the nearbound playbook & why it matters

Trust is really hard to build when nobody knows who you are. Why would some senior executive trust some random person or brand they don’t know? They wouldn’t. And that’s why the Nearbound Playbook matters. Join us as we delve into the integration of nearbound into your marketing efforts, injecting partner insights into every facet of the customer journey. Discover how nearbound propels revenue growth swiftly and addresses challenges in partnerships, marketing, and sales. Tune in for insightful discussions on navigating the business landscape with the nearbound advantage!

Podcast Transcript

You’re listening to the Digital Banter Podcast, the show where we tackle the challenges of B2B marketing head on and aren’t afraid to tell it it is. Join us weekly as we talk to industry leaders, explore opportunities that impact the bottom line, and rev your company’s marketing engine with actionable insights and tips.

It’s time to burn the old B2B playbook and build something that makes an impact. Here are your hosts, Andy and James.

Andy: What’s up everybody. We have Jared Fuller on today as our guest. Jared, welcome to digital banter live,

Jared: man. Happy to be here. Happy to be here. We’ll see how many folks, in LinkedIn land and, listening, downstream from the restream, I’m able to inspire or make incredibly frustrated, upset.

Jared: Maybe I’m going to be the Socrates today. We’re gonna have a [00:01:00] lot of fun.

Andy: And throughout the show, if anybody has questions or pet peeves, or just wanted to bat, well, don’t bash Jared in the comments, save that for a private conversation, but definitely throw questions in the chat and we’ll get to them.

Andy: If we have time,

Jared: come at me. I love questions. I’m known for, I’m known for doing an event this, a podcast, a show and engaging in chat while I’m talking. So I love that stuff. All

Andy: right. So today we are talking about nearbound. Now let’s lead this off. In the world of buzzwords, what the hell

Jared: is Nearbound, man?

Jared: Nearbound is just a recognition of, how

Jared: we all operate today. Let me give you a perfect example. How much do I know about health? Well, a little bit, right? But have I been a biohacker? Have I taken all of my blood samples? How much stuff have I actually done around health? Not a [00:02:00] ton. So if I want to get more healthy, what am I going to go do?

Jared: Well, I could go Google stuff what’s the best vitamins or supplements or, you know, whatever. And then I could go to review sites and then check out maybe, you know, the rankings on Amazon. But here’s the problem with all that stuff. If I go Google something , Hey, healthy supplement, you know, morning drink.

Jared: What I’m going to get is I’m going to get 15 SEO driven articles about the history of beverages in the United States of America. And I’m , why do I need to read 27 pages of content? To get your clearly biased viewpoint. I just don’t do that anymore. We used to Google things, right? We used to answer questions with how, how do I do this?

Jared: How do I do that? When I was a VP of sales, I, you know, Google how to set up whatever X or Y in a forecasting meeting, et cetera. Now I know exactly what I’m going to get. I’m going to get 20 articles from vendors that are all biased towards their software, right? We just know that, [00:03:00] and review sites, guess what all review sites are.

Jared: Every single review is 4. 7 stars. I call it 4. 7 star syndrome. And in fact, that’s not just my opinion. So I went off on a rant on LinkedIn about 4. 7 star syndrome. I’m , review suck. And guess who commented on it clutch, the CEO of trust radius. Right. And he reached out and he actually. Requested a conversation.

Jared: I was , Whoa, okay. I thought this it’s , Whoa, I wasn’t expecting, you know, you to come up in here and he hopped on a call with me and he said, Jared, I completely agree. And in fact, the data backs that up and he did a survey of over 2000 B2B buyers. And you know, the by a factor of 10 X. What buyers care most about are reviewers most them now, or who’ve accomplished the thing that they’ve already done.

Jared: And so I’m going to bring this full circle.

Jared: What is Nearbound? Nearbound is just a recognition of how we buy, which is with who, right? The likeness to us. And [00:04:00] I’ll give you my favorite quote of 2023. I’ll have to come up with another one for 2024. But there’s a paradox that we’re all experiencing right now.

Jared: That trust only comes from helping people reach their promised land. And yet we only trust people who’ve been to the places we want to go. So if we’re in B2B and we haven’t done the thing that our customer is trying to do… we got a problem. So how do I get my morning supplement tying this all back together?

Jared: Well, I have athletic greens, right? Why? It’s got 75 whole food source nutrients and minerals, and I couldn’t tell you a damn one of them, right? All I know is that Tim Ferriss told me to drink it, and I trust Tim Ferriss, right? He’s actually done the stuff. He’s been to the promised land. I have not. And I bought it based on that, and that’s how we all buy today.

Jared: So what is Nearbound? It’s just a recognition of reality. There’s people that surround us that we trust, and that’s who we go to for making decisions today. It’s not the old playbook. That’s what Nearbound is. And it can be overlaid to every single part of the B2B business.

James: So [00:05:00] we’ve had a couple conversations recently around, influencer marketing, right?

James: Because that kind of plays off of taking the trust that was essentially built and created by somebody else. And it’s also a space that’s , pretty diluted right now. Kind of leading to, I don’t know, even less

Jared: trust than it’s ever been. There’s tons of wannabe influencers. I’m not sure that there’s tons of good influencer marketing in B2B.

Jared: There’s tons in B2C. Go ask the Kardashians and their private equity company, you know? Go ask Mr. Beast. But go ask example, after example, after example, where it’s done well. I think people conflate influencers and influencer marketing, but can you continue to make your points?

James: No, it was really a question that I was going, the question that I was going down is ,

James: Do you think that in within Nearbound, you talk about partnerships, partnering with your customers, partnering with companies who have similar client bases to you. A lot of it is partnership [00:06:00] driven and influencers are also making a big play. And I think in the B2B space, we’ve gone the partnership route to some extent that I think there’s still obviously a lot of ways that could be done better, but the influencer thing is new.

James: And I guess my question to you is, do you think that that should be part of that nearbound ecosystem? Or is that… is that something that’s not going

Jared: to work for B2B? It absolutely is working, but it’s not working carte blanche. That’s saying, you know, any business tactic, it’s , Oh, this thing works.

Jared: Outbound works, inbound works, SEO works, ad works, all of these things work done correctly. The question is, is that strategy something that’s a saturated channel where you’re going to have to be, you know, a three stripe black belt that could, you know, go submit, you know, Royce Gracie, one of the best Jiu Jitsu guys of all time, right?

Jared: If you want to win right now at SEO, you’re going to have to be really damn good, right? Especially since [00:07:00] traffic’s declining from SEO. When it comes to influencer marketing, I think here’s the thing… it’s all about the person and it’s all about, I’d say the person at the company.

Jared: What do I mean? I’ll give you a personal anecdote. So. I’ve worked with Jill Rowley. She’s, often credited with kind of popularizing, evangelizing, almost creating social selling. She’s got probably a quarter million followers on LinkedIn, one of the biggest followings of B2B SaaS. And I was actually in the trenches with her, when she was chief growth officer at Marketo, and I was head of partnerships at Drift.

Jared: That’s a partnership I built from scratch. We went end to end to where the, the end state was this. Adobe partner of the year, right? From zero to Adobe partner of the year. I have the receipts with Jill. We have stories to tell and I make it extremely easy to work with Jill. What do I mean? Because we have that relationship, [00:08:00] I’m able to write content and get her started from something her vantage point.

Jared: We talk all the time. You know, she’s done intro pieces for us. She’s comes to our events, but LinkedIn every single day? No, no, she’s actually having conversations. Conversations are the actual influential thing. It’s not just, you know, the brand equity of some advisory or influencer role at XYZ.

Jared: I’ll give you another example. Scott Lease, right? So Scott’s a, you know, VP sales, three, four X over humble dude, honest, real raw. And he’s really anti , look, the B2B sales playbook is really broken right now. He’s an advisor to a bunch of companies. A lot of those companies don’t get their money’s worth.

Jared: I asked Scott to help. I reach out to him and go, Hey Scott, so you got a relationship over here. Can you help right? Influencer marketing, the way that we kind of think about it, , Hey, can we just get some GPT esque content? That’s not in that person’s voice and have them post about our product and somehow that’s going [00:09:00] to work.

Jared: No, you got, I mean, you got to,

Jared: If trust comes from helping people reach their promise land, then you need to use their voice. In the most important ways possible. And not dilute that because otherwise you dilute the trust it’s not going to go very far. So influencer marketing… I actually call it nearbound

Jared: social. Is the way that I think about it because you can do it much wider. We just did the Nearbound Summit, James and Andy, and we had, I don’t know, hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of coordinated, influencer comments, posts, and engagements. That were the thing that most people probably think about, but it wasn’t from the big dogs.

Jared: Right? So I think you need to leverage your entire network to be able to influence people. And that’s more programmatic and overlaid against your marketing and your social team and your sales org. Versus going out and paying, you know, two or three influencers, you know, 10, 20 grand a month to post, you know, a couple of times or You know, host a [00:10:00] podcast once a week, whatever that is.

James: I was going to say, so one of the things that I saw, I, I saw posts, you commented on somebody’s post today.

James: I mean, it was today or in the last couple of days where

James: There’s kind of this common misconception about nearbound that essentially it’s a sales technique to reach out to friends of friends. I mean, honestly, kind of a cut co pyramid scheme type thing, right? Where you’re going through, you pitch, you sell to your family and then you ask him for a list of references of people that you can then go sell to. You’ve obviously made very clear that it’s much more than that.

James: If for those who kind of have that mindset right now, but are also looking for a place to start with a nearbound strategy that isn’t that. What would you tell them?

Jared: It depends on where you sit. Right? So, , I’ll answer that question by slightly disagreeing with you and bringing it back. How does any business start any business?

James: [00:11:00] Yeah, you’re I mean, I

Jared: think the answer. Yeah, referrals, referrals, how, how do 95 percent of agencies acquire their customers referrals? What do agencies sell that SAS companies don’t people know? They sell outcomes. SAS companies sell access. That that’s a very important distinction that we’ll come back to in a minute.

Jared: Meaning

Jared: If trust comes from helping people reach their promised land… you’ve actually delivered an outcome that you said you were going to. Otherwise that person doesn’t pay you anymore. You don’t get new customers. Right? And I think that is a, an incredible forcing function. Unfortunately, in a world where you have 12,000 MarTech companies alone. There’s a lot of shelfware out there, right?

Jared: Where there is no outcome. There’s no outcome at all. If you’re starting a business… referrals, great. If you’re trying to grow a company. And you’re trying to get, let’s say, referrals from what? From what, from, if you’re asking people for referrals [00:12:00] because you’ve helped them, that’s called doing a good job.

Jared: That’s being a good business person. If you’re asking people for referrals that you’ve never helped… that’s called being an idiot, right? And let me, let me show you how idiotic you can be with this. Is that if you’re a salesperson and you have your list of a hundred accounts and the way that you’ve traditionally thought of referrals or partnerships or customers or anyone that isn’t the hundred accounts that you sell to, right?

Jared: I only care about the contacts at those hundred accounts. Okay. So how are you going to reach out to them? Maybe they come to you. Maybe you send them a cold outbound. Fantastic. Great. What about the 10 other accounts that you’ve sold to? Why not start there? Oh, because you didn’t help them do jack shit.

Jared: What you did is you sold them access, right? You don’t know the context or the fabric of that business. Their business challenges. Their business initiatives. The second you got that contract signed, you were out of there. Peace. Bye. You know what I’ve just spent the past 48 hours doing in my house? Building an overlay [00:13:00] plan for a 1500 person company I personally have been spending

Jared: probably 20 hours trying to onboard this account. Why? Because whenever I write about this, whenever I do these things, nobody can mess with me, nobody. Why? Because I do it. It’s have to have integrity. So I think that when most people think about referrals, they’re thinking about it as if it’s a tactic, you know, this, this ephemeral thing out there.

Jared: And that seller is well partner program, where’s my referrals? And it’s where are your referrals? You know, the 10 customers that you’ve already sold? Have you been able to help them connect the dots? Remember Jill Rowley I was talking about? What most people don’t realize about her is that her track record is mind boggling.

Jared: So at Eloqua, she was the top rep at Eloqua, got acquired by Oracle. When Eloqua hit a hundred million dollars in revenue, do you know how much of that hundred million dollars Jill [00:14:00] sold? 40 million of a hundred million. No one’s ever replicated that. I’ve never heard of that story again. And you know, what’s crazy.

Jared: She did all of it by obsessing over her customer obsessing, right. Understanding the entire fabric of the marketing organization and bringing about this change. The best salespeople. If you go to Adobe, if you go to Salesforce SAP, they are actually account executives. Meaning they surround the account.

Jared: They coordinate it’s not them in the sale. It’s all the people that surround nearbound surround. Right. And they help not just for the first sale, but the second, the third, the fourth. And even if you’re not getting more ARR, you’re getting the second referral, the third referral, the fourth referral, right.

Jared: Or a connection into what, how did Jill hit her number? How did she hit the largest percentage of revenue I’ve ever heard of in all of SAS history by getting referrals into the vendors. And the [00:15:00] partners that her customers worked with, she didn’t wait for the partner team. She went and got them. So let me ask anyone that’s listening to this right now.

Jared: You can go do Nearbound if you’re an AE and an individual contributor. And we can talk marketing as well. Go ask your customers who they already do business with, right? So , if you have a customer that is successful that you care about, who do they do business with? Who are their vendors? Who are their agencies?

Jared: Who are their service providers? Those are your partners. If you cannot go get W’s on the board. With the people that your customers already work with. You don’t have a job, so I guess how

James: to break that down tactically a little bit because we were talking about referrals to start. Right? Yeah, of course.

James: So I’ll tell you this us as an agency. You’ve met you hit the nail on the head. We get 90 plus percent of our revenue from referrals. Pretty much every client I’ve ever worked with has been a referral since I’ve been here. We don’t actually go out and ask [00:16:00] for referrals. We actually don’t have a strategy to , I guess, get more referrals.

James: It’s just been a natural part of the business. I, I feel there’s a lot of a lot of companies that are in the same. Boat

Jared: is a lot of service providers that are in the same boat. I think there’s a lot of SAS companies that probably do the opposite is that they, they want them really bad. They measure them.

Jared: They, they try to, you know, monetize them. They do some revenue share. They have a partner program around them. And yet there’s two people in a go to market team of a hundred. That actually do anything with it. So it’s this weird, perverse thing where everyone thinks about it, so to speak. But there’s only two partner managers that proactively think about how to go get them.

Jared: And it’s not the people that are actually closest to the customer, which is very ironic. Yeah. And I think

Andy: that’s the thing where this breaks down is you create, you have so many silos and yeah, you’re surrounding yourself with the right people. And you’re actively trying to find the best outcome for the customer and you do that, but then it gets lost.

Andy: Then there’s this gap of, I don’t know, nothingness [00:17:00] that shit just. Flows into, and there’s nothing that gets done with it after that. So , how do you, how do you

Jared: address that then Jared? Yeah. So this is where, when I, I founded partner hacker and in a less than a year, we built a successful seven figure business and were acquired by reveal.

Jared: We flipped that into near nearbound. com and. The reason why nearbound had to be the thing is because partner immediately, everyone starts thinking about everything, right? It’s just such a loaded word and inbound outbound and then inbound and then nearbound, right? There’s this kind of continuity is outbound for marketing or for sales.

Jared: Is inbound for marketing or sales or you see how it’s cross departmental. What I said was, is that

Jared: Partnerships has to stop becoming a department and instead becomes a strategy for every department, right? And the go to market motion can change when you have this fundamental thing, which is, you can call it second party data.

Jared: But you basically have contacts, you have accounts, and then you have what? [00:18:00] These other relationships that you can have a direct one with. And that’s something that you should have at the data level. So for example, who is your network of, let’s say integrations? Or agency partners? Or service providers? Or if you have none of them, who do your customers trust?

Jared: Right. Where do they live? Go live in market. Where are your customers? Who do they trust? That’s where you need to be. And you need to become obsessed with them, that market and where they are. And then you can build the database and the relationships that surround the customer, right? It’s not just a table.

Jared: It’s a graph. It’s a network. When people said your network is your net worth, we should have paid attention. We really should have. And that comes at the individual level and the company level. It’s absolutely true. So you can start small with your first account, your first 10 or 20. And all that you’re doing is you’re tracking the relationships, right?

Jared: The ones that matter the most, where you have the most overlap. And from [00:19:00] there, I think, you can apply that to each department, marketing. Sales. Success. And I can give you examples across all of them. Across the entire customer life cycle. It’s it’s when you have the second party data, all of a sudden, it doesn’t just become an account in a name. It becomes, okay, well, there’s five companies that they use their software of that as an integration partner of mine.

Jared: Presumably, there’s probably something important there. Some Intel, right? I call these the three eyes of nearbound. So

Jared: Intel, influence, and intros. Not just referrals, right? It’s intros, not referrals. There’s probably some intelligence that lives in those relationships that you can go ask. Go talk to them.

Jared: Right. So , you know, James, what’s a piece of software that you’ve bought recently? Oh, boy. Freestream. Freestream. Okay, great. You can go

James: down your route with this one. That’s exactly how we purchased it, right? I needed a tool. Ask somebody I know. [00:20:00] That’s exactly, exactly what we did. And that’s probably for the record with every piece of software I’ve ever

Jared: purchased ever for the, for the most part, right?

Jared: It, you know, there, there is some serendipity here and there, right. Which great, but serendipity is not a go to market plan. Right. , yeah, you know, that’s just called luck. Right. And then there is some market or somewhere that’s taking credit for that, , aha, I got them and it was intelligently designed.

Jared: That’s totally not the case at all. Not even a little bit. But yeah, I mean, nearbounds about surrounding the customer and it’s about building. The graph, around the people that, you know, your customers trust. And it, you know, this is a little bit of, you know, of a marketing, kind of angle and a B2B SaaS audience here listening.

Jared: I think the major challenge given that, you know, I could say the trust is the new data, right? Is that we’ve overemphasized the ING and marketing. The root of marketing is market. Who are your [00:21:00] customers? Where do they live and where are they trying to go? I mean, I could go ask most people. And they have a very piss poor understanding of who their customer is and where they’re trying to go.

Jared: They have all the answers about their operating model, their funnel, their activities, their stuff internal. And that’s what, that’s why I’m so. Wildly passionate about what I do. Because I’m customer obsessed. I’ve been customer pilled. It’s not about us. It’s about the customer. And every single great entrepreneur in great company you have ever bought from.

Jared: I, and I mean, truly great. What is the first principle in all of them? What does the CEO say time and time and time again? I was watching Satya Nadella today, right? But you know how many times in a 30 minute interview

Jared: he said customer obsessed and customer first. Again, again, again, again, again, again, again, for 10 years. That’s all he says. You know, and it’s because he means it. It’s actually there’s actually something behind it. Right. [00:22:00] And I think we’ve lost our way in that regard. We just don’t have the same empathy for the market.

Jared: And we think that our ivory tower models is, you know, how we go out and win in the market. It’s just not the case anymore. Well, I think you, I mean, you have

James: to be customer obsessed, not only from marketing sales, but also on the product side, one of the things that they always talk about when it comes to SAS products is the number one reason why they don’t renew is because they don’t use it.

James: Right. And if you are not listening to your customer, getting them the features they want, educating them on how to use it, ensuring they use it, you’re not. That comes from customer obsession. And , that’s, I mean, that’s the, I don’t know. I always think in a lot of the stuff that we do, the biggest piece that’s missing is the educational component and, you know, thinking about what future is also , you know, bring it, you [00:23:00] said, bringing in people who’ve been there and been in situations before.

James: Cause the other thing I’ll tell you what we’re working on a partnership right now, we’re thinking about launching. Another show with a dev agency. One of the biggest things in B2B is, um. Fear of change, right?

Jared: And especially right now, which is kind of crazy. It’s the time when everything should be changing and everyone’s problem aware, but solution wary.

Jared: Yeah, because you’re,

James: I mean, think about what this projects that they would do. You’re moving from one e commerce platform to another, moving from Magento to Shopify, right. Talking about businesses that have maybe grown out of a tool that they have, but. There’s 50 people in the organization who already know how to use it.

James: All of the processes are already in there. , sure. There’s a better, cheaper solution out there, but why would we do that? Because we’re going to make everybody else mad. And if you can bring on partners who have gone through the process, talked about how easy it was, leveraging those partner relationships, I would make a damn of a difference for

Jared: sure.

Jared: [00:24:00] Well, I mean, some curiosity. Can go a really long way for everybody. And what do I mean by that? Okay. So how many customers have you talked to, or let’s say partners, have you talked to about what, what they’re going through, where are they going? What are they trying to do? How are they getting there?

Jared: Do they even have an idea? What truly what are their challenges? And I don’t mean taking an analyzing discovery calls from gong and getting some, , you know, synthesized version back up to you to inform, you know, your copywriting. I mean, the actual context in the fabric where if you went out and talk to, let’s just say, Matt query from ROI DNA.

Jared: So ABM, you know, guy that I knew really well. And I, I kind of brought him from demand based ecosystem to the six cents ecosystem.

James: They became the six

Jared: cents, six cents, his biggest partner, right. By talking to Matt. About his customers and the outcomes that he delivered. You learn a lot. You learn a lot by talking to you guys, [00:25:00] whenever you, you know, actually go out and do something great for an account, you learn a lot about the challenges, the problems, where they were and where they were going.

Jared: And that’s where all the, that’s where all the wisdom is. The wisdom is in what Paul Graham refers to as an earned secret, right? And so many marketers haven’t earned the right. To even put copy down and put it in front of a customer. You know, I, I was at a, a CMO show, CMO , event where we, there’s about 250 CMOs in a room, B two B CMOs, and there was big names there.

Jared: I won’t, I won’t throw anyone under the bus, but , hey, six six Sense. So a LaTony cannot, the CMO of six sense was there. And, I don’t know how the heck I got in that room because I wasn’t ACMO, but they invited me to speak and it just hit me while I was kind of going on. This ran. Speaking of, you know, earning the right.

Jared: And I was , you know what? I want to do an exercise. Somebody in the audience, tell me who you sell to who’s your [00:26:00] ICP. Who’s your persona. And they’re , CIOs. Fantastic. So tell me about the last time that you were a CIO. And she was , what? , well, you’ve, you’ve, so you’ve never been a CIO before?

Jared: No. So you’ve never even been a bad CIO? No. Well then what gives you the right? To go and tell a CIO how they’re going to be a better CIO. What gives you the right to go hire three college, you know, three years out of college graduates, you know, they’re 24, 25 years old and they’re supposed to go tell a 55 year old veteran with five kids, you know, about to retire, how to not make sure that there’s this latest blah, blah, blah, blah.

Jared: We, as we identified, we only trust people who’ve been to the places we want to go or who share in that same struggle, right? They’re us, right? They’re going through the same thing. Maybe they’re one step ahead of us. Mentors, role models, you know, people that we pay, that we associate with, that we’re friends with, that we trust.[00:27:00]

Jared: So no one in your organization has ever done that before. Your sellers haven’t, your marketers haven’t, you haven’t, your product people haven’t. In fact, the only person in your organization who’s done that is your CIO. Is she doing your marketing? Is she doing your selling? Is she doing your product development?

Jared: No, this is very interesting conundrum that we find ourselves in. So what does that mean? That means that you should probably go market with those people who have, that means you should probably sell with those people who have, that means that you should probably serve with those people that have. What, what a novel fricking concept.

James: It’s so you’re hitting on this, common it’s, you’ve basically taken the common dispute of marketing and sales, right? There’s there’s the normal problem that sales has with marketing is that they know more about the customer. Cause they talk to the customer every day. Absolutely right. Honestly.

James: But it’s one level further of how, again, example, you gave a junior level salesperson reaching out to a senior level [00:28:00] executive. , yeah, nobody’s going to trust

Jared: that person. Nobody. No, I mean, it’s, it’s a game that is increasingly harder and more difficult to play. And here’s my point. If you want to disagree with me on marketing or sales or any of these functions, do you think that this is a, a game that has one level?

Jared: Or is this a game that has many levels? It’s a game that has many levels. Let’s put a B2B SaaS company that starts right now today. Today. They just started today. And let’s put them, fast forward two years. Okay, let’s go back now. Let’s go back ten years. A B2B SaaS company that started in 2013.

Jared: Which company do you think is going to be farther along in two years? The one that started in 2013? Circa 2015. Or the one that started in 20 23 circa 2025. The one that started in 2023 is going to be exponentially further ahead in terms of capabilities, software, automate all of the stuff that we have.

Jared: And guess who else is everyone else, right? The game has [00:29:00] levels, right? Not all choices are equal. Strategy is the most misunderstood word in all of startups. And all it means is making a dang choice, right? That’s all that it means. And if you go backwards in time. We used to get lucky because the game was just, you know, Hey, I’m selling into this persona.

Jared: And there’s a finite set of problems that have a long time horizon. Now it’s we have more software solutions and help than we ever have. And yet we’re busier than we’ve ever been. We, our lives are in so many ways better than, you know, 10 years ago. And yet, for some reason, stress is higher. Business is harder.

Jared: There’s this inverse correlation where the game is getting harder and yet you’re not trying to ascend the levels. You’re still playing level one. So it’s not to say that that doesn’t work at all. It’s just some JV shit out there. No junior varsity. Well, that’s the

James: AI that’s the next evolution, right?

James: [00:30:00] Everything’s AI, right? You mentioned SEO not working as well as it used to, right? HubSpot basically built this whole company off of. I don’t want to say that they did a lot more than that. Right. But you can’t do that now. And now if you want, , if you, I would

Jared: say the amount of content

James: that you have to

Jared: produce.

Jared: Yeah, you definitely can’t do that alone.

James: wHat, I know one of the things, a lot of agencies are talking about right now is SEO creating content, right? Where , you know, as an agency, you used to sell for X amount of dollars, a certain amount of content. Right now you have to sell 20 times the amount of content for the same dollar amount, because.

James: You know, they can just go create an AI and they’re going to, you know, the, the level is that

Jared: much higher. Yeah, we live in an infinite game. Just as evidenced by the last, you know, 100 years of human history. Every single piece of technology has always been met. With, severe skepticism [00:31:00] and , oh, it’s going to destroy jobs and supposedly value.

Jared: But if that were the case, well, then, you know, I think we should just have everyone carry stuff across their backs across the country. You know, let’s put everything on horses. , no, technology continues to make the game more complex and complicated and kind of everything. If you don’t get better with it, you certainly will be left behind.

Jared: And that’s fine. You can go live in the woods. You know, I love log cabins. I love streams. I love simple nature and you can go do that

James: too. Yeah. I mean, I’ll say one, , I saw, I listened to somebody push back on that recently, and they said that with new technology to get full adoption on average, it’s been taking 20 years throughout history.

James: So we’re in , this was the argument of, you know, do you need to adopt stuff that fast? One, I think that if in our industry you do, but if you’re in, I don’t know, something that’s more a service based industry, they’re not going to move into AI until [00:32:00] 20 years from now. Right. And there is this gap in advantage.

Jared: I’m not sure on that one. And I don’t know that I would necessarily agree or disagree. I just think that, the, the past is not an accurate indicator of the future. is evidenced by , you know, the past hundred years, past 200 years, past 500 years, right? Everything that we’re experiencing, we’re experiencing for the first time ever.

Jared: Yeah. People might be , Oh, everything’s cyclical. And it’s , really? Okay, great. Take someone from, I don’t know, 1900 and put them in 2023. They’d all think that we’re, we’re wizards and witches and. You know, it’s not what we’re

Andy: doing right now, isn’t what happened during the industrial revolution.

Andy: Very some, not very similar, but at least there’s a correlation here, right? Where you have the proliferation of new technologies, everybody’s enamored with them. They’re going to steal jobs, right? They’re going to put people out of business. They’re going to put them, you know, in homeless shelters, things that.

Andy: And it’s. Really? How do these things play together? That’s the ultimate outcome here that drives somebody forward. So it plays into that concept of nearbound of [00:33:00] people, but leveraging technology to do so in an effective manner.

Jared: So I’ll answer that question directly. And this goes for the time that we’re in right now, we’re, you know, November coming up on Thanksgiving.

Jared: Right. So we’re entering, you know, the middle or end of the annual planning season, right? For next year. Okay, great. So if you’re in marketing, what are you doing right now? You are mapping your way. Into your 2024 goals. Congratulations. You and hundreds of thousands of other people are spending the next three months, putting together a spreadsheet where your goal seeking your way through the funnel, through your lens, for your company, for your technology.

Jared: And guess what the world is doing. The world is changing. The market is changing. The market always wins. Your model does not. The game is changing. Therefore you must change. The only constant is change. And that’s not to say throw out the table stakes. But that’s not to say obsess over them. You can have an [00:34:00] operating model, basic funnel, basic stuff.

Jared: But if that’s all you’re focused on and over obsessing on, I promise you’re not going to win. Why? Because I can do the same thing and I can hire someone and I don’t think about it at all. And I can set up a cadence where I get my reports every week. We’re past that. We’re past that stage. If you don’t think we’re past that stage, well, great.

Jared: More business for the rest of us that know that there is. So I’m not saying throw out outbound and throw out inbound entirely. My point is, is that things change. And the folks that don’t change with it, those are the ones that complain, Oh, tech is bad. You know, this innovation is terrible or whatever.

Jared: That’s, you know, the map is not the territory. Your spreadsheet is not the market. I’ll give you a great quote. That’s by a Nobel prize winning economist, Frederick Hayek. And I tend to think this way, first principles, everything to me is first principles. I’ll say the same 10 things a thousand times versus a thousand things, 10 times.

Jared: And so few people, they want to go figure out a hundred or a thousand things, [00:35:00] the curious task of economics, which is kind of , you know, math, you need economics, et cetera. It’s to demonstrate to us how little we know about what we imagine we can design. And that’s just a fact, right? So your model is actually a rear view mirror, right?

Jared: It’s not forward facing. It’s a rear view mirror. It’s not a windshield. So you’re designing it as if it is a windshield. And then you look back on it and you’re , that’s not what happened. And each time we’re not fricking humbled by it. Okay. So then

Andy: what do you tell the CMO or the C Sweeter or the board that’s saying they want your six, you know, your quarterly plan, right?

Andy: That is the ask in many businesses. And I agree with you, by the way, the market is constantly changing and whatever plan you put together today and you execute on tomorrow is already behind, but how do you balance that ask against what reality is? And yeah, it will be successful in your job and the outcome [00:36:00] that I have, or you have, or anybody listening has in their

Jared: job.

Jared: Here, here’s a rock solid takeaway. Everything that I just said is an overlay to what you already do. It’s not a reinvention. You can do an underlay, which you’re building everything from the ground up from scratch is a new business. So when I say overlay, here’s what I mean. You have a list of a thousand accounts that you’re going to go market to as an ABM marketer, right?

Jared: So you’re starting at the strategic level. Okay, fantastic. You have a named list of accounts. Congratulations. You’re doing marketing from 10 years ago. Let’s start there. It’s better place to start than no accounts, right? That’s just table stakes. Okay. So where do those accounts live? Who are those people the actual titles, their actual names, right?

Jared: Where do they live? I don’t mean their house. I mean, where do they spend their time? What do they listen to? What events do they go to, right? Who do they purchase from? Who do they ask questions? What forums, what communities you need to understand, have that first, the understanding of your market. And then you need to go, okay, where are they at?

Jared: And then [00:37:00] where are they going? You need to have a, not just a kind of hypothesis. You better have damn conviction about that answer. And I mean, not just you, the CMO, your team, that becomes the job. If you go live in market and then overlay it against your customer lifecycle, right, the thousand accounts and then the campaigns and the activities, and then you go live with them, you talk with them, you do content with them.

Jared: You do events with them. You’re not doing it at them. You’re doing it around them together. You’re a participant in the thing that they’re going through. Then all of a sudden, you’re playing the game at the next level. That’s nearbound. Versus you staying behind yourself. , if your content marketers aren’t living in market, doing the things that you were…

Jared: Two years ago, that’s the problem, right? So any single thing in the marketing funnel or campaign or activity, I promise you can do with other people.

Andy: So let me just walk that back to you then. So as the CMO will use as [00:38:00] the person here, right? They’re leading by example,

Jared: correct? I would sure hope so. Well, yeah, I’m

Andy: leading question to an extent there.

Andy: I guess my question then comes into with the churn and burn of CMOs that last two years at a SAS company before moving on to a new market. How do you. How do you do that effectively? If I’m that CMO, because I have to relearn, I have to relearn,

Jared: right? You need to have a ton of influence in that market.

Jared: See, that’s, that’s the other problem too, that a lot of folks just don’t get you industry hoppers out there. That’s the challenge you’re going from market to market. You have no influence. You have no network. Your network is your net worth. And you keep rewriting it every one and a half years, right? The CMOs that actually kick ass.

Jared: That have four or five, 10 year runs. They stay in that market. Why? Because they intimately understand that customer, the messaging that moves them, but the people, the influence, right? You know, you can go influence an account because you’re someone who is influential. [00:39:00] How are you going to tell a company that you’re going to go out there and influence these buyers, if you can’t do it yourself, you lack integrity.

Jared: And you’re not going to be a great marketer, period, full stop. , I will go up against any CMO in my industry or space any day of the week. Content, copy, marketing strategy, and I’m not even a CMO. Why? Because I’m more freaking customer obsessed than you. I’ve interviewed more people in my industry than you.

Jared: I’ve wrote more content with them than you. That should be your mindset is that that market is yours. Chief marketing officer, get rid of the ING chief market officer, and actually give a damn about where this cohort of people that you want to sell to live, breathe, eat, and then the activities. So that could be again, ads events.

Jared: Think about it this way, partner attach any. And you’re telling me that across your entire marketing life cycle of all the activities name, name, one name, a single one that you can’t attach a partner to that [00:40:00] bullshit. Okay.

Andy: So if I, if I’m living in market, right, it was the CMO. Now tell me the two to three things that I need to go and talk to my team about to facilitate that same mechanism and move the needle forward with the nearbound philosophy.

Jared: So, come up with a, I don’t know. So let’s say there’s a campaign for the quarter, right. And then we can detail out what that work is. Who, who are we marketing with? So let’s say it’s content and there’s going to be X number of, let’s say. Proprietary pieces of content published on our own site.

Jared: And then there’s going to be, you know, X number of social media posts around that, and then there’s going to be some podcasts and guests, each of those things that maybe it culminates with an event or whatever. Are we doing that as a brand? Just us, , it’s just our brand. We’re just going to go out and throw that into the ether.

Jared: That’s usually the case or, or who are we doing this with each of those things can have partner attach. [00:41:00] Right. Every single one of them or customer, the point is it’s, it’s not just partner, it’s the people around those thousand accounts, right? So nearbound ABM, so to speak, what are the relationships and the people that they trust?

Jared: And you better be marketing with them. So a blog post, go talk to three of them. Have all three of them be not just mentioned, but the authors, not you, your company, no one cares about your brand. You don’t have an opinion. You don’t have a voice. You are not the customer, right? Acme co security incorporated means Jack shit to Jane Doe.

Jared: You know, the CMO , or the CIO, that brand is not an authority because that brand has never done their job. It’s a vendor, it’s a slice of their life. And we have to stop marketing as brands and we have to start, we have to start marketing as if, as, as, as if it’s a movement. Right? It’s the collection of people that believe the same thing that you do.

Jared: And then your brand equity somehow mysteriously rises because all [00:42:00] the people that have done the thing that care about it, they’re talking about you because you’re helping them. You’re helpful. And I think that’s the first thing you do. You go across each individual campaign or activity and you ask the question, Who?

Jared: Who are you doing this with? That surrounds these accounts, customers, right? And you just add that layer. So it’s not, it’s not wildly overly complicated. It’s an overlay strategy and you can track it at any level. Partner attached. It’s very simple. And it’s actually extremely simple to measure Andy. And James, it’s cake.

Jared: You don’t have to overcomplicate attribution at all. All you have to do is measure partner attach versus not partner attach. Measure that cohort of pipeline. Measure that cohort of revenue. And guess what? I can promise you this. You don’t go back. Whatever you do against any activity. Do an event by yourself.

Jared: I dare you. Go do an event by yourself. Spend more money than you ever would. And then go do one with partners. Do you think the pipeline from the second one is going to be better than the first one? Abso frickin lutely. You know, data box. I’ll give you a [00:43:00] perfect example. Pete Caputa, CEO of data box. He got partner led startup startup of the year last year.

Jared: He had three marketers, three, and they produced nearly 10, 000 pieces of content. How is that even possible? No AI. They just lived in market. They had all of these agencies contribute, fill out surveys. They, the market created the content. That’s why he had a 200 person business, fully profitable, no venture backed capital whatsoever.

Jared: And the number one partner in HubSpot’s app ecosystem, completely sustainable business. Guess what? Pete also does not have the partnerships department. That’s Nearbound. That’s Nearbound. , that’s modern marketing. Go look at Databox. He owns his future. Everyone out there is getting their ass handed to them right now.

Jared: The proof is actually out there. You know, what we’ve done it, you know, Nearbound Summit. Partner Hacker was the fastest growing B2B media SaaS company of all time. Nearbound’s the [00:44:00] fastest growing category creation in B2B SaaS history. And it’s because we do the things that we say that we do. I don’t, I don’t know anything about , you could put a CMO up against me in terms of orchestrating the perfect operating model, orchestrating the perfect campaign, the attribution, all of that perfectly set up, come to it in my market.

Jared: I’ll kick your ass. Well, if you think

James: about every, you know, One thing that

Jared: you should be thinking the same way as my point. That’s not about me. It’s not an ego thing. I promise. It’s , I want you to feel the same way about your customers. You need that customer obsessed. It’s ,

Andy: well, it’s confidence over cockiness at the day.

Andy: It’s confidence over cockiness. That’s how it has to come down to do. I know my customer’s best. Can I, yeah, well, obviously three seasons.

Jared: Totally. Totally. I told you guys I was no gloves today. This

James: is, I think what we’ve wanted from this podcast from the beginning. It was originally supposed to be this banter argument podcast.

James: I mean, we’re not arguing really, honestly, I feel I’m at a loss of words because I just agree with [00:45:00] everything that you’re saying. I mean, it’s , I’ll tell you us as an agency from the beginning, . We’re struggling with our positioning right now. Right. Every agency out there is , this is , oh, we’re a demand gen agency.

James: We’re a lead gen agency. And we are sort of

James: that we follow. Right. And I feel the problem that I have with that personally is that every marketer has some stupid framework that works for. One business that they’ve done in the past. And then they try to bring it from company to company, to company, to company.

James: And the reality is, is not demand. Gen isn’t the future. Elite gen isn’t the past. All of the arguments that you hear online, it’s. You said, you need to evolve with the market and, you know, nearbound isn’t a, it isn’t a playbook. It’s a, I’m going to say a way of life. I don’t want to be corny, but , it’s , it’s something that’s integrated in any strategy you have, no matter what it is.

James: And I think that that is. A huge difference because there’s a lot of marketers out there that do think that there’s a playbook for everything and there’s just not. [00:46:00] And this is something that can be tailored to everything.

Jared: It’s not strategy though, right? So it’s project management, it’s list, it’s, you know, marketing automation, those things are foundational and I’m not saying throw them out, but if that’s where you start and you stop, you know, the map is not the territory.

Jared: It’s another common phrase. So you have this map and underneath it is the actual territory and you’re staring at the map and you’re not looking. At the land around you, you know, you can’t navigate absent this map. Well, the thing about geography is it doesn’t change that much, but the thing about the market, do you think it changes a little bit?

Jared: Have you lived in the past three years? Have you lived in the past week? , last week, open AI was the fastest growing company of all time. The fastest growing company ever by far. And in this week, it is the. Well, destructive company of all time, , , no, literally my wife’s company, notably AI, they, they had, luckily they have a great platform at the data layer and they have a visualization [00:47:00] on top.

Jared: So they use GPT for some stuff, but they, they were built before GPT. But even then it’s , well, are you going to use those endpoints anymore? And , are you, you know, they had to actually start thinking about their business to be , Oh shoot. And then big enterprise logos were , Hey, can you, disable the open AI endpoints?

Jared: And it was , Whoa, we’re talking trillion dollar plus companies. Whoa. And I was , okay, so , again, you know, your strategy last week, you got this map and you’re , Hey, we’re going to go do this. If you’re not paying attention to the market and you just continued with your plan, what worked in the past.

Jared: Good luck.

Andy: All right. I was going to give you a chance to give me three actual takeaways, but I don’t know if I’d want to do that and be on here for another hour, unless you’ve got them short and succinct,

Jared: your call. I mean, the reality is, So here’s what I would say. I have nearbound the book coming out January 15th, so you can check it out.

Jared: nearbound dot com. Sign up. Everything’s 100 percent free. It’s the largest library of content on the Internet as it [00:48:00] relates to the topic. Thousands of pieces of content, and I break nearbound the book down in the following ways. You know, you’re bound to find what a network database looks . So how to think about this data first, right?

Jared: I’m not anti data. I just think that there’s a new type of data, which is trust and trust is measured where? Well, in the market, so that’s a vector that you need to start looking at, so start paying attention there and then you can overlay it to each department marketing sales success. So I’m not saying reinvent everything, but start to measure things partner attach, start to talk, and document those things in CRM in marketing automation, build those associations and those relationships.

Jared: And I think, you know, participate in market, right? Go live where they are, create content with people. And I think nearbound, again, nearbounds, just an overlay. It’s actually not that complicated. It’s first principles and you overlay it to what you’re already doing. And it’s, um. [00:49:00] It’s absolutely eye opening how B2B changes.

Jared: And do you think anyone else is out there really that passionate right now as I am about sales and marketing alignment? I could throw up. I could throw up. Throw me in another sales and marketing alignment conversation. , how disgusting is it? I’m so sick of it. , no, I’m actually passionate about what I’m doing because I’m helping my customers.

Jared: That’s, that’s the funner thing. And then go apply that to your operating model. And, you, You’ll find that there’s actually a lot of fun still in B2B in business left. Whenever you surround your customers and you care about them, and you make sure that the rest of the team does too. All right.

Andy: Well, Jared, it was awesome having you on. How can people learn more about Nearbound and follow you and connect with you?

Jared: Yeah. So, here on LinkedIn, so folks that are, obviously, tuning in from the feed, but linkedin. com slash in whatever Jared Fuller, J A R E D F U L L E R. Sub to the Nearbound podcast.

Jared: It’s the number one podcast in, [00:50:00] kind of the space. I think we’re on episode 150, 60, and then Nearbound. com. And then, if you want the, the platform that can orchestrate all this, see, I went through this entire thing. I gave no product plugs whatsoever. Reveal is the network database that you can use to connect all those relationships up and push them into marketing, sales, success.

Jared: And then for the agency folks out there, I can help you with your positioning James and Andy right now. Need to get on that nearbound train and offering those services. You’re , Hey, how do you go do X, Y, and Z? Well, I think those are a product size offerings that, no one else has, that the market really needs.

Jared: So there you have it. Fair

Andy: points. All right, man. Thanks for joining us. Subscribe, check out everything that Jared just talked about. See you

Jared: next time.

Thanks for listening to the Digital Vanter podcast. Make sure to subscribe wherever you get your podcasts so you don’t miss an episode. For more resources and to keep up with the show, visit dragon360. com. Until next time.

Entertaining Content with Purpose

Interactive Demos are Better Demos

Beyond Creation: Maximizing the Impact of Your Content

People-First Playbook AMA Edition Part 2