August 27, 2014

BrandingBlog Radio: Ray Seggern and Wizard of Ads Events

Have you met Ray Seggern?

He’s been one of our Wizard of Ads partners since about 2006. He’s stepping into a role as a sort of ringmaster for many of our partners.

By ringmaster, I mean that he’s making an effort to herd our posse of cats onto a flatbed truck and getting them moving in the same direction.

He’s filling a Colonel Parker role by finding speaking gigs for us and he’s creating events where he can sell our services.

He’s got an event planned for May 16, 2012 in St. Louis and we had a chance to talk about it and he spills all the details in this interview.

I always enjoy talking to Ray, when I can get him to sit still long enough. He’s full of energy and I’m sure that a 25-minute podcast felt like an eternity to him.

BUSINESS OWNERS…you really ought to head to St. Louis for this. It’s a measly $67. Get on an airplane. Make a reservation. Go learn something.

BrandingBlog Radio: Test My Marketing with Brian Schmitt

Have you ever poured your time and energy into an ad, or an email, or a blog post, video, phone message, sales pitch, or, or, or….?

Sometimes you are just too close to the issue to realize what may be wrong with your approach, the words you’ve choosen or the the fact that you might be leaving out something critical. TestMyMarketing.com is a place where you can upload your marketing message and have it critiqued by at least 3 marketing professionals who promise not to hold back. If you can take the heat, you’re message will be tempered by fire.

Back in August of 2011, the Awesome Sauce class at Wizard Academy birthed this baby business that was adopted by a couple of students. Brian Schmitt and Matt Lenhart decided that this was an idea that they could get behind and nurse into a full-grown enterprise. Now, more than half-a-year later, they’ve added another partner, changed the name and are in the middle of another launch mode.

I had a chance to catch up with Brian Schmitt last week to discuss how things are going. You’ll like what you hear…or your money back!

 

BrandingBlog Radio: Greysuit Retail with David Lively and Raffy Pendery

These guys rock. David Lively and Raffy Pendery are the brains behind Greysuit Retail and now Greysuit Apps.

Their mission is to make the techie side of the web easier for retailers. They’ve built a platform for managing a small retailer’s ecommerce, blog, web, craigslist, email and more. Now, with Greysuit Apps they can help you manage the ever-growing complexity of marketing on Facebook.

In the middle of the podcast, I asked how they came up with the name Greysuit. They went into a story about how laid-back they are and how they hardly ever even wear shoes. So, I thought I’d go swipe a photo of them from Facebook to use in this post. What did I find? David Lively in a dark suit-coat and Raffy in a tux. Sigh. So, I grabbed this image off of their web site instead.

Here are the links we talked about in the podcast:

BrandingBlog Radio: Paul Boomer on Web Hosting

UPDATE:  Regarding the amazing Paul Boomer. A few months ago, I got a nibble from a business owner with a carpet cleaning business who had a gawd-awful web site. I could tell that her crap-o-la site was the sole reason that she wasn’t getting much business through the interwebs. It looked like someone had bedazzled an old pair of boxer shorts and called it a web site. Well, maybe not quite like that, but you get the idea.

She didn’t have enough budget to hire both Paul and I for a full-on web overhaul, SEO and copywriting gig. I looked over the site pretty well. It had some decent copy…buried where nobody could find it. They had a nice pic of their van. Their phone number was almost impossible to find.

I told her that I would try to cash in a favor from my WordPress wizard partner, but that I doubted he would do it. I asked her for a little more budget than she had available and called Paul. I convinced him to create a new site for her and severely limit the scope of client involvement and interaction. I knew Paul could do this one blindfolded and with earplugs in, if needed. He knocked it out of the park, just like he usually does.

He followed up with an email a week or two ago and she finally emailed back with this:

“It’s good to hear from you! I have been meaning to send you an update to tell you how amazing you are. But because you’re so amazing I haven’t had time!

Our website is working just like you said! We’ve been getting quotes and testimonies through the website. Just the other day a gal called to schedule a cleaning and I was taken back because she was talking to me in a tone and as if we had been best friends for many years. She then told me that she reviewed the website and is so happy she was only going to use us!

I know that I still have much to do to get this company functioning properly. But I am so thankful for you and what you have done for us. You have changed the direction of this company and I’m starting to feel the wind in our sails.

I hope all is well with you!”

It was the perfect alignment of project and available time for Paul. He had a brief lull in his pipeline and knocked it out in a day or two. I doubt if I could get him to do it again because he was paid way too little for what he delivered. But, boy did he deliver. He can do it for you too. Let me know if you want to meet The Boom.

About the Podcast:

This week, I’m busy trying to move BrandingBlog to a new hosting company. So…I recorded a conversation with Paul Boomer about what kinds of things a site owner should consider as they contemplate a move.

As we discussed how you should package up your content into boxes and cartons, I inadvertently gave one of my very best lessons on Microsoft Excel as well. I hope you enjoy it.

We mentioned a couple of sites…one being my new host MediaTemple. Check them out.

Another was www.downforeveryoneorjustme.com which is a good place to check first when you can’t get to a web site.

Sometimes it’s just you.

NOTE: That is NOT an editing mistake at the beginning of the podcast. It’s a blooper. I left it in. On purpose.

 

BrandingBlog Radio: Ari Meisel of LessDoing.com

This week I got to spend about a half hour interviewing Ari Meisel. We connected a couple weeks ago when I found his “Less Doing” productivity blog and he asked me to be a guest on his podcast to discuss Shortcut Blogging and how we are making it easier for CEOs to blog.

I was fascinated with his approach to productivity and how it sprang from his battle with Crohn’s disease. His victory over his disease and how he approached the battle is the basis of Ari Meisel’s TEDx talk from May, 2011.

In this podcast, Ari tells his story and shares some of his favorite and most effective productivity tools. He is an advocate of doing away with your To Do List and using systems that simply make your tasks appear at the moment you need to work on them. He is also a big advocate of using virtual assistants to take your focus off of your more mundane tasks. Pretty cool stuff.

All of the links we mentioned can be found on Ari’s site in the description of his Achievement Architecture coaching program.

I really like his approach and enjoyed talking about all of these geeky tools with him.