12 episodes

Digital Marketing Confessions brings together some of the greatest most talented minds in the digital marketing community to answer the two big questions that entrepreneurs and small business owners are asking... "What isn't working in the world of digital marketing and what is working right now!"

Giving the latest hints, tips and strategies to implement to your digital marketing plans right now.

Host Steve Hooper designed his first website 25 years ago (yes that is before Google) and over the time he has worked in digital marketing, he has met and worked with some amazing characters and now he is grilling them to get the exact information that will help you move your business forward.

Digital Marketing Confessions Steve Hooper

    • Business

Digital Marketing Confessions brings together some of the greatest most talented minds in the digital marketing community to answer the two big questions that entrepreneurs and small business owners are asking... "What isn't working in the world of digital marketing and what is working right now!"

Giving the latest hints, tips and strategies to implement to your digital marketing plans right now.

Host Steve Hooper designed his first website 25 years ago (yes that is before Google) and over the time he has worked in digital marketing, he has met and worked with some amazing characters and now he is grilling them to get the exact information that will help you move your business forward.

    Episode Eleven - Nichola Stott - There IS A Need For Speed

    Episode Eleven - Nichola Stott - There IS A Need For Speed

    Nichola Stott is the MD and Founder of Erudite Agency. Nicola has been involved in Digital Marketing for 20 years. She worked as Digital PR & Head of Commercial Partners for Yahoo in the UK. She is passionate about search and decided to start her own SEO agency, Erudite, 10 years ago providing SEO, CRO & web analytics services.
    There are two big questions regarding SEO: 
    1.    What is working? 
    2.   What is not working in SEO?
    First, Nichola explains what isn’t working - inauthenticity in campaigns, giving Pure Gym as an example. They did the campaign regarding Black History month which severely backfired.
    Nichola illustrates that if you want to use digital campaigns, the most important thing to understand is the audience. It is imperative to be passionate and authentic.
    Build your own story and thoughts. Don’t use it if you don’t fully understand it as this could backfire on you.
    Next, Nichola explains what is working right now. She defines working as “Improving Visibility”. With greater visibility comes greater potential to convert sales.
    Whilst discussing visibility, she adds that the strongest criteria is speed. Better speed helps to improve the ranking. Image size makes a huge impact on page speed. Adding a video is also a great way to get ranking. Users have the option to use 3D modeling, or animated images of the products.
    Nichola goes on to say that the age of your website visitors is an important factor to understand.  The younger visitors like videos. 70% of web traffic is video related, especially on mobile phones.


    -      “There are now two different Googles: Mobile Google and Desktop Google.
    Visitors Prioritise fast websites specific for mobiles
    -      “ With greater visibility comes greater potential to convert sales”
    -      “If you want to scare the living daylights out of a group of entrepreneurs, talk about technical information.
    -      “70% of web traffic is video related”
    -      80% of website visitors are likely from mobile phones.


    In This Episode:
    [ 2:40 ] About Nichola Stott
    [ 7:10 ] What isn’t working in the SEO
    [ 7:10 ] Pure Gym Inauthentic campaign
    [ 15:40 ] 5000 podcast download milestone 
    [ 17:30 ] What is working in the SEO
    [ 25:40 ] Serving Video for SEO
    [ 33:00 ] Why Consider age for using Videos
    Links Mentioned:
    Contact Nichola : https://erudite.agency/
    Nichola’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/nicholastott
    Nichola’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nicholastott/

    • 36 min
    Episode Ten - Oli Hills - The Power of Facebook Groups

    Episode Ten - Oli Hills - The Power of Facebook Groups

    Oli Hills is the Managing Director of Updates Media, disrupting traditional local news allowing brands to speak to local audiences through engaging and creative content. Also, COO at Zento, the point of sweat data analytics for global sports brands. He is a speaker and thought leader for disruptive business models.
    First, Oli reveals his big news – they are merging with a company in Bristol called Best of Bristol. It’s lonely running a business on your own, so Oli is excited to have a friend on his journey.
    Oli says that we are all a bit lazy when it comes to digital marketing. Social media today is complicated. We can get information to people in seconds; however, everyone is doing it. Plus, social media channels are changing drastically.
    For example, Facebook says that they want videos that are three-minutes in length. If a video is three-minutes, the algorithm will give it a boost. Now, Facebook is running advertisements in one-minute videos. Unfortunately, users want a video that is five or ten seconds. When someone opens Facebook, they simply aren’t prepared to watch a three-minute video.
    TikTok has blown up during lockdown. It has gone back to absolute basics. So, Facebook launched Instagram Reels. Now they are asking for ten seconds reels when they previously wanted three-minute videos. Oli says that content creators can’t keep up with the ever-changing rules of social media. Also, not many people have the skillset to approach content for a specific platform.
    Oli says that the next phase of social media will be a private chat-based conversation. However, companies get excited when new platforms launch. Then, Facebook will try to replicate it. Each platform needs to accept that there will be competitors and then stay in their lane. Oli feels sorry for social media managers because they just have to navigate what is best for each platform.
    Later, Oli says that groups are working in the digital marketing world. You can join a group based on your niche interest; it’s incredibly powerful. More importantly, you can join or start a conversation – that isn’t available with a Facebook page. It’s unbelievably powerful when you hone in on your niche. Stay tuned as we talk about the importance of community when it comes to your groups.
    - “Groups is where you can have personalised and deep-meaning conversations.”
    - “Don’t forget about the good work that you have done.”
    - “Be creative with the basics.”
    - “The engagement you get from a good group is hugely powerful.”
    In This Episode:
     [ 1:30 ] About Updates Media
     [ 3:30 ] Big news from Oli!
     [ 7:10 ] What isn’t working in the world of digital marketing
     [ 13:00 ] The next phase of social media
     [ 17:40 ] Advice for social media managers
     [ 21:20 ] Stop creating so many graphics
     [ 24:50 ] What is working in the world of digital marketing
     [ 34:55 ] How to use groups correctly
    Links Mentioned: 
     Updates Media: https://updatesmedia.com/
     Oli’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/olishills
     Oli’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/olihills/
     Email Oli: oli@updatesmedia.com

    • 38 min
    Episode Nine Scott Cunningham - Stop Marketing For The Sake Of Marketing

    Episode Nine Scott Cunningham - Stop Marketing For The Sake Of Marketing

    Scott is the founder and managing director of Social Lite Communications, a full-stack digital marketing and design agency. A certified Shopify expert, Scott is an industry leader in helping e-commerce merchants scale.
    First, Scott explains what will get in the way of measurable results in business. The biggest obstacle is steep learning curves every time you start a project. A learning curve shouldn’t get in the way of your staff’s performance. If something takes a long time to learn, it will prevent you from getting excellent work done.
    Then, Scott explains what is no longer working in digital marketing. Scott says that doing more marketing for the sake of marketing is no longer working. If you’re a startup, then you might be at the crawling stage of your business. When you are financing your startup, branding, and inventory should be 1/3 of the total spend, and 2/3 should be promotion. Businesses that are at a walking stage are at $20,000 to $100,000 a month. The companies that are at a running stage are making $100,000 to $1,000,000 a month.
    Businesses that are at a crawl are guilty of not investing enough money into marketing. You can’t put out a few ads and expect people to show up. You don’t want to do more marketing until you validate the market for your product. Scott says that you need to validate your product market. They should have at least $1,000 to $2,000 coming into the store. Once you proved your concept, you can spend more money on inventory. Then, you’ll be ready to do more marketing.
    When starting your business, validate it through a small circle first. For instance, one of Scott’s clients sells CBD dog food. She wasn’t allowed to advertise. Instead, she called the Golden Retriever Club of America. She has tripled her business three years in a row. It all started with a small community and validating her product market. People get distracted by shiny apps. Think about the core strategy behind the app before marketing on that application or website.
    If you’re not confident in your idea, then it’s not going to work. Scott says that potential clients ask him to sign an NDA before explaining their product idea. However, once the product launches, people are still allowed to rip it off. If you want to be a step ahead with your product, get buy-in from your community first. When your organisation is booming, your product will be valid.
    Stay tuned as Scott reveals the importance of looking at your product reviews, how to understand the success of your campaign, and the number one rule of copywriting.
    -      “Don’t do more marketing for the sake of doing marketing.”
    -      “Before investing in inventory, prove the concept.”
    -      “If the product is proven to add value to a specific customer segment, it’s going to be a lot easier to market.”
    -      “We can never spend enough time getting to know what keeps our customers up at night.”
    In This Episode:
    [ 2:50 ] About Scott’s work [ 6:10 ] Why you need to avoid steep learning curves [ 11:00 ] What isn’t working in the world of digital marketing [ 26:20 ] What is working in the world of digital marketing   [ 32:50 ] How to understand the success of your campaign   Links Mentioned: 
    Scott’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/scott-cunningham-10517199/ Scott’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/scott.cunning/ Merchant Mastery: https://www.facebook.com/groups/merchantmastery/ BFCM + Holiday Campaign Courses For Shopify Store Owners: https://merchantmastery.io/pages/bfcm Social Lite Communications: https://www.sociallite.ca Mike Michalowicz: https://mikemichalowicz.com The Pumpkin Plan: https://mikemichalowicz.com/pumpkin-plan/ Golden Retriever Club of America: https://grca.org The Prince’s Trust: https://www.princes-trust.org.uk Girl, Wash Your Face: https://www.girlwashyourface.com The ASK Method: https://askmethod.com StoryBrand: https://storybrand.com

    • 41 min
    Episode Eight - Stuart Harrison - Get Out Of The Marketing Mix

    Episode Eight - Stuart Harrison - Get Out Of The Marketing Mix

    Stuart Harrison is the founder of Burning Need, a brand strategy consultancy for B2B businesses. Stuart encourages people to forget 'customers' and start creating 'brand fanatics.' Over the years, he's worked in agencies for some of the world's top B2B tech brands, defining brand positioning and developing a content strategy.
    First, Stuart reveals what isn't working in the world of marketing. He says that the marketing mix is no longer working. This term perpetuates the idea that we have to use loads of different marketing tactics to see any success. It has put a bit of a blocker in place for small businesses. 
    Small businesses will try loads of stuff and never see anything significant from it. So, the owner will think they aren't good at marketing, or their strategy isn't working. Stuart says to take away the mix. When you know how to get your customers to your offer, it's time to optimize it. It's a much more effective way to look at marketing for small businesses. 
    When you can master one marketing tactic, keep going at it. If at any point you feel like it's not working, then look at why it's not working. Perhaps your audience has shifted from Instagram to Facebook. If you find out where your target audience is, then that's where you need to be. Also, it might not even be on social media! Your marketing can thrive in places that are considered old school. 
    Once you find where your target audience is, it's time to come at them with stuff they care about. Get the message right and understand your audience's need and interests. You need a cohesive message for your target audience. Concentrate on getting one thing right instead of getting loads of things wrong. 
    Later, Stuart reveals what is working in the world of marketing – listening to your customer. Get your customer actively involved in your business. As a business owner, you shouldn't be afraid to have two-way communication with your customer. If a customer likes your business, then they would be happy to help. Don't be scared to ask your customer what their needs are. 
    Stay tuned as we give successful and unsuccessful marketing examples that took place during the pandemic.
    -      “Just focus, do one thing, and do it really well.”
    -      “Find out where your audience is, but also understand them and come at them with stuff they care about.”
    -      “Listen to your customer in as many ways as you possibly can.”
    -      “Find a personal army of people that love everything you do.”
    In This Episode:
    [ 3:05 ] About Burning Need [ 6:45 ] What isn’t working in the world of marketing [ 14:50 ] Your target audience may not be on social media [ 18:50 ] Understand your target audience  [ 20:50 ] What is working in the world of marketing  [ 25:15 ] Find out what is broken  Links Mentioned: 
    Burning Need: https://burningneed.com/ Stuart’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/stuartharrison43/ Stuarts Challenge: https://burningneed.com/hire-customer-challenge/

    • 32 min
    Episode Seven Bryan Plumb - One Size Does Not Fit All

    Episode Seven Bryan Plumb - One Size Does Not Fit All

     The guest today is the owner of the award winning and soon-to-be multi-award-winning Bee Digital Marketing. Joining us is Bryan Plumb, the Managing Director and CEO of Bee Digital Marketing, a certified marketing agency that helps education businesses grow. In today’s episode, Bryan offers his knowledge and resilience on how he built his business and why you should never exaggerate what you don’t know. We discuss the pros and cons of flash in the pan marketing tactics and why you should integrate a new mindset that focuses first on your clients and client’s customers. Listen in to hear Bryan’s great insights and how intertwined the do’s and don’ts of digital marketing can be!
    The guest this week has a great sense of resilience and admiration. Bryan Plumb, Managing Director and CEO of Bee Digital Marketing offers incredible marketing advice and some important tips to run and grow a business. Bryan Plumb entered the marketing space in a rather unique way when he created Bee Digital eleven years ago. 
    After finishing his degree at university in TV Production, Bryan went into a role in sales and quickly moved into recruitment where he recruited developers for companies selling education technology products. As an overly confident young man in his early twenties, Bryan Plumb found that many of these education technology companies did not market their products in the best ways and thought he could do better. At the time, with no experience running a business and zero experience in the marketing space, Bryan Plumb started Bee Digital Marketing and now is driven to grow his business by helping education technology companies level the playing field in education.
    Bryan shares that the best advice he could offer to listeners is to be humble enough to admit when you do not know something and when to ask for help. Bryan has made it a goal in his company for any member on his team to be encouraged to admit when they do not know something and go on a mission to ask for help or find out the answer. Almost all of us feel we must naturally exaggerate our knowledge when someone asks a question especially when it is heavily technical. The best thing you can do is to say that you do not know and to ask for a day or two to find the answer.
    Bryan shares that there are many things that no longer work that once did and many things that suddenly work. Bryan offers an example of running a Facebook Messenger campaign that was really a flash in the pan tactic and knew that in only a matter of days, Facebook would shut it down. Many things in marketing can work at one time and then end up not working again. When it comes to flash in the pan tactics, they will work for only a finite amount of time. Instead, what Bryan Plumb finds to make an agency successful is to build an agency that has solid foundation. Bryan’s advice is to stay away from things that could be flash in the pan tactics because the risk is so high that you are going to do something that isn’t good, and you will have to start from scratch.
    What is working in digital marketing right now is the idea of creating campaigns that have a longer cycle of return. For Bee Digital Marketing, most of the focus is surrounding B2B and slower B2B that takes about three to six months to see a return. Due to COVID, these methods have worked massively in the company’s favour as the marketing structure at Bee Digital Marketing has not changed as they have never been about selling a product immediately. During this time, Bee Digital Marketing has been putting their clients and their client’s customers first by producing campaigns that genuinely put the customers at the forefront of everything they do. By taking care of your customers and your customer’s customers you are adapting the mindset of not focusing on the product at hand but instead what the customer needs right now and how your company can help.
    Relevant Links: 
    Bee Digital Marketing | Website
    [https://beedigital.m

    • 40 min
    Episode Six Maggie Benson The Importance of Not Being Soppy About Your SOP's

    Episode Six Maggie Benson The Importance of Not Being Soppy About Your SOP's

    On this episode of Digital Marketing Confessions, I welcome Maggie Benson, CEO and Founder of Agency Alliance, a partner for growing marketing agencies to help them scale to new levels without all the headaches involved with growth. Maggie is here to discuss her take on what’s working and what’s not working in the digital marketing world right now. She first explains the biggest mistake she sees repeatedly, detailing the downfalls of shiny object syndrome and thinking you know what’s going to work in marketing. She emphasizes focusing more on your big picture marketing strategy, rather than just your tactics, as well as concentrating on your target market while creating a system that benefits your customers. We talk about the importance of Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) and Maggie shares a relatable analogy that could benefit you and your business.


    “Facebook ads are not the solution for every little thing.”   - Maggie Benson


    Then, we discuss what is currently working in the digital marketing world. We come to the conclusion that it all comes back to having a cohesive plan. Maggie speaks on the necessity of establishing your “who”, generating awareness of your solution to your customers’ problem, and building an ecosystem between all your digital tactics to get sales. We focus on the customer journey and being patient when moving customers through the marketing funnel, touching on the benefits of micro commitments.
    Tune in to learn Maggie’s biggest takeaways and two action steps you can take right now to benefit your company’s marketing strategy!
    About Our Guest:
    Maggie Benson is the Founder and CEO of Agency Alliance and Merit-Based Marketing, as well as CEO and Trainer at Local Marketing Made Simple. She is based in British Columbia Canada and believes the foundation of any community is small business.
    Email her: info@agencyalliance.ca
    Visit Agency Alliance’s website: www.agencyalliance.ca
    About The Host:
    I've been marketing for over 25 years and have met countless people who are true experts of digital marketing. Now, I'm grilling them to get vital, up-to-date information that business owners and entrepreneurs need to know and implement to be successful.
    Follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/dmrevelations
    Connect with us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/DigitalMarketingConfessionsPodcast
    Episode Timeline:
    00:20 – Introducing Maggie Benson
    01:54 – About Agency Alliance: What do you do and who do you serve?
    04:26 – What isn't working in the world of digital marketing right now?
    07:10 – You must concentrate on the tactics that are working and the channels that are appropriate + B2Bs are struggling due to covid-19
    09:12 – Maggie’s relatable analogy about buying a fitness program off Instagram
    10:55 – Concentrate on your target market & Creating a system and process that benefits your customers
    13:24 – The importance of Standard Operating Procedures
    14:27 – Key takeaways of what’s not working in digital marketing
    15:41 – What is working in the world of digital marketing right now?
    18:22 – Focus on the customer value journey, the problem you need to solve, and raising awareness
    21:50 – The importance of having a plan for moving customers through the marketing funnel
    25:09 – Cautious consumers + Creating a cohesive marketing process with micro commitments
    28:03 – It takes time, so be patient when looking for results
    29:37 – Biggest takeaways from what’s working in digital marketing + Two actions steps you can take right now
    31:48 – Outro: Want more information on bigger picture customer journey? + How to contact us

    • 33 min

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