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How To Kick Start Your Inbound Marketing Strategy For Greater Success

In Conversation with Zach Chapman

In this episode of Ecoffee with experts, Matt Fraser interviewed Zach Chapman, Co-founder and digital marketing specialist at Sparkinator. Zach lays forth the procedures required to initiate inbound marketing. In addition, he reveals his method for assisting organizations in developing a customer journey with content. Watch now to learn about successful inbound marketing strategies.

Inbound is not a magic bullet. It takes much time to get it right. It is essential to reset expectations and say, look this magic isn’t going to happen overnight.

Zach Chapman
Co-founder and digital marketing specialist at Sparkinator
Hello everyone. Welcome to this episode of Ecoffee with Experts. I'm your host, Matt Fraser. And on today's show, we're going to be talking about how to kick start your inbound marketing strategy for greater success with Zach Chapman. Zach is the co-founder and digital marketing specialist at Sparkinator, inbound marketing certified HubSpot agency headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in management information systems from the University of South Florida. He has been helping both small and medium-sized businesses harness the power of the Internet to scale and grow their businesses using the latest data-driven marketing techniques and strategies. When not helping businesses to leverage the power of the HubSpot platform and Internet. Zach enjoys spending time with his family and training for marathons. Zach, thank you so much for being here. A pleasure to have you on the show.

Yeah. I’m excited to be here. And that sounds a lot better coming from you than it does coming from me. That’s really cool. Kick-off. I should have you kind of trailed me around and introduced me everywhere.

Yeah, right. So, you've had an interesting journey so far. I was just wondering, were you always wanting to be an entrepreneur when you were growing up like when you were in kindergarten? Were you the kid with the lemonade stand?

A lil’ bit, my brother and I co-founded Sparkinator, which is a marketing agency, and we had kind of like schemes work off at that age, maybe more in like around ten years old, we bought like a gumball machine, with like save up and I’m doing like chores around the house and mowing other people’s lawns and stuff like that. We were like 12 or something, we bought a gumball machine and put it in a local restaurant and lost a bunch of money doing that. But like it was a cool kind of mini experience, you know, that was the first path to entrepreneurship. So, we kind of were always toying with the idea. The gumball machine was an absolute nightmare in terms of like profitability, but it was only like a $100 gumball machine with like $20 of gumballs. So yeah, I guess we kind of had like this in the back of our minds. You know, we fell in love with Shark Tank, as I’m sure many entrepreneurs always do. We kind of fell in love with entrepreneurship from there.

All right, on. Was there anybody that influenced you in that regard?

My dad, he worked in a corporate kind of sales gig for many years, but he was always trying to scheme and get a business off the ground. So, he started a business, a tutoring company in Saint Charles, Illinois, which is like a suburb of Chicago. We started that when I was probably like 12, around that same time of like the gumball machine. My parents ran that for many years and they actually just sold it a year or two ago.

Oh, a tutoring business.

Yeah.

All right. That sounds pretty unique. So, is it you and your brother in your family that run the Sparkinaor?

Yeah. It’s me, my brother and then my dad as well. He’s kind of on like the board. He’s not full time but his kind of role is to motivate me when I get myself into a sticky client situation. He’d be like, yeah, back in the nineties this happened, and here’s how I got myself out of the vehicle, right? So, he’s just got this deep wisdom, but it’s just like, you know, we’re tapping into that. He was not joining client meetings and stuff like that, but still very influential.

Yeah, you are leveraging his years of experience and wisdom in business and life, to navigate, which is always helpful to have a mentor, that's for sure. And even great if it's your father. So, what drew you to digital marketing?

My dad was struggling with the marketing for his tutoring business, the digital marketing and this was like when I was 16 years and a junior in college, and we kind of been talking about it for that whole time and then as well slightly after college. We kind of been just like, wow, this stuff’s tricky, it’s tough. And my dad had this problem where, you know, he’s kind of an old school guy and he was like, okay, like he’s a millennial. He’s, he’s been on Facebook before, so obviously, he’d be good at Facebook marketing, right? And like give us bucks with Facebook marketing and Instagram. And so that’s kind of why he thought of doing it with me, which I’ve seen other entrepreneurs do. They get like a kid who’s like 22 and make them in charge of digital marketing, maybe you’ve seen that as well. I assume you have.

Oh, yeah, for sure. So, did you start doing digital marketing then for his tutoring business?

Yeah. I was working at AOL at the time and was kind of doing it as like a side hustle and was helping them on the back end, helping them out with my brother. And we were kind of like this is kind of a really tough. Digital marketing is really tough and tricky. And we still were terrible at it, but we knew that other people will be struggling with it as well. So, we kind of did it based on our own incompetence. We built a business and, in our struggles, we were like, I like I bet other people are struggling with this too, and turns out everyone’s dealing with it.

So, your entire agency was birthed out of helping your dad, asking for help? And you guys learning how to help him and then realizing that other people were struggling with it as well. I thought, man, we can help other people with what we've learned.

Yeah, exactly. And like, we kind of didn’t thrive with helping, my parents tutoring business out, but it was kind of enough to get us kickstarted and, kind of see that there is a path to success here and there is a path to doing this for other people as well.

What resources did you seek out to learn and grow in the aspect of digital marketing?

We used the great World Wide Web and just googled everything under the sun. Ultimately, you know, where we found success was, one we kind of really liked HubSpot like practices around like the philosophy that kind of created, I think to a degree like inbound marketing and like that. We really like that philosophy and really that resonated with us. And, you know, they kind of had this partnership program that allowed us to to be able to grow and scale inside of it and the cool opportunity to kind of get taught by experts who are already kind of doing it. Because at this point, we really had no clue what we were doing. We kind of maybe seeded a little bit for my parents and we needed some like hand-holding for sure. We’re kind of just two guys with no experience and no concept who are like trying to start a marketing business. So yeah, we leveraged a lot of their training, the HubSpot Academy, but also like guys like Neil Patel like followed him like crazy, like the SEO as well, just all of the big online resources.

Yeah. I remember when the author, as the founder of HubSpot, came out with inbound marketing, and that was a book that really was incredibly influential. It sold an incredible number of copies and they put it in a way that and they reframed marketing in a way that made sense to attract people to you rather than interrupt marketing. You're inviting people to come to you and permission-based marketing, kind of like what Seth Godin teaches, and providing value to them so that they're attracted to you rather than trying to interrupt them on TV, billboards or even interrupting with a Facebook ad. I think you can even take that approach with inbound marketing by providing a value, something of value to people first with an ad, rather than just an advertisement saying, buy from us now! It's a different philosophy, a way of thinking, isn't it?

Yeah. And I like it better. I kind of think the world has already kind of changed based on this philosophy. And I think it will continue to change in inflection. But it’s essentially like putting your mind in the buyer’s shoes and like, how would they like to be sold to and that’s where it’s at. Well what value and what questions can we get ahead of and kind of get in front of and just make sure we’re able to be found when they are ready to ask those questions as opposed to being like, for 420 payments of 1999, like these infomercials are now, we can cut pennies. I’m not roasting the people who do that there. There’s a product, place, and space.

It works for some. Yeah, absolutely. What do you think? How do you think inbound marketing differs from traditional marketing techniques then?

Well, inbound is kind of more digital-focused, but essentially, it’s just putting out tons and tons of content that allows people gives people the space and the freedom to research their own. And it’s kind of just answers their own questions. And then so when they do reach out to sales, they’re kind of further down the funnel and they’re more ready to buy. Then they can kind of self-educate and self-weed themselves out as well, assuming your good content. But it all starts with huge amounts of content.

What's your process for helping businesses to develop that customer journey with the content? Yeah.

For my agency, it was a lot of thinking through, sitting down with the salespeople or the SEO, and just saying, what are some of the common questions that you get asked? Like, what are the 50 most common questions, right? And like, those are all like blog articles, white papers, books. There’s just tons and tons of content around those. And then one, they can peddle those on their own and leverage those pieces of those assets rather. And when they’re selling and then as well, they can get found online and we’ll SEO the heck out of them until they’re found and rank highly and then go from there. It was more of a matter of sitting down with them. That was a key way. What are some of the most common questions you get? That’s the easy win that we found.

Yeah, absolutely. You know, HubSpot is famous for using the lead magnets on the resources page that is just of such extreme value that you can help give them your email address, even if it's a fake one. So, have you found that that same principle of developing lead magnets is effective for other industries besides Digital marketing, the SAS platform? In other words, have you ever developed any kind of lead magnets for other verticals and industries that have proven to be effective?

Yeah, we had one. We’ve done it for a few, some in like while they were Tech, they were a Tech software company, never mind about them. We had one that was for like a commercial cleaning business. They go in and they clean and this was kind of during COVID and like we had white papers around, like how to sterilize COVID-based things. And then if you’re sterilizing it, we can do it one better than you can have more professionally. That was a really good, timely white paper that we pumped out and kind of pushed as well.

Okay, cool.

That’s just one example. There’s a lot more, but there’s a lot out there, kind of broadly.

Yeah. What do you think the business that wants to adopt inbound marketing strategies, what do you think the first few steps are that you would advise them on if they want to get started with inbound marketing?

I would say, well, one, make sure they’re a good fit, like these knife salesmen who are ready to cut a penny are. I don’t see inbound marketing really working for them, but really like it works for considered buying processes where this is a long hairy buying process that takes time and research to buy. The worst example of who you could do inbound marketing for is like a stick of gum, right? In which the decision-making process is like you’re in the checkout line and you see it and you’re like zero consideration. It’s kind of just pure impulse and there’s no like, is this Five gum better? I wonder which one is better for my teeth. They were asking those questions, which their customers pretty much never would read a blog on that, but that could be something that would work. But yeah, so make sure they’re a fit, and then it’s really kind of content based. It’s just like let’s bump up all the relevant content and just become like the industry thought leader on this topic. And then kind of all the topics around that. HubSpot, I think also coined this, but like created like topic clusters, if you’re familiar with this.

Absolutely. What you're saying is businesses with a short sales cycle that don't involve a huge amount of font, like gum or toothpaste or maybe even shampoo. Like, those are just things that maybe a different form of advertising, brand marketing or commercials and so on and so forth would probably be a better fit.

Yeah, absolutely. We had a client that was a commercial professional cleaner for businesses like warehouses, dentists, you know, just professional spaces. And so, like that’s a considered buying process and we’ve kind of found success with like helping, like, should they hire their own team or should they not? We had kind of a good catered piece of content around that aspect as well.

How did you go about developing the buyer personas for that particular campaign company commercial?

Luckily our client was pretty savvy and smart and they kind of had a decent understanding of who was buying and selling. So, they had them somewhat established. But typically, it’s kind of like, we do like a workshop, whereas like over a couple of days and we’ll sit down and be like, who buys, why would they buy, what they typically look like, what are the kind of questions are they researching, where are they researching these questions? Typically, they all know and we didn’t get to a point where we would sometimes interview their customers or have them interview their existing customers or like who they thought would best fit. But we weren’t, you know, get them to put on like a whole research panel to go like start flagging people down on the street and say, like are you a person who might be interested in commercial cleaning services, you know what I mean and then interviewing them. Although I think for bigger companies that make sense.

But yeah, did they have existing customers already that you could use as a profile to generate that information?

Yeah, yeah. These guys for this professional cleaning company were pretty close with those clients. They had really good relationships. So, like they did ask them some questions kind of that we prompted and as well and they had a really good understanding. They knew how to do business and what their customers were about. They didn’t go through the exercise, they kind of just had this floating around, they knew all these answers, but they didn’t distill them. The distillation process, I think is big and hairy and scary, but like, it’s not in reality.

Was it easier to do targeting and content creation when you figured out what their buyer persona was?

Oh yeah. 1,000,000% because all the content we create was really based on, what kind of challenges are these guys having? What are they thinking about, like before they even know what their problem is like our SEO spends too much time cleaning our dental practice. Like, they don’t even know that that’s the problem yet. We kind of started with a super high funnel, like how the dentist was like an avenue that we saw growth. And so, it was like, okay, how can we kind of help dentists like be good at running business and then say like, one of those problems is, you know, maybe we are like a small business and like you have five dental hygienists and you’re spending too much time doing this and like, you should just outsource it. And so, we kind of went all the way down, all the way up, I guess, from, like, very bottom up until, like its ready?

Work backward. Yeah, that makes sense.

Going up the chain, I guess in terms of like where can we meet them and give them all the stuff, they need in order to help grow and succeed as a business. And sometimes, you know, a lot of the very top-of-the-funnel stuff doesn’t include our schools. It’s just like, hey one bullet in that blog article and then like even all the way down. But essentially it was just like we can help dentists, crush their business. We see this is a small piece of that.

Are there any tools or resources that you use for mapping out the customer journey that you find helpful?

HubSpot has a really cool tool, it’s called the Content Plan Tool and so it does this in like kind of builds this like spider web tool, which is really kind of topic cluster-based. So, like if we wanted to become like the leading authority on like growing your dentist business, we could kind of put that in the center of the topic cluster and then just build out this kind of web of blogs around it like and all the things that could be relevant to that. Then we kind of can become a source of expertise in that area.

What about other additional tools to come up with those content ideas besides talking to the CEO and salespeople, are there any additional tools you use or have found to be helpful to generate ideas?

Yeah, we liked SemRush a lot as well, like the keyword planning tool. So, they have every variation of everything in there, that like so we’d just be like, you know, how to increase dentistry and then just scroll through their list of 60 million topics around that and then it’s kind of do that for each idea. You know, I could only come up with like seven ideas relevant, and then like I would type in each one of those seven and just pull out like the best ones from there. And like related search terms inside of Semrush’s is maybe the most appropriate way to label that.

How do you take that those idea and then mold them, organize them in such a way that there are different pieces of content that are not cannibalizing, for instance, you know, like there are so many terms and you can look at all these terms and go, how do you put this into, like these are all going to one article, they should go into one article and this should go into one article and then mapping that to the buyer's journey and doing all that? That seems kind of complicated, requiring a certain sophistication and planning.

Yeah, yeah. I mean, so typically what we would do is kind of put like, okay, here’s the whole topic cluster. We’d build it out conceptually first, the whole topic cluster, and then go, here are all the pieces of content, and here’s like all the keywords that would go into that and then we would just run with that. So, it was a little bit careful planning and like we were kind of concerned about cannibalizing a little bit. But it was just, I guess thinking holistically, taking like the holistic approach for planning it out, you know, hey, look, here’s the whole topic cluster. What can we do about this keyword, these keywords are really closed and it’s like, how can we separate them? Do we need to? Maybe we don’t. Yeah, we’d like we just have different angles. For example, this angle is going to be about, cleaning dentist’s chairs or whatever and this one’s going to talk about sterilizing the tools. It’s maybe the same article, but like coming at it from a different angle.

Sure. What about segmenting the content, I understand creating the content clusters, but what about segmenting the content in regards to the customer journey or funnel, whatever you want to call it, with things that should be at the top of the funnel versus things that should be at the bottom and deciding which one has more commercial intent, user intent for commercial purposes and conversion purposes versus informational purposes.

Yeah. So, we typically started at the bottom of the funnel, which was like the low-hanging fruit. What’s the number one question the salespeople get? And then build that out, then as we go, we kind of move up the funnel, we kind of go like this. And so, we’re casting a little bit of a wider net, getting more leads and broadly but less qualified. But we kind of would work then into like making sure that our marketing practices are qualifying them on the back end. Was that maybe your question?

Yeah, absolutely. Did you decide on different channels to use for different parts of where they're at in the funnel? For instance, you know, SEO and search engine marketing is one thing, but you find paid advertising like Google ads and Facebook ads or even other such things play a part in improving our content and operating in the buyer's journey of getting people into the funnel, even display marketing and programmatic advertising?

I think what we did was we kind of did a splice, you know, it takes a while. It takes months. Sometimes you can get lucky and you get like you can get ranked number one in the first month, which is increasingly more difficult because people have been doing this for now for over 20 years. The Internet is bursting at the seams at this point, although we’re kind of just getting started on this. You know, we as humans are just getting started on this crazy thing.

Absolutely.

I don’t know what’s going to happen in SEO in 700 years. There’s just going to be so much, much stuff on the inter-web and connected.

I was talking to somebody about the metaverse on a previous episode and we only scratched the surface of what's going to be possible. I mean, I know people are laughing at Mark Zuckerberg right now because of his cheesy avatar, and you know, they think the graphic quality is a joke and it doesn't kind of like a joke. I'm not sure if he's shooting for realism or if he was shooting for the cartoon. Maybe he should have explained he was shooting for the cartoon because, if you're shooting for that kind of look, I mean, I love my bitmoji avatar. That to me is cool. I would rather have something like that in the metaverse than a real me portrayal.

Right.

But, you know, maybe he should have communicated that better, so. Yeah. But what's going to be possible with virtual reality in the metaverse is just mind-blowing. You know, being able to put on a VR headset and actually go into an Amazon store in the metaverse and go shopping and add things to your cards and then getting shipped to your house physically is just incredible. Right now, all of our marketing is based on content and text-based content. How do you think it's going to change? Like, is content always going to be informational content? Do you think we're going to move more and more towards video?

When I got into this game like seven, eight, six, some years ago, I thought video is the future. And I kind of still do, but it takes longer than I thought. I thought we’d be doing like nobody would be doing blogs. It’d be like the only video by this point. I still see blogs being decently relevant, which kind of surprises me, and like, video is increasingly more relevant, but still just not there. I’m finding myself, I go on YouTube a lot more now and I’m more likely to YouTube, for this like, how do I fix my oven? You know, I would never read a blog on that, but I’ll go to YouTube for that, these days, which five years ago I probably wouldn’t have. But I think video is the move. It just takes a long time.

The pandemic definitely accelerated things by several years. I know that I myself started watching YouTube more and more when I got an Android-powered TV. And, you know, I've gotten a family member, I won't say who it is, addicted to YouTube because I bought him a Google TV. And he only watches his YouTube videos, he doesn't watch Normal TV. He just watches YouTube in his retirement. So, you can easily figure out who that is. But yeah, it's like video is just so engaging, but you're right, there is a cost to it. I like the fact of how some websites are, I don't know if they're doing it with AI or not, but you can listen to the article being read instead of reading it. And a lot of publishers are embedding the audio version of their article into the site. I find it valuable because like, I'll ask my phone to like read it on 2x speed, which my wife thinks I'm crazy, but I can understand it. So that's okay because most of the stuff I read or consume, there are things I'm familiar with, so it's not hard for me to understand it on 2x speed. What do you think about that, putting the audio version of the content?

I like that. We had a client that he put on a podcast pretty regularly. We did the transcript and then we kind of just cleaned up the transcript a little bit. Like, Boom, that was the blog, and that was right from the CEO’s mouth, which he hated writing it, but he was super knowledgeable about the topic, like in ways I would never be like and we got a great five blogs out of one podcast and just kind of like just use the transcript and just kind of made a little prettier, the little edit going into the break in like the paragraphs. So, I kind of did the reverse, but I do think, I did think to do something. Yeah, you could do this for your podcast as well.

I never thought of it, Oh yeah, absolutely. We definitely do the transcripts but we haven't thought about breaking them down into additional articles. But yeah, nice idea.

So I think that was a nice little hack that I’ll give him credit for this. He gets credit for that one. We just kind of made it happen and then but yeah, as far as reading the articles, I do think that’s kind of an easy way to do it. I kind of like that a lot.

If we are talking about the metaverse. So, that alone, artificial intelligence is absolutely mind-boggling. I'm not sure what your thoughts are on like there's artificial intelligence out there that can now read stuff with a voice and you can choose the voice and it's AI and you feed the content into it and it spits out the verbal audio content and sounds just like a human being. It's unbelievable.

I saw Mission Impossible, third or fourth one, Tom Cruise says, like a sentence and then like, yeah, it was like the quick brown fox ran over the lazy river or something like that or it has all the syllables.

Yeah, yeah. We probably thought they were just faking it. It was movie magic and it's actually real. Like I've had people share the sites with me, I wish I had bookmarked them. I have to go back and figure out what the heck and where the heck they were. What about AI for generating content? What do you think? What are your thoughts on that?

About a year ago, I looked into it and it felt, I don’t know, maybe I’m just old and skeptical, which I’m not that old, but like, I felt like it’s just not there yet. There’s no way. Maybe that’s just pessimistic to me, but I looked into it a little bit. I can remember which site it was, but it was like the leading site of content creation. And I was like it’s probably clerks and like, we didn’t buy anything from it. We didn’t actually do it. But I don’t know, I was maybe just eager for it, however, maybe pessimistic that it’s here today. So, we didn’t bite the bullet and make the jump. But it’s cool. I love the idea. I mean, it’d be cool. Just pay robots $0 an hour to do this, you know, just create tons of great content.

Yeah, it's pretty interesting what's happening and you know, with GPT 3 out and apparently GPT 4. I've been told GPT 4 is going to be able to write direct response sales letters which you know, I don't know if that's true or not, but in direct response, sales letters are not easy to write, but it's going to be so intelligent that it will be able to do that. So, I think it's only going to get better. I think you're probably right. You know, in some ways it was, all things start out. I mean, I know when I first started out in digital marketing. I had no idea what I was doing or when I first started out doing most things. We don't know what we're doing, but I think it's only going to get better more and more. Do you think it's going to make the Internet better or worse? So, what I mean by that is there are two things, people could use AI to put out really crappy content. Lots of it or it can enable authors to put out even better content if they leverage it properly. And important, even higher quality content.

So you’re worried about just the noise?

Like, I mean, is it going to be? It's going to we're going to have to buy a whole bunch more computers to process the Internet because people are putting out so much more content. You know, is it going to create the level of backlinks that are going to go up in regards to that content today? Are they going to be able to differentiate? Is Google going to be able to differentiate between human-written content or AI-generated because I know that I could put two articles in front of people? One human written and the other AI.

Yeah. Do you think it’s that good yet?

Oh, yeah. I can show you later.

Yeah, yeah. Show me later. That’s cool off camera. So maybe what’s going to happen and maybe this is breaking my brain a little bit like there is no internet is just we search like what we want and then like AI just writes it right then in there. What about that?

Oh, that is mind-blowing, you sort of angle your question, and the AI just provides the answer.

It just makes the answer right then and there and it says, here’s an article based on what we know.

About the front door. That is unbelievable.

I don’t know how far we are from that, but one day at.

You know, the future of voice search. I asked Google for lots of stuff. It reminds me of when these podcasts start, when to buy my flowers, and so on and so forth.

I have an Alexa, and I pretty much just ask to set timers and turn on music and what’s the weather. Those are my three things and I really don’t do anything else.

Yeah, you know, I use it for reminders. I use it for what the weather is, what time it is or I'll ask it to tell me a funny joke. It's told me a story sometimes just to be funny. I don't know, there are other things so. I but I do think, I'll ask here's a thing. I'll use it to add stuff to my shopping list for groceries. Because I'll forget. I'll say, hey, you know who? Add this to my shopping lists? And it will literally be added to my shopping list that it shared with my wife and I. And then I wonder if eventually, we've gone totally on a different tangent. That's okay. And then I wonder if eventually when you add those things to your shopping list, you could program to order your groceries for you automatically and get them delivered on a weekly basis without having to go grocery shopping.

Yeah. And then you have 70 gallons of milk in your fridge because you never drink. So, it happened to me.

I had to pause my auto shop for my vitamins because I had too many, and I was like, Stop, I got enough for a year. Or even like the Dollar Shave Club, you know, I got too many razor blades. I have a beard, so I don't really shave all that much an as you do. And I don't need them as much. I probably need the blades once every quarter rather than once every month. So that being said, though, you know, coming back to content. How do you guys measure the success for clients that what you're doing is working?

Yeah. So, there’s a few KPIs which like, you know, the people that we’re working with really kind of trust us to kind of build those KPIs. One on the surface it’s how much traffic are we getting. Then it’s like, okay, well, so that’s just like Google Analytics. You know, how much time is being spent on this? These Web pages, how many people are hitting them? And it’s like, what is that audience doing? Is this doing anything right? And so that’s where we’ll have, you know, a lot of CTAs on the website, in the blog to kind of get people down the funnel. Sometimes, depending on the article, it can just talk to us right now like we know your next step is, is buy right from the bottom of the funnel content, and sometimes it’ll be the middle of the funnel. So, we’ll put a top-of-the-funnel lead gen offer. But essentially, it’s, do they fill out a form, how many form submissions do they can do? And then how much do we get to sales? How much ultimately deals do we give to sales? And then like what? And here’s why we fell in love with HubSpot is like this like a full loop close to reporting where you can kind of see like, okay, week 100, we had a thousand visitors to this blog. of that 1%, fill out this form of that 1%, you know, went to sales and the like of that, one person bought. And we kind of see like, Okay, so this blog actually is responsible for this many dollars, you know, of sales. So that’s what we like doing and I find without that, your marketers are really kind of just doing marketing with an arm or two tied behind their back.

Yeah.

And you really need, in my opinion, the sales arm tied to attribution. Otherwise, the CEO is just kind of a matter of time and time you’re fired. And the CEO goes like, Yeah, like you guys are creating a lot of noise, what is this?

And see, we're working.

Yeah. So, you need that. That poll closed-loop reporting attribution.

Little do a lot of people know and correct me if I'm wrong but the marketing department can do their job and generate and I know this from experience working at the car dealership. The marketing department can do their entire job, generate tons of leads and the sales department can ship the bed and not lose any of them.

It’s true.

You know, it's important that we as marketers know what our KPIs are and know what. But the marketing qualified leads are and what are the things they're indicating? And those are conversion points usually like your training, lead scoring, and so on and so forth. It's some sort of lead scoring where you can score a lead and so, that you can transition from a marketing-qualified lead to a sales-qualified lead.

That’s one of the conversations I liked having with the CEO and being like, you know, marketing and sales right now do this. We want them to need that to stop. Let’s come up with some like prearranged terms around like, what is a marketing qualified lead. What is a sales-qualified lead? And we’re on board with like an agreement on those like that, right? So, those conversations to me are necessary and essential and like the relationships that we have.

In regards to attribution, how important do you think it is for UTM parameters to be used to measure the success of content marketing campaigns, for instance, publishing content on Facebook and tagging it properly with your teams?

Yeah, I think it’s really important. Ultimately, maybe this is not good, but I have kind of no clue how they work. I just know what they can do in terms of tracking. I cannot set that up for the life of me. I have really good nerds, and I mean that as a compliment helping me out.

Yeah. Dan McCall, who's going to be on the show, has a resource called UTM that I O, which is a team management platform that is to me foundational for anybody doing marketing. That's why he created it. And his blog is a tremendous resource of information in regards to those things. So yeah, if you want to check it out, I was just curious what your thoughts were on that because it seems something that I wish I'd learned more of when I first started digital marketing and something that I now know to be a tremendous value in that regard too, to properly segmenting and knowing where and what's happening. Of course, you know, tools like HubSpot are fantastic, and other such things for doing those things, and who knows what part maybe there are even platforms out there that will automatically tell you where the traffic is coming from. An ad UTM parameters automatically to the traffic that's coming to the site on the, which is just mind-boggling. Yeah. So anyway, but yeah. Anyway, that being said, you know, what's one takeaway you want, a big takeaway you want listeners to get from this?

Inbound is not a magic bullet, it takes a lot of time to get right. It’s one of the biggest things we have in our sales process is like resetting expectations and saying. The magic bullet isn’t going to happen overnight. Like, are you in this for the long run? In the long run, could be nine months, could be a year. Before we’re starting to see serious traction like it’s an investment and getting people on board with that. I think that is maybe the biggest takeaway as we’ve kind of talked about this and it sounds maybe magic already, but creating that content takes a long time and then like just it takes a long time for Google to appreciate it as well. That’s really where the biggest waiting game is. It’s like waiting for Google to go, I know this is good content, right?

Yeah, it's an investment. Absolutely of time, resources, money. And making enough of an investment to transition your thought process from other traditional advertising methods to becoming an inbound content marketer and our company and inbound marketing campaigns. You need to provide value and that value sometimes requires time in order to create enough content to get enough leverage, to create enough momentum to eventually do that. Otherwise, I think people would agree, if they're in need of that fast, then they should start an advertising campaign in regards to paid ads, which isn't bad, and complement that in your budget with whatever kind of paid advertising you can do to generate those leads and traffic. So anyway, that being said, how can listeners connect with you online?

Yeah. You can go to my LinkedIn, that’s I guess the best way to connect with me personally or you could find me, I work at HubSpot now. So actually, my agency is still up and running. However, we’re mostly just getting kickbacks from, like, what we sold as HubSpot partners. So, now I work on HubSpot, bringing on people into the partner game to become HubSpot partners, which is cool.

Oh, that's awesome. I did not know that. I thought you were still running your agency. Well, fantastic. It's been a pleasure having you on the show. It’s such a great product. They built an awesome thing, there's no doubt about it. I remember when it came out and I was like, wow, and I was very impressed with it. So that being said, I'll make sure to put your links in the show notes, and thank you for coming on the show today.

Awesome. Glad to be here. Thanks for having me.

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