In this episode, Matt is joined by Marie Martens, the founder of Tally, a rapidly growing form builder tool that prides itself on simplicity and power, all wrapped up in a free package.

Marie shares the unique marketing strategies that have propelled Tally to surpass $100,000 in Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR) with a lean team of three.

Watch episode

Listen to episode


Marie Martens, hailing from Ghent, Belgium, is the co-founder of Tally, which she started in 2020 alongside her life partner, Philippe.

Tally distinguishes itself in the crowded market of form builders by offering an unlimited number of forms and submissions at no cost, challenging the pricing models of more established competitors.

Their tool is designed to be intuitive, allowing users to create forms as easily as typing a document, and has garnered attention for its user-friendly design and scalability.

Marketing Strategy #1: Product-Led Growth

Tally’s primary marketing strategy revolves around product-led growth, specifically utilizing a “Powered by Tally” badge on their free forms.

This approach turns their users into promoters—each form created is an opportunity for visibility, as every form submission exposes new potential users to Tally’s brand.

This strategy capitalizes on the virality of forms; they are meant to be shared and filled out by many, spreading the word organically.

Approximately 30-40% of Tally’s new users come from clicking these badges, illustrating the effectiveness of integrating marketing directly into the product.

Marketing Strategy #2: Branded Search Optimization

Marie identifies branded search optimization as Tally’s second most potent marketing channel.

This strategy leverages the word of mouth generated by their free product. As current users talk about Tally, new potential users search for the brand specifically, leading to high conversion rates.

The team enhances this strategy by creating SEO-optimized competitor comparison pages, which also perform well in search results.

This method shows the power of a strong product and positive user experiences in driving organic search traffic without significant advertising spend.

Marketing Strategy #3: Building in Public

Tally’s third strategy involves transparency and community engagement, often referred to as “building in public.”

Marie and her team share their journey, including both successes and setbacks, on platforms like Twitter and their company blog.

This approach not only fosters a community of like-minded individuals but also serves as content marketing, attracting a following among startups, creators, and freelancers who resonate with their story.

This strategy not only builds trust but also continuously engages their user base, creating a loyal following.

Last 3

To wrap up the podcast, Marie answered three quickfire questions:

  1. Best Piece of Marketing Advice: Marie advises to keep it authentic and simple. Find what works and focus intensely on that area without overcomplicating strategies.
  2. Book Recommendation: Marie recommends “Intercom on Marketing.” This book offers actionable advice for startups on how to leverage marketing effectively and was instrumental in shaping how she approached marketing for Tally.
  3. Indispensable Software Tool: Besides Tally, Marie can’t live without Notion, which they use extensively for business management, task tracking, and even personal organization.