York IE CMO Adam Coughlin joined the Grind Academy podcast to talk about entrepreneurship, positive investor relationships and communication in the age of instant gratification.
About Grind Academy
The Grind Academy podcast, hosted by Rob Paterson, founder of Grind Equity, shares life stories and practical skills from entrepreneurs, authors and more.
York IE founders’ journey
“I moved back to my native New Hampshire, and that’s when I reunited with Kyle York and Joe Raczka at a company called Dyn. We were able to grow that company to a really good size, and then we got acquired by Oracle. That was an excellent experience. We spent three years there and then realized we weren’t the kind of people that wanted to work at a 150,000-person company. We really liked working with early-stage companies.
We reflected on our growth journey, and we felt that a lot of the places that we turned to for help — whether that was vendors, advisors or venture capitalists — they just weren’t constructed to be advantageous to us, as the operators. They were constructed to be advantageous for themselves, and so we thought that was a model that was ripe for disruption.”
“When I think of marketing, I think of two sides to the coin. I think of marketing communications and brand building, and then I think of demand generation and leads. At that early stage, you need both. And oftentimes a founder sacrifices the long term for the short term of leads.
Where we love to come in is, ‘Let’s identify and create points of view that are truly unique, and then let’s take those points of view and put them into really nice messaging, and then let’s hammer that messaging over and over again through our owned, earned and paid.’ A lot of times companies start with paid. And I always say, ‘Why would you waste money experimenting?’ At the early stage you don’t know exactly what’s going to resonate. Getting some of that experience through owned and earned channels will make you feel more confident when you get to the paid.”
“It’s so easy to fill your entire day with being reactive. There’s always a fire to put out. But unless you purposely and intentionally schedule time to be proactive, you never get ahead. You need to say, ‘I’m not going to check email for this hour. I’m going to whiteboard and think about what moves my business forward.’
Before I had kids, I always thought it was funny when people said they scheduled date night. Like, ‘What do you need date night for?’ And then it’s like, no, actually, if you don’t set aside the time, it’s so easy to sacrifice it. But it’s so important for the health of your relationship with your spouse — just as it is for the health of your business.”