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TEDx Youngstown is Back

When I think back to my TEDx Youngstown experience, it was and is one of the highlights of my professional career. It’s probably one of the most rewarding moments I’ve had in the adult world excluding the birth of my children and marrying the love of my life!

This week’s Throw Back Thursday #TBT Blog is celebrating my TEDx Youngstown moment. Tickets for the 2015 event went on sale this week, get yours today by going here: TEDx Youngstown 2015 Tickets Buy Today!

Enjoy – share, like and comment. For those speaking in 2015, embrace the moment and every aspect. TEDx is a life alterning event!
CYO Marketing is the premier digital marketing agency in Youngstown, Ohio. We are dedicated to generating high quality cost effective leads for small-to-mid-sized businesses (SMB’s) through integrated marketing efforts. Subscribe to our blog, follow us on Twitter & Facebook, we are always giving away free marketing advice. Yes, we post eBooks, case studies, links to great marketing articles, because we love all things marketing and helping businesses grow. If you want to talk about implementing some of these strategies call us today!

 

 

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CYO Marketing’s #TBT Blog – A tribute to Derek Jeter & Big Stein!

It’s a Throw Back Thursday blog article from CYO Marketing. While I know the recent Re2pect and Gatorade tributes have left fans misty eyed and reminding us all why the Captain is so special. If anyone can remember way back when. George Steinbrenner, Owner of the New York Yankees was rather upset with #2 after rumors of DJ’s late night carousing in NYC during his rookie season. Big Stein, never one to pass on a business opportunity to promote the Yanks. Partnered up with Mr. November & Visa to poke fun of their dust up. Enjoy, it’s a classic on a #TBT!

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So your product is just going to sell itself?

So you think your product will just sell itself. The classic inventor, coder, developer who falls in love with their idea and has the narcissistic approach that the world will just figure it out through osmosis is destined for failure.  Venture Beat, a publication we admire, published an article Hey, software makers: Skip the sales team. Go freemium to build a $1B business.

Let’s not full ourselves, Apple built an empire of $1.00 iTunes transactions, GE with the light bulb, but they also have sales teams to address the complexity of enterprise deals . It’s possible, don’t get me wrong. For the right product, in the right vertical, when the stars align and your developers walk across a rather large body of water, yes, it will work.

So does going down to your local 7-Eleven and playing the lottery. However, in B2B software sales, especially in enterprise situations things more often times than not get difficult. Even as the web has become a $10 per month subscription environment, which is a fine way to grow market share, in addition to the 5, 7 or 30 day freemium model. An Organization spending millions of dollars have complex workflow problems that need to be resolved and those problems generally get resolved by sales professionals that know when and who to pull into a conversation to overcome these challenges.

True there’s incompetence in sales, but those individuals don’t last very long in complex businesses.

We love technology because it is scalable. But customers have unique challenges and needs that require customizable solutions. It’s true, 95% of all purchases B2B or B2C start with some form of online search. 75% of companies will have already vetted your offering before ever speaking to a sales person. If you aren’t going to have a sales organization you might want to consider have really good marketing, like kick butt Chuck Norris type marketing, otherwise how are people going to find you?

 

There was a guy, he gave a TEDxYoungstown talk on the Three P’s of Innovation. Watch it. You’ll learn the cautionary tale of thinking that your product is the greatest thing ever invented but what will be the result if you fail to tell people about it.

I believe strongly that an organization needs to have all facets in place: An elegant product or solution that solves a problem, a solid marketing plan to engage and tell people about it on a mass scale that feels individualized and they need strong sales acumen that can understand the challenges of an organization, align the right resources and project manage to present a solution that solves for a problem.

I’d also be willing to tell you that if you’ve got a great product and bad marketing and no sales team you’ll be out of business rather quickly. But if you’ve got a sub-performing product, but great marketing and fantastic sales, you’ll be around a lot longer than you think.

CYO Marketing is the premier digital marketing agency in Youngstown, Ohio. Our offices are located in the Youngstown Business Incubator, the #1 ranked university affliated business incubator in the world. We are passionately helping small-to-mid-sized businesses generate highly qualified cost effective leads to generate revenue. Contact us today, we can help!

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7 Movies to Inspire Entrepeneurs

We complied a list of 7 movies that embraces the idea of starting something new, being courageous and the all the spirit that embodies entrepreneurialism. Goolge movies for entrepeneurs and you’ll get some of our favorites: GlennGary Glen Ross and Alec Baldwin’s speech, The Godfather, that great movie with Will Smith and his kid walking around San Francisco living out of a homeless shelter, Boiler Room, anything with Steve Jobs and the list goes on, but those all seem a little obvious. Hopefully some of our suggestions turn you onto something new!

Bones Brigade – Brash, in your face, take no prisoners with a great marketing and branding lesson!

Pearl Jam 20 – A big middle finger to the man, 90’s GenX’ers created an entire culture of making bad ass music and making no apologies about it!

Bottle Shock – Wine, say no more!

Brooklyn Boheme – BK, NY – Spike Lee, Chris Rock and the rest of the movement that set it off. Spike’s talk about the early days of 40 Acres and a Mule are riveting!

Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid – Paul Newman’s entire body & spirit embody being your own guy. His partner in crime created the idea of film festivals and shared that same sense of independence. Newman & Redford never followed the path they created it!

Discovering Mavericks – A group of guys that dared to be different and took a risk to surf a wave with deadly potential!

Apocalypse Now – Maybe not the Francis Ford Coppola movie you’d expect to see to round out the list. But understanding the back story on what it took from start to finish resembles that pain that most start-ups will face. This movie pushed Ford Coppola to the brink of both financial ruin and insanity. Coppola had to raise money, contribute and finance some of the project with his on scratch.

He dealt with blending non-experienced actors and legends of the silver screen that refused to cooperate while rambling on through incoherent lines. Relying on guys like Duvall, Sheen and Hopper (who was stoned out of his mind) to carry the movie. Not taking the easy way out when it came to the shooting location. Editing is way through several years of movie footage trying to piece together what’s one of the 100 greatest films in cinematic history.

The painstaking process of making this movie is similar to what many entrepreneurs will face in their lifetime. While this movie and others on the list don’t have that one scene about closing deals, trusting friends or breaking necks and cashing checks. Their makers, their actions and their themes embody and embrace the spirit.

CYO Marketing is the premier digital marketing agency dedicated to helping small to mid sized business grow and love to work with entrepreneurs!

 

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Taste Great, Less Filling

This week’s Throw Back Thursday #TBT blog features a beer commercial that is a gem from the 1970’s and to help usher in the start of professional football season starting this coming weekend. McCann-Erickson Worldwide forever changed the way that beer would be marketed in this country. And if there’s two things people love in Youngstown, Ohio – it is football and beer. You may not have known this, but Ohioans consumed on average 33 gallons per beer last year per person and more beer is sold in Northeast Ohio than any other place in the Buckeye State.

Back to our commerical that inspired the everyday person to pick up a lite beer, not only because it tasted great, but because it had less calories. This campaign had a foot in two decades, which included notable professional atheletes and actors. It expanded out of TV commercials into softball games, bowling matches and almost a movie.

While I was in college in Canton, Ohio – I can remember working the NFL Hall of Fame Weekend. While parking cars at the Canton Civic Center the night of the induction dinner. Hall of Fame linebacker Ray Nitschke from the Green Bay Packers arrived in his yellow blazer and walked in yelling TASTE GREAT to which the entire outdoor bar near the valet yelled back, LESS FILLING. An amazing moment forever blazen in my memory!

Generating millions of dollars in the growth of beer sales, introducing the world to lite beer and forever placing the thought in an entire generation of people that lived through the 1970’s & 80’s, that’s great marketing my friends!…TASTE GREAT, LESS FILLING!

CYO Marketing is the premier digital marketing agency in Youngstown, Ohio. We are dedicated to helping small-to-midsized businesses with lead generation programs through both digital and direct marketing. While we won’t work for beer we are glad to meet over one and discuss your marketing needs!

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3 Ideas to Improve Your Next Webinar!

 

  1. Be Compelling – I spent time in Media Bistro’s Social Media Bootcamp last year. Mike Monello, of the Blair Witch Project and Campfire, presented a wonderful story to make his point on the topic of Coney Island in Brooklyn, NY. His whole point, which was so well made, was to be compelling. Think of your product as an opportunity to tell a story. The more compelling you can create that story the more likely you will create interest, convert non-believers to believers and drive results. 

 

  1. Engagement – A webinar is a great opportunity to connect with your content but not you unless you make it personal.  It starts by asking thoughtful registration questions that will help you to qualify participants but not be too invasive, this will help you to get information that will never be answered in a post webinar survey. Turn on the camera and let them see your face, explain you are doing everything you can to make it interactive by using the chat and polling questions throughout the webinar. Assign yourself or someone in your company to moderate the chat, ask for a show of hands a couple of times, repeat questions in the chat for everyone to see and thank the person by first name only for asking. Be sure to conduct polling questions at section breaks. I like to use a webinar platform that will post it (the question) on the screen rather than the  sidebar. Announce the polling question, read it and give a participation update, encourage people to participate. Wrap up the webinar with a live Q&A, if there are no questions restate 2 or 3 that were posted in the chat during the event.

 

  1. Timely Follow Up – For any lead generated, the longer it takes for follow up the less likely it will turn into a sales qualified lead. Harvard Business Review conducted a study that found companies that follow up within 1 hour from the time the lead was generated are 7x more effective to qualify the lead and 60x greater than those that wait 24 hours. While an automatic email (post webinar) is great for a show of appreciation. A phone call to participants (post webinar) referencing the event is the best way to turn a participant into a prospect. Which has a greater potential to convert into an opportunity and eventually a new customer!

 

CYO Marketing is the premier digital marketing agency in Youngstown, Ohio. We’ve conducted over 50 webinars that have generated thousands of leads and contributed 10’s of millions of dollars in sales opportunities. Download our complimentary ebook on webinar best practices to learn how your business can start generating warm sales leads today through webinar events.

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Do you remember your first day of college?

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In the spirit of college kids everywhere heading back to school, it’s a little trip down memory lane on a Throw Back Thursday #TBT, do you remember when…

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it was your first day of college…

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you were from here, they were from there…

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far from home, making new friends at fun outrageous themed parties…

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Co-eds, cheerleaders, older women and sometimes all of the above…

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costume parties…

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intramurals…

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parades…

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diversity…

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secret socities…

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college’s version of court…

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for all this debauchery, a long list of friends and a lifetime of memories!

Here’s to another year of toliets blowing up in the fall and toliet paper hanging from the trees in the spring. Enjoy, you’ll be in the real world soon and 8AM class will be a much missed memory of the past! Share, like, comment your favorite memories from your first day of higher learning!!!

 

 

 

 

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ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Donations Reach $22 Million

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge  is utilzing the power of social media to create awareness, generate engagement and convert passive participants into donors. I am one of those people. While I’m aware of ALS, I’ve never given until now.

I am not alone. According to a recent press release, 450,000+ new donors have contributed to ALS, to the tune of over $22 million dollars.  The impact of both the awareness and the money raised is beyond comprehension.

It shows you what a little creativity and social media can do to drive your fund raising efforts!

To donate: ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Be sure to check out my ice bucket challenge below

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Ever think about a webinar to generate leads?

Download our Free eBook – No Registration Required – Best Practices for Planning & Executing Webinars!

The use of webinars to engage prospects, educate current customers, create awareness and generate warm sales leads is proven to be a highly effective. Identifying speakers, the topic and a promotional strategy are all important aspects that will help to determine outcomes and how successful your event will be.

Knowing what day of the week to send emails, integrating a social media strategy, coupled with a direct marketing efforts from your sales teams are going to impact your attendance rate. Qualifying participants with pre-registration questions, in webinar polling questions and post webinar survey will determine if a suspect is a prospect or if a prospect is a buyer. Some will require more nurturing than others, but rest assured all will require follow up.

Below is a free Slideshare from a learning lab that we held at the Youngstown Business Incubator, it’s titled, Ever Thought about a Webinar as a Way to Fill Your Sales Funnel? Keep in mind that the YBI is a fantastic resource, their Learning Lab series is a great way to get access to great business topics.

Ever Thought about a Webinar as a Way to Fill Your Sales Funnel? from CYO Marketing

CYO Marketing has conducted over 50+ webinars, which have generated thousands of highly qualified sales leads that have contributed over $20 million in sales revenue opportunities. We are uniquely positioned as the premier digital marketing agency in Youngstown, Ohio to help your business plan, execute and generate warm sales leads with our B2B and B2C webinar strategy. Download our complimentary eBook on Best Practices for Planning and Executing Webinars. No registration is needed!

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Anyone Remember When E.F. Hutton Talks?

It’s a Throw Back Thursday #TBT at CYO Marketing as we pay homage to one of the all time great advertising campaigns for financial services. It was time to stop and listen when the Wall Street titan E.F. Hutton gave financial advice. That’s the premises behind the 1970’s and early 80’s ad campaign. Which was the brain child of the Benton & Bowles, a New York based ad agency that got its start way before Mad Men but found its stride during that era.

E.F Hutton’s was consolidated into Smith Barney, but the legacy of their ad campaign lives on in the advertising hall of fame.

Financial services organizations still leverage TV commercials to develop brand awareness. However that’s an extremely expensive proposition. Measuring the effectiveness of an ad campaign shouldn’t just be derived of how many people at your local country club can recite the lines of a catchy phrase.

Digital marketing gives financial service organizations an opportunity to drill into what every financial person loves or should love, numbers. These types of digital marketing campaigns are data driven supported by compelling content are extremely cost effective, give you the ability to generate tractable ROI and engage with very specific segments of the population.

Integrating phone campaigns, connecting with people via LinkedIn, spreading the message over Facebook, performing a webinar to educate people are all ways that financial organizations are generating leads and if they aren’t they should be.

CYO Marketing is the premier digital marketing agency in Youngstown, Ohio. We provide strategic digital  marketing consultation, including use of LinkedIn in your business and ongoing day-to-day management of digital marketing campaigns such as: Content creation, social media marketing, email campaigns and we will even pick up the phone and qualify individuals.

In the meanwhile, download our free marketing financial services whitepaper and remember when CYO talks marketing everyone is listening. Be sure to subscribe to our blog for great marketing ideas, this is a new weekly topic on our blog, which is incorporating the use of Throw Back Thursday #TBT!

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