From the archive: This episode was originally recorded and published in 2020. Our interviews on Entrepreneurs On Fire are meant to be evergreen, and we do our best to confirm that all offers and URL’s in these archive episodes are still relevant.
Randy is the Cofounder of Outgrow.co. He is passionate about digital marketing and growth hacking. He previously worked in investing at SilverLake and in online advertising at Ampush. He studied Business at Wharton and Engineering at UPenn.
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3 Value Bombs
1) Interactive content allows you to personalize the information through a medium based on the interests of your audience.
2) You have to develop Interactive Content that will determine if it will be useful for the end-users.
3) Every company needs to experiment with different content types and other ways to engage with your customers. Focus on how you can build customer’s trust online and create a more personalized customer experience.
**Click the time stamp to jump directly to that point in the episode.
Today’s Audio MASTERCLASS: How to Build Trust and Grow your Business Online with Outgrow with Randy Rayess
[1:34] – Randy shares something interesting about himself that most people do not know.
- He does a lot of hip-hop dance.
[2:10] – What is Interactive Content?
- Interactive content allows you to personalize the information through a medium based on the interests of your audience.
[3:27] – How does Interactive Content help with lead acquisition, qualification, and conversion?
- Some examples are having a chatbot on your site, an ROI Calculator, or an assessment for your visitors (depending on the situation).
- You will get a higher conversion rate by focusing on adding value to the user.
- To create an assessment, you will need at least six questions – ask about their current processes to qualify your leads while building trust with your customer.
[5:37] – How does one come up with great ideas for useful content?
- You have to develop Interactive Content that will determine if it will be useful for the end-users.
- Do not assume.
- Let your audience speak about what is useful and what is not. Test and study the data.
[8:38] – How can Outgrow’s tools help?
- Outgrow helps you do just that – outgrow your current marketing strategy.
- Anyone can use it. It does not require you to have any technical experience.
[10:20] – A timeout to thank our sponsors!
[13:00] – Should you charge for interactive tools?
- Generally, it would help if you do not charge
- You can charge after giving your audience value.
[15:09] – Where can you place your interactive tools to be most effective?
- There is no one place. It depends on the type of content and situation.
[18:13] – What would be an example of typical interactive content that works best for you and your audience?
- It is best to run a comparison test to identify what works best.
- You can experiment through different versions.
- Start with an assessment.
- Create a chatbot for Frequently Asked Questions.
- Create an ROI Calculator – A quiz to recommend which plan, product, or service is relevant.
- For e-commerce, build a complete recommendation tool.
[20:40] – Randy’s parting piece of guidance
- Every company needs to experiment with different content types and other ways to engage with your customers. Focus on how you can build customer’s trust online and create a more personalized customer experience.
- Outgrow – Claim your 30-day free trial + special discounted pricing for Outgrow!
- Outgrow’s Email – They’re here to help!
- Outgrow’s Twitter – Follow and keep updated with Outgrow.
[22:27]- Thank you to our Sponsor!
Boom, shake the room, Fire Nation. JLD here and welcome to Entrepreneurs On Fire brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network with great shows like Business Made Simple. Today we're pulling a timeless EOFire episode from the archives, so the giveaway may not be active and we'll be breaking down how to build trust and grow your business online. Outgrow to drop these value bombs, I brought Randy Rayess and the EOFire Studios. Randy is a co-founder of Outgrow.co. He's passionate about digital marketing and growth hacking and previously worked investing at Silverlake and an online advertising at Ampush. He studied Business at Wharton and Engineering at UPenn. And today, Fire Nation, we'll talk about interactive content, we'll talk about developing that interactive content, which will make it useful for your end users and how to experiment with different content to make sure that you are engaging with your customers and so much more.
And a big thank you for sponsoring today's episode goes to Randy and our sponsors. The Gold Digger podcast hosted by Jenna Kucher is brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network, the audio destination for business professionals. Tune in and discover your dream career with productivity tips, business hacks, and so much more. Jenna's recent episode on four Questions. To qualify your Digital Products idea is a must. Listen, listen to Goal Digger wherever you get your podcasts. Randy, say What's up to Fire Nation and share something interesting about yourself that most people don't know.
1 (1m 29s):
Hey, everyone On Fire Nation, I would say one interesting thing that most people don't know is I do a lot of hip hop dance.
0 (1m 38s):
Whoa. What is couple of your favorite songs you like to hip hop dance too?
1 (1m 43s):
I like a lot of like Latin type music. I like G six. If it's fast-paced and it's loud and you're trying to get a group going, that's the best.
0 (1m 51s):
Love it. Well, listen, Fire Nation, we're here not to talk about hiphop dance. We're here to talk about building trust and growing your online business. And I wanna start off Randy, with today's focus, which is interactive content. What the heck is interactive content?
1 (2m 6s):
A good way to think about it is there's static content all over the internet now. And so you'll see over the last 15 years, a lot of people have been building out blogs and building out a lot of great content, which you can consider kind of static content. So you have eBooks, you have white papers, you have blogs, but if you land on the blog or I land on a blog, we're kind of seeing the same piece of content. So what interactive content allows us to do is it allows us to personalize the content based on the person landing on the page. So if you're coming onto a page and you have a question about advertising on Facebook, and I have a question about advertising on Instagram or advertising on Google AdWords, and there's a page about, you know, how to optimize your ad spend, personalizing that content for each one of us is gonna make the content much more effective.
1 (2m 56s):
So interactive content makes it easy for you to personalize what exact information you're showing someone based on what they're actually interested in.
0 (3m 3s):
Fire Nation interactive content, when you're actually serving people what they want to hear, what they wanna see, what they wanna learn, when you're actually giving people real solutions to their actual problems, that's going to have a very high conversion rate compared to the alternative. But let's talk specifics here, Randy. How does this help with lead acquisition? How does this help with qualifying your leads and your customers? How does this help with overall conversions?
1 (3m 32s):
So what you have to think about is there are two things that are you're doing when you have Interac, when you have an interactive tool, right? So you can have a chat bot or an ROI calculator or an assessment depending on the situation that you're, you're in. So if the person is still top of the funnel and you're just trying to get them to get a sense of, you know, the value of, let's say you have some sales software. So you might give them an assessment on their current sales processes so that if it's a really good assessment you're, that's gonna really not only improve your conversion rates because you are, you're gonna tell them what they're currently doing well and where they can improve their current sales processes, right? So it's a very helpful piece of content.
1 (4m 12s):
And so you're conversion rates are gonna be much higher. So usually, let's say you're converting it, let's say 10 to 20% on a page here, you might convert 40 to 60% because it's a light assessment that's just focused on adding value to the user. It's not just, oh, buy now. And so that type of conversion rate is gonna be a lot higher. So that's the first thing to think about. The second thing to think about is from a qualification standpoint to create an assessment, you need at least six questions asking someone about their current processes. And so now you qualify them, you know how many people they probably have in their sales department, you know what current technology they use, you know the processes they have in place. And so you also know if they're a good fit for your company. So you get the lead, you get the qualification, while at the same time building trust with the customer cuz now they're like, oh wow, you've just helped me with something.
1 (4m 59s):
Your brand is legitimate because you just told me things I can do to improve in, in a minute without talking to anyone on a site at any time that I'm available.
0 (5m 9s):
Fire Nation, when you can improve your lead acquisition, when you can improve the actual qualifications and when you can improve that conversion, you are improving your business, you're improving your life. So let's talk about coming up with actual ideas for not just any kind of content, Randy, but useful content because we're gonna have to have useful content to make this interactive content work well. So break that down for us
1 (5m 33s):
A hundred percent. So a lot of people will come and say, okay, so we can build, you know, interactive content has so many different types of content, right? Chat bots, calculators, assessments, recommendation engines. But if you come onto the tool and you build, so like let, let's say you come on and you build a a recommendation tool, but the recommendations you're giving are are very simple or very basic and you like, I'll give you a great example. So let's say you only have two products, right? A a shirt product and a shoe and shoes or whatever it might be. You're selling e-commerce and you're just starting and you only have a couple products. If you're building a recommendation tool and you have one shirt product and one shoe product, then the recommendation tool isn't gonna be that useful because if you're only sending me to this one shirt or this one shoe for whatever input I'm giving you, it's not gonna be as useful for to someone where if you're doing a recommendation engine for someone who has a thousand products or someone who has a hundred products, right?
1 (6m 33s):
So like a car recommendation tool is really useful because there's so many car options and there's electric cars and there's my, there's my budget, there are the, the the custom add-ons that I would like on a car. Do I want autopilot or auto driving? There's so many different features and, and customizations that a recommendation tool is gonna work really well. So I think the, the key thing is, is this useful is gonna determine whether or not this interactive content is gonna be really useful. And so you can't assume that every interactive content piece is gonna be a, a home run unless you really focus on how useful the content is and there are gonna be some content pieces you're gonna be like, you know what, I'm just gonna compliment, you know, my top 50 or top 30 block posts with an interactive tool assessing your understanding of a blog post.
1 (7m 19s):
So those are nice, they're small, they're you're, they're giving them some value right away in the blog post and it's gonna help convert you, convert people on the blog. But when you're really talk, talking about your main, your like most important content pieces really focus on is this useful and how can I make it useful for the end user
0 (7m 37s):
In Fire Nation, I'm speaking from experience here, you can't assume what you think is useful and what you think is not useful for your audience. You need to test and you need to study the results and the data cuz you might be surprised, you're gonna get surprised on something that clicks and something that doesn't click. I mean there's been things that I've done before where I'm like this is gonna be an absolute home run. I mean a grand slam and it has flopped on his face and there's been something else I've been like, I really don't even wanna put this out there because I just really feel like this is a dud of a topic or whatever it might be. And it ended up blowing up because guess what I was assuming and I was incorrect. Let your audience speak, let the people speak what's useful and what's not. But you have to make sure, hey I am actually taking this information, I'm studying the analytics, I'm making things happen and Randy, you've really gotten Fire Nation fired up with all this talk about interactive content.
0 (8m 29s):
So let's get specific, how the heck could we build a tool like this?
1 (8m 33s):
Yeah, so this is an interesting question and one where, so eight years ago we, the mobile app store was taking off and we kind of wanted to build a mobile app cost calculator and that's kind of how we decided to, to create a Outgrow. But because it's really hard to actually build a really good piece of an interactive tool, you need developers, you need designers, and then you, every time you wanna make a change or optimize or AB test, different variation, you gotta go back to your developers. So it's a really annoying process. And so what we did was we created a tool called Outgrow.co and the idea is to Outgrow your current marketing strategies and kind of compliment them with, with this additional interactive tool. And we tried to make it, optimize it for the modern marketer so that anyone can use it.
1 (9m 17s):
You don't really need any technical experience whatsoever. And then all the things you would want to do, which is integrate it with your email tools, run different analytics embedded on different types of pages, analyze user funnels, run comparison tests and compare different variations, all those things, we kind of built it right into it. So that in my opinion is probably the fastest and easiest way to build it. Of course if you have a really large development team, you could go the development team route as well. It's just that we found it's just so much more time consuming and expensive and it's just much harder to move forward when you're, when you're doing, when you're working with developers on it. So I highly recommend using a tool like Outgrow because it just makes it so much faster and easier.
0 (10m 1s):
Fire Nation, I know you're getting excited about interactive tools and we still have so much more to share with you about charging potentially about where it should be placed, about different parts in the funnel than it works and so much more when we get back from thanking our sponsor. Time, it's our most precious resource and something that I strive to maximize every day of the year and maximizing my time comes the form of using tools that can help me work smarter, not harder. The key is finding the right tools for your business. Ones that are easy to use, that give you access to the data that you need to make strategic business decisions and ones that make collaboration a breeze for your team. One tool that help you accomplish this is HubSpot.
0 (10m 40s):
HubSpot helps empower teams to do their best work by eliminating friction with connected easy to use tools. Imagine your team on the same page working together towards a common goal and with a centralized platform you spend less time managing software and more time serving your customers. A HubSpot CRM platform is easy to integrate, use and love, learn how HubSpot can help your business grow better at hubspot.com. That's hubspot.com. So Randy, we're back and I kind of teased before the break, you know some different things about interactive tools like charging or not to charge. That is the question. So what has been your personal experience should we charge for these interactive tools?
1 (11m 23s):
I generally say we should not charge so, and the reason being is if you're focused on making a lead magnet, it's generally best not to charge for the interactive tool. However, we see a lot of people giving you a result. So what you'll do is you go through a piece of content. Let's say you're doing the assessment example or an ROI calculator. So you're saying okay, what's the current ROI in your ad spent on the results page. You can show them, okay this is the r o i from each channel you're advertising on, right? Like podcast ads or, or you know, Facebook, Google, et cetera. But you give that for free just, well they're just giving you their email, right? But on the end, on the bottom of the results page you can say download detailed report and then you can charge like $10 or $20 or whatever you think is reasonable for that re report.
1 (12m 9s):
So you're still charging them within the inter interactive content but after you've given them a decent amount of value. So you give them a a pretty good results page. And then if you think you can go a lot further and go into detail about oh these are like best practices, you should make sure you're incorporating in your keyword ad targeting on Google or whatever, then then you can charge for that. But after you've given them some value. So usually we say those types of things work out well if you're charging for them afterwards, after you've given them some value. So that's kind of how I like to think about where to charge and, and if you charge them right on the, at the beginning of a content piece, it's gonna hurt your conversion rate obviously because it's not free and it really will only work if they've done a few other interactive content pieces for you and you've built trust with them and the content piece you're charging for that result that you're giving them that recommendation is, is worth like, it's like a consulta what you would give like a, you know, a 15 minute consultation for like, it has to be really good if you want to charge for them and them to be happy about paying you.
0 (13m 12s):
Now that we know like that process and what you recommend and you know what you've successfully done in the past for interactive tools on that part of things, where should we actually place these interactive tools so that to be most effective? Cause there's a lot of different areas that we could have these interactive tools, but what have you seen as places that actually work the best?
1 (13m 31s):
I love this question because there's, there's so many options, it's overwhelming, right? And what I like to look at is, I like to say we should not assume that there is, you know, one place that works for everything. It really depends on the type of content and the situation. So for example, if some, if you've acquired an email already but it's a very, you know, top of the funnel, you have no qualification about them and you're trying to qualify a lead, then launching it within email, embedding the content right within the email is a great way to qualify the lead and move them from just an email to seeing, okay, is this person even relevant? Maybe move them down to middle of the funnel or you know, down, down the funnel a little bit so that in that case you launch it in the email until you just get some embed code, right, based on your email provider.
1 (14m 17s):
So when Outgrow like we give that to you, you just put your email provider and we give you some code and then you drop it and then the first question is actually gonna show right there in the email and now you can qualify them. So that works well obviously if you don't have someone's email that's not gonna work cuz you cannot launch an email. So in those cases you want to think about the content. Is the content a compliment to a block post? Because if it compliments a blog post, then I'm either gonna have it as a time pop or exit intent on a block post page or just as an embed within the block post page at the bottom or in the middle or even at the top depending on the situation where it's kind of embedded within the block post page. And so now you're gonna say, oh, I have so much traffic to this blog post but it's not converting any leads, so maybe I should create like a, you know, see how much you understood about the blog post content, that case embedded on the blog post page.
1 (15m 3s):
Or have it as an exit intent where someone's leaving the page, the blog post page pulls up. So that's a really good idea for that case. And then you have the content pieces, you're probably gonna have five or so content pieces which are kind of like, you want everyone to go to them, right? So find the right podcast. If you have a thou you know, thousands of podcasts or if you have thousands of YouTube videos or blogs and you're just trying to help 'em figure out which blog they should start with, which podcasts they should start listening to, and you maybe want to give them four recommendations like the top four for their use case, then I might put that on the homepage of the blog, like the first page of your blog or I'd put it as a tool with a on on the, on the welcome, on the homepage of your whole site you say, oh, like go to blog, you know, figure out which blogs or which podcasts you should start with and then, and then go from there.
1 (15m 50s):
So in that case I would put that on the, on the homepage. And then the last thing are the pieces of content where it's like, what's the ROI of my software? Or you know, assess your understanding, assess your current sales processes and your sales software company, or assess your current marketing processes and your marketing software company or whatever it might be. Those I would definitely put either have a call to action on the welcome page or even embedded on the welcome page depending on the situation.
0 (16m 13s):
So we know by now that our content has to be useful. Like we know that's very important, but how do we actually know what type of interactive content works best for our audience? Like what have you seen other entrepreneurs and business owners effectively do to specifically identify the type of interactive content that works best for us and our audience?
1 (16m 34s):
We always recommend running comparison like an ab tests to see what works best, but in general it's very good to, to experiment with different versions, right? So most people, when they come at least onto algebra, they start with an assessment cuz those are easy, those are fast, okay? And then they might create a chat bot for like frequently asked questions. So the assessment will be like, you know, if you're, if you're an agency, you're a security software com, a security agency consulting company, you create an assessment, assess your current security processes so that that is a good content type to start with. And then you might create a chat bot to handle, you know, the top 20 questions people get when they land on your site. So you can come, you're gonna have a chat bot for that kind of an FAQ chat bot.
1 (17m 16s):
Instead of having a list of every faq, you basically will ask them a set of questions and you send them to the, the most likely FAQs they have and then the answers for those FAQs in a, in a more interactive chat bot way. So those are two that people usually will start with and then you'll go to your ROI calculators, right? Maybe a, a quiz to recommend a, a quiz to recommend which plan, product or service is relevant. That could work. And then obviously if you have a lot of products, you should build a full recommendation tool if for e-commerce cases. So tho those would be the, the first kind of four that I start with. And then over time you can start adding things in or taking things out depending on, on how you wanna do it.
1 (17m 57s):
So if you wanna build a full-on grader to like grade your blog, then I would do that later on. Cuz that takes a bit more work. You have to scrape the blog, you have to see current, you know, their, their tags. If you wanna do like a, like a SEO type SEO optimization one, those graders are gonna take a lot more work. So usually you'll do those later because, because they do require you to, they do require much more work than than the others.
0 (18m 22s):
Man, Randy, you have been dropping a ton of value, so many value bombs coming at us. Of course Fire Nation, you know that you can go to Outgrow.co, that's Outgrow.co to just learn a ton more about what Randy's talking about, putting this into actual action and so much more. But before we go any further, Randy, I want give it back to you because I want you to give us a key takeaway. Like we've se we've shared a lot, a lot of content with Fire Nation. What's the one thing you wanna make sure that we really walk away with from this entire interview? Then of course let us know how we can connect with you over at Outgrow and any call to action you have for us and then we'll say goodbye.
1 (19m 2s):
The main point that I like to highlight is it's really important for every company to experiment with different types of content and different ways to engage their customers, especially now as everything moves online in 2020 with with Covid. And so it's really important to think about how am I building trust with customers online and how can I do a better job building trust with customers online and creating a more personalized experience, whether you're using Outgrow or you're building a custom on your own, it's just a much better experience for customers and they're more likely to choose you over the other options they have that give giving them kind of a static piece of content that might not be as relevant.
1 (19m 42s):
So I think that that's the main recommendation is figure out how you're building trust and always be open to experimenting, experimenting with different forms within each content, interactive content type. There's so many different options you wanna experiment with them and really see, okay, do I have good tracking in place to assess it? So that would be the main thing from that point for the other aspects around call to action and how to keep in contact. So if you go to Outgrow.co/fire, we're giving every, every, all of your podcast listeners 30 days completely free, no card required to just try out building these pieces of content and, and obviously you're gonna have chat access on the bottom right, there's a chat support and we're right there to help you if you have questions, you're not sure how to do things the right way.
1 (20m 32s):
So that's a really good way to start. And we have, everyone has a coupon from your audience so that they can get custom plans or small business plans and then how to reach out to us. So the easiest way, the fastest way to reach out to us and the best response you're gonna get get is if you go to Outgrow.co/fire, the chat on the bottom right, we're al we're basically nearly always there to help you. And then if you want to email us or tweet at us, it's questions Outgrow.co and Twitter is just the handles just at Outgrow.co
0 (21m 4s):
Fire Nation cash in on that coupon. Head over to Outgrow.co/fire, check out the chat. Everything else you have going on there. I mean Randy and his team are there to serve you and help grow your business and help Outgrow your competition for sure. So Randy, I just wanna say thank you for joining us today because Fire Nation knows that the average of the five people they spend the most time with, they've been hanging out with you, RR and me JLD today. So Fire Nation, keep up the heat and head over to EOFire.com. Type Randy in the search bar for access to the show notes with all the links to everything we talked about. And of course, Outgrow.co/fire is your call to action Fire Nation.
0 (21m 46s):
Randy, thank you brother for sharing your truth, your knowledge, your value with Fire Nation today. For that we salute you and we'll catch you on the flip side.
1 (21m 55s):
Thank you. Thank you. This was great.
0 (21m 57s):
Hey Fire Nation, today's value Bomb content was brought to you by Randy and if you've ever thought about creating a podcast of your own, the podcast journals for you, it is a gorgeous, full other journal that will guide you step by step in the creation and launch of your podcast in 50 days. We're talking five zero, visit the podcast journal.com, use promo code podcast for a $15 discount. And thank you for listening to my podcast and I'll catch you there or I'll catch you on the flip side. The Gold Digger podcast hosted by Jenna Kucher is brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network, the audio destination for business professionals. Tune in and discover your dream career with productivity tips, business hacks, and so much more.
0 (22m 39s):
Jenna's recent episode on four Questions. To qualify your digital product idea is a must. Listen, listen to Goal Digger wherever you get your podcasts.
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