How to Achieve Your 2020 Content Marketing Goals + Recommended Resources Help You Get There

Blessings on your Holidays and wishing you vibrant good health, chuckles of happiness and easeful prosperity in the New Year.

Setting yourself up to achieve your 2020 goals sounds simple… and it is!

But, doing what you want to do does require taking some simple action steps. And, you have to take them! 😄 Some essential elements of embracing your goals are illuminated in this week’s Video Mojo:

This Weeks Power Briefing, How to Achieve Your 2020 Content Marketing Goals + Recommended Resources

In the world of content marketing, there are also strategic steps that you can take to get where you want to go. One of those steps, finding my “content tilt,” is at the top of my list of 2020 goals. I’m learning a lot from the book, “Content Inc.” as you will see.

The resources that are offered in this video (links below) can also help point you and your online presence in a more productive direction as well.

I am wishing you all the Happiest and Healthiest New Year Ever!

Here are the RESOURCE LINKS mentioned in this week’s video:

​Content Marketing Institute
https://contentmarketinginstitute.com/

Joe Pullizzi’s book, “Content Inc.”
https://www.joepulizzi.com/books/content-inc/

Bullet Journaling
https://bulletjournal.com/

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:

How to Achieve Your 2020 Content Marketing Goals + Recommended Resources Help You Get There

Hi and welcome to another episode of Video Mojo. My name is Jon Leland and I’m your guide on this exploration of both timeless marketing communication principles and up-to-the-minute resources, tools, tips, and that kind of thing. 

Today we are taking on goal setting and how to achieve your goals for 2020 and the year to come.

Recommended Resource: Joe Pullizzi’s book, “Content Inc.”

I want to start with a couple of resources. One is Joe Pullizzi and the Content Marketing Institute and, in particular, his book Content Inc. It’s a classic. It’s been around for a couple of years. I’ve been following Joe and his “partner-in-crime,” Robert Rose, on their podcast called This Old Marketing. And that is also a recommended resource. They are two of the most intelligent, resourceful, strategic people in the whole world of content marketing. Joe’s book, Content Inc. is particularly powerful because of its model and its model has inspired one of my goals for 2020. I’ll get into that in a minute. 

A Fundamental Action Step: Write Down Your Goals on Paper

The first tip, in his book which is about content marketing and a strategy… he has a whole methodology for it. Pulizzi starts out talking about goals. I really appreciated the down-to-earth practicality of it and he says two things that I think are crucial for anyone to achieve their goals next year or whenever.  

The first one is very basic but very few people do it: Write Your Goals Down. It’s really important to write them down. I will also share another resource which is called Bullet Journaling. Not everybody knows about Bullet Journaling. This is my bullet journal and pen right here. It’s something that I’ve used extensively. 

The tactile experience of writing to-do lists, of writing a goal, of writing a plan has really had a profound effect. It’s been really good for me to get away from the screen, and to be present to that. 

And that is one of the, everybody agrees, main thing with goals. I know a lot of people are afraid to set goals. I’ve personally experienced the vulnerability of “God, if I write this down and I set this goal, what happens if I don’t achieve it?” The worst thing that can happen is you had a vision and a goal and you didn’t achieve it. It’s not the end of the world and we could do a whole podcast about failures and how everybody, including the most successful people in the world, has had their share of failures. So it’s really not a horrible outcome but we all have our fears. 

Some people resist goals, they’re afraid to write goals. Don’t be afraid and write them down. 

Fundamental Action Step #2: Look at Your Goals Daily 

The second thing that Joe points out, which I think is even more challenging, is to look at those goals every day. So I’m reinforcing that and also offering the resource. 

Then in my own spirit of vulnerability, in the adventure, I want to share that the second part of Joe’s strategy about content marketing really hooked me in. He talks about how important it is to have a “sweet spot” that overlaps your passion and your skill set. Then, the second phase of the content in Content Marketing Model is called “Content Tilt” and that is where you get your unique voice. 

You’ve picked a niche, you’ve found where the overlap is between your passion and your skill set. But then, what’s unique about you and your voice? And that’s something that I’ve really been exploring for myself and that’s one of my goals for 2020. I’ve made progress on this. 

A friend of mine helped me see just this morning that a lot of what I do is Timeless Marketing Communications Wisdom. For decades I’ve been doing marketing communications, in video before digital media. And the principles that apply in terms of relationship building, authenticity, having a real message, that’s the kind of thing that I’m very committed to. 

I also am – a friend of mine calls me – the “Google of Marketing Technology.” I test out, experiment with, play with, all kinds of marketing tools from software, to digital strategies, to social media, to, as I hope you know by now, online video in particular. 

So next week I’ll get into some online marketing technologies but that’s my second goal—to really do more. This year has been a big breakthrough for me because I’ve started this video blog. Next year I want to really bring these tools to bear with more consistent video communications for all of my friends, relationships and in particular clients and prospective clients. 

Bonus Fundamental Tip #3: Share Your Goals

So what are your goals for 2020? A third technique that I can recommend, call this the “bonus,” but this is where some real juice can come into it, is to share your goals. You can share it with another person. I certainly recommend you choose one of the people who you find really supportive in your life because your goals can get trampled upon by somebody who’s a “Doubting Thomas,” as they say. 

So another way to do that would be to share it with us. You can put it in the comments on the podcast, the comments on the YouTube video, or the comments on any social media where I post these video blog posts and podcasts. I’d love to hear from you; but there’s something in it for you, if you share your goals publicly and with other people. Again, be careful and if you don’t feel that’s appropriate no problem. 

But if you’d like to share your goals for 2020 I would love to hear them and see what I could do to support them. I’m always so grateful for your time and attention and I really look forward to your comments suggestions and feedback.

Thanks again for being here. Happy Holidays! And I’ll see you next week!

Hey Podcasting! Meet My Video Blog – A Content Marketing Distribution Innovation

What?!? You turned your video blog into a podcast? Yes, I did! 😊

If you want to know how and why I did this, please watch this video:

This Weeks Power Briefing, Hey Podcasting! Meet My Video Blog.

What I did is: To get started, I stripped the audio off of a few of my video blog episodes, successfully put the Anchor.fm online app to work, and my video blog—now named “Video Mojo”—is now available via all of the major podcast distribution platforms. Here are a few links, in case you’d like to listen:

Join Us for a Free “Beyond Storytelling” Video Session

I’ve added a new service: Free Video Sessions. This is new way for us to connect as a virtual community, and for me and my friends to offer you complimentary support. You might think of these as a kind of “enhanced” Ask Us Anything experience. Basically, there will be a short interview followed by open Q&A so we can interact and be as helpful as possible. There’s no telling what might happen.

The first Free Video Session will be next Tuesday, December 17th at 11am PT / 2pm ET via Zoom Video. My guest will be my soul-full friend, the inspiring and empowering, Michael Kass, who takes storytelling to a more meaningful level. We are calling this session, “Beyond Storytelling” and it’s a chance to truly enliven your online communcations… well, all of your communications!

Yes, I will record this session and distribute via the podcast, video blog channels, and these emails; but if you have a question, problem or challenge that you think Michael or I might help with, think of this as an opportunity to get free coaching in a virtual group setting. Register Now for Free Here

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:

Hey Podcasting! Meet My Video Blog.

Hi there, and welcome. Welcome to Video Mojo which is my short-form podcast and video blog about making more meaningful online connections for a better world. 

Today’s subject is “Hello Podcasting! Meet My Video Blog.”

Connecting Vlogging & Podcasting

As some of you know if you watched earlier episodes, one of my axioms is “It’s Not HOW to Distribute the Content that you Create, It’s HOW ELSE to Distribute the Content that you Create.” And I’m reporting success in walking my talk in that regard, because the video blog that I’ve been doing on YouTube, I’ve also been putting on Instagram TV, Facebook, LinkedIn, and so forth. It is now also a podcast; and it’s available on Apple Podcasts (the iPhone app), available on Spotify, and on all the major podcasting applications.

I had this idea: I know that there are a lot of people distributing podcasts on YouTube, and I decided to follow the example of some people I admire. Derek Sivers is a great author and entrepreneur who founded CD Baby. He does a short-form podcast that’s just a couple minutes. Likewise, Naval Ravikant, who’s a VC financial guy, also does a short-form podcast and puts it on YouTube. They both do the very short form kind of podcast like this one. 

One difference is that they don’t do video. I originate with a video, do the video distribution, and have made the bridge the other way from YouTube and video into podcasting. I think that’s kind of innovative. I’d love to know your point of view about it. But the point is that it makes this content more accessible. As long as I’m producing content, it makes sense to have it out there. 

A Great App for Podcast Distribution

I do have an application tip that I want to share with you. I’ve made the podcast happen through a free application called anchor.fm. They did a great job! All you need is a title, a description, and some cover art. They’ll let you do some very simple cover art (within their app), but we created a custom graphic for Video Mojo. They literally took care of the rest at no charge. So I really recommend this app. It is a big time-saver. 

Free Video Sessions

I also want to tell you about an exception because occasionally I will do long-form episodes of this podcast and video blog. Those (longer episodes) will come out of some free public open group sessions. I’m calling them “Free Video Sessions.” The first free live video session is going to be with my good friend Michael Kass, who is an amazing storytelling expert. In fact, he takes storytelling to a deeper level of authenticity that I find inspiring and valuable. We’re calling the session “Beyond Storytelling” because we’re really going to talk about how to approach storytelling in a way that is not about transactions or selling stuff, just like I’m not selling anything here. It’s a free conversation and we’re not going to be selling anything in that free session either. 

It’s going to be Tuesday, December 17th at 11:00 a.m. Pacific and 2:00 p.m. Eastern. The link is here on the screen for you. And please join us by registering. You’ll get the recording if you register or it’ll be available via the podcast a little bit later. 

So, thanks so much for your kind attention. I love sharing this information with you. Questions are welcome. Comments and feedback at any time. Thanks again we’ll see you next week!

3 Ways Video Can Build Trust & Meaningful Digital Connections

Trust matters!

In today’s online, social media environment, trust matters more than ever before. Here’s why.

Everyone wants to filter out the BS, the hype, the sales pitches, and the get rich quick schemes. How do you do that? While browsing, you gather “data”—usually very quickly—in order to figure out whether or not you can trust someone. You want to know if they are really going to be of service and whether or not they actually care about offering something (whether service or product) that will truly be valuable to YOU.

This Weeks Power Briefing, 3 Ways Video Can Build Trust & Meaningful Digital Connections

In other words, trust is the “currency” of online/digital engagement. It matters enormously and it is extremely valuable. That’s why I think video is so important as a primary component of your online and social media presence. Nothing builds trust like video. Period.

So, if you are marketing in any way via social media or a website, building trust is crucial. In order to help with that, I made this video to illuminate three ways that you can use video to build trust and meaningful digital connections.

I hope it helps you to market with authenticity and to build meaningful, human relationship via digital media. Or, to be more specific, I’d love to help you build more valuable relationships via online video.

New Service Offer:

The Video Launch Pad 
This is a new service where I help you to learn about how to do video effectively while we create three videos together, and then our ComBridges Digital Engagement Team also helps you distribute your videos on YouTube and the major social media networks. We are trying to make the whole process as easy and powerful as possible for you. Please click here to learn more.

Edited Transcript:

3 Ways Video Can Build Trust & Meaningful Digital Connections

Hi there and welcome. My name is Jon Leland and I’m a Video Marketing Explorer. I really like to get involved with what’s going on with video and how video can enhance our human connections. 

Yes, I play a Digital Marketing Strategist by day but really, what I’m here doing is playing,  experimenting and exploring the dimensions of online video that matter. 

The ones that matter have to do with human connection and build trust. So, that’s why this video is about 3 Ways to Build Trust in Digital Video & online communications. 

Make Marketing Communications More Human

One of them is the most important and that’s making marketing communications (or just communications in general), more human. We do that with this kind of virtual eye contact. Once you make virtual eye contact, someone can experience who you are and what it is you have to offer in a way that print or even photographs can’t do. And because we’re dealing with filtering out the hucksters and the salespeople and the profit-oriented whatever’s, we want to make connection, and we want to give real value. 

Making a “human presence” is number one in terms of building trust.  

Be Consistent

Number two is being consistent, showing up regularly, and I think weekly is probably a minimum requirement. That’s what I’ve been really striving for with these video blog posts, because when you show up consistently, you build trust by being present, by people knowing that they can count on you. 

Cultivate Connection

The third way is really cultivating connection. So, showing up consistently, being human, and authentic are making a real connection. That enables you to build a real community, tribe, client base, or whatever your goal is. That is something I know that shifts the equilibrium of the world – when we make real human connections, cultivate community, especially in ways where we can relate to each other as we do on video… Then something changes. 

That’s what I’m about and that’s why I’m doing all this. I want a better world with more human connections, with real communities, and people who support each other. 

So there’s the three reasons how online video can cultivate trust, and I hope you will consider them as you decide to do your own outreach.

I’m going to follow up next week with more information. I’m going to The Patreon headquarters in San Francisco this weekend. They’re having a gathering about building community online. For those of you who may not know Patreon, Patreon is a crowdfunding way to do subscription support of your content. And I’ll be reporting back on that kind of video community building next week. 

So thanks again for watching. I really appreciate you being here and I’ll see you next week!

Vlog Video Production Tips: How I Use my iPhone to Keep Things Simple

It’s been so fun to get myself “over the hump” and start video blogging on a weekly basis.

I’m fascinated by the process and uplifted a whole bunch of results that have followed—from more clarity on my purpose, to increased visibility, to business prosperity.

I’m wondering if you might be someone who wants to get going with video blogging but feels overwhelmed or resistant to facing down the camera and/or all the other stuff that goes with it?

For me, I made progress when, first, I separated video distribution from video production; and then, when I streamlined my video production “system,” I finally became consistent.

This Weeks Power Briefing, Vlog Video Production Tips: How I Use my iPhone to Keep Things Simple

In this week’s video, I summarize my iPhone video production “system” and what I have done to simplify and streamline my vlogging production process. This includes using my iPhone to shoot, a simple wired lav mic for good audio, and AirDrop for file transfer. Click here to watch now.

And, if you are serious about becoming a video blogger (or upping your video blogger “game”), I’d love to help. Very soon, I will be offering a special “Kick-Start” services package. Please contact me if you’re interested in becoming one of the first to try out this package (at special “early bird” savings, of course).

In any case, I’d love to hear what works for you and if you find this video useful. Thanks for watching!

Edited Transcript:

Hi there, my name is Jon Leland, I’m a digital marketing strategist and a video blogger. I am here with episode number 9 of my weekly video blog series about video marketing.

I want to help you be a video blogger (or a better video blogger) and share what’s really worked for me. I talked last week about video blogging as a “superpower,” and about the way I got over the hump by separating out the video production from the video distribution. 

Simpler is Better

The other thing that has really worked for me is simplifying the video production and that’s what I want to offer you today. 

Here are the key components and how I get these videos done in a simple efficient way every week. 

iPhone Video Advantages

I have a number of cameras and I’ve been a video professional for a lot of years. I have a nice digital SLR, a DSLR; and I also have a video camera, an old camcorder. But for these videos, I’m using my iPhone. I have a good iPhone, a 10 XS Max. 

I really like my iPhone because of the video quality. The video quality even using the selfie cam, as I do, is going to be better than I would get, for example, out of my computer’s webcam. That’s the first point. 

The second point is that I do these videos by myself. I don’t have a camera person, so the fact that I can look at the lens and frame it with a nice good-sized selfie cam screen definitely makes things easier.

Tips for Better Audio

Another tip that I want to give you is that for audio. I’m using a very inexpensive $20 lavalier microphone. 

An even bigger audio tip to share is that one of the most important things about audio quality is making the shortest distance possible between your mouth and the microphone. So, even with a better microphone that would sit further away, I probably wouldn’t get the audio presence that I’m able to get out of this Lavalier microphone.  

I also have an extension cord that plugs right into the iPhone so that the audio and video are in sync together. Using a DSLR camera means having to separate out the audio which definitely adds a level of complexity that I would not want. 

I also have a nice camera mount that holds my iPhone on a real tripod. You could put your smartphone anywhere but using the tripod enables me to put it in the same position and thus to do the same kind of setup every week. Consistency in your videos is important. 

Video File Transfer via AirDrop 

The other thing that I get out of the iPhone in particular and from the Apple ecosystem is AirDrop. 

One of the other tasks that goes on when you shoot digitally with another camera is transferring the files. This can take time and of course additional effort. I use AirDrop to just take it from my iPhone and move it over (wirelessly) to my MacBook Pro. 

Create a Video “System” That Works for You

It’s simple, and simple is good. Use whatever works for you. Streamline your system. It doesn’t have to be fancy and expensive; but get a setup that you can do week-after-week to be consistent and make it simple enough and streamlined enough that you get it done week-after-week. 

I hope this has been useful. I look forward to your feedback and comments, thanks again for watching.

And, see you again next week!

Watch to Learn Why WEEKLY Vlogging Is My New SuperPower + Why You Might Want to Join Me.

In just the last two months, video blogging or vlogging has changed my life and my business; and this breakthrough has led me to think of these weekly video posts as a new kind of “SuperPower.” 

As a digital marketing strategist, when I finally found the discipline to “eat my own cooking” and do videos every week, I knew it would be a positive step; but honestly, the results have exceeded these expectations. 

Check out this video, won’t you?

This Weeks Power Briefing, Watch to Learn Why WEEKLY Vlogging Is My New SUperPower + Why You Might Want to Join Me.

In this week’s video, I not only share how this practice is working for me, I unpack why any kind of regular blogging or vlogging is so powerful.

To make this point clear, I call on a quintessential video clip from Seth Godin and Tom Peters that I’ve used for years in my social media marketing workshops.

I also unveil the essence of a new video marketing offer that may help you get over the “hump” to do a weekly vlog yourself, including our system for social media video distribution. The truth is that it was separating the video production from the distribution that made this breakthrough possible!

Links and Videos for Resources Mentioned in this Week’s Edition:

Seth Godin & Tim Peters on Blogging

Thanks for watching! I look forward to your feedback.

Edited Video Transcript:

WEEKLY Vlogging Is My New SuperPower. Here’s Why You Might Want to Join Me.

Hi there, my name is Jon Leland and I’m a digital marketing strategist. And this is episode #8 of my video blog or Vlog Series about digital marketing and in particular about video marketing. I want to talk to you today about vlogging or video blogging and how dramatically it has changed my life and I think potentially even changed my business. 

The Power of Blogging

So, let me explain. First of all, blogging and vlogging are really, really valuable practices, and I’ve been wanting to do a weekly Vlog for years. And, finally, I have gotten myself over the hump and I have started doing it. Like I said, for eight weeks in a row now. And I want to share with you today about the ways that has changed my life and my business.

I’ve known from blogging the way that doing a regular practice, about getting my voice out there and how that changes things. Intuitively, I knew that vlogging was going to do that as well, but it really has done that and much more. 

I will post a video (link above) with Tom Peters and Seth Godin talking about blogging and they talk about how it really doesn’t even matter if anybody is reading it or in the case of a vlog if anybody is watching, 

“Blogging is free, it doesn’t matter if anyone reads it. What matters is the humility that comes from writing it. What matters is the metacognition of thinking about what you’re going to say. How do you explain yourself to the few employees or your cat or whoever is going to look at it? How do you force yourself to describe that in three paragraphs? Why you did something? How do you respond out loud?”  

Seth Godin

Because what happens is in the weekly practice of putting yourself out there, saying something that you intend to be useful and where you’re really trying to deliver some value doing that week after week really shifts something inside you. You’re able to go deeper, you’re able to discover more about what the value is that you want to share and that you want to communicate with other people. 

“I will simply say, my first post was in August of 2004. No single thing in the last 15 years professionally has been more important to my life than blogging.”

Tom Peters

So, your voice emerges and also your putting yourself out there with it. I know it’s going to sound very California, but as I experience it, there is an energy shift that happens by putting yourself out there in that way. 

Weekly Makes All the Difference

The other thing is the fact that I’m doing it weekly. This makes it a practice and gives it this ongoing continuity, such as when you want to learn to play golf or learn to play the piano, whatever. It’s a practice and going to the gym is another really good example. It takes time to build up “the muscle” and when you do it weekly, it has this power. I’ve talked in other videos about “The Power of Consistency”. 

So, when you do it weekly you build up that consistency and you begin to develop “the muscle” and just like going to the gym when you start doing it for awhile week after week, day after day it starts to feel good. 

And I’m proud to be telling you that I’ve made this commitment, I’m doing it every week and it’s  feeling good to me. It’s also getting me out there. I believe it’s making me more attractive and the last point that I want to make is the way it shifted my business. 

In the coming weeks, I’m going to be making an offer to help people get over the hump to do this. My offer will help them create their first three videos as part of a package and then take advantage of the distribution system that I’ve built and how I’m getting these videos out. 

Separating Production from Distribution Made This Possible

This reminds me of Derek Sivers, who founded CD Baby way back in the early days of the Internet. He invented CD Baby because he was a musician and he needed and wanted to sell CD’s. E-commerce hadn’t really been invented yet. He helped invent it and suddenly all these other musicians came to him and wanted help getting their CD’s out. 

Well, I needed video distribution because I wanted to do video blogs and I wanted to get it out. What helped me get over the hump was I separated the tasks for doing this out, separating video production from distribution. I now have a virtual assistant who’s helping me with the distribution.  In fact, we’ve designed a whole system where these videos are not only on YouTube, they are also native on Facebook, native on LinkedIn, native on Instagram TV and all have the subtitles and meta information… wherever you happen to be watching it. 

So video blogging really is a practice worth developing. I hope you can get over the hump and, if you’d like, I can help you do it,. 

However it works for you, and, let’s talk if you want help from me. Let me know because we have a system that can help you distribute and “watch this space” for the offer in coming weeks. 

As always, thanks again for your kind attention, I really appreciate it. See you next week!

5 Reasons NOT to Hire an In-House Digital Marketing Manager

Shine Online with Less Stress & More Profitability

The need to create an effective, engaging and profitable online presence can present serious challenges, and many organizations struggle to find appropriate resources that help produce meaningful results. A frequent mistake is to think that hiring an in-house digital marketing manager will make things easier.

Nagging Questions

Do you have a nagging feeling that your customers are out there on social media or searching on Google, but you don’t have the expertise to get your company or organization the visibility that it needs? Do you hear about other organizations profiting from online/digital marketing but feel like you’re missing out on opportunities?  Do social media, email marketing, blog posts and other kinds of content marketing just feel like a waste of time and a money sinkhole?

Making this situation even more frustrating, you would like your in-house staff to take care of this for you, right? Perhaps you could hire a low-budget young person? Don’t all young people understand how to use social media? Well, from the point of view of results-oriented strategy, no, they don’t.

Warning: A Word to the Wise

This blog post is your warning. Be careful. Hiring new in-house staff might not really save you money and, more importantly, you might not get the meaningful results you want and need. And if you don’t get the results you need, what’s the point?

Before you interview for a new team member, take a breath, pause and consider the key benefits of working with an affordable, talented digital marketing agency like us.

Yes, no doubt, we are making a self-serving point here. But don’t let that hold you back. We are ONLY interested in win-win relationships. Your success is our success. Seriously.

So, if you are considering an in-house digital marketing manager, here are five reasons why we think that we can do a better job at a comparable cost while saving you a ton of frustration and stress:

1. Simpler, Powered by Experts

Hiring a new employee who you have to manage in an area that’s not your expertise takes your focus away from your other responsibilities. If online marketing isn’t in your particular skill set, chances are you don’t want to manage a new hire and clutter your day and your mind with things you’d prefer to leave—and that would be better off leaving—to someone else. Why not be guided by experts?

2. Fewer Hassles, Fewer Expenses

A new hire costs you both time and money. But with ComBridges doing your online marketing, you don’t have to pay benefits, employee taxes or overhead costs. There’s no need to find space in your office, nor do you need to do employee on-boarding. The HR staff will save time, too. A new member of your in-house team can also affect company culture and morale in unpredictable ways. Simpler can be better.  

3. More Scalable

Your success is our success and we are built to grow with you, without you ever having to invest in increasing overhead expenses. As long as what we are doing is working for your organization, we keep going; and as appropriate, we keep growing with you. In other words, we will grow our efforts as you achieve new levels of success. All along the way, our work together will never create space and cost challenges for you.

4. Talent You Can Trust

No matter how carefully you check resumes, no matter how thorough your interview process, there’s no certainty that your new hire will meet all your requirements and be a good fit for your culture. Why struggle with a newcomer who may still be trying to figure things out, when you can work with experienced experts? We produce results that you can trust.

Our company has a 34-year track record with results-oriented marketing communications. We have an already-established “tool kit” and systematic strategies that we use to customize social media presence and to implement digital marketing strategies that we know work.

5. Consistent Results

In-house digital marketing managers often take a hit-and-miss or shotgun approach. On the other hand, we understand that online marketing is about building relationships. We will customize a strategic approach that is designed to build authentic, sustainable relationships with your customers and prospects.

That’s what we do.

Recommendations to Help You Make the Right Decision

  • Be clear about your goals for social media and digital marketing. Focus on real results.
  • Choose resources and virtual team members that you can trust to make your investment in marketing more profitable.
  • Consider all of the possible pros-and-cons of hiring in-house.
  • Aim to make your work easier rather than more complicated.
  • Build your team with empowering collaborators who can help take your company to the next level

If you can see that this approach may have benefits for your company or organization, we would welcome the opportunity to answer any questions you may have.

Click here to schedule a free consultation.

My 6 Favorite Digital Marketing Apps. Webinar Video + Free PDF

Researching, testing and figuring out “what’s the best app for that?” is part of my job.

I also LOVE sharing information and being helpful. Recently I hosted a video webinar where I shared the six digital marketing apps that I use daily for myself and for my clients. I’m writing this blog post to share this webinar video recording with you.

Also, please scroll down, because there are links below to the apps themselves as well as to other resources that I mention during the webinar. Enjoy!

FYI, the initial presentation with demos and info about all six apps is about 30 minutes in length. It is followed by about 15 minutes of edited Q&A.

Get Yours: Free PDF, 6 Recommended Digital Marketing Apps

Leland combridges marketing app infographic small

This PDF has Jon Leland's recommendations for his six favorite digital marketing apps in one easy-to-read, one-page reference doc. Get yours now.

To watch the video webinar where Jon Leland explains these recommendations, click here.

We won't send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit

For your convenience, here are the direct links to the applications that I talked about during this webinar:

Squarespace for Websites:
Blog Post: http://www.combridges.com/small-business-website-design…/
My 15-minute (recorded) webinar on Squarespace https://youtu.be/eOjMgce2E2A

ConvertKit for Email:
Affiliate link: http://mbsy.co/convertkit/76357
Blog Post: http://www.combridges.com/email-marketing-conversations…/

Canva for Social Media Graphics:
https://www.canva.com

Soapbox for Low Budget Video Production:
http://www.wistia.com/soapbox

Zoom for Video Webinars:
http://www.zoom.us

Thinkific Online Classes:
https://thinkific.com
https://combridges.thinkific.com/

If you have any questions or suggestions, I would love to hear from you via any medium you choose including this contact form or via any of the social media networking links at the top of this page.

Thanks for reading and/or watching! 🙂

Dr. Mac – Mac Productivity Miracles “Sandbox Session” – This Thursday, May 25th

I’m launching a new bi-monthly (every other Thursday) series of live video webinar conversations that I’m calling “Social Video Sandbox Sessions.” It will start this Thursday, May 25th at 11am PT / 2pm ET with a very special guest. This session is called:

Mac Productivity Miracles – A Jon Leland Social Video Sandbox Session with “Dr. Mac” Bob Levitus

A Mac computer is supposed to make things simple and easy, right? Not necessarily. For one thing, we are human beings. A computer can only do so much.

Whether you are a brand new user or a seasoned veteran, Dr. Mac has insights to help you use your Mac more effectively and to be more productive.

“It’s no coincidence that the day after I read this book I started working on my next book. I’ll finish my book because of Bob’s book!”
— Guy Kawasaki, Chief evangelist of Canva and Mercedes-Benz brand ambassador
In this lively, interactive session, here’s what you will learn from Dr. Mac, the author of more than 80 Mac books including his latest “Working Smarter for Mac Users”:
  • How to use your Mac better, faster, and more elegantly.
  • How to banish procrastination forever.
  • How to more work in less time so you have more time for things you love.

So if you’re having trouble getting stuff done in a timely fashion, this Sandbox Session will offer dozens of tips and techniques guaranteed to help.

Your Mac is meant to be a tool to make your work easier. Isn’t it about time it did?

Click here to join Jon Leland and his good friend Bob Levitus and learn how to change your relationship with your Mac. You’ll be glad you did.

Register here, and this will allow you to become part of this video conversation if you wish and it will also ensure that you will receive the link to the recording.

 

Squarespace Website Quick-Start Webinar: Free. Next Thursday.

If you’ve been challenged getting a website done or you think they’re too expensive, I have some good news for you.

Next Thursday, December 17th at 10am PT / 1pm ET, I will present short 15-minute webinar on why I’m preferring Squarespace websites for small businesses. During this presentation, I will concisely share my knowledge and insights about why most of my clients are now benefiting from the streamlined production, stress-free hosting, elegant templates, built-in mobile-friendliness and other benefits of the Squarespace online website software platform. Click here to register or learn more.

Squarespace Website WebinarMy Mission is To Help You Get a Grip on the High Performance, Low Cost Squarespace Website Software That I’ve Come to Know & Love

If you’re interested in learning more about how Squarespace and/or if you think this information might help you to have a more elegant website and an expanded web presence more quickly than you may have thought possible, I would love to help you by sharing what I’ve learned in the hope that you will benefit. I promise to quickly and clearly explain why this is the website development strategy (Squarespace) that I’m recommending these days.

Squarespace has really changed things at ComBridges recently because now, thanks to the ease of use of this platform, I’m able to do websites a lot less expensively; and, it’s more empowering for the clients to be able to make their own website changes and updates. It also solves the today’s requirement that everything on the web and in email be mobile-friendly. Squarespace does that “out of the box” will ALL of its modern templates. My clients also like that they don’t have to worry about hosting and the associated technical headaches… and on and on.

Bottom line, our clients are happy, and you might be interested in learning more about why this is working so well. Click here now to learn more.

This Is What I Do

As many of you know, I am an online marketing mentor with a real passion for connecting the dots for small businesses. I call it spanning the Grand Canyon gap between people and technology. One of the biggest things that’s happened to me in my business in the last or year or so is doing more websites using Squarespace rather than WordPress.

All the information about this online event is here on this page, including a personal video invitation and bullets that explain more about what I’ll be talking about.

I hope to see you there.

When you click this link you will see more detailed information and be able to register. The live session includes a chat-powered Q&A. The recording is included when you register.

The App Year in Review: My Favorite Apps from 2011

“Hello, my name is Jon, and…

I’m an App-aholic.”

Apps is me. I love ’em and I love to share ’em. And, just for the record, I consider my obsessive behavior with apps of all kinds, especially iPhone apps, iPad apps and small business productivity-oriented web apps to be a healthy addiction. Well mostly healthy. At least I’m learning about the future of mobile computing… and I’m definitely having fun.

Here are my mini-reviews of my favorite apps from 2011 (more to come in 2012). I look forward to your comments and to hearing your recommendations via the comments below.

Note Taker HD: Hand-Written Notes Come to the iPad
This is the app that changed my life. It’s a powerful tool for writing on the iPad in a totally hand-written natural way. I used to prefer using yellow-lined paper writing pads for meetings, and would journal in notebooks, but Note Taker HD has shown me that I can write almost as fast on my iPad tablet (using a stylus) and I’m eliminating the clutter of scraps of paper all over the place.  I use it now for meeting notes, journal entries and brainstorming sessions; and I just love the natural feel, especially the way that Note Taker HD’s window system lets me write nice and big while my writing is automatically resized into a page-sized virtual sheet. This app is so easy and just plain fun that I find myself swiftly moving into the promised land of an (almost) paperless and less cluttered office.

The Hit List: To-Do List Nirvana
In the incessant quest for the holy grail of an Organized Life, I’ve taken more than a few laps around the track with various to-do list programs. Now, I think I’ve finally found the one I’ll stick with forever because, for me at least, this to-do list offers the right balance between features and simplicity. It’s snappy name is The Hit List.  It’s Mac-only (via the Mac App Store), but I also use it on my iPhone and iPad. I can organize lists into categories by client, by project, or by any number of other categories. It’s very intuitive with due dates and priority settings as well as a space for notes on each item. I also like the way that it synchs between platforms and the few dollars I pay per year for that service is well worth it. I’m really pleased I’ve found something that works for me, and I highly recommend that you check it out.

Zite: The Future of News Reading
My new favorite news reader is an iPad app that trumps Flipboard. Zite is personalized news at its finest. It’s infinitely customizable in a very effortless and seamless way. Zite filters what I like according to my initial preferences, and then I continue to let it know what I like and why as I go along. As I interact with it, the app gets smarter and gives me an increasingly better fit for my interests and sensibilities in a clear, interactive, easy-to-read format. The results in terms of valuable articles is the ultimate value, but it’s also easy to share what I read, which is certainly a requirement for me in this social media world of ours.

Google Docs: My New Standard in Groupware
More and more of my clients and team members are now collaborating with me via Google Docs. I gotta believe that that’s because it works. One previous concern of mine was the lack of change-tracking features that are frequently required and available in MS Word. Now I’m enthralled with the newish “See revision history” feature in Google Docs which I like even better than the “Track Changes” equivalent in Word. I am also surprised by the ease of the collaboration process. If you haven’t seen this, you need to try it: When I’m working with someone and we’re both updating a document at the same time, it’s just seamless. You can even see what the other person is doing, in a distinct color, while you are also editing—all via the Web, of course. All the value of sharing and online collaboration is built in. Google Docs is now a standard part of my workflow.

Summify: Socially Aggregated News Delivered Daily
Facebook coined the term “social graph” to describe the mapping of social relationships online. There are clear advantages to extending these virtual relationships via other websites in order to create new kinds of information collections. Summify is just this kind of real time source of aggregated news and blog posts. What I read, pretty much every day at some point, is being sourced by Summify from my own social graph (my online relationships) via their neato web app (a web browser-based app). Summify leverages my network by sending me daily emails containing a linked list of news articles that have been referenced (linked to via Facebook or Twitter) by multiple people from within my social graph. When multiple people from my networks share the same information, that clearly increases the likelihood that I’ll find it interesting. And it works. The consistent quality of what Summify delivers has been impressive. And I like that it can be delivered by email too. I don’t have to go to the app or website to see what they’ve found for me. This is a useful and, to me at least, a valuable preview of the growing power of our social media matrix.

Nimble: Cross Social Network Messaging Power
This start-up company is a recent investment of Mark Cuban and a definite app to watch. Nimble is a new breed of virtual CRM software that connects your contacts from Facebook, LinkedIn, Gmail and Twitter into a single interface. From within Nimble’s web-based interface, I can message people on different social networks from within one platform and that message, along with all the others that may have been sent from other sites, is available in one place. Note, these aren’t post or status updates, but the embedded messages from within the particular sites themselves. This is very convenient because you don’t have to go to LinkedIn, for example, to send a LinkedIn message to someone whose regular email address you may not have otherwise. Thus, Nimble is also a great way to keep track of the increasing number of online conversations, all in one place.

Scrivener: Larger Written Documents at Another Level
I want to give an “honorable mention” to Scrivener, a marvelous and powerful writing/document management program. I’ve used it to organize references and new resources by subject area for the social media workshops that I’ve been developing and delivering. But I’m only scratching the surface of this feature rich program. It’s powerfully sophisticated, so there’s a real learning curve involved. However, I’ve heard from multiple, reliable sources that this program has been enthusiastically received by authors and others who work with king-sized pieces of content and/or research. If you’re one of them, I think Scrivener is definitely worth checking out.

iPhone Photography
My app review of the year would not be complete without talking about iPhone photography apps. Taking photographs and playing with the images on the iPhone is a source of great pleasure and fun to me. My favorite app so far is Camera+ by Lisa Bettany. I can crop and I can process with a very creative set of presets. It’s got some great filters and I can also put all kinds of artsy frames on my images, plus it easily posts to the social networks (although I’ve recently started using Instagram for that because it also connects to Tumblr). I’m just starting to explore Camera+’s actual camera features…

ProHDR makes a big improvement over the built-in HDR on my  iPhone. If you haven’t checked out HDR (Higher Dynamic Range) photography via the apps, you must do.  It just makes a huge difference and I can’t imagine doing iPhoneography without it.

Finally, I’m a fan of Auto Painter, which I use on both my iPad and iPhone to create very cool painterly effects on my photos. It’s been a big source of creative delight. And recently I’ve had some fun with SketchMee which turned a picture of my newly-wed son and his bride into a lovely pencil sketch, if I do say so myself.

Bonus List
I had the pleasure of catching up with my favorite uber-geek, Brett Terpstra (@ttscoff) at MacWorld and noticed he posted an awesome 2011 Favorite Mac Apps list. Click to discover more cool stuff.

Thanks for app-ing with me – I’m really happy to share all of this with you. Like I said, more to come (subscribe to this blog above if you want to be notified). I wish you happy app-ing in the year ahead, and I hope you have as much fun checking out these recommendations as I have had exploring them. Please let me know what you think.