Project Description

Episode Number: 18
Published: June 4, 2019
Gusest: Udi Ledergor, VP Marketing
Company: Gong.io

Cash-Worthy Content And Five Word Show Booths with Udi Ledergor from Gong.io

Marketers in Capes, Episode 18

Between Q2 and Q3 of 2019, Gong.io grew their LinkedIn followers by 70%. And it’s hard to find any conversation across sales or marketing professionals on LinkedIn that doesn’t reference them. Because their content is that good.

It scrolls though like an intense sales crash-course. I’m a marketer that cringes from the idea of getting on a sales call…but their videos still had me (briefly) reevaluate my career.

And the amazing educational material is just one of the ways that Udi Ledergor, the VP of Marketing at Gong.io, has catapulted the company into the spotlight. So in this episode, Udi unpacks the cold marketing truth that makes our lives harder, how to get around it, three key tips for trade shows, a content hack for outbound, and more.

Important Links:

Udi Ledergor on LinkedIn

Gong.io’s Amazing LinkedIn page

Clearbit profile on Gong’s inbound stack

Udi’s book on The 50 Secrets of Trade Show Success(Amazon)

GET EPISODES TO YOUR INBOX

Episode 18 Transcript

Eytan Buchman

Grab a flashlight, this is going to start out dark.

See, marketers tend to market themselves pretty well. So, someone like me can pull out a crappy mic and talks real pretty, and it sounds like I have it all figured out. But marketing in the real world is messy. And harsh.

But before I continue to complain about truly titanic problems … my name is Eytan Buchman, and you’re getting a dose of reality on Marketers in Capes, the podcast that packs rapid insights from marketing heroes with really, really bad jokes from me. But this episode is so good, you might want to send me flowers, maybe some Petunias. And it’s not because of me, it’s because of my guest:

Udi Ledergor

I’m Udi Ledergor, I’m the VP marketing at Gong. I am a five time VP Marketing. Before that I was a product manager and in between my last two VP marketing gigs, I did consulting for Israeli startups on how to shift and transform their marketing organizations.

Eytan

If you don’t know Gong, try turning on your router, because they’re everywhere, especially on LinkedIn and they have some incredible sales SaaS technology but where they truly shine, at least from a marketing perspective, is with educational content that would make the Wolf of Wall Street feel like a sheep.

Remember I said this episode starts dark? Here’s why:

Udi

I think the the one truth that hasn’t changed about people and how we do marketing is the deep realization that nobody cares. I mean, nobody cares about your company, nobody cares about your product. Don’t assume that anything you build will be consumed or read or use or bought simply because it’s there. You have to constantly create value.

Eytan

And we’ll get to the content side soon, I promise. But first, I got to talking about the funnel. And even though I could edit this out, I’m not going to. Because it’s important. Like an idiot, I asked Udi what tools they use to automate their funnel. And he put me in place.

Udi

I never know what to say to people ask me tell me which tools you’re using for chat or for marketing automation, as if it matters. None of them are going to fix your funnel problems if you don’t think about them from the business problem perspective. Here’s an example. We have a very sophisticated flow with automation of about four tools that we stuck together to optimize our inbound flow. Now, why is that important? Because we’re getting about 1000 demo requests a month on our website and our inbound SDR team was crashing. And we needed to optimize that so that we could get some of the best leads to schedule their own demos and solve other peoples problems in other ways and only get the ones that we had no other choice to the SDR team.

Eytan

That’s true – I needed to hear that. Those AllBirds won’t make you trendy, that Everlane shirt won’t make people like you – sorry – and if you’re not closing deals, fancy marketing tools won’t solve your business problems. You’ve got to solve those first.

Udi

But if you have like four inbound demo requests, don’t waste your time on tools and processes and automation and code writing to optimize your inbound calls. That’s what I mean by solve the real problem that you’re having. Okay? So if you have, if you have a problem of understanding who your target buyers are, figure out your target account market and start some outbound operations.

Eytan

I can’t emphasize how important those target buyers are. It’s not easy. And it’s also why Steve Blank’s ideas around pivoting always starts with pivoting to new markets, not changing the product. The target audience is everything. And that’s clear from how Gong does outbound.

Udi

or outbound. I think the the stages are simply: one – define your target audience, which is not as easy as it might sound if you haven’t done this before. and two – reach out and get them. Our outbound technique at Gong has been been defining a rather narrow, sweet spot that we think we can successfully turn into raving fans. We don’t want to just get customers. But we want to be true to our number one operating principle of creating raving fans.

Eytan

And this is where the content comes in. Yes, content on outbound. Listen up.

Udi

So we created a pretty small target account market list, we divided it among the outbound SDR, they get air support from marketing, which creates thousands of marketing engagement points every month by getting our target audience to consume the content that we create willingly Of course. And then the SDR team is alerted when those constant content consumptions take place. So they can reach out and have a warm conversation rather than a cold conversation.

Eytan

There’s something about getting the perfect information in front of the right audience – the ultimate content/market fit. And this is something that Udi keeps going at trade shows. He literally wrote the book on how to nail a trade show and it crushes it on Amazon – you can find it as bit.ly/showsecrets or in the show notes. But how do you get the right information out at a show? The first thing is get up there at talk.

Udi

We focus heavily on speaking opportunities at conferences as a way of getting our unfair share of attention. I think speaking opportunities where we can get 200 people sitting for 45 minutes hearing about our content, and it’s never a sales pitch. It’s always valuable content is way more impactful than talking to 300 random people that are booth to just drop by for some swag.

Eytan

And even when you’re not talking, either stick out or stay out. The first way to stick out is with your booth, and this is right out of Seth Godin’s Purple Cow.

Udi

The booth needs to look different. If you’re an IT show and everyone’s booth is blue, and gray and boring. Yours should be the bright pink, purple and orange booth. That is the only way to stand out. Always use just a single strong image never tried and fit into their 20 quotes from your customers 15 bullet points of your features. This is your booth. This is not a data sheet. It’s not a one pager, it’s not a case study, no one, no one is going to stand there and read everything you’ve written on the booth, there should be a maximum of one sentence, no more than five words, try to keep it down to three if you can at the very top of your booth so people can read it above peoples’ heads so they can read it above people’s heads.

Eytan

Oh, and a word on that USB stick you’re planning on giving out….

Udi

If everyone’s giving away water bottles and mints, don’t be that guy. Your swag should be cool. It should be useful. Ideally, it should be both. It should never be boring. If you don’t have a cool idea. Don’t give out swag at that show. That’s fine.

I remember at a trade show we did here where we’re selling software to help salespeople improve their pitching and how they’re talking. We created customized M&Ms with all sorts of sales cliches like, “great question” and “I’m glad you asked” printed on the M&Ms. And we labeled the box pitching pills. And we had people chew on those for their next sales conversation.

Eytan

But let’s talk about the bread and butter – the inbound. Remember how we started with the dark world of no one caring? The best, and possibly only, cure for marketing in an attention-starved world is providing copious, overflowing and extensive amounts of value.

Udi

The one marketing strategy I’m most proud of here at Gong and before that tonight, is creating content marketing that is so good that people actually offered to pay money in order to consume it. In the last week alone here at Gong, we’ve received several emails from assistant professors at universities and colleges, running sales courses and asking why it would cost them to include the Gong materials, the Gong marketing materials, in their official curriculum. We smile, we always tell them they can use it for absolutely free, all we ask is that they attribute and link back to gong.io. so that people who are interested can come consume more of that on our blog.

So there’s your benchmark right over there. Would someone whip out their wallet to get to your blog post? Would they hand over $2.50 for your LinkedIn video? Or would they at least trade that half-eaten hot dog for your crappy tweet?

Udi

So in B2B content, I’m always thinking about what value we can provide, what content we could create that is so good, that people would be willing to pay money for it. Try to be different rather than trying to be a little bit better or even a lot better than the best in your industry. It’s so much easier to think of something that no one has done before. And just do that.

Eytan

Aw, see, things got a little brither! So, yea, the world is a dark place. But that one video post that drives value, ideally combined with a personalized M&M, can make it a little brighter. I highly recommend following Udi on LinkedIn – I promise you you’ll learn something. My name is Eytan Buchman, you’ve slogged through another seat-gripping episode of Marketers in Capes and before you go think about the next piece of content to blow your audiences minds and have them reaching for their wallet, I’m think I’m ready for you to send me those flowers now.