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BlogThe End of Year 12 of Blogging

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The End of Year 12 of Blogging

I have been blogging for nearly half my advertising agency ownership life. It is true; the older you get, the faster time flies. And 12 years of blogging has whizzed by. I feel like the Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner. The Road Runner represents the years in this metaphoric dream. And I’m Wile E.  Beep. Beep.

It is hard to think about the future of blogging, podcasting and content creation without wondering if it all is worth the effort. In my TV days, we would call it broadcasting to the ether. You always asked if anyone was listening above the clouds. Did the words, pictures and video make a difference?

13New technologies are changing how we communicate. And we are all communicating through endless channels, large and small. With so many of us expressing ourselves, are we really reaching our target audiences? Are we touching the right people at the right time?  Are we listening?

In college, I made a short film about a large rock on the main lawn of campus where anyone who had something to say climbed the rock and spoke out. Usually, a crowd would form. My movie short featured one speaker and a small audience. Then one by one, members of the audience all climbed up on the rock; all were speaking at once. Soon, no one was listening; everyone was on the rock speaking to the empty lawn. (By the way, I got a very low grade for my film. The instructor was more into the recently released “Rocky” movie knock-offs). It seems like my little film applies today. We all can speak from the rock, so what is essential as we become our own media outlets?

This is where three keywords become more and more critical: Relevancy, Empathy and Story. To me, empathy is the most important word. You must be able to empathize with your audience. Our thinking should be, “What does my audience need to hear? And not, “What do I want to say?”

You can’t blog this long about marketing and not be optimistic. Each new change has brought incredible opportunities to do things better and with more relevance. Ideas will always lead us forward.


Blog note: This is the last blog of 2021. There are times when readership is extremely low, and this is the lowest time. The weeks surrounding holidays always have low readership, so I’ll take a break.  Thank you for reading.  

Mark Mathis III is chief creative & strategy officer, partner and cofounder of AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising.

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Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.