Episode 1: Solo Content Marketing

Episode Table of Contents

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Meet the Guest: Eric Doty

Eric is the Content Lead for Docka startup SaaS that organizes sales and onboarding into one workspace for prospects and customers. Eric regularly shares about Doty’s content journey to 100,000 organic page views per month.

By night, Eric is a husband, wiener dog parent, and sports fan. He occasionally twilights as a freelance writer for B2B SaaS companies and shares content about all the marketing stuff he automates.

Fun fact about Eric: He used to study how language works in the human brain. While he was doing a Ph.D., he started a hockey blog and Twitter account @BonksMullet that became way more popular than anticipated. Blogging was a thousand times more fun than doing science, so he quit that and became a marketer. 

Follow Eric on LinkedIn.

Podcast Episode Notes


Here are some of the biggest takeaways from this episode.

  • Multitask with Efficiency: Manage various content areas such as SEO, blogging, social media, and paid ads simultaneously. Effective project management skills are essential to juggle these effectively.
  • Onboard Freelancers Thoroughly: Implement a comprehensive onboarding process for freelancers to ensure they understand the brand’s values and product intricacies. This reduces the need for heavy edits later and ensures content quality from the start.
  • Invest Time in Content Briefs: Dedicate effort to crafting detailed briefs based on thorough keyword and competitive research. This helps produce high-quality initial drafts and minimizes revisions.
  • Embrace Automation: Use tools like Airtable to automate repetitive tasks and streamline workflows. This can significantly increase productivity by reducing time spent on manual tasks.
  • Manage Vendors Strategically: Treat freelancers and vendors as extended team members; build strong relationships to maintain content quality and consistency.
  • Align Content with SEO and Product Features: Plan your content to align closely with SEO goals and product features to ensure it drives value and enhances product forwardness.
  • Utilize Automation for Scalability: Continuously seek ways to implement automation in content distribution and management to save time and scale operations effectively.

Mentioned Tools and Resources:

These are tools and resources that were mentioned throughout the episode.

  • Airtable: Used for project management and automation, streamlining the content creation and distribution process.
  • Google Ads and LinkedIn Ads: For running paid advertising campaigns that complement the organic content strategy.
  • Descript and Opus: For video editing and generating social media clips aimed at increasing viral potential.
  • Zapier: For creating automations that connect various tools and services, enhancing workflow efficiency.
  • Clearscope: For content optimization, ensuring SEO friendliness and relevancy.
  • Webflow: For uploading and managing content on the website, used by a freelancer to alleviate workload.
  • Superpath Slack Community: A community of content marketers where Eric moderates, providing a platform for networking and sharing industry insights.

Episode Transcript

Ashley Segura: So switching gears and talking about being a content team of one, this is something that you really specialize in and have a lot of experience in creating content strategies and building them out yourself. So could you kind of break down what a typical day looks like for you juggling all the many aspects of content marketing?

Eric Doty: Yeah, what a question. I think, I think there is no typical day and that’s the biggest Part of being a team of one is that you’re sort of tasked with managing everything that’s thrown at you, shifting priorities, shifting needs, et cetera. But if I had to kind of maybe more percentage of like work I’m doing, for example, so a lot of it is.

Project management, really, um, and like vendor management. So at doc, I’m the content lead. I report directly into our CEO, uh, his name’s Ax Krakow. He used to be a marketer himself. So in some ways I’m kind of lying when I say I’m a [00:01:00] team of one, because Alex is a very, like I’m our content team, but he’s a very competent marketer.

So he, he will run our ad campaigns and. Um, you know, he’ll, he’ll turn on Google ads and he’ll be like, Oh, I’m running paid ads on LinkedIn now. And I’m like, awesome, great. And I just find out about that over the weekend and wonderful. But, um, but in turn, yeah, but, but no, but it’s, it’s really great to have a leader who can just get, make stuff happen.

But in terms of my role, um, like the main channels we’re working with our, our blog, I guess, SEO is a really big part of our strategy and there I’m managing. Normally something around eight freelancers at once. Uh, and so, so a lot of sort of a quarter of my time, like in a given month is writing briefs for those freelancers, you know, doing all the background keyword research.

Explaining how doc our solution fits into the topic. Uh, and then going through the whole back and forth editing process with them. Um, we also have [00:02:00] a podcast that I, that our CEO hosts, and so I’m doing all the project management behind that too, like helping schedule the guests. Uh, I mean, you know, uh, doing the, yeah, there’s, we have a, an agency that does the edits.

I have a solo freelancer who does. Helps with kind of all the moving bits and pieces like, you know, copy for our YouTube, uh, you know, our YouTube video of the show or, or a Tik TOK clips or, um, and so I’m doing lots of wrangling there as well. And then, you know, then we have our website where I’m working with our designer, where I’m writing the copy, where we’re working on messaging, where it’s kind of more product marketing work.

So that’s kind of. The basis that that’s like kind of the typical and then, and then our social media feeds, we do lots of product launches at doc. We have pretty quick product launch velocity where we’re doing a new feature release almost every week. Uh, and so, yeah. So again, in January, we just had one [00:03:00] big release every single week.

So that was also kind of. You know, I, it’s wrong to call it like hamster wheel work, but it’s like that ongoing, like beat of the work you have to do every week. Uh, and then we also try to make time for bigger projects on top of that. Um, and so, I mean, I just threw a lot at you, so, uh, I guess I’ll stop there, but that’s kind of the typical.

Work that I’m doing. 

How often are you communicating with them? What does that whole process break 

Eric Doty: down to?

Yeah. So we take, I take a fairly big upfront investment of time in onboarding a freelancer. I think a lot of people don’t think of freelancers as like a person you have to actually onboard as if they were an employee. But I find when I, when I look at the ongoing time investment, working with a freelancer, if you put a lot of upfront effort into making sure they’re up to speed on your product, your value proposition, all the things that you know really well as an in house marketer, that a freelancer does not know, like they’re, they’re very good at writing.

I have no doubt that every freelancer we work with will write. Well, the question is, can they speak to our audience? Do Can they naturally pull our product in without me having to, you know, over time, you hope that the relationship with the freelancer gets easier. So I treat it more like an employee onboarding [00:05:00] experience where, uh, when we first work with a freelancer, actually, so I dog food, our product a little bit here and doc is made for onboarding customers.

So you can, you can make like a little hub where you put in checklists and embed dashboards and, you know, throw in content and it’s, it’s sort of like a microsite for onboarding a customer and I use that for onboarding our freelancers. So I’m showing them. The product experience at the same time that I’m showing them, you know, here are the blog posts we’ve written that I like the most.

Here are our products that you really need to know and how to tie in. Uh, here’s a video demo from our CEO, uh, going through each of these products. So, um, you know, you have to pay the freelancers enough that when they start working with you, they’re looking at this and they’re like, okay, I will actually invest my time in learning all of this, but it pays off so much because.

Every, every hour I invest in onboarding someone from the beginning, I’m It feels like it saves me one hour [00:06:00] on every blog post they write for me in the future, right? Instead of having to give that feedback, you know, okay, great first draft, but we want to be more product forward with doc. Uh, you know, you should tie in this, you should tie in that.

They normally know 75 percent of it. If once we’ve gone through that process, so that’s maybe something a little different. That when I used to freelance as well, I mean, I still do sometimes, but typically you just get handed a keyword and three sentences and three competitor articles and it’s like, go ahead, make content.

And so, yeah, yeah. So like that big, that big onboarding process is something that I kind of over index on. And then I spend about two to three hours writing a brief, which is also. Maybe a little unusual, but again, I find that the time you invest in the brief comes back double triple in terms of the quality of the content and then having it just sort of be near published ready on the first [00:07:00] draft.

Um, and so, uh, so the, what that looks like for me and what’s really different is I say, here’s. You know, I’ve, I’ve looked at the top articles. Here’s some that I think are good. Here’s how I think ours can be different, or here’s how our opinion differs on this subject, you know, everybody else is showing, you know, they’re talking about really like pie in the sky things.

Let’s, let’s show a step by step list with screenshots of our product and say, here’s how to actually do it. That’s how this topic can be different. And so our, how our article can be different on this topic. So getting kind of in the weeds on helping the freelancer understand how to stand out here. And then giving them very clear, uh, instructions on here’s how doc relates to this topic.

So it could be a really like, it could be a very top of funnel keyword where the connection isn’t obvious and you could end up with a very fluffy article that says nothing. But if I say, okay, for example. Like [00:08:00] I just wrote a brief on the concept of account mapping during sales, where you’re basically saying your, your job is to figure out all the different stakeholders that are in the, your prospects account and like draw a little map.

And for that, I was like, you know, here’s the, here’s the five ways that doc helps with account mapping that, you know, it doesn’t say that anywhere on our website. So it’s not obvious unless you know the product really well, but you know, here’s how we tie it back to that topic. So that’s something I also do.

And then that, that tends to. And then the process from there is they read a first draft. I give them high level feedback where I don’t really do many line edits. I just say, you know, can we get a better example in the intro? Could we, I know I normally just say example, example, example, question mark throughout the whole article.

And then, uh, yeah. And then they give the draft back. I do a bit of. Cleaning up normally spruce up the parts about doc, cause that’s the hardest for the freelancer to do. And then I actually have another freelancer who uploads it to web flow because I just find that was a blocker for me. [00:09:00] So, uh, it just sort of like goes, uh, I’ve, a lot of the stuff scheduled in air table or automated through air table, where once I say a blog is ready for publishing, my, my friend, Mike gets an email that says, Hey, this blog’s ready, go ahead and upload it.

And so he just gets pinged every time it’s ready. And. It just magically appears on our website and I’m happy. Yeah. 

Ashley Segura: I think that sounds like a really fluid process. I mean, there’s, there’s so many touch points and this definitely takes a lot of time, but I think it’s so valuable to start off the bat with investing time and.

Investing in your freelancer to take the time to get to know your brand. That’s something that I just started doing at the end of last year is every new freelancer, the first week is literally just onboarding as if they were a new, A new employee, here’s our branding documents. Here’s all of our internal docs about all the products that we have in taking that time.

Like you said, it just kind of streamlines their whole content creation process. [00:10:00] And they’re better able to align the topic with what the brand really has to represent versus just, you know, the typical brief of here’s our brand tone. Here’s a couple sentences about our brand style. And it really doesn’t tell you 

Eric Doty: much.

Yeah, I actually, I explicitly say in our onboarding guide, I can share the link with you, but, uh, I have like a public facing version, but I stay in there. I, we don’t really care that much about style. Like style is easy to edit. I can, I can breeze through the document with style edits. It’s mostly about the substance and how well you tie the topic back to doc, because we’re, we’re also writing about things that are normally more sort of mid funnel or closer.

To our product, then maybe the typical sort of top of funnel blog article. And so, you know, if it’s how to write a sales proposal, the person really needs to know how to write a sales proposal and doc, like that’s what the article is about. And so there you have to, you know, well, I’ll do a 15 minute loom video walking them [00:11:00] through, here’s what it looked like.

And then they just sort of turn that into an article and spruce it up and make it SEO friendly and. Um, you know, theoretically you could do that all yourself, but when you’re a team of one doing all the things that we just talked about, there’s, there’s no world in which I could write 10 blogs a month and four podcast episodes and four product releases, etc.

So the, the job is really vendor management and freelancer management. Yeah, you really 

Ashley Segura: need to be able to delegate and know what parts. You should delegate. So when you first started, did you, were you trying to wear all those hats or did you know right away, okay, this is what I excel at and this is what I want to manage and this is what I can outsource.

Eric Doty: Yeah, it’s super good question. And I think that’s the hardest part for content leads, especially people who are sort of mid career who are, you are part individual contributor, but you are part manager, part vendor manager, whatever you want to think of it as. And. [00:12:00] I think the habit is always as a creative type is to take things on yourself and, you know, I know what quality looks like, so let me just do it myself.

And that’s very easy to, to fall into that pattern. And I think my, my last role, um, I was, I was content lead at a company called butter, which was kind of like a zoom alternative meeting platform built for facilitators. And there, I think I was in the habit of trying to do it all myself and we didn’t have as much of a a budget.

We were a little more like conservative and how we approached content. And there I learned as, as a one person team, if I was doing all the writing myself, you know, four blog posts a month, that’s it kind of thing, right? It’s it plus all the, you know, had to do some product relations and things like that.

But I learned, I just felt in that role, how limited I was by my own capacity and your own ability to just write constantly, or, you know, doing one thing all day is just It’s too difficult kind of, no matter what [00:13:00] the role is. And so when I got to doc and even before I joined and I was interviewing with the CEO, we talked about this philosophy that we’re going to build everything we do, we’re going to build it to scale.

And so there might be, we’ll, we’ll battle test some things. in house, uh, or, or specifically with me writing them or, you know, us editing the podcasts ourself, the first episode or whatever that was. And then over time, so our general approach has been spin up a channel by ourselves in house. What does quality look like?

So for the blog, you know, I wrote the first eight blogs and then I went out and said, okay, what did, like, what did I need to know to write these blogs? And then, Make a bit of a guide and then go out and find a group of freelancers and just iterate on that process until I was happy enough with our monthly output.

And then we’re like, okay, now let’s do podcasts. Let’s figure out what that looks like. And so we’re sort of [00:14:00] iteratively adding channels. Um, or sorry, we’re, we’re iterating on our process until we’ve sort of compressed down the time it takes to do it. So for the first three months, all I was doing was the blog when I joined doc.

And then now it takes me one week, a month. Maybe to do the same quantity based on just how well we’ve got the process down. And so that frees up another three weeks. And so now we added the podcast and that took my whole time for three months. And then now that only takes me one week a month. And so over time we’re adding channels and, you know, eventually I’ll hit my limit there of being, not being able to add new things.

And then the question is, What should I keep? Like, should I keep this because it’s my skill blog? For example, I’m, I live, you know, I grew up in the content marketing world of SEO blogs and like many, many of us have, and blogs will always be in my wheelhouse. I can always do it faster and I’m probably always going to do it better than.

Vendor, but, you know, if we want to add video and, you know, let’s say [00:15:00] YouTube, I’m not like a native YouTube user. Like I’m, I’m an end user, but I’m not a YouTube creator. So that’s the kind of thing that I would look to outsource. So you kind of have to find this balance of, um, yeah, what, what’s my, where do I really add value or where, where am I just adding value with my time versus where do I add value with my skill or my taste or something like that?

Right. And so we’ve been pushing over time. You have to, you have to push yourself to outsource. It’s, it’s not like my first instinct, but it’s a necessity when you’re a team of one. So it, it really forces you into that mode of like, how quickly can I get rid of this? Yeah.   

Ashley Segura: I feel like when it comes to outsourcing, there’s really so much pressure sometimes because there’s all these content projects that you want to do and like, you know, Launching a podcast, having a bunch of blog posts in the pipeline.

Then there’s all the social content that you need to do. Then there’s sales collateral. Like it, the list just goes on and on. I personally [00:16:00] had the hardest time being like, all right, we’re just going to focus on this right now. And it sounds like you got to this stage to where. You are able to put the time and resources into just really putting energy into one content medium and owning that and making it really successful.

Then moving on to the next, how do you kind of like from a mental perspective, how do you process that? Because I’m sure I’m not alone. I’m so overwhelmed all the time with like all the content tasks. So how did you go through that mentally? 

Eric Doty: Yeah, I mean, I’m also overwhelmed all the time by all the content tasks.

I think everybody is. I think that’s just, it’s hard to, it’s hard to multitask in that way. And so the way I try to think about it is. More so compartmentalizing down into like a month and thinking, okay, this week I know how much time I know what I have to produce every month. I know that the podcast is going to take so much time, the blog, so much time, et [00:17:00] cetera, and I don’t actually put time slots in my calendar and say this week, I’m just going to do the blog and this week, the podcast, but I know roughly.

Through enough repetitions and enough months, how much time I have to allocate to each thing. And, and so from kind of from a mental perspective, that’s the way I deal with actually went through an exercise once where I made a spreadsheet and did here are all the tasks I have to do and how much time every task takes.

And I, I laid that all out and it was. Like 80 hours a week, which is not, you know, and obvious. And so that was a good exercise in saying, you know what, I can’t actually do all these things. And my CEO and I sat down and walked through it. That was maybe three months into the job when I, you know, I’d put too much on my plate and we walked through and he said, well, you don’t need to do that.

You can outsource that. You don’t need to be the one doing that. You don’t need to be the one doing that. And we, or, you know, this isn’t a priority. You’re just because it’s something you’ve been actively working on doesn’t mean it should stay a priority. So that was a really useful [00:18:00] exercise for me. And since then, I think I’ve mostly just kind of kept that as a passive.

Mentality is so what I’m able to do. So that’s, that’s one thing is just kind of actually mapping your to do list to your schedule and saying, do I actually have time for all the things I’m going to do? Cause otherwise your list is just going to grow and grow forever and you’re never going to get it done.

So that’s one thing. The other huge thing that I’ve sort of taken on in the last year is to try to automate as much as possible. I think it’s a really underrated skill for most content marketers, because I think a lot of people come from a creative background where they love to write. And so, uh, and, and I haven’t really, I’ve dabbled with AI, but I’m not really talking about AI here.

I’m talking more about process automation. So like, um, in that brief process I talked about before, I have a lot of these things pre populated in air table, like the keywords that the blog post has to. Touch on some of my notes about how doc fits [00:19:00] in, uh, you know, like a link to the clear scope, uh, to clear scope, which helps talk about like how to optimize the post, like I have a lot of fields for each blog and when I drag it over to my make a brief stage, it creates a Google doc on its own.

It populates all these fields and that all of those little. Annoying admin, like admin tasks that I would have to do over the course of a month when it comes to all these different channels, I’m saving myself like hundreds of hours. I’m doubling, tripling my own capacity by getting rid of all this administrative headache stuff that again, the question of what do you outsource is a great thing to outsource.

It’s manual work that, you know, copy pasting or saying new file and. Putting a link and attaching that over into air table. Like that’s all work that I don’t want to have to do. So my, my general philosophy around that is figure out what the process looks like manually doing it, doing it all on your own.

Make sure you actually want to do all the [00:20:00] steps that you’re doing and then attack it with like, okay, what, what can be automated here? Okay. I’m, I’m sending an email to a freelancer every time at this step. Why don’t I just make it so that air table sends the email to them. To say, Hey, your blog is published.

Thanks. Like, do you mind sharing it on social media? Things like that. Right. All these little steps I’ve automated. And so without that, I would be able to do half as much as I can do. And so, yeah, that’s been a really good mindset shift. And, um, yeah, or even the other day we, we were doing this new project where we’re uploading a whole bunch of videos to our website.

Basically, we’re taking every clip from our podcast and making a video library on our website. And, and the CEO said, okay, here’s how we set it up. Uh, you know, all you have to do is drag in this spreadsheet. And then for every video, you have to go and click, click, click and click, click, click. And I, and I started doing the mental math.

I said, okay, well, we’re doing 25, 30 videos a week. That’s going to be, you know, that’s this many [00:21:00] clicks, which takes this many minutes, which takes In my year, that’s going to take dozens and dozens of hours. Can we stop before we keep, before we just agree to this process, can we stop and figure out, like, is there a way to automate this better?

And, you know, we took one hour and hammered it out and eventually figured it out. And so now I don’t have to do anything now. It’s just, I drag some file and it just, everything populates. And so constantly having that mindset of saving yourself time and treating yourself as this really valuable, treating your time as a valuable asset.

Um, it’s just invaluable. 

Ashley Segura: Yeah. I love the idea of using air table and thinking of automation way more than just AI and actually setting up systems. Like there’s so many great YouTube videos on how to set up automations for any tool or any like current. Workforce. Like there’s things in Slack that you can do that sets up Google drive folders for all of your clients.

Like it’s, it’s amazing how much time you can save that are just like you said, basic admin [00:22:00] tasks when you take the initial time, which setting up automations can definitely take time. But then once they’re done, it’s so beautiful and so easy. 

Eric Doty: Yeah, I love the Slack ones. So I’ve, I’ve won where every time we publish a blog, it sends to our Slack for the whole company to see.

So. A, they actually just see the blogs we’re publishing, but B, it helps them just see what we’re doing. Cause I think it’s easy to think marketing is off writing social media posts or something and just on LinkedIn all day. And so it’s nice that every time we hit publish on something and get shared, uh, another fun Slack when I have is when I have a keyword idea.

I just type it into Slack with a hashtag, a keyword idea. And then Zapier is looking for that hashtag and then we’ll send it to my list of SEO keywords because I find you always have the best ideas when you’re in the worst possible time to have an idea and just being able to pull something up. And, you know, you could accomplish that with a long.

[00:23:00] Notes document, but then am I ever going to, or like a pad of paper on my desk? But am I ever actually going to look at my pad of paper again and then put it into my sheet? Like, probably not. So lots of those little tasks, switchy things I try to, cause I have a terrible attention span and forget to do things all the time.

So I kind of have to build. That into my workflow, right? Like knowing that about myself, I’m definitely going to have 

Ashley Segura: to try that. Cause I legit have 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11 sticky notes on my desk of things to not forget to do plus the notepad on the left. Plus my project management tool. So, you know, sounds right.

Totally, totally get that. Uh, something that, that you touched on a little bit earlier. It, In your previous role, you were really a content team of one and was trying to wear all the hats and delegate everything. Now you definitely, from what it sounds like, have a great CEO that you’re working for that understands [00:24:00] marketing and can look at bigger picture.

Not everyone’s equipped with a great CEO like that. And not everyone’s equipped with the opportunity to do outsourcing. So do you have any advice for kind of relaying the importance of This is what we can handle internally. And if you want us to accomplish these goals, this is how we need to outsource.

Like, how do you have that conversation with your higher ups? 

Eric Doty: Yeah, that’s a super good question. I think, cause I have, so I’ve, I worked, like I said, I worked at butter before, which is an awesome company. Just. Didn’t have a large content budget. So that was just a risk constraint. Uh, and I also worked at a bigger company before, but it was, I was a marketing team of one for three of the three and a half years I was there.

And then, uh, so that was, it was kind of a common experience. And the, I think that company before was a really good example of, it was a more kind of classic. B2B company with like really big contracts, really long sales cycles. [00:25:00] And it was hard to attribute marketing to business. You know, these are accounts that are worked for like a year before they signed.

So it’s hard to say, you know, this blog post brought them in. And so it was very, um, You know, it was, it was difficult to attribute. So there was always fighting for like the existence of marketing and the value. Uh, like ironically, all of the business came in through organic traffic and I was constantly trying to, uh, like try to wave my hands about that, but so that, that’s a going back to your question of managing up, I think for sort of the modern content leader, vendor management is huge.

Like we talked about and managing up as the other. Really important skill of, yeah. How do you, how do you convey the value of content? How do you push back when you need to push back? Like, how do you make the argument? And so, yeah, do I have any good advice for that? I don’t know. I think make it a priority is my advice.

So like part of what I was saying about [00:26:00] making my Slack notifications about stuff being published is just like making space for marketing and making it known what you’re doing. Um, making it known with your sales team, making it known with sort of upper management, like here are the activities that are happening.

Even, even if it’s very transactional like that, like here’s what we did this month. That goes a long way. One thing I started doing at that one company where I was having trouble getting that visibility was doing a monthly. Report that was, and this advice came from Jimmy Daly over at super path and he, he had this report template that was half data or not even half data, a few data points, just some like pick three things that leadership might care about and then have way more narrative in the report.

So, It comes off as this data backed report, but then you’re saying, you know, here are the five big important projects we’re working on this month. Here’s some roadblocks we faced. Uh, [00:27:00] here’s what we want to do next month. And just something really easy like that. It just, I just emailed around to the C suite.

Everyone read it. Got like a great, keep up the good work by doing that for three, four months. Then they started to see, Oh wait, that roadblock was the same roadblock three months in a row. Like, and the, the pains I was having instead of it coming up, instead of like bottling it up and trying to bring it up in some meeting, it was just constantly being, it’s like a, like a drip campaign almost to your own, to your own leadership of the, the same themes are brought up every time.

And it’s way easier to then. Three months later, come in and say, I need budget to do so and so that you’ve already been chipping away at them for months, um, versus like, I don’t know, trying to come up with the most polished argument and amazing data. It’s, it’s not as effective as just constantly mentioning it.

So that, that report, I think was really helpful. You know, if you don’t [00:28:00] have a standing meeting where you, you get that airspace, um, and even actually think it was more effective than a meeting because people could just sort of sit on their own and read it. 

Ashley Segura: Totally in meetings or, you know, you’re half tuned in, you’re half tuned out.

Whereas if you’re sending something, you’re taking that time, you still may get notifications, but you’re taking that time to really, really focus in. Have you noticed from job to job that you’ve had that the important metrics to track have changed? Or have you noticed any patterns with how you’re really measuring the success of your content efforts?

Eric Doty: Yeah, for sure. I mean, the, the last two content companies I’ve been at are more like product led SaaS. So we’re much more focused on get users to the website, get them to sign up for a free trial of the product. And then, uh, at Butter, it was way more like your typical kind of SaaS, like activation thing where then we’re trying to hit them with email drip campaigns and get them to use the product more and then pay for it.

Doc is a little more of a [00:29:00] sales led. Motion after that, where, you know, we get them in with a free trial to the product, but then we have a sales team looking at everyone who creates a free account and qualifying them, trying to see if they fit our, you know, our deal, ideal customer profile, our ICP, and then they’re sort of taking over.

So at doc, because. That sort of marketing to sales handoff is very clear. The, the qualified leads is a very easy metric for us to track. So as long as sale and sales pipeline, so like how much, you know, how much, how many opportunities are we creating for sales? And then the rest of it is on sales, right?

You know, sales looks at the lead and says. Yep. It checks all the boxes. This is a real opportunity. And from there, that’s their job. And, uh, so we can track more so those sales metrics like MQLs and, um, and pipeline, but then also we have a very direct path from organic traffic to. [00:30:00] Someone’s signing up for a free trial of doc and therefore stuff like website traffic is super relevant for us to track.

And that’s kind of the thing I obsess over the most is our organic traffic. Um, whereas at the, the, the company I was talking about before with a really long sales cycle, so it was a translation. And localization company called, uh, Summa Lingua, they’re much harder to figure out what to report on because like website traffic is not that exciting.

When you’re talking about our customers, we’re signing six figure deals. But it was taking a year to close them. It’s really hard to say what role content plays in those deals. And so there was much more just like sales raises their hand and says, Hey, I need a case study on this. Can you get that to me?

And then I go to make it and give that to them. It’s way more anecdotal and more of a generating the [00:31:00] feeling that marketing is supporting the sales initiatives. Right. And so, you know, you could measure things there, but you know, we didn’t have the greatest attribution and that was okay because we were able to say, okay, sales, you know what, you need a better slide deck.

We’ll go make you a better slide deck. Like. And so that was more of a, you know, did the, does the team feel comfortable selling with the marketing materials they have? And so, yeah, it’s kind of like how, how sales led are you? How big is your contracts versus how product led, you know, those more smaller transactions is really going to impact what sort of valuing yourself on where to focus your attention.

And yeah, so it has been really, really different. 

Ashley Segura: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I feel like something regardless of any brand or what you’re selling or what you’re offering that you can definitely measure is traffic. And with you coming from an SEO content background, I’m sure you could agree that, you know, when you see the traffic [00:32:00] numbers, it’s Even if that’s a year long, two year long sales cycle, if that traffic is going up, then you’re at least getting leads in, which then you could measure as like, okay, here’s partial success.

Otherwise it really does come down to sales collateral and sales support doing more of that, like traditional marketing 

Eric Doty: level. Yeah, absolutely. And you see so many people argue that traffic is a vanity metric, but I tend to disagree with that. If, if you’re making content that is actually relevant to your company and it’s getting traffic, that is not a vanity metric.

That’s awesome. That’s, you know, free impressions on your brand, not free because it costs money to make them. Uh, it’s, it’s If you’re, if you’re making the right stuff, then any view is good. Even if that’s a more or less top of funnel blog, but doesn’t directly lead to a conversion. It can’t help to make a pop.

It can’t hurt to make a positive brand impression. Yeah. Yeah. That 

Ashley Segura: makes a lot of sense. Um, when it comes to like, we [00:33:00] we’ve talked a lot about different management methods and different types of content create to create, but I think we can definitely agree that, you know, content burnout is a real thing.

So how do you stay excited about creating new content or even on like a month, a month basis of like, this is the Rolodex. It sounds like you have a Rolodex of content you need to create pretty regularly. Yeah. How do you stay hyped up on 

Eric Doty: it? Yeah, super good question. And I think that I’m sure that’s hard for everybody, but especially as a one person content team, I said, I said this on another podcast before, and I, I always laugh that I said it, but it was just for the moment that I said, the hardest thing about my job is managing myself and that is, that is my whole job.

And, um, the, the burnout is real. I think one, one strategy is just to have a mix of. Of things you’re working on and to not be, it, it helps that I have so many channels actually, versus that causing [00:34:00] versus that causing me to burn out. It, it helps that I get to spend one quarter of my time on our blog, one quarter of my time on our podcast, just mixing it up.

Um, that’s what also I’ve leaned really heavily into the automation stuff because it’s using a different sort of part of my brain for lack of a better metaphor, uh, where. I’m not just sitting and writing for eight hours a day. I might be writing for the first four and then for the back half of the day, figuring out how do I automate the thing I was just working on?

Or how do I pull reports more efficiently? Or, uh, how do we. Connect our podcast publishing process to our YouTube channel, to our tick tock account and, you know, orchestrating these fun, like it’s, it’s making like a Rube Goldberg contraption or whatever. Like that’s how I like it. It’s just, it’s nice to mix it up.

So that’s one thing. Uh, another sort of underrated thing I spend a lot of my time doing is just talking to other marketers. [00:35:00] Um, I, I kind of. So I, I am currently the moderator of the super path slack community, which is a community of 18, 000 content marketers and I spend, yeah, and I don’t spend like hours and hours of my day in there just a few hours, but through that, I’ve met so many interesting people.

I have a one on one with somebody, or I go on podcasts like once or twice a week and it really, Just sort of keeps you excited about, you know, what are other people up to? And I dunno, it’s more of a community feel because when you are a one person team, you normally don’t have, like, I I’m a little bit of an exception right now, having a boss, who’s also a career marketer.

But when you’re a one person marketing team, you normally don’t have that peer to either like spar with or commiserate with on, you know, how annoying it is that we have to do X, Y, Z, like you’re just by yourself. And so it’s really nice to have a network of people, even [00:36:00] if it’s just through LinkedIn or Slack community.

Where we can really, you know, I can talk about marketing and talk about ideas. And, um, yeah. And so I think that’s kind of how I avoid burnout. I also used to freelance more as like a freelance writer and I was doing the same thing in my day job as I was doing. On the side. And that really was leading to a lot of burnout.

And last year in the back half of the year, I tried to shift more of my freelancing to, I did a little bit of coaching. I helped some companies with, uh, feedback messaging for their website. I did some product testing for people where, you know, their product was for content marketers and they wanted feedback.

Um, you know, I D I tried to mix it up so that I was still doing. Freelancing, but not the same activities. And that just helped me be inspired. I think also content marketing is one of those fields that it [00:37:00] evolves. So like, I mean, quickly is maybe not the right word, but it’s constantly evolving. And so, you know, the tactic that I was really excited about a year ago, I now look at it and it’s completely boiler plate and everybody’s doing it.

And it causes you to then be in like forward thinking, creative mode. Yeah. And I like that part of it. Like it’s, it’s tough when you’ve set up a process that you like, and then you’re like, oh, darn it. Now I don’t need to do this anymore because we don’t think it’s a great tactic, but, um, looking, it’s fun to have, you know, three hours a week in my calendar to just, you Noodle around on something exciting or some other format or whatever, some experiment, some SEO experiment and web flow or whatever.

So that’s how I keep myself interested. 

Ashley Segura: Yeah. It’s almost like, you know, a lot of, a lot of SEOs will subscribe to newsletters and they’ll keep track of every single Google update and they’ll take the time to read these articles. It’s like [00:38:00] it’s buried into their calendar, but I feel like as content marketers, We forget to do that because we’re so buried in the variety of things to do, which yes, that’s totally a blessing, but also that’s like, that’s the part where we’re definitely buried.

So having an outlet to be able to go and talk to other content marketers and see. What are people doing now? What automations are they doing? What tools are they using? Tools are a huge one and having a community to where, like you said, you don’t have to check it all the time, but like, just put an hour or two hours on your calendar Friday afternoon before you’re heading out or like, Virtually clocking out, go over to that community and just scroll.

And even if you don’t want to participate, but just to see what messages are going through, I’ve got a couple of groups on LinkedIn that I do this with and just see like, what’s, what’s everyone working on? What’s everyone excited about? And that kind of helps re energize me and be like, all right, this, this is fun again.

I’m going to go learn something new and keep the motivation 

Eric Doty: going. [00:39:00] Yeah, absolutely. And, and even from just a more granular level, like day to day, how do I avoid burning out? I, I try to do the hardest thing first, first thing in the morning, cause by 2 PM, my writing brain is going to be terrible. So I really try to, so like whatever you have the most difficulty with do it first.

And so for me, that’s normally like very careful writing or editing or something like that. And then in the afternoon when I’m burnt out, then I can just. Like do my tinkering in my automations and like, you know, rather than not working, I’m building some automation that will help me in the future. So that’s kind of like, uh, just knowing your own sort of mental energy patterns helps.


Ashley Segura: I feel like that’s, that’s a big thing. You’ve kind of echoed throughout this, this entire show is really knowing your own strengths and what that looks like in terms of your work day, your work week, what things you’re outsourcing, like really [00:40:00] knowing what you’re capable of and. Excelling at that and not feeling like you need to excel in anything else and kind of learning what that balance looks like.

Um, definitely some, some great advice throughout. So thank you for that. As we’re coming to the end of our chat, I’ve got to find out what is your current secret sauce? What’s that one strategy tool, your newest automation, what’s your hack that you’re just. In love with right 

Eric Doty: now. Yeah. Good question. I mean, I’ve mentioned the word air table a hundred times, so it’s not secret sauce, but I, like, I think every content marketer should have the one project management tool that they feel completely native in that, you know, when, when someone asks you to work somewhere else, you should be like, ah, no, can we do this in here instead?

So that’s kind of air table for me though. I’m a big air table head. The thing I’m really excited about recently is we’ve. Now got a, we’ve sort of built our own social media scheduling tool within air table, where we take our full podcast [00:41:00] episode, that’s been edited. And then we chop it up in Descript manually, like someone goes in and takes a few like five minute clips that could work well on YouTube that we might have a good like SEO heading and YouTube when we put those, we upload those back to Airtable and then we have, uh, we use Opus, which is an AI powered.

Uh, clipping social media, like clipping tools. So basically you put in your whole podcast episode and it tries to pick out moments that would make for more viral social clips. Um, and then we put those into air table as well. And then we sort of hit, you know, okay, publish. And it like publishes those to YouTube.

It publishes them to tick talk to YouTube shorts. Uh, put some in our LinkedIn sort of scheduling calendar, but then now it also puts them on our website once they’re, once they’ve been published, it comes back and then put each of those clips as a page on our website. So, uh, it’s a sort of Zapier crazy contraption of [00:42:00] linking all these tools together.

And so now in kind of one click, once we’ve done all made all the little videos, it just sort of goes everywhere at once. And. I don’t know. I’m obsessed with it. It’s fun. 

Ashley Segura: That’s amazing. And as soon as we’re done with this call, I’m definitely going to go right over to air table and see what I can play with.

You’ve given me so many great ideas. Thank you so much, Eric, for being on the show. Really appreciate everything that you’ve 

Eric Doty: provided. Yeah. Thanks for having me. Super fun. 

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