Brendan Hufford’s Content IP Framework that drove $134k worth of monthly traffic

Brendan Hufford’s Content IP Framework that drove $134k worth of monthly traffic

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Brendan Hufford, Founder of Growth Sprints, discusses his Content IP Framework to help you stand out from the noise.

If you want to rank a piece of content for SEO, you’d usually do keyword research to figure out what phrases you want to rank for.

Want to generate demand with SEO?

Cool, the first step for most marketers is to do keyword research.

But Brendan Hufford, Founder of Growth Sprints, says that doing that is no longer effective anymore:

Would you rather have this clickstream data from Chrome extensions and third-party sources governing your content strategy, or talking to your customers? It's clear that creating content that resonates with your audience is how you win with SEO today.

It’s why Brendan came up with the Content IP Framework, which is one part to his growth methodology.

In today’s episode, you’ll learn:

  1. The four parts of Brendan’s growth methodology.
  2. How to drive a ton of qualified signups using the Content IP framework.
  3. The process behind Brendan’s growth sprint process.
  4. How being prolific can give you a leg up in your career.

Listen to the episode on Apple Podcast and Spotify now, or watch it on YouTube.

I want to thank the sponsor of this episode, 42/Agency.

When you're in scale-up mode, and you have KPIs to hit, the pressure is on to deliver demos and signups.

And it's a lot to handle: demand gen, email sequences, revenue ops, and more! That’s where 42/Agency, founded by my friend Kamil Rextin, can help you.

They’re a strategic partner that’s helped B2B SaaS companies like ProfitWell, Teamwork, Sprout Social and Hubdoc build a predictable revenue engine.

If you’re looking for performance experts and creatives to solve your marketing problems at a fraction of the cost of in-house, look no further.

Go to to talk to a strategist to learn how you can build a high-efficiency revenue engine now.

⭐️ The Content IP Framework

Brendan Hufford's Content IP framework is based on the idea that the old way of generating demand through keyword research is no longer effective. Instead, marketers should focus on creating intellectual property around the problems their customers have.

Brendan argues that by focusing on naming and addressing specific problems that customers have, rather than generic educational content, marketers can create more effective content that drives conversions and builds brand affinity.

Example: Beardbrand's scent confusion

One example Brendan shares is with Beardbrand, a men's grooming company. They coined the term "scent confusion," which occurs when a person uses multiple grooming products with different fragrances, leading to a clash of scents. This can be off-putting and may even lead to discomfort for the person wearing the scents and those around them.

Here's a video of Eric Bandholz, Beardbrand's founder, describing what it is:

Did you hear what Eric said? He's on a mission to remove scent confusion. If you look at the comments on that YouTube video, people totally get it!

Beardbrand's campaign around scent confusion has been met with praise and appreciation from customers and industry experts. By raising awareness for "scent confusion" and offering practical solutions, Beardbrand is helping men improve their grooming experience and scent profile. This campaign solidifies its position as a men's grooming industry thought leader.

How to Implement the Content IP Framework

Here are the steps to implement Brendan Hufford's Content IP Framework:

  1. Identify your ideal customers: The first step is to get crystal clear on who your ideal customer is. This means understanding their pain points, their needs, and their motivations. You should also deeply understand their buying journey and the channels they use to find information.
  2. Discover customer problems: Once you know your ideal customer, you need to discover their problems. This involves talking to them, conducting surveys, and researching to understand their challenges. You should look for patterns and try to identify the most common problems your customers have.
  3. Name the problem: Once you've identified a problem, give it a name. This is the intellectual property part of the framework. By naming the problem, you're giving your customers a way to describe the issue and making it easier for them to find solutions. It also helps you stand out from competitors who may not have named the same problem.
  4. Create content: Once you've named the problem, it's time to create content around it. This content should be educational and informative rather than promotional. It should help your customers understand the problem and offer solutions. You can create blog posts, videos, podcasts, eBooks, and other types of content.
  5. Promote your content: Once you've created it, it's time to promote it. This involves using SEO, social media, email, and other channels to get your content in front of your ideal customers.

By following these steps, you can create a powerful content strategy that improves your SEO and online visibility and helps you build strong relationships with your customers and drive long-term business growth.

The results

Brendan provides examples of how the framework has helped his clients. One example is a DevOps company that used a glossary to attract organic traffic and build a talent pipeline. The glossary was designed to answer technical questions that the company's audience might have, and it resonated with them so well that it drove over $134,00 worth of traffic every month. This content strategy generated revenue for the company and built its authority and reputation in the industry.


Brendan shares another case study in which he helped a software company increase their sign-ups by 25% using the framework. The company struggled to get people to sign up for their free trial. After using the framework to identify and codify the customer's problem, they created a narrative around the problem and increased their sign-ups.

Another example is a project the Brendan undertook where he created one blog post, one YouTube video and one podcast episode every weekday for 20 weeks. Although he only made it halfway through before burning out, the project got him his next job and he still drives people to his courses and SEO resources. The experience of teaching and producing loads of content helped him become more comfortable in front of the camera, develop his material, and be more charismatic on the spot.

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    🎉 About Brendan Hufford

    Brendan Hufford is a seasoned marketer, Founder of Growth Sprints, and creator of the Content IP framework. Prior to his marketing career, he worked as a teacher, which has helped him approach marketing as a form of education. Brendan is known for being prolific in his content creation, having completed a 100 Days of SEO project where he created one blog post, one YouTube video, and one podcast episode every weekday for 20 weeks. This project helped him land his next job and still drives people to his courses on SEO for the rest of us.

    🕰️ Timestamps and transcript

    • [00:00:00] Brendan Hufford's Content IP Framework and Growth Methodology
    • [00:01:01] Content IP Framework: A New Approach for SEO Content Strategy
    • [00:04:50] Discussing the Content IP Framework and Its Influence on Marketing
    • [00:11:39] Creating Intellectual Property Around Customer Problems
    • [00:13:24] 42 Agency Helps B2B SaaS Companies Build Predictable Revenue Engines
    • [00:14:06] Exploring Dark Social and Content IP Framework
    • [00:14:27] Content IP Framework - A Superpower Strategy for SEO and Business Growth
    • [00:20:51] Name Your Problem: The Power of Creating a Shared Language for Your Brand
    • [00:27:50] Content IP: A Content Marketing Strategy by Brendan Hufford
    • [00:33:32] Effective Content Strategies for SEO and Investment in Content IP
    • [00:37:25] How Teaching and Producing Loads of Content Can Level Up Your Marketing Career

    Episode transcript

    [00:00:00] Ramli John: If you want to rank a piece of content for SEO, you probably do some keyword research and then figure out exactly what phrases you want to rank for.

    [00:00:06] Ramli John: But Brendan Hufford, Founder, Growth Sprints, said that's no longer effective anymore.

    [00:00:11] Brendan Hufford: Would you rather have this, like, weird Chrome extension, e clickstream data governing your content strategy, or, I don't know, talking to your customers?

    [00:00:19] Brendan Hufford: And I think, like, that's a weird, controversial thing for an SEO person to say because it's counter to what's worked for the last ten years.

    [00:00:26] Ramli John: It's why Brendan came up with the Content IP framework, which is one part of his four-part growth methodology.

    [00:00:33] Ramli John: In this episode, you'll learn, first, the four parts to Brendan's growth methodology.

    [00:00:37] Ramli John: Second, how to drive a ton of qualified signups using the Content IP framework.

    [00:00:42] Ramli John: Third, the process behind Brendan's growth sprint process.

    [00:00:45] Ramli John: And then, fourth, how being prolific can give you a leg up in your career.

    [00:00:50] Ramli John: Before we start, I've created a free powerups cheat sheet that you can download, fill in, and apply Brendan's Content IP framework and go to right now to get it or find that link in the description or show notes.

    [00:01:01] Content IP Framework: A New Approach for SEO Content Strategy

    [00:01:01] Ramli John: You ready?

    [00:01:02] Ramli John: Let's go.

    [00:01:03] Announcer: Marketing Powerups, ready?

    [00:01:08] Announcer: Go.

    [00:01:11] Announcer: Here's your host.

    [00:01:13] Announcer: Ramli

    [00:01:14] Announcer: John.

    [00:01:15] C: We're going to be talking about marketing power ups, specifically a framework that you came up with, the Content IP framework.

    [00:01:21] C: You mentioned this already a little bit about SEO, and specifically, you mentioned that in your website on growthsprints co that the old way of doing things with keyword research to generate demand is not as effective as before anymore, which sets up the framework for the Content IP.

    [00:01:41] C: But can you talk a little bit about why that is?

    [00:01:44] C: Why is it the old way of doing keyword research no longer effective?

    [00:01:49] Brendan Hufford: So I think we have to look at the data first.

    [00:01:51] Brendan Hufford: And when we look at keyword research, first of all, a lot of well meaning strategies are still built on this.

    [00:01:58] Brendan Hufford: Why?

    [00:01:58] Brendan Hufford: Because it's worked for the last decade, right?

    [00:02:01] Brendan Hufford: You could go into Ahrefs or SEMrush or whatever, export these key, pull up all these keywords on a given topic.

    [00:02:08] Brendan Hufford: What you do is you sort the column by highest volume and lowest keyword difficulty, and they're like, cool, these are our money keywords.

    [00:02:16] Brendan Hufford: These are really easy to rank for, supposedly, and also really high volume, and you just start making posts about each one.

    [00:02:23] Brendan Hufford: And that is how a lot of well meaning SEO content strategies have been built over the years.

    [00:02:29] Brendan Hufford: And I think first we have to how do these third party tools know how many people Google this per month?

    [00:02:37] Brendan Hufford: Google doesn't tell them.

    [00:02:39] Brendan Hufford: So how do they know?

    [00:02:40] Brendan Hufford: Well, they buy clickstream, data clickstream is this really nice, easy word for all of your Chrome extensions are tracking you and selling what you click on to other companies and your Google searches.

    [00:02:54] Brendan Hufford: So I don't know if it was Kaspersky or what but all these antivirus tools do the same thing.

    [00:03:01] Brendan Hufford: They'll be like, free antivirus tool.

    [00:03:03] Brendan Hufford: But then they track all your Google searches, and it's buried down in the terms that you agree to let them.

    [00:03:08] Brendan Hufford: Anyways, that's where all this stuff comes from.

    [00:03:10] Brendan Hufford: And I recently posted this on LinkedIn, this great example of, like, if I was using the SEO tools, I would make some huge mistakes.

    [00:03:16] Brendan Hufford: Like, the SEO tools still say 500 people a month are Googling.

    [00:03:21] Brendan Hufford: Will elon Musk buy Twitter.

    [00:03:23] Brendan Hufford: So does that mean that if I wanted that traffic, I should write this big post about the pros and cons and what I think Elon would do and whether he'll buy Twitter and why he should and why he shouldn't?

    [00:03:33] Brendan Hufford: No, Romley, because he did.

    [00:03:35] Brendan Hufford: It's passed.

    [00:03:36] Brendan Hufford: It's already happened.

    [00:03:37] Brendan Hufford: But these SEO tools like this clickstream data that they've bought from all these places that they're very ambiguous about, is six to twelve months old.

    [00:03:48] Brendan Hufford: So it's great.

    [00:03:48] Brendan Hufford: Don't get me wrong, I love keyword research.

    [00:03:50] Brendan Hufford: It's great for apples to apples comparisons of like, are more people Googling this or this?

    [00:03:55] Brendan Hufford: That's awesome.

    [00:03:57] Brendan Hufford: But letting that lead your content strategy, would you rather have this weird Chrome extension clickstream data governing your content strategy or, I don't know, talking to your customers?

    [00:04:08] Brendan Hufford: Right?

    [00:04:09] Brendan Hufford: And I think that's a weird, controversial thing for an SEO person to say because it's counter to what's worked for the last ten years.

    [00:04:16] Brendan Hufford: I just don't see that old way working anymore.

    [00:04:19] Brendan Hufford: And Growth Sprints, the agency consultancy, whatever we want to call it that I run, literally exists to help SaaS and software companies navigate that kind of new game.

    [00:04:28] C: That's fascinating.

    [00:04:29] C: I think that's lots of really good insight there.

    [00:04:32] C: I mean, you're right.

    [00:04:33] C: Like, a lot of SEO consultant, you mentioned Apple to apples, but it's not as effective with google has been updating with their helpful content updates, and there's been some changes in the space, and that's where this birth of this Content IP framework comes in.

    [00:04:50] Discussing the Content IP Framework and Its Influence on Marketing

    [00:04:50] C: Can you talk about what is this Content IP framework for people?

    [00:04:53] C: And I heard about it before, and how did it come up for you?

    [00:04:59] Brendan Hufford: Yeah, so I've always been obsessed with you'll hear a lot of overlap.

    [00:05:04] Brendan Hufford: I also hate it when marketers act like they invented stuff.

    [00:05:07] Brendan Hufford: It's like you didn't invent that.

    [00:05:09] Brendan Hufford: Like story.

    [00:05:09] Brendan Hufford: Brand is a great example.

    [00:05:11] Brendan Hufford: Everybody Loves Story brand Donald Miller, he literally just wrote a book that was Joseph Campbell's Hero's Journey and gave no credit for, like, ten years.

    [00:05:20] Brendan Hufford: He would never mention Joseph Campbell.

    [00:05:22] Brendan Hufford: I'm like, you literally ripped off the guy's life's work.

    [00:05:24] Brendan Hufford: Don't do that.

    [00:05:27] Brendan Hufford: I hate it when marketers, so I'll name drop stuff.

    [00:05:30] Brendan Hufford: I think that's really important that we cite our sources as marketers and also give credit to what we've been inspired by.

    [00:05:37] Brendan Hufford: This came from maybe a couple of different areas, right?

    [00:05:40] Brendan Hufford: Like my own personal experience of buying into marketing campaigns that were able to put words to problems that I had and describe them better than I could.

    [00:05:52] Brendan Hufford: Right?

    [00:05:53] Brendan Hufford: There was this fitness program that I bought into, and it was definitely geared towards guys, like, in their thirty s.

    [00:05:59] Brendan Hufford: And it said there's this one line in there where he said, I remember when my body used to feel like a weapon.

    [00:06:06] Brendan Hufford: And I was like, I remember that I was competing in Brazilian jiu jitsu and doing a lot of sparring and fighting and kickboxing.

    [00:06:13] Brendan Hufford: And I remember when I used to physically feel like I was a dangerous person and I didn't act that out.

    [00:06:18] Brendan Hufford: But there is a virtue in being dangerous and then choosing not to be right.

    [00:06:23] Brendan Hufford: And I instantly resonated with that, and I'm like, shut up and take my money.

    [00:06:28] Brendan Hufford: Doesn't matter, right?

    [00:06:30] Brendan Hufford: I remember Beard Brand came out with a campaign around Scent Confusion, where they were like, your cologne smells like one thing.

    [00:06:38] Brendan Hufford: Your beard oil smells like something else.

    [00:06:40] Brendan Hufford: Your hair products smell like something else.

    [00:06:43] Brendan Hufford: And I'm like, they do.

    [00:06:45] Brendan Hufford: They actually all do smell like random stuff.

    [00:06:48] Brendan Hufford: They're like that causes scent confusion.

    [00:06:50] Brendan Hufford: And I'm like, that's like some made up marketing stuff.

    [00:06:54] Brendan Hufford: Like, that's a made up problem.

    [00:06:56] Brendan Hufford: I don't know that that's real, because it doesn't really it all just blends together in one smell.

    [00:07:00] Brendan Hufford: But then you also have your body's natural scent, and that causes a lot of issues.

    [00:07:06] Brendan Hufford: And I was like, okay, cool.

    [00:07:07] Brendan Hufford: And I was like, why doesn't my deodorant beard stuff, hair stuff, and cologne all smell the same?

    [00:07:13] Brendan Hufford: Like, I should just do that, right?

    [00:07:15] Brendan Hufford: And that's a very marketing thing.

    [00:07:17] Brendan Hufford: The first one is like, a very good describe the problem better than your customer can, and they'll throw money at you.

    [00:07:22] Brendan Hufford: The second one was just very clever observation of, like, they could make a problem when maybe there necessarily wasn't one.

    [00:07:31] Brendan Hufford: The other piece is like so that was kind of the first piece.

    [00:07:34] Brendan Hufford: I was like, connecting the dots, and you can only do this looking back.

    [00:07:37] Brendan Hufford: There's a great Steve Jobs quote about you can only see those dots connected looking backwards.

    [00:07:42] Brendan Hufford: So that was a part of it, like, just having the experience and being a marketer.

    [00:07:46] Brendan Hufford: So I'm always hyper aware of the marketing that's happening to me and around me.

    [00:07:50] Brendan Hufford: The second piece was just the social media process of how I've started sharing and growing LinkedIn, the audience that I have on LinkedIn and building out that process, I needed to figure out something other than just writing random stuff.

    [00:08:07] Brendan Hufford: And I knew I didn't want to attract an audience of people like me.

    [00:08:11] Brendan Hufford: It's a huge mistake that marketers make.

    [00:08:13] Brendan Hufford: They don't attract customers.

    [00:08:15] Brendan Hufford: They attract other marketers.

    [00:08:17] Brendan Hufford: And in my case, I sell into SaaS and software companies, and I work with other marketers, so that's great, but I don't want to work with the SEO people.

    [00:08:25] Brendan Hufford: Right there's.

    [00:08:26] Brendan Hufford: Sometimes my point of companies I work with have an internal SEO person, but that's not who I wanted to work with, right?

    [00:08:33] Brendan Hufford: I want to build an audience of decision makers and other types of marketers and things like that.

    [00:08:38] Brendan Hufford: So I had to be really thoughtful.

    [00:08:39] Brendan Hufford: And we can walk through what the actual framework is in a second, but kind of like this third area that I got this from was just chatting with my friend Jay Akunzo.

    [00:08:49] Brendan Hufford: I've gotten to be good friends with him.

    [00:08:50] Brendan Hufford: He's launching a new program this year that I'm absolutely going to pay him as much money as I can to be a part of.

    [00:08:56] Brendan Hufford: I don't think it's expensive, but I probably just give him all my money if I could.

    [00:09:00] Brendan Hufford: But getting to be friends with him and talking through this idea of truly developing IP wasn't something I had thought of a lot.

    [00:09:08] Brendan Hufford: And I noticed a couple of other marketers doing it really well.

    [00:09:11] Brendan Hufford: They were doing a really good job of naming the problems.

    [00:09:14] Brendan Hufford: I call it like codifying the problems that their customers have even when their solution doesn't necessarily solve it.

    [00:09:21] Brendan Hufford: It's just giving words and phrases, usually two to three words, to kind of describe this problem.

    [00:09:28] Brendan Hufford: And then it creates this almost like zeitgeist feeling where it's like, this is now the word that we use, or the phrase that we use to describe this thing.

    [00:09:37] Brendan Hufford: Whenever I see somebody post something and everybody's like, yeah, not new, not new, not new.

    [00:09:43] Brendan Hufford: This has been around forever.

    [00:09:45] Brendan Hufford: A good example of this is like the phrase dark social, right?

    [00:09:49] Brendan Hufford: I was the first person that was like, this is total BS.

    [00:09:51] Brendan Hufford: That's just word of mouth, right?

    [00:09:54] Brendan Hufford: This is dumb.

    [00:09:55] Brendan Hufford: And then more people started saying dark social.

    [00:09:58] Brendan Hufford: And then I saw a guy who worked at Chili Pepper was like the director of Evangelism and Dark Social.

    [00:10:03] Brendan Hufford: And I'm like, what?

    [00:10:04] Brendan Hufford: Maybe I'm the project.

    [00:10:06] Brendan Hufford: Maybe they just gave a word to a thing.

    [00:10:09] Brendan Hufford: And what they were giving words to was the fact that we can't track word of mouth really well with any sort of attribution, self reported or software based word of mouth is hard to track.

    [00:10:22] Brendan Hufford: And if your business is generating a lot of its business, that happens a lot in enterprise and stuff like that.

    [00:10:27] Brendan Hufford: Word of mouth matters.

    [00:10:29] Brendan Hufford: Reputation matters.

    [00:10:30] Brendan Hufford: Brand.

    [00:10:30] Brendan Hufford: Brand, not meaning your visual brand, but like, the things people say about you behind closed doors, those things matter a ton.

    [00:10:37] Brendan Hufford: And they now have a phrase to describe this hard to track thing, right?

    [00:10:44] Brendan Hufford: Like, what I just said was really long winded.

    [00:10:45] Brendan Hufford: Or we could just say dark social.

    [00:10:47] Brendan Hufford: Dark social, right?

    [00:10:48] Brendan Hufford: And the company who popularized dark social as a phrase doesn't do anything with dark social.

    [00:10:54] Brendan Hufford: They run Facebook ads.

    [00:10:56] Brendan Hufford: It doesn't matter though, because when they're the ones that are naming the literally giving the name to the problems people have, the solution kind of becomes irrelevant.

    [00:11:07] Brendan Hufford: And I think that's where I started being like, all right, there's something around a lot.

    [00:11:12] Brendan Hufford: Like if you're familiar with SAS and software, there's a guy named Andy Raskin who wrote my favorite medium post of all time.

    [00:11:18] Brendan Hufford: It's called the greatest sales deck I've ever seen.

    [00:11:21] Brendan Hufford: And he talks a lot about strategic narrative and a lot of SaaS and software marketers are very familiar with, like, category creation, right?

    [00:11:28] Brendan Hufford: Where it's like, we're not email marketing.

    [00:11:30] Brendan Hufford: This is active campaign stab at it.

    [00:11:31] Brendan Hufford: They were like, we're not email marketing, we're customer experience, automation.

    [00:11:36] Brendan Hufford: Huge miss, right?

    [00:11:38] Brendan Hufford: Like total miss.

    [00:11:39] Creating Intellectual Property Around Customer Problems

    [00:11:39] Brendan Hufford: First of all, nobody knew they were email marketing.

    [00:11:41] Brendan Hufford: Don't invent a category if nobody knows that you're like the thing you actually are.

    [00:11:47] Brendan Hufford: My point is that we think that this IP has to be around our products and our solutions, and I would argue it doesn't.

    [00:11:55] Brendan Hufford: And it's far easier to create IP around problems.

    [00:12:01] Brendan Hufford: And that's where this content IP came from, of like, our kind of content strategy should very much be focused around this IP that we create, around the problems our customers have, and not just ones.

    [00:12:16] Brendan Hufford: Here's a good example.

    [00:12:17] Brendan Hufford: Not just like, jobs to be done problems, right?

    [00:12:20] Brendan Hufford: I learned about jobs.

    [00:12:21] Brendan Hufford: I understood it as a concept.

    [00:12:23] Brendan Hufford: I actually figured out questions to ask around jobs to be done from your book.

    [00:12:29] Brendan Hufford: Your book was like my go to of like, I flipped to the back and it was like, oh my God, there's just a list of them back here.

    [00:12:35] Brendan Hufford: This makes everything so much easier.

    [00:12:37] Brendan Hufford: I was like, trying to figure stuff out.

    [00:12:38] Brendan Hufford: Anyways, that's where I really got into jobs to be Done was from your book.

    [00:12:42] Brendan Hufford: And I think that's valuable.

    [00:12:45] Brendan Hufford: But I still want to let people zoom out a little more.

    [00:12:49] Brendan Hufford: That it.

    [00:12:50] Brendan Hufford: Again, doesn't have to be about the jobs that our product and solutions solve for people what they're hired for.

    [00:12:55] Brendan Hufford: It can just be about the things they're dealing with every single day.

    [00:12:59] Brendan Hufford: If we can give a name to those problems, all of a sudden we have more content to talk about.

    [00:13:05] Brendan Hufford: People are constantly like, everything has to be direct response, right?

    [00:13:08] Brendan Hufford: Like, well, how are we going to get them to buy our product if we're just talking about these other problems they have?

    [00:13:12] Brendan Hufford: Doesn't matter.

    [00:13:13] Brendan Hufford: When they feel like you understand them better than anybody else on the planet, when it comes time for them to need your thing, you're the only option, right?

    [00:13:22] Brendan Hufford: And that makes a huge difference.

    [00:13:24] 42 Agency Helps B2B SaaS Companies Build Predictable Revenue Engines

    [00:13:24] Ramli John: Before we continue, I want to thank those who made this video possible.

    [00:13:27] Ramli John: 42 Agency.

    [00:13:28] Ramli John: Now when you are in scale up mode and you have KPIs to hit, the pressure is on to deliver demos and sign ups.

    [00:13:34] Ramli John: And it's a lot to handle.

    [00:13:36] Ramli John: Demand, gen, email sequences, rev ops, and even more.

    [00:13:40] Ramli John: That's where 42 Agency, founded by my good friend Camille Rexton, can help you.

    [00:13:44] Ramli John: They're a strategic partner that's helped B, two b SaaS companies like Profitwell Teamworks, Proud Social, and Hub Doc build a predictable revenue engine.

    [00:13:52] Ramli John: If you're looking for performance experts and creatives to solve your marketing problems at a fraction of the cost of in house, look no further.

    [00:14:00] Ramli John: Go to 40 to talk to a strategist to learn how you can build a high efficiency revenue engine.

    [00:14:06] Exploring Dark Social and Content IP Framework

    [00:14:06] Ramli John: Now, you can find that link in the descriptions below.

    [00:14:09] Ramli John: Let's jump back in.

    [00:14:10] C: Yeah, let's dig into it.

    [00:14:11] C: I think it's super interesting that you brought up Dark Social.

    [00:14:14] C: I mean, I heard it for the first time last year.

    [00:14:17] C: I was like, what is this?

    [00:14:17] C: And it really is fascinating.

    [00:14:20] C: I think we're seeing it more.

    [00:14:21] C: I'm seeing it more and more as well.

    [00:14:23] C: But yeah, let's dig into it with this content IP framework.

    [00:14:27] Content IP Framework - A Superpower Strategy for SEO and Business Growth

    [00:14:27] Brendan Hufford: Cool.

    [00:14:28] Brendan Hufford: So I think we have to do a couple of things.

    [00:14:30] Brendan Hufford: Number one, we got to get crystal clear on who our customers are.

    [00:14:35] Brendan Hufford: We have to start seeing the marketing that we've done in the past as like, just maybe one data point.

    [00:14:41] Brendan Hufford: Good example is keyword research.

    [00:14:43] Brendan Hufford: Treat keyword research as one data point.

    [00:14:45] Brendan Hufford: It is not what leads our strategy.

    [00:14:47] Brendan Hufford: It is in there.

    [00:14:48] Brendan Hufford: It can be important.

    [00:14:49] Brendan Hufford: But again, it's just one channel.

    [00:14:51] Brendan Hufford: So let's just look at that anecdotally.

    [00:14:54] Brendan Hufford: The other thing that I think about a lot is we're looking at this as, again, a content strategy.

    [00:15:00] Brendan Hufford: It'll do the SEO stuff, but it also has to do three or four other things in the business.

    [00:15:05] Brendan Hufford: So it can do SEO, but it also has to play on other channels, and it also has to support all the parts of I don't want to call it the buyer journey, but the full funnel approach of acquisition.

    [00:15:18] Brendan Hufford: Activation, getting them actually sold on a close one deal or however it grows, whether it's sales or product Led, getting them to account, expansion, retention.

    [00:15:30] Brendan Hufford: If you can create content that touches all of those things and everybody sales can use it.

    [00:15:35] Brendan Hufford: Customer success can use it, product can use it.

    [00:15:38] Brendan Hufford: All the different types of marketers can use this content.

    [00:15:41] Brendan Hufford: All of a sudden, we do a couple of things.

    [00:15:43] Brendan Hufford: Number one, like, we're talking about power ups.

    [00:15:46] Brendan Hufford: You bulletproof your career when you can do stuff like that.

    [00:15:50] Brendan Hufford: This is an absolute superpower, being able to create content that does all of those things.

    [00:15:56] Brendan Hufford: And then again, like I said, focusing on the problems versus generic education content, the content IP framework really looks at a couple of different things.

    [00:16:05] Brendan Hufford: So we're going to start with the most important part and then break out exactly how to do this.

    [00:16:11] Brendan Hufford: So the IP is really just naming this thing, like giving a name to an issue that they have.

    [00:16:19] Brendan Hufford: So a good example, I like to attach examples to these.

    [00:16:22] Brendan Hufford: I worked with a digital asset management company.

    [00:16:25] Brendan Hufford: If people aren't familiar, it's a dam.

    [00:16:28] Brendan Hufford: Dam for short.

    [00:16:30] Brendan Hufford: A dam is like what you use next after you kind of like, can't manage Dropbox or Google Drive anymore.

    [00:16:39] Brendan Hufford: You just have too many digital assets.

    [00:16:42] Brendan Hufford: Videos, images, audio files, whatever.

    [00:16:45] Brendan Hufford: You just have too much going on.

    [00:16:46] Brendan Hufford: It's just untenable to deal with this anymore.

    [00:16:48] Brendan Hufford: There's too many people touching it.

    [00:16:50] Brendan Hufford: Nobody can get what they need.

    [00:16:51] Brendan Hufford: Cool.

    [00:16:52] Brendan Hufford: So we created IP around two different things.

    [00:16:55] Brendan Hufford: Number one was this idea, what we called like, relay race marketing.

    [00:16:59] Brendan Hufford: It's an absolute problem for so many marketing organizations.

    [00:17:02] Brendan Hufford: Specifically, ecommerce is really bad.

    [00:17:05] Brendan Hufford: Also for designers, where it's like, all right, the one person hands it to the next person.

    [00:17:11] Brendan Hufford: The next person takes this asset, gives it to the next person, they give it to the next person.

    [00:17:15] Brendan Hufford: And what happens is the more baton in this relay race, the more baton handoffs that you give, the more likely that baton gets dropped.

    [00:17:23] Brendan Hufford: Right?

    [00:17:24] Brendan Hufford: And then we created the content framework that I'm about to explain in a second.

    [00:17:27] Brendan Hufford: The other one we talked about is like commerce chaos or content chaos.

    [00:17:31] Brendan Hufford: We kind of like we're up in the air on what to call it.

    [00:17:34] Brendan Hufford: But again, it's just this idea of there's just so many assets floating around.

    [00:17:38] Brendan Hufford: What do we do with all of these things?

    [00:17:40] Brendan Hufford: How can we possibly manage it?

    [00:17:41] Brendan Hufford: Right?

    [00:17:41] Brendan Hufford: Everybody's using the wrong thing.

    [00:17:43] Brendan Hufford: That image isn't right.

    [00:17:44] Brendan Hufford: It's old.

    [00:17:45] Brendan Hufford: Just all these issues or even just like making your designer be the bottleneck.

    [00:17:49] Brendan Hufford: Can you imagine being a designer in an ecom company where you need like 20,000 pieces of creative and there's like user generated stuff and influencer stuff, and it's just a hot mess all the time.

    [00:18:00] Brendan Hufford: So once we have that problem and we name that problem, we look at a couple of different things, kind of like maybe give it five steps, right?

    [00:18:10] Brendan Hufford: What the problem is, and why does it matter?

    [00:18:13] Brendan Hufford: What is the first roadblock to that problem?

    [00:18:16] Brendan Hufford: This is really key.

    [00:18:17] Brendan Hufford: Everybody skips this.

    [00:18:18] Brendan Hufford: They always want to solve the initial problem, and then they move on to a new topic.

    [00:18:22] Brendan Hufford: It's like, yeah, but now that you've solved this, or now that they're aware it's a problem, what's the first roadblock they're going to run into?

    [00:18:28] Brendan Hufford: For example, the counter to relay race marketing is allow people to self serve in this digital Asset Management solution, right?

    [00:18:38] Brendan Hufford: But the roadblock is how do you teach your organization how to self serve?

    [00:18:45] Brendan Hufford: There's change management.

    [00:18:46] Brendan Hufford: There that's hard moving same thing as change management.

    [00:18:49] Brendan Hufford: Meaning for anybody that's not familiar.

    [00:18:51] Brendan Hufford: I say this not because I'm smart, but I just learned this a year ago.

    [00:18:56] Brendan Hufford: Essentially, whenever you move there's buying the software or buying the thing, and then you have to change the whole organization to a new way of working.

    [00:19:05] Brendan Hufford: At ActiveCampaign, we started using Asana, huge, epic change management that had to happen across the country because we're moving from like Google Sheets and Airtable to Asana.

    [00:19:16] Brendan Hufford: So that's what I mean by change management.

    [00:19:18] Brendan Hufford: But that's the same thing.

    [00:19:19] Brendan Hufford: True.

    [00:19:19] Brendan Hufford: When you're with Digital Asset management, if you're going to move to a self serve model, we need to create content that opens up the thing that, yeah, you're going to run into a roadblock.

    [00:19:27] Brendan Hufford: Here's how you fix it, right?

    [00:19:29] Brendan Hufford: And then some sort of so first what the problem is, why it matters, what the first roadblock is that they're going to run into a template or framework to help them think through message internally about that roadblock or the problem itself.

    [00:19:42] Brendan Hufford: Number four is a customer success story about that specific problem.

    [00:19:47] Brendan Hufford: And then finally a high level interesting roundup.

    [00:19:50] Brendan Hufford: So a good example would be like for Digital Asset Management just to stay on that kind of thread.

    [00:19:58] Brendan Hufford: That company doesn't work with Jeffrey Starr, who's a very prolific social media personality, and YouTuber, who does makeup releases that sell millions of dollars in a day, right?

    [00:20:11] Brendan Hufford: So it'd be cool to do like a high level interesting roundup and find out some insider info of how do they manage all that creative?

    [00:20:18] Brendan Hufford: What are they doing right now?

    [00:20:19] Brendan Hufford: They might not use even we don't know what they're doing, but just create an interesting roundup.

    [00:20:23] Brendan Hufford: I did this where I got some cool insight into how Airbnb actually built its SEO.

    [00:20:30] Brendan Hufford: There's a lot of people writing articles about how Airbnb won with SEO and it's all like outside looking in stuff.

    [00:20:35] Brendan Hufford: And you've worked in tons of places.

    [00:20:38] Brendan Hufford: I've worked inside of tons of companies.

    [00:20:40] Brendan Hufford: It's never that easy.

    [00:20:42] Brendan Hufford: Where it's like, oh, they did these five things.

    [00:20:43] Brendan Hufford: It's always a mess.

    [00:20:44] Brendan Hufford: And what I found was the mess.

    [00:20:46] Brendan Hufford: Somebody told me about it.

    [00:20:48] Brendan Hufford: Now I share that as like it's in my newsletter.

    [00:20:50] Brendan Hufford: It's a social post.

    [00:20:51] Name Your Problem: The Power of Creating a Shared Language for Your Brand

    [00:20:51] Brendan Hufford: It's all these things people love that inside information.

    [00:20:54] Brendan Hufford: Like if you can find that inside information for this last kind of piece, that high level interesting roundup, that's really valuable curating that so that's kind of how I think about content.

    [00:21:04] Brendan Hufford: IP not just of like name it, but then giving you a content strategy.

    [00:21:09] Brendan Hufford: And if you can think of four or five of these, all of a sudden, four or five of them multiplied out by five, all of a sudden we have let's just use a round number.

    [00:21:18] Brendan Hufford: We have five by five is 25.

    [00:21:20] Brendan Hufford: If you think I'm like drawing a grid with my hands, 25 of them means I now have at least one social post every Monday for the whole year.

    [00:21:31] Brendan Hufford: Because you could repost the same stuff you shared six months ago, right?

    [00:21:35] Brendan Hufford: Great.

    [00:21:36] Brendan Hufford: Now I have six months of weekly emails done.

    [00:21:40] Brendan Hufford: Perfect.

    [00:21:41] Brendan Hufford: And all of a sudden this starts to create a really intense feeling from your customers of like, oh, they get me, somebody gets me.

    [00:21:48] Brendan Hufford: Right?

    [00:21:49] Brendan Hufford: And I think that that's really, really cool.

    [00:21:52] Brendan Hufford: I like mispronounced something to my wife the other day and she's like, what in the gen z TikTok are you talking about?

    [00:21:59] Brendan Hufford: Because I come to her with all these phrases that I pick up from wherever and she's just like, what is that?

    [00:22:06] Brendan Hufford: And I'm like, I just said the word wrong.

    [00:22:08] Brendan Hufford: It's not like a new she's always thinking, I'm like naming things.

    [00:22:11] Brendan Hufford: But it's very true.

    [00:22:13] Brendan Hufford: I don't know if you've experienced this on TikTok or wherever, but you see a couple of videos about something, and then TikTok is like, oh, you like that?

    [00:22:20] Brendan Hufford: You are that now.

    [00:22:21] Brendan Hufford: And they show you, like, 1000, but it creates that very intense feeling of like, oh, okay, now I have words for this right?

    [00:22:29] Brendan Hufford: Now.

    [00:22:29] Brendan Hufford: I really understand what this is.

    [00:22:32] Brendan Hufford: So, yeah, I don't want to take people down the rabbit hole there, but again, if you can give people words for the frustrations they have, they will throw money at you.

    [00:22:39] Brendan Hufford: And the solution matters so much less.

    [00:22:42] Brendan Hufford: And this is where I think we as marketers can really put a flag in the ground and be like, this is what we do as marketers.

    [00:22:49] Brendan Hufford: And I think it just helps us differentiate from sales, because I think for a long time, especially in my world of SaaS and software, that Venn diagram has slowly become like a circle where it's like, marketing is expected to convert a very serious amount of revenue.

    [00:23:04] Brendan Hufford: And it's like, well, if all of our leads are qualified and they're all already ready to buy, what do we need sales for?

    [00:23:11] Brendan Hufford: Exactly.

    [00:23:12] Brendan Hufford: Aren't we also doing sales?

    [00:23:14] Brendan Hufford: I know I'm being snarky, right?

    [00:23:16] Brendan Hufford: But that's a fair question, right?

    [00:23:18] Brendan Hufford: Like, let marketing do marketing.

    [00:23:23] Brendan Hufford: That was a lot of me monologuing.

    [00:23:25] Brendan Hufford: Does that resonate?

    [00:23:26] C: Yeah, I think a few things really resonated with me.

    [00:23:29] C: I think focusing on the problem.

    [00:23:31] C: But when you said something around, like having a shared language, once you have that shared language with your audience around the problem, they're more likely to trust you.

    [00:23:41] C: They're more likely, oh, you created a problem.

    [00:23:44] C: Like, you brought up this example with scent confusion.

    [00:23:48] C: You yourself said, even now I'm thinking about it.

    [00:23:52] C: That makes sense.

    [00:23:54] C: If vanilla you put on vanilla on your beard and orange on something else, it might clash with each other.

    [00:24:01] C: You created this problem now essentially priming people, your audience, to potentially a solution, even though you're not necessarily like, oh, now buy now necessarily.

    [00:24:15] C: But you're getting the audience to say, what's next?

    [00:24:18] C: What is the solution?

    [00:24:19] C: You're getting them to ask that particularly.

    [00:24:21] C: Is that what I'm hearing?

    [00:24:23] Brendan Hufford: Yeah, 100%.

    [00:24:25] Brendan Hufford: Again, it doesn't even have to deal with what we're solving.

    [00:24:29] Brendan Hufford: This is true demand gen.

    [00:24:31] Brendan Hufford: I worked in search for the majority of my career, and that's what I would call, like, demand capture.

    [00:24:37] Brendan Hufford: People are raising their hand saying, I have a problem.

    [00:24:39] Brendan Hufford: And you're like, cool.

    [00:24:39] Brendan Hufford: Over here we have the solution.

    [00:24:41] Brendan Hufford: Right?

    [00:24:41] Brendan Hufford: Come over here.

    [00:24:43] Brendan Hufford: Demand gen is the other side of that.

    [00:24:45] Brendan Hufford: And I think they go hand in hand.

    [00:24:47] Brendan Hufford: They're twins, best friends, whatever, where we also have to have this piece where we are generating demand where it may not exist and just staying top of mind.

    [00:24:59] Brendan Hufford: A good time to do this is right now, right?

    [00:25:02] Brendan Hufford: So right now, semi uncertain economic future.

    [00:25:05] Brendan Hufford: A lot of layoffs happening in my space in tech, and budgets are getting tighter.

    [00:25:11] Brendan Hufford: The CEO and CFO are, like, really reading through all the contracts.

    [00:25:15] Brendan Hufford: Like, they probably haven't in a little bit, and all of a sudden, a lot more people are just doing research.

    [00:25:21] Brendan Hufford: They're just making their short list for when budgets come back, when they can get headcount, like, whatever the thing is, or even, like, if you're B to C and you're a clothing company, people are pinteresting everything.

    [00:25:33] Brendan Hufford: They're saving everything they're making.

    [00:25:35] Brendan Hufford: All right, cool.

    [00:25:35] Brendan Hufford: When I get whatever, I'll buy this, I'll check that out.

    [00:25:39] Brendan Hufford: People are making their shortlist.

    [00:25:40] Brendan Hufford: They're not doing research right now.

    [00:25:43] Brendan Hufford: This is a great time to become their favorite, to become the brand that they trust the most.

    [00:25:50] Brendan Hufford: I think it presents a really unique opportunity for us.

    [00:26:20] Brendan Hufford: Yeah, I got a lot of inspiration from Alex Hermosi's book 100 Million Dollar Offers, where he talks about naming your offer and the power of Rhyming and the power of two or three words at most.

    [00:26:34] Brendan Hufford: And he even walks through like he gives so many examples in the back of that.

    [00:26:38] Brendan Hufford: It's like the last chapter of the book.

    [00:26:39] Brendan Hufford: So it's probably like the one people read the least just by nature of that.

    [00:26:43] Brendan Hufford: And I don't know, I think it's really powerful stuff, so I get a lot of inspiration from that.

    [00:26:49] Brendan Hufford: And then, honestly, it just takes time.

    [00:26:51] Brendan Hufford: Like, you're doing the work of a copywriter, so you're just trying to think, like, I'm googling Synonyms and all this other stuff, and you land on relay Race Marketing is good, or like, content chaos and it's like, all right, cool.

    [00:27:04] Brendan Hufford: That's a very easy to remember phrase.

    [00:27:07] Brendan Hufford: It's something people would use of, like, we have this even if they're internal, they're like, messaging each other in slack of like, we got to handle this content chaos we're dealing with right now.

    [00:27:17] Brendan Hufford: We got to stop doing this Relay race marketing thing.

    [00:27:20] Brendan Hufford: So I think that I don't know, you just got to sit with it and practice if you want the shortcut.

    [00:27:26] Brendan Hufford: I guess there's some ideas definitely in the book.

    [00:27:29] C: In terms of results.

    [00:27:30] C: I know you have a bunch of case studies people should check out.

    [00:27:32] C: Growthsprints Co.

    [00:27:34] C: You have a bunch of content there and some case studies.

    [00:27:38] C: Any results you can share with the audience as to it could be around Relay race Marketing or other companies that you are currently working with to apply this framework that you can share.

    [00:27:50] Content IP: A Content Marketing Strategy by Brendan Hufford

    [00:27:50] Brendan Hufford: Yeah, so I've actually only started rolling this out to clients maybe in the last couple of months.

    [00:27:59] Brendan Hufford: This is something so I have a larger four part framework, and Content IP is kind of part of it.

    [00:28:05] Brendan Hufford: And this larger framework has changed over time, and it's kind of changed based on.

    [00:28:12] Brendan Hufford: What I see working, what I don't see working, and then what people are asking me for, I just had enough clients that are like, hey, we hired you because we follow you on LinkedIn.

    [00:28:23] Brendan Hufford: Can you explain how you do what you do there?

    [00:28:25] Brendan Hufford: And I'm like, you got asked that four times.

    [00:28:28] Brendan Hufford: And you're like, this is a deliverable.

    [00:28:30] Brendan Hufford: This is a thing people want to pay for.

    [00:28:34] Brendan Hufford: So then I'm like, all right, cool.

    [00:28:35] Brendan Hufford: I'll give you a good example.

    [00:28:37] Brendan Hufford: The way I think about my framework overall is I have traditional SEO, like product and keyword led.

    [00:28:44] Brendan Hufford: I call it content.

    [00:28:45] Brendan Hufford: Led SEO.

    [00:28:46] Brendan Hufford: Then I have revenue focused Content, which flips the model.

    [00:28:50] Brendan Hufford: That's me using what I call, like, the three S strategy talking to sales, success and support, getting ideas from them, talking to customers if I can.

    [00:28:57] Brendan Hufford: Usually as an outside person, I don't get to talk directly to my clients customers, but I can talk to sales, success and Support and get a lot of ideas.

    [00:29:06] Brendan Hufford: And then I had one in there around conversational marketing.

    [00:29:09] Brendan Hufford: I brought conversational marketing into an agency I was at previously, where I was like, everybody's got Drift.

    [00:29:15] Brendan Hufford: Why are we not helping them with Drift?

    [00:29:17] Brendan Hufford: Our goal is to help them make money.

    [00:29:19] Brendan Hufford: I know we're here to do, like, SEO and ads.

    [00:29:21] Brendan Hufford: Why not also do drift?

    [00:29:22] Brendan Hufford: So I learned drift.

    [00:29:23] Brendan Hufford: I would argue I am top 1% of the world at Drift Romley.

    [00:29:29] Brendan Hufford: Nobody's clicking chat bots anymore.

    [00:29:33] Brendan Hufford: We're kind of over it a little bit.

    [00:29:35] Brendan Hufford: And you know what?

    [00:29:35] Brendan Hufford: The only thing people are clicking chat bots for is to talk to a person.

    [00:29:38] Brendan Hufford: It came back.

    [00:29:39] Brendan Hufford: I remember Drift was like, nobody wants live chat.

    [00:29:42] Brendan Hufford: Like, blah, blah, blah, whatever.

    [00:29:44] Brendan Hufford: It's back.

    [00:29:45] Brendan Hufford: People are just like, I just want to talk to somebody that's got some questions real quick.

    [00:29:48] Brendan Hufford: Sorry.

    [00:29:49] Brendan Hufford: Like, hey, want to know some things?

    [00:29:51] Brendan Hufford: Don't give me some sort of flow.

    [00:29:53] Brendan Hufford: Like they're just hitting.

    [00:29:54] Brendan Hufford: You ever called a support line and you're just like, mashing zero over and over, and you're like, I just want to talk to somebody.

    [00:30:01] Brendan Hufford: That's what is happening.

    [00:30:02] Brendan Hufford: So I was like, you know what?

    [00:30:03] Brendan Hufford: Let me not set these chat bots up for them anymore.

    [00:30:06] Brendan Hufford: It's not worth them paying me for.

    [00:30:07] Brendan Hufford: I'll just give them my playbooks.

    [00:30:08] Brendan Hufford: I built them out in this software called Voice Flow.

    [00:30:11] Brendan Hufford: I just give them to my clients now, and then they can run with them if they want.

    [00:30:15] Brendan Hufford: There's still some really cool stuff you can do, but it's not like the conversion channel it was before.

    [00:30:19] Brendan Hufford: And then instead of that, I took conversational marketing out, and I put demand focused content in.

    [00:30:25] Brendan Hufford: And that's where Content IP lives.

    [00:30:27] Brendan Hufford: That's where a couple of other things live that's, like, really fun and exciting, and people are asking me more, and it's made my offer, like, more of this blended offer where it is content, it is search.

    [00:30:38] Brendan Hufford: There's stuff in there about authority building, but I also build out a really cool content distribution strategy.

    [00:30:43] Brendan Hufford: Not just like, here's all the places to post your link, but what does a mature program look like for that company?

    [00:30:49] Brendan Hufford: So there's a lot of cool pieces in there.

    [00:30:51] Brendan Hufford: The Content IP is kind of just one of them.

    [00:30:53] Brendan Hufford: And I think it's a good lesson for any marketers of, like, the closer you can have your ear to the customers and to the ground.

    [00:31:00] Brendan Hufford: I think in a lot of companies, there's a lot of well meaning marketers.

    [00:31:04] Brendan Hufford: I remember when I was at ActiveCampaign, I just couldn't talk to customers.

    [00:31:07] Brendan Hufford: We had, like, a customer marketing person, and it's like, we have, like, 150,000 customers.

    [00:31:11] Brendan Hufford: What do you mean?

    [00:31:12] Brendan Hufford: I kind of went rogue, Romney.

    [00:31:14] Brendan Hufford: Honestly, I went rogue and just found my own.

    [00:31:16] Brendan Hufford: I'm like, who do I know that uses ActiveCampaign?

    [00:31:19] Brendan Hufford: And I found, like, ten people that I knew, and I'm like, Cool.

    [00:31:22] Brendan Hufford: You're my customer advisory board now, because these jokers won't let me talk to anybody.

    [00:31:25] C: I love it.

    [00:31:26] Brendan Hufford: What do you mean?

    [00:31:27] Brendan Hufford: Well, they don't want to be bothered.

    [00:31:29] Brendan Hufford: It's such a lie that your customers don't want to be bothered by marketing.

    [00:31:33] Brendan Hufford: I wish some software company would be like, hey, you're kind of a power user of our product.

    [00:31:40] Brendan Hufford: We would love to involve you in product decisions and in our content and help promote you.

    [00:31:46] Brendan Hufford: This is easier when you're in Martech, right?

    [00:31:48] Brendan Hufford: But there's a lot of opportunity for that.

    [00:31:52] Brendan Hufford: And anyways, my point is, this offer has changed over time, but Content IP is just kind of like one part of that larger four part framework.

    [00:32:01] Brendan Hufford: So the Content IP thing is still new, and it's demand gen.

    [00:32:05] Brendan Hufford: So it is slower.

    [00:32:06] Brendan Hufford: It is more like canvassing.

    [00:32:08] Brendan Hufford: It's more like we'll see it come up in a self reported attribution down the road, where people are like, oh, I followed you on this social platform, or on wherever Transparently.

    [00:32:21] Brendan Hufford: I've been using it for myself.

    [00:32:22] Brendan Hufford: That's where it came from.

    [00:32:24] Brendan Hufford: And LinkedIn has generated half of my pipeline over the last year, which I'm thrilled about.

    [00:32:31] Brendan Hufford: Most people assume, like, oh, you quit your full time job.

    [00:32:33] Brendan Hufford: You run this consultancy now.

    [00:32:36] Brendan Hufford: I'm assuming most of your work comes from referrals, and that definitely does matter, and it's definitely the case.

    [00:32:41] Brendan Hufford: But it's been really wild.

    [00:32:43] Brendan Hufford: Like, what it has built for me, I think it's at 7 million plus impressions in my analytics for LinkedIn right now over the last little bit, and it's grown quite a bit.

    [00:32:55] Brendan Hufford: The overall framework has been really cool.

    [00:33:00] Brendan Hufford: I have a bunch of case studies.

    [00:33:02] Brendan Hufford: My website is kind of obnoxious.

    [00:33:03] Brendan Hufford: There's only three pages and spoiler.

    [00:33:06] Brendan Hufford: Two of them are basically the same.

    [00:33:09] Brendan Hufford: But the clients that I'm most proud of on there.

    [00:33:13] Brendan Hufford: If you check out the home page, the clients that I'm most proud of are the ones where, in this case, we actually didn't do content IP because this happened.

    [00:33:24] Brendan Hufford: Previously, but it became like a blended piece of authority building.

    [00:33:29] Brendan Hufford: Content distribution.

    [00:33:30] Brendan Hufford: Revenue focused content.

    [00:33:31] Brendan Hufford: And then some of that.

    [00:33:32] Effective Content Strategies for SEO and Investment in Content IP

    [00:33:32] Brendan Hufford: Like traditional SEO.

    [00:33:33] Brendan Hufford: Keyword research.

    [00:33:35] Brendan Hufford: One of the good examples on there, there's one right on my homepage that shows, like, again, I like to use as anonymized stuff as possible versus using, I don't know, like, somebody's actual Google Analytics screenshot.

    [00:33:49] Brendan Hufford: I prefer to take stuff out of third party tools as much as I can.

    [00:33:51] Brendan Hufford: Sometimes I'll use search console, but there's one example on there of a company that has 51,000 organic searches or site visitors per month.

    [00:34:02] Brendan Hufford: And that same effort has also built like 500 links to that website.

    [00:34:08] Brendan Hufford: I have an updated one of that same thing.

    [00:34:11] Brendan Hufford: So we built kind of like we had a content strategy.

    [00:34:14] Brendan Hufford: We executed on it.

    [00:34:15] Brendan Hufford: This content strategy did a number of things for the company.

    [00:34:19] Brendan Hufford: Remember, I mentioned earlier, like, it should do more than one thing.

    [00:34:22] Brendan Hufford: So this content strategy and it's not anything fancy, I'll put the answer ahead of the explanation.

    [00:34:29] Brendan Hufford: It was a glossary.

    [00:34:32] Brendan Hufford: People are like, nobody's impressed with that.

    [00:34:34] Brendan Hufford: When I say, like, Romlia did this really amazing thing, it was a glossary.

    [00:34:36] Brendan Hufford: People are like, yeah, I know.

    [00:34:38] Brendan Hufford: Like, change the channel.

    [00:34:39] Brendan Hufford: Hopefully people are still listening.

    [00:34:40] Brendan Hufford: But that's not an unheard of thing.

    [00:34:43] Brendan Hufford: Everybody's always looking for secret sauce.

    [00:34:45] Brendan Hufford: It's not but when we were thoughtful about this glossary, this glossary had a lot of what is searches on a very technical topic to an audience.

    [00:34:55] Brendan Hufford: That was traditionally, they're a technical audience, so they're a little marketing allergic.

    [00:35:00] Brendan Hufford: They don't want you throwing some featured blog images in there from unsplash or, like, something.

    [00:35:06] Brendan Hufford: They don't want any no whiz bang, no info, give me a GitHub link or, like, whatever embed some code.

    [00:35:13] Brendan Hufford: That's it.

    [00:35:14] Brendan Hufford: And we built out this glossary and kind of tested it out.

    [00:35:17] Brendan Hufford: And it was pretty small at first, and it resonated and was bringing in over $100,000 worth of traffic every single like, if they were to pay for that traffic in ads, it was over 100 grand.

    [00:35:29] Brendan Hufford: And we're like, all right, there's something here.

    [00:35:30] Brendan Hufford: So it expanded and it expanded.

    [00:35:32] Brendan Hufford: We kind of Stair stepped into it eventually.

    [00:35:34] Brendan Hufford: And what we realized it was a bunch of it was for a DevOps company.

    [00:35:37] Brendan Hufford: We realized, like, a lot of these developers would hear a phrase in a meeting or reading something or doing their job, and then they'd Google, what is this?

    [00:35:46] Brendan Hufford: And then they'd find this company.

    [00:35:48] Brendan Hufford: And then it built talent pipeline for them.

    [00:35:50] Brendan Hufford: So they in a very competitive industry now, had a pipeline of talent who thought they were cool and trusted them of technical people.

    [00:35:59] Brendan Hufford: It drove revenue for them.

    [00:36:01] Brendan Hufford: It drove a bunch of backlinks for them, because half of the people googling what is were really just looking for a resource to cite.

    [00:36:08] Brendan Hufford: And it did, like, a bunch of other stuff.

    [00:36:11] Brendan Hufford: It was that multifaceted content.

    [00:36:13] Brendan Hufford: And again, sometimes it's not that secret of a strategy.

    [00:36:16] Brendan Hufford: It was, again, a glossary, but it did so much for the company organic ended up being like their main channel that drove a ton of revenue for them, allowed them to IPO.

    [00:36:27] Brendan Hufford: So it did a bunch of stuff and it was really successful.

    [00:36:31] Brendan Hufford: It's probably, like one of my favorite examples, but I'm excited for the near future where I see companies executing more on the social side of it, on the content IP side of it, where we're giving them the strategies to do content distribution and content marketing.

    [00:36:49] Brendan Hufford: We're giving them the strategies to do the demand capture from Search, and then we're also giving them the strategies to do demand generation on social.

    [00:36:58] Brendan Hufford: Those can and should.

    [00:36:59] Brendan Hufford: We've always said it for years.

    [00:37:01] Brendan Hufford: These teams should talk to each other.

    [00:37:03] Brendan Hufford: The good thing is, it's just me, so it is talking to each other.

    [00:37:08] Brendan Hufford: And why wouldn't I share all of that?

    [00:37:10] Brendan Hufford: It's a much better blended strategy.

    [00:37:13] C: I love that.

    [00:37:14] C: That's such a great example.

    [00:37:16] C: People can find it at Road Sprints co I want to shift focus now and talk a little bit about careers before we wrap up.

    [00:37:25] How Teaching and Producing Loads of Content Can Level Up Your Marketing Career

    [00:37:25] C: You've been in marketing now for six years, but before that you were a teacher and you said marketing is a lot around education, so I would bundle that into your experience.

    [00:37:37] C: That's relevant.

    [00:37:38] C: Can you share a little bit about a power up that's helped you in your career, in your marketing career that's really, like, level you up quicker than if you didn't have that?

    [00:37:49] Brendan Hufford: Yeah, absolutely.

    [00:37:49] Brendan Hufford: So I think the big thing that I came away with was like, and we mentioned this earlier, we can get a little more tactical.

    [00:37:57] Brendan Hufford: This is something I advise for everybody who's looking to break out in their career is this idea of be so good they can't ignore you.

    [00:38:05] Brendan Hufford: There's a Cal Newport book with that title and I think a lot of me, I heard the title, I'm like, yeah, got it.

    [00:38:11] Brendan Hufford: Huge mistake.

    [00:38:12] Brendan Hufford: That book has so much more depth to it.

    [00:38:15] Brendan Hufford: Highly recommend reading it.

    [00:38:17] Brendan Hufford: But it was just this idea of like, how can I be so prolific?

    [00:38:19] Brendan Hufford: How can I create so much media?

    [00:38:21] Brendan Hufford: How can I do a project that people are like, everybody knows about?

    [00:38:25] Brendan Hufford: Whether they like it or not, they're not going to be able to miss it.

    [00:38:28] Brendan Hufford: So I did this 100 days of SEO project where every single weekday for 20 weeks, so five times 20, I created one blog post, one YouTube video and one podcast episode that was an absolute game changer.

    [00:38:44] Brendan Hufford: Transparently.

    [00:38:45] Brendan Hufford: I only made it, like, halfway through before I really burned out.

    [00:38:48] Brendan Hufford: It turns out that's a lot more work than I thought it would be.

    [00:38:51] Brendan Hufford: And I had a full time job at that point, working at a design agency as the SEO director.

    [00:38:55] Brendan Hufford: But that got me my next job.

    [00:38:57] Brendan Hufford: Those YouTube videos still drive people to my courses and things for SEO for the rest of us, which is what 100 days of SEO became.

    [00:39:06] Brendan Hufford: So the power up of teaching and having to just be fearless, like just being able to get in front of a camera and go, I give so much credit to me being able to close deals.

    [00:39:22] Brendan Hufford: I don't have any sales training.

    [00:39:24] Brendan Hufford: I've never studied sales.

    [00:39:25] Brendan Hufford: I take that back.

    [00:39:26] Brendan Hufford: I've studied Sales a lot, but not like I've never sat down and attempted to get an education in it.

    [00:39:32] Brendan Hufford: And a lot of that is just me being able to 30 seconds before the call, I am cleaning up some mess of yogurt my kid made out in the hallway.

    [00:39:41] Brendan Hufford: And then it's just like the two snap rule of like and I'm good and I'm on and I'm dialed in.

    [00:39:47] Brendan Hufford: And that's very much from teaching of like, something insane just happened.

    [00:39:51] Brendan Hufford: And you get a three minute passing period to gather yourself and deliver that again and make it better.

    [00:39:58] Brendan Hufford: And that sort of stuff, that training, it's not the same as stand up comedy.

    [00:40:05] Brendan Hufford: But when you are a high school teacher and you're teaching the same thing a bunch, like five or six periods a day, you almost get, like, material.

    [00:40:14] Brendan Hufford: So I remember anecdotally I had this student one time, he was in first period, and then he transferred to the Lat to 8th period class, and the guidance counselor sent him to 8th period, and he's like, here's my new schedule.

    [00:40:25] Brendan Hufford: They said, just come twice.

    [00:40:27] Brendan Hufford: And I was like, oh, all right, just, I guess sit somewhere.

    [00:40:30] Brendan Hufford: So he sat down and I started teaching.

    [00:40:33] Brendan Hufford: And he knew the jokes I was going to say because he had been in first period.

    [00:40:37] Brendan Hufford: And he's like, get him, get him, you guys, listen.

    [00:40:42] Brendan Hufford: Get him with this one.

    [00:40:43] Brendan Hufford: Huff hoff.

    [00:40:44] Brendan Hufford: Tell him.

    [00:40:45] Brendan Hufford: And I'm like, he already knows the jokes.

    [00:40:48] Brendan Hufford: That was the moment where I'm like, oh my God, I'm developing material.

    [00:40:51] Brendan Hufford: Like, I have these jokes that I've written in the margins of the teacher's edition and stuff.

    [00:40:58] Brendan Hufford: And then I taught that for like six years.

    [00:41:00] Brendan Hufford: You develop that sort of thing.

    [00:41:02] Brendan Hufford: You do the same thing on sales calls.

    [00:41:04] Brendan Hufford: You know what resonates, you know the stories, you know the most interesting things.

    [00:41:07] Brendan Hufford: You know how to describe stuff and speak to it.

    [00:41:09] Brendan Hufford: So I think that teaching experience of being really on my toes, being forced to be charismatic on the spot, and then also developing material, I'm very fortunate.

    [00:41:21] Brendan Hufford: I would definitely consider that to be a big power up.

    [00:41:25] Brendan Hufford: And then even prior to that, if we really want to go deep into the therapy of it all, it was just from moving around a lot as a kid, like moving around when I was a little kid, every two years I moved up until high school.

    [00:41:38] Brendan Hufford: And that sucked because I didn't have any long term friends, but I got really good at making new friends and having to be outgoing.

    [00:41:46] Brendan Hufford: I would say I'm very naturally an introvert.

    [00:41:48] Brendan Hufford: I just want to be left alone to do my work.

    [00:41:51] Brendan Hufford: But I have become this ambivert, which is both, which most of us are, but I have this very outgoing type of extroverted personality in different situations.

    [00:42:03] Brendan Hufford: A lot of that came just from moving a lot and having to make new friends.

    [00:42:06] Brendan Hufford: It was sink or swim.

    [00:42:08] Brendan Hufford: So those kind of power ups, I think translate a lot into the work that I do now and any modicum of success that I've had.

    [00:42:16] Ramli John: Well, the conversation went in places that I actually didn't expect to, but it was so much fun and learned so much.

    [00:42:21] Ramli John: Did you even think about Send confusion until today?

    [00:42:24] Ramli John: You can check out Brendan's work on Growthsprints co or follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.

    [00:42:29] Ramli John: You can find those link in the description and show notes.

    [00:42:31] Ramli John: Thanks to Brendan for being on the show.

    [00:42:34] Ramli John: If you enjoyed this episode, you'd love the Marketing Powerups newsletter.

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