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Content is Part of the Product

Your content is a part of your product. It is not something you:

-Use to sell your product.
-Create to rank for SEO purposes only.
-Publish on your blog.

Your content is a critical part of how your prospects and customers experience your brand, company, business and what you're selling.

Treat it as such and invest in it more.

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Growth Levers

Every business has hidden growth levers.

Your job as a growth leader is to find them and help the business capture them over time.

These include (not an exhaustive list):

-New revenue
-Expanding existing accounts
-Cross-selling / Upsell
-Increase pricing
-New products
-New markets
-New business
-New customer segments
-Lower attrition
-M&A

The more you capture them, the more enterprise value you create.

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Connecting Marketing to Business Results

Copywriting is not as important as everyone will tell you.

Copy is not what separates good marketers from great ones. Things that are far more important:

1) Connecting marketing's efforts to the overall business strategy and results

2) Interfacing with other functions and roles (product, sales, customer success, engineering)

3) Being finance-literate (it would help a lot of marketers to look at an income statement and balance sheet or know what EBITDA means)

4) Understanding the strategic growth levers of the business and how marketing plugs into those levers.

A lot of people will try to "sell" you on the idea that copy is your biggest growth opportunity as a marketer. While it will help you get an entry level job, you will eventually hit a ceiling.

Understand the above 4 opportunities and your career has no limits as a marketer.

Don't miss the forest for the trees.

P.S. Join the SaaS Marketing Simplified newsletter for more bite-sized content like this in your inbox a few times a...

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Marketing vs. Sales Quota

Over 50% of sales reps miss quota.

What companies don't realize is that this number is not just an indicator of good a sales team is.

Yes, a better sales team will hit quota more. But show me a better sales team and I can show you a better marketing engine:

-Better brand
-Better positioning
-Better demand gen
-Better content

If your sales investment outweighs your marketing investment by 4:1 or 5:1 like it does in a lot of companies, expecting sales reps to always hit quota is absolutely unfair.

Hitting quota and marketing investment go hand in hand.

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How Customers Buy

There is a big disconnect between how companies want to sell customers and how customers actually want to buy.

No customer wakes up thinking they want to go through your perfectly crafted, straight line buyer journey.

Meanwhile, companies are trying to push you through so many hoops, gates and forms just to get the right lead scoring triggered.

They also avoid talking about competitors because they think you won't find them anyways.

Here's the thing: your customers don't care about what journey you've planned for them. They'll:

-Find pricing on Google

-Look up competitors on Capterra

-Watch your pre-recorded demo on YouTube

-Read a bunch of reviews on TrustPilot

-Ask people they already know

All of this is happening without your lead scoring getting triggered.

Change the internal company dynamic and focus on helping the customer at every step with as much content as possible.

B2B marketing would be a heck of a lot better if marketers approached it the same way as they themselves do...

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Growth Leader

Product, marketing and sales collectively bring the overall growth plans of a company together.

None of these functions can lead growth for a business by themselves. They require alignment and orchestration to capture the value from the company's biggest growth levers.

In many cases, the CEO plays this role. But as companies get bigger, the orchestration role gets lost because the CEO's role also evolves.

Eventually, there are VPs and C-Level execs for all functions except Growth (!).

This is why a Growth Team or a Growth Leader is required inside these companies. The role of this function is to bring Marketing, Sales and Product into alignment.

By the way, having a Chief Revenue Officer who primarily focuses on Sales doesn't count either.

The Growth function requires a leader who understands Data, UX, Engineering, Product and Strategy on top of Marketing and Sales.

 

To learn more about how to hire the right type of marketing leaders, take a look at our full post: How to Hire...

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How Content Scales

Content scales over time. Each asset on its own may not move the needle. But the great thing about content is that once you create it, you can move on to create the next asset.

Meanwhile, the previous asset continues to generate returns. Each time an asset is produced, we layer on additional recurring value. This process takes time and patience, two things most companies are not willing to give.

But if a company is patient enough, a 12-month content strategy can build multiple assets that produce ongoing value for the business.

Oftentimes the work produces enterprise value in a way other channels never can.

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Good vs. Great Content

The difference between Good content and Great content is that Great content continues to pay dividends as time goes on. Factors that impact long-term dividends on content:

1) Quality
2) Distribution
3) Consistency

We want to produce more Great content. That's what creates long-term enterprise value.

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T-Shaped vs. C-Level

Becoming a T-Shaped Marketer is helpful to people starting a career in marketing but can be destructive to marketers later in their careers.

Being T-Shaped definite will help you get promoted to the level of specialist or manager. But then you will hit a wall.

On the flip side, if you begin connecting the dots between marketing and the other functions of the business right away, your odds of getting to a much bigger marketing role in your career increase dramatically.

I call this type of marketer a "C-Level" marketer. These marketers are difficult to find because it is difficult to see the whole board and understand marketing's role across the business.

These C-Level marketers understand:

1) How marketing connects to sales, product, support, client success, engineering
2) Financial and build a relationship with the CFO
3) Manage up in their conversations with the CEO
4) Communicate expectations and connect the dots for the team

These are the people who get the big promotions, who...

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Strategic Pillars

Not every good idea is worth pursuing.

Each business has core strategic pillars that are deeply interconnected and intertwined into the fabric of the organization. Can you imagine if Ikea started selling high-end, customized furniture?

This is why filtering your ideas through your strategic pillars is critical. When you go through this exercise, you realize that most ideas aren't a good fit for your business.

Where companies get caught is when they start with the $$$ value in certain ideas. They work backwards from there to figure out how to make it happen.

Along the way, they lose the strategy and forget what business they're in. They also jeopardize the core business with this outside-in strategy.

Instead, start with the strategic pillars and build from the inside-out.

Don't chase after every shiny revenue opportunity :)

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