Kenny Sahr

DevOps Marketing Theory – Content, Campaigns and Sales

Campaigns are the “content delivery system,” when you take your content, add graphics and a touch of smart decision-making; campaigns usually involve a strong statement on a banner or graphical image, and you should invest 90% of your time on this, your first impression
A general view of Times Square at night, New York City, June 14, 2016. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
A general view of Times Square at night, New York City, June 14, 2016. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Introducing DevOps Marketing – the holy trinity of B2B marketing! Traditional hi-tech DevOps is comprised of 3 components:

  • R&D
  • IT
  • QA

R&D builds, IT implements and QA handles performance.

DevOps Marketing has 3 components:

  • Content
  • Campaigns
  • Sales

DevOps Marketing Part 1 – Content

Modern technology marketing is based on content. Content is how you present yourself to the world. Blog posts, eBooks, product datasheets and your website are all key to DevOps Marketing.

I started my journey as a founder and CEO of a rebellious dot com startup. 20 years later, the rebellious part didn’t change. Content should be a bit edgy. Blog posts should push your audience to think. Some will disagree, others will complain. Wonderful – as long as they spell your brand name right, let ‘em have it!

If your CEO isn’t toning you down twice a month, you – the VP/Director of Marketing – are doing something wrong. I am honored when my CEO tells me I went too far with my content, or that my banners are “ugly”. I’m not an artist, my job is to convert. Sometimes ugly converts. This is a tug-of-war that I play with a smile – and a smirk.

eBooks are essential to DevOps Marketing. Write about your industry, the pains your prospects face – even write a buyer’s guide to what it is that you sell. Take your eBooks and turn them into blog posts. Offer a piece of the puzzle, with a “click here for more”.

Content creation is a never-ending story. Finished the eBook? Talk to Product and Sales about the next one.

DevOps Marketing Part 2 – Campaigns

Campaigns are the “content delivery system”. Take your content, add graphics, a touch of smart decision-making and you’re set.

The toughest job of a VP Marketing is to decide where to spend the budget. I’ve always had respect for the Secretary of the Treasury and Finance Ministers. Whining for more money is easy – the tough job is deciding where to spend it.

You start off with the basic 3 – LinkedIn, AdWords and Facebook. You expand your campaigns with content sites connected to your domain. My experience is that I get the best results on the small indie content sites that my audience sees as “less commercial”. I will never stop advertising on the “basic 3”, but I am always adding more content articles and banners to the small content sites – which by the way are easier to deal with and offer more value per dollar. The 35 year old who owns a bunch of small technical sites is hungry for my budget and is more willing to compromise along the way.

Campaigns usually involve a strong statement on a banner or graphical image. Invest 90% of your time on this, your first impression. Make it count.

When the campaign starts, be ready to be surprised. Run A/B/C tests, give them a week or two and analyse the results. Look for your secret recipe of what works. When you find it, double down and cut the weak performing campaigns.

DevOps Marketing Part 3 – Sales

Serving sales is the prime goal of marketing. Period. Full stop. I pride myself on my excellent communication with my VP Sales and his team. We talk almost every day, and I take notes. The best ideas for campaigns and eBooks come from Sales.

Why? Sales is the guy in the trenches who’s fighting the battles every day. Sales is the bread-winner – he has the toughest job in any enterprise. You guessed it – I respect Sales. The rare times when we disagree, I compromise and close a deal behind the scenes. I will never let my colleagues think that Marketing and Sales aren’t in TOTAL AGREEMENT.

Ask Sales, “What do you think our next 3 eBooks should be?” “Where else should we run campaigns?”

Eventually, Sales will ask Marketing to spend some risk money on buying leads. I’m agnostic on this. Truth be told, the worse the last quarter, the more likely I am to agree to buying leads.

At the end of the day, the only thing that matters are the quality leads that Marketing feeds Sales. If Sales says he is getting a lot of good leads, Marketing looks good. When Sales hits his targets, Marketing looks even better. When times are tough, I double down with Sales and come up with a smart strategy to win.

Working well with Sales is also good for company morale – as if you needed another reason.

DevOps Marketing – Content, Campaigns and Sales

Let’s compare DevOps to DevOps Marketing:

  • Content = R&D
  • Campaigns = IT
  • Sales = QA

Content is your code. Campaigns are your implementation. Sales are your performance.

Put it together and you have Agile DevOps Marketing!

About the Author
Kenny Sahr is a startup marketing executive. His first startup, founded in 1996, was featured in Time Magazine and on 60 Minutes. Kenny moved to Israel from Miami, Florida. In his spare time, he is an avid music collector and traveler.
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