In this episode, Stacy sits down with business consultant and President of WebStores Ltd., Greg Jameson. The two discuss the best ways to manage your business website in order to increase your market position, bolster revenue and strengthen your brand.   

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Stacy: 00:00               

    • Welcome to Marketing Mistakes (And How To Avoid Them). I’m Stacy Jones, the founder of Influencer Marketing and Branded Content Agency, Hollywood Branded. This podcast provides brand marketers a learning platform for topics for us to share their insights and knowledge on topics which make a direct impact on your business today. While it is impossible to be well-versed on every topic and strategy that can improve bottom line results, my goal is to help you avoid making costly mistakes of time, energy, or money, whether you’re doing a DIY approach or hiring an expert to help. Let’s begin today’s discussion.

Speaker 2:  00:31               

      • Welcome to Marketing Mistakes (And How To Avoid Them). Here’s your host Stacy Jones.

Stacy: 00:35               

      • Welcome to Marketing Mistakes (And How To Avoid Them). I’m Stacy Jones. I’m so happy to be here with you all today and wanna give a very warm welcome to Greg Jameson, the president of WebStores Limited. He’s joining us to discuss his over 30 years of experience in working in digital marketing. Greg has been at the forefront of digital commerce since the start of web development and e-commerce mastery, and Greg made massive impact helping bring the technical leadership and communication skills to large organizations like Chase Paymentech, Pall Aerospace, and Los Alamos Labs. As the number-one bestselling author of The Influencer Effect, Amazon’s Dirty Little Secrets, What Would Jeff Do?, Grow Your Online Sales, and a host of other books, Greg’s a sought-after consultant and speaker whose goal is to make your business successful online. He’s been awarded International Developer of the Year, Colorado Small Business of the Year, and listed on the Inc. 500 Fastest Growing Companies in America.

 

      • We all know that internet marketing is absolutely critical in today’s market, and also highly challenging, even for tech-savvy and business professionals. And for small and medium-sized businesses, it can be a colossal challenge to stay up-to-date on all the things you need to know and do to make sure your web site stands out from the competition. Today we’re gonna talk with Greg about how to best manage your business web site in order to increase your market position, bolster revenue, and strengthen your brand. We’ll learn what’s worked from Greg’s experience, what maybe could be avoided if you’re doing this yourself, and where other brands are missing the mark. Greg, welcome.

Greg: 01:56               

      • Thanks Stacy. This is gonna be fun. I’m really happy to be here and appreciate the nice lengthy intro there.

Stacy: 02:04             

      • You’re welcome. You have lots of lengthy things to say about you. You have done some really cool things, and what I wanna really share with everyone is how much you actually have harnessed the mastery of internet. I’m gonna share a quick little story. Greg just mentioned this to you. You made my husband’s absolute week, not even his day, because he was sitting there in the kitchen, cooking breakfast, listening to the New York Times Alexa briefing, and after it ended, he stayed tuned, which he doesn’t ever usually do. Usually he’s shaving and listening to the briefing. He delayed it. So this is very serendipitous. And he listened to the next commercial, which was for Audi, and the next thing he knew, he was listening to you, which he didn’t really know about. But you were introducing me because I was on your podcast talking on 20 Minutes of Influence, and you had gotten your podcast position to be able to be heard by people all over on Alexa. And you have some marketing savviness that most people really haven’t embraced yet, and that’s why I’m so happy to have you on today.

Greg: 03:07               

      • Well thanks Stacy, and actually, when you e-mailed me and told me that story, it kinda made my day. I was just like, “Yeah, that’s fun.”

Stacy: 03:17               

      • It is. It’s not something that normally happens, quite frankly, and it’s the ones close to us, when they get excited, it makes what we do even more exciting sometimes in life. So that was a big win. I appreciate that win that you were able to give me. But can you tell all of our listeners today a little bit about your background, where you were, what got you to what you’re doing today.

Greg:   03:38               

      • Sure. I’ll try to encapsulate a lifetime of experience into just a few minutes here. It really all began back when I was in high school, and I had a really rare opportunity in that my dad worked for Colorado State University. He was a research professor, and he had a research project where he actually brought home a portable teletype machine to do some work on. And this was before the age of PCs, so in my house, I had a portable teletype machine, and I actually had access to an account on the county computer, which was a DEC mainframe, a PDP-10. So I was doing computer programming stuff a decade before anybody else had a computer in their house, which kind of gave me an edge up on a lot of stuff. So I’ve been a geek my entire life.

Stacy: 04:41        

      • Well, that geekdom has paid off for you, mightily.

Greg: 04:45               

      • And technology has always been fun. For many of us, including me, it can be incredibly frustrating at times, and we don’t necessarily understand things. Like you and I were talking offline here about getting a podcast up on Alexa and trying to figure out how to do Alexa skills and so forth. And it seems like there’s always one more thing that you have to learn and it’s … and it’s not gonna slow down obviously. It’s gonna keep getting worse. But there’s always something else that we have to do, and because of that and the technology always being kind of right on the bleeding edge, things break. Even things that have been around for a long time break.

 

      • And certainly when it comes to web sites, which we’re gonna talk about today, web sites break all the time. And there’s a lot of reasons for it. Someone will change the database. Someone will change a browser. Someone … Google will go out there and all of a sudden say, “I’m not gonna show your site unless you have an SSL certificate on it.” It’s kind of one thing after another, and if you’re utilizing a content management system like WordPress, well WordPress has updates all the time. All the plug-ins that go with it have updates all the time. And all of these things may very well conflict with each other, and as a result, things break and you’re at the mercy of someone it seems like all the time to get things back up and running smoothly.

Stacy: 06:26        

      • No, it’s true. I mean, just the other day I realized that our Twitter feed that’s at the very bottom of our web site, right? Like if you go all the way down to the very, very, very bottom pages, at the very base, you have a Twitter feed that you’re able to see your tweets. Well, it said it hadn’t updated in something like three months, and I certainly never go down, and I guess no one else on our team went down, and no one commented about it. And it was just because a plug-in got updated, and so the API wasn’t updating correctly.

Greg: 06:53               

      • Yeah, and sometimes, I like to automate everything as much as possible so that if I do a blog post, for example, it automatically generates a newsletter for me. It automatically generates a Facebook post for me and a LinkedIn post for me and a Pinterest post and everything else. And it’s great when it’s working, but sometimes that linkage between your blog post and, let’s say, Pinterest for whatever reason, it no longer works.  And that’s one of those things that you have to be on top of all the time. It’s like, “Okay, it’s … If I really wanna be posting to Pinterest, and I don’t wanna be out there creating separate Pinterest posts,” then you have to be on top of that technology.

Stacy: 07:47               

      • Right, you have to figure out how to check in enough on it so that you can actually eyeball it and make sure that everything’s running smoothly. So what are some of the common mistakes you have seen with web sites, besides obviously not updating plug-ins, APIs, things along those lines, that our listeners should really be hyper-diligent about and aware of?

Greg:   08:09               

      • Well I think that the big thing that I see, and this is not a technology thing at all. This is simply a business thing. And that is updating your content. I always like to kinda compare it to Facebook and I ask people the question, “If you went to Facebook today, and you saw a certain set of posts, and then you went back tomorrow and you saw the same set of posts, and you went back a week from now and you saw the same set of posts. And then a month from now, and you still saw the same posts. How often would you go back to Facebook?” Probably not very often, because it’s the same stuff over and over again.

 

      • And then I ask the question, “What makes you think your web site’s any different?” And that’s usually when the light bulb goes on. It’s like, “Oh, so someone’s coming to my web site maybe one time, never to return because I haven’t updated anything in months.” And like I said, that’s a business thing. That’s not a technology thing. You have to get in the habit, if you’re gonna have a web site, of actually running your web site and putting new stuff out there so that there’s a reason for people to come back to your web site over and over again.

Stacy: 09:27               

      • And when you say new content and new things on your web site, are we talking here about meaning, okay, new blogs, or new e-newsletters or new downloadable e-books or things along those lines, or are you talking about actually home pages content changes and other things that are really part of the aesthetic of your web site?

Greg: 09:50

      • All of the above. The aesthetics of the web site, quite honestly, and certainly the layout of the web site, that’s not something that does need to change all the time. In fact, sometimes people get frustrated with a site like Facebook if they’re constantly changing. “Where’d they move this button to?” I know even if you’re trying to use a word processing program like Microsoft Word and they come out with an update, and all of a sudden, one thing that we’re used to finding it is now in a completely different place. That just annoys people. That’s not improving the user interface at all. That’s just somebody that got paid so they made a modification to whatever it is you’re using.

 

      • But certainly new imagery on your home page, if you’re running an e-commerce web site, maybe be promoting new products on the home page. Take a look at Amazon. Every time you go to Amazon, it’s different. And not only is it different, but it’s targeted specifically towards you. Here’s some products related to other things that you looked at when you came here last time. Every major web site out there is constantly putting out new content. Might be a news web site, it might be YouTube, it might be the social media sites where other people are creating content for you, which we can talk about as a way of getting content generated is having other people do it. Much like an influencer would do. But yeah, as a business owner, you have to take responsibility for that and update things on a regular basis, or no one’s gonna come back.

Stacy: 11:36     

      • Great. And so what’s the best thing to focus on? So is it … What would you suggest to someone as their first steps of focusing on updating content? Where should they dig in?

Greg: 11:52          

      • As I’ve gotten this bee in my bonnet here about this whole changing your content thing lately, I’ve actually been putting together a series of online courses to address some of that. And some of the things that you mentioned are things that people should definitely be doing. The lead magnet that you’re offering, whether it be a free e-book or a free course, a free white paper, a coupon for something, access to a video, whatever your lead magnet is, that is one of the things that you need to change regularly. If somebody comes and they’ve already downloaded your e-book, there’s no reason for them to come back next month to download the same e-book. Give them another reason to come back to your web site. And then, because they’ve already downloaded your e-book, you’ve got their e-mail address at that point, you send out an e-mail and say, “Hey, we’ve got a new freebie on our web site where I’ve got this 10 minute video describing x,” then that gives them a reason to go back to your web site.

 

      • So certainly the lead magnets. You mentioned blog posts. I think that it is really important, regardless of what business you’re in, that your blog posts appear on your home page. Not solely your blog posts on your home page, like WordPress likes to have the default be just your blog, but to have in addition to all of the other stuff that you have on your home page, show your latest blog posts so that every time somebody comes to your web site, there’s new material on your home page.

 

      • Certainly, as I said, if you have an e-commerce web site, stuff you’re promoting on your home page should change. I actually do have one client that is really good at doing this, and they change their home page about once a month I guess. But it depends upon the season. So right now, their home page has stuff on there all about Valentine’s Day. Or … Well, they did have. I guess that was a week or two ago now. I haven’t looked at their web site recently. It’s probably St. Patrick’s Day or something, but they’re changing stuff all the time on their home page to reflect the time of the year, and they actually do a really good job of that and have a really good following because-

Stacy: 14:28               

      • Right. I’m assuming when they’re changing their web site and updating their home page to be seasonal and specific to whatever that month’s feature is, they’re also doing the same across their socials, so that they’re actually carrying that out and doing it across their entire digital platform.

Greg: 14:43         

      • Absolutely. And like I said, it doesn’t matter what business you’re in. I’ve got a client that’s a doctor that does a pretty good job at this as well and they actually laid out a calendar for an entire year, saying, “Okay, during March, we’re gonna talk about gluten intolerancy or whatever. And during April, we’re gonna talk about inflammation or whatever.” But it’s like, okay, they’ve got a theme for each month, and then they write all of their blog posts around whatever that theme is, and their newsletters contain their blog posts and so forth. And it does make a difference.

Stacy: 15:23        

      • Yeah, that’s absolutely smart, and a lot of people don’t do that, and the calendar plan is [inaudible 00:15:28] PR agencies do, where you’re looking at, what is the conversation that you’re going to be having with the media on a monthly basis or a quarterly basis, and then you’re making sure all your messaging points are aligned with that.

Greg:     15:41               

      • And it doesn’t mean-

Stacy: 15:41         

      • People don’t-

Greg: 15:42         

      • Yeah, and it doesn’t mean because you have a calendar that if … we live in a constantly changing world. If something comes up that is relevant for your audience, put it in there. It doesn’t … Just because you have a calendar, it’s kind of like a budget. You don’t have to spend every single dollar exactly the way that you said that you were going to with your budget, but at least you have a [inaudible 00:16:10].

Stacy: 16:10             

      • Absolutely, it makes sense. And so when you are doing the planning, you’re doing the calendar, are you thinking that you just rip out a piece of paper and you do this, or do you use special software? Do you use CRM systems that help you with this? Do you use just WordPress and plan and an Excel document, or a Word document? What’s your best strategy that you suggest [inaudible 00:16:32] should go out and do?

Greg: 16:33               

      • I think it is completely up to the individual and what they’re most comfortable with. I just put things in a Word document myself and refer to it at the beginning of each month. And then I’ll look and say, “Okay, this month, I’m gonna be talking about graphics,” for example. Then I can go in there and … and this is something that I actually recommend to people when I’m sitting there telling them to change their content all the time, is they’re like, “Look, I’ve got a business to run. I don’t have time to be doing all of this stuff,” is, batch all your work together. Write four different blog posts, hit the schedule button, say, “This one’s coming out this week, this one’s coming out next week, this one’s coming out the week after.” Just do it all once, and they’re you’re not constantly having to go in there and go, “Oh, it’s Wednesday, I gotta get a new blog post out there.” Do it once a month.

 

      • Heck, if you have the time, take a weekend and do the whole year, and just put the stuff that comes up throughout the year, mix it in.

Stacy:    17:41      

      • Yeah, I 100% agree on that. I know that when you are behind the ball and you’re trying to desperately get something written because you have a blog post that’s supposed to go out the next day, it is like the worst homework assignment ever.

Greg:      17:57  

      • And then, like I said, if you automate all of this stuff, whether you’re doing it through various WordPress plug-ins like Microblog Poster or you’re doing it through something like IFTTT. If this, then that, which is a great little service out there. Just automate stuff so it’s like, “Okay, I wrote the blog post. It’s coming out on this date.”  And everything else takes care of itself.

Stacy: 18:23       

      • Great. I know on blog posting, one of my strategies when we first started it … Gosh, I think about seven years ago writing blogs, was using the blogs to answer problems we were encountering with clients. So we do a sales call, and we’d have a conversation, and I’d find myself trying to explain the concept, and I’d go into such detail trying to explain it on the call. And you have their attention but you kinda don’t have their attention, and what I learned is to touch on it, and then just to say, “You know what? I wrote a blog on it. I’m going to share it with you and send you more detail.”

 

      • And then I would actually sit down and respond and write a way to specifically answer what they were telling me and what the issue was that I could get them to better understand it. And then I would post it as a blog, then share the link with them as that, and know that I could use that and replicate that blog and share it over and over again, because lots of people would have that same question. No one has … You don’t just have one person who has a question about your company. There’s lots of people who have the same questions.

Greg:   19:27  

      • Yeah, I think that’s a great way to do blog content. And another way that I’ve seen is as I was talking about things that come up throughout the years, just look at what the current [inaudible 00:19:39] are as it relates to your industry, and pick one, and relate it back to what it is that you do.

Stacy:   19:49   

      • And a little bit ago, you mentioned getting other people to create your content for you. So how does someone go about that? Because oh my gosh, this is the miracle! Someone’s gonna [inaudible 00:19:59] for me! Yay! How does that work?

Greg: 20:04      

      • There’s multiple ways. One way certainly is to simply go ask them, and you would be surprised that if you ask a customer to go out there and write about their experience with your product or service, and tell them that they’re going to be featured on your blog or your podcast or whatever it is that you’re doing, they’ll do it, and they won’t ask for anything in return other than if it’s a business, maybe a link back to their web site. Pretty simple thing to do is to simply go ask people. When you introduced me, you introduced me as a best-selling author, and people always say, “Well how the heck did you do that?” And I was like, “You know, the reality was, I didn’t.” What I did is I sent my book out to all of my friends and they did all of these incredible social media posts holding up the book and writing reviews for it and spreading the word for me. And it was great. So clearly, just asking people is one way.

 

      • Another way that you can certainly do it is to pay an influencer. So you find somebody that is really an influencer in a particular industry, and come up with some kind of a contract in terms of how they’re going to do that for you. An example of that is that I’m working with a group of retailers in Estes Park, Colorado right now. And it’s a whole group of them that decided that they wanted to bring more people into this tourist town. And I said, “Well, a good way to do that would be to go get Rick Steves and have him do a video about Estes Park.” And they were like, “Yeah, that’d be nice, but we can’t afford him.” And I was like, “Maybe not, but here’s what you do is, you find a local influencer that would do the same thing for you.” Well they did that, and this gal ended up putting out a 20 minute video all about the great things to do in Estes Park, including, by the way, maybe you should walk into this particular coffee shop, and maybe while you’re there, you should go over here and go into this photo gallery and stuff. And it has been phenomenally successful. So pay an influencer is another way.

 

      • And a third way that I can think of is, put a contest on your web site. We were talking about changing up your lead magnets on a regular basis. Well one particular lead magnet you could have is a contest where you ask people to either take a photo of them using your product or service and post it all over social media, or to create a video and put it up on YouTube for you or whatever, and then … It’s a contest. It’s not a drawing. It’s a contest. You actually get a panel of judges to judge to see which person came up with the most creative video for you. And in the meantime, you had lots of people that have been entering this and creating all sorts of buzz for you, because you’re gonna give away whatever it’s gonna be. A $100 gift card to Amazon or whatever the prize is. You’re gonna give away a 70-inch TV. I don’t know what you’re gonna give away, but if the prize is enticing enough, you’d be surprised at how many people will go out and be putting in a really serious effort into trying to win that prize and create great content for you.

Stacy: 23:57    

      • And that’s really brilliant, Greg, because usually, people think about, “You’re gonna win this on your social media,” and there’s a lot of restrictions now that Facebook’s put in and Instagram’s put in where … just contesting rules per se on those sweepstakes opportunities, where it’s blind random drawings. But by saying it’s a contest, that you actually have a panel of judges, that you’re treating this as something that’s not just a blind drawing, is something that people really don’t do very often. And that’s a great idea.

Greg: 24:29      

      • And when you’ve run it on your own web site, you’re not restricted to the rules of Facebook or YouTube or whatever. This is your contest and you come up with the rules. You can certainly promote it on Facebook and YouTube and whatever else, but you actually run the contest on your own web site.

Stacy: 24:51           

      • No, that’s great. And so what else should brands think about, or businesses … to me everyone’s an employer or an agency, one of the two. And agencies are brands also. We’re all brands. But what else should companies think about when it comes to web sites and apps that [inaudible 00:25:10] with their content or design or just engagement?

Greg: 25:16          

      • Okay, I’m gonna actually back up here just a sec ’cause I just thought of another thing somebody could do, and that is guest posting on other people’s blogs. And one of the things that will frequently happen I know is that, if you do have a blog that is getting any traction at all after a period of time, people will approach you and say, “Hey, can I post an article on your blog?” And sometimes people even offer to pay you to put their post up on your blog. But regardless, the answer is yes. It’s more user-generated content.

 

      • And so you were asking what else here. Well one of the other things, I think, is your graphics. It is really important that business owners be able to generate their own graphics. You don’t want to be paying a graphic artist or a photographer or your web designer, whatever, every time that you want to come up with a new post on Instagram, for example. And you also don’t wanna every single post to just be a selfie with your smart phone. You want to have professional quality graphics. And it’s really pretty easy to do. So be able to create graphics, take a stock photo, be able to put some text on it about what it is that you’re offering, and then you can upload those to your web site as well as to all the social media channels.

Stacy: 27:00         

      • Yeah, our team uses for stock photography a number of different sources, but one of them is Dreamstime, and so we keep a monthly subscription to it so that we can download and have cleared images. Because the idea of going onto Google and finding images and using that as your content is bad on two-folds. One, the images aren’t really the highest quality a lot of times. You get some graininess. But two, they’re not actually cleared to be used. They’re not free images for you to be able to use without licensing. And from a stock photo site, all of that is. You have an agreement, and you can use it for however way you signed up for it to be used, and there’s different pricing plans on that. So whatever site you use, that’s important. And then I love PhotoShop. I love Adobe Illustrator, I do. I think they’re great. But I think that they are too difficult for the majority of people to be able to use, and it’s unfair to expect business owners or individuals in your company to be able to jump on, polish their skills, and be able to create awesome graphics using them.

 

      • So there are sites like Canva, which we love. I wish they paid us. They’re not. This is an authentic, for both of these services, endorsement. Where Canva is fantastic, because you literally upload an image, they have tile layovers that you do for words. You have different shapes, you have different ways that you can do layouts. It automatically will lay out for you based on if it’s a Twitter or a Facebook or an Instagram or a Pinterest or a header or all these different types of images, and it makes any business owner or business employee be able to almost be a graphic artist wizard. It’s awesome. So-

Greg: 28:44          

      • Yeah, I totally agree. And there’s actually lots of resources that allow you to do those types of things and Canva is a good one. Another good one is LunaPic. Kinda like lunatic, but LunaPic. And I don’t get paid for that either.

Stacy: 29:05  

      • No, I mean, there’s just some, there are some graphic programs and things that are just so awesome that it’s easy to endorse them. I’m like, “I like them.” Piktochart, which is for infographics, they’re really cool for that. It allows … I mean, even if you had interns, they’re gonna be able to lay out something that looks super professional that would otherwise have cost you thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars. So it’s kind of cool that you have all these resources and if you’re writing a blog, there’s no reason your blog can’t be turned into an infographic. Your blog can’t be turned into still images for graphics for Facebook or for any of your social platforms. Your blogs, once you have a bundle of them, you talked about having a month-long focused kind of campaign on a topic, whether it’s graphics. Well there’s no reason all your blogs from that month on graphics couldn’t be turned into an e-book. And now you all of a sudden have this awesome content that you can keep on repurposing and sharing and you don’t have to start from scratch every time.

Greg: 30:00      

      • That’s exactly my message, that we’re on the same wavelength here. So yeah, as a business owner, like I said, the technology stuff that we kind of started out talking about at the beginning of the show, about, “Hey, this plug-in has crashed my web site,” or whatever. Go see your local geek to fix that for you. But the content of your web site is … People say, “I’m too busy. I have to go run my business.” Your web site is your business. It is like saying that you don’t have time to restock your shelves. Well, if you don’t restock your shelves, guess what? You don’t have anything to sell. All of this content on your web site is restocking your shelves digitally, and you absolutely have to do it. And you can’t just put up a web site and let it sit there for two years, because not only does the technology get dated, but that content will be stale in a month.

Stacy: 31:02       

      • Yeah, really your web site is like having a sales person or a marketing person on your staff. But it’s working for you 24/7. And it’s actually chugging along and chugging along. So it’s worth allocating dollars to.

Greg: 31:16              

      • Absolutely.

Stacy: 31:18 

      • Okay. Any other elements or ways that you think people can leverage their web site or need to that they commonly don’t do?

Greg: 31:28    

      • Well, there’s lots of ways that you can leverage your web site, and to me, they’re totally intuitive, but maybe they aren’t to other people. Things as simple as your e-mail signature block. Put your web site on there so that … you never know who you’re sending out an e-mail to that may wanna go visit something on your web site. Your phone answering message. Tell people that too. I think that so often, people seem to think that the only real way to get your message out there is to advertise it. I gotta go do Google Adwords or Facebook ads, and quite honestly, those are things that you probably should be doing as your business gets to the point where you need to be doing it. We all see Amazon advertising stills, but you have to compete with that.

 

      • I think that … I heard a statistic the other day, and I’d heard it before, but the other day it really caught my mind as I’ve been on this kick for business owners to be creating content. And that is that 90% of all the data on the internet has been generated in the last two years. Pretty staggering. Just think about that. But what’s more staggering is is that, you have to compete with that. And so if you aren’t in on that, and you aren’t being part of creating that new content, and again, your web site is out there and the content hasn’t been changed for two years, then you are seriously out of date and no one … You’re irrelevant, basically, at that point.

Stacy: 33:34 

      • Right. And you have to find a way to actually make your web site work for you and bring you … And being in-bound sales service for you. That’s what’s the magic about it is, you want it to catch and trigger and get people at least on a high funnel level to ask more questions, or want to dig in deeper and sign up for your e-book or the other value-added content that you’re using as your lead magnets.

Greg: 34:00      

      • Yeah. And I think what we were talking about before about getting other people to market and sell stuff for you. The reality is is, that’s how Amazon got started. Their affiliate program still accounts for almost 50% of their sales, which is phenomenal in and of itself. Other people are out there pushing off links to Amazon because they might get paid for it. But equally important as that is they have these product ratings and reviews that people take very seriously. It’s like one customer telling another customer why you should or should not buy a particular product. And as a business owner, you need to be doing that too. Put ratings and reviews up on your web site. Let customers tell other customers why you are so good.

Stacy: 35:00               

      • Yep, that’s fair enough.

Greg: 35:01     

      • And if you’re afraid to do that because somebody might say something bad, fix your business.

Stacy: 35:09        

      • So really, what you’re saying is, we all know word-of-mouth is so powerful. That’s why influencer marketing works. And you need to actually have your own word-of-mouth about your business on your web site and to vocally share via your own platforms, your e-mail, your own conversations, your voice mail even, that you have these assets, and start bringing people into them so that they can learn and leverage and you can get more sales.

Greg: 35:39         

      • And the thing is is, it’s really cool that when you do that, people will say nice things about you every now and then, even if somebody … you disappointed somebody, you got a one-star review or whatever. People will say nice things about you every now and then. And then what you do when that happens is, you leverage it. You sent me that e-mail the other day saying how I made your husband’s day or his week. Well guess what? I actually created a graphic about that and posted it on social media, because-

Stacy: 36:13   

      • I missed that. I need to see that. I have to go look at your site.

Greg: 36:15       

      • Because it … It resonated with me that that resonated with your husband, so it was like … When people say nice things about you, all you have to do is take a little bit of a quote about what they said about you, slap it on a stock image that you got from a site where it’s been cleared, throw it into Canva, create a little meme about it, and post it back to social media, and now you’re spreading the word because other people were saying nice things about you.

Stacy: 36:50               

      • I had not thought about that as a way to leverage client testimonials. We’ll often … we’re … I’m honestly not good about calling clients and saying, “Hey, can you tell the world happy shiny things about our agency and how the fact that you love us … I mean, obviously you love us, ’cause eight years later you’re still working with us, but, can you share that?” Not so good at that. That’s hard. But a lot of times, we’ll get an e-mail from them saying how something actually managed to move a needle, or they wanna thank one of our employees for going above and beyond as an agency for something. And those are all really awesome tidbits that until you just, I hadn’t even really … trying to [inaudible 00:37:31] and position for social shares.

Greg: 37:35   

      • Yeah, I would do that for anything. And one of the things I did years ago because of all the spam is I turned off comments on my blog posts. But people still comment on it by sending me e-mail messages. “Hey, that was a great article. I got this tip out of it.” You know what? Copy that, throw it in … create a meme about it and put it back out on social media. It’s all a big wheel, and people like to say nice things about you, because hey, maybe they’ll get quoted by you.

Stacy: 38:12       

      • What would really be the first thing that you would say a brand marketer needs to do now? They need to sit down, they need to look at their web site, they need to see if there’s content actually being updated. Is there anything else they should really be digging in and hyper aware of?

Greg:   38:32    

      • I think that so often any more, people are concerned about how many followers they have and it’s kind of irrelevant, to tell you the truth. What’s relevant is not the number of followers that you have, but the number of people that really care about what it is that you’re doing. And I sit here and I see influencers out there, and I’m looking at the definition of influencers, and it says that a micro-influencer has to have at least 10,000 followers or whatever, and some of them say it’s 100,000 followers or whatever. If I had 10,000 people that really cared about what I was doing, I would think that I had died and gone to heaven. Because you don’t need that many people. If you have 1,000 people that really care about what you’re doing, that’s a pretty good number. Hey, if you’ve got 500 people that really care about what you’re doing, you’re doing well. So don’t worry about the number of followers that you have nearly as much about how much are you actually impacting those people.

Stacy: 39:52         

      • And you have to impact them by actually providing value and serving them with education or content that’s gonna help them make a decision or make their lives easier or just be able to make that next decision that much easier too.

Greg:40:07               

      • Absolutely.

Stacy:40:09   

      • Okay. So you mention that you have a course that you are going to be marketing shortly or you are marketing on content marketing. Do you wanna share more details about that? Are there any other cool things that you’re doing that you want to kind of pitch out right now and talk about?

Greg:40:28 

      • Sure. I’m actually … I’ve had a free course out there for a while that people can just get on my web site. It’s a four-session course that just kind of goes through an introduction to maintaining your own web site information. But what I’m in the process of doing, and this is what’s kind of taking up my time right now I guess, when I’m in-between client work, is developing a series of courses all about how you really need to be controlling your own content. So there’s gonna be one course just on how to create lead magnets, and we’ll talk about all the different kinds of lead magnets, some of which we’ve mentioned here today. There’s gonna be another one just on how to create your own graphics. Another one on how to create your blog posts and automate it into a newsletter and social media posts like we talked about here. So any type of content that you can think of … there’s actually gone be one on podcasts as well, and telling people how to get their podcasts on Alexa for example.

 

      • So all of these things about content that, as a business owner, it is really critical that you take seriously, there will be a course for each type of content out there.

Stacy: 41:59       

      • That’s awesome.

Greg: 42:00               

      • It’s gonna take me a little while to get it done, but it’s a fun challenging project.

Stacy: 42:06    

      • And if someone wants to find more about that, and if you [inaudible 00:42:10] right now get in contact with you, what’s the best way for them to reach out to you?

Greg: 42:14               

      • The best way is to probably go to gregjameson.com and there is a menu item up there that says connect with Greg, and it has links to all my social media profiles, all my various web sites. You can fill out a contact form there. So just gregjameson.com is probably the best way to do it.

Stacy: 42:45   

      • Awesome. And so you mentioned that 90% of the content that is on the world wide web right now has been made in the last two years. What do you think the future is? I mean, we’re all creating so much content. Where is this going to net out? I mean, obviously if people aren’t creating content, you’re gonna be left in the dust. But where is this content creation updating movement going to lead us?

Greg: 43:11   

      • I think that it’s … People that sell hard disk drives for storing stuff on servers, they’re gonna do really well here. Cloud storage is huge. But I think that it’s really difficult for us as human beings to comprehend the amount of data that’s already out there, much less what’s gonna be out there in another two years, or two years after that. And rather than having our minds explode, maybe the thing that we need to do is, we actually need to step back from the internet now and then and say, “You know what? I’m going offline for a weekend.” And really be able to kind of take that time and regenerate.

 

      • I know I like to do that, because frequently what’ll happen is that when you step back, that the way your mind actually works is, it’s kinda like singing in the shower or whatever, or sometimes having a dream at night. Because you are unwired, that you come up with even more creative thoughts. And there’s so much negativity in the world any more. The reality is I think that the human mind is such that the best years are actually ahead of us. We just have to take advantage of it.

Stacy: 44:40           

      • That’s fair enough. Are there any last words of advice you have for our listeners today?

Greg: 44:47             

      • The biggest word of advice I guess is, participate in things like this. I’ve absolutely loved being on this podcast, regardless of where you’re listening to this podcast from. Think about it yourself. Do I have something to share with the world? Any content through a podcast, through a blog or whatever, and don’t be afraid to share it, because it’s a lot of fun, and you get to meet great people like Stacy.

Stacy: 45:18             

    • Oh great, thank you, that was very sweet. I wanna thank Greg again for joining us today and thank you all for tuning in to today’s Marketing Mistakes (And How To Avoid Them). Greg’s provided a tremendous amount of valuable advice to all of you interested in creating web sites that sell, and I know I appreciated the time he shared with us today. Thank you again, and tune in to our next podcast where we will be deep diving into more marketing mistakes and how you should avoid them.

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