Accelerate Podcast with Andy Paul
February 28, 2017

Boost Sales by Building Trust Through Content. With Marcus Sheridan. #393

Marcus Sheridan, marketing and sales expert, Founder of The Sales Lion, and author of the new book, They Ask You Answer: A Revolutionary Approach to Inbound Sales, Content Marketing, and Today’s Digital Consumer.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

[1:06] In 2001, right out of college, Marcus joined two partners to start River Pools. The ‘08 crash almost ended them. They needed traffic! To generate leads, Marcus used content marketing and social media, to answer real buyer questions.

[4:08] River Pools adopted a core philosophy, which Marcus teaches all over the world: “They ask, you answer.” With FAQ content, they became the world’s most trafficked swimming pool manufacturer website, with 500K visitors per month.

[6:39] The big five questions buyers ask are: Money, Negatives (How could this blow up in my face?), Comparisons, Reviews, and Best (What is the best — whether or not I buy it?).

[8:13] The three reasons companies don’t release prices are: fear of competition stealing the “secret sauce,” fear of scaring customers, belief they have “a unique solution.” All are false reasons.

[9:37] Marcus wrote another article, “What are the Problems with Fiberglass Pools?” This article owns the conversation, and it generated $500K in sales. Buyers seek knowledge. They will find the answers they need. To provide answers, builds trust.

[10:48] A prospect asked, if we don’t buy from you, who would you recommend? Marcus wrote an article the five best pool contractors in his area. But didn’t include his own company! Talk about trust building. The article generated $150K that year alone. A series of similar articles earned millions.

[13:54] Who is the “WebMD” of your space right now? If you can’t name it, it doesn’t exist. Your culture must be, to be the best teachers in the world, where people know they will find their answers.

[16:06] In They Ask, You Answer, there are multiple case studies where companies required salespeople to participate with marketing. Sales serves buyers by helping make purchasing decisions. Most of the decision occurs before talking to sales.

[18:22] Marcus praises revenue teams, where marketing and sales are combined. Sales training should include marketing; content creation should include sales.

[19:09] Marcus found that prospects who read 30 pages on their site before a sales visit, bought 80% of the time. If not, they bought 25% of the time. Marcus pushed content. They sold 95 pools that year; the average buyer read 100 pages.
[28:19] As Marcus spoke about River Pools, people doubted the principles would apply to them. So Marcus developed world-class case studies of companies that completely changed the game in their spaces, always by teaching.

[30:37] The book is for people who say, I’m going to do whatever it takes to be the best teacher in my space. CarMax is an example of changing the game by answering critical questions. Eliminate fears, and you are left with trust.

October 22, 2016

How to Create Content That Attracts Prospects. With Alzay Calhoun. #286

My guest on this episode of Accelerate! is Alzay Calhoun, Founder and CEO of Coveted Consultant, a professional training and coaching company. Among the topics Alzay and I discuss are how the right content can transform a prospect’s perception of your intangible value into tangible value, how to use content to maintain the right “problem-solution orientation” to engage and educate prospects , and how to focus on creating the right “pillar content” that supports your entire content strategy.       

September 17, 2016

How to Make Podcasting a Key Part of Your Content Marketing Strategy. With Jessica Rhodes. #256

Jessica Rhodes is the founder and CEO of Interview Connections, what I call a match-making service for podcasters and guests. She’s also the host of her own podcast and web TV show, Interview Connections TV. In this episode Jessica and I discuss why podcasting needs to be a part of every company’s content marketing strategy, how to build your expertise and brand with a podcast, how to use a podcast to connect with new prospects and the steps to start your podcast right now.

August 20, 2016

How to Create Content with Sales In Mind. With Cara Hogan. #232

Cara Hogan is the content marketing manager for Rentlytics. In this episode, Cara and I talk about the critical sales and marketing alignment, how how to create content that aligns with the requirements of sales reps, how to track sales reps’ engagement with content, how to support account-based selling and account-based marketing models with content, and much more.

August 8, 2016

How to Drive Sales with Content Marketing. With Jeff Herrmann. #221

Jeff Leo Herrmann is CRO of Fathom, a digital marketing agency that creates data driven, profitable growth. Jeff also hosts a podcast called, Publish or Perish – Selling in the age of content marketing. In this episode, Jeff and I cover a range of topics about content marketing and sales. Join us now as we discuss how content marketing drives sales, why content marketing is more effective than traditional marketing, how the role of content marketing is critical for prospecting, and much, much more.

June 14, 2016

Maximizing Sales and Marketing Alignment. With Ardath Albee. #177.

Ardath Albee is the best-selling author of eMarketing Strategies for the Complex Sales and Digital Relevance, and President of Marketing Interactions. (She’s also a member of the Romance Writers of America!) In today’s episode, Ardath discusses one of the key challenges for all organizations: how to maximize alignment between their marketing and sales efforts. Among the many topics we discuss are:

  • The primary reason there is a disconnect between marketing and sales.
  • Why the most important part of content marketing is engaging the potential buyer in a conversation.
  • The importance of defining a storyline in the buying process.
  • Why conversations are a series of questions and answers.
April 26, 2016

On Accelerate! Now: Episode 142 with Joe Pulizzi. How to Use Content Marketing To Radically Grow Your Sales

Joe Pulizzi is the founder of Content Marketing Institute and the author of the best-selling book Content Inc.: How Entrepreneurs Use Content to Build Massive Audiences and Create Radically Successful Businesses.  In today’s installment, Joe and I discuss how to correctly, and patiently, use content marketing to dramatically increase your sales. Among the many topics we discuss are:

  • What “content marketing” really means to your business.
  • Why you need a plan to consistently target the right audience, your “sweet spot,” with your content.
  • Why content-based marketing is an essential tool to help your prospects get to know, like and trust you.
  • How a small/mid-size business should use content marketing to grow its business.
  • How to convert “followers” into “subscribers” who are ready to do business with you.
March 31, 2016

On Accelerate! Now: Episode 124 with Jon Wuebben. Warm Up Your Leads With Good Content Marketing That Builds Trust.

Jon Wuebben is the founder and CEO of Content Launch, a provider of the first complete content marketing software built for small and medium-sized businesses. In this episode, Jon provides effectives strategies that sellers can use to warm up prospects with good content that starts a conversation with your customers. Among the many topics we discuss are:

  • What is content marketing?
  • Strategies for SMBs to implement their first content marketing strategy.
  • What kind of resources does a small business need to conduct effective content marketing?
  • Simple steps to warm up leads with great content.
  • The 3 key factors of a content marketing strategy that converts leads into opportunities.
  • Why content marketing generates a better ROI than advertising.
March 28, 2016

On Accelerate! Now: Episode 121 with Kevin Craine. 7 Steps to Create Compelling Content That Sells.

Kevin Craine is the Executive Director of Craine Communications Group. His podcast, Everyday MBA, interviews best-selling business authors, innovative thought leaders, and top-shelf executives. Kevin is also a professional writer and editor, an internationally respected business technology analyst, and an award-winning podcast producer.  Among the topics that Kevin and I in this episode:

  • How to develop new customers through value-based thought leadership content.
  • What it takes to become an acknowledged thought leader.
  • Key ways to grab your customer’s attention through compelling content.
  • 7 steps to create credible & compelling content that cause customers to take action.
January 19, 2016

On Accelerate! Now: Episode 72 with Mark Roberge. The Sales Acceleration Formula. Part Two

In this second episode of my two-part conversation with Mark Roberge, CRO of HubSpot sales division and author of the best-selling book, The Sales Acceleration Formula, describes the process that he created to build the sales team that produced predictable scalable revenue growth as it rapidly marched from $0 to over $100 million in sales. Among the key topics we discuss are:

  • How to scale your demand generation efforts
  • How to put in place the process and resources to align marketing and sales.
  • The unexpected skill set you should hire into your content marketing efforts.
  • Why companies are under-investing in inbound marketing and how to balance that with proactive outbound demand gen.
  • How to project the mix of inbound and outbound required to scale your sales.

If you have the responsibility to grow a business, or scale a sales team to increase revenues, or maybe you want to run your own business someday, then this is a must listen episode. Don’t miss it! Listen today.