Marketing A Marketing Agency – Part 1



On this PART 1 episode of ‘Marketing A Marketing Agency’, host & founder Dean Denny is joined by Sam Kariuki, Head Of Performance Media at Owendenny Digital, to discuss the importance of understanding the market and the messaging you give to your audience.

They explained how AI is changing the way we do things and how marketers should focus on personal experiences to stand out.

They also covered how to speak your customer’s language and how to use paid traffic to grow your business. They emphasized the importance of colonization when it comes to marketing and how to create a successful webinar.



[00:04:27] Marketing agencies lack customer avatar.

[00:10:49] Message-market mismatch: understand industry.

[00:17:52] Marketing agency learns hard lesson: no perfect, extreme headlines work.

[00:23:30] Learn, pivot, adapt, relate, brand, succeed.

[00:35:40] Launch webinar, change it, great offer drives conversions

[00:42:37] Build trust with clients through language.

[00:49:09] Dynamic content for changing markets.

[00:54:42] Create unique content with personal experiences.


All right, everybody. Welcome to open source growth. I am your host, Dean Denny, founder and director of Owendenny Digital, Australia’s top ranked SaaS marketing agency. Now here’s a crazy one for you all today. I have my Kenyan King Kong killer, the ultimate marketing brain behind a lot of the hardcore paid traffic strategies, marketing strategies, offer development and so much more.

At Owens, any digital, everybody, Sam, Kara Yuki, what is going on, Sam?

Wow. Thank you. Thank you very much, Dean, for this opportunity. I really appreciate that. I really love it. And, um, yeah, it’s, uh, It’s, uh, it’s great here in Kenya and, uh, we are doing, we are doing great. Yeah. Yeah. And, uh, and I’m loving, uh, working with, um, all these, uh, digital, digital marketing agency, and, uh, also working with different size companies and, and seeing how, you know, how big this industry is and, uh, and, uh, also even how, how different businesses are really trying to.

Uh, to, to like, you know, get, get into this, uh, field of digital marketing. So it’s great. It’s great to discuss this with you and also, yeah, to, to see how this one goes.

Yeah, well, absolutely guys. And it’s, it’s really interesting that. Like with a lot of the episodes of open source growth, we normally just like lock me in a room and be like, Dean, create content, go.

And, you know, they just sit me in front of the microphone and just create. Here’s a few prompts, whether we develop them on chat, GPT or I just come out of them, pluck them out of the air, or I tell a story or whatever. But today’s podcast is a little bit different because a lot of people, especially in the marketing agency world, Have no freaking idea how to market themselves as a marketing agency.

It’s actually funny. It’s actually hilarious that, you know, we’ve got these positions of authority and experience and no one. Knows what to do when it comes to marketing themselves as a marketing agency or a digital marketing agency or a videography company or something like that. Now, before we get into what we’re going to do today is we’re going to go through each of our quarters at Owen Denny digital.

We’re going to be talking about some of the leads we’ve generated. What campaigns have worked, what campaigns have flopped, why have they flopped? What have we learned and what are the chasms that we need to cross in the next financial year? Hint, it’s not another platform. Hint, it’s not Snapchat. Hint, it’s not TikTok.

It’s something which can turn your sales qualified or your marketing qualified leads into your best sales qualified leads. And I’m know that Sam’s going to be talking about that one thing which happens live and it starts with E and ends in vent and looks like a free training. He’s going to talk all about it later.

Um, but you know, in today’s, um, podcast, I just want to go through this. But before we even get into it, Sam, why do you think? Marketing agencies struggle with marketing themselves. Why do you think this is the case?

I think one of the major, the major reason is in uh, crafting an offer for their audience, basically.

They, they exactly know what they are doing for their, for their clients. So most marketing agencies know what they are doing. They are marketing for other businesses, right? That’s what they know. But now communicating that in a way that offers value to their specific audience. That’s one of the biggest challenge.

They are unable to differentiate themselves from other agencies. So, like now, when you go to this audience, uh, your clients, the clients that you want, it’s the same message. So agencies are unable to differentiate themselves from others. They offer the same. And also as we run them, because I’m part of an agency, as we run these agencies, what we are doing is, is thinking that our client understands.

Yeah. Yeah. So we just go there and telling them you need marketing, you need more leads, you need all this. But instead of as an agency to think about your, your client in more specific terms, what is it that they want to achieve? And how can you help them achieve it? So it’s about coming up with that customer avatar and understanding exactly why these people want marketing and they don’t want marketing just for marketing sake is for them to get leads.

So if you can show them how you can get those leads in a way that is different from others. That will be, that will be, that will be the difference, you know, and also now understanding the process, you will be getting them. How do you get them, uh, onto the, you know, on your doorstep, you know, how do you get them knocking on, on your doors?

If you don’t have something that is really, really good. And, uh, valuable to them. So understanding what is it that you have valuable for them? That’s one thing. Why should they listen to you as an agency? There’s so many agencies out here competing for the same audience. And that, or that those clients are few, but.

They are really willing to spend a lot of money to the person that is, uh, that is going to give them the right results. So understanding the offer and communicating that offer effectively, that’s, that’s, that’s where most agencies are stuck. They know how to, they know how to do it for, uh, those other clients.

Yeah, but they don’t know how to portray their own value to those clients. That’s the,

that’s, it’s, it’s, it’s mind blowing, isn’t it? It’s like,

and I think that the biggest thing is, is that, uh, because you spend time with your client, understanding them and all that. Now you can craft a very good offer, but you don’t spend the same amount of time.

Understanding yourself as an agency, understanding the offer as an agency, and then now communicating that value to your customers. Think about it this way. Think of your own agency as your client. That’s the mindset you should have. Think of yourself as your own client. If, if you spend a month going through developing a strategy with a client, take that month, go through the same processes with yourself.

You know, and, and I think will help, uh, unlock a great, um, value in, uh, in the way you communicate, understanding, because the other thing is, uh, you, you pick a niche, uh, because you want clients, you know, we, we, we fall into the same trap that our clients fall, fall into. You know, taking the process, you know, so that is, uh, that’s a great, uh, that’s, that’s the biggest challenge that, uh, that I find ourselves also having, having gone through the process.

Yeah. How that process is a grueling, you know, you will also appreciate the, the, the grueling nature of that process, even to the client that you’re, you’re, you’re, you get the clients

that you get. Yeah. And it’s, you know, it’s so funny, Sam, you say, you say a few, there’s a few real nuggets that you’ve dropped there.

The, the big one for me, I, I found straight away is that. Yep. There’s no defined offer. You know, we’re a big fans of this book here at the agency. If you can see the word screen, you’ve got a hundred million dollar offers. That’s amazing. Um, yeah. So, and it’s funny cause it’s not just. It’s not just like paid offers.

It’s also like content offers and it’s, you know, you know, pre sales offers or sales qualified opportunity offers, whether it be like a free code audit or a free strategy call or whatever it needs to be right now, what’s also fascinating that you said there was that, and this is true, I can guarantee you this, like if I, most agencies.

Try to do too much for their customer and they tried to have too broad an audience and because they’ve got too broad an audience, they try to write, develop either an offer or even messaging or creatives, which go just so, so broad, but they mean nothing to anyone. Whereas if you’ve got a really defined avatar and it’s unfreaking believable how many marketing agencies simply do not have a customer avatar on tap for their target market.

They can’t even tell you, Hey, if you document from nine to five, what this person’s average day of his life looks like between the hours of nine to five. And also by the time they wake up, the time they get to work. And then when they leave the office, they jump in the car and they drive home, what they’re thinking about, what conversations are they having with their wife, et cetera, et cetera.

If you cannot map out the life, a day in the life of your prospect, it’s game over. It is completely like, it’s a tragedy. It’s all done. You’re like, you don’t have any chance of getting the marketing right. And it’s, it’s so funny. And this is my personal belief around marketing agencies having a, this is my weird theory.

So there’s two or two or three reasons why I think that we suck at it. Like not us personally. We’ve worked hard at it this year. Um, and we can’t wait to go through the winning campaigns and the losing campaigns because I think it’s a bit of fun because no one knows what happens behind a marketing agency’s door a lot of the time because it’s the internet.

Right? So like, is this my, I’ve got a few, few ideas around this. So, idea number one, the reason why marketing agencies struggle to market for themselves is because they struggle to, because they can do too many things. It’s too hard to market. So they struggle around like what they can do. The second problem they have is that, as you said, they think that everybody needs marketing.

Whereas they don’t, they don’t really recognize based on the target market. Where are they in terms of the level of buyer awareness as Eugene Schwartz talks about in Breakthrough advertising so they don’t know what messaging resonates to the right person and they don’t know how to call out their target audience Based on their level of market awareness.

The message, market match Yes, the message market mismatch Lots of mismatch Lots of mismatch And then It gets better And then It gets better The funniest part about this on top of that, like they don’t actually, because I was listening to a Dan Martell Instagram reel. He’s the guy who’s got like the Sass Academy.

He’s really good. Dan Martell, check him out. Um, Sam, if you haven’t already, um, he talks about, we’ll do more for others than we would do for ourselves. And what painter’s painter’s porch mentality where you are doing the customer avatar worksheet. You’re going through your offer, all this stuff, but because you’re doing it for yourself.

You’re so emotional and you’re just like, Oh, I don’t have to do it today. I can just make my money. And the main agency is making money. I’m going to be fine. It’s not going to be the end of the world, but you need to go through your process as unemotionally as you would for your customers on your own business.

So then you can craft the perfect offer. You’ve got the perfect customer avatar. You know, you almost feel like you need, you need an agency to run your own ad agency. Just so you, just so you, you can remove yourself emotionally from your own business. And I think that’s, that’s, you see, I think it’s, uh, as an agency, it’s very important that you understand what you even tell your own clients, you know, Yeah.

Go through the same growing process that you go with your, with your clients. Because we understand, we exactly know, we go through a client, he tells us about their own business and we understand it. We can, we understand it, we understand the customers, we create the customer avatars. But when it comes to, uh, an agency’s own, uh, own business, uh, advertising it, then, then you’re trying to.

It’s like you’re trying to cut corners with your own business, you know, you can’t correct you’re very strict with your with your clients but when it comes to now you you and I think even Working as a as an agency, you know helps you also understand, you know Understand your clients working on your own agencies campaigns helps you understand Where your clients are when you’re talking to them, you know, you can understand the passion they have, you know, the, the pitfalls, you know, where they, the pitfalls, the, the encounter, especially when coming up with a, with a customer avatar, you want probably to, to enlarge your, your, your age set, you want to enlarge it just so you have a bigger audience, you know, you go for, you understand your customers so well, but when you go to them, And they are not responding.

You try to let me, let me enlarge the audience a little bit just to see, you know, but when you’re talking to a client, you’re able to tell them, you know what, if this is your client and these are your clients, the most important thing is for you to spend time, you know, at first you spend time on their faces, you know, trying to get them to interact with you on all these platforms.

Yep. Once they interact with you in all those platforms, then you want to engage them through that process down the customer journey, you know, you want to work with them every step of the way. It’s easy to tell that to a client and it’s easy to execute it. For the client, but when it comes now to you and you have now to spend time creating your own campaigns that are supposed to just get people to, to interact with you, to understand who you are, to understand what’s happening, you know, what’s, what are you all about?

You know, and then getting that customer and it’s, it’s just a person who now understand, okay, you have convinced me that I have a problem because the way you are talking, it’s about, um, message and market mismatch, you know, have a message. And because you understand this, uh, marketing lingo, you are, you think.

That’s what everybody else understands, you know, instead of you coming down understanding that these, these are, if it’s SaaS business, like we are in SaaS business, uh, the first question is understand that industry yourself and understand why industry needs marketing, you know, how to communicate that with your clients, communicate, let them know that you understand the industry.

And let them know that the challenges that the industry is facing now they can listen to you because you understand their problem and you seem to be like a person who they can, they can engage with. Now, you have them, you have their attention, once you have their attention, now tell them, you have, this is the issue, this is, this is the issue that most SaaS businesses have, you have them now engaging with you, then now how do they resolve that issue, you know?

Get them involved. Yeah. Get them involved. You know that Big Bing, the E that starts with e and Heads with T, you know, . Oh, I how I That’s we’re gonna, we’ll get, we’ll get there, we’ll get there. We’ll get there. I promise. I know you’ve been busting to talk about it. I just did a podcast on it before, so I think we’re gonna, we get there.

We’ll get there. So yeah, we’ve got, yeah. Yeah. So now we’ve got a bit of context, right? Like we, we now know that it’s like we, like I think of where these agencies are falling over. Like, let’s be honest, like including ourselves, like I think. What’s really important for everyone to listen to here is that yes, at Own Denny, we have ran campaigns before with limited success for our own agency, and it takes a level of self actualization as a marketing team and a willingness to push to get the B2B generate agency client thing to work for you. Now, you know, I think this is, what’s really interesting is that there’s no shortage of online marketers selling, Hey, I’ll help you get your agency an extra hundred book calls this month. And if you don’t, if you don’t waste my time, if you, if I don’t you 3, 000 to make up for this.

And you see these outrageous. Bold offers and you’re thinking, hang on a minute, what is going on here? How can they make bold offers? And then you’re like, hang on a second, look at the terms and conditions. You must be spending 25, 000 a month on traffic. Hang on a minute. You know what I mean? So there’s a lot of crazy stuff happening in this world.

So now, like, now that we’ve kind of got acquainted to like the big problem, let’s talk about Q1. Of our financial year, which was from July all the way through to September at the end of September. Now, this was when Sam and I decided to develop a free training. We just, we developed a free online training that taught everybody about our wild success story.

With micro coffee roasters. And for those who don’t know about this massive success story, you would not believe it. We would basically, we, we almost doubled their business in a month by using a buy one, get one free strategy. And it’s not just by using buy one, get one free. We used an app-led e-commerce strategy to drive downloads.

To get people to buy a stupid amount of coffee, which would then turn into massive long term pipeline value for these guys through understanding their customer lifetime value. So we came up with the, the bold claim of, you know, the 46. 21 ROI stampede. We ran the ads and, you know, in a very short period of time.

You know, throughout that first quarter, we were doing some other things at the same time. That little campaign there generated something like 40 something leads in a very short period of time. So yeah, it generated, yeah, 43 leads in literally less than a month. We were generating leads for around about 50.

What was really interesting, and this is where, you know, we’re guilty as a marketing agency and I want to say that we’re, we’re, we’re, we’re not, what’s the word? We’re human, right? Like, that’s the most important thing to go through today was that we did literally no marketing. No paid advertising between July and August for our own agency.

It was crazy. I can’t believe we did nothing. And then we decided, launch the webinar, run the webinar, and just do it. So, what did we learn in those first three months? July and August, no marketing. What were you doing, Sam? You were down my throat, being like, Dean, stop being a perfectionist. Get the freaking thing done.

Launch. Yeah.

Yeah. Yeah. I think, and this is, this is one of another thing that really hinders agencies is, uh, is looking to, to be perfect. You know, looking to be perfect, having to have something that is really. Really good. Instead of just understanding what, and this goes back to message market, you know, at that point when we are going, uh, online, I think what we should have started with is just understanding our customer avatar and what they want, you know, at that point, probably.

It is not the point, the the point where we need to go, uh, with the messaging of probably this is how much we have, we have done for this specific client, but rather this is the issue that SAS businesses have and these are some of the solutions that you could get, you know?

Yeah. And, and Sam cause that person.

Now the funny thing about this was that this campaign was just a general campaign. It was just a Facebook ads. Anyone that has a post that’s ran Facebook ads, here’s a massive case study for you and it’s a free training. And the funny thing is, we, as an agency, are proud to admit that we went, we, we sinned.

We did, we committed a cardinal sin. We didn’t even look at our avatar and be like, okay, let’s build out a really specific offer for the target market. We went for because the funny thing is we’ve really only decided to be a SAS agency this financial year, but guess what? We did back to old ways, cut the corners, broad campaign, generated a whole heap of leads because we had an extreme headline and extreme offer.

And it was a really high value action packed webinar, but we look what happened, diddly squat all these leads. Yeah. Fantastic. How many converted nada, nothing. And that was like the big Facebook demand gen campaign we had. And. What did it teach us, Sam? It taught us many things. Number one, extreme headlines work.

Number two, it teaches us that the webinar format is super crucial. And if you don’t have a whole heap of energy and time to do like an automated webinar, it’s probably not the right strategy for you. We can talk about the other types of webinars and the later thing, which will work. However, that’s what we learned.

It was a bit too, it’s a bit too much. Um, The other thing I was going to mention to people though, was because we pivoted across to Sass, we started to have our SEO to work in July and September. We started building a whole heap of content around Sass, Facebook ads, etc, etc. And as soon as we had this glorious direct response advertising field campaign website built for us, it started to really hum.

So, that was the quarter one for us. It was a bit embarrassing, like we only generated 50 leads. Our own business literally in what? How many months in three months, we’re a marketing agency for goodness sakes. We should be, it should be like, you know what I mean? We should be filling our email list with very qualified leads

in a perfect world.

What were we doing?

It’s learning. It’s called learning. It’s called learning. Yes.

That’s what we call. And then, and if, if clients are what a prospective clients are learning today, we’re much better at doing it for yourselves than us, because as you can tell at the unactualized version of our marketing agency. Cut the corners, you know, and I think this is most marketing agencies.

In fact, most marketing agencies don’t even know what they’re doing and they’re running ads and they’re like, what, what’s going to happen? So we learned some massive things that, that quarter, like it was huge. Like, and what I found as well, which was such a struggle for me was these months between July and September, like the third, that was pretty much the three months before.

My wedding day as well, which was so difficult to do. I was just so busy. So difficult. Couldn’t do anything. A lot of

stress and the pressure was we got to have something running. We got to have something, uh, running, generating these leads at least for this period. Yeah, but I think, uh, the learning, um, and this is, this is what I say.

And I think this, this one I got from, um, 48 and not 48, the, the art of war. You know, strategy, uh, you know, the time you spend, um, coming up with a strategy is key. You know, and building up a strategy is key, but when you now go to war, you know, sometimes you, you, you, you will find that, uh, you are changing your strategy on the go, you know, on the go.

So it’s very important to come and this is something that, uh, every in each business, you know, the time you spend creating a strategy is key and it’s important for you to spend that time creating that strategy. Yeah, but when it comes to execution, you must be very, very flexible to do things on the fly, you know, as, uh, when, when, when something comes up, you need to be able to change, uh, very quickly with how the market is, is, is, uh, responding.

So it’s, um, it’s important that you learn very quickly. Uh, change your strategy very quickly. So flexibility, especially when you’re starting out, uh, it’s very important, flexibility at that point. Because we also pivoted very quickly to understand, no, um, this, this is actually, we don’t have a, a good avatar.

We need to come up with a, a size avatar that we can speak to. You know, and that ability to pivot very quickly. That’s why we, we, we are having successes as we go along, you know?


A hundred percent. A hundred percent. And guys like, I just want for those people to recognize at home that this, this isn’t easy for. A standard business. This is difficult even for a marketing agency sometimes because you invest so much emotional energy into your, your marketing campaign. And you think it’s going to be freaking amazing. And it’s going to be fantastic. And you’re like, Oh yes, I’m on a winner. I’m going to make so much.

I’m going to be a multimillionaire like yesterday. And then, oh yeah, and then you just demo it. And you think that you have the greatest offer that, uh, that people will actually, you know, run to, like, you’re, you’re, you’re thinking I’m going to have, uh, people rushing to this, uh, to this offer. And, uh, the market teaches you that, uh, you need, you need to think more like us, not more like you.

I think he gets slapped upside the head and they would call it in the morning, you

know. And this is, this is also even for other clients, you know, and, and one, the other thing is, uh, And this is something that, uh, we, we were struggling with, you know, we would think that this type of color, this background would walk, you know, it’s the same message.

We love this background, but we find that this other background is the one that is performing really well. You know, you’re trying to look at, you know, you get the results using a certain background that is probably not even that the color theme that you, you have. And you know, those are the things that people hang on to.

They will hang on to colors, their brand colors and everything. But if people do not know you, if people do not know you, they do not know your brand. The biggest thing is not to go with your brand. You know, it’s not to force your brand down their throat. It’s for you to go with what they love. And this is about market and messaging.

You know, go with what they love. If they love green. And your colors are blue. Go with the green. Let them, uh, get to know you at that point, you know, because that’s what they are relating to. And then, and then now introduce your colors to the people who already know you. But if you go with your color to a To a people who don’t like that brand type of branding colors and everything.

They are not relating with it. You’re going to have such a difficult time, you know? So understanding that you want to understand where you are as a, as an agency, as a business, understand where you are in the marketplace. Are you the best known? Uh, known, uh, company or business in that industry, if not go with what people already know, you know, start with what they know that one they are going to relate to it, then move them down to now introducing your own thinking, introducing where you want to take them, introducing your solutions.

But you must start with what is already known, you know, start with what is already known in your industry. And that is key to each business. And as an agency, it’s key to understand. If you are in e commerce, understand e commerce businesses and the challenges they go through. You know, you might have very great solutions to that industry.

But introducing them without them knowing who you are, they are just going to… They’re just going to block you, you know, and they will say, you don’t know what you’re talking about. You know, we’ve been in this industry for a long, but it’s about go with what they already understand. Talk about the issues they talk about, understand them, let them feel understood.

And this is. Like this is the basic tenant of a, of a marketer, you know, people buy when they feel understood, not when they understand you, you know, people buy when they feel understood, right? So, so for you to go with your solution, trying to make people understand your solution, you’re going to have a very, very difficult time.

But if you can. Understand them, you know, let them feel understood and the way, how do you do that? How do you make them feel understood this by understanding their problem? You know, appreciate the challenges they are going through, you know? And, uh, uh, I was looking at copywriting. Copywriting is key because that’s where, you know, what’s M.

I can tell based on this, you’ve been very deep in copywriting recently. Like it’s funny, like, cause everybody, like if everyone listening to this, I speak to Sam, like two, three times a week, because we’re working aggressively, whether it be on client campaigns or when Denny’s campaigns are just talking about marketing or, or, you know, what’s happening in Sam’s family life or whatever.

And it’s so funny, like. When you’re a marketer, I think this is something which we can both probably relate to is that you’re always talking about what you’ve most recently read. And you just, that’s at the front of your mind the whole time. Like the last few weeks, Sam’s just been like, offer, challenge, offer, go, go.

Now I can tell Sam’s been reading some like how to write a good advertisement by Victor Schwab or breakthrough advertising, or I’m not sure what you’re reading recently, but I know you’ve been doing something. Cause I’m like, hang on a second. This is new.

Yeah. Yeah. You know, yeah, actually I think I, I, I did that.

I did that cause I know what is, what was that name? There was a, I’ll, I’ll, I’ll let you know once I remember. One of the greatest thing that you want to do when you’re copywriting and also when you’re communicating is to first highlight the issue. You know, it’s the issue they already know, but just by highlighting it, they understand that you understand it.

You see, they will feel understood because if I come here and I tell you about my solution and I haven’t exactly told you, repeated back to you, your problem, you know, and that’s, that’s the first step when you’re marketing and you’re marketing to a cold audience, repeat back the problem. Yeah. Repeat back to

them the problem

they already have. Because now they understand, you understand my problem. Because they will say exactly, that’s the issue that I’m having, you know? And when they start now saying that, exactly, you get it. You know, once they start using those words about your copy and your advertising, now you’re getting, you’re, you’re now communicating, you know, you’re creating that rapport.

So when you tell them this is the issue and I understand it, and this is what I’m telling you, I can do it, I can do this for you. They will listen, you know, but if you come with, this is what I can do for you. And you haven’t really, they haven’t really understood that you understand their problem. They will be like, this guy is just another marketer trying to sell us something.

They just block, block you. And yeah. And then that’s where you start getting people who are not qualified, you know, because they are just trying to. To, to see what it is that you’re, you’re, you’re trying to, to talk about and things like that, you know, but I think at the first step should be for each marketer, highlight the customer avatar, know what exactly those people are, know exactly the problem that, you know, occupies their mind each and every day in their business and repeat that problem back to them, you know.

Problem back to them and tell them this is an issue. This is an issue that these people are having and you can do that through ads or you can do it through, you know, writing articles, SEO. You know, on your website, also organic content on social media and things like that, but highlight the problem first, you know, highlight their problem first, you understand the problem.

And it’s something you usually tell the clients, you know, it’s something that’s what you’re going to. Tell the client, but you’re not, you’re not doing it for yourself and you’re online.

So like,

what did I expect? You know? Yeah, I know, man. It’s like, like we look back right now as an agency, we look back at the things we were doing and getting, uh, those leads and, uh, leads not converting.

And you look at the messaging and you, you, you, you find, you know what? What are we thinking? You know, what are we doing this broad? What are we thinking going, doing like this? You know, but, but I think, uh, it’s very good to go through that process because then you are at a position where you can say, this is what really works.

This is, these are the steps to your, to your success.

Absolutely. So let’s, now we’ve gone through like Q1, we’ve learned some really big things here, which is number one, go through your process. Don’t take the shortcuts. Number two, when you launch a webinar, be prepared to change it. Number three, um, we, we, we were pretty happy with the fact that we got such a quick win with our participants.

Um, with our Facebook ads campaign, we ran it for a short period of time. What’s really powerful here, guys, ladies and gentlemen, was that our conversion rate on this landing page wasn’t like 20 or 30%. It was 67%. It was nuts. Matt, what did it tell us, Sam? It didn’t, and it was probably the worst conversion rate optimized page on the planet.

Like it was, it was a good page, like Tim built it. It was fantastic, but it wasn’t like a fancy, this is a high converting landing page. You know what it was? And I, this is why I’m, it’s made me a little bit more skeptical of conversion rate optimization as a, a craft because conversion, especially when it by design element, what it tells you is that there is no element, which we, I knew already, but like, it’s good for the audience to know this, there is no element that drives conversions better than a good offer.

Yeah. A great offer. It doesn’t matter. You can have the worst. Like if someone can take like a dump on your landing page and still sell things. It’s amazing. So that’s a big one. But then here’s the funny thing. If you if you have a great offer and your page is taking like a minute to load, people will wait.

You know, yeah. People for you to load so that they can get that offer, you know, so, and, and, and, and an offer. What does it take for you to create an offer? It’s understanding your avatar, you know, understanding the problem they’re facing, and then communicating that problem really effectively.

Now, that’s a probably a big, this is, this is where, this is where it gets funny because the story gets worse, ladies and gentlemen, for everyone listening in today, but there’s some amazing shining lights.

So now I’m back now I’ve gone on the honeymoon, I’m back in the, I’m back in the country and I’m getting hit from left to right with all sorts of random stuff in the business. Now, if you thought 50 leads. Over three months was bad. Try 20 over the next three months. Now, what we have to be considerate of in Australia is that the end of like pretty much your lead flow, if you’re a marketing agency will dry up in December because everyone’s thinking summer holidays, Christmas time, not really considering engaging a marketing agency before we get into it next year.

Realistically, they’re just doing everything they can to get as quick as close as they can to the fridge so they can crack open a beer. Really? That’s about it. Like they’ve, they’ve caught it for the day. But what’s really interesting here was that we’d went from 50 leads down to 20 leads, but we closed some of our biggest clients through this because of the power of high intent.

Angular SEO. Like it absolutely crushed it for our business because we knew out, we didn’t cheap out on our process with SEO. We went, we did the keyword research. We understood the avatar. We knew what they were looking for. We built content around what we were looking for. We had great internal linking.

We had really amazing structure. The copywriting was on point. It was fired up. I spent like a full month in July and August writing the landing page website, and we closed some epic deals because they were coming through the website. So like, and we in fact had our biggest month. In, I think it was in November or December, we had like one of our biggest months ever in terms of revenue.

And that’s because of the fact that, you know, you get a couple of big enterprise clients coming in the door and you know, and you understand them and you serve them. You do really, really well. But here’s the funny thing. You’re probably wondering, you’re a direct response advertising agency. You’re talking about SEO.

Like it is the most amazing thing on the planet. What happened to your direct response advertising? What happened to your Facebook ads? Guess what happened, Sam? And this is the biggest learning. I think. For everybody listening today, we didn’t run Facebook ads because I overcooked the goose. And I’m going to talk to you all about this today.

We did not run Facebook ads purely because of the fact that I was trying to rewrite a webinar, which is a full time job in itself to do it properly. And the problem is we didn’t have the lead flow to properly test the webinar. We weren’t spending enough money on that. We didn’t have, we, we, we were relying on an automated webinar.

When you start these webinars, when you have a crack at doing these things, all these free trainings, so to speak, my belief here is. That free training or that free webinar has to be live so you can get people asking questions and get to understand your customer a lot better. Don’t overcomplicate it.

Don’t do these big one hour free trainings and everyone gets sold at the end. That’s a bullshit way to go. The best way to do it is keep it scrappy, keep it nimble. Be adaptable as Sam has been saying around that, um, that art of war and just have a crack at being able to shape up shit and change things as we go.

And I think what we learned in that, that three month period up to Christmas, trying to rewrite the quote unquote webinar was this is the wrong strategy for us. We’re not spending enough. A free automated webinar is not the way to go. Would you agree, Sam?

Yeah. Yes. Yes. That’s, uh, that’s so true. That was one of the learning that we got from from that.

And I think it’s, um, it’s very, very important to have to go through, have a live, have a live event. You know, if you’re, especially if you’re starting, have, have a live event, let people attend live, speak to them, let them highlight the issues, let them ask you questions. Yes. And maybe if you do it three, four times.

If you do that webinar three, four times, then you are going to, to have refined, you are going to refine the offers, you’re going to refine the webinar to deal with the problems that people have, you know? Yep. And at that point, because you, you, your offer is your offer, and that’s exactly what you’re going to offer them.

But if it doesn’t communicate to the problem that people have, Uh, you’re not going to have much success in that, you know, but if you can have, if you can have that live for several times, you know, four or five times, understand the questions people are asking, incorporate those questions into your webinar, into your training, you know, into your free training, and then so that when you record it, and now And now you have it recorded.

You are answering all the questions that people can come up with, uh, during that recorded webinar, you know, and they will feel understood. They will feel like their issues have been addressed. And when now you are offering, when you are giving them the offer, it will be. To be easy sale, you know, to be easy sale and as opposed to coming up with a content in your own corner and Now giving that out as the perfect webinar, you know It’s not the perfection comes in actually doing the imperfect webinars several times You know, repetition, repetition, you know, repeat that webinar several, until now you, you, you are answering each and every question that people can have through the training, you know?

Absolutely. And also something else I came to understand, you know, through all that is that sometimes, sometimes the questions that people will ask you in those webinars. They’re so you can call them mundane from your point of view, as a marketer’s point of view. They are mundane. These things are, you’re supposed to understand them, but, but then that’s where you understand where your market and where your audience is in terms of our


Yes. Hang on. Let me just send it. Let me just do some like celebration. Yes. Let’s go. Let’s go. That’s so true. It’s so funny. Cause like we all think, Oh, I have to come up with something edgy and cool that I don’t understand. And it’s like, no, you don’t. Your market is so much further behind you. You’re a marketing specialist who’s tip of the spear in the agency game.

You don’t need to be bleeding edge. You just have to be you because that’s what you want. They just want

you. And I think the greatest challenge is, is, it’s, it’s there because we can talk here and talk so easily with the things that we are talking about. Yeah. But when now you are talking to your client, uh, you can speak the way we are speaking right now, you know, they don’t understand what we are talking about.

So you want to go back, you want to go back to where they are, you know, the issues they are facing, speak their language at that point, speak their language, and once now they are interacting with you, introduce your language. You know, it’s colonization and I understand colonization pretty well. So it’s about,

you know, it’s about colonizing your market, man, you know, speaking of a

true Kenyan, I understand colonization, man.

You want to go there with sweets, with sweets and blankets. And all that, the things they need, the things they love, you know, trying to, to love them, love on them, put a lot of love, understanding them and all that, you know, and then now introduce, introduce your real things later on, you know, step by step, step by step, let them understand what you’re talking about and then even building, and that’s how you build trust with them because the greatest thing right now online is trust.

There is so many people offering crappy services, you know, so each person that you’re going to get that they already have a wall, you know, they already have a wall of objections, you know, to what you are, what you are offering. So the only way you get through and you bring down that wall. It’s by, it’s by speaking their language, you know, it’s only by speaking their language, moving there, moving closer to them.

Because I usually say this, it’s, it’s your work as a marketer to actually bring down that wall. You know, if it’s one stone at a time, it’s one stone at a time, you know? And the reason why people are not converting is not because of anything. It’s just because they don’t trust you enough. Yeah, I don’t trust you enough to put money on you, you know, to put their money on you.

So your work, your work as a marketer is always to build trust. So don’t go out there quickly to get a quick, a quick client, you know, go out there to build trust with, with, with the, with the market, you know, let them trust you, let them come with their issues, you know, act like a psychologist, you know, tell them you can speak to me, you can open up, you


Now let’s, now, now, now Sam, let’s unpack your feelings. And I like it, I like it, it’s a bit like that, but it’s true. It is a bit like that, like we are, you know, like all purposes are rooted in emotions and backed up with logic. We all know this, right? But you’re so right. You know, I think we’ll get on to why we’re going to be focusing on webinars at Owens any soon and Q and A’s and ask me any things and things we want to get there.

I just, I think it would be really good though. We get back to like the overarching thing, because this is really a cool for us, you know, for us, ladies and gentlemen, everyone who’s listening today. This is amazing because we get to go through what we think worked well, what hasn’t worked well. And we get this as a snapshot in time.

It’s not only it’s available to the internet, so everyone knows what we’re all about. Everyone knows that we’re passionate about marketing. Everybody knows that you can get massive value just from learning from your mistakes. And this is like the complete dust up. Like we’ve made some absolute shocking internal marketing mistakes at Owen Denny this year.

Yes, we’ve had our biggest year ever. We’ve had less leads than ever before. But they’ve got some massive learnings and I can’t wait. We got, well, there’s some good stuff still to come. Like, come on, this is amazing. So let’s get to it. Let’s Q three. So everyone got hung over. Everyone partied too hard on New Year’s Eve, a few weeks in Australia doesn’t really pick up until.

late January because you’ve got New Year’s Eve, you’ve got Australia Day, pretty much the first month of January. It’s a write off from business. But what’s interesting, and this is what’s interesting, is that throughout the last year and the year before, we’ve had very low interest rates and the Reserve Bank of Australia has started to really dial in the notch and increase the interest rates.

So everyone’s mortgages repayments are going up and up and up. And there’s been some downward Activity in the Australian economy, right? So I’m not blaming that the reason why we’re not generating leads, but what we did notice. Is that from Australia, we have for a very long period of time in this financial year held two terms at the very top, like we’re number one for it.

We’re number one in Australia for SaaS marketing agency from an SEO perspective, and we were number one for Facebook ads agency, Melbourne. Absolute money terms. Like as a Facebook specialist in Sam and I, and the rest of the team, we’ve got Hannah and Kathleen and we’ve got Karthik and Harry and, uh, and oh man, we’ve got so many amazing people in this team, right?

And Ami and you know, like Tim will like, we’ve got this amazing team and we would ranking number one for some massive terms when we were out blasting. Like outblasting like King Kong and all the big players in the game. And what we found was that our SEO efforts, any given financial year, even with my previous website, which had very little to no direct response, advertising, prowess, or SEO, we would have had like five to ten inquiries in January.

We, in January alone, Sam, total, I’ll tell you how many organic inquiries we had. We only had two. So it really told us a lot about the economy, that you can’t rest on your laurels, you cannot rest on organic traffic. You need to be doing some form of outbound Organic. Yeah, outbound. Like you need to do a content play, you need an outbound organic play and you need a A paid, you need a paid play as well.

And we were relying on organic that month because I was still probably trying to write the webinar. Biggest mistake I’ve made personally as a direct response advertising specialist all year. Write my own webinar, didn’t have enough lead volume, not spending enough money on traffic to make it work. Idiot move.

But here we go. This is where it gets interesting. We still had massive big deals come through all these organic plays. We converted nearly everybody that came through the door in January. Then in February

we had, what is going here? I’m just trying to have a look at what we did in February. From February. It was even more dire. We only generated one lead throughout that because we were still focusing on our SEO. See, what was really interesting was. Between November through to March this year, this thing came out one.

What’s the biggest, what’s the fastest growing startup in the world right now that came out and is blowing the world up? What’s it called again, Sam?

Is it

chat? ChatGBT! Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding! OpenAI has come through and it is changing the way we do everything. So, you know what’s really interesting? I personally believe instead of actually focusing on growing the business, all us marketers got way too excited.

And we just started creating shit on chat GPT and not actually used it growing the business. So what could have happened? And I, I think this is what’s happened based on the numbers and the notes I can see is that we got too addicted to pumping out SEO optimized articles. We got too addicted to organic and we could have been focusing all this energy on paid traffic, which would have actually guaranteed us a result, which were an actual specialist that, but we didn’t do it.

Chose the in the direction and we went in the wrong direction. So it was really interesting in that. And also

I think, yeah, I think also, uh, another major thing is also understanding where your market is and the messaging you’re going to give, you know, because, um, when you’re, when you’re. Channing out content for SEO, uh, you’re, you’re looking at ranking on specific terms, you know, but it’s also very important that you understand where, uh, we, or where is your market at that point.

You know, if the interest rates are going up and things are happening, probably what you should be doing is how to run a successful business in tough times, you know.


because now they are having a tough time, you know, and running that type of content to them, to the people, probably to, to your audience, the audience that has already interacted with you and testing out with the cold audience, because Because, uh, at some point, uh, thinking that your market to message, you know, thinking that you’ve cracked it is also another issue that we, we face, you know, thinking that you understand the marketing message and now it is working really well.

But something changes, economy changes, something is happening and now that message doesn’t make sense to them at that point,

you know, you have to be

dynamic. You have to be really, really dynamic. You understand, you understood it yesterday, but then you have to understand it today. You know, when things change, you have to understand it because even and something that I’ve found, you know, people are now even saying this is judge it to be, uh, content, you know, this is an open AI type of content.

And, and, and when they go through it, they’re able to pick, you know, so, and, and this is, this is something that, uh, that I’ve seen marketers now. Shifting, you know, they understand that the market is understanding the type of content that is coming out from AI. And now as a marketer for us to stand out as a marketer, you will have to go down to your specific.

Uh, experiences, you know, you have to go down to your specific experiences and that’s what’s going to set you apart is when now you can see you generate your content with AI. That’s good. AI will give you talking points, but those talking points has to be infused with your specific experiences as a, as an agency, as an individual, as a marketer, you know, you have to infuse.

Personal experiences into your content for people to read it. And and interact with it and know this is not AI type of content, you know And because AI is actually i’m loving AI by the way, i’m loving it because


for sure. It’s going what is going to happen is that it’s going everybody every lazy marketer who’s going to use it Every lazy marketer who’s going to use it It’s going to lose value because people will, will see the content and people will understand that that is from AI.

And then they will go to people who actually have experiences. Yeah. Because if I’m sharing my experiences in my content, in my videos, people will actually relate to that because it’s more personal. It’s about life experiences, my own experiences, and they will be able to trust that content more. Because here we are, we are at a point where we are now, uh, from, uh, from, uh, uh, going for attention to going for trust.

You know?

Mm. Shift. Shift.

Yep. Yeah, we, we we’re shifting now from attention because attention is being grabbed by everything to now building, to now building trust. And building trust is about building relationships. So even customer conversion journeys will change, you know, they will be a little bit longer because they will have to spend time going through a lot of AI generated content, you know, to come, to come to a point where they now understand.

This guy is talking something different. He’s talking about his own experiences. He’s talking about his own clients experiences. This is not content that is generated by AI or somebody else just writing content, you know,

and, and,

and at that point, people will start winning, you know, a person, because, you know, AI has come and it has created, uh, uh, A blue ocean that we are swimming in, a blue ocean that we are swimming in has been turned red so quickly, you know, we have to, we have to create our own blue ocean, you know, we have to create a new blue ocean before.

Before these AI content start generating personal experiences.

Yes. And you know, what’s interesting, and this is, and this is, and I think you’re onto something here, Sam. And I know we’ve got to get through to the end of this, of this, but like, before we push onto this, just let me steal the spotlight for a second.

Here is what we’re now valuing more. It’s not so much the, it’s not so much the, it’s not just trust, but it’s also personality. It sounds weird, but people are actually looking for something more than the right answers. Now they want the right answers that make them feel good. Not just like, because it’s just the way it’s pitched, the way it’s presented, the way it’s sold to you, the way you feel listening to this person on the podcast, like for instance, like we found out.

I’m going to leave for you. Yeah. Right. Like how to generate podcasts without me speaking where you’ve figured it out. We’ve got the full roadmap. I’ve mapped my voice to ai. We could just be pumping out the seven best ways to get more customers on your SaaS for less than $900 per user and have like an AI automated thing.

It’d be awful, but it’s the stories like the AI’s not living your stories. You have got your stories, you’ve got your experiences. You are uniquely human. It’s your

what I want. It’s your ability to laugh at your own failures, your ability to laugh on your own jokes, you know, and, uh, and you know, you know, there is, there is a personality, no matter how this AI, how intelligent they become, they will not, they will not be able to, to craft the emotions on, on the go, you know.

They will not be able to come up with emotions on the go. So, so at that point, that’s where humans will win. And that’s where the person who’s able to create that will be the person who creates a blue ocean for themselves, because once AI can do it, that becomes an, a red ocean for me. That’s what I’m seeing.

If an AI can do it, that’s a red ocean. And now you need to come up with something else that they can do. Because if, if an AI can do it, everybody can do it because they just need to, they just need to pay for that. You know, they just need to pay for that platform. And then you’re out of business, but. It’s about the people.

It’s also about the people who are behind, you know, creating that content behind the AI, because I think it’s, it’s, it’s an important tool to use as a marketer. You go to the open AI, create your content there, but then infuse it with your own personal experiences, you know, things that are unique to you.

And those are the things that are going to help you win.




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