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Supporting image for Reflections on MAICON: 4 Agency Owners Weigh In
4 Agency Owners Reflections on MAICON
AI Agent

“Four marketing professionals walk into an AI conference…” That’s not the start of a bad joke, I promise! But I was recently joined by three colleagues, who all traveled to Ohio for the recent Marketing AI Conference (MAICON), and we sat down to chat after about what we learned, how we plan to implement AI in our businesses and for our clients, and our predictions for the future of AI. Shout out to Andy Crestodina, Brooke Sellas, and Ron Callis for taking the adventure with me.

Interview Summary

  • Rich, Ron, Brooke, and Andy discussed their experiences at the marketing artificial intelligence conference. They shared their goals and takeaways, including the importance of AI in their respective businesses and the potential for AI to enhance efficiency and creativity.

  • They discussed their experiences at the MAICON conference where they discovered various AI tools for their businesses. They were particularly interested in tools for data analysis, AI-assisted writing, and creating prompts, and expressed a desire for a simpler prompt library solution.

  • They discussed their plans to implement AI in their respective teams. They emphasized the importance of transparency, creating a state of the union address regarding AI to their teams, and removing detractors. They also acknowledged the potential for AI to enhance content marketing strategies but expressed concerns about ethics and biases associated with AI.

  • The group discussed various concerns and implications of using AI, including accuracy, ethics, bias, labor market impact, and the market for promoting services. They also mentioned the need to update agreements and develop proprietary AI models, as well as the importance of messaging AI usage to clients and building confidence in their teams’ abilities.

  • Rich, Andy, Ron, and Brooke had a lively conversation about their experiences at a conference and their plans to stay connected with the community. They discussed sharing ideas, organizing prompt libraries, and scheduling future meetings to continue their discussions. 

Full MAICON Recap Episode Transcript

Rich: All right. I am so excited for this week’s episode of The Agents of Change because I have some of my best friends here on the show with me right now. I’ve got three guests today, and these three guests make up our agency mastermind, where the four of us get together about every two weeks. I think I’ve mentioned this in one of the intros and the podcast in the past, but we get together every couple of weeks and we basically just talk about the challenges and opportunities of running a digital agency. We share ideas. We bounce ideas off each other. I strongly recommend this kind of idea to everybody out there listening, whether you’re an agency owner, or a butcher, or a rancher, or you do glass bathrooms, it doesn’t matter. Find people in your industry who you trust, and who trust you, and start a group so you can really grow your business.  

I’m just going to mention their name, I’ll ask them to give a little intro of who they are and what they do, and then I’m going to start peppering them with questions all about their experiences at MAICON, the Marketing Artificial Intelligence Conference that we all went to last week. Seeing each other in person for the first time ever. All four of us in the same room. It was epic.  

And Ron, you’re on my top left. We’ll start with you. Tell the people a little bit about yourself and your agency.  

Ron: Ron Callis, CEO and founder at One Firefly agency based here in Florida, but I have a distributed workforce throughout the US and Mexico and now the Philippines. And we cater and serve a very niche industry, a type of contractor that does technology and automation installations. I’ve been at it just under 16 years. 

Rich: Fantastic. And I’m just going to go around the horn here. Brooke, you’re next up. Tell us about your business.  

Brooke: Hey y’all, it’s Brooke Sellas, founder and CEO of B Squared Media. And we focus on social media customer service, or what we call ‘social care’, and we turned 11 this May. 

Rich: And you also have a new web-based show that you’re hosting, is that correct? 

Brooke: Yes. So I have partnered with Social Media Examiner to produce The Social Media Marketing Show, which is for agency owners and agency marketers. So definitely check it out. And Rich, thanks for the plug.  

Rich: My pleasure. And last, but definitely not least, Andy, please introduce yourself and your company.  

Andy: Rich, you and I go way back. Andy Crestodina, my company is called Orbit Media Studios. We’re based in Chicago. It’s a web development and website optimization company. This is year 20 something, and just big fan of everyone here on this episode and excited to talk about this topic, AI and marketing.  

Rich: All right. And so let’s jump into it. I do want to say, I feel so lucky and blessed to be part of this group. I really look up to all of these people for their individual skills. And if we’re the super friends, sometimes I do feel like Gleek the monkey, who really had no purpose except to hold the pail. But the bottom line is these guys are really smart and you should be checking them out and listening to them. 

So let’s jump in. We were all in Cleveland last week, very underrated US city, by the way. So I’ll start with, I’ll just keep the order going. Ron, you actually brought a couple members of your team, which none of us did. We weren’t as forward thinking as you. Besides having the opportunity of the four of us getting together in real life as a group, what did you hope to get out of the conference, especially since you brought a couple of teammates? 

Ron: Sure. So I’ve been on top of AI, maybe I came lately to the topic, but maybe since Q4 last year, and it certainly heated up in Q1 of this year. And so I felt confident pretty early on that this was going to be a game changer for the marketing industry and for the world at large. But I have a larger organization. I have a staff just over 80, and so it’s not a case where I can necessarily go in and experiment affect the change in my company. I need my leaders on board. And so I’ve been from very early on that CEO that’s pinging articles and sending it to my team, telling them this is probably going to affect us in a significant way. 

But when I heard of the conference and we actually discussed it in our mastermind, and we all agreed that we were going to attend. It was immediate for me to bring a couple of key leaders from my executive team to the conference. And even when we attend next year, I think there’ll probably be many more members of my team that we bring along. 

Rich: Fantastic. And Brooke, you do a lot more on kind of the customer service side, especially through social media. Some people might not think that really lends itself to AI. What were some of your goals or plans for the conference before you got there?  

Brooke: Yeah, so I have been toying with an AI program that we want to create, since I had an enlightening discussion with Chris Penn almost a year and a half ago now. So it’s been on my mind. And then when we went to the conference, as it pertains to CX or customer experience and social, we are not all for using bots all the time. Only a few instances really work with bots successfully right now in the social care space.  

But what I realized from the conference is that AI should be taking over 80% of what your knowledge workers do. And, from that 80% that hopefully AI will replace, you will take those hours and put it back into creative and strategy, which is the only thing that will set you apart.  

So my biggest takeaway was really focusing on the brand and the brand offerings from B Squared Media, and using AI not so much as, “yes, that program will be wonderful for our clients who use social care”, but really from an efficiency standpoint, And really figuring out from that efficiency standpoint, how to create differentiation in this space for B Squared Media. 

Rich: Nice. Andy you were, I’m not going to say late to the AI game, but you weren’t necessarily all in at the beginning of this calendar year. And then all of a sudden it seems like you surpassed us. You have this amazing slide deck that you put together. We were all super like, “Hey, how did you do that kind of thing?” For you, what was the biggest surprise or your biggest ‘a-ha’ moment during the conference?  

Andy: There were times when I was just gathering insights and ways to describe things and perspectives that I knew that I’d be able to use when teaching, because we all have to talk about this all the time now. So there were just little things that I got all over the place where it’s like, oh this fits this, I can use that here, and this makes sense and it’s a great way to talk about it.  

But there were some things where you almost heard a gasp in the audience. Ethan Malik and several other people said at different times, don’t worry about being an expert prompter, it can help you be a better prompter. Ask it how to prompt it. Here’s a spreadsheet, what should I ask you about this? Or, I’m trying to do a better job at this, what do I need to ask to find out? Or what are the best prompts if I’m trying to achieve this outcome? So I think that was an a-ha moment for a lot of people. And I tried that, but not that much.  

But Ethan downplayed the importance of being an expert prompt engineer, which everyone thinks is the job now. Because he pointed out that in fact, AI can help you with that as well.  

Rich: That’s a great point. And it’s interesting. So I still have not finished reviewing all of my notes or basically wrapping my head around everything, because of course we all have businesses to run on top of everything else.  

But one of the things I did is I started playing around with Claude and while I was trying to figure out something in Midjourney, I wasn’t getting the results I wanted. So I went back to Claude.ai and I said, look, here’s what I want to do, give me an expert prompt for Midjourney so I can do this. And there’s always a little bit of back and forth because it actually ended up giving me this really… it must have interpreted Midjourney as some sort of D&D like game.  

So the first version it gave me was so strange. I’m like, let me try that again. I’ll use the term AI image generator, got much better results. But yes, you can use these tools to make you a better prompter and to actually create the problems for you. If you’re not really sure where to get started in that, for me it was definitely an a-ha moment for sure.  

There was a lot of vendors there this year, and we talked about this. It was one of the few times I actually wanted to go talk to the vendors and the exhibitors there because the tools were new and interesting. 

Brooke, I’m just curious. Was there one tool that you saw that you were like, I’m immediately going to want to put this to use in my business, whether or not they were actually exhibiting there.  

Brooke: Yes, there were two that I followed up with. One is GlossAI, and I’m interested in this because of the podcast that you mentioned for me personally. But then obviously I could test this, be the beta tester, and then pass on to our clients.  

I just want to add really quickly, that’s one of the big things too.. They were saying, a lot of people said this not just one, that you should create an AI Council within your business, whether it’s two people or a team of people. And that AI Council should be running on an agile type of sprint, where you’re piloting and testing these tools, proving them or disproving them, and then moving forward with implementing them. That’s what I want to do with these tools.  

GlossAI was one, and essentially it could take a podcast and turn it into carousel posts, blog posts, different types of images and posts for different types of platforms, essentially saving you hours, if we’re talking about from an agency owner perspective of time for creating that client content. 

And then the other one that I was looking at was Content at Scale. But I’m remiss, and I want to talk to you and Ron eventually, about talking to the analytics AI platform that I know y’all, we’re going to demo. Because I came back home and I realized that was a real miss on my part. That’s going to be huge for reporting, which sometimes takes 30+ hours for some of our clients. 

Rich: Absolutely. Ron, did you have any specific tools that you were like, this is definitely something I’m going to want to play around with or implement, that you discovered at the show?  

Ron: Yeah, for us I’ll touch two sides of this. One is what Brooke was just referencing, which is the data analysis side. My CFO particularly, I saw him light up in ways I normally don’t see him light up, when he was looking at these really neat tools. There were a number of them on the floor and there was one session, 45 tools in 45 minutes, which was particularly awesome. And I know that he immediately, he was texting me over the weekend, Slacking me over the weekend, that he was starting to experiment with some of these data visualization and data analysis tools.  

For us, with an agency where we are always trying to forecast labor demands, and forecast market conditions, cashflow modeling, and the businesses imperative, we believe, to our success and our ongoing success. So having data tools that are AI supported or enabled, very interesting. 

On the more mundane but critical to us content marketers, where the software like Writer or Jasper. Admittedly, we’re currently not using either of those tools. We’re using a lot of the normal tools, SEMrush and Grammarly and tools like that. But these AI assisted writing tools, beyond ChatGPT, we’re currently not using. And we’re planning to immediately spin up in that agile function that Brooke was referencing within our product teams in departments across the company. Again, setting our team up to test these things.  

And I would just add one common theme or one theme that I heard throughout the three days was just getting better at accepting failure. I.e., being willing to go in and test and try things out and preparing your team to do that and letting them know that’s okay. And for some businesses, that might be an adjustment to normal operating procedure, but just getting the team to get their hands dirty, set up accounts, test accounts, and starting to use these tools. That’s a few of the things we’re doing immediately.  

Rich: Nice. And Andy, you’re one of the content marketers that I always turn to when I think of content marketing. Was there a content marketing specific tool you either are using now or you saw at the show that you want to start implementing?  

Andy: Some of the tools are basically preserving your training so that you can use it again and again, and your team can use it again and again. That’s one of the main use cases of these tools, it seems, is train Jasper and Writer to write like you. And then anyone on your team can use it and it always writes like you. And it’s got the brand standards built in. And then the other main use case it seems is, I don’t want to be training GPT5, can you please not learn everything about my data if I upload it?  

So with those in mind, the tools are going to do that and do it well. There’s a tool that wasn’t there but I wish existed. How about just a shared prompt library or a shared training? Do I need to spend $500 a month for these? It feels like a bit of overkill, and marketers are famous for overbuying technology. I just wish there was a simpler prompt library solution where everyone could go grab the official prompts of our brand, or we could train one, just have a simple training where this is how we talk. Just, if you want to generate an email, just use that one thing.   

So the tools are surprisingly mature already. This AI software category, they got some pretty strong players. And I think it’s going to be worth it. One of the speakers said, don’t sign long contracts right now. If you buy software, don’t sign a contract for very long contract for software, because there’s going to be something new down in the pipeline. 

But any of those for content marketing, one use is train it to be like your audience. The other is train it to be like yourself. And they both seem – Writer, Copy.ai, Jasper – all seem to be doing that. I don’t know of a good way to test them all head-to-head, but a lot of people are going to be signing up for these. 

These companies are already like, 500,000-person team software businesses. But really, I feel like there’s a missing piece, like a mid-market, just a simple prompt. Someone listening, please go out and build a WordPress plugin that I can buy for $100 bucks a month that saves all my prompts in there. And then email me because I’ll buy it.  

Rich: Excellent. It is funny. A few people mentioned along what you were saying. That we’re going to look back in the not-too-distant future talking about these amazing, powerful tools, and we’ll think how quaint they were and how basic they were compared to what’s going to be happening like a year from now, six months from now, even three months from now. It’s just the pace of things are going so quickly.  

So one of the things, I don’t know if you were the same, I was just buzzing with AI goodness when I got back to the office and I gave a few people on my team a heads up, “Look, I’m going to come in hard on AI during the staff meeting. I’m like super buzzed. I know I get excited about everything, but this one is different”, kind of a thing.  

I’m curious if you’ve already met with your team and what kind of messaging you gave to your team about AI? Especially because so much of the conversation around AI is how people will lose their jobs due to that. And I’m just curious if you’ve had the opportunity to talk to your team and what some of your messaging was to get them on board? And Brooke, why don’t we start with you?  

Brooke: So we haven’t gone to the team yet. We are formulating a plan. We formed the AI council. We have our first few tools to pilot and check out. And once that happens, we are going to have a State of the Union address with the team and just talk about hey, here’s what we’re doing.  

Because that was one of the notes that was made. There were two notes that were made that I really paid attention to when it comes to team. Which one is, note who your detractors are. Because they probably won’t make it in this new world of marketing.  

And then also transparency is so important, right? So I think in the note of being really super transparent once we start these pilots, we’ll have this kind of State of the Union. We’ll tell the team what we’re up to, what our hopeful goal will be for these products. And if we move them forward, we’ll move them forward in such a way that we do everything. Which is creating very paint by numbers processes that they can follow to make sure that they use the tool in the same way. 

So I haven’t done it yet, but hopefully by next week or the week after, we’ll be talking to the team about what we’ve started to do with some of the tools.  

Rich: Ron, obviously you had a couple of people there who got to taste the Kool Aid. What is your message to your team right now?  

Ron: It was neat because just the week prior I had come back from Denver. We had flown all of our staff in from all locations into our annual all staff. And in both my opening remarks, but with more focus on my closing remarks for the event, I gave a presentation to my team really about this concept that technology is advancing in an exponential manner and AI is a part of our life. It’s like gravity, you can’t fight it. And so the question is, what do we do about it?  

And I’ve been espousing to my team and on podcasts and different opportunities to speak on the subject, that I do believe principally the marketer that uses AI is going to be more powerful than the marketer that does not use AI. And what I have admittedly been struggling with, in terms of how to socialize and put this message out to the marketplace, our customers, because they’re going to become aware. We’re actually as an agency playing a role in helping our channel, our customer base, become aware of AI.  

There was a talk, Megan Anderson gave a talk on Thursday. And in that talk, I believe I’m crediting the right person, it was right before Ethan Malik spoke. And she presented the five categories of content writing or content marketing, the ideation phase, the research phase, the composition phase, the editing phase, and the distribution of that content. And she presented the current state, i.e. the world without AI, and then the world with AI.  

And she’s now given me the words and the graphics and the illustrations to both take back to my team and to my customers is that now that the composition component of content marketing is going to be aided by AI – I think that’s undeniable – we now can put more energy with our critical thinkers on our team into the other four components of a successful content marketing strategy. And so if you can imagine a visual where those five elements and composition is high in labor demand, you’re now going to see the labor demand on composition drop down, and you’re actually going to see the other four categories raise. And so we have an opportunity to be more strategic and effective as content marketers. 

But back to Brooke’s point, everybody won’t be on board with this. There will be those that resist. And one of the themes at the event was that you need to remove the detractors from your team. And you interpret that to mean what you want for your company or our listeners, but you ultimately want those that are ready to embrace this. Because we need to run forward and figure out a lot of things. And it’s going to be a lot of hard work ahead.  

Rich: Interesting. Yeah, I’m optimistic to a fault at times when it comes to my team. So I said, I’m not letting anybody go because of AI, that’s just not who I am. That’s not this company. But at the same time, I want you all involved in this process, and I gave examples, because I actually went to the workshop on day zero.  

Which one of the things AI for Marketing talked about is creating these use cases and piloting them. So I shared use cases that I wanted to pilot, and I asked the team to each come back with five over the next two weeks after looking at the work they’re doing each day. And then we would think about piloting a few of those as a company.  

But my point is, these are tools that everybody’s going to be using. You’re going to have to learn how to use these tools. This isn’t really, I’m not trying to use the stick, I’m trying to use the carrot. But I agree with you. In some ways the message is the same. Marketers who use AI will outperform ones who don’t.  

With that in mind, this was definitely a ‘rah’ conference in many ways. There were conversations around ethics and biases in AI. And I’m just curious, I’ll start with you, Andy. When it comes to AI, what concerns do you have around maybe some of the ethics or the biases or just any other concerns about using AI in your business? 

Andy: I don’t have any concerns about the accuracy thing. And it’s the mistakes it makes are famous and funny and disastrous, because there are absolutely ways to use it to generate ideas or find gaps in something you wrote, or to summarize something where accuracy is just not really a factor. That to me turns out not to be a concern.  

Ethics, I think that there’s a big concern about theft of property and plagiarism and classrooms. And as a higher ed lecturer, I teach in several schools, I’m more concerned that my students won’t use AI. So I think a little bit of that is technophobia. Bias, for sure. But also, as a marketer, I’m not really using it in a way where bias is a big concern to me. 

Labor market impact? Definitely. There are going to be huge implications. And one speaker last week said that we’re not requiring you to use AI, but if you don’t use it, it’ll be obvious. We’ll see it, your work isn’t as comprehensive. Or we’re seeing it in your timesheets. Or why did that task really take four hours, that spreadsheet could have been made in four minutes? I think that I’m really just looking at it all and asking myself, at what point do expectations change for us as individuals? 

I talked to a friend this morning who said it like a confession. He said, “I’m not using AI.” Two weeks ago it was a confession that people were using it. This is changing so fast. And mostly I’m curious about how this is affecting the buyer of our services. When do they expect us to use it? When do we need to add this to our marketing messages? When does it improve the sales closing rate to say, of course we use AI in our research. We’d be foolish not to. We’d be wasting your money, or our work wouldn’t be as good.  

So there’s tipping points coming soon. And aside from bias and accuracy and copyright laws, I’m just interested to see what happens in the market. Not just labor market for job destruction, but labor market for skills and also the market for how we promote our services.  

Rich: It is an interesting question. And in the thousands of emails I seem to get every day as a business owner, the number or the percentage of ones that reference AI and how it’s now baked into their tools is just exploding to the point where it feels like, “Cheerios – now with AI” on the side of the box. 

So it’s an interesting question on how much of our AI usage should be put into our marketing message to potential clients. Because some will be attracted to that message, and others will be like, “I’ll just use ChatGPT myself.” So it is an interesting question to see how this all comes out.  

Brooke, any thoughts on the ethics or the of the concerns that were raised at the conference or been raised in the news media when it comes to using AI for your company?  

Brooke: Yeah. Several things stick out to me, but one was Professor Ethan dodging the question, but also sheepishly answering it. Basically saying yeah, it’s probably going to grow way smarter than we can fathom and realize that we’re molecules on this planet that are destroying it, and then destroy us. So that was like a lovely way to say, “Yes, all of your fears are about to come true about our AI.” That stuck out.  

And then ethics-wise, I think what really stuck out for me as a business owner was we’ve got to update our agreements. Somebody talked about the legal aspects of taking your customers data and putting it into AI platforms where it is open source, and how that could really get you in some hot water. We’ve reached out to our legal people. We’re starting to figure out how we can, who will allow us to use AI that’s open source and who won’t. And then that’s why it’s so important now for me to really light a fire under myself and get that program that we want to build working so that can it be a closed source, private network, where we can put client data and not have it shared out. 

Rich: Very interesting stuff. Ron, we went to the conference. It was a lot of information. But on the other hand, this is such a big topic. What AI-related questions did you either form during the conference that weren’t answered or that you are now asking that you didn’t feel that were hit upon? 

Ron: I think the big issue that was talked about in many, if not most, of the sessions was around the aspect that the data, the content put into these public LLMs are not safe, not protected. And there’s just tremendous, depending on as an agency, depending on the customers you serve or your team, if there isn’t a company policy around this, and what the rules of engagement around the usage of AI. Your company could frankly be in a lot of hot water and not even realize it. You could potentially be oblivious to having a lot of liability.  

Fortunately, my agency is not in the medical space. We’re not in a lot of those more litigious type of industries where that level of detail matters. But nonetheless, the necessity for us to want a more proprietary AI, large language model type of environment, that has us now expediting our research around which one of those to use to make our own, to operate within our brand voice, to serve our customer.  

I would also add, we theorized that needing to form a company AI policy was a thing. Thankfully, the lawyer that spoke at the event, Sharon Toerek, we’ve been working with her for the past year on some other things, and so we actually cued her to assist us in updating all of our contracts and service level agreements with that. We pulled the trigger on that the week before the conference, theorizing she might be bombarded when she stood on stage and scared the bejesus out of everybody. And I’m excited to get that language added. 

And you added an additional question around how will we all as agencies message this to our clients? And I think that’s going to be a work in progress. I think it’s new for all of us, if not most of us. And I’m going to guess, in the beginning, our customers might not react positively. They might see it as a negative. “How dare you have a robot help the human? I want the human version.”  

And Rich, you’ve given an example to us in the mastermind so I’m not stealing it, but I’m just going to maybe paraphrase your own words. And I think you gave this example back in the day of web development when you were doing that, and you then started to use some software, which made it a little easier. If you look at the housing construction metaphor, do you want the person that’s building a house with hand tools, or do you want someone building the house with power tools? And is the house built with power tools a lower quality construction? Is it worth less? I think you could argue it’s worth more. It’s a higher quality product and it was done in a fraction of the time. 

So I just think we’re all going to have to message that in our own ways to our customer bases, and then build the confidence in our teams to speak with authority about what we do, why we do it, and the fact that we stand behind our SOPs and our methodologies to deliver quality to our clients.  

Rich: I’m reminded of the early days of the internet when it seemed like every company added .com to their name. And then three years later, they all quietly dropped the .com because it was almost like a negative. And I wonder if we’ll see something similar with AI, where it’s yeah of course you have a website, but you don’t need to add .com at the end of your business name.  

Andy, how about you? Are there any questions that you wish had been answered at the conference or have formed in your mind since you’ve left? 

Andy: I come back from events like that asking myself, how can I keep in touch with this amazing community of people? Because there’s a lot of seasoned pros who’ve come along and we’ve all met and seen many times over many years and just wondered, now to watch all of us embrace this next evolution in marketing. 

I came back, my notes are organized into a list of prompt ideas, a list of tools, a list of big picture perspective ideas, and a list of people to follow up with to do short calls to trade use cases and share our best tricks. That’s how I’ve learned the most. So I have a head full of ideas, but I also have a list of people to follow up with. 

And I recommend this for everyone. It’s like a one session mastermind. I’m going to show you something I’ve learned. And by the way, guys, I’ve got a really good one from two days ago. And you show me something you’ve learned, and then we’re both smarter by the end of the week. People who are doing that are moving up the learning curve much faster, anxiety levels go down, productivity goes up. You’re more excited than worried. That’s how you address the anxiety. Step forward into it. Try it. Embrace it a little bit. See if it can help you a little bit. And then choose your own adventure. Part of your job you love, don’t give that up. Have it help you with the boring stuff.  

So that’s what I’ve learned. And that’s my hope is to stay connected with some of these super smart, generous, kind people who are all happy to teach their own tricks. There was as much talent in the audience as on the stage. 

Rich: Definitely a great point. And I like your, “I’ll show you mine if you show me yours” approach. This has been really amazing, and I can’t wait to have our private mastermind so we can talk even more about things that we can’t share publicly, but we can share together.  

But I just want to thank all of you one last time for coming on the show, sharing your thoughts and where you think things are going. And one last time, Ron Callis from One Firefly, Brooke Sellas from B Squared Media, Andy Crestodina from Orbit Media. I will have links to all of their websites and their LinkedIn profiles. Go check them out, they’re all brilliant people. And I will see you all next week on The Agents of Change podcast. Thanks so much. 

Show Notes: 

Brooke Sellas and her team at B Squared Communications help businesses build relationships and connect with their online communities. Be sure to connect with her on LinkedIn, and check out her new podcast 

Ron Callis is a visionary in his niche, helping tech businesses grow. Check out his website for a sampling of what his team at One Firefly can offer. And be sure to connect with him on LinkedIn. 

Andy Crestodina is a nationally recognized speaker on all things marketing, including at his own conference, Content Jam, and is usually ahead of the curve as a thought leader in his industry. Check out his website to see how he’s helping businesses get better online results, and connect with him on LinkedIn. 

Rich Brooks is the President of flyte new media, a web design & digital marketing agency in Portland, Maine, and founder of the Agents of Change. He’s passionate about helping small businesses grow online and has put his 25+ years of experience into the book, The Lead Machine: The Small Business Guide to Digital Marketing.