Brandon is the Founder of Reporter Outreach, an agency that specializes in HARO outreach and link building. He scaled Reporter Outreach from 0 to 100 clients in the first year, and enjoyed every minute of it! He’s also the Co-Founder of Nomad SEO, a full-scale boutique SEO agency.
What is your typical day, and how do you make it productive?
My typical day starts early in the morning, around 6:00 am, with a cup of coffee and some stretching exercises to get my body and mind ready for the work day ahead. I usually check my emails and review what projects need to be completed for the day, prioritizing the most pressing tasks first. Once my team signs on, I check in with them to share any client updates or requests. The rest of my day is spent either on sales calls or developing and implementing new strategies for sales. I also work on content and SEO initiatives for our website.
To make each day productive, I have a set routine that I stick to regardless of whatever else is happening around me. I also like to work in large chunks of time, first handling all of the tasks that I can complete in 10 minutes or less and then focusing on more complex tasks that may take a couple of hours. Whenever I start feeling unfocused or antsy, I take a break to go on a walk with my dog, hit the gym, or simply just disconnect from all screens for 15-20 minutes. This helps me stay focused and energized for the tasks ahead.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Before I founded Reporter Outreach, I co-founded Nomad SEO, a full-scale SEO agency. It was through building that agency that I began to realize there was a huge market for link building services, particularly HARO link building. I wanted to capture the market that was looking for help with link building, but didn’t necessarily need a full-scale SEO campaign. There are a number of things I did from concept to creation, including:
1. I clarified my idea: I made sure I had a clear understanding of what my idea was and what I wanted to achieve. I remember writing down my idea and breaking it down into smaller steps and goals.
2. I did my research: I researched to see if anyone else was doing something similar, and if so, how they did it. I gathered information on the competitive landscape to see how difficult it would be to enter the market. I wanted to see what I was up against and if it was feasible.
3. I created a plan: I worked on a detailed plan that outlined what needed to be done initially, who would do it, and when it needed to be done. I made sure to set specific deadlines and milestones to keep me on track.
4. I built a team: This was extremely important. Once I had more than a handful of clients, I needed to make my first hire to take on some of the workload. Finding people who shared my passion and who were also highly skilled was critical. Hiring great employees in the early stages is so important because it enables you to scale properly.
5. I tested and refined: I tested my idea as I went along to see what worked and what didn’t. From the kinds of clients we would accept, to various writing strategies we used for content creation, to training my employees. It was all an iterative process that required feedback and improvements in order to refine the idea until it met my goals.
What’s one trend that excites you?
AI and machine learning are definitely two trends that I find very exciting. We are seeing more AI-powered tools and platforms being created to help automate and streamline marketing processes. This can significantly reduce the amount of time spent on mundane tasks, thus freeing up more resources for creative work.
I’m also very excited about conversational marketing, as it provides us with an opportunity to engage with customers in a whole new way. With chatbots, we have the ability to provide 24/7 customer service and deliver personalized content quickly and efficiently. I look forward to seeing how these technologies continue to develop and the opportunities they will create for us in the future.
What is one habit that helps you be productive?
I have a habit of breaking down big tasks into smaller, more manageable pieces and completing them one at a time. This helps me to stay organized and focused on what needs to be done in order to achieve my goals. In addition, I like to set daily, weekly, and monthly goals for myself so that I can stay on track and measure my progress. Setting these goals also helps me maintain a positive outlook and stay motivated.
What advice would you give your younger self?
My advice to my younger self would be to learn from my mistakes and never give up. As an entrepreneur, there will always be obstacles, but it is important to stay focused and keep pushing forward. In the process of building a business, it is essential to take calculated risks and not be afraid of failure. Every failure provides valuable lessons that can help you improve your skills and better navigate the business world in the future. In addition, I would advise my younger self to network as much as possible. Building relationships with like-minded individuals will open many doors of opportunity.
Tell us something you believe almost nobody agrees with you.
I believe that modern technology has created a false sense of security in terms of how people interact with the world. With the proliferation of social media and messaging apps, it’s become easier for people to connect with others without actually having to leave their homes. This can lead to a false sense of security in terms of engaging in meaningful relationships and interactions outside our own comfort zones. Technology shouldn’t be a substitute for genuine human connections. Venture out into the world and connect with people face to face! This opens up opportunities for meaningful conversations and experiences, which will ultimately result in better mental health and well-being.
What is the one thing you repeatedly do and recommend everyone else do?
One thing I repeatedly do and recommend others to do is to take time out of their busy schedules to reflect on the present. This means carving out time for yourself to pause and take stock of where you are currently and how far you have come. Reflection can help in identifying areas for improvement, as well as provide clarity on what goals you should be aiming for. It also allows us to gain perspective, which can be helpful in making decisions that are based on our true values. In addition, reflection encourages self-awareness and gives us the ability to recognize our own strengths and weaknesses more objectively. Taking regular breaks to think and evaluate is an important part of personal growth, so it’s vital to make sure that we make time for this practice whenever possible.
When you feel overwhelmed or unfocused, what do you do?
I love exercising! The physical and mental benefits of working out are undeniable, so it’s one of the first things I turn to when feeling overwhelmed or unfocused. Going on a run with my dog down the boardwalk in sunny San Diego, hitting the gym, or playing some beach volleyball are my favorite ways to unwind so that I can come back with a clear mind, ready to work.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business or advance in your career?
Networking and building relationships have proven vital to growing my business. It really is all about who you know. Whether it’s partnering with other agencies, getting referrals from happy customers, meeting other business owners at networking events or conferences, or simply surrounding myself with other goal-oriented people in my friend group – it all leads to growth. Being able to bounce ideas off people, asking for advice, and expanding the way I think through new experiences have all been incredibly helpful in my entrepreneurial journey.
What is one failure in your career, how did you overcome it, and what lessons did you take away from it?
Back in 2016, I worked as a Digital Analyst at an SEO agency, and over the course of a few months, the team started to realize that clients were leaving and new clients were not signing on. However, there was no communication about this from upper management. It was a gradual decline that eventually led to the CEO closing down the agency to focus his attention on other business ventures.
Each employee woke up one Friday morning to an email outlining that we no longer had jobs and that the agency was no longer in business, effective immediately. This was a difficult pill to swallow and seemed like a huge failure at the time. I was trying to figure out how I was going to bounce back from this because I needed a new job quickly. At the same time, I realized there were dozens of agency clients left behind who definitely still needed SEO services.
This was a light bulb moment, and a co-worker and I talked about making a big leap. We decided we would venture out on our own, together as partners, to create our own agency. We reached out to each of the 10 clients that we had been working with over the previous year and explained what was going on, presenting them with an option – they transfer their services over to our agency, and we pick up right where we left off – the same pricing, and the same two people working on their projects. Out of the 10 clients we had, 8 of them decided to come on board with us! And from there, we had our start. We were charging agency prices and delivering the same agency quality of services. This “failure” turned into the best thing that ever happened to me!
What is one business idea you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I flew back to Florida recently to visit with my parents for a week. They’re both elderly – my Mom is 65 and takes about a dozen different medications. She still uses one of those archaic pill counter boxes that list the days of the week. For each of the seven containers, she has all 12 pills tossed in there, completely unorganized. All of these pills have to be taken at different times throughout the day, some with food, some on an empty stomach, and some a certain amount of hours apart from each other. It gave me a headache trying to think of how she manages that every day.
It got me thinking – I have no idea if this already exists or not – but what if there was a smart medication management system for the elderly? You could create a smart medication management system that uses AI and IoT technology to help the elderly manage their medications, improve medication adherence, and reduce the risk of medication errors.
The system would consist of a mobile app that the elderly can use to track their medications and receive reminders when it’s time to take them. The app would also provide information about potential side effects and interactions with other medications.
In addition, the system would include a smart pill dispenser that dispenses the correct medication at the right time and sends alerts to the app when medications are running low or have been missed. The pill dispenser could also be programmed to notify a caregiver or family member if medications are not taken on time or if there are any issues with the medication schedule.
This system would help solve the problem of medication non-adherence, which is a major issue for the elderly population. It would improve medication management, reduce the risk of medication errors, and provide peace of mind for caregivers and family members.
What is one piece of software that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
I use ClickUp for project management, and it has proved to be invaluable! I use the task list feature to prioritize tasks based on their importance and urgency, the calendar view to schedule tasks in advance, and the timeline view to visually map out projects. I also use the comment section for internal communication between team members, as well as file sharing.
ClickUp helps me stay organized by allowing me to break large projects into smaller goals or tasks. This makes it easier for me to see what needs to be done next, which increases my productivity and efficiency. It also allows me to monitor team performance and identify areas of improvement.
What is the best $100 you recently spent?
Recently, the best $100 I spent was on a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. Working from home has its benefits but I often get distracted by my dog or outside noises and can’t stay focused on work tasks. The noise-cancelling headphones are great for blocking out any distractions and help me remain productive when working.
Do you have a favorite book or podcast from which you’ve received much value?
My favorite book is ‘The 4-Hour Workweek‘ by Tim Ferriss. It’s a classic and an inspiring read for anyone looking to make the most of their time and energy, as well as become more productive in their work life. Ferriss’ philosophy is about working smarter, not harder. He covers topics such as lifestyle design, eliminating time-wasting tasks, and creating multiple streams of passive income. I found this book extremely helpful in terms of optimizing my workflow and understanding how to better manage my time.
I’m also a big fan of the podcast “How I Built This” hosted by Guy Raz. Raz interviews entrepreneurs from different backgrounds and industries who have built successful companies from scratch. I love hearing stories of how these iconic companies came to be: the obstacles they had to overcome, the strategies they implemented, and their ultimate success stories. It’s inspiring to learn more about these businesses, and helps me think more strategically when it comes to building my own business or projects.
What’s a movie or series you recently enjoyed and why?
I’m currently watching “The Last of Us” on HBO and absolutely loving it! It’s a post-apocalyptic drama based on the video game of the same name. The series follows two characters, Ellie and Joel, who must survive in a world overrun by zombie-like creatures known as “The Infected.” What I love about this series is its combination of intense action sequences and emotional character development. It’s such an immersive experience that keeps me on the edge of my seat throughout each episode. The acting and visuals are also top-notch, which makes for a really engaging viewing experience. I’m also a huge fan of Pedro Pascal, the main actor – everything he touches turns to gold!
- Don’t be afraid to take risks. Failure is the greatest teacher.
- Time management and organization are key for increasing productivity.
- Take time to reflect on your successes and failures. Being present in the moment can provide clarity.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.