If you don’t capture your ideas in a coherent manner, you’ll never actualize them.
Shmuel Herschberg is a seasoned digital marketing executive, who lives and breathes email marketing. He is the founder of Shyn Media, a boutique agency that offers creative marketing automation, content strategy, and digital media services.
Mr. Herschberg possesses a unique blend of technological awareness coupled with strategic thinking and customer psychology. Data-driven, with a proven track record of growing revenues and scaling business, he has exceptional communications skills and a strong ability to translate customer needs into actionable, winning strategies. He is the author of numerous articles that probe a wide-range of viewpoints relating to digital marketing, with an emphasis on the latest trends in email marketing. In addition, he has lectured and presented on these topics and will be speaking at some industry events later on this year.
Originally hailing from New York, Mr. Herschberg has over 18 years of experience in the Israeli high-tech scene. Previously, he has held senior marketing and business development positions at several companies and was responsible for creating successful revenue streams. When it comes time to relax, Mr. Herschberg enjoys traveling and spending time with his loving family.
For more information, please be sure to follow him on LinkedIn and Twitter.
Where did the idea for Shyn Media come from?
Good question. Well, logic would state that I should just be Shmuel Herschberg Marketing and Communications. I thought about going with that, but admittedly my Achilles heel is my long name. Good luck typing “Shmuel Herschberg” into your browser – people are always misspelling it! So, I came up with Shyn Media, pronounced “shine,” because I deliver creative solutions that lets my clients shine! Plus, it’s an acronym of my children’s first names, so that keeps me focused on the prize.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
Well, when I get up, I pray and do a little Bible study. I try to internalize these teachings so that they will have a positive effect on my day. After this, I help get my kids off to school and then I’ll sit down for a cup of coffee – usually black, no milk… definitely without sugar! During this time, or better yet, when the water is boiling, I try to envision my day and see how I will be able to help my clients. Some days I have client calls and others I have a lot of time to write. I like that variation. One of the things that I disliked about an office job is the monotony of the quote-unquote daily grind.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I’m an idea man and anyone who’s brainstormed with me could attest to my creative streak. I’m also a believer in if there’s a will there’s a way. So, when I come across a good idea that I want to bring to life, I’ll make a note of it and then figure out what the best course of action to bring it to life is. I find this is a much better tactic than just running without a strategy. President Abraham Lincoln was quoted as saying, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” It’s funny how this adage still holds true today in the world of business, preparation, and discipline.
What’s one trend that excites you?
Email marketing. A lot of people had written off email marketing with the rise of Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms, but people are realizing that email is the one digital marketing commodity that you own. And even though it’s been around for a while, there are always new techniques to test. One area that I’ve been focusing on is subject lines. I find it challenging because you only get a few words to hit a homerun, so to speak. Here’s an interesting tidbit: I got a 65% increase in open rates when I added the current date into the subject line.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Although I never met him, I feel like I am a student of David Allen. You know, the author of “Getting Things Done,” both a NY Times bestselling book and social movement. So, clearing my mind, sorting through tasks and prioritizing is of paramount importance to me. My go-to app is Microsoft’s To Do because it syncs nicely across all my devices.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Take some risks and don’t be afraid of failure. Being human means, you have vulnerabilities just like the next guy, so stop thinking everyone else’s life is perfect.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
The Miami Dolphins are going to win the Super Bowl this year!
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Post a steady flow of content on LinkedIn. Maybe it’s because I’m in Israel and I don’t get out to events much, but I firmly believe LinkedIn is a great networking tool.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Helping people solve their problems. Being a mensch is still a reputable trait! And the way I go about it is by specializing in email marketing. I know I can do a lot of other things, and this doesn’t mean I’m signing on to do email marketing for the next 25 years, but for now, this is my main pitch. Yeah, I also do content and funnel hacking—and do it pretty well, if I may add, but focusing on helping SMBs and people with their email marketing and marketing automation issues is what has helped me grow. Plus, as a side benefit, it’s helped me carve out a niche for myself, which is pretty neat.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Excellent question. When I made the move to becoming a solopreneur, I thought the best way would be to get one client. This way, I could buy stability and my freedom. I don’t know what I was thinking—it was a mistake!!! So, after being miserable for a few months, I scaled back and slowly built up a portfolio of clients that allows me to see a lot of “action” and it enables me to set better boundaries for myself.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Never be afraid to proactively put dormant leads and email addresses on a self-imposed exclusion list.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I bought an annual subscription for online music. I was going crazy listening to all their ads! Now it’s ad-free, and I can finally relax.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
As I said earlier, my go-to app is Microsoft’s To Do, because it syncs nicely across all my devices. Basically, whenever an idea pops into my head I capture it. I don’t start hacking away at this. For example, I wanted to do this interview for a couple of weeks, but it just wasn’t a good time for me; I needed to take care of other stuff. However, this is important to me and it came up on my to-do list. Without capturing your ideas, 87% of ideas go to waste. Well, I just made up that stat, but it’s probably somewhat true—if you don’t capture your ideas, you’ll never actualize them.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
Well, I already spoke about David Allen’s “Getting Things Done,” so let me pick another one. I’m going to choose “Start-Up Nation” by Dan Senor and Saul Singer. It’s a book about Israel and how it overcame tremendous odds to produce more start-ups than big countries, like Japan, Canada, and the United Kingdom.
What is your favorite quote?
There was a Hasidic Rabbi in the 20th century named Kalonymus Kalman Shapira who said, “The greatest thing in the world is to do somebody else a favor.”
• Always help other people solve their problems—remember the greatest thing you can do, is to do a favor.
• Be a mensch.
• Take some risks and don’t being afraid of failure—we’re all human and failure is a part of life.
• If you don’t capture your ideas in a coherent manner, you’ll never actualize them.
• Sometimes you have to believe in crazy things, like the Miami Dolphins winning the Super Bowl.
Carlyn runs the day-to-day publishing operation here at ideamensch and interacts with our awesome customers and entrepreneurs. She is likely editing this with a cat on her lap.