARR company right now with one marketer, you could be 100 million ARR company right now with 20 Plus marketers on your team, right? So, depending on what your resources, what you have available, and then depending on to what you've actually done with your content strategy thus far. You can decide like, Okay, where are we going to start? Right, like, so first, there's that and then that's from a content creation perspective, it sets the purpose for your content. The other way that this process this top down, middle out, bottom up, process really, really helps. It helps you define and segment your audience. Right? So for example, if we go to top down content, the content that's meant to reach the, you know, leaders and decision makers in an organization that can drive company wide change, who are they? Right? Like, you're, you're I'm a project management tool. I'm a project management tool, SaaS company, when I consider who the top down, people would be in the organizations that I'm targeting, who are they let me write them down. A lot of companies could say, well, well, we have multiple use cases, right? Like, the sales team could use our product marketing team could use our product, customer success could use our product. That's fantastic, right? Create a list for all of those use cases. So let's start with, you know, sales, sales could use our product, it's like, alright, top down content, who are these people? It's like, alright, that's the, the CRO the Global Head of revenue, the VP of sales. So and so we make a list of make a list of people, then we move to the middle out content, alright, these are the people within the target organization that are going to implement this change. Who are they? And it's like, alright, SDR manager, Head of Customer Success. So and so this person, that person, then it's like, okay, bottom up content, are the end users within an org that are going to drive awareness and admiration from the ground up. Who are these people? Then you make a list of that. Now, what you have is an actual list of your audience. And the current way we kind of go about this in the Content Marketing World is we just make like buyer personas, right? And the problem with buyer personas is like as we know, we say it all the time. We're marketing to people, we're forgetting that we're like, we're marketing to people like these are dozens and dozens of personalities that we're talking about that we're trying to, like sort of sum up to these, like fictional, like, people that we've created and like this one, two or three fictional people are supposed to like encompass the entire you know, our Our entire audience of hundreds of hundreds of potential people. And so this is a better way to actually define your audience and segment your audience. Because now when you have this list, I now have a list of people that I can network with people that I can talk to, on LinkedIn people that I can set up 15 minutes, you know, Zoom calls with and just ask them about their day to day, ask them about their challenges. And then I have a lot of information on them. And I can go one step further, for, you know, my content creation, I guess research and I can ask them about their actual interest, right, like, sure. They like to watch Netflix over the weekends, but it's like, what are they watching? Yeah. And so that gives you a lot of insight into when it comes to making entertaining content or something like that, like what sits well with these with these people within your audience. So but one thing
Jonathan Fischer 25:54
I really like about it, too, is that you are really offering as a marketing department a lot better support to the tip of the spear in terms of your sales team, because they have these are their challenges. They have to sell into an organization over a long cycle. And they have to make the same org charts hit all the same people. And meanwhile, marketing has this very scattergun broad based approach to an ICP, perhaps maybe it's not scattergun but still not as supportive. What I love is that you're really offering fantastic support to the individuals who've got to generate revenue. So that's really powerful. Well, for the sake of time, let's move on. What's the third component we're going to share with the listener today?
Obaid Durrani 26:33
Cool, awesome. So the third component is strategy. And it's a pretty long one. But I'll try to go over it as quick as I can. It's broken down into two parts strategy. And this relates to content strategy. It's not, you know, business strategy. You should have that sorted out before you get to this point, right? If you don't have like a business strategy sorted, where are we going to play? How do we win all that stuff, then you should first sort that out, and then come back here. So this part is strategy. Part three of this framework is broken down into two things. The first is, its bit of a corny name, but there's not really anything else to call it, it's called the Five prerequisites of ideation. So before you get into ideating, content, trying to think of content ideas, these are the five things that you should have a really deep understanding of. And then the second part of this part, is a realm of relevancy. And what that is, is it's a bridge to it's a bridge, that sort of, it sort of helps you map out your strategic narrative to serve as a bridge between that narrative and your everyday content topics. Because, again, what Todd and I realized was companies that do get like a strategic narrative crafted, it doesn't really make its way into their everyday content, like they'll post about it on LinkedIn, maybe they have like their CEO posting about it. Or maybe they're appearing on a podcast here or there, and they're talking about it, but it's not embedded into all of their content. So the realm of relevancy, it really helps you do that. So the first part, the five prerequisites of ideation, these five prerequisites are the things you have to have a really deep understanding of are one your product to your narrative three, your audience for your objectives, and five different content formats. So if we look at each of those one, your product? What is it? What is it do? Who does it help? How does it help? Do you know all the features? Do you know how to use it? Can you show someone how to use it? Right? If you don't have a deep understanding of your product on this level, like nine times out of 10, that's probably why you get stuck on ideation. But if you if that's not the issue, and you're sorted on that front, let's move to number two, your narrative, right? Like, what is it? Why is it needed? How do we adopt it? How do we adapt to it? Can you provide examples of it? What's it trying to change? Do you have research to back it up all that stuff? Um, one, if you don't have a narrative, then that's a issue right there. And if you do have a narrative, but you as a creator, as a marketer don't have an understanding of it on this level. You know, that's why you're stuck. So moving on from there. Number three is your audience. Who is your audience? What are their challenges? What are their goals? What platforms do they use? What are their actual interest? What segments make up your audience? Another thing about this a quick note is another thing I feel like marketers especially you need to realize is when we're sitting on a platform like LinkedIn, When we're talking about audience, we need to realize that audience means two different things. There's your audience, the people that you're actually connected with. And when you create content, it's those people that see it. And then there's your audience as in the people your company is trying to reach. So it's again, it sounds silly, but your audience needs to reflect your audience, right? I speak to a lot of marketers, and like, a lot of times, they're just connected to a lot of other marketers, like they're not, you know, when I was at Laakso, and our end user was SAS account executives, my entire LinkedIn feed just turned into like sales. I was like a salesman for three months, I was talking to nonstop account executives and talking to sales leaders and this and that, but a lot of times I see that, like, marketers don't do that they don't have their audience reflect their, you know, their personal audience when they create content, who's seeing it doesn't reflect the people you're actually trying to reach in terms of your company. So there's that. The fourth thing are your objectives, right? What are your objectives, your business objectives? marketing's objective sales team's objectives, customer successes, objectives, product teams objectives, right? You should know everyone's objectives. And because a lot of times, well, not all a lot of times all the time, that's what your content starts with. Number one, it's always going to start with what's the objective here? What is the goal we're trying to accomplish? What is the goal we're trying to create progress on, it's not going to start with keyword research, it's not going to start with trends, it's not going to start with Hey, our competitors just made a landing page, comparing their product with this and that it's cool, we should do the same thing. Right? Your content is always going to start with one year objective and to the realm of relevancy. Because the realm of relevancy is built on your narrative, all that stuff. And before we get to that the last thing is five different content formats. So before you can get to ideation, you have to have a deep understanding of different content formats. Can your Can you and your team create a wide range of different content assets? You know, animated explainer videos, podcast, episodes, infographics, commercials, blog post all of that stuff? Or are you still just operating on the ebook? Blog Post newsletter model? Right? If you are, you need to expand beyond that and get a deeper understanding of different content formats
Jonathan Fischer 32:31
will challenge us to get way beyond the normal format today, what absolute feast of great insights. And I want to really encourage our audience to take things further with you and your colleague. Is the pot your podcast, the best place for them to begin? How can they take the conversation today? Further, you obviously have a lot more to share?
Obaid Durrani 32:51
Yeah, so we, on our podcast, cheat codes, play the marketing game on easy mode. We have one episode dedicated to each part of this framework. So it's an eight part framework, there's five episodes published, and each one of those. So Episode One is on part one of this framework, it's like 2030 minutes long. In these episodes, we cover like, everything there is to know about each one of these parts. I hope that there's stuff that you can take away immediately after this event and implement it. If not, if you if you need to ask questions. If there's something you want to dive deeper on, then absolutely, you can check out those podcast episodes, they dive deep into everything. We're also going to be launching a website soon. The slide deck that all of this information resides in will also be public. So yes, though, we're running a consultancy, you don't need to hire us to implement this info. This will be public knowledge or public information in about two, three weeks when the website is live. So you could just go to our website, download the slide deck, listen to the podcast episodes. And you could totally implement this at your company.
Jonathan Fischer 34:10
Well, we'll have to add you and Todd back on the show maybe together the next time. But hey, we've got a live audience here with us. Let's let's go over to some of the questions that we have. That being the been asked by folks. And we'll check on that real quick. We've got so one that so here's the user said that he thinks he or she thinks the Superbowl commercials are good because they are the very best efforts to put on a top class production. Absolutely. It's not wrong. But I think we've also maybe had a counter view put forward here today as well, that maybe the inventiveness and creativity behind it was just as important as the production quality. Would you agree with that?
Obaid Durrani 34:48
Yeah, absolutely. And you know, that's why, when it comes to for example, substance and delivery, you have your substance and then you have delivery the way you're presenting that substance, and that part delivery is broken down into two further parts, I'm sorry that we constantly add parts to parts. I know it's weird, but there's format. And then there's concept, right? So you can you have your substance, and then the weight when you're, when you're thinking of how you want to present this information, you got to consider format and concept format is the end asset that you're creating. Right? I'm creating a blog post a Podcast, episode a video. And that's usually where we stop. Right? So we'll say like, I'm gonna write a blog post on this topic, or I'm gonna write a, you know, I'm gonna make a video on this topic. Sometimes, we need to go one step further and consider concept, right? A creative concept, like a premise, what is the creative concept or the premise that this content is built on? And so that's where you see things like the funny skits that may be low effort, but work really well, you'll see things like the Superbowl commercials, you'll see things like winters commercials, or male chimps commercials or nerd wallets or lavender, Jo, you'll see these things. And it's, yes, the production value is there. But it's almost always also built on a unique or creative premise. So I, I would totally agree with that statement.
Jonathan Fischer 36:21
Here's a question from Pablo. He's asking How could a services company use the top down to the cloud and bottom up strategy when they're creating content? And, you know, this is a little bit different, maybe vertical? Talk to us about
Obaid Durrani 36:35
that? Yeah. It's a bit similar, because you know, even as, as a service agency, you're not going to be trying to go after everyone, right? It's, you know, like, Oh, we're a 360 agency, and we do web optimization, and this and that, and this and that. I've never really felt that that was a good approach, right? So oftentimes, agencies like Pablos, I'm pretty sure you're going to be very clear on who it is we serve who it is, we don't like we know who we can generate real results for, and we know who we can't. So that's step one, if you have that there's already clarity right there. So now, it's like, okay, we can create, you know, great results for, you know, FinTech companies that are doing between five to 10 million arr. And they have X amount in funding, and they have a headcount of 30 to 70 employees, right, that helps you helps you helps you sort of begin to like segment your audiences like Okay, now we're talking about these very specific fin tech companies. All right, top down, who is it? middle out? Who is it bottom up? Who is it? So you could totally still sort of implement this from a agency or services perspective as well? As long as you have that defined? Like who it is you serve? You know, your ICP, all that stuff?
Jonathan Fischer 38:07
Yeah, yeah, that makes a lot of sense. Well, here's a good follow up to because it's a good, it's the first place that my mind goes is how do we establish ROI, you actually lead out with that as one of the challenges in implementing, and really good content based strategy? Talk to us about that?
Obaid Durrani 38:22
Well, it really it depends on the campaign that you're running. Right. Um, a lot of times, though, we have to understand like, what's a brand building campaign? What's a demand creation campaign? What's the demand capture campaign? Right? Um, and I would, I would say that when you get into sort of like the very short term territory, like when you're talking about, like marketing, generating results in like, a month or two, I don't know, man, I might get some slack for this. But that's not marketing, that's sales. And so, you know, marketing should be focused on one, you should have that ability to support sales when curious people come knocking at your door, right? So like messaging, positioning, sales, assets, all that stuff should be way sorted out in the beginning, before you even start considering something like the easy mode framework. It's like, if that stuff isn't sorted, first sort that out messaging, positioning it reflecting on your website, you having, you know, thorough pages on different case studies, I mean, different use cases, having, you know, transparent pricing, if if, you know, if you're not, you know, some enterprise company that, you know, like gong or something that can get away with it, right. So, you have to sort all of these things out first, you have to make sure that, okay, that you know, that that that narrative is built, and we've defined our audience and we have clear objectives and all that stuff. When you do that first and then you sort of think of content creation from that line. I think of it this way, a lot of companies run a lot of like funded startups run on like the triple, triple, triple double double formula, right? And so if like, it's like, okay, if you're at 3 million Arr, that's triple nine, like three to 9 million in one year, the nine to 27 million in one year, and so on and so forth. And it's like, when I get hit with information like that, it's like, Wait, we have to grow from three to 9 million in this year. Okay, let's throw that unwritten b2b Like rulebook playbook out the window. Because if our goal is to just hey, let's start blogging. Good luck, right? Like, that's, that's a part of it. Yes. But it's like, you know, and, you know, take this with a grain of salt, but think of Geico, right? They don't bring you in through the thick pamphlets, and the insurance rate cards and the brochures and all of that they bring you in through commercials of a talking Gecko. And that's how they plant the seed in your mind that, hey, when you're in the market for insurance friend come to us. And then when you go to them curious and interested to talking, Gecko goes away, and all the informative pamphlets and brochures and all of that stuff come out. Right. So it's like, they're doing marketing. And then they also have content to support potential buyers and users and customers when they come into the sales process. So it's like we need to recreate that. But I feel we only focus on on one of those parts. Where are the talking Gecko commercials? Right? Like, where is the real marketing? And I'm not saying again, this is all in order. That's a due process, right? I'm not saying leave this now. And then go to your sales, like, you know, marketing leader and be like, Yo, we need to do commercials, right? Again, if you're not at that stage of growth yet, if you're not, if you don't have all those other things sorted yet positioning messaging, like a way to create repeatable customers that don't turn and you know, customers are happy and all that stuff. That's, that's, you know, that's that that's what you have to worry about first. So, exactly. Duolingo flow from progressive, all of these different things like this is how they bring you in. Yeah, and you're now starting to see it like MailChimp is making commercials. And, you know, I can't recall off the top of my head, but I'm starting, you know, we're starting to see it quite a bit. I think it's just a matter of when you do these types of things. Again, it has to tie back to your narrative, it has to tie back to your product without your product being in their face, because then it's just a very like salesy asset. Yeah. So it's like, ultimately, if you leave with anything, just leave with this, like, how do you turn this content that you're creating, which is very clearly content that's created as a brand asset to further your business objectives? How do you turn that into a memorable experience? For the person that's reading, watching or listening to that content? That's it? How do I turn this content into a memorable experience for the person reading, watching or listening? You can do that through insights alone, you can do that through insights and entertainment. So it's not a one or the other thing. It's a both thing. Think of it this way, you guys come across hundreds of content assets. And one day, three, or four or five days go by, you're never going to be able to recall all the content that you've seen in those days, you're probably going to remember three or four or five of those things, Max. And the reason you remember those things is because they were memorable experiences. They were either insightful, or they were interesting, or they were entertaining or they were all three Sure, I think it really comes back to all of that.
Jonathan Fischer 43:49
If I can challenge you just a little bit so it sounds like it is difficult to do a dollars and cents ROI calculation with this it's a payoff. It's a little bit more intuitive. Does that mean there's no KPIs or can you measure audience responses? Or can you give us a couple enclosing insights on how you could measure
Obaid Durrani 44:07
the biggest reason it's hard to put in dollars number on this right now is because no one really does it. So you don't really have like you know, benchmarks to go on you can't turn to Oh well you know, click up did it like for example like you have clickup Right you can watch click UPS Melissa Rosenthal's presentation she did with traction where she talked about how they 100 extra revenue in like three years or something and she strongly leans on as as humor as the reason and so you have things like that but until you know we're very much at the beginning of this you're now seeing also like companies here hiring a lot of content creators lavendar just went all in on it. Aaron meet these companies are doing it. So we're really at the beginning of this. So it's very difficult to just you know, show up with this plethora of evidence notes and just be like, well, you know, here it is in 510 15 years. Absolutely. I think it'll be there. But right now, we're at the very beginning of this where we're just starting to think this way in b2b SaaS. And I think the companies that sort of give this a shot and sort of gradually roll this into their existing content engine. I think they're gonna win for sure.
Jonathan Fischer 45:25
Well, I bet you've given us a lot to think about a lot of ideas that we want to I think all of us want to go and take and continue to work on. And I think a lot of I think we just probably gained some audience members for your podcast. Thanks for adding so much value to our show here at the vault seals leader.
Obaid Durrani 45:39
Yeah, I definitely appreciate and I'd love to come back on with Todd and bother you guys some more.
Jonathan Fischer 45:45
Definitely. Welcome. Well, and a big thank you to our sponsor, Overpass overpass.com. The number one platform for getting fantastic SDRs AES anybody you need to work the phones for your company in very short timeframe and an amazing economical cost. And I want to thank our whole production team for helping us be such a success with the Evolve sales leader. We'll be right back here on LinkedIn again next Friday, same time, same station, bring a friend that's going to do for tonight. Take care everybody goodbye.