Dan Blacharski is the president and founder of Ugly Dog Media. He has drawn on his years of experience doing PR for some of Silicon Valley’s most exciting companies during the dotcom boom, recognizing the increasing fragmentation of the marketing business. Blacharski’s Ugly Dog Media is a full-service PR and marketing firm that offers small to medium-sized businesses and startups a comprehensive approach to marketing.


dan blacharski Marketing Expert Gives Survival Tips For Using Online Marketing Firms

Dan Blacharsk
(Photo courtesy of Dan Blacharsk)


Why is your company named Ugly Dog Media?
Because there really is an ugly dog. He’s our Boston terrier, who hangs out in the office with us. His name is Pladook, which is the Thai word for catfish. When I met my wife Be, in Thailand, she told me how much she loves ugly dogs, and it’s been a running theme with us ever since. Be also works with me in the business.

Should I trust online job boards as a good source of candidates for my marketing project?
Marketing, public relations and advertising are no longer the exclusive domain of Madison Avenue. B2B sites like Elance, Guru, Freelancer.com and Upwork provide an easy platform for finding candidates, but use these sites with caution. If you do look on these sites, be aware that many providers are offshore, and marketing should be a very hands-on process with lots of communication. Even many U.S. based providers on those sites want to stay anonymous and are only willing to communicate via email, and that is never a good idea. When considering a candidate from one of those B2B sites, check first to see if they have a presence outside of the B2B site. If all you have to go on is a two-line response to your query from somebody named ‘MarketingGuy2511’ that’s giving you a bargain-basement price, then give it a pass. You are not buying bulk toilet paper; you are buying services that will materially affect the success of your business. Marketing should never be provisioned anonymously. You should be able to have either a phone or in-person conversation with your provider before making your selection, and if used right, these platforms will facilitate this connectivity.

I saw an offer from a marketing firm offering high-quality backlinks for $99. Why should I pay thousands of dollars?
The companies making those offers are not marketing firms, although they may call themselves that, and the results they deliver are likely to be harmful to your brand. These firms specialize in mechanical SEO, often consisting of embedding rogue, spammy comments into article response threads and submitting poorly-written articles from content mills to low-quality online magazines and article submitter sites.

Backlinks took center stage several years ago when the Google algorithm was young and immature, and it was easy to game the system with keyword-packed articles and by creating websites just for the purpose of placing links. Today, the Google algorithm is all about quality, backlinks are a lot less relevant. A good marketing provider will focus on gaining legitimate brand mentions in A-list publications and creating an online presence for you that provides a steady stream of high quality-informative content that reinforces your message and your brand.

This article was written by Robin D. Everson for Small Business Pulse


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