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Podcasts > Tea Time With Tech Marketing Leaders

Content with Clarity and Integrity

Kerry Guard • Monday, April 3, 2023 • 52 minutes to listen

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Joel Silverstein

With a background in journalism, I've pivoted into television, PR, SEO and content marketing, helping clients and brands develop their narrative, from fitness brands and art galleries to financial and technology organizations. *Views expressed here are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer*


Hello, I'm Kerry guard and Welcome to Tea Time with tech marketing leaders.

I have a very special guest with me right now, this very moment in time. Let's say hello. Hello. This is my daughter, Elizabeth. The guest I have on today was a print journalist. Ellie, do you know what? A newspaper is?

Elizabeth: No

You've never heard of a newspaper?

Elizabeth: No.

How old are you?

Elizabeth: Seven.

You're seven and never heard of a newspaper. What about the news? How do you how do you learn about what's going on in the world? TV TV, what? Where do you watch TV to get them to get your news? We're on the TV.

Elizabeth: Now.

Now and where else?

Elizabeth: YouTube.

Yeah, you watch a lot of YouTube, don't you? Here's your favourite YouTuber.

Elizabeth: Mr. Beast

Quality news reporting right there folks find us recording.

Well, the guests I have on the show today was actually a print journalist where he wrote for newspapers, newspapers, were these giant pieces of paper that were printed every single day about the news that happened the day before. And that's how people got their information before the internet. And before computers. They had to read it.

Elizabeth: Wow.

Yeah, it's I'm watching it on YouTube. Yeah, crazy, crazy. Well, I have Joel Silverstein joining me, like I said he was a journalist back in the day, and then he made the leap to being a marketing and marketing director. What's interesting about his background, and how that now relates to what he's doing is that he basically approaches his brand and brand website, as if they are journalistic outlets, which is fascinating and also really, really smart. Because the impact that that can have from an SEO perspective is monumental. And so cool.

A little bit about Joel Silverstein. So Joel has a background in journalism, like I've mentioned several times. Now, he's pivoted into television, PR, SEO and content marketing, helping clients and brands develop their narrative from fitness brands and art galleries to financial and technology organisations. He is currently working at in victi. Security, the key security in New York City, my old stomping grounds. And what a great story, I can't wait for you to take a listen. So here's my conversation with Joel


Kerry: Joel, thank you for joining me on Tea Time with tech marketing leaders.

Joel: It's really my pleasure, Kerry. And as I just said, off the record, I put it on the record that I feel honoured to be here.

Kerry: I feel honoured to have you I'm so excited for our conversation. It's not one that I've had in a while. And I think it's really good to bring it back to the centre and to layer in your, your expertise in it as you have a very interesting background that I don't get to sort of dive into on a regular basis. So I'm stuck for that. Let's get into it, though, and bring that to life for people. What's your story? Joel, what do you do and how did you get there?

Joel: I am a director of content, I should say the there's only one of us. Not a director of content, although I am a director of content amongst the field of content directors. Anyway, I digress. I think that, um, I lead content for a company called evictee security, which is an application security company which is a subset of the broader cybersecurity industry. But I took a very circuitous route to get here started out as a print journalist out of college, at a small newspaper in Massachusetts actually Nantucket called the Enquirer and mirror and was a first gen Simon reporter and then a an arts and entertainment editor. They're really interesting. I don't know if I said this in our pre interview, but I like to think of it as like my own sort of rum diaries but a little bit less extreme and exciting. If you know if you know the sort of book or the body of work by Hunter S Tom Some he spent time as a reporter in the Caribbean I believe in and you know, documented that little less crazy, obviously Hunter S Thompson was a bit more extreme, but did have a lot of fun there learned a tonne.

Kerry: But in Nantucket it's got its own history and its own richness. So I'm sure you had plenty of stories to tell.

Joel: Absolutely. Mostly, like, you know, from a professional sense have taught me a lot about how to draw out the best content, both from an interview, but also from research and finding the story, I think, which is a skill that has served me since and will continue to serve me. You know, in terms of understanding what, you know, what's, what's the news here, and, and learning not to bury the lede, if that makes sense. Because you quite literally can't, you know, if you're trying to fill up a newspaper, you have a finite amount of space. We used to carry around these little reporter notebooks that said, integrity, clarity, brevity, were like the three principles that I looked at every day when I opened my little notebook. So I mean, learning how to write succinctly and effectively was obviously a skill that I could bring with me, also drawing out that story. And then from there, I went to a two or three year period, working in television production and with an actor comedian. In New York, and and doing some original television and video work, we did a YouTube talk show where we also today, the number of other things, you know, book proposals and things that, unfortunately, were projects that never got fully completed, but and from that, I sort of started doing my own consulting work in media and content marketing. And I ended up working, doing digital marketing full time at Amex. And that kind of kicked me off of this more formal marketing and content marketing path specifically.

Kerry: I got to know how you made the leap from print journalism in Nantucket to a YouTube talk show.

Joel: Well, interestingly, when I got to the city, I was doing some freelance writing for a couple of small publications that are now out of print. One of which was Long Island City magazine. And that was called I'm trying to, I think it was LFC magazine. And one of my assignments as a tangent really quick was that I spent 24 hours in a diner in Queens and documented it hour by hour. I don't know if you can find that anywhere on the web, but it was fun down.

Anyway, so while I was doing that kind of insane freelance.

And also sort of conceiving of this website that I would eventually build called YB, NY and run for a couple of years, just you know, around arts and culture in New York, which was a great learning experience, but it didn't make any money with it. And ultimately, I had to shut it down. But, um, during all of that happening, I also had a part time job at a restaurant, because New York is expensive, and we all need to survive. Did you have a question there?

Kerry: No, I was agreeing. I lived in New York. Yeah. Yeah.

Joel: So like, you know, I couldn't get by on the the freelance writing. I had to work at a restaurant at a bistro actually and, and a friend who I made there, who was another server and actually happened to be the stepdaughter of playwright Neil Simon, which is pretty crazy, introduced me to one of her mother's friends, actually, her mother. And his name is Diane introduced me to a friend of the gentleman who would become my boss. You know, the actor, comedian I worked with, whose name by the way is Richard Belzer. You know, and I, you can look up who he is, and what he's done is a really talented individual, but has since retired and moved to France. So that's sort of how I got into working with him. And then from there. We went from talking about CO writing an autobiography for him to really having me work with him full time. I'm both like an executive assistant capacity, but also helping co produce some of the video stuff we're doing, including this interview show that he did on YouTube in 2012, called Richard Belzer is conversation and had guests like iced tea and cocoa and Gilbert Godfried. Rip. And, you know, other folks, Academy Award winning filmmaker, Alex Gibney, and a number of other folks, actor, comedian, Taylor Negron, who was also unfortunately no longer with us, but And that's still up on the web, and was a lot of fun to produce.

Kerry: So cool. That's so cool. I mean, it's just such a dichotomy between like, what you know, the important work that you're doing now versus the important work you are doing then. And I can attest to having lived in New York myself the hence, luckily, I got a media job out of the gate, a Universal McCann, so it certainly, you know, even with student loans, and all the other payments that New York brings, I was still able to sort of make ends meet sort of kind of living on cereal, but you got to do, but it is about who you know. So it's interesting, connected story that you have. It's how I got my first job. My uncle is working with people mag, and he was like, Well, I can get you a job at your roles we can doing print media and TV. And I was like, Okay, I don't know what that is. But I'm all in. And then from there went to another agency again, through it, it is this sort of interesting world of like, New York is at least it was back then who you who you knew.

Joel: It still is unfortunately, it's more of a vulture virtual environment. Hemesath vulture, which has a weird, sort of conscious slip, yeah. But it's certainly more virtual. And that, really, I you know, I took a drive actually into the East Village last night, because I live now and sort of more central. Oh, yeah, I realised like I barely visited the city over the last couple of years. I mean, you know, we've gone from time to time, you know, at least once a month, but I used to be in the city every day. And having an interaction in general, you know, experience of being in Manhattan every day, it gives you a bit of a different energy than, you know, sitting in my office and Brooklyn on zoom all day. So inherently, it's a different energy, but it was nice. I think New York still has the energy. And when we finally get out from under this pandemic, obviously, I think Office and Office work and life will be forever changed. But I'd love to see sort of, and, you know, be part of people interacting in person again, in a big way. Because I think that's where that energy in New York comes from. And the people you know, incidentally, I also got my Amex job from someone I know a guy that I met in Brooklyn, who introduced me to a friend that he had worked with at AmEx and got an interview and then a job and, you know, went from there to Mimecast and which is another cybersecurity company, and now I'm at Invictus.

Kerry: I think the world will be obviously forever changed. I, New York sort of will say this on the record, New York sort of kicked the crap out of me, I was living in the East Village commuting from Avenue D, all the way up to you know, 42nd. And, yeah, and then initially, and then I was I was going over to the Chelsea Market area for my second job. And so that commute really was churning and really hard. Plus the long hours, I was working from, like 8am to 8pm most days. And so from that aspect, I definitely feel like New York, New York, and I sort of rumbled a bit. But in hindsight and where I am today, and now seeing the potential of remote work, I feel like if I could have chosen the days I went into the office and not having a beat every day of the metro grind. I think we could have found a happy medium and a lovely peaceful existence rather than rather than feeling like it was this turn and burn. So I agree with you. I think there was forever changed. I do think there is a space in place for that balance in in the future. I hope that there is I do think I've been I've been remote since 2011. But I you know, we get together every year in person and there is no replacement for that. There just isn't. There isn't I totally agree. Thank you for sharing your story. Joel, what an amazing adventure you've been on and kudos you for sticking around New York. I think that's amazing. That was my dream I wasn't able to hang like you are. And that's, that's a good or a bad thing.

Because like I said, I think if I could have gotten to New York in this place I am now it would have been a lovely balance. In terms of where you are right now, and the work you're currently doing, before we dive into our, our core story of bringing all of these things together, what's one challenge you're currently facing?

Joel: I think you know, you know, in broad terms, because I obviously don't want to speak out of turn regarding my employer, nor do I think it's a long term problem for us. But I think every marketing programme has the challenge of funding at the beginning. And that's just a problem I've faced. In every content job I've had over the last several years in terms of proving ROI for content and SEO. Luckily, I think with Invicta you, I came in with a company already having a really strong understanding, because of our involvement with the the private equity companies that own us and their nature as sort of digital marketers, digital marketing advisors within those PE firms, organic traffic and SEO are already very valued channels for us. So I feel, I feel fortunate to have having come into this position and not having to fight as much for funding for the content as I have in the past. It's just that, you know, as as usual, you sort of get the, you know, this sounds like a great programme, you know, I pitched a programme, for example, that would maybe we'll get more into detail later on specifics, but a high frequency content programme that brings in traffic, and also sets a company up as a subject matter expert, etc. You know, that proposes we publish X amount of articles per week, I'd say four to five, which ultimately, generally with an internal staff is a very difficult number to hit. If you're going to hit it consistently, you probably need external help. And that means you need to budget for external agency support. As I'm sure you know, as you're now running a marketing agency, that can get really costly, depending on what your vendor charges for an article plus, considering the cost or the SEO, advisory, etc. So you didn't like, as any good marketer should make a case for the ROI of your channel and talk about the opportunity in terms of how this will benefit the business. But again, I am lucky, I think that our marketing team, our CMO, my boss, the the, the Viet the sorry, the Vice President of Corporate Communications, both very understanding of both the programme that I proposed and the value of content for SEO. So I feel like it was less of a struggle here than it's ever been.

Kerry: Well, that's amazing to hear it. It's definitely a resource that I feel it. In my experience, everybody sort of knows I need this thing. But there's two challenges they have. One is resources, which I feel like is what you're speaking to, whether that's funding or whether that's people or whether that's both, sometimes you have the funding, but then it's really hard to find the people, especially if you're talking from a very technical standpoint, the other challenge that people generally have is time, they want leads yesterday. And SEO is a build game that takes time and energy to you know, but if you're pumping out four to five articles a week, that's definitely going to compound that traffic quicker than more of that slow burn week over week. And again, set balance between resources, money and time, right. Pick two. Yeah. Alright, so that's not anything against your current employer. That's the that's the overall challenge that anybody's having in the world of SEO and content. It's those three things, time, resources, and funding. So thank you for sharing. It's nice to know, we're not all alone. And we're all up against that clock.

Joel: Yeah, for sure. I mean, and like I said, I think this this role, and Invicta in general have been more understanding of the power of those channels than any other role I've had in the past.

Kerry: And amazing that they're giving you the space to figure it out. And what's beautiful about you, Joel, and why I'm excited to have you on this on this podcast is that there seems to be some giving your experience some opportunity for people to sort of figure out I don't know They cut corners. But in learning from what you've learned, they can get there a little bit quicker. I think you've already given us some nuggets. And if anybody's paying attention, I hope they wrote them down. And we'll dig into them more. But there are some quizzes later. Yes.

Joel: Cool. Maybe there will be.

Kerry: You. Yeah. So in terms of the the role that content plays within your organisation, what does that to you, we talked a little bit sort of danced around it. But let's be really clear, like, what is the role that content plays in an organisation?

Joel: I think from a big picture point of view, content plays. Two, if not three roles, the one, as I mentioned, being an inbound or a lead generation channel in terms of bringing traffic and ultimately leads into the websites. And that's a general statement about content from top to bottom of funnel, there are different types of content at different points in the buyers journey, different intent for different search terms. So that was a general statement about all the content that we're producing. The other major purpose is a communications benefit in terms of us, you know, the content that we're creating, establishing, and I'm repeating myself again, but just to get it down here, establishing the company as a subject matter expert, as trusted industry player, you know, so that's why we produce long form pieces of content that are research based, because we want to show a level of expertise that people can count on and use in their work. For example, we just produced a paper called the app SEC indicator where we surveyed X amount of I don't want to get the amount wrong. So I'm just gonna say, significant number of respondents in the industry, and we're able to sort of talk about trends from that. And I think, those kinds of pieces, I like to refer to it as friend of mine, Micah Zara, from Content Agency, that we actually just started working with Advic D, likes to refer to it as a nervous system, in terms of that marquee piece of content being the sort of company brain trust from which you distribute that messaging and that information throughout all of your marketing channels. So in a sense, in a lot of ways, the content that we produce really feeds a lot of the rest of marketing in the sense that gives people the material to work with and to break into pieces, or what, for their purposes. So, for example, we take that larger piece of content, and we break it into vertical cuts, and send out via our ABM, our Account Based Marketing campaigns. And we carve out a couple pieces of data and we we put them into paid search and display, potentially, you know, social, etc. So, you know, that sort of explains the broader communications or messaging purpose that content serves. And then I guess that's a, you know, the the third, the third, right, you gotta have something to say, yeah.

I was gonna say the third, the third part of are really goes into communications is is like, the thought leadership piece. And yeah, and really putting the company's perspective out there through all of these channels. So that's exactly right. It's about what what we as a company have to say, you know, the challenge that I think, you know, I've found and been able to work with our broader marketing team to solve is how do you then bring all of these sort of outside factors into a content strategy so that it executes on, you know, being all of those things to all of these channels, including, you know, how do we amplify the company's messaging, which we recently went through an exercise to revamp corporate messaging and branding? So how do we start to amplify that and pull it through the content that we're creating as well in terms of forming a brand voice, if that makes sense?

Kerry: So many questions. Let's start easy. Let's start easy. The first one is you've mentioned traffic versus inbound and so I want to be really clear here because we, we talk a lot about this internally at our agency, and then how we talk to our clients, too. So I'm, I'm curious about your perspective of traffic versus inbound, is there from a content perspective and you and you alluded a little bit to the funnel, but like, what's your, what's your approach there? Because you don't want just traffic, you definitely want inbound. But their difference, right?

Joel: Indeed. So when I say traffic, we want relevant traffic. So when we do keyword research for SEO, we're searching for relevant terms around our product, our offerings, our solutions, and the problems that they ultimately solve for the customer. In that sense, by going after those topics, and even some of the periphery of those topics, by the way, it's not all about product product product, you also need to show up in related topics, if you want to be relevant, as well. So I can talk about that a little bit later. Because that's, that's another struggle in terms of communicating a strategy to a broader corporate environment to you know, helping folks understand why maybe you're going out towards a tangential place on a topic. That's not something we offer, but it's related to our industry and our audience cares about. But I digress. Yeah, circle back on. Getting back to what what we're saying around inbound, I think the, the, the idea that we want to bring in relevant, traffic is super important. Because we want that traffic to ultimately convert meaning, either, you know, directly on that, from that piece of content on the page, which is statistically less likely, but more often than not direct them to content that's further toward the buying stage. So when people come in, when I talk about intent, I'm talking about informational content at the top of the funnel, sort of awareness stage. So more like a what is, you know, so in our case, what is application security. And as you get further down the buyers journey into consideration, so then, if I can paint the picture of like, someone comes in through an organic search, they come to an article on a specific topic, say it is like, what is application security in the simplest of terms, we then pass them through to, you know, consideration stage pieces of content, like a case study, or, or another article that's more vertically specific around their industry, potentially, that we're linking to from the first article. So we're trying to also while we create these pieces, craft that user journey and make sure we're interlinking to relevant pieces of content to keep folks on the page and engaged then from you know, that sort of mid funnel piece of content, whether it's a case study, interviewing a customer that's had success with our product, or that sort of vertically minded piece of content, would then lead or link to specific product page that would ultimately result in conversion, that's the sort of desired effect that you have with top of funnel content. But we understand as I said, that the majority of the traffic coming in to these what is, you know, awareness style articles, will not convert, but instead is the beginning of the customer journey. So as we started to get more sophisticated, and use solutions, like visible and other things that allow us to see the complete funnel of touches, with prospects versus last touch attribution, which traditionally is all you had in terms of seeing where, where the, the the lead ultimately converts, we can start to prove the the influence and the value of top of funnel content even more,

Kerry: but it takes how many touches before a lead actually will ask for a call or demo. It's like 40 It's something insane anywhere from 16 on like a good day to like 40 to 50 Right, depending on how many channels you have activated.

Joel: I mean, that's, that's right. On our best day, we get lucky and somebody comes into a piece of content and converts immediately. It just doesn't happen. You know, that happens maybe 1% of the time before Lucky. But over time, you can, you know, concretely observe the correlation between a rise in awareness traffic on these informational pages and a rise in leads. But like you said it compounds over time, that's in my opinion why I, you know, I wanted to get started on a high frequency content programme right away, because once we build that momentum, it gives an A gives over and over again. But in terms of once those cycles start happening, the sales cycle and the lead conversion cycle, we start to see the momentum builds in the lead numbers, and then ultimately, revenues grow, etc. But you need to start somewhere.

Kerry: And that content lives on. Before we get into that, though, let's start at the beginning of I mean, you're recommending for your client for your company, or previous companies to produce four to five pieces of content a week, that feels like a very steep hill to climb, even if you did have the resources and the funding, potentially. I mean, so where do you begin on saying, okay, because you can produce all the content in the world, like, I look back on the content we've produced in our early days, which have like, very little effect on what it was that we even did at the time, right, but we wouldn't be we would need to produce content or like, we'll just produce content for the sake of it, but didn't mean that he could create the right traffic for us. So in your expertise, Joe, where do you where do you start? You mentioned keyword research, is that really the beginning for you?

Joel: Absolutely. You know, keyword research, it's part of a broader sort of discovery. So you as a sort of someone with an agency background, understand that term in terms of spending, you know, as an agency, you would spend time doing discovery with the client and understanding their industry, the products, the pain points, and all of these things, interviewing people in the company that do a number of different functions, including sales, customer success, count, management, etc, etc. Even the product focus and the engineers understanding from top to bottom, all the things that sort of your audience cares about your audience being customers and potential prospects in the cybersecurity industry as a whole. So, yeah, the keyword research is part of that broader discovery process. I think, from there, we build, you know, I like to build it, we call a keyword universe, but to break it into chunks that we call pillars in terms of topic, areas, that can be used to aggregate content on your website. So I mean, navigation on your blog, and so people can split into these different topics, but also a way of tagging content so that you can bring it into other relevant pages on the website, I find that to be a useful way of breaking up the information.

Kerry: Some clusters, like you want to group certain keywords together that make a lot of sense, and then create the dichotomy with, you know, even though content lives on, you know, from a navigation standpoint, from a user ability standpoint, content lives under these specific whether that's product, industry, contact, whatever, but then you build sort of these pillars, like you're talking about our content clusters around specific keywords are what is and then you link content from all other different places to sort of say this page is important around this specific topic. Are we on the same?

Joel: That's exactly right. And I find that that helps create a great experience on the website, you have additional sort of content and modules that you can use to build into product pages to make them sort of a better experience for your customer and provide additional information, especially if they're coming in to the site. On those core pages. You can provide additional resources for them if they're curious.

Kerry: Bringing them deeper. Exactly. Yeah. Yeah, that makes sense. So a lot of legwork to make that sort of start that. And so for you, you sort of talk about creating almost like a media arm seems like a great way to bring this sort of full circle of if you're creating sort of, if you want to call it a blog, or you want to call it almost like your own news cycle website. That seems like a really great place to start bringing those clusters together around these certain topics and levelling your website up. Is that really your strategy when it comes to that? Creating a media centre for brands.

Joel: Absolutely, if you can think of it like sections in the newspaper, it's it's it really bring it back full circle. You know. So on these different topics, separate sections, you can divide by subject matter. But it's really, again, giving people a way to easily and succinctly navigate all of this huge body of content that you're creating. It also helps us internally frankly, as we start to build it this way, that we'll be able to go back to that into our, you know, previous planning docs, and our project management software, and keep track of what pieces of content we're producing by topic in those four or five pillars that we create for the brands. And then we can make sure that we're giving equal play to each or, in the past, what I've done is built a priority model that says, We need to over rotate on X topic this month, because we have a product release, for example. So you can begin to sort of model out what topic or pillar you need to prioritise at a given period of time based on the company's priorities. And that's something I think that's also very important to mention, which is, in this sort of media idea, you also need to keep the company mindset and priorities in the forefront. And not only think about SEO, but also about what the company itself is trying to achieve and work that into the content plan, if that makes sense. Like I said, so, you know, to be abreast of product releases, you know, new benchmarks and sales goals and or what's happening with government regulations, and these sort of exogenous factors, to use a economics term. It's also really important, and I think sometimes can be forgotten, at least temporarily, if you're not sort of keeping that top of mind when you go into the sort of SEO, rabbit hole. But you need to also keep your mind on what the company needs. And there is a way to marry all those things, you just have to be conscious of doing it.

Kerry: One of the things you mentioned early on in terms of inbound calling back to company priorities. And what we're talking about, it's very much I don't want to say necessarily all thought leadership content or all high level, but it is more top of funnel in regards to living on a website and being searchable in terms of intent from from Google. But one of the things you mentioned from an inbound standpoint, and when you started mentioning EBM and display. I mean, one of the questions that sort of popped up for me in that was, is that white paper? Is that gated is that blog content, it sounds like, there, there's a mix here that we're coming back to that, I think is a good time to sort of touch on.

Joel: Yeah, another sort of, if we had all day to talk about struggles that would also be on the list in terms of to gate or not to gate is a constant question. However, I you know, my answer on that has evolved, I used to, I used to think that, you know, be like a radical SEO proponent and say, Let's engage everything and put it on the website. And I realised over time, that that's not always the best solution in terms of using a piece for lead gen, or being able to use specific long form pieces of content in the media and, you know, the certain like exclusivity of the data, etc. I think it's important to sort of time that out in terms of ultimately everything becomes ungraded on our website, but what I've realised that is an effective strategy in terms of releasing pieces of content is to, to think of it as proprietary from the launch in the sense that this data is a company asset to be used in our marketing channels, because we produce this proprietary research, we can use it, like I said in this nervous system, and you know, flush it through the system, in terms of having it permeate all of our marketing channels to the point where we get to a year later and we've we're on to the next version of the report. Then we can take that, that first you know, last year's report and put it into our Resource Centre and make it ungraded and let it do was thinking in terms of, you know, Google, preferring long form content and all of these elements that we know, the algorithm will start pointing to. But prior to that becomes really useful as a gated asset. That said, there are all these sorts of ways to get better about gaming content that I've been exploring and really want to start using. Again, you know, there's always the budget consideration of bringing additional software into your website environment. So that's a consideration. But I'm trying not to name outside brands, but I can't really think of a better a better brand. And you can believe it, if you don't want to name outside brands. But there's a, there's a company called turtle that essentially has created a new form of long form document that essentially allows you to serve like a white paper or an ebook in a number of different ways, including lateral page turn that they sort of like to say, in their marketing induces a, you know, a 70 plus percent increase in engagement, because you're not having to scroll down the page. Usually, you're sort of in that place and scrolling laterally, and that's a, that's a more, you know, natural way to consume content.

Kerry: Well, you're saying that really You mean, like, obviously, flipping a page of a book, right?

Joel: Correct. Flipping a page, left to right. And that's the most basic piece. Now the other piece, I think, would be really great.

Kerry: And in terms of sort of giving you let me take a step back, the limitation, ultimately, of getting a piece is that you don't know what happens after the download in terms of engagement, of course, you then have a lead. And theoretically, that person either gets placed on a nurture campaign or somebody calls them. However, you don't get any more information about how they've interacted with that piece of content. With that kind of live sort of long form document on a website, you can do a couple of things, you can leave the first couple of pages open, and then type in, you know, a custom gate that comes after two pages, or one minute, or however long you want to give that person to consume content without having to enter their information. But if they want to keep going, they have to fill out like New York Times where it gives you like that first paragraph or so. And then it's like to read more, you have to register a little.

Joel: That's exactly right. Yeah, yeah. And I think, you know, and I think that becomes, I mean, I, you know, I've registered for the New York Times, I mean, it's super effective way to do it, because you really want to be able to consume that content. In our case, we're not asking for money, we just want your information, you know, to be able to contact you and talk about the product. But if you're willing to, to accept that, then here's, here's this great piece of content that we we've created. That and I think, you know, it also gives us as the creators of the content, more of a view into what people are actually consuming once they download, because that document then lives on this turtle platform. And you're able to observe people's behaviour on the pages, which obviously with a static PDF, you cannot. So we can start to say, Okay, we realise people are falling off after page nine. So we shouldn't be creating 20 page. Yeah, no ebooks any longer or the opposite. You know, like, I think, you know, people are giving us feedback that they want a little bit more information or whatever this sort of data says, you know, it's data that we've never gotten before. So that's sort of where I'm looking to go with it.

Kerry: No, I love that. And I haven't heard of that. I'm all for sharing tools here because there's a new tool every day. So and turtle isn't one I saw was the gear going in the ABM realm of like on gating, and we're talking about and getting, you're going to talk about more of the ABM tools. So you totally threw me a curveball there with with turtle, which I haven't heard of which is exciting. It sounds like from a content standpoint and talking about intent and gaining an engaging and leadership and building this sort of media arm that you want to think about the keywords that people are initially looking for from a very high level of like that, what is bringing them in through how your company treats those things and what that means to you from a brand standpoint, and how you solve for those things and what the pain points are. And then as you get further into the technical field or that research element, or the more proprietary then you look at the gating element of then building that into of Do you want to learn more about this specific thing. Here's this thing we built. hook us up with your info automation, and we're happy to share that with you like, I can sort of see the full funnel come to life, and how you've described it to us today. Have I captured that?

Joel: Yeah, I think you did a really great job capturing. And I think, you know, that also led me to think about how we then point back to that sort of what I was calling the like, the brain, the company brain trust, or the brain and the nervous system scenario. One of the ways we do that is by, you know, part of that nervous system is ultimately the high frequency blog programme. So we take specific topics from that empirical report, we write about them in an in depth way on the blog. And then we point to the long form piece for more information as a sort of CTA at the bottom of the article, but often within the article, etc. And that becomes part of the motion of promoting a piece like that is bring people to it in different ways. That's also, you know, great reason and ROI, in my mind for doing a report like that, because it really is a gift that keeps on giving in terms of information for you to use and other content forms.

Kerry: Close this out here, Joel, with some examples of like, what you talked about research and about that content? Like I feel like we all have sort of wrapped our brains around what that high level content means that keyword research like that thought leadership, but in terms of that proprietary, right, we sort of think of the gardener, a gardener is producing those reports. So what are you doing? What are you producing, from your standpoint, that puts sort of that I need your information in order for you to have this thing. There's this turn that's happened in the last few years where people aren't just giving away their email address, willy nilly anymore like it, there's got to be some punch behind that of why I would give this to you. So what is that for you? What are you producing that say this is worth you handing over your email address, and for us to follow up with you?

Joel: Well, for us, for example, in in the application security market, you know, a long form piece like that can can do a number of things for us. One of the sort of major points and again, this goes back to the sort of idea of the newspaper and not burying the lede is that the key data points from that report, make it so a security decision maker in a prospect company wants to bring this to their superior to their supervisors to show them, hey, look at this data point. You know, 1000 of my peers are feeling the same way. And all these other, you know, potentially competitive companies are putting budget towards this type of technology, maybe we should, too. So it's also about how you craft the story. And that's not to say that, like, I think we provide a lot of information that is, again, sort of tangentially or peripherally related to the product itself. But we also have some very specific product related questions and some of those pieces that will sort of justify the need for the technology that we provide. And I think that's where that's, I guess, that answers your question, sort of how we see it being an invaluable piece of information, because because that decision maker can take that piece of content to the rest of their company and say, this proves that we need this technology in order to secure our systems to secure our code, etc. So that's what we aim to do is to provide really invaluable pieces of information that arm those folks with the tools that they need in order to make decisions about the technology they use. If that makes sense,yeah.

Kerry: And that's very bottom of the funnel, which, which ties this up perfectly with the boat. So Joel, I'm so grateful that you joined me today. What an honour before we close out. I do. You're more than a marketer, as we've heard in terms of your journey here and that you're limited in New York. But to bring a little bit more levity to the conversation and breakout of being a marketer. I have quick questions for you and engage know you more here he ready? Absolutely. First question. Have you picked up any new hobbies these last few years given COVID the world events and change of all the things

Joel: We're talking about positive habits, right? hobbies? Well, I don't know if you can call this a hobby, but, you know, spring of 2020. And all this stuff is going down, I decided to apply to grad school. And I'm now in my final my final term and an international business programme at the Tufts University's Fletcher School so that that's been a huge occupier of my free time in the last couple of years. But, you know, in a good way.

Kerry: Yeah. That's that's huge. Tufts is no small feat for sure.

Joel: It's a good, that's a good institution. I've enjoyed being a part of it.

Kerry: Last question for you. If you could travel to anywhere in the world without all of the challenges that we have had or that are petering out? Where would you go and why?

Joel: I've always wanted to go to Hong Kong and Japan, or like, there's this the, you know, East Asia in the furthest away possible places, really, I've been to the Philippines, but that's as far east which maybe as far east as those places, I just didn't happen to get to, you know, Hong Kong or Japan. And, you know, there's also a lot of turmoil in Hong Kong in the last couple of years and may be difficult to travel there. But as you're saying, if none of that was happening, and all these, I would love to check out Hong Kong for sure. You know, I did a little bit of martial arts in my history and a lot of the, you know, originates there, and it'd be pretty cool to see.

Kerry: Okay, awesome. Awesome. Joel, thank you so much for joining me. I'm so grateful.

Joel: It's my pleasure. Thank you.


That was my conversation with Joel Silverstein. If you'd like to learn more about Joel you can check out his LinkedIn in the show notes. He would love to hear from you and help you figure out how to make your website and brand a news outlets. Yeah, so cool. So cool. What a great conversation so grateful.

If you liked this episode, please like subscribe and share. This episode was brought to you by MKG Marketing, our agency that accelerates the mission of cybersecurity vendors via SEO, Digital Ads, and Analytics. Hosted by me Kerry guard, Co-Founder and CEO of MKG Marketing, Music Mix and mastering done by Austin Ellison. If you'd like to be a guest, please visit to apply.

This episode is brought to you by MKG Marketing the digital marketing agency that helps complex tech companies like cybersecurity, grow their businesses and fuel their mission through SEO, digital ads, and analytics.

Hosted by Kerry Guard, CEO co-founder MKG Marketing. Music Mix and mastering done by Austin Ellis.

If you'd like to be a guest please visit to apply.

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