Do It! Marketing Blog: Marketing for Smart People™

17 Tips to Create Audio that Rocks

doitmarketing 17 tips for audio that rocksAs you may know, I just finished recording the audio book version of the Do It! Marketing book.

The audio book will be published by Gildan Media - the same folks who publish audio books from Brian Tracy, Simon Sinek, and Mark Goulston... and distributed through Hachette Audio - the same folks that distribute audio books for authors like Malcolm Gladwell, David Sedaris, and Scott Turow. Not bad company... and who knows, maybe they need someone like me to carry their luggage!

It was a great experience - and you can see some photos from the studio recording here on Facebook... 

My audio engineer on this project was the fabulous Joel Metzler at Milkboy the Studio in downtown Philadelphia. Great facility and Joel was the consummate pro - a total pleasure to work with! If you need a killer studio facility and you're anywhere near Philly, Milkboy is the place to go. Just sayin'.

17 Tips to Create Audio that Rocks

I've done a lot of homebrew audio - on my laptop - with a Zoom H1 digital recorder - and with my trusty Blue Snowball microphone and Audacity on my Mac. And I've also done a fair amount of studio recording in studios ranging from the scary to the awesome (aka Milkboy).

Here are 17 tips for speakers, authors, consultants, and independent professionals who want to create better sounding, more professional audios for their podcast, radio show, audio products or voiceovers. 

1. Stand up when you record - it makes a HUGE difference to the way your voice sounds. For example, I recorded the entire 12 hours of the Do It! Marketing audio book standing up. (Wear comfortable shoes!)

2. Speak close to the microphone - you want to get right up in that bad boy's face. Somewhere between 4 to 8 inches from the microphone. If you're doing this at home, test different distances and use the one that sounds the richest, warmest and most clear. 

3. Use a pop filter. You will totally thank me later. It's going to be the best money you spend if you're serious about creating great audio.

4. Don't overinvest in equipment. You don't need a lot of fancy gear to sound great. A good USB microphone, a mic stand, a pop filter, and some basic recording and editing software like Audacity (free at this link) will go a long way. 

5. Don't skimp on studio time, either. If it's an important project where production quality counts, find a great local recording studio near where you live. Top notch studio time is surprisingly affordable these days. Expect to pay between $75 and $125 an hour for a top-notch facility and technical staff who can help you produce top-notch work.

6. Don't overprepare. If it's a big project especially - it doesn't make sense to overprepare. You should be familiar with the material (if you wrote it, you will be!) and that's about it.  

7. Don't underprepare. If you've never done an audio recording before, paid studio time is not the place to learn the ropes. Invest a few hours with "practice recording" at home. Your studio time will go that much more smoothly and quickly. 

8. Read - but don't "read." In other words, don't make it SOUND like you're reading. Speak naturally. Pretend you're talking to a friend so it's not boring.  

9. Mix it up. Use vocal variety - just as professional speakers and seasoned storytellers know how to vary their pace, tone, pitch, and volume to keep an audience engaged in what they're saying... YOU should use the full range of your vocal variety to emphasize key words, transition between points, and underscore important ideas. 

10. Use your body. Since you're standing, you'll have the ability to do more physical movement. Use it! It's amazing how the voice and the body are connected. Have you ever seen actors like Robin Williams or Whoopi Goldberg or Tom Hanks in those "Making of" special features on the Disney movies that they do voice acting for? They are gesturing wildly with their hands, bouncing on the balls of their feet, making silly faces, leaning into the microphone, sometimes even jumping up and down. And it's for a VOICEOVER. That's because your vocal energy is tied to your physical energy. Use it - and your voiceover range and variety will improve dramatically.

11. Remember the art of the pause. Listeners need a pause to comprehend the last thing you said. Think of pauses - some short, and some not so short (for dramatic effect) - as the punctuation in your audio. If you never pause, you exhaust your listeners who lose the thread of your long sentences or complex ideas. If you use pauses to insert "natural phrasing" into your script, it makes it much easier for your listeners to understand, absorb, and they WANT to keep listening!

12. Take it one page at a time. For the Do It! Marketing audio book, I had to get through 60,000 words and 280 pages. If I had thought about it that way during the recording sessions, I might never have made it! I took on the task one page at a time. Do longer recordings with this mindset, and you'll sail right through faster than you ever imagined. I cruised through 150 pages on Day 1 (6.5 hours) and 130 pages on Day 2 (5.5 hours). And it was fun!

13. Have a "keep going" mindset. Voiceover professionals know that their main task is to "get the job done" - and that momentum is their friend. Don't think about stopping. Don't take too many breaks. You're in the studio (yes, even your home studio) to crank out the work, not to obsess over minor details or do endless retakes. Keep going!

14. Flaws are good. Good professional audio editors will take out every inhale, smooth over every rough patch, edit out every vocal aberration. GREAT editors will leave in just enough of those same aberrations to make the voiceover pro sound human. When we chat in coffee shops, over breakfast or lunch with friends, or in front of prospects or clients in meetings, our vocal and verbal delivery is never 100% perfect. There's a difference between sounding professional and sounding sterile and robotic. So leave a few "personality flaws" in your audio. Maybe 5-10%. It makes all the difference and you'll sound like a REAL human.

15. Pause whenever you need to. Ah, the magic of editing. Whenever you screw up a line, swallow a word, stop to fix a typo in your script or for any other reason (sneeze, cough, get a drink of water) - keep the audio rolling and pause. Then pick up where you left off. Most professional audio engineers will mark the script at that point to help the editor, but you just pause as long as you need and jump right back in when you're ready. You don't need to ask permission, you don't need to apologize, you don't need to get flustered. Pause so you can GO!

16. Eat! And drink tea, bring lozenges, avoid dairy and coffee and bring water. Don't forget to eat breakfast on the day you're recording. Why? Because stomach grumbling is audible on good audio equipment. Yes, really. Avoid coffee - it dehydrates you. Drink tea - especially lemon tea or ginger tea that has a little bit of acid to clear and soothe your throat. Bring lozenges with you in case you need a midday vocal recharge - I like the Ricola classic Swiss herb cough drops. Avoid dairy products like milk or yogurt which tend to generate phlegm and block up your throat. Also, bring a water bottle so you have plenty of water available in the booth as you record. Water is your friend! 

17. Personality not included. No matter how great your script, it doesn't have any personality until you pick up the script and put YOUR personality into the words you've written. Don't be shy - in fact, if you don't bring your full personality to the recording, you'll miss out on the biggest opportunity that audio programs and products present - the opportunity to connect and build rapport with your listeners and have them experience what it's like to have a warm and personal conversation with you! If you're loud, be loud. If you're a little edgy, sound edgy. Don't hide your personality for the sake of a "professional sounding" recording. There's no such animal - the whole point of recording audio is so that you CAN marry your content with your personality.  


Grab your FREE copy of the Do It! Marketing Manifesto

And then leave a comment below with your questions, thoughts, and advice on the ideas to create audio programs that rock!

Are you a DO IT freak? Welcome to the club!! Please use the social media buttons at the top of this post to share it with your network. YOU are a rock star!

Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing for coaches, consultant marketing, thought leadership marketing, business coaching, marketing book, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing expert, marketing coaching, product development, professional speaker marketing, marketing ideas, marketing coach, motivational speaker marketing, marketing consultant, marketing for authors, marketing for consultants, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, content marketing, audio products

Marketing Coach: Your Ideas Are Sold by Weight, Not Volume

doitmarketing five words recite

Ya dig?

Please use the COMMENTS area below to share your advice, insights and recommendations on packing maximum VALUE into minimum WORDS...

doitmarketing, marketing speaker, marketing coach

Tags: marketing speaker, consulting firm marketing, thought leadership marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing professional services firms, marketing strategist, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, content marketing, brand strategy

10 Blogging Lessons from Your Dog

woofie wheres woofie dog blogDoes your dog blog? 

Yes? No? Not sure? 

Well, don't worry because mine does.

You're about to get 10 blogging lessons from my black Labrador retriever, Woofie, who turns 10 soon. (FYI her birthday is April 29 and she loves getting birthday notes by email. And she replies to every one!)

What makes Woofie such an authority on blogging? Well, it's simple really - she gets a TON of traffic. Every month, I get emails from GoDaddy, where her website is hosted, to the effect that her website bandwidth (5GB/month) has been exceeded. Sometimes by a factor of two or three!

Put simply: there's a chance that this dog's blog is more popular than yours. 

So to help you fix that, here are Woofie's guidelines for blogging.

  1. Post  regularly. Woofie posts updates once a year - usually on or before her birthday. It's regularly scheduled. You should post more often than that - but the point is the word REGULARLY.
  2. Don't ask for much. Woofie doesn't sell on her blog. She doesn't beg. She doesn't collect email addresses. She offers value (if doggy cuteness has value to you) and she invites engagement (by email or social media). That's it. And it works. 
  3. Be cute and relax. Be the real you on your blog. People ask me the secret to success in presenting yourself online. My answer: it's two things. 1. Authenticity and 2. Enthusiasm. Woofie freely shares both of these traits on her blog - and so should you.
  4. Let people come up to you first. Pretend you're a dog... you have no opposable thumbs... you can't do much. So you better be the online equivalent of an adorable little puppy who people want to stop, pet, interact with, and give treats to. Do that, and you win.
  5. Use more photos - visuals sell. Much of Woofie's website is made up of photos of her adventures from the previous year. Photos and videos are where it's at. In the wise words of my digital marketing pal, Jay Baer of Convince and Convert, "Text is going away online. Everything is moving to pictures and video."
  6. Be easy to reach. Woofie has a whole host of digital communications tools in her arsenal (Here's how to connect with her on Twitter, LinkedIn, email, blog, Dogbook.) The short story is she is reachable in ways that YOU want to reach her, not in ways SHE prefers to be reached (which all happen to involve bacon and/or cheese.)
  7. Depend on other people to sell for you. In addition to having no opposable thumbs, Woofie has never made a sales call and has never sent a marketing email. She has people do it for her. Third-party endorsements, referrals, recommendations, and word of mouth from her human friends do the trick. How about you?
  8. Make people feel better about themselves after engaging with you. Let's face it - this dog is cute. But what's beyond that to make interacting with her worthwhile? Well, if you came over to our house, you could answer that for yourself. But we're talking about online. So each interaction needs to be fun, special, and rewarding in and of itself. Want to try one? Click here to send Woofie an email and see what you get back in a reply. 
  9. It's OK to be silly. Sometimes it's even more than OK - it's required. Self-deprecating humor is the best kind. It puts people at ease and makes them feel better about themselves, too. Plus it's an indicator of expertise if you can portray yourself "as you are" - mistakes, warts, and all. The fearful, the incompetent, and the weak don't have the guts to do that. Woofie does. And you do, too. 
  10. 10 kisses, one bark - keep it positive. Nobody likes to read the blog posts of a perpetual whiner, negative nelly, or always-ranting loon. Woofie has never posted anything negative. And even I, her humble human, try to keep my blog posts 90% positive, aspirational, and fun -- and only 10% critical or "calling out the crazy." It's like the old bumper sticker of doggie wisdom - "Bark Less, Wag More."
Grab your FREE copy of the Social Media Traffic Boost Cheat Sheet!

And then leave a comment below with your questions, thoughts, and advice on the ideas above.

Are you a DO IT freak? Welcome to the club!! Please use the social media buttons at the top of this post to share it with your network. YOU are a rock star!

Tags: marketing speaker, thought leadership marketing, word of mouth marketing, web marketing, marketing professional services, blog, trusted advisor marketing, blogging for business, marketing coach, marketing strategist, blogging 101, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, content marketing, marketing tips

Marketing Coach: There Is No Blue

doitmarketing out of the blueWhere did that lead come from?

"It came out of the blue..."

How did that customer find you?

"They found us out of the blue..."

What made them call?

"They called out of the blue..."

How many times have you heard yourself give these types of answers?

Hmmm... me too.

Until last night when I was having dinner with The Hot One™ - aka my lovely bride of 27 years.

I was telling her about a brand new client and she asked me, "How did they find you?" and I instinctively answered, "I dunno - they found me out of the blue."

By the way, this is a terrible answer for a marketing guy to give.

I should know exactly how and why my specific marketing activities attract specific clients but I must admit things have been going fast and furious around here lately so I've lost track. A good problem to have - but a problem nonetheless...

Back to dinner with The Hot One™ - she looks over at me, pauses meaningfully and says... 

"There is no blue."

Ouch. And she's right. So she made me think harder - look harder - connect the dots - to where and how this client came to me. 

This is a terrific reminder for YOU, too... 

There is no blue.

So here are 12 potential sources of "blue" -- inbound leads, prospects and referrals. You need to work harder at identifying, specifying, and inquiring about these when GOOD prospects come your way. And even more so when - like in my situation yesterday - good prospects become clients!

  1. Google (or other search engines)
  2. Your articles in hardcopy publications (industry magazines, trade journals, association publications)
  3. Your articles posted online (guest blogs, contributed columns, niche industry websites)
  4. Your social media accounts (Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook, etc.)
  5. Your blog
  6. Your personal network (friends, family, colleagues)
  7. A referral (current client, past client, or non-client fan/influencer)
  8. Directories and listings (online, offline)
  9. Your speaking engagements (local, regional, national, fee or free)
  10. Your videos (on your website or sites like YouTube, Vimeo, etc.)
  11. Your teleseminars (the ones you host or where you're the guest)
  12. Your media interviews (TV, radio, print)

Become fanatical about connecting new customers and clients to specific marketing channels. 

Put a sign up on your office wall to remind you if necessary... 

There is NO blue!

Tags: Marketing speaker, marketing coach, thought leadership marketing, lead generation

Grab your FREE copy of the Platform Promotion Checklist!

And then leave a comment below with your questions, thoughts, and advice on the ideas above.

Are you a DO IT freak? Welcome to the club!! Please use the social media buttons at the top of this post to share it with your network. YOU are a rock star!

Tags: marketing for speakers, consultant marketing, thought leadership marketing, word of mouth marketing, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, professional speaker, professional speaker marketing, marketing mix, marketing for authors, marketing for consultants, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, content marketing, referral marketing, business strategy, networking, public speaker marketing

Marketing Coach: Your Product Development Strategy

doit marketing coach product development strategyLet’s talk about YOUR product development strategy. This is about creating products with intention. And let me back up a step and define what I consider “creating a product” to be.

It could be you wanting to write a book, produce audio, video, or online assets, package a coaching or consulting program, or otherwise "productize" your expertise. It does not necessarily need to be a product you hold in your hand, although sometimes it certainly is.

Quick story. I was working with one of my clients who was a very gifted speaker who had been working a long time in her niche. She would go from keynote to keynote, seminar to seminar. Finally, she got tired of having 100% of her income tied to her personal time, attention and presence.

She said to me, "David I need products. And I have a crazy busy schedule coming up over the next 2-3 weeks with good opportunities to be in front of LOTS of potential prospects."

Mind you, she was NOT speaking to audiences of thousands – her typical audience was probably like yours – between 50 and 250 people at state and regional conferences.

She asked me, “What’s the easiest product I can create?” And we decided that the easiest product for her wasn’t a product at all – it was to package and sell access to her time and expertise. Later, products could be developed as a standalone revenue stream. 

So we created a single 8.5 x 11 piece of paper. Long story short, she emerged from those 2-3 weeks of speaking engagements with over $20,000 of coaching and consulting clients.

The point: your product strategy needs to fit YOU – your personal strengths, preferences, and the needs of your particular business.

If you love writing strategies, focus on writing products.

If you love coaching and consulting, develop coaching and consulting products.

If you love training, develop training products.

If you love video, develop video products.

The key to your product development game plan is to make it Easy, Effortless and Enjoyable.


Want to kick your product development into high gear? Good news - the next Product Development Toolkit program launches on March 5 and we still have a few open seats remaining at Early Bird prices. Program details and registration info are online for you here

Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing speaker, marketing for coaches, thought leadership marketing, marketing professional services, trusted advisor marketing, marketing expert, marketing professional services firms, marketing coaching, product development, marketing coach, marketing strategist, marketing for authors, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, content marketing, product development for experts

Marketing Speaker: Keep It Short

marketing speaker doit marketing keep it shortSnappy.



Here's a video to demonstrate: 

Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing speaker, marketing concept, thought leadership marketing, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, professional speaker marketing, marketing coach, marketing strategist, speaker marketing, marketing for authors, content marketing

Marketing Coach: Your Web Traffic - Fitness Program or Autopsy?

marketing coach, small business marketing coachBad news: You are 9 days into the month and your website traffic is down 43%. 

Worse news: You don't even know about it. 

Why not? 

Because if you're like most small business owners, (non-web) entrepreneurs and independent professionals, you look at your web stats once a month - and almost always when it's too late. 

So the question for you and your organization is - are you looking at your web marketing game plan as a forward-looking fitness program -- or as a backward-looking autopsy?

The autopsy approach sounds like this: "What went wrong? Where did our site visits go? How come opt-ins dropped? Our bounce rate climbed again..." Sigh, worry, fret, fret, fret...

The fitness approach sounds like this: "It's been 10 days since our last blog post, we have to post more regularly - let's put something up this Tuesday and again on Thursday. Where's our SEO score card? I think we dropped back a few places on two of our keywords and it looks like we're back at #1 again for 'Poughkeepsie laundromat' - woo hoo! We need to load some fresh tweets to drive more traffic to our free report because it looks like opt-ins are dropping..."

DANGER: The fit get fitter. And the autopsy people are dead on the table. 

Where do your website stats stand today?

Please leave your insights, advice and recommendations in the COMMENTS section below...

Keywords: Marketing coach, small business marketing coach

Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing speaker, marketing for coaches, consulting firm marketing, marketing professional services, email marketing, marketing for trainers, marketing professional services firms, marketing ideas, marketing consultant, small business marketing, marketing mix, marketing for authors, marketing for consultants, doit marketing, doitmarketing, content marketing, small business marketing coach, marketing tips, frustration

Trusted Advisor Marketing: Why You're Asking the WRONG Question

Marketing expert marketing speaker og adThe ad above first appeared in Business Week in 1958 – yes that’s right over 50 years ago! The moral of the ad’s story was relevant then and it is even more relevant today: build relationships before you sell.

The bad news is that we live in far more cynical times than the sellers of the 1950’s; the good news is that YOU have so many more tools available to help you address the problem.

If you're investing in "Trusted Advisor Marketing" (it goes by several other names like inbound marketing, thought leadership marketing, and content marketing)... then you've probably asked yourself: 

How (and when) will this generate a sale?

And that is the completely WRONG question to ask.

By the time you're done reading this article/ rant/ manifesto, you'll see exactly why - AND you'll be able to ask (and answer) much better questions for your business right away. 

We interrupt with a brief metaphor... Asking when trusted advisor marketing will lead to a sale is like filling up your car's gas tank and asking, "Why aren't we there yet?" 

Answer: Because filling your car with gas is a NECESSARY but NOT SUFFICIENT step to getting you to your destination (a new customer or client).

Do you have a chance of arriving now that your gas tank is full? You bet.

Did you have a chance of getting there with your tank on empty? No way. 

Let's move on... 

Insight #1 You need to sell the same way that YOU buy.

Look at your email spam or bulk email folder. Yes, you. Yes, right now. I'll wait... 

tap... tap... tap... tap... You're back. Excellent.

Did you see that spam email from the toner cartridge company? Did you catch the pitch from the SEO firm that filled out your website's "contact us" form? Did you respond to that great deal on vacation cruises? NO? 

OK now pop over to your paper mail pile on your desk. Did you check out the latest "triple play" offer from Comcast (or whatever hellacious Cable Satan runs in your neck of the woods)? How about that compelling cell phone offer from Verizon? The Wall Street Journal subscription offer under that postcard? Or how about that postcard - you know, the one from the home heating oil company? NO? 

When's the last time you gave your credit card number over to a cold caller who interrupted your family dinner? NEVER??

I'm shocked...

Because you seem pretty excited about YOUR cold calls - and sending out YOUR spam - YOUR offers - YOUR postcards - YOUR sales messages.

The problem with doing it this way? In four words...

Zero. Value. For. Prospects.

And hello? YOU don't BUY this way. What in the world makes you think your prospects DO?

Look once more at the ad above - and answer one simple question: 

Question #1: What VALUE have I ADDED to my prospect's world in order to EARN the RIGHT to INVITE them to a conversation and OFFER my solutions to their urgent, pervasive, expensive problems?

Insight #2 Referrals are great - but they are neither deaf, dumb, nor blind

The next thing you're going to tell me is that you don't NEED "trusted advisor marketing" because 99% of your business is repeat and referral business and it's always been that way and you don't see how this "newfangled marketing" is going to move the needle in closing more sales.

Do you seriously think that referrals don't check you out online before picking up the phone?

What messages are you sending to your valued referrals with...

a. Your outdated website (articles from 2008 are outdated, friends. And from 2003 even more so. And design aesthetic from 1997 most of all.)

b. Your sporadically updated blog that you leave dormant for 2 (or 4 or 6) months at a clip.

c. Your abandoned Twitter account you set up because someone said "you had to" and that now has 17 followers while your competitors have 3,000 (or a whole lot more.) 

d. Your sketchy, bare bones LinkedIn profile that has 300 connections but only 2 recommendations (From 2005. From people with the same last name as you.)

e. Your "glory days" articles and TV clips and PR placements from 20 (yes I'm serious), 10, or even 5 years ago. Nothing screams "has-been" like old media.  

Make no mistake: Getting repeat and referral business is great. But don't kid yourself that this absolves you from having a top-notch web presence, social media platform, and body of knowledge that is ultra-current, super-relevant, and obviously abundant.

In fact, you are leaving yourself open for EMBARRASSMENT if your advocates hear back from their referrals and find themselves in the awkward position of having to DEFEND you to them because your web presence has fallen behind and now casts your professional expertise into doubt.

Question #2: Does my overall web presence REASSURE and REINFORCE the referrals I earn with the most current, credible and relevant marketing messages, positioning, content, resources, and value that will make my advocates LOOK BETTER - not worse - for referring me? 

Insight #3 Trusted Advisor Marketing is a 4-layer enchilada (aka You don't get to eat the delicious golden-brown cheese without first layering on the meat!!)

trusted advisor marketing DOIT

The first layer - at the core of the matter - is your Reputation. Your work. Your track record. If you stop there, you'll have a VERY hard time attracting NEW leads and prospects to your doorstep. "My work should speak for itself" is what a lot of very smart people say - smart people who have a hard time making their mortgage payments.  

The second layer is Amplification. Ways to make your "signal" stronger. Enter social media marketing, niche PR, article marketing, blogging, keyword research and search engine optimization. This is the key to spreading your ideas and broadcasting your expertise.

The third layer is Leverage. This is where you begin to capitalize on your "trusted advisor" assets such as articles, blogs, videos, podcasts, interviews, white papers, special reports, book excerpts, and other value-first marketing tools. You can now reach out to high-probability prospects both individually (on LinkedIn for example) and collectively (on your blog for example). This is where your job becomes putting the right bait on the right hooks in the right lakes to catch the right fish.  

The fourth layer is Gravity. Just like Jim Collins talks about the "flywheel" concept in Good to Great (it takes a long time to get it spinning but then is very hard to stop because of the power of momentum) - this is where you start to see payoffs. More leads, better prospects, bigger opportunities, more conversations, higher profile alliances, more invitations to speak, publish, guest post, contribute, teach, and (drum roll please...) more invitations to do great work at premium fees for great clients who NOW know you, like you, and trust you enough to hand over 5- and 6-figure checks because their level of confidence in your expertise is pretty damn close to 100%.

Question #3: Do you want to make more sales to strangers? (Good luck with that). Or do you really want more people to recognize, respect, and request YOU by name when they have a need, project, or problem that they instantly see has "your name written all over it"? If that's your goal, then trusted advisor marketing is for you. 

Re-read the McGraw-Hill ad above and let's do a 21st century spin on it together...

  • I don't know who you are.
  • I don't read your blog. 
  • I don't subscribe to your newsletter.
  • I don't see your name in my industry's publications.
  • I don't hear my peers spreading your ideas.
  • I don't come across your content in Google searches.
  • I don't connect your solutions to my problems. 
  • I don't feel the gravity of your credibility or credentials.
  • I don't have any tangible way to gauge your expertise or experience.
  • Now -- what was it you wanted to sell me? 

So here's the ultimate (and most important) question for YOU: 

How can you realistically expect to SELL anything by NOT setting the necessary pre-conditions for ANY sale with Trusted Advisor Marketing?

The answer is as simple as it is obvious: you can't. Just like you can't drive your car from Denver to Sheboygan just by filling up your gas tank. You need to get behind the wheel, plan your route, use your GPS, add more fuel along the way (and probably some beef jerky and Sno-Balls and root beer) AND put in the hours and the miles to get you to your destination.  

Nobody -- and I mean N-O-B-O-D-Y -- hires speakers, consultants or professional services firms sight unseen. You wouldn't. I wouldn't either.

And the facts prove out that today's buyers are just like YOU and ME. 

Trusted Advisor marketing is a marathon, not a sprint. And as any marathoner will tell you - the best (and only) way to run a marathon is one mile at a time. 

What do you think? Please post YOUR COMMENTS below and... 

trusted advisor marketing for speakers, consultants, experts

Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing speaker, marketing strategy, thought leadership marketing, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, small business marketing expert, public relations, professional speaker marketing, marketing ideas, marketing strategist, marketing consultant, small business marketing, thought leadership, small business marketing speaker, content marketing, inbound marketing

Marketing Coach: How to identify with your prospects on your blog

marketing concept business bloggingGuest post by Diana Urban

Some of the benefits of having a business blog is that you can generate leads from qualified prospects who visit, establish yourself as an industry thought-leader, and build business relationships in the blogosphere. This is most effectively done if you identify the persona(s) you're targeting and establish your voice when launching your blog.

The first things to consider are:

  • Who are you writing for?
  • What are you writing about?
Know your audience
Think about the type of person, on average, who you want to attract to your blog. Is it a 40-year-old head of manufacturing? Does he have a family? What are the pressures he faces? What is he interested in? What kinds of things does he do and read? Or perhaps your target audience is a 24 year-old professional who lives in a major city. What does he look like? What motivates him? What interests him? You should develop marketing personas for the types of prospects you want to attract to your blog so you have a mental picture of who you are writing for, and you can easily communicate this to others.

Brainstorm articles
Considering your marketing personas, brainstorm some articles you might write to appeal to your readers. Come up with 5 or 10 topics you could write about.

Keep tabs on related blogs
Find related blogs on the web; these can serve as an inspiration and to connect with fellow industry experts. Engaging with related blogs to understand:
  • What are the current hot topics in your industry
  • Common topics that personas in your industry enjoy reading
  • Gaps in topics that you can cover in your blog
As you find blogs that are interesting, subscribe to them via RSS or email. 

Comment on related blogs
As you skim the articles, try to think of interesting and insightful comments you might be able to leave. Note that "nice article" and "I agree" are NOT interesting or insightful. If you can think of a good comment, leave it. If you can't, just move on. The goals of commenting on articles are:
  • Develop a reputation in the blogosphere as a thought leader
  • Generate some site traffic through any link to your website that you can leave in the comment
  • Get the blogger's attention, which is useful later when you are initially promoting your blog and building links
  • Get comfortable projecting your voice and joining the conversation happening on the web
  • Over the course of a week or two, as you continue to read blog articles and leave comments, you should start to get a pretty good sense of what other bloggers are saying, the kind of content people in your industry like to read, current hot topics, etc.
Based on all the work you've done, you should now be able to articulate the "who" and "what" of your blog. Congratulations!!

Need help blogging? Contact us and we can help you get going and keep going with a prospect-magnet business blog.

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Marketing Coach: Your Blogging Quick-Start Guide

blogging for business bwWant to Grow Your Business With Blogging? Here’s Your Quick-Start Guide

Guest post by Claudia Somerfield

One of the easiest and most powerful tools for growing your business is the business blog. Most marketing advisers suggest including a business blog as a sales tool. If you are a business owner, entrepreneur, or thought-leading professional and want to expand your influence with blogging, here is a quick-start guide that will have you up and running in no time at all.

Start with a clear plan

A common mistake that many businesses make when they start a blog is not having a long term plan in place. This applies to various aspects of the blog.

Consider these questions:

  • What is the core purpose of your blog?
  • How do you want it to look?
  • What should be the writing style and tone of your blog posts?
  • How openly do you want to position your blog as a sales tool?
  • What kind of interface do you want to offer your blog readers to contact you?
  • How do you want people to find your blog on a web search?

Having a clear cut strategy makes your blog much more focused, consistent and professional.

The web is often referred to as a fickle medium. If your blog readers do not find your blog of value, they will not return, they will not click through to your products or services, and they will not promote it by sharing it on their social networks.

At the end of the day, your reader looks for value, and your long term plan can help determine the specific nature and scope of the value you will offer.

Select your tool

The interface that you will use to upload and publish content on your blog is known as your blogging platform. There are several popular blogging platforms that you can choose from such as Blogger, Wordpress, and TypePad. While your web developer may provide you with a "home-made" interface on your website to create and add content to your blog, it is much easier and more efficient to integrate one of the more popular platforms. Take a look at what these platforms offer, and choose the one that appeals to you the most.

Create classy content

If you want your business blog to attract readers, and if you want the blog to become an integral part of your business strategy, you will have generate high quality content. You may want to employ the services of a professional blogger or content writer for this or you can do it yourself.

In the context of a business, there is no one who knows the nuances of the business better than you. However, you will want to keep in mind that it takes consistent posting of good content on a regular basis on your blog for it to grow in value.

Many business blogs make the mistake of compromising quality of content for quantity, over-using techniques like link building and search engine optimization to get more traffic to their blogs, but across time, they fail to engage the readers or to get them to respond to their call to action.


The key to popularizing your blog is to promote it. This can be as simple as sending out email announcements every time you update your blog, sharing it on your social networks, and notifying what are known as pinging services that will update web directories with your new content.

Social bookmarking sites are another commonly used promotion tool. The most popular social bookmarking platforms that are worth your time are Delicious, Digg, and StumbleUpon.


Start building relationships with other business bloggers. Promote their work on your networks. This may seem counterproductive especially if they are your competitors, but it will establish you as a fair and open networker. This will also help you study other business blogs and learn the tricks of the trade. Study how they use interesting content to get their readers attention and how they convert it either into return visits or a click through to products and services.

Visit other blogs and leave your opinions in the comments section. As people take note of your opinion, you will find them wanting to network with you and your blog. As with everything in life, blogging for business has a certain amount of give and take involved. The more you give, the greater your chances of taking something back.

Business blogging is proven strategy that will help your business grow. However, for a blog to be noticed and acquire a reputation among readers and clients, it takes time and dedicated effort.

Study the basics of search engine optimization and keyword research so that you are able to bolster your content with the technical strength it needs to reach the top of search results. Make your content interesting and useful.

Remember that your blog posts are not direct sales messages, but rather high-value assets with which to build a community of interested readers who are your potential customers.

As you grow your dedicated readership, you will find that your blog has become a significant source of web traffic, leads, referrals, and new business.


About the author: Claudia is a blogger by profession. She loves writing on luxury and technology. She recently read an article on a t-rex car that attracted her attention. Her next writing project involves a flying car.

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