As Sales and Marketing Merge, the Cold Call Disappears
Our favorite blogging evangelist gives us his business case for blogging.
Dan Tyre has done five startups. The latest is HubSpot, traded on the New York Stock Exchange and a leader in inbound marketing. Over the last several years he has become a mentor and advisor for a dozen companies in various locations.
In 2016, Dan is devoting his energies to supporting the women at HubSpot who are rising stars, as well as the women who are CEOs in his startup portfolio. He and I share a commitment to supporting women-led companies.
He also is an enthusiastic and relentless blogger. The way Dan sees is, sales and marketing have merged. There’s no more pushing. We can’t get people to buy something they don’t want. The only thing we can do is show them that we know what we are talking about, that we are trustworthy and when they are darn good and ready they will consider our product or service—or not.
Dan views blogging as an efficient, effective way to get the word out. He says 86 percent of all B2B purchases start with an online search or social media search. Dan says an hour invested in blogging will far outpace cold calling in terms of generating leads and new customers. By his reckoning, his blog article "Always Be Closing is Dead, How to Always Be Helping" generated 311 customers in only a few months since he posted it in July 2016.
He tells people the first thing they should do when they are starting a company is write a three-page business plan or PowerPoint and say “this is what I am going to do.” Second, get a co-founder to help. Companies that have co-founders are successful 60 percent more than companies who don’t.
I would argue that finding a co-founder who is different from you is an essential step here so you know that you are hearing different voices.
Third, put up a website. Say this is what my business plan is. These are the people I'm trying to help. This is how I solve the problem. This is what the product is going to look like. If you're interested in joining my vision, if you want to start with the company, if you want to invest in the company, drop your contact information here.
Dan says your best sales person has to be your website. Your blog is the important content that you use to build confidence and trust. If it turns out that your message resonates in Germany and lots of German citizens come and read your content then that's an important indicator that's where you should take your business.
So much of what Dan has said about blogging is something that we are trying to implement here at The Impact Seat. It is also something I advise my portfolio companies. By blogging, you put yourself and your possible customers into a conversation together.
Everybody is working on solving some level of a problem. The question is how quickly can you get out and how quickly can you attract the thought leadership. More than the people who are interested in your tribe, right? They're interested in how you solve the problem. They're interested in coming to work with you. They're interested in buying your product; they're interested in reading your content.
It doesn't matter where you're located. It matters where your customers are. You don't know who your customers are when you're a startup. You've got to put out your shingle. It's got to be online.
Either one of two things is going to happen. They're going to come to you and find you and say that is a good vision—or they're going to ignore you. If that happens then you don't really have a business. It's better to find that out early.