Following His Lead.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6-7

Do not be anxious about anything.

The power of a single desire of us from God. While it is often hard to grasp the fullness of this, He quickly follows up with a promise.

The peace of God… will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

The past twelve months has contained many ‘anxious’ periods, followed by a lot of change. Yet, through those periods of anxiety and change – came peace, and growth.

Every minute of it has been a learning experience, shaping me into the person I am today.

I am thankful for every moment of it.

During the summer of 2014, PayProMedia underwent a change in ownership, change in name (212 Media Studios), and change in my personal role for the company – transitioning into the CEO seat. While I am extremely thankful for the trust and guidance from the new ownership, I quickly learned that I was not the best fit for the role and future growth of the company.

Early January 2015, I stepped aside to let someone more skilled run 212 Media Studios. I have had the incredible pleasure of still being ‘part’ of 212 Media Studios, even to this day, assisting in anyway they need.

At the time of this transition, I returned to the PayProTec offices, to link arms with an incredible team and work to take huge steps in innovation and payment processing. These past five months have been filled with a lot of learning, new challenges, and the formation of strong relationships.

Yet – He made it clear that He is not done with us.

Another period of anxiety came upon Christa and I.

The peace of God… will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Through many prayers and the guidance of those wiser than us, we feel this peace. The peace, to following His leading.

This June, my wife and I will be packing up the contents of our apartment in Warsaw, Indiana, and will be transitioning across the US to the greater Phoenix, Arizona area, where I will be joining the team at Sun Valley Community Church as their Communications Director.

I am excited to bring my passions for storytelling and ministry together – to use the skills He has given me to spread His good news.

We are truly excited about this new journey in our lives. We are excited to experience a new culture, and to branch out of our comfort zone to form new relationships.

Yet, it won’t be easy. It already hasn’t been.

But the peace of God will guard our hearts and our minds. He already has.

The Real Storyteller.

Storyteller.
Easily coined as someone who tells stories.
Fiction or nonfiction. It doesn’t matter.
The storyteller is there to entertain – to keep the listeners attention.

Yet, storytellers are the new marketers.

We have seen a large shift recently. The traditional ‘push’ marketing no longer works. We cannot shove our brands and products in front of people and expect them to buy. We abused that avenue, and now consumers have the ability to ignore us. To skip the ads. To look past the signs. To pick what they want to see at every given moment.

It is no longer about the product.

We must give buyers a reason to buy our product. We must be transparent. We must show how we can help them.

We must truly tell our story.

The real storyteller? You.

Time for an Attitude Check.

“Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference” -Unknown

This little quote goes a long ways.

Attitude can make or break your day… Your week… Your life.

Yet, your attitude is set by you. It is up to you to decide how you want to live.

Take some time today to check your attitude, and adjust if needed. You will be happier because of it.

Image by SL Snyder

Bucket List

I was having lunch recently with a close friend, and we began talking about his recently formed bucket list. He shared with me some of the items on his bucket list… ranging from things that are daring and fun, to more serious notes, and potentially life changing.

While I think some people view bucket lists as a silly list that will never be attained, that is certainly not the case.

A bucket list is a valuable list to have.

It creates a list of goals to work towards – a list of dreams to strive for. It provides you something to plan for, both physically, mentally, and even financially. It helps you build fun activities and accomplishments into your life.

And then, when you accomplish something on your bucket list, you get the opportunity to cross it off, and add another.

What all does your bucket list contain?

The Importance Of Setting Goals

Dreams. We all have them.
And I am not talking about the dreams that we have at night while sleeping. I mean, the dreams of our future – where we will be in 6 months, 1 year, 5 years, and so on.

The dreams of success.
Of starting a business.
Of getting married.
Of having children.
Of retiring.
Of making $250,000 a year.

What are your dreams?
And, more importantly, how will you reach them?

Reaching those dreams is a personal success, but in order to attain that success, you need to be able to measure that success.

Setting Goals

This is where setting goals comes into play. Think of goals as drawing a map. You know where you and are you know where you want to be. At the same time, realize that traveling across country cannot happen overnight. You need to plan you journey and set goals of how far you are going to get each day to reach your destination.

The same course of action is needed for reaching your dreams.

Success in reaching your dreams does not happen overnight.
Set attainable goals for the path to help you reach your dream.

You will feel little bits of success for each goal you set, continually building until you reach your dream.

I challenge you to take 30 minutes and write out 25 goals you have. Write it out. Keep it in a place of constant reminder. And, as you reach them, mark them complete, but build new ones.

Justin Wise recently posted an article with 46 of his goals. Take a look for some inspiration.

I am setting a goal to take 30 minutes and write out personal goals for myself, and I will post those here for you to see.

Will you take the challenge?

Imagine & Create A New World

I recently read a quote that sparked this post, “Legos. The toy that teaches we can imagine and create entirely new worlds.”

I grew up with legos. I love legos. I wish I could still find the time everyday to play with legos.

Why?

Legos let us leave this world for a brief period of time and travel into a world that we created. A perfect world. One that we control everything and everyone. There is no world hunger. No poverty. No sex or child slaves. It is perfect.

Imagine what you can do with legos.

Creativity, at its best.

As a new world focused on creativity and innovation, it may be time to bring legos back. This time, not just for kids, but into everyones daily lives.

It is time to imagine. Time to create. Time to dream.

Yet, lets not stop there. Lets actually do something with the ideas, dreams, and creativity.

The world will appreciate it.

What will you do?

Four Steps To Inbound Marketing Success

Many recent conversations I have partaken in revolve around inbound marketing and the differences between push (interruptive) marketing and pull (inbound) marketing. Out of those conversations, I have realized that people struggle to fully grasp inbound marketing, and often over complicate the process.

The inbound marketing methodology is a simple four step process.

Attract

Attract your potential customers to your website by generating quality content that is of interest to them. We live in the world of information, and people constantly turn to the internet to get answers. By generating content that helps educate your potential customers, you are building a level of trust with them that will cause them to return to you over and over. Promote this content to them within social media and email marketing.

Convert

With traffic coming to your website due to your content generation, it is time to capture leads by offering premium content to your viewers. Premium content tends to be slightly more advanced than what you publicly offer on your blog, and can be in the form of ebooks, whitepapers, infographics, checksheets, or videos. Throughout your blog, implement calls-to-action that attract viewers to the premium content and drives them to landing pages, where the offer is given to the viewer in exchange for simple information. Once they complete the form, they are directed to a thank you page where they gain access to the premium content, and a new lead was input into your system. Congrats!

Close

As time progresses, prospective customers in your system continue to interact with your content and digital marketing efforts. The more interaction that happens, the warmer the lead becomes. Oftentimes, a warm lead who has show continued interest in your company becomes an easy sell.

Delight

While gaining new customers is important, once someone becomes a customer does not mean the process is complete. It is now time to delight the customer and keep them happy. A happy customer means a loyal customer and a long relationship. Make sure to focus heavily on customer support and customer happiness. Evaluate every contact point with your company that a customer may have. Is it the best experience possible? If not, make it.

To learn more about inbound marketing, check out PayProMedia and HubSpot.

Inbound Marketing: No Need For Cold Calling

We’ve all experienced it. Answering your phone to an unknown voice trying to sell you on a product or service that you have zero interest in.

But wait, technology has advanced.  Now, we have caller ID to scan the call before we even answer.  Minutes after ignoring the call, we get a voicemail with the salesperson stating they will try back later.  Sure enough, they keep calling and calling, and we keep getting more frustrated.

Cold calling has been a large sales tactic for many years. With call centers located all over the world, people are paid to sit and call unknown numbers and try to sell them on the latest and greatest.

While this technique was previously effective, it is quickly becoming a way of the past.

It has come time to forget cold calling, and start calling warm leads.  With inbound marketing, generating content that people desire and find useful attracts potential customers to your website.  Once there, draw them into premium content through landing pages and calls-to-action, while providing the premium content for some simple information in return.  This lead generation technique starts to build a contact database of leads who have shown interest in your company.

As time progresses, and prospective customers continue to interact with your digital marketing, your leads become warmer and warmer, without even picking up the phone. When a prospective customer becomes a warm enough lead, it is then time to follow up with the lead via phone or email, but have a connection and starting point with that lead already.  They know you.  They know your company.  They have shown interest in you.

Does it get better than that?

People are no longer frustrated at your brand because you kept annoying them with consistent phone calls, but rather, they reached out to you first because they need you.

Stop being interruptive, and start pulling.

To learn more about inbound marketing, check out PayProMedia and HubSpot.

Inbound Marketing Using Social Media

The introduction of social media into the digital world changed how people use the internet. Prior to social media, people went online for short periods of time to do research and gather the information they were looking for. With social media, people spend a considerable amount more time ‘connected’ to the digital world. They are constantly refreshing their feeds to get the latest scoop, often spending hours every day online.

This change has brought about an interesting twist in marketing over the past several years. Companies started changing their mindsets to think, “Where does our target audience spend their time?” The answer for many, social media.

At PayProMedia, we view social media marketing as an integral part of our inbound marketing strategies. Inbound marketing centers on the idea of generating relevant content that is helpful to your target audience and using that content to attract prospective leads.

So, where does social media fit with inbound marketing?

Social media is a critical avenue in promoting and sharing the content you have generated. Remember earlier when we talked about going to where your audience spends their time? Take your relevant content to them, and promote it on the platforms where they are spending their time.

Here are a couple of things to keep in mind when promoting content on social media:

Optimize for the platform

It is important to optimize your posts for each platform. The way you promote content on Facebook will be different than how you promote it on Twitter. Each platform is unique, and draws users for different reasons. Appease those different reason by tweaking your content to fit appropriately.

Use a platform to track your link click rates

There are many tools available that allow you to track clicks on a URL you promote. This allows you to review analytics of your content promotions and to tweak your content and methods to see what may get a better click-through rate. Oftentimes, the tool also shortens the URL, making it more user friendly.

If relevant marketing is important to you and your business, take the time to develop a solid inbound marketing strategy and use social media marketing effectively. It may seem like a large increase in work, but it will help your business succeed in the long run.

If you are interested in learning more about inbound marketing and social media marketing, please check out PayProMedia.

FREE Mobile Marketing Solution – Give it a try!

PayProMedia is doing great things! I am always excited to walk into the office every day and see new ideas coming into action.

One of the latest items is TxtConnect! TxtConnect is a mobile marketing SMS platform that allows you to connect with your customers in an avenue that is close to them – their pockets! Mobile marketing with TxtConnect allows for marketing to your audience through SMS text messages that are sent directly to their cell phone…

The best part, its free!
Check it out now at mytxtconnect.com and let me know your thoughts!