SaaS Breakthrough – Featuring Chris Davis

demio saas breakthrough featuring chris davisAbout Chris Davis:
Chris Davis is the Director of Education at ActiveCampaign. He is responsible for the creation and organization of content to provide business owners the instruction they need to properly utilize marketing automation. With over 12 years of professional experience in the technology and business space, he is passionate about helping companies grow by use of technology in their marketing. ActiveCampaign provides business owners with “all the tools you need to make meaningful connections and grow your business” and is one of the fastest growing tech startups in Chicago.


Show Notes:
02:40
How It All Started
05:00
Funding and Intentional Growth
06:19
Building an Educational Department
08:02
The Education Effort is Twofold: Internal and External
10:41
Building Internal Education
12:38
External Education: Educational Content and Marketing the Content
15:05
KPIs: Mixed Anecdotal and Measurable Effort
17:42
Differentiation in a Very Competitive Market
21:53
Competitive Advantage: Developing the Product Around The Users
22:58
Education as Differentiation
25:16
Lead With Learning
27:07
The Future of Email Marketing: Multi Channels Helping Email
30:18
Being the Trusted Voice
34:18
Lightning Questions
Transcript:

DA: 02:10
Hey Chris. Thanks so much for joining me today. I can't tell you how excited I am to have you here. Have ActiveCampaign here, the CRM system that we use at Demio, one that we absolutely love and are always recommending. So I'm really excited to talk marketing and education with you today. How are you doing?

CD: 02:30
I'm doing good, David. I'm excited as well. It's not often that I get to talk about both worlds and blend them together. So I'm, I'm ready to go for this one.

DA: 02:40
Awesome. I am too. So let's jump right in. Talk a little bit about ActiveCampaign to those people that don't know what you guys do yet. When it was founded, who do you guys market to? You were your customers. What are you doing uniquely in the market place?

CD: 02:53
Yeah, so ActiveCampaign, believe it or not, has been around since 2003. It was founded by Jason. He wrote the code while he was in college and we've been profitable ever since, which is absolutely crazy, but a lot of people don't know in the beginning years it was enterprise server side software, so much like Microsoft office, how you used to buy the cds and install it. That's what ActiveCampaign was. And to show like the vision of Jason, that he, he had a software suite before other companies beyond like Adobe's and Microsoft were making software suite. So there were nine products in one that he was selling individually for enterprise companies. But once, once they bought the license, they would get access to all of them and around 2010 we started seeing the cloud emerge, you know. So by the end of 2013 there have been a clean transition from enterprise service of software to the cloud. And that's what really opened everything up.

CD: 04:00
If you look at Google trends, ActiveCampaign was fairly underground to right about 2013, then you start seeing a little bump and then in 2016 you see the huge trajectory. And since then we've been continuing to grow and I think one of the things that makes that has always been unique to, to ActiveCampaign is that the focus has always been on remaining a full marketing automation platform and staying true to that. So there's not a whole lot of bolted on solutions like some of the all in one solutions in the marketplace. It was purely focused on, you know what if we can nail marketing automation and build the most flexible platform to do so and make integration with the other platforms that do so great at what they do, now business owners, the stack approachable we're talking about, but now business owners will have the power and ability to create a custom system for their business.

DA: 05:00
That's amazing. And I just want to jump back. You did say in 2016 there was a big spike. What do you think caused that Spike in growth in 2016?

CD: 05:08
Yeah. One of them was, we raised funding, so we got a $20 million in the bank. But before that you just saw it, man. It was like word of mouth. You felt the momentum. In fact, 2016 is when I came on board as well. So there were just, it was a intentional effort to grow the business. And with that growth, what we saw was the market responding. And, and here's what's interesting David, what the decision to grow ActiveCampaign was sourced by the needs of our customer base around support. So the idea was, look, oh my God, our base is growing so fast, we need to be able to support them better. So I love that approach to it because when you look at ActiveCampaign, the features and just like the roadmap of product development, it has, it always has been and always will be user focused and with the ear to the ground to ensure that the end user, our customers are being taken care of.

DA: 06:09
That's an incredible, incredible way to build a software company, that makes it a lot of sense. Especially with that, that round of funding coming in. So you're coming in 2016, you got a high rate of growth at this time. You're coming in specifically to do what, what are you trying to solve for the company?

CD: 06:27
That, that was probably the biggest challenge for me. I mean if you think about it, David, across startups, you're not going to find an, an education department, right? What happens is education becomes the byproduct of marketing and support. If you market well and you support well somehow in there education has taken place. So coming in, again this is to Jason's vision and, and him and I talked about it before starting and it was like wow. An opportunity to build out education, I was previously at LeadPages where I built the marketing automation system and it was just like, you know, I was trying, the next step for me was to go from doing to teaching and not just teaching, you know, like one person, but like teaching both our users and our employees. So that was an amazing challenge for me. And when, when I came in there was nothing, it was just me. It was just like, okay, hire your people. Well, it's easy to hire people when you know what you're hiring them for. I'd never built out a department even know what an education departments should, could, would look like. So, um, a lot. That was my experience getting started with the company. It just really a lot of, presentations my mind just presenting and saying, Hey, what do you guys think? This is what I'm, this is how I'm viewing content. This is how I'm viewing the positioning. A lot of the departments had a lot of overlap. So I had to start to define, okay, this is where marketing begins. And this is is where education picks up, here's where support plays in success, here's how we overlap all of those things.

DA: 08:02
Where did you find your space? Is it really just talking to customers before marketing takes place? Is it after marketing takes place or is it like, like how did you define that? I think that's so interesting that you came in probably a little bit of, of overwhelmed kicked in, right? Like how do I do all this and you figure it out, but what, you know, what were some of those big winds that you were able to figure out in education?

CD: 08:24
Yeah. You know, I came in user focused. My whole thing was to provide education for the user. If you think two years ago, I mean marketing automation was even more confusing back then. I moved, got more platforms in the marketplace is becoming a lot more competitive, which is doing some good because it's raising overall awareness. But back then it was just like, I'm, I'm looking at our users and they're simply confused. They're looking at it purely email marketing platform and they're wondery like ok, why should I? I can already send emails, so getting them to think beyond email was my first focus, but check this out, as soon as I started to do that, I realized that the education effort is twofold. Right. It's, it's, is important internal as it is external. So when it came to looking at if somebody. So put it like this, David, if somebody who's creating a support ticket is more versed in marketing automation than the employee supporting that ticket, that that's a mismatch man. And it leads to frustration because the person explaining it is like, wait a minute, how do you not get this? And you work there.

DA: 09:43
Right. I can totally see that. I know exactly what you're talking about because I've had those conversations.

CD: 09:47
Yes. So when I saw that the outward education and what the outward education looked like was webinars. I started office hours. I started a podcast. Everything, you know, just kind of checking boxes really on content that I knew was safe. We started writing guides, publishing content regularly just to kind of get a pulse. Right. See how people were, where they were at, what they were responding with, and when they started to evolve beyond, you know, as far as intelligence, some of our, some of our internal employees, it's like, Whoa, wait a minute, we need to find a way to make sure internally education is a focus as well as external. So holistically I saw my mission for education is to work along with product and marketing and engineers to provide a comprehensive educational experience both internal and external.

DA: 10:41
That's so interesting and I wonder why more companies don't double down on that internal education because I know, I mean I've had a number of conversations with engineers where, you know, we're talking about a feature and when you're talking about the story of how it works, they just never imagined the use case being the way it is. That's just lack of education, lack of education of that knowledge of how users are actively using it. So what do you think companies can do to help their team as, as new team comes in as a company grows to, to build that internal education? That's such an interesting, interesting idea.

CD: 11:17
It's one of those things that has to be intentional and you have to really dedicate some resources and time. We're really on the cusp of cleaning up a solid process internally for all employees going forward and it took some time and it took some time to get here. And if you don't invest in educate, like specifically education and onboarding, it's not gonna happen by osmosis. If you leave it to happen to osmosis, it will be, you know, what we've seen. It's just like, hey, here's a Webinar we did, here's some documentation and here's some logins. Just drop it off, get up to speed, hurry up, because we need, we need you to know what you're doing. So here thankfully there's an intentional effort, attention to education, which allows me to really look internally, internally and externally. Find the blind spots built out systems, right? We know it from marketing, you, Demio, you're, you're providing a system for running webinars. So when it comes to marketing systems, marketing systems, oh, that's easy. I say easy respectively because you may have heard of the term or you know, you've experienced one. The education system's totally different

DA: 12:38
Totally different, totally just a great idea. And so you know I want to also jump to the external education that you've done and you said you did webinars, you did office hours, you did the podcast what are you looking at when, when those are, when those are being released, what are you saying or what are you using as KPIs or quotas or some type of milestone to say this is working, our education is indeed helping our users get a better level of understanding? How do you, how do you gauge what works there? Always struggled with that.

CD: 13:13
This is a great question man, and this is going to get the wheels turning for and all of my educators and marketers listening, this is really going to get the wheels turning because this challenged me so much as a marketer, you know, like I'm a marketer first turned into an educator, right? Not an educator turned marketer. So I want to measure everything, man. You know, we create a guide, hey, let's look in Google analytics. How many views are we getting? Can we track the trials generated by that guide, right? Like my marketing hat sends me that way, but then here, here was the reality I had to make. Now education most definitely has to, has a huge impact on new business, but it looks different. It looks different than marketing does because if you mix marketing and education, like the messaging, people's guard will be, oh, from the marketing and they won't understand, reached an understanding that the education is there for. So you have to separate the two. You have to create educational content and marketing the content. You see what I'm saying? Instead of trying to create content that's a little bit of education and marketing mixed in.

DA: 14:27
Give me an example of that.

CD: 14:28
Right? So if less, for instance, we, we've just created a new course, actually it's called getting started with ActiveCampaign and in that course there are no strong call to actions. There are no upgrade your account today, right? There is no buy this or here's a special promo code. No marketing is mixed in there. It's pure education. However, the marketing team takes it and markets the education. You see what I'm saying? Yes. Part of marketing collateral which strengthens the funnel. Okay, so back to the initial question with KPIs. When I, when you look at it in that way, how do you measure understanding? How do you measure understanding and track that to new business? Well, some of the ways that I've used that have been very, very effective is the, the level of questions being asked, right. Are you repeatedly getting asked like the beginner questions, like, hey, what is an email? Right? So if the questions become a bit more advanced, now you know that the people are being educated because they've moved beyond the basics. They've moved beyond the milk drinking when they're going through the substance. Now how do you measure that though? It's not like I can just log in to a analytics platform and say, what's the level of my questions? Well, it's a mixture of technology and just personal engagement. I'm always engaging in the Facebook group and the comments of the blogs, right? Office hours, people asking questions. I'm talking to our internal team to always get a pulse and I can see, okay, here's where people at. There was one point, David, where people were confused about goals like just across the board in ActiveCampaign.

DA: 16:26
I used to be that person.

CD: 16:27
Right? So that let me know, okay. Once people start understanding goals, you'll start seeing more blog posts on people's websites, more videos on youtube, right? You'll start. We'll seeing more automations on the back end with feature adoption, which feature adoption was another KPI. Right? But all of those things, it was, it was not like marketing where you just have a dashboard and you look at numbers and percentages go up. It's more of a mixed anecdotal and measurable effort to understand exactly how your education is helping people move forward.

DA: 17:06
That makes so much sense as you say that and you're going through. It makes so much sense. I can see it in my mind obviously, like you said, it's a little bit harder to aggregate that data because it's not numbers, registrations, conversion, stuff like that. It is measuring community understanding and I'm sure a lot of it is probably just getting in there with the community, getting your hands dirty and just mixing it up with the, with the audience and making sure that, you know, the questions you asked, you get the right answers, know what questions are they asking to the support team. So having some way to track responses in the support desk itself. But that's awesome. That makes so much sense. I love both those systems and now kind of pulling that and flipping it to the other side. I kind of have some tough questions for you because you are in, like you said before, ultra competitive marketplace like email marketing, CRM systems. There are a ton out there. What are you guys doing well do you think to attract customers and to differentiate yourselves right now in this marketplace?

CD: 18:08
Yeah you know what worked in the beginning? I'll take you through a quick progression. And, and this is what got me in the beginning it was integration, it was integration and flexibility. And by that I mean in 2013 when I came on, when I was aware of ActiveCampaign, they were a, the platform was coupled with Zapier, so you could, you could sign up for a free trial and with that free trial you got a free Zapier account. So what that did was it immediately showed you like, oh my gosh, I can have a marketing automation platform that pretty much integrates with everything because three, you know, what, five years, jeez, five years ago, Zapier did not integrate at the level that it integrates now.

CD: 18:54
So, right, this was a huge value add back then and instead of pulling teeth with your current marketing automation provider and say, Hey, can you build out this out, this integration here, here comes ActiveCampaign that has all of these integrations built in via Zapier. So that was huge. Right? And then the second piece was pricing, pricing and integration with a built in Zapier were really two things that helped early on capture the market. Well that only lasts for so long, right? As we see Zapier evolved, partnership just naturally didn't make sense. And then two, is there we have pricing is tricky man. Especially in the marketing automation space because since we were quote unquote new, the main giants in the space, we're charging around $300 a month. Right? So that was the going rate. That was the market going rate. If you were going to use marketing automation. Well, here we come. We're $9 a month to get started. And you know what that did, David, it, it raised intrigue and doubt, was like $9. Huh? But then it's like, oh, there's no way a $9 platform can do everything my $300 platform can do.

DA: 20:16
That makes so much sense.

CD: 20:19
So then what we found is, and this is a hats off to the sales team, what we found in our positioning and selling and everything was that you had to immediately take the conversation away from pricing to value, value add to your business. How can ActiveCampaign help you grow your bottom line right now? And that's where we saw the differentiation, David, the differentiation, the differentiation was this, we're the only platform whose sales systems and marketing systems are in one and talk to each other, right? Just think about across the board, most of the time these platforms don't have a full CRM that can pass data back and forth. Right. So like in ours, automations can move deals through stages in a pipeline, whereas other platforms you have to manually move them and then some automation could be triggered but it, there was not this back and forth tightly coupled sales and marketing experience and even though people couldn't necessarily pinpoint that was like what was helping them, they could feel it.

DA: 21:30
The simplicity of the product like doubling down on the user, the user experience itself and just understanding how users use the product or as kind of the major way that you guys could step forward in that marketplace by creating something that was seamless and got them the value that they needed without extra steps and all the unnecessary automation that can go on and, and some of the other.

CD: 21:53
And I will be remiss, I guess I kinda jumped ahead, it's all, everything that I'm saying on this podcast is all based on having a strong product. I cannot stress having a strong product with a tight fit to the market. If, if you asked me what has been the competitive advantage of ActiveCampaign over the years and will continue to be, it's the fact that we are always developing the product around our users, always.

DA: 22:25
It's incredible. It's something that we also try to do as well because it's just, you mentioned it before that you saw in that 2016 time that that wave of referrals and word of mouth really start to pick up and that's how we've been able to grow. Like focus on the product and let the market itself help push your product out there. And it sounds like you guys were the same is funny that you say quote unquote new and you guys are around 10 years, but you know, I totally understand that as the, as the market shifted and you guys changed all that kind of came together. So that's really incredible. Do you think, and have you seen education add into your differentiation as you build that out? Has it helped you guys stand out now and showcase that value in a better way?

CD: 23:10
Absolutely. Absolutely, and I'll tell you why. If you think about it, it just look at the marketplace. Most people when it comes to educating on marketing automation, they're either consultants or there's somebody doing it for the sake of monetary gain, right? At the end, they want you to buy their course or get into their program or let their agency do the work for you, whatever. Right? So what I, what my positioning was this, if I just purely educate, just based on the appreciation of understanding a complex topic and idea that's so valuable now, that will have more weight than if I was trying to sell them something. Right? And since I've been doing it, listen man I literally I'm not, I'm not exaggerating. I can get stuck. I've been stopped on the street in Chicago and this is a big city, somebody has like pointed me out and said, Hey Chris, I just watched your webinar. Thank you. It finally makes sense, right when I'm going to speak in engagements. It's people, David, they've heard the words man, they've heard funnel, they've heard conversion optimization, they've heard email marketing, they just don't know what it means. They've seen all the dots, but nobody is taking the time to really draw the picture and piece them together in a way that they understand.

CD: 24:41
So a lot of my time is spent listening to the language that people are using and it's and and I'm not, it's not limited to just like ActiveCampaign community. I'm everywhere man. Everywhere, everywhere where marketers are, I'm listening and I'm like, okay, these type of marketers are really struggling trying to understand this. So a lot of my education comes from that desire to truly allow businesses or, or to help businesses reach a level of understanding that you, you just can't get it anywhere in the market.

DA: 25:16
Well, you just shared so much gold. I think anyone who's looking at developing education and their product are really doubling down or building a department for it, you've just shared so much great information. I mean, it really is just being in touch with the users on a very deep level and it's not tangible. Maybe like I'm putting it together an opt in page, I'm going to look at my registration numbers. It's awareness, understanding, knowing how to speak a language and solving the real problems that they're having in a clear, consistent manner that adds value without asking for anything in exchange.

CD: 25:51
There you go. Yeah. It's one of the things, we just had our annual user conference Activate and I was talking to people and you know, people are coming up to me, thank you so much for you guys and this and that, the podcast is amazing, x, y and z and they were just like, I just never understood this stuff. And as I'm talking to them, I said, you know what? One of the principles that we've adapted in into the education team is lead with learning, right? Like, don't lead trying to get the sale. Don't lead with trying to be so creative that they buy something they don't even know what they bought. And by the time they figured out they can't return it, you know, like lead with learning, teach somebody something. I mean, we're in the information age where information has really been cheapened, right? It's like anybody can share anything. People act like Photoshop doesn't exist. so any image they look at, they just take it as reality. You have people with a snapshot of their life posing it as if they've made it. So it's really hard. Honestly. It's hard for people to filter through what's real and what's not. But if you lead with learning and you teach somebody something, that they can apply in their business and see the results, they'll come back, they'll come back man.

DA: 27:07
I love that. That's amazing. Where do you see, like looking forward, where do you see email marketing? The industry itself changing, it's and it's continuing to evolve year after year. You guys are evolving with it. Your product's evolving. How do we help marketing teams to adapt to what's coming?

CD: 27:24
You know, what it is? How many, how many times have you heard email marketing is dead, David?

DA: 27:31
Past five years.

CD: 27:34
It just keeps coming up. But guess what, it's not going anywhere. No matter how we evolve, no matter how technology advances, email marketing will be what it's always been, a fundamental means of more intimate communication between yourself and your audience. It will always be that. But in saying that, now I've got my marketer's hat on here, but in saying that, you also have to understand that the way people's behavior towards electronic commerce has changed. People are more willing to buy. People, people will go to their email for a coupon or they will rely on a message from email more now than before and you put that against more people are sending email than before and it's, it's a lot of area for confusion. So what's the solution where, where's the market going? Well you don't ignore email but you stop relying solely on email, right? If, if I'm going to war not to save businesses, for some people it is. For some people it definitely is. Like I'm not just going to have one rank, right? I need a sergeant, you know, I need a scout, I need. These are all channels, you have to use multiple channels in your marketing to help email. Email is strong, but it's not strong enough to hold your entire marketing effort. You see what I'm saying? So it needs those other channels to help it. Facebook Messenger Bots, right? Onsite personalization, dare I say direct mail. You get what I'm saying? So I think that what we'll see as long as there's responsible education around email marketing and how to continually leverage it because, because even though it's not dead, some of the methods are dead, right? Some of the methods that could have, that worked awhile back. I can just go back to when I was learning email marketing, it was big to do product launches, $2,000 product launches lineup. All of these JVs, they send out emails and people buy try that now. It's way tougher. However, look at Facebook live right now. I can. I can do an entire launch on Facebook and I know people who have built communities where all they do is say, hey look, we're, we're going to do a webinar and these platforms can also stream to my Facebook live. I can stream on Youtube, Instagram has TV and now your email is a means of pushing people there or reminding them to show up.

DA: 30:18
So do you feel education, your job in education is to also talk about what's upcoming and how to use utilize it in your arsenal without over complicating the whole process, because I feel like once you go down the path of just start talking about everything now you get into overwhelm, but do you still need to educate in the marketplace about these are other things you need to look at as well?

CD: 30:42
Absolutely, absolutely. Because the reality is this, tools are not going to slow down anytime soon. Right? If you, if you look at just your story, I know we met a couple, couple of years back when I was at, at Leadpages and you guys were fairly young in two to three years look at the progress you've made, right? But let's not look at the progress without talking about all of those battle scars. So, so then we say, well, when it comes to educating the marketplace, a lot of times where you know on, on, on how to use the new stuff that's coming out, a lot of times I recommend people ignore new platforms until they do have those scars. I am what I'm, I'm 100 percent confident in your platform. Whereas two, three, two to three years ago when we first met, I liked what you guys are doing and I was hopeful in the platform. You see what I'm saying? I was like, I hope it works, it works for them and that's what, it sounds, old school but it's one of the things that really hurt when you, because you have so many tools, is that people do not take the time to do the research. Listen man, I used to be one. I used to be sold on features and over benefits in shiny objects and all of that. But now I'm a lot more methodical when I, when I approach technology because essentially I'm hiring technology to do a job for me. And what do we do when we hire people? We do a background check, right? We take our time, so if I'm looking at Demio, I want to look, Hey, how long have you guys been around? Hold on. Who are these founders? I'm checking you out on Linkedin David.

DA: 32:32
I should probably update my Linkedin.

CD: 32:34
I'm like, I'm. I'm searching Medium. I searching. I'm finding out who are you? Because I want to know if you've got standing, staying power. Are you in this to make a buck? You know, like how has your platform progress? I'm looking at the blog, seeing the updates, like, oh my gosh, they're updating frequently, right? These are all things that we have. We owe it to our business, ourselves and our business to do our due diligence and when that happens for me on the education side, I'm able to help people pinpoint those, those, those tested platforms. Hey Chris, I just found ABC payment processing. Oh, how long has it been around? Oh, they just opened. Nope, I won't. Why don't you try this, this payment processor over here.

DA: 33:21
You're the trusted voice and you're the trusted voice of reason and experience and you can come in and help guide them to make proper decisions because you're coming from a place of, again, pure value.

CD: 33:32
There you go, the guards are down. I'm not trying to sell you anything.

DA: 33:37
Makes so much sense. I love it. Absolutely love it. And again, you shared a ton of information on education and how to create these different pieces that I think are absolutely so important for that entire customer process, from being a prospect to learning about the product, where the value is, how to utilize it, how to be the best customer you can be. And it's incredible. And congratulations to you for, you know, coming into such a, you know, I guess overwhelming situation to say the least and making something incredible and you guys have an amazing product and a great, a great education center that I'm in all the time. But, I do want to switch over here to our lightning round questions. These are five questions that I'll ask, you can say the first piece of advice that comes to your mind, it's really fun to get some info. You ready to go?

CD: 34:28
I'm ready. Yeah, let's do it.

DA: 34:30
Alright. What advice for early stage SaaS companies starting today would you give?

CD: 34:36
Product. It's all about the product, product, market fit. Nothing else matters if you can't establish that.

DA: 34:42
Totally love it, absolutely love it. What skill do you think is vital for marketing teams to improve and build on today?

CD: 34:49
Authenticity. Authenticity in your personalized marketing, right? Don't just use my first name in the subject line and think that that's personalized. You know, do your due diligence. Learn some stuff about me. If you're not, you don't have to ask for my first name upfront, but over time, look at the websitesmI'm going to look at the links that I'm clicking and perhaps there's a way to create a personalized experience just on looking at my behavior even without my first name.

DA: 35:18
That's incredible. That's such a good answer. And for those of you guys who don't know how to do that yet, ActiveCampaign can definitely help you do some of that stuff. Best educational resources you'd recommend for learning about customer education.

CD: 35:29
Ooh, this. Ooh, that's, that's a good one because I'm all over the. I'm always learning, man. If, if I could single it to one, there is. Well, it's not, it's not a resource is a mentor of mine. I actually met him at Leadpages. Is name is Eric Anderson and he's been an amazing help for me just to kind of bounce ideas off and understanding. He's done certifications for Microsoft. I mean, he's done big stuff. So, with you asking this question, there's a huge space just for education, piece of content on customer education.

DA: 36:08
I see. I see a blog coming in the near future. What is it about a favorite tool that you can't live without?

CD: 36:17
This is, this is gonna sound like, of course you would say that, right? Let me qualify this by saying this. The answer is ActiveCampaign. And the reason being is this, I reached a point to where, you know, in growing this department it has. I've faced some tumultuous times, right? And it was just kinda like, you know what? I'm so frustrated, right? I'm so angry. And at my most angry moment I've thought, I said, you know what? If I leave this company, guess what? It if I got fired from this, if the worst thing happened to me by this company, guess what? I would still use the tool. No other tool that can help me run my business the way that it does.

DA: 37:02
Makes a lot of sense. And when you have it also says another thing is like when you work for a company that has a product like that, it just gives you so much more fuel to want to help spread that message, spread that education, spread that value because you 100 percent believe in it and you believe in the vision. And it's just, it's an incredible feeling to work for a company like that. And you know, I know I've been there to unfortunately work for companies that are, you don't feel that way and you don't have that passion behind it, but yeah that's awesome. What about a brand business or team that you admire today?

CD: 37:32
The brands that I admire are actually outside, they're outside of the tech space and there are a few, a few clothing brands. I'm a big Steph Curry fan, so let me qualify when I was a warriors fan way back when we didn't have baron Davis and (inaudible) is my favorite player of all time, but there's a clothing line called (inaudible) that promotes Steph Curry. I'm a big fan of, of their brand. I'm a huge fan of their brand and how they create like premium quality workout attire. Aside from like Nike and Reebok, it's like amazing how competitive that market is. Right? And they're able to stand out and in. as far as businesses, man, I've grown to love, this, this is so crazy. I'm so technical, but all of, all of the ones that I admire are not technical. There are a few like smart, I don't want to say mom and pops, but a few smaller restaurants in every city that I've lived in that I absolutely love the culture, the environment, the eating experience. It's one here called Batter's and Berries in Chicago and you're always got a line. You're always waiting. But man, the food, the experience, the people just everything is so great and so welcoming and it's like one of that type of experience. What I found David, is that I tend to take experiences outside of the technical space that I enjoy and figure out how do I translate that in the tech space.

DA: 39:13
It's absolutely a smart thing to do. They always say, you know, look at other verticals and things are doing or you know, happening well and other verticals and how can you translate to your own business or you know, to your own vertical. And I think restaurants and hospitality, that's where I came. I came from a long time ago from hospitality, but like so many lessons learned and how to treat people and how to, you know, talk to them through a support conversation stuff like that, that was very helpful to me when I first came into this industry, but I think hospitality itself has so many lessons that you can learn when you can find a great restaurant. I'm like you just said that experience is so amazing. They've done such a good job of understanding what they want people to feel when they come in, the the brand that's going to be conveyed to them as they come in and you can totally do that in the tech space, but it takes thought and time and hard work and people like yourself doing great educational things. It's a great answer.

CD: 40:10
Thank you man. I appreciate it.

DA: 40:12
Perfect. Well, I do want to say just thank you so much. Thanks for taking the time to join us. This has been an incredible, incredible episode. Really. I learned a ton. Things that I'm going to take to our teams to implement because this has been awesome, so I hope you do come out with that blog about customer education so we can learn more. Chris, thank you so much, man.

CD: 40:32
The pleasure has been all mine David and I will say everybody, you know, my background, David knows is heavy marketing, and I've been converted to the education side and I will say I, I believe going forward, David, education will be the new marketing and it will be up to us as educators and marketers to understand exactly how that, how to balance that with our brand.

DA: 40:55
I completely agree with you. Lead with value and you'll win. I'll leave with that statement, but thank you everyone for listening. Chris, thank you again and have a wonderful day.

CD: 41:06
Yeah, you do the same day.

DA: 41:08
A huge shout out to Chris Davis and the entire ActiveCampaign team. They've been absolutely rock stars, really, really helpful (...)

Resources:
Learn More About ActiveCampaign:
https://www.activecampaign.com/learn/
Connect with Chris:
https://www.linkedin.com/in/businesschris/
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