Episode 89: Matt Bailey – Educating Yourself, Big Biz Lessons for Small Business, Analytics & Data!

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In today’s episode, I am joined by Matt Bailey. Matt teaches Digital Marketing to the world's biggest brands and prestigious universities. Microsoft, Google, Hilton, Orange, Nationwide, P&G, Disney, and HP are just a few of his training clients.

We start with his personal journey and story and what lead him to ‘education’ as a focus. Why it molded him and what were those early years like? He was building and marketing websites in the late 90s.. what was that like, what traffic did he get and what lessons could he extract that are still applicable today?

From there we dive into lessons small businesses can learn from big businesses. The importance of business owners educating themselves so they can ask good questions; especially when talking with agencies helping them. We also talk about analytics and data and understanding not just how to get a lot of traffic, but how to focus on what’s contributing to revenue AND most importantly profit. A lot of great lessons in this one.. don’t miss it!

Matt Bailey teaches Digital Marketing to the world's biggest brands and prestigious universities.

Matt Bailey teaches Digital Marketing to the world's biggest brands and prestigious universities.
Microsoft, Google, Hilton, Orange, Nationwide, P&G, Disney, and HP are just a few of his training clients.

His training curriculum is used at Duke University, Rutgers University, Purdue University, University of South Florida, Full Sail University, and many others.

Matt is the digital marketing instructor for the Direct Marketing Association, the Association of National Advertisers, an instructor for LinkedIn Learning, and standards contributor for the OMCP, the international standards certification and licensing program for digital marketing education.

He’s the author of Internet Marketing: An Hour a Day (2011 ), Wired to be Wowed (2015), and Teach New Dogs Old Tricks! (2017).

His passion is to teach digital and media literacy skills to businesses, students, and individuals. He does this through speaking at conferences, training courses, and developing educational curriculum.


  • Intro
    • He does a lot of training.
    • With the pandemic.. a lot more online training.
  • His journey
    • Always been comfortable in front of people..
      • Father was a paster, Mother a teacher
      • Well read, grammar correction. Learning always encouraged.
      • Communication was always encouraged.
    • Father started a business..
    • 1984 Commodore 64 – drawn to it.
      • Went online..
      • Found bulletin boards – social media started pre-browsers!
    • Got a journalism degree – didn’t like the journalism, but liked the writing and research. Development of story.
    • Went into real estate.
    • mid-late 90s.. started developing website to sell commercial properties.
      • Short time became one of the top realtors in the State.
    • Loved the Internet more than selling real estate..
      • Started working for brands, other agencies
      • Then pivot to just education…
  • Doing one thing.. learning you actually like something you are doing related to it.
  • How did he get traffic and sales in the late 90s..
    • How he developed the pages.
    • Was starting to come up #1 in searches.. ranking well. Reverse engineered.
    • He was doing what the algo wanted.
    • The layout techniques in learned in newspaper applied really well to an online design.
      • This is how you get rankings!
    • Most leads came from..?
      • 80-90% from search engines.
      • Finding him online.. registering as lead.
      • Spreadsheet as CRM !
      • BUT … none of his sales came from those leads.
      • 5% of traffic was responsible for 80% of sales. Came from articles written on other sites and banner ads .. on sites where target audience was gathering. Less leads, but further into the decision cycle.
      • The Principle – BIG NUMBERS lie.
    • Pre-qualified, targeted – that’s what matters
      • Digital marketing skills that never go out of style .. vs. emerging trends.
      • Skills that get people through those trends.
      • Experience.. digital marketing vs business.
        • Understanding your primary customers
        • Instead of chasing digital trends
    • The importance of analytics..
      • Knowing what works and doubling down on it.
      • Maintain what works and ‘try’ other things with little investment.
      • Analytics gives you the freedom to say ‘no'.
    • Eliminating things that don’t work.. but the fear of missing out.
    • Examples of companies that cut huge ad/marketing budgets and saw no change in sales.
      • And how that can be applied to small businesses
    • Being find-able .. maintaining a presence.
      • Maybe in the future it could become a ‘thing’.
      • Fluid approach – can be minor, but at some stage you can invest in it if it makes sense.
      • Spending more money as you start to see results.
    • What else can small businesses learn from larger businesses.
      • “How do we work with our agency better?” – using external agencies.
        • A lot of people on staff, but still using agencies.
      • Who should be ‘leading’? What data is important .. and not knowing what questions to ask.
        • Same for large and small businesses
        • Dumping all this data on me.. what does it mean?
        • The problem – agency thinks the bigger the report, the more graphs.. the less questions you’ll ask. But NO INSIGHT.
          • What does it mean? The Trend?
        • No one wants to ask a question and look stupid.
        • If you don’t ask.. you don’t get clarity.
        • Problem is on both sides.
      • What questions to ask.
      • When to cut ties.
  • Business owners need to take the time to educate themselves.
    • Where should they go?
      • LinkedIn Learning
      • Not recommending Youtube
      • His training (of course!)
      • Resources that are vetted
  • Matt L’s example of ‘easy clients’.. that should probably ask more questions. Trusting us that we are doing everything right.
  • How much did the talk about you?
    • A good sign is they are asking questions and you are doing the majority of talking.
    • They are listening to you.. and applying what they do to your unique situation.
    • Building trust working with the agency.
  • Teaching while marketing and understanding what YOU want? What’s your pain point?
    • Asking ‘why’.
    • Explaining how things work.
    • Good leads vs ‘a number’
    • What they ‘really’ want to do..
  • MORE LEADS → What happens after it hits your CRM?
    • It’s not just the marketing.. hand in hand with sales.
    • Big and small business problem.
    • Which content creates leads, but also generate the sales.
    • Retention level.
  • Where you can find him.. how he can help.
    • Podcast – Endless Coffee Cup
      • Tech and cultural side of marketing and how it affects us.
    • Online educating site?
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