From Almost Bankruptcy To $1.53 Billion Valuation: The Journey of Loom From A B2B Marketer’s Perspective

Recently, an article detailing how Rippling raised $250 million with Loom videos caught my attention.

It’s fascinating how Loom is replacing old ways of business communication. Loom, Zoom, Room is a thing.

One of the reasons for Loom’s success is, of course, its intuitiveness, user-centricity, and effectiveness.

Personal story time.

My introduction to Loom happened when our Sales Head shared a few Loom videos. Those videos looked nice, so I decided to give Loom a try. 

It was love at first sight (or first use). Switching to Loom immediately solved my issue with the QuickTime Player on iMac: I no longer needed to append voice recordings separately. That was the “aha moment.”

Fast forward a few weeks, I was selected for Facebook’s billion-dollar creator funding program. I used Loom to create at least 3 minutes long 90 videos covering inspirational sales and marketing stories across the globe.

And one of the videos went missing. 

What followed next amazed me. Not only did my problem get resolved, but I also received multiple emails from the Loom team that showed they care about my issue personally. 

Such a user-first mindset combined with an excellent yet simple product and effective marketing won Loom 14 million users worldwide. And Loom’s journey from the verge of bankruptcy to a $1.5 billion valuation can offer many lessons.

This article will distill those lessons by analysing Loom’s growth from a B2B SaaS perspective.

Loom’s Story: A SaaS Fairytale 

Loom’s story is no less than a fairytale full of struggle, adventure, and moments of pure bliss.    

In 2016, Vinay Hiremath, Joe Thomas, and Shahed Khan – a band of three brave entrepreneurs sailed the troubled waters of the SaaS market, intending to change business communications with asynchronous videos.

However, things didn’t go well despite their best efforts. After several failed launches and fundraising attempts, they struggled to keep the lights on. Their last hope rested on the launch on Product Hunt. 

It took a miracle to save the brand from closing its door. The brand received more sign-ups on the day of its Product Hunt launch than it did in the past six months combined.

That miracle gave the brand the breathing room it needed. After that, Loom steadily continued its climb to the top while battling against a tough economy and cutthroat competition.

Currently, the company ($1.5 billion in valuation) serves over 200,000 businesses and 14 million users. Even after the CoVID-19 pandemic, millions of new users signed up, and Loom opened two new offices. 

During this eventful journey, Loom indeed faced and successfully dealt with almost every possible challenge a SaaS startup can expect. So that alone makes Loom a great example to learn from. 

Four Pillars That Support Loom’s Upward Growth

Before we move on, please note that any brand cannot attribute its success to only a handful of different factors. Usually, these factors mutually influence each other, and the lines often get blurred. Hence figuring out the exact extent of any factor’s impact is complex. 

With that in mind, let’s break down four factors behind Loom’s success from a B2B marketer’s perspective.

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

#1 – User-Focused Approach and Crystal Clear Understanding of Target Personas

Folks at Loom figured early that their most formidable competitors are most commonly used communication tools such as email, messenger apps, text messages, etc. 

Of course, none of these tools allows a user to record an explanatory video in seconds, send it with his report, or record a screen capture video and add a human element to dry business communications otherwise. 

But very few users understood how asynchronous videos fit in their lives. They were more familiar with text-based/synchronous video (e.g., Zoom) communication. Changing this status quo was hard.

That’s why Loom (then Openvid) team focused on understanding the users first. This user-focused approach is one of the reasons behind Loom’s wild success on both Product Hunt and later as a brand itself. Shahed Khan later revealed they tracked everything: how people were using zoom, when they stopped using it and why.

Their goal was to plan their product features and marketing around user feedback.

Before the launch, the founder team tweaked their product based on every little insight they got from user inputs.

After the early growth spike, Loom doubled its effort to understand the customers. First, the brand identified seven personas. Then team members requested their users for a 10-minute call to understand their use-cases.

For many SaaS brands, one of the biggest struggles is convincing the users to replace existing solutions with the brand’s product. The hyper-user-centric approach solved it for  Loom.

Screen recording with Loom is intuitive (the credit goes to Loom’s extensive user research) and easy to start. Both ease-of-use and a carefully designed referral program compel the user to try the app. Vinay refers to this moment of user adaptation as the “aha moment.” If you haven’t already, you must try the Loom app to see how intuitive it is!

After a while, users realise how versatile asynchronous videos are, which have a place in daily business communication. This versatility is the moment (which Vinay calls “Habit moment“) when “testers” actually became paid customers. To help users to arrive at this “Habit moment,” the marketing team put more tailored use-cases, blog posts, and help articles based on users’ profiles.

If you go through the brand’s blog, you will see the blog posts cover use-cases across different segments. And, of course, the audience-content fit is on the point here. (We will cover their blog content strategy later in this article.)

#2 – Product-Led-Approach As A Go-to-Market Strategy

People in SaaS circles hold the product-led approach in high regard.

But in reality, the product-led approach is hard to implement. After all, it is not child’s play to understand your user inside out, prioritise the end-user while building the product and deliver value before you start profiting. 

SaaS brands that wish to adopt a product-led-growth approach as their go-to-market strategy can learn a thing or two from Loom.

Essentially every component of Loom’s marketing and strategy is tied to the product itself. 

The basic technology the brand offers isn’t new. There are multiple tools available in marketing that allow screen recording. However, Loom’s simplicity, performance, and user experience set it apart.

For example, once the user installs its Chrome extension, it won’t even take 5 mins to understand how to record their screen or edit those videos. Also, the recorded videos get uploaded to the server on the go. So even during editing, merging, or reviewing the transcript, there is no drop in performance. And Loom continuously works on improving the user experience.

Such a seamless user experience makes it easier for users to try and continue using Loom. They use it to send any report, thank you note, message to their colleagues, and whatnot. And the more they use it, the faster Loom videos become one of the “must-haves.”  

Loom takes user experience inspiration from other brands. For example, every time someone views your Loom videos, you get a notification. This feature mimics one of the distinguishing features of  Linkedin – “Someone has viewed your profile”. The numbers revealed this LinkedIn-inspired feature is popular amongst Loom users too. 

The product-led- growth strategy also influenced the early adaption. From the beginning, Loom made it extremely easy to share videos and sign-up. In addition, since Loom supports the workspace model (like Slack), the moment a team member shares a Loom video, others start using it too, which accelerates Loom’s adoption inside an organisation. HubSpot is one of such enterprises that became one of the early enterprise adopters.

Loom’s team members also use asynchronous videos for outreach or building connections. It makes the recipients more like to give the videos a try as they can see the product in action.

This product-led-growth approach helped Loom build a brand. Interestingly enough, Loom uses this to gain massive SEO advantages.

P.S: Let’s cover that in the following section.

#3 – An SEO Moat For Sustainable Organic Growth

Can you guess how much traffic the Loom website receives every month? 

According to Similarweb, It’s over 13 million. 

And two most prominent sources of Loom’s traffic are direct traffic (9.6 million) and organic search (1.9 million).

These numbers show how influential the brand is (hence, people directly visit by typing the URL or clicking on bookmarks). And, of course, their SEO strategy is worth learning from. 

Most SaaS brands approach SEO by targeting some top of the funnel/middle of the funnel keywords based on what problem they solve for their target audience. This approach, indeed, has some merits. 

However, Loom’s approach to SEO is entirely different. Instead of mindlessly chasing after some top-of-the-funnel keywords and burning cash, it chose to excel at brand query SEO. As a result, for any search term that involves Loom as a product/company, Loom’s content ranks at the top.

Here is an example of the keyword “Loom not working” (1080 monthly hits): 

Keywords that drive most of Loom’s monthly traffic are also mostly branded. However, with that said, Loom’s SEO team doesn’t neglect non-branded relevant long-tail keywords either.

You must be wondering why branded query SEO works excellently for Loom.

Well, this success has its root in Loom’s brand building and positioning. Its users mostly came to know about the app after receiving a Loom video or hearing about it from others. So, it created a powerful brand which resulted in further brand awareness. So people started looking online to understand different usages of the app, troubleshoot, and receive new product updates. So, Loom secured SEO wins by optimising its user guides/blogs/landing pages for those search terms.

Interestingly, Loom’s obsession (which is good) with understanding their audience is also reflected in their SEO strategies. On close inspection, Loom’s SEO team invests in “pain-point SEO.”

If you are unfamiliar with the term, it’s an SEO approach that advocates taking into account your users’ real challenges first and doing keyword research based on users’ issues, not search volume.

Loom does not stop at providing a solution for common issues. Instead, its content team finds more profound and complex user challenges and creates content.  

Loom’s blog posts, for instance, rank for long-tail keywords like “hate my voice.” It might feel entirely out of context at first. However, many people are insecure about their voice, making them video shy. Loom helps readers and gains exposure to a new audience by targeting such keywords. 

Last but not least, Loom pays attention to its link profile. According to Ahref’s report, Loom has almost 2.5 million backlinks (you get a backlink when other websites link to your articles in their blog posts) from 44000 referring domains (list of websites that have linked them). In addition, highly authoritative websites like HubSpot and Forbes also link back to Loom.

#4 – Product-Led/Thought Leadership Content that Educates Customers and Promotes the Product

Loom introduced asynchronous videos as a new way of business communications and, in the process, challenged the dominance of asynchronous video communication and sync text communication. So educating users about the usage of asynchronous videos was (and still is) Loom’s priority.

That’s why Loom’s content always has been top-notch. Its entire content strategy revolves around product-led content and occasional thought leadership content.

But first, let’s talk about unsung heroes: “help articles”. As we discussed, brand query search terms are responsible for a big chunk of Loom’s monthly traffic. As a result, the Loom resource library houses hundreds of “help articles” to answer almost any queries made up with those branded search terms.

These help articles are packed with information and includes relevant screenshots and video. Such high-quality and well-planned content pieces ensure user satisfaction and a positive impact on overall SEO. 

Only a few SaaS brands produce great product-led content as Loom. (Ahrefs and Hotjar are another two examples if you are wondering). The cornerstone of its content strategy is product-led content which is not surprising considering the brand’s overall commitment to product-led growth.

Almost every blog post picks one specific issue and weaves the product into the narrative while offering the solution. Here is an example from the blog post “How video messages help us explain and review code“.

This embedded Loom video demonstrates how an engineer can review code using an asynchronous video and eliminate a lot of needless back and forth between the coder and reviewer. As you can see, including the product (that above mentioned Loom video) feels natural in this context. 

Interestingly, Loom doesn’t always treat its audience as a bunch of people divided based on their use cases. Sometimes a few blog posts go live talking about the discomfort the users might feel while shooting videos.

But no matter what problem the blog post provides a solution for, the product-led part is always executed flawlessly. 

Thought leadership content has become another staple of the entire content strategy. 

As you know by now, Loom essentially carves out a market with a product that challenges the existing status quo. To do so, the brand has to persuade, educate and provide new perspectives to its users. As a result, the brand invested in quality product-led content with elements of thought leadership.   

Take this blog post, for example. It matches the description of good thought leadership content: 

  • It offers a new perspective (adaptation of asynchronous communication).
  • The argument is well thought out and based on facts.
  • It has a strong, compelling message that makes the reader reconsider these new ways of communication.  

At the same time, Loom’s use cases fit pretty well into the narrative. As a result, these hybrid blog posts both educate and sell at the same time. 

A further intriguing aspect of Loom’s blog strategy is how it approaches bottom-of-the-funnel content. For example, many SaaS brands consider bottom-of-the-funnel case studies with many numbers and stats.

However, in many cases, the impact of a product is not easy to measure in numbers. In those situations, storytelling is a great way to send your message across. 

Instead of writing those customer success stories in-house, Loom invites its customers to narrate the impact in their own words as guest post contributors. This practice is superior for two reasons:

  • First, these bottom-of-the-funnel articles rank for relevant keywords. 
  • More importantly, a success story from the actual customer is much more persuasive than something written by the brand.

(P.S: If you want to create or scale thought leadership/product-led content, we can help you with planning, draft creation and promotion. Book a call here.)

Key Takeaways

The biggest takeaway of Loom’s story is prioritising your users is the best approach. 

Loom didn’t go for rapid sales growth. Instead, they made sure the product was as user-friendly as it gets. As a result, early users found it very convenient and shared it with their peers. 

It, in turn, presented an SEO opportunity that Loom leveraged effectively.

Also, content played a significant role in Loom’s success.

Most of its blog posts focus on educating and providing solutions to users’ questions. Often Loom’s product fits in these solutions pretty well, so the product-led-content approach works well for the brand. Loom also publishes a lot of top-of-the-funnel content and gradually builds up authority. It’s a well-thought decision, considering the Google algorithm now emphasises E.A.T. (expertise, authority, and trustworthiness)

We hope this piece provides you with actionable insights from the story of Loom to create meaningful content for your customers.

About Us

We are a content marketing agency that brings business, not just website traffic. We curate the best content as per your company’s requirements and philosophy because we believe in the power of meaningful information.
If your organisation wants thoughtful content brainstormed and designed by Concurate, let’s connect over a short call. Block our calendar today!

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20 Questions You Must Ask Before Hiring A SaaS Content Marketing Agency

Hiring the wrong people is the fastest way to undermine a sustainable business.

Kevin J. Donaldson

Hiring the right partner is vital to making your content marketing strategy successful. A SaaS content marketing agency will help elevate your business by understanding its fundamentals and assisting you in achieving your goals.

The process of hiring a SaaS content marketing agency can be time-consuming. But, a clear understanding of the critical questions you should ask during the screening process will help ensure that your recruitment efforts don’t waste vetting the wrong options.

Let’s go through a comprehensive list of twenty essential questions you should ask before choosing a SaaS content marketing agency and ensure your enterprise’s processes fit in perfectly with the agency’s established systems.

1. In What Format of Content Marketing Do They Specialise?

2. In Which Industries Do They Specialise?

3. What Kind of Clients Works Well With Their Business Model?

4. Which Stages of the Buyer Funnel Will They Target?

5. How Will They Help Your Business?

6. Can They Create Materials Like eBooks, Website Copy, and Landing Pages?

7. What Metrics Will They Use To Measure Success?

8. Will They Provide Unique or Standardised Solutions To Your Business?

9. Are They A Partner Or Provider?

10. How Will The Project Be Handled?

11. How Frequently Will They Communicate?

12. What Do They Require From Your End?

13. Can They Share Case Studies?

14. Can They Provide Testimonials?

15. What Industries And Topics Are Their Writers Familiar With Curating?

16. Which Tools Will Their Team Use?

17. Will They Provide Access To Marketing Automation Software?

18. Are They Comfortable With Your Brand And Culture?

19. What Will Be The Cost?

20. Is The Contract Flexible?

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

1. In What Format of Content Marketing Do They Specialise?

Some agencies specialise in one area of content marketing or have a team that covers many. So ensure you’re in the clear. For example, some agencies provide full-scale end-to-end marketing services like Grow and Convert and Concurate, while some specialise in link building like Heroic Search. Alternatively, you may need an agency to market your SaaS enterprise on social media; that’s where content marketing agencies like Siarza Social Digital come into the picture.

2. In Which Industries Do They Specialise?

It makes sense to approach the relevant SaaS content marketing agencies that have prior exposure to the industry in which your business operates. Having this background means that the agency will be well immersed in the best practices and have a clear understanding of your competitors, the pain points of your target audience and the required steps to help you grow and scale your business.

3. What Kind of Clients Works Well With Their Business Model?

The different stages of T2D3 growth for B2B SaaS businesses are $1M to $10M ARR, $10M to $100M ARR, or $100M+ ARR. For example, Concurate works with medium-sized B2B SaaS businesses. Collaborate with content marketing agencies – bespoke or boutique – that are more attuned to the growth stage your business is experiencing.

4. Which Stages of the Buyer Funnel Will They Target?

Each business will have its priorities. For example, one firm might want to inform its target audience, while another might have commercial intents. This clarity will require hashing out the agreement on how the content marketing will either make your target audience aware of your product or interested in trying it out, make your business desirable, or make a purchase decision. 

5. How Will They Help Your Business?

Be clear about what the content marketing agency aims to achieve, whether bringing in more marketing-qualified leads (MQL) or sales-qualified leads (SQL). Or, your business might be looking to secure more signups and sales. But, again, there should be absolute clarity on the results.

6. Can They Create Materials Like eBooks, Website Copy, and Landing Pages?

Emergencies are precisely that – emergencies. Your agreement may require receiving content pieces like blogs, case studies, and allied materials. Ask if the content marketing agency can provide you with additional services like creating lead magnets in the form of eBooks or developing your landing pages, website copies, and more.

7. What Metrics Will They Use To Measure Success?

Run away if you hear about some vanity metrics. Instead, ask how the content marketing agency will keep track of and report on results. You’d like to see the progress since the start of your agreement, and it will be crucial to measure the performance against established indicators.

8. Will They Provide Unique or Standardised Solutions To Your Business?

In other words, do they provide unique or cookie-cutter strategies? Every business has individual needs, and formulating a content marketing plan should not rely on a templated approach. In a perfect scenario, an agency would build all of its client strategies from the ground up and design them per the account’s goals and objectives.

9. Are They A Partner Or Provider?

Be on the lookout for content marketing agencies that are comfortable with either assisting your in-house marketing or even acting as their extension. It should be the agency’s objective to not just focus on the minutiae but also help you focus on scaling your business, keeping customers happy, and more.

10. How Will The Project Be Handled?

Inquire whether you will get a dedicated point-of-contact. The answer should be a resounding yes! Agencies need to provide a human touch, and an account manager will do that. Another pertinent point is to ask for a dedicated secondary or “backup” point-of-contact with extensive account knowledge.

11. How Frequently Will They Communicate?

Routine and free-flowing communication is vital to the success of any plan. So while outsourcing may have its caveats, a barrier to communication shouldn’t be one of them. Make sure that you block calendars to get regular and timely updates on the health of your content marketing campaigns.

12. What Do They Require From Your End?

Establish expectations on what the content agency will be expecting from your team to hit the results that they’ve promised. For example, how much would you like to be involved in the process? What reviews and approvals do you need to give regarding the content creation? Maintain clarity to avoid difficult conversations in the future.

13. Can They Share Case Studies?

The proof is in the pudding. If the agency can share similar results to those you expect, that is a great indicator and will give you loads of confidence. Spend time digging into the case studies they have presented on their website. For example, Concurate has published its own B2B client success story.

14. Can They Provide Testimonials?

Testimonials speak a lot about an agency. If a client is confident enough to put their name on a review of the agency’s work, that speaks volumes of its credibility.

15. What Industries And Topics Are Their Writers Familiar With Curating?

Agencies typically also hire freelance writers as part of their staff. Again, it helps to inquire about their team’s familiarity with the topics and the content pieces you’re looking to get published.

16. Which Tools Will Their Team Use?

Content creation requires using industry-standard tools like Grammarly, Canva, HubSpot, SEMrush, Google Analytics and more to help elevate and bring life to content pieces. Ask what tools the team at the agency is comfortable with and will be using to bring your ideas to life.

17. Will They Provide Access To Marketing Automation Software?

Marketing automation software dramatically simplifies and streamlines your marketing efforts. Whether Buffer for publishing content on different platforms or using HubSpot to manage leads. Ask whether you will gain access to such automation tools.

18. Are They Comfortable With Your Brand And Culture?

Don’t be afraid to look for competing options if there isn’t a required level of overlap in conducting business and company cultures. A clash of cultures and approaches to building brands will lead to unnecessary difficult conversations. So proceed with caution.

19. What Will Be The Cost?

You need to understand the investment required from your business. The quip “You get what you pay for” is prescient here. However, a cheaper or more expensive proposal does not mean it’s the right choice for your business. Use the screening abilities you’ve showcased to make the best decision. Prices can range from $1-5k per month on one end of the spectrum to rise as high as $25-100k on the other.

20. Is The Contract Flexible?

If you’re dissatisfied with the results, you’d ideally like to bring a “bad” decision to a close. Ensure you’re clear about the level of flexibility and leeway the contract offers.

Parting Thoughts

SaaS businesses stand to gain a lot of benefits from dedicated content marketing agencies. But that is only possible if the SaaS content marketing agency knows what they’re doing. We hope this comprehensive list will help you shortlist and recruit the right content marketing agency for your business.

As a bonus, ensure that the content marketing agency you’re looking to hire possesses these 5 strengths!

About Us

We are a content marketing agency that brings business, not just website traffic. We curate the best content as per your company’s requirements and philosophy because we believe in the power of meaningful information.
If your organisation wants its content marketing strategy designed by Concurate, let’s connect over a short call. Block our calendar today!

If you wish to read more goodness, subscribe to our newsletter.

We send value to your inbox only once in 15 days.

10 Things To Look For While Hiring a SaaS Content Marketing Agency

Getting content marketing right is crucial for growing SaaS enterprises.

This study from Animalz states that about 85% of all blog traffic for SaaS companies comes from organic search. SEO approaches like “Pain Point SEO” can increase organic page views, signups and more. Content marketing is essential for SaaS companies since it helps build relationships with their target audience, nailing down repeat sales and recurring subscriptions.

Rather than figuring out a content marketing process from scratch, hiring a dedicated SaaS content marketing agency and plugging your business model into their established systems will be more cost-effective.

SaaS content marketing agencies are an excellent fit to help generate recurring revenue for software-as-a-service brands. They can do so because they have an in-depth knowledge of SaaS businesses and can build effective content strategies for your enterprise.

But how do you determine whether or not a SaaS content marketing agency can deliver the results you’re looking to achieve? What are the qualities you should be looking for in prospective agencies? To help you find the right agency, follow the tips outlined in the piece and get cracking.

#1 – Specialises In SaaS Content Marketing

#2 – Specialises In Your Industry

#3 – Works For Your B2B SaaS Growth Stage

#4 – Clearly Outlines Their Target Channel

#5 – Displays Industry-specific Case Studies

#6 – Displays Client Testimonials

#7 – Dynamic Team

#8 – Pre-contract Consultation: Free or Paid

#9 – Contract Length: Fixed or Flexible

#10 – Pricing Structure: Standard or Custom

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

Criteria For Choosing A SaaS Content Marketing Agency

#1 – Specialises In SaaS Content Marketing

When you scout for SaaS content marketing agencies, you’ll find that some agencies will provide full-scale end-to-end deals like Grow and Convert and Concurate or specialise in link building like Heroic Search. You may need an agency to market your SaaS enterprise on social media; that’s where content marketing agencies like Siarza Social Digital come into the picture.

#2 – Specialises In Your Industry

When you’re trying to solve a medical problem related to your kidney, you’re going to consult a urologist rather than a general practitioner, aren’t you?

In the same way, you’re better off hiring a SaaS content marketing agency that caters to your specific industry. This way, you’ll be assured that the agency knows about your target audience and their pain points, who is your competition, and deliver actionable solutions around these points.

For example, at Concurate, we’ve worked with clients like Triangle IP in the domain of Intellectual Property, allowing us to give insightful solutions that help bring revenue, not just traffic.

#3 – Works For Your B2B SaaS Growth Stage

While there is no harm in going for the services of established or bespoke SaaS content marketing agencies, it certainly helps collaborate with one more attuned to your growth stage.

There are essentially three stages of growth for B2B SaaS businesses. Agencies like Kalungi can work on each of the three stages: Whether you’re at $1M to $10M ARR, $10M to $100M ARR, or $100M+ ARR. Concurate works with medium-sized B2B SaaS businesses, as another example.

#4 – Clearly Outlines Their Target Channel

A SaaS content marketing agency can help its clients by developing a content marketing strategy that is the right fit for their unique needs. The agency will create high-quality content that suits the target audience’s pain points and promote content through effective distribution channels. Because let’s face it, traditional social media giants are not the only place your target audience is likely to spend time.

#5 – Displays Industry-specific Case Studies

It’s a good practice to vet an agency’s credibility and ask for industry and customer-specific case studies to validate the claims that the agency is providing. For example, Concurate has published its own B2B client success story, and so has Grow and Convert for a B2C client.

#6 – Displays Client Testimonials

As an extension of the previous point, it’s a good practice to look out for client testimonials and gauge what kind of services the SaaS content marketing agency was able to provide.

#7 – Dynamic Team

A quality content marketing agency will be transparent about its workforce. A helpful next step is to consider their content production skills. Then, get a walkthrough of the agency’s key members and conduct a gut check on whether they’re a fit for you or not.

#8 – Pre-contract Consultation: Free or Paid

While authenticating whether or not an agency is suitable for your business needs, it’s a good practice to vet their capabilities beforehand by letting them conduct a consultation call. Again, be in the clear whether such consultations are free of charge or not.

#9 – Contract Length: Fixed or Flexible

Another critical point is determining whether the content marketing agency offers flexibility in terms of contractual obligations. For example, are you allowed to walk away anytime if the services don’t match your expectations or not? Again, ensure that such details are clear from the outset.

#10 – Pricing Structure: Standard or Custom

Before taking the plunge, understand whether the pricing is a fit for you or not. For example, is the content marketing agency offering bespoke custom pricing or a fixed flat fee?

Parting Thoughts

SaaS enterprises stand to gain a lot of benefits from content marketing. But that is only possible if your SaaS content marketing agency knows what they’re doing. Ensure alignment in content marketing speciality; industry served; pricing; contractual obligations, and more.

About Us

We are a content marketing agency that brings business, not just website traffic. We curate the best content as per your company’s requirements and philosophy because we believe in the power of meaningful information.

If your organisation wants its content marketing strategy designed by Concurate, let’s connect over a short call. Block our calendar today!

If you wish to read more goodness, subscribe to our newsletter.

We send value to your inbox only once in 15 days.

26 Employee Retention Ideas for Millenials

A Simple, Actionable, Effective Guide 

What makes me stick to my company – Concurate?

Well – many things – great growth opportunities, awesome mentorship, global exposure, very high-profile clients, no micromanagement, honest feedback, recognition, etc. 

What else can I ask for?

Honestly – Nothing

However, everyone may not be as lucky as I am! In the second half of 2021, 20 million-plus Americans quit their jobs. That’s almost the entire population of Australia. The majority of the workforce today is Gen-Z and Millennials. The younger generation’s expectations and requirements of a job and workplace are very different from the traditional ideas of job security and a good salary. So, in a world where opportunities are easy to find and create, how do you hold on to the talent you worked so hard to identify? 

The answer is quite simple. Ensure the talent you choose is choosing you, every day. Based on research and experience, here’s an alphabetical list of things put together just for you, as a guide to talent retention:

The Actionable A-Z Dictionary of Millennial Employee Retention

Autonomy

Dilbert comic talking about micromanagement

Avoid micromanaging. Start trusting.

Autonomy means self-governance and letting a person be able to make their own decisions with respect to how they do their work. Over the years autonomy has become a determinant of job satisfaction.

Let’s say you’ve given an employee a task to do that you had once done as a young employee in your time. They employ a different method to get that task done. That urge in you to tell them not to do it that way – don’t let that urge get the better of you. Avoid telling them how to do what they have to do. They’ve been hired to do work that both you and they believe they are good at doing. Trust in your hiring and in their skill and strengths.

Push employees out of their comfort zones every once in a while and then give them the power to make their choices (and that includes running the risk of failure). Employees recognize and appreciate being given the freedom of choice and tend to stick around longer. They also deliver fantastic results, and become unafraid of trying new things and being in alien situations.

Belief System 

A common belief system across all stakeholders (clients, the company, and its employees) in an organization is one of the keys to success. And who doesn’t want to be part of a successful system?

Source – Concurate

Every organization has a belief system that it’s built on – a foundation of sorts. Every brick (employee) that’s used to build on that foundation needs to have something in sync with that belief system. An employee who does is the right fit for the job. Whereas someone whose belief system is in conflict will never fit well enough into the organization. Almost like a piece of a jigsaw puzzle that belongs to another set. Say, for instance, a cribber v. a problem solver. A cribber is someone who constantly complains about problems around them instead of looking for solutions to them. A problem-solver on the other hand is someone who obsessively looks for solutions, even if they are outside of their comfort zone. Which kind of person do you think is a better fit for the company?

And constant friction that makes an employee feel like he doesn’t want to go to his workspace on a daily basis is sometimes enough reason for an employee to switch their workplace. 

Culture

Source – Think Boundless

Toxic company culture is a bigger reason than burnout or salaries that cause talent loss. Some factors that make a culture toxic are disrespectful, unethical, non-inclusive, cut-throat, and abusive behavior. As a leader, toxicity must be taken as seriously as performance. Actively work towards building a strong culture that turns tension into harmony. Focus on healthy habit-building as a part of business and workplace ethos. 

High-performance organizations have two things in abundance: productivity and positivity. Productivity involves getting the right stuff done, thereby creating value for customers and shareholders, and positivity generates great outcomes for employees in terms of their satisfaction, belonging, and growth. Most companies miss the second point, but great companies focus on both.

Delegation

It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do

Steve Jobs

In a work atmosphere, the biggest show of confidence is in delegating. The more responsibility (read bigger opportunities) employees are given, the more valued they feel. And the more work a leader delegates, the more time there is to get more done for the company as a whole. So delegation sets up the perfect win-win situation. 

Engagement

Talent which chooses to stay is employees engaged constructively. An employee who has new things to learn, challenging tasks lined up on a daily basis, and opportunities for growth and learning is much more likely to stay with an organization compared to an employee who does the same thing day in and day out. 

Flexibility

Source – RingCentral

The WFH remote work culture has increased the demand for flexible work hours from the talented workforce. The days of clocking hours and punching in and out, timing breaks, and monitoring every movement of employees are long gone. Flexible work hours and a goal-driven system are the need of the hour (quite literally :)). It’s not surprising that 82% of people who took part in a survey said they would be more loyal to their employers if they had flexible work options. 

Source – Twitter

Growth

Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime. As a leader, you can choose to be the kind who gives your employee a fish – an answer to a question, a roadmap or blueprint to success, or a path that he can walk. Or, you can choose to be the kind who teaches him to fish – force him to think outside the box, encourage creative thinking, or push him outside his comfort zone. Choose to be the latter. It will help employees create a growth trajectory for themselves. And you can stand by them to nurture them through. 

Encourage your younger employees to indulge in courses and classes that can help them upskill. Offering a platform for growth is a great way to ensure job satisfaction. Set aside an allowance or offer assistance – financial and otherwise for your employees to enroll in programs that will help them perform better at work. 

Actively encourage their professional development and growth – Don’t make talent wait for an opportunity. Put skill and delivery over seniority if you have to. It takes a good leader to recognize talent and push growth when it’s due. 

Hire

Retention begins with recruiting. Hiring an employee is actually rocket science –  it requires a certain amount of understanding of human psychology, awareness of the brand, business, and culture, and the ability to gauge correctly how much potential candidates match these aspects. People who are open to feedback, prefer to solve problems rather than cry over them, are always curious to learn new things, etc. make a great fit.

Internal mobility

Many a time employees who have joined an organization in a particular role may outgrow that role in their time at the organization. Sometimes, it’s boredom; sometimes, lack of interest or the birth of new interests. When talent is as good as it is, structure internal mobility policies that allow talent to switch roles, teams, and profiles. Recognizing talent and providing a fertile ground for growth serves to reduce the temptation for talent to seek opportunities outside. 

Job satisfaction

Job satisfaction and work environment are complementary factors that influence an employee’s decision to stay or leave an organization. While both have an equal impact on an employee’s decision, job satisfaction weighs slightly heavier. When an employee is satisfied with the job, it makes him want to stay as opposed to environmental factors that have an external impact on his decision. 

So how do you ensure job satisfaction? It starts with hiring the right person for the right job, constantly checking in with employees, providing growth opportunities, rewards, and recognition, but most importantly constantly evaluating if the growth of the employee matches his role in the organization. And if it doesn’t, then in finding the right fit for him. 

Knowledge sharing

Keep your company’s knowledge widely accessible and updated. Encourage employees to write about their learnings from products and projects. And share this in your organization. We encourage everyone in our organization to write about the methods used to find answers to complex questions. We’ve noticed sharing knowledge leads to better results, overall. When one person learns and shares, everyone learns and grows. Learning provides growth, growth retains talent.

Lead (Don’t Boss)

Source – Twitter

Be a leader, not a boss. Most people join an organization with the belief that they will grow where they are choosing to plant themselves, in a healthy work environment. Example over instruction, one-to-one honest feedback over ridicule, genuine appreciation in public, and unselfishness to shine the spotlight on your team are some best practices to implement. 

Besides, setting up a mentorship program in your company is an excellent idea to boost employee confidence, commitment, and performance. And keeping that in mind, coach managers to imbibe a similar system and culture at the team level. Leadership style permeates from the top down and it is you who must set the tone by action. Make this leadership style a system that every person in a leadership role follows at the organization. Educate managers on how to conduct meaningful conversations, asking how their people are doing with their professional or personal goals. Coach managers to bring out the best from their teams.

Meritocracy

Many organizations let experience dictate growth and advancement. This puts exceptionally talented employees at a disadvantage. Recognizing the potential and providing employees growth opportunities, promotions and advancements on the basis of merit rather than seniority is a way to show the talent that they are valued for what they bring to the table and not simply for the number of years of work they have put in. When talent feels wanted and their merit is rewarded, they are far more likely to stay. 

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

Newsletter

An internal newsletter (read simple company-wide email) is a superb way to let everyone in the organization get to know what’s happening in parts of the organization that they may not be aware of. Focus on the impact that your information sharing creates. Maybe you can share interesting insights about success stories within the organization, client feedback, new experiments, and systems, etc. Familiarity and a sense of belonging help create stronger ties and deeper roots. Keep this easy and low frill so it’s easy for you to maintain regularity and consistency. 

Office Hours

Source – Twitter

At our organization, we have a concept called Office Hours. Nope, it’s not what you’re thinking – no 9-5 workdays chalked out with meticulously planned schedules. This is a time when anyone in the organization is allowed to book the founder’s calendar to have a one-on-one chat. While this mainly happens when employees ask questions and need advice, it almost always results in great conversation and learning. Encouraging asking questions builds confidence and gives leaders insights into their employees’ thoughts which helps them see better, too. By understanding how employees are feeling you get an idea about their motivation, goals, and challenges. This further helps you to come up with some retention strategies.

Purpose

Paul Polman, CEO, Unilever (2009-19) in his time there adopted the idea of making “Sustainable living commonplace” and has shown how purpose can help reduce tensions in the workforce and create optimum conditions for growth. In 2020, 92% of Unilever employees who attended a “Discover Your Purpose” workshop reported having jobs that inspire them to go the extra mile. 

Study shows 89% of young employees have opined that they are willing to give ground on compensation and title at work if the business is aligned with their values or mission. A sense of purpose serves as a guide to tough decisions (even quitting a job). So, identify a sense of purpose and use it as a driving force. 

Quality of work 

When you hire talent, you do so because you see the potential. One way to reward that potential is to ensure that talent is kept occupied with challenging and interesting work.

Beware of monotony it’s the mother of all the deadly sins.

Edith Wharton

Offering monotonous work to someone who is capable of growing himself and the company with out-of-the-box ideas is a total waste of potential. It’s like leaving the sword to rust. 

Recognition

Feeling special and recognized for talent is more important than monetary compensation. Recognition can take on many forms – simply acknowledging the talent that they bring to the table, applauding their contributions and work, or recognizing what they are capable of and encouraging further growth. Listen to ideas, and set up internal reward programs that give out rewards that are not “things”. Think experiences – holidays for employees and their special ones, paid time off, occasion-centric, thoughtful experiences like a newborn baby photoshoot.

Systems

When the quality of work depends on individual employees, it’s bound to suffer in their absence, unless (s)he creates a system that’s capable of running seamlessly even in their absence. 

When asked to create a system, an employee may feel like the system may become his nemesis and make him dispensable. However, that’s really not how it works. Once an employee masters the system at the level he’s currently at, the only way for him to go is upward and onward, within the organizational hierarchy. And here, he has the chance to create a great new system. 

The more systems (s)he creates, the more the company benefits, and grows. It’s a win-win situation that ensures the growth of both the organization as well as the employee. And in contributing this way to the organization, (s)he becomes a valuable asset to the company, an employee the company loves. And no company would want to let go of an employee that contributes to growth.

Trust

A team is not a group of people that work together. A team is a group of people that trust each other.

Simon Sinek
Ankur Warikoo tweet on trust between team members
Source – Twitter

The foundation of every successful relationship is to establish trust. Reminding employees that you believe in them is one way of showing trust. Allowing them to fail and helping them handle it gracefully is another. Creating an environment that echoes the culture of – I’ve got your back – is a definite determinant in talent choosing to stay.

Unexpected tokens of care

Appraisals and monetary incentives are things employees come to expect. How can you stand out from amongst the thousands of other employers that are options for great talent to move to? By showing that you care when employees least expect it

Values

Gen-Z specifically is on the hunt for jobs that allow them to be their most authentic self. Finding roles that feel most authentic to their personal values is most important to them. They believe that their true self is their greatest asset. And why not? Allowing the talent you hire to stay true to their honest, best selves is what is most likely to get them to perform to their potential. But more importantly, what will make them stay – for acceptance and respect for who they provide a level of comfort that’s irreplaceable. 

Duolingo’s TikTok account went super viral. Thanks to the company allowing a driven, passionate young woman to walk in and create magic by allowing her to fit into a role that aligns with her personal values.

Work environment

No matter how good the work an employee is given or does, a toxic, unfriendly, unsafe environment can drive an employee out. Besides the various aspects of workplace discussed earlier in the article, ensuring talent stays requires the provision of a work environment that:

  • Encourages team spirit
  • Ensures safety and inclusion
  • Focuses on proper technological infrastructure
  • Offers clean and organized workspace
  • Allows for some fun to unwind 

eXit interviews and surveys 

100% retention is unrealistic. Despite all the efforts, an organization may put in to ensure talent retention, there will still be factors beyond control due to which talent may leave. When this happens, ensure that exit interviews and surveys are conducted with them. This can help you understand what factors drive employees to leave, if there are any unique to your organization and if there are any aspects that need to be worked on within the organization. Share the results of these surveys and the outtakes of the interviews with the leadership team and work towards developing better retention strategies. 

Yardstick

Performance reviews are an essential yardstick for success and satisfaction measurement – both. Encourage employees to question the feedback they receive, hear them out, and help them improve. Facilitate 360-degree feedback where employees give feedback to their managers as well. Choose to hire people with the right attitude who are receptive to feedback and criticism. 

Zeal

Interact with employees constantly and keep a finger on their pulse. When you find that the enthusiasm and zeal for their work are waning, use it as an opportunity to give them a pick-me-up. Organize a one-on-one meeting with the employee and someone from the C-Suite, to understand what has caused a lack of interest and why performance has been adversely affected. Keeping the enthusiasm for work alive in an employee is what is going to cause him to wake up each morning and look forward to work. And you can do a lot to make that happen. 

In Sum and Total

Every talented person spends their life striving to be unique. And at work, endeavor to create outcomes that wouldn’t be possible if they disappeared. If talent retention is a goal, it’s important to remember this. No one interviews for a job and joins an organization only to quit. The default setting is for an employee to stay. So really, providing an environment that nurtures them is just about all it takes. 

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The Hyper-Growth Story of Gymshark

adulting is asking for gym socks as a gift

Origins

Founded in June 2012, Gymshark has experienced a meteoric rise in the fitness apparel industry. In a span of under eight years, it was valued at over £1 billion. Ben Francis, the founder of Gymshark, started off the business as a DIY screen printing operation in a garage. It then evolved into focusing on health supplements.

But Francis realised that the profit margins of this business were too low and had no potential in the future. So, he decided to switch to apparel and accessories. What was his north star while curating the products? “It was more a case of ‘I really want to wear this,’ so I made it,” he said. Gymshark’s fortunes reached stratospheric levels almost overnight.

Francis exhibited Gymshark’s products at the BodyPower Expo, one of the premier fitness trade shows. He spent nearly all of his savings to get a spot and networked furiously to promote Gymshark apparel. He could generate quite the buzz, and after returning from the trade show, he put the products online. The fledgling enterprise sold roughly $42,000 in a single day, compared to $400/day in the past!

From then on, there has been no looking back. Gymshark’s products are sold directly to consumers in 180 countries via websites in 13 languages. So how did Gymshark manage to achieve this kind of success? It essentially deployed four key strategies. Let’s learn about them.

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

Success Levers

#1 – Target A Niche Market

Function over form prevailed in the fitness apparel industry when Gymshark came knocking on the doors. It targeted an untapped market which was looking for good-looking clothes to wear while working out at gyms. At the same time, health and fitness accounts were mushrooming on social media platforms, generating massive followings from millennials. This is where Gymshark zeroed in.

Source: Gymshark

#2 – Turn Influencers Into Brand Ambassadors

This is the lynchpin of Gymshark’s success. A realisation was struck that the subscribers of popular YouTubers were Gymshark’s target audience. Francis partnered with popular fitness influencers and athletes to promote Gymshark’s products. It proved to be quite an effective strategy. The influencers were sent clothing samples and were eventually sponsored to promote Gymshark to their followers.

The brand adopted influencer marketing before it was even a concept. “At the time, no one else was doing this,” Francis said. “Now it’s called ‘influencer marketing. But at the time it just came totally naturally to us because we were just fans of the guys.”

Source: Instagram

Gymshark coined the term “Gymshark athlete”. It has maintained an air of exclusivity around who can become its ambassador. Here’s what they state on their applications page: “We don’t really have set criteria when we choose our athletes, as all our athletes are so unique. The only advice we can offer is to identify what makes you unique and how that unique nature or ability can inspire others to become greater versions of themselves. More simply – it’s not just about the athlete – It’s about how you can positively influence others.”

One massive benefit of signing influencers on long-term contracts as Gymshark did is that it instils confidence in fans that the person they look up to is a genuine believer in the products and is not looking for a quick cash grab.

#3 – Involve Customers In Brand Stories

What started off as a partnership with fitness influencers on TikTok to further their digital reach turned into a torrential stream of user-generated content. In 2018, Gymshark launched its “66 Days, Change Your Life” challenge. It unexpectedly morphed into a movement in and of itself.

So what is #GYMSHARK66? Their page states, “Gymshark 66 is the 66-day event where together, we challenge you to change your life by forming positive habits that will last a lifetime.” A member has to bear in mind three simple rules:

  1. Start whenever they’re ready – not just the first day of January.
  2. Decide on three rules that they want to stick to during the 66 days.
  3. Share their journey!

It is an inclusive, supportive, and community-led initiative which weaves in perfectly with the theme of togetherness that Gymshark aspires to create.

Source: YouTube

#4 – Weaving Online And Offline Interactions

Gymshark holds events that, while promoting its brand and clothes, have its ambassadors present as well. The whole concept of hosting events is to encourage the ambassadors’ followers to go to the events to meet their influencers and subsequently end up supporting the Gymshark brand.

In order to create the best in-person experiences, Gymshark decided to stop doing trade shows and experimented with pop-up stores as well. This helped Gymshark achieve its goals because it could raise awareness of new products, educate fans, boost sales, and take free product returns.

Source: Twitter

The Takeaway

Targeting a niche market, incorporating “influencer marketing”, building communities and maintaining momentary availability are not new concepts. But no one has done it to incorporate it all like Gymshark ever before. So soak in these learnings and capitalize on them to build and scale your business just like Gymshark!

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7 Ideas for Conducting Town Hall Meetings to Retain Talent

Company-wide town hall meetings are an opportunity to give people a reason to stay and meaningfully engage with your company. The idea is to celebrate wins, show growth opportunities, express gratitude and care, share challenges to encourage problem-solving, walk through the plans of action, and reflect on the company’s stability. Every piece of information proactively answers the queries of talented minds. 

Some prominent examples of all-hands town hall meetings include the following:

Flipkart | Sharing Big Decisions and Plans of Action

This meeting was related to the Flipkart Group acquisition by Walmart. The CEOs from both the organisations headed it. During the session, employees were introduced to the new top executives who joined the group from Walmart. They were also given an understanding of the roadmap following the Walmart-Flipkart deal.

Apple | Proactive Objection Handling Regarding New Way of Work 

In a virtual town hall meeting conducted during the height of the CoVID-19 pandemic, Apple’s Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook shared details on the company’s plan to return to the office, amongst other issues. Prominent leaders from different divisions also spoke during the meeting, including “the chiefs of retail, legal, environment, marketing, services, hardware engineering, software development, operations, and machine learning.” The discussion areas involved remote work and finding new ways of maintaining productivity.

Twitter | Streamlining the Chaos with Needed Answers

Following a swift turn of events, Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, SpaceX, and The Boring Company, acquired social networking giant Twitter earlier this year. In an all-hands town hall meeting conducted by the incumbent CEO of Twitter, Parag Agrawal, thorny issues were tackled. The meeting brought simmering tensions between the employees and senior management to the surface. The CEO was grilled about mass layoffs and advertisement partnerships, amongst other issues.

Benefits of a Town Hall Meeting

There are several benefits of hosting all-hands town hall meetings. Let’s broach this subject further:

#1 – Foster Company Culture

During the meeting, the senior leadership can talk about the company’s vision & mission while emphasizing the core values that drive the company forward – inclusivity, diversity, meritocracy, people-first, and so forth.

#2 – Give Employees A Voice

Town hall meetings provide an excellent platform for employees to interact with colleagues across divisions and hierarchies. Impromptu questions, answers, and conversations can become a melting pot for new roadmaps. Additionally, the leadership team can recognise standout performers and allow them to share what ticked for them.

#3 – Keep Everyone Updated And Aligned

Town hall meetings allow the senior leadership to update everyone on everything business-related. They can reflect on the company’s performance regarding revenue, projects in the Pipeline, customer satisfaction, etc. You may not want to share exact numbers unless you are a public listed company. But there are relative ways to tell that company is doing well.

A town hall meeting is a two-way street. Now that we know the benefits of a town hall meeting, let’s work backward and try to understand what employees look for in an enterprise. We can lay the groundwork for covering the essential tips for conducting an impactful town hall meeting by working backward.

What Does A Talented Employee Look For In An Enterprise?

Let’s start with a discussion on this question: What goes into designating a company a great place to work? And how do you offer that to talented employees? The characteristics across such certified organisations include the following:

Trust 

Employees are more likely to vouch for a company whose leaders make people-first decisions. Some examples of building trust include: being considerate about the minute details involving day-to-day interactions, being there for them during a rough patch, avoiding micromanagement, etc.

Transparency

When the senior leadership team is accessible and approachable to discuss employee challenges, it fosters a positive work environment. An example of this could be a CXO asking for employees’ opinions and ideas in an open forum.

Engagement

Engaged employees are vested in the best interests of the company. Therefore, ensure that everyone across the company can contribute to the conversation. This allows employees to break out of their shells and become more engaged. An example of building engagement would be discussing specific goals and how employees can bring value in accomplishing those goals in internal chat channels.

Honest Intent

False platitude and empty slogans don’t take anyone anywhere. As Abraham Lincoln once said, “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.” The company’s leadership needs to showcase honest intent and follow through on their promises. For example, suppose leadership wants to build upon diversity and inclusion. In that case, it must showcase hard proof of what it has already achieved in the domain.

Perks

You’d be surprised what employees consider a high-quality workplace. It isn’t about meditation rooms, sleeping pods, or indoor gyms. Future Workplace conducted a study to determine which wellness perks matter to employees the most. Check out the graphic below:

Future Workplace survey on workplace wellness perks

The idea is to stop spending money on pointless office perks and focus on a holistic approach to reward perks to employees. Focus on emotional, physical, and environmental wellness.

Communication

Ensure constant communication and feedback between managers, direct reports, and regular communication regarding culture and practices. These are essential components of what to communicate about with your workforce.

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

7 Effective Town Hall Meeting Ideas

In this section of the piece, I’ll be discussing tips on conducting an effective town hall based on a personal experience over at Concurate. Believe me these tips are gold to share information that drives talent retention!

#1 – Get Employees To Share Their Success Stories At The Enterprise

In this approach, the senior leadership can ask employees who have secured, for example, industry accolades how they managed to succeed. How has the company’s leadership, culture, and practices helped them attain success in the manner they have?

#2 – Share Client Testimonials Appreciating The Work of Employees

Implement this approach when senior management or the sales head receives private feedback from clients on a job well done. This will help boost the workforce’s morale and help them connect the dots on how collaboration across verticals can achieve great results.

#3 – Get Employees To Share Their Stories of Transformation

This approach will work wonders for boosting engagement in your workforce. Give the podium to employees who have shown a credible turnaround in their performances to describe how they could achieve the results. This approach will help highlight the supportive culture present in the organisation – be it at the CXO level, mid-level managers, team leads, etc.

#4 – Share Challenges As A Company

Yes, challenges! The idea is to give a growth opportunity to employees in the cover of solving a challenge that the company is facing. For instance, you lost xxx thousands of dollars in revenue due to a lack of bandwidth of employees. So you want to involve managers in the hiring process so that such revenue goals are not hurt. And suppose managers contribute to getting more talented minds to join the organisation. In that case, they can be rewarded, recognized, promoted, and more.

#5 – Set Clear Expectations

Rarely is the road to success linear. Exponential growth requires constant strides, not short, infrequent sprints. So share with people what they are signing up for.

A Pro Tip: Use analogies – such as videos, case studies, client testimonials, etc. throughout the town hall to communicate the message engagingly.

#6 – Reflect on the Stability of the Company

In a post-CoVID world, people scramble for a sense of stability. Industries and markets have been ravaged as a result of the virus. Take the opportunity to rest any fears of illiquidity or layoffs at your company. This will ensure that there is no subconscious fear in the minds of your employees and that they can work stress-free.

#7 – Share Plans in the Pipeline

Share the plans for the road ahead. Take return to the office as an example. How will this transition take place in your company? What are essential pointers that the employees should know about? What steps will you take to ensure a smooth transition, with employee wellbeing a priority for your organisation?

Parting Thoughts

We hope this piece provides you with actionable insights on conducting effective and impactful all-hands town hall meetings at your organization. Whether it’s a virtual setting or a physical one, keep the foundation in place. Build and maintain trust, transparency, engagement, honest intentions, holistic perks, and communication while putting into action the seven practical tips we have outlined.

If you’d like to watch a video from us on this topic, make sure to check out the link below!

Effective Tips To Run An Impactful Town Hall

If you enjoyed reading this article, you would love to read – Top 8 Company Culture Ideas for C-Suite!

About Us

We believe content marketing can be a game-changer for SaaS businesses. Should you wish to explore more on content marketing, check out our analysis of:

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How To Give A Live SaaS Product Demo

It’s not what you sell that matters as much as how you sell it!

Brian Halligan, CEO & Co-Founder, HubSpot

A typical buying activity involves either of two routes. Either you’re taking away your target consumer’s pain point or providing something of a pleasure. As a buyer, you know you’re ready to stash open your wallet when a seller demonstrates how their product:

  1. Solves your crucial pain points,
  2. Provides benefits such as saving you time, money, and resources to bring better results with identical levels of effort

Without further ado, let’s dive into the five principles to demonstrate your SaaS products.

Live Demonstration For SaaS Products | The Principles

At the outset, here are the five principles you need to keep at the forefront of every product demonstration.

  1. Be succinct
  2. Tell less, show more
  3. Demonstrate your product’s USP
  4. Talk more about “what” than the “how”
  5. Let the audience conclude for themselves

Let’s discuss all of them with relevant examples.

Note: Most live demos are not available for recording hence for presenting examples we have used pre-recorded videos.

#1 – Be Succinct

Time is of the essence, quite literally! Naturally, therefore, you need to craft a concise and compelling “why” for your prospects to opt for your product.

Example

Loom

Loom is a video messaging tool that helps users send messages through instantly shareable videos. You can simultaneously use Loom to record your camera, microphone, and desktop. Your video is then immediately made available to share across different mediums.

In this five-minute software demo video, you can access a complete walkthrough of every element in the user interface to help you kickstart your Loom journey. It’s a time-bound, concise and informative video and is a great template to implement.

how to get started with Loom

#2 – Tell Less, Show More

By giving a visual representation of how your product or service works, the concept is better understood by the target audience.

Example

Duolingo

Duolingo is a language-learning website and application. It allows users to practice vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation using spaced repetition, and it is fun and accessible. It is available in over 30+ languages.

In this 30-second software demo video, Duolingo explains what the app is about and how to use it effectively.

Duolingo demo video

#3 – Demonstrate Your Product’s USP

Rather than bombarding your target audience with jargon and lengthy descriptions of the feature-set, demonstrate your product’s USP – showcase in vivid detail the use-cases of your product or service.

Example

Slack

Slack is a workplace communication tool. It’s an instant messaging platform that allows users to share messages and files.

It consists of focused spaces called “channels” for organised discussions around specific topics. In addition, this division allows users to ask queries and catch up with new developments in the designated spaces. Slack promotes inclusivity since information is available to everyone in the channel all at once.

In this quick start guide video, a prospective user can immediately understand what Slack is and how to navigate its user interface to start messaging instantly.

Slack quick start guide

#4 – Talk More About “What” Than The “How”

Instead of mentioning your product or service’s inner workings that make it do what it does, focus only on the outcomes. Consider only showing how it gets things done.

Example

Drift

Drift is a conversational marketing and sales technology company that facilitates communication with website visitors in real-time to increase engagement, generate leads, and increase sales.

While Drift talks about ROI and conversion rates amongst a whole host of things, what it does best is to show in real-time how its product gets used in a specific setting – say, winning more sales deals. This walkthrough allows the user and potential customer the freedom to get a feel for the product and make up their mind before proceeding further down the funnel.

Check out how you can clinch more deals using Drift by viewing the software demo video linked below.

Drift demo video

#5 – Let The Audience Conclude For Themselves

Provided you execute with finesse, your “demonstration” will leave no room for doubts in your prospects’ minds as to what your product or service can achieve for its users.

Example

Supermetrics

Supermetrics is a central hub for all your marketing data. It brings it to your go-to reporting, analytics, or storage platform. Essentially, it doesn’t let your marketing data be scattered and act as a hindrance to executing business goals.

The KISS principle states – “Keep it simple, silly.” Supermetrics has followed this approach in a short software demo video.

Supermetrics demo video

It shows how it only takes a few clicks to set up your marketing data transfer in particular use cases. Just over two minutes long, the video is an excellent example of making it easy for the target audience to understand and make conclusions without much thought.

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

Key Takeaways

So, what are some macro-level takeaways that we can draw from these SaaS businesses?

#1 – Teach, don’t sell

People are busy. They want to learn about stuff. So give the “secret sauce” to them in the first 5 minutes of your demonstration. They’re more likely to be engaged in the pitch this way since they’re not anticipating and wondering what will happen next.

#2 – It’s a proof of work

Your demonstration is a proof of work, not an explicit demonstration per se. You’re actively solving a problem for your audience to prove that your product works and doesn’t need specific variables or situations to live up to its billing.

#3 – What is it solving, exactly?

Clearly state the more significant problem that your product aims to tackle. Next, you need to understand your target audience’s daily challenges. Then actively engage your prospect and showcase how your product will solve their specific problems.

#4 – State the achievable gains

Ask your prospective customers how much time/money/people-hours it takes for them to solve their concerned problem on a usual basis. Then, actively show how your tool cuts it by the relevant percentage points.

#5 – Maintain essentialism

Remove significant chunks of information yet still allow the prospect to know how your product works. Skip the “how” sections and jump to the “what” section.

Parting Thoughts

We hope this piece provides you with actionable insights on presenting successful demos for your SaaS company’s product. Whether it’s a pre-recorded demo with a presenter or a live demonstration given by your sales representative, the strategies shared in this article are absolutely killer. Our best wishes on converting more users with demos!

Open To Explore?

Concurate testimonial

We believe content marketing can be truly transformative for SaaS businesses. Strategic content marketing can bring many more product enquiries your way. We at Concurate – a founder-led boutique content marketing agency, curate well-researched engaging content to attract your target audience. We strive to bring you business, not just traffic. Open for a short discussion on how content marketing can help your SaaS business? Book a call here!

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How Crocs, a Footwear Brand, Made A Massive Comeback?

From a $400 Million Loss to $2.3 Billion in Profits – A Powerful Story of Marketing Genius

From mountains of shoes and no one to buy them to conquering the mountain to reach the zenith of all profit records, Crocs has aced their branding, positioning, and marketing strategy.  

How did this brand that people either love with all they’ve got or absolutely hate transform from being a forgotten, unwanted footwear company to “Special editions all sold out in two hours”?

And how did they achieve that in the pandemic – when businesses were collapsing, the market barely saw any money being pumped into it and the economy took such a beating?

Let’s go back a bit and understand how the brand was born and what it’s evolved into today.

Walking in Their Shoes – Understanding Crocs

When three friends bought the idea from the original producer of these foam shoes, they did so to make them, especially for yachtsmen. The fact that they were light, comfortable, sanitary, airy, and non-absorbent of smells made them an ideal choice for men at sea. Slowly but surely, Crocs (short for Crocodile because the classic Crocs resemble the reptiles they’re eponymous with) became popular among people on land who cared more for comfort than style. 

But, for all the people who loved them for their simplicity and comfort, there was a bigger chunk of people who detested them for being plain boring and ugly. The hate is real, by the way, and the community is very vocal about it. Blogs and websites mushroomed so much that they became a cultural phenomenon. In fact, the website Ihatecrocs.com chronicles its proprietors’ attempts to physically destroy Crocs (using things like fireworks, scissors, and lighter fluid).

It was when Crocs stepped out of its niche market and began to try and popularize the humble clog among the masses that it began losing its foothold (pun absolutely not intended) and its allure. In 2006, the brand repositioned itself as an ‘eco-friendly, super basic, useful to the masses’ product. But people were tired of its ‘same, old, boring design and style’. Sales tanked so much that it called for a complete overhaul of the company, what it stood for, and how it positioned itself.

Crocs – The Pop Culture Phenomenon

The turnaround began in 2017, when Andrew Rees took over as CEO and decided to go back to basics. Under his leadership, the brand went back to reposition itself in the market emphasizing on the simplicity and comfort of the signature Crocs clog by shifting focus to “clog relevance and sandal awareness.”

But how did this repositioning strategy get Crocs to go from a modest shoe for a niche market into an explosive pop culture phenomenon almost as a resurrection from the dead?

Before we delve into their marketing strategy, let’s understand how Crocs slowly but surely laid its ground before it went 💥Boom!

#1 – They ‘Owned’ It

“Come as you are” – The brand walks the talk (pun not intended) when it comes to its by-line. Unafraid of being called out as ugly, the brand thrives on the philosophy of – ‘Be Unashamedly You’. Looking back at the history of Crocs, it becomes abundantly clear that despite all the lows they went through, the brand never looked to change its product. It has consistently worked on making it a more personal experience for the wearer. Love it or hate it, you will always have an opinion about it. And we know that when things are talked about, there is no better advertisement. 

#2 – They Identified a New Target Market 

Crocs was born in the early 2000s, much like its new target market. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons the brand found it easy to target the millennial, Gen-Z market and make its presence re-felt. I think it worked in its favor also because it is these millennials who grew up wearing the OG Crocs, and rediscovering them at a time when they’re able to own it themselves is a sweet hit of nostalgia, that Crocs has capitalized on. 

When we delve a little deeper into marketing strategy, it is quite evident that Crocs ‘gets’ millennials. The growth that it’s shown is a testament to that fact. Crocs claim to be a democratic brand that caters to everybody, but they have an admittedly soft spot for the millennial. They say:

…our target consumer is the female millennial, partially because her attributes align to ours. She’s fun. And she’s brave. She’s comfortable in her own shoes, and she’s unapologetically optimistic.

There’s quite a lesson to be learned here – Instead of modifying their product to suit a particular audience, Crocs identified a target customer that echoes its core values. 

#3 – They Created a Marketing Strategy Specific to the Said Target Market  

We have defined consumer segments, and our younger ‘explorer’ consumer has played an increasingly important role in shaping our global product and marketing strategies. We know they’re active and independent, and most importantly, they want to be able to express their own personal style with their favorite brands.

Terence Reilly, CMO of Crocs.

Once the target market was identified, a quick persona study was the logical next step to craft a marketing strategy that would work best for the market. Let’s break down the Gen-Z persona to understand the specific marketing strategy Crocs crafted.

The Crocs comeback is largely thanks to the brand targeting this segment of consumers, and being quick, diligent and accurate in their understanding of who these Gen-Zers are and what makes them tick. Details of how the brand nailed it with Gen-Zers are discussed in further sections.

#4 – They Stepped Up When it Mattered

Source – Crocs

When the world was reeling from the pandemic and frontline workers were spending days on end on their feet, Crocs launched the “Free Pair for Healthcare” campaign. Originally set up to give out 10,000 shoes per day to frontline healthcare workers, Crocs later announced that they had ramped up their giveaway and would not give out 20,000 pairs of shoes a day. The campaign ended up giving out 860,000+ pairs of shoes by the end of it – all through its website. At a time when the world was confined to their homes with their screens being their windows to the world, this deed of kindness turned into a fantastic ad campaign for Crocs. After all, who doesn’t like the good guy, right

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

The GenZ Marketing Genius | What Was It?

With the re-positioning of the brand and a shift in focus, it was only natural that the marketing strategy had to evolve. The brand was quick to understand that most of its sales were happening online and as a result it chose to shut down 170 stores. Most people buying Crocs online were millennials. And the best way to reach them was digitally. 

Side Note: Did you know that the Crocs millennial Gen-Z fanbase has a name? They’re called CrocNation

Recognizing the power and reach of the internet and online market, developing a digital first marketing strategy was but natural. 

We needed to spend more as a brand to ignite our customer base and maintain strong connectivity — and architect a marketing strategy that was more effective at getting in front of consumers.

The CEO identifies three things that they did when building their marketing strategy:

#1 – They went all digital

We’re a digital first brand. We’ve been a digital-first brand for years now. And that gave us a lot of momentum through the pandemic to make sure we were meeting customers where they were spending their time. And we also created some fun, you know, we gave away free shoes to healthcare heroes, but we also dropped collaborations and Snapchat filters and other ways to engage our fans as their worlds were changing as well.

Heidi Cooley, Head of Global Marketing, Crocs

Crocs hit the nail on the head with identifying the social media network that most of its target market engaged with – TikTok. 60% of its 1 billion users are Gen-Zers. And it provided the perfect platform for organic searches. 

The kind of content they created on TikTok was Flicker Content, Flash Content and Flare Content. Most of this content was organic, user generated and hugely viral. 

Flicker Content is when users hop on the challenge bandwagon and become part of what almost seems like a movement. It’s reactive, it’s very frequent and as a result it’s woke. For instance, Crocs roped in the healthcare professionals they’d run the ‘Free Pair for Healthcare’ campaign for, to do a dance challenge in Crocs.

Flash Content is more proactive, less frequent and usually is rolled out in a consistent format with some effort by the brand. For instance, Crocs highlights its collaborations with visual storylines. 

Flare Content consists of large scale campaigns that are run maybe a couple of times a year. They’re designed to be engaging, catchy, and rely on a well thought out hashtag (usually) to make it big. For instance, #StrapBack – A campaign Crocs ran with Afterpay.

#2 – They partnered with key global ambassadors

The way I look at collaborations is it’s very wonky math; one plus one equals three. What I mean by that is when you pair a brand like Crocs with another partner — it could be an individual like a Post Malone; it could be a really quirky, distinctive brand, like KFC; it could be an uber-high-end fashion brand like Balenciaga. But when you bring two entities together, and you do something really interesting and fun — the consumer wins. It’s so much more than one plus one.

Michelle Poole, Company President

Collaborations are as old as the earth. But successful collaborations need the right people to be brought together for magic to be created. That is a science and art. The team at Crocs studied mountains of data to identify the right collaborators for their campaigns. Studies revealed an overlap between some influencers and wearers of Crocs. But where Crocs aced their game of choice was in identifying those celebrities that were genuine fans of the shoes. In doing so, they lent their programs an air of originality, authenticity and relatability. 

It came as no surprise then that the shoes rolled out in collaboration with Post Malone sold out in a matter of hours. 

#3 – They used a brand roster of local influencers in each market

Through their history, Crocs went through a time when they tried to portray themselves as a luxury brand. And in doing so, they used “high-end” influencers – actresses like Drew Barrymore, and even Priyanka Chopra. With their new marketing strategy, they now recognize the influence that micro-influencers have on their target markets. And they’ve used this to their advantage. Identifying influencers from various geographies and collaborating with not necessarily world famous influencers but local stars has sky-rocketed their social presence and their sales.

…we’ve also now evolved to really focus on a tapestry of micro-influencers. Some of these influences have such dedicated followers; they might have a smaller number of followers, but they have a really devoted — almost obsessed — group of followers. So we think about our influencer strategy as a rich tapestry of interests and affinities and geographies — and we stitch it together like a quilt.

Key Lessons From This Massive Turnaround

  • If your target market is young, wild and free, a little hype goes a long way! FOMO is a rather effective driver in influencing buying decisions. Nothing about their product changed. Just the way they sold it. 
  • Offer personalization. The Crocs acquisition of Jibbitz all those years ago has made it possible for them today to revolutionize Crocs into arguably the most personalize-able shoes ever made.  Every pair of Crocs has been turned into a blank canvas that the wearer can make a one of a kind, unique piece, stamped with its individual style.
  • Developing a communication strategy that echoes your brand sentiment and helps you connect with your audience is key. Crocs uses short, snappy, yet conversational communication in all its social media marketing. With short attention spans and so much content to consume, it feels like they’ve cracked the recipe for success.
  • Choosing the right platform to engage with your market is vital. Not only did Crocs go digital, they staggered their marketing ideas across various platforms designing campaigns around their USPs. For instance, they chose to release filters on Snapchat and encouraged video challenges on TikTok. Had they chosen to do those things in reverse, the campaigns wouldn’t likely be as effective or successful.
  • Choose honest collaborations. Every collaborative campaign that Crocs entered into – whether it was Post Malone or Justin Bieber, KISS or The Grateful Dead, Balenciaga or KFC – was honest, real and raw. In doing so, they struck a chord with every buyer making every collaboration feel unmissable. 
  • You don’t need to pressure generate content. Let the user do it for you. With its Flicker and Flash content strategies, Crocs garnered tens of thousands of followers, a quadruple increase in sales and their name all over social media. If that’s not every marketer’s dream, I don’t know what is!  

On the same note, LEGO’s success story is also quite inspirational. From $800 million in Debt they turned into a powerful brand with $600 million in profit. Thanks for reading the story. Stay inspired!

If your organisation wants to elevate its content marketing strategy, one designed by Concurate, let’s connect over a short call. Block our calendar today!

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Top 5 Websites You Can Use to Hire Freelance Writers

Getting Content Right

Current Trends

According to Content Marketing Institute (CMI), the top three organic content distribution channels used by B2B/B2C marketers are social media, email, and their organisation’s blog/website. So much so that, according to HubSpot, 71% of marketers say that targeting strategic keywords is their top SEO tactic.

But there is a lot that goes into great content before hitting the publish button.

Strategising Content Creation

You need to create a strategy around content creation, its distribution and providing editorial inputs to publish high quality content.

As a business owner, you have to be clear on:

  • What type of content your organisation is planning to publish – Top/middle/bottom of the funnel
  • Ensuring that the format of content – such as listicles, how-to, explainers, press releases, etc. matches with the intended objectives of your blog posts
  • How much time you will dedicate towards crafting the content, which isn’t a cakewalk either. Statistics state that the average duration to write a blog is just over four hours!

If you’ve thought of having a rock-solid content marketing strategy, you’re in good company. 82% of marketers are actively investing in content marketing according to HubSpot. And 81% of marketers view content as a core business strategy according to a survey conducted by Content Marketing Institute (CMI).

Setting Up Your Content Marketing Team

Objectives

A dedicated content marketing team will help you achieve the following:

  • Establishing thought-leadership
  • Building relationships
  • Attracting customers
  • Boosting sales, and
  • Building brand awareness

Hiring

With so much at stake, if producing content in-house isn’t up your alley, outsourcing is the way to go. Don’t fret it, content creation is the most outsourced content marketing activity among B2B marketers according to Content Marketing Institute (CMI).

You must be wondering, what should you look for while hiring a freelance content writer? Additionally, where do you search for available writers for hire?

Skills

In the right article writer you’re looking for communication skills, a go-getter attitude, creativity skills in conjunction with writing, editing, proofreading, and copywriting skills. The candidate also needs to possess the skill to incorporate the right SEO keywords into the copy to attract the right audience while providing their writing services.

Remuneration

Let’s take a look at how much it will cost you to bring onboard different freelancers.

Content Writers

A content writer is someone who tackles content writing full-time and creates website content for businesses as a freelancer or as an in-house writer.

  • According to Salary.com data, in India, the average Specialist Digital Content Writer salary is ₹1,849,606 per year
  • According to ZipRecruiter, the average annual content writer salary in the United States is $50,109 per year, and the average hourly wage is $24/hour.
Copywriters

A copywriter is someone who writes copy – content that’s designed to sell.

  • According to Salary.com data, in India, the average entry-level Copywriter salary is ₹568,937
  • According to Salary.com data, in the United States, the average entry-level Copywriter salary is $53,096.
Freelancers

They are typically paid per deliverable (a flat rate per content piece) or per-word (for example $0.10/word). The data varies wildly though. Freelance writers typically charge $0.05/word – $0.15/word range.

  • According to Indeed, the average salary for a freelance writer is ₹26,020 per month in India.
  • According to ZipRecruiter, the average annual freelance writer salary in the United States is $63,213 per year, and the average hourly rate is $30 per hour.

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

How To Find Freelance Writers

Here are 5 sites we recommend for hiring freelance writers.

Upwork

About Upwork

Upwork is one of the world’s biggest freelance work marketplace. It has a credible and voluminous user base, and helps connect millions of businesses and independent talent around the globe.

How it works

Sign up, post your project, review proposals to find the right independent contractor or agency for you.

Payment

With Upwork you can schedule hourly contracts, fixed price contracts based on milestones, and project catalogue contracts based on project approval.

WriterAccess

About WriterAccess

WriterAccess uses AI-powered tools to find talent, optimise content, and streamline workflows.

How it works

It deploys an AI-powered writer search that uses text analysis to match you up with writers that align with your tone and style. Finally, it uses a star rating system to find talent in your budget range.

Payment

WriterAccess has three monthly pricing plans tailored to customers needs.

LinkedIn

About LinkedIn

LinkedIn is popularly used for professional networking, and career development. It allows job seekers to post their CVs and employers to post job openings.

How it works

You can access LinkedIn from a desktop, or its mobile app. By creating a LinkedIn profile you can showcase your professional experiences, skills, and education. Users can tap into the vast network of professionals, companies, and groups within and beyond their industry.

Payment

LinkedIn offers a free, basic membership to anyone who wants to build a professional online presence. Their paid subscriptions include marketing, recruitment, sales, and learning products.

Superpath

About Superpath

Superpath’s Slack community consists of 2,500+ content marketers in the industry. It conducts AMAs, discussions and members provide support to one another.

How it works

Superpath helps you to connect with content marketers from companies like Udemy, HubSpot, ahrefs, Shopify and more. It allows you to have meaningful conversations about skills, jobs, projects and networking.

Payment

Superpath’s Slack community is free to join.

Twitter

About Twitter

Twitter is the go-to platform for businesses to gather insights on the evolving trends and happenings on topics closely related to their objectives. Statistics show that Twitter has close to 220 million annual total users.

How it works

Consider the microblogging platform as an avenue for reaching out to thought-leaders for collaboration rather than the traditional route. Twitter can significantly cut the noise and help you find the right talent.

Payment

Twitter is a free to use platform.

Parting Words

We understand that content marketing is hard to crack. Concurate is here to help. We are a content marketing agency that brings business, not just website traffic. We curate the best content as per your company’s requirements. If you need any help with the content marketing strategy, book a call here.

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5 Movie Takeaways—Steve Jobs and Marketing

Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes… the ones who see things differently — they’re not fond of rules… You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.

Steve Jobs in Apple’s “Think Different” Campaign (1997)

Well, excited to share that I have also got some crazy things to do. I am in my first month of a new job. I recently joined Concurate as a digital marketing associate. And you know what’s super cool about it? My first learning assignment. My manager has given me a list and asked me to watch 13 movies around marketing. I am loving this fun assignment. My first pick from the list is ‘Steve Jobs’. So this Saturday afternoon I grabbed a pack of popcorn and sat down to watch it. I was thrilled to see what a marketing maestro Steve Jobs was.

By the way, a popular question asked on Google is this: “What did Steve Jobs really do for Apple?”. Well, a quote from the movie ‘Steve Jobs’ answers this quite creatively:

The musicians play their instruments. I play the orchestra.

The film also recreates landmark Apple launches executed under Steve Jobs’ leadership. An absolute treat to watch. If observed, one can learn a lot from the movie on marketing – the Steve Jobs way.

The 5 Key Takeaways

This piece attempts to break down 5 critical marketing concepts as learnt from the maestro through the movie. So, let’s jump in!

#1 – Persuasion

Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life or come with me and change the world?

Steve Jobs to John Sculley

John Sculley was president of PepsiCo when Steve said this to him. 

If you were John, wouldn’t you want to jump out of your chair to go out and change the world? 

Steve had offered the position of chief executive officer of Apple. John accepted. Jobs surely had his way with words. Let’s take some cues from how he convinced John.

First, Steve Jobs leveraged his authority and status. He was a co-founder and senior executive of a reputed Apple brand. He was already quite popular for his unconventional approach and ideas. Second, Jobs had created a liking for himself by appealing to the other person’s hidden needs and aspirations. He understood what made them tick.

As a marketer, understanding what makes people tick can go a long way!

Bonus tip: If you want to learn about the psychology of persuasion, the book Influence by Robert B. Cialdini is for you.

#2 – The Customer Doesn’t Know Best

If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.

Henry Ford

In most cases, people avoid change. They prefer the status quo. A marketer’s job is to understand the psychology behind a user’s product usage and nudge them in the desired direction.

Consider a particular clip from the movie. It is about a marketer in the 80’s helping a customer visualise how computers will look almost a quarter of a century later. He is addressing the concerns, doubts, and claims of the customer. A great marketer tries to overcome objections proactively.

Empathy is vital in terms of devising the user experience. Apple’s Macintosh, released in 1984, was ahead of its times – in terms of design, user interface, user experience, and more. (Think car instead of a faster horse, but a faulty one). So was Apple’s Macintosh – It was a dazzling but woefully slow and underpowered computer. Its launch was one of the biggest failures in Apple’s history. And that was when everything changed. It was the beginning of a new era. As the catchphrase attached to Apple products goes, the notoriety and “inconvenience” paid off because all of it just works! The three words “it just works” made their way to almost every keynote speech that Steve Jobs gave.

#3 – Tap Into Cultural References

The television advertisement for the original Macintosh was a marketing masterpiece. Advertising Age awarded it as the “Greatest Commercial” in 1995. In 2007, it was awarded the “Best Super Bowl Spot” (in the game’s 40-year history at the time). What can we learn from this ad campaign’s success?

First, Apple pulled out all stops to ensure the advertisement’s quality matched their product’s vision. It was conceived by the reputed ad agency Chiat/Day and directed by the famous Ridley Scott.

Second, the year of the launch (1984) coincided with the title of the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell. It was, and still is, a prominent cultural reference. It is a dystopian social science fiction novel. The society has been brainwashed into blind obedience to its leader, Big Brother. With the connection, Apple pitted itself against the industry leader and giant IBM since their products were the default choice at the time. Essentially, it was a David versus Goliath.

To create a connection with the target audience if a marketer leverages cultural references the creatives resonate much better with them.

#4 – Listen To Your Customers

Apple in the ’90s was directionless, struggling to find its feet. This stemmed from the fact that Apple wasn’t raising the bar and listening to its customers.

Apple had released Newton, a series of personal digital assistants (PDAs). It was the first to feature handwriting recognition using a “stylus” in the category. But it wasn’t in line with customer expectations. It was shortly discontinued when Jobs returned to Apple for a second time. He famously mocked Newton, stating that a customer does not need a “stylus”; they already have 5 of them.

1998 marked a turning point in the fortunes of Apple. Enter the iMac.

Its launch meant that Apple was reorienting and listening to its customers. Its success stood on the foundations of a mixture of beautiful design and functionality – exactly what customers were clamouring for.

A marketer can learn from the empathy portrayed here. So, if a marketer positions the product in a way that it solves a customer pain point it will be better received in the market. For instance, this music jukebox ‘Carvaan’ is positioned as a gift for parents.

#5 – Make Your Launches a Grand Opera Performance

Unless you’re way out of the loop, it’s known that Apple produces state-of-the-art corporate presentations and always has “one more thing” to keep everyone on their toes. It is a practice that began in 1999 when Steve Jobs would provide big announcements at the end of a presentation. Like a maestro showman, Steve Jobs — and by extension — Apple, know how to maintain excitement and tension in the audience before the grand reveal.

A marketer can learn from the storytelling style implemented by Steve Jobs and Apple.

They employ a beginning to every product launch – which talks about the pain points their customers are facing. As the launch progresses along, Apple releases products that solve those exact pain points. But everyone knows very well that something is amiss. Where is that product that will “wow” everyone?

It is over here that Apple releases the product that is opposed to every expectation, and gets jaws dropping.

Pro tip: If you need 30 standout SaaS growth hacks to attain double the growth for your SaaS business, fill out the form below!

Key Takeaways

Giving you a round-up of what I learnt as a marketer from the movie:

  • Persuade the target audience by appealing to their subconscious needs and desires
  • Empathise with the target audience’s natural objections and guiding them to a better solution
  • Relate to target audience in ad copy and demonstrations by utilising popular cultural references
  • Simplify the execution of marketing strategy by serving exactly what target audience demands
  • Create compelling stories to keep your target audience hooked before a product reveal

I hope you enjoyed this round-up post on learning about marketing based on the life story of a marketing whiz. Alternatively, you may like to read: “10 Attractive Job Descriptions for a Brand Marketing Manager”.

On a side note, we are a content marketing agency that strives to bring empathy, persuasion and relatability in the content backed by thorough research. If you need any help with content marketing, book a call here.

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