Tips & Tricks
The intersection where marketing, branding, design and data meet with technology is where I like to live, and it is where I have the greatest impact on my friends, partners, clients and colleagues. Having grown up in the 1970s and ‘80s I have had to re-invent myself several times over the last several decades. My experience ranges a broad spectrum of environments, markets and industries. I learned person to person and business to business marketing and advertising, beginning in the creative arts and crafts world and then in retail industries and then moving into business-to-business strategies and events through a series of experiences. It is far more than could be explained in an article, summary or even an interview. However, I wanted to simply explain my perspective on marketing here to give a little context behind how and why I do what I do for the companies I am proud to partner with.
In the early days of my career, marketing consisted of business cards and person to person communication, either face to face or over a telephone, and advertising was purchasing ads in the newspaper or the yellow pages, billboards or magazines. If you were lucky enough to succeed, then as the budgets grew you would expand into radio, television and events.
No matter what industry, audience or environment you do business in, it all still boils down to storytelling. If you have a well-established brand, then everything down to your logo tells a story and produces a response of emotion good or bad. Every headline, every paragraph and every second your brand is in eye view of your audience has an impact on your success or failure. Technology can either help you become a better storyteller through test driven, data driven methods of experimentation; or, technology is a barrier, a virtual brick wall, in your way causing you to waste time and money investing in and building things that have no return on investment and are simply draining your company of its profits because your people are wasting time trying to learn how to convert the mounds of data into an intelligent graph that explains why your business in not turning a profit.
My love-of and relationship-with technology as well as my passion for advertising and marketing have given me a unique relationship with technology and a broad understanding of what does and does not return positive results in any and every type of environment. I can very quickly help you spend less and produce more and help you get your teams focused on those parts of technology that will tell you the story you need to hear, while helping you to tell the story your customers want and perhaps need to hear.
Here are my personal brands with marketing and marketing related technologies and processes in use.
Designed on a standard set of tools using Bootstrap 4 as the design grid foundation, using a current version of jQuery for any necessary client side scripting and Umbraco as the foundation for the CMS, each has multiple blog pathways which are each fully customizable on their own, a custom and flexible e-commerce system built entirely within the CMS platform and utilizing PayPal's custom cart engine, each has its own mailing list configuration and templating system and each use versions of Facebook Pixels, Google Tag Manager and Facebook Messenger for chat. Each site with very little customization and effort is configured to use its own engine for analytics and marketing applications integration and reporting structure. Analytics and reporting are both driven from Google’s analytics platforms as well as Facebook’s business reporting system, each are constantly growing and improving on their own without my involvement.
I've been building out these platforms so that I have a point of reference for what can be accomplished when the executive and leadership teams have a single focus and the necessary time and resources to deliver a technology infrastructure that builds to and supports a single focus.
I’ve been programming in various capacities since high school in 1984 when computer programming and personal computers was a fairly new and immature concept. I’ve learned dozens of languages and frameworks over the years and can comfortably trouble shoot most source code and can build a CRM and CMS platform utilizing common frameworks or even from scratch using .Net, PHP or Cold Fusion. I’ve also been responsible for infrastructures and processes spanning most technologies and platforms, from small scale business offices when I was running wire and utilizing trace tools and punch down tools back in the ‘90s, to international point to point VPN networks utilizing point to point tunneling and encryption and internal applications and systems for proprietary data integrations. I utilize a design sprint style of communication with executive and leadership teams, and an Agile Scrum and Kanban style to drive process down to the development and integration teams and communicate back up the ladder to leadership for communication and transparency.
I thrive in the space that is occupied by a CIO or CTO, because I possess experience and training in so many different environments from small business to large scale enterprise networks. I can articulate the necessary methods and processes to an executive leadership team while also helping drive the hands-on code processes and standards and actually perform code reviews in most situations. My most valuable asset is my ability to understand the stress in every position and calmly navigate deadlines and unforeseen obstacles while finding creative paths for solutions that most others would not or could not see, while at the same time understanding the executive leadership’s need for speed, accuracy and transparency to deliver on promises made to investors and boards. Most development teams are led by a fantastically gifted developer or leader who knows either one specific product or process or a small set of products and processes that has allowed them to successfully build something in the past. However, moving from small and even startup processes and technologies requires a much broader understanding of the integrations that will be needed in order to fully realize a vision and break through that next revenue ceiling.
Having executed many of these high-level projects and communicating with large scale international teams to execute on various pieces of technologies and processes, I know what is required and how to execute that type of scale. The advantage of this experience is the ability to more accurately project the costs and scale, and more accurately estimate timelines that will be required for projects. If you would like to see some case studies for my previous experience I will be publishing those case studies specific to my technology experience on my development company website PSM Design LLC.
If you are reading this, then you are probably looking for some way to break through that next barrier in your business. Give me a call and lets talk about your needs, I may or may not want to actually join your executive team or board but at the very least I can help provide the necessary guided leadership to break through that next barrier, and probably sooner and costing less than you might think.