By Rex Hammock

I love how the web offers marketers the ability to communicate directly with their customers. It’s the same reason I love custom magazines, live events and email newsletters. These types of marketing have one thing in common—one thing that makes them different from traditional advertising and public relations. It’s the phrase, “directly with their customers.”

By Rex Hammock

After the recent announcement of the acquisition of Time Inc. by the media company Meredith, I received the usual round of questions whenever there’s some big news about magazines: Do magazines still work?

By Rex Hammock

Over the holidays, I did a lot of reading about the 16th century and its most famous denizens. As I became enthralled by the Renaissance, I was inspired once again to encourage those of us who use different types of media to market products or services to stop labeling ourselves as content marketers, search marketers, email marketers or digital marketers. Instead, we should view ourselves as people who use content, email, print, video, etc., to create new opportunities and solve long-standing challenges.

By Rex Hammock

The ideas and practices that encompass what is today called content marketing have been used since the advent of mass media and the industrial revolution. However, the development of digital media has spurred the marketing and communication industry to reboot the labels, definitions and roles of content tools and strategies.

By Rex Hammock

This issue marks the fifth anniversary of the day we sent the first Idea Email. Here are some of the major themes distilled from our 125 biweekly missives.

By Rex Hammock, CEO

I’ve spent almost 30 years helping marketers use media and content to build long-term relationships with their customers or members. Over the course of three decades, I’ve learned that what marketers do in the final 60 days of the year can often determine their success for the following year. 

As part of our countdown to year-end projects, we thought we’d share a few of the ways we have been able to speed up our processes in ways that can help our clients meet their important goals and deadlines.

By Rex Hammock, CEO

Glancing around our offices today, I see people working on projects ranging from the development of a historical documentary about a national association to a monthly customized print newsletter for a network of 60+ wellness programs. Others are working on an Ebook series supported by a social media strategy, while yet another is working on the popular website we created and maintain, SmallBusiness.com. And still others are putting the finishing touches on the next issue of an award-winning national magazine we’ve published for a client for the past 15 years.

 

Helping our clients finish year-end content and media projects reminded me of some of my favorite last-minute sports finishes. Of course there are many incredible moments, but these are five of my favorites—including one I witnessed in person.

But here’s a cautionary note: Don’t wait until the last minute to start your year-end projects. It’s amazing what collaborative teamwork can accomplish, but the process works best with a cushion of a couple of months. Or, as we’re saying this year, it’s amazing how many types of content projects you can accomplish by January 1 if you begin on November 1.

By Rex Hammock, CEO

Here are two quick stories about learning to play a musical instrument that illustrate the difference between marketing content used to close a transaction—and the kind used to create a lifelong relationship.