Look at how you buy things today and then look at your business, your sales and marketing team and ask yourself; “Are we communicating in a way that helps consumers to make buying decisions, to take action to make improvements in their businesses?”

Dylis: Hi there, this is Dylis Guyan and welcome to the Inspire Selling Podcast, the place where business owners and sales people who sell to bigger businesses, discover how to attract, convert and retain more of their ideal clients. I’ve got a superb guest for you today, Mr. Chris Marr, the one and only master of content marketing.

I know he blushed because he is a very humble man and I can see you blushing already Chris in fact on the video there. What he doesn’t know about content marketing isn’t worth knowing. He is the founder and driving force behind the Content Marketing Academy which is the UK’s largest membership organisation of its type.

His pioneering work has helped countless organisations grow through content marketing. Through workshops, events, coaching, conferences and a ton of freely available content, Chris has become a highly respected content marketing educator. The reason that I’m so excited to speak to Chris today is because he has a corporate background and he understands exactly the why and how the use of content marketing is beneficial, specifically in B2B…a business to business context. So welcome to the Inspired Selling Podcast Chris. 

Chris: Thanks for having me.

Dylis: It’s great to have you here today.

Chris: It’s good to be here, thanks very much.

Dylis: You’re very welcome indeed. So before we get into our discussion, let’s find out more about you. Tell us a little bit about your background? How you got into content marketing and what inspired you to set up the Content Marketing Academy?

Chris: Sure yeah, so I think the best place for me to start I think is probably, I’m thirty-six years old, I live in Dundee, which is in the east coast of Scotland. I grew up in Fife and went to school there, went to high school, went to college, went to university there as well, all in my hometown.

I got my first real job, my first career job when I was nineteen years old. I worked at the University of St. Andrews for ten years in various different roles, in lots of different projects and things like that. Marketing wasn’t really my job as such, I just kind of got really interested in it because I wanted to…we ran things like we had a couple of bars, a restaurant, and exclusive events venues there as well and I really wanted to just get more customers and get more people to spend money there, you know. Just the things that you know we would define as marketing right. Marketing is, you know to get more customers to spend more money with us, stay for longer that sort of thing. 

So it just naturally fell into my lap, that was the activities that I started getting involved in. I think the key period of time was probably in my mid twenty’s so about ten or eleven years ago I started got really interested in marketing because of what the University of St Andrews… we were one of the first groups of people to have access to Facebook for example.

Then we jumped right on there and started using it to communicate with our customers and I started to really get interested in all things social media and content. Started my own personal blog in about 2010 and that was when I started to understand the power of content and how that was going to shape my future. 

So I read Gary Vaynerchuk’s book ‘Crusher’, which just came out I think 2009 and that really inspired me to think differently about how I would shape my own future. So instead of you know, one of the things that I said to myself at the time was, I’ll never write another C.V. ever again and the blog was my way out into the world which was, to you know, instead of me sending out my C.V. and applications to lots of different companies, the idea was that they would find and want to work with me instead and sort of turn the tables basically.

So there’s a lot of things go on inside my head, a lot of naïve things going on in my head at that time in 2010 and it wasn’t until two thousand and eleven when I had an opportunity to leave my job that I realised I didn’t want to work for anyone else ever again. I was already kind of signed up to go to university for a couple years, so I did my full-time business degree at the University of St. Andrews.

So I’ve got that under my belt and then when I graduated in 2013 I went from being a full-time student one day to a director of my company the next day. I got my first couple clients and you know since then we’ve built a small Agency based in Scotland, all our clients were based very locally, small to medium enterprises.

Then as we went down that road in 2014, we started our live events stuff and we started building an audience around that and that’s where the Content Marketing Academy came out from. The Content Marketing Academy is actually what the business is called now, they actually started as a small conference and that was where our audience was built out from. 

So the business has changed a lot even in the last four years and we’ve tried a lot of different things, we’ve had the agency, we’ve got membership business, we’ve got our live events, we’ve got you know all the content that we do and the courses that we run you know all of that, all that kind of stuff.

So yeah it’s been an interesting journey from going back to as we were talked about in the pre-chat to the pre-beard suit wearing Chris Marr 10 years ago to now where I work from anywhere in the world and I have a business that allows me to do that and I’ve got a completely different way of life in a way of making money I guess and making all this I guess so it’s been an interesting in 10 years I would say and it’s been awesome.

Dylis: Fantastic and we were just saying that there was a Chris Marr that didn’t have a beard. 

Chris: Yeah, I wasn’t born with a beard.

Dylis: You look young now but in those photographs without the beard you know you looked about 15.

Chris: Yeah I know I was really young at the time. I was probably in my early twenty’s, probably in the photos you’re referring to probably, I can’t think but yeah probably in my early twenty’s.

Dylis: So let me just recap on what you’ve said there then, so you left the University with a degree, you set up your own business but that wasn’t the Content Marketing Academy, that was a marketing business? Then from there you set up conferences and invited people to those conferences and from that you set up the academy.

Chris: So it’s a little bit more organic than that actually, we still have the same company, the same company registration number all that kind of stuff, we just changed the name of the company to Content Marketing Academy. The company was called ‘Learning Everyday’ first. It was a small agency a consultancy agency and then as….so let me just actually paint a better picture than that.

What happened was when we started ‘Learning Everyday’, one of the first things I did was set up a workshop for business owners right so it’s like hundred pounds per person, two-day workshop something like that. That was one of the very first things I did when I started my business and this kind of goes really far back Dylis to when I first start with the University of St. Andrews, when I was nineteen.

One of the first things that my boss asked me to do or told me to do or volunteered me to do at the time was to go and train the staff on how to do fire safety or health and safety or something I cannot remember the exact topic. Which is like here’s the acetate Chris, go and teach, go and teach, go and teach the staff at the health and safety.

One of the first tasks I had to do was go in front of an audience and do a workshop right. Then all through my whole career at the University of St. Andrews and for ten years and I don’t know how many workshops I governed and training sessions I did, got dozens and dozens and dozens we had to do something like fifteen every year for every group of staff.

Then eventually I just became part of the course and obviously as part of that became also came all the training like training me how to train, so train the trainer group training all of that stuff, had to do all of that. So I had tons of experience in that, so it was no real surprise actually looking back on it now that one of the first things I did was start setting up workshops, live events and meet-ups. 

We did dozens of really small workshops and locally for about ten people; there are only ten pounds per person to come along that made no money on them and the idea was to try and build an audience around the business. What happened was is that we became more known for what we were doing around the Content Marketing Academy stuff which is what we called our event at the time, rather than what the business was called which is called ‘Learning Everyday’.

They were distinctly different brands. One was blue and that fun, one was green and a bit more corporate and bit business like and then there’s me in the middle kind of like fooling around suit sometimes and then other times not. Then what we did was in 2016 we consolidate both brands into C.M.A. changed the name of the business and then we became a membership and live events business essentially. So we only teach content marketing, we don’t do any client work at all, we don’t have any clients, it’s all teacher-led content that we deliver now.

Dylis: I attended your conference at the beginning of this year and it was phenomenal, absolutely phenomenal. I’ve been to dozens and dozens of events over the years. The quality of speakers of the Content Marketing Academy conference was superb.

Chris: Yeah that’s a big thing for us is that we want to…how many speakers I speak to…I had two calls today with speakers pitching to you know, to come along to CMA live. One of the big factors we consider is making sure we get the right people on that stage. You know we only have two days, one track and it’s making sure that everybody is blown away with the speakers that are up there.

Not everybody’s going to relate to every speaker, I mean we get that and then some people you know will really take to someone else and maybe not someone else and we understand that. We really want to make sure that the people on the stage are people that we can learn from and look up to and be inspired by and motivated by and that’s really important for us 

Dylis: What I absolutely loved was it wasn’t a pitch fest, this was absolute raw education. It was educational.

Chris: Yeah, that’s why we don’t have any sponsors, there’s no expo; you won’t see any banners for other people’s companies there, it’s not even on my radar. It’s not even you know, how can we make more money? Will we get some sponsorship? It’s not even on my radar we don’t even look at it.

So I think yes it’s absolutely a big part of it because I’ve been to tons of events like you Dylis as well and I just thought to myself, what do I not like about events? What do I like about events? How can I make sure that we create an event that we can be proud of?

Dylis: It really was something special not just the quality of the speakers, because the fact that it wasn’t this pitch fest, but the venue was sensational. It added to the quality of the whole event.

Chris: Yeah we don’t…this again goes back to the early days. I mean even when I did my first workshop we picked a venue that was not normal, we did a putting green in the afternoon session and stuff like that you know, things that we can do that are fun. The hub is probably one of the most impressive venues in the whole of Edinburgh for an event like ours.

You’ve got to think about it like if you’re going into marketing and sales discussion you have to think about what that looks like as a picture. When people are taking pictures and their live videos and their stories and then what do we share afterwards, we want people to see pictures that are unlike anything they have ever seen before. You can do that event and it could be the same speakers and the same people and the same furniture and everything and do it in a Hilton hotel and it would not be as impressive as what it is, we just wouldn’t have the same vibe.

Even going back to one of our most recent events that we did in a really old theatre in the centre of Edinburgh as well and we used to do that event in a hotel room; the pictures just did not do it any justice and as much as it was a hugely impressive event, the actual transformations that take place at the event, I’m just not shown, it just don’t come through in the pictures. So you need to think about that as well, so yeah, absolutely Dylis yeah.

Dylis: Yeah I was so impressed with the amount of thought you had put into the experience of the people who were attending. It was so obvious and I know you going to share some details about your next one at the end of this, to give people the opportunity and really there with you how much I really did appreciate and enjoyed the whole experiences it was fantastic.

Chris: Thank you. I’m glad you came, I’m glad you came, I’m glad you enjoyed that as well that’s the most important part.

Dylis: I met some brilliant, brilliant people who also did a podcast you know it’s such a great place to be.

Chris: I just always want to have the best people around me, I mean it’s not even from a selfish perspective but even at that level I’m like how can we just make sure we’ve got two hundred amazing people in the room that I actually want to hang out with and then make sure we’ve got sixteen speakers on the stage that everybody wants to learn from and get to know and be friends with. That’s what happens, I mean the people that come to the conference make friends with the people on the stages, they end up becoming actual friends and they know each other now and that’s the kind of event we want to have is a non-elitist, a non-hype event.

Dylis: You certainly achieved that, you’re a very generous of spirit kind of person.

Chris: Thanks.

Dylis:  However, let me stop stroking your ego because you know that I’ve got you on a bit of a pedestal Chris Marr. Anyway, let’s go back to when you set up your Content Marketing Academy. What were the challenges that you faced because I’m sure it wasn’t all plain sailing? Did content marketing form a part of you become known as that expert in the content marketing space? 

Chris: One of the biggest challenges I had from the very start I guess every marketing person will understand this but most people in business suffer from it too ,is that they don’t know where to focus their energy and their resources on. So, they generally in most cases, they end up being generalists in their business so they can do everything okay reasonably well, but they can’t do any one thing very, very well and be an expert in it and therefore are not really known for anything.

So even like, people I speak to now, that want to be speakers on our stage I’ll say I like what do you speak about is like social media and I’m like yeah but what part of social media do you speak about? What you’re an expert in? They’re just very general. So, there’s a generalist approach to it.

So one of the lessons I learned very early on was, do I go wide or do I go deep? That was my one of my step dad who was coaching me at the time and from that day on I just decided the content market was going to be absolutely my number one thing. Then I went on to read all the books, do all the courses, get known in that space for it and put the name actually on our best list, you know heart on our sleeve basically and then make it a thing.

So that was like a big challenge at the start when it’s just understanding just how important it was to really lean in on the thing that really interests me. How I started my business? I think the first thing I did was start a blog. I was when I got my first five figure contract was from a really terrible, terrible blog that I wrote, that I produced. I created a website online on Word Press and it was a terrible, badly designed but it got me the contract and that was how someone got interested in what I was doing.

So content always underpinned everything that I did and I have not rested on that, that’s always been a big part of practice what I preach as well. So when someone says to me ‘how do you get customers Chris’ and say well I get it through content marketing and I don’t spend a single penny on advertising and we build our business completely organically and I can show you how to do exactly the same thing.

So there’s been tons of challenges along the way, the biggest one was definitely figuring out what we wanted to be known for but also I would say patience is probably a big factor as well especially when you’re doing…well if Content Marketing is a big thing for you is that you’ve got to remain patient that what you’re believing and what you’re doing is taking you down the right path and at some point in the future you’re going to get to that success whatever it is that you’re sort of looking for.

So, you know a lot of people are really looking for a silver bullet kind of approach or you know a fast buck and that’s slow, I mean it’s always been a mess but there’s always been things there that kind of emulated that silver bullet. Now I think the more and more we go down the road and the internet becomes a little bit more mature and I think what we’re finding is that it’s becoming very rare to find something like that.

A lot of people are having to recalibrate their expectations in terms of what they’re going to get from their efforts for marketing and their starting to understand actually it is going to take time and it is going to take a lot of effort if we want to build something great. 

That’s what I would say couple is a couple of the biggest challenges for us is just managing the business. If you look at my Twitter profile it says at the very end embracing slow. That’s like a big part of the approach to what we do is that you know we’re here for the long term, I want to be here next year.

You know that’s my key thing, its like I want to run our event next year and I’ll do everything I can to make sure that happens because that means we’ll be here the year after and the more years we stay, the more years we’re going to stay. So, it’s kind of how do we make sure that, that’s a thing and we’re not in a rush to, to get to any end goal, it’s about creating something that we’re proud of.

Dylis: So what do you say then to the business owner or salesperson even, who are selling to other businesses and they say that’s all great Chris but I haven’t time for slow, I need be proactive. So how do we fit proactive and content marketing together? So, when I talk about proactive I’m talking about you know, emails, maybe direct mails, phone calls where they may get a no and what I always tell people is it’s not no forever, it’s just no not right now which is where you can then keep in touch with the blogs or valuable information, links to information or whatever. What’s your take on that?

Chris: Sorry Dylis what’s the key question then? Where do you want to start with that because it won’t end there right? We got cold calling, content, sales, marketing…

Dylis: The essence of that question really is for business owners who are selling to other businesses, who get content marketing, they understand what it is but they haven’t time for slow, so they have to be proactive to generate business alongside content marketing, this is what I want you tell me.

Chris: Okay, yes so someone that says I understand content marketing, I know what it is but I don’t have time for it is essentially what you’re saying right?

Dylis: Not so much haven’t got time for it. Haven’t got time to wait for it to gain traction. 

Chris: Right, so the key, the key thing here though Dylis and this gets me really riled up is that when someone says that to me they actually don’t get content marketing is what they’re telling me. So, they’re saying we understand content marketing but; as soon as that but goes in then there’s the excuse or the reason why they’re not doing it and the reason that they’re not doing is because they don’t actually get it, they don’t actually understand what content marketing is and content marketing is about sales, it’s about business growth, it absolutely has to be about that.

You can’t walk into a boardroom of people and senior level and say to them, ‘hey guys we’re going to start doing all these blogs and things like that hopefully maybe you know well in time maybe six months, twelve months, eighteen months’ time we may get some customers; we’ll see how it goes kind of thing. They’re going to be like ‘no way, we’re just going to get a hundred people, we’re going to make tonnes of phone calls and we’ll just do it that way’.

So, what we do is we need to come back to basics and help people understand how content marketing leads to sales. The key factor, the key factor in all of this for all the businesses that are listening B2B, B2C, Government, non-profit Third Sector, is understanding how consumers make buying decisions today that’s it.

How does a consumer make a buying decision? That’s what we need to consider, and this is what they don’t do, right, they don’t sit home waiting for you to phone them, to sell to them and they don’t want to be sold to, we turn off all advertising, we binge watch on Netflix, we hate it, we even skip the intro on Netflix now because we don’t want to waste time on anything.

We want to find what we’re looking for, we want to be in control, we want to make sure we’re making an educated buying decision and we do not want to be sold to because we feel like we’re going to get ripped off. So, these are the things that people don’t want right and you think yourself well, just look at your own buying behaviour. As a consumer every single person listening to this podcast is a consumer, just look at how you buy things today and then look at your business and your sales and your market team and think to yourself are we communicating in the way that helps consumers to make buying decisions?

There’s no doubt in my mind that most of the people listening to this will not be doing it the best way and that’s how it is today.

I’m not telling you anything that you don’t already know, I’m telling you the facts right, this is how people do it, they understand that they have a problem, some have become aware that they have a problem or a need for something, the first thing they’re going to do is they’re going to go to Google and they’re going to search for some stuff right. They’re going to be like what’s the best version of this thing or how much is the cost of this thing? 

What’s the difference between that product and this product or this service and that service? How much is it going to cost? How long does it take? You know there’s load of questions that they’re going to ask about that before they even consider the company that they’re going to be buying from somewhere down the line.

So, we need to consider all of that stuff how do consumers make a buying decision today should be one of the major factors that determine how you go to market today as a business. So, it’s about marrying those two things together, but plugging that gap.

So I think if someone says to me I’m not prepared to embrace slow or I’m not prepared to put the time and the effort into this Chris, what they’re really saying to me is I don’t want to do the marketing. What I just explained is marketing today, how customers can find you, your prospective customers can find you when they’ve never heard of you before. Help them to make an educated buying decision in their time, so they feel in control and then they contact you for the first time, when they feel like they’ve developed enough trust ,which is the key.

So that’s the key to content marketing is understanding that it’s not just, just blogs and podcast for the sake of it, it’s about creating content that drives sales, that helps your sales teams to get more educated, more qualified leads, so you can close them faster and not only that, you want them to spend more money with you as well. So, you get them to pre-qualify, you’re not wasting your time answering silly questions you answer fifty times a day, they’ve already been answered. Now you’re getting people that have done all of the education piece now and they are ready to buy, that’s what we’re really looking for, that’s marketing. 

Marketing should drive the sales process and speed it up and make it better for everybody and marketing if it’s done properly, works 24/7, 365 you know, and it should really improve every aspect of the business in terms of how someone goes from being a prospect to a lead, to a customer, to an advocate of your business. Content touches all of that, that the whole journey through from the prospect and right through to them being a referral partner for your business.

I think that that, in short, is what we really need to be thinking about today and it’s not about whether or not you want to do content marketing or not, the question is do you want to be relevant today and in five years’ time from now? Do you still want to have a business and if you do then you will have to understand that marketing is fundamental to gain customers today. It always has been and it’s not like I’m not telling you anything new.

Marketing was always about doing something, some activity, creating something that creates interest in your business, allows you to be to found and accessible to people, so they would maybe want to do business with you future. that just happens to be today a lot of digital things like blogs and videos right and podcast in fact that we’re on today.

Dylis: It’s about positioning yourself as that trusted expert as well isn’t it, it’s about cutting through all of that noise so that you are, when somebody is looking, they find you because they find your blog, or they find your podcast, or they find your video, or whatever it is. I don’t know whether you’ve come across ‘The Ultimate Sales Machine’ by Chet Holmes, it’s an excellent book

Chris: Yes.

Dylis: I did some research, and I always use this triangle where there’s only three percent of your target market actively looking and there’s thirty percent who are never going to be interested but the seven percent in the middle there who knows they need the product but they’re not looking just right now. 

Another thirty percent who know they need it but they’re too busy with the everyday goings on in their business, thirty percent who don’t even know that your product or service exists and great example of that is my husband who suffered from noise induced hearing loss from being in the Marines and we used to have the television either blaring loud or the subtext on. 

He got some marketing material from a company who do T.V. ears and they’re a wireless set of ears that connect to the television and when he saw those it was that oh my God you know that I didn’t even know there was such a thing but because they educated him through their marketing, he was one of those people who didn’t know about the product or service.

Chris: Yeah that’s absolutely a key lesson for anyone listening to this as well as the understanding that… so, for example, a lot of people would say to me ‘Chris we don’t come up number one on Google for our brand name’ and I’m like yeah nobody is looking for your brand name, the people that you really need to be focusing on are people who don’t know that you exist. So, you’ve got to think to yourself if you’re creating content, if you’re truly doing content marketing, you are creating content that can be found by people when they’ve never heard of you before right, that’s a like an absolutely key lesson.

Dylis: I absolutely love that from Chet Holmes you know it could be missing sixty-seven percent of your target market.

Chris: Well it’s funny because it’s fairly similar to the statistic that Google came up with which is that seventy percent right ‘The Zero Moment of Truth’ that seventy percent of the buying decision is made online before someone makes contact with your business for the first time. So seventy percent of a buying decision is made online before someone makes contact with your business for the first time.

That’s people doing research, educating themselves, trying to figure out what they are looking for. They don’t even know there might be a product or service that does what they’re looking for, all they’re doing is looking and researching. They’re not waiting to be sold to, they are not even ready to buy yet; they’re just looking around doing their research.

Dylis: Yeah so what are your top tips then for business owners or sales people who are selling to bigger businesses to really embrace content marketing? What should be doing? What would you say are the first steps?

Chris: The first steps for people who really want to get into content marketing is that they really need to understand what we’ve just talked about, that main part of this podcast. Just understanding how your consumer, how your prospects behave when they’re trying to make a buying decision. You need to really think about that, and it is slightly different for each type of business but the best businesses in the world get closer to their customers than any of their competition and they understand and emotionally connect with their customers better than anybody else.

Step one is to listen to your customers and understand them better than anybody else. A lot of companies say, ‘we’re customer focused Chris’, and I am like I don’t believe that for a second, not a second. So you really need to understand them, listen to their problems, listen to their questions.

So, step one for bigger businesses is to perhaps embrace your sales team, embrace your sales and your marketing team and your leadership. Get in a room together and start thinking to yourself what questions are people asking us every single day? Are we answering those questions on our website?

When you type those questions into Google, are we the company that is providing the answers to these questions or are they getting them from somewhere else? Are we the trusted people within our industry? Can we be? Can we be the leaders in our industry for these questions to be that resource for our prospective customers?

There’s a lot you can do right off the bat that is just really stuff that is just right in front of you; it’s in your email inbox, it’s on the phone calls you are having with people and the key thing here is to embrace transparency and a lot of companies are simply are not prepared to do this.

You say to them put this information on your website instead of answering this question one to one with people on the phone or by email you publish it as an article on your website. They would say ‘but what if our competition steals it?’ They’re not going to steal it; they don’t pay your bills, stop worrying about them so much and be the first to do it. Get out there and change your industry, do something different.

I think transparency is one the biggest challenges for businesses. They feel like if they can do it in private but you’re not going to get as many customers that way. You really need to get out there and become…what Marcus Sheridan taught us is to be the Wikipedia of your industry. Be that resource for people all over the world for what it is that you do and to lead as well, to be leaders within your space.

Let’s say off the bat there are so many things you can do, you’ve got to embrace transparency, honesty, and an unbiased approach to the content that you are providing for your consumers, your prospective customers to help make an educate buying decision. That can come out in the form of blogs, videos, and things like that.

The first thing you have to do is you have to have some ideas; you have to have some ideas of what that looks like. Listen to your customers, the questions that they have, the problems that they have, how can you create content that helps them answers those questions, solve those problems for them, and then find a platform on a medium that relates to them, something they would actually read. Would they read it, would they watch it, would they listen to it?

You have to figure out that for yourself in terms of who your audience is and how much resource and time you have to put into it. Then you create that content and publish that content and you do it consistently forever.

When you were talking about embracing slower…and I talk to people about this all the time as well is that you don’t just say well we’ll give it six months you just do it. This is you now, this is world that we live in, this is what you have to do now.

Dylis: Yes.

Chris: It won’t be long until your competition is doing this as well and you will be behind, and you will regret the fact that you didn’t bite the bullet and actually do it and make that decision to get it done. One of the best examples I can share with you is there’s a local car garage actually where I used to live in Fairmont in Fife. They closed down and the owner of the business was in the paper and quoted saying something like , the business, the whole industry has changed now, people will go on the internet do all of the research and then they will walk into my garage and tell me how much they are going to pay for this car.

If I don’t get them for that price they are just going to go away and they’re going to buy online. What’s happening is that they are just not coming into the garage anymore, so we’ve closed our garage down and we’re not going to do business anymore because we’re not…and it was in the sub text.

Dylis: Yes.

Chris: We are not willing to change. So if you’ve embraced change…consumers are changing therefore we need to change but instead what he said was consumers are changing we’re not prepared to change we’re just going to close the business is what we are going to do. One of the red flags that went off for me was this was a used car business, they are very traditional in terms of how they approach business and they’re having to changing the way they do business. People are going online, inspecting the cars online and having them delivered to their door. That’s what’s happening.

Dylis: Yes.

Chris: That is wake up call for everybody, hello, and everything is changing in terms of how people make buying decisions and buy things today and that is cars. Cars are being a commodity now for people it is happening across all industries B2C, B2B and for a lot of people it will be a radical change in terms of how they approach. Honestly there are so much great content out there to help you understand it.

Your sales guys are the ones that are the absolute key to this whole thing; whoever the sales people are in your business whether it’s a director or you’ve got a sales person or a sales team those are the people you really want to get in on this. They will look like heroes in this whole thing even though it is marketing that’s doing a lot of the leg work they are the ones who will reap the benefits in terms of their perspective customers.

Dylis: They are out there hearing what the problems are, they hear the questions, they need to collaborate and share that information instead of being individual silos of information.

Chris: Yes, they all need to work together, absolutely.

Dylis: Yes, you’ve hit the nail on the head there; consumers now are becoming much more discerning, they want much more for their money. It should never have been about product, but it is certainly not about product these days. They are looking for someone who can bring insight, who can bring that added value, who can be seen as a trusted advisor. Through the content marketing it also educates you if you are looking to create an article or a video or you’re talking to people, like me talking to you. I learned from that and I know that you are a lifelong earner and I am the same. That all adds towards the richness of your trusted expert status.

Chris: Yes, it is like a cycle.

Dylis: Yes.

Chris: The thing is with this is you’ve got to give to get and every situation is like this. If you want to build trust with an audience, you have to give trust first. It’s like every relationship you have to give trust to get trust and it is the same for education, you give a little you get a little.

We have this conversation, everybody learns, you learn, I learn, the audience learns if anything…we’re not even talking about content marketing anymore but when you strip it right back, it is about an approach, it’s about a mindset or a philosophy towards how you actually grow business.

If you are in business to just…. like fingers crossed let’s just make as many sales as we possibly can and just get through this you might be around for a while, but you are not going to create anything worth talking about. Whereas if you are in business you’re like we’re here to build something great and we’re here to learn and we’re always going to be learning and our approach to business is to be the best we can be in all the ways that we can then you’re always going to be learning and you are probably already doing this or you want to at least. That is the marked difference I think between those that will make a move and those that won’t. They’ll be those that are like we have to do this because….

Dylis: We have to do it.

Chris: Yes, we just feel compelled to do it and there will be people out there that will just question it; they will be like well what about this and what about that and it’s like well what about what? What about anything….

Dylis: Yes.

Chris: The people that make the move, the people that want to change and try different things will be the people that will be here in five years time.

Dylis: Yes, and also with artificial intelligence galloping ahead people now have got to be the trusted expert, they have to got to be someone who really understands the client, understands the world in which they operate and can bring that added value. They can’t sit still, they absolutely can’t; I interviewed a lady from America a couple of weeks ago an expert in technologies and it’s coming in the next eighteen months. If you are sitting, hoping that you are going to sell some of your products or your service in your traditional way it’s not going to work for you, so you are absolutely right Chris.

Chris: It’s already here.

Dylis: Yes.

Chris: The technology is already here.

Dylis: But it is going to gallop ahead, when I was interviewing a lady it was like wow, this is going to take a lot of people by surprise with what’s coming.

So, Let’s just wind up then and anyone who is listening or watching this and they think I need to get into this but I need to learn how to do it how can they get in touch with you Chris because you are the number one person certainly as far as I am concerned in terms of your teaching ability and the quality of what you teach so how can people get in touch with you?

Chris: Sure, thanks for that, the best thing to do…I get this question a lot actually there is a couple of different things that I would advise you to do, one thing is that you try to learn as much as you can on your own. So, there’s a lot of things that you can do just yourself.

If you went to our website for example there’s a ‘start here’ page on www.cmauk.co.uk , there is the content marketing institute CMI there is a treasure chest of content on that website for example too; you can go there and get a bunch of content from them as well. Just learn as much as you can about what is changing the world and why we need to change. The key thing is to learn enough so that you can bring it back into your company and start teaching your sales and marketing team about it as well and allow them to make that change in the business too.

There’s tons you can do for free but if you wanted to have more directed learning in terms of someone helping you to work through it in a structured way; step one, step two, step three, step four etcetera then definitely get in touch with me. You can email me at chris@cmauk.co.uk you can tweet me at chrismarr101.

There’s lot of things that I can do, I can give you stuff for free, you can join our membership. I have got a 12 weeks program that I run that’s probably the best content marketing program on the planet, design by Marcus Sheridan, the sales lion. We teach that exclusively within CMA.

So we’ve got a whole bunches of resources there that we take people through, just get in touch with me and I’ll help you find a fit for whatever is right for you. It might be something for free it might not be it all depends on what you want. There are tons of ways to do this the first thing is you deciding that you are going to do it first

Dylis: Yes.

Chris: I think that’s the key, absolutely but I am willing to help anybody. If you’ve got a question, something that’s bothering you, something that we covered today, something that is not clear, or you want to shout at me because I’ve said something that you don’t agree with then just email me…don’t do that on twitter. You can email at chris@cmauk.co.uk I am always available.

Dylis: Excellent let me just check that is cmauk.co.uk

Chris: That’s correct.

Dylis: The same address there, Chris thank you so much, it’s been so insightful. It’s been an absolute pleasure talking to you and I hope we talk again soon.

Chris: You are welcome, it’s great being here thank you.

Dylis: Bye for now.

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