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Unpacking My Marketing Funnel and Content Strategy with Alastair McDermott

October 2, 2023
The Recognized Authority Podcast Cover

The podcast that helps experts & consultants on the journey to becoming a recognized authority in your field, so you can increase your impact, command premium fees, work less hours, and never have to suffer a bad-fit client again!.

Ever wonder how to build a marketing funnel with content that generates leads and sales? In this behind the scenes episode of The Recognized Authority, I’m unveiling some of the the inner workings of my content marketing funnel and strategy that have been instrumental in building authority and reaching my audience.

In this episode, I explore the strategy around creating short-form books as a part of my marketing funnel. Learn why I put these short-read books, some of which were initially conceived as lead magnets, onto Amazon. There’s some interesting tactical benefits from a simple pricing strategy to boost downloads and reviews which has a knock-on effect: higher rankings and enhanced visibility. These books then serve as a gateway for readers to access additional resources, entering my broader ecosystem.

I’ll also give you a look at how I think about this podcast, where LinkedIn fits in the mix for me, and as usual I talk about the importance of a consistent body of work in establishing authority, sharing knowledge, and building trust.

We’re in a market where trust is the key to sales, and this episode provides a practical roadmap for anyone looking to harness the power of content to create trust in a strategic, impactful manner. Whether you’re looking to refine your content creation process, explore new marketing channels, or simply curious about the mechanics behind successful funnels, this episode is packed with actionable insights, so tune in.

You can find me on Amazon by visiting and learn more about my coaching at

Show Notes

Guest Bio


books, podcast, amazon, creating, people, series, work, content, discoverability, marketing funnel, content creation, interesting, recognized, write, interview, lead magnet, authority, short, listening, building

Alastair McDermott


Alastair McDermott  00:34

If the thought of setting up marketing funnels with multiple moving parts makes your head spin, you’re not alone. But I want to give you an insider view at my marketing funnel and content strategy and maybe you’ll get some ideas from this. So from The Recognized Authority podcasts which you’re listening to, to using Amazon, which I’ve been started using lately, and I’m finding quite interesting, there is a method behind the the apparent madness of lots of content creation. And so I want to kind of lift back the veil give you a look at behind the curtain and show you how I’m approaching this personally, how I’m talking to my clients about this. And so I’m gonna make this really practical. So grab a pen, you might want to take down some notes


Alastair McDermott  01:26

Okay, so the first part of my content funnel, let’s call it or my marketing funnel, is the flagship podcast, which is The Recognized Authority. And we’re listening. Now I think, to Episode 136, if I have that, right. And so there’s one of those has gone out pretty much every week and there have been a couple extra bonus episodes have gone out, which is why it’s doesn’t track exactly 236 weeks, but pretty much every week 601 I am on a Monday morning. There is a new episode of this. And part of the reason why that’s so important to me is the consistency and publishing. And I want to demonstrate that consistency to people. I want to build up a body of work. I want to build relationships with the people who have interviewed like for example, I interviewed Bob Berg recently and having the credibility that goes along with that. So I think you you if you’ve been in my world for a while you probably already understand those pieces of the puzzle. And so I’m also trying to create value for you like you the listener, like I really care that you actually get something out of listening to my podcast. I want you to stay subscribed because I want you to get value that helps you with your business and help you to build your authority. So that’s the podcast piece and the podcast is important. The podcast is not great for discoverability and this is an interesting thing about the different platforms. Some are really good for discoverability and people need people finding you and some are not so. So for example, creating your own podcast is not great for having people discover your podcast going on other people’s podcasts is much better for discoverability and that’s why I do that on a regular basis as well. And that brings new listeners to my podcast when I when I mentioned that. So one of the other place where I do have engagement and I posts a lot is LinkedIn. And that’s much more about discoverability by getting in front of new people, and about creating content and kind of testing ideas and writing and developing my network over there. I think I’ve got about 5700 connections or followers on LinkedIn. I don’t know what the kind of split is between those but so I’ve built up an audience on there. And I post pretty regularly on there in video format and in text format as well. And this is actually something that I help my clients with because I have a service called authority accelerator where I interview my clients. And then we’ll take those, we do it like a podcast interview, and then we split it up into short form video. And then they can put that up, they can put those short form videos up and see you you’ll see a lot of those short form videos on my on my LinkedIn feed as well. And the great thing about those short form video pieces is they can also go on YouTube shorts, Instagram reels, Instagram stories, and even on Tik Tok and Facebook. So those are great for multi purposing and that’s where discoverability comes into it. So those that’s kind of discoverability and getting out in front of people. Now the thing that I really wanted to talk to you about today is something that I’ve started doing recently and I find it quite interesting. I think that the potential of this is is quite big. And that is Amazon as a marketing distribution discoverability channel. And so the way that I think about this, the way that I’m using at the moment, I have a series of short books on Amazon and some of them are free and some of them are $1.99. And I’m actually trying to make those free by the way. The way it works is when you have a series of books on Amazon, so they’re all in the same series. Amazon will actually cross promote the other books in that series on each books. Page. And what it does is it displaces an ad so there would be if you have one book, Amazon will have an ad underneath your book description for all of these other books. And what it does is it actually moves that down it puts your series there and so it gives you more real estate. It gives you more discoverability for your series. It highlights the series in different ways that it mentions that allows people to buy the series as a bundle. There’s a lot of advantages to that. And I saw this with the 33 ways series. So I wrote a book called 33 ways not to screw up your business podcast. And so that’s part of a series and actually, we weren’t able to make it part of the series on Amazon, which kind of led me down this road in a way but it’s part of a series and so the publisher asks Amazon to put all of those books into series and then all of those books will cross promote each other as well. At least that’s the way it works in theory. In practice what happened was Amazon ignores the request from the publisher to add it to the series. And that’s because they’re from different authors. Because my my, my my new series, which I’ve called expert authority builder, so because my expert authority builder series is of my books, I have much more control over what books are and aren’t made part of that it’s more difficult if you’re trying to get books from another author added to a series which is a bit of a digression. So the idea here is


Alastair McDermott  06:52

I’m and the way I’m approaching this is I have these short form books. And the reason why I create these short form books is because another publisher of mine, Brian O’Kane from Oak Tree press, which is the biggest business publisher in Ireland, and I’ve known Brian for a long, long time. And we’ve worked together before. And so Brian suggested to me that I write more short form books, and at the time I was talking to him, I wanted to write something longer, and he was insistent. Business owners are looking for short, how to practical guide type books. And so I took this on board. And so I started to take some of the things that I had as lead magnets. And so these are pieces of content that I’d created. And usually there’s a lot of text in them. So they’re like their little mini books. And so I took some of these and put them on Amazon I packed them up I did the typesetting and packaged them up and turn them into the right formats, ebook format and everything. And I put it on Amazon on Kindle. And one of them I made free and Brian had taken the previous one that I created for Brian that’s up there for free as well. And then I have these other two books, which I put up for 99 cent. And so it’s quite interesting. Amazon the difference between a free book and a 99 cent book in terms of numbers of downloads and purchases, as how Amazon sees it is about 40 to 138 to one is approximately is the number that that that I’m seeing and that other people have talked about. So we’re talking about 38 times more people purchasing and reading a book that’s free compared to $1. And where this gets interesting is the number of reviews that you get is directly related to the number of people who read your book, and it’s hard to get reviews. And so the number of people downloading and reviewing and reading your book is what will get you more ratings, which will increase your books rankings, which will get more people reading it and so it goes and when your book is part of a series, that’s when the free books can start to cross promote the other books. And so that’s where this Amazon experiment is going with me. And I find it quite interesting because for not a huge amount of commitment of time and resources for me. It didn’t take a whole lot. I bought a piece of software called Atticus to do the typesetting and formatting. And then in terms of the content, I already had most of this content already written. I just needed to package it up. And you know, these are not hugely long books. And that’s the other interesting thing. Amazon actually has specific sections in in Kindle. So it’s got you know, for example, right now, efficient content creation, which is one of them with coefficient content creation, the practical guide to consistently creating high quality content in a busy schedule. That book it’s only 37 pages long. And it is currently number two in the one hour business and money short reads category and it’s number seven in internet marketing and number nine in web marketing so you can see that Kindle has it’s divided into free and paid within Kindle settings. And then I see that the other one of the other books is actually ranking number four. That’s the that’s the one on how to look good and sound good and Sumo. Podcasts. So those two books are ranking quite high right now in Amazon. And so people are finding those and discovering those. And so what happens then is they see my other books and can discover those two, as well as that there’s also a mention of resources at the start of the book, and then a big call to action at the end of the book to download a resources pack. And there in that section. That’s where I asked for email opt in in order to get access to the expert resources toolkit. And so that’s another way for people to get into my ecosystem into my world if they’re interested in downloading the resources that I have available. And so it’s mentioned on there, I have a whole bunch of resources called the expert authority builder toolkit. And so I have in there the guide to podcasting equipment list, content, strategy, resources and free books and tools and things like that, and so on on that’s mentioned at the start and end of every one of those books. So you can see how creating this body of work and taking something that you’ve already got, which is some text that you can turn into a into a short booklet and amazon it specifically has these sections you know, 45 minute quick read when our quick read sections. And so, if you can get your book into those and then you’ve got a series of these books together. And if you look at the the covers of my books, you’ll see that they all have a little thing on top of the title which says part of the authority, part of the expert authority builder series, and you can see that like they all look pretty similar in terms of the cover design and so people know that this is a series and they can see the fonts all look the same. And so they they will go from one to the other to the other. So this is this discovery ability of Amazon. So I find that really interesting. I think part of this, it goes back to the concept of creating a body of work. And I think that creating a body of work is really important. I think that it’s it’s one of the most important things that we can do if we want to, to become known as experts in our field, and to kind of build credibility and trust. Because what we’re selling is a credence good, it’s intangible invisible. It relies on trust to sell. And so creating a body of work it putting our our knowledge and expertise out into the world is crucial but there are some other things as well that come from it, because we actually learn from the act of writing or grading. So when we express our knowledge and expertise in words, that helps us to develop our thinking. Friend of mine said I don’t write because of ideas. I have ideas because I write and so when we continuously write and sharpen our thinking, we get better we learn how to better communicate it. And the other thing is part of it is risking criticism. When you put yourself out. People will see that you are taking a risk by sharing your thinking and that’s part of that’s part of learning and growing as an expert. But this risk is recognized consciously or unconsciously by other people. And you know people you like you hear people say, Oh, that was that, you know, takes takes guts or that was brave. You’re setting an example. You know, people acknowledge like, that’s why people fear public speaking, and why livestream is is popular and recognized and prioritized by social channels because you’re taking the risk of doing this. And then you’re actually providing value by doing this and you know, helping people to solve a real problem. So, that’s why building this body of work, I think is really crucial. Because every everything that you share is a building block. And when you create a building block, it’s like one blog post that doesn’t make or break it. But when you’ve done that 50 times or 100 times, a friend of mine who was on the podcast, Patti Delaney, he said, You can’t fake 200 podcast episodes. And this body of work as it grows. It’s kind of like going to the gym over time, except if you stop going, it doesn’t disappear. But it increases the surface area for look. It increases the body of work, the more you share, the larger that gets. And so that’s why I think it’s really important to do this. And I know that people will be maybe afraid of criticism, or afraid that they have that they don’t have enough expertise like imposter syndrome. You almost certainly do have enough expertise. If you’re listening to this. I promise you that. The only people who don’t or people who are starting out and even then you can still document your journey. And I know that that it’s time consuming and in fact that’s why I wrote that’s why I wrote one of the books, efficient content creation, which is about creating high quality content on the busy schedule. But I think that this is important to do this. And making like this will always slip down your priorities. It’s one of these things. It’s never going to be urgent for you to write a blog post or to write a chapter of a book.


Alastair McDermott  16:00

But you know, there’s ways to optimize for time. And this is something just like going to the gym, you really need to start doing it if you if you want to go the route of building a personal brand and building reputation becoming known as an authority in your field. The other routes are you can go through the regular door of doing networking and word of mouth and that’s that’s a tough slog in its own in its own way. And then there’s outbound cold calls cold, the DMS and emails and things like that. That’s not for me. It might be for you. But if you want to go down the inbound, creating content route, then I think that you know, it’s it’s an incredibly powerful way to go and and it’s it’s something that is really satisfying because what you’re marketing is creating content. So that is, you know, those are things that I’m doing to create content to use to kind of harness the distribution and discoverability of some of the platforms that are out there. And then one other thing actually, that I’ve been doing is creating a private podcast, I created a private podcast, which is effectively a podcast where the access to it is limited to you can give people their own private access to it and so there’s a couple different ways you can do it. So the way I have it set up is so that people can access it with their email address. And so it’s it’s another it’s another lead magnet. It’s another way of creating something where it’s building, creating this kind of trust building content. It’s it’s giving people access to something valuable and asking for something in return. And you can also set a private podcast by the way, so that you can actually charge for access to them, which is interesting as well. The private podcast that I set up is called the lead magnet blueprint. And it’s a step by step guide to driving High Ticket Sales with quick win content. And so it’s effectively an audio version of the quick win content booklet that I have, which is a guide to creating this. lead magnets that are effective and actually turning into sales. So you can get access to to this and to all of the things I just talked about. If you click in the show notes wherever you are listening to this. So that is kind of an overview of my own marketing funnel, how it works. What I’m doing, and I’d be interested to know what you are doing. And, you know, to hear your stories about content creation, how you’re doing distribution, and you know if you’re like what your strategy is, and if you want help with any of this if you want help with figuring out your positioning, figuring out content strategy, how to position yourself, how to create a podcast or talk to your audience in a way that will actually result in sales. I’d be delighted to help you out. I offer one to one coaching in this I have two slots currently available. Because I work with five clients at a time. Because if we have a call every two weeks, which is about an hour and a half each call, then that’s about 15 hours a month of coaching and that’s enough, I can’t mentally go above that. So that’s why it’s limited. And like I suggest to my clients I habitually raise my prices. So I’m going to be raising my prices for the first time this year on my one to one coaching. I’m going to be raising them at the end of October. So if you’re interested in working with me, then please do reach out. You can find a link wherever you’re listening to this or if you go to the recognized And I would be delighted to help you out. I want to tell you about two results or two testimonials that I’ve gotten recently. One is from Sean Walsh, who has a software consulting business and we were able to create an additional $11,500 in revenue from a coaching session. And then Martina Lannon who said and she gave me a testimonial on this as to really knows how to keep me directed he takes into consideration what I want to achieve. And when I first heard his price, I thought it was really expensive. But now I think it’s the best money I ever spent. And I would absolutely recommend working with him. So thank you Martina and Shawn for permission to use those quotes. I really do appreciate it. So if you’re interested in working with me, like I said about two slots available in my one to one coaching, and if you’re interested in having me interview you so that we can create some content, you can go check out the authority accelerator as well. So links to all of that are in the show notes. So thanks, too, for listening to this podcast. I hope you got some value out of it. I hope you are thinking about ways that you can create content and possibly use something like Amazon to distribute and get to a bigger audience as well. So stay tuned next week. I have a really cool interview coming up and I look forward to sharing that with you. Have a good one. So stay tuned. I have a really great interview coming up for you next week. And I look forward to sharing that with you have a good one.


Alastair McDermott  21:26

Amazon to distribute and get to a bigger audience as well. So stay tuned next week I have a really cool interview coming up I look forward to working with you.


Alastair McDermott  21:42

So stay tuned. I have a really great interview coming up for you next week. And I look forward to sharing that with you have a good one. I use that you can create content and possibly use something like Amazon to distribute and get to a bigger audience as well. So

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