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Jason OgdenJason Ogden is the President and Partner at Syrup, a marketing agency specializing in fostering revenue and maturity for B2B companies. With a robust background in finance and operations, Jason spearheads revenue-generating initiatives, account services, and financial operations at Syrup. Prior to his role at Syrup, Jason served as the Director of Finance at Codesmith Development, where he established core financial and accounting practices and managed various financial functions, including reporting, forecasting, and cash requirements. A graduate of The University of Iowa Tippie College of Business, Jason brings a wealth of expertise in economics to his endeavors.

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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Jason Ogden explains the services that Syrup offers
  • Methods to create a successful brand strategy
  • How does Syrup differentiate itself in the web development industry?
  • Jason shares how companies can effectively balance their marketing budget
  • Measuring the success of marketing initiatives and campaigns
  • What role does customer feedback play in shaping a marketing strategy?

In this episode…

Crafting a winning marketing strategy is the cornerstone of business success in today’s competitive landscape. It involves meticulous planning, creative execution, and a deep understanding of target audiences. How can your business leverage innovative approaches to stand out and captivate your audience in the ever-evolving digital marketplace?

B2B marketing expert Jason Ogden explores the importance of having a clear brand strategy, emphasizing the need for strategic planning over mere aesthetic appeal. This underscores the role of technology as a tool rather than a standalone solution. With this approach, organizations are less likely to adopt technology without clear objectives or strategies in place. Jason also explains the ethical considerations and potential of modern data and AI in shaping marketing strategies. To propel your business forward with marketing, ensure a strategic focus, harness technology wisely, and strike a balance between immediate gains and long-term capability building.

In this episode of the Top Business Leaders Show, Rise25’s Chad Franzen sits down with Jason Ogden, the President and Partner at Syrup, to talk about crafting a winning marketing strategy. Jason discusses creating a successful brand strategy, how companies can effectively balance their marketing budget, and how to measure the success of marketing initiatives.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

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Episode Transcript

Chad Franzen 0:03

Chad Franzen here co-host of The Top Business Leaders Show, where we feature entrepreneurs and top leaders in the business world. This episode is brought to you by Rise25. We help b2b businesses reach their dream relationships, connect with more clients, referrals and strategic partnerships and get ROI through done for you podcasts. If you have a b2b business and want to build great relationships, there’s no better way than to do it than to profile the people and companies you admire on your own podcast. To learn more, go to or email us at support at My guest today is Jason Ogden, president and partner at Syrup, a marketing agency which grows b2b companies in revenue and maturity. At Syrup, Jason leads revenue generating activities and Account Services and directs financial operations. He is also a husband, a father of two daughters, and his specialties are people and numbers. Jason, great to have you today. How are you?

Jason Ogden 0:57

Hey, I’m doing great. Thanks a lot. Yeah, I’m really looking forward to being on.

Chad Franzen 1:01

Yeah, great to have you. Thanks so much. Hey, so just tell me a little bit more about Syrup. And what do you guys do there?

Jason Ogden 1:09

Yeah, we are a b2b agency. As you mentioned, we put together a variety of not just capabilities, but we engineered a model specifically for the needs of b2b companies. We do a lot of the same tactical things that b2c marketers do. But they have to be done and packaged and organized and executed in a very different way. And based on these different ways, we’ve ordered, organized a holistic model that focuses not only on bringing new opportunities into the top of the funnel, either through direct customer marketing, but also through events and partners, as well as on the bottom of the funnel, we focus on retention and expansion of existing revenue for our clients.

Chad Franzen 1:59

What, what brought you to syrup from your you’ve been there for I believe, more than 10 years now, what, what brought you to syrup from your previous role at eyespeak where you were Chief operator?

Jason Ogden 2:09

Yeah. So later this year, we will hit the 10 year mark. Okay. And 10 years ago, at that point, we took eyespeak, which was a creative agency that did messaging positioning, creative marketing, websites and collateral, a very project oriented company. And we put it together with a two year old marketing services startup at that point. And that was called Syrup, we took that name going forward. And what brought me forward was having worked at eyespeak for several years, and really understanding the marketplace. New needs over this past decade and beyond work are changing quickly. And internal teams were going to have a really hard time keeping up with the pace of change, the addition of technical expertise, and just a really elevated sense of buyer expectations. So our thesis was we’re going to put a business together to address those needs. And for me, that was compelling. And that’s why I’m the head.

Chad Franzen 3:18

Yeah, what is kind of, you know, just in general kind of inspired you to focus on you know, marketing strategies to drive business growth.

Jason Ogden 3:28

Yeah, so on a purely personal level. I really like b2b Because so much of it is relational and service oriented, versus physical goods and transaction oriented we all do in our everyday lives. I personally, like that aspect of it professionally, might be part of our thesis as it’s just an underserved market. There are a lot of marketing agencies out there, they tend to skew a little heavier B2C. And in our local economy here in Atlanta, most of the big name companies that have gone on to make a name for themselves or that exist in the startup ecosphere, or even in the middle market, skew, pretty heavily b2b. So that’s reflective of our local marketplace. So put the personal side together, but the marketing market opportunity together and she made sense.

Chad Franzen 4:29

I know it’s Syrup. I was looking at your website. So one of the services you offer is brand strategy. Can you give me kind of an overview of maybe some successful components or some components of successful brand strategy?

Jason Ogden 4:43

Yeah, I think you really have to look at it kind of across two different boxes. The first is an increase in potency of how you talk about your business. Now that could be the message that you use, a marketing asset. That could be the way that sales people talk about the business. But however it is it, it gets elevated through the brand strategy exercise. And then the other axis is oftentimes an issue that clients are aware of walking in the door, which is consistency. They understand that buyers are turned off, when I look on LinkedIn, I look down a website and talk to a person. And it’s all three completely different disjointed conversations. It doesn’t exactly instill confidence. So on the one hand, you have sort of potency and quality of message. And on the other axis, you kind of have consistency across the whole sales and marketing ecosystem.

Chad Franzen 5:46

Yeah, you mentioned consistency. I know another service that you guys provide is a visual identity. How do you kind of develop a comprehensive visual identity system that goes beyond just a logo and you ensure consistency and effectiveness across all branded assets?

Jason Ogden 6:04

Yeah, so the development part of your question really flows from the first offering, which is the brand strategy. I think there’s probably the most confusion around the topic of brand in the marketplace of any of the things that we talked to prospects or strategic partners about. And people have their own kind of angle on what it is and what it means. And the digital identity side, that lends itself to sort of a belief that it’s an art project, or that it’s just a function of having unusually talented designers, and creatives, when, in fact, to your point to do it well, to create something compelling and interesting, that resonates. It’s got to be strategic. And the strategy comes from what’s in the brand strategy, how you talk about your business, who your target audience is, what they need from you, where you communicate with them, etc. So that’s how you drive the quality part of the design creative. And then, as far as consistency, we provide at the end of an engagement, it’s typically somewhere between a 40 to 60 page guidelines document that covers every application in print and digital use. So that down the road, week two, year three, when you’re buying assets from outside vendors, there’s already criteria around this is how it’s to be used at trade shows on printed assets on video display. And here’s how it’s not supposed to be. And as long as clients adhere to the guidelines, consistency will be a byproduct.

Chad Franzen 7:51

I know web development is another one of your services. In what ways would you say maybe Syrup differentiates itself in the web development industry?

Jason Ogden 8:02

Yeah, yeah. So that is a really good question. Most of the existing clients that we have, they walk in the door with some version of a templated, or proprietary theme that their agencies have built for them. So basically, we’re different in the sense that we start with continuity content throughout the entire site. So that’s written words, calls to action site architecture. And from there we design. And then rather than trying to dump all of that into a template or a theme, we create custom themes to wrap around the design of the specific site. To take it a bit further, because 75% of our business is marketing services. We do all of the things big and small, on the backside, or under the hood, so to speak, that we would want to inherit, if we were to inherit a site. So think SEO, fake integration with marketing, stack tools, deep, deep customization of the WordPress CMS, which is something that most of our competitors don’t take the time to do. The idea there is we want it not only to perform as a marketing act, but we want to make sure that the end users can make whatever changes they need to do quickly and easily. So I’d say those things.

Chad Franzen 9:32

Right. Great. I was checking out one of your recent blogs, you really provide some great thought leadership there on your website, you wrote that marketing budgets and performance are closely intertwined. Can you kind of elaborate on how companies can effectively balance their marketing budget to achieve optimal performance?

Jason Ogden 9:53

Well, optimal performance, you know, it really starts with what you’re up to. Right or Are you in growth mode? Are you in survival mode over the trailing two years, the SAAS space, which is one of our core verticals, went from sort of using this term, loosely grown all costs kind of mindset. And then in early 2022, when conditions started tightening, it shifted completely. And they started for the first a lot of the first time in history, focusing on sustainability retention of existing clients. And it’s just extremely different how you approach it from a not just a budgetary standpoint, but what are you measuring, measuring? Wise, right. So in growth at all cost mode, you’re looking at things like web traffic and forum conversions, which are, you know, always on the table. But we saw a huge shift during this trailing two year period towards not just a focus on existing customers, that bottom of the funnel piece we talked about earlier, but also on partner led motions. So how can I market to my strategic partners for the benefit of getting new business that way versus trying to market direct retaining customers?

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