Learning about Branding from Dean Logan

As a marketer, it is extremely important to understand the concept of branding. So, what better way is there to learn about branding than from a talented branding expert like Dean Logan? I certainly cannot think of one. 


Of course I had a million questions about branding that I would have loved to ask Dean, but for the sake of time, I had to keep it to a decent amount. Excited to learn more about branding, I first started off with a pretty basic question, “Do you think there is a big difference between branding and marketing?” He told me that he believes there is a difference between the two and explained what it is that differentiates one from the other. He described that branding creates an emotional reaction in the audience through actions, words, and imagery. As for marketing, it is a way of getting those things in front of the target market just at the right time for them to express that desired reaction.

To sum it up, he said, “They’re related and close cousins, but they are not the same thing.” His example was that you could create the most beautiful landing page, but it doesn’t matter if anyone sees it. With that being said, it’s the responsibility for marketers to create traffic to that page which consists of the right people.

A brand is what you think in your head and feel in your heart instantly when you hear a company’s name. Good brands have that emotional capital, and it’s way beyond what the homepage looks like, what the logo is, what they tweeted that day… it goes way beyond them. -Dean Logan

To establish a strong brand, brands need to ask themselves, “What do we want our customers to expect from us. What’s the thing we do that makes our customers say, ‘That is so them.'” The good brands do just that. They let those questions be their compass and guide them on the right path.

Dean emphasized that the biggest, most important thing about branding is the emotional reaction that is associated with it, “When you hear the name of a company you immediately have an emotional response.” To continue further explanation, he pointed out the Amazon Student sticker on my laptop. He explained how the emotional reaction can be simple as the instant association of Amazon’s products being affordable and their shipping that is quick.

Beat Your Competitors

My next question, “How do you go about making a brand unique and stand out from its competitors?” His answer, “Find out what it is about that company, product, or service that is different from their competitors. Then build a brand around that.” However, he mentioned this could be extremely difficult to do, especially in parity industries that sell similar things.

As a company, it is important to find that one particular thing that makes you a differentiator.

It could be the way your service is implemented to your clients, a particular feature to your product, or maybe it’s the kind of people you have working on that thing, that service, or business. Are they all MBAs with management degrees? That could be something to be capitalized on. Now, judo flip that. ‘Our people are from all disciplines. We don’t think the same and you’ll get all different perspectives.’ All those are good things and directional, but if your product or service sucks, then no amount of branding is going to help you. Branding is great but the experience your customers have is more important. Branding will not fix everything. -Dean Logan

With that in mind, think of the branding difference between Uber and a new teeth whitening toothpaste. In Uber’s case, people love the experience, but they don’t care at all what the logo looks like. On the other hand, with a whitening toothpaste people do care about the look of the brand.

Leading a Brand to Success

Here are the two most important things that Dean believes a brand must have to lead them to success:

  1. Clear idea of who they want to be
  2. Clarity in their message and then reinforce it

Companies need to have a clear idea of who they want to be in the minds of their audience. The successful companies have a core message, and they stick to it in the way they advertise, how their products are packaged, and how they act on social media. If it all points to that single message, then they’ll most likely be successful.

Think of when JCPenney hired Ron Johnson, who formerly worked for Apple. Ron came into the store and attempted to make it hip by turning the store around. It ended up being a complete brand disaster because the changes were not consistent with the company’s true brand and message. As a result, they wasted millions of dollars.

Brand Consistency

It’s very important for brands to stay consistent with the messages they send. Not only through message consistency, but also in their tangible assets such as the logo, brand colors, and the overall design. For example, one of the first things I noticed when I arrived at ALPHA Marketing to interview Dean was the table in the conference room. It was broken up into four sections with each a different color of the company’s branded colors.

When it comes to having a brand consistency, Dean believes it’s important to:

  1. Have discipline
  2. Pick the right channels
  3. Have resources

Companies are perfectly capable of having a consistent brand operationally, but they often lack in this area through parts of their organization and within their marketing channels. It’s important to pick the right channels that make a good fit for your branding message. Dean continued to explain to me that it is really important to find where you want to be and to not ignore it. So often companies make, for example, a Twitter page, but then they don’t actively use it.

Dean also mentioned that it’s important for brands to have the right resources that their company needs. He went on to say that digital somehow got associated with being cheap, but in all actuality, that is not the case at all.

Company Branding Done Right

After I received some of Dean’s insight on branding, I asked, “Do you have any examples of companies that have naturally done really well at branding itself?” Outside of Disney and its extraordinary brand success, he noted that there are is definitely not a shortage of companies that have branded themselves really well.

To give me an example, he mentioned theDollar Shave Club. In everything that this company does, they add a reverent humorous tone to all of their messaging. It all started with the founder who previously was a standup comedian. He created a hilarious promotional video that went viral.

The company maintained the disciple to stick with a consistently funny tone and expanded to other marketing channels. They want their target audience to get a good laugh, whether it’s when they receive the products or follow the social media platforms.

The Future of Brands

How are the successful brands evolving? Dean says it is the realization that in addition to their social media and digital footprint, they need to deliver something to consumers. For example, the way a product arrives in someone’s mailbox or something memorable that happens in the store and makes an impression, can make a significant impact on consumers and increase brand awareness. We live in an experience economy, and marketers are testing what works and what doesn’t. For example, Disney invests significantly in customer experience by creating a magical, amazing experience for all who attend their parks.

On that note, during our meeting together, Dean put his trademark on a fantastic idea. He thinks that it would be a great idea for there to be a children’s hospital that is run by Disney. This way Disney can give the children in the hospital a magical experience and lighten their spirits.

Dean believes that within the next few years, people will begin putting more of their marketing dollars in experience driven occurrences. For instance, a company could provide something cool in an event sponsored tent that gives people a memorable experience.

He gave me specific examples of bands who not only played music for their fans but provided an experience. (I highly recommend clicking on the hyperlinks below to view some pretty sweet videos and interactive experiences).

Overall, Dean thinks that in the future brands will not completely abandon traditional, but they will expand and invest more money into more engaging things like those stated above. He also thinks that brands will start to partner with one another to elevate and strengthen consumer experiences. As an example of this, think about if Lulu Lemon and Apple partnered up to create an engaging fitness experience for people. It would be pretty cool and most likely would be successful.

Dean’s Process

Curious as to how Dean comes up with such creative ideas, I asked what steps he goes through when designing something new. His answer was as follows, “I’m old school.” He begins drawing sketches because computers can easily make a bad idea look good. Once he finishes sketching, he then picks 2 or 3 strong directions, steps away for a little while, and then comes back to review them. After he completes his sketches and determines his top 2-3 directions, he uses digital tools that allow him to do things that he couldn’t have completed as quickly with the sketches. He develops his strong ideas until they are in a finished place that he can present to his client.

Most of the time he uses this method to weed out the good ideas from the bad. However, he sometimes will skip the sketching phase when an idea pops in his head that is already pretty finished. This isn’t rare since he has been working long enough in the business, so the pieces just naturally come together. He also keeps his software skills up to date, which is always beneficial. Dean recommends to fellow creatives to draw sketches out of their ideas first. This way they can put more details into their ideas.

I then asked, “When creating a logo, how do you know where to start?” Dean responded with saying he first talks to his clients to get a solid idea of how they want to appear to their potential customers. “There’s no proven method. Every creative is different,” Dean adds. This just happens to be the way he goes about designing a logo.

He asks them if they want to look progressive, modern, traditional, friendly, light and humorous, or serious and to the point. Sometimes what they express isn’t always right for their target audience. To visually know where to start, he needs to know the emotional reaction his client wants their customers to have. After that is determined, he goes through his designing process.

The Chance to Learn More

Just from our hour-long meeting, I learned a lot about branding from Dean. It was a terrific opportunity, and I certainly look forward to listening to what he has to say during the September TMC event. You too have the chance to hear what Dean has to say during his presentation, Embracing The Change: How Brands Must Evolve To Stay RelevantSo, don’t miss out on hearing a great branding presentation by the talented, Dean Logan.

This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.

The Creative and Inspiring, Dean Logan

Dean Logan: A very successful, creative, one-of-a-kind type of guy with a strong passion for art and design. No matter where he goes, he always has a new creative idea up his sleeve.

Outside of Work

When Dean isn’t designing something neat at work, you will most likely find him in his garage studio. Whether it is creating lightsabers with his son, making Halloween decor for his house, or constructing gorgeous wood sculptures in his free time, his creativity is always flowing.

Every year for Halloween, Dean transforms his house into a Disney inspired Haunted Mansion. His passion for Halloween started early on as a kid as he always loved the Haunted Mansion at Disney World. One year, he and his friends made a haunted house in his basement and charged people a nickel to enter. Years later, in his first apartment, he had the idea that he should do it again, and ever since, he has designed and made a Halloween attraction out of his house. Last year, he had around 300 trick or treaters stop by his neighborhood house attraction – that’s a lot of candy to be giving out! As Dean says, “The Logan’s. Lowering your property values since 2001.” Click here to see for yourself!

As for his beautiful sculptures, he began making those while he was in design school in 1998. The story of how he began creating these masterpieces is quite interesting and pretty funny if I do say so myself. In short, Dean was vacationing and realized that he had a 3D project due in one of his classes that he had not even begun. He stumbled along some scrap pieces of wood that people were going to discard and asked if he could have them. He had the idea to put the pieces together and paint them to create something unique with a 3D effect. To read the full story on how he began to create these amazing sculptures, check out his website.

Outside of creating fascinating things, he really enjoys hanging out with his kids. Especially when they build LEGOs together. Dean mentioned that they have a tremendous amount of LEGOs. In fact, the amount could be measured in gallons because not only do they have LEGOs that his children have acquired over the years, but also some from his own childhood.

The Road to Success

Dean’s inspiration started early on in his life as he was always surrounded by art. His mother was a fantastic portrait painter and was constantly painting and drawing. He also had the same love for art as he took classes in high school and continued his art studies at Transylvania University, which he attended on an art scholarship. First and foremost, he notes that his mother played an important key role in his career. However, she isn’t the only one who inspired him to get where he is today. Dean mentioned that there were several people who really were an inspiration to him.

Specifically, his great art professor in college who impacted his life as a mentor. Joe Knox, a professor of Dean’s at Ringling College of Art and Design, taught Dean humility and gave him good advice. He also taught him an important lesson, which Dean acted out the entire story for me during our conversation. At the time, Dean thought he was the teacher’s pet, and he figured he could get away with doing the bare minimum amount of work. Turns out, he was wrong, and he never made that mistake again. Dean admitted that he didn’t put forward enough work, but it was a good lesson learned. In his own words, “No one is above not doing their fair share.” Even after his days as a student, he stayed in touch with Joe.

Besides his parents’ constant push for him to do his best, another person who helped Dean get on his current career path was his dad’s friend. He suggested that Dean should go to school for computer graphics. He told Dean that 10 years from then he would either be working on a computer or sweeping around it. So, he took his advice and began his adventure with graphic design.

His Career Journey

Early on, Dean discovered that numbers were not his friend. At one time he thought about being an astronomer, but then he realized he would have to include math, and he told me that he just wasn’t wired for numbers.

Apart from that, what really led his desire of art and graphic design was the fact that he enjoyed the process of bringing his ideas to life. He likes to be able to take a picture of a project that he has visualized in his head, and then he brings the idea to life by creating it in a way that others can see exactly how he imagined it.

Having both a fine arts degree as well as a computer design degree made for a pretty strong resume in the marketing field. Dean’s first real job was at a design company. At his new job, he was sent to an empty corner cubicle where he was then instructed to take an unopened Photoshop box and work his magic. The rest is history.

Dean has worked with many Fortune 500 clients over the course of his career and has gained a wealth of marketing experience. Since 2014 he was the founder and CEO of FOUNDATION, a branding consultancy focused on the technology industry, has partnered with several regional agencies including ALPHA Marketing on high-level project work and just recently accepted the role of Creative Director at French West Vaughan.

Thanks to extensive experience with database, channel and integrated marketing in the consumer and B2B space, Dean knows that having a solid core to build a brand, product or service on top of is critical — and that in an era of continuously evolving social media and sales channels, every element of a positioning platform has to have a strong, clear perspective and a cohesive visual representation. -Excerpt from Dean Logan’s LinkedIn

Dean is an expert when it comes to branding. He has so much valuable knowledge and experience, and he shared some of it with me on August 10th

The Worst vs. The Best

According to Dean, the hardest part for creatives that work in a business setting is the tough line between art and commerce. He explained to me about how creatives are wired to fiercely protect their creations. For those of you who attended his TMC talk last year, you may remember him discussing this topic.

Dean continued to describe to me that each person has an insecure streak about themselves, but it’s important to find that comfort zone within yourself. Creatives need to remember that while they may be the one who is creating the masterpiece, at the end of the day, they’re getting paid to sell something that meets their client’s particular wants and desires. In his words, “The work that wins awards sometimes doesn’t sell and vice versa.”

As for young creatives, Dean tries to help them internalize and understand that even though their idea might be really cool, the client might not buy it because of their target audience who might not respond well to it as opposed to a different target audience might.

Dean has a lot of favorite projects that he has worked on over the years, but not one specifically overall. He described, “Some projects are professionally satisfying, some are financially rewarding, and others are artistically an accomplishment.”

Recently one that he worked on that he enjoyed was creating a company’s PowerPoint deck. The company had an existing logo, and Dean took what they previously had and created a deck that was beyond what they might have thought of or they hadn’t thought of it yet. He was really proud of how it turned out. Artistically, he took what they had, pulled all of the pieces apart, and then put them all back together in a new way.

Whether he is positioning tradeshow collateral or working on a branding platform, Dean’s favorite part of working in this industry is creating things for others. He loves to see them look at the finished product and have them say, “Wow. It’s better than I thought it was going to be.” To him, it’s very satisfying to create something that the client sees it as much bigger than they could have done on their own.

Dream Company

If Dean could work anywhere, he would love to work for a company like Apple or Lenovo. Specifically, so that he could be involved on the inside of a game-changing product or development, maybe like a new tech product, and be able to launch it into the marketplace. He thinks it would be pretty cool to work along on the inside of a strategy and during the conceptual phase.

He predicts that the next big thing will be relating to the idea of a “smart home.” Something that connects a person’s home to technology and the internet of things.

Book Recommendations

As always, I love to ask professionals if they have any book recommendations that relate to branding and marketing.

Here are a few books that Dean highly recommends:

Why You Should Attend Dean’s Presentation

The most valuable takeaway that people will receive upon listening to
Dean’s presentation at the TMC event will be the acknowledgment that their company needs to be open to experimentation with how they express their brand in the world.

If you are part of an organization that consists of selling something, whether it’s a product or service, it will be very beneficial for you to come hear what Dean has to say. He will discuss the realization that your company needs to have and will elaborate on the fact that if companies don’t step up what they are currently doing to add new dimensions of customer service and so on, then someone else will.

See you on Tuesday, September 27!


This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.

Brad Grantham: The Expert of Media and Public Relations

On August 30, Triangle Marketing Club will be hosting a networking event with Brad Grantham as the speaker. Brad is a media and public relations professional with a lot of experience. Luckily for me, I was given the pleasure to meet him and pick his brain.

In talking with him about his exciting career, Brad told me that in media and PR it “all comes down to solving problems quickly and to doing whatever it takes to get the job done” – a practice that defines his approach.

About Brad

Brad is a diehard LSU fan with a passion for music. He enjoys “attempting” to play the guitar and loves going to U2 concerts, so much so that he has already attended over 25 shows!

Upon meeting Brad, I quickly learned what a great sense of humor he has. For example, I witnessed first-hand his impressive Bill Clinton impersonation. Brad told me that his dream job is to be a cast member on SNL, and I think he would do excellent in that role since he can easily make others laugh.

Brad grew up always wanting to be in television news. He made that dream a reality at the age of 15 when he began working behind the scenes at WAFB-TV in Baton Rouge. During college at LSU, he worked as a morning radio host and as a DJ and also worked on the assignment desk at WBRZ-TV.

On top of his multitude of general news memorabilia, Brad has also collected over 800 microphone flags throughout his career. He has worked at multiple news stations, including the following: WBRZ-TV, WNCT-TV, WRAL, and WBBJ-TV in roles ranging from assignment manager to news director. He also worked for PR and advertising firms in managerial roles in New Orleans and Baton Rouge. Currently, he is working as an Associate Vice President at the four-time “Consumer Agency of the Year,” French/West/Vaughan.

Media and Public Relations

I was curious as to why Brad chose a career in media and public relations, so I asked. He responded by explaining how he always wondered what made things tick and finding that out was fascinating to him. He wanted to know more about the way TV stations worked, and what makes a good story.

As a public relations and media professional, Brad raises awareness for his clients on various media platforms. He said that he spends about 80% of his time with general media and PR, while the other 20% is spent dealing with crisis situations. Although he enjoys both, he believes that crisis response and management is more second nature to him. Technology is changing the face of crisis management in public relations, making successful response even more important and, at the same time, more rewarding.

What about the relationship between digital marketing and public relations? Brad believes that digital marketing is helping public relations raise awareness. According to him, “It’s like an orchestra. You know specifically what note you are hitting. If orchestrated well enough, both can help the other increase awareness.”

Importance of Relationships

I was curious about the importance of relationships in the world of PR, and since Brad has so much TV experience, I asked. His response makes a lot of sense, especially in today’s market. Brad believes in relying on a network of support to quickly get the job done, no matter the cost. Obstacles are minor annoyances – you’ve got to be the problem solver clients can depend on at all times. He noted that it is vital to not only make connections but to also form meaningful relationships with people. He also mentioned that you could never have too many media contacts, because people move and change career paths, so having a deep portfolio of professional connections is really important.

Brad considers a great relationship to be more than just a phone call or an email pitch. Instead, it should be one where you help each other out even if it’s giving the other person a tip without getting something in return – they will remember that in the long run.

Not only should you build relationships with other professionals, but most importantly, your clients. Brad taught me that every client is different and handling delicate matters within public relations varies per client.

The biggest takeaway is to establish a deep trust with your client very early on. His explanation for why this is so valuable is because he wants his clients to know they can call him at any time, 24/7. This accessibility creates an openness between him and his clients. Brad is committed to doing anything for his clients, to always having their back, and to helping them handle any situation. With trust and an open line of communication, there tend to be no surprises between the PR specialist and the client.

Brad has focused on building strong relationships with clients and the media over the years – among the things he enjoys most about working in media and PR – because it enables another rewarding favorite of his. He loves to see a great story reach the masses. Through my conversations with Brad, I could clearly tell that he loved a good story. As Brad mentions, “a great pitch for general PR has a great story behind it.”

The Highs and Lows of Public Relations and Crisis Management

Like most fields, there are always some highs as well as lows. In this profession, companies tend to need general PR services when a big product launches, for branding, or during any big events. On the crisis side, usually 9 out of 10 times, clients reach out after the crisis has happened.

In Brad’s opinion, below are a few listed examples of PR that has gone right or gone wrong.

  • Crisis Gone Wrong – Volkswagen
  • Crisis Gone Wrong – BP Oil Spill
  • Crisis Gone Wrong – Delta (recent software issue that delayed flights)
  • PR Locally Done Well – ABB, Rex/UNC Health Care, Wake County
  • Attend the TMC event to hear Brad address other examples

So, what was the most rewarding project that Brad worked on within his career? Brad told me about a time where he worked with the company, Zatarains, for the 125th Anniversary Crawfish Boil (The worlds largest at the time, held outside the Mercedes Benz Superdome). All of the proceeds went to charity, and it turned out to be a very successful and rewarding event. It was even aired on CBS, CNN, and the Today Show. They didn’t stop giving back there, however. After Hurricane Sandy hit, they brought a U-Haul truck filled with Zatarains and fed 4,000 people in Staten Island, NY.

How about the most challenging thing that he faced through his career? February 5, 2008 – the super tornado outbreak that hit West Tennessee, including the Jackson area, where Brad was a news director at the time. An EF4 and EF3 tornado came through Jackson, demolishing over 10 dorms at a local university and numerous neighborhoods, including his own.

He didn’t know for some time if his wife was alive or dead and still had to push through to make sure his news crews were safe and the reporting of the news never stopped. Many slept on floors in the newsroom for days after and never left – they just kept going. He was proud of the resiliency of his news team, a team that ended up being nominated for an Emmy for their nonstop coverage against larger television markets like Nashville and Memphis. This commitment to making sure that stories are accurate and timely, even under extreme duress, stays with him to this day.

Hearing Brad discuss some of his stories and talk about his career, it was very obvious to me of how strong his passion was for this line of work. Not only did I get to hear about what he has done over the years, but I also got a short preview of Brad in action. While we were talking, Brad had to answer a crisis call from one of his clients. Cool, right? I definitely thought so.

Final Takeaways

Curious as to what are the top important factors that should be included in a good general PR plan for a company? Brad believes that the following 4 points are key to success.

  1. Objective
  2. Strategy
  3. Execution/Timeline/Tactics
  4. ROI

As you come up with a strategy, think of how the plan will target the audience that your client’s company needs to be targeting. You should also determine how you are planning on executing the strategy and create a clear timeline. Furthermore, it is essential to have a good idea on what that return on investment, ROI, would be for what you are proposing.

Here are a few of Brad’s reasons for why someone would want to come hear him speak at the next TMC event, and why they should:

  • To discuss what nobody ever wants to – bad things that will arise that could turn into a crisis.
  • Discover what crisis planning could take place now.
  • To talk one-on-one with Brad about their specific scenarios after the presentation.
  • To hear his awesome voice impressions.
  • See him give Chris some LSU trivia questions.

So, what are you waiting for? Go RSVP for the event to listen to a fantastic PR expert. You and your company will leave with insider tips on dealing with the media, and how to prepare your organization for crisis scenarios.

Also, check out Make It Memorable by Bob Dotson. Brad said it is a great book about video storytelling, and he highly recommends it.

See you on August 30th!

This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.

What I Learned from Interviewing Dan London

Friday morning I was given the honor of meeting with the awesome, talented marketer, Dan London. Prior to meeting him, I did some research. I was amazed at reading his impressive resume and seeing all of his experience in the marketing field. So, as an aspiring marketer, I had a lot of questions to ask him.

Meeting with Dan LondonTo start, I just wanted to get to know a little bit more about who he is as a person and how he got to where he is today. During our hour chat at the Brew, a coffee bar in Raleigh, I learned a lot about Dan.

For example, he is a huge fan of playing hockey. Since the age of two, he has been leading teams in points and penalties. Continuing his passion for hockey, he played for the Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Later, after reading an article in USA Today about the top places to live, he moved to North Carolina where he attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and graduated with an English degree.

Work Experience 

Like most college students, Dan didn’t know exactly what he wanted to do when he graduated, but he landed in the marketing field with the right combination of luck, timing, and connecting with the right people, as he put it.

Volunteer to Learn MoreSo what did this talented marketer do prior to entering the marketing field? During college, he worked part-time unpacking trucks. This experience proved very valuable, by taking the initiative to volunteer for different tasks he learned more about the company.

Dan’s advice was that going beyond what is required and displaying a willingness to learn will make anyone a valuable asset to a company. Furthermore, having a desire to learn new things, volunteer for unfamiliar assignments, and adapting to change will lead to more knowledge, experience, and overall value.

Once he graduated, he worked within the marketing industry for a few years as an online marketing manager and then as the top marketing copywriter for Clean Design. He took a short period of time off from the marketing world and taught 6th grade English and History, but then returned back to his calling of working as a marketer.

As opposed to focusing on just one aspect of marketing, Dan gained a lot of experience by working in multiple areas within the field. 

He worked in a search marketing firm and managed “big name” clients. Later on, he joined a new company and began working as the Director of Search Engine Marketing and focused on SEO, banner advertising, and paid search. A few years later, he joined a different company where he was in charge of increasing traffic and working with a social media marketing program. Now, he is the Director of Marketing at Ansible.

Here’s a list of companies that Dan has worked for over the years:

I asked Dan what a typical work day looked like for a successful marketer like himself. According to him, he has no “typical” work day since things change so quickly. However, one thing he always does is check the current stats and the ones from the previous week. After that, his day is pretty random. Without the basic everyday routine, it makes working more interesting, but in a good way. Plus, it allows time for launching new ideas within a matter of minutes.

Most Rewarding Project

With all of his experience, I was curious as to what he considered being his most rewarding project. He began to explain to me about a project with ShareFile which he considered to be a great achievement and rewarding. The task was for the company to hire 90 people within 30 days. Upon starting the project he asked himself, “How could they help market for that project?” Well, they decided to create a “Love My Job” campaign.

Collaborate with Your TeamThe project brought all of the company’s departments together, and they made t-shirts as well as a video that included employees from the company and even random bystanders!

The goal focused on bringing in people to the company and driving employees to work together in a collaborative effort. The focus was not centered around generating revenue, but instead collaboration, which made the project more valuable.

The project turned out to be a success and they surpassed their goal. Whether it’s working with one person or multiple people, Dan enjoys being able to collaborate with others.

Reason behind His Success

One of the things that I really enjoyed and admired about Dan, is his humility.  He contributes his success in the field to his collaboration and connections with other people. “I never walk into the room thinking I’m the smartest there.”

Building Your NetworkDan told me that he is always talking about marketing topics with others and constantly making connections. He went on about opening yourself up to new ideas and meeting new people. By doing so, you will always learn something new, and both parties will have something to gain connecting with each other. He also mentioned the opportunities that arise when talking to people from all different backgrounds and forming connections. It can be as simple as reaching out via LinkedIn with an invitation to meet for coffee.


During our meeting together, I asked Dan if he had any role models that inspired him to get to where he is today, and he did. Jessie Lipson, the man who started ShareFile. He said working for Jessie was great because he was given the space and runway to complete his work with flexibility.

Autonomy in the Workplace Even now, when Dan assigns others a task and the goal that needs to be accomplished, he uses the same work method that was used when he worked at ShareFile.

He always gives them their space but offers assistance to them if they need it. By providing the others with a greater sense of autonomy, he is allowing them the freedom and flexibility of being innovative in their own way.

Dan’s Advice for Fellow Marketers

Regardless of whether you are entry level or an experienced marketer, Dan has some advice for each of you. First of all, “Talk to as many people as you can, and learn as much as you can.” Dan never worked at a job that he didn’t know someone, and that is because of the importance of making connections. It is all about who you know.

Desire to Learn More about MarketingAlso, as Dan says, “There’s always something more that you can do and learn.” So, utilize that desire to learn and expand your knowledge. Whether it’s volunteering to learn something new or meeting someone and just talking with them, you can learn a lot over a cup of coffee.

For instance, take mental notes of their experiences, learn from what they share with you, and bounce ideas off one another. By exchanging ideas, you may not only expand your knowledge base but also be able to incorporate a new idea.

Top 3 Skills Dan Suggests are Necessary for Marketing 

To wrap it up, below are 3 skills that Dan believes are necessary to have while working in the marketing field.

  1. Analytical Skills – Analytics are used daily in marketing and each marketing professional should have a basic understanding of it.
  2. A Desire to Learn – Technology, social media, and marketing specific tools are constantly innovating and changing. Thus the importance to have a willingness to volunteer and a desire to learn new things as a marketer.
  3. Big Picture Thinking – Knowing where you fit in and how things work are essential to accomplishing your goals. Think outside of the box and be creative.

One of the most important things that I took away from my time with Dan is how important his family is to him.  He discussed how he loves watching his children grow and learn, and how ultimately you need a balance between work and home.  His suggestion is to be really productive at work but have a set time to cut off, go home, and recharge.  I think that’s good advice.Dan London

It was an awesome opportunity meeting with Dan London, and now you can too on Tuesday, July 26! Dan has been a speaker at multiple events such as the Business Journal Social Media Madness Launch Event, Meet the New Media, 2011 Kenan-Flagler Business Symposium, Triangle Entrepreneurship Week, SEO MeetUp, Internet Summit, Google AdWords Client Forum, and now our very own, Triangle Marketing Club. So, you are not going to want to miss a chance to meet Dan and listen to him present on Start up Marketing – from Day 1 to Acquisition.

This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.


How to Prepare for a Networking Event 

By now, you’ve probably heard about the importance of networking. In fact, many of you may have been taught that it is an essential step in the journey of landing a job.

Why is that? Well, building connections can help further your career, and it can open new opportunities for you. Plus, you’ll meet some awesome professionals that you can exchange information and build a relationship with.

So, how do you build your network? It’s simple. One great way you can start making connections is by attending a networking event. At first, networking can be intimidating, but if you are prepared, you’ll have nothing to worry about.

Remember these few tips when preparing to attend an event:

  1. Research
  2. Business Cards
  3. Elevator Pitch
  4. Professional Attire
  5. Take Notes


If possible, look at the RSVP list to see who will be attending the event you are going to. After you see the list, you can search everyone through LinkedIn. If they work for a company that you are interested in, you may want to reach out to them prior to the event. By contacting them in advance, you can introduce yourself and tell them that you would like to speak to them in person at the upcoming event to learn more about their company. Or, if you don’t feel comfortable with reaching out before, you can always approach them at the event and start a conversation with them.

doing-researcWhen you do your research beforehand, you are making yourself more aware of the different companies that will be represented at the event. This is a great opportunity to get to know more about the places you are interested in working at as well as the people who work there.

However, don’t limit yourself by only focusing on a few companies. Even if you don’t recognize some of the companies that someone works for, research them! You may find out that it would be a good fit for you.

Business Cards

Get those business cards out and ready! Business cards can be fairly easy to make, and it is an excellent way of helping people remember who you are. When you meet people at the event, be sure to ask for a business card and give them one in return. You’ll get the chance to meet a lot of professionals, and you may have a hard time remembering everyone’s names. However, if you get a business card, you will not only  have a better chance at remembering their name but also, you can follow up with them after the event by using the information stated on their card.

business-cardsIn fact, after the event, I would highly recommend doing a LinkedIn search on every person you met and invite them to connect with you. By doing this, you can easily contact them in the future and follow up via LinkedIn.

Send a personalized message to each person you met and thank them for sharing their knowledge with you at the event. If you want, you can even invite them for coffee to learn more about them as well as the company they work for.

Tip: quickly jot down information on the back of the business cards that you receive to remind you of your conversation with that person. This will make it easier for you to remember who they are when you reach out to them later. Plus, this will help you make your message to them more personal, and it will show the other person that you were genuinely listening and interested in what they were saying.

Elevator Pitch

As most of you know, your pitch should be short, sweet, and to the point. In your pitch, you can discuss topics such as your educational background, work experience, and skills. There are a lot of different kinds of pitches that you can use at your next networking event. Once you pick a type of pitch, go ahead and write it out then edit it. After you finish your final draft, be sure to practice it until you can recite it in your sleep.

Check out this video about making an elevator pitch:

Professional Attire

When attending a networking event, be sure you dress to impress. Depending on the event, everyone may be wearing business professional, business casual, or they may even be dressed more casual than that.

networkingHowever, if your intentions at the event are to make connections in order to get a job, I recommend dressing well despite what everyone else may be wearing. Not only will this will help you make a good first impression by looking professional, but you will also feel more confident.

Your appearance can easily reflect the way that you feel and it will influence you to act self-assured. Plus, if you look and feel good, then it will be a lot easier for you to approach professionals at a networking event.

Take Notes

At some events, there may be a speaker. My advice is to pay attention, actively listen, and take notes. By doing this, you will be able to retain the information, and you will look like you genuinely want to learn about the topic that is being presented. Plus, you will learn something that could help you in your future career. So, make sure that you save your notes for future reference.

After the speaker finishes their message, go up and speak to them afterward. Thank them for taking the time to come and share their knowledge. Once you finish your conversation with the speaker, ask for a business card and follow up.


Now that you know how to prepare yourself, what are you waiting for? Attend our monthly TMC networking events! Our next one is on Tuesday, May 24. Click here to RSVP.  

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to network with outstanding professionals!

This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.


What Marketers Should Take Away from Prince’s Branding Style

Each individual has a personal brand that depicts the way others view them. Our actions create a brand that paints a picture for all to see, whether we realize it or not. It describes who we are, and it displays our personality.

In this blog, we are going in-depth about a great musical artist who had a very consistent personal brand, otherwise known as Prince Rogers Nelson. Specifically, we will be discussing some key takeaways that marketers can learn from his branding style.

Before we get into the takeaways, let’s briefly mention Prince’s personal brand. The picture above is a perfect image displaying the components that make his brand. For example, the color purple was used a lot in his wardrobe and throughout his concerts. This color represented who Prince was, and as his signature color, it also held a lot of meaning for his popular song, “Purple Rain.”

This picture also shows his unique but well put together style. Prince always made sure that he had a clean, remarkable, and stylish appearance whether he was performing, or just going out in public. In fact, he made it a requirement for all of his employees to dress well. If their wardrobe was not up to his standards, they would be given the option to change their outfit or be fired. Lastly, this photo displays his stage name, which is an unpronounceable symbol. In terms of what this represents towards his brand, this “love symbol” is his personal logo.

What should marketers take away Prince’s branding style?

  1. Brand Name
  2. Logo
  3. Creativity and Consistency
  4. Target Market
  5. Products
  6. Attention to Detail

Brand Name 

Prince Rogers Nelson had multiple nicknames throughout his lifetime. However, despite the multitude of names he had, everyone knew him by his real name, Prince. The name was pretty fitting since he was one of the best performers of his time.

His brand name ironically linked the generic definition of a prince to the artist himself. It sent a message that described his personality and his talent that reigned in the music industry. The name, Prince, told a story of his brand in itself.

We should take note of how his brand name combined storytelling with an automatic association of his name and image to the definition of an actual prince, or in this case, one who is superior in his profession.

Brands should include storytelling to promote and establish interest and loyalty within the target market. By doing so, it will define the way people view your brand by painting a clear picture of it.


Most artists do not have a specific logo. However, Prince did. His stage name was his logo. He chose an unpronounceable symbol, the love symbol, to be his stage name, and he displayed it at all of his concerts. This symbol represented who he was and what he believed in.

Prince’s logo was so well-known, that his personal brand was automatically associated with it whenever someone saw the symbol or heard someone refer to the love symbol.

As a marketer, we should all strive to have a logo that is easily recognizable to the extent that it creates an instant association and awareness for our brand.

Creativity and Consistency

Prince was an extremely creative and talented musician. He built his personal brand through the consistency of his logo and the creativity of his appearance and music.

Once he changed his stage name to a symbol, he routinely displayed it at his concerts, whether it was on his microphone stand, his guitar, or even the stage itself, he made sure to proudly show his logo to his fans. By doing so, he created brand awareness by associating his new logo with his personal brand.

He was also known for creativity in the stylish way that he dressed. His outfits were fashionable, and he was constantly setting new trends every time he made an appearance. With an unforgettable, inventive attire, Prince established a memorable personal brand. His fans could depend on him to come up with a new, distinct look whenever he went in public.

We should take Prince’s example of his branding style of consistency and creativity as an example of how we should establish our own personal brand and even within the brands that we market through our career.

Brands are successful if they are consistent and different than their competitors. By being original, brands can stand out among their competition. As for consistency, it leads to brand recognition and customer loyalty.

Prince’s amazing talent, consistency, and innovative style produced loyal fans and made his personal brand recognizable to everyone.

Target Market 

As a popular 80’s musician, Prince targeted people in Generation X. He captivated his audience through his spectacular music. His fans were loyal and continue to be so to this day. He wrote his songs based off of seduction and prayer, and his songs inspired so many people. In fact, not only did he write his own lyrics, but he also wrote songs for other famous performers as well. Some people took inspiration from his work that they based their own off of his.

It’s safe to say that he created an influential brand and established customer loyalty. His reputation defined his brand, and his target market loved what he had to offer. As a marketer, think about what your brand has to offer to your target market. Also, your brand
should inspire people and remain a credible brand that doesn’t stray from its reputation.


Prince’s “products” consisted of his outstanding music, instrumental talent, and great vocals. At a young age, he learned how to play multiple instruments, and he was excellent at each. It’s not a surprise at how musically gifted he was, since both of his birth parents were very talented as well. He grew up around music, and he continued to thrive in the music field throughout his entire life.

Prince was a complete introvert and had a very calm personality. Although he may have been relatively quiet off stage, his talent shined and he was very enthusiastic the very moment he stepped on stage and began to perform. He played his music and sang passionately at every concert.

Through his brand, he created an experience for all of his fans and he inspired people through his music and lyrics, which is a goal that every brand should aim for.

Attention to Detail 

This artist branded his personality and highlighted his characteristics through the way he presented himself. Even the little details contributed to his success in building up his image. For instance, his signature color was purple which purple, represents royalty and creativity. Although it is simply a color, it had significant meaning that connected with his name and symbolized who he was.

As you reflect on your own personal brand, pay close attention to the details that make it up. Each specific feature can stand for a much deeper meaning than you may realize.

Now that we have analyzed Prince’s branding style, what was it that he particularly wanted to be known for? To find out, watch the clip below.

Well, he sure did accomplish that. He will always be remembered for his outstanding talent throughout the music industry.

This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.


TMC’s 5 Step Process of Making LinkedIn Connections

We all know how popular LinkedIn has become when it comes to job hunting. So, how do we use it to our advantage while making connections in the process?

In this blog, we’ll go through TMC’s 5 step process to help you make the best connections that may also open up new opportunities for you in the future.  

TMC’s 5 Step Process of Making Connections via LinkedIn

Let’s walk through this 5 step process together.

  1. Search for People on LinkedIn
  2. Utilize Autopilot for LinkedIn
  3. Check Your LinkedIn Often and Respond to Views
  4. Thank Your New Connections
  5. Ask for Coffee

Step 1 – Searching for People on LinkedIn

According to Triangle Marketing Club, TMC, you should view 1200 profiles a day. You may think that 1200 is a lot, but it’s necessary, and you will be thrilled with the outcome if you do this! Searching for people is the only way you are going to increase the number of your connections on LinkedIn.

When you connect with someone on LinkedIn, don’t just press the connect button and move on. Instead, view their profile. Your connection invites will be alerted that you viewed their page, and it will show that you are interested in learning more about them. People will be more willing to accept your invite to connect if they feel that you are truly interested in who they are, and not just connecting with them to raise the number of connections.

Step 2 – Utilize Autopilot for LinkedIn

Maybe you’re thinking to yourself that you like the idea of creating your own personal brand; however, you don’t have enough time in the day to view 1200 different profiles.

No need to fear! There is a solution. Autopilot for LinkedIn will do this for you! How easy is that? There is a fee to utilize this tool, but it is worth it! It views people’s pages for you and saves you a lot of time! Through the automatic viewing, it will increase your connections and help you rise in ranking among those connections.

Step 3 – Check Your LinkedIn Often and Respond to Views

We all tend to check our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram religiously, but what about our LinkedIn?

As a general rule, check your LinkedIn at least twice a day, if not more. Your profile will never grow if you don’t engage and have an active profile. Treat your LinkedIn account like your social media sites, but do so professionally.

Tip: Try setting your LinkedIn account as a tab on your browser, or put the app on your homepage so you will always remember to check it.

As we discussed in the third step, make connections and view other profiles daily. If you put in the hard work, then you will see results, but you have to make an effort.

We all see those alerts that someone has viewed our profile, but they didn’t ask to connect. Well, when you see that notification go to their profile and view their page. After you view their profile, respond back to them by sending them a personal connection request.

They have already seen your profile, so if they didn’t send you a request, they may be intrigued to connect with you after they read your personalized message as opposed to the generic one. Just remember, engagement is key!

Here are some suggested guidelines from TMC regarding personalized connection requests:

  • Make It 300 Characters
  • Be Genuine
  • Include Their Name
  • Avoid Yes or No Answered Questions

All of these may seem simple, but these points can make a tremendous amount of difference.

To start, make your message 300 characters. This is really easy to do. As for being genuine, people enjoy feeling as though you are interested in who they are and that you truly want to get to know them.

When you include the person’s name, it shows you care about who they are as an individual. To add onto this point, make sure that you spell the person’s name right. This might sound obvious, but it happens. Although it may be an innocent mistake, spelling someone’s name incorrectly can come off unprofessional.

When you ask a question to someone, avoid yes or no answered questions. This makes the person you are sending the question to open up and be more specific when they reply.

Step 4 – Thank Your New Connections

Most people do not expect a thank you message after they decide to connect with you. So, when you send a thank you to your new connections, this will make you stand out among the others who do not.

You always want to make a good impression on those around you, especially if they may be recommending you in the future. This is the same concept as sending a thank you note after an interview.

Sending a thank you message will show that you are dedicated to learning more about this person. So, type away! If you asked the person a question when you sent them a request, but they did not respond, feel free to ask them again when you thank them for connecting.

Step 5 – Coffee

Now that you have made a connection, it’s time for you to build that relationship. Don’t be afraid to ask to meet your new connection. In fact, your thank you message gives you a great opportunity to ask them to meet with you.  

By meeting your new connections, you will be able to get to know them more on a personal level. Even if your new connection is not from your area, you can still arrange to meet them by using an application like Skype. This will make your conversation more personal than just a regular phone call.

meet for coffee

Meeting your new connection is a great opportunity that you should definitely consider taking advantage of. When you meet with them, you will be able to learn from someone who has more experience than you in your prospective field, and they will be able to give you more insight on the type of job you are looking for. Plus, you may gain them as a mentor or a friend that could possibly lead you to even more connections in the future. Overall, getting to know your new connections can be very beneficial.

This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.


So You Want a Job in Marketing…

Want a job in marketing, but you don’t know how to obtain one? I have good news for you. You came to the right blog!

Let’s first start by stating the steps of how to obtain a job, then we will go into more detail for each.

  1. Know the Job Title That You Are Going After
  2. Find Companies That Are Hiring via LinkedIn
  3. Make Connections

Job Title

Do you know yet what job title you are going after? If you don’t, try doing some research through a job site.

Here are a few examples of some job sites:

When you get to the site, type in “marketing jobs,” and then type in the location you wish to work in.

Once you see a job title or company that may interest you, click on it, and read the job description. If the job description is something that you may enjoy doing and you fit all of the required qualifications for the job, then you are ready for step 2.

However, if you review the job descriptions, and it doesn’t sound like the job for you, then continue reading about other jobs until you find a job title that you like.

LinkedIn Research

Congrats! You completed the first step and have figured out the job title that you are going after.

For the second step, you will need access to your LinkedIn account. LinkedIn allows you to research companies that are hiring for individuals like yourself!

There are multiple ways that you can continue on your job hunt via LinkedIn. You can do so through your computer in desktop view or by using your phone. Isn’t technology just awesome?

Here’s how you do it in desktop view:

  • Log in to your LinkedIn account
  • At the top of the page, select the “Jobs” button under the search bar
  • Type in the job title that you are searching for as well as the location

Here’s another way you can do it in desktop view:

  • Type your chosen job title in the LinkedIn search bar
  • Read through all the jobs that pop up
  • On the left side of the page, you can select specifics to help narrow down your search

LinkedIn job search through your phone: (This is from an iPhone perspective).

  • Download the app, “LinkedIn Jobs”
  • Connect it to your LinkedIn account
  • In the search section, type the job title or keyword
  • Then select your location
  • Click search
  • In the top right corner, you can select the filter button to narrow down your search
  • You can also enable the job alert button to be alerted every time a company is hiring for your selected job title

You can also search through the LinkedIn phone app by using the search bar.

Once you find companies that are hiring, research what industry they are in. You can click on the company’s name to learn more about them. In fact, I encourage you to do this. Researching companies will help you get a feel of what the company is about, and if this is a company that you would like to work for.

Make Connections

Do not, I repeat, do NOT skip this step. Making connections will make all the difference when you apply for a job. In today’s society, everything is about networking. If you don’t make any connections, you won’t get very far. Networking is extremely important and it comes with a lot of benefits. In fact, you have a far better chance of getting a job if you have connections within the company that you are applying for.

If you connect with people who work in these companies prior to you applying, they may be willing to give you a recommendation, which would really increase your odds of landing that dream job.

So, Why do you need to network? The answer is simple. You need to network with other people in order to get a job.

What if you already have a job? Networking with others can still be beneficial to you too! You might network with someone, and they may be able to help open another career opportunity for you. Networking with people may even help you advance in your career.

There really aren’t any disadvantages to networking. The more you connect with, the better!

To learn more about jobs in marketing, check out the list below.

Happy job hunting!

This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.


Mixing New and Traditional Marketing

Last week we discussed the topic, Inbound vs. Outbound Marketing. We ended that discussion debating on which method your company should use. Should you use inbound, outbound, or maybe a combination of the two? Ultimately, we said it really depends on who your target market is, and which method would work best with them. However, if you have the resources available, you could choose to do both!

Companies don’t have to pick just one way or the other when they combine the two methods. Instead, they can choose multiple ways of reaching their customers without having to limit themselves. In fact, they can even come up with an advertising method that intertwines both inbound and outbound marketing. Let’s explore this option further, and we’ll talk about a couple of examples where these two methods are effectively being combined.

The Mixture

In my previous blog, I briefly mentioned digital billboard advertising as an example of both inbound and outbound marketing. I’d like for us to go into more depth about it, but first, let’s watch the video below.


Lamar Advertising is a company that has done a brilliant job of combining these two marketing strategies. To reach a bigger audience, this company, along with a few others, have taken the traditional, outbound marketing method of billboards and added an inbound marketing twist. Being digital, these billboards can update constantly based on consumer data, interactions, and more.

As you saw in the video, Lamar Digital Billboards can display:

  • Trending items
  • Live game scores
  • User-generated content
  • Social media posts
  • Countdowns
  • Relevant information based on the day and time
  • Ads relating to the current weather

inbound and outbound marketing billboard tweetIncorporating inbound marketing into billboards has been really successful for companies. It has increased their customer traffic simply because of the digital attractive and engaging displays.

According to a recent study by the Outdoor Advertising Association of America, 75% of people who participated said that during the past month, they noticed digital billboards, and 55% of those in the study remembered the message of the billboard.

So, why is that? In my opinion, I believe the statistics are so high simply because these billboards incorporated inbound marketing. People enjoy when companies engage with them, and that is exactly what these billboards are doing. In fact, according to the same study stated earlier, 22% of people followed advertisements after they saw it being presented on a digital billboard.

Here are a few examples of companies using digital billboards to encourage consumer involvement:

inbound and outbound Facebook post on billboardIt gets people’s attention when they see something unique and interesting that engages with real consumers. 

When the billboards update with live social media feed, it makes the advertisement more authentic and shows viewers that the company wants to build relationships with their consumers. People tend to rely on word of mouth when making decisions, so when they see real comments from people like themselves, it provides more incentive for them to try the product or service as well.

Billboards have come a long way, but so have other forms of advertisement. So, let’s talk about a couple more great examples that mix the two methods, inbound and outbound, into one. For example, advertising panels, such as bus shelters and free-standing information panels. Similar to the billboards we just discussed, both of these examples were originally considered outbound marketing, but now they are incorporating inbound marketing by becoming digital.

Check out this video to see what I mean:

In the Batman vs. Superman bus shelter video, you can see how the company took the outbound marketing method to a whole new level by meshing it with inbound marketing. Instead of having just paper advertisements in the panels, they added life-size figures on top of the shelter and added a digital feature for people to interact with.

In this example, the digital panel gave people the option to take a picture of themselves looking like Batman or Superman. Once the picture was taken, and they entered their email address, their picture was automatically sent with the option of posting it on their social media accounts. This is such a great idea because it gives people an incentive to post about their experience on social media. By including all of these attractive aspects, people are easily able to remember the message that the company is advertising.

In the following video, you will see some awesome, creative international campaigns by JCDecaux:

As you saw in the video, a lot of the advertising campaigns shown were digital, and all of the campaigns influenced people to engage with them. By doing this, they were able to increase brand awareness for the companies that are being advertised. People were able to play games, virtually try on products, and some were given samples for interacting with the advertisement.

With a such a unique display, people naturally took pictures with their free samples or the panel itself. Some of these advertisements even encouraged people to post on social media in order to get a free sample when they go to the advertised store. All at the same time, people were remembering the brand and the intended message that the company was trying to send to their customers.

This company, JCDecaux, easily combined outbound and inbound marketing through their advertising. With the use of touchscreen displays, they were able to easily connect people to their company’s brand by encouraging the use of mobile devices and posting on social media.

The Impact

inbound and outbound marketing advertising panelThese companies created an experience for people and encouraged them to get involved with the advertisement, and by doing so, they made their brand one to remember.

Since they decided to mix inbound and outbound marketing, these companies were able to reach a bigger audience and impact current and potential customers. In return, it not only helped increase sales but also brand awareness. Traditional advertising often times isn’t as effective as inbound marketing. So, in my opinion, combining the two makes the perfect mix.

Overall, it is important to focus on how to build a relationship with your consumers, connect them with your brand, and create an experience for them to share with all of their friends and family. If you do this, I’m sure you will create a brand that will be loved and remembered.

inbound and outbound billboard share a coke

Do you have any innovative ideas for combining the two, inbound and outbound? Let us know! We would certainly love to hear them!

This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.


Inbound vs. Outbound Marketing

It wasn’t too long ago where marketing was focused strictly on tv advertisements, radio commercials, cold calls, and paper ads. So what happened?

Well, with the new generation rising, the use of the internet has been increasing very quickly. As a result, marketing professionals have been expanding their methods to reach out to these tech-savvy individuals through the internet and social media platforms.

When you are considering which marketing techniques to use for your company’s product, be sure to consider all of the pros and cons of inbound and outbound marketing. People want to shop at their convenience, and they want to do whatever is the easiest and fastest way of doing it.  

To start, let’s talk about inbound and outbound marketing in more detail. I like to refer to inbound marketing as the new marketing method as opposed to outbound which is starting to be outdated.

Inbound Marketing

Have you ever searched for a product or service online? My guess is that your answer to this question is yes. When we want to satisfy a need or solve a problem, we tend to do so by typing it into a search engine. By doing this, we are taking part of inbound marketing.

Inbound marketing is a way of getting potential customers to come to you, instead of pushing your company’s product or service onto them.

The ultimate goal of inbound marketing is to create content that will attract potential customers to your site. A good way to do this is through content writing and social media.

Most people don’t want to waste their time by reading things that they aren’t interested in. With that being said, be sure to create content for your company that people will actually want to read about, especially your target market.  

For example, blogs can help lure people onto your website. Not only can it increase traffic to your site, but if a person really likes your blog they may share it to their social media accounts for all of their followers to see.

Companies love when people retweet, repost, or share their posts. There are a lot of reasons why this is so beneficial. To start, it’s free advertisement. When people share your company’s posts with their followers or friends they are essentially recommending others to purchase your product or service. Also, it attracts more potential customers to your site.

This can also be done through word of mouth advertising. Companies use this type of advertising to plant a seed in order to start a reaction from their customers on social media. When people enjoy a product they often tell their friends and post about it on their social media accounts.

When I see one of my friends post about their new purchases, I often tend to click on that company’s website or social media outlets to see what products they have to offer. Same goes for when they specifically recommend a product to me. For example, last week my friend told me about her most recent clothing purchase, and she suggested that I check out the website where she purchased it from. Shortly after, I decided to look at that boutique’s website and considered purchasing something from them. If it wasn’t for her recommending this store to me, they would have never gained me as a potential customer.

Not only is inbound marketing cheaper, but it can also be more efficient. Those who stumble onto your site were brought there because they saw something that captured their attention. Thus the importance of content, keywords, and strong SEO. 

For instance, let’s say that someone wants to look online for a new pair of tennis shoes. More than likely, the first thing that they will do is use an internet search engine to find the kind of shoes they want. If your site pops up with the same keywords and appealing content, they will most likely click on your site. Your odds are pretty high at gaining them as a customer since they were already searching for your product or service.

Here are a few examples of inbound marketing that will help you draw customers in:

  • blog posts
  • videos
  • surveys
  • social media campaigns

Having a strong SEO strategy is key to success because it will drive traffic to your website and potentially will increase sales. If you include keywords and alt text, blogs can be a great way of attracting potential customers to your site.

According to a blog post by Jeffrey L. Cohen, statistics show that companies who post blogs gain 67% more traffic every month, and 75% of people purchase products through some sort of social media. Let alone, these statistics should show you how effective inbound marketing is.

Outbound Marketing

I like to think of outbound marketing as more of the traditional, old school marketing method. Although outbound marketing can be successful, often times it tends to not be the most effective or best way to reach potential customers because of the new advances of technology in today’s age.

This method involves marketers pushing their products onto consumers, even those outside of the target market. For instance, the door-to-door salesman who went to every house in the neighborhood regardless if that person wanted what he was selling or not.

Here are some outbound marketing examples:

  • newspaper/magazine ads
  • radio ads
  • billboards
  • tv commercials
  • cold calls

Consider the role of a car salesman. The person in this position is attempting to influence anyone to purchase a car, whether they are looking for one or not. This is the complete opposite of what we discussed earlier.

To show how different these two methods are, an inbound marketing example would be when a person uses a search engine to find a specific type of car. The potential customer will type in keywords to find the exact car that fits their needs.

Using these two comparison examples. Which do you think has better odds of gaining a potential sale? The inbound method, with the customer who is specifically looking for your product? Or, the outbound method where the salesman is reaching out to everyone? My guess would be the inbound method with the customer who was searching for someone who was selling a car.

Things to Consider When Choosing Inbound or Outbound Marketing

  • Price
  • Time
  • Efficiency
  • Impact
  • Target Customer

So, which one should you use?

It depends on who your target market is. Once you do your research and determine who they are, their purchasing patterns, and how you can reach them, then you can determine which marketing method would be the best to use.

However, the best part is, if your budget allows and makes sense for who you are trying to reach, you can do both. You don’t actually have to pick one way of marketing. A lot of marketers are using a combination of the two to reach more people. For example, digital billboard advertising with live tweets. This is a great example of combining inbound and outbound marketing. The tweets sent in by customers represent the inbound side and the billboard itself represents the outbound marketing method.


Just remember, be creative and do whatever works best for reaching your customers!

This blog was written for Triangle Marketing Club.