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Category ArchiveDigital marketing

Google Winter Wonderlab

How I expanded my business from Sacramento to San Francisco

Nutshell ver 3.0: 3 years in 60 seconds

Che and Sergey Brin at Wanderlust Tahoe

DC founder CT and Google co-founder Sergey Brin in Tahoe.

A week before Halloween in 2013, I found myself flying to Las Vegas courtesy of Google. A few weeks later I was helping Google test the waters in retail space at Google’s Snowglobe. When the party was over and the Google gig began fading away in my rear view mirror, I headed up to Lake Tahoe where I ran into Google co-founder, Sergey Brin. We had a brief and inspired engagement about international food and where he could find some. This auspicious event triggered me to get back on the Google train, which I did and promptly.

Today, I’m preparing to take my Google game to Oakland and San Francisco to meet with some major players in the 501(c)3 space. That may sound mundane, but trust me – it’s anything but routine.

Google Explores Retail

In 2013, Google took a serious pitch at entering the retail game, albeit late when compared to their rival, Apple. Sure, they had endcaps at Best Buy, but this pitch would be much stronger than setting shop up under somebody else’s tent.  Enter Google’s pop-up shop, aka Snowglobe. This effort required some 200+ trained Google Specialist to keep the shops running smoothly across the country from New York to Los Angeles.

As the week-long training came to a close, the prospect of failing the final exam was nerve-racking. Had I come this far only to fail and be left behind by one of the world’s most successful companies in tech? Hell no. I passed with a relatively low score of 97%, but it worked for me.

On my flight home, I thought about all the endless possibilities before me. Could I land a gig at Googelplex? How would I handle the commute from Sacramento? Were there other ways to get on but stay in Sacramento? Could I be a Google marketing manager at Best Buy? Did I really want to work at Best Buy? Who did I know at Google? All that I knew for sure is that this was just the beginning of a long-term relationship and I was betting big all on Google.

As I wrapped up my last shift on Christmas Eve, I felt triumphant but also knew that I had to figure out how to continue working with Google. As luck would have it, three months later, Google launched a program called “Google Partners.” I jumped in hook, line, and sinker. This was exactly what I needed to keep my Google “juice,” fresh and not allow my recent experience to fade to black.

Getting Googley

Vince Vaughn never gave up, we don't either.

Vince Vaughn never gave up, we won’t either.

Google Partners are tested and certified by Google as competent ad specialists, (AdWords).  Their ad system is fairly complex and requires serious studying and hands-on use before becoming an adept user. By 2016, I was managing Google Ad campaigns for the Sacramento Public Library, the Sacramento Zoo, The Crocker Art Museum, The California Nurse Practitioner’s Association, The Sacramento Philharmonic and others.

As 2016 came to a close, I began working more and more with nonprofits. My job evolved to help them leverage Google For Nonprofits and Google Grants, both of which are well suited for management by Google Partners.

 

The Takeaway

After three years and three months of working on Google stuff, the upshot is that it’s super critical to know your stuff better than the next person. After that, keep your professional relationships alive with regular communication. Lastly, realize innovative ways to apply what you’ve learned and carve out a new niche market if you can.

Know your stuff better than the next person. Communicate regularly with your network. Carve out a niche market.

Within 24 hours, I will be expanding my services into Oakland and San Francisco’s financial district. The players at the table have budgets beyond my wildest imagination. I’m not trying to get rich here, I’m trying to make a living and provide nonprofits with value added services that put money and results back in their pockets.

I like to tell clients that my goal is to help them realize a 10-to-1 return on investemt. For every dollar they spend with me, they get ten back.

As an aside, I was approached by Wanderlust management after I was spotted walking around with Sergey. They asked me if I knew how to get in touch with Google so they could present a proposal. Yes, I answered and dug into my digital Rolodex. I shot off some emails and made a few phone calls to Googlers I knew. Long story short, Google ended up being on-site the next year with Google Play Music. Below is the video they produced from this experience. My job often feels like a connector or people and ideas which often leaves me outside looking in. Lucky for me, I’ve got a memory like an elephant. Even better, I’ve finally developed a niche service for a huge market and I barely have to leave home to meet with my new clients, and besides all that – I love San Francisco and Oakland.

 

 

 

Google Grants Sacramento

How-To Guide To Google For Nonprofits

According to Google, the tech giant has given $100,000,000 annually to nonprofits around the world in investments and grants every year since 2014. As a Google Partner, a big part of what I do at DC is to help nonprofits process their grant applications, setup their new AdWords accounts, install Google Analytics on their websites so I can analyze what’s working, what’s not and how to maximize clients’ advertising efforts with Google.

Organizations need more insights, not more data

Here is the outline of the process a 501(c)3 will experience when engaging the Google Grant process.

APPLY

The application process is a straightforward process. In late 2016, Google brought San Francisco nonprofit specialist, TechSoup aboard to review applications to the Google Grant system. Although the exra layer of security is more than what was required previously, it’s still a fairly simple action and should take no longer than 15 to 20 minutes to process. Click here to get started: https://www.google.com/grants/.

INSTALL ANALYTICS

Google Analytics is a very powerful application that users install on their website. If you’re using WordPress, there are some great plugin’s to make this process super simple. Here’s a full list of Google Analytics plugins for WordPress sites: https://wordpress.org/plugins/search.php?q=google+analytics.

This application will help you understand who is visiting your site, how they found the site, what keywords are being used and how frequently, when users visit, how long they stayed, what they clicked, and even more complex data depending on how diligently your webmaster or Google Partner setup your analytics system.

What Google Analytics does

  • Provide data on bounce-rates. If a lot of visitors to your site leave after visiting only one page, that’s going to be reflected in your analytics as bounce-rate. Poorly designed site with little relevant content are the most common cause of high bounce rates.
  • Helps webmasters identify new markets by providing detailed data on demographics.
  • Understand users’ behavior, (flow), with a graphical display. The more you understand what your users are doing on your site, the better you can arrange and create content and calls-to-action to heighten those actions.
  • Provide key data on trends. A good Google Partner can look at your site’s analytics and provide keen insights to trends. From day-to-day, week-to-week, and month-to-month, it’s critical to see the big picture and make adjustments to enhance your site’s engagement with users.
  • Identify traffic sources. One of the easiest and most useful metrics to understand with Google Analytics is traffic source. Whether it’s Facebook, or Twitter, organic or paid search – traffic sources is easily one of the most useful data sets that you should monitor carefully.

WRITE GREAT AD COPY and then some

Once you’ve been accepted into the Google Grant system, your organization is ready to run ads, for free. Sounds pretty simple, but this is probably the most critical part of your investment into this program. Even a well-written ad will fail miserably if you have not taken the time to do some homework. Here’s a checklist to ensure that your ads will be seen, even in a competitive market where some companies may be spending upwards of $10 per click (CPC); Google Grants limits your ad budget to $2 CPC, but not to worry. A savvy Google Partner or webmaster with Google AdWords experience can help you overcome this seemingly insurmountable hurdle.

  • Money is not the key to a great ad rank with Google.
  • Google ranks ads based on the ad content AND the page on your website that it links to.
  • Do not link ads to your homepage, unless the homepage has a call-to-action directly related to the ad.
  • Create custom pages that resonate well with the content of your new ad.
  • Create unique campaigns and test variations of ads with different keywords and negative keywords.
  • Do not max out your bid (CPC) from the get-go, start small and increase your bid incrementally over a short period of time.
  • Review your Google Analytics report every morning, at the least.

A nice and short presentation that puts all of the above into a perspective you can digest, easily.

Google Grants, Sacramento for Non Profits

Google For Non Profits in Sacramento

YOU FOCUS ON MAKING THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE; DC IS HERE TO HELP.

dc-grants

Deep Creatives is a Google certified Partner agency. We help non-profits navigate the Google Grant process. Once approved, DC can help you commandeer Google AdWords and make the best use of Google Analytics to maximize your $10,000 a month gift from Google.

$349 SETUP and QUALIFY
Money-back-guarantee. No grant, no fee.

Fee includes:

Processing your org’s application with Google.
Setting up your AdWords platform.
Helping your org brainstorm ideas for ads.
Setting up your campaigns and copywriting.
Monitoring ads on a daily basis.
End-of-month performance report in plain language.

Organizations DC’s founder has managed Google grants for:

  • The Sacramento Public Library
  • Sacramento Zoo
  • The B Street Theatre
  • The Crocker Art Museum
  • The Sacramento Library
  • Assoc. of Nurse Practitioners
  • CA Capital Financial Development Corp.


Using Google Grants 101

Advertising Burning Man Style

Burning Man Videos and Fiya

Original post: September 6, 2016
Edited: September 19, 2016

Burning Man is arguably the most fantastic display of human ingenuity and art and architecture and music and high vibes. Over the years, many inspired videos have emerged and 2016 was no exception. DC’s mashup includes a remix of a 2015 live dj morning set at the Pink Mammoth party.



“Sunrise at Burning Man,” is a mashup featuring moments from Burning Man 2015-2016. It was published on Youtube on August 31, 2016. It was simultaneously published on Facebook as a native video, (embedded), under the title, “BM Playa Temple Love mashup-remix 2016.” As of September 6, 8:20 a.m. PDT – 7,502 views have been clocked on Youtube. Credits to

The Christina, burning boat on the playa in Black Rock City, Nevada.

Burning Man proves timing is everything in digital marketing.

Imagine my surprise today when YouTube reflected more than 7,000 views.  Am I cheating with smart hashtags or backlinks or simply asking friends to like and share? No. My “cheat,” was in the timing. Sounds like something I read in Sun Tzu’s, “The Art of War.”

The days when brands could buy their way into markets are behind us. The paramount key to great marketing today is no longer shrink-wrapped, slick or glossy. Nay. Those qualities will kill your brand fast as a millennial can swipe left on a beat troll on Tinder.

Virtually all adults and most teens are armed with oceans of real-time info about anything because Google. It’s best not to risk your company and brand’s digital rep by veering off the course set by authenticity. Successful brands keep their messages authentic and time their launch dates.

Three mantras of authentic marketing

  • organic relationships, (not paid)
  • legit shit, (really good product(s))
  • culture as a brand

 

Keep Calm and Keep it Stupid sign

Rule #1, KISS.

Brands cannot buy this stuff. They try, but reputation and authenticity are not items a brand can simply purchase. They can only build it from and with some metaphorical and real sweat equity. Much of the time, that’s all a small boutique agency has.

 

Agencies continue to bamboozle their clients into spending more money on storytelling, even if the story isn’t completely true. Doubt this? You spent about $700 on your last smart-phone. So tell me, what’s your phone’s story? Crickets, I hear crickets.

The answer to succeeding in brand building, marketing, advertising and ultimately sales and brand loyalty is genuine, old-fashioned, authenticity and nothing communicates that like video.

 

Hello Story-Doing

Broadcasting stories is falling flat on all mediums. What to do? How are you gonna get your story out there and heard, and acted upon? Try shining a bright light and speak to the medium of people. In other words, give the people what they want.

Hello Video

Video is the premier channel that all great marketing campaigns seek to leverage.  Smart  phones have become the great equalizer, putting the power of video into the hands of “everyday people.” Apple’s story-doing campaign, “Shot on iPhone,” is captivating audiences with aspirations that maybe they can “GoPro,” to steal a mantra from another camera brand.

It’s an elegantly simply call-to-action: buy an iPhone, make great videos. Will that translate to clicks and shares and brand building? Maybe, maybe not. What I discovered is elegantly genius, in our pursuit of making videos “work.”



Case Study

DeepCreatives has been developing a brand in Lake Tahoe called Tahoelove. The brand is a conglomerate of sorts, blending information about the stuff that makes Tahoe magical: mountain bike trails, outdoor festivals, concerts, skiing info, apres ski, fun vibes and of course the very lake itself. With a mere 350 likes on Faecbook as of this posting, it’s not exactly registering on anybody’s social media richter scale. But this fact goes to show the sheer power of doing video right. If I’ve got 300 odd likes on a FB page, how is it generating thousands of impressions? That’s right, sharing and liking. And that’s not easy to buy, but when it’s organic, i.e., word of mouth, well, it’s hard to stop.

Timing is Everything

Last week, as friends began showing up at Black Rock City, aka the Burning Man locale, large and small media outlets began teasing “stories,” about the greatest show on earth. They were all boring. An epiphany hit me. Make a mashup video for Burning Man. Tag it properly. Describe it well. Publish the shit out of it, and share it.

These guys don’t know jack about BM. They’re not burners, they’re reporters.

I threw all the “ingredients,” unto my proverbial cutting block where I edited and pieced together my final cut. At the same time, I listened to white label mashups on Soundcloud from Burning Man 2015 waiting for the perfect song. Half a day later, I finished the final cut and loaded the edit on Tahoelove’s FB page, and simultaneously on my Youtube Channel.

The first 24 hours racked up 700 views. Good. A week went by, 9,000 views on both channels. Wow. In the end, I’ve built up some brand indentity, some new Likes and subscribers on two of the biggest social channels on the web. This will go a long way, soon, as I prepare to launch a product line for Tahoelove. You can bet poles to skis, I’ll be running video for that launch.

 

Burning man accidental fire turns into epic photo shot.

Adam Pollina’s set burns accidentally.

Photo by @peterruprecht

The flames are not supposed to be there. This blazing set was created for an epic playa performance that was to be documented with photographs. Designer Adam Pollina worked for six months on it, handmaking everything in Bali, and every detail of the production was carefully planned. And yet, before the show began, the set and all the props caught on fire (no one knew why). At the last minute, photographer Peter Ruprecht yelled to the whole cast and crew to move to the upwind side of the fire and get at least one shot. “The photo is, to me, proof positive of perseverance through disaster…,” Ruprecht says. “IT BECAME ONE OF MY FAVORITE photos ever.” | #burningman #blackrockcity #brc

 

Founder of DC wins 1st Place at Palace of Fine Arts: Teton Gravity Social Media Contest

Big Mountain Movie Further with Famous Truckee Mountaineer, Jeremy Jones

Deep Creative’s founder, CT, took first place in a social media contest by delivering the most paid attendees at a movie premier in San Francisco’s, Palace of Fine Arts.

(TGR), had completed post-production for their latest trilogy and big mountain snowboard movie – Further. Instead of dropping wads of cash on advertising, they did something unique for the time; they held a simple contest using Facebook and Twitter. The contestant delivering the most paid attendees won.

This unique opportunity to go head-to-head with San Francisco’s best and brightest was met with some trepidation, after all, this entire event and contest was held at ground zero of the digital revolution and marketing capitol of the world. But when the first week’s results were published, DC’s founder had inched out the top spot by several tickets. Week two came and it was all hands on deck;  DC pulled out all the stops, nabbed 1st place and kicked off an epic winter in Tahoe because of it.

Teton Gravity Research is one of the world’s most respected brands in action sports media with roots deeply planted in the ski/ride and surf spaces.

Founded in 1996 by two brothers in Wyoming, hence the name, TGR produces films with environmental messages, yet it also produces advertising for a wide range of manufacturers. The company is a key partner to organizations such as the Surfrider Foundation, Protect Our Winters, and 1% For The Planet.

Deep Creatives wins social media contest in San Francisco

Jeremy Jones at Teton Gravity’s premier of his movie, Further: San Francisco Palace of Fine Arts, 2012.

 

Videos on Facebook are King of Content

The numbers are in:  Facebook videos have quietly and quickly become the #1 most clicked content on social media.  Once upon a time, that slot belonged to photos. But photos are so 2013, and we all know what 2 years means in social media, heck, that’s like a decade.  While YouTube has stagnated, even declined in uploads, FB is growing like a weed.

This-is-TahoeLast week, I finally got around to putting the wraps on editing a life-style and sports video of all the things that I love about Tahoe. When I finished, I realized that instead of linking from YouTube, I could show my friends and connections on Facebook that I was the editor if I uploaded it to my Page.  So I did just that.  Of course, I also loaded it to Youtube, but the tools that FB gave me to track metrics were way better than they were just a few months ago.  I was sold.  Personally, I don’t like clicking links to Youtube from my mobile device, when I’m on FB, I kinda like to just stay there.

Read the full report from May 2015 in Business Insider: Facebook is Stealing Vast Chunks of YouTube’s Business.

If you own a business, a video could help you, a lot.  Here’s a few key things to think about when doing a video to promote your business.

  • Keep it authentic
  • Learn how to edit or find somebody who’s good at it
  • “Pin it” to the top of your FB Page aka Feature it
  • Learn how to use music effectively and make sure you have rights to it
  • Keep it short – the average time viewers watched my video was 56 seconds
  • Brand it
  • Use a Call-to-Action
  • Market it
    • Use a professional and interesting cover/intro
    • Load it on Youtube
    • Tag it and write a good description and use links
    • Load it directly into your Page on FB and tag it
    • Link/embedded on other sites
      • Twitter
      • Redit
      • Relevant Group Pages on FB
      • Youtube
      • Your website
    • Share it with close friends
    • Share it with good clients

Adam Callinan echos a few of my tips in this month’s issue of  Entrepreneur.

5 Tips for Effectively Setting Up Facebook Ads

The viral video, “This is Tahoe,” reached 20,000 eyeballs in just about 72 hours or 3 days. To be honest, that’s only 10,000 people and some 3,000 actual views with an average time spent watching of 56 seconds on Facebook.

But, and this is a BIG BUT,

The total reach and engagement was completely organic without any boost or advertising.  And not once did I ask anybody to share it. To be fair, I do run a small digital agency and have amassed a small amount of FB Pages which I manage.  And because of the organic relationships I have cultivated, it was not too difficult to find Pages that were all about Lake Tahoe. So sharing on those pages helped make the reach go big.

Below is the post on Youtube.  No effort was made to push traffic to this video vs. the one on FB because, well, I wanted to focus on social where I’d get more tread from my work.  If you want help with your next video project, feel free to contact me directly for a free evaluation of your plan and I’ll send you an outline of what I’d do if I were you.

Deep Creatives can develop your next video including script, filming and editing.

Pinterest Gallery

DC’s Pinterest gallery:




Google AdWords: Spend $125, get $125 to Match

Google AdWords 2-for-1Spend $125 on GooglAds, Get $125 Extra from Google!

Just in time for the holidays, Deep Creatives has a limited supply of $125 Google AdWords vouchers to share with select associates.  With more than 10 years experience working with Google’s ad networks, DC will provide any new client, not currently using Google AdWords, a voucher for $125.*

~ I’m in, help me get started! ~

 

 

 Google AdWords Basics: 101

  • Design an ad in just 3 minutes

  • Decide when and where your ads appear

  • Set a custom daily/monthly budget to meet your needs

  •  Set your maximum bid per click to stay in your comfort level

  • Only pay for clicks, not views, unless you want branding

  • Use Google Analytics to see what’s working, and what’s not working

  • Use REVERSE KEYWORDS to filter out clicks from unwanted similar key words

 


 

THE RULES

*   Vouchers available to customers with a billing address in the United States only.

*    One voucher per customer.

*    Must activate voucher before Dec 31, 2014

*    Ad campaigns must accrue costs of at least $125 within 30 days.

*    Credits apply to future ad costs only, not to costs accrued before the code was entered.

*    Your account must be successfully billed by AdWords and remain in good standing.