Todd Clouser, AKA the “worst marketer in the world” at Lavender, let us in on a little secret at SaaSiest 2023, namely his secret sauce to creating memorable marketing experiences that turn your users into die-hard fans and make non-users aspire to one day use your product, ultimately driving inbound. Follow his formula to win in a crowded market.
Create memorable marketing experiences to live rent-free in the minds of your audience. When they need a product like yours, they’ll come directly to you.
Be known for something.
The insightful substance is essential to any attempt at memorable marketing.
Applying an interesting format to insightful substance can make even the most basic content more interesting, engaging, and differentiated.
Layer in an entertaining concept to deliver your content in the most memorable way.
Make sure your content has a purpose and resonates with your audience.
Imagine you’re part of a Series C company, and you’re number five in the category. How do you win in this market as number five? Conventional advice would be to niche down. Can you go to your investors and say, “Hey everybody, we need to step back and niche down in order to grow”? Not really. Another option is to outspend the competition. As number five, it’s unlikely you’re going to be able to do that. Even if you could, is that really the best use of your funds? Probably not.
So how do we grow in this market? By creating memorable marketing.
Here are the three types of good (B2B) content:
Insightful substance, which is the foundation of any good content
Insightful substance with an interesting format on top of it
Insightful substance in an interesting format, delivered through an entertaining concept
Insightful substance comes into play when you want to (or have to) provide a lot of education to your audience. Typical examples, especially for B2B, are talking head videos, insightful blogs, and traditional B2B podcasts that are information-rich.
As an example, one of Lavender’s executives creates TikToks teaching people how to write better cold emails (insightful!). It’s the typical TikTok style where he is a talking head, and there are animated captions, emojis, and graphics that pop up on screen.
Insightful substance + an interesting format
The second type of content is insightful substance built on an interesting format. A good example is ESPN’s flagship program, SportsCenter, which provides daily sports news in an engaging and entertaining way.
ESPN has been successful in building a loyal audience for SportsCenter by combining high-quality reporting with a lively and interactive presentation. The show’s anchors are knowledgeable and engaging, and they often use humor and pop culture references to keep viewers entertained. In addition, SportsCenter features a variety of segments, such as highlights, interviews, and analysis, which appeal to a wide range of viewers.
As a result of its innovative format and engaging content, SportsCenter has become one of the most popular sports programs in the world. It is an example of how a well-executed format can help to make even the most basic content more interesting and appealing to viewers.
Game shows also do a great job with this type of content. There are many different game show ideas centered around common information (like trivia) with the format as a differentiator. As an example, Jeopardy is significantly different from Family Feud because they have different formats.
Applying an interesting format to insightful B2B substance
Format can be a meaningful differentiator with B2B content as well. Let’s look at a scenario where the same insightful substance formatted in different ways resonates differently with the audience.
The first example is the Lavender executive’s TikToks teaching people how to write better cold emails using the talking head approach. The insights are good, but the format is not as interesting as it could be since it’s fairly typical on TikTok and doesn’t stand out.
A different approach to sharing the same substance is a competition series one of our account executives (Mike) does. The insightful substance is the same: he teaches people how to write better cold emails. But he’s applied a unique format to it to gamify the content. When Lavender gets cold outreach, we put the email into a game show. Mike essentially competes with any SDR that reaches out to him by rewriting the email, and we use our tool, Lavender, as the judge to grade which one is better: the original email or Mike’s rewrite. And there are prizes for the winner. This is a good example of the second type of content that combines email rewriting insights (insightful substance) with an interesting format.
Insightful substance + interesting format + entertaining concept
The third type of content is insightful substance built on an interesting format and delivered through an entertaining concept. Here’s an example.
Let’s break this down.
Depending on what type of content you’re creating, the insights do not have to be at the forefront. You have to put the entertainment at the forefront with this type of content. In this video, we are showing SDRs how their prospects view them when they do the stereotypical type of outbound outreach. The insights are there, but beneath the layer of entertainment.
The format is a character called Lavender Joe that personifies all the outdated tactics salespeople use in their current cold outbound work. The entertainment value should be apparent to our audience because they implicitly understand the role of an SDR. Lavender Joe uses these cold outbound tropes and conversation starters in real life (both scripted and impromptu) to demonstrate how ridiculous they are and see how people respond to him. It’s extremely awkward.
You have to create good content from the start.
It has to be insightful.
There are many ways that we can deliver those insights, but being “good” is only one part of being memorable.
Your content needs to resonate
For your content to resonate, you have to assign a purpose to it. All content should fit into one of these boxes:
Top-down strategic narrative: Content with the purpose of changing the mindset of the strategic decision-makers in customer and prospect organizations. You want to change the way your audience sees the world to how you see the world.
Middle-out implementation: Tactical content that bridges the strategic mindset to the people who actually have to execute it (like how-to content).
Bottom-up evangelism: Content with the purpose of turning current users into die-hard fans and non-users into aspiring users.
Be known for something
To be memorable, you also need to be known for something. That takes a repetition of insights. But you don’t want people to get bored with the same message over and over again. You can use that same insightful substance and apply different formats and entertaining concepts to continue to hammer these insights into your audience’s minds. By changing up the execution of your insightful substance, people will continue to watch/follow/engage. They will remember your content, and eventually, when they need a product like yours, you’ll be top of mind, leading to inbound. And that is what creating memorable marketing experiences is all about – living rent-free in the minds of your audience so that when they need you, they come directly to you.
To enjoy Todd’s full presentation, head over to SaaSiestTV.com.