Dave Delaney is a recognized leader, consultant and speaker on digital marketing, social media strategy, and business networking. He hosted one of the first parenting podcasts from 2005 – 2008, and he has been blogging for nearly a decade. His book, New Business Networking, is available from Que Publishing. Since moving to Nashville, TN in 2007, Dave has co-founded two annual unconferences, PodCamp and BarCamp Nashville. He has also launched two monthly networking events, Nashcocktail and Geek Breakfast. The latter now has chapters across the US, South Africa and Australia.
In July 2012, Delaney was selected by Billboard Magazine as a digital marketing expert to follow. In May 2012, Delaney was featured by the Nashville Business Journal as a Power Leader of Technology in Nashville, TN. In 2011, Dave was awarded the prestigious Digital Media Champion AIM Award by the American Marketing Association in Nashville. In 2009, he was nominated for Nashville’s blogger of the year by the Nashville Technology Council. Dave has appeared in technology stories in USA Today, Billboard Magazine, Globe & Mail, Nashville Business Journal, The Tennessean and Mashable.
Delaney frequently speaks at private events, functions and public conferences. Engagements include South by Southwest Interactive, PodCamp Toronto, BarCamp and PodCamp Nashville, Social Media Club Nashville, American Marketing Association Nashville, Interlogix Partners Conference, Killer Tribes, Explore Nashville, Techville, and more.
To learn more about Dave, please visit his website DaveDelaney.com
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Start of Interview with Dave Delaney
Jason Hartman: Hey, it’s my pleasure to welcome Dave Delaney to the show. He is a recognized leader, consultant and speaker on digital marketing, social media strategy and business networking. His new book, New Business Networking, explores online and offline tools which is kind of neat to see someone combining those two today for a more holistic approach to networking as well as tips and techniques to grow and nurture your professional network. And it’s a pleasure to have him coming to us today from Nashville, Tennessee. Dave, how are you?
Dave Delaney: I am wonderful, Jason. Thanks for having me.
Jason Hartman: Well, good. How’s my girlfriend, Taylor Swift?
Dave Delaney: She’s lovely, actually. I just had pizza with her the other day.
Jason Hartman: I’m so envious.
Dave Delaney: She was actually in a restaurant here. I had my family with me and we were the table over from her. So it was kind of funny just to see her hogging down pizza like the rest of us chumps.
Jason Hartman: The Nashville celebrity scene, there’s a lot of celebrities in Nashville. I was there a couple of months ago and I’ve been there a few times, but I went to that Bluebird Café where that reality show is filmed. I can’t remember the name – it’s just called Nashville actually, the show. And it’s pretty cool. Celebrities just sort of mingle with the general population. It’s kind of neat that way, isn’t it?
Dave Delaney: It’s a great club. It’s very, very intimate. It’s in like a strip mall, so people always think maybe it’s a wrong place or whatever, because it’s not quite as fancy.
Jason Hartman: It’s pretty unassuming.
Dave Delaney: Yeah, it is. And it’s not that fancy inside either. And, actually, there’s a YouTube video floating around today because I think it was last night the lead singer of Aerosmith showed up and did some numbers and sang in that little intimate setting. And it’s on YouTube, so you can find it, but it was pretty neat.
Jason Hartman: Yeah, that’s pretty cool. But just in general, in Nashville, that whole vibe – now we’re actually gonna talk about digital marketing today, but let’s just get the Nashville thing out of the way, one more minute on that. I mean, what was Taylor Swift like? You were with your kids and you’re at a pizza joint and do you just talk to her or how’d it go?
Dave Delaney: We didn’t talk to her at all. Now, I should mention I’m from Toronto originally. And in Toronto, Toronto’s sort of Hollywood North. So, there’s like a film shoot happening at any given time – you can walk past and there’s something going on in the city. And, just like in Toronto where people tend to leave actors alone, they don’t really bother them, the same applies here in Nashville. It’s the same sort of respect for people. And it’s kind of an unwritten rule, but celebrities typically are left alone. Like, I’ve seen Jack White from The White Stripes countless times. I keep running into him all the time. Johnny Depp lives here now, a lot of big celebrities live here now. Robert Plant from Led Zeppelin lives here now. It’s the same sort of thing. I think they like it because it’s not a major, major city. It’s not a huge city.
Jason Hartman: It’s not nuts with paparazzi like Hollywood is, right?
Dave Delaney: Exactly, yes.
Jason Hartman: Interesting. So, just one more thing on Taylor Swift, was she alone or with someone or with an entourage?
Dave Delaney: Yeah, she was with a small group, like 3 other people, all probably around her age as well. The only thing that did happen that was kind of funny was there were 2 kids sort of sitting near her, and it’s a pizza place where you can kind of play with the dough, like kids can get a little bit of dough to play with while they’re waiting for their food, and these kids spelled out like “I LOVE YOU TAYLOR” on a plate and kind of leaned it her way, kind of giggling, trying to get her attention which was kind of funny. But no, she was just there with some friends having pizza.
Jason Hartman: Did anybody look like a hired person, like a bodyguard or a handler or anything? Or just friends?
Dave Delaney: That’s a good question and I don’t know the answer to that. I didn’t see anybody, but it wouldn’t surprise me if she did have somebody.
Jason Hartman: Yeah, at least in the background, maybe sitting at another seat or something. When you’re that famous, someone’s gotta keep an eye on you. There’s all kinds of nuts out there.
Dave Delaney: Yeah, absolutely, yeah. So, yeah, I would expect that there was probably someone nearby.
Jason Hartman: Yeah, well Dave, it’s been great having you on the show today.
Dave Delaney: It’s been fun, Jason. Thank you so much for having me.
Jason Hartman: Well, I guess we should actually talk about the topic at hand here, but that’s an interesting insight on Nashville. So, digital marketing, your new book on the holistic approach really to networking, online and offline networking – everybody now thinks of networking as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc., but where do you want to start? Tell us a little bit about what you do.
Dave Delaney: Well, I’m a digital marketing consultant. So, I specialize in helping my clients understand how to promote themselves, their services, their products online better and so I do that by auditing what they’re doing currently and I provide recommendations and I kind of coach them through execution of the plans that we develop together. So, that’s typically what I do with clients. But I also have cofounded a couple conferences in Nashville, sort of un-conferences. They’re free, big events and then I also founded two monthly networking events. And a friend of mine pulled me aside one day and said “You kind of missed your calling with this whole networking thing.” And I sort of put it all together and mentioned it to my wife and she’s like it’s true, you really do excel at connecting people and being a connector and helping facilitate this. And I’ve done that in the events and things in meeting people over the years, online and offline.
And so I was speaking at a conference and met my future publisher there and pitched them on the idea very casually and she loved it. And the next thing I knew I was filling out a proposal and it was accepted pretty quickly and suddenly I had a book deal. It all happened very quickly.
Jason Hartman: As a result of networking.
Dave Delaney: Exactly, exactly.
Jason Hartman: I find those particularly interesting, some of the services you offer like the digital audit. What do you want to talk about first? The basic digital marketing or do you want to talk about the contents of the book? Let’s cover both. Let’s go into the basic internet marketing space first if we can and kind of talk a little bit about that. What are some of the most effective things you’re seeing today and some of the big mistakes that marketers are making?
Dave Delaney: Well, the biggest mistakes that I’m seeing, a lot of companies will jump on social networks and automatically assume that people are going to flock to their websites from the links that they provide and buy their stuff. And people don’t understand that social networking and professional networking are very similar in a lot of ways, and I think people forget about that. And what I mean is networking is all about building relationships. And what happens on Twitter is if you go on Twitter, you create an account and you just start pushing out special offers all day. Nobody’s gonna click on any of the links and nobody’s gonna follow you back and you’re not gonna get any interaction. But, instead, if you shared stories about the business that you’re in or the industry that you’re in, and you start interacting and listening and finding opportunities to connect with people and follow people, then over time you build trust and from that trust people will start following you back. And then you can start selling things, but not constantly shoving stuff in people’s face. And it’s the same thing with like a networking event where if you go to a cocktail hour, for example, you wouldn’t interrupt people say “Hey, you wanna buy this?!” And it’s the same sort of idea. So, I see a lot of brands and a lot of companies tend to just get on there, get on social media, get on social networks, and just start trying to push their products sand services. And it doesn’t work that way. So, that’s a mistake I see. The positive side is the opposite of that where I do see brands more and more establishing themselves by building relationships with people and actually being of service and providing things that are helpful. There’s a company called HubSpot which is an inbound marketing company.
Jason Hartman: We’ve had them on the show, yeah.
Dave Delaney: Yeah, exactly. And they do a great job at providing amazing content. They just had a conference recently, inbound. And that was a great example they had of all these videos and great content that they can provide their future customers or just people for free. So, I see a lot of that happening, a lot of content marketing. There’s a great book by C. C. Chapman and Anne Handley called Content Rules which I recommend people check out as well.
Jason Hartman: I’ve read it. So, spam doesn’t work, producing things of value, not bugging people to death, all good advice obviously. Any particular platforms or tools? You mentioned Hubspot. They happened to do a book, but they have a lot of various tools that people use. Any particular websites, tools, software that you would like to recommend to people?
Dave Delaney: I mean, aside from social networks in general, I love HootSuite. I use HootSuite sort of as my social media dashboard. There’s a great service I love called Reportive which it shocks me that more people don’t know about it but it’s free, it was a company that was acquired by LinkedIn about a year, maybe 2 years ago now, but they’re still reportive anyway. So, hopefully LinkedIn won’t swallow them up or make them go away or anything. But the way it works is it plugs into your email, for example Gmail, and as you’re composing an email to somebody, you can actually see their social profiles pop up on the right column, the right side of your screen.
So, you can see their picture from your LinkedIn profile, you can see their Twitter handle, their recent tweets, their Facebook profile. Not all that information all the time, but usually you can see some of that information at least. And that gives you a better idea of who it is that you’re reaching out to. So, if you’re sending a cold email to somebody as an introduction or trying to connect with them, that information certainly does help a lot. So, Reportive is great. There’s a social dashboard called Nimble as well, which is like a CRM.
Jason Hartman: We had Nimble on the show. That sounds like a really impressive software and I’ve got to start using that.
Dave Delaney: Yeah, it’s good. It is good. And that also is sort of your home base that you can use to learn more about the people that you’re connecting with and also kind of keep up with the relationships because as you follow more and more people, you tend to neglect others because you can’t listen to everybody all the time, so that’s very handy.
And Twitter lists – I just wrote an article recently about Twitter Lists on my blog. And Twitter Lists, it’s a service of Twitter, but it’s something I’m always shocked to learn people aren’t using more. And it’s a great way to create lists of group people together. So, say it’s your direct family – you want to have a Twitter List for them that’s private or a public list that you want to subscribe to or create of like say local media or local thought leaders. And it’s a great way for you to keep track of people that you really want to follow.
Jason Hartman: Okay, fantastic, fantastic. Are you a specialist in one section of the digital marketing or internet marketing realm? Or do you kind of cover everything as a generalist? Certainly, I know the book is about the networking side specifically. But, email marketing, website design, conversion, squeeze pages, YouTube channels, podcasting, would you say you have a certain area of specialty?
Dave Delaney: I would say I’m a jack of all trades in that area. I’ve been online since 1984. I ran a BBS on my Commodore 64. So, I’ve been online for a long, long time. I hosted one of the first parenting podcast in 2005 to 2008. So, I’ve been podcasting for a long time as well and blogging for a decade at least. So, I have a lot of experience in a lot of different areas. I worked for a huge brand in the technology space and in the hardware and software space where I represented them as far as social media goes. So, I have a lot of expertise in a lot of different areas – let’s just say that. So, when I provide an audit, I’m thinking of all digital marketing. I’m not thinking of just Facebook or just social media. I’m thinking Facebook and, as you mentioned, email marketing, and opportunities like affiliate marketing and things like that.
Jason Hartman: Okay, yeah, fantastic. Affiliate marketing just seems like such a big opportunity now. Many marketers and manufacturers of products and so forth have obviously taken advantage of it, but tell us a little bit more about your take on affiliate marketing if you would.
Dave Delaney: Yeah. I mean, as long as it’s done with full transparency, I think affiliate marketing is fantastic. And what it is basically, the nuts and bolts of it is basically when you recommend something to somebody, you can do so by say on Twitter somebody says “Hey, anybody know a good TV, a new model TV?” and you get right back and say “Hey, the Sony blah-blah-blah is wonderful.” And they’ll say “Hey, thanks Dave. Thanks for letting me know. But you can also use a link and let them know that it’s an affiliate link to say the Amazon page with that TV. So, that way, if they click that link and make that purchase, then you’re gonna earn a small commission from that or sometimes a big commission depending on what it is that you’re selling. That’s basically how it works, and so Amazon’s a huge affiliate publisher for that.
Jason Hartman: The problem with Amazon is they don’t pay very much, though.
Dave Delaney: No, they don’t.
Jason Hartman: So, really, I mean are you a big fan of ClickBank or any of the other platforms?
Dave Delaney: I haven’t used them. I’ve used Commission Junction, I’ve used LinkShare, ShareASale – I’ve used those services before in the past, on both sides, publisher and affiliate as well. And, yeah, I’ve been very happy with the results.
Jason Hartman: Anywhere in particular else that you’d like to go before we move onto the book?
Dave Delaney: I mean, anybody can visit me at DaveDelaney.me to learn more about the services I offer. And, if they have questions, feel free to reach out to me directly through the site or on Twitter @DaveDelaney. So, if I can answer any questions.
Jason Hartman: Let’s jump into the book. So, this is a first book of its kind in a way, isn’t it?
Dave Delaney: Yeah, I think it is. I mean, I was interviewed by Joseph Jaffe who’s also an author and he mentioned that, that it was the first of its kind that actually mixed online and offline. So, yeah, I’d like to think it is.
Jason Hartman: So, what are some of the techniques that mix the two together in a good holistic approach really well.
Dave Delaney: Well, I mean you can take events. For example, I’m a big fan of obviously organizing events, but also attending events and meeting people at events. I mean, that’s really what it comes down to when we’re talking networking, especially in person. But, today, you can research and find events through Meetup or Eventbrite, things like that, or Plancast is another service or Facebook Events. And you can find events in most cities around any sort of area that you’re interested in. And what’s great about it, too, is many of these event websites tie into Facebook. So, you can see who’s going to be attending ahead of time and actually do a little research into these people to find the people that you really want to meet and you can see their photos, so you know what they look like. So, when you’re at the event, you can be more productive by reaching out to the people specifically that you’d like to reach out to. And, also, you can reach out to them ahead of time because you know they’re attending. You can say, hey, I’d love to buy you a cocktail at whatever event we’re attending together next week.
Jason Hartman: Okay, so that’s good. Have a real purpose, a target, if you will. I don’t want to say that in a negative way, but that’s really true. Okay, what are some of the other techniques?
Dave Delaney: So, if we’re talking about other techniques specifically, you can connect with people on LinkedIn ahead of time and afterwards, too. I mean, I think that’s a big part where online and offline meet. When you meet people offline, in person, following up is so important and so often people neglect doing this. It’s a big mistake. You come home from a conference or a trade show or something with a pile of business cards and you just let them collect dust. And really what you should be doing is email each person, try to perhaps send them a connection request on LinkedIn and grow your network on LinkedIn. I’m a huge fan of LinkedIn and I think it’s extremely important that more people use it because it just drives me crazy when I talk to people and they’re not using it because they think LinkedIn is just for looking for work. And it’s not, it’s about networking, it’s about growing your network before you actually need it, so that way should you have to look for work at some point later down the road, you have a substantial network of people that you can talk to about it.
Jason Hartman: Sure, absolutely.
Dave Delaney: And I have a whole chapter dedicated to LinkedIn specifically.
Jason Hartman: So, you really like LinkedIn. I mean, would you say you like it better than Facebook, Google+, Twitter, or it’s just different, it’s for a different purpose?
Dave Delaney: That’s a great question and I have chapters dedicated to each social network. So, that’s a tough one to say and it depends on what I’m doing specifically. I’ve been on Twitter since February, 2007 and I’m a big Twitter fan. I’ve made a lot of friends on Twitter over the years and meeting them in person was a big deal for me as well. The microblogging thing was very, very cool. But Twitter has definitely changed over the years. It’s very hard for me to say which I prefer. I mean, I think LinkedIn is extremely important for professionals, but I also think if you can dedicate the time to using Twitter, you can really gain a lot of trust and gain a great group of followers and vice versa. You can use it a lot to listen and to find people yourself you’re researching. And then Facebook, obviously.
Jason Hartman: Yeah, Facebook is just so amazing. That little thing.
Dave Delaney: That little thing, yeah.
Jason Hartman: You have a whole chapter dedicated to business cards, Dave. How should people be using business cards properly and what are the cards that really make a difference in terms of design and so forth?
Dave Delaney: Well, with business cards, I think it’s very important to always try to ask someone for their business card before offering your own. There’s always somebody at a Meetup or a networking group that is what I call “that guy”, that guy who is just in the room, handing out business cards to everybody and trying to collect as many business cards as possible, so he can cut out and go to the next event and do that again. And then he’s probably gonna spam everybody later.
What I think is having business cards ready absolutely is important. I think business cards are not going away as many people may claim they are because of apps and NFC chips and things like that. But I really believe that business cards will be around for a long, long time. I think in designing business cards, having a blank back or having space on the back so that somebody can take a note is very important. The back of my business card actually has blanks on it saying we met at blank event, we talked about blank, I should do this, blank, with like a follow up, and with lines to fill out so that I’m encouraging people to take a minute and write down why they should follow up with me. And I do the same when I meet people. Maybe I won’t be rude and take your business card and say “Uh huh, mhm” and take a note on your business card, but later I will take a note on it to remember what we talked about and so that I can follow up with you later. So, I think those are some tips.
As far as other design tips, I have some examples in my book of some really creative business cards that are worth checking out. But I think you should also know who you’re going to be giving your card to. Obviously, you’re not a fortune teller or anything like that – you can’t tell the future – but I do recommend that you make sure you have business cards that are sort of suitable for the event that you’re going to, so if it’s a really casual business card, maybe not the best for a very corporate event and vice versa. If you’re going to a design conference, make some really cool well-designed business cards and that will make you stand out.
Jason Hartman: Good advice. What do you think the future is of internet marketing? I mean, where are we going? It’s always important to think of what’s gonna be the next thing. Everybody wants to know that. Where do you think we’re going?
Dave Delaney: Well, that’s a great question, a very good question.
Jason Hartman: And an impossible to answer one.
Dave Delaney: Impossible. Yeah, it’s a real tough one to answer, but I think it’s important to be honest online. I think things that you put online may bite you on the butt later if they’re nasty and so I always tell people, especially if it’s students and younger people that I speak to, if I’m speaking at a University or what have you, I always recommend don’t put anything online your grandmother would be upset seeing or your mother or your father, whatever. But I think that’s really important. But as far as the future goes, obviously mobile is extremely important. I mean, all the numbers show mobile visits are always increasing now because people are using tablets and smartphones and things to visit your website. So, I think obviously that’s a given at this point. So, I wish I had more to tell you but I think the future will tell.
Jason Hartman: Certainly. It’s just hard to imagine a world without Facebook, for example. I just can’t imagine it going away. I mean, it’s just so big and it’s such a big part of so many lives. But, then again, people probably said the same thing with Myspace. Certainly Rupert Murdoch did.
Dave Delaney: Yes. I think Facebook is so huge right now that they’re going to do something to really upset a lot of people. And even that, they’ve obviously lots of privacy issues come up and things, and numbers are starting to indicate that younger people are sort of going away from Facebook because all their parents are there.
I spoke to somebody recently who’s sort of a Luddite. And she was talking to me and she’s I would say in her maybe mid-60s, late 60s, and she was talking to me about something she saw online, and she said I saw something on the internet the other day which really was hilarious. I’m sorry, not the internet, Facebook.
Jason Hartman: That’s a funny reaction, yeah.
Dave Delaney: Yeah, and she said that to me like Facebook is not the internet. And with the Like button being added all across the web and Facebook Connect being used all across the web, it is very interesting now that so many people, and I’m sure she’s not alone in this, that think of Facebook as the internet. Some people live on Facebook. They don’t go to other website. Obviously they click the links and things, but their primary place is Facebook. Even my own wife’s primary place is Facebook aside from her email. And I think that’s pretty telling. So, yeah, the future, we’ll have to see what happens with Facebook. Who knows?
Jason Hartman: Yeah, what an amazing thing. They’ve done something that Myspace never did, though, the log in with Facebook concept. People are just using that as basically their password system all around the internet. What a brilliant strategy really.
Dave Delaney: Very smart.
Jason Hartman: It really is. Well, Dave, give out your website if you would. And, of course, the book is available on Amazon and all the usual places I assume.
Dave Delaney: Yeah, it is. It’s available at Barnes & Noble as well if you’re in the states or Indigo Chapters in Canada. You can visit NBN, New Business Networking, NBNBook.com, for more information about the book. And also I blog at that website, too, so you can find my blog there as well. And, yeah, I encourage people to check it out but also, please, and I mention it several times in the book, reach out to me. I would love to hear from you. I would love to hear your feedback, read your reviews on Amazon and find out if the stuff in the book is helpful to you and if you have questions. I also have a private LinkedIn group that you can find from that site as well for anyone interested in networking and networking tips and tools and techniques. We have a private LinkedIn group. Anybody can join – it’s just a private one. So, come one, come all.
Jason Hartman: Good stuff. Well, Dave Delaney, thank you so much for joining us today.
Dave Delaney: Thanks, it’s been a pleasure.
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Transcribed by Ralph
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