Don Draper of Mad Men and Dre from Black-ish may make marketing look easy, but that doesn’t mean anybody can do it. Joey Alva, the Chief Executive Officer at Rockit Digital Marketing joins Seth on the podcast to dispel that myth. He explains why a marketer needs to be able to not just play to their strengths, but also recognize the value of marketing channels that may be out of their comfort zone.
They also talk about the secret to successfully marketing treatments for head lice.
[00:00:00] Seth: Hello, and welcome to the Bad Marketing Advice podcast. This is the show where we invite marketing professionals on to tell us the worst piece of marketing advice that they have ever received. And let me tell you, there’s some Bad Marketing Advice out there. My name is Seth Resler. I am the founder of Community Marketing Revolution. We produce branded podcasts for organizations. So if your company has ever thought about creating a podcast to engage with customers or clients, or even just internal communication tool to communicate with your employees, we would love to help with that. Go to communitymarketingrevolution.com, check out what we do. And if you’re interested, please send us an email. We’d love to talk to you about your project.
[00:00:47] Today on the show, my guest is the chief executive officer at RockIt Digital Marketing for 20 years. RockIt has been providing companies with award-winning content, strategic oversight and digital advertising campaign management. I wanna welcome to the show, Joey Alva. Hi Joey. How are ya?
[00:01:04] Joey: I’m doing well, Seth, how are you?
[00:01:06] Seth: Good. And, and you have a beautiful studio there. Tell us what else you do when you’re not running this digital marketing agency.
[00:01:13] Joey: Yeah. Believe it or not in those, uh, you know, extra hours of, of every given day. I’m also a part of, uh, 786 Media, which produces live streams, a show called The Shop Report on all of your social platforms. And we are live typically Sundays or Saturdays at about nine Eastern.
[00:01:35] Seth: Nice. Very, very cool. Well, look, let’s talk about what goes into running a digital marketing agency. I, I mean, your agency was born out of the union of yourself who comes from Google, that’s your background and where you were working. And, uh, you joined up with a guy who really has a background in content. Talk to us about how that came together and, and also what a typical day in your life looks like.
[00:01:59] Joey: Absolutely. And, you know, as they say, there’s such thing as a perfect marriage. And if I were to, you know, rewind all these years ago, that I had noticed one of the, the biggest challenges that I was facing at Google, as it pertained to working with SMBs throughout north America, as well as globally was often waiting for content to be produced. And naturally of course, that’s going to have a large influence on execution and of course performance, and, and as it relates to KPIs as well.
[00:02:37] And so knowing that, or at least rather, I would say I felt that it was only a sign of things to come with where the role of content would be as we fast forward into the 2020s and beyond that, basically this would be the, a very good idea to try to pair the best of both worlds and be able to offer that all internally.
[00:03:10] Seth: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I mean, I think we’ve gotten to a point where every company is involved in content marketing. You need content out there so that people, when they’re searching for it in a search engine, like Google, they find it, they find it through channels like social media, so that you’ve got something to email out to people so that you can build an email list. You really need that content. So when you first sit down with a small business client, do they already know what content they want you to create or do you come up with a content strategy?
[00:03:39] Joey: Well, you know, what’s always the most interesting is that I always tell everyone naturally they know their business better than anyone else, but what we want them to ultimately focus on is doing exactly what they do best. So to your point, Seth’s absolutely they have a vision or they believe they may already know what works and that will certainly influence how the, the conversation early on takes place. And then of course naturally through, uh, the evaluation process and we’re able to identify what that key selection criteria may look like specifically for that particular use case. Uh, that’s how we’re able to then essentially connect the dots and cross Ts and dot I’s.
[00:04:25] Seth: So give me an example. I mean, you know, talk to me about a client that you’ve worked with and, and what was that initial strategy session like and what did you guys wind up mapping out?
[00:04:35] Joey: Absolutely. So right away, what, what comes to mind is believe it or not, there was a pharmaceutical company that, uh, had a head lice product. Historically, at least as it pertains to that particular market, leave it or not. It is seasonal. And typically it has, uh, a lot to do with both back to school, as well as, uh, post holiday breaks as well. And so what had never been done was utilizing digital content to be able to take advantage of in-store opportunities.
[00:05:07] And so that’s exactly what we did it. Essentially, one of the most successful campaigns I’ve ever been a part of to the point where by the end of that fiscal year, we’re all, uh, much better off because they were able to, to actually sell the organization. They, they were, uh, given an offer and that they couldn’t refuse.
[00:05:29] Seth: So what was the content and what was the in-store opportunity that you were driving them to?
[00:05:33] Joey: Absolutely. So it was, uh, promotional with a coupon code to take advantage of at their participating retailers. We were able to then segment that out geographically based on who those partnerships were with and how to make sure that the respective codes were, were being able to take advantage of within that local proximity.
[00:05:54] And then of course, making sure of the fact that by utilizing certain targeting methods, spanning multiple platforms that we knew exactly where that customer was within the journey and who our target market was specifically. And again, this spanned both throughout north America and it was wonderful.
[00:06:13] Seth: And when you’re dealing with something like head lice, I imagine that there are certain places that you’re trying to get that content. Like I would imagine, you know, I have, fortunately haven’t experienced this, but I would imagine that if, uh, I were dealing with a head lice problem, I would go to Google first. You know, something like that, as opposed to, I don’t know, LinkedIn or TikTok. Right.
[00:06:33] Joey: Exactly. Yeah. So there, there were certainly some strong focuses on search, but additionally, Of course with content in mind, we were able to reach people that, uh, met the demographic criteria that we were looking for and being able to introduce what some of those symptoms may look like and ultimately more so making them aware that this is common around this time of the year. So what, what I believe that did is it maybe led to some more parents being a little bit more invested in, Hey, let me check this out. And then naturally they of course may have found some things they didn’t like, but it, it ultimately, uh, we were able to help get ’em a, a solution as well.
[00:07:17] Seth: And the content that you’re creating was that articles that you were writing was that videos that you were making?
[00:07:23] Joey: Absolutely. So it was definitely videos. And again, it was, uh, a multi-tiered approach with general awareness to what, you know, what head lice looks like. So the educational side, again, the historical, Hey, back to school’s in session. This is typically when this thing happens. And then of course, most importantly, here’s your treatment options and here’s where you could find it.
[00:07:47] Seth: Got it. Very interesting. I, you know, it’s, it’s fascinating. The different use cases for marketing that have come up in the course of this podcast. I never, I never envisioned that head lice was gonna be a topic that we would discuss on this topic, but, you know, everybody needs marketing and this is one of those things and it, it’s amazing to sit there and try and figure out how do I reach that right audience for this.
[00:08:07] Joey: Oh, you’re absolutely right. I was gonna say, I’ve worked with everyone from dog breeders to the world cup and everything in between. So yeah, it certainly. Each day unique. And, uh, it certainly keeps me going.
[00:08:19] Seth: Everybody needs a marketer. So let’s get into the worst marketing advice that you’ve ever heard. What is it?
[00:08:26] Joey: Right away, it was, well, anyone could do it. And naturally you take a step back, right? No different than the, one of the questions you had asked, you know, a little earlier, which was, well, how did the conversation go? Did they know what they wanted? And the reality of it is every person is a walking case study or a one of one in terms of what their experience that they bring to the marketing table and advertising table.
[00:09:03] One of the challenges though, is you’ve often heard throughout the past, I would say three, four decades. Now, if you do this, you’ll never look bad. This is dead. Do this. And the, the fact of the matter is that’s right away where that notion of anyone can do it goes out the window because people have tendencies that are to be geared towards their own strengths, rather than being able to be as versatile, to finding out what the ultimate end strategy and end goal is for the person that they’re ultimately working with.
[00:09:43] And that’s how not only myself, but naturally the team has approached what we do and makes it so different because we’re often white loving things that we can do ourselves.
[00:09:54] Seth: So gimme an example of, you know, a time when somebody said, oh, we don’t need to do that. Even though it was the right thing, maybe to do for a particular marketing situation.
[00:10:04] Joey: Oh my goodness. Uh, right away during the pandemic, someone said to me that they did not need to create an e-commerce store. And this is during a time where brick and mortar locations were either limited, in terms of the hours that they could actually be present and, and open, or again, they faced many headwinds as it pertained to what they could do.
[00:10:30] So to basically say, I’m, I’m not willing to take my business online, to be able to essentially either eventually either create at the very least a supplemental avenue of revenue, uh, from a revenue stream perspective until things opened up, which again, it going way back when, you know, uh, a lot of people had no timetable as to when that would be and what that would look like.
[00:11:01] And so right away, Hey, I know my customers, they come to me for this particular stuff and , and they’re not going to purchase it online. Well, of course the fact of the matter. I think eCommerce in general has spoken, especially if you look at Q4 of, of that same year.
[00:11:22] Seth: So it sounds like what you’re saying is people need to be wary of this idea that just because maybe you don’t do things a certain way, or you don’t have experience with a particular way of marketing, it doesn’t mean that it isn’t the right thing in terms of a way to reach your customers.
[00:11:36] For example, I, you know, I’m not an Instagram user. I just like. In my own personal time, I never open up Instagram and start scrolling through photos and commenting on them. It’s just not what I do. And yet that doesn’t necessarily mean that Instagram’s not a really powerful channel for marketing particular types of businesses.
[00:11:57] Joey: Yeah. You couldn’t be more correct. And again, even with that example that you just provided, you acknowledge that just because you don’t do it doesn’t mean that that’s not happening. Right. So you still are at least looking at, evaluating what else may be happening and what the platform can do. I’ll give another example within that is actually someone who said, well, as it pertains to content, I don’t see the point of being on TikTok.
[00:12:24] As an example, that’s been a big one and naturally we could speak to general high level metrics that would say it’s in your best interest to be there no matter what, but when you’re both a B2B and B2C type of organization, you may say, well, it just doesn’t sound like something I should be on fact of the matter is this is actually a restoration client and people are gravitated.
[00:12:52] I viewed it almost like career day in elementary school, where no matter what profession that individual was affiliated with those kids were in awe of what that person does. And in, in TikTok’s case, you know, when they see what a, uh, the results of a commercial fire, or a flooded basement, you know, all very real things that take place, unfortunately, in all of our lives, I’ve had that experience myself.
[00:13:25] So. But when they get to witness it firsthand, it actually spreads, uh, organically much better than your traditional social media posts, especially right for small to medium sized businesses that are much more local or regionalized than again, the way that these algorithms are currently garnered to, as it pertains to the existing way of just a post.
[00:13:51] Seth: And so I’m envisioning a TikTok video that sort of shows before and after and shows you what the damage was and how they were able to restore it. And it just spoke powerfully that you’re like, whoa, that’s amazing that they could do that. Is that, is that what we’re saying?
[00:14:04] Joey: Oh, absolutely. Because you go in there and you didn’t realize somebody thought, okay, I’ll give an example of, they left their water running, right. Just to, you know, slowly to prevent freezing. But then they forgot to turn the heat to make sure the heat was still on. You still have to heat the building. Right. And well, what happens when you don’t do that? And there’s, it’s the winner. Well, naturally you’re gonna experience freezing and you’re gonna come back to something that is vastly unpleasant.
[00:14:36] And so yes, being able to, to see what that first take and that first glimpse looks like. And then what that ultimate end result looks like and being able to know. Again, this is where community comes into play. That you’re restoring people’s lives. You know, there is a personal element to it that goes far above and beyond uh, what many of us assume the general targeted audience would be looking for?
[00:15:00] Seth: So, what do you do when you’re in a situation? And I think a lot of marketers have found themselves in this situation at one time or another, where, you know, a particular channel or a particular tactic is gonna work based on your experience, but you’ve got a client or, or maybe for other marketers, they have a boss or somebody that they’ve gotta get buy in from and they don’t believe in that channel. They don’t believe in that tactic. How do you build the case? How do you persuade them?
[00:15:27] Joey: Well, and right away, you wanna make sure that you’re overcoming the objections, but you wanna know why there’s the absence of value, because again, we could any, it doesn’t matter if it’s yourself, Seth, or me, I could say, oh, I can just do the podcast on my own. And again, so again, that absence of value and instead, what you wanna be able to identify is the whys behind that. Why do you feel that this particular platform may work better than the other all the way down to why do you believe that a certain dollar amount is where you should be? What it boils down to is the why?
[00:16:11] Because what oftentimes the same way they say that 80% of salespeople don’t ask for the sale is the same way that most people in the advertising space are not asking, where did you come up with that number? You know, when they say, well, I, I think a thousand dollars, I think a hundred thousand dollars, where did that figure come from?
[00:16:31] Well, uh, that’s what the, uh, the controller told me we’re allowed to spend. Okay. But the, you know what, the great part about advertising as a whole is it is a science at this point. We can’t work backwards and tell you what it’s going to take to get you to where you believe you want to be. And then again, to answer your question even further, if I came back to you and said, well, this is where you need to be and again, now I’m providing the why you told me you wanted to grow by X percent in order to do so using historical data. This is what it would take to achieve that metric. Is that something you wanna move forward with? Yes or no? The answer is no. Well then naturally they don’t wanna grow by that percentage then do they, but you want them to understand, again, the why’s behind what you’re doing.
[00:17:26] Seth: Okay. So asking a lot of why that makes, that makes a lot of sense. And then will you try experiments or, or trial cases or, I mean, will you essentially go in and say, let’s do a mini version of the full strategy and see what the results are?
[00:17:39] Joey: Well, the, the interesting part about that is that’s, you know, the metaphorical phrase for that is I just wanna dip my toe in the water. I just wanted to see how this stuff works. Can you give me another example where that’s ever really told you anything other than if the water’s cold or hot.
[00:17:55] Seth: No, no. Yeah. What you’re saying is that if you don’t commit enough resources to it, it’s not gonna produce results.
[00:18:01] Joey: Exactly. And typically there’s a reason that for most vehicles, as it stands today, that there’s still four tires on the vehicle.
[00:18:11] Seth: Right.
[00:18:13] Joey: You know, unless you have a sling shot or something unique, but, uh,
[00:18:16] Seth: I’m gonna, I’m gonna go take a tire off my car. I’m just gonna try it. I’m just gonna, I’ll let you know what happens. See if it runs with three wheels.
[00:18:23] Joey: And especially with these gas prices today, you know what I often kind of explain to everyone is that each of these, to your point with, Hey, can we try it at a, at a micro level? Well, you can go to the, to the gas station and you can decide that you wanna just try $5 in gas. You already know what, what that’s going to get you versus that full tank.
[00:18:45] Seth: Right?
[00:18:46] Joey: So you can try to get to Chicago, but when you stall out in Plym. We know why. All right.
[00:18:53] Seth: So this is, uh, uh, great advice. And this is what I always love is that we always get, you know, bad advice and then we’re able to draw some good advice out of this, which is really ask why and understand when you have somebody who is not buying into a marketing channel that you, as a marketer know, is gonna work, you know, really try and uncover where that objection comes from and, and why that’s there. Well, thank you so much for that. Uh, Joey Alva, you are the chief executive officer at RockIt Digital Marketing. If people wanna know more about RockIt, what’s the website that they go to right away, you can go to RockItdigital.net. That is R O C K it digital.net.
[00:19:30] Joey: RockIt like a Herbie Hancock’s RockIt. Am I showing my age there?
[00:19:33] Exactly. Yep. So as they say, if they don’t know that she might be, you know, it might be a little too young. Yes. Yes.
[00:19:41] Seth: And if you don’t know it go to YouTube, Herbie Hancock, RockIt. That song’s amazing right there. Joey, thank you so much for coming on the podcast. I really appreciate you being here.
[00:19:50] Joey: No, likewise again, appreciate the opportunity and, uh, looking forward to the many great things to come from it.
[00:19:56] Seth: Cool. All right, that’s it for us again. I am Seth Resler. I’m from Community Marketing Revolution. We produce branded podcasts for organizations. If your company’s ever thought about creating a podcast. And let’s be honest, you’ve been talking about it for two years. Now. It’s time to finally pull the trigger and get it done. Please go to Community Marketing Revolution.com. We’d love to talk to you. Thanks so much for listening. We’ll talk to you next time.
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