Two questions from this week

Yo! If I’m keeping it a buck, I really wanted to open with PHEW! because it’s been a big week.

Me and my team at Clari have been hustling on our virtual event, Charge, happening on Tuesday, I recorded that podcast with Dave Gerhardt that I told you about (coming soon, I’ll holler when it drops), and I’ve been working on a handful of exciting projects for The Reeder. The first is comin’ in hot like fajitas on the 16th. More on that soon.

Anyways, phew is how I’m feelin’. All good stuff, but it’s tiring. Maybe you’re feeling it too? If so, give yourself to some grace and don’t forget to recharge.

Last thing: Sending love and appreciate your way. I appreciate you rockin’ with me on Saturday mornings, inviting me into your inbox, and hangin’ for a bit. I don’t take it for granted.

I’m gonna shake it up a bit this week. Yup, even more than the intro above.

Instead of one “lesson” you’re getting two mini lessons. Each of them are from conversations I had this week. More specifically, they’re a question someone asked me about building and scaling content strategies. I thought it would be fun to share with you to help you on your content journey.

That’s it, it’s that simple.

Ready? Let’s ride.

Dave Gerhardt asks, What’s your take on gating content?

I know marketers debate about this all the time, and gating content gets hated on like a referee who blows a call in the 4th quarter. Gating content is often viewed as outdated or “icky” — but I completely disagree.

Here’s why: I built Gong’s content engine on the back of gated content. Actually, that’s a lie. I built it on the back of incredibly high-value content.

It was an intentional decision because I knew the value of an email list. It’s a direct line of communication with an audience that could buy or influence a deal, now or in the future. That’s why email lists are insanely valuable.

My goal was to make content so good that people would be willing to pay for it. But instead of cash, they give their email address. And because the content overdelivered, they were happy to receive emails with more content, and I got direct access to people who could buy or influence a deal. It was win-win.

But gating content is really less about email addresses and more about trust. There’s a “trust trade” that happens, and when broken it damages your reputation and brand. That’s why most people are against it — they don’t believe the trade will pay off in their favor because most gated content sucks. They don’t hate the landing page, they hate that they gave more than what they got in return.

Lesson: There is nothing wrong with using lead magnets to grow your email list. In fact, I highly recommend it (when done right).

Bonus: In case you’re wondering which type of content to gate, I only gate top of funnel content. If someone wants to get educated on our product, I’m not going to add a barrier between them and a case study, for example.

Adam Robinson asks, Am I thinking about this the right way?

On Friday I had a quick call with Adam, CEO of, to chat through his video strategy.

He just launched a dope Netlfix-like series call Billion Dollar Challenge and wanted to understand how to think about content distribution on social.

He was torn between two strategies. On one hand weighed the “go big and get a million followers as fast as possible” route. It’s the common misconception of what success means on social. At least that’s what I told him.

He nodded and said one of the funniest and realest things: “Yea… do I really wanna pay someone to make memes then get a click farms to throttle my engagement?”

Amen brother.

On the other hand was to get narrow and hyper-targeted with his audience growth, even though his admittedly didn’t know a ton about them yet. I told him better to have a few thousand dedicated followers who can buy your software than 100k who never will. That’s the difference between vanity and true success.

Our convo was funny in a way because I could tell he already knew the answer, he just wanted validation before making a big investment. He wanted to know if he was thinking about it the right way. I respect him, especially as CEO, for being open and asking me straight up.

Lesson: Your social strategy should reflect your business model. If you’re going to monetize attention, then yes, you will make more money with a large audience by selling ads and such. But if you want to sell software, build trust with a niche audience who can (and eventually will) buy from you.

That’s it for today. Hope you enjoyed the two enchilada combo plate.

And if you have questions about growing your content, click reply and holler at me. I always holler back.