Resource of the Week

[Article] How Gusto turned Facebook ads into a hyper-efficient growth engine

"Gusto builds HR, benefits, and payroll tools to make it easier for small businesses to do HR. They were founded in 2013 and are scaling quickly, with about 450 employees just four years in. Small businesses, particularly those with under 50 employees, are underserved by payroll software. “Large incumbents are missing features that small businesses need, or they’re focusing on larger SMBs,” says Dan. “My team’s goal is to identify as many small businesses to help as possible. We run paid media campaigns, optimize them, and measure performance across the marketing organization.

As a marketing channel, social advertising has the capability to address these challenges, which are relatable for many of the growing SaaS companies you’ve read about in Data-Driven Marketing. “Our audience engages in search, but we also felt like they were on social. So we began experimenting and our early tests showed good results.” They evolved the channel from there, eventually running a number of successful direct response and branding campaigns on Facebook, LinkedIn, and more. Let’s look at how those campaigns fit into Gusto’s overall marketing funnel. "

- Soso Sazesh, CEO and Founder at Growth Pilots

Reading time: 12 minutes

Growth Resources

[Article] Why Enterprise Products are Missing the Boat on Growth

"Growth is no longer just for B2C and consumerized B2B companies - if you’re building an enterprise product and you’re not thinking about growth, you should be. Most people think “growth” isn’t relevant for enterprise. As a result, companies end up building complex products to satisfy a list of requirements from IT buyers that leave end users frustrated and looking for a “better mousetrap.”

As large enterprises transition to SaaS products, this outdated approach leaves the doors for product disruption wide open. While product disruption in this space has been slower than in consumer and high volume SMB due to built-in defensive moats around contract structure, technical integrations, and brand, it’s now starting to happen faster. Think Salesforce, Box, and now Slack as it expands upstream towards enterprise.

To unpack the dynamics behind this shifting enterprise landscape, I’ll walk you through the following in this post: 1. How user experience and growth is changing the enterprise game. 2. How to customize the user funnel for enterprise 3. The 4 pillars of enterprise growth and how to align them with consumer growth strategies ."

- Bela Stepanova, Director of Product Management at Box

Reading time: 8 minutes

[Article] Is SEM An Effective Growth Channel For Startups?

"Startups eventually have to acquire new customers efficiently and at scale in order to become mainstay businesses. In the early days that’s no easy task, as even defining efficiency goals based on LTV benchmarks can be arduous. Succeeding with SEM as a startup requires being nimble with testing and learning, and it sometimes necessitates sacrificing short-term efficiency in favor of long-term growth.

There will always be established competitors with much larger budgets trying to box out startups trying to break into their market, but there’s a huge opportunity for the startups that are able to successfully overcome the challenges associated with SEM. People expressing their intent through a search query is arguably the most powerful marketing signal that exists. And tapping into that signal using paid search engine marketing can be the source of a highly scalable customer acquisition channel. "

- Soso Sazesh, CEO and Founder at Growth Pilots

Reading time: 7 minutes

[Article] Beyond BuzzFeed: How I used quizzes to generate 10,000+ qualified leads

"According to LeadQuizzes, the average quiz has a 33.6% lead capture rate – though in the quizzes I run, I typically see much higher conversions. Plus, interactive content is far more powerful than a regular ol’ guide. According to a CMI survey in 2016, 81% of respondents agreed that interactive content grabs attention more effectively than static content.

Dang, that means more than 3 out of every 4 people is hooked by a quiz. If you’re not impressed yet, that’s cool – but consider these additional points: They’re fun. When scrolling through social media, you’re more likely to click on something with entertainment value. (Helloooo, Facebook time suck.) The average quiz is shared 1900 times. No more forking over handfuls of cash for Facebook ads – quizzes are your new BFF. Ideal lead magnet to attract people in the first stage of the buyer’s journey / TOFU. You may think you’re being approachable with your 25-page free guide. But a total newcomer isn’t going to invest their time or energy in reading that. They’re in the wrong stage of awareness. What they will invest in is a quiz. "

- Chanti Zak, Conversion Copywriter

Reading time: 11 minutes

Marketing Resources

[Article] We Need a Slower, More Thoughtful Approach to Content Marketing

"The web is saturated with posts that didn’t need to be written. An editorial calendar required a post, so a post was created. Here are just a few of the problems caused by the over-production of content: 1. The more posts on a site, the harder it is for readers to find the good ones. 2. It reduces the potency of good links, whose PageRank is spread across more pages than necessary. 3. Readers find it easier to tune you out. When you do publish something great, they assume you’re the “boy who cried wolf.” 4. Sites with more pages require more maintenance and are harder to optimize for search. 5. Content marketers spend too much time writing and not enough time promoting. Most articles don’t get traffic, leaving writers frustrated and stakeholders wondering if content is the right channel. "

- Jimmy Daly, Marketing Director at Animalz

Reading time: 3 minutes

[Video] Is content marketing dead? Here's some data.

"Content effectiveness is dropping compared to the past. Quality is increasing, but content effectiveness is dropping. The average number of shares per post has actually fallen by nearly 90% compared to two years ago. Plus, the life of an offer - like an ebook - is actually dropping in effectiveness, as measured through lead velocity. An offer's effectiveness used to be roughly 6 months, whereas today that effectiveness has dropped to less than three.

47% of buyers still view 3-5 pieces of content before engaging with a sales rep, companies with blogs still get 67% more leads than those that don't, and inbound close rates are still 8-10x those of outbound efforts. Plus, CAC Ratio's for content still tends to be roughly 30% better than the paid side, because of the compounding nature of content. "

- Patrick Campbell , CEO at ProfitWell

Watching time: 3 minutes

[Article] SEO Competitor Analysis Guide

"Whether you’re just starting out with your online business or you’re pivoting your SEO strategy to be more competitive in your online market, learning how to do SEO competitor analysis effectively is one of the most important aspects of any SEO campaign.

SEO competitor analysis helps you: 1. Understand your standing within your digital marketplace 2. Get data on competitor efforts 3. Benchmark your success 4. Find gaps in your strategy to improve upon

However, a lot of SEO competitor analysis content dictates that somehow you already know who all your competitors are. This might be the case if you’re an SMB or you’re in an extremely niche industry, but for most businesses you may lack a picture or even a method of how to understand your entire SEO industry landscape. Ultimately, when it comes down to how to do competitor analysis and understand your entire competitive landscape from an SEO point-of-view, you’ll need to: 1. Conduct keyword research based on your value proposition 2. Obtain an entire list of the most relevant and strongest domains 3. Supplement this list with additional analytics when analyzing different parts of your competitors’ SEO "

- Adam Coombs , Marketing at Unamo

Reading time: 5 minutes

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