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E70 | Gideon Joseph – Helping The Next Generation of Founders Become Famous

Do you need to notch your marketing up another level? Do you run a tech start up but your story is failing to get any traction with the press? Then you need to hire in Transatlantic, the marketing agency run by CEO Gideon Joseph. 

“We are a communications consultancy working with fast growth, entrepreneurial businesses that want to change the world.”

Gideon is the guy who can get your marketing really singing. He cut his teeth working for Jeremy Paxman on BBC Newsnight, followed by a stint at ITV and Channel 4 working on Big Brother, before realising that Skype had an amazing opportunity to revolutionise broadcasting. 

“Satellite was expensive, using VoIP was cheap, in fact, free. While the quality of the satellite link or the VoIP connection was dodgy, it was worth the trade off… the whole idea was that this was innovative marketing by an aggressive fast growth business.”

Gideon has since developed a unique approach to marketing using, in Gideon’s own words, ‘story, fame and rolodex’. 

“Our core offer revolves around 3 things – forging a brand narrative and messaging for young brands; making our clients “famous” with the right audiences, at the right time; and finally, providing access to our phenomenal rolodex.”

This is a great discussion that we enjoyed immensely and we’re sure you will too. 

On today’s podcast:

  • How Gideon used the news media to make Skype famous 
  • The work Gideon’s done for former clients and does for current ones
  • What you as a business leader need to do in terms of marketing
  • The importance of narrative, fame and a rolodex
  • Measuring the value of PR
  • How to use LinkedIn effectively

Story, Fame and a Rolodex – How to Grow Your Business with Gideon Joseph

How do founders get famous? They bring in the team who can tell their story. Transatlantic, the marketing and PR agency run by Gideon Joseph, mainly helps founders of early stage tech businesses to craft their narrative. They develop the brand a story that’s going to be really unique and authentic, and then deliver them fame so that they can capture their niche and finally introduce them to lots of experienced people who can make that possible for them.

The Transatlantic team includes a former CEO of Sky News, award winning former journalists from the BBC and ITN, and influencer specialists and communication experts who have worked with big tech brands such as Microsoft and Facebook.

It might sound like a dream team come together, but Gideon earned his stripes at Skype, being thrust into the world of fast growth technology startups and having to run before he could walk. 

“I saw the challenges of hyper scaling, organisationally, culturally, the need to continually sort of think about being agile before these words were being created.”

In order to transform Skype into the Goliath comms platform it is today, Gideon and the Skype marketing team first had to nail down the fundamentals of defining what their narrative was – what their messaging and their positioning was. 

“We thought very much about our audiences and our audience personas from the early days… And then also the ability to think about influencers, before we even used the term – we called them moment makers, was really fascinating.”

It was then that Gideon knew he could help early stage tech businesses grow quickly through the very specific services that he could offer.

Defining your narrative

“The story of your business, as you know, is clearly critical, because it both describes what you do and it also allows you to differentiate yourself from your competitors.”

The problem is that whilst many founders are brilliant at what they do, acutely identifying a gap in the market, selling to investors and telling them a narrative about how they plan to grow the product. What they’re not typically good at is articulating this narrative to an outside audience, journalists for example. 

“Many of them are product people, many of them have never had to be in an environment where they’re talking to the media, nor have they necessarily always thought about benchmarking what competitors are saying or thinking about where the business will go over a period of time.”

Achieving fame

“Broadly clients come to us and want that on its own or they want it with fame… And really, fame can mean different things to different people. In the case of Skype, it was clearly B2C ubiquity. We wanted everyone to know it, and everyone to be aware of it.”

Transatlantic will beat a regular drum providing clients coverage on national media, on TV and in print. They want reactive stories, proactive stories; they take data from their own customers and turn it into surveys that they can share with the news. 

They get the brand talked about through word of mouth, using a combination of influencers, be they celebrities or bloggers, and they create advertorials in periodicals through to trade shows. 

The Rolodex

And then once fame has been achieved, the final step is to accelerate growth. 

“And so what we try and do is introduce them to our network of consultants and advisors, or we might try and help introduce them to customers or potential partners who will accelerate their growth.”

But basically, without story, fame and a rolodex, you’re going to struggle to grow your business. 

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