Episode 59: Strong Social Strategies with Kyle Turk

I don’t know if you frequent the same social channels that I’m using for the podcast: IG, TW and my personal LinkedIn feed. I’ve put posts for the last 3 years on those platforms and the one thing I can tell you is that without paid promotion, it takes real work to reach a decent audience. 

I wanted to know how others play this game so I asked someone who started promoting things on Facebook 15 years ago. He’s not on all the social channels and doesn’t pretend to keep his Twitter account active, but for the company that’s his day-job and the clients he serves through his agency, he knows how to use content that gets noticed. 

Today’s guest, Kyle Turk, has headed the marketing teams at both public and private sector organizations. He has a Bachelor of Business Administration from St Francis Xavier University, and is a recipient of Ottawa’s Forty Under 40 award.

Listen for his explanation of how to conceive and create content.  He also does a great job of outlining how social selling should work to smoothly shift from public commenting with someone to  continuing the conversation through direct messaging. 

 Let’s learn how to up our social media game, with Kyle Turk!

People/Products/Concepts Mentioned in Show

Episode Reboot

Observe what posts prompted you to engage. Deconstruct them and see what’s transferable to the content that you post.

Episode 58: I know what you’re saying, with Debra Workman and Justin Hacker

Voice technology is so prevalent, I’m giving a disclaimer on this episode that we’ll refer to some voice assistants by name, so smart-speakers or digital assistants within earshot will, you know, notice.  

Many of us may be users of voice recognition, but few of us know how to use it for marketing our companies. Coming up with applications is hard, with a platform whose interface is invisible. Few of us are exposed to the artificial intelligence behind it, so we can’t picture what we’d do with it. As the Steve Jobs quote goes, “A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.”

To help us with this, we’ll talk with a company that launched a voice AI tool, and is happy to peel back the curtain on how this all works. Our guests are both from UCLab, a  software development firm in Ottawa, where Debra is a Partner and Justin is CEO. 

Listen for how this technology began with simple single-word commands, to where it can now process whole paragraphs containing advanced grammar structures. You’ll learn how it goes beyond turning itself on or off, to interacting with calendars and documents. They will share  how AI monitors which points someone brings up on a call and whether it was said in a positive or negative way, so before you talk again, you’re ready for that objection. Also hear how detecting different human voices lets it assist with meetings by pulling out of the discussion, email them to people action items.

Bound to be some good ideas here for how to use this in your marketing or your work life. 

People/Products/Concepts Mentioned in Show


  • 1950s: computer program Audrey created, it understood numbers 1-10
  • 1985: stuffed animals that take voice command, like Teddy Ruxby, enter marketplace  
  • 1990: Dragon Dictate launched
  • 2011: Apple releases Siri 
  • 2011: IBM Watson won on Jeopardy 
  • 2013: Alexa, Cortana, Google Assistant enter the marketplace
  • 2013: Movie HER released

Nielsen ratings

Xbox Kinect

IVR – Interactive Voice Response


Company Debra and Justin are part of, UCLabs

Debra Workman on LinkedIn

Justin Hacker on LinkedIn

Episode Reboot: check out UCLabs’ meeting assistant, BlueCap

Episode 57: How AI Levels the Marketing Playing Field

If every part of your customer acquisition can be measured, you’ll figure out how to do it profitably. That premise has driven why digital marketing, and especially Pay-per-click (PPC) is managed by experienced humans. These professionals scour through data for the relationship between a company’s ads and the buyers actions; once found, budgets get shifted to achieve that optimal effect.  

A wrench has been thrown into our acquisition dreams by the ad platform titans: Google, Facebook and Microsoft (who own LinkedIn). Thanks to major AI investments they have made in the last five years, they’ve been able to automate much of the work that marketing professionals have done. In tandem with implementing their ‘smart’ software that runs autonomously, they have been restricting a marketer’s ability to manually control campaigns. 

The platforms believe their AI is smart enough to run marketing, so we can either be passive, letting them spend our money as they see fit, or we can choose to give them navigational assistance while they drive. The point is, you should have a game plan that works with the platforms’ AI. One that, over time, will generate the leads you need at the best possible acquisition cost.

I believe listening to this episode will give you that plan. It covers:

  • How marketing has become more computationally complex than humans can handle
  • What was in it for the platforms to automate PPC marketing
  • Stages of maturity for dealing with data, ending with predictive analytics
  • Why you shouldn’t fight ad platform automation, but instead use your business data to train algorithms how to market you more effectively
  • How you should integrate your in-house systems and apply data science to uncover insights

People/Products/Concepts Mentioned in Show

Paper estimating how much data optimized advertising requires, authored by Randall A. Lewis of Google; Justin M. Rao of Microsoft: “A calibrated statistical argument shows that the required sample size for an experiment to generate informative confidence intervals is typically in excess of ten million person-weeks”

Quote by Chuck Heamann & Ken Burbary in “Digital Marketing Analytics”:  “If you think about all the tools we have talked about…you see that there is one common denominator: You do not own any of the data. Herein lies what we think is the biggest revolution coming to digital analytics..companies will be building internal repositories for this data.”

Episode Reboot 

Go talk to a coworker who uses statistical measurement, to understand how the efficiency it achieves in other fields can be applied to marketing.

Episode 56: Content Inc. with Joe Pulizzi – Summer Books

The book we talk about in this show is #15 on the Amazon Best Seller list for Internet Marketing. Not to take anything away from past guests, but if you only listen to one of the 50 interviews we have done, I hope that you choose this one.  

I think most marketers have heard of the Content Marketing Institute.  The public figure at the centre of CMI, Joe Pulizzi, started it all with a blog post on April 26, 2007 “Why Content Marketing” His hypothesis in 2007 was that companies who put content on the internet would build relationships that blossom into future customers. He then went about literally putting out content that taught others how to do this. Once they came to the CMI site and got this free content, he would sell them everything from newsletters, to magazines, to training, and an annual Content Marketing World event.

For me personally, the story picks up in 2014 when I started listening to Joe’s podcast with  Robert Rose  on the podcast series, This Old Marketing. I found this giving-away-expertise tactic to be quite unorthodox, as I was accustomed to thinking that companies should mainly communicate with their audience through advertising. Listening to them influenced how I’ve come to see content marketing’s value. 

While CMI was evangelizing how to grow a business on content, Joe didn’t keep any secret about how well he was doing with growing his business. Already a bestselling author of several books, he came out in 2015 with Content Inc, that gave out the blueprint he was using. A year after it came out, he sold CMI in 2016 to the International Events company UBI. 

He may have finished with CMI, but over the next few years, he stayed close to both corporate and entrepreneurial content creators. His keen focus on them led him to pitch his publisher on a second edition of the book, which  rounds out the model by sharing the rest of his own journey of monetizing a Content-based business. the second edition that came out this year. I was amazed as I read it; so many new examples, all the updates on marketing channels, it’s a total overhaul from the first edition. 

This is one high-energy conversation. I was already pumped to talk to Joe, I’m not going to lie, and it seems we both got pretty keyed up as we spoke. 

People/Products/Concepts Mentioned in Show

Shift away from the Glengarry Glenross revenue-generation model

The Sweet Spot

Episode Reboot

To get another perspective on audience-building, see Kevin Kelly’s post on 1000 true fans

Episode 55: Content Marketing Engineered with Wendy Covey – Summer Books

No matter where you look around in today’s world, you use things that were conceived and built by engineers.  There were engineering-minded thinkers in ancient times like Archimedes and Leonardo da Vinci. industrial age thinkers like Thomas Edison and Henry Ford built on their ideas, to manufacture many things that improved the quality of our daily lives. Since then, engineers like Alan Turing, Thomas Watson and David Packard ushered in an electronic revolution that gave us the technology that makes possible the communication we’re having right now. 

Engineers are great. But, they are also a breed apart. They have a stereotype of being way too exacting for most people’s liking. They put a new spin on the proverbial glass half-full or half empty debate. While the Pessimist says “The glass is half empty” and the Optimist says “The glass is half full,” The Engineer does some measuring and pronounces “The glass is exactly twice the size that it needs to be.”

They also have a reputation for being notoriously tough to market to. Today’s guest knows how to reach engineers, and in her 2020 book Content Marketing, Engineered, she gives us a formula so we can reach them as well. 

Wendy Covey is a co-founder of TREW Marketing, an Austin, TX-based agency that serves technical industries such as engineering design and hardware manufacturing. Prior to starting the agency in 2008 Wendy produced global marketing and services programs at National Instruments. Another side of Wendy you should know about is how she loves outdoor recreations – in fact she is the current holder of a Texas fishing record.  

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Geoffrey Moore’s Crossing the Chasm

SWOT Analysis: 

  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Opportunities
  • Threats

Episode Reboot

Figure from Wendy’s book (used with permission) showing channels where engineers prefer to get their content. Note how high YouTube and LinkedIn are on the list.

Episode 54: The Visual Sale with Tyler Lessard – Summer Books

The newest book in our #SummerMarketingBooks series talks about how to take sales & marketing beyond the printed or spoken word.

Our guest Tyler Lessard has worked at high-flying tech companies like BlackBerry and lives in the Waterloo Ontario high-tech hub with his wife and four kids. Whenever he speaks on stage or is a guest on a show, he talks about how to modernize the way sales and marketing people communicate. I consider him to be a marketer’s marketer. What I mean by that is he’s dialed in to marketing tech, so seeing him come out with a book in 2020 called, The Visual Sale, I knew I needed to pay more attention to video. 

Listen in the show for the reasons why he thinks today’s buyers expect us to show up visually, not just in text they read or orally over the phone. He walks us through how to make videos seen when prospects are researching a purchase, when they are ready to decide and even after the sale. Most importantly, take it from a guy who describes himself as a hacky video creator, how little you need to get started shooting video.   

People/Products/Concepts Mentioned in Show

4 E’s of Video:

  • Educational
  • Engaging
  • Emotional
  • Empathetic

Marshall McLuhan assertion that “The Medium is the Message”

How Walt Disney appeared on video (we’ve moved past this kind of talking head video)

Episode Reboot

Great quote from his book: “If you don’t think that video can do a better job than text on a webpage or text in an email, think again!”

Episode 53: Digital Marketing in an AI World with Fred Vallaeys – Summer Books

Chess Grandmaster Garry Kasparov was famously beaten in 1997 by a supercomputer built by dozens of IBM technologists. A Slate article looking at how Deep Blue changed chess said “The change here wasn’t just that a computer could win, but that a computer could help human players win if incorporated into their training regimes effectively.”

The same thing is happening with PPC Platforms. Since 2011, Google has been integrating AI into many of their products, and every campaign feature Google Ads rolls out seems to take away control from us humans and give it to their machines. So if we’re going to follow Kasparov’ lead and get better at this game with the AI, the question becomes, what’s the process for training an ad platform’s AI, when it’s writing programming that only it knows, and even the technologists running it don’t know?

Some answers are contained in the book Digital Marketing in an AI World. Fred Vallaeys was one of the first 500 employees at Google where he spent 10 years building AdWords and teaching advertisers how to get the most out of it as Google’s AdWords Evangelist. Today he serves as Co-Founding CEO of Optmyzr, a PPC management software system. Fred is a fixture on the marketing conference circuit and blazed new trails with online industry learning through Optmyz’s PPC Town Halls. 

People/Products/Concepts Mentioned in Show

Episode Reboot: 

Remember, computers have a different kind of smarts than us.

Episode 52: Unfair Marketing with David Rodnitzky – Summer Books

Has this ever happened in your career?

  • Sales told you that a deal was lost even though you have a superior product
  • You’ve seen the positioning statements listed in your website or in your ads twisted by your competitors, to exploit some weakness
  • You saw an industry award or splashy press go to a competitor rather than to you
  • You faced a rival brand undercutting your pricing to grab your market share 

It’s maddening when this happens, but the truth is, marketers don’t get participation ribbons. Each of these things may be unfair, but they are also situations where you could have grabbed the upper hand and reaped the benefit over your competitor.  

That’s the premise of the book Unfair Marketing which came out in 2021, written by David Rodnitsky He is the founder of 3Q Digital, an agency that has over 350 digital marketers devoted to advertising, analytics, decision science, strategic consulting, creative, and conversion rate optimization. Many of 3Q’s clients are in silicon valley,  which is where they are based. You would no doubt know the names of the companies they serve.

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David’s Five levers:

  1. Unfair Data
  2. Unfair Knowledge
  3. Unfair Brand
  4. Unfair Access
  5. Unfair Money

Episode Reboot. 

Get a free copy of the book at www.3qdigital.com/unfair-marketing

Episode 51: The AI Marketing Canvas with Raj Venkatesan – Summer Books

Are you looking at how your marketing can use AI? That’s good if you are, but it’s not enough to know how it works. Whether you are embedded in marketing operations or you’re an executive who oversees it, you must also figure out how to get your organization to buy into AI. You’ll need stakeholders who own precious data, you’ll need knowledge experts to train your models, you’ll possibly need operations folks to change what they deliver…as AI informs what you offer. Lastly, you’ll need money – getting that money will take you proving that investing in AI yields a positive ROI. So by now, you’re probably wondering how you can implement AI. Well, if you are, you will definitely be interested in the framework called the “The AI Marketing Canvas”

It’s all detailed in a book by the same name, co-authored by Raj Venkatesan, along with Jim Lecinski.

Professor Venkatesan is a professor at the Darden School of Business at U of Virginia. He is also a co-author of the book Cutting Edge Marketing Analytics. Before coming to Darden, Venkatesan taught graduate students at the University of Connecticut. There, he was the recipient of the MBA Teacher of the Year Award. He received his Ph.D. in marketing from the University of Houston and his B.E. in computer engineering from the University of Madras. He has consulted with firms in the technology, retailing, media, industrial goods and pharmaceutical industries. 

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Framework’s 5 stages, reproduced with permission:

Episode 50: Join or Die, Digital Advertising in the age of Automation by Patrick Gilbert – Summer Books

This is the fifth book of our “Summer Books” series and we’re even going social with the hashtag, #SummerMarketingBooks on Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. This book focuses on Pay-Per-Click marketing, and whether you do any PPC yourself or outsource, you should be aware of how much of a ground-shaking shift artificial intelligence is making here. Remember that Google & Facebook have been investing enormous sums of money on AI. Their ad empires pretty much run on AI now, and it’s vaulted them to become two of the world’s top 10 companies.

While acknowledging that this sounds ominous for advertisers, our author believes that by joining with them on campaign automation, we can actually thrive. Our author’s seen this shift happen first-hand, as part of the NY-based agency Adventure Media, where he serves as COO. his book, Join or Die: Digital Advertising in the age of Automation, came out in 2020.

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