Gavin Whittaker from Webspin UK Digital Marketing and SEO:
When I started learning about digital marketing and online entrepenurship it was starting out in affiliate marketing and Search engine marketing or (SEO). I did learn a lot about how the search engines work and how to gett rankings, visitors and highly converting advertisements.
But i did not really build any good relationships
In my struggle to grow into a great marketer, I’ve been experimenting with different kinds of digital marketing i missed out one key fact: building and nurturing business relationships.
My background is travelling i have literally traveled the world learning about how to build relationships. As a recruitment officer I excelled at starting relationships with everyone from students to executives. But applying these same skills online is still something i wanted to work on.
Below are some of the things I’ve tried and results I’ve gained.
I got straight on the phone and started with this pitch: “I realize that some students might find it challenging to get in touch with expert sources, especially for interviews, and I’d love to have a chat with you about working together.”
Representing a fairly significant brand and offering my CEO and marketing manager as sources, I thought that journalism students would jump on the opportunity for an expert source in marketing to validate some of their stories.
My hit rate wasn’t extremely high.
I learned two results here.
The first is that cold calling or cold emailing is probably the simplest and quickest way to start new relationships online. The people who I did get through to are awesome.
The second was that if I’m going to pitch a project to someone who I don’t already have a relationship with, I have to make it easy. I shouldn’t have said, “our experts are available.” I should have had a simple project ready to go right away and asked for a simple piece of input from the students.
I Tried Asking for Something Easy…
Joe James from Pinpoint SEO has been an great connection for superpower Search, sitting down with Alex Creations our marketing director for this super interview. He also publishes great content, a lot of which he produces in conjunction with other industry experts.
Straight from my previous experience on relationships, I wanted to try doing something similar. I needed to work with the best industry leaders to produce valuable content.
I deciden on a single question that everyone in my office was interested in. I pushed it out to a set of my top industry experts via email, trying to make the value proposal as simple as possible.
I’m hoping that the value proposition turned out like:
Hi! You’re a person that has an opinion I respect and I was wondering what your thoughts are on these questions… We’d like to share your answer and those of some other industry experts to create a great piece of content. We’d like to link to you and promote you as an expert in this piece as well!
I was excited when responses started coming back–people were excited as well and coming back with some great answers. I had definitely learned something from my last project. I’m still getting responses back and I’m following up.