757: How to Write B2B Content That Gets Engagement w/ Robbie Abed

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode we talk to Robbie Abed, Executive Ghostwriter, Marketer, Author and Contributing Writer for Inc Magazine.

Check out his book & other great content from Robbie at FireMeIBegYou.com.

Click here to connect with this guest on LinkedIn.

There's a ton of noise out there. So how do you get decision makers to pay attention to your brand? Start a podcast and invite your ideal clients to be guests on your show. Learn more at sweet fish 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 BTB 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 B tob grows show. We're here today with Robbie Abed. He's an author, ghostwriter and ink magazine contributor. Robbie, how you doing it? Amen, doing great, man. How are you doing? I'm doing really well. Thanks for coming on the show it. I am really excited to have you. I'm excited to know I've been listened to your show quite a bit and I'm just happy to be on and share them, share my wisdom. All right. Well, Hey, we are going to jump into a topic that you have a lot of experience in. As we mentioned in the Intro, you do a lot of writing and in various formats. So that people have a frame of reference and no kind of what you're up to. Why you're talking about be to be content writing and ways that we can do it more effectively. I'd love for you to take a second and just introduce yourself and let the audience know what you are up to these days. Yeah, so, thank...

...you so much for having me about me like that. I'm a I'm a writer, Ghostwriter and writer for ank magazine, and my background what used to be Ike consulting. I did IKE consulting for a long time and I kind of got fed up with the consulting world and doing the sights, you, rold, and so I became an entrepreneur. That's why I learned how to write. I wrote a few books. When the first books called Fire Me, I beg you, which is how many people know who I am, and I just teach people how to take risks with their career and I sort of taking my writing and marketing career and now I do it on my own and I ghost right for the executives that have a lot of things to say. It just don't have enough time to say it. So I kind of own net nick for the IT executive and so, you know, I've been doing after the past year so and it's been what they're really well for me, I well. But and when you were doing the IT consulting yourself, were you primarily doing marketing in that niche? No, I actually not. I was working for accenture and deloight and I was implementing Idee as a as a technically okay, so I work it like probably like microstole there all stay or lawmark as a tech league, and so that absolutely nothing to do with marketing technically turn marketer turned writer. I love it, man, I love it exactly. All right. Well, you've got some things to share here that I think our audience is going to get a ton of value out of. So I would love to jump right in, Robbie, and one of these first strategies that you talked about as we were coming up with a topic for this interview, in writing. More engaging content for BB brands. You know, the first recommendation you tend to make with folks is fine, ways to share personal stories. Tell us a little bit about where that sits. Yeah, so I think you know, as you know it, blogging itself needs to be at tactic. That used to work really well ten years ago, and what happened is so much content has come out there that it's really watered down a lot of it. So it's really hard for content to stand out. And so what's worked really well for me and as well as my...

...client, is we focus on personal stories and you know example of one of the posts I did for one of my clients. He thought about a personal story about how one of his employees did something extraordinary and did something that that was an asked of him. But end up generating a company millions of dollars of revenue because this person took the risk throw it was a very personal story about something that happened to them or within within the company, and people really resonated with it. And so the content if you if you take a content and say here's what's happened to me and here's what I've learned, as opposed to, you know, here's three things you can learn from from that, it makes a lot more real and people are just looking for real content. So I when I write, I usually start with a story and I expand from there and never work. But that's worth out really well for me. Yeah, I've seen some of the people that I follow on Linkedin really use this strategy very well. You know, I think of deal to Prix, is someone from a sales perspective I've been following a lot lately and you look at his post that start with a story and then there's a lesson, but it starts with the story to get you engaged from your perspective. Robbie, what do you think is standing in the way of a lot of bb brands from using these personal stories in their content? You know, it's a really interesting question. I think that the first thing that people especially when it comes to bedb brands, is that they don't know who the content is coming from. So they tend to try to talk like from the brand's perspectives and there really is no tone of voice, you know I mean, I think it's not going to get a generic perspectives and because it's so generic, the content become the generic, you know. And so the angle that I've taken a spech with my ghostwriting is that I'll take a BDB company at a client to say I will indivi interview individuals within that company and a right content on the behalf of an individual within the company, so the content comes from them and...

...their voice as a representative of the company, as opposed to like writing on behalf of the brand, you know what I mean. So it's like yeah, it's like one level away and that's when that's when content doesn't become interesting. And so that's that's the number one thing is in the writing blog posts. Either they hire a PR firm because they don't have time to write and it just sucks so bad. The content just comes out so bad because, yeah, they're not really in it's not from them, you know. So that's why it's just not effective, and so that's where the Niche I've owned it. There's ghostwriting, is writing that half of individuals, and I and that the funny thing is about ghostwriting is that I'm still writing what they're saying. You know, I mean that I'm not like putting words in their mouth, I'm just literally putting the words that they say on paper. Do you know that, dude? Yeah, so do you do? You know, I'm assuming you do interviews with them to kind of understand their voice and be able to write in in their tone and things like that. Yeah, exactly. So some people are some some people speak in like absolute you know, I mean as some people like playing middle of the road. It really depends on where they are in the career of the company that representing, and so I sort of I start asking those questions about things that they say. How outland is some people are? I mean, you speak like dollar trump, or do you speak like, you know, like Bruck Obomb, or you know what I mean, like we're where are you and how? What is your tolerance for saying something that people are going to disagree with? You know, and I love the people that are saying, Hey, I I mean it when I say it. For add and write, put it on paper. I swear, please swear. You know I mean. So those are those are my favorites and those are the ones that are are really deep down the most interesting in right right. Have to come from single person. Yeah, and you're giving a chance for that personality to shine through, which people can actually connect with. I love that. Yeah, so, yeah, the next thing you want to talk about was, you know, how people...

...can get away from these listicles, these you know, three reasons why you should do x, or the top five hacks to improve your productivity and some some ways that they can write more effectively. So we've talked about personal stories, we're talking about personal voice. What are some of the other ways that people can can avoid putting out, you know, this this bland content or these click baby little listicles, things like that. Yeah, I think that the no one rule is that if you wouldn't read what you wrote, don't write it. That's particularly out of if you if you won't read it, then other people won't. And so, like said back in the day, you writing something you have like Seo value or some sort of value to it now there's like no value. You know, I mean like anything that's doing damage, because if you want to write good content such a Sel, it's got to be really extensive. And so what I tell people to get away from the listicles is usually focus on like one point and expand around it and again it US revolved of all like a story or something else like that. But I you know, it when it comes with three ways, you know, three things you can learn from this, like it's just just smells right someone who's just wants to write for the sake of writing. You know what I mean. It's sometimes, like, you know, such as in the quote or things like. I can see, we know what why that would happen. But you know, I'm trying to think. Like you know, the best way to get to get away, to get away from it is is don't start with it, you know, start with like a central, central point, and I stand and I usually when I write, I start like in the middle of the story and I expand from it. And one thing to do is like to make a point and stick with it. So, like you say, is you know, I think apples went to be the first trillion dollar company. Here's why you know, I mean like, yeah, I think that's sort of thing. Is like make a point, you know, and like stand by and yeah, you know, I think that's and you have a lot of things to say, then that becomes really...

...easy. Yeah, there's nothing more frustrating than reading in the article, even if it's, you know, a short, you know, five hundred word post or something like that, and realizing that it's just reiterated some vague generalities. And so I think you make a really good point in start with something very specific that you have to say. Start mid stories, start with something very granular, and that's something I've learned too, is the more granular that you can get, the more valuable it is. We think that, oh, there's only going to be a narrow niche that's going to be concerned about this, but better to hit that niche with something super valuable that they can walk away from then these bland generalities that everybody's putting out there right, right, exactly, and I think that's the that's the thing. And so I get again, it comes down to the your filter of what I read this whenever someone else find this interesting and if not, just don't, don't publish it. I mean I think some people go a little, you know, to overboard with just, you know, writing the personal stories, because it at their while it doesn't. It's it's very clear you're recycling stories, you know, and you're like trying to make a point out of something clearly unrelated. I mean, don't stop. You know it. People things you can learn from Michael Jordan winning six championships and it's like okay, well right, really please tell me, because that's out there. I think the best the best content strategy is to rite when you have something to say. HMM, yeah, and I stand by that. You know, like if you you writing something to say, and he stayed away from like a content calendar. I think content like having a cated to compost great, but the content calendar essentially forces bad content. HMM, that's really interesting. You know, I always heard you know right what you know and then you know, couple that with what you're saying here or rabby right when you have something to say. If you if you stick to those two things, you probably be all right. Today's gross story is all about search engine marketing. The company were highlighting is sentinel one. This challenger Cybersecurity brand was set out to disrupt the endpoint...

...protection space. Their brand was top notch, their product was innovative, but they were struggling to gain traction online in an already developed industry. Then they found directive consulting, a Bob Search Marketing Agency. Within the first quarter of working with directive, Sentinel one was able to increase their organic traffic by a hundred and twenty eight percent and overall lead volume by an outstanding two hundred and fifty one percent. I have a hunch that directive can get these kind of results for you to so head over to directive consultingcom and request a totally free custom proposal. That's directive consultingcom. All right, let's get back to this interview. The third thing you wanted to cover was, you know, blogs have become so, so ubiquitous. You know, it's not ten years ago where you can just put out masses of content and expect to to generate traffic with that. And so you have some specific ideas and this thought of you know, it's start assuming that no one reads your blog. Tell us about that strategy and how you can use a blog actively these days. Well, I think if you, yeah, you start with a strategy of assume nobody's going to read your blog. It makes things a lot easier because it's like people get really scared of you know, like Oh, what if people don't like it? And the really answers don't worry because they're not going to read it. So you want to worry so much about it. You know what I mean, like this, don't, don't forgot about it, and so what really well, and this amount of novel and I'm when you're getting to see of the same thing. It's it's either you write one distinitive piece of content or you don't write it. Especially comes to blog, it's like for my website, like fire me, I beg youcom which is about my clear advancement business, you know. You know I write article about, you know, resonation letter. I'm just doing one at a time and I'm trying to make it as best as possible and that generates, you know, sixty seven the set of my traffic of people searching that resonation letter, temple, it's...

...right andy still example. You know, I'm not not competing with some other bigger, you know, type out there, but it really comes down to is this the definitive piece of content? As point to answer my questions or a certain question. Then if it's not, then don't write it, you know. Yeah, say away from multiple again, it comes back to really comes back to that, that point of getting super granular right, like you're not putting a post on just how to write. Well, you're getting into okay, in in the resignation letter. In this point in this journey, someone's going to be searching for this very specifically, and so if you can put out a super valuable piece of content on that exact scenario, then one it's easier for that to actually get found in too. It's easier to make that valuable for people, you know, in those areas. Yeah, so the other thing you talked about a little bit here when we were chatting offline, Robbie, was, you know, when you're assuming no one reads it, you know you want to create other ways to drive traffic to that blog when you do have one core piece of content. What are some of the strategies that you see that you know, where you can kind of compete with that noise and get people back to those pieces of content? What's working for you specifically right now? Sure, yeah, we works really well. Is and I do with a lot of my clients to as well, is one stable piece of content one wanted to continental really good, and then I'll use linkedin, like the status updates, to kind of supplement that. So I'll write one will publish it on that you say, it for to the mom and then we'll write like six to seven status updates that month. That's essentially support the case that blog post, and so using that linked in and using linkedin like the set us updates has been really effective and that's the best way for people to read your contents. I use linked in heavily for that in my clients to and they see engagement and this is actually platform people. People do read it because they own no choice. Yeah, there's no clickt there.

It's there for now. So that's that's what yeah. Well, I think you make a really good point. When you repurpose that you are finding ways to support it. But you're serious, you're sharing value in those nuggets on Linkedin. So even if they don't click through, their associating you with that valuable. And you know we do that a lot with with these podcasts. We turn them into linkedin status updates which, as you said, you know, have some value one. Linkedin prefers the status updates to long form articles. They just get more reach and to write. People can read them more quickly, you know, they hit read more, they don't have to click through change a page as they're scrolling. They can get some value. So we're big believers in that. Just don't tease the content. Share something of value and then get people through, because even if they only see, you know, your continual drips on on Linkedin, then they're associating that value with you, even if they don't click through. Back to your point of you know no one's reading your blog. You're, you know, being a little extreme in that statement, but you know it's also true that not everybody's going to click through right, so take advantage of that space that you're using to promote it. Yeah, exactly, Robbie. This has been a great conversation, man. I think you've got some practical takeaways for for folks doing content writing in the BB space, people that have things to share. If people want to stay connected with you, reach out, maybe a some follow up questions, anything along those lines. What's the best way for them to go about doing that, man? Yeah, the best way is you can sweet dot to me directly. It's Robbie or Robbie at fire me. I Beg Youcom, and that's the best way to reach me. I'll just add me on linkedin and that's what I'm most active and also you can send up for if you're looking to change jobs or hatred career, which is about nine nine percent of you. Go to fire me. I begcom to learn more. Check out that resignation letter blog post. Right. Yeah, take out the resonation. Let a black wells exactly handling and link to it. That...

...would be better. Be The beout there. We go, there, we go, learn well, rolly, this has been great. Thanks so much for coming on the show man. I thank you very much. There are lots of ways to build a community and we've chosen to build the bed 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. Would likeminded people will talk business we'll talk family, will talk goals and dreams, will build friendships. So if you'd like to be a part of a B tob 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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