Founders have a unique experience and passion for running their businesses, thus shaping the way they lead their teams. And as it expands, they may want the same level of passion from their employees, which could lead to being too controlling as leaders.
In this episode of SaaS-Story in the Making, B2B SaaS Sales Coach and host Matt Wolach and BrightLocal’s Founder and CEO, Myles Anderson, talk about the importance of letting go of control for a more practical approach to business and how it helps with the success of SEO. Anderson shared his knowledge and experiences on SEO and how encouraging autonomy to the team helped them gain authority over prospects, clients, and Google rankings.
Podcast: SaaS-Story in the Making
Episode: Episode No. 222, “How to Empower Your Team to Win – with Myles Anderson”
Host: Matt Wolach, a B2B SaaS sales coach, Entrepreneur, and Investor
Guest: Myles Anderson, Founder, and CEO at BrightLocal
TOP TIPS FROM THIS EPISODE
Get Your Prospects Committed
Building from scratch usually comes with a lack of resources and credibility. At this time, you are trying to get clients to trust you with little that you offer and hope that they may be willing to pay for it in the future. Because of this, Anderson suggests you put your best foot forward and make it a free product.
In their early days, Anderson shared how offering a free widget that generates reviews was able to build their email list. This initial offer allowed them to get noticed and made connections with big agencies. Eventually, it helped them drive forward. As a business in the phase of trying to establish credibility, this is a great start to getting recognized by your market. And once they have tried, they may be willing to commit to you and pay.
Additionally, you should also cater to some aspects that your competitors lack. Anderson shared that back in 2009, content marketing opportunities are hard to find. Because of this, they initiated providing such in their industry. And it became a success, not only in increasing website traffic but also to establish credibility in the market. Just as Anderson said, “it helps not only get our name in front of them, it also establishes us as an authority and someone that they can trust and listen to.”
Move Quickly Through Autonomy
A growing business faces newfound struggles where you need to always keep up. Aside from this, the SaaS industry is fast-paced, making it more important to learn how to cope.
Businesses start with a few employees but as it develops, they add up. Anderson has experienced this, from having two members before, they are now at 200 employees today. But it was not easy, he said, “it was also hard having to work in a fast-paced industry. We have to move quickly, with trial and error, you have to move quickly—make quick decisions.”
However, a way to make this happen is to encourage autonomy. It allows team members to think critically and determine the next steps on their own to be able to move and decide quickly as a team. As a result, there will be no bottlenecks or red tape. Instead, a high output culture where members are confident in decision making and are not afraid to make mistakes.
Create a High Trust Environment
In building a high-trust environment, you need to establish a culture that works for the team. It includes moving away from bureaucratic structures and business norms that focus on hierarchy. Instead, it should allow your team members to feel encouraged and motivated to perform their best while not being afraid of failure.
Just as Anderson said. “I want to create a high trust environment where people just bought their best selves to work every day, giving them lots of autonomy to make decisions in a supportive environment. And when they fail, we pick them back up, and we go again.”
Creating this kind of environment may be divided into three things:
- Having alignment around what you’re trying to do
- Have a strong culture with defined values
- Make sure everything is well communicated and understood
It is important to relay everything clearly to everybody to ensure that you are all on the same page. Through this, decisions can be quickly made through effective discussion.
Make as Few Decisions as Possible
When you are used to managing everything, it may feel strange having to let go of control. But by the time you decide on giving autonomy to your team, your only goal should be to make as few decisions as possible.
Giving and trusting your team the power of decision-making frees you up from worries. But more than that, it increases their confidence and gives them the motivation to perform their best. Because once you have established trust, they can commit to the mission, strive hard, and drive the business forward.
SEO is an Investment
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a process to increase website traffic organically. It is an organic method of directing prospects to your brand’s website. Part of this is establishing authority online through providing valuable content for your market. When doing SEO, it is important that your team is aligned to work, makes fast and efficient decisions, and is organized in employing the right ways to succeed.
Anderson mentioned two kinds of SEO: standard and local. While both are aligned to website and content creation and its efficiency, local SEO is unique as it appears in a local setting. The latter uses Google Business Profile which acts as a Google directory. It allows the brand to appear on the first page of Google, specific to the user’s location.
Local SEO can help small businesses and entrepreneurs increase their visibility and sales. It may appear free as the method and goal are organic. However, it is an actual investment that companies should prepare for. They will pay for manpower in website development, content writing, optimizing your Google Business profile, and more. It will take time and a lot of effort to employ, but investing in the right people can give you great results.
[10:46] “The key thing is that not a great result, it is that people aren’t afraid to put their hand up and say, look at that mistake,”
[11:26] “I want to create a high trust environment, where people just bought their best selves to work every day, giving them lots of autonomy to make decisions in a supportive environment. And when they fail, we pick them back up, and we go, we go again.”
[19:01] “They feel like they’re really kind of committing to the mission and having driven the business forward. That brings them to work more motivated every day, which in turn reduces the stress on leadership, because as well as not worrying about, are they making the right decisions, you’d have to worry less about how motivated they are.”
[23:06] “One of the key things that local businesses need to understand is that it’s not free marketing. SEO might appear free because you’re not handing over dollars to Google to appear in the results. But it’s investment still.”
[07:08] “I think that’s so smart, getting the people at a non-financially committed level, and then working them and getting them more and more committed into a deeper level into your funnel.”
To learn more about Myles Anderson and BrightLocal, visit https://www.brightlocal.com/.
You can also find Myles Anderson on LinkedIn at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mylesstuartanderson/.
For more about how host Matt Wolach helps software companies achieve maximum growth, visit https://mattwolach.com/.