February 07, 2024

Social Media Marketing Leadership: Value productivity over perfection


I had a brilliant conversation with Erika Lovegreen, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Communications, ICUC (a Dentsu agency) about career transition, hiring strategy, and customer experience, in episode #86 of the How I Made It In Marketing podcast.

Listen now to hear Erika Lovegreen of ICUC discuss social media marketing strategies and productivity in marketing.

by Daniel Burstein, Senior Director, Content & Marketing, MarketingSherpa and MECLABS Institute

Social Media Marketing Leadership: Value productivity over perfection

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“We can say that. Sure we can say that.”

Oh, I do not like having to utter this phrase in meetings. Because it’s not what you can say, it’s what you should say.

I’ve heard so many times ‘we can say that in an ad.’ Or ‘we can write a press release about this.’ Oh, the hubris in that statement.

Because we get lulled into false confidence in the four walls of our offices, when we think we can make a payment, and put whatever we want into ads or press releases or on websites.

Sure, I guess technically you can. You can write those words down. It’s not illegal. No one will stop you. Media companies and ad networks will glad take your money for that placement. But should you?

Because the ultimate decider is the customer. So no matter what you pay to say, no matter what you can say, the customer will decide whether you should say it.

Which is why I loved this lesson from a podcast guest application – ‘Never underestimate the power of your customer.’ It doesn’t matter if you have a fancy title or massive media budget, the customer has far more power than you.

I talked to Erika Lovegreen, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Communications, ICUC (a Dentsu agency), to hear that story behind that lesson, along with many more lesson-filled stories.

ICUC is a Dentsu agency with a team of 450. Dentsu is a public company that reported 1.117 trillion yen in annual revenue in 2022, or about 8.59 billion dollars.

Lovegreen managed a team of 30 when she ran the strategy team. Now, she runs marketing for ICUC and overseas a team of six, along with a variety of partners and contractors.

Listen to our conversation using this embedded player or click through to your preferred audio streaming service using the links below it.

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Stories (with lessons) about what she made in marketing

Here are some lessons from Lovegreen that emerged in our discussion.

Be comfortable stepping into new industries to gain the necessary experience

After spending several years as a journalist, Lovegreen decided she wanted to get into marketing. She was most inspired by agencies but was having a very hard time landing a gig and having agencies take a chance on her. Instead, a 50-year-old senior living company was willing to hire her. She was the youngest member of the leadership team AND female.

It ended up being one of the most incredible jobs where she learned new skills, challenged herself in a hard marketing environment, learned about regulations, and had to meet ambitious goals. She leans on many of her experiences in that brand to ground her as an agency leader. She thinks all agency marketers should spend time working for a brand so that they have a greater appreciation for business goals and try new things.

Another interesting fact about this company, the CEO was pretty high up in politics. Lovegreen got interesting exposure to that world, and when there was some business crisis, she helped serve as the ‘Olivia Pope,’ leaning into her journalist background and helping with PR.

If leading a team, value being patient and hiring the right people

Working in a 24/7 social media agency, Lovegreen’s work truly never sleeps. When she was overseeing their strategy team, at one point, she had 30 individuals report to her. As new projects came in, she always felt the pressure to hire. After having a few individuals come through who were successful on client accounts, she had to re-evaluate her role as a hiring manager. She started to slow down, change her line of questioning, and work more at onboarding.

Her retention rates went up, and they ended up having one of the stronger teams in the agency at the time.

Never underestimate the power of your customer

Whether you are a DTC or B2B marketer, the customer is the North Star. Lovegreen loves it when she gets feedback on her campaigns from leads. We are never too senior or experienced to have humbling moments where an automation doesn’t go off right away, or we find a typo. We need to be in a constant state of learning, adjusting, and failing forward to keep growing!

Lessons (with stories) from people she collaborated with

Lovegreen also shared lessons she learned from the people she collaborated with.

You need to quickly serve the customer to create a great experience

via Jay Baer, Author, Speaker, friend, and Tequila enthusiast

Lovegreen learned the value of the need for speed in the customer experience and what the gift of time means. Baer and Lovegreen met several years ago at a conference, and he had done some collaborations with ICUC before her time. He’s done incredible research studies on customer experience and took her under his wing as one of his predecessors on the Social Pros podcast.

Through him, she really learned to value the customer in community building. He does a fantastic job of connecting research to real people.

Value productivity over perfection

via Nicole van Zanten, Co-President, ICUC

Van Zanten is Lovegreen’s boss and someone she looks up to. She has done multiple Ironmans and marathons. She has taught Lovegreen the importance (truly and deeply) of the – it’s a marathon and not a sprint mentality. Nothing will ever go or be perfect, but as long as you are continuously working to improve and learn, the outcome will be great. Lovegreen recently ran her very first marathon, which was in part inspired by van Zanten.

Pay attention and look for trends

Matt Navara of The Social Media Geekout

Navara has been a major industry disruptor in social media. He is a news breaker, not a follower. Lovegreen has always admired his work, and he did a solid job doing a training session for her team a few years back. He has a great way of teaching the value of understanding what is really going to shake things up versus noise. In social media, it’s easy to get distracted by new shiny features that really don’t do anything of much value. She appreciates adopting this mentality.

Related content discussed in this episode

Artificial Intelligence Demo: A look at the output from an AI-powered podcast assistant service

Value Proposition: Marketing examples for each of the 4 essential levels of value prop

Social Media Marketing: Can you compete with your customer’s mom?

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Not ready for a listen yet? Interested in searching the conversation? No problem. Below is a rough transcript of our discussion.

Erika Lovegreen: Because any marketer, we've all kind of looked at each other like that Spider-Man meme where we're all pointing at each other sort of a do we? Don't we? Maybe you, me, my team, your team. That's sort of how I felt. Like Tick Tock was, you know, a year or so ago. And even still there's a lot of questions, you know, around which privacy and some of its growth trajectory.

And and so we're fielding those constantly as marketers about which channels we should and should not be on. And again, customers Northstar, if they're on it and they're engaging and there's meaningful things to be learned and new products to be innovating in surprise and delight moments, we could be capitalizing on, you know, who are we to not be visible and not be present and not be offering and gifting brand love and learning.

Intro: Welcome to how I made it in marketing. From marketing Sherpa, we scour pitches from hundreds of creative leaders and uncover specific examples, not just trending ideas or buzzword laden schmaltz, real world examples to help you transform yourself as a marketer. Now here's your host, the senior director of Content and Marketing at Marketing Sherpa Daniel Burstein to tell you about today's guest.

Daniel Burstein: We've been we can say that. Sure, we can say that. I don't like having to utter this phrase in meetings because it's not what you can say. It's what you should say. Right. I've heard so many times and we can say that in an ad or we could write a press release about that or the hubris in that statement.

Should you? Because we get lulled into this false confidence in the four walls of our offices where we think we can make use of our budget and put whatever we wanted to ads or press releases or on websites? Sure. I guess technically you can you can write those words down. It's not illegal. No one will stop you. Media companies go gladly take your money for that placement, but should you?

Because the ultimate decider is the customer. So no matter what you pay to say, no matter what you can say, the customer will decide whether you should say it. Which is why I love this lesson from a podcast Guest application. Never underestimate the power of your customer. It doesn't matter if you have a fancy title or a massive media budget, the customer has far more power than you.

I love it. You're just you're the story behind that lesson. Along with many more lesson filled stories is Erica Love Green, senior vice president of marketing and communications at ICI U.S.. Thanks for being here, Erica.

Erika Lovegreen: Daniel Thank you so much. I'm a huge fan of the show. And so it's a it is a dream to get the chance to talk to you. And hopefully I can share some fun stories, have a little self-deprecation, too, But really appreciate you having me on.

Daniel Burstein: Well, that's very kind of you. Thank you. And you've got some interesting stories to tell. But first, let me let people understand who I'm talking to here. Let's dip into your background a bit. Just cherry picking a few things. Eric has been a TV news producer for NBC affiliate WFLA, STB, owned by Media General. She's been an advertising account executive for Berkshire Hathaway Media, a director of corporate communications and branding at Medical Facilities of America.

And for the past six years, she's been in ICU seat, where she is senior vice president of marketing and Communications. ICU. C is a Dentsu agency with a team of 450. Dentsu I'm sure you've heard of them, but they're a public company that reported I love this ¥1.117 trillion in annual revenue in 2022. That's about $8.59 billion. Erika herself managed a team of 30 when she oversaw the strategy team helping clients.

Right now she is doing marketing for ICU itself where she manages a team of six along with a variety of partners and contractors. So, Erica, give us a sense, what is your day like as the SVP of Marketing and Communications.

Erika Lovegreen: Yahoo! Daniel That was a mouthful. And my background, a lot of twists and turns there, but my day to day truly is. I see you as my client. We are trying to attract really large enterprise brands to come and want to partner with us. You're unfamiliar with ICE. You see, we're kind of a unique agency. We help enterprise brands specifically with their online community management and customer care.

We're 24 seven agency, which is super unique. And, you know, being a marketer for 24, 24 seven agency globally has its own unique challenges. But you know, a day for a day in a Life for me is brainstorming new campaigns to try to target in enterprise leaders to want to work with us. You know, I think another big part of my day is team mentorship.

I absolutely love working with different marketers who are wearing the different hats on my team, whether it's from CRM management and making sure our data is really good. Again, AD and campaign planning to content planning. So we do a lot of strategic workshops. In my role, I actually also oversee product, so we're kind of innovating the next services for the agency and figuring out how to bring those to market.

And again, being a global agency, we're really trying to think big. We're really trying to think about unique value propositions in different markets across Europe, looking at Asia Pacific, for example. So every day is a bit of a new day. I also is a member of the executive leadership team of the agency. So while I absolutely have a massive passion for the marketing piece of it, I'm also thinking about the 450 employees and sort of the strategic direction of the actual organization itself, along with my peers that do that work to really think through how we continue to scale and grow and be a healthy organization with a great culture.

So, you know, again, I get I get to wear a lot of different hats, which brings me a lot of joy. And again, I really love marketing for a unique, unique organization.

Daniel Burstein: Well, perfect. Well, I'm sure there's a lot we're going to learn from your current role and also your previous roles. So let's take a look first at some lessons from the things you made. That's what we get to do as marketers. It's kind of unique. I've never done anything else. I've never been a, you know, actuary or podiatrist.

I don't know. But I don't feel like people get to make things like we do in other industries. So here's your first lesson. You say be comfortable stepping into new industries to gain the necessary experience. And I guess you didn't even start in this industry, right?

Erika Lovegreen: No, I. I did not start as a marketer. I aspired to be a journalist. I went to school as it to learn to be a journalist. I interned, I did internships. I my first job was at a TV station and that's really where I wanted to go. I've had visions of grandeur, you know, today's show producer where if you've watched, you know, on HBO, the show, the Morning Night, HBO, Apple TV, the morning show, I mean, I wanted to live that life.

I worked overnight shifts all all the many things. What I love about television is you have to ask really great questions. Storytelling is your North Star. You abso lutely need to understand your audience. And at some point along the way, after working overnights for many, many years, I think I had an moment that maybe I could really apply that in different in different industries or different capacity.

I knew I was going to be staying local. When you work in television, you become very transient. I was getting married and wanting to have children and kind of move into that season of my life. And so I kind of went into a bit of a reinvention and I found myself having a little bit of an opportunity in a sales capacity.

And then from there there was a local corporation that was a senior living corporation, but they were looking for a pretty entry level marketer and communication manager to come in and learn and help grow and take some of the skills that I had from being a journalist. And I had to tell a convincing story of why a random, you know, journalist, aspiring journalist wanted to become a marketer and how I could maybe help them.

But what was really fun and beautiful about kind of getting into a different industry and being willing to say yes to something that wasn't maybe outwardly as exciting as other industries is that I really got to cut my teeth. I got to learn and they were willing to let me learn and give me resources to grow and I great mentors in and around me.

I got to work with agencies and kind of hear from them and see how they were building strategies. I got to be a part of a team that was doing incredible work and it was very it had it to be to be elements and that it had its direct to consumer elements too. And so I got to kind of learn all the different things that I needed to be to be successful at that time.

So all that to say, I think in the learning lesson, saying yes and stepping outside of a comfort zone and not making pass judgments on a specific industry or a specific business for what they do, they're very passionate people behind those brands and very passionate people in those industries. And it lent me an opportunity through networking to find myself at I See You See, which is an agency, and at an agency we get to work across.

We're not we work across industries. So I went from that to getting to work with almost every single industry. But I learned not to pass judgment and find why we get excited about the randomness that maybe one industry or one business might be doing. And I'm just very thankful. Again, it's an interesting background, but I loved getting to bring that sort of, you know, no judgment, no judgment free zone thinking, you know, into into that work.

And so, yeah, again, a learning lesson I feel very passionately about. And I try to gift on to those who may be taking a bit of an atypical route to get where they are, where they are today.

Daniel Burstein: So you mentioned you had an Olivia Pope moment when you went from being in journalism to being at this, I think a senior living company worked that. And I just want to ask, you know, as a journalist, like what did you bring to that role in like PR or marketing about actually serving the customer with your messaging that really helped you?

Because that's one thing is marketers, I think, were PR people. Sometimes you don't have a journalist's background, your focus is more than I know. I'm trying to convert or sell them on something, right? Where journalists say they come from it from like, yes, they got to get a conversion. You got to get clicks on the headline or people to watch a story on the news.

They're great with, you know, the level a conversion they try to do before the commercial. Like, you know, stay tuned to see, you know, what restaurant and town have like, you know, cockroaches everywhere or whatever. But at the end of the day, they're serving with their messaging, not just trying to sell. So I wonder if for you as a journalist, you know, take us to maybe ensure Olivia Pope moment.

How did that background help in a moment where you're surrounded more by business people and marketers and PR people, but you had those journalist chops?

Erika Lovegreen: Yeah, I think some of the things that I really brought to that that table were not burying the lead. I mean, it's funny because we get when you've been in a brand for a really, really long time and honestly even been in an agency for a long time or just been in any business for a long time, you just get kind of stuck in your way of thinking.

So you write something that you think is absolutely beautiful and compelling and you really realize, you know, when you have, I think, an objective or secondary idea or a journalistic lens to it, you know, oftentimes the the key thing you're trying to say might be actually buried very, very deeply in the bottom. So my you know, some of my Olivia Pope moments were standing there with senior executives that were much, much older than me, much more experienced than me, come from very deep medical backgrounds, too.

So brilliant people, you know. And here I was, this kind of millennial came in, you know, I was the social media gal of, you know, I my CEO, who I think very, very highly of would kind of joke with me and say, go tweet that, Erica, you know, But they they loved that I could kind of bring sort of this, hey, I think maybe we're like this thing is the actual interesting thing in the whole thing that you just said.

I think this is actually the really interesting thing. And in journalism, too, we're really taught, especially as a news producer, you have to think if you're writing a script, you're not talking to, you know, the most highly educated person within your demographic. You have to talk to, you know, you have to say something compelling to them, but equally is compelling to someone who might have a fourth grade education.

So you have to you kind of have to cut through the jargon, cut through the noise. What are you trying to say? And again, it was the skill set that in the medical industry especially is very, very valuable to take these extremely complex topics and sort of distill them down for a layperson and your everyday person. And it relates to the customer because the customer most of the time is just your everyday person.

So got to get away from corporate speak and company speak and medical speak, things like the word and with ambulatory. What is that? You know, our physical therapy guy adore him. He would say things like that. And I'm like, I'm sorry. Walking like. So, you know, again, we had to I think I brought again that interesting sort of lens.

And I pride myself as a marketer today to still keep that lens and again, try to ask a good line of questioning to make sure that we're really getting to the heart, the heart of what we're trying to do and what our goal is and what we're trying to serve.

Daniel Burstein: You know, that's a great point. I've heard, you know, TV news is, I don't know, sixth grade level, eighth grade level or whatever it's written for. And sometimes since we're trying to sell those marketers, we're trying to sound so big and fancy. I mean, it's bad and tech like it's bad health care. Remember work with some how we got kind of using like nephrology or something like that.

We took my kidneys and I'm like, you know, people understand that. I mean, you sound smart now, okay, Now I trust, but like, nobody can know what you're talking about. So that's another great approach. That's another great thought of like, okay, making sure you're speaking at their language as opposed to trying to oppress them. Right. But another group where you have to serve them and speak their language is your own employees.

And you said, here's another lesson. If leading a team value, being patient and hiring the right people. So how did you take that approach when you built your team? I think of 30.

Erika Lovegreen: Yeah. So when I started out leading the strategy team over here at I See you see, we had like four of us. We were kind of the OG group and this was a product line that we were looking to scale and grow. To go from four to about 30 is very, very ambitious. Sales was is very, very busy.

But I think, you know, some of the lesson that I learned when you're hiring a really, really large team or, you know again, agency brand doesn't matter. I think you're under pressure when you need to hire. You feel this sense of kind of getting getting the right people. But we got to do it quickly because we have work that's actively happening or a scope that we need to actively fulfill.

But the lesson that I've learned is that any time you rush, you're probably going to miss, you know, missed the mark on asking the right questions, properly vetting properly, making sure to it. If a job needs to be mutual, it needs to be a mutual fit. You want that individual to really as much as you're selling them, they're selling you.

This needs to be a process where you really get to know each other and get to know the different the type of work that they're going to be doing. And I think it's it's okay to just sort of slow down and take your time. I had an incredible boss actually, at the Health Care Corporation. This is a you know, another big anecdote.

And, you know, we can we can take that how far we want to go. But I was eight months pregnant when they hired me. And the the hiring manager at the time who ended up being my boss made a comment to me that, you know, look, we're looking for the right person. And if that means that we need to go through maternity leave, you know, it'll be worth it to us.

And it's going to be painful because, boy, we want you to start like yesterday. But, you know, you have the chops, you have what we're looking for. And you know what? We're going to we've made it this far. Let's make it a little bit further. So, you know, I think I adopted that sort of way of thinking of, you know, how can we make a we don't want to draw out an interview process.

We definitely don't want to waste candidates time. But I think really making sure that we're considering the goals, considering the needs of the clients, considering what our scope may or may not be, and, you know, personality and all of the many, many, many things that kind of go into that candidate experience on both sides of that fence, we want to you know, my lesson is to definitely it's okay to slow down.

It's okay to make sure that you know, that it's the right fit. And if that individual, you know, can't wait or, you know, for whatever reason, you know, then then maybe it wasn't meant to be in the first place.

Daniel Burstein: Let's talk about something. As a team leader, I'm not sure if we need to be more or less patient at this point in the world. What about A.I.? What about artificial intelligence? Because you talk about a team leader, talk about hiring people. I boy, I've been where you are. We've got a lot of work going on. We need to bring in a lot of people.

But now it seems like A.I. is almost part of the conversation. Like, is that part your headcount is up here to like, how does that factor in? And like, for example, you know, we get pitched all the time at marketing Sherpa cover this company to cover that company. And I got pitched by this new podcast, A.I. Company. And you know, they even have a case study like we normally publish.

But I had idea of like, Hey, why don't you just do some we've got a podcast, just do some of the stuff for a podcast, we'll just publish it, we'll show people and it'll be like a demo of your product without people having to do a sales call. So it'll serve them. They could just see what it does.

And it got me thinking like, Wow, this is kind of just are your team. You'd hire a person to do all or part of this before. So as a team leader, as you're thinking of hiring, as you're thinking to staffing up, you're how patient should we be with artificial intelligence and what role does that play on our team?

Do you have any experience with that?

Erika Lovegreen: yeah. Artificial artificial intelligence is certainly a hot topic. You know, living in in and around the agency landscape. I think we talk about it at nauseam. You know, not only at my agency, creative agencies are talking about it kind of where can we sort of cut corners and and leverage it? And, you know, I think my fundamental core belief is that I think there is a place for it.

I think how do we bring humans and the tech together? Oftentimes the humans have to train the technology. So there's still thought that's going to have to go into it and then it has to be audited. I think my concern with AI is not even the AI. I think that it's very easy for unfortunately marketers or busy people to set it and forget it and that happens oftentimes when we're running paid campaigns, you know, Google and all the social channels, they all have AI functionality and it's easy to dump a ton of money into, you know, whatever platform.

And I think if you get lazy and you set it and you forget it, then the guy's going to take over and it's going to start making mistakes and you know, it claims that it starts finding efficiencies, but while it's building out some of those efficiencies, it could also be breaking other things. And I just again, I think we have to be really, really careful.

It can help and but we have to continuously be training it. We have to continuously be kind of keeping an eye on it. And then from a content marketing perspective, it's super controversial. And I know that it's going to miss the anecdotes. It's, you know, if we want to go back to my journalistic viewpoint on things, you know, it's going to miss the anecdotes of the storytelling so it can spit out a lot of good verbiage and jargon and kind of hit the CEO highlights and hit, you know, maybe the things that you're looking for it to do.

But it's not going to say, I personally experienced this thing. The AI statements really don't exist in there, and the AI statements are the most compelling normally, and they're the ones that really take us, I think, into that, into that journey and that experience. So if you want to find some efficiencies in your content, sure, no problem. You know, crafting a calendar invite or crafting something that's not going to have an AI statement.

But if you need an AI statement, I think it's a cautionary tale. If you're not really involving yourself a little bit more in that writing process. So that's my my take on it. You know, for better or for worse, but passionate about it. Again, I'm not a not a naysayer. There are people who are like none of it.

I think I'm a me in the middle kind of person, but we need to proceed with caution.

Daniel Burstein: Well, and to use an example from your journalist background, good journalist finds a human interest in the story right. So as you said, it's not just reporting the facts. I mean, the facts, that's pretty much a commodity. But getting that human interest that works in journalism, that works and marketing, too, that's what it's all about. And so this is why I love your next lesson is never underestimate the power of your customer.

I think whether it's AI, whether it's hiring the right team or just getting in right industry, it all comes down to why do we do that? We do that to serve a customer. So give us a sense, how did you learn this lesson? Never underestimate the power of your customer.

Erika Lovegreen: Well, when you work with enterprise brands at scale, it is so incredible that one teeny tiny comment buried very deeply within a social page can be the one thing that sets off a virtual viral firestorm. You know, I have, of course, will be, you know, kind of careful about the brands and the who, what, when and where. But I mean, truly, in my experience and what I have seen, one teeny tiny comment can make it or break it.

It can spark the big as we know it. Go and tick tock, you know, go on, go into Instagram. It can spark the biggest new trend that everyone gets really, really excited about. Or it can be really the demise in the moment that a brand, you know, gets called out for something. And you have a little bit of that groupthink mentality and all of a sudden you're on the front, you know, the brands on the front page news for, you know, for a viral moment.

And so I think that if you don't have good social listening sort of set up and kind of paying attention, if you don't have if you're not kind of in the detailed weeds, again, it kind of goes along that theme of getting a little bit lazy. You know, if we're not kind of in the details, the devil of the details and really appreciating each and every interaction we have, you know, you could you could really be the next brand that has a problem for yourself and and have market share go down very, very quickly.

Also, just the spread of misinformation can happen really, really quickly, you know, and that can hurt a brand if you're not kind of staying on it. So, yeah, I feel pretty passionately from watching, you know, some of the enterprise brands in and out and around to have went viral or not for good reasons or for bad reasons, just based off of one singular comment.

Daniel Burstein: So, yes, I agree with you about going viral, but you also talk about the customers in North Star. So I wonder, like if you have an example and you have to name a brand if you don't want, but of being, you know, proactive in seeing kind of the general trends, what's going on with the customer right now. Just, you know, a viral comment.

But the general trends, okay, we're learning something about a customer here because our customers in general. Right. And based on that, here's some change we need to do to serve them better. Like, for example. And is this the most stark example I can think of? I did a case study with MONTEFIORE Health System. Right? And their customers are employees with the North Star.

And then, you know, wow, COVID 19, right? That came up. And so then, you know, the case was about how they shifted their social media and their content and their websites and all of these things to serve their customer differently. You know, they had to give more information and tell them what they could do, what they couldn't do, how they could visit, how they could use health care, but also served their employees differently because they needed to appreciate their employees in a whole new way and in a whole new level and make sure they were heard, to make sure the community felt, you know, the employees felt all the community being after them.

And so I wonder for you, you know, Erika, it's great, you know, looking at that one viral moment or that one comment. But we also want this broader understanding from our social media and our content of what is going on with our customers, how are they shifting, how are the sands shifting and the examples of being able to like kind of discover that and pivot based on that?

Erika Lovegreen: I can definitely speak to that. You know, one one that comes to mind really, I think is was the emergence of tick tock. And, you know, a lot of our brand partners, you know, it was sort of a do we don't meet, don't we? What is this? And one of the brands that we partner with it, I am so awestruck by is Chili's.

Chili's is you know, they were kind of one of the first ones that were like our audience. They're like giving us a lot of feedback here and they're interested and they're talking and how can, you know, do we jump in? Do we not jump in? So ultimately they did. And they, you know, did a lot of surprise and delight of some of their swag and pajamas, I believe it was.

And, you know, kind of gifting, you know, some of their consumers, some product as a thank you for following their page and you know and giving kind of their good customer service moments. And I just think that the you know, it's important as a marketer to really be paying attention where your audience is and what makes them tick and where they're going.

And I think Tick Tock was one of those ones that it's not a channel for everyone, and that's another kind of learning lesson and all of that. If you know your audience really well, you can kind of say like, this isn't really for us. This really is a tick tock of the marketing world by storm. And, you know, it grew so, so quickly.

And we're it's an evolved strategy of things that we were doing on other traditional channels. And, you know, again, I commend you know, I commend Chili's as a brand for being one of the earlier adopters. There are many other examples of early adopters, but being an early adopter is hard. You have to we have been thrown a lot of new platforms, a lot of new channels, a lot of new offerings and subscriptions and things we should and shouldn't be doing as marketers and picking the one that you really look at and you're like, our our audience fits this and it's engaging and it's fun and it's different.

And we want to invest our our dollars and our time here. You know, you have to have to navigate that. And and I'm sure there's a lot of convincing of internal stakeholders and all the, you know, all the things that exist there. So that probably be one that is really close, close to a lot of us, because any marketer, we've all kind of looked at each other like that Spider-Man meme where we're all pointing at each other sort of a do we, Don't we?

Maybe you, me, my team, your team. That's sort of how I felt. Like Tick Tock was a year or so ago, and even still there's a lot of questions around its privacy and some of its growth trajectory. And and so we're fielding those constantly as marketers about which channels we should and should not be on. And again, customers, Northstar, if they're on it and they're engaging and there's meaningful things to be learned and new products to be innovating and surprise and delight moments, we could be capitalizing on, you know, who are we to not be visible and not be present and not be offering and gifting brand love and learning.

And so you know again customer Northstar and you'll know what you need to do as a brand I think to be successful.

Daniel Burstein: Yeah well I'll tell you one thing I like about tick tock and I don't generally like or use it personally, so actually the I guild this week I opened it up with some tick tock goodies and so it was coming in like Daniel, like watches, tick tock and I'm like, no, not as a civilian. Like, not in my personal life.

I'm not using tick tock like my kids have shown it to me. But where as a marketer, the thing that's so powerful is, you know, when I started in this industry, I started doing print ads like in the Wall Street Journal and stuff, and it was really hard to get that type of customer wisdom and insight and feedback, you know, And like, you had to be like a really big brand to do these studies.

I don't think people remember like it used to walk through the mall and someone would stop you in the mall and try to pay you to be part of a focus group just because we're trying to get we were thinking, but now, like that certain age group that use tick tock a lot there, it's a focus group that just sharing it all on tick tock, you can see it all.

And so what I was presenting about in the Air Guild was about drive thrus. Now fast food restaurants using A.I.. And so we could just see we could pull it up like this. This would be a big consumer study you'd have to do right week. We could pull it up on tick tock. Here's people that like it, and you see them liking it.

All right? There's people that issues with it. You see them having issues with it so powerful.

Erika Lovegreen: It you know, one of my fundamental core beliefs, the more time I spend on tick tock. But something that, you know, I heard at some point I listen to a lot of podcasts, so it's someone probably touched on it. If you like Google, you actually probably like tick tock because it it can function in part as a search engine If you have a curiosity that you would go to Google and you type in, you know, your ailment or your question or your need, you can go to tick tock and type in that same thing, that syndrome, that thing, that quirk, that cure.

Again, curiosity and Tick Tock will deliver a visual version of, you know, in video form of what you would probably get in your Google responses because a lot of health care companies are innovating searchable content, real everyday people are kind of posting about their thing that maybe they thought was unique, but maybe it's not as unique as you thought it was.

Once you see, there's an audience of people sharing their anecdotes and their experiences. And so again, you know, Tick Tock has a lot of different kind of types and use cases, you know, across the spectrum. But boy, we Google is powerful in our world and, you know, intent and search and all the many things. If an individual likes Google, more than likely, you know, there might be a case to be made for having a tick tock strategy and their audience has shifted.

I think we had certainly that perception when it first kind of came out of all our gen-z ers and kind of our our young folks using it. And they were and they are creating a lot of quirky, fun videos. But the evolution of that I think is super fascinating to kind of study and keep an eye on, because that age at that age is trended up and started to shift a little bit.

And you're getting a lot of folks, you know, millennials and even beyond that interested because they're searching, they want to learn things. And again, their curiosities are a quick, you know, type in the search bar, a way for them to learn from other people. And again, and maybe a little more visually compelling than what you would get in a little more human element than you might get in a typical search engine.

Daniel Burstein: And, you know, that's a great opportunity for brands in a lot of fields where the reliability and credibility of the of the information is important because obviously there's a lot of things trending on TikTok. Some of it's accurate, some of it's not, depending where it's coming from. And I know here in Jackson we've got the Mayo Clinic right here.

And one thing I saw was content marketing started with a mayo clinic. They were so good at content marketing online. And so whatever the thing was, they had the good content said Google Mayo Clinic would have it there. And so I don't follow Tik Tok closely enough to know who those brands are. But it seems to me like that is a big opportunity for definitely the health care field.

I finance technology, some other fields have a credible voice and say, Hey, this thing is trying to this thing's being talked about. Here are some facts from a credible voice and to kind of build their brand that way.

Erika Lovegreen: Yeah. It's it's again, I think, really fascinating as marketers to sit down on that. And again, in the spirit of the customer, you have to really know your audience and you have to know your value proposition and you need to know what it is you're trying to offer from your marketing team. Mayo Clinic is a great example. I mean, they're an educational authority and they pride themselves on being a massive warehouse of data and information and educate journal articles for people to go and understand what might be going on with them.

And if you want to be in all the places that people might be trying to try and understand what might be going on with their health journey, you know, again, you would you would want to be in places that individuals could search and find community and find understanding. And and again, you want it to be factual. And what gets scary is when people are creating content and it's not coming from an authoritative place.

So it's really refreshing when brands do get behind creating some of that educational content in searchable places like a TikTok or even Instagram in its own right, because maybe it's coming with a little bit more fact and a little bit more, you know, good, good data to be engaging with and reading and understanding then, you know, letting just your every person maybe give their point of view.

So I think we all have to you know, that's a whole other can of worms. But I think we all need to be mindful of who's posting what's being posted as we're digesting all that content.

Daniel Burstein: Absolutely. Well, in the first half of the show, we talk about lessons from the things Erica made in the second half. We're going to talk about lessons from the people she made it with. That's a great thing we get to do with marketers. We get to make things. We get to make it with people. But first, I should mention that the How I made It in Marketing podcast is underwritten by McLeod's Institute, the parent organization of marketing Sherpa.

McLeod's A I can measure your value prop competitive analysis and more based on the results of 10,000 marketing experiments. It's totally free and you don't even have to register for now. So just go to McLeod's icon, begin trying it out and ECL ab a ICOM to get artificial intelligence working for you. All right, with that, let's take a look at this first lesson from someone you collaborated with.

You said you need to quickly serve the customer to create a great experience. And you learned this from Jay Baer, who you call an author, speaker, friend and tequila enthusiast. So tell us how you learned this from Jay.

Erika Lovegreen: Yeah. So Jay and I go back a little ways. We've done some collaborations through my current agency. You see, I also was a co-host of the Social Pros podcast, which he helped found. So we've known each other a while. And you know what I love? He puts out a ton of thought leadership. He's written several books and he really, really cares about the customer journey.

Like to the point that this man would write a whole book and do research studies on this topic. And so I think I just have a deep, profound respect for him that again, to make your whole career out of customer care, I think takes a really, really special person. And so I really, you know, he kind of does a little bit of my homework for me and I appreciate getting to take that in.

And he is absolutely a tequila enthusiast, too. So if you like that, he definitely has some good recommendations. But I appreciate what he has to say in our industry, and I think he's certainly someone worth worth looking at. If If customer care in your marketing strategy is something that you that you value in his, some of his most recent research really goes to speed and you know that you can't just keep people waiting.

And I think that's logical for us all to say, Like there's a lot of logic in it, but when you're actually practicing that as a marketer and you're looking at your resources and where you throw your resources behind, it's not as easy to execute that as you think, especially at scale, at volume, you're you're prioritizing. And so, you know, my fundamental belief is I think you just have to again, really know your audience and you need to think channel by channel.

Your strategy cannot be the same across the board and you need to really gut check where you need that speed and where maybe you can gift yourself a little bit of grace. But it's tough. It's tough out there when volumes are high to kind of pick and choose who you're going to get to the fastest.

Daniel Burstein: Yeah, I love some JB I love me some JB And we were we were talking I first met Mike 15 years ago and we had him come speak at Marketing Sherpa event, and we've had him speak at several marketing Sherpa events. And I remember, you know, he was an agency guy and, and I remember we're like having a beer after speaking once.

And he was just kind of saying like, like, here's how I'm going to do it. Like, you know, because you wanted to do that thing of become an author, become a speaker, become that kind of follow the ear thing, you know? And it was just really cool to see back then, you know, and back then, I don't know.

He's nice, likable guy. He's a good speaker, good writer, like, hopefully. But you know, if it's going to pan out and it's just nice. It was nice to see like that thought and strategy that he put into can like, here's how I'm going to do is just kind of like laying it out for me versus, you know, some people who try to take that tackle.

I'll just hire some speaker, bureau or whatever. They'll figure it out or, you know, my book publicist or whatever, they'll figure it out. We'll just BioWare and The New York Times anyway. So one great lesson from that, just from Jay in general, is just like, boy, that strategic forethought of like setting a direction of where you want to go and then following through and then years later.

I just love hearing him on NPR and seeing like, okay, he broke, he did it, he didn't do it. But yeah, let's talk about that speed and some of that stuff. I wonder if you had an example of if you worked with a brand and how you helped them manage having that like a quick response on social media like we know we need to have, but making sure it's also authentic and meaningful and brand appropriate and all these things.

Because I found an old interview I did with Jay like ten or 15 years ago, I don't know. And one of the things he said was brands have to compete with customers, friends and family on social media and in email. And it's so true. I mean, when you hear it, it's obvious. I don't think a lot of brands think that way, though they're not thinking.

They're thinking of competing with other brands or not thinking of competing with, you know, friends and family because they kind of forget. That's the reason people first went on Facebook or any of these social media is with sticking with their friends and family. And so what that says to me is like, well, guess we have to be quick and accurate as brands would, but a way to differentiate from other brands is also feeling like it's human and authentic and meaningful, like you would from your friends and family.

But from a management perspective, from a branding and from a marketing perspective and having a broad team in responding 24 seven and doing all those things, well, that's hard to start for and get the right rules in place and balance all that and be brand appropriate and if you're a public company, like I said, you don't want to go viral for the wrong way.

So that's a long question. There's a lot in that. But I think I think that is what the challenge is, right? Yeah. Do you have any examples here of balancing that quickness yet being authentic and meaning and having real actual interactions on social media for a brand?

Erika Lovegreen: Yeah, you know, I think actually one of my favorite favorite organizations to work with is visit California. Visit California is an interesting one because they're attracting tourists. I mean, this largest economy in the world is California. We don't think that way, but it's a massive place. And they have tourists who are interested in coming and inquiring. And you know, you kind of have two approaches to community management in a situation like that.

You have the, you know, reactive people are asking us questions. You have the proactive of who can we jump on that? Someone just said they're planning a vacation and why don't we throw our names in the hat? And in a state that has wildfires and, you know, dignitaries coming all the time and Disneyland and all of these many, many, many things, there's just always something going on, coupled with the fact that there's always people planning their trips and planning their events.

And so a lot of activity. And I think what I really love about this brand and the work that they do and why, you know, aspire, I think they're a good use case is that I think it's twofold thing. Number one is just having a good community management playbook like how are we going to do this and scenario plan for ourselves?

I think just knowing that it's not an if, it's a when is something that, you know, an organization like that has done really, really well. If you watch some of their some of their strategy at play, you know, it's not if the earthquake or when you know or if the fire is going to happen, they're going to have they're going to happen.

So I think kind of planning how our take, our response, how we show that empathy, how we show that care, how we get information out quickly, having good tools in place to really streamline and find efficiencies. The other thing, if you look at some of their community management, they don't stop at just like, you're planning a trip, here's you know, here's a link you could go to, they will have like five or six interactions with one person.

You know, to really make sure that they've closed the gap, that they've brought their vision to life. And again, I think that's taking their audience and putting them, you know, really in the center and really showing a lot of care and concern. And again, they have a lot of different people coming at them from all different markets, all different places.

So that's a brand. I personally just really love to watch. I think that they've continued to be a really dominant force in, you know, in how they're kind of building their strategy. And, you know, it's also just a great place to visit. So I also encourage anyone to head out to California and have a great trip there, too.

Daniel Burstein: Yeah. You know, listen, you mentioned value productivity over perfection. You you learned this from Nicole Van Zandt and the co-president of IQ C, who's your current boss. Does that kind of value productivity over perfection, kind of tie in here as well? Because if we are going to respond so quickly to so many people in this case from all over the world where crises might happen and, you know, all of these things are going on, I mean, I don't think we could expect a level of perfection we would from our branding Super Bowl commercial.

Right. I mean, there's got to be some different level here where there's that productivity where we're actually serving this many people, even if it's not perfect. Right, Right. In my office based on that.

Erika Lovegreen: No. I mean, I think you're I think you're spot on at the end of the day. I mean, for starters, social media is just not perfect because humans are not perfect. And so we're humans and we're talking and we're sharing our life stories and it's perfectly imperfect. It might come with typos, it might come with your user generated content that is fuzzy and not pretty.

And but that's what we love. That's what we want. And I think, you know, in a landscape where there's so much noise and so much talking, you know, we just got to show that we're there and we care and we're listening. And, you know, again, maybe your response isn't absolutely perfect. And again, you have to be careful that have a plan and you sort of scenario it out.

You know how this is going to go. But, you know, your fans and followers are certainly going to appreciate just that you showed up, even if it's a heart emoji. You know, that's just love. You're listening. You're showing that you're kind of there and available. You build and grow off of your learnings and then you can get your strategies a little bit more tailor made.

But, you know, I just think it's it's just so important to be active and show that, you know, do again what we what we can within our power. I think it's just easy. If I sort of talked off the top of the show, I think how easy it is to get into our brands or get into our way of thinking or get into our agencies and just overthink to a point where you kind of miss the moment, you know, not suggesting that you don't want things to go out that are well-done and thoughtful.

And, you know, we don't want to have sloppy pieces of work. I mean, we're marketers. We need to have a certain level of professionalism in what we're doing, for sure. But I think we also need to have a value in, you know, just just getting out there and getting scrappy and trying new things. And they all forward is something that, you know, I really believe in.

You know, we're going to make mistakes, but do we learn from it? And did it move our momentum in the right direction? You know, are questions you need to ask yourself.

Daniel Burstein: So you mentioned Van Zandt and partly inspired you to run your first marathon. So congratulations on that. And I always like to try to learn from other things going on in life because I don't think there's this work life for marketing from other industries. It's it's one thing, it's work life. It's all together. I think we can learn from all these different disciplines.

I wonder, what did you learn from that marathon that could apply to onboarding? I'm serious. I'm sure I see you laughing, but, you know, come to apply to onboarding a team and employees to manage our social media, manage our brand, because I would think, like I have never gone nearly that far. So congratulations to you. Just training for a5k.

You know, we had this guy at work who was like this track star and you have a duties five KS and he trained. It was, it was, it was. I like how he did it and it was like, okay, you do that here you push a little hard and go easy. Then you push harder and you go here.

And it would seem to me and again, this is where I could say I'm off base, like training someone to be able to handle a brand's social media would be in a similar approach. It's like, okay, you know, you going to start a little bit here, They're going to push a bit, see how you take that. And and before we give you too much authority, you really have something up or, you know, to see we get that trust and go back and then by the end of that boom, okay, now you're ready to run that marathon.

It's race day and you go, and we've got the Super Bowl or, you know, the wildfires or whatever it's going on. So I just want to just having gone through that experience recently, are there any analogies or is there anything you learn from that or similarities you see too, to training someone for social media?

Erika Lovegreen: It's so funny. I feel like my whole life and marathon identity was basically analogy to everything that I do now in life. You know? And for anyone who doesn't know me, many of you don't couch to marathon or in a year. I mean, I was like, Wow, wow. If you think there's a knife wielding person behind me, you know, running joke, I mean, I surprise my friends, my family, you know, And it started with just deciding to try a half marathon.

And I thought I was going to walk it. You know, my goal was just to finish. But then, you know, you get halfway and anyone who's a runner is probably laughing, but you get halfway and you kind of feel like, well, maybe I should check that, you know, check that bucket list thing, you know, And my gosh.

But I really the parallel I draw with training for Marathon, which was I ran a thousand miles last year, Daniel. A thousand. Wow.

Daniel Burstein: Congratulations.

Erika Lovegreen: On average, I set my alarm like my Garmin was hit before five 50% of my runs. So it was a it was a dedication. It was loud. Yes, I have a little PTSD. If you if you can't handle it. But that what I draw the parallel. It's strategy at the end of the day strategy when you're training for a marathon, everything strategy you get so far and then something happens and you have to kind of change that strategy.

And some days you absolutely complete what you're supposed to. And, you know, other days it was just ugly and it didn't go the way we thought. And you're rooting yourself in a lot of data about your performance, about how far you've gone, about what you're supposed to do, what you're supposed to eat, what's fueling you, what's inspiring the moment, and you know, all of the many, many things.

And when you're working as a marketer, we're creating strategies and doing the same thing. You're going to have setbacks and failures. When I was marathon training, I actually ended up getting a knee injury three months out from the race and one MRI and a cortisone shot later in a few physical therapy sessions and risk and fear. You know, I was not sure I was going to see that, see that dream through.

But the lesson for me, whether you're building a brand strategy or whether you're running a marathon, believe it or not, is to kind of trust the process, know your goal, like set the goal at the beginning because, you know, that has to be the thing you're sort of aiming for, you're reaching for and, you know, follow the process, be comfortable kind of pivoting and making adjustments and optimizing.

And there will be some days that are a little harder than others and there'll be moments that you feel like maybe you're not going to see it through. But I think you have to set the intention can be consistent and and you'll really surprise yourself that that it can come to fruition. I think it's it's very easy to give up at any point.

The easy button sometimes when you're when you have a strategy to say, that's not working, tear it all down. And as marketers, we can be kind of shoot from the hip sometimes if we haven't gotten enough leads, you know, in a in a set period of time. And sales is getting in, you know, anxious over that, it can be very quick to be like, well, cut the budget here, do this, do that, pivot that, eliminate this and I think at some point you have to just be very methodical about that and say, if we cut that and sacrifice that, that's one part of our funnel that goes away that may be serving a bigger

purpose than you realize. So let's just let's just make sure that we're really thoughtful about why we had that campaign or why we had this sort of strategy in the first place. Have we seen it through as long as we should and have we optimized it as much as we should? And again, you know, all roads lead back, no maybe pun intended, but, you know, to the marathon.

But, you know, it's funny. We all joke about the kind of like, it's not a sprint, it's a marathon. And boy, when you've actually run a marathon, you realize that that can be very it can take a long time. So give yourself some grace and be patient. A theme, you know, that was asked in another question be patient and you really can see your goals through.

And, you know, and now you learn if you want to do that again, I'm a little cross-eyed at the idea of ever wanting to do anything like that again to my being. But, you know, there are things you'd probably do a little bit differently the next time, so. that was a big journey, though, 26 miles and actually almost 28, because by the time it was all said and done and you're going around all the large winding roads, I did my marathon at Disney World.

Anyone who knows Disney World, large, sweeping highways and long roads. Apparently my marathon was actually closer to 28 miles. And I my watch told me that at the end, and that was very overwhelming because I did not train for 28, train for 26.

Daniel Burstein: Now that is impressive. Couch to marathon. When you said when you tell me running, I just thought like, well, maybe you'd been like, you know, running track since high school or something.

Erika Lovegreen: You know, did a short stint of cross-country for the wrong reasons for something. And that was not for me. And had I have done a turkey trot or two in the last decade plus. So this was a this was a really ambitious and very ambitious goal. But I certainly hope to inspire anyone listening, if anyone ever has any questions about that process.

I'm always happy you shoot me. LinkedIn. I'm always happy to share what that might or might not look like.

Daniel Burstein: Because.

Erika Lovegreen: It's not that ugly. Very ugly sometimes.

Daniel Burstein: That's impressive. Well, one thing you mentioned when when I asked you about that was the strategy. And we don't want to just pivot because, you know, we don't have enough leads this quarter. And that is so true.

Erika Lovegreen: But I feel that others feel that. We feel that in our bones.

Daniel Burstein: yeah. But there are reasons. We sometimes do want to pivot. One of those reasons is, boy, is this just a quickly changing industry and technology, right? As we talked about AI and tick tock and something going on and what I like of these things, you said pay attention, look for trends. And you learned this from Matt Navarro of the social media geek out.

And I think that's why it's so important to make sure you can, you know, get ahead of those changes and trends versus, you know, wait a minute, you launched a campaign in the middle of something, tick tock or something totally different. The algorithm changed or whatever. So how did you learn this from that?

Erika Lovegreen: Yeah. And for those of you who don't know who Matt is, he's sort of like the social media tipster and has been for a long time, has a really, really great e newsletter and, you know, I think what I appreciate about Matt is, for starters, just his passion. You know, if you're if you're passionate about what you do, you want to know what's going on.

So you go and you fill out the Google alerts. You use all the tools and technology you possibly can to be constantly learning and growing. I think, you know, for Matt, it's really about being that news breaker and knowing and kind of thinking through how that's going to impact your organization. And I think, you know, knowing is half the battle.

So you get the news and you see the trend and then I think you have to really just sit down on it and figure out if that's right for us, is it right for our consumers, are right for our goals and, you know, kind of check, check, make a matrix. Check yourself gut check yourself on when you want to, you know, say yes and when.

Maybe you want to kind of wait and see, especially And I think the digital landscape, there's just new platforms all the time. There's new social media channels all the time. And I think we can get a little bit you know, two things can happen. You either get tired of it, you're like, God, I can't. I can't launch on another platform today, or you get overly excited and you're like, Heck yeah, I want to do that.

That sounds great. That's so fun. Either way, it's a lot of times, you know, there's time that you're investing, time you're spending. And I think, you know, you can do fabulous things like social listening or, you know, make sure to be doing sentiment tracking or, you know, again, other various tools and data that you can kind of pull together to sort of make sure you're pulsing your audience and checking if that's the right fit for you all when it's, again, easy to follow the trends.

But, you know, I think being methodical is is always going to be really important.

Daniel Burstein: So doing marketing for you see, how do you decide when you go on a new platform or when you use a new feature, Right. Because marketing Sherpa, we're kind of in the same boat. You know, we all go out there to marketers, so we have to be on every platform. I could expect to be here and there. But at the same time as, you know, like you said, it gets tiring.

And are you going to support each and every platform? But I've done many case studies of, you know, those early adopters at the gold rush where great that I did with a small jewelry company, I think they were called Brian Gavin Diamonds. And so they got into these conversations for jewelry that they wouldn't have if they weren't an early adopter.

Divine Right. They got on early and boom, and then they got all this attention they wouldn't have otherwise. But at the same time, we talk about Vine. It's past tense right? So so for ICU, see, how do you balance that? A new platform comes out and that new feature starts trending. How do you decide if you're going to invest in it, how you're going to invest in it, what approach you take?

Erika Lovegreen: You know, I love that question. And I think, again, as all of us marketers, you know, can unite under this as a marketer, I respect marketers and so I almost feel like I'm forever on demos. But that's something I actually I used to almost get like frustrated and tired. I'm like, another cold outreach email. Do I want to say yes to this?

Or How do I safeguard my day in my time? But I try to make space for saying yes to some of the cold outreach emails that come to me because you learn so many things when you do that. And again, I think it's easy to get kind of tired and weary, but if you really safeguard the space, know when you're going to do it in a given month, boy, you can learn a whole lot about what's out there in the landscape.

Even some of the emails that you're like, this is this is spammy or this is sketchy. This might be like black market. I'm not sure. I've taken a few of those calls and you you end up being wowed. You're like, I'm sorry, who who are you from? And, you know, but as a marketer, I'm busy doing the same thing.

We're all just trying to find the best approach. And one of my absolute favorite outbound vendors that I work with was kind of one of those scrappy ones that sent me kind of a sketchy looking message. But I opened it, I clicked it and I laughed. I giggled at that message and I'm like, I'm going to I'm going to take a call with you all.

They've been one of our best ROIC success stories when it comes to, I think evaluating some of the other platforms and channels, you know, that we would recommend clients to get on or even ourselves consider. You know, I think, like I said, social listening is something that I just deeply, deeply value. I kind of want a pulse check, you know, my industry, my service, my audience, and get a little bit of a sense of where everyone is as a marketing team.

I think we kind of have to look internally across our resources is I love a test. I know pilot is kind of a buzzword and not everyone's favorite. I think there's a lot of power in a test in giving some of these tools or techs or platforms, just a little sliver of my budget. Again, when I take some of these some of these interesting calls and demos.

But, you know, what is the harm in just a little bit of your budget to allow space to learn and grow? And even if it's not the next best thing, I assure you you'll learn or you find the diamond in the rough. The little thing that you again, you know, early adopter on and you know, you end up kind of having this little secret that you have found something that's really kind of innovative and creative and moving your brand forward or hitting helping you hit your goals.

So but you got to you got to be curious. You got to be willing you got to, I think, drink that extra cup of coffee and not let yourself get complacent and get tired. And it's hard. It is not always easy, but, you know, back to the marathon analogy, you just you just have to know where your passion lies.

And, you know, and again, I think it's habit forming and making sure that you kind of keep in the habit.

Daniel Burstein: All right. Well, if you're a BBR listening right now, our inside sales rep, I want it hip hop.

Erika Lovegreen: You will need well.

Daniel Burstein: Go Eric a lot of green and Lincoln sales navigator or whatever you know emailing her that she's going to go she's going to help you meet your numbers. She's going to go for the demo.

Erika Lovegreen: I'll I'll hear what you have to say or I'll read your email and I'll learn something new. I love, you know, again, I think it's about respecting other marketers who are trying to do good work and being humbled in knowing we can keep learning from one another. And so, yeah, I, I do save those emails. I refer back to them.

I've, you know, it might take me a while. I'm in their funnel too. But I think it's about respecting other marketers, it's respecting salespeople. We've had folks that we've reached out to and you know, if you do cold outreach, sometimes folks are just mean. You know, they're they're rude to be ours. It's a hard job. And I think my number one, you know, fundamental belief is be kind to be nice, know that they're working hard, too, and they believe in the value that they are providing.

And, you know, there's a mission there, too. And just be respectful, be kind. And again, maybe you'll learn something unexpected.

Daniel Burstein: Absolutely. You know, I was interviewing CMO of a major restaurant group, Things on the Border, Mexican restaurant. Maybe it's a different one, but one thing she said in there was I'm like, I personally go on two demos a week, like every week. Regardless, I just picked you and I go on them. She's like, Yes, most of them we don't use, which she's like, But this is the way I find that next cutting edge thing.

And you know, some of them work, you know, And I think that that's a great mentality. And I also thought to, boy, if your body are listening right now, what I would do is I party I'd look her up and boom, I'm going to get my numbers that quarter.

Erika Lovegreen: For me or promise.

Daniel Burstein: Yeah. So Erica, we talked about so much about what it means to be a marketer and apparently a marathoner and broadcaster and all these things. But if you had to break it down, what are the key qualities of an effective marketer?

Erika Lovegreen: You you know, I, I think curiosity is just that thing that always, always sticks with me. It's maybe the journalist in me. It's, you know, just not it's just not settling. Like I'm never I'm never settled. I think, you know, good marketers, in my experience, are just not you're not settled because it's such an ever shifting, ever changing landscape.

We're just constantly have to be learning. And I think just having that like that intrinsic, you know, as a trait, as a quality curiosity is really, really important. And I, I think that, you know, I as a remote worker, feel very strongly and the power of know being comfortable in yoga pants. But I mean that, you know, jokingly, not jokingly, I think just being yourself is something that I think is is really important.

We all come with unique bringing that, you know, unique perspective that you as an individual person bring to the table and not being afraid to kind of insert again, you heard my career history. It almost makes no sense. It's kind of quirky and, you know, all over the place. But in a room where we're being challenged by clients or challenging our own thinking, you know, when you bring yourself, even if it's the comfy version of yourself or the buttoned up version, whatever you whatever you are, you know, when you bring yourself to that conversation in your experiences, I think you can really help further what we're, you know, what we're trying to do and be

a disrupter. You know, the I've always done it this way. Unfortunately, it just doesn't work in the marketing landscape. So I think that is, you know, a trait that it's really, really important. And then again, I mean, I'm a little biased on this one, but story, tell human interest, story, tell, pull it out. Don't don't settle. You just can't settle.

I think you have to keep, you know, asking and questioning and reframing and, you know, just don't just don't settle in anything that you're doing. I don't care if you're a paid marketer, an organic marketer, or an SEO specialist or anything you're doing, You just can't settle. And there's a there's a story there and a why of it.

And really, you know, fundamentally understand that in pour that into anything that you're doing.

Daniel Burstein: Well, Erica, thank you for sharing your stories and so much of yourself today with our audience.

Erika Lovegreen: Yeah, any time. You know, again, I, I just like I said, I respect marketers. Marketers love marketers. And if I can help, you know, any other marketer out there, that's certainly something that I pride myself on. We all learned from someone. We all had great lessons in life. And, and I just think that we all want to do great work at the end of the day, and we want to build incredible stories, incredible businesses, incredible campaigns and always, you know, want to be that resource within our with our field to help one another.

Daniel Burstein: I love that. And hopefully marketers were listening today with our help. So thank you all for listening.

Outro: Thank you for joining us for how I made it in marketing with Daniel Bernstein. Now that you've gotten inspiration for transforming yourself as a marketer, get some ideas. Your next marketing campaign from Marketing Sherpas Extensive library of free case studies at marketing Sherpa dot com That's marketing s h e RPA been.

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