Marketing Strategy With Cat Valyi

Thomas Green here with Ethical Marketing Service. On the podcast today, we have Cat Valyi. Cat, welcome, welcome.

Thank you. I’m glad to be here.

So I guess that’s why I’m welcoming you glad to have you. Would you like to take a moment and tell the audience a bit about yourself and what you do?

Certainly. I am a strategic marketer. I own my own organisation and I focus on helping stressed and busy executives in the healthcare space. get a better understanding of their marketing. Normally if they’re not happy with their one dimensional flat marketing, I can come in and help them read evaluate and learn how to work better with their marketing. whether you’re a startup or you’ve been in the health and you’ve been in the business for many years and you’re finally engaging in marketing or if you have a sales and marketing group that’s not working. I have a process called 3D Marketing Approach, Strategic 3D Marketing Approach that helps you go focus on the process and then better understand how to apply marketing. So this way you have better results, your team is working together and that you’re very approach driven Throughout the process it’s less about just pretty pictures and cool events, it’s about the process of marketing.

Thank you for that. I would like to maybe get a definition from you 3D Marketing at some point but kick off, if it’s okay. I know you’ve gone from the corporate world to owning your own business. So would you care to share a little bit about the story behind that? Well I’d like to start with the fact that I’ve always been in the healthcare space because I enjoy that space for various reasons. One in particular is that I was sharing the story that my sister at a young age in her mid-twenties, she was struck with lupus that really ravaged her body and then she went into total kidney failure and she needed a kidney and I was a perfect match.

I’m not gonna lie. It was scary the whole thought of giving her a kidney. But an event happened that made me think that if I died today and I didn’t give her my kidney that would be a tragedy and a double tragedy. So I you know gave her my kidney and I’ve always really had an affinity to the physicians and the doctors and everybody who helped her through the process and even me as the donor. so I can’t I don’t diagnose, I can’t help people in that that way. But I can help healthcare organisations get their products and services and solutions to the providers in the hospitals that can help the patients through you know providing quality messaging through my 3D Strategic marketing approach and just helping. So that’s my way of helping organisations get their solutions to the providers.

I went from corporate to owning my own business because there was an opportunity, I worked in corporate for many, many years and I really enjoyed it. I climbed the ladder. I, you know, you do the corporate politics, you learn how to, you know, manoeuvre, but then I had an opportunity to go off on my own and I thought you know, I want to help organisations that are struggling with their marketing. I love to see someone starting from nothing in their marketing space and then really helping them enhance their brand, get their message, learn how to really speak specifically through their target audience and really narrow that down. So they’re really not just talking about a we have 1000 clients and we’re the best and best in class. It’s really about, you know, talking at a deeper level and that’s how I decided to say, you know, I’m going to branch off on my own and really help those organisations that I can make that I can affect. So when you went from your job to running your own business last day in the job, well how does that feel?

Well the circumstances were that I got a package because they were reorganising a lot of things were coming together. So I had a package that was quite nice. So I actually had the opportunity to sit back. So I was lucky in that aspect, I had an opportunity to sit back and what I said was I applied what I did for companies marketing to myself, I sat down and I said, what’s my strategy, who are my target audiences? And I created a whole marketing plan for myself, using my process that helped me understand where I wanted to go. So it actually was exciting. and it also branched me off too. I have this other organisation I work with or that I co-founded called Women with Dynamic Purpose, because as I was doing all of this, I was looking for an organisation to kind of help me through the process and I couldn’t find one and a friend of mine and I we said well if we can’t find the thing let’s make the thing.

And we created this other organisation that I’m also working with to help women who are rising in age thrive and find their purpose, their path in their community, but it’s all marketing base, it’s all using that same thought process around marketing, you know? So I actually felt good when I left. Did you say you left on good terms? Yes, I did, I did. Okay, so day one you’re a business owner, what does that look like? Well, I got lucky again because one of the things I did was I had a lot of great contacts. So I started with reaching out to contacts and really started pumping up my networking again and letting people know that I’m here to help them and someone reached out right away and I started on a contract, working with them and then one led to another and to another and now I am still using referrals but I’m more actively working on programs and education so I can help more people instead of just one company at a time.

So when you say networking and we took in phone calls or emails or meeting people everything, you know it was going to organisations it was going to trade shows, it’s going making phone calls, I love video calls, emails, so I do video emails. it’s just reaching out and it’s not it’s not reaching out to say what can you do for me? It’s really just usually touching base with people to say how can I help? It’s great to connect what are you doing just really be interested in what’s important to them and that usually works out that eventually the right moment and the right time kind of connects. But it’s about reaching out consistently and then also putting information out in the atmosphere like LinkedIn, Instagram, so on. So this way people can see that I am actively engaged in a business, anything that people are really doing wrong on that particular topic of networking that you see.

Yeah, I think people want to jump in right away and sell too fast. you have to know if the person is even interested in what their problems are. You can’t um, just call them and try to sell. It’s very off putting people get sold to all the time. We need sales people, we need to sell, we need things, but there’s an art to it as any good salesperson know that they have to engage and understand where the person is in that journey. So I think it’s um, the challenge that a lot of people have is that they jump in, you know, you know, on LinkedIn, you’ll get an email connection, you know, you’ll get an email connection and you connect and boom right away. You’re like, oh you want this great new marketing pool. And first of all I’m like, dude, I don’t even know what I do because it’s, you know, either it’s just an automated email or it’s, it shows that they might be a tone deaf or they’re not really digging in to see what I need.

And I think that’s the problem. I think it’s more about, it’s longer two build a community and build a connection. But I think the payoff is better be a bit more patient than in that particular instance and you’re still in the same business that you were when you went from your job into becoming a business owner. Yes, I stayed in the healthcare space. so I, I love that space. I love helping organisations help physicians to help patients because I see it as a through line. I see the I see the companies that are making the technology, the solutions, the services helped the doctor or the hospital. But ultimately, ultimately, when you go all the way through, it helps the patients. So what can I do to help patients by helping those organisations? So I always kind of keep that through line and it just makes me feel better and I love it. Good. It’s certainly good to love your work. Some of your biggest challenges from starting out on your own. Well, there’s a lot of folks out there, there’s a lot of marketing companies, there’s a lot of solutions.

So, you know, it’s just trying to make sure you’re working to connect to the right people so they can hear what you offer. And also it’s making people aware that they do have challenges. Some people think, oh no, my marketing is fine. and they’re doing the same thing, but really sometimes it’s you can be doing it better so you can do more effectively so that, you know, of the churn behind that and staying positive and upbeat that you can help because I always try to focus on who can I help today? Who can I help today? And if I focus on that thought process, it makes me feel less of a feeling that there’s less competition out there and I don’t really worry about interesting, so, change your perspective slightly in order to deal with, would you say is your biggest challenge? Competition? That’s a good question. I really don’t even think about himself. I don’t really think about that because what I focus on is who can I help?

So, I guess the biggest challenge would be finding those that I can help. so competition, Yes, but really narrowing down to who can I help? To me, it sounds like um, client acquisition, but a better perspective on it. So, you know, when people talk about, you know, cost per acquisition or acquiring a client or something, you are essentially saying that’s um, so you’re looking for people that you can help essentially, is that fair? Yeah, no, I would say that interesting. and so the biggest, biggest wins for you since you started anything spring to mind, I’ve helped organisations truly transform their brand. that’s because a lot of people will bring me in when they’ve been doing well, but they’ve never focused on their brand and their message. So really taking a company that looks like they’re from the early nineties to the two thousand’s, really helping them hone in their message.

So this way they’re saying and speaking in a different way that’s more engaging, that talks to the people that they’re trying to share their solution with. so there are, I can think off the top of my head there about three organisations that I really affected in a positive way that I was so happy to see the evolution to take them from. It’s not about tactics, it’s about strategy. Let’s lay down the plan, let’s think through the, the goals and let’s apply the right marketing plan to achieve those goals. So it’s taking them from a whole different mindset and really that’s really a lot of it, because when you’re a lot of people, when they think about marketing, like I mentioned before, they think of the end, they’re like the things that you create at the very end, which are the promotion, the brochure, the webinar, that’s the endpoint of that process.

And then you’re like, what does that end point do, does it, you know, get emails, get leads, get whatever, but it’s really about a tying that endpoint to the initial goal. So this way you can say, I’ve achieved that goal for you. So, and you help companies establish what their actual goals are and then refine them because a lot of times businesses have, you know, they know their goals right? They’ll say, I want to sell more of our products to our clients. Okay, great. But now you have to refine that you say, okay, do I want to sell to clients that are new, that are clients that their contract is ending or you know, so it’s refining the goal. So this way you can achieve when it’s too broad. That’s when you’ll hear people say, oh, you know, sales marketing is just getting clicks and their leads are not hot, but if you’re casting your net to a very wide audience, it’s very difficult to get a hot lead, right?

So you have to really take a moment to narrow it down. So this way you can talk to the right person and get those right leads. Has it ever happened that you start business with a particular company? And they’re really clear on what it is that they want and that goal is kind of meets your criteria for strategy? Well, I haven’t so far, a lot of times it’s and I think it’s because the people that have brought me in are struggling with marketing or just starting with marketing or are more thinking about marketing, like sales. And so I’ve, most of the people that I have, I would say all of the folks that I’ve worked with really benefited from going through a process and narrowing down, you know, marketing goals. So they say they’re achievable, sounds like a problem that needs a solution it does when you first get that typical inquiry, what does it look like.

Usually it’s, hey, we’re looking to improve our marketing, what can you do for us, you know, or we don’t have a marketing can you, sometimes I’ll come in as a fractional CMO where I build their marketing space for them and then then help them hire the right people to take it on going forward. But it’s usually people do that come to the realisation that hey we need to do something different with our marketing, it’s not happening or we’re ready to invest dollars into the marketing because we need to help energise sales. So it’s usually with that question and then we start having a discussion. Sounds like a good time to ask you about 3D Marketing. Yes. 3D Strategic Marketing is a process that I created years and years and a lot another years ago I was starting out in the marketing space and I found that you’re never really working on one project at a time, You’re working on multiple projects.

And what I learned was I needed to create a structured process. So this way I could be successful. So the company I was working for could be successful. So I created a 3D Strategic solution because it broke it down to design, defined and deployed and actually 3D Means two different things right? For 3D Is looking at marketing in a multidimensional way. So this way you don’t think of brochure, give me a thing, give me a brochure, give me a promotion. It’s saying no it’s marketing is multidimensional and you have to have a starting place to build the marketing strategy that gets you to the plan that gets you to the tactics that gets you to the budget that gets you and so on and so forth. And then once you have that mindset, so it’s a mindset but it’s also a process, it’s you’re gonna define design and deploy and you kind of and within each of those there are sub structures, right? Because you’re gonna define for clarity, you’re going to design for direction and you’re going to deploy ultimately action for a launch.

So that’s the way I structure. There’s also another step prior to that which is foundational because before you even start with the 3D you have to have the foundation and then there’s a process I have for that as well. Sounds great. Have you used any of your to say 3D Marketing principles and applied it to yourself? Oh yeah, all the time. That’s how I again that’s how I decided to start my own business. I just did the whole process. You know, I created a strategy I designed and defined and deployed and that’s how I got from beginning to end and said this is my launch date for my business, this is how I’m going to do it. And so it’s all about um using that process and then I used that same process for my women’s organisation, women with dynamic purpose because my co-founder Emmy Weber, she’s also a marketer. And so marketing because it’s kind of like in our psyche is everything that we do. And so I apply that same approach and it’s very it’s very organised and it keeps you structured and it keeps you on path because a lot of times when you start marketing, everyone has a great idea, everyone’s like, oh you know what you’re doing this, how about we add this, how about we?

And if you don’t have a structure, you start to splinter out and then you don’t have a defined a program at the end. This keeps you asking the right questions saying, oh well maybe we need to start another program as opposed to adding into this. And let’s start the process where we, you know, the foundation and then we design, define and deploy the project. And so this way it keeps all the different marketing programs separate. Simple, you can report on them, it’s all about being able to say, okay, this is the program. Now let’s report on it is working. Do we need to enhance? Maybe we need to add more money here. So this way we can do even more. So it’s all about a really a process driven of structure. It’s funny, you know when you think of marketing, you think of creative and I am very creative. I’m an artist, I’m a journal. I but when it comes to delivering on marketing you need structure, right points regarding feedback.

Do you ever get any, let’s say results from clients where they actually are able to tell you based on what your original goal is to help people, do they ever say, like as a result of working with you, we’ve now been able to help like x number of more people or something like that. Does that ever reach you? Well, that’s well, I always try to track the results. so I always look at so I always track the results. They don’t tell me, I usually tell them, you know, because we did this, we’ve connected with more clients in the prospects in this space because we did this, we had more people interested in the business and asking the specific questions. I also like to do a lot of surveys. So, so this way I can get some honest feedback from whomever we are marketing to clients, prospects and so on. So that usually gives me the feedback and they’re either happy or they want more or, you know, they say, okay, we’re good, we’re going to apply our, you know, our team is ready and then, you know, we’re done, you know, and which is good because that’s what I want.

I want their team to be up and running. So this way I can go on and help someone else. Have you ever been approached by non-healthcare business and how did that go? Let’s see. Well yes I have I worked with a what is it a charity? It wasn’t in healthcare But they have a wonderful charity but their messaging their look and feel was not it didn’t give you a feeling to want to go to that website and put your credit card in. It was it was too rudimentary was two. It didn’t allow whoever was coming to that site to feel like oh I understand what you’re doing, I understand why you’re doing it, let me participate. And they had a lot of they have a lot of competition in that space so I really sit down with them and to understand their goals what their mission was.

And then I applied my process and then created a new look and feel for them. New messaging. And it’s just a more dynamic experience for the peoples of the people that go to that website and engage with them. So yeah you know I mean the process works marketing is marketing. So the process works with anyone. I just happen to like to stay in the healthcare space because I have a lot of experience in the healthcare. I’ve worked in medical devices I’ve worked with in clinics. I’ve worked with health IT companies with ophthalmology companies. Audio large technology companies just all in the healthcare space. And so I understand a lot of what physicians, how they speak, how health information managers speak, I understand what they’re looking. So it makes it easier for the company when they come to me. They don’t have to then explain to me how healthcare works because it’s very complicated.

It’s the it’s a business but then you’re helping people, there’s so much, there’s so much complexity within healthcare that when you’re working with a healthcare marketing a company that knows healthcare, you can shorten the time between when you signed the contract and get going because you don’t have to spend the time saying this is how we do you know, coding, this is how we get paid this. You know I know all that so I stay in that space because I can help them faster. But technically I can work with anyone. And presumably the results are perhaps more probable if you’ve got all that experience in that particular sector. Yeah I can see what it is. I can get up and running faster. Yeah. At what point do you become an author in your story? Oh well when I was working in the when the women with dynamic purpose I created we wrote a book about two years ago and then I’ve been creating journals because I one of the processes I have is that I always write my checklist, I always try to work through my thoughts.

So this way I can manage all that’s going on. So I see there’s some of my journals back there accomplishment book. So it was about three years ago and now I’m creating a new one specifically for my 3D Strategic marketing approach. So that should be out. I would say in about a month or two. I just I just feel it’s another way to get my message across. and I love it just doing it. Well that’s the next question. I mean if you’re if you’re writing all the time presumably you don’t find it difficult. Would you call it a passion? Do I love writing? I read all the time and every morning I have my routine where you know, you get up and kind of breathe, you say you’re you know why you’re raring to go. Then I read For about 30 to 40 minutes. Then I write every morning and that really starts getting my thought process going and if I sit down and I just start writing it starts to get my my thought process going about what I want to share what I want to write about how I can change my message or a new message for a client.

So yeah, I love writing. I love writing and your marketing experience probably helps on the on the back end, where you’ve done all the work and you need to promote it, presumably Any anything that you’re proud of in relation to being an author. Oh I love my book of for Women with Dynamic Purpose, it’s called Shift Always Happens because it’s about the shift in life that you have to be prepared especially as your and I call it rising in age as you’re getting older as a woman, especially in the corporate space. there’s so much opportunity for women but helping them gain the confidence and you know, really outline what their purpose is, how to identify their path and build that right communities to support them.

I love that book and that organisation because when women engage, they’re in there, it just helps them in their business space. And so now my next one I’m working on which is my fourth steps to transform B two B marketing strategy. I’m really excited about that one and includes my 3D Strategic marketing approach and it includes that whole foundational approach because I think the more people that are engaged and thinking about marketing a different way their relationship to marketing will improve and then they’ll be able to really expand. I think that’s the thing, I think there’s a relationship problem with marketing that they don’t understand, you know, the buyer’s journey and where marketing plays in that journey in the front end and in the back end and understanding that I think will help a lot of people favourite chapter at all in the new one, I’m sorry, what was that favourite chapter?

Oh that’s a good question. I think one of my favourite chapters is the foundation setting, the foundation that I think a lot of folks don’t do when they’re getting ready to start their marketing process. And so I love talking about the setting the foundation and the one question you have to ask in order to help you say, you know, I’m going to get from here to there because I always think about it like you’re planning a trip, right? There’s two aspects, there’s number one, the realisation that hey, I want to go on a trip, I want to go to Florida Disney, right? So you know that, but now you have to say okay if I go to Florida, do I want to fly, do I want to draw, you know, it’s helping that foundation. So this way, once you say okay, these are the parameters of my trip now. Now I start planning, which is, you know, I’m going to define it, I’m going to design it and I’m going to deploy it, you can do really three D three marketing approach for anything.

So I love that foundational chapter a lot because I think it’ll I think it’ll help people get started any misconceptions about what you do at all misconceptions. yeah, I think I think that there’s the misconception, there’s a few but the misconception is that marketing is a thing and not a process and if you think about the process it’s gonna take too long because a lot of people, you know, when I say, oh you have, you know, build a strategy before you go on there, like oh that’s going to take too long, we don’t have time. And I always say that time is relative and marketing in terms of you don’t have to take a month, you can think of a week or two days to figure out, you know what it is that you want to do. So I think the misconception is that planning a strategy will slow you down but actually in the end it will actually accelerate what you do because you’re sure, you know, you know which path you’re going to take, you know, what tools you’re going to use, you know why you’re doing what you’re doing to affect the business goals and then you can go forward, you know, and it keeps you from falling off your lane.

I think the other misconception is how sales and marketing should work many times sales and marketing are speaking different languages, there are different they have different dictionaries and then they, and suddenly at the end we’re saying, well why don’t they speak the same way, why are they at odds and sales and marketing, I always say are in a relay race? And if you’re training for a relay race, you can’t just train the first leg and the last leg and not train people how to hand off the baton. Everybody is part of the same team, You can have sales, you know, working on sales with the sales manager and marketing, working with a marketing manager, but there has to be the same language, the same understanding of the goals, the same understanding of what a lead versus an opportunity.

You know, that’s one of the biggest challenges is the language problem. And once you get sales and marketing thinking as a team as opposed to adversaries, then you really have a great marketing a process. Does that mean that you when people hire you from marketing, you’re also talking to sales as well? Yes, I like to do that as well. Sometimes it’s easier in some organisations and other, it depends on their established history, but I always, the first thing I always try to do is connect with sales. So this way we’re talking and we’re engaging and we’re understanding each other. So this way, you know, we’re on the same page and if we’re on the same page, it makes everything infinitely easier and then you understand what their goals are because a lot of times they’ll say, well marketing needs to get more leads, but if the net is being cast too wide, then you’re saying, do you want marketing then to become someone who follows up on those leads that they make the initial contact post the promoter.

So these things have to be kind of worked out. And so this way everybody’s on the same page and you can say well or let’s keep marketing super focused, super. Um, um, uh, like laser pointed on one particular project at a time. And so this way, you know, we can really get those quality leads. Like I mentioned before, if you’re speaking to too many people, it’s almost impossible that every lead that comes in is going to be hot. It’s going to be people that are just, you know, kicking tires learning, trying to get a little bit more information. So back to your analogy for a moment about going to Florida Disney, Florida being the end goal. can you give me an example of what’s the, do we say, the marketing equivalent of that or the goal equivalent of that for a business? Sure. So, um, like I mentioned before. Um, so let’s say the client says, I want to sell more to the client, our client base so that I want to sell more to our client base.

The marketing then says, okay, great. We know that the selling more to the client base is the end goal, but let’s refine that um, a little bit. Do we want all clients? Do we want to say clients that are what clients are most in jeopardy or what clients do we feel would be the ones that are more receptive to Upsell. So it’s refining that’s the foundational part saying, okay not only do I want to go to Florida, I actually want to go to Orlando Florida. That’s right. You know what I mean? So Florida is the state right? So but marketing says okay let’s refine that. Let’s not go to just Florida because that’s a big state. Let’s go to Orlando more specifically, let’s go to the Magic Kingdom more specifically let’s go to the animal kingdom within that. So now you know that’s what you want. So now you know what tickets to buy. So but let’s get back to marketing. But now you’re saying now that I know what clients group, I want to focus on what message is that?

So if its clients that are coming to the end of their contract, you’re gonna speak differently to them than clients that are just coming in. That’s two different messages. You can say oh I want to speak to both. Okay great. Let’s make two different promotions. Once focused on clients that have a contract that’s ending, What would we say to them? It’s so different because nothing is more insulting to a client if you talk to them and you’re not talking to them in a way that makes sense to them. You can’t talk to a client, like they’re brand new customer if they’ve been with you for 20 years, they’re like, who do they even know me? So you have to make sure that you’re understanding that and that’s what marketing and that’s what this approach does. It helps get very specific. So this way you can create the right message and the right promotion. So this way you can get the right outcome back. Yeah. I think the great answer by the way, and the reason I asked that question is because the difference between your explanation and perhaps what you mentioned earlier what people’s interpretation of marketing that it’s just clicks.

The difference between those two is quite big. Can I ask what your goals are, my goals, my goals are to continue to help healthcare organisations in their marketing efforts. I also, my goal is to share my methodology with more people through educational courses and a book. And it’s just really helping people really get a better relationship with marketing by understanding how it really helps. And I think when you have a better relationship with marketing, it becomes less of your sales and marketing work together. There’s less a professorial, you know, headbutting because you understand what it does and you understand what you need to do to get the most out of marketing. So it’s just helping people understand that I’m very excited about that, I’m very passionate about it and I think I I’ve helped many people and I think I can help more the courses that to be completed or is that on the way?

Yeah, it’s on the way, it’s getting that I’m doing the book and the course at the same time a little bit busy then I yeah I stay busy, I stay busy. Is there anything that I should have asked you about today? Let’s think should have asked. No, I think you hit everything. I think that this is a great conversation, I love enlightening people about a different way to think about marketing. so I think we’ve hit all the marks and I really appreciated this conversation and allowed me to talk about my three D strategic marketing solution, so that’s good to hear. Have you got any closing thoughts? My closing thought is I want organisations to change their mindset about marketing and that it’s a team sport with sales and that when you work together in a way that you understand that you are, there are a lot of hand offs and that marketing is a strategy and there’s a process behind it.

I think you’ll find that your relationship with marketing and the outcomes you get will be better. Great point. If someone wants to read a book or buy the course or hire you, where do they go? Well to hire me or to get some information about me, you can go to my website at or on LinkedIn. I’m there. I’m under Catherine Valyi. There’s not too many of those in the world. So you’ll find me my book, you’ll find on Amazon. If you search for Catherine variety, I’ll pop up and you’ll see all the books and journals. so whether you want to learn about women with dynamic purpose or you’re really wants to expand your journaling experience, you can get my books there and then eventually my four let me get the right name. Four steps to transform your B two B marketing strategy book will be soon. So you have to let me know when it’s out and share something and congratulations on being an author and also for being a great guest, Cat.

Thank you very much. Thank you. It’s a pleasure.