740: How to Grow 300% in Just 3 Years w/ Radek Zaleski

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode we talk to Radek Zaleski, Head of Growth at Netguru.

Click here to connect with this guest on LinkedIn.

Are you struggling to come up with original content weekend and week out? Start a podcast, interview your ideal clients, let them talk about what they care about most and never run out of content ideas again. Learn more at sweetfish MEDIACOM. You're listening to be tob growth, a daily podcast for B TOB leaders. We've interviewed names you've probably heard before, like Gary vanner truck and Simon Senek, but you've probably never heard from the majority of our guests. That's because the bulk of our interviews aren't with professional speakers and authors. Most of our guests are in the trenches leading sales and marketing teams. They're implementing strategy, they're experimenting with tactics, they're building the fastest growing BB companies in the world. My name is James Carberry. I'm the founder of sweet fish media, a podcast agency for BB brands, and I'm also one of the CO hosts of this show. When we're not interviewing sales and marketing leaders, you'll hear stories from behind the scenes of our own business. Will share the ups and downs of our journey as we attempt to take over the world. Just getting well, maybe let's get into the show. Welcome back to the BDB growth show. We're here today with Raddick Zelesqui, head of growth and net guru. Raddick, how are you doing today? Man, fine. Thank you so for whether King or so Poland. Enjoying the day and this conversation. Nice. Nice, I love that. You know, we get to connect and we're going to have a great growth story today. You know, we are probably eight or nine hours apart in time zones, so you're kind of wrapping up your afternoon with me. I'm starting my morning with you, but I think we're despite the time difference. We're going to have a great conversation. So I really appreciate you making some time today. Before we dive into today's topic, in in your growth story, Radicet Neck Uru, I'd love for you to take a second to let everyone know what you and the team at net guru up to these days. Yeah, so we are professional services, software consultancy. Basically we deliver software projects. We focused on entrepreneurs, entrepreneurs in the organizations. So we basically be build startups for founders or help built internal startups for bi good corporations, and right now we are about four hundred people strong and growing very fast last couple of years. Unless five years, less three years, it is a growth about at one hundred percent here to your place. So we are quite happy with that, obviously, and we work with with big brands across the globe like Ikea, Folkswagen, and top startups like hive or bubble or helping hmmm, nice, Nice. Yeah, when we first connected I was really impressed by the growth that you guys have seen. You know, you mentioned that three hundred percent growth in a three year time span and obviously there's been, you know, growth...

...outside of that, but you know, that was a nice little stretch right there to kind of key in on and you had a nice post on linkedin that kind of highlighted some of the h key points of that wild ride. And so try brow tree on Linkedin and I loved it. So what we want to do today is, you know, talk through a couple of the lessons that you learned and so, you know, tell us a little bit about the challenges in being a professional services company. You know, there's some unique challenges to growth, specifically when when that is your your main core of your business. Right. Yeah, so these services aren't cheap. That's that's the first thing. Our usual I tv like time value is plus one hundred K dollars. And the second thing is it's not a musk market thing. It's not you, but you have a lot of people who are actively shopping but kind of stuff. So that means that the opportunitying of for our for us to find a partner and close the deal, is really, really small and in terms of numbers, typical be to be funnel is that we have very big traffic and very big visibility. We have a lot of marketing qualified leads and not a lot of closures, or I would say very small amount of closures, but these closures are mean a lot to us. So in terms of your typical pipeline is different than in your software as a service or marketplace type of business. That's a challenge because most of tutorials or knowledge out for focuses on different type of businesses. That's what we are and when you stepped into this row where it was that a change of mentality you had to go through in thinking about, you know, a different type of sales funnel. Definitely it was a challenge for the whole organization. Before that with. The organization was not professional in in growth activities. It was growing because the market was growing. And after I joined we professionalized it. We divided marketing and sales roles. We divided marketing from recruitment marketing, but kind of stuff. We implemented proper KPIS and also we during those three years, we understood the market better. That's why we are able to grow its in and what I'm seeing when I'm looking at my competition is that often they don't understand this buying personal lus market, but and they are making mistakes that are costly for them. And and since you have, as you mentioned, a smaller addressable market, understanding that buy our persona really really well, seems like in your position and when you're marketing in this segment of the market, that becomes really, really important. So I want to get into, Randic, a couple...

...of things that you did. You called out in your post a few stats and figures, things like that. One of the things I was intrigued by you mentioned increasing your landing page conversion rate and that that was not easy. So tell us a little bit about what happened there and how you went about doing that. Yeah, so when I joined the company, our key landing page was contact us. Basically, it's not that landing page, it's just the contact for just a contact form, right, right. Yeah, and to understand who are the people that are contacting us well, what are the goals and how they approach to it was really important and during the whole process with my team, I looked at different tactics that you can have on your ending page, different outcomes that you want to to get at the end and what we what we sew but things you are taught on the blocks on about, for by the experts, like other testimonial or do that. That doesn't work very well at all in our environment. And also we did a lot of interviews with our potential or current clients. What they want from us? What's the one thing that's really important for them? And we during both this research, we understood our personal better in the what we need to provide. So what we did through the lot of iterations, we get read out of any stuff that is presumably understood as a pushy says or pushy marketing tactics. We need to have this lending clean, I would say far, I would say even empty. Somehow just get to the point. What you do, what you can get as and user and what you want is when you're looking for our services. So basically, when you are building a startup or a new product, main pain the main theories. How much is it going to cost me? What's destinate? Well, when it's going to be finished, when it's going to be ready? This is the key problem. The stakeholders match. So we changed the contact form to get an estimate, basically, and we had about ten to fifteen iterations with get an estimate. One of was obvious iterations was kind of, would say, black hat conversion, very pushy. Basically, we use type form and ask users to put a lot of information to this form. At and the very end we ask for an email. Okay, and it was quite successful in terms of getting emails, but people were angry and we go we get, we got. We're getting a lot of emails that were and our potential clients, just people who were interested in finishing the whole thing. Also, we created a current version of the lending that we that you can see on our web page. That is very clean, very simple, very easy to understand. But we were recrying...

...beginning information about your budget and once we did that, we saw that people the conversion were right drop because people were afraid about telling us what is very budget because they thought we will take advantage of it. Right, right. Get rid of that and right now we are just focusing on the key information. So it's like, tell us what you want to do, what's the platform, what's the scope? If you don't want to fill out this form, please email us. If you need an NDA, tell us more. That's that, nothing else. Very simple and it's marvelous. Like I mentioned in my post, we improve that from two percent to, or not seven percent right now, and the qualifications is much better. We don't get emails from people who want to we're shopping around, or people who just want to join our companion. We get leads that we want to have from this page. So that's the short story of it. Project Nice. So you went went from more of a contact driven form to a landing page that was about what you knew your buyers had top of mind, which was trying to figure out, you know, a ballpark estimate on on your services. But then when you went there you found that just kind of asking them to put in a budget range or a budget number, while that kind of fit with where you were trying to go. It didn't really fit with with what buyers wanted wanted to give. So you kept that, you know, that goal of giving them the option of fill out this form in order to get an estimate, but you change the way you were asking questions. As opposed to budget, it was about scope and it sounds like what that also did was, you know, if they weren't serious about answering some of those questions about a scope of project, they just they just wouldn't fill it in. So that eliminated some of those unqualified leads from coming in right. Yeah, and also what I want to really stress out this, but for us the key factor is being trust. We need to be rust with our audience and our audience usually are the people at the top of her leak, where founders fare, entrepreneurs for people who know thinks really well. Also every marketing magic you have out for so when you use that kind of a bit of to pushy marketing, you lose that trust factor and you lose conversions and you you lose better prospects. So and right now we we are evaluating how we are going to approach enterprise. Enterprise market target bigger organizations and probably will need to reevaluate how we are approaching to that because maybe a form on the website might feel silly to that audience. So my key message is always think about your audience. Now we are by your person to understand their motives. What do they feel when you're visiting your website? Yeah, Awesome Oranic? The next thing that I noticed that you guys were able to do was, you know, to...

...be able to be showcased as thought leaders by, you know, some big name brands, sales force, slack being some of them. Tell me a little bit about some of the strategies you use to get to that place. You know, a thought leadership is something that we talked about a lot. That, I think, is, you know, a buzz word right now in the industry. If you could break down, you know, a couple of things that you guys did to implement that strategy, I think our listeners would love to hear a little bit about how you guys did that. Yeah, so back to the trust. That's the peeler of everything we do. So when we are designing the whole strategy, for Whole Communications Strategy for the company, we said to ourselves that we are never going to tell the things that we don't understand, all things that are not we are not passionate about, because even if it might resonate with our audience, it will be a fake and if you're a fake, it will be sooner or later become clear for your prospects or for your audience. So basically, we only talk about things we know about. We don't push for leadership too hard, like, Oh, this topic is really important, please write about it because it's hot right now. If we don't understand the topical, if we are not an experts, we are not trying to pretend that we are for leaders so that's that's the one thing. The other thing is that we we share a lot about our company internally externally. We are we love transparency. It's not a Buzzword that our company we share information, the key Kpis of our marketing team to our company inside and, as you can read in our post, my post on Linkedin, we share it with with reword as well. So we do it constantly about every part of our business. And that, yeah, it's results, because if you are trustworthy and you do that, people ask you questions, more con more questions, or share that information because they see that it's useful for them or for our audience as well. And and then how to build a presence in in media or places when you can and be viewed as a foot leader. So my tip is always the same. Just ask for it, be very transparent about it. Don't be shy, because if you do that, I would say not transparent approach to a journalist or a medium about your goals. It will be much longer and harder. So, to give you an example of my thought process, I posted on Quora question how do I get in that and that publishing magazine or Publishing House or whatever, and hope that people will answer me, and some guy answered that his processes Blah, blah, blah, but and that and he was able to be featured in this magazine. So I reach out to him on twitter directly and ask him for tips, to whom he talked gave me an contact...

...and email. I very transparently wrote to this woman from the next magazine and ask we can write a article for them about this topic because we are confident we are really, really good at it. And in that in that precise case, I wrote an article about Partscom but was cloud survey, cloud back and move it back and created and maintained by facebook back in the day. And parts was closed by facebook very, very after outside two years of growth faith the closet without any information. Why? Every transparently, and it was the big bomber for the whole Development Community because a lot of applications were built on parts. So I wrote an article. How can you manage that? What kind of processes you need to have in place in the future when it happens for other provider of your back end? It sirett sitter. So it wasn't that you know, thought leader should peace. Rather was very youthful peace. Yea. That opens me, me and door to this publication and to the is. This Day I am a contributor and precisely that opens US doors, transparent for trustworthy. Don't pretend that you are something else. Right about the topic. You know right. I think it's what I love about that's very raadic is, you know, the transparency on the front end of just this is this is what I'm trying to do. This is the question I have. And then you went directly to you know, the contact that you got from posing that transparent question and then like you said, in building trust with your audience. What you you know, the approach you took there was not only writing about something you knew, but helping them in in a way that you saw could, you know, could help a lot of folks. You saw something that they were dealing with into your speaking to you know, the answers that you had to a specific problem that you new was going on in the market, and I think, you know, thinking about that in ways to do it strategically like you did with figuring out, you know, what could I answer, where could I publish it, and then just going to those steps to get it done. Yeah, it's phenomenal. Tell me a little bit about the story where you mentioned in the post you planted your CEO into a speech on the same stage as as Youtube CEO. Yeah, so all goes down to those transparent and trustworthy relations that are fruitful for both sides. So various this organization here in Poland that helps. It's a government organization that helps Polish entrepreneurs and companies to promote themselves globally and attract clients and promote our products and services. And basically they were organizing a conference with a lot of very cool speakers like Susan fost needs be from from Youtube, and we were working on different projects without organization, completely different thing, and we...

...build trust with them, we build relations or relation with them, and I had a plan to do report about talent shortage in Europe with them, because this is precisely the market we are we are on the talent management and this is something also that our region is viewed as a very stronger in this topic. And it went bust. Basically, we did nothing. It ended as maybe not a disaster, but it went nowhere. But keeping this relation and to keeping contact with them and understanding what are our goals resulted in that that they asked me for a person who would be a great fit to be on the same stage as as you, tube CEO, and I gave them some tips whom this might be it. But I also transparently asked if our CEO at this Victor Smith, is in that good fit for it, and they thought, well, of this is marvelous, let's let's do it. and to give a tip for fellow marketers, if I would push it like, I think victory is the greatest person on earth who should be on this stage and how can I arrange this, probably that would be much harder to achieve. Yeah, so in and if, in addition to presenting something that you know that are that obviously would benefit your team in your company, you gave them some other valuable tips and some other valuable feedback that didn't result directly active value to yourself, but at the same time of providing value first, you also had enough of a relationship and transparency to say, I'm going to go ahead and ask this question and, and here's why I think it'd be a good fit, but I'm giving you other info too. And so precisely that striking those now once, I think, is is where, you know, a lot of us can miss it. So I love that story again of how building that relationship and weaving in, you know, not even weaving in, just having a foundation of transparency, you know, led you to those results. Yeah, so the story here, both with with being a fought leader of featured in some publication or being on stage with with other experts, is that too often, I think, people inside marketing departments think it's some kind of a game, some kind of a hand. When the various you are a hunter and those people on the other sides has to be hunted using some kind of tweaks or techniques or whatever, and and they focus too much on it, and bless they do. I think the better people on the other side, they also have her KPI, they also have a goals, they also have things to achieve and if you present them solutions to their problems transparently, without being shy about it, I think it's the most clever and fastest way to get results. M and I think, you know, especially for your market and for any marketers that are, you know, in that scenario where they're, you know, higher up in in the market when it...

...comes to, you know, the dollar value of the products and services that they're selling and it's a narrower market, it's a you know, a smaller niche in their addressable market. You can't burn bridges and you've got to build relationships in so, you know, we love, we love hearing people say, you know, playing the long game. You know, you mentioned it's it's not a short term game. It's not something that you can just win by some some tricks and in some short term tactic. So I love that that thought is we'ved in and out of every story that you shared Raddick. Raddick, if any of our listeners would like to read more about this, would like to connect with you, would like to learn from your personal growth stories and Net Gurgu, what's the best way for them to go about doing that this time of a year, in this and next quarter, I recommend you to follow me, or executive TM, on Linkedin. You can follow me at Linkedin vetus, Rade Zaleski, in one line, without any adults or anything. We have process for publishing relevant, important, interesting content for people in our industry and it works marvelously right now. So I highly recommended to follow me and see if it works for you as well. Awesome. Well, Raddic, thanks for sharing some of your gross stories today. We really appreciate it. Folks Ebbs, you probably have heard in recent episodes were really excited about the flip my funnel conference. Big Topic there is going to be account base marketing and looking at you know how you how you target those key accounts. A lot of our conversation today, you know, centered around that. So we're looking forward to seeing you there August eight in Boston. The Flip my funnel conference and for BB growth listeners you can get fifty percent off the price of admission. If you buy your tickets at flip my Funnelcom, use the two thousand and eighteen conference link and use the Promo Code be to be growth. Be The number two the growth when you check out, you'll get fifty percent off your tickets. Look forward to seeing you there. Guys, there are lots of ways to build a community and we've chosen to build the BEDD growth community through this podcast. But because of the way podcasts work, it's really hard to engage with our listeners, and without engagement it's tough to build a great community. So here's what we've decided to do. We're organizing small dinners across the country with our listeners and guests. No sales pitches, no agenda, just great conversations with likeminded people. Will Talk Business, will talk family, will talk goals and dreams, will build friendships. So if you'd like to be a part of a BB growth dinner in a sitting near you, go to be to be growth dinnerscom. That's be to be growth dinnerscom. Thank you so much for listening. Until next time,.

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