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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Q&A with John Jantsch - Duct Tape Marketing

The following are my notes from the question and answer period last night at John Jantsch's Duct Tape Marketing presentation.

Question: What do you mean by creating a total web presence?

The internet and specifically your website is the hub of a brand.  The more links that exist to direct people back to your website the better.  There are hundreds of free link building profile sites out there that every business should contribute to.  Here are just a few examples

Youtube - create you own channel
Linkedin - connect to a business network
Facebook - duh.  create a page or join groups
Entrepreneur - connect with other business minded people

Question: Your system seems to focus the business owner on their marketing by getting them to identify and utilize their existing resources ie. web presence and improving their existing lead conversion rates.   What role do traditional media platforms like magazines have for business owners?

If your ideal client uses a particular type of media, then it's a great place to advertise and connect with that ideal customer.  As always, your goal should be to drive this client towards your online digital assets and interact with you there.

One of the most important parts of traditional media is that you can control when your message is broadcast.

Question: Does email marketing have a role?

Absolutely.    Email marketing can be one of the most responsive mediums...if you have built trust with your ideal customer.

Question: What are your thoughts about Groupon or other Group Discount coupons?

These types of group discount coupons can be a great tool for exposure if you can do two things.  #1 can you attract significant amounts of new customers?  #2 Make sure that you can turn that new customer into repeat business.

Question: What are the future trends that business owners should be looking at?

Location based services and devices.   These types of things ie. gowalla, urban spoon, yelp are often dismissed by small businesses because of their novelty and fringe feel.  However, business owners should be try to understand the behaviour behind them.  People are sharing their interests with their social networks in a very hyperlocal fashion.

Mobile.   The amount of mobile smartphone use is significant and is increasing.  Dozens of Augmented Reality applications exist and are changing the way consumers interact with their environment, find businesses, rate and review service and share with friends.  (If you've got an iPhone, download Yelp and walk down any street with the monocle turned on to see what i mean...or check out this video)

Mobile Payments.  Anyone with a smartphone can now Bump mobile payments through Paypal to another person.  Businesses owners can recieve $1000s of dollars without having to open their till or pay for a monex machine.  Check out this video

Other thoughts and Links

Open Forum - top 5 trends in 2011 for small business owners article by John Jantsch
CRM - we'll need to start including social activities of our customers in your database
Flowtown - submit a list of email addresses to this company and they'll return your contact list including the contact's social presence and score your contacts based on their social influence
Klout - scores your social influence and categorizes your contribution to social networks.  You can search for others as well.  I scored a 5.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Presentation Notes & Key Learnings from John Jantsch Author of Duct Tape Marketing


  • been in marketing for 25 years
  • Rebranded his business to become Duct Tape Marketing.   Started a blog which is currently ranked #27 on The Adage Power 150 Best Marketing Blogs and designed a marketing "system" that small business owners that could be trained to install in their place of work.
  • John realized that he liked working with small businesses.  He also realized that many small business owners faced the same challenges  as each other, namely limited budgets and resources.   Many of these owners not only wear the Marketing Hat, but also the hats of the Customer Service Department, Accounting, HR, Sales and IT. 
  • 10 years since the rebrand John has certified Duct Tape Coaches across 6 countries helping local businesses install his marketing system.
  • Talk to Cindee Stephen if you're interested 
John's Fundamentals
  • Marketing Definition - getting someone who has a need to ... know, like & Trust you
  • Tools & technology change but the fundamentals always stay the same
  • Digital Interactivity should be at the centre of your brand
Duct Tape's 7 Step Marketing System
  1. Strategy before Tactics
    • Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat. Sun Tzu
    • 2 important parts
      • Narrow your Focus.  You cant serve all clients.  Be careful of detractors that take more time than their worth to your business.  Identify the makeup of your Ideal Clients.  What's their behaviour, Demographic, Psychographics, Geography and Biological make up.  Your ideal customer values you.  They're profitable and they refer you.
      • Differentiate and Dominate.  Visit the website of your top competitors.  Cut and paste the first paragraph of their sites along side yours on a document.  Eliminate any reference of each individual business and compare what each has to say.  Do any stand out?  Most probably say the same kind of things.   So where do you go to find out what makes you different?  Your best clients.  Meet with the top 10 of your clients and ask them things like...What did you do to find a company like ours?  What made you choose us?  What do we do well?  What do we do better than others?  What can we do better? Would you refer us?  Your positioning statement and core message will come from these answers.
  2. Marketing Hour Glass
    • the marketing funnel is broken
    • companies could do better if they spent less time filling the funnel and finding ways to convert more of their existing leads then ways to create remarkable customer experiences
  3. Publish Educational Content
    • the consumer expectation is that they will find everything on Google (youtube is the second largest search engine).  Your content must do 2 separate things.   The first is to build trust between you and your ideal customers.  Interact with these people on social media platforms, generate reviews and testimonials to help build that brand trust.  Secondly, You need to provide educational content about your industry.
  4. Create a Total Web Presence
    • of online users (nearly 90% usage of population in Calgary)
      • 73% read a blog
      • 57% join social networks
      • 45% start a blog
      • 83% use online video
      • 39% subscribe to RSS feeds
      • 36% think more positively about companies that have blogs
    • Build what Earnest Barbaric would call your digital assets
    • The pillars of building a web presence are
      • Listen first
      • optimize your web content
      • Claim Digital Real Estate
      • Optimize your brand assets
      • build reviews and ratings
      • social media participation
  5. Inbound Lead Generation
    • Advertising, Public Relations and Referral.   Advertising should focus on a narrow target and in all forms point your clients back to your website.   Public relations should not be about pitching.  With the Internet we are all media publishers now and you can use online press releases and leave comments on related topics.   Lastly, by converting to the hourglass marketing model you become more referable.  
  6. Selling IS a System
    • self evaluate your lead conversion system.  This is likely the first spot that you'll be able to make improvements.  
    • develop a customer orientation kit
  7. Live by the Calendar
    • Use your calendar to help you make time for marketing.  It's often the easiest hat to keep on the rack.  Schedule marketing appointments with your self.  It could be daily, or weekly.  Set monthly themes with actionable items for each step.  By focusing on an end goal, you'll find that your marketing program takes some direction rather than focusing on the squeaky wheel.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Gary Vanerchuk: Technology Doesn't have Feelings

Gary's got a great way of delivering information so that anyone can understand.

I 100% agree that media is changing. I also agree 100% that this change takes time. Yes, some traditional media platforms like magazines, newspaper, yellow pages etc. are in fatal nosedives or have been eliminated altogether. Conversely, many social media tools have yet to reach their expected widescale adoption.

In either case, there are many reasons to use both types of new and old media. According to the CMUST study, TV and Radio still occupy about 60-70% of the average consumer's media time per week.  Internet usage is growing and is the 3rd major player in a Canadian consumer's media time.

Today, social media platforms like facebook and twitter have grown enough to be recognized by mass audiences.  However, the fact that millions of people use twitter does not mean that your brand can reach a mass audience just by creating a twitter account.   As Gary would agree, it takes hard work, hustle and time to build and connect to a community that cares about you.

In my opinion, all brands and businesses need to start this building process.

While your building your social media community, you can access the mass audiences of relevant traditional media platforms like TV and Radio to accelerate your own social media growth.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Did Social Media Help Nenshi become Calgary's New Mayor?

Many people are are attributing Nenshi's win to social media.  By comparing their stats & spend (known to me), I attribute Nenshi's victory to communication hustle & smart spending on 2 of the 3 most consumed media platforms...internet & radio.  These stats are as of Oct 19, 2010

              Facebook               Twitter                Youtube               Linkedin     Radio
Nenshi*   11,820 likes             3,603 tweets        24,592 channel views     yes      strong
              15 discussions         724 following        98,158 upload views
              18 photo albums       4,277 followers     26 videos
              voters post on wall    233 listed            119 subscribers

Higgins   198 likes                  241 tweets            4,607 channel views      no        mild
              0 discussions           72 following           67,940 upload views
              0 photo albums        1667 followers        23 videos
              self posts on wall      125 listed              47 subscribers
McIver     has a couple pages   353 tweets           1,807 channel views       no        ok
              4,303 likes                100 following        20,739 upload views
              0 discussions            1,344 followers      5 videos
              4 photo albums         142 listed             17 subscribers
              self posts on wall

* also the only candidate with an iPhone/iPad App.

Why I Voted for Nenshi


  1. I'd never heard of Naheed Nenshi until purple lawn signs started replicating everywhere about 4 weeks ago
  2. I didn't know anything about Barb Higgins until her interview on BT
  3. Ric McIver hit my candidate radar at a stampede party at Bookers Crabshack
  4. I'm not very politically minded.  I didn't follow any of their campaigns
  5. I  made my voting decision 1 hour before I voted 

I viewed this election as a advertising event with lots of competition (15 candidates on the ballot).  In short, the most fascinating candidate would get my vote.   Sally Hogshead wrote a book & speaks on this very topic and the importance fascination has on brands in a competitive environment.  I've archived her presentation notes here.  Since the candidates missed reaching me through traditional marketing platforms ie. news paper, TV, radio I went to their websites to research their brand.   

I made the assumption that mayoral candidates site's are a good representation of the them.  I wanted to learn about who these people are, what they stand for and why they should get my vote.   I figure that the way their websites interacted with me, would be representative of how the candidates communicate and inform the voters as a whole.  So, I browsed each of their websites to look for their key platform my preferred   
  • Nenshi made it easy to find his key platform issues, in video format.
  • The others frustrated me before I could even hear what they had to say. Don't you think?  Ric vs. Barb vs. Naheed
  • All of the candidates key platforms issues were virtually identical.  SO, my decision couldn't be based solely on the words they used.  I expected this since I feel that most politicians generally say nothing real.   
  • My decision came down to the candidate who seemed the most genuine.  In other words, it wasn't what they said, but how they said it.   
  • Nenshi's spoke passionately on his video.  Ric, you should take some notes from both Naheed & Barb.
  • Nenshi's delivery gave me the confidence that he could do the job
  • Nenshi's content delivery was compelling and made me want to learn more about him.   Ric, I could barely get through your video and after hearing you speak found you incredibly boring.   Barb, yours content delivery was pretty good, but didn't give me confidence in how you would perform on the job.
  • The final piece of the puzzle was in Nenshi's bio.  I'm very impressed that Naheed was an author of the Building Up: How to make Canada's Cities an engine of Growth.  Though I've never read this document (i plan to), just seeing this link gave me hope that Naheed has actually thought about the challenges of implementing change and specifically how those ideas can be put to use to to make Calgary an even better city.
Congrats, Naheed.  I'm looking forward to hearing more from you!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

GLEE - My happy exploration into a modern integrated media brand

I am totally fascinated by this show.  I'll admit it's entertaining, but what I'm really amazed by is the BRAND of Glee & how it connects to it's consumers.

The show is broadcast on Fox TV - a mass media & traditional media platform.  In the old days, this would have been the end of the story.  Back then, you had to wait for the following week or season to see the next episode.   Today, I can go to the Glee microsite on Fox to see previously aired episodes.

Once at the microsite, a consumer/fan can do so much more! (Insert Vince the SlapChop sales guy voice playing over and over in my head)  Here's some other things I (or at least a person with a USA IP address) can do from the website.

  1. watch, share & rate previous episodes (Google TV is coming)
  2. watch, share & rate clips
  3. look at, share and rate photos of my favorite stars/episodes
  4. search and join in conversations about the show 
  5. take personality quizes.  As a bonus, I can connect to my facebook network to decode special things
  6. upload my own photo
  7. download a Glee iPhone App that turns my phone into a Karoke device where I can practice, share and compete against all other players
  8. Download wallpapers for my computer / smartphone
  9. sign up for a newsletter
  10. watch the original casting calls
  11. interact with the sponsors in fun ways and connect those fun experiences to my friends via Facebook (try the slushie and insults)
  12. connect to Glee's Facebook, Twitter & Youtube channel

THIS IS JUST ON THE FOX WEBSITE!  Not enough?   I'm gonna throw in the Graty & a ShamWow for free.  iTunes has a few other items to help consumers/fans get their Glee on...

  1. albums
  2. songs 
  3. TV seasons 
  4. TV episodes
  5. no less than 4 iPhone Apps
  6. 1 iPAD app
  7. Podcasts
  8. Audiobooks
  9. Ping

Other similar products sell for $39.95 and they're really hard to clean.  But if you buy right now I'll sell you the Slapchop AND the Graty for only $19.95 + S&H.  I can't do this all day so you got to buy now. All you "gleeks" out there stand by for these amazing offers...

  1. books
  2. video games
  3. karoke machines
  4. Glee branded talent shows
  5. Glee Cast Concerts
  6. 3D movie
  7. Board games
  8. Puzzles
  9. Tshirts
  10. Script Music
  11. Lunch bags
  12. cards
  13. any other bit of shwag you can imagine

Brands today have an unprecedented ability to create an incredible consumer/fan experience.   Yes, the TV show is the main platform to broadcast the message, Glee is a clear example of the consumer's desire to connect, communicate and share with the favourite brands...on their own terms and timeline.

What touch points are you using to connect your brand?  

Here's a few sites you may find useful

Friday, October 8, 2010

How to Buy Radio Advertising in Calgary (or anywhere else)

The media landscape is clearly changing.  Results from the CMUST study show that the average Canadian spends the majority of their time with 3 kinds of media....TV, Radio and Internet.

I believe that most companies should align their marketing budget to reflect the consumption of media.  If you want to catch fish, you're best chance of success is to fish where the fish are.


My main objective when working with clients is to provide sound advice on integrated marketing campaigns that grow their business so as to develop long term business relationships.   If a campaign isn't working there are things we can adjust to try and correct the problem.  If your campaign isn't working for you, it's not working for me either.

I happen to sell radio, but understand that radio is just one tool in their kit.  In my mind, radio is a very important communication tool for any company.  


In my opinion, radio is often underutilized or overlooked.  In many situations, clients choose to deliver their message from more "familiar"  platforms such as newspaper or yellow pages.  Unfortunately, these two specific print forms of media are decreasing in usage yet still maintain a high cost of message delivery.  Given radio's affordable delivery of a frequent message to virtually any demographic,  I felt it appropriate to help shed some light on how to buy radio advertising for the Calgary Market.


Any media can work to grow a business.  There are several considerations to get the most ROI from any marketing campaign.  Here is a list of things to think about that will have an impact on the success of any campaign.
  • are you paying a reasonable price for the size, quality & frequency of audience that your message is being delivered to?
  • what are your goals? how are you measuring them?   
  • how do clients and prospects interact with your company?  Can you measure those touch points?
  • The success of any campaign is based on the size of impact with an audience.  If you're not advertising during the Superbowl, then most campaigns will require frequent message delivery.  Is your campaign spread too thin over too many media to make an impact?
  • Do you have the right message?
  • Are your chosen media platforms delivering your message to the right people?

In traditional media platforms (ie TV, print, yellow pages, outdoor, radio, magazines, direct mail), your company pays for access to the audience/community that already exists.   The type of media that you buy will dictate how your message will be packaged and delivered.   TV is Sight + Sound.  Print is sight.  Radio is Sound.   Martin Lindstrom has made a pretty convincing argument that the more senses you engage with your campaign, the bigger the impact that your campaign will have. The majority of traditional media formats only allow for one-directional communication.  You can broadcast a message, but not really engage in a conversation.

With Social Media platforms (ie. twitter, facebook, youtube, digg) your company has the ability to create and build your own audience/community.  With this type of media platform, your business can distribute and broadcast your own content.  This ability to create and publish your own content is liberating but you are also required to build your own audience/community.  It seems to me that the key to building an audience on a social network hinges on 5 main steps

  1. explore types of social media platforms
  2. create,  publish or redistribute great content
  3. connect with like minded groups and care about people.  
  4. share your ideas
  5. repeat over and over again
Social Media platforms are unique in that they allow for multi-sensory two way communication.  

Both traditional and social media platforms are important tools to use to connect with consumers throughout their decision making journey.


Everybody.  Stations are differentiated by their programming.  In larger markets like Calgary, there is a station designed to appeal to specific target demographics like Men, Women, Baby Boomers, Gen Y, News Junkies, Sports Fanatics, Young Executives, Moms, Rockers just to name a few.   Many of these stations also have build databases of their target listeners which means any advertiser can reach their desired target group with on air, online and social media methods.


The station that best matches your target audience.  Once you've saturated that audience, expand to the second best station match.   As one of my colleagues so eloquently says, 'if your selling bananas, you better be speaking to monkeys'.


If your business is in big market, the answer is all the time.

The main goal of advertising is to influence consumers into "action" when they are in the market for your product or service.  There are numerous "actions" to try to achieve.  You could ask consumers to call  a number, check out your website, share with their friends, contribute to your brand or buy a product.  Each of these actions requires a unique metric for measurement.

The truth is that (in most cases) we don't know when consumers are triggered to investigate a product or  make a purchasing decisions.    If consumers are investigating, you should be advertising.

There are many myths about when people listen to radio.   More people listen during the work week to the morning show than any other time of the week is one that I hear often.   Interestingly,  our radio stations  and here in Calgary, have at least as many listeners during the day as there are during the commute times.  If you skip the midday, you'll skip a huge part of our audience.  


This depends on your message.  The more complicated your message, the more likely you'll need to use a 30 or 60 second commercial.  If you have a short message, you can buy 5, 10 or 15 second commercials.   

Whatever the length of commercial, the main objective of of your campaign is to connect to the radio audience.  More specifically your real objective is to connect to your chosen consumer within the whole radio station audience.   You can connect with these potential consumers with traditional commercial messages but also through a radio stations online community.


That depends on the station you want to buy and your goals.   In general, you should get the the best rates if you buy a ROS (run of schedule aka TAP or REACH)  program.  You'll also get lower rates the more you buy.  It's worthwhile asking radio reps about any special programs that give you commercials during each of the 4 dayparts (breakfast, day, drive, evening) over a long period of time.

The cost of radio advertising will also fluctuate based on the number of commercials you buy per station.   Each station has a recommended weekly minimum to be effective.   Some stations are programmed to have listeners stay to listen for long periods at one time ie. country.  Other stations are designed to have listeners tune in and out mulitple times during the day ie. news.  Ask your rep what the appropriate number of commercials is for your chosen station.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Streetwise Tips on Radio Advertising - my rebuttal

My responses to this article are in RED

Critical mass

Radio is referred to by some advertising people as the ”Cinderella medium.” It can be spectacularly successful if everything clicks—the right offer, the right message, the right copy, the right stations. Or radio spots can fall on deaf ears.  

Is this any different that other forms of advertising?  I don't understand your point.

Radio ads require repetition to work. A minimum run of at least fifteen ads on one station during a one-week period is recommended. Furthermore, if your entire advertising run on a particular station will be less than sixty spots during a month, try to keep the ads within a particular time slot. This way you will reach the same listening audience during each spot or often enough to create an awareness and ideally a desire to buy or inquire about your product or service. If your spots run on an erratic schedule, you might reach the full listenership of the station but you won’t be reaching any one group of individuals often enough to motivate them to take action.

I believe that all media requires repetition.  The reason for this is that the marketplace of consumers is made of a dynamic and ever changing group of people.  Let me use an example to illustrate my point.  

Think about the last time you bought a car or a house.  When you were in the market, did you notice how many ads there are for the vehicle you were looking for?  Did you notice how many "For Sale" sale signs there were in the neighbourhood you  are looking at?  I believe that consumers are only consciously receptive to advertisements when they are in the market.  At all other times we tune out the ads.  

I believe that there are many different triggers and reasons that make people receptive to ads, which by the way, are impossible to predict.  Talk to your local rep about the right kind of schedule for your campaign.

A great way to zero in on the same people and have added impact is to buy a sponsorship of a daily feature, such as a news or sports broadcast. A sponsorship guarantees your ad will run at a particular time and typically affords you a brief “sponsored by” message in addition to your ad spot.

Errors and rip-offs

New advertisers are often suspicious as to whether or not their ads have run correctly or even run at all. Advertising salespeople respond by saying “No need to worry, our ads are recorded in our operating log as required by the FCC. To not run an ad would violate the law.”

Don’t believe the salespeople for a minute. One of the very largest Boston radio shows was subject to a major scandal a few years back because they were skipping clients’ ads on a regular basis, logging the spots and billing the clients as if all of their spots had run as per contract.

While skipped ads are fairly uncommon, they can happen—and happen to you. What is a lot more common, however, is an unsatisfactory ad presentation. This is most likely to occur if all or part of the ad is read by on-air talent.

Most radio stations are going digital.  What that means for the client is that reps are able to print off a log of the exact times that commercials ran.  If you're skeptical, just ask your rep.  We want you to be happy and we want your ads to work so that you keep buying more radio.  Skipping your ads is counter-productive to both our pockets.

For example, in running a series of ads that included changing short live taglines on six major radio stations, I discovered that only one station read the ad correctly. Most made significant errors in the live taglines. Some actually skipped the tagline altogether. Some ran the wrong ad on the wrong day. One station even ran half of the recorded version of an ad, abruptly cutting it off midway through the spot.

You need to monitor your ads to assure that you are getting your money’s worth of exposure. And don’t hesitate to demand free spots, called make-goods, for significant goofs.

Any radio rep worth their salt will make good on spots that ran in error.  In my 4.5 years of experience in radio, errors in live reads can happen, but aren't the norm.  


If your audience is fairly general and you have successfully tested radio ads on one station, you may want to consider running ads on many stations at the same time. The practice of airing television or radio ads on several stations simultaneously is called a roadblock. The advantages of this strategy are that you get multiple exposure, reach those people who frequently switch stations, and are more likely to benefit from word-of-mouth or viewers talking you up after the ads have run.

I once did roadblock advertising in the Boston marketplace and saw newsstand sales of a local magazine I was publishing almost double during a two-week period. I also saw the sales slide back toward their former level about a month after the ads stopped running.

As the results of my campaign show, radio ads tend to work best for advertisers who can concentrate a lot of money in one marketplace, with heavy concentration over an extended period of time.

In 4.5 years of radio, I've never heard of a roadblock before, but that doesn't matter.  What matters is that the effect was real.  There are numerous studies that prove that using multiple media is more effective than using any single media platform.  

There are a few reasons for this positive effect on newsstand sales that I can think of.   First, is that people (in Canada at least) consume TV, RADIO and INTERNET nearly equally over the course of a week.  By using TV & RADIO, this campaign would have delivered this message to consumers during approximately 60% of their media consumption time.  Secondly, there is good evidence to show that campaigns that engage more than one sense ie. taste, smell, touch, sight and sound are more effective than single sense campaigns.

Let’s make a deal

The real fun in radio advertising is negotiating rates. Try to wait until a slow season, then call every station that meets your demographics. Tell them either how much money you are considering spending on their station or how many spots you intend to place. Also tell them nicely, but firmly, that you are only going to run ads on the station or stations that give you the best rate deals. Get one or more of them to show you their ratings book, ideally from Arbitron, and compare how many people in your target audience they will be reaching.

Get all of the bids from each station. Then call each station back and say you still haven’t decided which station to choose, and can’t they do any better?

If you choose a slow time of year and are persistent but pleasant with people, you should be able to negotiate rates that are even lower than the those paid by large national advertisers that buy huge blocks of advertising time.

You will be amazed to see how much less than the published rate card price you can buy radio time for. You will also note that, from radio station to radio station, there is an enormous difference in the station’s willingness to negotiate.

For example, a Boston station, which normally sold morning drive ad spots at $150 per second, sold me a package deal costing only $10 per spot. What you should typically expect through negotiating, however, is half the published rate. If you can do this, you are doing great!

We negotiate rates everyday, to a point.  I'd like to point out that every consumer should try to negotiate.

Some stations will sell their product for any price just to get the sale.  I think radio is the same as any other business, you do get what you pay for.  If a rep is willing to sell a $150 spot for $10 do you think access to their audience was really worth $150 to begin with?

In my opinion, the best stations have rate integrity.  The reason this makes them great is because you can feel confident that there aren't a dozen other clients buying the same station at a fraction of the price you're paying.  It also means that these stations are likely selling out...proof that they are as big as the reps say they are.  

During slow times of the year JAN/FEB and JULY/AUG most media platforms sell their inventory at special rates and/or with extra bonuses.   HOWEVER, in most cases, these rates and bonuses disappear when the busy months kick in.  If you want a real deal, negotiate a rate and buy as much media as you can during a recession.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A Real life example of Customer follow-up, Objection Handling and how to Measure a Radio campaign

Here's a real email string that I had yesterday between a client, their creative writer and myself.  

The email started with a question about their campaign results and ended up being a dialogue on how to measure the impact of their radio advertising program.  

I'm posting this because I think our team gave some good advice to the client about how to measure a marketing campaign.

Do you have any thoughts?

That's a great e-mail Marc! I'm really impressed. I've seen a lot of reps panic in that situation, but you handled it so well. And you're completely right
-----Original Message-----
From: Marc Binkley
Sent: Monday, October 04, 2010 2:39 PM
To: writer; 'client a'; 'client b'
Subject: RE: your ads!
Hi Guys,

The ads sound good to me and I’d agree with xxxx about keeping the theme.  As for the response I’d say to look at measuring all of the following over time 
  • Web Traffic - # of views, # of pages views, Bounce rate
  • Phone calls – no phone number on the ads & no website for people to find you would contribute to the lack of call ins
  • Business – # of deals, average amount/deal, quality of client
  • Word of Mouth – friends & family, clients, social media platforms ie. Facebook, Twitter, Youtube etc.

I think its important to measure all of these things over time.  Compare quarter to quarter and year over year.

Hope that helps!

When you’re ready, I’d be happy to meet up again to chat about the next phase of your creative.  Perhaps we could go for lunch sometime after thanksgiving?

Marc Binkley   Account Manager
Office: 403.686.9715  Cell: 403.608.2465
Fax: 403.240.4126
2723 - 37th Ave NE • Calgary, AB T1Y 5R8

From: writer
Sent: Monday, October 04, 2010 1:49 PM
To: 'client a'; Marc Binkley; client b
Subject: RE: your ads!

Hi client a&b, 
 With a branding campaign we usually recommed leaving the same message on for a minimum of 4 weeks. Usually, the more time you give people to hear your message the better. You'll find it's like a rolling ball picking up speed along the way. At first it may seem slow, but the more people hear it, the more likely they are to give you a call. Sometimes it takes people 2 or 3 times of hearing the same message before it even clicks... but once its clicks, it clicks.

That being said, we're at the point where we can look at changing it up. I'd recommend sticking with the same theme "xxxx", but changing some of the details to keep it fresh.

Let me know if there is anything specific you have in mind and we'll go from there. Thanks!
-----Original Message-----
From: Client a
Sent: Monday, October 04, 2010 11:12 AM
To: Marc Binkley; writer
Cc: client b
Subject: RE: your ads!
Hi Marc and writer, 
Thanks for following up J 
We have had great feedback from friends and clients regarding our ads, they all think that they are original and feel they should be very effective but we did not have any calls from potential clients. So n that sense, we have had no response as of yet. I should mention that we have been struggling a bit with finishing our website as we try to make sense of new xxxx regulations etc., so you think that the unfinished site has something to do with the lack of response? 
As far as new message, we can get that started anytime unless you feel that we should wait and see what happens after our website is done which should be mid October? 
Let us know what you think 
Best Regards,
client a&b

From: Marc Binkley []
Sent: Thursday, September 30, 2010 10:24 AM
To: client a & b
Cc: writer
Subject: your ads!

Hi Guys,

writer and I were just speaking about you and wanted to check in.  I’ve heard the ads a few times and think they sound greatJ  Have you had any feedback yet? …from friends, clients, web traffic etc?

I think we could start looking at developing another message for you guys to start for Nov.

Talk soon,

writer & Marc

Marc Binkley   Account Manager
Office: 403.686.9715  Cell: 403.608.2465
Fax: 403.240.4126
2723 - 37th Ave NE • Calgary, AB T1Y 5R8

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Secrets Your Radio Sales Rep Forgot To Share - A Rebuttal

I found this article today by Stephen E. Feswick and would like to comment on it.  I think there are some good thoughts but mostly flawed ideas in his argument on Secrets of Radio that I would like to respond to.   I've posted my comments in RED

There are secrets you need to know if you would like to maximize your marketing budget the next time you decide to advertise with your local radio station!  
OK, I'm listening
But, before I pull back the curtain and reveal some insider secrets, there are a few things you need to know about the operation and management of a radio station.
First of all, remember radio stations exist solely to extract money from the market place. Their single driving motive is PROFIT. This means the format a station plays, be it Top 40; News, Talk, Sports; Country; Alternative and so forth doesn't matter.
Radio stations, like all good businesses, are designed to differentiate from competition and profit from consumers by providing a service or product to at a fair price.  The format of a radio station is carefully chosen to attract a specific group of listener demographics that are appealing to a specific group of advertisers.  The format a station chooses is meant to either entertain or educate its audience.  That specific format matters to the listeners and therefore the advertisers trying to communicate with that listening audience.
Stations couldn't care less. They only play what they play to own the ears and fleeting attention spans of the largest market segment in the communities they serve. Don't worry about the station format - it doesn't matter. Whatever you do, never buy radio advertising soley because you like what they play. It's all about audience. Concern yourselves exclusively with the quality of the audience.
Every advertiser should worry about the format.  If a business was trying to sell a Lexus, it makes no sense to try and convince 18 year olds that a Lexus is the kind of car that young, low income earning demographic should buy.  They can't afford it.   Conversely, if you are a nightclub owner, why would you advertise on a adult contemporary station that is targeting their programming to appeal to 45 year old women?  Your money is better spent on that station format that is designed to attract 18 year olds.  
I agree you shouldn't pick a station because you like what they play.  You should pick a station that can deliver your message to an audience that is likely to buy your product.   The quality of audience is more important than the size of audience.
Radio sales people are very poorly trained in successful, proven and measurable marketing techniques. Don't buy radio advertising from a sales rep who can't provide a list of at least 3 books on the subject of marketing they've read in the past 12 months. How can they help you market better if they aren't educating themselves on the subject of marketing?
Most marketers have trouble measuring marketing techniques.  Radio sales people are not an exception.  This is as true for TV reps as it is for print, outdoor billboard and web marketers or advertisers.   I agree completely that all marketers should educate themselves, but books are just one resource available to learn from.  Would you not consider your blog an educational tool?
If you haven't heard from your sales rep in the past 90 days, FIRE them. Call the station sales manager (if you still want to do business with them) and request a new rep. If a rep who earns their money selling you radio commercials won't take the time to call you at least once a month to ask how you're doing, how the business is running and finally, how the current radio campaign is working or not working for you, they don't deserve your business.
You should request a new rep if you feel that you aren't getting the service you deserve.  It's important to feel like your media rep is working with you rather than just taking your money.
Never, and I mean NEVER allow the stations' creative department to write your radio ads. You are the expert in your business category. Take control and act like an expert.
Imagine: A prospective customer walks into your store and approaches you to ask a question about your service or products. Who in their right mind, would step aside and allow their radio sales rep to take control of the sale and deal with the customer?
Unlike jobs with a professional designation ie. MDs, Lawyers, Engineers I've not met many marketers (reps or buyers) who have expert designation.   True, the majority of local clients I work with are the experts in their field.  Many of them are business owners who perform many duties of which marketing is just one of them.   You are the expert of your business.  
But, are you an expert in creative writing?  The creative department at most radio stations are very good at developing & crafting a message that will appeal to their listeners and give them reasons to buy your product or service.    Before anything goes on air, we get approval from our advertisers.  We can create jingles, add sound effects and have a variety of talented voice actors to produce your message.  At no additional charge.   Why would you not take advantage of that service?  We don't walk into your business and try to sell your products.
Remember, a sales reps job is to convince you to spend your marketing budget with them instead of the newspaper, TV or a direct marketing campaign. They do not know the relevant issues relating to your business, the special knowledge you have acquired over the years and the essential information customers must know before making a purchase.
I don't try to convince advertisers to to spend their marketing budget with radio instead of other media outlets.  I think it's important to use multiple media forms that will reach customers on multiple senses.  Radio is sound.  Print & direct mail is visual.  TV is both.  If you can afford it, you should use a media mix that reaches your potential consumers through all their senses.  
For those who cant afford a multi-sensory advertising campaign, I have an alternative suggestion.   My advice is to concentrate your marketing budget on the right media platform that will deliver the right message, to the right people, the right number of times in the most cost efficient way possible.  Compared to TV, Direct mail and Newspaper, radio will win just about every time.
Most advertisers believe it's easier to allow their sales rep to take control of the commercial writing duties. Stop it now. You are responsible for the ad.
Ultimately you are responsible. We are here to help.
You are the one that knows your customers' wants and needs - don't you? You know what your unique selling position is; the reasons why customers should do business with you instead of your competition. You're the one with the drive and passion to run a successful business, so don't pass on that responsibility.
Identifying a unique selling proposition isn't always that simple.  "The best customer service" is not it.  "Reliable" doesn't work either.  "Trustworthy" means nothing.  "The lowest Price" is a bad business model.  

Radio advertising is simply one element of your overall marketing campaign. You must take the time and effort to learn how to do it properly so as not to waste a single dollar of your hard earned marketing budget.
Canadians spend most of their time equally with 3 media platforms...TV, RADIO & INTERNET.  Here's a couple of links that will help "educate" you on media usage and the pros & cons of various media types.  Stephen is right, you shouldn't waste your hard earned marketing budget.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

3 Months, 400 tweets, 100 Twitter Followers - What I've learned so far

What's Twitter Anyway? (taken from their site)

Twitter is an information network made up of 140-character messages called Tweets. It's a new and easy way to discover the latest news (“what’s happening”) related to subjects you care about.

What I've done (in social media)

  • 3 months ago I started content marketing almost daily on multiple social media platforms (facebook, linkedin, twitter, youtube, blogspot, digg) 
  • I've tried to link most of these platforms together 
  • I get much of my twitter content from iPhone apps called Mashable, Ad-ology, Mprofs and tweet google articles
  • have built a database of about 300 clients that I email with articles that I write every 3 weeks or so

Why I'm doing it (social media that is)

  • SM is a new marketing platform that I need to know as a marketer
  • i'm hoping to use social media to develop new prospects
  • to be able to integrate social media strategies for my radio clients
  • when someone googles "calgary marketing" I want to show up 1st in the results

What I've learned so far (in no particular order)

  • Social media isn't a magic bullet
  • it takes lots of work to maintain social media sites 
  • i don't really like using facebook for business
  • My blog is the best place to post my ideas
  • getting recommendations on linkedin is important.  it's akin to an online consumer review
  • it's been 3 months and I've just started to meet some people
  • I'm having better conversations with my regular clients and feel like I'm being seen as a resource
  • I've learned LOTS about marketing and communication
  • "tweeting" hasn't replaced cold calling, I still have to do it
  • More and more prospects say tell me that they appreciate my articles & ideas
  • I've got more ideas & am building better marketing plans for clients
  •, seesmic, tweetdeck are useful programs to help access & contribute social media content 
  • twellow is a cool site to find local twitter users in your area
  • is a site to shrink links for twitter

    What I'm going to learn (in no particular order)

    • use more #hashtags
    • tag more people in twitter
    • How to better leverage my existing SM platforms
    • how to use twitter lists
    • how to connect with more people