In this episode, Harris and Shawn chat with David and Chris, owners of Cyber City Circtuits. David and Chris are working to expand their contract manufacturing (for electronics and PCB assembly) business and need help reaching new customers. As a result, Harris and Shawn perform a live consultation with them to give advice on how to approach marketing and sales.
In particular, Harris gives his thoughts on best ways to set up a sales pipeline, and Shawn helps brainstorm marketing ideas. Both Harris and Shawn agree that marketing and sales must be approached with a scientific mindset: experiment and learn from the experiments.
One Powerful Quotation:
- 58:45 - Shawn: “Everyone thinks marketing is fun colors and shapes and photographs, and while that is a part of branding, real marketing comes down to ‘what do customers engage with?’...you have to take a scientific [approach] to go ‘I have a hypothesis, I’m going to test it, and see the results.’”
- 1:00 - Shawn asks David and Chris to explain what Cyber City Circuits does.
- 3:40 - David talks about how he’s working to ramp up a contract manufacturing business within Cyber City Circuits.
- 4:45 - Harris asks David and Chris about why shipping is a hard problem.
- 9:00 - Shawn talks about automating shipping processes to allow for capacity and time to work on sales and marketing.
- 12:00 - David talks about wanting to find more CM customers to help pay for his and Chris's time and provides some examples about what ideal customers would look like.
- 14:00 - Shawn askes David and Chris to define whether they want to be B2C or B2B.
- 15:30 - Harris gives his thoughts on setting up sales pipelines.
- 18:15 - Shawn asks David and Chris to elaborate where their current customers are coming from.
- 20:30 - David mentions that they currently test 100% all of their boards.
- 21:30 - Shawn and Harris help David define their current sales pipeline.
- 23:00 - Harris gives some advice on setting up onboarding techniques when hiring a salesperson.
- 28:30 - Harris talks about how a good, simple CRM tool can help Cyber City Circuits.
- 32:00 - Harris and David discuss the various ways to position a brand when it comes to sales.
- 33:45 - Harris recommends that David and Chris create marketing and sales personas and then use outbound marketing to validate hypotheses about those personas.
- 36:30 - Harris talks about the customer acquisition process.
- 37:15 - Shawn asks if Cyber City Circuits is seeing repeat customers for their CM service.
- 41:00 - Shawn recommends following Hubspot’s tutorials for developing personas.
- 43:15 - Shawn and David talk about potential problems Seeed Studio’s CM service might run into. Correction in the show: Seeed Studio still offers their Propagate service for low-to-medium volume manufacturing.
- 45:00 - Chris and David talk about why tooling costs are so high for CMs.
- 46:45 - Shawn talks about how to find potential customers outside of an existing network along with how to engage with people on Twitter.
- 50:30 - Harris gives feedback on Cyber City Circuits’ Twitter profile page.
- 54:30 - Shawn talks about what it takes to create good content.
- 58:00 - Harris and Shawn talk about experimenting in sales and marketing.
- 1:00:00 - Harris and David talk about the difficulty in setting up a bootstrapped business. David mentions that he used Shopify to build his ecommerce storefront.
- 1:01:30 - Harris and Shawn talk about how to test and measure various sales and marketing tactics.
- 1:07:00 - Harris and Shawn discuss ways to develop good content and apply search engine optimization (SEO) to appeal to a particular audience.
- 1:12:30 - David and Shawn talk about the necessity of having a good product to start with before being able to market it.
- 1:14:30 - David talks to Shawn about handling poor designs or customers that want things outside of what a CM can provide.
- 1:19:00 - Chris and David talk about wanting to transition to being primarily a CM shop with electronics distribution on the side.
- 1:25:30 - David leaves listeners with some words of wisdom.
List of Resources