In todays interview we are going to be talking with Trevor Schain from ThreeLaddersMarketing.Com.
Trevor’s Biography: Trevor is the Co-Founder and Media Strategist at Three Ladders Marketing. Three Ladders Marketing specializes in paid, free and social online marketing strategies, across all industries. The company utilizes state-of-the-art data and analytics to optimize their client’s campaigns and grow their online presence.
1. Hi Trevor, can you tell my readers and me more about yourself? What do you do in the world of online marketing for anyone who isn’t already familiar?
Certainly, I’ve been doing online marketing for over 6 years, kind of all over the place. I’ve done b2c and b2b, lead gen, sales, e-commerce, downloads, account sign ups and everything in between.
A little over a year ago, I co-founded a full service online marketing agency with a longtime friend, Three Ladders Marketing. We focus our efforts on what we call the three ladders of marketing; free, paid and social. Each of these covering all of the possible marketing means a business can utilize to grow their business.
2. When and where did you make your first dollar in Internet Marketing?
In 2008 I started doing lead gen in the EDU industry. We were very successful and grew rapidly in a short period of time.
It didn’t take long before I knew online marketing was where I wanted to be. I went to school with the intention of getting into the finance industry. Despite having spent years learning economics and international finance, online marketing held so many opportunities and possibilities that I didn’t see in the finance sector, especially in 2008 when that industry was collapsing.
Looking back, it’s the best career path I could have ever taken.
If someone was ever contemplating between online marketing and something else, I’d seriously recommend trying out online marketing. It’s such a young industry that there are still so many opportunities to be had.
3. What strategies are Evergreen and help generating revenue month after month despite what some big search does?
I think there are a handful of evergreen marketing strategies which have and will always work. First of all, email marketing is something anybody with a website needs to be utilizing. It’s an amazing thing to have someone give you permission to send them an email. With the ability to personalize and target using email marketing, there’s no wonder it’s one of the most profitable marketing tools.
The age old saying is true, content is king. With paid media sources becoming more competitive and expensive, long term winners will be the ones with high quality content. High quality content is one thing, but adapting to the ever changing SEO landscape is critical to successful rankings. I foresee company better understanding the importance and investing more in content in the coming years.
One of the best things about online marketing is that it’s always charging. With that in mind, I think there’s a new marketing channel which will become evergreen; social media. There are only a few platforms which empower an advertiser like social media does. Being able to communicate one-to-one with current and potential customers takes things to a whole new level. Since we’re all still figuring out how to crack the social media nut, there’s lots of possibilities and money to be made in this channel
4. What is your biggest online marketing challenge?
Simple point data integration. Advertisers use so many different ad platforms, analytics tools, marketing products and advertising interfaces that collecting data and analyzing it takes more time than is needed.
Ideally, there’d be a product which offers seamless integration with all platforms, without requiring development resources. Until then, we’ll all keep doing this manually.
5. What are your top “must follow” Internet marketing blogs?
The blogs I find myself constantly checking are; HubSpot, Search Engine Land, Moz, Search Engine Journal, AMNavigator, Social Media Examiner, HasOffers, UnBounce, among others.
6. How do you communicate your trustworthiness?
At Three Ladders Marketing, trust is everything to us. It’s something you only get one chance to make or destroy. We do everything we can to make sure our clients, visitors, readers, etc know we’re trustworthy.
We offer 30 day money back guarantee to all of our clients. If they’re not happy with our services or level of performance, we’ll refund their money with no questions asked. Fortunately, we’ve never had to do this and are very blessed to have such amazing clients who are awesome to work with.
7. What is the biggest mistake I can avoid starting out in Internet Marketing?
There are two common mistakes we see all of the time when people approach us and ask for help; poor website design/infrastructure and trying to do paid advertising without any knowledge or experience.
The first one, poor website design and a lake of solid infrastructure have serious implications. The most important is user experience. When someone finds their way to your website and you have a bad design, poor navigation or something that looks like it was created on GEO Cities in the 90’s, there’s no way to impress them and convert them into a customer or make a sale. If you don’t create your site with a basic understanding of search engine optimization, you’ll face an uphill battle trying to correct problems you made for yourself without even knowing.
The second mistake is trying to do paid advertising without any experience. The paid space has become extremely saturated and expensive. When most clients approach us wanting paid advertising services, they always tell us they’ve tried advertising on AdWords and either their cost per acquisition is through the roof or it just plain never worked. The truth is AdWords is saturated and expensive because it works. Before you decide to start dabbling in paid search, you should understand the time, effort and know-how that’s required to be successful and see if an agency would be a better option.
8. How can we find out what your audience is really looking for?
It really depends on the nature of the business. In most cases, it’s about competitive research and testing. Understanding who your audience is the first step. Next, perform some research and find out where they go online, what they do, what they read, who influences them and what they’re ultimately looking for. In more cases than not, your audience is looking for solutions to problems they face day-in and day-out.
Lastly, you’ll want to test the type of content, products, services, user experience, etc. you produce or offer. Measure the various levels of engagement and keep optimizing. Plan to do this over and over and over.
9. What is next for Trevor, What can we expecting this coming year?
This year is going to be big. We’re anticipating some exciting things in social media, content marketing and partnerships. We’ll be investing in one-to-one marketing, data visualization, video and automation.
As the online space is changing, we’re trying to adapt and be on the forefront. Over the last several years, we’ve seen a trend in the way consumers are interacting with brands online. We’re moving with this and modeling our marketing initiatives to coincide with these changes to remain competitive and leaders in the space.
10. What area of online marketing do you consider yourself an expert in?
I started out doing email marketing, both externally and internally. I later found myself getting into the affiliate space, running programs, as well as generating traffic promoting other’s products. Those two areas are where I’m most passionate and have the most expertise.
As of late, I’ve been pushing myself in content and inbound marketing. Once I feel a certain level of expertise, I think my next venture will be to start digging deeper into social media. I feel the next wave of online marketing will be utilizing social media in much different ways than we’re doing it today. The possibilities are endless with the ever changing space.
Thank you Trevor for the interview! It’s greatly appreciated. Please feel free to leave a comment below. Make sure to stop at Three Ladders Marketing.Com today and check out their Social Online Marketing Strategies.