• Running a Lean Digital Marketing Agency

    By | November 19, 2014
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    Below is a guest post by Ryan Chester (@ChestNut_Ryan), a business development manager at AnnexCore. He has helped develop digital marketing strategies for enterprises across the globe.

    Most manufacturing companies operate lean, and luckily; our agency was started by someone with an extensive background in both software and electronics manufacturing. Unlike the marketing agencies of the Mad Men era, new-age agencies are built to do more with less.

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  • Data Security Tips for Your Agency and Clients

    By | November 10, 2014
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    Below is a guest post from Tom Smith, VP of business development and strategy for CloudEntr by Gemalto. In this role, he helps define and execute Gemalto’s identity and access initiatives in the cloud. Tom has over 30 years of experience with security, mobile, and cloud technologies, including founding executive roles at four technology companies. Read more on how to keep your agency’s data secure though two-factor authentication and password management here.

    When you think of all the things that drew you to the marketing and advertising industry, information security probably doesn’t spring to mind. It likely didn’t even occur to you that dealing with clients’ strategies could make you responsible for handling sought-after secrets.

    Yet look at how government leaks have happened. NSA servers weren’t hacked. Contractors like HBGary Federal and General Dynamics that work on government projects were targeted. This means you—a third-party vendor—could be at risk. Should confidential client files be leaked, you could be subject to the subsequent investigation.

    If you want to land big accounts, you need to prove that you’re not a weak link. Agency collaboration is difficult without sharing access to online services, but you can do so securely with these four practices.

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  • Advice For Marketers From PayPal’s Billionaire Founder

    By | October 28, 2014
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    Peter Thiel co-founded PayPal and provided Facebook with its first outside investment. He also just wrote a book on startups called Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future.

    Modern marketers have a lot to learn from Thiel’s entrepreneurship guide. Because really, this is a book about how to envision, shape and create the future, which is exactly what marketing technologists do. We strategize, activate and measure tech-driven campaigns to produce new, better futures for our clients, agencies and industry.

    While aimed at founders, the book’s contrarian thinking about how to build the future offers all marketers some important lessons.

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  • How to Create a ROWE™ at Your Agency: Q&A with Michael Reynolds

    By | October 13, 2014
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    Michael Reynolds (@michaelreynolds) is president and CEO of SpinWeb, a digital agency in Indianapolis that specializes in website design, inbound marketing and app development.

    In this Insider Series, he discusses the benefits of a Results-Only Work Environment™ (ROWE™), and his experiences implementing one at SpinWeb.

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  • The Quest for a Unified Client Services Theory

    By | October 9, 2014
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    “What do you do?”

    For those in the marketing agency world, it’s a loaded question. At Inbound, Robert Solomon (@RJSolomon), author of The Art of Client Service and founder of Solomon Strategic, opened his session with an answer he’d often tell his mother: “Mom, I do lunch.” Doing lunch means being there for clients, and getting the chance to build an actual relationship with them.

    Yes, it’s sometimes hard to describe “client services” amongst the continual flow of client strategy, production work (writing, social media, PR, design, etc.), measurement and account management. Yet, Robert’s second response to the question offers a catchall glimpse: “We do the simple things necessary to help clients achieve their goals.” During his presentation, Robert shared his thoughts on what’s at the heart of client services.

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  • How to Gain Buy-In with Client Decision-Makers

    By | September 23, 2014
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    You’ve won the business, delivered awesome work, exceeded expectations, and built a great relationship with your main client contact. Next thing you know, a new president is announced, who decides to slash marketing budget, and your agency is kicked to the curb.

    Sound familiar? Too many agencies find themselves in this position; pushed out when the going gets tough, run ragged reacting to ill-advised business strategies, or siloed delivering a particular service and unable to grow the account.

    As Paul Roetzer (@paulroetzer) explains, “Growth is the easy part. Retaining it, and making it profitable, is the real challenge for agencies.”

    Part of the problem these agencies face is their marginalization within the client’s organization. They simply don’t have a seat at the table. Comparatively, other agencies are yoked with their clients, enjoying long-range strategies, acting as strategic marketing and business partners, and feeding off each other’s success. How do they do it?

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  • The Agency Guide to Inbound 2014

    By | September 10, 2014
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    If you're like us and heading to Inbound next week, you can look forward to a ton of great agency content.

    To help you sort through the sessions, Dan MacAdam (@DTMacAdam), VAR channel account manager at HubSpot put together a curated list of recommendations for agency executives, marketers and business development folks.

    Use it as a guide to help you, and your agency, get the most out of the conference.

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  • 5 Elements of an Effective Internship Program

    By | September 8, 2014
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    This is a guest post from Dana Bingham (@danabingham), the Director of Operations at New Breed Marketing. Dana coordinates the company's internship program, helping connect students with a meaningful and rewarding experience, while also supporting the organization's hiring goals, existing team and clients.

    Have you considered creating an internship program or tried utilizing interns in the past and found it to be more work than benefit? If so, you’re not alone; many companies face this problem.

    When successfully implemented, internship programs can be instrumental in the growth and development of your organization.

    In today’s post, we discuss the five key elements of building an effective internship program. If implemented correctly, not only will you create a great experience for your interns, but you’ll also help grow the next generation of successful employees!

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  • Working Remotely: Lessons from the Road

    By | September 2, 2014
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    The American workforce is increasingly mobile. By one estimate, telecommuting has risen 79% between 2005 and 2012, with 2.6% of the workforce, or 3.2 million Americans working remotely at least some of the time.

    Working remotely, whether temporarily, intermittently or full-time, can stem from a variety of reasons:

    • You need a modified work schedule to care for young child or sick relative.
    • You live in a different city or state than your employer.
    • You live in the same city as your employer, but your significant other needs to move.
    • You occasionally need to go to the doctor, take the cat to the vet, or wait for the cable guy to arrive.
    • You have a case of wanderlust and a spouse with summers off.

    In addition to accommodating employees’ work/life goals, offering flexible hours or telecommuting options opens up the available talent pool, and has proven to make some employees happier and more productive. If you are considering telecommuting, below are strategies to set yourself and your team up for a successful arrangement.

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