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In this episode of E coffee with experts, Matt Fraser interviewed Liza Mischel, the marketing director of Quattr. Liza shared simple key steps to creating a marketing plan for your B2B startup. Liza also shared her thoughts on how to produce effective content for your business. Watch the episode now to get some great tips from a true expert!
Figure out what you want for your company and understand that if you are going the first round of the low-hanging fruit, eventually that fruit will end.
Hello everyone. Welcome to this episode of E Coffee with Experts. I’m your host, Matt Fraser. And on today’s episode, I have a very special guest, Liza Mischel. Liza is the marketing director of Quattr, an AI-first website optimization platform headquartered in Palo Alto, California. She has a bachelor’s of business administration degree from Baruch College and over ten years of experience in various industries, helping businesses and organizations to increase their website, traffic leads, and sales. When not working on marketing campaigns for Quattr, Liza enjoys spending time curled up on the couch with her husband watching Jeopardy! Liza, thank you so much. Welcome to the show.
Thank you for having me.
So, how would your university professors describe you as a student?
Yeah. When I was in college, I was in college two days a week on purpose because I was working the other five days a week. So, I was not very studious, but I was creative. Things came very easily to me in high school, and I was unprepared for college. Every hour you are in class, you need to spend 3 hours in the book. That was not something that registered with me, especially since I was paying my own way through college and working. But I did get good grades. I wouldn’t say they thought I was the most studious person. I kind of just did the bare minimum to get my B or A and tried to skate by. But whenever I get asked in interviews, what did you learn in college as a marketer? I learned nothing, absolutely nothing, there. What I learned is to meet my deadlines under stress. But that’s something I was well aware of before I got into college, so I can’t say that. While, I enjoyed my time at Baruch College, and I think it’s a great pool for anyone who wants to get into business. Just like the network connections that you make and the location like it’s right on in Midtown in Manhattan. So, it’s really great. But I cannot say that I learned anything for my marketing career. I also graduated in 2015. So, I can’t say that I felt like anything that they taught me there translated because it was a massive technology boom. Everything has changed. They were teaching me the four P’s. It’s great to know that because it is a basis for marketing. But if they were teaching me how to use Marketo or teaching me how to use HubSpot or teaching me even how to use JIRA, that would have had value to me. That is academia for you.
Yeah, it’s interesting because I went to school as well. I got a diploma in web media design, and it was expensive. I learned more in a six-week course from an agency owner teaching you how to run a marketing agency and all those things. What I learned in school and probably better, especially now with the way the internet is like LinkedIn learning, I mean back when it was Lynda.com. Now, in the city I live in, you get free access to that platform with a library card. It’s like huge savings; you can just take as many courses as you want. But it’s interesting, Google has now said that they don’t require a degree to get a job with them, which probably may be a huge hit to like some universities because people bypass that and they start making money. But do you think it’s necessary then if someone was waiting to start out in a career in digital marketing, would you advise them to go to school?
I would say it can’t hurt. If you have the time and you have the money. Yeah, do it. Not just like the learning perspective. It’s an experience. But if you’re asking me, would I not hire someone if they didn’t have a degree? Definitely not. I don’t care. My back before I was in marketing was working at a restaurant, and a lot of that lent itself for me to understand the human psyche, human behavior, and, you know, let me understand consumer behavior very, very early on in my career and people to have that edge. So, I can find out if someone has the potential in their past experience. That is way more than what they provide in terms of education.
Oh, that’s awesome. What do you wish you had known ten years ago?
To be honest, it is probably not the greatest thing to say in a podcast, but I would have liked to know how many glass ceilings there are. How much will I have to fight through to be a woman, especially in this field. Like you would think the marketing would be more open. You have more creative stuff, but it’s not true. The amount of adversity I’ve had as a woman, as a woman going on maternity leave, as a mother, and the assumptions that people come in about the job that I can and cannot do, are the things that I wish I had told myself ten years ago. Gain your strength, polish your armor. It’s going to get tough out there. But that being said, these are learning experiences. It’s part of growing and part of being a woman in corporate America. That being said, I’m very happy with my current place and company, but there are multiple struggles in terms of getting here.
Yeah, that’s very interesting. I was talking to somebody on another episode about this. She was a young lady and was talking about the same things. And in that regard, people thought, because she was a woman there are just different comments people made.
Yeah. And it is a male-dominated industry.
Especially B2B, SAAS.
What advice would you give to young women looking to enter the digital marketing industry?
I think the atmosphere has changed right now. I’m sure there’s a lot of it still going on but my advice would be to find a mentor, someone you trust, someone in your space or similar enough, and reach out to them for advice. I did have that, and I stumbled. I fell flat on my face so many times climbing the ladder. And I’m still climbing the ladder, and I’m still falling on my face. There’s a reason when you climb Mount Everest, you have a Sherpa.
Yeah, that’s amazing. What great advice. That’s such a good analogy. The value of having a mentor is just amazing. I wish I had a mentor too.
More than one. You know, one could be for managing being a woman in the industry, and one for actually learning marketing, one for managing up, and one for managing down. We all have different strong suits. And most people that I’ve approached for mentorship have been very open about it. So, it can be someone that you are following on LinkedIn. Reach out. Maybe they would be willing to give you an hour. In the beginning, that’s kind of all you need. Just come prepared, come ready, and have that mentor there.
Yeah, I met a mentor. I was going to a digital marketing conference in Vegas when I was in the car industry, and there was a gentleman who somehow, I found out about, and his name’s Joe. I reached out to him on Twitter and asked him if I could meet up with him at the conference and talk to him, and yeah, I hit it off with him. He was a mentor to me in the industry, and because he had previous experience doing the position that I was doing and it was, it was so valuable to be able to talk to him. I didn’t know who he was, like his reach of influence in the automotive industry. He was in the NADA magazine for one of the top Internet marketers in the United States of America. He took a dealership in Miami for an area from 200 cars a month or 400 using his back-end processes. But I think if I’d known that a little bit more, I would have been a lot more intimidated talking to him, I was just this naive guy. But yeah, it’s cool that you see that, you know, reaching out to people and just asking them.
Yeah, you know, some good advice that I got was it can’t hurt to ask. Worst case, they would say no.
Absolutely. So, you touched on working in the restaurant industry a little bit, but how did you first get interested in digital marketing?
Well, I mean, I knew that I wanted to get into business. It fits my personality very well. Like I was not a liberal arts major. I didn’t like to write. I was not into art, but I was very creative and couldn’t sit in one space. I liked marketing because it was very dynamic. As I said, I was in college when Facebook started blowing up, Twitter was comical, and LinkedIn became a thing. So, I kind of grew up in that stage, like as an adult, and I just felt like a very natural fit for me. And when I looked at what my majors were, I knew that I wanted to be in college for as little time as humanly possible. I knew that I wanted to pick my major right from freshman year, and I did. I looked at what available options were, I was like finance. I was good at math and at calculus. So, I knew I would get through all of the classes, but it had no interest to me whatsoever. You know, market movements following all of that are not really something I saw myself doing for 40. And then I looked at accounting again, numbers. I don’t want to count other people’s money. I would rather count my own. Law also came up, philosophy also. But I was like, Nah, it’s not really my thing. My thing was the only thing I didn’t have an objection to at the time.
So, I was like, okay, let’s do this. And then I took my first few marketing classes, and I was just like, this is boring. This is terrible. What kind of marketing class did I enter? Branding was the first class that made me think this is what I want to do. But it was actually like a three-level course. The person who was teaching was actually a marketer. And I hope I’m not getting this wrong, but I want to say his name was Steve Gold. It was many years ago, and I still remember his name. I still have a book he gave me called Branding, one of my favorite books to read. He was an actual marketer working at a large company. I won’t remember which one, but he came in to do the course because the person who used to teach the course was his mentor, who passed away. So, he took over that course, and he pretty much started the class with like if you’re here to get an A, you should probably drop this class. Like he was there to teach and not just sign grades. And he really taught me so many things about branding and social awareness. He really was a great teacher, and that solidified my going with marketing. I knew that branding is a very small piece of the marketing puzzle, and it’s a long game you play. But it got me involved and wanting to stay on the marketing track.
Well, that’s awesome. What’s your favorite thing about digital marketing or marketing? whichever.
It’s constantly changing. You know, there is some monotony to the job. Obviously, you’re pulling the same records, you’re looking for the same metrics. But generally, new platforms are coming out. And right now, the question is how B2B marketers leverage Tik Tok. Can you leverage Tik Tok?
Yeah. That’s interesting.
So yeah, same with Instagram, and now it moves to Tik Tok, and it’s like you’re always answering a new question. You’re always trying to leverage something new in people’s lives. Right now, there’s a lot of talk about data privacy, and as a marketer, that’s a very scary concept because we live and breathe data to make informed decisions. But people in Mad Men Era didn’t have that much data. They had Nielsen reports, and they were like stellar marketing campaigns. So, we as marketers are being challenged to make amazing, great campaigns that will convert for the companies we work for while respecting the privacy of the people we are ultimately trying to market to. So, there are always interesting questions in this space like, how will you answer them? I don’t have an answer to that. I think everyone’s going to figure that out.
For sure. And yeah, it is interesting how so many things exist to learn. I think that’s drawn me to it, and it’s always changing. I get bored easily, so that’s the fun part. Would you say it’s fun?
It’s a lot of fun.
Yeah, it’s definitely fun. But you have to come in with the right mentality. And there are definitely days, especially the report days, where I’m like, where the end of the quarter and you’re like, oh, how are we going to meet our metrics? Those are also the days, but the beginning of the quarters is fun when you get to be creative and try something new. It’s like any other job, right? If you like what you’re doing and love what you’re doing even better, you know you’ll come in with a smile. You’ll come in ready to tackle the challenges ahead of you. My husband did, and he loves it. So yeah, now that I would never want to tackle, he is happy.
That’s awesome. Well, what do you think are the key first steps in creating a marketing plan for a B2B start-up?
Uh, you need to know who you’re marketing to, right? So, there are a couple of ways they can do it. You can either go with the buyer persona, or you can go with the buyer customer profile. So, especially if you’re starting out, a lot of this will be conjecture. You’re pretty much-making assumptions or informed decisions based on how much information you have. But, say, do you have some customers already? Then it’s probably better to go with the ideal customer profile because of the customers that you currently have and figure out what that profile is. Who’s using the profile of using your platform? What kind of profile do they have? What are the demographics? What are the features that they’re using about your platform? And you make this kind of like cards out of that, like little bite-sized, like index cards and a PDF form or PowerPoint, so that you know who to target your efforts after. You can also review your sales data. So, even people who didn’t necessarily convert but got really close could also be your ideal customer profile. Maybe something internal in the company, like budget decisions, stops that from happening. So, you have a few sources that you can look at, even if you don’t have customers. For example, you can try and survey customers that you would like to have, some potential customers. I would say you could probably go out on LinkedIn, offer someone a $25 Amazon gift card, and scale that up a few times over for the profiles that you’re looking at and find out if they were looking for a solution like yours, what would they want? Well, you know, how would they describe their ideal product or service? And why would they pick one over the other? And that’s also going to help you make informed decisions. You might find out those companies that you wanted to target actually don’t fit you at all. And then, you need to start from scratch and figure out the product. So it’s always easier when you do have that customer base because you use that, and even if you have two or three customers, you might have multiple users within one company. And you can ask them and have a candid interview about what they like and don’t like about your platform. Would they have used it and other companies that they have worked in? Which one of the companies? That can also help you make this idea of what your ideal customer profile is. But say you can’t do that. Then you are left with conjecture on buyer personas. So, you try to figure out who you think would use your product. Marketers, if it’s marketers, is the CEO using it, or is it just the marketing manager using it? But if it’s the marketing manager using it, is that person your champion, the person going to push the product internally? Yeah. Are they the buyer or decision-makers? The marketing manager generally doesn’t have a budget. So, you do also need to market to the CMO, even though they’re not your end user because they are the decision maker. So, when you get into the buyer persona world, you also have to figure out who are your champions and your end users of your platform and who are also the decision makers and going to be approving the budget quarter over quarter, year over year for your product. So, it’s really important to figure that out before starting marketing.
Yeah. And you just said something very key before you start marketing because many businesses, whether B2C or B2B, think that’s a complete waste of time. I was even talking to another marketer out of Chicago, and she was talking about how even when she was teaching a class at the university, she taught that the students wanted to just jump right into the tweets and right into they forget about all this peer persona stuff and like, no, you need to do this to know what you’re going to say. You can’t just jump into it; what you said is relevant and key. Even if you are an established business, going into your customer service call center and spending time in there and listening to who’s calling in, what they’re saying, and who they are in that regard. Would you agree with that?
100%. First of all, not just from a quality control perspective, but you need to know what questions are being asked. And you don’t know what people want from your product. Where is the next step that your product is going? Products should always be growing. It can’t be stagnant. Yes, you can take a break to figure out other things, but your product needs to grow, or it’s going to die. And the best place to do that is from your customer base. They’re the people using your platform. They’re the people that you want to see more of. So, you have to make them happy.
I mean, look at MySpace. MySpace died, and I think Facebook killed MySpace. But anyway, I don’t think they were as innovative as they could have been or who knows? That’s a totally different subject. So, what do you think are the best ways to determine how to reach your target market, the personas that you’ve developed your ideal customer profiles? How do you find out where they’re hanging out, and how do you reach them?
See, you have to talk to them. Once you figure out who it is, you have to do that kind of market research to figure that out. When you are a B2B founder or if you’re in a startup. Your founder will know that space. That’s how they come up with the product, generally speaking. So, you’ll gain a lot of insight from whoever started the company or came up with the idea, not necessarily the engineers who built the product, but the people who generally have the idea because they are in the space. Nine times out of ten, it’s not a solid and fast rule. So, you’ll get inside from there. But you need to talk to people in your ideal customer profile now if you have the customers. It’s very easy to have that conversation with your customers, like help us out. Where are you? Are you on LinkedIn 99% of the day? Are you on Reddit? Are you here? Do you click on paid ads? Do you just know to skip them? You know, there are a lot of different questions that you can ask. So, there are some aspects before you even start creating content or creating campaigns, you need to know where they are.
Yeah, it’s interesting. When you’ve developed that, is it easy? Because going and finding and asking people these questions, I mean, people send me surveys all the time, and I’m like, I got so much on my plate. I don’t have time to answer those things. However, something that day, someone offered me a $50 or $200 Amazon card. Not that I’m being facetious, but do you think that helps?
100% it helps. Their whole platforms and B2B solutions build on it. So, I definitely do think that it does. But I will say that’s why it’s best to go to your customer your customers are already invested in your success because if you see it right, they are, generally speaking, savvy people using your platform will understand that if your company succeeds, new and better things are on the horizon, and then here comes the last. So, you’ll find that your customers will be very big advocates for your brand if they’re treated right, and they will be more than happy to give you an hour of their time to figure this out. And if they’re your customer, you can throw in some add-ons, some benefits, with your company, and you know that they were ready to sign with you. So, they are the right profile. You should be talking to people who have already signed with you, but if you don’t have someone who’s signed with you, then you should go the survey route.
But that is so long way out, in my opinion. Because, you know, the first year and a half before you’re even going to pay for any kind of marketing campaigns, you’re going to be relying on a lot of sales outbound and sales prospecting. That’s just a natural stage of how it works. You need to get your content down right. That’s your website, your blog, and your social media posts. You can be paying off the ether without content and without brand authority. But they aren’t going to value your brands. They’re just going to look at it as some other clickbait or some other spam. So, I would say it’s important to figure out what those channels are, but you can most definitely do that parallel to creating your content, and even while you’re doing your ideal customer profile, you might find that you’re already finding those channels, but without anything to put there, you are going to have a problem. I think a lot of B2B SAAS solutions that I find, along with some strapped versions of their website, and think that that’s acceptable to start marketing with. But it’s not. That is your first impression of the brand with another campaign site. Is that first impression and if you are not trusted on your first date, if you are not speaking cohesively and coherently, you know there is not going to be a second date, or you’re going to have to find someone who’s very open and willing and working with a project to get that second date, so to speak. So, I would say that figuring out your content, figuring out your messaging needs to be key before you start putting yourself out there.
Wow. There are so many things you said there. So, for instance, what I heard you say is that number one. The content is important, and it’s strategic, but not just producing content for external consumption but the foundation is actually figuring out your messaging and your content for your actual foundation of your website, for your brand. To make an impression because you only get one chance to make a first impression in all things. And it’s amazing to me how many businesses, whether B2B or B2C think websites are just an afterthought. Is it just me, or do you find that as well?
Yes, so often. It is actually ridiculous the number of times I see this happening. Like, how do you expect to get yourself out there if you don’t even know what you’re saying? If you don’t know what points you’re addressing, you just have this conjecture of what it is. Let it down on paper or put it down into Google Docs. Figure that out.
And make it a clear and concise message.
Yeah. Because that’s going to be the basis of everything that you do. The blogs that you put out. You know, like, what is your value proposition? There are just basics that people just skip through, and then you go back, and you try and figure it out, and you realize like you’ve done so much work that goes against your value prop, that goes against the messaging of your homepage that you’ve now redone. Get it right the first time if you have the time to launch just as much as you are spending time on building the product for launch, you spend time building your website for launch. It is crazy how many people don’t care about websites. We live in a digital age. Your website is you. The founder is not the face of the company. The logotype is the face of the company, and your website is the face. You need to work on building that up before you start trying to attract people to it.
How can people go about doing that?
Great question. So, while you’re doing those ideal customer profiles, you will hear many of the same kinds of phrases and sentiments and probably a lot of the most similar pain points now. It’s inclined to create this like a working document in any format that really works for you. I know some people prefer PowerPoint for this, and some prefer Google Docs, but I sit there and list out the pain points that we address, which can be 20 or 5. But for your whole page, you want to pick the top five, so you don’t want to go too much into it. And then you could kind of like find the features or benefits of your solution that answer those pain points. We also need not feature. People don’t want to just hear we have feature one that solves pain, point two, and feature three solves pain point five. It’s not an engaging experience. Out of these pain points and the benefits you provide, create a story, experience, or something relatable. For example, something that I did, very often, people say SEO is something complicated. It’s difficult. I don’t want to bother with that, I’m going to just hire the person who is an expert in the space and let them do their own thing. I don’t know if I’m going to get results or not. But that’s SEO. And then I kind of decided to break the story about, Data-driven SEO is easy. That was my story. That is all of my pain points and benefits, and they tie into the fact that we are making SEO easy right now. That is the experience you’ll find on our website, and that is the experience that you should try and create for your website. What story are you telling? Are you a challenger in your space? Are you going with the flow or just making it better? Figure out what that is, and you’ll get that it will come to you when you’re writing those pain points and those benefits. There’s no very clear way of doing that, but that’s part of being a marketer. That’s why certain people are, and certainly aren’t. That story should develop for you because that’s the story that will drive your blog posts, your social posts, your brand voice, and whatever you find, and you’ll mature over time. The story you started with may not be the story you end within five years. So, that space has changed, things have changed, and you should be very agile with that. But also, you need to start with something, and you’ll find that maybe it’s not working story, and you need to find a different story, but it definitely needs to be a story. It needs to be an experience. Don’t just dump information about your platform on your website and assume that’s it. Copy needs to be compelling. It needs to be easy to read. This is the hard part about being a copywriter is that you need to write a copy, thinking that someone’s going to read the entire thing and that most people are going to read bits and pieces of it. So, what bits and pieces do you want to stand out? So, you have to write it as a cohesive experience thinking that someone will read it all but knowing that most people will not. So, it’s definitely not easy, but it is one of the most important things you can do to get yourself on the right footing at the beginning to convert your leads into customers.
I totally agree with you. And are there any resources or books you would recommend? For instance, at the top of my mind is coming a great book by Donald Miller called Building a Story Brand. Are there other resources you’ve come across that you can share?
I think YouTube is great. Everyone has their own different way that they like to learn. For me, it’s like reading articles is a big thing, and looking at examples from other companies as well. So, I think you have to find what works for you. But there’s plenty of literature. There are plenty of morals. You also have e-learning experience. There are plenty of ways to educate yourself. You just need to find what medium works for you, and you’ll find various opinions on the same matter. But I think the most important thing, even more than the literature, is ensuring you’re in a creative space for it. If you work better in a creative mess then make a mess, if it works better in cleanliness, then that’s how you need to work. You need to prime your brain to get the result that you want.
Yeah, that makes so much sense. And you know, it’s interesting, you talked about, like developing your ideal customer profile and even, I think I would say, the voice of the customer or what they’re saying. It triggered a thought that perhaps you could find those things also if you don’t have a customer base on your competitor’s profiles, for instance, in the reviews or the testimonials. The reviews of your competitors and what people are saying about you behind your back. People are reading the negative stuff, and then you can find the problem they’re not solving that you solve.
Exactly. There is a plethora. As long as you’re scrappy, you’ll find what you need. So, my biggest suggestion for anyone in the B2B SAAS startup space is that you got to be scrappy. If you are not scrappy, then this is not the space for you. Don’t bother. Abort mission. Turnaround. Go to B2C, where budgets are in the billions and millions. Go there. That is the space for you if you are not scrappy. This space is just like dog-eat-dog, fight for every dollar internally within your company with your best friend who heads up a different department. B2B startup space, specifically solutions services, is so wild wild west. I love it. I really do. This is a spaghetti western. Okay, now, so what are you ready for?
That’s amazing. I’m just trying to think of my next question to ask. Based on what you just said, tell me about the content.
So, let’s say you figured out your ideal customer profile. Let’s say you figure out what pain points you address and what your key message is. You start putting out feelers for people to come and speak. Content is not just text on paper. It’s not just what content is. I’m surprised by how many times I encounter non-marketers when I say content things that it is just written media. It isn’t. It could be images, it could be infographics, it could be videos, and so many different things.
Yeah, even what we are doing.
You want to ensure that your content educates, sells, and builds trust in your brand. That is the goal of all of your pieces of content. It needs to do one of the three, and best if it does all of the three. So, that could be starting a knowledge base or an article topic. Let’s say you want to talk about everything that there is about podcasts. Maybe you have a kind of article topic on microphones, headphones, and then video equipment, and you go on and have these massive knowledge bases on all of these things. And that can include infographics. All of these things really bring people to your brand in a non-salesy way. What’s the demo? No, it’s not a contact us but a person. The experience that you’re trying to create here is that someone comes and looks at you and says they know what they’re talking about in the podcast space. These guys are smart. Do you need our services? They will be reaching out to you. The one thing that I would say to any B2B solution that is trying to start out in the space, come with the goal of making yourself the thought leader of the space. So, if anyone says, I have a question on SEO, who do I want to call? Quattr. That’s what you ultimately want to have. You want your brand name to be synonymous with the subject matter expert in your space. That is the goal you must have in mind when creating your content.
Okay, that is remarkable. You mentioned the type of content created for hypothetically a podcast. What about specifically for B2B in the B2B SAAS space? Like, my first thought when you were talking was like tutorials, maybe.
So, you should try to mix your media as well. Let’s take the tutorial example. Google search console is a big thing in the SEO space. For example, I’m going to be putting a lot of it back into what we do. We can do a written tutorial with screenshots and images of how you pull a certain report from Google Search Console with that now, we can also do a video tutorial that takes the exact same content and puts it in video format. And you’re all on the same page. Then you put that video on YouTube, and then you also put that on LinkedIn with a link to the blog that you just put out with the tutorial. Make your content work for you. One piece of content, multiple media, multiple channels that you can then put that media out on. This is the one piece of advice that every content marketer gives me. Create small pieces of content out of any long piece of content you create. One for social, one for an email blast.
Okay, so maybe the different parts of your post. Like your post has five points, take each one of those points and break it down into snackable pieces of content that people can snack on.
You can make an infographic. You can make it for LinkedIn or Facebook, whatever it is. Any content that you create needs to be able to produce more content from you. You need to be able to chop and dice and create more out of it. But on the big point that I’m going to make about putting this content out, and like I said, you want to be the subject matter expert in the space. You need a subject matter expert to review your content. You don’t necessarily need to be a subject matter expert to write the content always. You need a subject matter expert to review it. And they might find the gap that can be a total game changer in converting your content because they are the people in the space. Usually, you have to find or be the subject matter expert.
I was going to ask you, who should that person be?
Yeah, it’s a difficult question to ask because, you know, it might be your founder. Generally speaking, it is your founder because again, they started the company and they were in space. But sometimes you might need to get someone, a thought leader in the space, to be that reviewer, and you need to pay for that. But it’s worth it. The content is a big investment, but you can’t expect to put out content that will speak to people unless that’s why you need to have it reviewed by someone in that space. That’s the biggest mistake that I find, and I find a lot of times that they’re marketers marketing to me, and they’re not actually speaking the right terminology like it’s just off. Whenever I find that I just get off the page, I remember the brands because I don’t want to do business with them. And you don’t want that to happen because B2B SAAS solutions are expensive. You want to make sure that the money you’re investing in this company is not wasted, that this company is smart, the people working in this company are smart.
It’s a part of that impression. That’s why it’s difficult if you don’t have a subject matter expert reviewing your content. Also, when you are in a space like SEO, you know, one topic, five opinions on the matter, and they’re all varying. So, you have to pick a side. Yeah, that’s just the case, and you’re going to alienate people. But you know, if that is what you think is correct and that is the foundation of how your platforms are built, you need to keep that.
You know, it’s interesting. All of these things that we’re talking about, they’re very sophisticated. They’re very complex, and they take a lot of time. And I’ve met individuals who are founders. Maybe they’re a software engineer or whatever the case may be. But they’re absolutely not marketers. And for someone who may be listening to this, how do you solve that problem? For instance, you hire someone to do it for you. Do you hire internally or partner with an agency that specializes in it? The only thing I’ve found is that marketers are expensive, and those are good at what they do, but it’s expensive. Because they know what they’re doing, customer acquisition is the most expensive part of the business. And those who know how to do it should be rewarded for doing so. So the first point is all of those things and finding the right person to do that for you or finding a company. And it’s like, how do you compensate them? Especially if you’re a startup? Is it through equity, issuing shares based on performance? As you were talking, this thought came to me.
I can give you some musings on it, but I don’t have a strict answer.
No, I just want to know your opinion. I’m not asking for a textbook. I just want to know what your thoughts are.
Yeah, it’s a very interesting question. So, who should your subject matter expert be? If it can’t be a founder, you need to find that person, and you should go online and see who’s on the hashtags that relate to your business and who is getting the most number of followers, most likes, and comments. Look at what the engagement is like there and be picky about it because that will be a big part of your brand voice, and you’ll need to go for it. But B2B SAAS is not a cheap space to be in, and if the investors aren’t ready to pay for it. You know, then make sure that you’re in business to market. And I’ve seen that fail plenty of times over. I think department-level marketers have a 6 to 18-month turnaround in the B2B space.
Like we have, we’re probably one of the highest turnarounds in the business in general.
Why is that? What do you think?
I think a lot of what marketing does, especially in the beginning, is not tangible from a financial perspective. That ideal customer profile I’m telling you about might take three months to build. And that’s perfectly fine. You’re going to reiterate that multiple times, and maybe you’ll start working on step two of your content while you’re working on your ideal customer profile. And a lot of these things are happening at the same time. But you know, anyone in the SEO space will tell you your content needs time to build up. You need to give it time. It’s not going to happen right away. Then there’s this expectation that marketing is like sales and marketing can give you quick and fast results. I’m sorry, but you can go on paid media and pay 40,000 on ad spend and not get a return because it doesn’t resonate. If you can take that time to figure that out, you look like a 40K plus loss to your investors and to your CEO. And the math for them, it’s very easy to say, this didn’t work out. So, as a good marketer, there’s also a lot of stuff to cover. You can’t get away with it. You have explained I’m doing this, and the reason that I’m doing this is this. And you need to understand that you will not see the tangible results you want until maybe five quarters out, and that’s over a year later that they might see tangible results from something you are doing now. That is why it won’t last. But when you find the founders and investors who understand this is the case. I think the best kind of founder is one who’s also had a failed experience. Because they have been down the path, they know maybe they did rush their marketer last time, or maybe they didn’t bring in a marketer at the right time. You know, they do come with some insights from the failure before. Your greatest learning is your failures always. This is a general thing in life, right? Having a founder who’s failed actually means having a better founder to work with, even investors who have failed investments, because they can also guide that founder and guide your department head. I’ve seen so many different variations of that, but. I think as marketers, we need to be open and honest to people that we are reporting to, whether it’s the founder, whether it’s the investor, whether it’s just up the chain in marketing about what results in you can give and in what time, and try and be honest about that even in the interview stage. You don’t want to get stuck in a place that you’re not happy with and then feel like you have to leave. So, I think that’s super important, but I feel like I’ve missed something in one of your questions. I’m trying to remember what it was, but I think it was something along the lines of like, how do you succeed or something like that?
I will take a look. It may have been about how to be successful. I don’t know if it’s going back to determine which marketing channels would be most effective or how to track and measure the success of your marketing campaigns. I’m trying to stimulate my brain to remember what it was. When we’re talking about content, that was fascinating.
So again, it was your content. Once you put it out, it’s going to take time for it to build up in one channel that you’re going to use from the very beginning as SEO, making sure you’re using the right keywords and making sure that you are not keyword stuffing, which is extremely popular. But Google hates it. But again, you’re going to need to have that expertise and the space to do that. So, if you’re a founder, find the marketer that fits the plan that you foresee for your company. You need to manage an expert if it’s quick and dirty. If you’re willing to play the long game, you need someone more experienced with branding, experience with SEO, and organic growth. I think that’s the big suggestion for founders for success. With their marketers, figure out what you want for your company and understand that if you are going the first round of the low-hanging fruit, eventually that fruit will end. And that market needs to be able to play the long game in the marketplace, and for the long game, they also need to be agile at some point to be able to play for the quick wins when things are figured out.
It’s been absolutely fascinating talking to you. How can our listeners connect with you online if they choose to do so?
So, I’m on LinkedIn as LIZA MISCHEL. Feel free to search for me, and I will happily add you. I am beginning to put out more content. But like I said about the mentorship, if anyone wants to reach out to me for free, I will try my best to accommodate you. And in general, feel free to ask any questions. I’m very, very open, as everyone else is on LinkedIn. If I don’t answer you, it’s probably because my inbox has been spammed.
Yeah, exactly. Well, hey, it’s been absolutely awesome. Thank you so much for being here. We’ll make sure we put that information in the show notes below. And I just want to thank you for taking the time out of your day to talk with me today. It’s been awesome.
Thank you. It’s been a really, really fun chat. You got creative juices flowing.
All right. I’m glad to hear. Fantastic. Thanks again.
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