Interview with MobileMonkey and Wordstream Founder Larry Kim

This month in Champ Life Series we have one of the most recognizable faces in digital marketing, Larry Kim. 

Started WordStream as a “one-man show”, today it is considered as the world’s most significant PPC management service. He is also the CEO of MobileMonkey, a chatbot service.

With four award-winning books under his belt, he is also top columnists for & ranked in top 10 on most popular contributors to

Best known for his superficial content marketing strategies, with a slight obsession for unicorns, Larry is the one who revived the term “Unicorn Marketing.”

Social Champ is honored to have this digital marketing legend onboard on this series! Get into your favorite reading seat and buckle up, coz this interview will make you believe that unicorns are real!
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Entrepreneurial Journey


How did all of it begin? Started as a sole proprietor, with WordStream back in 2008, what were the things you were passionate about?

I’m motivated by a desire to help people grow their businesses, create job opportunities and make things that help others.

I tell people to set bold and even somewhat delusional goals. At WordStream I learned that my goals weren’t big enough because we were outperforming our own goals.

You can surprise yourself at what amazing things you can do.

In 2017, you started AI mobile chatbot space, MobileMonkey. What inspired you to step into the AI business?

More people use chat than social networks and yet less than 1% of businesses are using technologies to reach customers with messaging.

I wanted to give businesses the ability to build chatbots without crazy development costs and leverage AI and automation for chat marketing.

Marketers who invest in Messenger marketing while it’s still early can gain leverage from being the first on a new channel.

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Larry Kim as a keynote speaker at SMX Munich

How is your entrepreneurial journey so far? and what made you enjoy it?

I’m really happy with WordStream’s success.
I started WordStream by myself in a Panera Bread and now it’s made up of over 300 people, with tens of thousands of customers, managing over a billion dollars of ad spend.

Not to mention, it would have been pretty embarrassing if I didn’t have a successful outcome since I’ve spent the last decade teaching people how to grow their business.

What’s ahead is also exciting. In the next 3-5 years, I see 30-40% of businesses adopting messaging as the infrastructure of their marketing.

People actually prefer messaging to email, and yet all of the business communications is dependent on email.
MobileMonkey is reimagining the entire marketing stack built on messaging.

Let’s Talk About Unicorns!

We’ve seen you obsess over unicorns on the Internet.

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Larry Kim’s New Year Wish on Twitter

Why unicorns? What do unicorns have to do with digital marketing?

How does the DONKEY VS UNICORN analogy help with marketing?

Unicorns are a metaphor for rare and remarkable marketing campaigns and channels — the top 1-3% that provides 60% of the results.

Donkeys are everything else. Most marketers suffer from “delusional donkey syndrome” where everything is equally fantastic or important.

Marketers who don’t understand the difference between average campaigns and remarkable unicorn campaigns can’t be effective at producing remarkable stuff.

Larry Kim believes in “Focusing on the quality, not the quantity is a dumb cliché.”

Many digital marketers find it a little contentious. Can you please elaborate your thoughts for our audience?

No one’s intentionally trying to create bad quality stuff.
And there are so many different definitions of quality, like quality is a checklist where you have to check the box — hit word count, including images, etc. Yet most marketing efforts go nowhere.
A lot of times my best blog posts written in less than an hour get millions of views.

“We should be measuring the outcomes, not the input.”

Realign the definition of quality with the algorithms that surface content. That has everything to do with click-through rates.

Machine learning algorithms surface the stuff that they believe is popular, is it getting an unusually high click-through rate relative to the expected click-through rate.

What’s your advice to all the new fellows out there for content strategy in 2019?

Whenever there are new marketing channels I always try to jump on them early.
With any new social media channel or new marketing channel, it’s never going to be easier to get traction and maintain that traction than early on.
Go where your personal strengths are, whether that’s video, design or text.

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See you later, Unicorns.

And add Facebook Messenger marketing into your content strategy for 2019. Messages have 4-10x higher engagement than email.

Social Media Marketing

Tips & Hacks Briefly Covered with Larry Kim.

According to Larry Kim, what are the killer hacks to increase social media engagement?

Unicorns are very powerful and they’re also very rare. What this means is there’s something about the content that you’ve created that’s very catchy.

People want to comment on it, they want to share it, they want to click on it and they want to learn more.
The mistake marketers make is that they don’t realize how valuable that is.

They might say, hooray, we got a great social post. What’s next? Let’s look at the content calendar.

What you should do is stop everything you’re doing in marketing. When there’s not enough time and resources to do everything, you have to prioritize making unicorn babies over any other marketing campaigns.
If you have a unicorn that’s doing well, it’s going to do well in other channels and other formats.

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Larry Kim’s Blasting Twitter with his Unicorn Marketing Strategies.

How do you manage time on social media? Do you believe in being omnipresent when it comes to social media marketing?

Marketers should cut their donkey channels that aren’t getting high engagement.
They can also use Social Champ to post simultaneously on all channels.
If you do this, you can maintain multiple platforms without a ton of additional effort.

Since you are already working on chatbots, what do you think about social media automation tools?

How do you think that a social media automation tool like Social Champ can help social media managers in 2019?

Automation and scheduling are important for marketers since it saves time and creates efficiency so you can focus on finding more unicorns.

Since you can publish to all your social channels from Social Champ marketers can get more mileage out of their content.
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Lastly, we would love to know the advice that stuck by you in your epic journey of entrepreneurship.

Be great at your specific thing, but don’t rush it!

Our readers would be honored to get advice on social media marketing from the digital marketing legend Larry Kim.

Be a Unicorn in a Sea of Donkeys!

Thank you for your time.
It was an honor to have Larry Kim onboard with Social Champ. 🙂 We hope our readers got to learn something new from this interview! Do let us know your thoughts unicorn marketing & how do you plan to get rid of “delusional donkey syndrome”?

May the unicorns be ever in your favor! *Fingers Crossed*

Picture of Saadiya Munir

Saadiya Munir

I'm part of #ChampFam as a Senior Content Strategist. Computer Science graduate who hates to code. Introverted. Mostly hungry or sleepy. Writing a novel is always on my bucket list, and eventually, when I'm done with all the movies on my watch-list and tasks on my to-do list, I'll get to it. Twitter handle: @munirsaadiya

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