What’s your best marketing advice?

That’s what I asked you in a previous edition of Serial Marketer Weekly, and dozens of you took the time to respond.

It doesn’t hurt that there was an added incentive, with a $CMO reward that delivered the first such bounty of its kind. Follow that page to learn about new bounties.

Below is a round-up of advice, often abridged (sorry) to accommodate as many respondents as possible (not sorry) and possibly copy-edited (you’re welcome). They’re shared in the order received.

There are so many gems here; we’ll have to do more of these. If you think of other good questions for such interactive columns, let me know. And if you want to fund a bounty yourself (no cost beyond the $CMO coins you pass through to the respondents), reach out to me so we can explore running others.

On to the best advice from you, the reader (well, probably not you, but it’s possible):

Never stop self-promoting. Clients want to work with people who are successful and who are proud of their accomplishments. It can be difficult to talk about yourself, or seem a bit braggadocious, but remember that we are in the business of getting attention, and if you cannot generate excitement for your own brand, why would anyone trust you with theirs?”
Layne Harris

“When you are first starting or launching a new product, simplify and STAY CONSISTENT with your message.”
Zachary Rozga

Cut the fat: It’s not the 80/20 rule, but more like ‘rank stack the campaigns.’ I do this multiple times– by spend, by conversion, by engagement, etc. Prune the stuff which is either too expensive, not converting enough, or where the engagement rate is so low that the ad is not resonating.”
Matthew Silverman

“The best – and most concise – marketing advice I ever got was from Seth Godin, who famously said, ‘You can’t just tell people what you want to tell them. You have to tell them what they want to know.’ That can be unwrapped in so many layers, but basically it means listening deeply to the conversation before jumping in with your ‘message points.’ Before jumping into any marketing campaign, research, research, research. It’s always time well spent.”
B.L. Ochman

Market the marketing. Don’t assume everyone knows what the marketing team is doing internally. It’s important to share the content being created (along with how to use it, for whom, when), campaigns being run, and how everyone in the company can augment these efforts. Too often marketing efforts can remain in an internal silo and not take advantage of the entire team’s network.
David Markowitz

“I was a stressed-out fool early in my PR career. I’d just arrived in a new country (Australia), and was getting into a new industry (tech). I wanted to impress, and was legitimately losing sleep over all the things I couldn’t get done each day. I confessed to my boss that I was not coping. And he asked me three questions: 1. Are your clients happy? Yes. 2. Is your boss happy? I looked at him. He nodded. 3. Then what are you worried about? I paused. He was right. Sometimes, good enough is really good enough.”
Jeremy Woolf

Marketing isn’t sales; trying to tell a consumer to buy your product is akin to telling a teenager to clean/tidy their room. You need to incentivize and influence a change in behavior by proving positive outcomes. And use all of your marketing budget because the finance team will reallocate those resources to another department if you don’t, and reduce your budget the following year.”
Philip Robertson

“The best advice I’ve received sounds obvious, but is rarely practiced: You need to see the product and experiencing the purchase journey as if you were an average consumer. That is, if your product is sitting on a retail shelf, go to that retailer and see what the experience is like. If it’s a car, go to a dealership and see what that experience is like. It’s amazing how many brand and agency leaders only experience what they work on through screens and presentation decks. Doing a simple ethnography through the eyes of actual consumers goes a very very long way.”
Michael Miraflor

Identify the biggest barrier to your target taking the behavior you want, then deliver a strong argument that overcomes it.”
Nancy Harhut

Provide your customers with a reason to talk about your product. I found that completely wowing them with customer support does exactly that, as no one expects good support anymore. In our company, everyone from the CEO down to junior engineers tries to reply to incoming support questions within minutes. This has gained us not only lots of 5-star reviews but also led to winning huge accounts based on personal recommendations. As an added side benefit, the leadership team will get valuable customer feedback. Read more here.”
Boris Pfeiffer, Riddle

“Here’s how to improve briefs, or even better, co-create clients’ briefs. Ask simple questions to start with: 1) Who’s your audience and what problem of your audience are you solving? 2) Have you validated it / do you keep validating if your solution / service / product still solves their problems? The first question 9 out of 10 times triggers tons of good discussions in order to improve product/service offerings as well as (re-)defining target audiences.”
Mark Mansveld

Understanding your audience is critical. You can only close a sale by understanding and eliminating purchase doubts. If you can’t overcome issues in the consumer’s mind, your marketing won’t be as effective.
Michael La Kier

“The best marketing advice/lesson I received was by taking a class in Stage Directing: It ties back to having a North Star. When directing a play, you start with the final moment in mind – the moment the curtain closes and the lights come back on. What is the feeling, the emotion you want the audience to be experiencing at that moment? You need to know that, and then every single scene in the play needs to be moving things toward that moment. If it doesn’t, if it’s extraneous. I look at marketing and branding the same way.”-
Jeff Sass

“Don’t just say what’s great about your idea or your pitch. Make sure to talk about the bad things that can happen if they don’t choose you. There have to be consequences for inaction, or there’s no reason to act.”
Mark Avnet

“When trying to market something to someone, always make sure they first understand and buy into the WHY. This is very much the message made popular by Simon Sinek in his TED talk, which I paraphrase below, called Start With Why. It is also often the answer to why some companies and/or people with less funding/resources end up punching way above their weight! This mindset can be helpful in most interactions with people, not just around marketing products.”
Jeff Katz

People don’t buy things, they buy for a feeling.”
Justin Finkelstein

“I can’t remember if it was a business school professor or a fellow marketer who said, ‘As marketers, our job isn’t to get everyone to believe us. It’s to give the right people something to believe in.’ And something else I’ve always believed in, and I think I can take credit for this myself: ‘If you’ve never met your customer, or talked to them yourself, you really don’t know who they are.’”
Faisal Laljee

Play more games and participate in their communities so you can learn what motivates people and keeps them engaged. With this knowledge, you’ll be much better off when you’ll want to start building a community around your product. It doesn’t matter if it’s B2B, B2C, D2C — you’re always marketing to people, and people want to be a part of communities that stimulate them and make them feel like they belong.”
Ayokunle Odukomaiya

An ounce of execution is worth a pound of planning.”
John Koetsier

“Do not be afraid to take chances and keep asking questions. Most importantly, take one step at a time and then keep building on that.”
Kenneth Simon

“‘We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.’ – Epictetus. Epictetus taught that philosophy is a way of life and not just a theoretical discipline. Marketing is about creating customers by listening to them so that you may persuade them.
Larry Smith

’Listen to the market.’” My coach told me this a few years ago and she couldn’t have been more right. As marketers we’re always trying to project what we think people need onto them, but if you listen, your audience will tell you what they need from you.
Danielle Hughes

“When I first was starting out in Sports Marketing, I read a book by Jon Spoelstra called How to Sell Every Seat in the House about ticket sales. The premise was how much easier it was to renew a season ticket holder than to find a new one. As such, he focused on the now ubiquitous ‘surprise and delight’ mentality by creating opportunities for value added experiences, gifts, etc. While he wrote specifically from the sports ticket angle, the prevailing strategy has always been top-of-mind regardless of where my career has taken me.”
Paul Robinson

Thanks for your advice. There is so much to take to heart.

I’m taking next week off to enjoy some vacation time with my daughter. See you in a couple of weeks. Have a great rest of your summer, and let me know any ideas for how this newsletter or I can be a better resource for you.



  • We have a new Bounty on Bonfire. Please take this one-question survey to share feedback on the best timing for virtual events this fall and beyond, and earn a $CMO coin as a token of thanks.
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  • Check out the recent episode of Founders Live Podcast, where David talked with Nick Hughes about building purposeful communities.
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Upcoming Serial Marketers events:

  • 9/1: First Wednesday – in-person social chat in NYC (5pm)

August 25
Via Nishant Mani of Terra.do
“25+ companies (including ArcadiaOhmConnect, and Pachama) with 100+ open software roles across disciplines and seniorities will be there pitching you and ready to answer your questions. For some meta love, Climate People will be there, repping roles from several companies they’re helping recruit for as well.”

August 26-28
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September 1, 5pm
Back in person! First Wednesday, our fun NYC tradition led by Zack Rosenberg, keeps going strong.

September 1, 6pm MDT
Via Zachary Rozga in the community:
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Via Joshua Caldwell in the community:
Rise Together Foundation (RTF) is going to solve inequity through reparation programs. Join us for our launch event, or reach out to partner and create your own program during our LEVELUP quarterly event.”

September 14
Via Larry Smith in the community
“The ANA, through the Global CMO Growth Council, is calling for an industry-wide collective pause on September 14, 2021. Let’s take this time to reboot with an infusion of the world’s best practices to help you and your teams refuel growth at full potential moving forward.”

September 15, 11am
Via Robin Li in the community
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Keep checking out the #jobs channel in Serial Marketers for more. Better yet, subscribe to get updates from our job listing board. Here are some great opportunities shared in these places or sent to me directly.

Assistant Manager, Content Engagement
New York
Via Kevin Chuang in the community
“The Assistant Manager, Content Engagement will report to the Senior Manager, Content Engagement & Creators Programming, supporting the development of a global strategy for the brand’s owned social media channels helping managing relationships with key external stakeholders, including creators and brand partners to amplify the social component of our channels, increase visibility and exposure for the Coach brand.”

Growth and Content Marketing Manager
Remote US
“You will be one of our first marketing hires, and will be responsible for defining, implementing, and expanding the foundations of our Demand Generation team that will play a pivotal role in helping us hit our growth goals. This is a unique opportunity to start from a blank slate, have ownership over the mission and vision of how Growth Marketing will move the needle for Logixboard, and drive immediate and meaningful impact.”

Lifecycle Marketing Manager
Growth Marketing Manager
Remote US
“Scratchpad is an all-in-one sales efficiency toolkit that allows users to consolidate and streamline the different aspects of sales.”

Head of Growth
Berlin / remote (company offers visa support)
Via Alex Buckalew in the community
“We are looking for a Head of Growth, who will help us improve the most advanced content platform worldwide. We at GraphCMS have innovative, passionate, and committed people working together to build the most advanced content management system on the market.”

Senior Vice President of Product Marketing
Indianapolis, IN (open to remote)
“Terminus was founded in 2014 out of a need to give B2B marketing and sales teams a better way to go to market. The premise was simple: since only 1% of inbound leads became customers, we set out to build a solution to help marketers find their next best customer and give them everything they needed to create a conversation with them.”

VP of Strategy
Remote US
“Social Studies, Inc is seeking a true cultural polymath to helm our strategy department. The ideal candidate has a strong track record for conceptualizing and commercializing next-generation, data-driven digital marketing campaigns and possesses an in-depth understanding of how the social ecosystem is evolving.”

Industry Marketer, Government
Product Marketing Manager, Insurance
Remote US
Via Lilian Haney in the community
“Nearmap is unique. A global technology company with incredible people; a market-leader with energy and spirit. Nearmap was named as one of the world’s 10 Most Innovative Companies of 2020 by Fast Company magazine – and we’re growing.”

Director of Sales and Marketing
Work from anywhere (US work authorization required)
Via Wadnes Castelly in the community
“Bleeker is a Public Benefit Corporation with a mission to put underrepresented talent in the
driver’s seat of their career. We’re seeking a new addition to our team who can lead our Sales & Marketing
department, including our Sales, Marketing, and Strategic Partnerships teams.”

Chief Marketing Officer
Chicago, IL, Open to remote
“Experienced leader with proven mentorship and leadership acumen in the marketing space, the future Chief Marketing Officer has:
* 20+ years of experience leading (and building) marketing organizations, overseeing budget and performance for omni-channel marketing initiatives
* Deep B2C expertise (B2B experience is also preferred). Ideally has been trained in a best-in-class environment and has been tested in applying their toolkit in an innovative operation
* Consumer-focused, digitally-native marketer with a strong track record of developing and elevating winning/desirable brands
* Ability to motivate their team to achieve/exceed goals and facilitate paths for advancement and growth”

Client Services Director
Chicago, Atlanta, New York, or Richmond
Via Mat Zucker in the community
“Prophet is enhancing our existing creative capabilities, building a new, complementary creative capability at Prophet which includes a brand and content studio (CoLab) to take storytelling to new places. We’re looking for a team of outstanding talent to help build this new unit which will brilliantly activate our client brand and marketing strategies for fame and impact.”

Creative Director
New York
The ANA is seeking a highly skilled and motivated Creative Director to lead all aspects of the ANA’s creative direction and overall brand design and ensure a consistent high-quality appearance in the marketplace. The new Creative Director will be part of a dynamic and growing group focused on marketing, content development and distribution, program development, and creative services.”

Marketing Manager
New York City
“We’re looking for a Marketing Manager who will be responsible for leading and contributing to projects that drive revenue growth for the company as well as planning and executing all marketing programs. This role will be heavily focused on the creation and distribution of content.”

Find more jobs on the Serial Marketers job board.

Other job resources:

  • Advisable: Get instant access to top marketing freelancers
  • AMA Job Board: Listings from the American Marketing Association (maybe you can also ask them anything)
  • Beeler.Tech: Job listings for ad operations, programmatic account management, sales operations, and more.
  • Braintrust: A new freelance platform where you are the owner and where freelance talent keeps 100% of the bill rate.
  • Built in NYC: Jobs at a range of levels and functions, as long as you’re okay working in this quaint, backwater hamlet.
  • CareerList: Here’s a form for companies hiring and a form for job seekershere’s the public list with tabs for both
  • Content Writing Jobs: Content marketers, enjoy
  • Creative Women of Color: List yourself in the database and find talent, via Women Who Create
  • Demand Curve: Growth and marketing jobs
  • DiscoverTheTalent: An initiative designed to build partnerships with businesses to advocate, train, and hire military spouses
  • ExecThread: Senior roles spanning a range of verticals and cities; membership is free but fully vetted (this uses my referral ID to get you in faster)
  • Ex-Equinox Media Talent: A spreadsheet of available talent (permission given by those listed) who are recent ex-Equinox media folks.
  • Gently Ventures: Helps scale businesses by finding the right talent
  • GLG: Get paid to share your topical expertise; it can lead to some interesting conversations at a potentially decent hourly rate
  • Growth Collective: Apply to join this network of notable freelance marketers
  • Grace Blue Transitions: A portal for hirers and seekers with resources from this exec recruiting firm
  • The Hired Guns: An array of jobs in marketing and related fields at brands, agencies, and media companies
  • Hue: Amplifying voices of people in color working in marketing
  • Hunterz: A way for connectors to get paid to introduce startups to large enterprises
  • Lead5: A paid service for executive roles, plus intel on changes with companies and PE investments; you can try a risk-free weeklong trial to see if it’s any good for your needs
  • Lunch Club: Match 1:1 around predetermined goals with accomplished professionals (free)
  • NYC Ad Jobs & Networking: A popular Facebook group
  • One Club for Creativity: COVID-19 jobs Board
  • #OpenToWork: There’s a channel in Serial Marketers where you can share what you’re looking for
  • Pangea: Where you can hire college freelancers (and college students can get gigs)
  • Pocit: A platform connecting people of color with jobs in the tech industry
  • Questions to Ask for a Marketing Role: What questions should you ask when starting a new marketing role or job?
  • Remotists: Remote startup jobs, chronicled weekly
  • Sales Hustle Stack: Find platform-based gigs and other creative ways to earn some extra cash
  • Serial Marketers Job Board: Post regular and featured listings and subscribe for updates.
  • Startup.Jobs: There’s a section for marketing jobs
  • Teal: One place to organize and manage your job search.
  • TechNY Daily: While more technical, there are also some sales and marketing jobs at NY startups.
  • VC Job Boards: AlephEniac VenturesPearSequoiaUnion Square Ventures
  • VentureLoop: Free startup job listings; their paid option is $15/month and might surface more leads (but it might not).
  • Venwise: Submit your job interests here and get in front of their roster of hiring leads; select “Serial Marketers” under “How did you find us”
  • Wanted: Wanted helps top talent in tech and marketing find a job at your desired pay.

Do you run or enjoy other job listing sites? Let me know, and I’ll share them.


Below are offers extended to the Serial Marketers community. To share your own or access the Premium member discounts, review membership options here.

GPO: Generate at least 20% more organic traffic. Doing a strong job in SEO but wonder if more traffic can be had? GPO will custom-build an AWS instance that will become a subdomain of your site, and generate at least 20% more traffic the first year. Contact Cory Cox in the community to redeem.

ContactSmarter: ContactSmarter is an AI tool that generates over 40% call booking rates without requiring human intervention. More details.

Markman Speaker Management: Get 15% off the half-day customized virtual training session “Get Speaking Engagements” for individuals or corporate staff through Sept. 30, 2021. Contact Steve Markman to redeem.

Thece: Get 10% off their Getting Started Kit — just let them know Serial Marketers sent you.

Get 5% back on any bookings of the FocusGrowth, and ReFocus plan. To receive your rebate, please contact me after you book the course.

My Software Tutor
Get a 15% discount on live online classes that teach practical, functional, business-centric Microsoft Office software skills (Excel today, PowerPoint coming soon). Use code SERIAL15 to redeem. Premium members get a 25% discount.

Get 10% discounts on campaigns. ReverseAds reverses the search ad process, outperforming Google at a fraction of the cost. To redeem, contact Thom Feltz by email.

Northarc Media
Marc Lefton is offering brands a free one-hour consultation on your media mix to show how you can integrate programmatic. For agencies, you can get a free one-hour consultation on how to add programmatic to your service offerings. To redeem, contact Marc by email.

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