Harnessing Technology and Human Touch for Marketing Success with Robert Brill

Apr 1, 2024 | Gathering Fans, Instruments of Choice, Keeping the Hat Full, PodCast, Season 3

The Back-Story

In this episode, Tim jams with Robert Brill, the rockstar CEO of Brill Media. They talk about his company’s meteoric rise to success and the vital importance of standard operating procedures. Robert also covers topics from achieving product-market fit to mastering Meta’s platforms for targeted advertising. He also talks about the challenges of rapid scaling and the essential mindset shift from employee to owner, which are not just insightful — they’re game-changing for anyone looking to evolve their business acumen. If you’ve ever wondered how a positive work culture and clear job responsibilities can dramatically boost employee retention and client happiness, this episode strikes all the right chords.

Who is Robert Brill?

Robert Brill, CEO of Brill Media, specializes in precision advertising for business growth. His company has been honored ten times, including recognition on the Inc 5000 and Financial Times 500 lists. As a Forbes Business Council and Fast Company Executive Board member, Robert shares insights on user experience, business strategies, data targeting, local advertising, and white-label media buying. He also delivers talks on advertising, marketing, AI, and entrepreneurship to business owners nationwide. Beyond work, Robert takes pride in being a father, husband, dog owner, and passionate fan of the Dodgers and Intermiami.

Show Notes

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In This Episode:
(0:00) Intro
(0:16) The good note
(1:55) What didn’t go as planned
(5:40) How important mindset is to business growth and success
(12:19) Difference between audience and fans
(14:49) Running ads for sales vs. boosting posts
(23:22) Managing cashflow
(28:04) Tools to grow the business
(34:24) What’s exciting in his business now
(35:50) How to connect with Robert
(40:22) Outro


Read Transcript (generated: may contain errors)

Tim Melanson: [00:00:00] Hello and welcome to today’s episode of The Work at Home Rockstar Podcast.

Rocking out today with the CEO of Brill Media. And what he does is he helps his clients grow their business with target advertising. So I’m excited to be rocking out today with Robert. Hey, Robert, you ready to rock? I’m ready to rock, Tim. Let’s do this. So we always start off here at a good note.

So tell me a story of success in your business that we can be inspired by. Success in

Robert Brill: my business. I mean, just the fact that we exist is a success.

Tim Melanson: Yeah.

Robert Brill: Every day that we can perpetuate to the future is a win. The big hallmarks of our business have been featured and ranked on the Inc 5000 and Financial Times 500 10 times over the last decade, which are indicators of growth across the U S and the Financial Times is actually across the America.

So Central and South America as well. But the reason we’ve been able to get there is because we have really talented senior experts on advertising channels, search, social display, et cetera. And we have really strong standard operating procedure, which is so [00:01:00] boring, but it’s so incredibly important.

And everything we do starts with strategy, strategy first.

Tim Melanson: Yeah. That’s the way it is, right? It’s all the boring stuff that gets you success. You know, all the fancy stuff. That’s great. But you really have to have the operations figured out as well Right? A hundred percent.

Robert Brill: knocked me for a loop, man.

Holy cow. Like it just came out of left field and it took us six months to figure out we had a problem during one of our growth periods and six months to figure out what the problem was, but only three months to solve the problem. And that cleared a massive opportunity for growth in our business.

Tim Melanson: Yeah, it’s, it’s interesting how that happens, right?

And there’s sort of like a lag period, right? Where you, you know, I, I know that it takes a little bit of time to build some momentum, but it also takes some time for it to disappear as well. So you might be doing things wrong and you’re only going to see that down the line, right? A hundred percent. So, I mean, that probably is a good place to start with a bad note, because, you know, with that success, you know, comes some things that don’t go as [00:02:00] planned.

And, you know, is that your big bad note or is there something else you can share with us as well?

Robert Brill: Yeah, I think the big bad note was, I’ll dive into a little bit more detail. There was a period of time where we grew from, we tripled our staff in the course of a summer. And I was like, all right, cool, great.

I’m just going to hire a bunch of smart, expensive people and they’re going to do great work. Well, what ended up happening was they were so dissatisfied working here that one of them, the most senior one quit within six months, I was very dissatisfied about that. So here’s what happened. We tripled our staff.

And I just was surprised that things weren’t going well and they were dissatisfied with their work and I was unhappy with the way things were going and then finally we started to get rumblings of clients being unhappy. So over the course of six months, I was racking my brain, like, what is going on? I was talking to all kinds of different people, including former coworkers.

And one of them [00:03:00] pinpointed the issue. He said, there is no standard operating procedure in our business. And I was like, what even is that? Who the heck cares about that? It’s so boring. Cause I’m still in the mode of employee mode. Like I hated, I’m thinking of myself as a bad employee. Like I hated process and I hated people telling me what to do.

But as a business owner, it’s like, now I need to actually implement things to make our business grow. Again, it’s, it’s a mindset shift. So we hired him. He came on, created a standard operating procedure, implemented it, documented it, and he became our first chief operating officer. Since then, we’ve doubled our staff again from that moment on dramatically higher revenue over the course of those years from then to now, and it’s cleared a space for growth because when people like working at a business, standard operating procedure means employees know.

When their job starts and when it [00:04:00] ends, like they know where their responsibility started at, therefore, they’re far more satisfied with the work. When they’re more satisfied with the work, they stay with the business longer. They stay with the business longer, knowledge accumulates exponentially in the business.

And then you can hire people and they get trained. Clients stay with you longer, revenue grows. It’s a fortuitous cycle.

Tim Melanson: That’s not my job thing, right? Which is good. It’s not my job because it’s a clear delineation. Right? Because I think that with like smaller companies, especially where you’re wearing all these hats, you’re just sort of trying to just do whatever, right?

But as you said, as soon as you get to the point where you’re not a solopreneur anymore or you’re not a partnership, now you’ve actually got employees. It just doesn’t work anymore. And. It’s funny that, you know, when you’re working for a company and you see all this stuff, you’re like, Oh, this is boring.

This is annoying. Why do they have that? It just seems like you’re wasting time. Right. But then you get to learn that when you actually start your own business and then you realize, Oh, that’s why they do with things [00:05:00] that way. Right.

Robert Brill: Right. And it’s, you know, you’re a different person, you know, I’ve spent 20 years in advertising and I could feel myself.

It’s gearing towards being a bad employee, like hard to work with, hard to deal with all these things. And I’m like, Oh man, I really got to start my business because I don’t know if I lasted this industry because I’m kind of like not, it’s not going the right direction. And so it’s the mindset shift. is incredibly important.

The biggest surprise I had was how important mindset is to the entire process of business growth and success. Like I’m a dude, like I’m into sports and you know, macho and all that stuff. And it felt like such a tangential thing to be thinking about mindset.

Until I started this business, I saw all kinds of people that I really admire talking about mindset and looking at how you handle distractions and the type of people you surround yourself with, right? The people who you surround yourself with are going to be the people who [00:06:00] elevate you or bring you down, depending on the type of people.

So be very picky about the people who you spend your time with. Right. And so I was really worried as an employee starting this business that, you know, There were so many challenges that I wouldn’t be able to handle, and the solve for that was mindset. I didn’t know how to sell.

Selling is incredibly important when you’re the CEO of something, like a big part of your job is selling. I didn’t know how to take big financial risks. I felt scared to take those big financial risks. And the only way to succeed is to understand that there can be failure and to understand that chances are you have the ability.

I had the ability to overcome the challenges, but I had to believe in myself.

Tim Melanson: Yeah. And I think that everybody should take a sales course, really, because, you know, it’s not even just, if you want to start a business, but also even if you’re an employee, you have to sell your ideas in a board meeting at some point.

You have to sell yourself for a raise. I mean, there’s so many [00:07:00] parts of life, you know, and I think that it’s just that. We all had this sort of negative connotation when it comes to sales that we think that it’s something, you know, we all have a bad sales experience, right?

We all have an experience where we bought something with somebody who just said something garbage, right? And I think that’s what we think of when we think of sales, but really sales is just communication, right? It’s helping people to solve their problems. Isn’t it?

Robert Brill: It’s persuasive language. You know, anyone who ever asked me, Hey, I want to get better at my business.

I want to be more effective. Chances are, I’m going to tell you to go to Toastmasters. So the sort of insight I realized recently, so like I was 29 years old and I had a director title, which is pretty aggressive for the advertising business, right? There are directors who are in their forties, fifties, sixties, but I was 29 years old.

Great deal of responsibility, partially because I was good, but also partially because the marketplace had evolved and I was sort of riding that wave of the evolution of digital advertising. I think it would be harder for me to achieve the same level [00:08:00] of success in like, so I started advertising. I started working in the advertising business when I was 22.

So like seven or maybe 23, I don’t know, six, seven years into my career to be a director that might be a little challenging in 2024. So I was in these meetings with people who were far more senior than me, far more experienced, far more organized and effective and had a great deal of ability to communicate in a really interesting way.

And so I felt down on myself, like, what’s wrong? I have the knowledge, but I feel really uncomfortable. And I’m not really being effective in these meetings. And someone told me like, you just don’t have the experience talking.

You have the practical knowledge, the digital advertising knowledge, but talking about it is a completely different skill. I spent nine months at Toastmasters, made a dramatic difference in the My ability to communicate persuasively, to be effective, to get my thoughts across. So fast forward to when I started my business, that insight and ability to be effective at communicating [00:09:00] was a foundational point for me to then be effective at selling.

One of the things I really found about Toastmasters, they’re like, okay, so how do you become an effective speaker? There’s all these kinds of like different things, but one of the key things is, which is so obvious and simple is you practice. You just say the same thing over and over again.

I’m saying the same thing over and over again. So there’s a practical component of just by practicing, by building that muscle memory, it becomes far easier to be effective at

Tim Melanson: talking. And that’s so important because it seems as though we want to say things differently every time.

Cause we feel like it’s boring for us, right? Thing is, is that the person that you’re talking to is a different person every day. So why wouldn’t you say the same thing if it works for the one person, why wouldn’t you just get good at crafting that and saying it over and over again? Right? I

Robert Brill: mean, look, it’s the same thing with playing a band was playing music.

Like you’re right. you listen to the early years of Coldplay and you watch [00:10:00] them become such masters of their craft over the course of like 20 years. Well, they were great in 2000. Nine or whatever, but man, like I got into like this period of time for like six months where like every day I’d be listening to the same 27 Coldplay songs live on YouTube.

So I’d start to see the pattern and it’s really interesting to see musicians develop their craft over time and how they. start to make their music unique to each performance, but it’s tiny differences. And the 99 percent of the performances it’s the same performance, but just slightly better over time.

Tim Melanson: Yeah. Well, they get better over time, but also the crazy part of it is that. Really, as a performer, you’re the one that gets bored of doing the same thing over and over again, but the reality of it is that the audience actually, I don’t know how many times I’ve heard someone say, well, if you just want to hear us play it exactly like the record, why don’t you just play the record?

That’s exactly what they want to hear. [00:11:00] They want to hear it. Like they hear it in their head so that they can sing along with it. They can be part of that experience. Right, bro. That’s why I’m here. It’s us that feels weird about playing it the same way that the record plays it, but that’s what the audience wants to hear.

And really when it comes down to it, that’s what your customer wants to hear too. They want to hear the best version of it. And so you have to keep playing the best version of it over and over again. Why would you try to do it differently? And maybe not as good because that’s not going to come across to your audience the same way, right?

Robert Brill: 100%. So that’s a nice leeway into the marketing component, because guess what? You say the same thing over and over again

Tim Melanson: in marketing and it works. So let’s talk about the difference between an audience and then fans, right? Because the audience, I mean, Hey, let’s call it like it is today’s world.

The audience is very easy to find. They’re everywhere on social media. But how do you change that audience member into a fan to someone that’s going to buy your merch, right? And that’s going to come to your show more often. And, you know, in your business, that would be someone [00:12:00] that actually buys from you, right?

Robert Brill: combination of compelling stories and repetition. I mean, that’s it. Like when you hear radio commercials, the common trick is, you know, you say the phone number three or four times, so you say it in the jingle, so it’s easily memorizable.

So part of advertising, you know, when the advertising and marketing world was purely about like television. When you talk about gross rating points, you’re talking about the combination of reach and frequency. How many individuals saw the commercial and how many times did those individuals see it? And so you’re looking at frequencies of like three, five, seven, nine per week.

If you want to grow a new business, you’re essentially describing the human experience. What do humans like repetition? They like something that they understand. And if it’s good, they want to hear it often. Because it’s good.

And so, as marketers, we have to understand the fundamentals of human behavior. Now, I’m not a psychologist or psychiatrist. I’m just observing what I think is common across human [00:13:00] behaviors. So, as a marketer then, your goal as a marketer is to find the best version of you.

Which, by the way, should be your goal as a human being anyway. What’s the best version of you? How do I achieve that? So, as a business, you find the best version of that business, the best way to describe the intricacies of that business in a way that’s compelling to people. And once you figure out compelling, which in parentheses is called product market fit.

Like when people know what you have and they want to buy it from you, that’s product market fit, and then you scale that up and do that exponentially more in more different channels and more different ways in ways that stick to that main or fundamental truth about your business. And that’s how you grow a business.

Tim Melanson: So would it be safe to say that, like, let’s just say you have a social media channel, would you continue to run the same ad over and over again, or do you need to be creating new ads all the time?

Robert Brill: Yes, to both. So here’s a frame getting by. Self prepared here for this. Cause this is [00:14:00] a common theme that we talk about because it’s exceptionally accessible to every business.

Number one, don’t boost posts on Facebook because that’s a waste of money and time. There’s no strategy. You’re not getting the effectiveness that you need. You don’t need likes, comments, and shares. What you need are sales. You need to keep your accounting team busy. So this is an effort to drive sales, not likes, comments, and shares.

So when you talk about sales. This is a method that works on Meta for the last three, four years. And this is not just me saying it. if you want to understand how Meta talks about this, search for Meta performance five, it tells you how they want you to work with the platform for advertising.

Tim Melanson: Okay.

Robert Brill: So there’s three steps here. Step one. Broad targeting age, gender, and location, serve up ads to as broad of an audience as you have. So for example, my business, we serve agencies because in some cases we’re a white label for outsourced ad buying for agencies. And we work with businesses, but let’s say there’s [00:15:00] 40, 000 agencies around the country and there’s 80, 000 people who can work with us, right.

Two people from each company. We target the entire United States. Men and women, age 25 to 65, because that’s generally the age of the people that we can work with. That’s 140 million people that are eligible to see our ads. And we’re not spending millions of dollars a month on advertising. We’re spending very little relative to that million dollars.

But here’s why we continue to generate leads that turn into business. Meta is really good at routing your ad creative. To the people who are most interested in that message. It has 10 or 20 years of data on most of us. And it tracks data all across the web and across apps. So it knows what we add to cart and what we abandon cart on.

So it has the ability to really hone in on what a person is interested in, what they do for business, what they’re about to buy and serve up an ad to those people. So that’s step one, broad [00:16:00] targeting, age, gender, and location. Step two. Is going back to your earlier question about creative, you’re doing a creative testing framework.

The fundamental idea is if you have an ad that is an all star ad that is continuing to drive leads or sales for your business for the next two years. Let it ride. How do you find that all star ad is you do creative testing. So the process is very accessible. All you got to do is create five ads a month on Facebook, Facebook plus Instagram as a single inventory source.

An ad is comprised of a headline at the bottom image or video in the middle and primary texts at the top. So you’re going to create five of those. When you. Combine 15 different elements in all kinds of different ways.

You have a total of 125 different ads. We’re not going to run 125 different ads because that’s a ton of money and a waste of time. But you’re going to use science, control, and variable testing, powered by Meta’s [00:17:00] algorithm, to find out which of those elements are the absolute best. And that’s how, over the course of a month, you’re going to understand, out of 125 different ads, Which one is the absolute best?

As you start to do this, the third step of this is the feedback loop. advertising is a real time feedback loop. It tells you what customers want from you right now. You are training Meta’s machine learning algorithm to find your best customers. What that means over time is your all star ads will indicate to the business.

Which product and service offer in discount, which creative executions and which audiences resonate with the business. That’s how you scale up meta advertising. And once you have that all star team of ads, a few of them are going to just go wild for you for years, because you are training meta to understand who your customers are, and you’re giving it sufficient creative [00:18:00] assets to really run.

So you’re leveraging the power of meta. You’re giving it content in the form of ads. And that’s how you scale up a meta advertising account to millions of dollars profitably.

Tim Melanson: Hey, Rockstar. I hope you’re enjoying this episode of the Work at Home Rockstar podcast. If you didn’t know already, my business is Creative Crew Agency.

We build websites. Now let’s talk about your website for a minute. Most people realize that at this day and age, we need a website, but we don’t really know what the website is supposed to do. And sometimes you’ll just go and build a website for the sake of building a website. What I do is I make sure that your website actually accomplishes a goal.

Now, there are three main goals to most websites. Number one is to provide information and build credibility. Number two is to schedule some sort of appointment and get them on onto a sales call. Number three is to sell something like an e commerce site. Now, when you’re setting your website, you have to be very mindful that the visitor doesn’t know what to do.

And so you have to provide them with a roadmap [00:19:00] that leads them down a path to wherever you want them to go. On my website, I want them to be on a free consultation. So that’s why when you go to creativecrewagency. com, you’ll see information about scheduling a free consultation. Now, for you though, I’m going to provide you with an extra link so that you can get your free website audit.

Go to creative crew agency. com forward slash free website audit and schedule an audit with me. And I’ll go through your website live and determine what we can do to improve your conversions and make sure that you’re getting the business from your website. Go to creativecrewagency. com and we’ll see you there.

Robert Brill: Yes. That’s different than ads is what you’re saying. Okay. So let’s talk about that. So by the way, everything that I just described, I have in a 13 minute video. It’s on our website. All you gotta do is email Robert at Brillmedia. co and I’ll send it to you.

So, here’s a challenge with boosting posts. Boosting posts is ads, by the way. The definition of advertising for anyone listening is you are paying [00:20:00] a publisher or some inventory owner for access to deliver a message to its customers. Okay. So people don’t realize that boosting post is ads.

Oftentimes the incentive, the thinking is sort of like backwards. Remember how I said the creative testing framework will find your best ad out of 125. It’s a meritocracy. People boosting posts usually say, Hey, I created the message. I created the post. Might as well get eyeballs on it. But what if that post is one of the 124 that isn’t your all star?

Now you’re just spending a bunch of money to deliver a suboptimal message. And now you’re spending hundreds of dollars a month or thousands of dollars a month just like poking around saying, Hey, let’s just serve this ad. But each of those messages that you’re boosting, there’s usually very little strategy to it because what you want is a concerted effort that will actually grow your [00:21:00] business.

And that’s fundamentally the difference between running ads through like Meta Business Suite or Meta Business Manager and boosting a post. There’s no real strategy to it. You have far fewer tools to actually make those insights work for you. So if you have a thousand dollars a month, like to work with us, 1, 500 a month, 1, 000 goes to advertising, 500 comes to us to manage it.

And you can actually be very effective with a strategy because that’s what actually works. We do everything in digital. Google, LinkedIn, TikTok, ads on Hulu and Paramount Plus and Roku and Out of Home and Pandora and Spotify.

What I’m actually here to do is make advertising strategic so that it grows your business so you’re not wasting money so you can have the freedom that I have in my business to live the life the way you want to live.

Tim Melanson: I’m doing here. Awesome. Wow, that’s amazing. I’m going to have to listen to that over and over again, I think, too, because that’s a really, really good, clear messaging on how to do this.

So, [00:22:00] okay. And you even talked about a little bit about the cost because I mean, that’s the next. I think a lot of people sort of have this idea that it’s going to cost a bunch of money, or you have the opposite. People are throwing money at stuff that’s not working. So, yeah, I think you kind of dug into that a little bit already.

But how do we make sure that money that we’re putting in is actually getting us return?

Robert Brill: Yeah, absolutely. First of all, you have to have the right goals.

Do you even know how you get revenue into your business? What is generating your sales? So what we advocate for and what we do for our clients is we start with a strategy. What do you want to accomplish in the next 12 months? And where do you want to be in five years?

Do you want money in the bank? Do you want headcount? Do you want prestige? Do you want to be in like your trade publications on the cover? Like, what are you actually working for here? Do you want to, you know, like me? I want to go to 40 Dodgers games with my child. [00:23:00] What are we working for here? So that’s what we want to understand first.

The second thing we want to understand is sort of like the basic foundational elements of your business. Like why do people buy from you? What’s the transformative value? What are the economics around your customer? What does it cost typically historically to acquire a customer? What’s the lifetime value of your customer?

How do you upsell them or do you even upsell them? What is your sales process look like? If we’d send you a lead? Do you have the infrastructure to take a boatload of leads and actually convert them into sales? Yes or no. A lot of companies don’t, but it’s a different practice.

How do we know when we’re talking to your ideal customer? By the way, what’s your ideal customer look like? What searches do they do on Google? So an example would be if you’re a flower shop, it’s very easy to identify when someone wants to buy flowers because they go on Google, they search flower shops near me, and then they buy stuff.

So it’s very, then very basic. It’s a very basic one to one match. Run ads on Google to get people to buy flowers from your shop. Very [00:24:00] simple. Usually companies have far more complex. Purchase habits and rhythms, and we want to understand that, discover that, and then create an advertising plan to achieve the business goals.

And the part that we bring in is we extract that information because we know the questions to ask. And secondly, what we do is we put together that plan that will achieve their goals. Now, what we’re doing here is we are actually setting up yet another testing framework because our belief is that business is iterative.

Thank you very much. You get 1 percent better every day. You’re 37 times more affected by the end of the year. And it’s the same with advertising and marketing. Like, you know, 45 percent of all advertising in 2024 is going to run on Google and meta. So chances are your ads are probably going to need to run on Google and meta.

So if I run on Google and meta and Hulu and banners, I’m looking for overall business performance. We know how to judge when a platform is effective and when it’s not effective for the business. [00:25:00] We know how to make recommendations to where you should increase budgets on meta and or lower budgets on Google or vice versa.

So we’re constantly refining. The places that we run ads, we’re refining the creative executions, we’re refining the targeting audiences so that you’re constantly getting just 1 percent better every day. And that’s how you grow a business because you really need that strategic input. And the heartbreaking problem is too many business owners don’t realize that they think they’re going to do it themselves because we’re all familiar with how to do a Google search.

But it’s very different to actually go to the back end of the platform, use the tools and data effectively to grow your business. So your question is, how do you ensure you get more out of advertising than you put in? You start with a strategy.

You then become very effective at the implementation. You set up a testing framework to understand what works and what doesn’t. And you consistently iterate. So you get 1 percent better every day. [00:26:00]

Tim Melanson: Okay. And then you mentioned some tools, like, are there some tools that you use to see this success?

Robert Brill: So, you know, the tools that we use are visualization platforms, we use a visualization platform called Datorama, which is owned by Salesforce. Which gives our clients insight into how their advertising campaigns work at all times. So if at two in the morning, you have a hankering for data, you’re going to get access to that and you’ll be able to look at, make analysis of it, but we’ll do the reporting for you,

But if you have something in a pinch and you need it. You can see it and you can drill down into the audience as to understand a big part of our success internally. It’s like we communicate on Slack for creating content. I’m a big fan of a tool called Descript. So Descript is AI. You’re familiar with it.

AI. I use it. Yeah. I use it too. I really enjoy Descript. Organizing ideas. And to collaborate with my team asynchronously, we have been on Trello, we’re moving slowly to Notion because I think Notion is a far more versatile tool. [00:27:00] Yeah. And you know, we, our CRM is on HubSpot and I think HubSpot is a really good platform because when you have no revenue and you don’t want to spend any money on customer relationship management tools, there’s a free version of HubSpot that’s really good.

What I encourage all business owners to consider is be a technology tinkerer. And that can come from AI, like, we love using chat GPT, we created a chat agent to make our copywriting more effective. Use tools to make your business faster, to accelerate your work. But don’t use AI, for example, to replace people.

Because it’s not there yet, it may never be there yet, and fundamentally, People buy from other people.

Tim Melanson: Yeah. So we use very similar tools. I mean, I’m using HubSpot to script and Slack actually. I use monday. com as well, though. So I think that might be the Trello thing is, is in Monday. And I agree with both AI is a great companion [00:28:00] and it is a tool, but it’s not going to replace.

You plug something in there and you’re like, Ooh, that doesn’t sound like a person at all. But you can use it to like, I mean, what I love to use to, chat to GPT for is to shorten things like, Oh, I need it to fit in this little spot. I say, Hey, can you rewrite this in, you know, X characters?

And it’s great at doing stuff like that.

Robert Brill: Right. Really good at that. We use that for research. So for example, when we write a, you know, we’re going on an SEO journey for our own business. And like, if I need to write an article on retargeting, I could give you, Seven points on retargeting on why that’s effective and beneficial for advertisers.

But what AI is going to do is organize that into like, you know, seven bullet points and probably give me an eighth bullet point I wasn’t thinking about and do all that in like 30 seconds, instead of me doing like 20 minutes of research to organize my thoughts around it. So it’s an accelerator in my opinion.

Tim Melanson: Yeah, it’s just a tool. It’s just an assistant, right? It’s not going to replace anybody anytime soon. But I agree with you a hundred percent that we [00:29:00] have to be looking at all this technology because. You better believe somebody is. So if you’re not, if you’re just kind of going like, no, God, you know, I’m doing it this way.

I’ve always done it this way. Well, you’re going to get left behind at some point. It might not be immediate. It might just be like an accumulation point. Next thing you know, five years down the line, all these people that had been like, Figuring out the tools that make their business run more efficiently will now have that advantage, right?

A hundred percent. You know, I like the word tinkering. I think tinkering is a great word because you just kind of tinker around with it a little bit and go, Oh, that’s kind of cool. And then eventually you’ll end up being a master at it, right?

Robert Brill: Exactly. And the tech is getting so much smarter by the day.

I didn’t do anything with mid journey for like three months. And when I came back to it, I was like, holy cow, these images are just absolutely amazing. Yeah. I think we’re about to see a really interesting world powered by AI and technology.

Tim Melanson: you’ll be

Robert Brill: cool.

Tim Melanson: Yeah, I agree. And you’re right. The [00:30:00] tools get so much better so fast. I mean, I think we’re both using AI that is attached to our meeting here. Taking notes, huge deal right there. And we’re, we’re using different ones. And what I’ve noticed is just over the last year, the one that I’m using, it’s called Fathom, it was actually a guest on my podcast.

That is the owner of that company. It has improved in the last year. Like I keep logging into the back office and going like, Oh, it can do that. It can integrate with HubSpot. Now it can integrate with Slack. I’m like, that’s cool. Right. And it just gets better at transcribing your stuff.

Yeah, about five years ago is when I think I started seeing these transcriptions coming through and it was terrible. But now it’s getting pretty good at figuring out most of what I say. So, you know, as time goes on, it’s just going to keep getting better and better.

Robert Brill: There’s a theoretical physicist. His name is Michio Kaku. He talks about the different types of civilizations that exist in the universe or et cetera. And he says. The [00:31:00] jobs of the future. So I think the jobs of the present are the people who are going to be the people who tend to machines.

Right. And if you think about advertising or think about like. Flying like in an aircraft, you need pilots and co pilots, but the majority of the heavy lifting quite literally is done by the airplane and, you know, the takeoff and landing are the most crucial parts. And that’s when you need people there, but most of the flight is done by auto crews or whatever it is on the, Plane itself,

Tim Melanson: tenders to the machine.

And what you just said there is exactly how I use some of these chat tools. The takeoff I do, and I do the landing, I do the end part, but in the middle, the AI kind of takes control of the middle part, right? And then, you know, I just have to make sure that I give it the right inputs. And then when I see the output, I massage it a little bit to make sure it’s right.

Exactly. So let’s get into your guest solo. So tell me what’s exciting your business right now. Yeah. You know,

Robert Brill: we are going through another round of standard operating procedure [00:32:00] improvement. I’m really excited about it because I’ve learned about myself when I want to fall back to something that feels good to me.

I fall back on systems and processes. So going back to that moment where we found out that standard operating procedures exist. We’re now in a moment where we’re trying to level up to that exponential growth phase. And that’s going to come from the output of a strong standard operating procedure. And a lot of that includes just.

Understanding the intricacies of the business differently, understanding what we’re calling, what we’ve been told is like growth engines and value engines. The idea is what does it look like when we grow our business? Like what are the actions that happen? And when we fulfill on. What we sell, what does the fulfillment look like?

So even having those visualizations is very important. And then mapping out the processes and steps for each of the constituent parts there. So I’m really excited about that. What I’m doing, that’s with a company called scalable. co, [00:33:00] which. It’s a really cool system.

And we’re really fortunate that we have clients that stay with us for six, seven years at a time, and we’re looking to

Tim Melanson: expand. Okay. So let’s get into, I’m wondering if I wanted to do some advertising, I want to up level my game in advertising. This is your business, right? I’m wondering, is there anything that I should do to, you know, beforehand, like get ready, you know, try some things out first before I go contact you, or do I just contact you right away?

Like, is there something that I could do to make things easier or more efficient to work with you?

Robert Brill: I would advocate just reach out to the expert immediately. Over time, what you need to understand is how your business grows and what are the levers that your advertising agency pulls to grow your business.

Like the way we operate is we’re very transparent and the more you know about the work we’re doing, it really just turns into more client satisfaction. They understand how hard we’re working and the intricacies of how we’re working for them. We’re never about a black box, [00:34:00] opaque system.

Like we don’t work like that because we want you guys to know What’s going on with your business in particular. So what you do need to kind of like start to make decisions on is what type of marketer do you want to be? Do you want to be the type of marketer that outsources it? Which there’s a really strong argument for that.

Do you want to be the marketer who will want consultation? Talk to me or someone else for a few hours. We’ll give you ideas, but then you’re going to go implement it. Or are you going to try to build a team in house, whether you hire people or hire freelancers. And there’s pros and cons to each. I think the challenge with freelancers fundamentally is that you don’t really have process with them and they can bounce on you at any moment.

Even though if you find good ones, I’m sure they’ll stay with you for a long time. What you don’t want from marketing and advertising is people off in a corner doing things on their own. You need redundancy. You need people to check their work. You need people to have supervisory [00:35:00] review. And in our case, in our business, you know, account managers review the work.

A strong component of our success is the fact that we just have many people, many eyes on the same piece of business from many different perspectives, which gives a much more holistic view. So like you can get millions of dollars of assets in terms of knowledge, experience, tools, et cetera. We’re like hundreds or thousands of dollars a month in fees to us.

Tim Melanson: Well, one thing that I really do like about this conversation with you, as opposed to some of maybe the secondhand conversations that I hear from people working with advertising agencies or marketers is that you’ve mentioned the word sale like a million times versus traffic. Right. A lot of marketers talk about, well, I’m just going to get traffic to your website.

And that doesn’t necessarily put money in my pocket. Right. And I noticed that you did use the word sales. I don’t even know if you’ve used the word traffic once, [00:36:00] right. In this conversation, which is really, really important. I think for anybody who was listening to this going, like, I’m looking at an advertising agency.

Sales is what you want, not traffic, right? Maybe traffic might lead to sales, but really it comes down to the right kind of person looking at your stuff. Right.

Robert Brill: I’m a firm believer that you really want to work with other entrepreneurs. Like the challenge with big agencies, and I know this firsthand because I’ve experienced it is my first agency job was at University of McCann.

And you know, my job there was to just not mess up and to learn stuff. I knew nothing for the first six months I worked there. I did not even understand the role of the different companies that we were working with. It took me six months to figure all that out. And so the job was really repetitive.

Whereas for us, we hire people with at least seven years experience up to 20, 22 years. And the benefit there is you’re going to have answers to questions before you even ask the question. So you want to work with people who understand what it feels like. And [00:37:00] companies who understand what it feels like when your bank account is on the line.

And that’s a very big decision. That’s the key differentiator there. So tell me, how do we find out more about

Tim Melanson: you?

Robert Brill: Yeah. So our website is brillmedia, B as in boy, R I L L media dot C O. There’s a start now button.

Tim Melanson: Love it. Thanks Tim. Appreciate it. To the listeners, make sure you subscribe, rate, and comment. We’ll see you next time on the Work at Home Rockstar Podcast.

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