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Digital Marketing And Your Brand
Every business knows that there is always room for improvement in marketing your brand but sometimes, it can be overwhelming. Many business owners feel that their business doesn't need to utilize digital marketing or social media, especially if their company performed just fine before digital marketing became an expectation.
Though it is unavoidable to acknowledge that all brands need to take advantage of digital marketing practices to contend with current and upcoming competitors. In this blog post, Hollywood Branded examines how to develop digital marketing strategies for your brand's success from the experience and expertise of Naresh Vissa from Krish Media & Marketing.
A Little Background on Naresh
Naresh is the founder and CEO of Krish Media & Marketing, a full service online in digital media and marketing consultancy and agency. He has worked with CNN Radio, JP Morgan Chase, EverBank, The Institute for Energy Research, Houston Rockets, Houston Astros, The American Junior Golf Association, Agora Financial, Agora Publishing, and Stansberry Research, and TradeStops.
He's a #1 bestselling author of 'Fifty Shades of Marketing: Whip Your Business Into Shape & Dominate Your Competition,' 'Podcastnomics: The Book Of Podcasting ... To Make You Millions', 'The New Pr: 21st Century Public Relations Strategies & Resources... to Reach Millions', and 'Trumpbook: How Digital Liberals Silenced a Nation Into Making America Hate Again'. He's been featured on USA Today, Yahoo, Bloomberg, MSNBC, Huntington Post, Business Week, MSN Money, Business Insider, India Today, and other domestic and international media outlets.
Transcript Interview Highlights
Question: Can you tell us a little bit more about you, how long you've been doing what you do and more about your background and how you got to where you are today?
Answer: I've always had an interest in marketing and it's kind of been in me or in my blood and I think that's really important when it comes to marketing. I don't think its something that you can learn in school and that's partly why I don't have the degree in marketing, even though I have two different business degrees that don't really a focus in marketing. I started out in media and journalism, that's TV, radio, print, newspaper, magazine, etc., both on paper, in front of the camera, and also behind the scene as a producer, director, editor etc., and that's actually marketing as well.
Media is tied into marketing. That's why my company is called Krish Media & Marketing. And because media ties into the marketing funnel as either public relations. I wrote that book, 'Trumpbook' which you brought up earlier in the introduction, because President Trump did a tremendous job of using media to market his campaign.
So anyway, working in media and journalism, that got my foot into the door when it came to the online and digital marketplace because I was a journalist during kind of that convergence when all the media turned into new media and the online marketplace or online publishing was just writing about the rising the BuzzFeeds, the Business Insiders, etc., were startups, just little bitty companies back then. So I was able to see that convergence between old media and new media and also learn most importantly that the technical aspects of some of basic media and marketing fundamentals like how to use WordPress, social media, what's a hash tag? How to use Twitter. How to use Facebook, etc.
So as a reporter, back then I had to learn all those things and today as a reporter, you certainly have to learn all those things. But I also got interested in finance and worked on Wall Street for a little bit. Worked for a value fund as an equities' analyst and when I went to graduate school to combine my background in media and in finance, I was contacted by probably one of the largest financial marketing companies in the world. They found me on LinkedIn and they ended up hiring me while I was in graduate school. I was a consultant to manage a project and then I ended up taking over that project full time and it was while I was working full time that I really, really learned the online and digital E-commerce marketplace. That's where I really, really learned the nitty gritty of how to make money online through marketing.
Question: You were talking about old media versus new media and when we think of new media, a lot of times that's more so digital which is why you're on this podcast today. Do you think new media or digital marketing is more important than the old standards?
Answer: Well, this is really a no brainer. Absolutely and all businesses, all industries need to go digital. Businesses need to have this 21st century mentality in running those physical businesses. It's not just tech businesses per se that need to adapt to the 21st century. Let me give you an example of that.
So a restaurant locally where I live in Tampa Bay, You would say, okay that's kind of a 20th century business. Well, the restaurant was started by some IT professionals who wanted to leave their IT jobs 'cause they loved cooking and they just love the restaurant business, and they love the food industry.
Before the restaurant even opened, they had at least I want to say 30 Yelp reviews. I don't know how they got them. Well, two months later when the restaurant was opened and in business, I remember a group of friends, we're trying to decide where to go to dinner and I recommended this place and a couple of people took out their cell phones and said, "I've never heard of it but let me look it up." So they looked it up and what did they see? They see that they had 4.7, 4.8, 4.9 stars out of 5 stars on Yelp. And they said, "Oh wow, this place has at least 100 reviews and 4.8 stars. This looks amazing." So we ended up eating there.
Well, that is an example of how a 20th century business model adapted to 21st century business and marketing in order to grow their business. And there are so many examples like that where you might think, "Oh, I'm just a laundromat or I'm just a convenient store. Nothing's changed in the last 40 years, 50 years. It's all run the same.' And I'm here to tell you, no. That's why I wrote '50 Shades of Marketing'.
Every business needs to adapt to the 20th century. You need to go digital. You need to promote yourself online. Just look at how much people are looking at their phones nowadays. I would say most of our lives now, for better or for worse, are outsourced to the online and digital marketplace. So that means if you are brick and mortar, if you are any business, you need to make sure that you are ... that you leave an online and digital footprint because it will only help your business. It will not hurt it.
Question: What are the first steps that brands need to be doing and considering before they're embracing all things digital?
Answer: Well, the first thing a company needs to understand is who is their client. Are they a B2B business or are they a B2C business? And most businesses who are probably listening to this podcast are B2C businesses. So I think more businesses need to understand before going digital "what can I do to improve the customer experience or to engage with the customers digitally?" I'm not saying physically why I have to take customers out to lunch just to get them to keep coming back to my restaurant.
Well, what we've identified or really what I identified many years ago, is email marketing is the most effective tool in online and digital. And so what I mean by email marketing is some many of these brick and mortar businesses or businesses in general, even websites, they claim that they have all these customers and they claim that they have all these visits and clicks and uniques to their sites but then when you ask them, "Well, do you know who those people are? Can you show me some proof outside of Google Analytics that those are actually people of value and they're not just coming in that go to the bathroom or just one time customers?" And so the best way you can quantify that is by capturing names and email addresses, really email addresses even more than names.
And so once you capture email addresses, now you have a communications tool to reach out to those individuals and you can reach out to them about coupons that you have, special newsletters, whatever it is, and I can tell you, I'm a loyal customer to various establishments simply because I'm on their email list. I'm on PF Chang's email list. I'm on other pizza places and restaurants, shops, stores, their email lists and that's how they keep in touch with me whether it's the email list or the app. I download their app and they send me notifications to my app but they've done is they've capture my information so that they can keep that open line of communication and when they send me something, like buy one get one free pizza or buy one get one free ... buy one entrée get one free, I act on that. I get it delivered to my inbox and I say, "Oh, this is pretty cool. I'm hungry today. Let's go eat at X."
These are just examples that I'm sharing about the importance of capturing your traffic, and capturing your customer base and then engaging with them so that you can build a long lasting relationship to sustain your business over the long haul.
Question: And what are some of the ways you suggest in capturing email addresses because you know obviously not every business when you go into like a restaurant, you're not just saying, "Here's my email. Sign me up for dinner." So how do you suggest businesses go about that?
Answer: Well it depends on the line of business. Every establishment is different. So what my own business is, we capture email since we're online businesses, E-commerce businesses, we capture email addresses through the simple, "Enter your email address to subscribe to our monthly newsletter." Or "Subscribe toward our daily e-letter." Or "Special report: Seven Ways to Make More Money in 2019. Enter your email address below to download your special report."
Essentially what you want to do is giveaway something of value that doesn't cost your company anything out of pocket. So by out of pocket I mean, you don't actually have to go buy something. If you're a lawyer, well if you offer one hour of your time which is $300 to $1000 value, well that's something you can certainly offer and you're not paying anything out of pocket or from your bank account. It's just an hour of your time. If you're a restaurant and you say, "50% off your next bill", well again you're not paying anything out of pocket because that's essentially money that's coming in that would not have been there had that coupon or that offer not been available.
So as a business, you need to kind of figure out what it is that you want to give away. And on the digital side, it's pretty easy because when you're giving away E-books, audio books, free reports, promo-codes, those are all digital so there's really no overhead.
Question: Are there any other digital topics that you wanted to cover today?
Answer: The last topic that I want to quickly go over is the direct which is just business that directly connects a consumer. So how it connects is up to the business. We've talked about some of these channels so historically in the 20th century it was channels like Snail Mail, Qpons, Telemarketing, and today's ecosystem it's more email content marketing like writing a blog or a podcast, search engine optimization, social media, Pay-Per-Click, those are some of the more modern tools for direct marketing.
But the biggest takeaway that I want people to have with direct marketing is you want to directly connect with your consumer. So we talked earlier about build a website, create social media, and they will come which I said, not entirely true but it's really the base and the foundation that you want before starting to run your campaigns but what I brought up earlier like email marketing, there outside of you, actually captured names and you can directly connect to those end users.
With the click of one email, boom, you can send them a message to millions of people in the case of President Trump for example, 'cause that's how big his base is. He's worked hard to collect all those names and if he wants to get a message out, he can just send out a Tweet and it becomes a front page of the New York Times or Headline News for CNN or Fox or whatever. If he sends out an email, lets say he's soliciting funds like fundraising, raising money, well within hours he can see tens of thousands of dollars being poured in and that's what I mean by direct marketing.
President Obama was the first one to utilize direct marketing but nowadays you look at the politicians and they're just prime examples of direct marketing and that's going directly to the consumer and telling them to do something, telling them to vote, telling them to donate and you can apply those principles to your own business and so you need to just think about that full cycle of how am I going to find those people? How am I going to connect with those people? How am I going to capture their email addresses or their phone numbers or their ... yeah, their cell numbers to text them? What am I going to send them that's going to be of value? How am I going to keep them engaged? This is all part of the direct marketing funnel that I think every business owner should think about.
To learn more about implementing digital marketing into your business, you can listen to the full interview in our podcast.
Next Steps And Further Readings
Want to learn more about how to improve your brand's marketing practices? Check out some other blog posts we've written on the subject!
Want to learn more from experts across various walks of the marketing landscape? Subscribe to our Marketing Mistakes Podcast and learn tips, strategies and suggestions from the pros!
Topics: Social Media Strategy, Digital Marketing, Podcast Interviews, HB Podcast