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NativeAdVantage 10-Q2BA:

(10 Questions 2B Answered)

What do you do best?
What makes you the best?
Biggest success?
What are your aspirations?
Most challenging moment?
Favorite Motto?
Favorite People?
Favorite Places?
Favorite Products?
Current Passions?


Featured NativeAdVantage:

Andy Weir: Author of "The Martian"

John Philipson: VP, Six Senses Resorts

Tom Sito: Chair of Animation, USC Film School

Elizabeth Wynn: Broker, Sotheby's RE

Leonard Greenhalgh: Professor, Tuck-Darmouth)

Ryan Blair: NY Times Best Selling Author/Entrepreneur

 

Featured NativeAdVice:

Shai Reshef: Founder of University of the People

Paul D'Arcy: SVP of Indeed

Susan Hatje: GM of Mandarin Oriental, NY

Dan Laufer: Co-Founder of RentLingo

Hilary Laney: President of Tri-Digital

Greg Marsh: Co-Founder of onefinestay

Omar Qari: Co-Founder of Abacus

Gabriell Weinberg: Founder of DuckDuckGo

Stacy Rauen: E-I-C of Hospitality Design Mag

Jon Gray: CRO of HomeAway

Joe Speiser: Co-Founder of LittleThings.com

Ben McKean: Co-Founder of HungryRoot

John Boiler: Founder/CEO of 72andSunny

Wayne Pacelle: CEO of The Humane Society of the US

Tom Guay: GM at The Sagamore Resort

Dr. Alejandro Junger: Founder of The Clean Program

Rob Flaherty: CEO of Ketchum

Neil Thanedar: Founder/CEO of LabDoor

Andy Grinsfelder: VP of Sales/Marketing, Delaware North Resorts

Laura Frerer-Schmidt: VP/Publisher of Women's Health

Avi Steinlauf: CEO of Edmunds.com

Kathy Bloomgarden: CEO of Ruder Finn

Gabriel Flateman: Co-Founder/CTO of Casper

Mark Bartels: CEO of StumbleUpon

Bill Hagelstein: President/CEO of RPA

Adam Singolda: Founder/CEO of Taboola

Jonathan Plutzik: Proprietor of The Betsy-South Beach

Jessica Scorpio: Founder/VP of Marketing at GetAround

Ralph McRae: CEO of Leading Brands

Warren Berger: Bestselling Author

Liz Kaplow: Founder/CEO of Kaplow Communications

Dave Girouard: Founder/CEO of UpStart

Dave Asprey: Founder of BullectProof Executive

Douglas C. Smith: President of EDSA

Val Difebo: CEO of Deutsch NY

Guido Polito: CEO of Baglioni Hotels

Doyle Graham, Jr.: CEO of Valencia Group

Oscar Farinetti: Founder of Eataly

Angelo Sotira: CEO of DeviantART

Ali Khwaja: CFO of Safecharge

Zach Erdem: Proprietor of 75 Main

Jim Beley: GM of The Umstead Hotel

Alexis Gelburd-Kimler: Proprietor of West Bridge

Elie Georges: Proprietor of Hotel San Regis

Kalen Caughey: Founder o VOKE Tab

Michael Friedenberg: CEO of IDG

Donna Karan: Founder of DKNY

Edward Nardoza: Editor-in-Chief of WWD

Scott Dadich: Editor-in-Chief of Wired

Rhona Murphy: Former CEO of The Daily Beast

David J. Pecker: CEO of American Media

Lilian Roten: VP of Swissotel Hotels

Kenny Dichter: Founder/CEO of Wheels Up

Joshua Tetrick: Founder/CEO of Hampton Creek

Paul James: Global Brand Leader of The Luxury Collection

Dr. James Wagner: President of Emory University

Amy Thompson: President of ATM Artists & Management

Neil Gillis: President of Round Hill Music

Brett Matteson: President of Columbia Hospitality

Jonathan Reckford: CEO of Habitat For Humanity

Phil Harrison: President/CEO of Perkins+Will

Chef Bill Telepan

Tony Horton: Founder of P90X

Beth Weissenberger: Co-Founder of The Handel Group

Michael Fertik: Founder/CEO of Reputation.com

Dana Cowin: Editor-in-Chief of Food & Wine

Bob Proctor: Chairman of Proctor/Gallagher Institute

Dennis Turcinovic: Owner of Delmonicos

Vittorio Assaf: Co-Founder of Serafina Restaurant Group

Shafqat Islam: Co-Founder of Newscred

Matt Williams: CEO of The Martin Agency

Bruce Rogers: Executive Chef at Hale & Hearty

Caleb Merkl: Co-Founder of Maple

Candy Argondizza: VP of Culinary at ICC

Neil Sazant: President of The Sagamore

Matt Straz: Founder/CEO of Namely

Terry Couglin: Managing Partner of Marta/Maialino

Andrei Cherny: Co-Founder/CEO of Aspiration

Ronen Nissenbaum: Managing Director of Waldorf Astoria NY

Patrick Godfrey: President of Godfrey Q

Sarah Berman: Founder/President of The Berman Group

Michael Schwartz: Owner of Genuine Hospitality Group

Stephan Aarstol: Founder/CEO of Tower Paddle Boards

Peter Shaindlin: COO of Halekulani Corp.

August Cardona: Founder/CEO of Epicurean Group

Nick Kenner: Co-Founder of Just Salad

Wednesday
Feb222017

Kelsey Meyer: Cofounder & President, Influence & Co.

My NativeAdVice:

Bio:

Kelsey Meyer is the Cofounder and President of Influence & Co., a content marketing agency specializing in content creation & distribution. Influence & Co. was named to the 2016 Inc 500 list at #239, and was named the Emerging Business of the Year Award for the EY Entrepreneur of the Year program in the Midwest Region. Influence & Co. works with companies ranging from venture-backed startups to Fortune 500 companies, and everyone in between to help them utilize content to accomplish business goals.

How did you get into the industry?

I started in the content marketing industry when I was running a co-working space in Columbia, MO. I saw a lot of startups struggling with traditional PR, and trying to build trust and engagement with an audience, and started talking to Brent Beshore about his ideas for a different way of approaching PR and marketing. We didn’t know much about the industry of content marketing at the time, but just knew that there had to be a more effective way for these companies to engage with their audience in an authentic way. I had a background studying marketing and English at the University of Missouri, so combining those two passions was a natural next step for me.

Any emerging industry trends?

One industry trend I have loved seeing is the transition from companies just having a company blog because “they know they should” to companies having a company blog that actually educates, engages, and builds trust with their audience. Gone are the days of a stale company blog getting updated once a month with obscure company updates, and now we’re seeing companies treat their blogs as real publications that provide value to an audience. This is a trend I hope never ends because it’s the best way to scale education and trust. 

Any industry opportunities or challenges?

Once challenge that online publications are facing is remaining or becoming profitable when everyone expects to get access to content for free. This creates an opportunity for publishers to be more creative in the types of content they create. One thing we’ve seen is publications being more open to guest contributed content when it’s from trusted sources, because they can receive content for free and many times the guest author brings his or her own audience with them to read their content.

Inspiration for the business idea, and your vision for the Business?

I kind of spoke on this above, but the real inspiration for Influence & Co. came from conversations with Brent Beshore, founder of Adventures, when we talked about how many companies were struggling with traditional PR. They were paying thousands of dollars a month to traditional PR firms with zero guarantee of anything being picked up, and many times the mentions that were published were missing the mark on the client’s strategy. This gave us the idea for doing PR and marketing in a different way, and Influence & Co. was born.

What's next for the Business in the near future?

We are expanding from providing more thought leadership services to providing more comprehensive content marketing services. We are also adding additional analytic features to our proprietary software – Ico. Core .

Your key initiatives for the success of the Business?

Right now we’re working on a few key initiatives that I am personally really passionate about.

1.    We’re starting to offer services to our clients for creating and marketing books. We have finished one book thus far – Top of Mind, and are working on a second.

2.    We’re going to be starting a do-it-yourself course for people who want to execute on content marketing strategies, but don’t have the budget to hire a firm like ours.

3.    We are implementing a better organizational structure for our Account Teams (called Pods) which has been a big undertaking, but has resulted in better employee retention and client retention.

Your most difficult moment at the Business? (and what did you learn?)

My most difficult moment with Influence & Co. has been when we’ve had to let people go. It’s never easy to make that decision, but when you know it’s right for the company, and ultimately the individual, it has to be done. We’ve been fortunate to have an amazing team, so we haven’t had to do this often, but it’s never something we look forward to.

Ideal experience for a customer/client?

Our favorite clients are the clients who really understand how content marketing fits in with their overall marketing strategy, and they maximize each piece of content we work with them on. For example we love clients where we get to handle all of their marketing funnel. With these clients we can create awesome guest contributed content, that links to a really educational blog post on their site, that links to an in-depth piece of gated content that a prospective client can input their email to download, and then we can deliver that prospective client valuable insights through an email drip campaign, with the ultimate goal of getting them on a sales call. When we can handle every piece of this content we can see great results with clients.  

How do you motivate others?

We look to hire employees who are intrinsically motivated, meaning that they don’t want us to motivate them, but they are self-motivated to do a good job. When we see people waning in motivation it frequently means we haven’t done a good enough of a job in explaining the why. If we are explaining why something is important effectively, we never have issues with our team being motivated.

Career advice to those in your industry?

Read, read, and read some more! One of the best things about working in the field of content marketing is that it’s a quickly-changing industry. There is so much in flux right now that it’s imperative to stay up-to-date on industry trends, and to be aware of what other big players in the industry are doing. You can subscribe to our blog for industry updates in your inbox on a weekly basis!

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