Kevan Lee

VP of marketing at Buffer. Hi there!

522 Followers | 23 Following

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Kevan Lee

1 day ago

The 4 things that matter most are things that it’s often hard to take too seriously in the early days.

Culture? Well, in the early days that’s the cofounders and the pizza box team.

Brand? In the early days, you sort of make fun of brands as old school.

Customer Visits? No time, or at least done when you can fit them in. Gotta spend all your time closing new customers.  It’s do or die if you can’t put points up on the board.

Continuous Recruiting? No time. You are busy being VP of 4 different functions yourself.

The Only 4 Things That Really Matter After $10m ARR

saastr.com

Kevan Lee

34 days ago

Onboarding Artifacts

runthebusiness.substack.com

Kevan Lee

34 days ago

Is it time to ditch the old SaaS metrics?

kylepoyar.substack.com

Kevan Lee

34 days ago

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”

The Most Beautiful People

swiss-miss.com

Kevan Lee

236 days ago

Categories tend to converge on value props, features, messaging, and even design over time. It's why every SaaS website looks exactly the same. This means you need to reinvent yourself on a consistent cycle.

Doing The Opposite — Brian Balfour

brianbalfour.com

Kevan Lee

236 days ago

Your Startup Is a Movement

sacks.substack.com

Kevan Lee

286 days ago

common tactics that disrupter brands use to reach customers. In summary:

1. Content-to-commerce (Glossier, Goop*): If you have an audience that's already telling you want it wants, just make that thing.

2. Monetize organic fandom (Fenty, Haus Labs*, Honest Company*): Start with a person who is widely known and build a product that is authentic to her story and aligns with the needs of her fans.

3. Brand resonance loop (Away, Daily Harvest*, Warby Parker, Rothy's*): Build an iconic hero product that's highly visible and extols user virtue. New users will be attracted in an offline viral loop.

Firehose #173: 🥛 Wild oats. 🥛

firehose.substack.com

Kevan Lee

286 days ago

68 Bits of Unsolicited Advice

kk.org

Kevan Lee

286 days ago

Benchmark. But benchmark from the best.
Most people benchmark their competition. But what happens if they aren’t very good? Instead, benchmark from the best. And if that means they are not in your category, no matter. But the learning curve will be steep. And that is the main thing.

23 Crazy Simple Tips About How To Build A High Growth Newsletter.

thedolectures.com

Kevan Lee

286 days ago

Alternatives, Not Competitors — Brian Balfour

brianbalfour.com

Kevan Lee

286 days ago

there are four categories of product problems.

Feature Work - Creating and capturing value by extending a product's functionality and market into incremental and adjacent areas.


Growth Work - Creating and capturing value by accelerating adoption and usage by the existing market.


Scaling Work - Focusing on bottlenecks to ensure the team can continue to move forward and take on new levels of feature, growth, and product-market fit expansion work.


Product-Market Fit Expansion - Increasing the ceiling on product-market fit in a non-incremental way by expanding into an adjacent market, adjacent product, or both.

Product Work Beyond Product-Market Fit — Reforge

reforge.com

Kevan Lee

324 days ago

What’s something that you miss that surprises you? What’s something that you don’t miss that surprises you?
Which member of your family/ friend group have you been thinking about the most during this time? Why?
What’s the most generous act you’ve seen recently?
What’s the last thing you experienced that made you laugh, or cry?
What times of the day or the week are hardest?
What’s giving you hope right now?
What’s the best thing that happened to you today?
How do you want this experience to change you? How do you think it will?
What do you hope we all learn or take away from this experience?

20 questions to ask instead of “How are you doing right now?”

qz.com

Kevan Lee

325 days ago

Pinterest used DIY meetups to sequence to influencer blog campaigns to sequence to virality to get enough content where it could scale via personalization on the retention side and SEO on the acquisition side.

The Kindle and the Fire

caseyaccidental.com

Kevan Lee

327 days ago

digiday.com

Kevan Lee

327 days ago

Figma has been building the ideal tool for designers, they’ve actually built something more important: a way for non-designers to be involved in the design process

Why Figma Wins

kwokchain.com

Kevan Lee

334 days ago

An Inside Look at How Datadog Reached $500M in ARR (and Counting)

openviewpartners.com

Kevan Lee

438 days ago

It’s an approach that Vincent mastered while embedded at Apple, where he met with Steve Jobs weekly for 11 years. “What Steve wanted was a highly provocative two hours,” recalls Vincent, who is credited with conceiving the iconic ad campaign featuring dancing, iPod-wearing silhouettes. “And if it wasn’t, he’d be like, ‘Boring! Try to do better next meeting.’ ” FNDR may not mint the next Steve Jobs, but if its system works, its clients’ stories will always be engaging.

How brand consultancy FNDR helps companies such as Snap and Glossier find their voices

fastcompany.com

Kevan Lee

513 days ago

If you’re serious about finding 1000 true fans for your work, you need to stop confusing attention with accomplishment and make a shift from metrics to meaning. This is not an easy shift because as a society we are programmed to seek out status. And more is the ultimate indicator of status: more followers, more money, more traffic.

How to Build an Audience of 1000 True Fans in a Noisy World

medium.com

Kevan Lee

518 days ago

The spot embodies Kaplan’s approach of “culture in, brand out” marketing, which he details on the podcast: “Rather than start with your brand objective, start with what’s happening in culture by listening to the consumer, looking at cultural truths and insights, and saying, ‘OK, there is a thing that is bubbling up here.’ Start with that and then ladder up and say, ‘what would Pepsi’s point of view be on that.’” 

Pepsi’s marketing VP on Cardi B and the soda's new ‘culture in, brand out’ approach

adage.com

Kevan Lee

640 days ago

On the internet, where attention is bought and sold like a commodity, the scarce resource has shifted from attention to trust.

The Customer Acquisition Pricing Parade — David Perell

perell.com

Kevan Lee

640 days ago

The first theme is to be very scrappy. Good content does not need to cost much money — many of our best posts and videos cost very little. Closely related to this is a high output. When content is cost-effective, you’re able to make more of it. This is critical because you won’t learn very much doing something only a few times. It takes many dozens of times to refine the template to perfection — and indeed this is what we offer our advertisers: a refined social format, forged by dozens of prior failures.

5 Questions With James Lamon, Head of Content, BuzzFeed UK

socialmediaweek.org

Kevan Lee

640 days ago

Hire great people, and then trust them completely. Default to trust, and then let anyone go who doesn't live up to that trust.

Clearbit's approach to management

clearbit.com

Kevan Lee

673 days ago

Depth of Field: Alex Morgan and the Politics of Women in Celebration

wired.com

Kevan Lee

683 days ago

The list of tools that top DTC brands are using today

D2C 2.0: The Rise of Infrastructure

hackernoon.com

Kevan Lee

683 days ago

Stewart Butterfield and the Changing of the SaaS Guard

theinformation.com

Kevan Lee

713 days ago

Young workers are likely to ask for a promotion after just one year

The Office Rookies Who Ask for the World

wsj.com

Kevan Lee

713 days ago

A lot of people talk about Instagram being the mall of our generation and I buy into that.

From the Thingtester: How t...

producthunt.com

Kevan Lee

759 days ago

Such a neat concept for how leaders influence their teams

1. Being grease instead of glue

The Value of Taking a Sabbatical

helpscout.com

Kevan Lee

848 days ago

Not sure I fully agree with the anti-README angle (I have done READMEs in the past), but I do like this sentiment

If you want to build trust, you do that by showing up, talking to your team both individually and as a team, and behaving in an ethical, reliable manner. Over, and over, and over again. You don’t get it from writing a doc about how you deserve their trust.

I hate manager READMEs

medium.com

Kevan Lee

881 days ago

A world class team and an authentic brand that resonates with consumers can take a seemingly uninteresting market by storm.

The Direct-to-Consumer Landscape

medium.com

Kevan Lee

888 days ago

Just setting the KPI isn’t enough, though. These 3 things need to happen:

The team needs have a sense of ownership over the KPI.
If they don’t feel like they own it, they will view it as someone else's problem.
Every single person on the team needs to understand the KPI and have easy access to viewing it.

How You Battle the "Data Wheel of Death" in Growth — Brian Balfour

brianbalfour.com

Kevan Lee

910 days ago

lean was an answer to a specific problem, one that most entrepreneurs still face and that ebbs and flows depending on capital markets. It’s a response to scarce capital, and when that constraint is loosened, it’s worth considering whether other approaches are superior.

NewTV Is the Antithesis of a Lean Startup. Can It Work?

hbr.org

Kevan Lee

910 days ago

I keep my 1:1s pretty casual and conversational. Our team is majority remote, so for me, these meetings are as much about building relationships as they are about checking in on projects, performance, and career aspirations.

Trello’s Justin Gallagher on Remote Management at Scale + More

hackernoon.com

Kevan Lee

910 days ago

1 - How were you brave today? 2 - How were you kind today? 3 - How did you fail today?

We Ask Our Kids The Same 3 Questions Every Night

huffpost.com

Kevan Lee

923 days ago

Human Terrain

pudding.cool

Kevan Lee

1133 days ago

“The goal isn’t credit. The goal is change.”

– Seth Godin

The End Goal

swiss-miss.com

Kevan Lee

1175 days ago

5. If you’ve hired people you trust (and if you haven’t, why not?), trust that they’re working.

40 Lessons From 4 Years of Remote Work

buffer.com

Kevan Lee

1189 days ago

A real strategy involves a clear set of choices that define what the firm is going to do and what it’s not going to do.

Many Strategies Fail Because They’re Not Actually Strategies

hbr.org

Kevan Lee

1224 days ago

For (target customer)
Who (statement of need or opportunity),
(Product name) is a (product category)
That (statement of key benefit).
Unlike (competing alternative)
(Product name)(statement of primary differentiation).

Positioning Your Startup is Vital — Here’s How to Nail It

review.firstround.com

Kevan Lee

1273 days ago

Managers would often complain to me about an employee or someone in another department. I'd always say, "Have you told her yet?"

Humans Hate Being Spun: How to Practice Radical Honesty — from the Woman Who Defined Netflix’s Culture

review.firstround.com

Kevan Lee

1280 days ago

If both our friends and our news sources most likely reflect our existing beliefs, we risk living in a full-body filter bubble.

12 Ways to Break Your Filter Bubble and Gain Diverse Perspectives

open.buffer.com

Kevan Lee

1280 days ago

Flexible tooling: Adoption of that mindset, though, is a lot more important than adoption of any single tool. “Just let everybody have their own specialized data tool. There is no one solution.” Her team uses Looker; other teams might find that something else works better for their analytics. “I hear people say, ‘Wouldn't it be great if we all used Looker for everything?’ There's no amount of time in the world for me to build enough Looker capabilities, even customizations, to answer questions as well as, say, Amplitude for the product team. So let them use the tool that works for them.”

The Four Cringe-Worthy Mistakes Too Many Startups Make with Data

firstround.com

Kevan Lee

1469 days ago

Marketing’s role is about recommendation

Slack's CMO on how to use the best of consumer marketing at B2B brands

marketingweek.com

Kevan Lee

1521 days ago

doing the right things is more important than doing things right

Doing the Right Thing > Doing Things Right

bothsidesofthetable.com

Kevan Lee

1581 days ago

what has emerged in the paranoia of everyone thinking social media only works when you spend money, is a lack of hustle and a lack of understanding that great content, especially when amplified in subtle ways, can be unbelievably effective.

2017 Key to Small Business Social Media Marketing

garyvaynerchuk.com

Kevan Lee

1668 days ago

It got my attention, not my interest.

Put differently, it got my lizard brain to look but kept my thinking brain peacefully sleeping and my heart beating a slow, steady, uninterrupted pace.

Put differently still, it got 51K unique views and 1600 email addresses. A 3% conversion rate. Pretty solid, actually.

And that speaks to the problem of looking at conversion rates only when we’re measuring lead-gen pages. Because, in the case of the MoneyLab.com/Email page above, those new subscribers didn’t sign up to receive value. They signed up largely out of morbid curiosity. And partly out of being nudged to do so repeatedly. So a 3% conversion rate doesn’t actually mean much at all – in this case or on many lead-gen pages.

What matters – and what you’ll actually be measured against as a marketer – is not how your list has grown but how your business has.

Writing lead gen pages doesn't have to kill your soul (2016)

copyhackers.com

Kevan Lee

1668 days ago

^^ the factors of 10x content

High quality
Entertaining
Solutions based
Fresh
Non-promotional
Educational
Thought leading/innovative
Highly relevant

How to Detect, Repair & Profit From Underperforming Content

blog.hubspot.com

Kevan Lee

1700 days ago

I believe it is critical to have the courage to test big. If you spend all your time merely trying to optimize things you already know work, you likely will not achieve exceptional performance.

An Agency Perspective: Shifting the Measurement Mindset to Drive Growth

thinkwithgoogle.com

Kevan Lee

1701 days ago

Lead Quality
Impact
Cost
Effort
LICE makes everything nice. :)

Our system for scoring & prioritizing every marketing idea

baremetrics.com

Kevan Lee

1707 days ago

Great collection of links

lookadandelion.com

lookadandelion.com

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