Ep 053 - How To Build An AMB Machine with Andy Culligan of AndyCulligan.com

January 5, 2023

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In this episode of Confessions of a B2B Marketer, I'm joined by Andy Culligan of AndyCulligan.com. We get Andy to share his process for Account-Based Marketing (ABM). He discusses the advantages of having sales experience in marketing, how to get closer to customers by attending industry events, how to tier your accounts and why Andy loves direct mail.

As a business owner, you know that marketing is essential to the success of your company. One of the most effective ways to reach potential customers is through account-based marketing (ABM). ABM focuses on targeting specific accounts and delivering personalized messages tailored to their needs. One way to make your ABM strategy even more effective is by leveraging celebrity endorsements.

Celebrity endorsements can help you reach a wider audience, build trust with potential customers, and increase brand awareness. Here are some tips for leveraging celebrity endorsements in your ABM strategy.

This will allow you to adjust any aspects of the campaign if needed , while also helping ensure that all goals are being met. Additionally, tracking performance & results can provide valuable insights into how successful this type of marketing strategy has been for your business. Leveraging celebrity endorsements can be a great way to boost visibility and credibility within certain industries while also increasing brand awareness among potential customers .

By following these tips, businesses can effectively leverage celebrity endorsements within their account-based marketing strategies .

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Episode transcript

Love direct mail. Can't get enough of direct mail. It's fantastic. Everybody's selling everything to everyone all of the time. So you're super overwhelmed and somebody that's going to come to you with something that's a little bit different than a shitty email, which there's plenty of, you're probably as a prospect going to take notice to.

Andy, welcome to the show. Thanks very much. So from my research and from my scrolling through endless LinkedIn posts, it seems like what we have here is somebody with extensive experience in the B2B marketing world, but her expertise may be at the intersection of sales and marketing and revenue and account based marketing.

Is that an accurate statement?

That's an accurate statement. Yeah. Bit of a mixed bag. I started my career as a seller. Yeah. And then I went into marketing because I wanted to earn less money.

So how much of an advantage do you think it is for somebody who does marketing to have actual sales experience?

Massive. It's massive. You don't get many marketers that have it because most marketers, it's two very different mindsets. And I think it helps hugely when you're in the marketing position, having done a sales role to understand like how a seller thinks and understand what's important to a seller and understand what a seller's day would typically look like and how their calendar is structured, how they see the world.

They don't necessarily care about small little things unless it's going to be lining their pocket. I can talk to a seller on that level, which other marketers can't because I've done it before. And I'm like, I just try to cut through all the bullshit and be like, OK, this particular thing that I've done is going to help you sell.



OK, let's go. I'll put a plan with sellers, then I'll be like, here are the things that I think will help you sell. XYZ.

What do you think, lads or ladies, whatever?

And typically, that's how we find good eye to eye alignment with one another because I know what works. I know what I would have in my tool set as a seller myself to go and start selling properly a marketing need to help me with.

A lot of marketers will cause a lot of friction in that relationship because they feel as those sellers aren't taking them seriously or not thinking that the things that they're doing are important. It might be important to them, but maybe not to the seller, right, not helping them sell is normally the problem there. For sure. Like that is definitely going to help the marketer's relationship with sales.

But do you think it's deeper than that?

It means the marketer will actually understand more about why people buy, how people buy. And the whole point of the marketing function really is to end up with revenue. Yeah.

Well, I think that definitely helps.

Obviously, I think as a marketer, there is a certain element of understanding why people buy. But I'll put it like slightly different. I would think to get that type of knowledge, you should be talking to your customers regularly. So you should be trying to build relationships with customers.

Now whether or not that's a seller, that you get that from being a seller, I think as well as a personality type as well to want to be able to or to want to go and start being very close to your customers. You need to be extroverted to be that type of person. That's me anyway. And that's typically a lot of sellers.

I don't think you're going to find too many introverted sellers. So being that extroverted person to be able to create that connection with customers is great. I would say my experience as a seller was not necessarily in the companies that I've done well in. I wasn't a seller in those companies. So it wasn't actually for me being at the call phase and speaking with prospects or being in a discovery call often.

It was more so for me on just trying to understand, OK, what's the customer requirements?

How did they find us?

What were the things that were important to them in the buying cycle?

Where were the areas that they were researching?

Where did they come and meet us?

What are the platforms that they use when they're in a buying cycle?

Those types of things. Some sellers won't even have the answers to that. That's more so getting closer to the customer base and interviewing customers regularly, I would say. Someone from marketing has to be doing that. If you have a marketing team of like seven people, yeah, they speak to sales.

But if no one in that team of marketers regularly interfaces with a customer, how can that marketing team expect to actually create information or influence people to buy?

100%. And so that sort of goes hands in hands with the sellers thing that you just mentioned there as well. They might be speaking with sales, like a lot won't be speaking with sales. That's like a very typical thing as well.

When I come in and join an organization, I'll ask the marketers, hey, like how often are you dealing with somebody from the sales team?

Or when's your one-on-one with somebody from sales?

And they're like, well, we don't have a one-on-one with anybody from sales because why should we?

I was like, OK, let's start from scratch here. This is how you make friends. You read it as a start. And then when it comes to the customer thing, yeah, that's normally getting closer to the client success team or account management team or project management team, whoever's interfacing with clients or customers on a regular basis.

And also like a good tip for marketers to get closer to customer will be to go to events. So go to industry events, go to trade shows, exhibitions, even if you're running your own events, make sure that you're there and just network with your customer base and try to make friends.

That's the easiest and best way to gain that relationship and to also extract knowledge, right?

Makes total sense. This actually leads nicely onto like the core part of the interview today because, well, actually, before we kick off this, everybody should go to Andy Culligan, follow Andy on LinkedIn.

Because again, from my research, it seems like one of the things you're doing right now is going into B2B businesses, acting as like a fractional CMO and getting them on the right path to building a revenue generating marketing, I guess, and sales function.

So I think it would be really cool if we can pick like one of the previous clients or even one of the previous businesses where you have worked and then just go through this kind of account based marketing approach that you have and just to give the audience an understanding of what people should be doing in that area and how you work as well.

Okay, sure. So I'll give you a bit of background on what I do and what I have done. So up until about a year and a half ago, June 2021, I was a full time CMO at a company called Leadfeeder.

So that was a VP of marketing, previously that was a global demand gen head, like various sized businesses, but mostly in the double digits, high double digits ARR businesses, so SaaS, so software as a service. Like that's where I have most of my experience and decided to walk away from Leadfeeder in June last year and set up my own business, which was andyculligan.com.

Since then, I've worked with about 10 different companies in terms of their marketing and sales strategies, stepping in as that all encompassing CMO, but at a fraction of the cost of the CMO, I also give only a fraction of my time. But I look at areas where we can make a muck's bang for our buck typically.

And normally it's like it's a mixture of alignment between sales and marketing, and also marketing really not knowing what the right things to work on are. Right. I've had the luxury to be able to be in companies that have received quite a substantial amount of funding.

With that quite substantial amount of funding, I've been able to make a ton of mistakes, using and burning some cash along the way to making those mistakes. So I've got a fairly good idea about how or where we should invest our money wisely.

And one of the things that I think you're nodding at there is around account-based marketing and how you water the steps you can take to create a campaign marketing model. Right. One of the... I've done this with every company that I've been working with over the past year and a half. And prior to that, I also did it with Leadfeeder. Leadfeeder is a volume SaaS model.

So you need to be super careful in terms of how much you're spending per sign-up per lead generated. Right. So you don't really have the luxury of being able to do like a proper end-to-end AVM focus.

However, one company that we did it with that worked particularly well, it was a VP of Marketing at Exponia, recently acquired by Bloomreach. Exponia is a customer data platform that was built for retailers. So upper mid-market to enterprise sale. So you're talking about multi-hundred thousand dollars per year contracts. That's typically where the account-based marketing model fits in well.

Now, I'm not saying it doesn't fit in well when it's lower revenue models. But as I mentioned to you before, you need to be careful that you're not blowing budgets and you're not overdoing it when it comes to customer acquisition costs, which when you're in a volume play, like for example, at Leadfeeder, you need to be super careful.

Although, we did do some AVM plays, but super basic. But let me go through what my process is and what we ran at Exponia and also what I run at some other companies right now that we're seeing good success with. So I call it like I've got like six steps to success when it comes to AVM.

And I'll try to go through each of the six steps and try not to forget in between which one's which. But I'd normally start with identifying your ideal customer profile.

So understanding which companies do you sell to?

What are the ones that you want to sell to?

So when you're talking about startups or scale ups, so anything that's gone from this, like, let's do everything. We're an agile business to be like, oh shit, we need to probably be focused on a specific vertical in the market now. We need to make sure that we have all of our processes in order.

Otherwise, we're going to fail. That's typically the difference between those companies that make it out of that SaaS value of debt. I don't know if you've heard of that. That happens at around 5 million recurring revenue.

And every sort of at that point, every $5 million in annual recurring revenue you bring in, you hit another one of those valleys of debt where a lot of companies don't survive because they're not able to upgrade their business model to hit that next level of growth.

So typically, like when it comes to that, when you're working with those startups or scale ups, they'll have built their business model or built their business of a certain type of customer.

So they'd be like, oh, this is our best customer because our current database is telling us that 34% of the companies that we work with, governmental agencies, as an example, right?

But there might be like, that might not be the best way forward for the business. That might be just, hey, we were trying to sell to everybody and anybody that would give us money early on because we were trying to scramble and do as many things and sell as many things as possible. There may be more opportunity or maybe more value where a better product market fit in a different vertical.

So one thing that we did at Exponia really well from early on was to identify our vertical and then identify our sub-vertical within that vertical. So we were selling mostly, like we had identified retailers as the vertical that we wanted to go after, but it's being specific to online fashion retailers. So we went then sub-vertical.

So we got super focused in terms of, let's get as much bang for our buck in that specific sub-vertical as we possibly can. And it looks like you want to ask something, so I'm going to make a pause there. Got it.

So my question is, I've written down here optimal ICP because there may be this ICP they think is good, but maybe we need to dig into the data to understand which actually is the best one. Cool. 100%.

So I would give the warning there to businesses that are looking at their current data set, their current customer set, to be like really questioning, hey, is that actually the vertical or sub-vertical that we want to go after?

Is there enough opportunity in there?

Does our message really resonate there or is it just because we've been scrambling in that vertical to win business?

I'd take your hypothesis because typically founders of a company will have a hypothesis about what type of customers they want to win going forward. I'd look at that versus what the current data is saying and then see where you're at.

And again, an ICP is a hypothesis typically. I've been with businesses that have spent a year and a half trying to understand who their ICP is. Be quick with that. I'm running in a specific direction to see if it sticks. Don't spend a year and a half, two years trying to really get into the nitty gritty of what our ICP is. People have a general idea, try to run with it.

That would be my advice there because otherwise you're just wasting time. Step two then is building your total address of the market based off that ICP.

So which companies are the companies that you want to target?

So the difference between any account-based marketing model and any just old school lead gen model is old school lead gen has just put stuff out into the world that will probably resonate with companies that you think are in your ICP, but you're not really getting that focused in terms of only sharing the content with those companies in your ICP as an example.

Whereas with account-based marketing, what you're doing is you're recognizing the companies that you want to do business with first and then you're going and chasing them. So that means that you're going to have both sales and marketing and actually post sales as well. You can also have it as a client success model, but we'll stick with the pre-sales marketing and sales. They're both going to be dipping into the same account list.

So ideally what you'd want to have is your full market defined. So all of the companies across the globe in the markets that you operate in that you want to do business with. And that can be as simple as after recognizing who your ICP is, use those data points that you know about your ICP. Certain company size, for example, is a good one. So they've got X over X in revenue.

We know they're from this vertical, this specific sub-vertical, they're from these geos. And then you create your list based off that.

People say, oh, how do I do that?

You can use a tool like Cognizm or ZoomInfo or they're probably the two I would use actually to pull that one of the two to pull that because then you basically what you have is you have your yellow pages of the companies that you should be going and chasing and that should be everybody's Bible.

Now, everybody says, oh, that sounds real easy. It's not because typically these tools are not perfect. They're going to spit back a load of shit as well that you're going to have to sift out. My apologies. I've been cursing a couple of times here, Tom. It's all good. So you have to sift through those.

So you need to have somebody go through those lists and make sure that there isn't junk flowing in there because what you're going to be doing is you're going to be using that entire list to go target. So that's going to be your list to go and do your digital marketing towards. So people from those companies, those personas on those accounts. And the next step on that is personas.

But I'll stop right there just to answer any questions you might have on building your TAM. So what build TAM is both identifying the companies, but also trying to get contact information for all the relevant individuals in the companies. Contact information is step three.

Oh, step three. So step two is TAM. So TAM is just accounts. It's just naming the accounts.

And also, like actually step three is tiering those accounts. So looking at the accounts, which you need to like, you can split it up.

Typically, I do it into three different tiers. Tier one would be your like, these are our very aspirational wins.

So let's say, for example, at Exponia's case, we had companies in there like Boohoo, like Zalando, like those monsters that are multi-billion dollar companies that are, if you get into a sales cycle, even if you get the pleasure of being able to have a conversation with somebody relevant in that company, like the sales cycle on those, you're probably talking about a 36 month sales cycle.

So long, right?

So very, very long tail stuff, aspirational stuff.

But that's, you want to be building brand within those companies, right?

But tier ones would be those massive, massive guys. Tier twos would be like probably SEMRI aspirational.

So you're probably talking like a tier down from those Zalando's of the world to maybe something like, let's say, for example, River Island, for example, right?

That they were one of our tier twos. Okay. So you're going to be building companies like that. And then what you might want to do then is tier three, which would be your lower value, probably keep your lights on clients, the ones that you know that are going to make up your run rate for you. They're the ones that are going to be probably coming a lot from inbound.

They're lower deals, but they're quick sales, right?

And those ones, you're probably going to have a specific strategy for those, right?

So later on, I get into it like for each of those different tiers, you're going to have a very specific strategy, right?

So and you can let the tier define how much you want to spend, right?

So you know that your tier ones, you can afford to put more money into them because if you win one, the deal value is going to be way higher than your tier threes. Your marketing approach can be, doesn't have to be night and day across each of those. But for example, I'll give you a simple example for your tier ones.

You could have a very special dinner somewhere and like an amazing five star restaurant somewhere and invite, I don't know, five of those tier ones to it and spend, I don't know, 20 grand with the knowledge to say, OK, like that's 20 grand that could potentially come back like at some point in the future.

But the deal value is making sure that that's covered, right?

Whereas you're probably not going to do something similar like that with your tier threes. Your tier threes might be we're going to an event. We have a booth party, come by our booth party and have a beer with us. It's slightly different.

And I assume we're getting on to step five and six there because if three is tier, the accounts four is explore the list and four, five and six, I assume some of this stuff.

So step forward and is to define your personas, right?

So who are the people on the accounts that you want to target?


So typically, I don't know if you're familiar with a software called Terminus, but Terminus are like, they're like the founders of ABN, right?

So Sangram is the guy that started one of the founders of Terminus. And they started really like pushing the term ABN probably around 2013, 2014. They would see themselves as the category creators when it comes to ABM tech. They did a lot of research there a couple of years ago around how many buyers you typically have in a mid market to enterprise sale.

And the magic number is around six, right?

So you're probably going to have to be engaging with at least six people on an account, if not more, when you're running one of those mid market to enterprise deals.

So in our case at Exponia, we were chasing people like CRM managers, head of CRM, head of loyalty, loyalty managers, head of e-commerce, e-commerce managers, CMOs, CIOs, CTOs, like the list goes on, right?

So all of those people that we had to find at some point in a buying process, we were like, OK, we need to get the Exponia brand in front of these people, right?

And we would do that throughout the entire buying cycle. But I'll get to that a little bit later. So the next step, I think that's step four, right, was to find personas and understand, like, again, I don't want you to be like, this is Tom. Tom likes to have cornflakes for breakfast and he's got three kids.

Like nobody can like that persona building stuff is nonsense, right?

It's more so like, who are the job titles that you typically interact with when you're in a buying cycle?

Because when you try to get like time and time again, when you try to get really deep into I'm going to create content for Tom because he likes cars, whereas this other person here likes, I don't know, whatever trains, right?

I'm going to create train folks. Don't get that deep because you really just want to be getting your brand in front of everybody really.

That's the point, right?

When it comes to very, very different role types, if we're talking about CMO versus CTO, then yeah, you want to be doing slightly different content plays because their needs are going to be different, right?

But again, I wouldn't be making it massively different because first of all, you're adding more complexity to it for your marketing team. And secondly, you probably don't have the resource.

Most companies don't have the resource to do it, right?

So that's step number four. Step number five then after that is to pull the persona. So now that you've defined who the personas are, similar to what we did with our Tom after we had our ICP, you then pull your phone book.

Now who are these people from these companies that we want to be interacting with, right?

You have your list then of like you have your yellow pages, which is your total addressable market list. These are the companies that we want to go target.

They've all been tiered out, right?

Then you want to be going and getting your six to 10 contact to each of those companies based on the personas that we've just defined. It could be based off job title. Then you're pumping those into your CRM against the accounts.

Then you're divvying up those accounts, right?

Typically, I do it across sales and SDRs.

Marketing would take everything, right?

Go target these accounts, lads. Time to go get them. Whereas with the sales, guys, I'd be like, okay, guys, here's maybe 250 accounts each per queue. Now that might be different when you're talking about AEs, so account executives versus sales development reps. Sales development reps typically are more junior. So they would take more because they're the openers rather than the closers.

The closers would take a handful, right?

Maybe some of those really strategic accounts like those tier one accounts, you could have some of the closers work directly on those.

So you're maybe talking about 20 to 30 accounts for those AEs and maybe 200 to 250 for the SDRs, right?

That's your next step then.

Final step then is to go and start targeting the heck out of them, right?

So I'd be taking simple first step would be take your total addressable market list uploaded to LinkedIn, right?

From a marketing perspective, I would always try to have somewhere in the region of 5,000 accounts. That's a good level that you're not going to be charged a fortune per lead. Then you're also going to make sure that your match rate is more or less fitting.

Most people say, hey, Andy, should I match an email address or should I match on company?

I'd always match on company because you'll find that the email match rate on LinkedIn is super shitty just because most people don't use their company email address when they're signing up for LinkedIn, right?

That's how LinkedIn is doing their matching.

Hey, is it andy at andycolligan.com?

No, it's andy.colligan.gmail.com, right?

That's what I have as my LinkedIn profile email address, right?

So that's how LinkedIn are doing the matching. I would do it just based off of the main for the company. Upload the list. It takes a couple of days to run it.

But then what you have is you have a full audience of all of those companies that are directly in your ideal customer profile from your time that are now in a system where you can start pushing ads to, right?

Start pushing out interesting content. Start running some lead gen ads, for example. Start doing some follower sponsorships to get them to follow the pages you're on. Start pushing out more content for your company page.

And then at the same time, I'd also be giving over that same account list over to the sellers, as I mentioned, that they have their cadence as well, right?

So on a marketing side, I typically be helping out with the SDR's cadence, which would be things, simple things like what are little marketing touches that we can help you with?

For example, direct mailers. Love direct mail. Can't get enough of direct mail. It's fantastic. And it's so simple for SDRs to do.

They can literally get a sheet of paper, write a handwritten note on it, put it in an envelope and send it out to the prospect that they're looking to sell to, right?

People are like, oh, well, that sounds a bit weird.

Why would I send a handwritten note?

Because it gets your little twinkie in the door, right?

Does it like you're not looking for somebody to sign up for a demo immediately.

You're just trying to get noticed, right?

That's the thing about sales nowadays. Everybody's selling everything to everyone all of the time.

So you're super overwhelmed and somebody that's going to come to you with something's a little bit different than a shitty email, right, which is plenty of, you're probably as a prospect going to take notice too, right?

So one other thing that I would do, which I tell my SDRs as well is let's try the crumpled letter technique, okay?

So this is not me that came up with this. This is a guy called Dale Dupree. He should follow Dale. Super sales expert from the sales rebellion. Super interesting. He does a technique whereby he writes a handwritten note, crunches it up into a ball. People say like, hey, Mr.

Prospect, Mrs.

Prospect, Miss Prospect, been trying to reach on the phone.

I've noticed XYZ about your website, for example, blah, blah, blah, blah, a couple of lines, crumbles it up into a ball, puts it into an envelope, sends it into the post, right?

You can write anything down on that, but I guarantee you as an SDR, if you follow up with a phone call to be like, hey, did you receive the letter that I sent you to post?

Like which letter?

Well, the one that I crumbled up and put into a ball and put into an envelope. They're going to be like, oh, you're the weirdo that sent me that.

Again, it's not selling, it's not immediately, oh, shut up and take my money because we're talking about an enterprise sale here.

But again, your relationship building, you're making somebody smile, you're just making that little bit of a difference in the day, right?

And that's what you want. Okay. I got a very good cold call today. I'll stop for questions in a second. I got a very interesting cold call today that as soon as I answered the phone, the guy said, hi Andy, I'm going to sell to you now. If you don't want to talk to me, like just hang up.

I say, okay.

It's a very different way to be approached on the phone, right?

And because he put it that way, I was like, okay, like, pitch me.

What are you trying to sell me?

Exactly. But if I go, hi Andy, this is blah, blah, blah, blah, blah from blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. I'd be like, no.

So anyway, point is there do something different, but I'll stop for any questions that you might have Tom. A couple of observations.

The first is I kind of, I think maybe the most interesting thing for me is that the first four or five steps here are planning, which is crucial, right?

Because it seems like the biggest part of this whole strategy is just to make sure you're targeting the right people with the right level of intensity or investment. And so that is my first observation. My second is a deeper one. So we spoke at the start of this call about how sales and marketing teams ideally need to be more aligned.

And it's interesting how this whole approach, this whole ABM approach really necessitates both teams to be in lockstep together.

Would you agree?

Yeah, it doesn't work otherwise. Cool. Because otherwise what you're going to have is sales are going to be like, oh, these are my accounts here and I'm going to go after them. And marketing like, I'm going to go over these accounts over here. And then you're going after two different ICPs sometimes. And sellers are then getting leads coming to their queues.

So people from the time that marketing have might be downloading, might be downloading content or interacting with us or whatever. And we're sending that information over to sellers being like, hey, we've had some really interesting interactions with us. Maybe we should probably pick up the phone and see how they're getting on.

They'd be like, why would I pick up the phones?

And that doesn't make any sense. So I know what we're doing is we're burning money. We're putting money into a bucket and light it on fire. It's a complete waste of time, resource and money.

My question is for different personas, we need some messaging that communicates why or like how our product can solve the problem each persona is having, right?

And so whether that's in LinkedIn ad copy, LinkedIn organic posting, outbound cadence, direct mail cadence, who if it marketing's job to define and own that messaging and then just ensure the sales are using that effectively in that outreach. And the question if yes to that, then marketers have to get information presumably from the sales team. Yeah.

So like when you're coming up with messaging, just did a very interesting messaging exercise with extreme push. So a company that are actually in the same space as Exponia, we spent a couple of months actually putting together a messaging and then created a messaging playbook, which also had arguments for the sales team as well against like certain objections and so on and what the messaging is for certain different personas, et cetera.

Now, that was all based off input that was given to the marketing team from sellers. So sellers plus senior leadership, so all the C levels were included, plus account management was included based on the customer's voice.

We also spoke with customers themselves to see if they're still resonated, right?

So there was like a number of different people that were involved in that, but it was like the entire commercial org and commercial org being marketing and sales, right?

Yeah, that makes sense because it seems like that's a couple of crucial steps, I think, which is obviously choosing the right accounts, tiering them properly. And then I think after that, maybe it's ensuring the messaging is on point and then also used in everything. Yeah. There's also with messaging as well. I think it's a bit of trial and error.

Like typically I put it with SDRs because they're the ones that are really the ones that are pushing a lot of the messaging out through their outreach, right?

So I would just give them some guardrails, the way that I think about it is if you give them enough information, it's a bit like, you know, when you went bowling as a kid in the gutters, they'd have like blow up things that your bra wouldn't go down the gutter. And I just see it as that.

You give them some like guidelines in terms of what they should stay in between, right?

And to not go completely rogue. And I'd be as a marketer, I'd be checking the stuff that's being pumped out there. So that's really important as well. Like marketers don't take enough ownership for things like that.

And then what happens is somebody on the senior leadership team will see it and be like marketing, why the hell is this happening?

Why are they saying this?

And I'm like, I never knew anything about that.

Like well, you should make it in your best sense to go and check what's being said about the company outside these four walls to our prospect. It's inevitable that somebody is going to write something that's not on brand or not fitting or not on message. So you should be the person to see that and also give recommendations on how to change it rather than the CEO, which happens all the time.

The CEO will stop somebody in the corridor and be like, hey, show me your outreach cadence just for the crack, right?

Like happens all the time.

And then as a marketer, you're getting pressure from the CEO being like, why is this happening?

You don't have ownership on it.

Why don't you have ownership on it?

So get ahead of that would be my advice. Nice. You recently wrote a LinkedIn post about the importance or the power of B2B brands interacting with in your words, celebs or celebrities.

Does that or can that fit in with the ABM process we just defined?

Yeah. So with that, I think it adds a certain amount of credibility to you. So if you're dealing with these major enterprise organizations as a smaller organization. So let's take, for example, I give you a good example. It is a company I work with at the moment called Base HQ. They offer software for executive assistance and they also offer executive assistance services. But we were unknown in the market.

Nobody really knew who we were. So we knew the best way for us to get there was to build in a community of executive assistance across larger organizations, because that's where the product was really fitting in. So that enterprise, upper mid market to enterprise size companies in the tech space, that was our ICP. Right. So we knew, OK, we needed to build a good community of these EAs.

How do we do that?

Well, typically through content.

What type of content?

OK, let's get people on that like they know and everybody in the community knows. And even like people that will be outside the community will be interested in talking to and get them onto a webinar and get them talking about interesting things that they experienced. Right. And it was always like interesting people from the community.

Typically, I'll give you some examples. So people like Peggy Grande, who was the EA to Ronald Reagan. Nice.

Yeah, exactly.

Or the EA, the XEA to Jeff Bezos or the XEA to Madonna. Or I've just talked to last Monday, I just talked to the XEA to Obama and he's coming on in September. Right. So like people say, oh, that's impossible. Like you need to know all these people. I didn't know any of these people, not a single one of them.

And I just use LinkedIn, just reach out and being like, hey, this is what we're trying to do.

Would you be interested?

And we started to build a community. We've got a community of 25,000 EAs. It gets easier to build a community more and more clearly. But we'll then promote anything that you want.

Do you have a book or something that most of these guys have a book?

But it was as simple as what I was doing was, for example, like to get Anne Hyatt, who's the XEA to Jeff Bezos. I listened to a podcast that she was on. Did put on my sales hat. Now this is the difference between a marketer and a seller.

I put on my sales hat and was like, okay, let me pull out a couple of interesting tidbits from this conversation or that she's had on this podcast. And one of the things that she mentioned was when they first started working at Amazon, they couldn't afford tables. So they had doors on cylinder blocks. So I was like, okay, that's interesting.

So I took a picture of my door in my office and sent it to her and said, hey, how would this look on cylinder blocks?

And she wrote back laughing or whatever, a smile emoji. So then I just started the conversation. That's typically how I do it. Just reach out to them, have a bit of fun with it.

If it doesn't work, who cares?

Move on to the next one. But typically, every time that I've had fun with it, not outreach, to reach out to those people, it's always worked. I've never had anybody. Another one is when I was with Leadfeeder, I was reaching out to, I'd listened to the Joe Rogan podcast and he had an astronaut on called Terry Virts. And Terry was on the International Space Station.

I was like, this is an interesting guy. So I looked him up on LinkedIn and I connected with him on LinkedIn. He just so happened to accept my connection request. And I wrote him a message saying, really enjoyed what you're talking about on Joe Rogan. Really interesting. It would be awesome to have a chat sometime.

You know, like, yeah, sure, let's have a chat. I see it as the same as like, I don't know if you ever heard of like, the best looking person in the room never gets approached. Right. Because everyone thinks can't go after that person because they're too good looking for me. Right. You'd be surprised. I don't think many people are reaching out to these people.

So I would be like, let's try, see what happens, save from there. And then leverage their exposure or their name to 100% create better content slash also maybe they have an audience they can bring to their webinar or podcast, etc. Exactly. And that feeds in nicely because then if we're able to do that, then the people we have in our time, etc.

are going to have more brand awareness because they've consumed the content because we have the Barack Obama's EA on our podcast. Exactly. Makes total sense. This also makes total sense that all this whole process that you have like perfected it or refined it because this is like, if we look at your experience, obviously sales and then marketing, it's just like your absolute sweet spot, I would assume. Yeah. 100%. 100%. Amazing.

And I'm being so generous with the process.

If anybody needs a CMO right now, go search for Andy Kelligan or andykelligan.com, right?

Yeah. You'll get me on andykelligan.com. You'll get me on LinkedIn. Pop me a note on LinkedIn. It's probably the best way to get me or you fill out the form on the website. You get me at andy at andykelligan.com or you just get me at andykelligan on LinkedIn. For sure. They will all be in the show notes below.

Andy, thank you so much for your time.

Thanks, man. It's been a pleasure.

All right, I hope you enjoyed that episode. Big shout out to Andy for coming on and being so generous with the ABM process that he runs for companies. His links are in the show notes below. I also need to give a shout out to M.M.

Kammer, who lived a recent review for us on Apple Podcasts. Tom really knows how to run a great interview. He has the right questions. He's energetic and he extracts lots of insights from his interviewees. Thank you so much for the kind words. If you would like a shout out on the show, just leave a review rating a review on Apple Podcasts.

Send me a screenshot so I know who it is and then I can give you a shout out and I can give your business a shout out as well. The final shout out on this episode goes to H-Refs Webmaster Tools. You can get free stuff completely free. Google H-Refs Webmaster Tools and you'll be able to do three things that will boost your SEO for absolutely free. Go and do that right now.

Then of course, I want to thank you for listening.

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