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I made a short and sweet video for you about some inspiration I received from my friend Ann Handley. If you prefer to read rather than view a video, an edited transcript about this idea of artisanal marketing appears below the video. Here we go!

Today I’m offering some ideas and observations on artisanal marketing inspired by a thank you note I received from Ann Handley.

There’s a cool lesson here that applies to content marketing, digital marketing, and even general business.

So let’s take a look at this thank you note, and the lesson that it taught me.


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None of the people in this photo exist. They’re all deep fakes generated by a site called This Person Does Not Exist. Refreshing this site to see new pictures of made-up people is harmless fun. But what happens when these realistic fakes become moving images with voices and opinions?

What happens when one of these images is … you?

I host a small marketing leadership retreat called The Uprising. At our last online event, we had a mind-bending presentation from Nina Schick, the author of “Deep Fakes” explaining the implications of this emerging trend.

This discussion had a profound impact…


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Over the past few years I’ve become skeptical about the true opportunities for Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for many businesses. Some of my SEO friends have pushed back — but I’m unconvinced. I think the window for smart SEO investment is closing for several reasons:


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When I wrote Marketing Rebellion, I proposed that in the end, “the most human company wins.” I believe in our hearts we all seek communion with real humans, and to the extent we can do that with our companies, we’ll survive and thrive these perilous times. The book is a call-to-action for human-centered marketing!

Since then, the pandemic has amplified the need for this authentic human connection. People have been isolated, fearful, and anxious for months. …


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The other day I had a phone message from my local pharmacist: “Please call me as soon as you can.”

Hmmm … what in the world could this be about? I had only received a direct call from a pharmacist one time in my life and it was because they gave me an incorrect prescription!

When I returned the call, the pharmacist tried to sell me on a new prescription program.

I was disappointed and confused by this. Why is this trusted person bothering me with a sales cold call?

A pharmacist is on a different level of trust with…


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My new book has arrived: Cumulative Advantage: How to Build Momentum for your Ideas, Business and Life Against All Odds.

Some early reviews are in:

“After I read this book, I stayed up all night thinking about it.””Cumulative Advantage will be Mark Schaefer’s legacy to the world.””I’m so inspired. This book is coming to me at the perfect time. Oh my goodness.”

But today, I want to explain why Cumulative Advantage could be right for you (and offer you some crazy deals at the end of the post!).

I respect your time and your faith in me, so before you…


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Hi everyone. Remember me? When you last heard from me I reported that I was taking a sabbatical — a month off at the beach — to recover and re-energize. I thought I would report on this experiment. After all, how many people get to take a month off?

People often say that you don’t learn and grow unless you’re out of your comfort zone. For me, not working was definitely out of my comfort zone! Here’s what I learned from this experiment.

The limits of “off”

To keep my business running, I blocked out each Monday for calls and presentations. However, I did…


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My cherished blog-reading friends,

Every week for the past 12 years I have written freely, openly, and passionately for you. With pride, I can say that I’ve never missed blogging for you over the last 650 consecutive weeks — even through illness, life trauma, and extended overseas trips. For many of you, my blog has earned a tiny place in your life and I am forever grateful for that.

A little piece of me is proud of “the streak,” but ending it is an easy decision because I can set a better example as a leader by taking a break…


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Every year I summarize my writing of the year and pluck out the best blog posts out of the dozens I created for the year.

In the 12-year history of this blog, 2020 marked a massive shift in the content direction … is there anything that DIDN’T SHIFT this year? : )

When the pandemic hit, the marketing-related content I had planned seemed out of sync so I began to write about strategies to fight the other side of this pandemic. …


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Clubhouse appears to be the next hot social media platform.

Backed by the prestigious venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz and growing faster than Mark Zuckerberg’s bank account, Clubhouse is a platform where users participate in different chat rooms on a wide range of topics. The conversations are audio-only, and when they finish, they disappear forever. It’s like talk radio on steroids — endless, diverse, inclusive. Wading through Clubhouse can be dizzying because there are so many interesting conversations.

Clubhouse is halfway between a podcast and a party. It’s a facilitated discussion, no make-up required. This is why it will displace…

Mark Schaefer

Chieftain of the blog {grow}, strategy consultant, educator, podcaster, author of Return On Influence, The Content Code, and The Tao of Twitter.

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