Blog

Here's an archive of blog posts I've shared since 1999, including articles, interviews, books, and news. Topics include marketing, digital marketing, copywriting, communications, and business.

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The Professional Never Stops Learning -

The Professional Never Stops Learning

September 10, 2020

Back in April of 2000, Aesop Corporation published one of my books. Aesop, an international publishing company, was then owned by Mark Joyner, often called the “Father of Internet Marketing.”

Amazon was selling just physical books at the time. Kindle only came out in late 2007. So forward-thinking publishers who wanted to go beyond the shelves of brick-and-mortar bookstores started selling something called “ebooks.”

The concept was new and revolutionary at the time.

As part of our agreement, Aesop would sell my book online. They published it, provided the landing page, wrote the copy, and managed the distribution system, which involved affiliate marketing and a huge list of subscribers.…

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The Silver Lining Behind The Cloud -

The Silver Lining Behind The Cloud

September 10, 2020

Recently, I shut down one of my businesses. With COVID and a number of other factors, many personal, I decided that I needed to focus my energy on my core business, which is my independent marketing consultancy.

Over the last decade working with thousands of clients, I've accumulated a huge number of files. I figured this shutdown process was the perfect opportunity to do some cleaning.

Some of these files are quite large, too. Many are recordings of website teardowns, copywriting critiques, interviews I've conducted, interviews I've given, training courses, online classes, and of course, old archived websites.

The total was several terabytes.

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How SEO And CRO Are Connected -

How SEO And CRO Are Connected

September 8, 2020

Subscriber and copywriter David Kimbell asked: “I'd love to hear your thoughts on CRO and list-building.” So as Bart Simpson quipped, “I please to aim.” For the sake of brevity, I'll come back to list-building.

CRO, or conversion rate optimization, is an area that I don't cover as much as I do SEO. It's likely because of how much the two are connected.

They're independent but also inter-dependent.

  • SEO's goal is to attract more and better users to your website.
  • CRO's goal is to convert those more and better users into leads/clients.

Improve your SEO and you improve your CRO at the same time.…

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How To Funnelize Your Marketing -

How To Funnelize Your Marketing

September 8, 2020

Today, I posted a rant on LinkedIn because I was getting frustrated with the number of connection requests that only amount to spam. The vast majority of people who attempt to connect with me have one of five things in common:

  1. Some freelance network (e.g., Fiverr, Upwork, etc);
  2. Some lead generation type of business;
  3. Some virtual assistant or outsourcing service;
  4. Some LinkedIn-related marketing service;
  5. Some “High-Ticket” closer or other B.S.

I understand that it's part of doing outreach. But there are better ways to do that than attempting to connect with someone only to spam their DMs less than a few hours later.…

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5 Under-Exploited Ways To Build An Email List -

5 Under-Exploited Ways To Build An Email List

September 8, 2020

When it comes to building email lists, there are countless ways to do so. Most traditional marketing channels work well. You promote your list on them as you do your business. But there are additional things you can do to.

Some of them are glaringly obvious. But because they are, they're also easy to miss. Others may be new to you. Either way, here are some that I and several of my clients have used, which proved to be quite effective.

1. Forms

Just ask people to join. Simple suggestion, I know, but the point is that you want to ask as often and in as many places as you can on your website or any of your marketing assets — without being intrusive or distracting.…

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What Does Google Think Of You? -

What Does Google Think Of You?

September 4, 2020

My SEO approach is simple, as it should be with you. Serve your audience first, focus on quality content, attract natural links, and structure around topics.

More content doesn't always mean better. Sometimes, the benefits of refreshing existing content outweigh those of creating new content. The goal is to match the audience's search intent as best as possible. The more you do, the higher the quality traffic and conversions you will generate.

If you have a website and it has been live for at least six months, chances are Google has crawled and indexed it. If so, here's a tip that I encourage every professional to do.…

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calligraphy, pen, thanks

Don't Neglect Your Nooks And Crannies

September 2, 2020

Is your marketing productive?

To me, productivity is not limited to performance or the return on investment. It is also extracting the most value possible out of every channel, funnel, or touchpoint in your business.

Many professionals often get hung up on a defined yet limited set of marketing tactics. If one doesn't work out, they move on to the next. Sometimes, a tactic may not work out because it's not productive, not because it's underperforming.

For example, a website has many neglected nooks and crannies. Many of them may offer huge potential returns if optimized.

Let's take a look at the thank-you page.

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Credibility Is A Matter Of Perception, Not Competence -

Credibility Is A Matter Of Perception, Not Competence

September 2, 2020

“All credibility, all good conscience, all evidence of truth come only from the senses.”

— Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900)

When I posted the above on LinkedIn, someone said:

“Senses are easily manipulated and can be used to passionately motivate people to either buy products or even vote for president.”

This person's comment is absolutely correct.

First, let me say that I'm not a Nietzche connoisseur by any stretch. But I did study some of his work. This quote and many others like it stem from Nietzche's take on perspectivism, which I like.

It's the concept that there is no truth, only interpretations of the truth.…

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How To Extract Maximum Value From Your Content -

How To Extract Maximum Value From Your Content

September 2, 2020

Content marketing is an important component of your marketing strategy as a professional. Content communicates your expertise and positions you as an authority. It attracts people to your tribe and provides great SEO benefits, too.

But content is not limited to blogs.

I once had a client whose blog was very thin. It only had a handful of articles, and his most recent article was several months old. When I suggested starting blogging more, he disagreed because he felt he didn't have the time.

I was going to suggest hiring a content writer. But I realized he was quite active on social media and forums in his niche, posting and commenting a lot.…

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building an email list in marketing

Another Reason To Not Chase Clients

August 30, 2020

After my email about building an email list instead of a social media following, someone pointed out something very important.

Subscriber Carl Seleborg of DasCask.com (mmm, I love whiskey), said the following, reprinted with his permission, which I completely agree with:

I think this has become a big no-no in many parts of the world, and even if it were legal: we really should stop throwing people's data around, especially when they trusted us enough to sign up for our newsletter. We're entering an age where privacy is turning into a basic right, and the added restrictions on how I can collect and use the data I have on people make that data even more valuable, I find.

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