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Advertise Like a Fortune 500 Company with Brill Media’s Robert Brill

March 4, 2020

Data is the engine that runs digital advertising.

Robert Brill is the Founder and CEO of Brill Media.

Brill Media makes it possible for businesses to out-compete the largest brands in the world with the best advertising tools, data, ad inventory, automation, and optimization available in the marketplace. They help you develop expert knowledge about the elements of the programmatic ad buying ecosystem.

Learn more about how Brill Media can help push your business to new heights through data-driven advertising by listening to this episode of The Thoughtful Entrepreneur above and don’t forget to subscribe on   Apple Podcasts – Stitcher – Spotify –Google Play –Castbox – TuneIn – RSS.

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Welcome to The Thoughtful Entrepreneur Show. I'm Josh Elledge, Founder and CEO of UpMyInfluence.com. We turn entrepreneurs into media celebrities, grow their authority, and help them build partnerships with top influencers. We believe that every person has a unique message that can positively impact the world. stick around to the end of the show, where I'll reveal how you can be our next guest on one of the fastest growing daily inspiration podcasts on the planet in 15 to 20 minutes. Let's go.

And with us right now, we've got Robert Brill. Robert, you are the Founder and CEO of Brill Media. Thank you so much for joining us. Thanks, Josh, happy to be here. Now you have a great tagline and that is that

if you want to advertise like a fortune 500 private brand. Well, you may not necessarily have a fortune 500 brand budget, but you're actually able to provide a service where people are Able to advertise on platforms that may have not been accessible to them. So I'd really love to learn how you do that. The basic thesis for our business is Yeah, advertise like a fortune 500 brand without spending a fortune. Every brand that you know and love that you buy on a regular basis are using tools that provide a lot of data like hundreds of thousands of different audience segments from hundreds of partners like Oracle axiom Nielsen MasterCard, they're using algorithms are using the best inventory available in the marketplace. And these big brands have a massive advantage. And we're bringing that advantage to small and mid sized advertisers. So the ability to do things like understand where people go in the physical world and serve ads based on where we've seen them, like if you've walked into a bank of america branch, like I know you bank at Bank of America so I can with that knowledge with that signal. I can make a decision about The type of person that you may or may not be along with other factors like demographics and financial, and the things that you're searching for on the web and who your friends are in social media. And that's really valuable, sophisticated precision advertising that we're making available for small and mid sized advertisers.

Yeah. And so what's your secret? Like? How are you able to what have you done that allows you to provide this for a client?

Yeah, I mean, look, our unfair advantage is that I've been in the business for 16 years, I have an incredibly valuable network. So our Director of client services, his name is Tony price. I've known him for 20 years we went to school together, this is now the third time I've hired him. So the relationships that I have in this business have allowed our us to grow. I have incredibly valuable relationships with some of these big demand side platforms that have allowed us to get access to these tools and provide value in a way that is unheard of In the realm of small and midsize advertising campaigns, and so we've been able to scale that with our friends, our partners, the relationships we have in the business. And the best point of advice I can say is if you have a network, nurture it, grow it be a value driven provider of information to your network, and that will be paid back to you in leaps and bounds throughout your career.

Yeah, why not? Then I guess the other side of that, and this is going to sound like a dumb question, but why not just keep it all for yourself and try to do all things for everybody?

Yeah, I mean, so they're, like, I really don't have much if I don't have my network, and I don't have much if I don't have the people I work with. I mean, the you know, I'm actually going out into the marketplace right now and, and giving some stuff away for free because it's inspiring, and it's motivating and it cultivates a new idea. So right now, one of the things that I think is very interesting, as I'm on Reddit. My username is just Robert Brill. And I'm in the small business. I'm in the marketing subreddit and I'm also on Quora answering marketing questions, asking question, answering questions for people who need help with startups with the decision, when do I start marketing? How do I find my business? How do I grow my business through the use of advertising? It's talking about things like Do I have time? Or do I have money? If I have money, I do one thing, if I have time, I had to do something else to grow my business and to generate awareness. The reason I'm doing that is because number one, this is the only thing I know how to do. Like, I will never, like start a crypto business or a drop shipping business, right, like all I know is digital and programmatic advertising. And I get fueled by talking to people and understanding their business challenges and I'm realizing I have knowledge that can help people grow and I'm just giving that away because it helps me write more Things that helps me think about things differently. And certainly, it helps me provide better solutions, overall marketing solutions to our clients. So it's, it's a waste in a number of ways to just keep it off for myself, I have to share, share this stuff. I completely agree I and I really love that model. It's, you know, and, you know, for us, I think when we started the idea, and I think, especially when a lot of agency owners start, they're working as a freelancer and you know, they get a customer and the customer says, Well, hey, can you do this? And he The answer is always that Yeah, I can do that I can do anything you're gonna pay me

and I've been so but that's not sustainable. I mean, it just, you'll burn yourself out. You just you know, you're, you're you become a jack of all trades. And you know, if you're a generalist, you just, you know, there's there's some inherent challenges to just pitching yourself as a generalist as opposed to, I do these one or two or three things. things better than anybody else on the planet. And, you know, I really love that model. But you know, it solves a major problem. Think about it from the perspective of your clients, who, you know, most clients that we work with have more than one need, they have more than one problem that needs to be solved. And if I can serve as a resource and say, Well, I don't build sales funnels, but I tell you what, I've got a really good sales funnel guy that I've been working with for over a year. I trust him with my own work. He's done some exceptional work. I mean, we've, you know, I can vouch for his quality. And Matter of fact, I'll show you some examples. Let me know if you're open to an intro. Of course, you know, my funnel guy loves that. I can say that. And similarly, you know, he's, he doesn't do media. Well, we do a lot of media. So is it you know, if someone's like, Well, hey, how do I get in the press? Like, oh, man, you don't need to talk to anybody else. Let me introduce you to Josh.

That's kind of the idea, right? You've got it like, the The more, the more, you're in a position, this is what I found over the years, right. And this is exactly sort of a different way of saying what you're saying, which is, the more your position as a strategic partner and solutions provider and have a have a have a single dimension, product or service, the more you are entrenched with a customer, and the more value you bring, and the more likely you are to have a long term customer relationship.

Now, yeah. So who are like some of the people that you're in your valuable network, obviously, you're, you know, sharing business with them. And the I guess the the math on this is like, we all have our own inbound client opportunities. And so now if you have a network of people, they're all getting inbound. They're all working with clients that are on that, hopefully on the up and up. I mean, They're working with you. They're wanting to be seen and celebrated, you know, they want to get their message in front of clients. So they're they're investing in growth. That's a really hot lead for a partner.

Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, I think, I think it's just about, you know, for us, we, when we make recommendations for partners, we definitely ask, we vet to vet both ways. If the partners too small, then we don't want to, we don't want to burden our partners with partners that you know, with opportunities that aren't in their fit. So we've got, you know, at the end of the day, like we've got a duty, Our duty is to provide a strong strategic recommendation for both our client and our partners, we're recommending if it's if it's not something that we do, and so it takes a long time to vet people like it literally takes years for me to feel comfortable with someone to the point where I can say okay, now I'm just going to every time I have sex, business or every time I have social marketing business, I'm just going to throw this over to you or I have strategic business, this, you know, business and marketing, like top line strategic things, I'm going to refer them to you like

it has to be vetted. And if it's not vetted, I definitely say that it's not vetted. Yeah. Right. Right. And so in your world right now, what are some observations that you have in the advertising space? I think historically, most, particularly digital business owners, kind of look at their advertising options is, well, it's got two options. That's pretty much it, other than if you count, like, you know, email and SEO and that sort of thing. And that's Facebook and Google. We've seen a lot of evolution with Facebook over the past couple years. And so where does that leave you?

Yeah. So what we what we generally say if we if we're talking to Small client, a lot of times will say, Do you even should you even be advertising? So right the reason why a company may not want to be advertising right now is because they don't have the message down. They don't know what to say to inspire and motivate a potential customer and turn that into a sale right? So if you're spending money to amplify the wrong message, that's kind of a waste now so that's that goes back to do you have time or do you have money if you have time, and you don't have money, you want to figure out what your what what you're writing messages and what what people respond to, if you do have money, but you don't have time, so there's a fast build, you're gonna have to learn that stuff. And you're gonna have to pay for it by you know, running hunt, you know, hundreds of different creative variations and defining what message is the right message for your customers and advertising has a really good way of doing that. Now The other thing that I think a lot of customers in the mid size marketing pool are not really aware of is that you know, look you can with the same precision that you run ads on like Facebook or Google, you can run ads on Roku or Hulu or DirecTV or Amazon Fire TV, amazon fire stick or digital audio like the digital audio stream of kiss FM or power 106 you can run and target people who just bought Oreos at the supermarket last week. Yeah, it's ridiculous and then of course digitally with banners with video right look with snap with tik tok you have the ability to target very precision audiences. I think one of the most interesting things is targeting people who walked into a specific location and serving them ads because they're there at the moment and then remarketing them after they've left. And so we do that a lot with conferences so I was at the Inc 5000 pounds Friends in Phoenix a couple weeks ago, I was there with Yeah, you were

Yeah. Is that right? It was like we connected on LinkedIn. But I don't I'm not sure if we saw each other talk to each other or whatever. But yeah, I saw your anchor. I thought, Man, maybe we chatted there. I wasn't sure I was waiting for you to bring it up. I didn't want to look like a fool.

What I did is I ran ads on Facebook and banners at the conference. And I have I have a text that is beautiful. The guy says, He says, We just met yesterday. And now you're in my Facebook feed with a sponsor with a sponsored ad with an ad. Yeah, like yeah, that's brilliant. I love that. And I got so much good engagement on the ads where people were just, we're just talking about it. And so I think that's the type of precision targeting that a lot of that is not even this in the sphere of like possibility for a lot of companies and our job is not to sell. Our job is to evangelize the incredible business building opportunities that are available in the marketplace and find the right solution for the right customer.

Now, wow. So over the next, say six to 12 months, so you Congratulations on being on the Inc 5000, by the way, yeah. And so where do you go from here?

Yeah, so, um, I'll tell you over the last, you know, nine months, we've grown

beautifully. No kidding. By the way, forgive me. Let me amend my my earlier question. In 504 years in a row.

You're in 500.

Nice. No, you're you are no yeah, we're actually no,

we're on the Inc 500. This is our first time we're on the Inc 500.

Oh, congratulations. No, so I actually got in the military program. So we're not quite ready for in 5000 yet, we'll talk We hope to get it next year. But as a military veteran they every year, you apply and if you didn't make the list, but your military veteran owned business, you can apply and be a part of a contingency where they actually scholarship myself and about 20 some other business owners and we got to attend for free. Got some special time with Bob Parsons.

It's a hook up.

It's a real real

Parsons lunch. I was there too. It wasn't a lunch. Oh,

okay. Cool.

Yeah, I was sitting in that room too. That's fine. That's great. So we have a photo of you with the group, the group selfie that we did.

Yeah, I will have to check that photo. See, it's there's so much going on. It's like, you know, and especially, Robert, I mean, you're, you know, you're a marketer, you'd love to do business, obviously with a lot of folks in in at that conference. It is it's a little bit like being a kid in a candy store.


Oh my gosh, be doing something together and we could be doing something together.

Exactly. The conference was incredible. And, you know, for the this coming year where we're pushing aggressively into sales. You know, one of the things I've learned this year is that from I've sort of doubled down on the value and opportunity that emotional IQ brings and for better for worse, I don't have an incredibly strong emotional IQ. And I realized that one of the challenges we were facing was was that and so I hired Tony prize, our Director of client services, who has incredibly high emotional IQ. And he has done an incredible job of sort of developing process within our organization. every nook and cranny is his memorialize. So everyone knows what they what, what their swim lanes are. And he's just such an incredible person to manage and steward, our team and now into this year. into 2020, we're looking at much more focus on selling. We we've we invested in some tools that will help us sell better. I'm, I'm doing a lot more marketing value, you know, value driven content marketing. And so speaking engagements and so as a result, I'm like this is going to be an incredible year. Wow, wow.

Well, again, congratulations. Yeah. Congratulations. Congratulations on hitting the list. And again, you're on the web at BrillMedia.co. and Robert, who's an ideal client for you.

You know, that's kind of that's kind of a tough thing, because ideally, we want to work with agencies. What we like to do is work with agencies who do creative do video do direct response TV who do out of home, and who knows that they need to augment their business with I'm with digital and programmatic and hyper local media. And what we end up doing is in some cases where a white label so people, I've been on the phone with you now and I have someone else's email address, and they don't know about Brill media, they just know that we're on the pixel guy or whatever. I'm the digital guy. Yeah. So we like those types of relationships. Because at the end of the day, we're a we're a, we're a media activation business, for advertisers who we work with directly. You know, these are advertisers who want to build their business and who are probably spending between 25,000 and $100,000 a month in advertising, to generate sales to generate leads to get people into a specific store location to get an app download. Those are the types of clients that we work with. And I'll tell you like, the, one of the core sort of elements of our businesses, we're kind of, we're kind of like a chameleon we adopt and adapt to the circumstances that our clients need, because we have the foundational knowledge to build a lot of different types of businesses like now on people who are who are working with us. All they're really interested in is digital out of home and in a different company is interested in really low cost direct response media. And another one is really interested in just lead generation. And so the types of campaigns they bring us are those types. Like there's a we service specific fit within the larger mix that they provide. And I think that speaks to our knowledge and our versatility in the marketplace and our ability to really drive results in a variety of different verticals.

Yeah, terrific. So Robert Brill, you're the Founder and CEO of Brill Media, and you're on the web at brillmedia.co. Thanks so much for joining us. Thanks, Josh.

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