July 12, 2023
President of Pearmill, ex-Head of Product at Taplytics, ex-Head of Mobile at Frank & Oak. YC fellow.
VP of Growth, Pipe
Cam emphasizes the need for a formula for growing a company and optimizing it to increase customer LTV and reduce CAC, while maintaining a high-functioning team through listening, trusting, and learning from mistakes.
Additionally, he talks about Pipe's tooling and collaboration process, AI and ChatGPT's future impact on the industry.
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[00:00:00] Cam Bodenstadt: if you need to like generate business fast, like it's intent, right? So it's like where are the people already searching? Let's go find everything that, that are what, who are our, competitors, and what are they doing on, search? search is where the intent is.
[00:00:12] Cam Bodenstadt: If we need to bring in capital, we need to bring in business fast. Let's go where people have the highest propensity to go forward. correct search right away, that was like, goal number one. Like, Let's dominate search, let's understand search. let's really, really, hone in on that as one of our first channels to like really say that, hey, check that channel off We have, we have our metrics pretty pretty packed. We have, and we have a really good understanding of our, metrics here. and we can, We have a good idea of how we can scale this.
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[00:00:40] Nima Gardideh: Welcome to another episode of The Hypergrowth Experience. I am your host, Nima Gardideh. Today we have Cam Botten stat, the VP of Growth at Pipe on the podcast. If you don't know about Pipe, Pipe is a modern capital platform. They really provide companies and founders with non-dilutive capital to help them grow their companies, without having to risk equity in their businesses, which I think is a wonderful service to provide to folks as a different source of capital for folks to grow.
[00:01:15] Nima Gardideh: We have a few clients actually, that, I think use their product and they're pretty happy with, with the, the engagement there. It was really great to speak to him. , he's had a conser background before doing this, work, which is a lot more focused on acquiring businesses. but it's very clear that he had such a strong.
[00:01:37] Nima Gardideh: Framework behind the way he's helped grow businesses. He's been a founder in the past and has also helped companies scale. , we dive deep into how he thinks about audience building and growing Pipe and the trust he's had to build with the sales team and creating sort of standards for how to consider their work on the marketing and growth side a success.
[00:02:01] Nima Gardideh: and. We get into the, the data stack as well of how their, their teams work together. but we start with, cams, journey as an entrepreneur, and the sort of non-traditional businesses he's been in before, getting to Pipe. Here's Cam.
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[00:02:19] Cam Bodenstadt: I'm here from, Austin, Texas now, but I grew up in South Florida and, I've been in,
[00:02:25] Cam Bodenstadt: in kind of like the, the, the marketing world for the last 10 to 12 years, and kind of mostly as like a founder, always just, , as I create businesses, I always felt like, the thing that I could add the most value to was the sales and marketing aspect.
[00:02:38] Cam Bodenstadt: So I, kind of fell in love with that and like being a non technical founder. So, , the sales and, marketing was something that I could add a lot of value, at all my startups
[00:02:51] Nima Gardideh: , what kind of companies have you sort
[00:02:53] Nima Gardideh: of created or been a part of before, have been, curious. I think we we're gonna talk about this in a, in a bit, but, Pipe is just a little bit new for you in terms of the type of company it is. So I wanted to give the audience some, context about the type of businesses you've started and, scaled and sold in the past.
[00:03:13] Cam Bodenstadt: , yeah, so it's the full gamut and I, I started like, my first business was a, a windshield replacement business, and I was like 18 and it was crushing it and, scaled it to multiple locations and I was, really I fell in love with entrepreneurship and kind of the whole, , making my own, schedule.
[00:03:31] Cam Bodenstadt: And you, know, my efforts were like directly reflected in my paycheck.
[00:03:34] Cam Bodenstadt: kind of thing. So it was like, I fell in love with that idea. And then I had a slew of failures. And So it's, all, always starting some type of new business between, , you name, it, you name it. I've tried to, I've tried to start it. And, I, , 2013 I started this, with my co founder, his background was in, in, in, is in manufacturing. So we, we started this, this label business, for logistics, shipping, labels, and, took years of, of, of, of non market, product market fit.
[00:04:06] Cam Bodenstadt: And then in 2017, it hit and it was like, took off and, it went, it was just shipping labels that, you print them out and slap them on your, your, your econ, your business Yeah. It, it had the packing slip and the label and
[00:04:20] Cam Bodenstadt: one label.
[00:04:20] Cam Bodenstadt: And, , then it just scaled all across the EU. So we're in like Five or six countries in the EU and all of the United States. And that business was super fun. And I learned a ton about like a very non traditional business and like all of the actual running, a, a, like a a real organization and , film love with crypto. And so like that, I guess the transition there is that like I, I , Yeah, I caught the bug in 2016 and the 2017 and, me and my friends were, kind of in all the same crypto craze that everybody else was in 2017. And, one of the things that we kept on, figuring out which altcoin to go into what to do, and, one of our other friends is like, super, , analytical, he's Like, Hey. , like you can rebalance, you can do all these things. And he was doing it in spreadsheets for us. And my other friend was like, yo, let's just make this, let's make this a product.
[00:05:11] Cam Bodenstadt: And we whipped it up and we ended up scaling it and selling it to, a shape shift And we all, we got Accired and went to shape shift And that's a big crypto exchange, for, we were there for, I was there for almost two and a half years. And, And I just wanted to get back to entrepreneurship. So, came back down to Austin and was the head of growth with my, my other friend at his, coffee business, as, and we scaled that throughout the pandemic, which was just like right time, right right place.
[00:05:40] Cam Bodenstadt: And, then I saw what was happening at Pipe late 2020, 2021. And so I joined the beginning of 2021. I, I started interviewing with Harry and Yaz in 2020, and then joined. I was the first marketer at Pipe. So, We've scaled the heck out of that business. so here I am.
[00:06:03] Cam Bodenstadt: with the team and all the things.
[00:06:05] Nima Gardideh: So tell me about, so you went,
[00:06:07] Nima Gardideh: , back into entrepreneurship briefly during Covid, and then Cho chose to work at Pipe and Work on Pipe. What was excited about Pipe and, and can you give us like a, maybe a snapshot of, first of all, what is Pipe and, what was the state of the company when you joined it?
[00:06:24] Cam Bodenstadt: Pype allows, founders to get non dilutive capitals. Really simple. when I, when I saw what Harry and Josh were doing, they were adding, they were allowing founders to sell their recurring revenues upfront to take some capital. And so it's non dilutive capital. And so it's like a really founder friendly way of, scaling your business when I, when I saw my friends, I had two friends that were early on at, at, at Pipe as well.
[00:06:50] Cam Bodenstadt: , and I knew them from, from like Austin's, like startup community. And I so I knew them, and I saw what they were building and I was like, okay, I was like, I get it. I get what you're doing. It's a marketplace. I'm coming from shapeshift, that's an exchange. I very much like the mission. that You guys are trying to do. You're trying to help founders. so it's like checking all the boxes.
[00:07:07] Cam Bodenstadt: for me, It's technology, it's early. , they have a great brand My friend I have two friends there, I, I also like the community that it serves as my is like right in line. So I just reached out to, to Harry and to , to Yas, who's the CMO at Pipe. And I said, Hey, like I, love, it. I don't know what you're doing for a growth team, but , here's my background. I would love to publish shot.
[00:07:31] Cam Bodenstadt: that Just talked to
[00:07:32] Cam Bodenstadt: you. you.
[00:07:32] Cam Bodenstadt: know, We started talking and
[00:07:34] Cam Bodenstadt: it was, yeah, you got to come.
[00:07:36] Nima Gardideh: That's how it started. That's
[00:07:38] Nima Gardideh: exciting. And so, if I were to repeat that back to you, this is kind of like invoice factoring, but for SaaS
[00:07:45] Cam Bodenstadt: Yeah. I mean that's where it was there. So it's, It's very much evolved, right? now. We We've evolved it so much in the business and it's continuous involving right. now. Any type of revenue that's repeatable or even that's, we can predict it. And that's the currency. Things are always shifting right? So like the, product is evolving, right now, even to a degree. And so when I came on, it was very sass focused.
[00:08:07] Cam Bodenstadt: Then we went into any type of revenues and now it's just like, it's very much like definitely the product is evolving.
[00:08:13] Nima Gardideh: Gotcha. So it's any form of predictable revenue to, to some like error rate that you're okay with. You're, you're willing to sort of front the company some capital, upfront for that predicted revenue
[00:08:27] Nima Gardideh: outcome.
[00:08:27] Nima Gardideh: Walk us through the first couple of months, like you were the first growth hire, but there was an already a cmo. How did you
[00:08:34] Nima Gardideh: guys think
[00:08:34] Cam Bodenstadt: Yeah. , it was it was a there's a VP of marketing and she's like a wizard at, at, at branding. And so like, I'm a very honest person when I first meet with people, like, I like to just say like, hey, like where are my strengths and where are my weaknesses? And so I'm like, Hey, I'm, branding is not my thing.
[00:08:50] Cam Bodenstadt: I'm a performance marketer. I think about the funnel. I care about metrics, I care about this stuff. I think about it's, so independent, but when it comes to like the brand itself, like if I have like, it's like a yin and a yang. Like, like, like if I, if that's her superpower, this is my superpower, we're like We're dominant this way.
[00:09:05] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense.
[00:09:07] Nima Gardideh: And I think, commonly people talk about how we can, which one of these things could you bring in first into an organization? But it sounds like from an early on there was both like a brand focus and a performance focus in the, in the organization, which I is probably good
[00:09:23] Nima Gardideh: for it long
[00:09:24] Cam Bodenstadt: no, definitely. And, and just knowing each other's strengths. I mean, that's like the biggest thing I think from, from , when you, when you're building out your team, but also just like those, those first players, it's like, who, who really like gets excited.
[00:09:37] Cam Bodenstadt: I wake up thinking about. Funnel metrics, I get, like performance stuff is like what I care about.
[00:09:42] Cam Bodenstadt: Right. And so, , I couldn't say that I wake up and be like, how's the, the brain, like the brain, like, I'm just very lucky that like, she built a very dope brand.
[00:09:52] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, that's, that's a good position to be in because I, I find that a lot of the times, at least in, the performance world, which is sort of where I spend most of my time, there is this like, maybe negative point of view on brand, on the performance side, where people
[00:10:09] Nima Gardideh: are sort of like struggling against the folks on the branding side.
[00:10:14] Nima Gardideh: , I generally disagree with that, and it's good to see that this, this can be a very fruitful partnership between these two things. And, I think people miss out on that, because the, maybe the
[00:10:26] Nima Gardideh: language is different and the per their perspective is, are different around the same thing, which is both of these folks want to grow the company.
[00:10:33] Nima Gardideh: And so that
[00:10:34] Nima Gardideh: part
[00:10:34] Cam Bodenstadt: And it's the common goal. It's like, zoom out, man. Just like, zoom out a little bit. What's our, what's our common goal here? Like, what are we trying to achieve? And You're going to achieve it this way. I'm going to try it this way. I can help bolster it. The better brand you build makes my job easier.
[00:10:46] Cam Bodenstadt: , it's a vicious, it's like a circle.
[00:10:48] Cam Bodenstadt: We can help like you.
[00:10:49] Nima Gardideh:
[00:10:49] Nima Gardideh: So to that story, so when you, when you joined in, you were gonna focus mostly sounds like on the performance side, on the, on the funnel optimization side, did you end up building a team immediately? Like were you pressing the buttons on these,
[00:11:01] Nima Gardideh: , networks yourself? Like how was
[00:11:03] Nima Gardideh: it going? , for the first, like, and I know it, it all happened very fast.
[00:11:07] Nima Gardideh: So, I'd love to get maybe
[00:11:10] Nima Gardideh: like a snapshot and then we can talk about the team.
[00:11:12] Cam Bodenstadt: Like it was, it was jazz And I, for almost a year alone, just, like us too. And, but I had contractors, right? It was like, Hey, let's, let's not scale with headcount. Let's scale with like, let's use, let's go get a contractor for this. I can manage a contractor for this. I, I know how to pull the levers on these things so I can like, get in there, help set up the account initially, and then have them scale the account or them.
[00:11:33] Cam Bodenstadt: So that's kind of like the playbook that I, overall, the plays that we ran was get in there, set the accounts up, structured the way that I want it structured, build out the process and say, Hey contractor, let's, let's do it this way. Report on this cadence. , these are going to be the things that I'm going to be looking for every on a weekly,
[00:11:51] Cam Bodenstadt: reporting structure. And we did that for almost a year just with contractors.
[00:11:54] Nima Gardideh: And is, was there sort of like an underlying framework for testing the different channels? Did you have like an intuition where of, X channels is gonna work? Were you running
[00:12:05] Nima Gardideh: tests out in the, in the market first? Like how were you thinking about those early days?
[00:12:09] Cam Bodenstadt: Man, I think it's like, it's always where, where when you, if you need to like generate business fast, like it's intent, right? So it's like where are the people already searching? Let's go find everything that, that are what, who are our competitors, and what are they doing on, search? search is where the intent is.
[00:12:27] Cam Bodenstadt: If we need to bring in capital, we need to bring in business fast. Let's go where people have the highest propensity to go forward. correct search right away, that was like, goal number one. Like, Let's dominate search, let's understand search. Let's, really, really, hone in on that as one of our first channels to like really say that, hey, check that channel off We have, we have our metrics pretty pretty packed. We have, and we have a really good understanding of our, metrics here. and We can, we have a good idea of how we can scale this, And Once I got that one done it was like, let's, go to social, but social is a little bit different in B2B.
[00:12:58] Cam Bodenstadt: And that's like, where I, that was my learning curve I was like, where I got kind of punched in the face. Was that like, I, I Didn't initially know, I'm a DTC marketer and so, , moving into a B2B world and like, I've never touched LinkedIn. I don't know anything about LinkedIn. Like that's like the last channel I've ever, now I'm like, I know LinkedIn inside and out. But that was like kind of a goal It was like, how do, I, how do I learn LinkedIn?
[00:13:21] Cam Bodenstadt: How do I scale LinkedIn? And it actually work Because it's really high CP really high cost for impressions and the The cost to acquire a customer that is very high as well. you, you, you, have to shift your mindset there a good amount.
[00:13:37] Nima Gardideh: Yeah. And, and if I were to sort of repeat that back to you, like the clear path to starting out is just going where there is existing intent. And then after you sort of, capture a good portion of that potential traffic, then you start to go going towards less intent based channels like LinkedIn or paid social in general.
[00:13:57] Nima Gardideh: ,
[00:13:58] Cam Bodenstadt: Well, and I, and I'll, I'll double down There's, a, and I'll say that like or I'll, I'll give some insights. Like, we could test very rapidly, very, like, we could do a broad stroke of, of tests, and then throw in some type of survey, some type of, some things that we're gaining insights about the audience.
[00:14:18] Cam Bodenstadt: And then we're also using like LinkedIn's like, , script to like kind of tell us who these people are. So I'm using traffic that I'm I'm garnishing by, by the demand, I think that like what my competitors, are people who are already in the space or adjacent products that would be capital providing products. I'm, I'm getting their traffic to come in and now I'm building these profile, I'm building these audience sets off of that, and I'm taking zero party data.
[00:14:41] Cam Bodenstadt: And I'm also taking it from, from, from the, their different tracking scripts. So I'm, learning about these audiences at a rapid space. And I can just think that like, the easiest one
[00:14:50] Cam Bodenstadt: that I could detect was, was by
[00:14:52] Cam Bodenstadt: search.
[00:14:53] Nima Gardideh: So you, you're looking at the market and then sort of going down there. It just happened, that search was the right sort of channel
[00:15:00] Nima Gardideh: based on
[00:15:01] Cam Bodenstadt: I think search would always be if I came to a new business and there's like, it's like demand gen or , Legion kind of thing. It's like you're going to create demand with hype and in like legions, like, where's the, where are they already going? So if they're, if we know that, like if I get to say, Hey, well who, if I had to ask the founders who are our competitors and they say X, Y, and Z.
[00:15:19] Cam Bodenstadt: And I said, okay, well, it's just like, let's go to all their landing pages. Let's go look at all their traffic. Let's go, let's go look at the ads they're running. Let's go look at the copy. Let's go look at everything. Let's go make it ours. Let's go look at the keywords. Like we'll just, we'll do all the things to, reverse engineer exactly what's working in the current market. Now we're going to do stuff of our own on top, but I'm like, if they're spending a hundred thousand, 200, 000 a month on ads. Either They're, really bad marketers or they know what they're doing, right? So like, I'm gonna hope that they know what they're doing and I'm gonna say, Hey, like I'm gonna just learn off of that.
[00:15:49] Cam Bodenstadt: They're going to take from their mistakes and I'm gonna say they're running it. It's probably good. Let's, let's try to make that better.
[00:15:54] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, there's always like, there's the signal of someone, a company spending that much money usually is a good signal. I think it's very rare where companies are willing to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars per month on some channel when it's not working. , yeah. So that makes sense.
[00:16:10] Nima Gardideh: So then, you were using contractors to sort of run these channels after you started introducing them.
[00:16:16] Nima Gardideh: , were you upholding them to some, you said like a reporting cadence? , I wanna talk about cadence a little bit with you in general, but. Were you also like enforcing some form of Experimentational model? Like how are you managing these folks in the beginning, and, trying to make sure that they're performing well?
[00:16:35] Nima Gardideh: Cuz they're not in your organization and you're working with them remotely, I asse.
[00:16:39] Cam Bodenstadt: , all of them, everybody basically then had a clear path to like, becoming all my team. So like, basically most of those marketers, like we, built really good, like good, like working relationships, as, contractors. And now they're either, they're full time employees here. So it looks like, it so we built, our processes were based off, like I was, I already had it in mind that like, when the time comes, these are the processes that we're going to be running as my growth team.
[00:17:05] Cam Bodenstadt: And so, most of those processes is just the stuff that I would do on a regular basis. So I'm rather than maybe at the early days, not giving them the autonomy to say, I need you to think of these plays. I'd say like, I'm going to come back and say, what are the big two rocks that I'm trying to move?
[00:17:20] Cam Bodenstadt: What are The what are the, all the levers that we can pull And I'm going to say, Hey, I need these things done and not really given a lot of autonomy, but giving very much, just like, can you get these things done, report back on this? And in a very, very transactional, But it's just the opposite of where I am today,
[00:17:33] Cam Bodenstadt: right? It's like, that's like a complete one 80. it's like let's pick the one or two big rocks. You go, come up with your ideas. Let's talk about it as a group. Let's, commit to them. And then let's all report and have like a, very, very engaging, but autonomous, like my team runs a very, very autonomous, like very much autonomously.
[00:17:51] Nima Gardideh: Well I feel like there is like a lot of wisdom in what you just mentioned, which is basically, and if I were to sort of like repeat that back to you, it's almost like you had, at first you were exerting a lot of power. , and control to get things done faster because you have, you were running on intuition, you had all the data, you had all the information.
[00:18:14] Nima Gardideh: , and then as the team grew and as, as you've brought people into the company to work on this problem with you, you're sort of like slowly letting go of that control and you're running the process as opposed to, just making all the sort of micro decisions. , does that sound
[00:18:33] Cam Bodenstadt: Yeah.
[00:18:34] Cam Bodenstadt: 100%. Like it's a, , when it's transactional, it's transactional. For me, I'm, pretty blunt about it. It's like, I need this thing done very, very much so like this, and it has to be like this. But when you're on my team, like you're my teammate, like I don't dictate how you do it.
[00:18:52] Cam Bodenstadt: We just have a common goal and our common goals are going to get met and , I mean, I'm here to help.
[00:18:56] Cam Bodenstadt: I'm like, I'm just a, I'm right in the trenches trying to get the same problems done, but when, you get very much the opposite side of like, me is as with contractors. And it's not a bad way.
[00:19:07] Cam Bodenstadt: I just like, it's just the way I operate. because I'm running really fast and like, it's just, it's a very transactional agreement for me. It's like we have to get these things done. If it's not up to par, then we can't move forward, And we're not going to, either we can try to fix it and go forward, but if it doesn't, I'm going to find the next contractor
[00:19:21] Cam Bodenstadt: that can fix it. specifically do these tasks to the framework.
[00:19:23] Cam Bodenstadt: that I like to operate under.
[00:19:25] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, it's almost if you, you were sort of like extending your abilities with, by using sort of like a, an external set of contractors. It's like, Hey, I'm, I know exactly what I need to do. I just need it done, and I don't have
[00:19:37] Nima Gardideh: the hours and a day to do it, so I need you to help me with that later on.
[00:19:41] Nima Gardideh: That is not the problem you're solving, you're solving for.
[00:19:44] Nima Gardideh: Literally just coming up with the solutions themselves. So that's where your teammates come
[00:19:47] Nima Gardideh: into, it's like, Hey, I don't actually know the
[00:19:48] Nima Gardideh: solution. , help me
[00:19:50] Nima Gardideh: come
[00:19:51] Cam Bodenstadt: supporting them, giving them guidance or even just saying, hey, like, here's some, here's a blind spot. Maybe I'm seeing that you're not. but like, how
[00:19:56] Cam Bodenstadt: about we Look,
[00:19:57] Cam Bodenstadt: at it both together? It's a completely different management style. , and, and it's, it's, it's a 180 world like for those two.
[00:20:05] Nima Gardideh: Yeah. And it makes a lot of sense to me.
[00:20:06] Nima Gardideh: I think, like, especially in the early days of the company, , I, I'm a big fan of like, and, and I don't want to go on this tangent because it's in its own, like, I think it's one of those, this is another podcast thing, but I'm a big fan of organization design, and when people come to me and say, oh, I like to run sort of like a non-hierarchical organization that's sort of like, cratic is what's maybe what they're calling it these days as like a principled way.
[00:20:35] Nima Gardideh: It makes no sense to me. I think in a specific scenario, those things make sense. In other scenarios, they do not make sense. So it's almost as if like, just going back to your story, you were applying a management style for the problem at hand and at the problem.
[00:20:50] Nima Gardideh: The problem at hand at the time required a lot of sort of like control and more, more of a transactional relationship Later on, it just that nature of the problem shifted.
[00:20:59] Nima Gardideh: So the solution for how to manage the people on the
[00:21:02] Nima Gardideh: team would've changed, right?
[00:21:03] Cam Bodenstadt: and that's like, I think that last time I spoke to you the other day, it was like, frameworks playbooks to me. Like, and I got this whole idea that it's like, I, I struggle with this because like, they evolve. Like, I can't necessarily apply one thing to any, any given time.
[00:21:19] Cam Bodenstadt: It's like, it's like such a, it's such a flu is these problems are super fluid. And so at times you have to just like change it up and see if it works. Like today, this works. My, I have, a, I have a really well functioning team that like, we really enjoy and knock on wood, what I mean, Like, I hope they love it. No, I'm just kidding.
[00:21:35] Cam Bodenstadt: No, I'm kidding. No, no. , they, we have a really we have a great, it's like, a really great relationship And it's, I think it's like, a lot of listening, a lot of understanding. where people are, where they want to go with and, ultimately just putting trust in people's abilities. , we're going to mess, stuff up, but we're going to, we're going to. Send the wrong emails to people We're going to run the wrong, ad set, like all these things are going to happen dude, but like, it's not that big of a deal. And as long as we learn from our mistakes, make a process to like shore that up, then like I don't ever I don't ever trip about like, things we messed up my boss.
[00:22:04] Cam Bodenstadt: doesn't do either. Like, I think one of the first days, and this is like one, of the earlier, just me and I'm like, send out this massive email like, yeah, I sent that email to the wrong people. I was pretty, I was pretty hurt. Like I just got like punched in the stomach kind of thing. Cause I like, I, you hate when
[00:22:18] Cam Bodenstadt: you make a mistake, like emails, one of those things like.
[00:22:21] Cam Bodenstadt: When you press it, it's gone. Like, what I mean? Like, and I was like, I was like, I was like, I was Like,
[00:22:25] Cam Bodenstadt: hey, guys, I think I sent this to the wrong cohort of people. , I put these filters in, but the, the segment didn't come up Correct. We like diagnosed it. She's like, oh, not a big deal. I was like, not a big deal.
[00:22:36] Cam Bodenstadt: She's like, no. I was like, all right, this is what I'm talking about. what I mean? Like, this is what I'm talking about. Like, I, I, I, love it. So I kind of approach things the same way. Like it's not of order of magnitude or bad, than like,
[00:22:49] Cam Bodenstadt: Let's just, let's just try not to do it again and go at it again.
[00:22:53] Nima Gardideh: Yeah. That. Oh man. I feel like,
[00:22:55] Nima Gardideh: , I feel free. You, I, I've done, I've done exactly that before and it feels awful when you message the wrong people in like some campaign.
[00:23:03] Nima Gardideh: , I,
[00:23:04] Cam Bodenstadt: and just, you can't go
[00:23:05] Cam Bodenstadt: back like, in paid, you just like kill the ads,
[00:23:09] Cam Bodenstadt: like, kill the campaign, whatever. it is, like, it's not a big deal, but email, it's just like
[00:23:13] Nima Gardideh: Oh yeah. Thousands of people got it. It has the wrong content in
[00:23:17] Nima Gardideh: it. Makes no sense. It is just so bad. Yeah. , yeah, so going to this frameworks versus playbooks, sort of discussion and for context, we've been just talking about this concept since we decided to the podcast around. So, people come and, and say, I have a playbook for like scaling you up on X and, and I'm gonna apply it sort of like a lot of marketers think in this way, to me that that doesn't make sense.
[00:23:42] Nima Gardideh: And I think you just alluded that doesn't make sense to you, but just going into your mind camp, like what are the frameworks they use, what are the processes that. , are currently working for you and that you feel that you're gonna carry with you every time? , when you go and start another business or, or work on a new product or, or try to scale up an existing product, what are the things that you hold dear as processes that you sort of like commit to as opposed to a, a playbook, to maybe
[00:24:11] Nima Gardideh: do X or Y?
[00:24:12] Cam Bodenstadt: yeah, and maybe I just don't articulate it correctly. , maybe that's my issue. Like maybe I don't formulate the idea of what my playbook or my framework is. Maybe I probably have, them, you probably have, them, we probably use them in some case, but I, I, I think that like, I have no tried and true thing that like, I think I approached a lot of these problems.
[00:24:29] Cam Bodenstadt: Every industry is different, every, every business is different. Every quarter sometimes is different, man. Like, if tick tock wasn't here, or chat, GPT wasn't here, like, you approach things differently. So I think like just having like a, like a, an open mindset that you, that ultimately I'm going to. I'm going to look at what drives this business revenue, what makes what everything makes money, in that, and there's, there's ltv, there's like a lifetime value side of, of, of, of of our job that we need to really push into, or the, the acquisition side that we need to drive down those costs.
[00:25:00] Cam Bodenstadt: And so those play very hand in hand with each other. And I, so I, but that framework I guess I always use is that like, how do I increase the lifetime value of customers? There's a. slew of tactics there, right? Per the business. And on the other side of the equation, how do we drive down the cost at the blended level or the channel level?
[00:25:20] Cam Bodenstadt: Both of those play into each other and lifetime value in itself there, that comes with retention. growth. There's like, there's ops that, the part of that to like actually drive down your gross margin or whatever, like the drive up your gross margins, whatever you can do to increase that bucket, decrease this bucket and play that.
[00:25:39] Cam Bodenstadt: Like that's no, like in business, we're here to make money, we're here to serve, but the business is here to make like thrive and make money. And so if that's the case, that money gets generated at the life, the value of the lifetime of that customer. So whatever those things are. And so like my frameworks are pretty simple, like the way I think about things.
[00:25:56] Cam Bodenstadt: Let's understand the LTV or let's understand the lifetime value and let's understand the CAC blended and at the channel level or paid channel.
[00:26:03] Cam Bodenstadt: And from there we can go to work.
[00:26:06] Cam Bodenstadt: And I
[00:26:07] Cam Bodenstadt: don't
[00:26:07] Cam Bodenstadt: know if
[00:26:07] Nima Gardideh: I mean, that's actually very good, there, I don't think like,
[00:26:11] Nima Gardideh: ,
[00:26:11] Nima Gardideh: you need to have a name for it. , the way I've thought about this is kind of there is like a formula for growing the company, and then your job is to sort of optimize that formula. And so your formula in this case is very clear.
[00:26:25] Nima Gardideh: There is like a cost to acquire new, new co new folks into this business. And then there's a, Quality and service quality thing that increases how long they are going to use this service. And so your job is to sort of optimize those things, one to lower, one to, to go higher. And, and the ultimate thing is that the business ends up making more money, and, and has more propensity to grow because of that.
[00:26:53] Nima Gardideh: , in the early days when you joined, was there a very clear understanding of ltv? Like how did you operate in
[00:27:00] Nima Gardideh: that?
[00:27:00] Nima Gardideh: Like Yeah. How do
[00:27:02] Cam Bodenstadt: marketplaces in itself or Like where we're, we were a market, we were a marketplace. Those are really tough. Like marketplace understanding, like lifetime value, tough. We're early on, very tough. So you have to just make like, I can't control that one yet. I have no idea.
[00:27:17] Cam Bodenstadt: Right? Like, that one has to, early on we're like one year old, like, just over a year old. There's not necessarily a lot of of data, like historically, you can have some projections or some forecasting that you could say, if this thing were to repeat itself here, chances are wide. , but what can I control? And in a B2B I can control the cost of a lead, cost of a marketing qualified lead, and the cost of an SQO or a sales qualified lead. And that's like, and in everything a bit. And when I say like lead, just give me your email, give me something about you. And then there's all types of plays that we can run to get people to MQLs to decipher whether they're actually marketing qualified leads, and then move them up the ladder into an SQL or a sales qualified lead.
[00:28:06] Cam Bodenstadt: That is like the thing I have to hone in and be laser focused early on in this business and just like crush that, understand these metrics really well and what is it, and then their propensity to go down funnel. And like some of that stuff, especially in like a B2B business or like in a sat like a business like our, this B2B business, like I don't have a lot of control at the product level.
[00:28:24] Cam Bodenstadt: So like you're really having to try to paint with data like, hey, These leads are of X quality because of these indicators. These indicators we define , the, the likelihood to go down, all the way down the funnel, at, at this percentage. And so we're goal was to try to make a sales qualified lead and try to get to a threshold and try to nail that.
[00:28:46] Cam Bodenstadt: And then all of the, all the steps to get people up the ladder to there. And that was like kind of the focus for the, the first year, almost 18 months is like. Be, be ruthless
[00:28:56] Nima Gardideh: Hmm.
[00:28:56] Nima Gardideh: And were you sort of working with the sales staff there or you going on the
[00:29:00] Nima Gardideh: cost to understand like how, what are some of the like early qualifying metrics or data that you were
[00:29:06] Nima Gardideh: looking at?
[00:29:07] Cam Bodenstadt: so this is like, and I think that, I talk about like a DC marketer and that's the stuff I really know. DTC subscriptions to be specific is. what I understand the best and , whether if you have like a sale pretty quick, right? , if you're going to get this, and then you have like, you have like this, this date that you generally have like high power churn at this date. And then from there you have like, you have these just different tranches, these different cohorts that like, that's where the churn, is. like you try to do these, you have all these different plays to try to like reduce churn here, which increases ltv, it's like you do all these things and so, but you, you have a really good idea early on, like, do you got a winner or not Does campaign get a work or not?
[00:29:48] Cam Bodenstadt: And with B2B sales for a marketplace like this and, for finance specifically, it's like, wow, man. Like you were, you were talking like lead times that I've never even thought of. I've never even thought of lead. times like this. Like, I was like, wait, what? , so, you want to find things like zero party data. You want to do, like you want to make correlations to zero party data campaigns, keywords, like what kind of keywords they were looking for, and see whether those keywords have higher potencies to get approved or to go down front on use and use the product. And so then you're starting making this note making mental notes here and there, all these things where you're saying, Hey, these type of keywords, well, like let's go max spend it, let's go, let's go push heavy on those keywords.
[00:30:27] Cam Bodenstadt: or let's go actually really, try to scale that one higher, or let's go pay much more for these type of leads because they just have a higher, likelihood of, of, of getting approved or going down the funnel. , and I guess so, so to answer your question, it's zero party data was like, what were, what were the questions that they asked?
[00:30:47] Cam Bodenstadt: What was like on the onboarding floor? What could you ask them? That would seem very much insightful for them because we need to know it, But also it's
[00:30:55] Cam Bodenstadt: like, okay, people who say this, this, and this.
[00:30:58] Nima Gardideh: Or likely to,
[00:30:59] Nima Gardideh: yeah,
[00:31:00] Cam Bodenstadt: yeah, rank them higher, rank them higher, and then just really, really be fine tuning that and, and try to send as much traffic into these things and get as much data.
[00:31:09] Cam Bodenstadt: And then work with the sales team every week. , Hey, these leads, what were they like? I have a hunch on these leads. What were they like? , and just getting all that, the feedback loop was super tight. So feedback loops are something I'm really into, but all of the design, on the content, on the sales, like I, work closely with these different departments to, so that like I'm showing the creative to, to, to my, to the designers.
[00:31:29] Cam Bodenstadt: This, this kind of stuff. this, This is
[00:31:30] Cam Bodenstadt: what the performance is of these assets. So we, can, we can talk about that one in a minute, but,
[00:31:34] Nima Gardideh: So this like, yeah, I think I want to, I wanna
[00:31:36] Nima Gardideh: maybe spend a good some time on this qualification part, because at least in B2B I see it working very well as well. So, the flow, I asse, and, and please correct me if I'm wrong, someone clicks on an ad, let's say off of search, they land on your landing page and then they start going through some form of, like a qualification process.
[00:31:57] Nima Gardideh: So they're really answering questions that you, that you can use when they arrive into your product. So it's both useful to them to fill that out and that information is useful to you because you can then qualify if they're gonna be a good user or not. How so first of all, like I'd love to know what tooling you used for that, or is that all built inhouse
[00:32:15] Nima Gardideh: and that you
[00:32:16] Cam Bodenstadt: is built. Yeah. So I have two, like two engineers. I'm like, my growth team has two engineers. So we're, we build everything, everything. , it's like the key thing and people have to, like, can you have, you have, I have two engineers that were, , not even on the end, George, there's literally just on the growth team.
[00:32:33] Cam Bodenstadt: And It's.
[00:32:33] Cam Bodenstadt: like, yeah, I'm like I have, , a topic, We have a copy of content person. We have a paid, we have a designer, we have, an email and pmm and so like, but two engineers, it's like, we, we will, we solve problems fast.
[00:32:47] Cam Bodenstadt: Like That's that's our thing. It's like we move fast. because the worst thing is like you're, when you're resource restricted, and like you're like, you're, you're, you're you're scratching for resources.
[00:32:55] Cam Bodenstadt: Like, Hey, can we build this? We have these ideas, like we need to be like on the opposite we need to have like just as much firepower and
[00:33:02] Cam Bodenstadt: we have a contractor.
[00:33:03] Cam Bodenstadt: on the outside right. And just build pages. So it's
[00:33:05] Nima Gardideh: love it.
[00:33:06] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, that's super important. Yeah, we, we use like a tool called form sort that's rather new, helps with this type of stuff, but it's very, important to, I think, have the velocity there for, for testing these flows. , and then when people go through this flow, do you reject them ever where you're just like, you're not the right
[00:33:28] Nima Gardideh: potential
[00:33:29] Nima Gardideh: user for us?
[00:33:30] Nima Gardideh: What do you do?
[00:33:30] Cam Bodenstadt: I, I'm not here, I'm not here to tell people they're not qualified.
[00:33:34] Cam Bodenstadt: Let the, let the, the ratings engine and let their thing do its job. I'm just here to try to gather some information and possibly send them down the right path. So, , we we're exploring different products in the past. We were, they can made sense of like, Hey, maybe we put them down that path. Maybe we put them on this path.
[00:33:49] Cam Bodenstadt: Maybe it was like a traffic controller, but definitely not like a red light or like a dead end side. It was just not, it didn't make sense to do it. , also people lie on fors. Like, I think it goes both ways. and I, and I stress test this as well. Like I I, we, we looked at like, okay, people said they have X amount of revenue.
[00:34:04] Cam Bodenstadt: And then we, when you plug, when you come into Pipe, you connect your revenue sources. and we actually see it and we said, Hey, what, what was like the, what was the the, the hit rate? What was the, the how? How often were they lying And it was like, man, like 70% of the time people tell the truth. Like people just tell the Truth.
[00:34:18] Cam Bodenstadt: Cause like, I guess like if you're gonna buy a house or a car and your bank said, Hey, How.
[00:34:22] Cam Bodenstadt: much do you make? You're not gonna say, I make 4 million or whatever. You're not gonna, you're gonna say whatever you, you might say like 10% more. You might say a little bit more, say, you get the better chances, but
[00:34:34] Cam Bodenstadt: you're not gonna only like wildly off. And that was like conclusion I landed on is like self-reported data, maybe it's not, a hundred percent because you can't, take it to the bank, but you can at
[00:34:44] Cam Bodenstadt: least use.
[00:34:44] Cam Bodenstadt: it as a leading indicator on whether this is gonna be a good lead or a bad lead.
[00:34:48] Nima Gardideh: Yeah. And it goes back to like looking at all of this data that's coming in almost like this, this survey data, the, the, quality of that cohort of leads. All of these are like leading indicators towards how the machine is working. And then you can use it to sort of like modify and modify and modify to, to,
[00:35:06] Nima Gardideh: make it better.
[00:35:07] Cam Bodenstadt: think about that. Think about if I didn't, just imagine if you didn't have a feedback loop to, to your media buyer. If you had to work 90 days to figure out whether if you were like, dude, you can like I spent, we spent some money, like we were, we were spending like, you probably saw our ads, like we were spending some money and like if you don't, if you don't put a control on that, you can, you can get bad leads really quickly and you can lose the confidence of your sales team.
[00:35:31] Cam Bodenstadt: My sales teams, they love us. They think that like we, were a strongly inbound, business by the, on the, on the, on the work that we did on the growth team. And I would say that like we worked hand in glove with them because we listened to the feedback. If they saw lower quality leads or we were seeing that as well.
[00:35:47] Cam Bodenstadt: then Like we'd kill those campaigns. There's, leads that we could get super cheap, like SQL members or sales qualified lead. Like we had like a goal okay, let's hit this, many every month, but like. on One caveat to that is it can't go below this number on the threshold of quality. And how do we define quality? Well, the sales team and the, growth team said this is what quality is and these are the indicators that go into.
[00:36:09] Cam Bodenstadt: it. We use, we would then say, Hey, like our, threshold has to be above 60 to 70% of the, leads that come in have to be above this quality. And so like, we can't just run up the scoreboard on, SQLs or, the sales qualified leads from a channel that's sending like.
[00:36:24] Cam Bodenstadt: Crappy leads. Like that doesn't work.
[00:36:26] Nima Gardideh: I really like this threshold idea because it almost builds this trust with the sales team of like, Hey, we don't want to be like ruining your days, cuz it's, actually quite demoralizing for a salesperson to go on a call with someone that's just not the right fit for what they're selling.
[00:36:42] Nima Gardideh: I really like that as like a tool to, build a better relationship with, folks that you're working
[00:36:50] Nima Gardideh: with there. ,
[00:36:52] Cam Bodenstadt: and we, we work like, man, it's, there's like, even the like having dispositions, like having them, the sales team disposition you, know, we use HubSpot and, having them disposition right into the, into, if they get off the sales call and they don't like it, wasn't a fit or whatever, it's disposition and, and, and, and, and have these pre dropdowns and have them select it.
[00:37:09] Cam Bodenstadt: And then we're like looking at it's like, ok, which, which campaigns are sending this? Tons of these? Okay. Like, why? Let's go figure that out. Okay. And then it's like that was like kind of our, game was like, find the areas of weakness and eliminate that. Find the areas that are working and go pay more for it.
[00:37:26] Cam Bodenstadt: , it was like, eventually it's like, because if you spend money on bad leads, like ultimately it doesn't matter if I pay 500, I'm just making up numbers, If I pay 1, 000 a lead, or 500 a lead
[00:37:38] Cam Bodenstadt: if it, like, if I got a bunch of leads in and like only a small, like it all matters, like how far, if it goes down to like them actually making us money, And so Don't, let's try not to get super caught up on the number up here. Let's always try to
[00:37:49] Cam Bodenstadt: decrease
[00:37:50] Cam Bodenstadt: it, but quality has to be the indicator of like our success.
[00:37:54] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, I would far rather get a thousand dollars lead if the propensity of them to buy is like 80% versus a a hundred dollars lead, that's like 10% likely to convert. Right. , you mentioned hotspot. I, I, and I asse you're somewhat opinionated about the tooling that you all use. Like what is the stack that you, you have and, and for tracking and, and for making some of these decisions?
[00:38:18] Nima Gardideh: Like, would you use the same stack if you started from scratch? Like what have you learned in that process?
[00:38:23] Cam Bodenstadt: When I got here, we didn't have a crm. There was no crm, there was like off spreadsheets, so we were really early on. And so not that I'm like a HubSpot fan or I was like super, like keen on using HubSpot. I actually was like, I don't know if you remember Autopilot, as a, as an email provider, like that was like, I'm like a Klaviyo autopilot kind of guy.
[00:38:42] Cam Bodenstadt: But I, From a tracking standpoint or from like a reporting, we use Amplitude and Segment. So everything is done with segment events.
[00:38:49] Cam Bodenstadt: Everything that we track both on the front and the back end and downstream of the product is all done with Segment events. So we have, my team does really good job of, every, everything we build, we definitely put into our build plans like, Hey, we want these things tracked.
[00:39:00] Cam Bodenstadt: We want this thing done. And in our, our engine, when they were viewing like the, the, the, spec, they're like, okay, I'm going to write these events. And then data science says, okay, yeah, I could definitely, we can definitely look at it that way. And then everything gets put into amplitude and we just, we track things in Amplitude
[00:39:16] Cam Bodenstadt: or preset, like we have like a whole nother product like product Suite that like the company uses.
[00:39:20] Cam Bodenstadt: but my team, uses Amplitude.
[00:39:22] Cam Bodenstadt: a lot.
[00:39:23] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, I'm a big fan of that tool. It seems to be very good. I, I just had someone on the pot, who's a growth engineer for almost a decade. , and he recommends that exact stack. So I feel like you've picked pretty well, on Segment being the core routing everything, and then sort of amplitude being a good layer of, tracking on top of it, and then still building even further based on the raw data on segment.
[00:39:50] Nima Gardideh: , and, and, and sort of building dashboards and, and tooling on top of the raw data eventually seems
[00:39:56] Nima Gardideh: to be like the sort of modern stack these days.
[00:39:59] Cam Bodenstadt: Yeah. , in, in like my whole team, I mean, I would say from everyone on it, we have, the composition of my team is, we have like a technical SEO content, , pay channel, email, pmm, growth engineers and designers. And, and I would say that like, other than the designers, every single person is like very, very very proficient.
[00:40:23] Cam Bodenstadt: Like, in, in, in Amplitude. Like it's, there's no, like, there's no lag. It's like everything, every question they, they generally answer their own questions. They have like , they come up with their own hypothesis. Now we do have like a full data science, department and, one of the data the data teammates comes , To all of our growth growth, growth calls, and it's kind of like a satellite honorary member of our team. And he, he, he then goes kind of a little bit more, deeper when we need things.
[00:40:51] Cam Bodenstadt: So he'll, he'll, he'll do the analysis and it goes really like sanity check. Like that's the idea that like, you bring so much value by this sanity checking, making sure there's enough exposures to like actually make it a justifiable, where we can get stats saved, or we can actually like, make heads or tails. And then there's some things that like, there's like second order effects.
[00:41:08] Cam Bodenstadt: There's things that, like, you do things here, but, and they might, metrics might look really good and we're, all high fiving, but in like downstream it had like an adverse effect and making sure that like, Someone isn't just super happy about like the thing that they were trying to push. And so it's like having him say, A full scope is that like I'm, I'm, I'm very unbiased or I'm going to look at the whole thing and say, yes, you are winning here, but you're causing this, and so maybe we need to like, put the whole thing, into, into the equation. And that's, that's something that I think is really nice about Having like a data team and someone
[00:41:36] Cam Bodenstadt: that comes in, it's super passionate about what, what,
[00:41:39] Cam Bodenstadt: the growth team is doing.
[00:41:40] Nima Gardideh: , there is one person on your team that I'm very curious. , About, which is the, the pmm, the product marketing manager, I asse is what that stands for. , that is, I would say rare to see on a growth team. So I, I, I'm curious how you think about that role, why and when you, you, you hired for it, and what the value is, right now at, in your organization with that, with, someone with that mindset.
[00:42:06] Cam Bodenstadt: Wow. So you, you would deem
[00:42:08] Cam Bodenstadt: a, the, the product marketing function, not on a growth team normally.
[00:42:12] Nima Gardideh: I see it a, a lot on the
[00:42:14] Nima Gardideh: marketing team more than a growth team. And quite often growth and marketing teams are separated in companies I'm speaking to.
[00:42:21] Cam Bodenstadt: Got it. Got it. Okay. So, yeah, it's a good distinction. I, I would say that, so she is a, super analytical, super, like in the weeds on like, like helping the product, the product team, Very much Like she, she fulfills a true product marketing, function. But I would say that like her, her true superpowers is very, very analytical and like helps with the funnel as well.
[00:42:50] Cam Bodenstadt: And so, like why she sits on, on, on our team, is, is like so much of the funnel can be improved at the email level and at the market, at the product marketing level itself, like product marketing and channels like email and out externally in other ways or inside the app itself can help drive the ltv, which then drives down the cat, , like an overall, like it is a direct correlation to the funnel that we can, improve on. And so like having someone that's like very analytical and very thinking about , how to how to, how to bolster up those numbers, or, decrease those numbers, she has the power to do. it.
[00:43:26] Cam Bodenstadt: Like Email might be one of the, as , as a DTC, It's like the, it's like the holy grail. Sometimes SMS and email is the holy grail. So having someone that like lives and breathes the product and being able to like, just flow right into a channel. So that
[00:43:41] Cam Bodenstadt: she is both, both of them. The email marketer and our
[00:43:44] Cam Bodenstadt: pmm.
[00:43:45] Nima Gardideh: Oh, interesting. So it's almost like a composite role of lifecycle marketing plus. Product marketing. ,
[00:43:54] Nima Gardideh: yeah, that makes a lot of sense. But that lens of product marketing, you can probably do a better job at even, , the core lifecycle marketing work that you do. I, I like that a lot. so
[00:44:05] Nima Gardideh: so they're, are they like, looking at L T V as a metric, like that one seems to be harder to predict in general.
[00:44:11] Nima Gardideh: So how are you thinking about, this part? And we can maybe shift further. We just, we
[00:44:16] Nima Gardideh: just addressed acquisition, let's shift to LTV and, and ,
[00:44:21] Nima Gardideh: increasing retention.
[00:44:22] Nima Gardideh: Like how are you thinking about that?
[00:44:23] Cam Bodenstadt: I would say it's like a little squishy for, for, it's a Pipe. It's much more squishy and like, I don't know if there's a true rhyme and reason like in DTC, There's a rhyme and reason on like, when I do these things, I can like directly show it, but I like having things to get people to do to come into Pipe and trade more often.
[00:44:41] Cam Bodenstadt: And is it because of, is it because of the email that was sent or is it because of the, what, what segmentation where, where there may be a, maybe a correlation, maybe not. I, mean, like, I can't say for like certain, now I can say that we watched the tracks and we say, hey, like that person did open, a Saturday email and they did on Monday make a trade.
[00:44:59] Cam Bodenstadt: And maybe we could say that like that was the direct correlation. But ultimately sometimes it's a really harder, it's harder. Specifically in, in this world, because when I ran a growth team at a, like, a really fast, econ business, I had an LTV team and I had an acquisition team. And like that was, we were all like, very hand in glove with each other.
[00:45:17] Cam Bodenstadt: But like the plays that we ran on the LTV side there, I, knew the impact. I knew the impact that we could have and I knew, so it's like here, we definitely asse that these things are moving. It, I think that ultimately they're not hurting They're not hurting, they're not hurting the ltv, but they're, it's harder to decipher whether it's like, because it's capital, right?
[00:45:36] Cam Bodenstadt: It's like when I need capital is, when, when, when a founder needs capital or a business owner needs capital probably is not going to be like
[00:45:45] Cam Bodenstadt: super, like It might've been like the thing that reminded them, like Pipe does that, I, but I don't know if it was like they saw they're like, I gotta go do this , like, I gotta go get it. like,
[00:45:56] Cam Bodenstadt: like, it's just like a, week, I'm going to. I'm going to go get a hundred. I need 200, 000. Like, like it's like, it's like it's staying on top of the mind, showing them how easy it is. I mean, Pipe is an aha moment. And like, I love products that have an aha moment.
[00:46:11] Cam Bodenstadt: And one of the things like when people put in all their, their, their systems and they would get, rated and they have an approval or, whatever, there's. And, when they want to, when they would like to, when a buyer,
[00:46:21] Cam Bodenstadt: wants to buy it, they like slide this thing over the contract so they press a button
[00:46:25] Cam Bodenstadt: And it's just like, whoa. like just works. Like, money's coming to my bank
[00:46:29] Cam Bodenstadt: account right now. I just like, it's like, an aha moment.
[00:46:32] Cam Bodenstadt: And I think that That's. really cool.
[00:46:33] Nima Gardideh: Yeah. That's awesome. I, we have a couple of, I think I, I told you this offline. We have a couple of customers, of yours as clients and they're big fans.
[00:46:43] Nima Gardideh: Yeah.
[00:46:44] Nima Gardideh: ,
[00:46:45] Cam Bodenstadt: cool.
[00:46:46] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, that's interesting. And I think that's a, a, a problem in probably a lot of like B2B where the decisions are being made outside of your, prerogative as a marketer, right?
[00:47:00] Nima Gardideh: And, and so increasing LTV is gonna be harder. Maybe there's some product work, but in your type of business, the product is almost like the capital. And so it's much harder to really do anything there. , so it makes sense that you're
[00:47:14] Nima Gardideh: thinking correlations at best.
[00:47:16] Cam Bodenstadt: , make it easy, make it, make it something like, I think what the ads did really well was like, Pipe a verb, like People say, I'm going to Pipe it. Like, like, Pipe became a verb. It was very like, perfect timing. , and I, I, I think that, As, as long as we can continue having like a strong brand keeping to like, what, what got us super like, in front of a lot of these people and, and, and not being, like, I think people just want to use Pipe.
[00:47:43] Cam Bodenstadt: because it's a non diluted capital, but also it's like,
[00:47:47] Cam Bodenstadt: It's, it's, it's, capital in some ways is a commodity, but if you got it from Pipe, it's cool. , it's like, You
[00:47:52] Cam Bodenstadt: know, it's like, that's the, like, that's, that's pretty cool. I think, so,
[00:47:56] Nima Gardideh: Yeah. And I think like plenty of capital providers have sort of leaned in on becoming a brand such that the value of the capital is perceived to be more than just the cash itself. , so it makes a lot of strategic sense to have really pushed hard on that lever.
[00:48:12] Nima Gardideh: , I, I want to talk a bit about just the market shifting and how maybe that has changed your perspective as a growth person.
[00:48:24] Nima Gardideh: , The last maybe eight months or so, tech has gone through its own version of a recession. Maybe the general economy's gonna go through a recession. , has that changed your perspective, perspective, on things? Are you, are you still like, just looking at the numbers and, and, and focusing on where they take you?
[00:48:45] Nima Gardideh: Are you thinking forward in that way at all? Looking at the macro
[00:48:50] Nima Gardideh: markets, like how do you think about these things?
[00:48:52] Cam Bodenstadt: mean, I'd say like it's like kind of four dimensional chess here at Pipe because, we lend to startups, we, we will not lend, but we, we, we provide capital to, to, to startups and ultimately it's a risk model. People have to assess risk. So there are like very much an idea that you have to find.
[00:49:16] Cam Bodenstadt: we need to be a little bit more focused on the type of leads that we want. And so working with the, the risk team and say, Hey, like this is the type of leads that we want. The sales team wants to sell, right? They, they, they. They're here to sell stuff. So like quality leads is one thing, right?
[00:49:29] Cam Bodenstadt: Risk is like this type of what, I'm saying? just like, kind of like a little bit of a shift, not maybe because I want to shift things, but maybe like, hey, the business wants to, like, we're, we're looking at assets, making sure that they, they're going to perform well and then we're passing those over to, to a buyer.
[00:49:46] Cam Bodenstadt: But if those things don't perform well, then that doesn't make a happy buyer. So it would be not, it would behoove us to do really good job at the risk level to ensure that we could cap, we give good products over to them. So we have to like, really take those factors. That's why it says like four dimensional chess. So yes, we are a lot, a little
[00:50:03] Cam Bodenstadt: bit more, , just a little bit more strategic in these times.
[00:50:06] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, so your definition of risk has maybe shifted slightly or to some extent, which makes sense. So that that is actually kind of like a somewhat of a clear, directive to use. When you're marketing out there, you're like, okay, well I, not only do I care about quality, but they also have to match this risk profile.
[00:50:27] Nima Gardideh: So it's just another sort of like factor to judge the traffic that's coming in or the people that are coming in to, to,
[00:50:34] Nima Gardideh: use the
[00:50:34] Cam Bodenstadt: It's a challenge accepted,
[00:50:36] Cam Bodenstadt: that's like, it's like, it's another challenge, right? Like, it's like, I didn't foresee this, but , ultimately you always have to be like the type of risk that you're bringing in for the product. , but it wasn't like at the, today I'm very much thinking about these things.
[00:50:50] Cam Bodenstadt: , I, I think that just as much as like the macro shift as a, and maybe this one is where you're taking it, but I think just as much as the macro has had to make marketers think differently, I think that, chat GPT has.
[00:51:02] Cam Bodenstadt: been marketers have to think a lot differently. And I think that It has a maybe even a more of an impact, like right now in the future. like the macro is going to like macro is going to do its thing, right? Like, we might do a recession. We might not do recession. I don't know. But what I can't tell you this year is that like, how, how we produce content, how we, how we do our job, how we
[00:51:23] Cam Bodenstadt: do everything is shifting Like right now and for the Future
[00:51:26] Nima Gardideh: Yeah. Th that's exactly where I was gonna go next is I'm curious how you're already thinking about using, ai, but specifically maybe chat g p t into the workflows of your team. Is there like a use case that's
[00:51:43] Nima Gardideh: already working? What's, what's been
[00:51:45] Nima Gardideh: interesting? Yeah. Tell me more.
[00:51:47] Cam Bodenstadt: oh man. Just, I mean, I do have two growth engineers, so that's like the, like all of us are super into data. All of us are into like cutting edge tech all okay. Also, Majority of the, my team comes from crypto as well. So majority of the people, I've worked with in the past, either at crypto exchanges, they came from a different crypto exchange So they were already on like the deep end
[00:52:09] Cam Bodenstadt: of tech, right? So everybody on my team has. like a pretty good composition of like, Like tech nerds, right?
[00:52:15] Cam Bodenstadt: So then we're all Like very much like, want to change, whatever here is here. And so, I mean, all types, of man, I, I I, I promise you, like everything that we work on, it probably now has some element of we're running it through, , like our, our, our engine. Like, hey, yeah. Like, let's just ping the open ai, api.
[00:52:35] Cam Bodenstadt: We'll do it this way. Like, he's, he's always building, like, I mean talk about like taking Lighthouse data to let's take FAQ data, let's do all these little things and like, let's, let's rebrand, like, let's, let's completely build out like robust, like FAQs with this thing. He's like, it's always something. We're always shifting things around and like rebuilding things now and like building at speed that like, I'm just like, Man, it's, it's, it's gonna be hard for, for people to keep up with, with, like, the sheer amount of content that you're, if, you, if you leverage it,
[00:53:03] Cam Bodenstadt: correctly, you can just like really hit the, gas. I think, and that's probably what I'm looking forward to.
[00:53:07] Nima Gardideh: Yeah, I, I, I would love to maybe like, have you speculate a little bit, like, let's walk, go forward five years, assing these things will like, improve to some extent. Like,
[00:53:18] Nima Gardideh: where do you see, like, how do you feel like you're gonna have one marketer doing everything? Do you feel like we we're gonna have a job in 10 years?
[00:53:26] Nima Gardideh: Like, where, where's
[00:53:28] Nima Gardideh: this
[00:53:28] Cam Bodenstadt: Yeah, man, I, I, I don't know. I mean, like, yeah, I mean, shoot, I couldn't even, couldn't even, honestly speculate that far out, but I think that, I mean the jobs will just be different, dude. It'll be just different. It'll be, if you, if you are like stuck in like, I can't use this, then like, you're probably in trouble.
[00:53:47] Cam Bodenstadt: But if you say like okay, the screwdriver is still here, but I have an electric drill, right? Like I have both types of drills. One's good for one thing, but like my electric drill probably that's a really weird And let's not use that analogy. I just, I was like, I don't know where I'm going with that one.
[00:54:01] Cam Bodenstadt: Oh, I guess like if you just do, if you just figure out how to leverage this technology, then you're going to be pretty good for the short term. Now, long term, like your guess is as good as, my guess It's very unclear, but I, already see like, it's like, hey, marketers might be thinking, Hey, I can, I can take this thing and make a bunch of content, right? Well, that's like, like if your market is thinking that, right? Like, that's, that's not unique. how can I get my, how can I get my team to think about?
[00:54:30] Cam Bodenstadt: okay, well We can get all of these things, but each one of these things can have like a different element to it. A different, let's, let's like use this as like the 90% and then the 10% is where we're going to put, like this han element, we're going to shine really, really heavy on it and we're going to make something that like, Hey, I can't, well, it could probably replicate, but it doesn't come replicated out of the box.
[00:54:46] Cam Bodenstadt: Like, we're going to some stitch a few things together. And like that I believe is like the edge for the next, at least a quarter or two is that like everyone is going this way, let's go like a little bit over to this way, but we're going to be using the same technology. where We're just going to do something a little bit differently with it.
[00:55:02] Cam Bodenstadt: And that's like how I'm thinking about this and building tools
[00:55:04] Cam Bodenstadt: to help other people utilize this thing is I think another big play.
[00:55:08] Nima Gardideh: Yeah. And I, I think
[00:55:09] Nima Gardideh: I'm, I'm with you. , I, I think of it as, at least for now, a tool to leverage your existing abilities, and make it maybe, X percent faster. , I, I still program cuz we, we have a SaaS product that we, are about to launch. And it's kind of my like side job as we're running the agency at the same time.
[00:55:34] Nima Gardideh: And
[00:55:35] Nima Gardideh: I've just, I'm maybe 20% faster, very easily I can say that. , by using, ai, I use copilot, not not G P T, but
[00:55:44] Nima Gardideh: , it's quite good. And then even for like my marketing work similarly, I'll. Write gibberish, like in terms of like, here's all my random ideas and then I'll ask AI to like smarize it and then make it better so then I can like communicate it easier to the team or to people I'm working with.
[00:56:02] Nima Gardideh: So there, there's some like incremental value. , basically it's like having an assistant that's maybe somewhat smart, but in like, it, it's, it's db in some ways, but it's quite smart in some ways. So you can sort of leverage the smart parts of it. , but yeah, who knows? In, in five years
[00:56:18] Nima Gardideh: it, it's gonna
[00:56:19] Cam Bodenstadt: it's tough man. I have an eight year old daughter and like so. I asked my, angel, I said, Hey, if you were to deploy a site today, What would you do? He's like, next CloudFlare, he's like, I'll do CloudFlare. I'll do this. So I was like, okay, can you send it to me in Slack? And then I sent it over to, to ChaiDBD and I said, explain this to me. Like I'm eight years old, My daughter is eight, and give me a step by step guide. So I sent it to her, like on this notion Doc.
[00:56:40] Cam Bodenstadt: And dude, literally a day later, my daughter has built like
[00:56:44] Cam Bodenstadt: a full website using tailwinds. Like this whole thing. She's eight, dude, eight, years old. I'll send
[00:56:48] Cam Bodenstadt: you the link. Yeah. We deployed it and everything in the production, she did all that. And eight years old man and all of that, she, I, I like, I looked at her chat log with Chad She's asking these questions, but how do I do this with this? And I'm like, that's the difference is that like you have Maybe like you have like engineers who can get like 20%, 30% better. But then there's people who like my daughter, who's eight, who just deployed a full, like full, full website on GitHub
[00:57:14] Cam Bodenstadt: using, it's, it's insane, dude.
[00:57:16] Nima Gardideh: So cool. yeah, yeah, I mean, I'm, I'm finding it at times hard not to be scared, but it's exciting at the same time, which is interesting. It's like an inch weird space to be in of like fear and excitement all in one. , but so far I, I tend to fall on the excitement side of this.
[00:57:36] Cam Bodenstadt: I think there'll be like a pinch of them, right? It's like artificial anything. actually I don't want to say that cause I was like
[00:57:42] Cam Bodenstadt: listen to this later on and come after.
[00:57:45] Cam Bodenstadt: me. I'm just kidding. I was like, well, you Better be Careful what you're saying.
[00:57:48] Cam Bodenstadt: that, these, like, you guys are amazing. I love you all Like, me and my family are very supportive of. you. Oh no. , I, I think that like realness is going to prevail and like, the opposite of artificial will always prevail and there, there's going to be a world that like that, that makes a lot of sense as well.
[00:58:09] Cam Bodenstadt: So, leverage it today. The best I can. I'm really excited about the technology. I'm trying to build side projects in it today. I love it very much. I have like, literally six ideas that I'm like, like, just wish I had more time in the day. Cause I have like, They're dope, but
[00:58:24] Cam Bodenstadt: , I don't have that kind of time Right. now, but, ,
[00:58:28] Nima Gardideh: That's awesome.
[00:58:29] Cam Bodenstadt: we'll see how the future is.
[00:58:31] Nima Gardideh: Cam, well thank you for speculating a little bit with me. , I really appreciate the time. , I, I'm quite grateful for our conversation and , I'm excited to see Pipe grow even further. I think you guys are providing a really great tool to founders. , as I mentioned, we have, you work with some of your customers and, you obviously have built a really great team who's been able to scale the company up and I'm just excited to just observe you do more here and, see Pipe go to the moon.
[00:59:01] Cam Bodenstadt: Oh, thank you. And I really appreciate you having me on. I, love to jam on any of those topics ever again. So if we want to talk about, if we want to really go deep dive on that Bitcoin or why my thesis of crypto, like I'll get the soapbox out and we can,
[00:59:13] Nima Gardideh: we can get there.
[00:59:15] Cam Bodenstadt: we can, we can get
[00:59:16] Cam Bodenstadt: there.
[00:59:16] Cam Bodenstadt: But yeah, and I really appreciate
[00:59:18] Cam Bodenstadt: everything you do, and you have the best day.
[00:59:21] Cam Bodenstadt: All right.
[00:59:21] Nima Gardideh: You too. Thank you so much.
[MUSIC FADES IN]
All right. And that's a wrap. I really appreciate Cam, for joining us on the pod today. and I hope you enjoyed, listening and, and learning from him like I did. , it was, it was wonderful to get to, really speak to someone who's quite genuine about, his abilities and, and sort of where he, he shines in the organization and, and why he's, he's joined Pipe and.
[00:59:46] Nima Gardideh: Have such a rock conversation about the different approaches he's taken in the past and how, how he sort of thinks about managing his team. and as always, if you are interested in this podcast, please subscribe and, follow us wherever you're listening to this or email me if you have, advice or suggestions on how we can do this better.
[01:00:06] Nima Gardideh: All right. Hope to see you on the next one, folks. Thank you so much for listening.
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