by Brian | Jul 5, 2018 | Building a Business, Content Marketing, Marketing
It’s a harsh truth that nobody wants to hear, but it’s true, nobody cares that you’re a vegan. Nobody wants to listen to you drone on about the fact that you don’t eat anything with a face, or that animals are your friends and you don’t eat friends.
I totally understand, I eat two vegetarian meals a day right now, and I plan out a vegetarian dinner once a week. I don’t do it because of ethical reasons, I find that a mostly plant based diet makes me feel better. I’ve tried to convince my parents that they need to adopt a similar diet, but they’re not really interested. Now with that said, I honestly believe chickens wouldn’t exist if they didn’t provide us eggs…but I also don’t like factory farming conditions. However, I understand that without modern advances in agriculture, we wouldn’t be able to support our massively ballooning population.
Be honest. You totally scanned over that last paragraph didn’t you?
The reason you scanned over it is simple, you really don’t care WHY I choose to eat the way I choose to eat. I either had you, or lost you at the word “vegetarian”.
It’s the exact same with your business.
- Nobody cares WHY you choose to sell sprockets*.
- Nobody cares about the history of your sprocket sales.
- Nobody cares what the ethical reasons for your sprocket manufacturing process is.
- They want to know that your sprockets will solve a problem they have.
- They want to know what pain points your sprockets fix in their business.
- People care how your sprockets will make their lives better.
*NOTE: I don’t care if you sell artisanal platypus abodes, or high end consulting services, for the sake of this post, we’re calling all of it sprockets…WHAT you sell doesn’t matter. HOW you sell it is what matters. (more…)
by Craig | May 31, 2018 | Digital Marketing, Lead Generation, Marketing, Marketing in London, Ontario
With some services you can easily see they’ve done a poor job for you, if your car starts making a clunking sound after visiting the mechanic, you’ve probably got a bad mechanic. If your haircut looks horrible, you probably have a bad hairdresser. If you get the wrong leg amputated, you probably have a bad doctor.
Digital marketing can be a little more difficult to come to that conclusion.
How can business owners avoid being preyed upon by unethical digital marketing agencies?
The following are sure-fire things to watch out for when working with your digital agency, or to keep an eye out for when trying to procure services from one. (more…)
by Brian | Apr 18, 2018 | Building a Business, Content Marketing, Digital Marketing, Marketing
Our Manage Comics blog was recently suspended by Medium for no justifiable reason. To date the only explanation we have been given is that we were accidentally caught in their spam filter.
This caused a huge impact on our business, saw our page rankings plummet, created dozens of orphaned links from sites that had referenced us, and left us scrambling to solve a problem that our vendor has not been able to give us a reasonable explanation behind.
Because of the negative effects on our business, and Medium’s lack of a reasonable explanation for what happened, we have removed all content from Medium, and we are firmly advising our clients against using Medium as a blogging platform. (more…)
by Craig | Apr 11, 2018 | Digital Marketing, Marketing
I’ve worked in marketing for many years, and I’ve lived through the entire coming of age of digital marketing. I have done it all. I am humbled and honoured to have had the opportunities I have had, to learn (the hard way usually) and to hone my craft.
My 20 year old self (an aspiring graphic designer) working at StarTech.com had to perform a manually implemented “fax” campaign. I had to literally print out hundreds of personalized letters to prospects and fax them one at a time. 20 year old me was not happy, but 40 year old me is thankful for that one.
I believe it started me on a sometimes rocky path that has result in several behavioural traits that have really paid off.
When I review which behaviours or traits have most often afforded me success it’s easy to pick out the most important.
I always keep in mind these four key behaviors:
1 – Don’t be romantic about the medium or the platform
It’s important to remind yourself that the medium you most enjoy or the social platform you like the most isn’t always your best option.
I see this mainly in younger marketers who ignore the numbers to pursue a romantic vision of what “should” work. They play in Instagram when maybe a simple text email campaign is your best bet. One is fun, one is not. But one works when the other might not.
Don’t let yourself become too attached to anything.
2 – Set aside time to try new things
Similar to the romantic view, is the reliance on your tried and true.
Be open to the fact that there might be better options out there and afford yourself the time and energy to try your hand at it.
Be open to the fact that your vision of what’s going to work best isn’t always right.
Try other things sometimes.
3 – Don’t be afraid to fail
I was luckily a very average C student. Lucky because the fear of failure died long before I hit the work force. I had already had a proverbial punch in the face and survived it….lots of times.
Just like you should always try new things, you shouldn’t worry if it doesn’t work like you had hoped.
At the very least you’ve gained experience. Experience I wouldn’t trade for anything.
4 – Always be practicing
Always aim to be the best when it comes to actually implementing any type of marketing campaign. From top to bottom, inside and out.
I’ve worked with teams who relied on me for things like understanding the in’s and out’s of the CRM but that’s not the right mentality. The right mentality is to know it better than anybody.
You should never be fancy.
Even if you have a team of specialists in an area you still need to be a practitioner.
You always need to be willing and able to roll up your sleeves and do some old fashioned hard work
Bonus thought: It’s Not About Skill
Skill is often overrated. People think that others are “particularly talented” in marketing, or have an “innate sense”, but skill is just really applied acquired knowledge. Anyone can be skillful at something, you just have to put the time in.
These four traits have helped me over the years to achieve repeatable results and large returns often on small budgets. None of them rely on “talent”, or “gut instinct”.
They don’t fail me when the chips are down.
by Craig | Mar 28, 2018 | Content Marketing, Digital Marketing, Internet Business, Marketing
“Mobile-friendly” now officially reads as Mobile-first with the news that Google is officially rolling out its plan to use the mobile version of your sites content to index its pages. Mobile versions will also be used to understand its structured data and to show snippets from the site in the Google search results.
Mobile-first indexing means Google will use the mobile version of a web page “for indexing and ranking, to better help our – primarily mobile – users find what they’re looking for,” the company writes in a blog post.
by Brian | Mar 1, 2018 | Content Marketing, Lead Generation, Marketing
This is a story about how following our own advice that we preach week in and week out led to some awesome successes for us. It’s a reminder that when we do the things that we tell others to do, we benefit from it as much as they do!
We should know this advice by heart by now. We’ve seen it improve our own results at NorthIQ, and we’ve watched it in action as we started content marketing on Manage Comics and saw our market share grow.
Last week the comic book retailers group ComicsPRO got together and did three days of meetings about comics retailing. During those meetings, Diamond Comics, the main distributor for about 90% of the comics market who has exclusive distribution rights with Marvel, DC Comics, Image Comics, and many others, made an announcement that they would be releasing their own version of a comics pull list application called Pull Box. (more…)