Meera Clark, Principal at Redpoint Ventures, is wholeheartedly investing in content — for Redpoint, for portfolio companies, and for herself.
For context, Redpoint is a venture capital fund with a multi-decade track record of backing great entrepreneurs at the earliest stages of company formation. The fund’s investments range from Snowflake and Stripe to Twilio and Whatnot.
We sat down with Meera for a two-part deep dive. In part two, we dove into topics like:
- How social proof drives value across a company’s lifecycle
- How content generates evergreen value by building networks and trust
- How to balance the goals of personal versus company content
“Companies need to continue to invest in content over time to build and maintain credibility — with customers, employers, and investors.”
The Compounding Value of Investing in Social Proof
When building trust, companies can leverage their network and other avenues for social proof to simultaneously build content engines and partnerships.
This also amplifies the message and reach of your marketing.
By encompassing articles, Twitter threads, videos, and more, the Redpoint team defines content as a way companies can stay top of mind throughout a buyer’s journey.
By viewing these touchpoints not as transactional but instead as a relationship-building exercise, they offer a much richer breadth of formats and messaging.
Meera has seen an increasing number of funds investing in initiatives to support portfolio companies by expanding similar partnerships and networks.
For instance, firms like A16Z and Redpoint itself (which has two team members specifically focused on this area) have invested heavily in building out influential network effects.
On the other end of the equation, an increasing number of companies are leaning on their investors to make these sorts of intros.
How Venture Firms Benefit from Content
According to Meera, Redpoint has doubled down on content over the past several quarters.
They’ve brought on Josh Machiz, the former Chief Digital Officer of Nasdaq, to spearhead content efforts, spanning TikTok memes to long-form content from investors. Josh is complimented by Rashad Assir, whom you might know from his viral TikToks.
The goal, again, has been to remain top of mind at all times for founders and early-stage investors alike as they evaluate future funders for their portfolio companies.
As for tactical plays, Redpoint’s content takes a drip campaign approach, aiming to be wherever their target audiences are at any given time.
“Our content can do anything from giving people data they might need for a crucial decision to making them laugh when they’re just having a bad day.”
The Multiple Layers of Content’s ROI
Companies easily grasp paid marketing because they can put $5,000 into a campaign and see a measurable return the next day (i.e., X number of clicks and Y number of conversions).
This is also easier to scale up: If they ramp up to $20,000 in paid spend, they can project certain returns. So what’s the equivalent for projecting returns on organic channels?
When it comes to organic, top-of-mind content, Meera affirms that ROAS isn’t always quantifiable. However, it’s shown to drive value across a host of functions, such as:
- Connections — To investors, operators, founders, and anyone else who can advise and fuel your growth trajectory
- Employee leads — Most early-stage companies are either made and scaled by great first hires — or fail since they lack high-quality employees.
- Direct customer leads — You can generate immediate, short-term leads or longer-term interest (i.e., if an operator has been following your content for a few months).
Whatever metric impacts you’re hoping to drive, Meera sees content as a continuous investment, rather than a spiky one. In other words:
It’s something you invest in before you need it, so it’s there when you need it most.
“Invest in content the same way that you invest in a relationship. It’s not a one-and-done investment, but much more of a long-term flywheel that you're building.”
The Right Mindsets to Maximize Returns on Content
Meera personally approaches investing in content with a 2-to-4-quarter lead time in terms of when a company will really see maximal returns.
Content requires frequent experimentation and iterations (especially early on), because few creators strike gold on their first try. You’ll simply have to find your footing and your voice.
It’s a balancing act between:
- Remaining open-minded and moving where the market wants you
- Staying true to your company values, mission, brand identity, ICP, and more
“The goal of content isn’t only to drive buyers, but also partners, investors, and employees — use cases that are hard to explain if people just want business.”