In this video Kevin Milani talks traffic. We had a great chat on a warm but cool Austin afternoon. Kevin is new to Austin and has been spreading his wealth of traffic knowledge like peanut butter all over this town.
Matt Gerchow: We’re live here in Austin, Texas, I’ve got Kevin Milani on the line with us. How are you doing Kevin?
Kevin Milani: Hey, doing well. How are you?
Matt Gerchow: I’m great, man. I’m great. Glad to be here at your building, spending time with you. We are up on the 36th floor right now of the Bowie building. Did I pronounce that right, Kevin?
Kevin Milani: It’s either Bowie, Bowie, or Bowie.
Matt Gerchow: Yeah, exactly. One of those. It’s one of the more exclusive buildings down here in downtown Austin. Kevin has recently moved to Austin. Kevin is a traffic expert.
Probably one of the more qualified traffic experts out there on the internet right now. I just wanted to share Kevin’s Austin story with you guys and let you know a little bit about him. Kevin, where did you come from?
Kevin Milani: I grew up in Oregon, spent 10 years in New York City, and I’ve been traveling all over the country. But unlike you, I haven’t been all over the world, just all over the US.
Matt Gerchow: Well, not yet. I know you have big aspirations for travel, you and your wife. How long have you been in Austin now?
Kevin Milani: Just since November.
Matt Gerchow: Fantastic.
Kevin Milani: It’s a fantastic city for all my marketers in general.
Matt Gerchow: It really it. How has your experience been so far?
Kevin Milani: It’s been really good. I’ve just been trying to network in this town. I met a lot of great people. Trying to find some people that are my level in different areas in marketing so I can just grow my craft, especially in areas where I’d like to learn a lot more, like content and copyright and things like that.
Matt Gerchow: Sure. Where would you say your USP, or your expert level is at?
Kevin Milani: Paid traffic is exactly where I excel. All the paid traffic sources. I started off with Google, ad words display being all of those search traffic. Since, I’ve expanded to just any paid traffic source. I used to do SCL, but I don’t do that any more. I don’t do social or anything else. I’m very, very specialized.
Matt Gerchow: I’m outside at the pool right now. See if I can do a little glimpse of it here at the back end as I find a place to balance the phone there. You’ve been here in Austin a little while, you’re really good at paid traffic and social media traffic.
A lot of the people watching this are kind of just getting started in marketing. What are some of the things you would tell someone that’s got a website up now and they’re looking to get traffic [inaudible 00:03:03] to it in some fashion.
Kevin Milani: Probably the easiest thing for anyone who is just starting is to start with some of the newer traffic platforms or some of the less expensive platforms where you can get a win on much lower budgets. Facebook is one of those.
Yahoo Gemini can be really good. Bing ads is always really good for someone who is trying to learn search. I’d stay away from more mature platforms like ad words especially because it’s extremely hard to get that one right unless you have huge budgets and a lot of expertise.
Matt Gerchow: Absolutely. I totally agree. Look at what we’re dong here with Blab. Blab’s going to have plenty of interesting traffic coming on. I’ve had to block 2 people from joining this call before I locked the seat down.
It’s always when you’re on the new platform that there’s an opportunity to actually have a win, where a lot of times if you try to go after Google ad words, right out of the gate, you’re going to get your ass handed to you.
Matt Gerchow: And end up with some big traffic bills and probably not even a winning campaign.
Kevin Milani: A piece of advice that my uncle gave me when I first started digital traffic 10 years ago was to really focus in on something, become really good at something. I decided to become really good at ad words and paid search.
Now a days, if you look around the landscape, you have Pinterest ads, you have Twitter ads, you have some of these newer ad platforms that are reasonably priced and you can really go out there and learn how to become the best of the best at those platforms and carve out a little niche for yourself.
Once you’ve done that and you can get bigger clients, it’s actually a good way to get in with any client almost. There’s a ton of potential clients out there that don’t run on those platforms and don’t have anybody who knows how to run those platforms.
You can get your foot in the door and after that you can start to pick up some more platforms. It’s a good way to get your feet wet and start doing some online advertising.
Of course, if you have your own business and you’re doing it for yourself, that can work too. I find that a lot of these platforms get to be so difficult so the people that do it themselves find that rather than pairing it out, they’re doing themselves a big disservice.
Matt Gerchow: It can actually become your full time job just focusing on traffic instead of actually worrying about your business.
Kevin Milani: Not doing as well as it could be done. We regularly see clients come in, and you know, you’re getting a 300% improvement, 500% improvement over a year.
Matt Gerchow: What happens when someone comes to you, initially you’ll spend some time auditing their campaigns if they already exist. What are some of the things you might do for someone right off the bat in order to get them headed in the right direction?
Kevin Milani: Basically, with really quick improvements, I just look to cut waste. First things is just look at all the reporting and all the analytics and find out what types of things are not converting or not giving us sales and let’s try to cut some of that stuff out. Then, pull those out of the campaigns.
Then, look at the places where you are doing well and say, “Let’s try to get more of this. If something’s doing great, how can I get more of that?” The combination of those 2 things is a really good starting point. That’s usually the first step I take when I take over campaigns, just optimizing or improving what’s already there.
Then, there’s a whole other piece, which is way more complicated building that whole new architecture.
Matt Gerchow: You’ve also mentioned to me before, when companies have come to you, they’ve been targeting certain cities across the US, and you’ll actually go ahead and target the entire nation, but do some plus and minuses on the traffic to get still save them money.
Kevin Milani: Yeah, we do a lot of geography and that’s been extremely powerful for us, is to just utilize geography as a differentiator. You’ll find [inaudible 00:07:22] about geography in campaigns. If you bid up the places that are working well and bid down the places that aren’t working so well, you can end up with some pretty big improvements in your campaigns just based on that.
The same with day parting. With day parting, you can get pretty big improvements cutting out the parts of the day that don’t convert, which is usually in the middle of the night. Well, it depends on the category. Some categories are great in the middle of the night, like the insomnia drugs.
Matt Gerchow: Yeah like insomniac. Fantastic. Cool, man. You’ve been here in Austin for a while, why Austin? Why did you come here?
Kevin Milani: Basically, the agency I work for is headquartered here.
Matt Gerchow: What agency is that?
Kevin Milani: MQ&C Digital. They’ve been here 25 years. It began as a traditional regular TV agency, and I had my own agency for 8 years. They bought me out and brought me in house to their larger traditional agency. We formed MQ&C Digital.
Matt Gerchow: I had lunch with your friend Ben a couple of weeks ago. Ben’s a dinosaur in this industry. He knows everybody. Much like you know everybody, but he knows everybody.
Kevin Milani: Yeah, I know nothing.
Matt Gerchow: He goes back more like Ogilvy and Chiat Day
Kevin Milani: Yeah, he got connected with all the internet marketers back in the ’90’s, back when they first started and he’s been around ever since. I didn’t get in to the marketing game until 2006, and for 10 years before that I was in New York City doing traditional marketing think tank. I was more of the Madison Avenue type.
Matt Gerchow: Fantastic. That’s about all I’ve got for today. Thank you very much for taking the time out of your busy schedule. I know we’ve been trying to get this scheduled for a while and we were finally able to get together. Maybe we’ll take a dip in the pool here for a minute.
Just going to get back to some of this Austin sunshine. It’s Friday afternoon, traffic’s gridlocked. I can’t think of a better place to be than in town right now.
Kevin Milani: It’s awesome. South x Southwest is going to be here any day now.
Matt Gerchow: I’m looking forward to it.
Kevin Milani: Cool, talk to you soon.
Matt Gerchow: Talk to you soon. Bye.
If someone wants to get in touch with Kevin Milani you can find him here… http://www.mq-c.com