Chase Dimond gets it. He’s driven hundreds of millions of dollars for a wide range of brands with his content strategy. But even better, he’s very open about what he does, and how he does it. He’s just giving away marketing advice that’s literally worth millions.
Chase is a co-founder of Structured Agency, where he heads the email marketing team. But he’s no one-trick-pony: Chase uses every marketing channel to build content moats and use his content to shape the culture around us. He’s helped companies like Posh Peanut increase revenue by 830% and bring in a 530% return on ad spend for Safe Life Defense.
Foundation founder and CEO Ross Simmonds sat down with Chase for an in-depth conversation on his values, strategy, and social media marketing secrets. In this piece we’ll go over a few key moments:
- Why Chase builds away from his personal brand
- How Chase makes money from his content
- Whether working smarter or harder pays off for content marketing
Why Chase Builds Away from His Personal Brand
Chase spent a lot of time and effort building up his personal brand. He’s accrued hundreds of thousands of followers across X (formerly known as Twitter), LinkedIn, and other platforms, and 75,000 people subscribe to his newsletter because they recognize and trust his name.
But since then, he’s started launching new brands. He builds LinkedIn pages that don’t have his name listed prominently on them and targets people that aren’t necessarily in his personal brand’s target audience. He has to build those brands from the ground up, which involves a lot of time and energy he could be putting into his personal brand. With all that effort, you have to ask:
Why is he building away from his personal brand?
Chase has stopped thinking like a freelancer, or someone looking to gain clout on social media. Instead, he’s thinking like a media company.
Chase looks up to companies like Jerry Media to develop his next strategy. Jerry Media started with a Tumblr account that gained a significant following, and then branched out into social media accounts that were, on the surface, unrelated to the original. Their Instagram accounts like @beigecardigan and @tank.sinatra target other audiences but have each gained their own, significant followings on the site.
That expansive influence allowed Jerry Media to become so influential that they got involved in 2020 presidential campaigns! Chase saw that success and discovered he could emulate it with his own set of social media pages.
By boosting his other pages with his personal brand, he raises their profiles. In return, the other pages target niches that Chase might not otherwise access and spread his influence symbiotically.
A Vision for the Future
When Chase talks about the future, he gives this example:
One day, he discovered a simple website — it was more like a widget — called Lose the Very. It did one thing: suggest new words instead of phrases like “very big.” That helps writers expand their vocabularies to include a wider variety of descriptive words, instead of relying on repetitive prose.
Lose the Very was a useful, fun website with a reasonably-sized user base. But it had basically no monetization and no newsletter. That’s where Chase stepped in, bought the site, and turned it into a revenue generator by attaching it to a newsletter.
81 days ago, I bought 50% of a site called Lose the Very.
I promised to share ongoing progress.
Since Dec 23rd, 2022, we’ve:
– Had 657,000 site visits
– Collected 36,982 email addresses
– 3x’ed monthly revenue
In the next couple of months, I hope we can 2x current revenue.
— Chase Dimond | Email Marketing Nerd 📧 (@ecomchasedimond) March 15, 2023
That’s how Chase sees his next steps in media. He’s using organic social media followers and other websites to feed his newsletters. He can also build out events and use the various pages and newsletters he works with to promote one another as they gain momentum with their own followers.
Eventually, he’s going to build his network to over a million followers across LinkedIn. With that, he’ll be able to make posts go viral at will and guarantee outcomes for any of his clients.
How Chase will achieve his vision
In order to reach that vision, Chase is going to follow three simple steps. Anyone can do these, and they’re exactly what every professional marketer and social media influencer does to gain their following:
- Make good content
- Produce it at a high volume
- Distribute it widely and boost engagement
Making good content is a no-brainer: It’s at the foundation of every successful marketing strategy. If what you make is no good, nobody’s going to like and share it to boost its profile.
But it isn’t enough to make good content, you also have make a lot of it. Part of the game is luck, and in order to have viral posts, you need to make a lot of them. Producing at a high volume also lets you address audiences that check their social media at different times.
That’s why Chase sets three posts a day as his minimum, and is looking for ways to consistently produce quality content six times a day.
Distribution and engagement
If you’re a frequent reader of Foundation Labs, you already know what we’re going to say here: D.R.E.A.M. “Distribution Rules Everything Around Me” is true because at the end of the day, your content distribution, not your quality or volume, is what is going to get it in front of the most people possible.
Content distribution is a complicated subject, and Foundation has plenty of materials discussing exactly that. But Chase as two pieces of advice on content distribution that are simple to implement but will take your distribution up a notch:
- Post for different time zones
- Promote your pages symbiotically
Focus on those steps to see immediate results spreading your content to more people and engaging with a broader audience.
Advice for building your own brand
Chase didn’t start out with a full media company. He began by building his personal brand, and he has plenty of advice for you to do the same.
First, he tells everyone to practice on their brand-building every single day. He works seven days a week and doesn’t schedule posts ahead of time. That’s because it lets him stay on top of trends and never get rusty.
He also suggests that you should find other, like-minded people to boost your content. That way, you can learn from them, call attention to each other’s great work, and spread to new audiences.
Finally, he says that as your audience grows, you shouldn’t be afraid to bring back old content you published before they knew about you. Many of your new followers or subscribers probably haven’t seen the great stuff that you built your brand on in the first place. So repurpose it from one format to another, bring it back up, or edit it so it’s even more relevant to day than it was originally.
You can create a moat where your content is at the top of your audience’s minds whenever they want to link to something on that topic. It doesn’t hurt that resurfacing and renewing your content can boost its SERP performance as well.
How do you make money from content?
Even if you had a social media following like Chase, how would you turn those numbers into dollars?
For Chase, there are two steps: Understand what your goal with the project is, and then monetize the brand accordingly.
Know your goal
First, Chase identifies what kind of brand he’s building to figure out how he’ll monetize it later. He categorizes his brands into two categories: personal brands and other brands.
For his personal brand, he understands that he’s building for cashflow. He isn’t going to be able to sell a website with his face all over it if he isn’t the owner anymore, so selling the site isn’t an option. Instead, he’s looking for ways for that site to become a revenue generator.
With other brands, it’s exactly the opposite. The fact that his name isn’t attached means he can sell the brand to someone looking for a revenue-generation opportunity. That means he can focus more on attracting the widest following possible, rather than short-term cashflow.
Monetize the brand
Once he knows what his long-term vision is, Chase is ready to start monetizing the brand. Whether he’s going to sell it eventually or not, he wants to generate some cashflow for his business — that’ll make it more attractive to potential buyers as well.
That means in addition to attracting viewers, he tries to find the best ways to make money from his content. There are a few ways he does this:
1. Negotiate Revenue Sharing
First, for brands he’s building with clients, he negotiates a revenue-sharing agreement. That means he negotiates a base monthly retainer, and makes an agreement with them that they’ll pay him a certain percentage of the revenue they make from his content, or the retainer — whichever is larger. That maximizes his upside will minimizing his risk.
2. Equity Stake
But the only companies that Chase personally promotes are ones that he has equity in. Usually, that means that when a company wants his personal promotion, he negotiates a share of the company that’s hiring him.
3. Build From Newsletters
Finally, he uses his newsletters to engage a highly interested, motivated audience with valuable content. A part of that content is promoting products and services they’ll benefit from — ones that Chase endorses and often helped create.
He promotes gated content, courses, and tools that his audiences will benefit from. By getting paid in shared revenue and equity, he monetizes his personal brand and the brands he owns to their maximum potential.
Work smarter or harder?
That all might sound like a lot of work. But Chase has an interesting answer to the question of whether you should work smarter or harder: he says, why not both?
That’s not entirely true. As a father, he understands the importance of a healthy work-life balance. But he also understands that you can work both smart and hard by finding people who’ve hit goals you aspire towards and reverse-engineering their strategy for getting there.
You can join a cohort of like-minded strivers, hire a mentor, or learn from the greats in their own words. But by studying the platform you’re focused on and the strategies of those who have succeeded there, you can start gaining momentum with your own social media empire.
That’ll also let you optimize your time. You’ll learn how to focus on the features the platform is promoting, such as LinkedIn Reels, and figure out which skills are worth learning and which you can pay to save time on. You can also teach others new skills in return for learning some of their proficiencies, in a mutually-beneficial knowledge exchange that’ll make you both better marketers.
Just put yourself out there
Finally, Chase’s last piece of advice is to just put yourself out there.
He isn’t afraid to look stupid, and you shouldn’t be either. Make stuff happen, experiment with your content, and figure out what works.
Of course, you’ll look a whole lot less stupid if you get informed on what industry leaders are doing to make their content stand out. That’s why Foundation Labs brings you weekly, in-depth studies on the top-performing B2B content marketing tactics out there. Sign up today to start learning from the best in the business, and feel free to check out Chase’s full interview on the Create Like the Greats podcast below.