Influencer Tech, Podcasts, and Clubhouse

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Influencer Tech, Podcasts, and Clubhouse

Interview With: Katya Allison, Grin

Published March 2, 2021

Listen to the live podcast version of this story

Jessy Grossman:
It’s Women’s History Month, guys. Isn’t that exciting. This is a month that we look forward to every year, it’s a month that we get to celebrate how awesome we are, which is always really fun. And we’re coming off a Black History Month. So there’s lots to celebrate. We also have a few upcoming events, I always want to do a roundup of those. So first and foremost, our website is where everything is (you’re here!). So of course you can go to www.iamwiim/events and you could check out the whole lineup yourself. 

This week we’re chatting with Katya Allison, who is an fellow podcaster and we’ve done a lot of episodes lately about influencer tech if you know me, you know I love this stuff. I’d miss passionate about finding ones that really help us be able to do this successfully. My least favorite thing is getting lost in the minutiae of bullshit. So, when it comes to grin, and others that we featured on this show, it’s all about finding the right product for you. So not only do we learn a little bit about Grin, we also get to know Katya, who’s just an incredible woman. I’ve been lucky to get to know her the past couple months, and I hope you enjoy so sit back, enjoy again if you’re new here. Welcome. I hope you love this episode. And if you do keep listening, we’ve got literally two years worth of content on this podcast. So, fun fact y’all. Alright, have a great rest of your week killing it. We’ll see you in the Facebook group. We’ll see on Clubhouse and we better see you back here on the podcast. Take care guys. Katya Allison is a digital marketing ninja podcast host and content expert. Her breadth of experience covers all areas of digital marketing from creating social media ads to influence our marketing strategy and everything in between. She lives to talk the shop and learn new insights in the ever changing world of marketing. While her path to where she is now was unplanned. She loves connecting with brands who are looking to share their brand story to help them figure out the best way to make it happen. Welcome to the podcast Katya. All right. So Katya, I am stoked to have you here today. So first and foremost, welcome. How’s it going today?

Katya Allison:
It’s going great. And I am equally as stoked to be here talking to you.

Jessy Grossman:
Yes, from one dog owner to another, somewhat people who are into two women who are into social media marketing. I’m just excited to have our listeners get to know you get to know Grin. You definitely see a lot out there about your company. And I’m just excited for us to like deep dive into it and learn more. So thanks for being on today.

Katya Allison:
Of course, I’m excited to talk about really anything marketing. I am… I’m live for talking shop about marketing. I love it.

Jessy Grossman:
Yes. Well, we know that you do or at least I know that you do because you have your own podcast as well.

Katya Allison:
Yes, yeah. So we’ve got the green gets real podcast where we bring on experts across all marketing disciplines. Nothing’s off the table. Everything’s on the table, right? So I’m really excited about doing that and just kind of sharing those tips tricks and, you know, actionable insights that experts bring to the table like yourself, and you are on one of our episodes as well, in regards to talent management. Think that as marketers, we all have questions. And my job as Director of Content is to bring the answers to the masses.

Jessy Grossman:
First of all, anyone listening, I feel like people are constantly what other podcasts are out there as well in the influencer space or just like something related. So I think that it’s so cool that you guys have gone that route. What inspired you guys to start your podcast in the first place?

Katya Allison:
You know, I think typical to like 2020. It was the pandemic, it was really trying to figure out a better way to connect with our customers. And not only to restart the podcast, but we also started our webinar series brands working remote talking influencers where we actually speak with green champions and their champions because they’re successful with influencer marketing, and they’re leveraging the tools that Grin has to help you run an influencer program. So I’m a big believer that there is no one size fits all, when it comes to creating or running an influencer program. Every business is different, everybody’s objective is different. So it’s a really great way to just highlight everyone’s stories and learn from them. And then from that we pulled out of our house of podcasts. And it definitely started off as something a little bit different. It was a us as a marketing team, just kind of picking out topics. But what we really… where we really found value was bringing on guests, and I’m sure you realize that you and I could probably sit and just talk about influencer marketing for days, and maybe it would bore people I don’t know. But when you bring in an expert, it allows you to just kind of dive into something, you know, one of my favorite episodes is one where we covered behavioral science, and really how to leverage the psychology with, you know, marketing initiatives. And it was incredibly insightful.

Jessy Grossman:
And this is why I’ve just enjoyed really chatting with you over the last like couple months or so that we’ve connected because yeah, absolutely. Like we could talk about this all day every day. Your advice, your podcasts, and my podcast isn’t enough. So yeah, we got like, we’ll be on each other’s multiple times I we could be for sure. So I think that it’s fantastic to see your company’s accolades and your accolades. But we also want to just get to know you, Katya. And so we’ve been having some fun, like rapid fire, get to know your questions that ask our guests this season. This year in 2021. We started and it’s been so fun. So can we ask you a few of those questions again?

Katya Allison:
Go ahead. I am an open book.

Jessy Grossman:
Amazing. Alright, so the key to having this be great is just don’t think about it too much. Whatever comes first to mind, are you ready?

Katya Allison:
I’m ready.

Jessy Grossman:
All right, Katya. What makes you laugh the most?

Katya Allison:
Like his and my dogs, honestly, and when you combine them both, it’s just a walking comedy set.

Jessy Grossman:
Hey, love it. Do you like or dislike surprises?

Katya Allison:
I like surprises.

Jessy Grossman:
You like surprises? Awesome. What is your favorite social media platform?

Katya Allison:
I’m going to actually say TikTok.

Jessy Grossman:
Nice.

Katya Allison:
Even though I’m not super active. Nothing better than scrolling through that feed.

Jessy Grossman:
Really? Absolutely. What is your favorite place on earth?

Katya Allison:
Oh, favorite place on earth? This is gonna sound corny, but my house.

Jessy Grossman:
You must love this to work from home situation.

Katya Allison:
I do. My favorite place is my house and all the nooks and crannies of the house. And a good cup of coffee.

Jessy Grossman:
Yes. Oh, you gotta have that too. I love it. And last but not least, if you could try out a totally different profession for one day. What would it be?

Katya Allison:
Teaching.

Jessy Grossman:
Teaching. Anything? In particular, like any age group, any topic? What would it be?

Katya Allison:
I think Middle School, which sounds insane.

Jessy Grossman:
Oh my god.

Katya Allison:
Yeah, I wanted to be a teacher. Yeah, I wanted to be a teacher. And life definitely took me in a different direction. And I think where I’m at now, there’s definitely teaching and just a different format. Right? Um, I feel like I teach to the masses rather than kids. But yeah, I think anything that I could do, it would be a middle school teacher. Wow. And really not like a subject like science. I mean, wouldn’t that be ideal if we could teach marketing in middle school but probably not?

Jessy Grossman:
Yeah, no, I love that. And so on those same lines, you know, I’d love for you to just talk about your professional journey, you know, maybe what you studied in school and what ultimately brought you to where you are today.

Katya Allison:
Lots of twists and turns, I will say that, um, so my degree is actually in communications with a public relations emphasis. I chose to start my family first before my career, which actually loved now at this point, because now I can dive deep into my career, and my kids are teenagers, which is fantastic. So, you know, you taking that trajectory, definitely, I don’t want to say stalled my career, but it definitely was a lot more work to get to where I’m at now. I think I, the biggest thing that I did was take an opportunity, any opportunity, right? If I found a company that I wanted to work for, and it had a set skills, I never took a job thinking that the job that I applied for was the end game. And I think that’s really helped me in my career, and especially get to the place where I’m at now, which is Director of Content at Grin, which I love. I like to tell people that I couldn’t be more of a Grinner. I’m sure to tattoo not that I’m going to get one. But that’s why I say I’m short of that. I used to be a Grin customer. And you know, it’s definitely a company that I realized, Hey, this is where I want to be. I know that I love marketing, I love talking to people, obviously. I love communicating, I love writing. Really, marketing just allows you to do all of those things. And it depends on the company that you’re at. And I’ve been in several different companies from a really small company learning sales business development to a much larger corporation where I headed communications for an entire continent writing press releases and, you know, internal newsletters to where I’m at now, which is really helping educate others on influencer marketing.

Jessy Grossman:
I love that. And I think that it’s so interesting that you are a customer of Grin, yeah, then and then started working with them. So how did that… I mean, can we get a little peek behind the scenes? Like did you end up connecting with them and or did they sort of end up coming to you or was it just something really natural that just progressed you from one company to theirs.

Katya Allison:
So that the company I was at before Grin was a marketing agency and I was the Marketing Manager and also the CEO at one point and we have one of our customers had a spreadsheet. And anybody who’s listening that’s ever worked with him full answers on a spreadsheet, you will get the pain, you will understand that I quickly was like, Oh, yeah, I need something to be able to manage this. And I really I started searching online. And I will never forget it one time I was out to lunch, we were coming back from lunch. And I got a phone call. And it was a cold call. And Eric, shout out to Eric, he’s still an account executive at Grin. Got on the phone, pitch me real quick. And I said, Hey, this is gonna be the best cold call you’ve ever gotten because I, I’m looking for exactly what you’re selling me. There were a lot of things that really struck me and his personality, for sure. The fact that it definitely filled a need of what I was looking for at the time. It was I was basically looking for something to manage this spreadsheet of influencers. Right? The the pain point really was, hey, here is this list. I don’t know what they’re doing. I don’t know if they’re even doing anything. Like, can you just vet this out? Like, how good are they like, tell me tell me some numbers. And Grin really fills that spot. Um, the other thing that I really liked was that it was a Sacramento based company. And, you know, I like to support local, so we definitely went there. And as Grin has grown, they’ve always been open to communication and listening to customers. You know, I sat with Brian and Brandon. Brandon is the CEO and Brian is the CEOO. Nothing was ever off the table, they were always very welcoming. They’re like, come down to our office, it was a little office to begin with, to where we’re at now is insane. But those little office and I mean, we we just consistently connect, and what was really impressive, was, they definitely walked the talk, I think I said that, right? They want the talk for sure at when they would say, Hey, this is on the roadmap, this is what we’re doing to kind of evolve it. It really happened every time I logged in, if there was an improvement and at a very fast pace. And, you know, as soon as I saw that they had an opening, I’m like this is… I wasn’t even looking for a job. That’s the crazy part. It’s not like I had my resume out, I was already doing what I loved working with a team that I really enjoyed. But as soon as I saw that opening, I’m like, this is where I want to be.

Jessy Grossman:
I love that so much. And so like, what was it the most? Was it? You know, the technology, the people, the culture, the growth potential? Like what do you think it was?

Katya Allison:
Yes, yes, yes. And yes, all of those things. Yeah, it’s, you know, I think a lot of times in life and in business, when you’re, whether you’re looking to buy a house or finding the right, you know, martec tool to invest in, right, you’ve got this list of like, Okay, my perfect house tool is going to do these, this list of things, right, like, I’ve got 10 things, if it could do that, if it could do 70% of what this list is, then I know I’m good to go. Because I think that it’s really hard to find the perfect anything. But if you go into it with a list then and it checks off most of them, then I think that you’re good to go with the house or the tool, or the company. And when it came to Grin, it is definitely the culture fit. It is the Grin DNA, we’ve got values that we that aren’t just posters on the wall, their true values that everybody within the company lives by, especially, you know, the C suite. And I think that that’s really important, although also the growth trajectory that we’re heading, and it’s very exciting to us. We’ve always looked at it from a marketing perspective as marketing to marketers, kind of know the the audience, right, I was the audience. So it really, it really helped for sure.

Jessy Grossman:
Well, I you know, so at the end of 2020, we did a big tech event with WIIM and literally the day that we’re recording this so it will be in the past when this goes live. We’re doing another Clubhouse event specifically about influencer marketing tech. So it’s something that we consistently talk about in the group. If you talked about pain points before. We get constantly requests in our Facebook group, all over and at all of our different communities saying either I’m using this but it’s lacking this or I’m desperately looking for this. Who has it? Like why? You know, a lot of it is just information sharing. There’s a lot of companies out there that are doing similar things, different things. And it can just be hard to identify the right one for you. Like my opinion is I think that like, there is a place for all of these tools, because everybody is working with influencers in a different capacity slightly different and have different needs. Who would you like? Who is the best customer for you? Who is somebody who is going to find and use your tools and say all thank goodness, I found this because it really has helped me tremendously.

Katya Allison:
So. I’m not going to say that it’s built for everybody. But I will say ideally, the people that will see the immediate value of a robust influencer platform like Grin is going to be someone in the DTC ecommerce space, because we have an e commerce integration that really helps manage the fulfillment and the payment and the content tracking. That being said, we have a lot of customers that may not have an integrated store that also still find value in a tool like Grin. But really, it’s anyone that has an influencer program, and they want to grow it and build it beyond just something transactional. It’s definitely a brands that looks at influencer marketing as a relationship versus a transactional approach. That’s a little bit more traditional affiliate marketing. Even that being said, though, we have affiliate capabilities as well, too. It’s just from an influencer perspective, right? So we’ve got promo codes and unique affiliate links, that you don’t have to log out of the platform in order to, you know, get those links and codes to your influencer, right? You don’t have to log into Shopify, to create the codes and then email everybody separately. Everything’s just kind of all in I hate to use the term but it’s all in one. Because it sounds like, doesn’t everybody say, all in one no but we truly are built to be all in one. And that’s definitely where we’re looking to grow into and that you know, someone that’s looking to fulfill a need or be able to find a solution for a pain point right now, but also maybe wants to grow it into some something else. Because there’s, I see it all the time with our customers, they have programs, they have invested in Grin because they know that that’s going to be the tool that they need to be able to manage their program. But a lot of them at this point, they’re like, Okay, great, we’re managing it, what else can we do? And I love that growth, that testing mindset of a marketer as well. And that’s what I think, is a key differentiator with our software from other software’s. It’s, we don’t just want to stop it. Okay. Find the right influencer? Sure. We’ve got a recruitment suite. That’s pretty kick ass. I’d say, Mike, it’s a kick ass. It is pretty kick ass. But it’s also we have an amazing campaign management, you know, workflow section of the tool as well. And we can also pull in the content so that you’re not scrolling and doing the screenshot, I think that that for me, that was like the biggest pin point I was trying to relieve. Like, even if you’re managing only 20 influencers, it can be incredibly time consuming, because you don’t know when they’re gonna post, you don’t know how often if it’s a story, then you’re checking every single day and then trying to also save the video at the same time. I feel like I kind of went down that rabbit hole. So I apologize.

Jessy Grossman:
No, no, I think it’s great. And like, you know, this, the point of us chatting today isn’t to go into every single detail like people can get in touch bys directly to do you know, a demo, sometimes you just have to like see it for you. Yeah. Oh, and also, like, talk to you guys about their specific needs. But it’s good to also just have like an overview of what you guys have to offer. And even just your approach by saying it’s not so transactional, it’s a lot more relationship based, like the idea of having like promo codes and things like that and having the content be pulled in. I mean, those are huge pluses. And do you find yourself like, so I heard, you know, an e-commerce piece of it, which is so interesting. That’s a whole other conversation because I just think like, generally speaking, so many more like entrepreneurs are springing up and could use tools like this for whatever they’re selling fill in the blank to work with influencers. So it’s kind of cool to just think about smaller businesses, entrepreneurs startups in that space, but do you tend to have, you know, is it large agencies? Or is it brands direct? Is it talent managers? Is it a little bit of everybody who uses Grin?

Katya Allison:
So I would not say that it’s built for talent managers. Um, that being said, that is definitely an area that we’re we’re trying to just kind of see. All right, where does that fit in with a tool? How can we evolve it to be able to fit into that we do work with brands and agencies. So there are agencies that use the tool that offer you know, influencer marketing as one of their services, which I think is a great way to get started with influencer marketing if you don’t have the bandwidth, but you do have an agency that you’re already working with that is already managing some of you know, your marketing initiatives. And then we do obviously, a majority of our customers are the our brands themselves that are working in the DTC space.

Jessy Grossman:
So cool. I love that so much. I honestly I can legitimately talk about this stuff all day, like we discussed, but I just happen to love, like problem solving and technology. And so much of what so much of what you’re talking about, just sound like fascinates me, but I know that we have listeners who love that, but I also know we have listeners who just also want to get to know you and your journey. And so we’re gonna do a little bit of everything today. So

Katya Allison:
I love it

Jessy Grossman:
On the fun side of things as well. I love always talking about you know, the platforms themselves. I love that you mentioned that your favorite platform is TikTok.

Katya Allison:
Yes.

Jessy Grossman:
Yes. And I think that… and we’re doing so much on platforms like Clubhouse for example. So talk to me about Clubhouse. Are you on it? Are you using it? Do you have thoughts on Clubhouse?

Katya Allison:
I do. It’s hard not to have thoughts on Clubhouse. I think that if you’re in any marketing space, I think I honestly feel like there was one week that legit. Everybody pinged me about Clubhouse, like every single day of the week. I’m like, yeah, guys, I’m totally on it. And I think honestly, where I had heard whispers of it. And as you know, I’ve joined WIIM and you guys had a Clubhouse event. And I for the life of me, couldn’t figure out how to get on. And that’s when I really dove into like, Oh, what is Clubhouse? I got in there. And it’s it’s an interesting platform. I think, especially as someone who hosts a podcast, it’s an interesting place to drop in and have a podcast like conversation, right? I think it gives everybody the ability to be on a podcast. And that’s kind of the way that I view it. From a marketing perspective, I think it’ll be really interesting to see how other brands kind of integrate it right now. I’m looking to integrate it as a community drop in to talk about topics for customers that are currently using Grin, right and you know, making a little bit more private but as a community of like minded people, right? Like, okay, you guys are all using the tool. You’re all running influencer marketing. I know you’ve got questions, let’s chat through them in a WIC, digestible way so that it’s not like this really long hour and last kind of a, you know, meeting room that people go into. So I you know, I think it’ll be interesting to see where it goes that a lot of people who are starting off in Clubhouse, everybody covets those invitations. Right. Let me in. I’ve totally heard about it. And then they don’t go into any of the rooms. So it’ll be interesting to see as time goes on, how brands leverage it, how people leverage it, the conversations that you can actually accomplish in that type of format.

Jessy Grossman:
Yeah, there’s so much chatter in the past week and a half. Even just about how brands are going to inevitably beyond their. There’s so much to it, that it’s just very conducive to really interesting conversations, connections with people you ultimately may never have connected with information sharing networking. So it has the makings of a lot of really great things. And it sort of combines like, it sort of combines a few things like.

Katya Allison:
I agree.

Jessy Grossman:
You know, yeah, like in if you… like if combines like a few different social apps and needs and all in one place, and you can be on there and look a hot mess, because no one is going to see you. It’s you know, it takes the best parts of podcasting and mixing it with access to people and you get really brilliant minds on there. It has the recipe for some really awesome things. I brands have already been on there. I’ve seen you personally, and I’ve heard about many more doing things on there. I love, I appreciate a decision, the decision to just sort of be first and dive in and to kind of experiment. But I also… I hear what you said. And I have the same experience, which is you get on Clubhouse and like it can also be a little confusing when you first get there.

Katya Allison:
Oh, goodness, yes.

Jessy Grossman:
You really have to, like, take a good week or so and consistently go in and figure it out. And so I would also just I just hope that brands who are inevitably going to get on their way home, though they are they already are that they just take the time to really truly understand what it is before making any assumptions and just jumping the gun and maybe not doing it so well.

Katya Allison:
Yeah.

Jessy Grossman:
Yeah. Yeah.

Katya Allison:
Well, my thought is, if you are gonna jump in, at least jump in with a formula. I think if you jump into it with, all right, let’s it’s a crapshoot. I don’t know what’s gonna happen, I don’t know how long we’re gonna talk, you know, it’s just gonna go on, we’re not going to necessarily have a topic, we’re just kind of gonna kind of shoot the shit. I think it makes it really tough. I have been jumping into some of the different rooms, just to kind of figure out what I don’t like as a listener and what I do like, right, is it a big panel? Like, I kind of think that maybe you should be more narrow with the panel so that you can get through the intros and dive into the topic, right? Like, how do you do that without like the visual but still keep people engaged? Like it is a podcast, right? If someone were to jump in right in the middle of our conversation right here, will they will they get it? Are they gonna see value? Are they gonna, you know, select the hand signal, leave quietly, right? My goal is to if we’re going to do it, I want people to stay there and I want them to be engaged. I want them to know that this is what they’re going to get out of like a room that you go into. And I think that in general, we could probably all do a better job if we’re on Clubhouse of like, Alright, what is this room? What is the topic we’re going to talk about?

Jessy Grossman:
And I don’t think there’s one formula for everybody by any means. But I think that exactly what you said is so true. It’s like go in there and feel like what what is this supposed to be for you? Like, what is what can we achieve here? What mood are we looking to set? What interactions are we looking to facilitate? I would just ask you personally, like, what are you enjoying the most on Clubhouse, just personally.

Katya Allison:
I enjoy. I enjoy peeking into a bunch of different rooms is really what I enjoy. I don’t think that I’ve really stayed the full time on any one of them. But I like that… I like that you can peek in, I like that you can raise your hand and have a conversation with a group of people that you don’t even know. And I think to your point, it’s kind of great because you can be a hot mess and still be listening and still engaged in the conversation. It’s not like Okay, I’m gonna be on camera like this is there, they’re gonna see me I’m gonna have to be articulate like, it’s kind of free forming that way as well, too. And it keeps like the networking awkwardness to a minimum, which I think is really great. I don’t know if you know, back in the day when we could do networking events. It was Oh, it always very much so felt like a middle school dance. Okay, we’re all around the like the walls. Someone’s got to be able to talk to one another. And I’m not a big fan of awkward silence and like staring at people so this is what I like about Clubhouse I kind of all fell like that it feels exclusive, which I now from a marketing perspective. I’m sure that’s exactly what they wanted it to be like, get your invitation. I’ve got five invitations, who’s not part of this, who is part of it. So yeah,

Jessy Grossman:
Yeah. And it’s funny because I’ve been on a lot of those Sunday afternoon panels or discussions, I should say with the two co founders, Paul and Rowan every Sunday they do these town halls. And I’ve heard them explicitly say that It was not our intention to have this be exclusive. We’re literally just in demo mode. And I was just like my call a little bullshit on that.

Katya Allison:
Come on, let’s be real, like you used, you know, scarcity.

Jessy Grossman:
Right? Like, you know if Kylie Jenner can do it and make a billion dollar business, like there’s something there. So don’t be ashamed of it. I mean, I’m sure part of it is what they were saying. But, you know, and then they saw how great it was because there’s that exclusive element and I’m sure they were happy that they had done it that way, too.

Katya Allison:
I think it’ll be interesting to see what comes of it. Like, I would hope that it doesn’t fizzle, right. Not that it’s like this app that is just kind of this bubble. Like it’s peaked, it’s exclusive, and then it dies down. So there’s really just gonna have to be some education when it comes to like, Alright, Clubhouses, I don’t know if that’s what they’re called. But that’s what best to call us Clubhouses. Like, if we’re going to use this, we need to be able to use it right? Like you got people in the door. Now let’s make the most of it. So it’ll be interesting to see where it how it pans out.

Jessy Grossman:
And I think that that’s a great point, because it really is going to be up to all those people who are creating content on Clubhouse to see you how it evolves where it goes to. I mean, we’ve all seen those giant rooms where you know, it’s thousands plus people listening at a time I was in a room the other day that they’re like, Alright, we’re on our 27. And I’m like, holy shit, they’ve been going for 27 hours like.

Katya Allison:
That to me is insane. And I don’t know if it’s because I must have a short attention span. I think that’s probably why I’m like going there with a formula or at least articulate how long it’s going to be because you don’t ever… I know that in the rooms that I’ve been in. I don’t want to miss out on a conversation. But I also want to know, like, how long am I going into this? I have limited time, especially if it’s something during the day, right? Like, if it’s going to be an hour, I can put that in my calendar. But if it’s going to be an hour and then 30 minutes extra that wasn’t planned for Oh, am I gonna miss the juicy last 30 minutes is that when everybody’s really comfortable, you know? I’m just gonna say bras are off. Like, you know what I mean? Like a little bit more liberating.

Jessy Grossman:
The bras come off, those are only in the WIIM rooms. That’s hilarious.

Katya Allison:
That’s probably not appropriate. But you know, no sailor me comes out.

Jessy Grossman:
That’s hilarious. I think you know, look, every and that’s the thing, right? People are experimenting with 27 hour rooms people are experiencing with or experimenting with 27 people panels 27 person panels where you see all these people up on stage. And you know, maybe there’s 27 people on stage and 20 of them are moderators. And you’re like, how could this work? Like I want to keep an open mind though. And I don’t want to assume that it’s not the right way. So I’m just sort of observing. And I feel like a lot of people in WIIM in particular are being asked by brands that they work with, you know, is Clubhouse a good idea for us how and WIIM members are saying, you know, how do I advise them. So I would just recommend that you go in explore it, we’ve got rooms that were running a particular way. And then there are other people who are running rooms in very, very different ways. And I think that everybody is going to have their own preference. One thing that I happen to love about it is kind of different than how we’re running them to be completely frank with you. Like, I think Yeah, like I’m running room similar to what you said, which is like, Alright, we set an hour. And we say like, this is going an hour when we start the room and what to expect and sort of like keeping it structured and formal and, you know, announcing it in certain places so people can find it. But to be completely honest, as a consumer, I just enjoy having like a spontaneous low in my workday and being like, no check in what’s going onin Clubhouse. Yeah, and I sort of like, explore them. The events, the calendar pain, yeah. Yeah, yeah. Like, not really the hallway. But the the events that are for you, basically. And I just sort of see what’s going on and I pop in, I pop out, I pop into another room and I just sort of spontaneously find my way around, and then work gets a little busy. And then I have to focus and I turned it off for a bit. But yeah, I mean, if someone said… but you know, conversely, I’ve been really enjoying a couple people in particular, like the social media space. And what they’re doing, which is interesting is they’re hosting regular rooms at like, yeah, five o’clock every day or five o’clock every Wednesday, or whatever it is. And like, that’s interesting, too, because, you know, it sort of feeds into both right? It’s like, if I’m if I happen to be available, I know exactly when I can tune in and if not You know, I’ll tune into the next time you can kind of pop in and pop out. But you know, it’s there. And so that’s interesting. But I guess just to wrap up the Clubhouse chat for now, because again, we I could… we can legitimately talk about it for a long time.

Katya Allison:
A whole episode on Clubhouse. I feel like I have so much more to say about it. But I will end with one note on it. I think that, like any other new thing that comes up with marketing, actually new or old, I think the best advice for anybody listening would be to tie it back to what you want to get out of it, you know, as a person as a brand, if you’re running it from a brand perspective, it’s all about objective, right? I think that’s also the case with influencer marketing as well, we get a lot of customers who will ask like, Alright, but like, what, what is the person who is making the highest ROI? What are they doing? You can’t replicate what it is that they’re doing? Maybe they didn’t go into it thinking, Okay, I’m gonna get the highest ROI, right? Maybe their objective was content and their content is just crushing it. Right? And that’s what’s resonating with people. I think that with all aspects of marketing, what’s your objective? What do you want to get out of it specific to your brand? And that’s what you have to kind of make those decisions on?

Jessy Grossman:
Definitely. And also being realistic to piggyback on that about, you know, what point in your marketing plan does this take place? So like, for example, is Clubhouse the introduction to new people who just may not have heard of your product or company in the first place? And it’s just, you know, it’s the first step because you’re just finding those people initially, and then maybe the call to action is something like, you know, dm us or follow us on Instagram or Twitter? Because of course, those are the only two platforms for now that you can link to in Clubhouse, or is it you know, tune in weekly here on Clubhouse and then every so often there’s this organic mention of this part of your business or that part of your Yeah, you know, because I think it’s what I’m also seeing are a lot of like, coaches, or just professional coaches. I’ve seen that a ton. But again, like maybe that’s just my algorithm on Clubhouse. Who knows, but I’ve seen a lot of people who it seems like they’re looking to convert people, right there essentially on the spot. You know, like, I’m gonna give you a little teaser about what I offer and maybe do a brief deep dive into what our work could be like together. And then but if you want to buy my course, or if you want to buy my this or that, like, let’s convert it now. And while that may work for some people, and who might have said, like, I hope that works for a lot of people, I would be hesitant about going like expecting that to happen, because I find I would assume that it would take a few more touches to be able to convert a customer from Clubhouse. What are your thoughts on that?

Katya Allison:
I absolutely think about that. I absolutely think that you need more than those touches. I’m also a big proponent for leveraging what you have in your toolbox to work with one another. I mean, I think the example that I can bring to the table is… and maybe it relates a Clubhouse, but it definitely relates to like even our webinars and our podcasts. Right, you know, the goal behind the webinar was to be able to share Grin influencers story on what they’re doing with it when it comes to influencer marketing. And the format of our webinars is that of like, okay, we’re chatting for 25-30 minutes, and then you get 15-20 minutes of live q&a and ask your questions. Now you’ve heard their story. I know you have questions, right? Um, so let’s, let’s take it to that it inevitably is always more than 15-20 minutes, but I stop it at 15-20 minutes, and we had recorded the q&a. And then we’d have a printable PDF but towards the end of last year, we’re like, hey, let’s take it to the podcast, let’s cross promote. And I’m a big fan and advocate for using those tools in your you know, toolbox of like a marketing strategy. So my podcast isn’t created for converting it is created for thought leadership and educating and being a resource. Right? The same thing with a webinars everything has to be able to work in tandem so that you can increase those touches, right? If I just tell you what I’m going to tell you on a blog on my website, I’m not doing you a service. I got to be able to promote it on paid. Maybe that looks like Facebook and LinkedIn. Right. So I’m now using paid but I’m also using SEO because I do have that blog, but I’ve created an infographic as well too, because there’s some people that just want digestible things and maybe they’re cruising for inspiration on Pinterest right now they’ve seen our brand as well too. And they’ve listened to it because maybe I’ve got a podcast or maybe I have someone that you You know, watches webinars, I excessively sign up for webinars. I totally love webinars, right? Because I pull out what the information that I need. So I think that from a marketing perspective, you have to be everywhere.

Jessy Grossman:
You do you have to meet people where they are, yes, it would be smart to do that. But also what you were describing makes me think about credibility. Right? And what are your thoughts on, you know, how all of this can lead into a credibility for brands?

Katya Allison:
I think that’s exactly what it does. If you’re just speaking in one area of marketing, if you’re, like I said, if you’re just using your website, it’s not that you’re not credible. But like you said, it does increase your credibility, like, okay, they’re really sharing their knowledge. And I also think that it gives you the platform as a brand, to share what your thoughts are without having to sell like we all want to sell. We all want to sell. We’re all in this for business. We’re not here just about like making friends, but it’s really trying to figure out like getting the right value. And if you can see that, from someone’s, as from a brand’s social feed, or like from a brand’s webinar, or from a brand’s like, even website presence, it all lends to credibility, like, I want people to trust what I’m saying, and not just because I’m trying to sell them. That’s also what I really enjoy about marketing in general, I’m not held to like, necessarily the one to one sale, not everything that I do is meant to sell it is definitely meant to educate, put us in as thought leaders, and also kind of sell you if you… if what I am selling you or what I’m sharing with you, what I’m educating you about is something that you’re like, Oh, I want more. I need this.

Jessy Grossman:
Definitely, As a marketer, I’d love to hear your thoughts on websites, on blogs, though, in particular, and sort of the power that you think they have or that they don’t have, I’d love to just hear your thoughts either way.

Katya Allison:
Yeah, I think that honestly, blogs are ever going to be dead because it also when it comes down to like the structure of your website, you’re not going to update your product pages every single day, right, or every single month. Like if you have a product, you’ve got our story, you’ve got resources, that’s where your SEO lives and the resources. And it’s all about creating the content that’s going to help drive organic traffic and that’s SEO. So, I don’t think that blogs will ever be dead. Not a big believer that people don’t read them at all, I think that there are types of people that only like use blogs as a resource to kind of aggregate their information and figure out what their plan of attack is. But also speaking on the diversification part, right? Like you can easily take that blog and you know, it’s very Gary Vee style, right? Take your long form content, chop it up into a bunch of, you know, bite sized little things and put it everywhere. And that is basically what you can do with all of your broad blogs. All of your blogs, as well write like a blog can be chopped down to 20 tweets, if you’re really strategic about it, right, you can pull an infographic from your blog as well to, like you can, there are just so many things that you can do, you can accumulate five different blogs and turn it into an E book, right? And not to give away the secret sauce but that’s really what it’s about, right? I’m going to aggregate all of the blogs that we’ve written on this. And then I’m going to give you one how to guide and you’re going to that’s what you essentially want, right? Then you’re going to put it in your resource tab. And that’s what’s going to get your website to be able to rank as well too. So I’m a big believer in blogs and the need to keep them to really, you know, your website is an organic, growing living and breathing thing. You need new resources on there and especially when it comes to marketing in general, influencer marketing, specifically to this is definitely an area where there is a lot of education that needs to happen. I view influencer marketing specifically is something that is still relatively new. I think we’re kind of in this cusp of like, like I mentioned before, transactional versus relationship based and we’re still people are with the mindset that it’s transactional. Still, when it comes to influencer marketing, and that’s kind of the hurdle we have to jump over so that we can make that influencer marketing viewpoint really last.

Jessy Grossman:
And maybe it’s just sort of wrapping our heads around that it’s not a blog in the traditional sense, like sort of what you were saying. It’s just like an aggregator of everything. It’s like the CRM of your business is your website because, like, yeah, it’s totally Gary Vee style, which is so silly to me that we like associated with it. But it’s Gary Vee and like he was the one to put it out there.

Katya Allison:
He did one he’s the first one to say it right? And not only does he say it, but he loves it and breathes it right, which just he’s not. He’s not just saying, Hey, guys, this is what you should do. He quite literally practices on a daily basis where you’re like, it’s clearly working for him. Because if I tell you, it’s Gary Vee, you know, is Gary Vee

Jessy Grossman:
Hundred percent, who is also on Clubhouse as well speaking of. But yeah, it’s just it’s like, the efficient way of being able to create a space on the internet, where everything lives, it’s the hub, you can, you know, chop things off and repurpose things and yeah, breathes new life into things and of course, add to it as well as and but it’s more of like an evolution maybe. So I think it’s really great that we’re talking about that even today, because I hope that any marketers that are listening are incorporating that into in a number of different ways, whether it’s variants that they work for, consult with, or, and or their own brand. Because that’s something that we’ve spoken about a little bit on this podcast probably need to more about your own personal brands. And you know, and, you know, you’re a podcaster. So, you know, you’re establishing your own personal brand, of course through grin, but I don’t know, I think that it like if I personally, I will predict this, I think that there will be more emphasis on the people at companies versus the companies, as you know, a logo where it’s the name on the air, and more of the employees. And you know, that’s an interesting thing when it comes to Clubhouse, which is, when people are asking how do brands get on there? What do they do? Maybe it’s not the brand, maybe it’s some of the employees or the customers like you were sort of proposing earlier, it’s, I think it’s, it’s just becoming more human. And especially in the world that we’re in today, where we’re sort of craving a little bit more of that human one on one interaction, because we’re laughing it so much, how even more valuable it could be today. So that’ll just sort of be interesting to see. But I could see that being a really good thing, I can see people really enjoying that.

Katya Allison:
Absolutely. And you bring up a really great point, like it is about putting a face behind a logo, right, so that you can figure out what that sentiment is. And this is bringing us full circle here. You know, you would ask me, Why Grin? What about Grin for myself in my career. And it really was the people, right, it was, you know, Brandon and Brian who have an infectious excitement about marketing in general. And you want to be part of that. And you want to be able to share that. And my whole goal is for everybody to like associate, you know, Grin with that, right? Like, we don’t just want to use the buzzwords, of buzzwords, buzzwords, that’s what I want to say, buzzwords of like we’re, you know, innovative and authentic and building relationships. Like No, we truly want to build relationships. And that’s also why even when we’re putting together our content, why we have so much value on like the webinars and sharing the customer stories, because that’s our relationship with our customers there is it’s not just like making the sale. This is a relationship we have we are only successful if they are successful. You know?

Jessy Grossman:
Absolutely. And it’s hard to like that is totally the goal. That I believe that’s the truth not even the goal. Yeah, I think it’s the truth and definitely the goal. Also just be real and you know, it’s hard to maintain that many relationships as you do grow and as a company as well. So we need people like, you know, yourself and the Grin and you know, tools to be able to manage those relationships because I agree, I’ve just seen it where people are attracted to people, right like yeah, are going to either started a company because of the people that hire them. People are going to want to maybe purchase a license for a company because of maybe what they stand for. And I feel like that’s been the case for a while. But it’s becoming even more important to people about what companies stand for who they are like that human connection. I love that. I mean, I think I hope that people look for those things more when they make their choices as consumers, because I think that you also as a consumer have a lot of choices out there. And it’s really up to you about, about where, who you who you place your money with, and how powerful those decisions that you make are. So thinking about them a little bit more and being a little bit more thoughtful about those consumer decisions that you make. So anyways, again, all these things are like hour long conversations and of themselves.

Katya Allison:
Totally trying to hold back and like, okay, don’t make this a four hour Clubhouse,

Jessy Grossman:
Right. Four clubhouse, a Joe Rogan podcast like, we try to keep it, you know, at a reasonable amount of time. But I’ve so appreciated this conversation with you because essentially, you and I have done a few hours between my show your show anyway. And I can continue to go on and on. But I’m just so happy that we were able to have you on and may to those listening, were able to hopefully get to know you a little bit more as a person know Grin as a company. And so we ask this question of everyone who’s comes on the show. The question being, what do you wish someone had told your younger self that would have given you a professional or a personal advantage today?

Katya Allison:
Oh, that’s a really good question. And man, I knew you were gonna ask it. I cannot believe I didn’t think harder about it. Um, I would say embrace failure. I embrace failure now. And not that I love to fail, but it’s definitely something that I use to grow. And I think my younger self was more hesitant about the failure. But I would say embrace failure. Don’t overthink it. I’m a classic over thinker. So I’m definitely better as an adult, but like my younger self, I overthought so many different things and just having faith that you’ve got this, you’ve got this.

Jessy Grossman:
I love that. That’s great advice. And so inevitably, when our listeners would love to reach out, learn more information about Grin, connect with you, what is the best way for them to connect?

Katya Allison:
Yeah, absolutely. Well, I am very active on LinkedIn, very active in my messaging, I should say, it’s not that I post a time, but I am always definitely on the lookout. So look for me @katyaallison, on LinkedIn, that’s the best way to learn more about Grin. You can definitely reach out to me but also visit our website grin.co. Grin dot co. And I definitely also encourage everyone to listen to our podcast Grin gets real. We’re coming up with a different series this this upcoming year that highlights customer spotlights, but also doing Q and A’s and a lot of fun stuff.

Jessy Grossman:
Yes. And so literally after you read to this episode, go to Grin’s podcast as well and bounce back and forth. They’ve got hours of content that you can binge on. And I hope that you do so. It’s been so nice having you today. I really appreciate you joining us.

Katya Allison:
Thank you so much, Jessy, this has been so much fun.

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