It’s the 8th episode of Meaningful Conversations with B2B Experts – No fluff. Meaningful conversations only.

To be honest, I had this “eyebrow-lifting” expression on for the whole time when I checked the interview we did with David.

Don’t believe me? Here’re some of his statements:

“Gated content is sh*t – don’t do it.”

“I am not looking for skills – I can teach an ape to do it.”

“Marketing is the greatest invention since sliced bread”.

He is a person with many bold opinions and a strong personality (I LOVE him).

As the VP of Marketing at e-bot7, he has solid experience and practical tactics to support every point he made. You definitely have to check it out.

Highlight 1: What’s the best piece of advice about marketing I have ever received?

I’m over-generalizing this. But every marketer I’ve ever spoken to or listened to is trying to sell their snake oil. For stuff that actually works and stuff that is actually good, they are not sharing it to the world or to other colleagues, until that day that it doesn’t work as well or this person is found something else.

It’s like a closely guarded secret, like the Coca-Cola recipe, you can still reverse engineer it, and figure out what others have done to make it successful. But nobody will straight up tell you.

So the only advice I could give to other marketers listening to this is: do not listen to other marketers, trust in what you think is right, and what would work for yourself with this is usually the way to success.

Highlight 2: What’s the craftiest way I have been prospected?

I get prospected. Like a dozen or more times every single day. Most of them have not even read my profile or spent their time researching my background.

But if somebody is brutally honest, and approaching me, and telling me upfront what it is they want from me, and what I get out of it by investing my time (because I have no idea why I should invest my time). That’s usually a good start.

Highlight 3: What are the three tips you would give other marketers?

  1. Do not listen to other people’s advice – do what you think is right.
  2. Always be open and try to figure out what sales actually want you to do.
  3. People usually say something, but they mean something else.

In this case, this is what you need to do:

Sit down with every sales employee or at least with your country managers on a weekly basis.

Tell them upfront, brutally honest, transparent, what kind of numbers you’re looking at in marketing, how you think the sales department is performing, and what you in marketing are, are trying to do to fix the problem.

And then listen to what they are responding to and what they are telling you how they would approach this problem.

Usually, you will, you will always find common ground and you would find something you both can work on and make your organization more profitable and more successful.

Highlight 4: How important do you think storytelling actually is?

If you’re able to transport a story, that of success, or of freedom, or being financially sound, or whatever it is the triggers that other person or that triggers what your company is trying to achieve, and the other person understands this, he will buy into your product – irrelevant of price.

You are the one that achieves that feeling in him, and he will trust you with it. Because he’s able to relate to you.

That’s why you need storytelling.

Highlight 5: What’ll be your first marketing hire and why?

I’m absolutely not looking for skill.

I’m looking for motivation and being hungry, and really wanting to learn what it means to build up a marketing department or a marketing team to really be successful.

Everything that we’re doing in marketing, brutally honest here, it’s not rocket science. I could teach an ape to do what we are doing. However, being successful takes somebody who is willing to learn and is willing to learn from fails.

Not everybody is like that. A lot of people say they are, but they can’t cope with failure.

I learned from these mistakes. So my golden nugget became a little bit bigger, then the chunk became a little bit bigger, and I can pass that bigger chunk off to the next generation to the new hire.

And that new hire shouldn’t just chip away from that gold nugget, he/she should also add to that nugget, and every generation is coming after is going to be bigger and better and understanding more and more and more about this subject.

Want to check the uncut full text? Here's your transcript.

(Transcription Automated)

Jan 00:02

Now it’s recorded. No, you have to say yes or something.

David 00:11

Okay, so why did I choose to work in marketing? Um, that’s a amazing question. I think marketing is the most amazing department, any organization can have. A, we can spend a shitload of money. B, we are responsible for the success or the failure of a company. And C, we can be, we can do whatever we want. We can be creative, we can be nitty gritty, we can deep dive into KPIs and number crunch the shit out of everything we can analyze and do stuff that is transparent, and measurable. And the best thing of it all, we’re still spending a lot of money. At the end of the day, we’re also building a marketing engine or a growth engine where it doesn’t matter how much money we’re putting into the machine … outcomes, more money. So we’re generating money, where the money isn’t, is a perpetual mobility. And this is something that I absolutely love doing.

Jan Mundorf 01:13

And I love this answer, David. Very nice. Let’s do the next.

David 01:20

What’s the best piece of advice about marketing I have ever received? Whoa. Quite honestly, I’ve never received good or great marketing advice ever. Every marketer I’ve ever spoken to or I’ve ever listened to. I’m over generalizing this. But everybody is trying to sell their snake oil. Stuff that actually works and stuff that is actually good – Every marketer that has found that out is not sharing it to the world or to other colleagues, until that day that it doesn’t work as well, or this person is found something else. It’s like a closely guarded secret, like the Coca Cola recipe, you can still reverse engineer it, and figure out what others have done to make it successful. But nobody will straight up tell you. So the only advice I could give to other marketers listening to this is do not listen to other marketers trust in what you think is right. And what would work for yourself with this is usually the way to success.

Jan 02:34

Boom. Nice, very nice. Love that statement. Now want to know, my favorite question.

David 02:43

What’s the craftiest way I have been prospected? Well, obviously, by you, I think I’ve been prospected many, many times over. Usually, I get prospected. Like a dozen or more times at each single day. Most of them have not even reading or spending my time on that simply do not have the time to do that. But if somebody is brutally honest, and approaching me, and telling me upfront what it is they want from me, and what they get out of it, me investing my time, because I have no idea why I should invest my time. If so, first and foremost, I am investing my time to make somebody else happy. For me being able to understand why this is important to somebody else. That’s usually a good start. For me, at least.

Jan 03:38

or Thank you kind words from someone who gets prospected a lot. Thanks. That means a lot. Next one

David 03:46

gated content or not why. Gated content is shit. Don’t do it. If you have to get your content, that usually means you do not have a product people are really interested in. If you have great, amazing content, share it to the world. If it’s good, if it’s if it’s content that is as good as that people will want to reach out to you they will gated or not. So why keeping the good stuff out and not sharing it to the people. Let me start sharing it. I mean, we are like drug dealers, you know, drug dealers would never tell a new prospect, hey, you need to pay first, or you need to give me your contact details before I’ll give you a hit. They’ll give it to you for free. And if you like it, then you probably will, you will come back for more. And this is exactly the thing with gated content or non gated content.

Jan 04:43

that’s that’s a really interesting answer for you. We haven’t received that so much. So yeah, but I told you subscribed like why should we just keep it for ourselves? just you know, share it and if they actually find value, they will come back they will like what you do and they will connect you towards the things said you’re doing.

David 05:01

It’s over simplified. As always, obviously, there are things like yeah, top of the funnel, middle of the funnel bottom bottom of the funnel content pieces. And some you still need to have some some form of content gated or get in front of it, but not for the majority of stuff like like, you should give away 95% of your stuff and just keep the little 5% or the gold nuggets, if you still want the little gold nugget that you still can can gate. But but the whole knowledge and your expertise and your thought leadership should be absolutely free.

Jan 05:42

Love it, it’s great. I think that’s also whether whether the smart marketers, or the majority or the thought leaders are going through so yeah, love it. Let’s, let’s take the next one.

David 05:54

What are the three tips I would give other marketers to try to break down silos between sales and marketing? three tips. Like I said earlier, do not listen to other people’s advice is the first thing, do what you think is right. From your perspective, always be open and try to figure out what sales actually wants you to do this, people usually say something, but they mean something else. When sales. I mean, every market has heard this before sales is coming to you and say the leadership I usually the response. No, these are the Glengarry Ross the leads, and you need to be always be closing, when you’re telling me that you’re that you’re able to close I am able to deliver you more valuable stuff. But those seelos that you’re talking about is how can I make my work more transparent. So sales is able to understand what I’m doing and what I’m trying to achieve versus sales trying to tell me what they are trying to achieve. We need to somehow streamline and align what I would say. And what I’ve always proposed is sit down with every sales employee or at least with your country managers on a weekly basis. Tell them up front, brutally honest, transparent, what kind of numbers you’re looking at in marketing, how you think the sales department is performing, and what you in marketing are, are trying to do to fix the problem. And then listen to what they are responding to and what they are telling you how they would approach this problem. Usually you will, you will always find common ground and you would find something you both can work on and make your organization more profitable and more successful. Those are not three different ones. But I think it’s a pretty good one

Jan Mundorf 08:12

doesn’t matter. It’s great advice. And I it’s so hard because we get so swept away, you know, short term, long term goals. Everybody’s under so much pressure, we aren’t a lot of pressure from the day to day, we forget to sit down and actually like be honest and transparent with the numbers that we have and show them and yeah, I love that you know that that idea of the revenue team makes sense, you know that you’re aligned towards one goal, ie you shouldn’t shouldn’t call the revenue at whatever. But it’s important that you that you come together and sit down.

David 08:41

I absolutely I do. There’s also another misconception that there are good numbers or good KPIs and bad KPIs or bad numbers. Such a thing I think does not exist, I actually welcome bad results are bad numbers. Why? Because I can do more with bad numbers than I can do with good numbers of people doing mistakes is completely natural. And this is human, this will always be the case. Learning from these mistakes and knowing what you shouldn’t repeat in future will automatically make you more successful every single time. Never be afraid to share bad numbers of trying to fake your your graphs and trajectories and trend lines, so it looks like you’re successful. Because honestly, in German, there’s a saying like like, never trust that this sticks that you didn’t fake yourself. Yeah, yeah, statistics can lie. But if you’re always transparent about your numbers, you don’t need to be afraid about sharing bad results. Share these results because everybody can learn from them. But then also Obviously, you’re going to be held responsible to fixing these things in the future. And if you are doing that, and you focus on that you will become successful, more successful every single day. And on one hand, and within 100 days, you won’t be 100% more successful. It’s compounding interest.

Jan 10:24

compounded interest. Yeah, yeah.

David 10:26

Yeah. So this will make you tremendously successful over time.

Jan Mundorf 10:31

Love it, love it. Now, the tool question,

David 10:35

what tools help you the most in your day to day? Albacorss. Now, to be honest, I think of this as a tool as a muscle, it’s a brain. A, our brain needs constant training. In today’s world in 2021, we’re so distracted by everything as I know, every year, we’re saying, keep repeating these same things, but but it’s a downward spiral. I can’t remember the last time I really sat down. And we’re able to think for half an hour. And that really mean think something strategically through from A to Z, and really think about the different possibilities, what kind of options I have, what, what things what could lead out of these things, this is really hard. And if you try to do this, I’m pretty sure most people today would start to become or get a headache, they would need like, like an aspirin, half an hour thinking that I think this is really hard. And you need to, you need to develop this, this urge that before you are leaping into action, or reaction. Now really take a step back, think about the problem. What could a solution actually be? And what do you need to do to execute on that? And what will you do if it doesn’t work? If you do this, that this is the greatest tool that you can actually have no technical tools, no phones, no software, everything. Everything else is just the icing on the cake.

Jan 12:31

Yeah, this is so true, have you? I think it’s about deep work, right? Having the ability to focus on one single thing, at one time, is actually the most efficient competitive advantage in the 21st century, right? Because we are so you know, up and everything else, but being able to really sit down silence and focus on something will will make you better. So yeah, I absolutely love that advice. Thanks, man. It’s like, because we always say like, we need another tool, we need another tool. But no, you just have to make the best out of what you already have in front of you. Right?

David 13:10

So yeah, sometimes, I mean, sometimes, obviously, you need, you need additional tools. Sometimes you need stuff to do, right, you can build a house, just with your bare hands. But before you’re going to start your house, we should at least sit down and think about how your house should look like you will not start with the foundation, not knowing how big the house is going to be, or how big that house needs to be, or how deep the foundation needs to be dug out. So these things always come first. And those are 90% of the work. The tooling just helps you do it faster.

Jan Mundorf 13:48

That’s great. I think is a perfect segue into something that’s that’s not on this list. But something we just spoke about before, which is the power of storytelling. Yeah. Well, like you’re very good with, like you told us about like a campaign about like the smiles, you know, making actually people smile to evoke an emotion. Like, how, what do you think like, where storytelling is going in the b2b space right now. And how important do you think it actually is?

David 14:21

Yeah. A lot of people are talking about storytelling. They’re also talking about, you know, like, like, how storytelling should be structured and how you’re doing this etc. If you really break down what storytelling actually is, storytelling is, like the word says, telling a story, but it’s not about sharing information. It’s about sharing a common experience, a feeling and emotion that you had. The exact words within that story is irrelevant. You just want the other person to understand how you feel, how it made you feel, and how they can re-live that moment you have, that is storytelling. And, and in b2c, this has been celebrated. For a long time there, there has been Madison Avenue, there were the Coca Cola campaigns, and they made the bears diamond campaigns, and they told every human why you should buy a diamond or why you should drink Pepsi Cola, or your why you should do or don’t do things. In b2b. However, this is unchartered waters, like everybody has been always focusing on. I need to be selling to a company, I’m talking to a company, I’m talking to us to a title within a company organization that has the right to sign or has right to buy or something like that, that that’s not true, you are talking to other human being, and this other human being irrelevant in his work for a company or not, is basing his decisions on his personal beliefs, on his personal experiences and feelings. And if you’re able to transport a story, that of success, or of freedom, or, or being being financially sound, or whatever it is the triggers that other person or or that triggers what what your company is trying to achieve. And the other person understands this, he will buy into your product, irrelevant of price, irrelevant event of if your product is actually the best one, you are the one that cat that achieves that feeling in Him, and He will trust you with it. Because he’s able to relate to you. That’s why you need storytelling.

Jan 16:58

Yeah, I love that. It’s so, so true. It’s really about, like you said, like a test to be a real story. But the story has to be real. So that you know, you can actually vote that promotion, like you can tell a fake story, right? Otherwise, they won’t believe you. They won’t trust you. And they cannot relate. So yeah, that’s, that’s great. Um, do we can maybe skip some of these? That’s an interesting one, and about hiring your first marketing person. Like, if you were to hire someone in marketing, will first hire. And why would you hire that person?

David 18:02

I’m absolutely not looking for skill. I’m looking for motivation, and being hungry, and really wanting to learn what it means to build up a marketing department or a marketing team to really be successful. everything that we’re doing in marketing, brutally honest here. That’s not rocket science. I could teach an ape to do what we are doing. To do it, however, successfully take somebody who is willing to learn and is willing to learn from states. Not everybody is like that. A lot of people say they are, but they can’t cope with failure. I am looking for somebody who is able to cope from failure is not afraid of failure, and is also not afraid of communicating his failures because that’s the only way on how to really succeed and really become better. We are humans. And this is why we are the top of the race on planet Earth is because we were we are able to pass information from generation to generation. So I obviously learned a lot of things from my mentors from my superiors in my time, obviously, I took they told me what has worked for for them and which failures they had, I was able to learn from that they gave me the golden nuggets they had I used them, I tried to adapt them. But obviously some of them didn’t work. Some of them didn’t work as well. But I learned from from these mistakes. So my golden nugget became a little bit bigger that the chunk became a little bit bigger, and I can pass that bigger chunk off to the next generation to to the new hire. And that new hire shouldn’t just chip away from that gold nugget should also add to that nugget and every generation is coming after after after us. is going to be bigger and better and understanding more and more and more about this subject.

Jan Mundorf 20:05

I have a great lofted analogy. It’s always on like some some parts get that away, sometimes you add you know what, in the end, does compounding gets bigger. If we look now in the in the future of the b2b space, yeah. What do you think will happen? What What is the thing like that? We’re like irisa at a great question on that. And the lunch alone. I want just want to repeat that, like, what is the thing that you would like to see that would make your life easier as a marketer?

David 20:36

Oh, AI. We all hate hate our AI overlords. They are coming for us, and they will make our lives miserable, I think. Yeah, I

Jan 20:48

mean, you’re on the forefront of evil. Like, why do you think why do you think they

David 20:54

I don’t want to scare people. I think AI is an amazing achievement. And also think that AI will leverage everything that we’re doing, even in those spaces where a lot of brainpower is still needed, or where we today don’t think that machines can actually outperform us. But even today, I mean, even if we’re doing paid campaigning, we’re not doing this manually anymore. At least not the way we did it, like five or 10 years ago, there is an AI behind that that really does all of the AV testing that it tries to figure out the best combination about how much money is being spent on what keyboards and what keywords and what placements, on what mediums for what kind of campaigns for what language and regions and for our target personas is much too complicated to do all of that. On scale yourself. The same thing is also going to happen in marketing for copy, for how you’re presenting to people, like imagine just having one ad copy for your whole organization. This is basically what this is the case today with websites, you’re having one website for everybody. You have one headline copy and copy text and call to action for everybody visiting website. Does this make sense? No, it doesn’t. But there is no not really a good technology out there today, that really leverage is that. In the future, we are going to have some AI tool where a marketer or marketing team sits behind says okay, this, these are our goals, these are our target personas. And this is what we figured is the best way to approach them and whoever is deviating from that solution and, or deviate from that target person, that AI is going to change things up and really get the most out of these customers. Yeah, so I think there’s lots, there’s lots coming for us. Lots of changes happened.

Jan 23:06

So marketers be scared.

David 23:09

No, absolutely not. Absolutely not. There’s still one thing where I believe AI is very far from and this is creativity. Information still needs to be passed to to these machines. And in terms of marketing and speaking from human to another human. You still need a human to do that. Although machines can be very good. You still need that spark of genius and spark of creativity. Yeah, and I don’t think this is very near this this won’t happen in the near future. Yeah, if

Jan Mundorf 23:51

not, now we make we make a hard shift here. I mean, you you get approached a lot you buy software you say no to demos you say yes. If you would improve the way you buy software right now as a VP, how and what would you change products? That’s a very good question. Um, I have to think about it as well like for me I oftentimes feel that you know, you get approached with it with the right and the wrong information at the at the wrong time. Like I heard a lot of people like to head cold calls. But why do people hate cold calls because it’s not not relevant to them. It’s not personalized, like but if you could change that experience and actually be there at the right time with with the right message, that that could totally change. So the thing that I would like to see often speaking to others, they say like, like give the right information give be at the right time for me, like speak to him when when when I am ready, you know, and to that, but but I don’t know, that’s abroad.

David 25:12

I’m not sure I would probably go into a different direction here, go, please go, I would say this takes a paradigm shift in, in, in, in how we as human beings consume products purchase things for, for example. I just imagine it this way, right? Today, if I go onto a marketplace and have lots of different stands there, and lots that said, lots of different products, some of them are same or similar, some are different. And I have to walk through and look for everything that they actually want or desire. And then I have to start talking to every one of them. Let’s say I’m in the market for buying apples. I like apples, I’m hungry, I want to eat apples. So now I think, and then try to compare. So there are obviously products out on the market that that help me compare easier. For example, in tech, where software solutions would probably be jeetu, or kaptara, or whatever, whatever floats someone’s boat, right

Jan 26:19

on our reviews for the German ones now.

David 26:24

But just imagine me being able to go to that same marketplace. And I would stand outside. And I would say I am hungry. Not I want to buy apples because I’m hungry, like I am hungry. And now people can come to me and start telling me how I can make my hunger go away. Maybe someone will come to me say hey, I miss apples, some other ones. Some someone else will come to me and say I have oranges. And so now I’m not in the market for oranges. So don’t like oranges. He didn’t know that’s fine. But now somebody else is approaching me and telling me Hey, I have dragon fruit. I’m like, What the hell is dragonfruit? Never heard of this before? Oh, my God, this is amazing. I want this. So I think how software should be sourced in future is I should desire or I should be able to somehow communicate the need I want to feel and not necessarily how I want to feel that need, if that makes sense.

Jan Mundorf 27:32

Yeah. Makes a lot of sense. Yeah, you just simplify a lot of things. Yeah, for sure. I would love that this. This sounds this sounds great. Cool. Last one, because then you have to run you have a lot of things going on there all chaos meeting and so forth. So considering that most marketing projects takes time to get results, right, that’s a lot of the clashes from marketing and sales comes from sales once present. No, no, no, no. Now, marketing also about some initiatives just takes longer. How do you make sure to convince the stakeholders, the other takers to buy into that thing that you want to do the project you want to do?

David 28:14

There’s an easy answer. And there’s not so easy answer. And there’s an answer for everybody will hate me for Go for it. I’ll go with the last one for sure. I don’t simply because I don’t care. The companies hire marketing teams to deliver a certain result, how we are delivering that result is entirely up to us. I don’t have to convince other stakeholders to do what they should be doing. I am enabling other stakeholders to do their job. This is something that some marketers haven’t really grasped that concept yet, everybody’s thinking, we are the marketing department. We are the ones everybody should follow. That’s true in one sense. But the marketing department is first and foremost role is to actually enable sales and enable BDR and enabled product and enable the CEO to do their jobs. And to do the jobs really well. Yeah, we are holding hands along the way along the whole customer journey. And externally and internally within the company until this client or customer exits and doesn’t want to hear from us ever again. Marketing is is part of that journey all the time. So I don’t I shouldn’t have to convince others, how to do the marketing projects. We are there to actually enable them. And in most cases, other departments don’t even know what marketing departments are able to do. So we’re just piggybacking off ideas and say, Hey, are you really sending out 50 follow up emails that are the same every single day. Like, why don’t you automate that? Well, I don’t know how to do that. Well, we do have the tools to do that for you. Just tell me exactly what you want to communicate and we’ll do this for you. And you can focus on other things that bring in more revenue or, or push more products or push more features. Whatever it is, marketing is always there to help others within the company and obviously also bring in new business.

Jan 30:36

Nice. There it Yeah, that was amazing. Anything else you

David 30:43

would like anytime? marketing rocks, marketing is amazing. Marketing is the greatest thing. And the greatest invention since sliced bread. Some people hate us some people love us. But without marketing the world would look a hell of a lot different. It’s up to you to decide if it would look better or if it would look worse.

Jan 31:08

Mike drop

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