Artwork for podcast Your Dream Business
How to post content that drives results with Dennis Yu
Episode 2104th October 2021 • Your Dream Business • Teresa Heath-Wareing
00:00:00 00:44:41

Share Episode


Today’s episode of the podcast is an interview with Dennis Yu who built the analytics at Yahoo Search Engine 27 years ago! Dennis has gone from being a search engine engineer to a sales and marketing guru, bringing a data driven approach to the industry. We talk all about using social media analytics to understand what is performing well, what you should post on social media, where you rank and how to build a personal brand.  


  • You need to separate your content into 4 components – Strategy brief, asset production, distribution and amplification.
  • Amplify what is already working and make it better – be good at market research and listening.
  • Think about what people are coming to you for – what do they know you for?
  • Ask your audience what they want to see – this will give you an idea of what to talk about.
  • Look at your analytics to see what is performing best.
  • Don’t try to do everything on social media, focus on the areas you want to amplify.
  • The algorithm wants to put good content in front of users so they spend more time on each platform.
  • The algorithm on every platform is exactly the same!
  • Give advice/tips on social media when you are selling and give sneak peeks/free samples.
  • Add links to comments rather than in posts.
  • 3 How, 3 Why and 3 What – ads.


Amplify the stuff that already works!


  • An introduction to Dennis 02:29
  • How marketing has changed 03:49
  • Building a personal brand 08:28
  • How to analyse your content 13:47
  • How the algorithm works 21:03
  • How to sell on social media 29:15
  • Paid traffic 37:06




Steps you need to create a personal brand  


Hello, and welcome to this week's episode of the podcast. How's things? So this week I'm jumping straight in with the interview. Now I interviewed the lovely Dennis Yu on the podcast, and it was a great interview. We talked all about using sort of the analytics and your social media, what to look at, how to know what's a good post, what you should post, where you rank, how to build a personal brand. There was so much good stuff. Now during the interview Dennis shared his screen with me and I'm laughing cause obviously it's podcast, uh, which was lovely and brilliant because it really helped me understand. So what I've done in the show notes is I've put a screenshot of one of the things he's talking about, which is actually really, really useful. So he talks about the kind of steps that you need in order to create a personal brand. And one thing that was really interesting, and I think this would work generally with business. But one thing that was really interesting is he has content first. And the third thing he has is distribution, where often, I don't know about you. But often we think of the distribution before the content. So we think about, 'oh, I need to do an Instagram story. What am I going to do?' Rather than thinking, 'I need to create some content, where am I going to put it?' So I thought that was really, really fascinating. He also did a critique of some of my stuff, which obviously, you know, it was really good for me on the, on the interview. But he gave so much value and I know you're totally going to get so much good stuff out of this. So I don't want to delay anymore. I'm going to hand you over to the interview. So I am really excited that today I get to bring to the podcast, the very lovely Dennis Yu. Dennis, how are you doing? Dennis: Good, Teresa. Teresa: My honor, honestly, I'm really, really excited to have you on. So Dennis I'm sure my audience know who you are, but just in case they haven't heard of you before, would you mind telling them who you are and how you got to doing what you do today? Dennis: I'm happy too Teresa. I'm Dennis Yu and I built the analytics at Yahoo search engine. 20 some years ago. And you know, from our friends, Michael Stelzner, Social Media Examiner, Amy Porterfield, we've done a lot of stuff in the world of social. So I've gone from being a search engine engineer to being kind of a sales and marketing ish sort of person. And I bring a data-driven approach into driving relationships and sales and conversion and data and traffic and all that kind of stuff. So I'm like your friendly math guy that is able to get under the hood of your campaigns, of your website or your social media and figure out what exactly you need to do to be able to drive more traffic and sales and from more of a math algorithm, database guy to learning about personal branding. So can you imagine someone who's an auto mechanic becoming an artist. That's sort of like my journey. Teresa: Well, my husband is actually an aircraft engineer. So when I think when you're an engineer, you have a certain brain. You have one of these brains that you can just look at instructions or look at something and you can just figure it out. And I, that to jump from doing what you did to doing kind of more the personal brand stuff is a really big jump. But how do you undergo about Yahoo doing the stuff then? Dennis: Just over 20 years ago. Teresa: Like when I think back 20 years, you know, that was like, so early on. The stuff that you must've been doing and learning about. And you know, you were right at the beginning or did it feel like that? Dennis: Well, even 10 years before that I built some of my first websites. So I've been building websites for over 30 years, but the internet shifted because back then it was just websites. And now you have all these apps. Back then you didn't have, I mean, the phone was really just to make phone calls. The texting was only barely coming on. You didn't have video, you didn't have apps. You didn't have all this mobile stuff going on back then. The phone was actually a phone for talking, or if you're lucky to have a mobile phone, it was a the Motorola one that's in the car. You know, the, the one that's like a suitcase. Oh like that, that's what mobile was. And if someone had a mobile and they were carrying around this gigantic heavy luggage that had a phone, you thought they must've been a really important business person, right. To be able to use a phone. Nowadays phone is this thing here. We don't even use it to make phone calls. We've 90% of what we use it for is social media and texting, and games and things like that. So I've had to adapt my journey for any of us that I'm over 40, but any of us of my generation, we know that a lot of this stuff is not native to us. And thus doing videos on social media or even taking a selfie is kind of a foreign, almost awkward kind of thing. So I've had to adapt and it's interesting working with other business owners, entrepreneurs, marketers like you on helping other people adapt to that. Teresa: Yeah, and it is interesting because I often talk about when I started, I did my degree 16, 17 years ago, and back then, none of this stuff existed. Like you said, we didn't use phones for that. We didn't have social media, we didn't have any of those things. And I used to work for big companies. I worked for Land Rover heading up their corporate marketing. And it was only businesses like that, that could afford to do marketing and suddenly and you must've seen this so closely given what you do. You know, when we talk specifically about things like SEO, suddenly the world just started to open up to everybody. Did you see that? Dennis: Yeah. The world of SEO was an engineering thing before because to rank on Google you had to have links, which means you have to have control over websites. So those people that control the ability to put links on websites that are linking to one another. And so it was a technical challenge. So to even have a website back then was to easily be able to rank because there were only a few thousand websites and now they're literally a trillion web pages that are competing. And because everybody is now an influencer, because anybody can say something on Twitter and potentially go viral. That creates a huge opportunity for us, but then we have to figure out what is it that we need to do to be able to track our audience so we can tap into the fact that there are now 4 billion people on the internet instead of just a couple hundred thousand. Teresa: Yeah. And I think that's often where only half the picture shown. So, you know, we'll talk about how amazing this is for smaller businesses for personal brands to get themselves out there because there's the social media and you don't need to be a huge, massive company or organization with a massive marketing budget. However, I think we almost make it sound like it's too easy. And then when people try and put themselves out there and they don't get seen, and they're not being picked up by search engines or their ads aren't landing or whatever, they then start to think something's really wrong. But the truth is it's, it's really open, but it's also not as easy as that. Is it? Dennis: Yeah, it's an oxymoron, isn't it? Because there are people have the dreams, especially as young adults that all you have to do is do a tweet and all of a sudden your viral and you have Lamborghinis and success, right? Teresa: Yeah. And I've got a 18 year old step son and an 11 year old daughter and they think that, you know, oh, 'Well I'll probably just be a YouTuber.' And it's, it's really interesting. Cause I can sit there and go 'Yeah, you could be, get totally be a YouTuber'. But also it's having that conversation of, do you know how hard you have to work to do that? Like, it's not as easy as just literally posted on YouTube. So what I'd love to talk about today for my audience and because I'm a little bit selfish and I want to know about this stuff as well. Is I want that talk around the kind of personal brand side of it and the kind of stuff in terms of. You, what can we do to, to one build a personal branding? And then how are we using these other things like SEO, like paid, like Facebook ads. Do you use nothing else? So I think let's just start generally around kind of like building a personal brand persona. Is it where? Dennis: Yeah. Yeah. So let me show you something that I literally just actually enabled screen sharing. If you could. Teresa: Yeah of course. Dennis: And I'm going to show you something very special. Just half an hour ago, I did a presentation for five or head 2000 people registered. So I literally just got off that to spend time with you Teresa and all of our friends here. So check this out and you see this screen here. Yeah. Content engine. So when we can divide our personal branding efforts into almost a factory line process, this is how we're going to win in spite of all these channels on TikTok and Snapchat and Twitter and all that, because those are distribution channels. That's the tealish color here. And then the asset production is video. So the main thing is when you tons and tons of video, which I'll show you in just a moment and what to do with that, but even proceeding that we need to have a strategy, which is our why. Right assignments and it start with why, 'Why do I stand for? What are my goals, content and targeting. Who's my audience. How do I resonate with them? What problem do I solve that I can document provably authoritatively so that other people then want to be able to buy products and services from me?' Most people who are solopreneurs as you, and I know where the smaller businesses, they don't really have clarity around that. Therefore they can't produce assets in the red column that tied back to that strategy. And then they can't distribute that across the website and email and social media. And you know billboards, you know, whatever the different channels are that we want to distribute it. And then into the orange, when we want to amplify that. So think of this as a progression, we call this the content engine where it's like taking raw material and then ending up with the finished product over here. So understanding our direction and the strategy, which is goals, content, and targeting to producing lots of video with our fans and our consumers and our friends and our clients and our employees and our partners and anyone in our community to then getting it out there. Most people, they confuse the distribution channel, they'll say, 'Wow, YouTube shorts. Did you know that one minute vertical videos are killer on YouTube?' Yes. I know that's a distribution channel. 'Did you know that you can do these TikToks?' Yes. That's a distribution channel, but you need to have the content to put into the distribution channel, which is in the red. And prior to that, you need to have a kind of theme and a strategy on what you're producing to then produce the content to then distribute it to then amplify it, which is on the ad site. And because people confuse all of these proponents, they mix all four of these components into one thing that it's like taking two things that you like, like maybe like chocolate milk and you like diet Coke or something like that. And you pour them together. That's nasty. Yeah, right. But think about Teresa and everybody, when you separate out your content engine into these four components, then if you're producing video in that red column, and then all of a sudden this new social network pops up or this new tactic or new landing page or a new tool or whatever it is, pops up, you're in great shape because you can just take the content you have and then repurpose it. So then it can live as eight second Snapchat videos, right? Yeah, you can reuse that you can take a webinar or podcast. Like w what you and I have right now and chop it up into articles. So we can start to rank on a website. Right. We can take a transcription of our conversation here and turn it into a series of articles. We can pull out 15 second snippets and turn them into Instagram stories. Right? Teresa: So can I ask you a question then? One thing. And it's so good that you've said this because it really sits with what I talk about. Right at the very beginning, your underneath a strategy brief, you've got goals, content and targeting. So like you said, it's the, why it's the, who, what you're doing for them. So if they get that bit wrong, the rest is done for. Dennis: Yeah it's an avalanche. Yeah. Teresa: So what would you say if you had to sum up very quickly. Cause I get that this is a big section, but what is, what kind of the some of the things that you can suggest that we can do to ensure we're getting that bit right? Dennis: That's a great question. You want to amplify what's already working and that means you have to be really good at market research. Really good at listening. So I'll show you. So now we are on your website right. Did you know that you ranked on 130 some keywords. You rank on your name, you rank on message marketing made simple. You rank on Dean Graziosi, fiancé, right? These are all these things that you rank on. A lot of the time it's going to be other people's names speaks of the podcast, but the membership guys you're promoting these guys. I can see me out a lot of friends that are in common, but if, you know, if at all you guys out there, you probably don't even know what your keywords are, but if you know, from your analytics. So if I go to Google analytics, I go to my Facebook analytics, or going to be Twitter analytics or LinkedIn analytics. And I come in, I see what are the keywords we come over in the list one here, here, I'll show you I'll show you a big website to show you we're not just making stuff up. The risk of showing big websites is the small people will say, oh, I can't do that because I don't have 5 million people on my website. Teresa: It's not about numbers per say, is it? It's about understanding the stats. Dennis: Yeah. All right. So here's one of our sites and we, I like to go to the source medium report. I don't want to go too technical, but just, just know that we're looking inside Google analytics and we'll go back the last year. Let's just say, and we've driven two and a half million dollars in the last year selling gift trees. So I'll just show you by the way, substitute your name, your brand, your products and services for here because this concept works universally. Don't think, oh, well this website sells gift trees. Where you plant the tree when a loved one dies. So it doesn't apply to me. It applies to every live. So just understand the principle, forget about what's actually being sold. So in this case, right, plant the tree when a loved one dies, right? Give trees all different kinds of trees that you can order. Right. And most people will think, okay, well I want to sell more gift trees or I have a new product and I have a lemon tree. Right. I have other variations of this, but let's think a little bit deeper. What is it that people are actually coming to me for. What I might think I know what they're thinking about. I might think I know better than them. I might want them to know me for something, but I have to start with what people actually know me for. What people actually, because I don't wanna amplify something that's already working. So check this out. Let's go to my Twitter for example, and I'll, I'll move fluidly between Twitter and Facebook and LinkedIn and Google analytics output. I'm going to show you it's the exact same principle. Yeah, right. In terms of personal branding and it is sort of an engineer's view of the world. So you'll just have to be kind to me on this. Okay. So I know that I'm known for the dollar a day approach, which is taking a piece of content and putting a dollar a day on Twitter, a dollar a day on Facebook. So I live it and I breathe it. Right. And you can see that here's a tweet that I made a few days ago and you can see a few thousand people saw it. People are engaging on it. Right. And I made, I've made a whole bunch of these little posts just minutes ago and I can see what what's resonating. Right? Simple little things like, 'Hey, can you help me get to 72,000 followers?' Or the different things I'm saying. And do you really know what it is? So you can literally ask your audience. So here I asked them yesterday, what platform do you want to learn the most about? Well, they don't really want to know as much about Facebook anymore. Okay. Well, if I know that I know what I should be talking about and not talking about. People really seem to be talking about Twitter and TikTok right now, at least for my audience. Then I can go a little bit further and go into my analytics and I can see of my top tweets. So here in the last 28 days, I've had 860,000 impressions. 40,000 people came to my profile. But what is it about my top tweets? Well, here's one. This is one where I'm saying congratulations to a friend that just launched her product. Hmm. Okay. Well, that's cool. Here's my top follower. Let's look at the...




More from YouTube