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They Ask You Answer vs. Demand Generation: What’s the Difference?

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Marketing strategies have evolved significantly in recent years, and two approaches that often stand at the forefront of discussions are They Ask, You Answer, and Demand Generation. 

In this blog, we'll dissect these two methodologies, exploring their unique characteristics, objectives, and key differentiators that set them apart in the ever-changing digital marketing landscape. 

Whether you're new to these concepts or looking to refine your marketing strategy, understanding the distinctions between They Ask, You Answer, and Demand Generation can help you navigate the path to marketing success.

So, let's dive in and unravel the differences that matter.

If you want more specifics on these two strategies, click below.

Keep reading to learn more about how these terms are related and the difference between the two.

Understanding They Ask, You Answer

They Ask, You Answer (or TAYA) is not just a catchy phrase; it's a content marketing philosophy that has gained significant traction. Started by Marcus Sheridan and utilized by his company IMPACT, this strategy begins with the obsession with understanding the answer to a straightforward question: “What is my customer thinking?” 

It is based on the idea that if your prospects ask questions, you must answer them openly and honestly….because educated prospects are happier, better customers. 

core idea TAYA

By providing valuable and transparent information, businesses can establish trust and position themselves as industry experts.

In a nutshell, TAYA focuses on creating content that answers your potential customer's questions, helping build meaningful relationships and drive organic traffic to your website. This strategy aligns well with inbound marketing principles and emphasizes educating and empowering your audience.

This methodology falls under the umbrella of demand generation, and while it is a vital component, it is just one part of the larger demand generation strategy.

Unpacking Demand Generation

Demand generation is a broad marketing strategy that aims to create and nurture customer interest in your product or service. It encompasses all of TAYA, but what sets it apart is it goes beyond just answering common questions—it includes various strategies for effective advertising (such as Google Guarantee, Local SEO, and social media management).

Demand generation centers on understanding consumer needs and the product or services you provide, intending to raise awareness about that product or service effectively. The ultimate goal is to convert this awareness into potential leads

This approach to sales and marketing helps you build relationships with your potential customers by getting them excited about your services or products.

For roofing businesses, demand generation is essential for several reasons such as:

  1. Building brand awareness: Demand generation activities, such as content marketing, social media engagement, and advertising, help put your brand in front of a wider audience. Creating awareness and visibility increases the chances of your brand being recognized and remembered in your industry. 
  2. Establishing thought leadership: Sharing valuable insights and expertise through demand generation content positions your business as an industry authority. When you consistently provide helpful information and solutions, you gain the trust of your audience and establish yourself as a thought leader in your field.
  3. Generating leads: Demand generation is a powerful tool for attracting potential customers and converting them into leads. By offering valuable content, engaging with your audience, and providing opportunities for interaction, you encourage individuals to express their interest in your products or services, ultimately driving lead generation.
  4. Increasing customer trust: Building trust is a crucial aspect of demand generation. When you consistently deliver quality content, address customer needs and concerns, and offer valuable solutions, you earn the trust of your audience. Trust is foundational for forming strong customer relationships and increasing their confidence in your brand.

demand generation focuses

Roofing businesses can attract and retain customers in a competitive market by implementing effective demand generation strategies.

Related: Demand Generation vs. Inbound Marketing for Roofing Companies 

Now that we understand what demand generation means for roofing businesses, let’s look at the differences between the two. 

The Key Differences

While both TAYA and demand generation share the common goal of attracting potential customers, they differ in their approach and focus:

  1. Content vs. Advertising: TAYA emphasizes creating educational and informative content that addresses customer queries. It relies on organic search traffic and building trust through content. In contrast, demand generation involves paid advertising and a more comprehensive range of marketing tactics to create brand awareness and generate leads.
  2. Reactive vs. Proactive: TAYA is a reactive strategy that aims to provide valuable answers to customer questions. It involves researching and understanding your target audience's pain points and concerns. Demand generation takes a proactive approach by identifying potential customers and creating awareness about your brand and offerings.
  3. Trust vs. Conversion: TAYA strongly emphasizes building trust and credibility with the audience. By providing valuable content, businesses can establish themselves as thought leaders and gain customer loyalty. Demand generation, on the other hand, focuses on driving conversions and nurturing leads through various marketing tactics.

The critical difference between demand generation and Marcus Sheridan's TAYA lies in their primary objectives and approaches:


Demand Generation’s primary objective is to create awareness, generate interest, and drive potential customers into the sales funnel. It focuses on building brand recognition and attracting leads.

TAYA primarily centers around educating and engaging potential customers by answering their specific questions and addressing their concerns. It aims to build trust and credibility by providing valuable content.

Content Focus

Demand Generation often utilizes a variety of content types to generate interest, including advertising, promotional content, and brand awareness campaigns. It may need to address specific customer queries in depth.

TAYA is highly content-focused on addressing customer questions comprehensively. It involves creating content that directly answers customer queries and provides valuable information.

Customer Engagement

Demand Generation seeks to engage customers but primarily focuses on driving leads and conversions, often through shorter-term, persuasive tactics.

TAYA strongly emphasizes building long-term customer relationships by delivering educational and informative content. It seeks to engage customers through educational content that addresses their specific needs.

Trust and Credibility

Demand Generation builds trust and credibility typically through branding and persuasive messaging.

TAYA aims to position the business as an authority and trustworthy source by providing honest, informative content.  Building trust and credibility is a fundamental aspect.

Sales Funnel Position

Demand Generation often operates at the top of the sales funnel, aiming to attract a broad audience and filter potential leads into the funnel.

TAYA content can be used at various sales funnel stages, from attracting prospects to nurturing and converting them into customers.

Demand generation focuses on creating awareness and generating leads through various marketing tactics. At the same time, They Ask, You Answer is an approach centered around content marketing, educating customers, and building trust by answering their questions and concerns. 

Both strategies can complement each other within an overall marketing strategy, but their primary goals and content approaches differ.

Now that we've explored the distinctions between these two strategies let's turn our attention to another approach that we believe is equally significant: ”Surround Sound.”

“Surround Sound” Strategy

"Surround Sound," a term coined by HubSpot, ensures that individuals can readily discover and place their trust in your business when they first hear about it. It starts with directing them to your website, which should be user-friendly and rich in information. 

Trust is paramount to this strategy since it influences customers’ decisions to choose your services. A positive experience can transform potential customers into new customers. The more you educate your potential customers, the greater the likelihood of converting leads into short and long-term referrals. 

Utilizing videos and valuable content can assist in this process. Additionally, it contributes to enhancing your SEO rankings. By accumulating more reviews and securing a prominent position in search results, you're on your way to success.

The idea is to have a presence and impact through various channels and touchpoints to ensure your message is heard and recognized from all directions, much like the experience of surround sound in audio systems. 

In marketing, this approach can involve combining online and offline channels such as social media, email marketing, content creation, in-person events, public relations, and more. The goal is to create a seamless and consistent brand experience for your audience, making it more likely for them to notice and remember your brand or message. 

Measuring the Success of They Ask, You Answer vs. Demand Generation

The good news is there's little difference when measuring the success factors between these two strategies.

TAYA focuses on answering questions, which can be measured by engagement and satisfaction metrics. At the same time, demand generation aims to create market awareness, measured by lead generation and brand visibility metrics. 

Let’s look at how the metrics are used to measure success.

Traffic Quality

TAYA emphasizes attracting high-quality, organic traffic by answering specific customer questions.

Demand Generation focuses on driving traffic through various channels, including paid advertising and targeted campaigns.

Engagement Rates

TAYA measures the engagement on content, such as blog post comments, social media interactions, and time spent on the website.

Demand Generation looks at engagement metrics across all customer journey stages, including interactions with marketing materials, webinars, and sales content.

Lead Conversion

TAYA focuses on converting information seekers into leads by providing valuable content.

Demand Generation involves a broader perspective on lead conversion, encompassing various touchpoints in the customer journey.

Content Performance

TAYA measures the success of content based on how well it answers customer queries and addresses pain points.

Demand Generation evaluates content performance in the context of driving leads and conversions across the entire sales funnel.

Attribution Modeling

TAYA may rely on a more straightforward attribution model, attributing success to content that directly answers customer questions.

Demand Generation typically involves a more complex attribution model considering various touchpoints and interactions throughout the customer journey.

Customer Education

TAYA strongly emphasizes educating customers through content, making them more informed buyers.

Demand Generation aligns education efforts to nurture leads and facilitate a smooth transition from awareness to conversion.

Although each strategy has unique KPIs, it's essential to note that both approaches share the overarching goal of driving business growth. Still, they may prioritize and measure specific metrics differently based on their unique strategies and philosophies.


As you can see, They Ask, You Answer, and demand generation are two distinct marketing strategies that can be effective in their ways. The choice between the two depends on your business objectives, target audience, and available resources. 

While TAYA focuses on organic content creation and building trust, demand generation takes a proactive approach to generate and cultivate potential leads to support business growth.

So, whether you believe in the TAYA philosophy or prefer the broader scope of demand generation, it's essential to understand the differences and decide which strategy aligns best with your marketing goals.

We hope this outline has given you a solid understanding of the key differences between these two strategies and how they can be used in unison. 

Have questions? We would love to hear from you.

Take some time to talk with an advisor today on all of your sales and marketing strategy concerns and questions!

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