Almost Timely News, 3-July-2022: Helping Causes, Personal Brand Strategy

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Almost Timely News

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Almost Timely News, 3-July-2022: Helping Causes, Personal Brand Strategy

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What’s On My Mind: You Are The One You’ve Been Waiting For

The reactions I got to last week’s newsletter have been all over the spectrum, from seething rage – one person wrote, “I thought you were smart but you are so,” followed by quite a string of profanity – to outright praise that belongs in a place of worship. But there was a common theme in many of the responses: thanks for sharing ways we can help. This week, I want to dig into that a bit more, inspired by your responses.

Every organization, every cause – no matter where you are on the political spectrum or what you believe in – needs help of some kind. And every person – like you – who is able to earn money from your skills can donate those skills to an organization. Even if it seems at first that there’s no obvious connection, if someone else is willing to pay you for it, a cause-based organization desperately needs it.

This is what Beau of the Fifth Column refers to as the rest of the spear. The “tip of the spear” refers to the people most visible in a military, but behind them is a massive apparatus that makes their efforts possible. An army can’t fight without food, without cooks, without logistics or supplies or construction or the many, many things that let warriors wage war. The same is true of any cause. The people who are visible, on the front lines of protesting and such, need a support mechanism of some kind if the cause is to be sustainable.

And that’s probably where you and I come in. Let’s look at a couple of mundane examples. I’m headed over to a friend’s house in a little while to help her with her email newsletter. Not the content, but the infrastructure powering it. She didn’t set up the deliverability protocols necessary to make her email marketing work as best as possible, and it’s hurting her open rates. The fixes for this are fairly straightforward but arcane if you’re not an IT person with knowledge of how DNS works and how deliverability works. The difference can be a 2x increase in email marketing performance overnight.

So I’ll go make those changes. Could anyone do this? Yes. Though you’d want to be careful because if you screw it up, you might accidentally remove yourself from the Internet entirely, which happened not too long ago to Facebook. Now, how many causes and non-profits rely on email to get their message out and solicit donations? Based on the contents of my inbox, literally every single cause and non-profit uses email heavily. How many of them have done this arcane little bit of housekeeping?

Here’s the key point, as someone who has worked in non-profits before: the smaller the organization is, the more desperate the need is. A gigantic non-profit like The Red Cross should have its ducks in a row and its infrastructure together. (though like corporations, it’s amazing how badly some are run) But the smaller an organization is, the less help it typically has, and the more your help is needed. Feeding America probably is all set. Your local food pantry? They’re probably lucky to even have a functioning website, much less email deliverability protocols in place.

And that means that for all their efforts, they’re not earning as much as they could be without your help. With our help, these organizations are more effective. An improvement in email deliverability directly translates into more money and more support for the cause, so even if you’re not on the front lines, you’re enabling the front lines. You’re helping make their work possible.

What do you have to bring to the table? Are you a designer? A musician? A writer? A WordPress expert? An accountant? A cook? Whatever your skills are, you have something to offer.

Here’s another example. I manage the Google Analytics accounts of dozens of organizations, including several pro bono organizations and people. Many of them have no budget for marketing at all, but because I believe in what they do, I’m happy to help out by keeping their analytics instances running smoothly. In turn, they make better decisions about their marketing and where they spend the very limited budget they have. Again, running someone’s Google Analytics account doesn’t look like the person in a parade marching with a sign, but it helps enable those marches and those activists.

A third example: I volunteer with the Mautic organization, the folks who make the open source marketing automation software that powers this newsletter, among other things. They just had their annual conference and put out a call for folks to help process all the session videos. While I’m no Hollywood pro, I know my way around Adobe Premiere and Adobe Audition well enough that I can produce coherent, clean session videos from their raw footage, and I processed probably two dozen of them last month. Why? Because I believe in their software and I had the ability to help. This example is really important, because it illustrates that you don’t have to be awesome to help out. You just have to be better than the alternative, which for many organizations is nothing.

The point of all this can be summarized by a line from the movie Frozen 2: you are the one you’ve been waiting for. The power to create change, to advance the things you believe in, is in your hands. If someone pays you money for it, it’s valuable – and that skill can be donated to the causes you care about most. Don’t think that just because you can’t be on the front lines doesn’t mean you can’t play a vital role.

Share With a Friend or Colleague

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ICYMI: In Case You Missed it

Besides the new Google Analytics course I’m relentlessly promoting (sorry not sorry), I would recommend the piece on personal brand strategy. It’s a walkthrough of my personal brand strategy framework, and it’s super helpful if you’re stuck.

Skill Up With Classes

These are just a few of the classes I have available over at the Trust Insights website that you can take.



Get Back to Work!

Folks who post jobs in the free Analytics for Marketers Slack community may have those jobs shared here, too. If you’re looking for work, check out these five most recent open positions, and check out the Slack group for the comprehensive list.

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Thank You Notes

These are the places you’ve had or mentioned me – on your podcast, on your blog, in your newsletter. Thank you!

What I’m Reading: Your Stuff

Let’s look at the most interesting content from around the web on topics you care about, some of which you might have even written.

Social Media Marketing

Media and Content

SEO, Google, and Paid Media

Advertisement: Ukraine Humanitarian Fund

If you’d like to support humanitarian efforts in Ukraine, the Ukrainian government has set up a special portal, United24, to help make contributing easy.

Donate today to the Ukraine Humanitarian Relief Fund »

Tools, Machine Learning, and AI

Analytics, Stats, and Data Science

All Things IBM

Advertisement: Google Search Console for Marketers

Of the many tools in the Google Marketing Platform, none is more overlooked than Google Search Console. Marketers assume it’s just for SEO, but the information contained within benefits search, social media, public relations, advertising, and so much more. In my new Google Search Console for Marketers course, you’ll learn what Google Search Console is, why it matters to all marketers, and then dig deep into each of the features of the platform.

When you’re done, you’ll have working knowledge of the entire platform and what it can do – and you’ll be ready to start making the most of this valuable marketing tool.

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Events I’ll Be At

Here’s where I’m speaking and attending. Say hi if you’re at an event also:

  • MAICON, August 2022, Cleveland, OH – use code PENN150 for $150 off any conference ticket
  • Content Marketing World, September 2022, Cleveland, OH
  • MarketingProfs B2B Forum, October 2022, Boston
  • Heapcon, November 2022, Belgrade, Serbia

Events marked with a physical location may become virtual if conditions and safety warrant it.

If you’re an event organizer, let me help your event shine. Visit my speaking page for more details.

Can’t be at an event? Stop by my private Slack group instead, Analytics for Marketers.

How to Stay in Touch

Let’s make sure we’re connected in the places it suits you best. Here’s where you can find different content:

Required Disclosures

Events with links have purchased sponsorships in this newsletter and as a result, I receive direct financial compensation for promoting them.

Advertisements in this newsletter have paid to be promoted, and as a result, I receive direct financial compensation for promoting them.

My company, Trust Insights, maintains business partnerships with companies including, but not limited to, IBM, Cisco Systems, Amazon, Talkwalker, MarketingProfs, MarketMuse, Agorapulse, Hubspot, Informa, Demandbase, The Marketing AI Institute, and others. While links shared from partners are not explicit endorsements, nor do they directly financially benefit Trust Insights, a commercial relationship exists for which Trust Insights may receive indirect financial benefit, and thus I may receive indirect financial benefit from them as well.

Thank You!

Thanks for subscribing and reading this far. I appreciate it. As always, thank you for your support, your attention, and your kindness.

See you next week,

Christopher S. Penn


One response to “Almost Timely News, 3-July-2022: Helping Causes, Personal Brand Strategy”

  1. […] Almost Timely News, 10-July-2022: Real Talk About Google Analytics 4, Content Marketing Trends (7/10) :: View in Browser […]

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