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Episode 317: How to Build a Content Library as a One-Person Marketing Team with Heather Knutson of Ascent360

Episode Summary

Heather Knutson is a seasoned marketer who has spent the last eight years in the housing industry space and data market. In the beginning of 2020, she took a new role as VP of Marketing at Ascent360, a computer software company that supports B2C marketers with its comprehensive customer data platform.

On this episode of Tech Qualified with Justin Brown, Heather explains her marketing philosophies and how she strives to keep Ascent360’s marketing strategy fully aligned with its sales team. She also shares her love for thought leadership and why it’s a big “vein” in her marketing strategy.

“I’m big into having good thought leadership where … you don’t want to give everything away — but you want to give enough information that you pique interest,” she says.

Heather goes on to discuss building a library of content that she can use to repurpose across the industries that Ascent360 works with. The library helps her set processes in place, reuse good content from platform to platform and better align with the sales team as they go after customers in the pipeline.

Guest Profile

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Key Insights

Episode Highlights

“I’m going in and looking for more but also different customers. … For example, I know in our neck of the woods here in Colorado bike stores are selling out. So how do I find more of those? I’m practicing what I preach. So I’m segmenting those different profiles and I’m making sure I am targeting bike retailers a little bit differently than maybe an email or a webinar invite that goes to a jewelry store or a resort.”
“My marketing strategy is to be fully aligned with the sales team at Ascent360. We call the sales team the growth team. I’m making sure as these raised hands come in, whether it’s from a targeted email auto generated campaign, a webinar poll question or a landing page lead form newsletter, that those raised hands are truly marketing qualified leads. That they didn’t just click something, but they actually said, ‘Yes, I’m interested in learning more.’ I pass those over, across the aisle to sales. And we make sure that we continue to talk to those opportunities.”
“I’m not commissioned like a salesperson, but I treat my role like I am. That’s kind of how my marketing philosophy has been. And it’s really shifted the last five, six years to heavy demand gen where I consider it almost to the sales point … And actually in my past life … at my prior organization, I have gotten the sales across the finish line myself and given the commission to the sales rep, just to show that proof of concept that I’m really believing in what I’m marketing. If you see that and the sales team sees a few of those wins, it’s just a different love for marketing. And rather than having that division and you’re competing with each other, it’s really that collaboration and not everybody has that marketing philosophy, but I think in today’s world to be a successful marketer, that’s truly the different stance you have to take.”
“A webinar program sounds pretty basic, but you are communicating something consistently. I looked at the conversations our CEO, Scott, was already having and then scheduled a consistent monthly webinar cadence starting in March. We did a really cool ski webinar last week together with the National Ski Association of America and had more registration and attendance — attendance rates in the 70-75% of registration. … The feedback that comes in from that is tremendous. And then those webinars become content that become newsletter content or blog posts and they’re recorded so I can give them to sales so that they can tee them up with opportunities and resorts that weren’t able to attend.”
“Take some highlights and create a top five list. … It’s really casting that net so that you have content out there in different formats so that when the time is right for somebody to consider your solution, it’s piquing that interest. … I’m making sure that what I’m sharing, … [the sales team is] sharing as well in a way that they’re comfortable. You know, a lot of those social media outlets, those are individual to them so I always give content to them on their terms. Here’s what I’m doing, follow my lead, make it easy reshare, or you know put it in your voice and let me help you do that.”
“I saw a company that was really excited about what they do, had a great logo and was talking a little bit about their cool SaaS customer data platform. What the marketing looks like now is really reaching across the aisle, changing that story versus us talking about ourselves in terms of what problem we are solving for our customers. I’m going in and changing a lot of that story as well as reaching across the aisle and shifting to more demand gen, thought leadership, delivering leads versus just that brand.”
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