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Matching You With the Right Digital Marketing Agencies
Behdad Jamshidi is the Marketing Broker and Founder of CJAM Marketing, which provides access to digital marketing partners that are ideal for your brand’s current and future goals. His unique background in marketing, engineering, consulting, leadership, sales, and strategy makes him the perfect intermediary for connecting business owners with vetted marketing teams that fit their objectives. Behdad’s work has been featured in several publications, including MarketWatch, Bloomberg, National Post, and the Financial Post.
Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:
- [02:31] Behdad Jamshidi talks about CJAM Marketing and his professional background
- [04:39] Common mistakes marketing agencies make and how to avoid them
- [06:07] The scope of services CJAM Marketing offers
- [09:43] CJAM Marketing’s business model for matching businesses with the right marketing agencies
- [15:16] Behdad explains the challenges associated with matching businesses with marketing agencies
- [17:11] The onboarding process for working with CJAM Marketing
- [21:10] How CJAM Marketing vets marketing agencies
In this episode…
Are you frustrated with the marketing agencies you’ve worked with because of the lackluster results they deliver? Where can you turn to connect with an agency that meets your needs so you can end your search and focus on running the business?
Marketing is the backbone of any successful business, and finding the right marketing agency is essential to drive growth. But let’s face it — finding the perfect marketing partner can be a daunting task. You may waste a lot of time and money looking for a marketing partner that ultimately doesn’t meet your expectations. However, Behdad Jamshidi recommends hiring a marketing broker to take the guesswork out of finding an agency that meets your needs. His business can match you with qualified and vetted marketing partners that will take your business to the next level.
In this episode of the Quiet Light Podcast, Pat Yates sits down with Behdad Jamshidi, Marketing Broker and Founder of CJAM Marketing, to discuss how businesses can source a marketing partner that delivers results. Behdad talks about his marketing background, the scope of services CJAM Marketing offers, its business model for matching brands with marketing agencies, and its vetting process.
Resources mentioned in this episode:
- Behdad Jamshidi on LinkedIn
- CJAM Marketing
- Quiet Light
- Quiet Light Podcast on YouTube
- Joe Valley on LinkedIn
- Pat Yates on LinkedIn
- Mark Daoust on LinkedIn
- Quiet Light Podcast email: [email protected]
- The EXITpreneur’s Playbook: How to Sell Your Online Business for Top Dollar by Reverse Engineering Your Pathway to Success by Joe Valley
Sponsor for this episode
This episode is brought to you by Quiet Light, a brokerage firm that wants to help you successfully sell your online business.
There is no wrong reason for selling your business. However, there is a right time and a right way. The team of leading entrepreneurs at Quiet Light wants to help you discover the right time and strategy for selling your business. They provide trustworthy advice, effective strategies, and honest valuations. So, your Quiet Light advisors aren’t your everyday brokers — they’re your partner and friend through every phase of the exit planning process.
If you’re new to the prospect of buying and selling, Quiet Light is here to support you. Their plethora of top-notch resources will provide everything you need to know about when and how to buy or sell an online business. Quiet Light offers high-quality videos, articles, podcasts, and guides to help you make the best decision for your online business.
Not sure what your business is really worth? No worries. Quiet Light offers a free valuation and marketplace-ready assessment on its website. That’s right—this quick, easy, and free valuation has no strings attached. Knowing the true value of your business has never been easier!
What are you waiting for? Quiet Light offers the best experience, strategies, and advice to make your exit successful. To learn more, go to quietlight.com, email [email protected], or call 800.746.5034 today.
Hey folks, it’s the Quiet Light Podcast where we share relentlessly honest insights, actionable tips, and entrepreneurial stories that will help founders identify and reach their goals.
Pat Yates 0:32
Hello, and welcome again to the Quiet Light Podcast. This is Pat Yates sitting in for Joe Valley. We have a fun conversation today kind of interesting. When I look for podcasts, I’m starting to look for lot entrepreneurs. So if you’re an entrepreneur out there want to talk about great experiences, I’d love to hear from you. Vendor partners like today we have CJAM Marketing and Behdad Jamshidi is coming in to talk about his firm. I think it’s really interesting. A lot of times when people go looking at marketing, they find a group that they like they have a great conversation with someone an intro and they go with it three or four months later, they look at the results and say was this the right relationship. Behdad’s business has a chance to really get through some of those problems, he actually will give you referrals into marketing firms that maybe within your vertical, it might be that their product they’ve had success with in your kind of space before. I think sometimes it’s kind of interesting, because I’ve even gone more ad-hoc to work with companies that I meet in marketing and just sort of build a relationship versus going in inventing that relationship ahead of time, especially based on results. This really gives people an opportunity to find the people that they need keep a relationship in between them. So if the marketing say isn’t doing well, you have an opportunity to be able to change it or whatever it’s going to be. This is kind of fascinating, because a lot of people look at decisions they make within their business, especially solopreneurs that they love, they know everything. Sometimes it’s good to be able to give up that thought and say tell me what’s been successful for you, or partners you’ve worked with. This is exactly what they do. So I’m anxious to talk to him about it and see how can help your marketing. So let’s get right to it. Behdad, hello, and welcome to the Quiet Light Podcast. How you doing today?
Behdad Jamshidi 2:05
I’m doing great, Pat, how are you doing?
Pat Yates 2:07
I’m doing fantastic. It’s a great early morning, we’re taping this around the Labor Day time. I know it’s gonna air a little bit later. But it’s great to have you in today talk a little bit of marketing. It’s something that I know that every entrepreneur that we have can use no matter if they’re marketing for a direct-to-consumer business or b2b business. So I’m anxious to dive into this today. So what I love you to do is tell us about CJAM Marketing and yourself and maybe your background a little bit.
Behdad Jamshidi 2:31
Absolutely. So I mean, around CJAM Marketing, I’m actually a marketing broker. So I’m not like your typical marketing agency that does all the work. But I’m the guy that basically talks to businesses understand what businesses need, and then I match them with the right marketing partners. And so that’s kind of what my business does. And a little bit about me and kind of maybe the one-minute background on how I got into it. I started out as an engineer, so I used to work for a company very similar to Verizon, but up in Canada was called TELUS. I was working with businesses in the b2b space. So typically working with businesses, anywhere from about 50 employees up to 1000 employees, talking to C-level executives, IT, understanding what’s going on their business, and then basically building out a roadmap of like, how do you get from A to B to C, and typically with touch technology, and then all the other aspects of business. And so that’s where a lot of like my business consulting, sales, leadership and technology experience came from. But on the other side, I started getting into marketing. And how I got into that, I started basically doing websites, Google ads, SEO for small businesses, I started hitting a point where I just didn’t enjoy doing ADR websites on the weekend. So I started basically looking for partners to work with. And as I did that, I noticed that most marketing agencies didn’t understand business and most business people didn’t understand marketing, massive gap in the middle. And when I put partners in the same meeting, I’d be like, well, first of all, why is the agency picking up that work? That’s not what they do. And two, they don’t understand what the business is actually asking about. So I thought, oh, there’s a big gap here. What if I was able to bridge that gap. And so I spent the last four and a half years talking to over 688 different marketing agencies and partners, and vetting that list down to about 90 plus partners that I work with. And today, all I do is I talk to businesses, see what they need, and then match them with the right marketing partners.
Pat Yates 4:15
It’s really amazing. I knew that. And I think that sometimes though, your depth of understanding of marketing may need to be deeper than a lot of people’s because to put them with the right partner, sometimes you have to think outside the box in their business. Correct. So tell me a little bit about when you’re vetting people, what kind of businesses you look for in the complexities of the decision-making, because they may come in with an idea of what they think they need, but you may look at it and see something different, correct?
Behdad Jamshidi 4:39
Yeah, exactly. Yes. So if we’re talking about the business side, when a business comes in to me, I’m always trying to talk about the high level of what they’re trying to do and what they’re trying to accomplish. I think what a lot of mistakes that marketing agencies make does go straight into okay, what did you for your business, great, okay, what are you doing for marketing and they miss all the other stuff that’s going on in the business from, where they’re trying to have, what kind of competitors they have? Do they have the operations in place to scale? What are their biggest drivers? What are their best resources and assets? You need to understand the business as a whole initially, before you can say, okay, it makes sense to go down this marketing path. I mean, especially for what you guys do, some businesses want to get sold in the next two to three years. So are you going to invest in a really long-term brand strategy, versus, maybe you just try to find the levers that you can do short term to get the business to a place where you can sell it and let someone else take care of the brand. So it’s all about really understanding what the goals of the business are, what they’re doing currently today, and then what levers can be pulled, and the appetite for the business owner, what way they want to go.
Pat Yates 5:38
That’s really incredible. So a lot of the listeners that we have that come into the Quiet Light Podcast are either entrepreneurs that are building a business looking to exit or buyers that are looking to buy businesses. So let’s talk a little bit about the scope of services. So let’s say that someone comes in and wants you to look at their e-commerce business, tell us all the things that you can help them partner with, is it just marketing? Or is it logistics? Are there other things? Tell us about the top things you talk to your clients about to try to help them with?
Behdad Jamshidi 6:07
Yeah, that’s a great question. So for me in a lot of the stuff that I do is around digital marketing. But I do have partners in some different areas. So when we’re talking digital marketing, I’m talking like brand websites, Google ads, SEO, influencer marketing do you need copywriters? Like you literally name it from A to Z, like I have partners that do that type of stuff. Video production and things along that sort. So anything that’s around digital marketing, I basically have partners for. On the other part is I’ve met a lot of really cool people, I’m a connector at heart. So I met people that can help with logistics, finding 3PL partners, that kind of stuff. And then recently, like, no fractional CMOS is a massive thing. But last year and a half, I started noticing that most businesses don’t have a proper marketing strategist inside the business, which always makes marketing fall flat. And it doesn’t allow a business to scale. So I’ve been in putting fractional CMOS into companies. And then I have partners that also helped with some in-house resources as well, especially when you’re trying to hire at that like C-level, exec-level, I have recruiters that I work with that help input in-house resources, too. So that’s basically like the scope of services that we typically help with.
Pat Yates 7:17
Really amazing. So let’s talk a little bit about marketing for, say, an e-commerce company. That’s kind of a low-hanging fruit of people that listen to Quiet Light Podcast, or come in selling their companies. So for marketing, let’s just talk about, say, SEO, let’s say someone had a background in SEO, they dealt with a company, maybe it did work out, maybe it didn’t. How successful are you finding someone when someone comes to this initial client? I mean, do you go to someone and maybe that will work or you move them on to another partner? How long does it take to find the right ones? What are the things that matter in that decision to match the right partner?
Behdad Jamshidi 7:52
Yeah, no, that’s a great question as well. So I mean, if we’re gonna use the e-commerce SEO example, I mean, I’ve helped many e-commerce companies find SEO partners to work with. And so in the beginning, it really comes down, let’s say you haven’t worked with a partner before, is really just assessing on the marketing agency side, do they actually have the talent and the skill set to run SEO well? And so a lot of SEO companies, they come in and say, yeah, we’ve been doing SEO for two or three years, I used to do it at a bigger company and now I’m doing it for myself and helping other businesses. You really want to find those agencies that have been around for a little bit longer. They have the systems, they have the processes in place, and that they are doing the right things for your business. And some of the best SEO agencies, you want to make sure that they’re able to do the three different aspects of SEO, from technical to on-page to Off Page, and a lot of SEO agencies will, when you go to them, they’ll say, oh, well, we do technical and On Page, but we don’t do the Off Page stuff. And that’s typically because the SEO agency hasn’t built that team yet, or doesn’t want to bring in that service, because it just increases cost. But a proper SEO agency will be able to do all three of those things within their own house. And so you’re always trying to be aware of do they have all the skills and the resources to help the business grow? Is that going to help answer that question like you’re looking for those?
Pat Yates 9:11
It definitely does. I think what I’m trying to do is make the listeners understand how you can really help them diversify and get, so when someone comes in on boards in an online business, you probably take a look at all of the facets, you look at how those pieces fit together from an SEO standpoint into social media. How do all these things tie together? Because I think one of the biggest time sucks and what people have to do for what you do is working with different companies for different parts. Is it possible that you’re putting all this together that makes it logistically even quicker for people to implement the things they need in their business?
Behdad Jamshidi 9:43
100% yeah, so that’s exactly it. Because when you look at the agency landscape, I always say there’s no one agency that can do everything. And if they say they can, you need to run. The number of times I’ve interviewed an agency and they’ll throw up the beautiful PowerPoint slide that says hey, we do websites and Google ads and SEO, we do the social media and I go, okay, listen, guys, I’ve done enough of these interviews, tell me what you’re actually good at. And all of a sudden, it’ll go from doing nine things to hey, we’re really good at these two things. The other ones were just kind of like we’re doing, but we’re not that great, not better than average. Right? So when you look at the agency or the marketing landscape like that, you start thinking, oh, wow, okay, if a business like an e-commerce business needs a Google Ads partner, Facebook partner, and SEO partner and influencer marketing partner, that’s typically going to probably be two or three different agencies you need to work with and bring together to make your strategy work. And so for business to do that, by themselves, is pretty much impossible to be able to hit that right the first time. Right now I have about an 80% match rate, right? Like at the end of the day, like I’m matching personalities to personalities, right. And so sometimes the personalities don’t work, or the model of how people don’t work. But if I’m right 80% of the time, that means if I’m giving you three or four different partners, like at least two out of three is going to be good, or all three out of three. And the more that I work with certain partners, I have way higher competence in like, for example of an e-commerce business came to me and said, hey, I need a Google ads, Facebook and an SEO partner, I have those guys, I’ve worked with them, I know they’re good. It’s just now are you at the stage and your e-commerce business to be able to afford that type of partner, right? Because most people also don’t realize that there’s like five different levels of marketing partners and agencies. And so they start, so say, an e-commerce business is doing less than $3 million, they’ll try to go for like the stage four agency where they’re gonna be paying retainers or like, you know, $10,000 a month, that e-commerce business thinking, oh, if we pay this amount of money in three months, they should be able to pay their ROI back and more, and we should be in a much better place. But the reality of that is, is you need to be making probably 20 million $30 million a year before you can use an agency of that level. Right? You need to understand like at what stage your business is, what stage and agency is at and how they can help you get from A to B and then use another agency to get from B to C and then move up that way.
Pat Yates 11:57
That makes sense. So that actually brings me to another question. Let’s say someone comes in and says, I’ve just started my business a few months ago, and I really need to ramp up my marketing. But my budget is not to the level of sum. I mean, are there levels of client that someone needs to be able to generate to be able to work with you or to help them get in the beginning to the right partner? So they start everything off right?
Behdad Jamshidi 12:19
Yeah. So I mean, it really depends. It’s kind of like a low threshold where like, you need to be at least spending two to $3,000 a month on some sort of marketing for it to make sense to even start using agencies. Otherwise, like just use, Upwork or freelancers or whatever, to kind of just, like, get some of your time back as you’re growing this. But for me, like when I’m working with businesses, I’m trying to reach them where they’re at and go, okay, well, if you’re not at the stage, where you can really invest in marketing, you need to invest in the foundations, right. So maybe it’s more one-time cost, we’re like, okay, get your website to a point where it actually can convert to make sure that you have email flow setup, because those are automated, right? Like, you want to make sure your email flows are working really well. So that if you’re doing any type of funnel stuff to bring traffic in, at least, you know they’re coming to a website that can convert, which then goes into an email list. And that email list is automatically working. And you know that that machine at the fundamental level works. Once you get to start scaling that and you’re like, okay, now we need to put more money in the top of the funnel to feed this machine more and more, because we know it makes money, that’s when you start kind of getting to that next level of marketing. And at that point, you’re likely generating some sort of revenue in the seven figure range, so that you can start investing in the next levels of growth.
Pat Yates 13:23
That totally makes sense. I think that so when you were talking a little bit earlier about sort of comparing marketing agencies, it’s kind of interesting, because when someone comes in and talks to you, they could be talking to 10 or 12 agencies, in essence, versus having a meeting with one. So sometimes I think doesn’t become really more specialized as a decision. Like let’s say that someone comes in and you know a marketing agency works better with I don’t know, shoes, let’s make that up. So they is the vertical, something that might help someone be able to be successful, because you’ve had so many partners that work in so many diverse industries?
Behdad Jamshidi 13:58
That’s exactly it. Yeah. So if I’m talking to different businesses, Let’s even say I mean, we’re talking about e-commerce, but even in the b2b space, there’s agencies that are specialized in different verticals, right. So a lot of times, I’m talking to say, like e-commerce shoes, I’ll go to my SEO agencies, I don’t have one SEO agency, I work with like, 15 to 20, after have talking to how many I’ve talked to, and they’ll go, hey, yeah, we actually have done a bunch of different shoe brands, these are the ones that we worked on. We’re totally fit for this, right. Versus there’s other agencies that be like, well, we’re not really getting that space. But in the health, pet wellness, like that stuff we’re really killer at. So in my database, I basically just kind of tag like what people say they’re really good at what verticals they’ve worked at. And then when I get a customer coming in, I’m going, here’s the people that you need to match with. So that’s how that works.
Pat Yates 14:43
So they’re building a relationship with you, you’re ultimately the vendor for this. So tell us a little bit about how you handle it post-engagement. Let’s say that they work with a company and let’s say six months in, it’s not working out. Maybe there’s an example. Technically that would probably work. reflect on you and the company a little bit. So how do you deal with issues? Let’s say someone gets in, and it’s not exactly what they thought about or becomes more expensive. How do you deal with changes in the situation? That’s one of the things I think about is if it goes wrong, it seems to go wrong a lot of ways. Maybe I’m overanalyzing that part of it.
Behdad Jamshidi 15:16
Yeah. I mean, I haven’t had like any crazy, terrible scenarios. So in terms of like, how I follow up, so every two or three months, I’m checking in with my customers, I’m going, hey, how are things going? And what is this agency doing well? What could they be doing better? And is there anything that I should know that I don’t know? And so always having a communication with my customers is really important to me. My door’s always open. I had had times which I actually had customers go, hey, like, we use these guys? They did well, but like, we’re looking for someone else. Do you have any other recommendations? And that’s like a massive testament to me, because like, I get really excited when my customers come back to me and ask me for another referral, because they know that I’m like, super transparent upfront. So in the email that I send, or say, hey, I’ve worked with this company this many times, these guys I haven’t worked with. But here’s what I’ve done on my deep dive and why I think they’re good, right. So ultimately, I work very similar to like an HR Recruiter where, similar to an HR Recruiter, but even deeper, where all that I’ll talk to people, I’ll do my best to make sure that I’m getting rid of a lot of the red flags for you. Because out of every, like 100 agencies or partners that I meet, I only allow 15 into my network. That’s the average. Right? So there’s about 85%, that I’d say sorry, you’re not at the stage where I would want to send you any customers. So just imagine being a business and you needing to meet 15 different companies to hire one. How many people are doing that? Yeah, we’re very close to zero. And then when you start thinking about, oh, you need two or three partners, for the thing that you’re doing. Now that 15 becomes you need to talk to 45 different people. And no one’s doing that.
Pat Yates 15:16
Yeah, that’s definitely I think there’s value not only is it a sort of a best way to put it, maybe a time suck, looking around at 15 to 20 different companies, if you can compartmentalize that, and also get referrals of someone. That’s good. That’s great. So tell me how someone gets started with CJAM Marketing? And what do you do? I know you can book a free consultation, people can think about the ideas tell us a little bit about how they onboard and how the process works.
Behdad Jamshidi 17:11
Yeah, I mean, my process is super simple. Like, as you see on my website, it’s literally just book a call with me. And let’s have a discovery session, I used to do these discovery sessions for larger companies anywhere between like 50 and 1000 range. So I basically take that same concept of like, okay, let’s talk about your business, see where you’re at. And then based on that, I go, here’s the way that I would move forward with your marketing, and whether that’s like, hey, we need a fractional CMO to come build a strategy. And then we’re bringing the agencies in, or, hey, you have the right in-house resources, we just need to supplement with this. So it kind of help with that kind of like thought process. And once I get the buy-in, I have a small engagement fee that I charge upfront for my marketing broker engagement. And then I work very similar to like a recruiter where if I successfully match you with an agency, I get paid a successful finder’s fee. And then the front-end fees from your very low, because I also get referral fees from marketing agencies, they have their whole model built out. So using me is actually way cheaper than using a fractional CMO or anyone else to kind of help you find agencies. And then from there, I come back and I go, well, here’s what you asked for you wanted a fractional CMO. Here’s the SEO person, the Google person, and here’s two or three options for each with descriptions. And who would you like to meet, and the customers typically will come back and say, hey, B, I’d like to meet with this person, this person, can you schedule this meeting with this person and this person, two weeks down the road, they have a conversation, and then they choose to work with people if they want to. And if they don’t, that’s totally fine as well. But at least they know, they’ve got kind of like the cream of the crop in terms of what I’ve found in the marketing world over the last five years.
Pat Yates 18:42
That’s really great. I mean, I think that people underestimate how difficult it is to be able to especially like, you can have the greatest initial meeting with a marketing company or any supplier. And then two weeks later, the expectations kick in, and it’s a little bit different. So sometimes it’s really good to have that other voice. So again, tell us a little bit more about how clients end up coming in and changing up everything they do. Do you find that most people come in and just concentrate on one area and then they expand with you? Or is there an area that you think is the hottest right now that people need to understand that you guys can really propel their business?
Behdad Jamshidi 19:18
Yeah, I mean, it really depends on the business. And so it depends on where the business stage is that what kind of marketing but they have. I mean, I have businesses that come in, and they have the marketing budget, right? So they’re like, hey, we need to get these four things going. Whether it’s SEO, Google ads, Facebook, they’re already running at these to run at a higher level. And so I help them find better partners for where they’re currently at. And most of my partners will do audits, right. So you can get those free audits upfront from agencies that I think are very, very high. Sometimes there’s partners, we’re just like, well, we’re just looking for a really solid Google Ads guy because that’s our main channel right now. It’s working really well. And so in those scenarios, I’ll just give them one partner to work with. Like for example, we had a reason a few different successful wins, but if a customer comes in and says they’re on the b2b side in the service space, I have a Google Ads guy that I’ve worked with nine customers, and he actually kills it, he helped one of my customers basically sell their business 18 months later. And he increased our profits from 20k a month on the Google ads and the Bing to 400,000 in just one year. And so you can imagine the multiple that that customer had got after selling. So there are like, those types of scenarios where I’m like, I have partners that have done this stuff before I have background like, let me just save you so much time and effort, just hire this dude. And just doing that can put the business so much further ahead than trying to figure it out yourself.
Pat Yates 20:36
It’s interesting you mentioned that because it is correct, as an M&A agency Quiet Light sees a lot of people that come in, and sometimes the marketing spend maybe a little bit higher, but the efficiencies of those, if it adds money to the bottom line to your SDE, then you’re gonna get a multiple that’s very high from that. It’s really an incredible thing. So tell us a little bit about the process with the vendors. Once someone comes on and onboard, let’s say they come to you, and then you give them all to XYZ agency, how does the communication work? Do you stay involved in it? Do you help the client? Or is it just turned over to the agency? And then they report back to you? How does it work post-transaction?
Behdad Jamshidi 21:10
Yeah, so post-transaction, typically, I’m not in the middle, right, like, so I build trust with my businesses and my customers. And I kind of stay in parallel to it. And so I go, hey, if you ever want to have conversations with me, or something that’s coming up, reach out to me, and I’m happy to chat. But ultimately, I don’t want to sit in between the relationship between the agency and the business that are working together. So once I pass off that relationship, and they end up working together, I want them to become naturally inorganic, the only times I will ever basically get involved is if I follow up and say, hey, can you kind of reach out to them and kind of tell them this, or typically, businesses will say, hey, B, they’re really, really good at this. I wish they were a little bit better at this. And then they’ll just talk to the vendor themselves. And so I’m just getting like, inside info of like, how is the relationship working? And it makes me better at matching continuously in the future. My business just keeps getting better and better, the more I match. And then on the agency side, I think you asked a little bit on how I vet the marketing partners. Yeah, so typically, I will have a conversation with any agency and have those conversations. And usually the agencies that I get are within my network, where it’s like, my good partners are referring other good partners to me, I’ll always have a 30-minute conversation with them. And on that high-level conversation, it’s really I’m just trying to understand what their values are, what their goals are for their agency, are they actually good? And then I request a ton of information after that first initial meeting of like, okay, well, you told me you can do this, this and this, whether it’s websites, or branding, or Google ads, or like, walk me through that, send me emails and videos and stuff, and tell me show me that you actually know what you’re doing. So after I review all that, and I go, okay, well, it all looks good. Now I do a one-hour deep dive into the agency, and I go through like a 30, 40 plus questions. Basically understand the agency inside and out from like, what their goals are, where they’re headed, what their team is, how their team is structured, and plotted out? Are there certain specialties within that team that I need to be aware of that if that person leaves, you lose an entire service line, all those like, deep questions that most businesses won’t ask, I’ll do. And then even after that, to get into my partner network, I charged the money to get in. So I have like, multiple levels of filters, to make sure that at least if I’ve never used an agency, before, I’ve done my due diligence, at the highest level to say, hey, based on everything I’ve seen, I haven’t seen that red flags. These guys seem to know what they’re doing in these areas. And here’s their specialties. And agencies are typically a lot more transparent with me, because if they know they lie to me, or they’re not transparent with me, they just paid to get into my network. And if they fail one of my customers, they get to my blacklist, and so it’s not in their best interest to do so. Versus just working with the customer, taking them on, and then they can do stuff it failed, the customer likely might write a bad review or just leave, right. And so they don’t get that same hit to their brand.
Pat Yates 23:53
Are there certain areas of say, an e-commerce business you don’t cover? Like, some people may say, Well, I’d like my email, top marketing to tie into my social to tie in to everything else that I do. Or can they find this as a one-stop-shop that can do basically everything you need within marketing or company?
Behdad Jamshidi 24:09
Yeah, so the only area of service that I don’t cover right now is affiliate marketing. So that’s the one product don’t. But if someone’s saying, hey, I need email that I need that tied to my social media and all that different kind of stuff, the question comes down to is there an agency that can actually do those two or three things together, right, like some agencies do, do two to three things? Well, can you find an agency that does email social media and that? That becomes a question and if not, it goes, okay, well, here I have an agency that does social media really well. And someone that does email really well? Do you have someone internally, like a marketing director or someone running marketing to help bridge that gap. And so you get the best of both partners doing what they do really, really well. And then an integrator within the company to do it. A lot of the times when I’m working with businesses, let’s say e-comm businesses or other type of businesses in the three to kind of $20 million range because you’re almost getting to that point where you’re getting to that next level of scale, right? Like you got to get operations in place processes in place so that you can and scale. In those scenarios, usually, if they don’t have someone strategic on the marketing department inside, I’ll actually recommend, hey, let’s get a fractional CMO into the company, let them build a strategy, let them build a plan. And then we’ll feed that fractional CMO, the agencies that you need to build out that plan. And the cool part about a lot of it is you can use that fractional CMO to hire a marketing director underneath them to basically run and execute the plan. So you’re not paying the high cost of fractional CMO over time. And so that’s typically how to structure it and just kind of have conversations with my customers to go, which route do you want to take? Do you want the more strategic route where you have a plan and that can input those agencies? Or would you like to, hey, I’m only trying to get like one or two channels going, and Google and Facebook is what we’re focusing on, B, can you just give me agencies for that. So it’s really just having that conversation with my customers and understanding where they’re at what their appetite for marketing is, and kind of where they want to go. And then just saying, here’s the two different ways or three different ways we can do this. Which one would you like me to go out and basically bring you a team to do?
Pat Yates 26:00
That’s actually amazing. I mean, again, I think it’s really kind of wild that, back in the day, everyone struggled to find partners, they wouldn’t even share information. But with you guys, you have an opportunity to come and start to finish and be able to take their marketing to the right partners without having to go through that pain of actually going through the bad situations. Like that’s one of the biggest pain points to building a business, you go out and make all these mistakes, and you screw up your marketing, then you figure out better ways to do it. Sometimes the good thing sometimes the bad thing, but I would assume with you guys, you can get a right, a perfect start right away with the right partners have been in your industry, is that pretty much how you operate?
Behdad Jamshidi 26:35
Yeah, I would say that. I’m a transparent guy. And I like running my business super transparently, like my relations don’t work 100% of the time, but they’re gonna work way better than you doing it by yourself. Even just having a conversation with me, for example, like I had a customer I talked to about a month ago. And they were telling me they’re spending $8,000 on SEO a month, and then the retainer for like Google ads are up $4,000 a month. And I just said, okay, well, I said some very simple questions. What are they doing on the SEO? What are you getting for it? What kind of business does this guy have before he built his SEO company? And after literally a 30-minute call, two days later, he goes, hey, I fired my SEO guy and I fired my Google Ads guy, because I realized they were overcharging they weren’t giving me enough stuff after kind of looking at a lot of it. Can you help me find the next piece or the next partners? And so just even sometimes a conversation of like, hey, am I getting the right value for what I’m spending? Is there someone out there, that’s better. And then I can tell you, because I’ve talked to over 688 of them, of what the pricing should look like for what you’re getting, so that you’re not getting hosed and spending more money than you should at the stage that you’re at in your business.
Pat Yates 27:39
Yeah, and I would imagine that, especially in pricing, and things like that, working with vendors, that a lot of volume is going to help the client save a little bit of money, maybe, and at worst case scenario, they would be able to sort of go through it. So let’s also ask one question. So let’s say that something’s going poorly, as we talked about with a vendor, are they able to come to you and maybe you get involved in that situation either helped mitigate it to make it better or find a way to move on to another partner? Is that happen very often? And if so, is that a difficult thing to keep the relationship good with both you and the vendor itself? I mean, that seems like it’d be a difficult situation.
Behdad Jamshidi 28:10
So I have to have somewhere in my contract, I thought about this clause way pre handlers like, hey, look, if I have a customer that’s not happy, and they don’t want to tell you that they’re not happy, I have the ability to step in and find another partner that will match better. It hasn’t happened that many times when it has happened, customers will come to me and say, hey, this agency hasn’t been able to do this. And this or I don’t know if they’re actually doing good work. And so there was actually one situation where I actually brought in two other partners to audit one agency to see how they were doing their work. And one of the other agencies kind of like spotted a bunch of things were there like this can be done better that can be done better. Because for me, I want my customers to be happy. And I expect my agencies on my site to be doing the best work possible. And if they’re not doing that, I want to know. And so there are situations where I get involved, and I’m happy to find another partner, because at the end of the day, I want the business to be happy. And if I’m allowed to, if the business allows me to, I’m always happy to talk to the agency and go what’s going on, right, that adds another piece of fire underneath, because they know I’m a referral partner. And having you not happy with them, ends up adding a little bit more fuel to the flame, especially when I’m, as well connected in the marketing world. It doesn’t look very good if you’re not.
Pat Yates 29:18
You’re kind of like having a fractional CMO, you come in and you help them understand what they need, where they can go and what’s been successful, correct.
Behdad Jamshidi 29:25
That’s exactly Yeah, that’s exactly right. I just don’t want to be one.
Pat Yates 29:29
No, I completely understand that. Well, this has been great. Is there anything else that you’d like to listeners to know about CJAM Marketing, and also tell them how they can get in touch with you?
Behdad Jamshidi 29:37
Of course. I mean, if you want to get in touch with me, there’s kind of two main ways I’m on LinkedIn a lot. So look up Behdad Jamshidi. I’m on there quite a bit. So if you’re going to message me, you can do it there. And also on my websites with www.cjammarketing.com. You can book a schedule a discovery meeting, or even email me from there. I’m always happy to chat. And if you go to my website at the bottom, there’s an agency resource section down there with questions. For example, 10 questions to ask your agencies and also five things to watch out for when working with agencies. So if you want to grab those, they’re in the bottom footer on my website or www,cjammarketing.com/resources.
Pat Yates 30:15
We will definitely have all these links up for the podcast as well as into your LinkedIn. And I think that it’s been a great conversation. There’s so much that can be learned getting into this. And Behdad, I just really appreciate you coming on the Quiet Light Podcast today. It’s been awesome conversation. Thanks a lot.
Behdad Jamshidi 30:30
Awesome. Thanks for having me Pat. It’s been a pleasure.
Today’s podcast was produced by Rise25 and the Quiet Light content team. If you have a suggestion for a future podcast, subject or guest, email us at [email protected]. Be sure to follow us on YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram, and subscribe to the show wherever you get your podcasts. Thanks for listening. We’ll see you next week.