Growing a start-up can sometimes feel like pushing multiple boulders up a steep hill. On the product side, the challenge is to move beyond the MVP and create an offering that is robust and scalable. With sales, it’s building a go-to-market machine that delivers a healthy pipeline month-on-month. Then there’s the question of how you grow the team while keeping the core culture intact.
At Compile, we have been at this for a few years. While we still have a long way to go, we seem to have a good handle on most of the big rocks. But recently we launched our company blog and at times it feels like a difficult trek. With the mountains of articles, tweets and infographics being produced every day, it can feel overwhelming as you begin to insert your brand into the conversation.
There are plenty of well established blogs with a dedicated base of readers. How do you make into list of “must follow” blogs? How will your customers chance upon your blog? How long before you “break through the noise”? All questions that cycle through my mind on a regular basis. Perhaps more to remind myself, than to impart any great insight, I thought it was worth listing the reasons why we are investing significant time in our blog.
Helps us hone our pitch
Explaining your product is much like the proverbial tale of the elephant and the blind men. There are many different ways to tell your story, based on the audience. The pitch to a customer is different from the pitch to a partner which in turn is different from the pitch to a potential hire. Summed together, they describe your company’s story.
We blog about many different things - from Star Wars and start-ups to baseball and burgers. Each of these pieces describe a different facet of Compile. It also helps us refine our story. The very act of writing forces you to think about how the words will be perceived by the reader. Beyond the blog, the pieces are a good template in structuring our conversation — have a catchy opening, weave a simple story and a offer a clear value proposition.
Catalyst for engaging conversations with our customers
Since we blog about best practices in sales and marketing, it creates relevant material to share with our customers. Even the best-run sales machine has room to optimize. And since we speak with customers on a daily basis on ways to improve lead conversion, we can identify patterns on what works and what doesn’t. Having a set of pieces that we can point customers to, based on the topic, feels more natural than just forwarding a whitepaper.
Additionally, in our quest to write about interesting things, we also read a lot of articles and research reports. Some pieces are good, most aren’t. But having filtered through the noise, we are also building a repository of good content. We share the best pieces with our customers who appreciate the convenience of a curated list.
Assures our prospects
Our library of content is also useful in maintaining a dialogue with our prospective customers. After delivering the sales pitch and answering product questions, there’s only so many times you can hound a prospect on next steps. Instead, by sharing a piece that is relevant to their situation, it allows us to demonstrate value beyond just the product.
Finally, in time (we hope) blogging will also generates inbound leads. Now, most organisations start blogging with inbound leads in mind. We have flipped the approach. We believe that the first three points are reason enough to stick to our blogging habit. If we are adding value and creating good content, it will generate leads, not an SEO-driven mindset.
But no matter how many reasons you can come up with, it is a leap of faith. You trust that with time, you will build a corpus of content that engages and drives the right audience. Until then we keep at it because it’s fun. And that’s reason enough.
By leveraging data-science and machine learning techniques, demand generation teams can now automate the opportunity identification process, completely reshaping how public sector marketing is driven.