Andy Crestodina is a co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer of Orbit Media, an award-winning 38-person web design company in Chicago. Over the past 18 years, Andy has given digital marketing advice to 1000+ businesses. He speaks at big marketing conferences, writes for big marketing blogs and he hosts a little marketing podcast, Content Matters.
He’s written hundreds of articles on content marketing, search engine optimization, social media and Analytics.
- Top 10 Online Marketing Experts to Watch, Forbes
- Top 50 Marketing Influencer, Entrepreneur Magazine
- Top 10 Social Media Influencers to Watch, Social Media Explorer
- Top 50 Content Marketing Influencers to Follow, Outbrain
He is also the author of Content Chemistry: The Illustrated Handbook for Content Marketing.
How did you get to become an expert in content marketing?
We started way back in 2001. Almost immediately I realized that I needed to understand search and analytics or we’d never get results for our clients. Around 10 years ago I realized that I needed some kind of newsletter to keep in touch with clients and prospects. That’s when I started doing content marketing. At the time, there weren’t many classes or conferences or books. I learned by doing stuff, trial and error. But early on, I started networking and making friends with the big names. Talking to these experts and sharing ideas was a huge shortcut. I learned what they were doing, what was working, what wasn’t.
Networking, sharing, building connects with experts is all part of influencer marketing, but it’s also great for your skills. Think of it this way… Influencer marketing is a great way to learn
What areas of content marketing are you most passionate about?
It’s an awesome field because it combines art and science, creativity and technology. You get to use both halves of your brain at the same time. It’s writing, but it’s also about visuals. I’ll make a visual now for this answer…
…That was fun. But you asked for specific areas. I’ll give you three:
It’s fun because a lot of people think it’s a mystery, and they’re eyes light up when you show them it’s not.
- Networking / Influencer Marketing
As I mentioned, connecting with people is the key to influencer marketing, but it’s also fun. This industry is filled with smart, interesting, creative people.
It really is a pleasure to give presentations. Except when I bomb. Then it’s very embarrassing.
Which content marketing influencers influence you?
My standard answers are Ann Handley and Sonia Simone. They are my original teachers, although they didn’t know it at the time. But I’ll dig deeper here. Here are five legit experts that you may not have heard of, but you should follow, read and reach out to some day!
- Justin Rondeau (conversion)
- Jessica Best (email)
- Joel Klettke (conversion)
- Tom Bowen (Analytics)
- Dan Shure (SEO)
Each of them has influenced me a lot. Look them up!
Outside of content marketing who else influences you?
I’m a family guy so my wife is my greatest influence. Followed by this little guy.
But I’ve been listening to podcasts lately. Here are some other non-marketing podcasts and people I listen:
- On the Media with Brooke Gladstone (media)
- Hardcore History with Dan Carlin (history)
- Manager Tools with Mark Horstman (management)
- Planet Money (economics)
- Radiolab with Jad Abumrad (all kinds of cool stuff)
I walk to work and I always learn something along the way.
How would you describe your offline influence?
I’m a teacher who breaks down complex topics in simple, practical ways. Especially SEO and Analytics. My main formats are articles and live presentations, but I also have a book and a podcast.
I give 100+ presentations per year. I’m typically one of the top-rated speakers.
What are going to be the key developments in the industry in the next 12 months?
Organic reach in social media will go down. And profits of social media networks will go up. Of course, you’re thinking of Facebook. Rather than complain, there are things that marketers can do. Most marketers don’t work that hard to win engagement and clicks in social. They’re a bit lazy. Working a little harder can make a difference.
Rather than just posting to social, include some of the following:
- Special Characters and emojis
- Line Breaks
Here’s what your posts will look like. You can imagine how they’ll get a lot more engagement.
This image is part of our big checklist and examples of social media post. ← You’ll find more tips there. 😊
If a brand wanted to work with you, what activities would you be most interested in collaborating on?
Speaking, interviews, podcasts, webinars and research collaborations. I’m often asked to write guests posts but I don’t have much time for it. Email interviews are fun and fast. Anyone is welcome to send me questions. If I have time, I’ll reply with answers and we’ll soon have a nice piece of content like this one! It’s a great format…
What would be the best way for a brand to contact you?
I’m very easy to connect with…
- LinkedIn and Twitter are my two best social networks.
- My speakers bio page has videos and a form that goes straight to my agent.
- Email me podcast or interview requests: firstname.lastname@example.org