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Gary Vaynerchuk wants you to start a Podcast

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For the past year Gary Vaynerchuk has been stressing the importance of leveraging the power of audio as a form of media and marketing. The fact that people can “gain time” by consuming audio content like podcasts while there do other things like driving, working out or doing house hold choirs make creating an audio first, voice version of your content more important than ever. Never before has it been so easy to create essentially your own radio show, and now, unlike traditional radio, consumers have a chose of what type of content they want to consume and when / where to listen to it. Here is what Gary said about the power of Podcasts on his blog:

Podcasting and the rise of Alexa voice is here today. For the past 24-36 months, brands and individuals alike have gotten serious about audio. The problem is, there still isn’t a lot of great original content to consume which leaves a massive opportunity for those who can produce on another level. Think of it like Netflix, the companies that create the best originals are going to win. – Gary Vaynerchuk

If you are serious about building brand authority and legacy, creating an audio experience is a crucial part of your digital strategy. The opportunity is insane for you to capture market share and dominate a new and emerging medium for entertainment. The podcast trend isn’t new but it is quickly becoming more mainstream than ever with companies like Spotify and Google recently stepping up there game in the space.

If you want to learn more about starting your own podcast and how to get started please feel free to contact us today to schedule a strategy call. We have helped numerous brand get started using audio to market themselves and their companies.

Founder & Editor-In-Chief of Disrupt Magazine Tony Delgado, is a Puerto Rican American software developer, businessman, activist and philanthropist. Delgado is also the host of the Disrupt Podcast where he interviews the most disruptive business owners, leaders and change makers in the world. Tony Delgado is best known as the founder, and chief executive officer of The Disrupt Foundation, a social impact movement to grow Puerto Rico’s technology ecosystem and host of the semi-annual Disrupt Puerto Rico Conference. Tony Delgado has also helped mentor thousands of students, create financial freedom, all from the comfort of his home in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

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Business

James Dhillon Shares The Four Systems Needed to Run an Automated Agency

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More agencies than ever are automating so that they can scale, or at least get back some of their time. If you haven’t automated operations within your agency yet, it’s high time you consider starting, because it’s never been easier to build out the proper systems, and automation has massive ROI that can change your business forever. 

Many get stuck on the details of just how to get started, and we can break down the automation necessities by looking at the four systems that every agency has. Ideally, all four of these systems should be automated in order to truly free up the time necessary to expand creatively, double down on management, or handle the responsibilities of scaling. 

James Dhillon, the CEO of Automers, shared these four systems with me as a way of looking organizationally at what an agency does. He helps agencies learn how to automate each of these systems, so that scaling is easier. He also ardently believes in the importance of automation. Whatever your goals are with automating, each of these systems in your own agency must be understood, mastered, and automated.

 

  1. Prospecting Systems. Prospecting entails finding prospects to sell to, which can be a full time job. This is usually where agencies get stuck right out of the gate. However, through social media campaigns and direct messages on social media platforms, a third party can manage the prospecting for your agency and for the businesses your agency serves. They can also be in charge of creating and running ads. Dhillon says that a successful agency is one that always has a full pipeline — and a robust prospecting system is central to this.

 

  1. Enrollment Systems. Enrollment refers to moving a potential client into a paying client. This is the sales of the operation. Sure, you may have that full pipeline of prospects, but if they aren’t enrolling and paying for your services, you won’t be successful. A third party sales agent can be hired to manage sales calls, and you can pay just out of commission – which is a budget-friendly option for an agency just beginning to automate and a great way to incentivize the new sales agent. This is a non-negotiable for agencies that are continuing to grow, as the owner of an agency should ideally be spending their time on strategy and management instead, even if they have handled all the sales calls to date.

 

  1. Fulfillment Systems. Once you have paying customers, it’s important to give them what they’re paying for! Fulfillment refers to ‘fulfilling’ their requests and what they hired you to do. As an agency, you should make sure that each of your clients is landing all the booked appointments that they hired you to book for them. This part can be outsourced, too. Dhillon recommends working with a white label agency that specializes in the niche your clients are in. This also makes it easier for you to expand to other niches, if you find a reliable white label agency that can keep up with the demand you generate.

 

  1. Post-Fulfillment Systems. Finally, post-fulfillment refers to all the other aspects of keeping your client happy. Who is there to respond to their late night messages when they need help? Who is responsible for making sure everyone is happy? Dhillon recommended hiring virtual assistants for post-fulfillment, because they can handle some of the smaller necessities and messages. All of these automation systems can be built out with transparency so that you always know how each operation is going, even though it’s now ‘out of your immediate control.’

 

By breaking down each of these four systems, you can begin to outsource and automate slowly, if you prefer. Start with one, then continue from there. But, note that all four of these systems are central to running a successful agency. You can’t have one without the other — they work together and lean on each other, so an automation across all four should be seamless. 

Some agency owners are concerned by how much automation will cost them, which keeps them stuck in an overburdened and busy schedule for too long. They simply prefer to do the work themselves rather than hiring someone else. However, it’s the norm and totally expected to hire people on a pay-for-performance basis. You can do this with third party sales agents or even on a trial basis with another agency, so you can prove to yourself that it’s worth the ROI. 

Be motivated by the extra time you’ll have when all of these systems are out of your hands to make more happen in your business. Of course, you’ll still be in a management position to oversee all of the operations. But, you’ll have more bandwidth to think beyond the current agency – either to scale it, or venture into another agency space.

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Isabella Zulli Shares Her Top Tips To Create Compelling Retail Signage

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Isabella Zulli Shares Her Top Tips To Create Compelling Retail Signage

Isabella Zulli’s top tips to create effective shop signage are:

 

  1. Be Direct And To The Point

It used to be difficult to figure out what to Tweet when we were only allowed 140 characters or less or having to edit a video for YouTube so it wasn’t longer than two minutes. Since those days, attention spans have gotten even shorter, and Vine is a prime example of that. The bottom line is people are in a hurry and you need to respect this.

 

  1. Fonts Need To Be Easy To Read

There’s a key difference between jotting on a chalkboard with crayons, getting away with and driving sales. It is crucial to have clear font characters, which means not use multiple colours or curly-cues. Customers’ attention should immediately be drawn to your message, followed by your product. If people can’t immediately read your sign, then they’ll just go to another retailer.

 

  1. State The Reasons For Customers Buying Your Service/Product

Is your customer going to buy your service or product to look good on a date? Maybe they’re going to buy it to manage their hair. Whatever the reason is, you want to state the reasons they should buy your product.

 

  1. Use These Words

The words you want to use are words such as yours and you because this creates a visual for your prospective customers. Signs become more powerful when you use those two words. For example, the phrase “you will make heads turn wherever you go”, creates a visual for customers. They can picture themselves turning heads if they buy your product or service.

 

  1. Less Is More

More and more people are only using initials or an emoji or two to communicate in texts. The point is we are getting used to very short messages. This is why you should edit your copy until you have a few words. Remember, less is more.

 

  1. Test Out Your Sign

It’s nice to have a brand new sign that you love, until you realise you can’t really see it through your windows or the font isn’t as big as you initially thought it was. If you’re on a busy street, then drive by your place to see what the sign is like, or have someone you know do this. If you or your friend can’t tell what your sign is, then it’s time to edit it.

 

  1. Have Fun During The Process

Boring signs are boring, period. You want to grab the attention of the casual browser, which means boring signs are not going to cut it. Feel free to include jokes, puns and things of that nature. Such content shows your business is fun.

 

Sure, some people won’t think you’re funny. However, this is fine because most of your customers and audience will love it. They may even snap a pic of your sign, share it to social media and then it’ll go viral. This means more potential exposure.

Read More: Tips For Building An Unstoppable Brand

 

Isabella Zulli Said: Here’s What To Avoid

Don’t be generic. Too many retailers have used generic stuff for their signs. The bottom line is you want to be as creative as possible and do your best to standout of the crowd.

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This marketplace for college sports equipment is attracting athletes, consumers, and sports clubs

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It’s always a good time to get your Marie Condo on and de-clutter. Letting go of things that no longer spark joy is already a challenge enough but selling your unwanted goodies shouldn’t be. There is a wide variety of marketplaces and platforms to connect sellers and buyers for just about anything you can imagine. 

Facebook Marketplace, eBay, letgo, even Craigslist are all great options to sell or buy goods but since they are so huge–it creates an opportunity for niche marketplaces to better serve specific communities. Naturally, entrepreneurs like Ahmad Elhawli identified opportunities like the fact that currently, there is no dedicated platform for colleges and college students to buy and sell college merchandise and sports equipment.

The recent news of the NCAA announcement to move forward with a proposal allowing college athletes to profit from the use of their name, image, likeness (NIL) makes it a great time to be in this college sports space.  

A marketplace platform for colleges

Sportsfinda is poised to be the go-to social marketplace enabling students to monetize on their personal brands and colleges to sell their equipment and merchandise on one platform. Being that college merchandise, like branded apparel and accessories–and sports equipment, like baseball bats, gloves, and helmets are integral elements of a student’s college journey–a dedicated platform was really needed.  

With a robust web platform and an app for iOS and Android–Sportsfinda is very simple to use. Sellers can simply list their products and buyers can like, comment, make an offer, and purchase sought after sports equipment or college merchandise.

Sportsfinda provides a valuable service to the colleges themselves as well since they are major buyers of sports equipment regularly as they continuously upgrade their inventory. All that old equipment has to go somewhere so once per year, colleges work with Sportsfinda to list and sell their retired sports equipment. In addition, the college stores that sell branded apparel and accessories can list those products on Sportsfinda to reach a wider audience interested in college gear. This allows students to align their products with their colleges and make them easily searchable. 

Humble beginnings

Sportsfinda–the brainchild of digital marketer Ahmad Elhawli–originated in the way many great businesses get created–through necessity. Elhawli experienced the problem firsthand in his pursuit of a sports item. 

“It all began one day as I was searching for a pair of LSU football gloves, I was moving from platform to platform and it was very hard to keep track of what I did find and what I had not,” recounts Elhawli, of his journey to his aha moment.

After some research and good old brainstorming, the dots connected for Elhawli and Sportsfinda was launched. 

The man behind the curtain

The founder of Sportsfinda, Australian-based entrepreneur and digital marketer Ahmad Elhawli, is no stranger to startups. Elhawli owns and operates a digital marketing agency while hosting a business-focused podcast called Business Wilderness where he has hosted guests from Forbes, Microsoft, Coca Cola, Hubspot, and many more. But his entrepreneurial spirit dates back to his early adulthood with a failed business at the age of 19. He then went on to earn a Master’s degree in digital marketing and committed to the continuous learning required to stay sharp in this field.

After a decade of hard work, Elhawli was recognized as an expert in digital marketing for his work directly supported the generation of hundreds of millions of dollars. Elhawli has taken everything he has learned over his career as a digital marketer is applying it along with his passion for sports to build Sportsfinda from the ground up. 

For college students with some retired gear, it’s a great time to get those products listed on Sportsfinda and get paid. College students aren’t the only people using Sportsfinda, but so is the average person at home. With more online shopping happening than ever, everyone is checking out the new marketplace to look for hidden treasures.

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