Content Marketing

Value-First Marketing & Why It’s Important to Make an Emotional Connection With Your Customers (ft. Jeremiah Allen)

by Ezra Firestone

By Ezra Firestone & Jeremiah Allen | September 22, 2021

“It was better than Black Friday through Cyber Monday for them last year, and all they did was give away something that would bless peoples’ lives.”

– Jeremiah Allen | Owner, Fat Bullfrog Agency



Few people understand the ins and outs of growing a digital brand better than Jeremiah Allen.

Jeremiah has been in the digital marketing game since 1997 (way, way before it was cool), and he now specializes in driving growth for small-to-medium sized ecommerce companies.

In addition to running an agency, Fat Bullfrog, he also owns and operates several successful ecommerce brands, which means Jeremiah gets to test strategies and analyze data across a ton of different markets.

He’s also one of the most engaged members of Blue Ribbon Mastermind — always asking insightful questions and sharing what’s working for him and his clients.

In this clip from his session at Blue Ribbon Live in Miami, Jeremiah explains:

  • Why your business is about so much more than just the product you sell
  • The importance of making an emotional connection with your audience
  • Why marketers should be selling “transformation”
  • 2 success stories from Jeremiah’s clients using value-first marketing

Features Vs. Benefits: What is Your Product Really?

When trying to sell a product, too many marketers focus on the physical item itself:

What size is it? How much does it weigh? What different components does it have?

These are the product’s features, and while they might be an important part of it, Jeremiah Allen would argue the real value of the product lies in the benefits it provides:

“Remembering what you’re actually selling: you might be selling happiness, you might be selling health, you might be selling spirituality, right?

Whatever you’re selling, chances are your actual product is not a thing that gets shipped in the mail. Your actual product is an emotion, and the way that you sell an emotion is by making an emotional connection with somebody.”

“Serve the World Unselfishly and Profit”

So how do you make an emotional connection with your audience?

If you want an example, look no further than Bernardo Faria, one of Jeremiah’s clients and another member of Blue Ribbon.

“He’s a five-time world champion, a Brazilian jiu-jitsu dude. He’s amazing. He runs a site called bjjfanatics.com that sells informational products in Brazilian jiu-jitsu…

When COVID hit last year, Bernardo was struck by the fact that jiu-jitsu practitioners all over the world could no longer go to their schools…”

So what did Bernardo do? He used Facebook to reach out to his community to help.

“He basically told people, ‘Hey, I’m so sorry to hear about what’s happening, you can’t study, you can’t go and practice jiu-jitsu. I wanna be able to give you that.’

And so he literally gave… He posted a coupon to get one of his courses totally for free. And he did this six weeks in a row. Through this, what happened is he got hundreds of thousands of people to come and become a customer.”

Keep in mind: this act of generosity didn’t have a clear upside for the business. Sure, he gained hundreds of thousands of new customers, but they were free customers and Bernardo had no real plan for monetizing them.

Fortunately, when you — as the Smart Marketer tagline goes — “Serve the World Unselfishly”, it tends to bring you profit. And that’s what happened for Bernardo.

“They bought something for nothing, but hundreds of thousands of people in the last year or so since that, those people have generated $3.4 million in revenue. All because he identified something he could give them that didn’t cost him much and he could give it away.

And he gave it to them to better their lives, to improve their lives, to transform their lives.

How Jeremiah’s Clients Beat Their Black Friday Results with a Value-First Approach

Jeremiah has been working with another group from Blue Ribbon: Frank and Nicky of The Ohm Store. They sell singing bowls and other products in the mindfulness space.

When Jeremiah took them on as clients, he didn’t just want to see how they could sell more products; he wanted to see how they could transform people’s lives.

“They have an ambassador who is a breathwork coach and consultant…

So, they convinced her to do an hour-long webinar… It filled up within minutes. They had to go and upgrade their Zoom account to be able to do more webinars… Tons of people attended it. Everybody loved it.”

Again, they wanted to provide value to their community even though they didn’t have a clear plan to monetize that attention. And again, the value they provided turned into sales.

“And what’s interesting is with every single email where we were announcing this — sales, sales, tons of sales. Zero pitch, zero pitch. Hey, here’s a breathwork webinar for you. And people are like, ‘Oh, yeah. I need breathwork, I better go buy singing bowls.’

But just a true attempt to enhance people’s experience on the planet, to transform their lives, this set of emails that ran from… They were probably about six, four before the event and I think two after the event giving people the video.

People rushed to buy. It was better than Black Friday through Cyber Monday for them last year, and all they did was give away something that would bless peoples’ lives.”

And for more content on value-first marketing, check out this blog post from yet another Blue Ribbon member, Anthony Mink:

How to Master the Game of Adding Value (w/ Anthony Mink)

That’s it, y’all. Thanks for reading!


Jeremiah Allen has been driving growth for small-to-medium sized ecommerce companies since 1997, and through his agency Fat Bullfrog, he’s made hundreds of company founders incredibly, stupidly wealthy.

While he still enjoys client work, in 2017 he began acquiring and building his own ecommerce brands.

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