How does Intellitonic help a local media company? What problem do you solve?

Intellitonic partners with local media companies to enable them to offer a full suite of digital marketing services—pay-per-click (PPC), search engine optimization (SEO), social media, content creation, site speed, website migration, etc.—on either an out-front or white-label basis. Our capabilities allow us to work on ongoing contracts or one-off projects. We pride ourselves on being both nimble and responsive to client needs as well as changing markets. We rely on our existing knowledge base and experience while also incorporating new and evolving best practices to ensure our clients get the best and most current digital marketing strategy. We help media companies who wish to grow but don’t have the resources or bandwidth to start their own digital media departments, or simply have more work than they can handle with the staff they have on-hand. We handle everything including the digital marketing work itself to sales proposals, monthly reporting, and collaborating with existing local media staff to ensure they’re educated and comfortable in the digital marketing sphere.

Intellitonic Founder Alexander Bruner

How did COVID-19 change your business?

We recognized pretty early that COVID would have a profound effect on the way people do business. With brick-and-mortar locations curtailed or subject to shutdowns, we knew that how businesses were able to adapt to needing an increased online presence would be crucial to their survival. We pivoted early and hard to support our existing clients and make whatever transitions were required to best position them for a business sector that had become almost entirely online almost overnight. We also grew our team and increased our ability to take on a greater number of new clients. With regard to our media partners, we provided them with steadiness and expertise during a tumultuous time and helped them leverage their digital marketing sales capabilities so they could weather the effects of COVID as well. Lastly, we worked with nonprofits and small businesses in our own community and elsewhere—often on a pro bono basis—that were especially hard hit by COVID shutdowns so that their communities would not suffer the loss of organizations that provide vital services, culture and enhanced quality of life. We are a certified B Corporation, and we take that philosophy and ethos very seriously and try to bring it to everything we do. 

Do you have one piece of advice you share with your clients you could share with us?

There’s not necessarily a piece of advice per se that we share with our clients as much as we try to empower them through education, clearly delineated strategy and regular reporting of results. We want our clients and their clients to respect our expertise, but we never want to present what we do as though it’s magic or a mystery. Digital marketing works best when it’s a collaborative process. 

What do you see as the No. 1 opportunity for local media companies going into 2022?

COVID has changed the way people do business, especially online, probably forever. However, long before COVID, the local media landscape was experiencing profound shifts away from traditional revenue streams and toward the digital realm. Capitalizing on that continues to be an area in which local media companies can see real progress that will not only strengthen their own health, but will also benefit the businesses in the communities they serve. Organizations that expand their services to work directly with their clients websites and local assets to stay apprised of technical performance will be a step ahead, and will be better positioned to maintain client trust. Additionally, expanding your search services to include Amazon search engine marketing (SEM) and SEO will put organizations ahead of the curve as this platform’s jump into self-serve advertising has yet to become fully utilized by organizations offering agency services.