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Marketing Strategies with Jacob Tegman from Third Loft Marketing on the Kooler Lifestyle Podcast #80

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00:00:00 Jacob Tegtman
I think humans don’t want is 10 companies that are all competing online and they’re all creating only AI content. So it’s just AI versus AI and then it has nothing to do with humans anymore because they can’t compete like that. Doesn’t it doesn’t make sense from like a ranking perspective. I think what humans want is good information, clearly presented fast, that’s also somewhat unique. And since AI can’t really produce unique like new Thought kind of content yet, yeah, it it’s kind of like against everyone’s best interest to just push out, you know, thousands of blog articles every day that say the same thing that every other article does, right?

00:00:51 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Welcome to the Kooler Lifestyle Podcast. I’m your host, Matt Kuehlhorn, and I’m excited to have you join me as I interview community members and business leaders from the communities in which I live, work and serve through my business Kooler Garage Doors. We’re going to bring you highlights on characters in our communities.

00:01:08 Jacob Tegtman

00:01:09 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Because community matters, and I want to know more about who is behind our business and leadership in order to understand and support the community fabric that our relationships make up. And collectively, we can build stronger communities that support our lifestyles, our youth and our health. Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Kooler Lifestyle Podcast. I’m your host, Matt Kuehlhorn. Today I’m sitting down with a local from Grand Junction.

00:01:39 Matthew Kuehlhorn
His name’s Jacob Tegman. He runs Third Loft Marketing. Jacob, I saw you popping up in my social feed as you went around interviewing folks on a on a local basis and I thought that was really cool. I’m excited to chat with you today, learn a little bit more about you and and what you offer to the local businesses. So thanks for joining.

00:01:59 Jacob Tegtman
Thanks so much for having me, Matt. Happy to be here.

00:02:02 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Yeah, and I understand you’re beaming in from your home in Grand Junction.

00:02:06 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, yeah. Day after Thanksgiving. We’re just kind of relaxing this morning. So yeah, I appreciate you you setting this up and you made it really easy to just do it podcast format like this, so.

00:02:17 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Yeah, yeah. I like to try to keep it simple, man. Jacob, did you grow up in Grand Junction or where’d you grow up?

00:02:24 Jacob Tegtman
No, I grew up in Fort Collins, Co, just north of Denver. So when I moved to Grand Junction about seven years ago, it was a pretty big culture shock for me because for me this is a very small area, much slower pace of life, But it’s grown on me. People here are very genuine.

00:02:44 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Yeah, What? What brought you over?

00:02:47 Jacob Tegtman
I had just graduated college at that time. Or maybe it was about a year after that and I got a job offer to run the marketing program for a local mold, water and fire restoration company.

00:03:02 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Oh, right on. So that so a job brought you into grand.

00:03:06 Jacob Tegtman
Junction correct, Yeah.

00:03:08 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Did you did you study marketing in Fort Collins?

00:03:12 Jacob Tegtman
No, I was actually an English major, OK? And I got into sales to help pay my way through college, more or less. Yep. And so I I connected with the people who owned that business while they were living in Greeley, Co, where I was going to college. So gotcha.

00:03:31 Matthew Kuehlhorn
And when did you start third loft?

00:03:35 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, it was, it’s been this is the end of year five, OK. And so there was just a period of time where that company was transitioning. They had been bought out by a larger franchise and as they were figuring out all of their marketing stuff and their changes, I moved to part time. And so it was a perfect opportunity to take on clients on the side, so.

00:04:02 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Cool. Yeah. And you were explaining a little bit of what I would call your niche before we hit record. But for the listeners, how do you like what’s a competitive advantage? What’s the differences with Third Loft versus some other opportunities that are out there for folks looking for marketing?

00:04:24 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, there’s a few. I guess I’ll start with what we do that everyone else does, which is we’re a digital marketing company. So we provide the website, SEO, social media ads, etcetera. Basically, if you need it, we can do it. But what we like to specialize in is working with smaller locally owned businesses.

00:04:47 Jacob Tegtman
And then as the technology’s developing, we are getting into the AI side of marketing. And there is a hype around that. I think everybody knows that. But I think it’s it’s like also a hype that when your client’s prospective clients even look at you and they see that you’re using AI, it’s like a perceived value thing. So their own hype about AI almost makes them feel better about you in their mind.

00:05:16 Jacob Tegtman
So we’re kind of exploring, you know some various things affordably that small businesses can add.

00:05:23 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Love this. All right. We’re going to lean into AI combo a little bit. But just to summarize for Lessner is what I heard is you really specialize in in that local marketing level for the smaller company, you know to be able to leverage their, their finite resources into getting messages out on a local digital basis, which is cool and you utilize AI. So you’re right there’s a lot of hype around AII think there’s there’s a lot of, there’s some knowledge around ChatGPT the one I love is π dot AIPI dot AI.

00:06:03 Matthew Kuehlhorn
It’s a empathetic ChatGPT type of machine, but but break this down. So how do you define AI and how do you currently use it for your marketing customers?

00:06:17 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, so I think even the term AI is is probably hyped up because, you know, like ChatGPT for now is very good. It can produce quite a bit of content, whether written or even you know, it can read aloud things for you. We use a decent amount of AI within our own company. For like creating blog content. It can’t do it on its own.

00:06:45 Jacob Tegtman
You still need an editor, you still need a lot at work. But basically you know this is not general AI, right? So like even calling it AI is a bit of a misnomer I think. But you know, more or less it is on the horizon. It’s coming up fast.

00:07:02 Jacob Tegtman
I view it as it’s going to be disruptive beneficially, I think mostly to the marketplace in the way that the advent of the Internet was. And so you know, those businesses have that have been open in Grand Junction for 50 years that just got a website like last year for the first time and they didn’t really need one because they had so much word of mouth advertising going for them. Everybody already knew them and loved them. It wasn’t a big deal, but you know, because of that, when people move to an area and they don’t know anybody yet, they can’t get the exposure to that word of mouth. They’re going to choose somebody else who has the website right and has the SEO and all that stuff.

00:07:50 Jacob Tegtman
And I just think that more and more companies who take advantage of AI when it comes out are going to move ahead in the marketplace and that ones who don’t and wait to adopt it, you know they will fall behind a little bit so and that that curve will steepen I think with time so.

00:08:11 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Yeah, it’s definitely gonna be something that is moving fast, and likely faster than most of us can truly comprehend.

00:08:21 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, I could, yeah.

00:08:23 Matthew Kuehlhorn
That’s one of the things I’ve been like almost in.

00:08:26 Jacob Tegtman
Awe of.

00:08:28 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Because I see it, I see it playing out in a lot of different ways. So so far you’ve explained like you’re utilizing some of these these tools like a ChatGPT for assisting and generating content. And it could certainly spit out a blog post that is like SEO friendly quicker than than I can type and we’re still gonna need to do some human massaging to it.

00:08:54 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, a lot, right. A lot.

00:08:56 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Why is that?

00:08:59 Jacob Tegtman
Currently, ChatGPT struggles to write just. Let’s say, let’s talk about blog content. Struggles to write content beyond like 4 to 500 words. It’ll start repeating itself it it won’t say anything useful, you know? And basically it’s just creating content by synthesizing information it can find on the web related to the keywords you’re using as input.

00:09:26 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah. And so you know, if you’re not saying anything unique in your blog post and it’s it’s not like something that a human would love to read, then the blog puts kind of falls, falls flat. So we mostly use it to, you know, have it write us an outline and then we’ll individually have it write like a couple 100 words on each one of those points. And then we’ll pass that to a writer and then take that and expand it, make it unique, add their own unique thoughts, of course. And basically it’s just cutting down on the time it takes to write blog posts.

00:10:09 Jacob Tegtman
It’s not really replacing it with ChatGPT 5, from what I understand coming out sometime in the near future, that shouldn’t be a problem anymore. I think that its length of logic will be able to be such that it could possibly write several thousand word blog posts, but we’re not there yet, so.

00:10:30 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Yeah, yeah. But then, soon as they’re going to be ChatGPT 6 and seven and eight and we’re.

00:10:39 Jacob Tegtman
Talking we’re.

00:10:40 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Talking a handful of years, right? Like the the massive amounts of information that it will be able to crunch is is insane. What do you know about SO I I think some people are just generating content with ChatGPT, copying and pasting it and pushing it out there. I heard some rumblings and I’m wondering if you could verify any bit of this or add insights to this. But can a Google crawler or any of these search engines crawlers identify AAI written content versus a human written content?

00:11:18 Matthew Kuehlhorn
And thus does it differentiate in SEO land of where those are going to rank?

00:11:26 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, I can’t 100% say for certainty yes or no. And the reason is because Google has never shared their exact metrics for how they rank websites and articles. We have, you know, a worldwide team of, you know, SEO marketers that we subscribe to and connect with and share our information with. So we have a very good idea about what Google, you know, thinks. My estimation is that they can tell to some degree.

00:12:01 Jacob Tegtman
And the reason for that is because universities for example also can tell to some degree when their students are are using AI specific content. It only makes sense then that Google would do the same. And so, you know, really what I think humans don’t want is 10 companies that are all competing online and they’re all creating only AI content. So it’s just AI versus AI and then it has nothing to do with humans anymore because they can’t compete like that doesn’t it doesn’t make sense from like a ranking perspective. I think what humans want is good information, clearly presented fast.

00:12:47 Jacob Tegtman
That’s also somewhat unique and since AI can’t really produce unique, you know, like new thought kind of content yet, yeah, it it’s kind of like against everyone’s best interest to just push out, you know, thousands of blog articles every day that say the same thing that every other article does, right? So, right. I don’t know if I explain that very well, but.

00:13:14 Matthew Kuehlhorn
No, I I’m hearing that. I mean, basically what I’m hearing is and as a tidbit for listeners like if we are creating our own content, we can use a ChatGPT or similar type of tool to assist in some of the organization and even prompting some of the thoughts. But we’re going to have to have creative inputs and then take that output and put it into our own words so that it’s actually speaking to our customer and not just another robot, if you will.

00:13:51 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, I I think that’s a very good summary. Yeah.

00:13:55 Matthew Kuehlhorn
All right. Locally, so you already mentioned something that I think is interesting. So for for Grand Junction, you’ve been in the area for seven years. What have you seen in the local market as a shift in that time frame that now encourages a company that’s been around for 50 years to start promoting themselves in a different venue?

00:14:25 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, I would say was the lockdowns a couple of years ago. I can think of of several small businesses that either didn’t have a website a few years ago or they didn’t do anything with it. And yeah, during that lockdown, a lot of people almost lost their businesses. So they’ve definitely changed.

00:14:47 Matthew Kuehlhorn
And that is because people just were staying home and and not being able to find certain companies or is it also or in part to a population shift like have you seen that where you yourself came from Fort Collins. But it I also sense that you know because of or out of COVID like there is a shift people Oh my gosh, I could live in the Western Slope of Colorado and I don’t have to be in wherever. And so I on that note like, I think, I think people coming from the Front Range have different expectations, right? Like they’re gonna want to go to online and find information before some of the other methods that are out there or they’re just new to the area and they don’t know what businesses are available, what resources, right?

00:15:40 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, I definitely think, excuse me, that the, the expectations of someone moving from the Front Range are different. Like when I moved here, if there was a business, you know, say I needed some work done on my car and they didn’t have a website, then I perceived that as a being that they didn’t care very much about their business and therefore maybe they wouldn’t care about taking care of my car well. And of course that’s mostly BS. Like, these are just like the thoughts that humans have that make no sense, right? In correlation to what’s actually real, right.

00:16:15 Jacob Tegtman
But but, you know, perception is really important when it comes to running a business, like how people think of you, what they think you care about or not. And so yeah, like Grand Junction is is growing very quickly in population, which is very good for local businesses, ’cause they have so much more potential now. But yeah, without a website I I think a lot of people won’t even give a business a look. So.

00:16:45 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Yeah, yeah, The adoption of technology, I mean we’ve talked about AI. We’re also referencing websites, which you know from my perspective is almost a basic piece. But I totally get folks that have been around and and playing a game for decades like that would be an afterthought. Yeah, but then we’re talking, we’re also like you know in a in a service based business like like Koolers, you know we’re giving tablets to guys and you know there’s folks that are running on paper. And it’s it’s interesting to me how technology can be a disruption and it can create the good and the not so great differences that that comes with it.

00:17:34 Matthew Kuehlhorn
But it’s it’s always mind boggling to me for whatever reason. And I’m probably already like technology moves so fast. Yeah, and and if we’re not actively adopting it, we’re going to lose out on on a certain base that is adopting it. And if we’re not moving into a high functioning website that’s even adaptable to to mobile, like how many websites are out there that that I can’t really see on my phone?

00:18:07 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, too many.

00:18:09 Matthew Kuehlhorn
And And how many people are now relying on their phone and only for their searches?

00:18:16 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah. I I would say at least 50 or 60% of web traffic for my clients is mobile now, so yeah.

00:18:26 Matthew Kuehlhorn
And and now you’re touching on something that’s really cool with, with a good marketing partner is that ability to see the data like you just spot about 50 to 60% of your clients are being found on mobile searches. And that is the power of digital marketing. Like, I can run a billboard or I could run a print ad or even a phone book, but it’s harder to measure that versus like how many people are coming to my website and where are they coming from and what devices are they using. Like, that’s all trackable.

00:19:13 Jacob Tegtman
With technology that’s a really big deal. You know we of course I still think traditional advertising is valuable especially depending on the demographics you’re going for. Whenever we have clients who are going to do radio ads or billboards, I always recommend that they have a forwarding number so that at least you know, if they call this number, that’s the only place we have that number and it’s still forwards to your office. So it’s fine. But so many businesses we’ve worked with have you know, initially given us pushback when we present our services because they’re, they’ve worked with marketing companies in the past and they’ve spent, you know, X number of thousands of dollars and gotten no results and yeah, I think that.

00:20:03 Jacob Tegtman
You need to have ways to measure your progress at least every month, preferably every couple weeks, so you can see what’s working, you can adjust, you cannot overspend. Marketing, unfortunately is one of those areas in the business where you could just literally dump your entire life savings and then you know it’s like a bottomless hole, like you can just put as much as you want in. And so I think that having those metrics are really important and we view it you know as a as a local marketing company as our job not just to provide the marketing services but kind of like you were you know pointing out there it, it’s our job to point out trends and it’s our job to make recommendations and do all the exploration of the new technology. And you know, I I feel like we’re almost as much advisors as we are or maybe even more than providing the services, so.

00:20:56 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s an interesting interesting game and I’ve I’ve had experiences of the past where I’ve put in gobs and gods of money and it’s like what is the return like some of it can be defined in data and and some of it might not like it’s it’s a weird mix of an art and science. Yeah and and that’s I mean that’s that’s a good thing and it’s a it’s a challenging thing at the same time. But let’s get some some practical pieces out there. So there could be some small business listening right now and that to that business owner like what have you seen that is one of the biggest mistakes a small business might do when it comes to marketing.

00:21:50 Jacob Tegtman
Either not doing enough of it. In fact, I could just say that yeah, just not doing enough. I’m.

00:21:56 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Not doing enough.

00:21:58 Jacob Tegtman
I was taught by my some of my business mentors. I’ve had many. When I started my company was that for every dollar you spend on your business, you should be spending $2.00 on your marketing. Businesses don’t fail typically because their organization is poor, although they do, but they fail even more so just because they don’t have enough sales. Like if somebody’s making money and their organization’s bad, they’ll just figure out how to fix the organization.

00:22:28 Jacob Tegtman
But if they’re not making money, then they’ll just, they’ll close the doors. So the only thing that makes you money is selling stuff. And you know, marketing helps you sell stuff. So it’s just like it’s like the basic math that I feel like it’s easy to overlook so.

00:22:45 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Would you say that that is true even in a in a tightening market like we’re looking at you know 2024 and there’s a bunch of balls rolling in the street, right. And and so I would say money’s getting tighter and and people are getting you know more tighter with that spend. What’s what would be your recommendation in that scenario for for a small company, limited resources like is it time to double down on marketing during that time or or pull back?

00:23:13 Jacob Tegtman
You know, I don’t know. So what what I say, I don’t know what. What I mean is, I don’t know if you need to spend more money, right? Like, there’s lots of ways to market your company without, you know, hiring a marketing company. Frankly, as much as I want people to hire me, you know, we this year have had a number of clients drop services or put a pause on things because people are spending less money.

00:23:40 Jacob Tegtman
Like, I don’t know if it’s a recession, maybe it is, but people are definitely spending less money like you’re saying. And so when there’s a tightening market like this, a lot of companies will stop their marketing, which means that there’s less competition now for promoting yourself than there was prior. And so like for a third loft, we have been marketing ourselves more now than we have like in the last couple years combined. But it’s mostly inexpensive marketing efforts. Like, for example, we’re interviewing local businesses similar to what you do, and we’re just promoting them for free, but it gets us in the door, right?

00:24:24 Jacob Tegtman
So there’s a, there’s a gaming store in our downtown market space that my wife and I love. We’re just, we’re into board games and stuff. And they had been giving away free like, really like common Pokémon cards with candy to kids and they just pass them out like everyone they could find. They’re giving away Pokémon cards kids love that gets them in the store. Like, parents know that their kids love the store, so they come and buy stuff it.

00:24:55 Jacob Tegtman
It didn’t cost him anything, right? Like that. Only bought with some bad candy. You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars when you’re struggling already. Like, go ahead and tighten your budget.

00:25:03 Jacob Tegtman
But there’s lots of ways to promote yourself for free that people will love. Just just give basically.

00:25:10 Matthew Kuehlhorn
So yeah, I love that. I love that perspective too. Let’s flip the script and. And what would be like the top 1-2? Maybe even 3 ideas you would have for any local business as far as maybe it’s some of that lesser cost type of marketing or just like here’s some of the fundamentals would it, What would a small business be able to take on?

00:25:38 Jacob Tegtman
I think one of the fundamentals that’s really easy is to just build an e-mail newsletter list. Most businesses collect emails as data, just kind of per the course because you’d have to correspond somehow, right? Yeah. And so once a month, you know, and some people do more, I I think once a month is a good amount because it doesn’t bother people, You know, just send out a newsletter to everybody on your list and just say, hey, you know, we’re thinking about you. Here’s some small tidbit of information that’s relevant to our industry that maybe we can educate you on and maybe you want to know about.

00:26:19 Jacob Tegtman
If you want to learn more, click on this link to our website And basically the whole goal is just to stay top of mind. Yeah, when people are spending less money it it, they’re going to spend more money with the people they trust. It’s basically what it comes down to. Like we live in the USA, people are not like widely in poverty. So people are still going to be spending money and if you just stay top of mind, you increase your chances of getting that sale dramatically.

00:26:50 Jacob Tegtman
And so that’s just the easiest way I think. And even if you don’t have an e-mail list, call up every one of your customers, spend two or three days doing it if you have to get their emails, tell them what you’re doing. Tell them that you want to support them with free information that can be relevant and beneficial for them. And yeah, you’ll you’ll easily get hundred couple 100 people signed up, so.

00:27:15 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Yeah, I love that. It’s a great tip. Wonderful, my friend Jacob, How do folks reach out to you and learn more about you and 3rd loft?

00:27:25 Jacob Tegtman
Yeah, so third loft’s website is just third. Loft. Third is spelled out and then loft is loft. So it’s third Anybody who’s listening to this, I’ll just give you my personal cell as well.

00:27:41 Jacob Tegtman
I don’t really mind. I usually turn off my phone when I’m not available anyways, but you can call me at 970-201-6317. You know, we give a lot of free marketing advice, so you just want some brainstorming? Yeah, to reach out. I’m happy to talk with you about your specific situation and if we can help, great.

00:28:03 Jacob Tegtman
Not totally fine. So.

00:28:05 Matthew Kuehlhorn
I love it. I really appreciate how your authenticity man. You know I can I can tell you’re you’re in it for for service 1st and you draw some good Nuggets of value in here and the pleasure was was mine and conversing with you. So thank you for your time, Jacob.

00:28:27 Jacob Tegtman
Thank you so much for having me now. I appreciate it.

00:28:31 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Ladies and gentlemen, thank you so much for listening to the Kooler Lifestyle Podcast. We count on your subscriptions, your likes, your shares, and I encourage you to do that. Now. If you’re watching on YouTube, Go ahead and subscribe. Lower righthand button.

00:28:44 Matthew Kuehlhorn
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