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So What? Business Strategy

So What? Marketing Analytics and Insights Live

airs every Thursday at 1 pm EST.

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In this week’s episode of So What? we focus on Business Strategy. We walk through the traction model, how to define your marketing maturity, and choosing three tactics. Catch the replay here:

So What? Business Strategy

In this episode you’ll learn: 

  • The 21 marketing tactics to power your strategy
  • Determining your marketing maturity
  • Putting together a business strategy

Upcoming Episodes:

  • Social Media Marketing – 1/20
  • Consulting
  • Change Management
  • Tag Management
  • Data Science

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AI-Generated Transcript:

Katie Robbert 0:21
Well, hey, how’d he it’s just me and John this week, it’s always a little janky. When it’s just me and John, make sure we start the show off correctly hit the right buttons. So welcome to so what the marketing analytics and insights live show it is me, Katie, I’m joined by John Wall. Chris is off site today, making magic happen with the digital customer journey and Google Analytics for how’s it going, John?

John Wall 0:44
Good, good. There’s like a panic, I couldn’t find the magic wand here. But I did manage to get that out. This is like our behind the scenes people or I just have this thing where I always wave the magic wand when the pre roll is running. And I could

Katie Robbert 0:54
it’s one of those pre show rituals that we’ve developed that now. Out of superstition, you can’t not do it, you have to do the pre show ritual, which is, as the music is playing, John has to wave the magic wand behind the scenes.

John Wall 1:09
It’s cruft. Yeah, it’s a burden myself with this now where it’s actually a problem if I can’t do it, and it actually delivers no real value of any sort. So

Katie Robbert 1:17
no, it’s a superstition.

John Wall 1:20
It satisfies a superstition, which is perfect, which is gets us on the road we want to be.

Katie Robbert 1:24
That’s right. So today, we are talking about business strategy. Specifically, John, you and I are talking about the traction model. And so we’re going to talk through the 21 marketing tactics to power your strategy, determine your marketing maturity and putting together a business strategy. So as we’re talking about business strategy, John, you always kind of come back to the traction model as your gold standard of, you know, figuring things out. So can you just sort of talk through what is the traction model?

John Wall 1:58
Yeah, the traction model originally came from the work of Justin Weinberg and Gabriel Maris, they did a book called traction that came out probably like five years ago now. And it was just the first time I read it, it’s a fantastic model. Because it’s comprehensive, it really covers all the marketing tactics that the average organization runs across and does. And they studied a couple 100 vc back startups. And were able to come up with some guidelines as to how to employ these tactics that will work most effectively. So the thing is, anybody can come in, and even a theory at that, you know, one founder in a garage, you can at least give yourself a map that companies have succeeded have used in the past. So you know, Your situation may be different, unique. And if you’re an existing organization, you may be doing things very different from how this works. But if you’re at a point where you’re not really sure where to go next, this is a map that, again, has proven success, and can get you on the right track and at least give you you know, the right things to start testing to figure out if you’re going in the right direction. There’s really

Katie Robbert 3:04
Oh, go ahead. Go ahead. No, no, go ahead.

John Wall 3:06
Well, as I said, there’s three main points to it that we’ll hit. The first is the 5050 rule, which has came out of the the realization that all organizations want to be doing half their time on product and half their time on either marketing or product development, but half their time being in front of customers and prospects and getting feedback, because the biggest gaps they saw were, you know, the build it and they will come people that just sit and toil away on a product and then throw it over the wall and hope it will fly and it doesn’t. And then the reverse of that is actually and this is an old adage that people say is like nothing will kill a product faster than good sales and marketing. You know, if you’re out in front of the customer all the time, and they burn your product down, then that’s fine, you actually that’s the fail quick and you can move on. And so there’s that kind of golden number of if you’re, you know, and this is easy for a startup, if you’re just, you know, one to five people, you can map out your week and just be like, Okay, let’s make sure two and a half days are going towards, you know, staying in front of customers and figuring out where we should be versus actually working on the product polishing.

Katie Robbert 4:13
You know, it’s it’s funny you say that, because as you’re describing that sort of 5050, I’ve worked in organizations that weren’t even close to that kind of a distribution. And so I’ve worked in organizations where there was 100% emphasis on the product, and zero emphasis on sales and marketing and talking to the customers. And quite honestly, the organization wasn’t interested in hearing the customer feedback. They were just a no I know best. I know what the customers need. But then all of these millions of dollars into the product, and it wouldn’t sell. And so it was always I know for always it was always kind of like a head scratcher of like, Oh, I wonder what’s going on. I wonder what’s wrong, why can’t we make more money? We’ve spent all of this money into it and then Absolutely, I’ve seen the flip side where all of the emphasis is on sales and marketing, but then it’s almost kind of like a bait and switch where like, once you get the person into the organization to buy something, there’s really nothing there to buy. I think I saw I don’t remember who posted it. So I apologize to the original poster, but someone had put on Twitter almost like a quick poll of, you know, which is worse. Really good marketing of a bad product, or really bad marketing of a good product, which one is going to succeed?

John Wall 5:35
Yeah, you’re both in trouble, you know, that that’s the thing, because the, we’d like to believe that a poor a great product with poor marketing will still survive. But the market has shown us over and over, you know, it’s, yeah, Mac is easier to use, but Windows dominated the PC space, you know, it was just like, cheaper, easier, you know, better market stuff flies. So, yeah, it’s, I you taught, it’s just so cliche, that group where the founders think they know what the customer wants, and they spend millions of dollars, and they end up not being able to sell. And the irony in that is that a lot of times, it’s because the customers are not as smart. And understanding as the founders, like the founders do get it, they understand what’s going on. But when they go make that argument to customers, the customers are just, I don’t even know what the heck you’re talking about, you know, I have this little problem here that’s on fire. So I’m not interested in your academic argument that’s going to change the world. And it probably will change the world eventually. But you know, you have to prime for the mass market, because they’re, you know, if they were visionaries, and really cutting edge people, they’d be doing the startup, right, they wouldn’t be sticking in their same jobs. So that kind of gets proven. So yeah, so from 5050, the next big thing that they learned out of that was this idea, they call it the bullseye strategy. But this idea that of all the marketing tactics out there, when you start, you want to start with three, you pick three tactics and test them, because the huge mistake so many organizations make is they try 10 things, you know, they have 100 grand to spend, and they spend 2050 different channels. And, you know, they end up burning 98,000 of it, if not 100, if they’re unlucky. And so this idea that you just pick three things, you do those three, and hopefully one of them hit, and then you rotate out the other two to other things. Because the big learning was that for every marketing channel, the returns are not linear, that you know, they’re more exponential, it’s having four people on your team all doing an hour of Google ads on the side is, has no chance of success compared to one person that sits down for two days a week and does nothing but Google ads, you know that one person is going to learn so much, that by their seventh or eighth iteration, they’re going to be miles ahead of the people that are just, you know, that’s just one of 10 things on their list to do. So that Bullseye strategy is a big part of that, too. And so that just scales, the idea with that is you kind of do the three and when you have three, that when then you do add a fourth, but you’ve got to start adding headcount at that point. And you keep kind of ratcheting that up, where ultimately, the end game is, when you’re at, you know, 150 million or higher, you’ve got 21 Different people who are covering each of those 21 different channels, and you have specialists and everything. And that’s, you know, that’s kind of the academic idea of where it will end up. And it doesn’t always end up there. A lot of for a lot of organizations, there are certain channels that just are never going to work for them. And they know that they avoid them or whatever. But yeah, that kind of gets them at least to the list of stuff that they can be working on and make sure they’re not spreading themselves too thin.

Katie Robbert 8:41
So how does an organization get to that point of knowing this is where the readiness comes in? And this is where the traction survey comes in? Is that right?

John Wall 8:50
Yeah, and even we will, this is like the big reveal here. Let me throw this thing out here if we can, if you can pick up that Adobe diagram for me there. So this is the traction model. These are the 21 channels that you can look at, you know, if there’s one screen, you’re going to steal from this today, this is the one because this is the map of of what the world can do. And so they’re broken out into four subsections. And, you know, the primary one is the awareness section where you’ve got advertising, conventional PR, social content marketing. And over the years, we realize that that maps perfectly with Gini Dietrich, his PESO model. And so we have stolen that she’s given us permission to do that, as long as we Yes. trademarked and the key is, the most important thing is that we say that if you need any of that stuff, you need to go call Jimmy and you know, go get a spin sucks, Slack group, if any of that stuff is in your belly, like you want to get over into the spin sex slack group because they’re always talking about that kind of stuff. And those are your peers over there and to get in. But so that’s the meat of it. They’re most of the classic marketing tactics are over there. As far as you know, content marketing, getting your email marketing, set up your website, all of your social activity. That’s its own channel right now. Conventional PR stuff what you know, the stuff you’d hire a PR team for, and then all the advertising stuff that all falls under that branch of awareness. So that’s a big chunk of it. Sales does also fall into that kind of hide that there we go, sales falls into that completely to, you know, your direct sales team, the other wrenches on our business development. So if you have sales people whose entire job is just to work with other vendors who are selling your product. For example, Hubspot does have staff whose sole job is to work with these other agencies that do Hubspot installs, like there are people like that’s their marketing duty is to help third parties be able to sell the product and make money off that. And then affiliates is kind of a is related, but different in that with most affiliate programs, you’re putting a program out there, and you just let the whole world sign up, and they’ll get their 10% or 20%, or whatever. And that’s a whole nother branch. There’s a lot of dark arts that are in that path that you know, if you’re into that stuff, you know where those things are, and what those events are, but rarely do we go down that route. And then the last two, product marketing, you know, that’s no surprise, that’s the, you always want to try you know, people talk about stickiness, or making their product, have viral components or whatever, if there’s something in your product that makes it easier for other people to buy it. Yeah, so a killer example of that. This week, threader was a Twitter tool where if somebody had done like 20 tweets in a row, and you can’t even figure out like, where to start reading, you would forward it to threader. And threader would have a webpage with it all cleaned for you to read. And but of course, the big win with that is anytime anybody does one of these huge long rants, there’s 50 replies underneath that tweet saying thread or you know, thread or post thread or poster. So anybody else that was looking at that, oh, my God, I had that problem and look threader right here solid, and it, it feeds itself. And the last one over on that branch of the product marketing side is just existing platforms, there’s always these plays, where if you have a product that perfectly fits within another organization, for example, we have this. There’s a startup here that does testing for swimming pools, well, they just work hand in hand with all of these large hotel groups, like they don’t have to go to the general public, they just work within these Hotel Groups. Because all of these hotels have pools. And so they can go in and talk, you know, go to all the hotel events, and the business just comes in, and they don’t do any traditional marketing, they just do this through an existing platform. And then you always see that the SAS right, the Salesforce AppExchange is classic example. Right, you could build an app on the App Exchange, if it lights on fire, you end up getting acquired by Salesforce five years later, and you’ve actually never even talked to anybody in the general public, you know, you can get away with it. So yeah, that’s like the huge, you know, show up and dump the whole carton of stuff on the floor here. This is a ton of stuff to throw out there. Yeah, I don’t know what any questions on that are? Where do you where do you want to go next with this?

Katie Robbert 12:57
I mean, I always have questions. So my question, you know, I guess the big question is, if I’m a startup, or if I’m, you know, an organization who’s just trying to reevaluate my business strategy, how do I know where to start? Like, how do I figure out, okay, I need to start with conventional PR, or I need to start with SEO, or I really need to double down on my business development. I mean, you could make an argument that you should start with everything. But as you were sort of just talking about the introduction, like you can’t do that, and have it be successful, you can’t just spread all of your resources out over everything, and know what’s working effectively. So how would I, as the end user, figure out what three things, all of these 21? To start with?

John Wall 13:48
Yeah, that’s a great question. And so the original traction framework talks about that, and a lot of it is just workshopping, I mean, you get the whole team together, you do have to sit down and do an inventory of what you’re doing. And of course, you know, self serving plug here, I mean, we do this and to have us come in, the great benefit is, we’re doing these surveys all the time, and you don’t have to put any effort towards it, like you just show up for a half day, and we can pull you through this whole thing. And the other Plus, with that is we’ve worked on all 21 channels. So if you’re on a team, that’s a start up and you’ve only worked on a few of the channels, we can at least, you know, be able to say okay, you know, you’re not doing anything in this channel, we’ve worked with four or five other companies that have been successful for this one. So maybe you want to check this out. But yeah, it’s just that process of going through all the channels that you’ve got. And with most organizations, you’re gonna, you know, when you look at what you’re currently doing, you’ll fill the three right out of the gate. I mean, the kind of standard one we see is on the publishing side, having your website you know, you’ve got to have a website up there, and you’ve got Google organic traffic, which is really the best ROI marketing that pretty much anybody can do. You know, it doesn’t even matter if you’re a tiny company if you’ve got some content that answers question Google will start throwing you traffic for free. If you’re unique and hot, so Website, email Marketing always has high engagement. And then for a third one, it’s usually direct sales, you know, you as a startup, you’ve got somebody that’s out in front of prospects talking to them trying to get real feedback to understand, you know, if you’ve got your product market fit, correct. And so then, you know, normally for a startup, and they’ve even gotten into this, as they usually throw three out, and usually one of three, they’re like, Yeah, we absolutely have to do this, and maybe the other two aren’t doing as well. And so for a smaller org, you just go down the list and cherry pick two or three others that you want to test. And you know, come up with your list and then just do short, iterative cycles, I mean, kind of classic agile marketing and say, like, Okay, for this month, we’re going to work on these three. And at the end of the month, you come back and say, Okay, how did these three do? Do we want to pour more money into any one of them? Do we need to shut any of them off? And are there some that are on the bubble? Do we see if we can fix it? Or do we swap them out? You know, you just set yourself up on a monthly or weekly cadence, whatever works, and figure out where to go next, and which ones to try.

Katie Robbert 16:07
And so I think that that, you know, I think that’s a smart way to think about starting your business strategy. And with that, you know, my little soapbox that I always get on is making sure that, you know, as you’re starting any one of these tactics, that you have some kind of a plan around it. And so that’s where the five P’s that we have, our framework comes in, so purpose, people process, platform and performance. And so I would apply that framework to every single tactic that you’re trying. And so what is the purpose of SEO? for your organization? Who are the people who are doing it? How are you doing it? What tools are you using? And how are you measuring success, and repeat that process for every one of those things, because the worst possible thing that can happen is you’re like, Okay, we’re gonna do PR, and then you never put a plan together to measure the effectiveness of it. So then the month, you know, let’s up and you’ve spent $20,000 in resources into PR, and you have no idea if it worked. So that’s just my little soapbox, that I like to get on is like, you can try any single one of these. But you have to have a plan that covers why you’re doing it, how you’re going to measure success and who’s doing the thing?

John Wall 17:24
Yeah, absolutely. Right, you. Chris talks a lot about, you know, if you don’t have 20% of your budget set aside for measuring, you’re not doing it, right, I mean, you just have to do that you have that point. And as a startup, or as a smaller org, you can kind of get away with that. But as soon as you get to the point where you have more than one employee, you’ve got to do that five piece thing, because you want to have, you know, a paper trail and documentation of, here’s what we thought we were going to do. And these are the things we’re testing, and this is what we consider success. Because yeah, as soon as you get beyond kind of the folks that have enough equity to chain them there, you’ve got to worry about churn in the marketing department. And you know, if you have two or three branches here that are doing great, but the person that runs those, you know, got a better offer to move to the Bay Area or whatever, you know, you’re going to be at Ground Zero and just lose that business. Unless you’ve got your plan written together. So that you can then, you know, at least hopefully start off at 40% as effective as you were, if not 80%. But worst case scenario is, you know, branches of the tree just die as people leave, and you’re stuck having to, you know, grow back from scratch.

Katie Robbert 18:33
So one of the things that you wanted to sort of talk about was determining your marketing maturity. So is the traction model, something that can help you figure out your marketing maturity? And what, in this context, John, is marketing maturity?

John Wall 18:48
Yeah, so the marketing maturity, as far as how we’re defining this is to run this model against your existing structure in your org, you know, so if you’re an eight person marketing department, you know, hopefully at that point, you’re, you know, by eight people, you do, in theory have enough to cover all 21 branches. So then it comes down to how successful are you at them? And, you know, you can come up with gaps, if you’re only a four person department, you know, you really shouldn’t be working on more than 12 branches, right? Because you don’t have the bandwidth. And in fact, with four people, really, you know, if you were had incredible luck, or great alignment, you’d only still be working on four branches with four people, you know, or maybe six. So yeah, just kind of doing the the math as far as both staying within your three per staff guidelines. And then but at that point, effectiveness comes into it, right, there’s no one size fits all rules on these because for some organizations, you know, they’ll get into three channels, and they’ll just be killing it, you know that their return will be there. So really, those organizations usually don’t feel like they’re in trouble even even, you know, they’re like, our marketing programs are going well, we’re generating a bunch of leads, and sales and things are going really well. But they actually may be leaving money on the table, you know, if they added staff and picked up two or three more channels, if they had the same success and those additional channels, you know, they could again, get, you know, double digit growth or whatever. So, yeah, the maturity model takes a look at, okay, how much have you bitten off? And how well are you doing with it? And, you know, do you either need to pare down and get more effective? Or are you more effective in that, taking advantage of that and need to just take on more channels to, to grow faster and get more out of it? So yeah, and we, again, that’s part of kind of the rollout process for us is, as we do that, we can do a full audit of where you’re at, and basically give you a report back of like, okay, here’s based on what we see, you know, what we think you should be at and whether you’re overextended or under invested, and be able to adjust to increase results on that. It’s just insane how, you know, we’ve seen stuff where, you know, Chris is looking at social and display ads, where our search engine ads where companies are bidding against themselves and wasting millions. And you know, to be able to not only get twice as effective and a channel, but then how also have a million bucks to pour into two other channels. Like that’s a complete game changer for a lot of organizations.

Katie Robbert 21:25
Right? Well, to paraphrase Ron Swanson, don’t have a bunch of things whole last one thing, and it sounds like David, you know, agrees with us and sort of there’s he’s right, there’s only 24 hours in a day, you know, it’s not realistic for any one person to try to tackle all of it. So really, picking and choosing where you can focus, your energy is going to make the most sense. And so, you know, when we get into things like our attribution reports, or digital customer journey reports, a lot of times, especially the larger organizations, we tend to ding them if they are focusing too much on one channel. The reason we do that is because the larger the organization, the more likely they are to have teams that are focusing on every single one of the digital marketing channels, or all 21 of these points here. And so there should be diversity in their digital marketing. And if we don’t see it, then that means that you know, one team’s not pulling their weight or things aren’t working, they’re not tagged correctly, whatever the case, as a smaller organization, like ours, it’s risky to be doubling down on one channel, like email, for example. But if you know with confidence that nothing is going to change with that tactic, with your email, it’s absolutely acceptable to focus solely on that, because it’s working, you’re doing it well. And you’re doing something of quality. And so you have to work within the constraints you have of your people and your budgeting. And so if you can only do one channel, well do that one channel, well, don’t try to spread it out across six different channels that are going to be kind of subpar.

John Wall 23:06
Yeah, absolutely. That’s, you know, this is startup land, like, it’s not about minimizing the risk. If you’ve got something that’s delivering return, you keep doubling down on it until the return starts to drop off. Because yeah, until you’ve got a proven channel that’s going to deliver as fast. You know, especially if you’re bootstrapping and you’re having to make payroll, you just don’t have time to play it safe. You’ve really got to, you know, again, jump on the channels that deliver and keep, keep driving those again, it’s that whole thing of the more you dig into a channel, the smarter you get about deploying within that channel to like an example that is with all search ads, right? It’s like, yeah, people start to get good at just key phrases and getting the content, right. But then when you start tuning with negative keywords, and making sure you’re not bidding against yourself and things like that, your returns continue to beat the general, the general masses, the folks that are just shuffling money on the pile?

Katie Robbert 24:02
Well, and that’s why the measurement plan is such an important element of all of this is, you know, so you’re talking about companies competing against themselves. Without that kind of in depth analysis, they may not know why their SEO strategy or their search engine marketing strategy isn’t working at all. Because they may not realize they’re bidding against themselves, because you may have two different teams who are not working together who are not talking to each other. And they’re, they’re both bidding on the same kinds of things. They’re both competing for the same keywords, we, we actually have a client where this happens, because just the nature of the organization is so large, where they have different branches of the organization. They have, you know, they’re a branch and they have a national branch and then they have teams within each of the branches. And, again, the organization is so large that they’re not communicating in such a way that they know they’re going Pete against each other. And so, you know, it’s not reflected on here. But that is a big part of this process is you can test and try any of these, but make sure you’re measuring what you’re doing and that you have that communication plan set up internally, even if you’re a team of two. I mean, I mean, John, you’ve seen this with me and Chris, the amount of times that things kind of go sideways, because Chris, and I didn’t talk to each other, even though we’re such a small organization. And one of us goes, What the heck is that thing? What are you doing? How did this happen? And it’s just, we didn’t have the conversation about it. And it happened so easily.

John Wall 25:37
Yeah, and that’s always a war, because you’re basically you trade off, you know, compliance versus agility, right? That’s the challenge, it’s like, because you could easily make the argument that every branch in this tree should ultimately have one person that’s ultimately responsible for it, like email marketing, you would have one person in the org, who has the final say, on what goes out on behalf of the company, and what doesn’t it just to avoid the kind of problems that you were talking about. But then there’s also the reality that if you get to the point where, you know, it’s gonna take you three months to get your email out, because you’re one division of 20. And, you know, you’re just waiting for your shot. But, you know, part of me is, that is the reality of it, like, it would be much better to have to wait three months to drop an email than have 20 departments just doing a free for all, pounding your customers and prospects. And that’s how see emos lose their job, right? It’s, you know, they have shadow IT are other stuff going on, and they’re not in control the message and where things go. So yeah, it’s, it’s always a fight. But and another thing that is a great point that ties into what you said earlier, is, if you have a five page document for any of these branches, at least, everybody else in the org can go to that document. And if they are kind of outside of the, you know, the directly defined area of where they can work, at least if they stay on track with the five P’s, they’re not going to do something that’s completely off brand, or going to screw things up, you know, more than if they were just to be Wild West shooting up the whole saloon when they got there.

Katie Robbert 27:09
It really a lot of organizations, even if they’ve been around for a long time do feel like that wild west scenario, which is, I mean, I get how it happens, but it’s still I don’t know why I’m surprised every time I come across it. Alright, so how, how do you start to use this information to put a business strategy together? So we’ve talked about what this is sort of determining your marketing maturity, you know, if you’re a startup, or if you’ve been around for a long time, if you have new team, so everything is? How do I then take this and put it into action? What is my sowhat? Here?

John Wall 27:46
Yeah, in a perfect world, you know, this is matched also up against your digital customer journey, you know, you’re actually have a report that you can run, and you can see every week or every month, that okay, these are the channels that are delivering and how they’re doing. So then you can make that decision. As far as Okay, for this month of this quarter, these are the ones we’re going to crank down on and, you know, spend more, these are the ones we’re going to shut off. And, you know, ultimately you would understand what’s going on. In each of these places. You know, one of the points here, I do have to say, any large organization is going to reach that wild west stage. And that is another benefit to bringing in somebody from outside to look at this stuff. Because they’re they don’t have a political vested interest in, you know, explaining what’s going on or where the gaps are in the data. And so having a third party that can look at this and give you the the truth, you know, about what’s going to go on and where things need to be passionate, are broken, can really kind of get you in trouble. And by the same token to conserve as the lightning rod, you know, your team doesn’t have to take the beating, you can have a third party deliver the bad news, and you know, and work around it or fix it. But yeah, this is, you know, this ends up just kind of being a cycle of, okay, you’ve, you know, this is what we’re working on for this quarter, we loop back, see what worked across all the channels, figure out which ones detect, test next, and just continue rolling the cycle. And what you’ll find is, as the business the overall business strategy changes that will affect the five P’s, which then affect, you know, kind of which channels may work in your again, it’s just always adjustment, right? This is the part of marketing that’s there’s my surfing analogy, right? It’s like every day is different. And you know, just because your show up today, don’t expect it to be anything like yesterday, you’ve always got to be on the move.

Katie Robbert 29:37
And that’s where that agility comes in. And so it’s funny. You know, we talk a lot about frameworks and process. And for some reason, those terms get associated with slowing things down and more of that waterfall approach to project management where in reality, using those frameworks gives you that repeatability which allows allows you to find that agility, and it allows you to pivot very quickly as you’re seeing something that’s not working. And so while this chart may feel overwhelming and daunting, and talking about the five P’s and other frameworks, the Trust Insights might apply. In reality, it actually speeds you up, doing business requirements upfront speeds up the whole process, even though it feels like you’re slowing down. And so that’s something that, you know, we can absolutely help with, because we can facilitate all of those conversations and gather that data. John, to your point, we don’t have that political or emotional investment in an organization. We’re coming in, like, just the facts, ma’am. Just tell me tell me the facts, like I’m not concerned about, you know, if you know, Barbara stole your coffee, and now you’re not talking to her. So you cut off the Google Analytics access, like, we’ll fix that stuff, but we’re not going to get involved in the politics of it. So I think bringing in a third party to help you evaluate your readiness, your marketing, maturity, and where you need to, you know, tighten up on some of your processes, even processes, and governance is an excellent idea. I mean, I’m totally biased. And I’m totally going to say that it’s always a good idea, but it really is a smart way to evaluate what’s going on.

John Wall 31:27
Yeah, and the thing that has just blown me away over the past, you know, five years now, as we’ve gone through all this stuff, is the number of orgs, where we’ve become the repository of knowledge for the marketing department, you know, there’s so much churn with employees and departments, that a lot of times, you know, one of these branches, somebody will leave and the new employee comes in, and we’re actually training them and getting them up to speed on what’s going on and what how, you know, why it was built this way? Why, why this works, what were the things that they’re working on trying to fix, and having some kind of institutional memory, as opposed to that info just walking around, it’s just been nuts. What the great resignation over the past six months here, we’ve just had so many orgs, where people have fled, and, you know, the CMOS just stuck with not able to report or do anything, you know, they had all this ability to execute. And now suddenly, they’re scrambling just to get back to where they were six months ago. So, you know, kind of think of this as having a data backup off site that can save what you’re doing.

Katie Robbert 32:31
Well, and with that, you know, we know that consultancies, like ours, not exclusively ours, but like ours, we tend to stay up to date on the latest and greatest techniques and platforms and those kinds of things that your internal team just may not have the bandwidth to do in terms of professional development, and, you know, their own research and innovation and development. And so turning to an outside organization to get that information in terms of what’s the latest information on social and display ads, what should I know that I don’t currently know, because I’ve been so focused heads down on just doing the thing, that I haven’t had time to look up and see what’s new. And so that’s another really good benefit of bringing in an organization like Trust Insights, to help you evaluate this kind of information to see, you know, it, are the tactics that I’m deploying working, or are there other things that I haven’t even thought of?

John Wall 33:28
Yeah, and that’s a great point, because that really applies to all these branches, right? I mean, there are in large orgs, you know, there’s somebody who does the messaging apps for, you know, name any Fortune 50 company? Now, do you want to grab somebody off the street and let them work by trial and error for the first six months to figure out how that works? Or do you want to, you know, find somebody who specializes that and hire them for two weeks to come in and give you some of the best practices and get you off the ground and save you all that pain? And, yeah, it’s, you know, until you have the resources to specialize in these channels, you getting some outside help is always a great way to you know, you just you don’t want to learn by banging your head against the wall, you know, it just it gets to be too tiresome and painful. And really, the big one is the pitfalls, you know, because so many of these programs, if we had $1, for every client that, you know, their first run with Google Ads was throwing $10,000 at something and coming back with absolutely nothing to show for it. I mean, that’s just, it’s not even cliche. That’s pretty much like what happens to the majority of people that try that. So yeah, don’t go there.

Katie Robbert 34:38
So as we’re starting to wrap up, it sounds like if you’re looking to either put together a fresh or or refresh your existing business strategy, a great way to look at it is using this traction model, which is sort of a major 21 points of your marketing, how you’re going to bring people in how you’re going to Keep them and determining your maturity with each of these things. And so if you want help with something like that, then Trust Insights is a great option. You know, to help with that you get to talk with John, you get to talk with me, maybe talk with Chris, who knows. But definitely, you know, look at using the traction model in terms of helping determine your business strategy. Again, whether it’s a brand new strategy or something that you’re refreshing, you know, there can be a lot of benefit to that, you may find that you’re spreading yourself too thin. And you really need to tighten up and just focus only on a couple of different tactics to really, you know, hone those skills and nail them and demonstrate performance.

John Wall 35:44
Yeah, that’s, that comes out. And the thing is, we can easily drop this, you know, 20 years of marketing knowledge on you in 30 seconds. But the reality is, you know, as soon as you do this, doing the measuring, and all the systems that need to integrate to make this all work, there’s just a ton of work that goes on underneath the scenes here. And so and that’s where we can, you know, that’s our specialty is getting you to the point where you can make these decisions and help you.

Katie Robbert 36:07
So, John, any any parting thoughts as we start to wrap up this week’s so what?

John Wall 36:14
Yeah, definitely give a plug for analytics for marketers, you want to check out our Slack group, we’ve got people always talking about the programs, they’re running over there. And if you want a third party view or opinion on programs you’re running, or what the results should be, come check us out over there, we’d love to talk to you. There’s an even if you’re not into what you’re doing today, you can tell us about the movies or music, you’re listening to the Now Playing channel gets a lot of action over there. So we’d love to see you over there.

Katie Robbert 36:41
So before we before we run, before we wrap up, John, we did actually get a question, see if we can tackle so Lori’s asking, there are some sectors that are unlikely to fund it outside marketing PR data provider. So how do you advise a CCO to fill in to fill in until that case can be made? Um, what do you think, John?

John Wall 37:04
Yeah, you know, I mean, if the reality is you can’t, then you’ve got to do it inside. And now you have the real struggle of when you’re looking at your budget, can you know, can you afford to hire somebody who’s got some experience already on these channels? Or do you only have the ability to hire a junior person that you’re going to have to train and so you kind of need to, to juggle that. And there’s a lot of different approaches to that, I think, kind of one of the big mistakes people make is, you know, the first marketing hire than firing than hiring like three junior people, and then that that senior marketing person just ends up spending their entire life, you know, training and cleaning up after the junior people, you’d really be better off, maybe, you know, hire even a little bit out of your budget, if you can prove it and figure out a way to make it work. One way that’s great to do that is hire somebody on, you know, on a project basis, you know, get just say this as part of our employment process, like you’re going to be on for 90 days, at which point we’re going to reassess where things are at. So you don’t have to fully commit, but at least maybe you can get somebody in the door with more experience. Because, you know, the ultimate goal would be somebody who you need to train them up on your business line and what you’re doing, but you don’t need to train them on. Here’s how Google Ads work. And here’s, you know, here’s how you run an event. And you know, just things that would be brutally challenging to teach somebody how to do. So yeah, there’s a, there’s a lot of challenges that go into that, if you’re not able to kind of think creatively on the hiring side, it can definitely be more of a headache. And a huge mistake people make on that front is then they delay the hiring, you know, they’re like, well, we can’t afford a person with some experience now. So let me just double down and do more work. And that’s the number one source of burnout that we see.

Katie Robbert 38:56
I would add to that, you know, if you don’t have the ability to hire someone from the outside, to do this kind of audit and evaluation, it definitely needs to be a commitment internally from the organization. And it needs to be a top down commitment, because it will take time away from your existing resources to do this kind of an audit. And so making sure that there’s buy in from the organization to say, alright, if we can’t hire an outside marketing, PR data provider, we have people internally who can do this, but here’s the trade off, here’s what won’t get done, as we make this a priority. And so that can kind of help you make that business case to say, you know, here’s the list of things that won’t get done. Or conversely, if we brought somebody in, we could, you know, have them work on this thing. And then all of these other things over here could continue to get done. You know, if the if the answer is still we can’t hire someone from the outside. Maybe Making sure that it’s 100%. Crystal clear. Okay, that’s what this means we can have John, focus on this audit of our marketing programs to see, are they working? Are they not, but here are the five things that John won’t be able to do during this time. If we’re all OK with that, then we can go ahead and move this forward. And so it’s just making sure you’re also having that conversation of this is a big commitment. So if we’re going to do this, here’s what that looks like for the organization. And a lot of organizations are okay with that, because it means that they’re going to continue to learn and grow and get better. But if they’re not okay with that, then it starts to become easier to make the case of bringing in an outside party.

John Wall 40:42
Yeah, okay. So for the hardcore fans that have stuck with us here, this is where you’re going to get the the real inside the extra tips. Because we’re talking about as a CCO doing that. So if you’re a challenge we see all the time is people trying to find people in their org to do blog posts, or do keynote speaking, whatever fun, you have to be able to create content, even though it’s not part of their job. And the mistake people make is looking for the subject matter experts, what you really want to be looking for are the people that are the one to be actors and comedians, the people that want the stage time, that’s the important thing, because you’ll never convince a subject matter expert, to take four hours out of their day to do a blog post, if like if, if that’s not something that they love to do, they are just never going to do it. They’re always going to blame their job and their their main line responsibilities. Whereas if you find somebody that does want to do that case study so that they can go to some show, or just enjoys hanging out on the social media channel to answer questions, you got to find those people, because those are the ones that can win because yeah, it’s just the, you know, fledgling VP of Marketing, trying to coerce people to do blog posts is just an old tired trope that nobody wants to see or have to live through.

Katie Robbert 41:56
And so with that, any other, you know, I want to make sure we don’t get too far apart, because this is something that we could probably talk about for a long time. So maybe it’s going to be an upcoming episode. So any other final parting words, John, on the traction model? And how organizations can be thinking about their business strategy?

John Wall 42:16
Yeah, that, you know, if you if you haven’t picked your three most important, you don’t understand what those are, go do that. And yeah, if you want to throw them over in the slack group, so we can talk about and kick them around, we would love to compare notes on what’s working and not working, but at least understand your three. That’s that’s where you need to start. And best of luck with that.

Katie Robbert 42:33
I think that’s a that’s solid advice, and probably a great place to stop for today. Because again, we could sort of rant forever about this topic. So thank you for joining us today. Join us next week where I believe we’re talking about social media marketing, which should be an interesting conversation. Since the three of us are not necessarily social media marketers, but we do know a lot about the specific topic.

John Wall 42:56
And we get no answers all influencers all the time.

Katie Robbert 43:00
And with that, let’s see if John and I can figure out how to properly close up the show. No, no, no, wait, we got it.

Christopher Penn 43:12
Thanks for watching today. Be sure to subscribe to our show wherever you’re watching it. For more resources. And to learn more check out Trust Insights podcast at trust AI podcast, and a weekly email newsletter at trust Got questions about what you saw in today’s episode. Join our free analytics for markers slack group at trust for marketers, see you next

Unknown Speaker 43:38

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