My new blog... more content to come

Friday, February 14, 2014

Most people simply USE email. Stop being "most people" and read this

Email is such a great direct channel to the people we want (and need) to reach for our businesses to be successful.  Unfortunately most people simply use email the way it comes out of the box and wonder why they have little success.

What they are missing are tools (most free), and strategies to take the guessing out of the game and know exactly how to win at email marketing.  I have seen similar post from other growth and marketing individuals, but continue to see a very small adoption of these practices.  My goal is to continue to spread the world and hopefully put it in a format that most people can adopt. 

Finding your contacts email: 

If you don't have the correct contact you are in trouble, there is no point of sending your message to the gatekeeper aka  We must find the direct address to the person we are looking for. There are 3 ways that will work with 80% success
  1. The original: Start by simply searching google, try; "Persons name + email" - "Persons Name +".  Often works but not for top level executives.
  2. The quantified guess: If you don't have Rapportive, stop reading this and get it now! (Google why do you not just buy them now?... update- LinkedIn did and kinda ruined it).  Rapportive (Free) is a tool that matches any correct email in the "to" field and displays the person's information online; Social information, location, updates, and more.  Now, since most professional emails use these four format; - - -  All we need is a name and the syntax. You will be mind-blown by the success of this strategy.
  3. The Social Mistake: We think we live in a world where things just disappear, so you will be surprised how often an individual will tweet their email in a conversation. Simply find the person's twitter handle (This is always public), scroll deep through their twitter feed, command-S, and search for the word "email".  Wanna take it to the next step? Use to search every tweet they ever wrote.  Yes "All My Tweets" exist for this purpose... it is pretty awesome.   
  4. Update: Try Salesloft ( a tool for pulling contact emails from LinkedIn. Really amazing, kinda pricey, but has good free trial. 
Be fast and analytical:

Lots of great options, but I use  They are good to me and active with communication when I need them so I will stick to them.  Yesware is a Gmail plugin that does so much! Tells you if and when someone opened your email, allows you to create templates that you can use in just 2 clicks, schedule emails, and analyze the open/response rate of each template.  In other words these guys are the foundation to being an email rock-star.  You are now sending emails fast, testing success of  different templates, and tracking what offer best open and response results.

Engaging and continuing the conversation:

We have the right contacts, the right emails to send, and the tools to track that.  Now we must follow-up and right to make sure we get the conversation. (Free) lets you create follow-up reminder right from the email so you can follow-up strategically and never forget.  Even better you can use to set automate your follow-up and simply shut it off if a conversation starts (Update: Yesware added this feature).  Tip: Make your follow-ups smart and relevant.  We now know who has opened our emails, follow-up should be very different than to those who may still not know who we are.

Extra: Track visits to your website from your emails using UTM parameters

This is just the beginning :
There is a lot more to email marketing, I simply want to provide the infrastructure.  Subscribe to my blog.

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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Startups- Create your entire content library in 3 weeks

I work with a lot of kick-ass startups.  In every startup our aim is to take over the world and do amazing things.  Problem: We have tiny teams and an even smaller budget.

The want: Create an awesome content strategy and start building out our inbound marketing baseline.  Modern day "Pull Marketing" involves about creating something so awesome that others seek it out!

But how?: We look at amazing companies like Hubspot and Kissmetrics with their inbound marketing, but how can we build such a powerful top-of-funnel strategy with no resources or time?

The Solution: Your entire content library in 3 weeks. The truth is we can't do as good as them...yet.   But we can definitely implement and automate an awesome content library.  This recipe will guide us to developing a long-term inbound marketing strategy.

The Recipe:

Goal:  Create and automate content publishing and distribution for the next 6-12 months.  Collect leads, collect data, and build thought leadership in our industries.  Content will include:

  • 20 3-minute videos
  • 1 50 page ebook
  • 20 500 words blog posts 
  • Over 600 tweets and social updates 

Step 1: The Interview - Draft 20 engaging FAQ style question for the CEO.  Interview the CEO on video answering the 20 questions, it should be no longer than 2-hours.

Step 2:  Break the video down into a 20 part series.  Add questions on screen, condense rambling answers, and limit each clip to 3 minute max. (Example:

Step 3 "The text content":  Transcribe the video and customize it into a 50 page ebook :
  • 60 minutes of talking = 10,000 words = 50 pages = 5 chapter ebook
  • 10,000 word ebook = 20-500 word blog posts. TIP: Collect leads - add "Download ebook at the end of each blog post."
  • Twitter: 15 tweets per blog post  / 5 tweets for every 3-minute video  /  40 tweets per each eBook chapter= over 600 tweets = 200 days of 3 tweets/day 
Step 4:  Define distribution channels and automate. You can simply set it and forget it and will see small traffic over time (1-2 items will tend to stand out as clear leader), but in all reality at this stage you will need to push distribution for most success.  Find top blogs, industry publications, forums, social conversations, and create an email newsletter to drive distribution as the content rolls out. 

Tools Needed:

  2. UTM parameters (My simple video explanation
  3. Google Analytics 
  4. Your blog - preferably one that you can schedule and automate 
  5. Mailchimp
  7. Fiverr- You can find some great transcribers, writers, and editors here for very low cost. 
  8. Great landing pages to increase conversions: Many tools such as, Hubspot, Marketo.
Final Step: If you need help from a rockstar... Contact me!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Recipe: How to automate your twitter, collect leads, and grow followers all at once

I got this great recipe from the people @ Growth Hacker community and have been using it relatively often with some of the startups I work with.  I wanted to share it in a simple structured format.

Disclosure: A fully automated Twitter will produce very little, but a nice combination is a great way to stay active while controlling your voice. 

GOAL: Create an automated process that gets Twitter followers, publishes content to them, and collects email addresses when any of the content is clicked on. 

STEP ONE - The first step is to visit and signup for an account. BuzzFork is a cool and cost effective way to gain targeted Twitter followers. You basically choose which keywords, people, or hashtags that you want to target, and then BuzzFork automatically favorites tweets that fit within your parameters. Favorited tweets show up on people's stream, and many of them follow you in return.

STEP TWO -  Visit and create that make sense to you (Similar to Buzzfork). Instead of having the alerts delivered to your email address, you'll choose to have them delivered to a feed instead. Now you have an RSS feed of stories that your Twitter followers would like to read. NEW STEP

STEP THREE -  is an awesome new tool that adds a pop-over to any like you create on Twitter.   Write a call-to-action for subscribing to your list in the headline field. Now, whenever you tweet a link, that link will be placed in an iframe on a page where you control the content. Tip- connect this with your Mailchimp account.

STEP FOUR - set up a to automatically post links from the Google Alerts RSS feed to Twitter for free. You will need to add the Google Alerts RSS feed here. 

  1. You have a twitter that looks for great people to follow you 
  2. Your twitter updates itself with relevant information and links our to full articles 
  3. Every link anywhere on the web has a pop-over that collects email addresses for your. 
*** For the evil hacker:  create hundreds of automated Twitter accounts that automatically collect real emails from all over the web and store them to a list in your mailchimp account.  Shhh I didn't say that.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

My simple explanation of UTM Parameters (Video)

I am a huge fan of UTM parameters.  They are included in some of the best analytics tools on the web, but can actually be used by anyone.

The problem is they are rarely used by general internet marketers.  It can be very simple and provide some great data on what works for your business or startup in terms of marketing and growth.

Here is the video walk-though:

Tagging explained: