Andrew Miller is the co-founder and VP of strategy at Workshop Digital, a search engine marketing agency that helps sales teams generate and convert sales qualified leads. We talk about the cost of customer acquisition, task-relevant maturity, and understanding the ROI of your marketing efforts.
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Task Relevant Maturity with Andrew Miller
Our guest is Andrew Miller, the co-founder and VP of strategy at Workshop Digital, a search engine marketing agency that helps sales teams generate qualified leads and convert them to customers. Andrew, welcome to the show.
Thank you, Steve. Good morning. Pleasure to be here. Appreciate you having me on.
It’s great to have you. So, Andrew, let’s start with the usual question that I’m always curious about. How did you become an entrepreneur and a co-founder of Workshop Digital, a digital marketing agency? Tell us a little bit about your journey.
Yeah, it was very unintentional. This is a chapter of the Workshop Digital story that most people don’t know that I’m a reluctant entrepreneur, or I was in the early days. I was happily full-time employed here in Richmond, first at the Martin Agency, and then at CarMax, two both great companies to work for. Loved every minute of it, great people, connections I still have to this day. But I was pushed out of the nest a little bit when my wife decided to attend grad school.
We had to move out of state for a few years, so I wasn’t able to keep my full-time job. Parmax offered me the option to stay on as a contractor, which I initially declined. I didn’t think that consulting or contracting was the role for me. I wasn’t sure about the autonomy, the uncertainty. But at the time, we were moving to Michigan, a state which didn’t have many great job prospects, so I reconsidered the offer and actually accepted it thinking worst case scenario is I can honor the contract and work through the first six months, get settled in Michigan and figure out what comes next.
And I will say that was 2007 and I’ve been self-employed ever since, haven’t looked back. I have been bitten by the entrepreneurial bug and I love it. And I know it’s not for everybody, but the lifestyle, the autonomy, the sense of purpose has given me a lot of enthusiasm, and that hasn’t changed for almost 15 years.
That’s awesome to hear. So that’s just proof that it’s not necessarily an innate, inborn thing to be an entrepreneur. It may be something that evolves over time, and as you say, the entrepreneurial bargain beat you and now you’re infused with it. So that’s pretty cool, so along the way, as you built your business, what kind of business frameworks or concepts did you embrace? So, give me something that, whether it’s a fully fledge management blueprint or whether it’s a concept that really inspired you and which you decided to take on board and implement in your business?The entrepreneurial spirit evolves over time, as the entrepreneurial journey beats you and infuses you with it. Click To Tweet
Sure, so there are two, two that have been instrumental in our growth. And so, you know, that initial chapter got us up through 2007 to 2009, around the end of 2009, early 2010, as luck would have it, very fortunate to have grown the solo consulting business to the point where I had to start hiring employees. And that became a different challenge. It almost became a separate career. And I like to think about it as a separate career than my technical days of actually doing the work for clients.
So, around 2010, I started hiring employees. I realized I didn’t know jack about managing people. I had never done it, never been exposed to it. I had great managers in my prior careers, but I had never had to do it myself. And I didn’t realize how hard it was. So fast forward to 2015, my current business partner, Brian Forrester, and I merged our two companies together to form Workshop Digital. So, at that point, we were immediately a 20 plus person company. We had to step up and start to build out these frameworks. So, the first two that we adopted and adapted at Workshop Digital are the EOS, or Entrepreneurial Operating System model.
Most people know it by this book, Traction. It’s been our main framework for the last six years, but we also layered in the soft skills part of management that a lot of people don’t talk about, and certainly EOS doesn’t spend as much time on with Andy Grove’s book, which we love called High Output Management. And it provides this framework for managers and employees to communicate on different levels based on their skill sets, their level of maturity at any given tasks. It’s called PRM or task relevant maturity.
So, between the two, the business framework from Traction, which gives us the big picture, how to set our long-term goals, how to work backwards to achieve the vision and all the good stuff that helps drive us forward as a company to the day-to-day soft skills that we train our managers with from high output management. I think we’ve been able to leverage both, but our philosophy has been not to be too rigid with any one particular framework. I think they exist and they serve a purpose, especially for a young company like ours.
There’s a need for that kind of knowledge and experience and common vocabulary that you can’t get if you’re just making it up as you go along. Or if you have managers that come in from different organizations with some experience, but they’re speaking slightly different versions of the same language, so we found that we had to adapt these because neither of them suits our needs perfectly. So, we’ve benefited greatly from having them as resources, but we’ve had to change and modify how we use them and how we mesh things together internally.
I feel strongly that any business that starts to feel like they’re outgrowing perhaps a particular framework, maybe needs to reconsider, is it time to just mix it up and inject your own secret sauce? Because I think there’s some adaptation and improvisation you can do. You don’t strictly have to follow the book letter for letter, and that’s served us well so far.Any business that starts to feel like they're outgrowing a particular framework may need to reconsider and inject their own secret sauce. Click To Tweet
No, I love that concept, and I totally agree with you. I mean, you have to make this framework your own, something that works for your particular business and which you really feel ownership of. Then you can do that, then you made your business more valuable because now you have your own operating system. You’re not running on the US, you’re not running on scaling up, you are running on the virtual digital operating system, and that’s part of the value proposition that you have and that can be extremely powerful. I’d like to ask you a little bit deeper about the Andy Grove, High-Import Management, which one of my favorite books as well. And you mentioned the task relevant maturity. So tell me a little bit about what that means and why is this important?
TRM, it’s a task relevant maturity is a mouthful. So we just, yeah, we call it TRM as he does in the book. It’s the concept of adjusting your management style based on your employees’ level of understanding and accomplishment in a particular task. So think about it as I’m a parent, but it applies in a work setting, it applies in a family setting, it applies in a leadership in a community setting. You have team members or employees or children that have different levels of autonomy and understanding of a particular task. So if I told my kid to go outside and just clean all of the leaves off the yard, they may not know exactly how to do that.Task Relevant Maturity (TRM) is the concept of adjusting your management style based on your employees' level of understanding and accomplishment in a particular task. Click To Tweet
They know what the end goal looks like, leaves got to be off the yard, but they may not have done it before. And they may need a little bit of instruction on how to use the rake, how to get the blower out, how to fill it up with gas. So the TRM concept means that I, as their supervisor, their manager, I have to go out there and show them, sometimes hold their hands, sometimes give them some encouragement at the very basic fundamental building blocks of that task before I can expect them to handle it autonomously.
Then as they get more comfortable with it, they’re out there maybe raking half the yard or they get to a section of the yard they haven’t encountered before. That’s when I can step back until they’ve got a problem. And once they get more mature in that discipline, then they can come back to me for specific help and guidance, but I’m really there to keep them within the guardrails, provide encouragement, motivation, incentive, and help them continue to grow.Your job as a manager is to stand back and provide encouragement, motivation, incentive, and help them continue to grow. Click To Tweet
So maybe someday that becomes, you know, they learn on their own, they learn here, and then maybe they turn that into a, you know, a business of some sort, or they take ownership of it and they go around and start finding other ways to use those same skills around the house. Same thing in business. You have employees that are new to the organization, new to the industry, new to a particular process or task, and they have to be shown how to do it first. So the TRM concept means for those lower maturity tasks, people themselves aren’t low maturity. They have low maturity within that particular task.
They need a little bit more handholding and guidance. And then as their experience and comfort level grows, your job as a manager, as they get medium to high levels of maturity, is to stand back and provide that encouragement. And that is kind of the overarching theme. There’s a lot of conversations that have to happen in there. There’s a lot of ways to adjust your communication styles to the employees’ communication styles and show recognition and appreciation and all of those important concepts. But for us, it allows us to hold our managers accountable for understanding where their employees are at in any given process and time and what they’re doing to help them on their journey towards growing their careers.
I love that insight from Andy Grove that it’s so easy to fall into this trap of, okay, I have a management style and then it’s a one size fits all and I just deliver that style to all of my employees. And that’s going to be very counterproductive because the people who are a rookie in the job, they really need more help, more support, and I need to get more into them. It’s not about micromanaging, it’s helping them be successful.
And someone who is already an expert, they don’t want me to hover over them because it impinges on their autonomy and they’re going to be frustrated, right? They won’t be able to own the job and deliver it their way. So I love that awareness that, okay, where are they on this spectrum and how do you adjust your management style to them? That’s great. That’s a really good approach. So switching gears here a little bit, what you talked about before is that CEOs need to prioritize their marketing programs and obviously help with that. But what is the basis of that? How should a CEO prioritize their marketing program? How do they even know where to start?
It’s different in every organization, right? But I challenge you to find an organization that grows and scales successfully without some sort of marketing component. So marketing is the input for sales in most cases, or in many cases. And our specialty, our niche, is B2B lead generation. So we speak mainly to CEOs, CMOs, VPs, and directors of marketing that need to drive more qualified leads into their sales funnels, their sales pipelines, which I think we’ll talk about in a minute.
But from a CEO’s perspective, we have to understand that the landscape has changed. You know, there are customers right now are more savvy and more intentional about their purchases and considerations than ever before, because we have more resources. Right, if we just put on our customer hat for a minute, whether you’re buying a car or a pasta strainer, you’re going to go online and find the highest ratings, you’re going to find the best reviews, you’re going to compare and price shop, you’re going to look for next day delivery versus same day delivery versus I don’t care if I get it next week delivery.
So all of those decision points, a customer’s engaging with your brand or a competitor’s brand. And so you’ve got to stand out at each of those points. So our philosophy from a CEO or CMO perspective is you need to be present in each of those channels, or as many channels as possible, when customers or prospects are making those informational and research-driven decisions or searches or asking around on social media. Those are the starting points. The rationale for that, and it’s subjective, right? I’m a marketing agency leader, so of course I’m going to say you need to do more marketing. But the stats back it up.
So we lean heavily on a survey done twice a year by the Duke School of Business, the American Marketing Association in Deloitte called the CMO Survey. And it’s freely available, it’s a great resource for anybody, cmosurvey.org. And every six months, they update their findings and it’s all trendable and longitudinal. But the interesting thing is they’ve been really tracking high level executive decision-making around and since the COVID outbreak. And at this current time, we’re almost two years in. So marketers have had time to adjust.
And what that’s telling us, what that’s showing us in the numbers is that for the first time in the last couple of years, digital marketing spending has eclipsed traditional spending by a wide margin. Digital marketing is now 58% of all marketing dollars within plus or minus a few percentage points, depending on which survey you’re looking at. But it’s certainly more than half of the marketing dollars are going online now, which again, follows consumer behaviors. But more importantly, it’s growing at a faster rate than traditional advertising.
The CMO survey, all the marketing leaders that are surveyed every year, every six months, are now more optimistic about the returns from digital marketing. So they’re projecting a 16% increase in digital marketing spending over the next year compared to the previous 12 months, even when all those businesses had to shift online. So if anything, from a CEO perspective, you have to understand where your customers are and where your competition is. And if you’re not considering an investment in marketing or testing and expanding your investment in marketing, you run the risk of being left behind when your customers and your competitors have already migrated primarily online.
And your sales teams ultimately are the ones that are going to be knocking on your door saying, hey boss, boss lady, where are the leads, right? Where are the customers? We’re not getting them the way we used to. The old networking skills, the conferences, the events, the trade shows, the grip and grin events where we’re building those partnerships and relationships aren’t as effective as they used to be. And that’s largely because a lot of the world has shifted online for better or worse in the last couple of years. And so our role as digital marketers and any marketing and sales driven organization should be following those trends and making sure that they’re keeping up with the times while still sustaining and supporting the business that got them there.
So, it sounds a little bit overwhelming to me as a lay person to be everywhere, present everywhere. I mean, I do social media, but to be present in all the channels, it sounds almost a gargantuan task. So is the 20-80 rule, the Pareto principle, does it apply here? Is it worth focusing on the 20% of the channels that will yield the most results or you have to be ubiquitous and omnipresent?
You don’t have to be everywhere. So yeah, I think it’s worth pointing out and it’s a very good observation that, you know, just because some brands are successful on TikTok or Snapchat or YouTube or Facebook or LinkedIn doesn’t mean that you as a marketer or brand or a company or a leader have to be everywhere because, you know, certainly as a small business, we’re resource constrained like everybody else. We can’t possibly engage on every channel, nor should we.
So our advice is typically with companies that are coming to us saying, well, how much should we spend or where should we spend the money? Where should we invest our time and resources? It’s start where your customers are currently, right? And a lot of times that starts with understanding who your actual customers are today and who you want them to be in the future. So we work with companies to understand their current customer base. We dig into their CRM data. We talk to their salespeople. We talk to their customers, the ones that they landed in, the ones that got away. And we try to really understand who they’re trying to reach and what their main motivations are.
So that way we can then go map those to the channels that their prospective customers are actually using. And there may be a few people that could be influenced by the next great viral video or TikTok ad or a Facebook campaign, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend money there. Most cases, the number one denominator across all these customer bases and prospective audiences is search engines. And our agency as a search engine marketing specialist agency really focuses on reaching those customers at the moment that they’re typing something into a search engine.
So they’re looking for information or resources or to transact in some way. And so at the very least, we recommend you’ve got to be present when people have the intent and there’s a high demand for your products or services to be there on search and then expand out from there. So then you can expand into display advertising or video or social media, wherever your customers are to start to extend the brand and build that awareness. And that’s what really builds that layered kind of concentric circle, if you want to think about it that way, focus around supporting your brand, expanding out to reach your current customers when they’re ready to transact.
And then from there, starting to build out from your central foundation to reach more and more people that may not have heard of you yet. What we see a lot of brands do and the mistakes we see them make is try to go too big too early. And that ultimately results in spreading yourself too thin. Every company, regardless of size and marketing budget has a finite budget. They can’t be everywhere. That’s why there’s thousands of advertisers in your news feeds, in your search results. Nobody can afford to dominate them all. So we’ve got to be very selective and targeted about where are you going to focus your time and energy.
So, basically what I’m understanding is, you first you do your research and then you figure out where your customers are. You start there and then you expand. So how do you know when to expand? How do you measure the ROI of these opportunities? And then how do you know what are the priority order, which channels are going to work for you?
Yeah, so the first thing to understanding ROI is you have to understand what your return is. It’s easy to measure investment, right? You can easily quantify how much you’re spending and paying Google or Facebook or Workshop Digital. Those are knowable things. Many companies, especially those that transact offline or over a long sales cycle, have trouble understanding the R part, the return part, because they can’t track the value and certainly the lifetime value of a new customer.
So, to really answer the ROI question, you’ve got to understand how much a customer is worth to you. So that’s where you’ve got to go back to your sales data, your CRM data, and start to map out. Even if it’s at a, you’re taking the average or the mean of these transactional values, you’ve got to start with something in mind of an average customer is worth X dollars to me over Y number of years. Then we can work backwards and say, well, how much does it cost to acquire one of those customers? Now, how much do we have to spend to acquire the X, the Z number of leads to acquire one of those customers? So very simple.
The simple math is for every one customer, if you’ve got a 10 percent close rate on your sales team, you need 10 qualified leads, right? And if you’ve got a 10% qualification rate on those leads, you need a hundred generated leads to deliver those 10 qualified leads to deliver one sale. So then it becomes easier. You’re giving your marketing team or your marketing partner some clear direction on the economics of what you can afford to spend to generate a customer, which kind of gets to your question of how do you decide where to spend?
You go to where the most efficient cost per acquisition is first. You always want to scoop up those customers or prospects that are the cheapest to acquire. So that can be search engines in most cases because they’re the ones that are lowest in the proverbial marketing funnel, the most, ready to convert or transact because they’re literally telling you what they want. They’re there on Google to research, engage or buy something.
Then you can expand outwards to say, well, where are the next batch of most acquirable customers? And that’s where you have to get, you have to start thinking through, you know, their behaviors, their likes, their interests, their browsing attitudes and their browsing behaviors. And sometimes it’s social media, sometimes it’s display ads or YouTube ads. But to the decision of when to expand comes at the point where you start hitting diminishing returns. So, you know, you’re not going to have an infinite number of qualified leads coming from Google or Bing or Yahoo.
At some point, you’re going to tap out or you’re going to get it’s going to get too expensive to the point where your competitors are driving up your costs. You have to look elsewhere to acquire more customers and more leads. So that’s typically when you’re when you’re starting to see that plateau on a diminishing returns curve, which is sometimes objective, sometimes subjective, that’s when you need to start thinking about branching out and layering other parts of the marketing mix.
Okay, so basically the way I understand this, let’s say I can, when I get a customer, maybe the lifetime value of the customer is $10,000, for example, or whatever it is. And maybe I make a gross margin on that customer of maybe 40% and I could give up 10% from that. So maybe I can afford to spend 10% of the lifetime value of the customer.
So let’s say that’s $1,000 and then I need to figure out, okay, so what is the maximum amount that it’s worth spending for me on my marketing in order to… It’s $1,000. So how do I spend that $1,000 the most efficiently? And let’s say I have Facebook is going to generate me $100 a lead that I convert, maybe $100 converted lead. And then the next one is going to be maybe YouTube, which is going to cost me $500. And then maybe TikTok is $800. And then anything beyond $1,000 will not be worth. So I can go to three channels where I can efficiently generate customers. Is this how it works?
Typically, yes. But the scenario you just described is every marketer’s holy grail, right? Where you have perfect data and perfect attribution of each lead. And in reality, it’s way messier than that. So typically, what we’re doing is we’re not assigning, we’re not able to in many cases, assign a specific dollar amount to a specific channel because they all work together, right? You could have a Facebook ad that somebody views but doesn’t click on that drives them to a search result on Google or Yahoo or Bing later.
So, we look at what’s called assisted conversions or attribution or multi-channel funnels. They’re all variations of the same theme, essentially trying to assign partial credit to each of those touch points to say which combinations of these channels are working best and maybe even in what order. So, you know, Facebook and TikTok may not drive the actual leads into your funnel or your pipeline. They may be assisting a conversion later on when somebody has that brand recognition or remembers the offer or the content that you were promoting or sharing earlier when they go to do a search.
So, our job as marketers or within your marketing organization, your job is not to say, well, you know, Facebook is a $500 cost per lead. It’s combined, and in these ratios, the aggregate or average cost per lead or cost to acquire a customer is under your $1,000 target. So, in many cases, unless you have perfect data and perfect clarity, which very, very few advertisers do, you’re left with those directional decisions. And that’s often as far as we can go unless you’ve got a perfect closed loop, especially with offline transactions, it’s very, very hard to do, to trace revenue and lifetime value back to an initial impression or click on an ad or a video view of some sort.
So those are kind of the biggest marketing challenges we’re trying to solve today, which brings us back around to why we still proclaim and profess brands should be in as many channels as they can afford to be present in and do well, right? Not all the channels, but they should cover the basics. And what we found in our research, we’ve actually gone out and analyzed, thousands of companies across their entire digital footprint.
And we found that the most successful brands are the ones that are engaging in search and social advertising, and they’ve created a great user experience on their website. They’re getting great engagement in their organic social media. So we put together a digital acquisition rankings report that shows which brands are excelling at widening their footprint. And the hypothesis there is they’re better positioned in more places to attract more customers. So we don’t care which channels they’re on. The point is that they’re covering as many channels as they can and doing it well enough to get high engagement, great search volume, great brand recognition, positive website experiences on their own website. So all of that in our experience are the ingredients to driving more customers online.
Okay, so I can clearly see how Coca-Cola can do that or Dominion Energy or some of these big companies because they have a big budget and they can leverage, they have lots of business that they can leverage so they can use this Chesser, not a shotgun approach, but the, what do you call it, the rifle approach, not the rifle approach, but the shotgun approach, whatever. So they can spread, they can bombard the whole market with the message, but what does a small business entrepreneur do? So we obviously don’t have the budget. You can’t just blanket, corporate bomb everything. Do we still try to be in as many places as possible or do we prioritize?
Well, yeah, at that point you’ve got to prioritize, right? And one of the things we hear the most is, you know, if we can acquire customers, whether it’s e-commerce or lead generation, if we can acquire customers below, you know, a thousand dollars per new customer, then the budget is infinite. Well, that’s the biggest fallacy in digital marketing is, you know, A, there’s no such thing as infinite budgets, but B, at some point, you’re going to run up against constraints, either in your sales team or your supply chain or your website’s capacity. Like, there’s no such thing as infinite anything.
So, you know, that’s a hyperbole. But the example I’m trying to draw is you’ve got to start where your customers are. So if you’re a local business, you rely on foot traffic. Obviously, you want to focus in on your local market. It’s a lot easier to stand out as a big fish in a small pond if you can hyper target your ads around your retail locations or your physical locations. Now that’s great for healthcare practices. It’s great for any service-based business that works in a certain area. It’s great for retail shops that aren’t typically pulling in customers from maybe more than 30, 45 minutes away by car.
So that gives you some guidance on how far you can reach. They don’t necessarily have to compete with Coca-Cola or Amazon at the national level. You can really aim to own your local market from a geographic perspective. But let’s say you are a service-based business and your customers are everywhere. You’ve got to pick a niche or lane and stick with it. Right, again, we’re a 30person company, but we can’t compete with 300 people digital marketing agencies. We don’t have the budget or the resources, nor can we handle the capacity that they can at any given time, so while we have our differentiators and we have a strong value proposition and all that good stuff. We can’t service everybody.
So we’ve chosen our primary lane is lead generation for companies that want to reach buyers in a B2B environment, right? So, business to business sellers. We do extremely well and have a lot of experience in that, so we don’t have to compete against every other digital marketing company in the world, essentially. It’s a global economy now. We can stay focused on meeting the needs of our customers where they are. And for those customers, we can stand out because we can develop more relevant case studies.
We can build more relevant content for them, speak their language, integrate with their CRMs and their platforms, and really understand their business challenges. And that gives us a leg up over somebody that may come from a different specialty in retail or e-commerce, where they’re going to have a harder time adjusting to the lead gen or B2B environments. So that’s my advice for any business is figure out, really who you cater to and what’s your specialties and differentiators are. And then it becomes easier to see that perhaps it’s a smaller pie, but you can claim a bigger piece of it.Figure out who you cater to and what your specialties and differentiators are. It becomes easier to claim a bigger piece of a smaller pie. Click To Tweet
And then maybe those people are not going to be everywhere. Maybe if I’m a business to business marketer and I target low firms, for example, they’re not going to be on TikTok most likely. They might not even be on Instagram. They’re going to be on LinkedIn for sure. Maybe they’re going to be on Twitter as well, maybe on YouTube. But it’s going to be a more limited area of social media channels. And then I can just focus on carpet bombing, maybe those three channels.
And tailor the message. OK, so that’s, that’s clear. So so moving on from there, I mean, one of the issues I hear a lot is that marketing and sales don’t work well together. So sales is looking for what they call sales qualified leads, something that can be converted into customer right away, and marketing produces, and marketing qualified leads, and MQLs and SQLs don’t speak to each other. Do you find this happening and what’s the solution? What is the bridge between them?
Everyday, we see this because as long as there’s been marketing and sales, there’s been disagreement about the quality of the leads or the sales team’s ability to close, right? The leads are crap, well, the close rates suck. We’ve seen it and we try not to get in the middle of it. Like it’s not our job to determine that. It’s our job to get everybody at the same table talking. So the healthiest organizations and the ones that we see succeed and exceed their goals are the ones where both sides of the table can come together and agree that we all have the same vested interest in generating more qualified leads from the right types of buyers that are warm enough and ready to close for the sales team.
But here’s where that breaks down because it’s easy to start throwing around opinions or in some cases, accusations, we’ve seen it all, that one side or the other of the house is not doing their job. But we like to, we defer to the data, right? So when marketing saying, we’re marketers, but we don’t have a dog in this hunt. You know, we work with the marketing team usually, but we ended up finding more allies on the sales side because they’re the ones that want the higher quality leads.
So when marketing is saying, hey, the sales team’s dropping the ball on these leads, they’re not closing them well enough. We can go to the sales team and say, hey, tell me about the leads you’re getting, like where are their disconnect? What’s the follow up process? Show us where they live in your CRM and how you’re tracking them and how your sales process unfolds and where those touch points are that we can then measure. And conversely, if a sales team is saying, hey, the lead quality sucks, then we can go back to the marketing team and say, well, let’s figure out where the breakdown is because here’s what we’re hearing from the sales team about what really drives a great lead.
So sometimes we have to be that go between, that mediator that speaks both languages, but ultimately, and many, many companies are doing a better job of this today than they used to be, because we have to be. But there’s still a lot of companies out there where the teams don’t get along. They’re not, even if they’re not co-located, there’s still a wall, artificial wall between the sales and marketing functions. So we’ve got to bring data to an opinion fight. You know, that’s another big thing we’re big believers of is data doesn’t tell the entire story, but it’s a heck of a lot better story than he said, she said. So we’re constantly fighting those struggles.
And it’s, you know, they’re valid opinions on both sides. Like there is a breakdown between sales and marketing and it’s hurting the entire organization. So our job is to come in and help sort that out. And then we can’t fix the sales process, but we can guide the sales team towards, you know, here are the types of leads we can deliver. Here’s what you can expect from a marketing funnel.
Then we’ve got to go back and build that marketing funnel or that apparatus to go actually deliver those leads. And that’s where we earn our money. That’s our accountability is to, once we identify and share a common goal, to build that pipeline of leads to the sales team, measure the outcomes and feed all that information back into the marketing process so that it’s continually iterating and refining and getting better. And one team doesn’t feel left out at the expense of the other.
So I don’t know about the listeners, but I often feel that marketing is an overwhelming challenge to understand where the customers are, what their needs are, how do you talk to them, what channels they prioritize, and then how do you create those marketing qualified leads that can become sales qualified leads and create customers, and then do it within your budget and have a good return and ultimately drive lifetime value. So thanks for walking us through all these steps. That’s I think it’s very helpful. So if listeners would like to learn more about what Workshop Digital does, and also maybe want to connect with you personally, where should they go and how can they find you?
I will share that. I want to share one tip on the last point, because as you were talking, it brought to mind the one simple thing that sales-based companies can start doing now that’s essentially free, is using your existing customer lists from your CRM or your email newsletter or wherever you store that essentially spreadsheet of customers’ names, phone numbers, email addresses, those types of things.
You can upload those to Google or Facebook or Twitter and see how that matches against their audience and use that as a either an audience you can target with ads or content, or you can build what’s called lookalike audiences, which is, you know, show me all the people that look like your current customers. So you know, I wanted to make it practical and applicable too, because a lot of it’s theoretical, the stuff we’re talking about. But step one is just taking a look at your current customers and finding out how you can engage more of them online.
So sorry for the tangent, but we’re an open book. As you can see, we’re at workshopdigital.com. We’re online in a lot of places. We run community meetups. We publish rankings, data and results like our digital acquisition rankings that I referenced earlier. We publish all that information in the methodology. It’s at workshopdigital.com slash rankings. Freely available. We love sharing those kinds of resources because it helps inform and educate more marketers and sales teams to help them improve their lead generation efforts.
For me personally, I’m all over LinkedIn. I love LinkedIn as a platform. I learned so much there and build my network. And that’s one of the ways we connected, Steve so the LinkedIn force is strong within me. So, if you want to look me up, I’m happy to connect. And I love chatting about this kind of stuff all day long. So, questions, ideas, your own experiences, please send them to me on email at andrew.workshopdigital.com or on LinkedIn, and I’d love to keep the conversation going.
Okay, well, great information. So please do reach out to Andrew Miller, co-founder and VP of strategy of Workshop Digital. And if you enjoyed this episode, please don’t forget to rate or review us on Apple Podcast or subscribe on YouTube and stay tuned because next week I’ll have another exciting entrepreneur sharing all their knowledge and their management blueprint with us. Thank you, Andrew, for coming on the show.
Thank you, Steve. See you soon.
- Pinnacle: Five Principles that Take Your Business to the Top of the Mountain
- Andrew’s LinkedIn
- High Output Management by Andy Grove
- Traction by Gino Wickman
- Andrew’s email: Andrew@workshopdigital.com
- The CMO Survey Website
- Steve Preda’s Book: Buyable
- Complete the Buyability Assessment for Your Business