Content Ninjas is a series for content marketers by content marketers.

It aims to help fellow marketers grow by showcasing the experiences and lessons from thriving marketers and thought leaders.

Vinay Koshy is the Founder of Sproutworth and he connects entrepreneurs and B2B Brands with dream clients using interviews, data and empathy.

Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.
Check out his interview below.

1. What is your background, and how did you first get involved with content marketing?

I worked with non-profits, in telecommunications, the SaaS, and agency space before I got laid off. With a baby with whom we spent very little time (since my wife and I were working full time), I felt that I needed to work remotely more than ever and so decided to strike out on my own.

Needing to start somewhere, I started creating text-based content on a blog and based on feedback realized that I could create decent content.

Through that, I ended up doing content marketing for a few SaaS companies like WP Curve (now part of GoDaddy), Engagebay, Easil, Baremetrics, HubStaff etc.

2. What should readers know about your agency, and what type of clients are a good fit?

Sproutworth helps entrepreneurs, consultants, advisors, and B2B brands expand their influence by sharing their stories and their customer’s stories in ways that engage their ideal prospects and customers while boosting sales.

Put another way you could say we help build out a pre-selling content strategy that drives prospecting, boosts sales and kills churn.

This will often take the form of interviews which are used for podcasts, text-based content, video customer case stories, or even influencer collaborations.

Clients that are a good fit have a complex sales process and are in the B2B SaaS or technology verticals. They tend to be subject matter experts who want to create better visibility to drive sales.

3. What challenges did you face in getting to where you are now professionally?

The challenges were numerous including not having any support or guidance, networks, and not having good processes and workflows.

But personally, I think the biggest one for me was not investing in relationships early on. I was so invested in ensuring good outcomes for clients but never really took the time to build and nurture relationships. This has been a struggle and only something I have come to understand and deal with more recently.

4. What common content marketing mistakes do you see every day?

Common content marketing mistakes I see are –

  • Not having a well-defined pre-selling content strategy in place that drives prospecting and lead generation.
  • Producing case-studies but not really understanding the customer story and empowering them to share it
  • Not speaking to customer expectations, experiences, and use cases.

 5. What is your favourite content marketing campaign? (something you got inspired by/executed)

There are a few but a more recent example would be GoDaddy’s attempt to support businesses that have been affected by COVID.

Their annual study revealed some interesting insights into how businesses are adapting, given the circumstances. To support this they created “Open We Stand” where they made available a bunch of resources and tools to help small and medium businesses through the COVID economy. Their community also continues to thrive and be supportive at this time if their forum discussions are an indicator.

6. What do you enjoy doing when you’re away from your laptop?

I usually spend time with my family.

I tend to dabble in the kitchen, go for walks or read to keep the creative juices flowing.

I also help with some faith-based training programs.

7. What are your favourite content marketing tools?

There are a number of tools that can be used but if I were to view things from the point of view of aiding communication then these would be my favourites –

G Suite is great in that allows for communication, sharing of documents, calendars etc.

Mixmax to make meeting scheduling easier

Zoom for video calls

Descript for podcast editing and creating snippets.

8. How do you think content marketing will evolve in five years from now?

I think it will become more focused and customer-centric and community-centric in that content will be created to serve the needs of a community. You are already seeing that with the rise in popularity of SubStack and Facebook Groups.

Collaboration will also become more commonplace.

I also think we will see more of a differentiation in the types of content that audiences will consume. Video content and podcasting is becoming more commonplace but interactivity is still limited. When done well interactive content lends to the experience that future customers have with a brand. That is an area that we will probably see more of an evolution in the years to come.

9. Which 3 content marketers do you think everyone should follow on Twitter?

Mark Schaefer, Jay Baer, Michael Brenner and Gini Dietrich. Oops that’s 4.

10. Who should we interview next in the content marketing universe and why?

Mark Schaefer for his insights, ability to teach and advice even if it goes against the grain.

Loved this article? You’ll love Social Animal even more.

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Sowndarya Kishore is a Content Marketer at Social Animal. A marketer by day and a reader by night, she loves to discuss herself in the third person. Follow her on Twitter.

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