Nearbound Weekend 12/09: Fruit Ninja Influencer Drives 600k in Revenue

Nearbound Weekend 12/09: Fruit Ninja Influencer Drives 600k in Revenue

Ella Richmond 5 min




How LinkedIn’s fruit ninja influencer drove 600k of revenue


Who knew cutting fruit on LinkedIn was a legitimate path to revenue?


Today’s weekend edition is a short case study on the man and myth, Tim Davidson.


Tim is known for cutting fruit on LinkedIn. He’s also known as the Bob Ross of B2B and the guy who stands at events with a cardboard sign. Professionally, Tim is the Senior Director of Digital Marketing at Directive.


Ring a bell?


Tim’s Sign

To people who have been in the industry for a long time, Tim’s approach is all wrong.


And yet, when I asked Tim about the results of his guerilla marketing, he shared,

We have closed over $600k in new business from my personal brand that I can track.

WOAH. 600k in net new revenue…and he’s not even a salesperson!


Here’s why I believe Tim’s content works in the nearbound era:

  1. Market conditions

  2. People trust people

  3. The 28 moments of a buyer’s journey

Market conditions

The market is noisy! There’s too much for one person to consume, so instead, everyone tunes it out.


Another product marketing email…no thanks! Another ad on LinkedIn…keep scrolling! It’s all blah in a sea of blah.


When I asked Tim about his approach, he explained,

My content works because it’s different. Most people do educational content but they completely miss out on the things that would get people to stop scrolling.

Nearbound tip: Think about standing out and creating different content. One great way to do this is by partnering. Bring more trusted voices into your content, multiply distribution, and have fun with it!


People trust people

In the past, people put their faith in organizations. Then things like scandals, mistakes, neglect, and over-commercialization made us realize that you don’t build two-way relationships with organizations. You build two-way relationships with people.


Or as Mac Reddin put it in his session at the Nearbound Summit,

The atomic unit of business used to be the organization, now it’s people.

People do business with those they trust. Now it’s up to businesses to recognize this shift and partner with those their buyers trust.


Mark Kilens and Nick Bennett (Co-Founders of Tack and ClubPF) further iterated the point in their session at the summit explaining,

You used to go to market as a company or brand. Now you go-to-market as individuals representing a company or brand.

Sure, Tim works for Directive, but Directive also partners with Tim.


Logan Lyles would call Tim an “Internal Evangelist” because when things go wrong with Directive, people will look at Tim. Evangelists have a responsibility to the people that trust them. As the saying goes — Trust is hard-won and easily lost.


By putting out content on behalf of Directive, Tim’s endorsing them and upping his skin in the game.


Nearbound tip: Leverage internal and external evangelists to create more trust with the people you want in your audience.


The 28 moments of a customer’s journey

The last reason Tim’s Fruit Ninja content has had such an impact on Directive is because of Jay McBain’s 28 moments.


Through his research on the buyer’s journey, Jay McBain realized it takes (on average) 28 moments for a buyer to make a purchase decision, and the average company only owns 4 of those moments.


So what’s happening the other 24 moments?! Who’s influencing your buyer?!


For most companies, the answer is — lots of people you don’t know or partner with.


Individuals can go where companies cannot — places like communities and dark social — so to influence more of your buyers’ decision-making journey, you need to partner with those they trust.


In other words, you need to surround your buyer with trust.


Directive can post on socials, host mini-events, and put information out to their audience, but Tim can engage with their audience in Slack communities, DMs, meet-ups, podcasts, and the list is endless.


Nearbound tip: The buyer’s journey doesn’t start in your funnel. Get to know your customers, figure out where they live and who they trust, and then partner with those people.




The lesson is NOT to start cutting fruit on LinkedIn, holding cardboard signs at events, or becoming a B2B Ross (no matter how fun that sounds!).


The lesson is that, in the decade of the ecosystem, buyers buy when they’re surrounded by people they trust.


To unlock immense revenue potential:

Know your customers.

Identify their watering holes.

Identify key influencers in those watering holes.

Partner with those your buyers trust.


Shoutout to Tim for his awesome content and for helping us put this piece together!


p.s. Here’s his LinkedIn if you want to go follow Tim!




Share this with someone who knows Tim.

Ella Richmond 5 min

Nearbound Weekend 12/09: Fruit Ninja Influencer Drives 600k in Revenue

How LinkedIn’s fruit ninja influencer drove 600k of revenue

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