Marc Guberti is an entrepreneur, digital marketing expert, and author. Marc publishes multiple blog posts every day on his digital marketing blog and tweets every 15 minutes to over 400,000 Twitter followers.
Marc has the fearlessness of his teen years and dedication of an entrepreneur mixed into one mindset which guide him through the process of creating products and writing content. Marc wants to show teens that they can start their businesses earlier. No one has to wait for working papers anymore. There is no age limit for success, and you don’t have to be 18 years or older to be successful.
If you want to contact Marc, ask him a question, or just say hi, you can send him a message on Twitter or directly through his blog.
Snark at Your Peril
Marc is a 20-year old full-time sophomore in college.
He’s published 19 books, hosted 2 Virtual Summits, publishes podcast episodes every day, and posts blog posts every day.
Over the last two years, I have seen first hand how millennial business owners are starting up traditional local businesses and stealing market share overnight from the old generations that took decades to build their businesses.
Any yet many older generation businesses are still “dipping their toes” in digital marketing, hip shooting at tactics…spraying and praying.
Don’t think millennials are lazy or unmotivated.
I have seen dozens of twenty and thirty-somethings startup local “traditional” businesses.
There are plenty that are willing to work hard, and they were born and raised to marketing online.
Listen to this podcast – see what you’re up against and what your biz can do to stay competitive.
Learn more about Marc Guberti
Marc Guberti: 20 Year Old, 19 Books Published
Phil Singleton: Hello, everybody, and welcome to another episode of the Local Business Leaders podcast. Today I have a super special guest. Marc Guberti is an entrepreneur, author, and digital marketing expert. He hosts the Breakthrough Success podcast where entrepreneurs learn how to achieve their breakthrough goals. New episodes get published on weekdays starring guests like Seth Godin, Neil Patel, John Lee Dumas, and many others. He advises entrepreneurs on how they leverage content marketing to fuel their growth. Marc, welcome to the show today.
Marc Guberti: Phil, it is a pleasure to be here.
Phil Singleton: I’m going to ask you a bunch of different questions because you’re doing a lot of exciting things at a fairly young age, or at least in terms of most people’s vision of what their career path is. I want to dive right into that, but why don’t you tell us where you are today and some of the things that you’ve accomplished? And then I’m going to ask you a series of questions based on that.
Marc Guberti: Sure. So today I’m an entrepreneur of all those things that you said before, and I’m working on a lot of good projects. I recently published book number 19, which was Content Marketing Secrets, which teaches brands how they can create, promote, and optimize their content for growth and revenue. So that’s one of the things that I most recently launched and I’m…
Phil Singleton: So that’s book number 19?!
Marc Guberti: Book number 19, yes.
Phil Singleton: Can I ask how old you are?
Marc Guberti: 20.
Phil Singleton: 20 years old, and you’re on your 19th book. Okay, that’s very impressive. And you’re in school? I think you’re a sophomore in college. Is that right?
Marc Guberti: Yes.
Phil Singleton: Tell us what else that you’re doing. I mean, you’re a full-time student. What are your other interests? Tell us some other things, because right off the bat, boom, 19 books, very impressive. So we’re going to talk a little bit about that at some point, but keep going.
Marc Guberti: I also host virtual summits. I’m going to be planning one in the future, but I’ve already hosted the Content Marketing Success Summit and the Productivity Virtual Summit, which all had over 50 speakers. That’s what helped me, in part, go from one podcast episode a week to doing a weekday podcast where I’m now publishing five new episodes. So if anyone asks me what my priorities are for business, like what I’m doing, a lot of it is just based on creating more content, spreading the word out to reach even more people. So that’s just my focus, because it’s what I love to do. I love create content for my blog. I recently started to write a blog post per day, instead of a blog post per week, just because I really enjoy creating the content. I want to force myself to get more accountable to creating that content and that expansion, as I mentioned before. I feel that’s something everyone wants, but of course, it’s something that I also want to do for my brand, as well.
Phil Singleton: So 19 books, then you’ve got two virtual summits where you recruited, as least on one of them, 50 guest experts. So that’s very impressive, right? They came up onto a special website that you had, subscribed to it, and then were able to listen to interviews to folks on specific topics, and use it as a learning vehicle, correct?
Marc Guberti: Yes.
Phil Singleton: And then you’re in school, so you’re managing a … you’re in your sophomore year and you’ve got two more years of college to get a degree, which I’m assuming that you plan on completing.
Marc Guberti: Yes, marketing is my intended major.
Phil Singleton: Surprise, surprise. That’s awesome. Now before you got the books, and your website, and your … I mean, how did you get started? Did you first start like a website and then start with a blog? What were the first kind of steps into developing this content platform and this personal branding and authority that you’ve been able to build in a very short period of time?
Marc Guberti: Well, it first started very much as a hobby, because I’m a Red Sox fan. If you are a Red Sox fan in New York, you know that is a really bad mix.
Phil Singleton: You generate a lot of engagement, I guess, on that topic.
Marc Guberti: Yes, so I wasn’t getting much of it in New York. I can tell you that much, but-
Phil Singleton: That’s awesome.
Marc Guberti: … I find the Red Sox fans online, so I actually started, not with a blog about digital marketing, but a blog about the Boston Red Sox because that was my way of tapping into … It was less of like I’m tapping into an online community, more of I’m tapping into a community about the Red Sox fans.
Phil Singleton: Was this high school or was this still in college?
Marc Guberti: This was actually middle school when I did this.
Phil Singleton: Wow. Okay.
Starting a Digital Marketing Career Early
Marc Guberti: So this is like … Content consistency, things like that meant nothing to me. I could write a blog post one day, and then another day I could write four blog posts in four days, but then publish the next blog post like two weeks later. So consistency, things like that, that matter to me now, didn’t matter to me as much. It was more me creating content that could create a dialogue between me and Red Sox fans because I didn’t really have that in New York. I mean, they’re rare to come across, especially when you go to a university in the Bronx. So that was the entry point, and then I promoted the blog on social media. I dabbled around in a lot more blogs and web pages. At some point, I just fell in love with the whole social media promoting and content marketing, that I decided this is what I truly want to specialize in. I want to help people in this. I’ve always wanted to write my own book. I know that. This is something I know a lot about, so that’s possible to turn into a book for me. That’s when I went from some of these other things I was doing to fully committing to being a digital marketer.
Phil Singleton: Were you already full into this before you even started your first day of college, or were you doing this in high school? Your current kind of business and where everything’s kind of evolved to right now, is this the last couple of years?
Marc Guberti: Towards the end of middle school, very early high school, at that point I still wasn’t like super serious in it. I was gradually getting more serious as the time went by. I feel like by the end of my freshman year of high school I was very committed with the digital marketing, and I stopped working on some of my other blogs and web pages, just focused on what I’m currently doing now. But I would say it was definitely a process where at first I approached it as just something to do to, like I have a message. I want to share it. At some point I realized, “Wow. This is something that is very important. This is something that I need to share with as many people as possible.” It’s something that I can do instead of going into a job or something like that where I’m not going to feel fulfilled doing the work that I would have to do either way.
Phil Singleton: And for you, you’re probably at the point now where it’s like you have a real business that’s evolving. So it’s almost like you know what you want to be when you grow up because you’re going to continue to have success with this as it snowballs, and by the time you graduate, I’m assuming this is what you’re going to be doing full-time. There is going to be, probably, a job hiring process. You’re going to jump into this and continue on the success that you’re having.
But one of the things I want to ask is you jumped right in from middle school into having your own blog. I think a lot of folks … maybe even in high school, or college, and certainly folks that I know that are coming out of school that we’ve interviewed … it still seems like having their own website is a scary-type thing, or they haven’t even done that piece of it. I recently went through a hiring process where we had somebody come on board. I was like, “The first thing I’m going to have you do is, I want you to have your own blog. So you can go, just figure how to set up your own personal branding website that, if you stay here with us or you don’t, you can take this with you and start to develop your own type of authority and just get your first taste of what it’s like to have your own website and try to publish content on it.”
Because I, personally, think that’s what … I don’t know. If they’re not doing that in high school or right now, I think everybody should have a website really right away and not have to go do that kind of on your own, so that you’re publishing it and have your own property, and have that rolling. But you did this in middle school, so how did that go about? I mean, you had to get somebody to help. Did you look online? Did a parent help you get it? What was the actual process, like you bought a domain and got a WordPress theme? Because it going to sound simple to you, but I think for a lot of people, that sounds like kind of still out there and hard to do, but I think it’s more accessible than most people think. If a middle schooler could do it, I think other people could probably figure out how to do it. Can you give us some insight on to just how you even got that started?
Marc Guberti: So the starting point, like how the Red Sox blog came to form was my mom told my brother and I about blogging and how you could … there was something called NLB blogs at the time. It’s not around anymore. It integrated with WordPress, which was really important for my growth because then I realized I could write about anything, and not just about baseball. She told us about NLB blogs. We were interested, so that’s … My brother created a blog about the Mets. He’s done a lot of things since he has his own social media agency. I wrote about the Boston Red Sox. I’ve done all my things. So she, my mom, gave us that starting point for getting into it. It wasn’t like she then told me everything to do, like from step one to step where I am now. She did help me a lot. Got to various stuff, if I had questions, I would go to her. If I needed advice, I would go to her. My brother and I continue doing this to this day, but that was the starting point. Then my curiosity and-
Phil Singleton: You just ran with it, it sounds like.
Marc Guberti: Yes. The moment I had it in front of me, I just did all the research to figure out what I needed to do grow it.
Millennials Are Taking Over
Phil Singleton: That’s awesome. I want to shift a little bit now here and talk about something that we were talking about in the Green Room, which is really one of the main reasons I was really excited to interview you on the show. That is, getting into this business of … you get a lot of folks that are in their 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, or whatever it is … and you’ve got a feeling of when you read things online or even on LinkedIn, other places, that there’s kind of this snarkiness about millennials and how they’re work ethic’s not there, or they’re general, or they talk about how different they are on things, and whatnot.
One of the things that I’ve noticed … well, there’s a couple really … is I think that you get millennials and the younger generation have come in and completely reworked things at the top level. So things like Uber, and Airbnb, and all these companies where guys have just come in and created great technologies, and put themselves where the point of purchase of the searches are, and have jockeyed out some of the traditional old ways of doing business. One of the things I’ve seen as a local web design firm that does local and regional ICO, is I see a lot of this happening now at the local level where you get these people’ that a lot of the older businesses snark at, are coming in and traditional businesses, like things like tree trimming, or hardscaping, or painting businesses, and they’re coming in as digital natives because they don’t … You talk to a millennial about like cold calling, or some of the phone books, it’s just like, “That’s not how we buy, man. They come in directly in with the websites.”
They’re doing things like … you’re doing for your own personal … and you’re an advanced content marketer, for sure. I mean, you’re just about as high as it goes in terms of doing all the things that people should be doing … have your own blog, have your own podcast, doing your own virtual summits … really doing all sorts of things that are just like killer in marketing techniques. But you see these traditional businesses that are being run by ambitious millennials that are coming in and just starting to steal. So the people that like snarking at millennials don’t realize the millennials, a lot of these ambitious millennials, are coming up and stealing their market share right out from under them because they don’t know any different.
Now give us your take on that piece, because you’re a perfect example of how you’ve just fully taken hold of the new way people look at information and do business online, and have done it, and are succeeding at it, before you’re even out of college. Give us your take on that. How do you think … Do you see it that way? Do you see it how I’m saying? Do you think there is a snarkiness? Do you think people are kind of missing what’s actually happening, or am I just seeing a small percentage of folks, or do you think this is the real path, the way people are going?
Well, I haven’t just seen this as a spectator, I’ve seen this actually happen to me.
– Marc Guberti
Marc Guberti: Well, I haven’t just seen this as a spectator, I’ve seen this actually happen to me. There are cases where … this isn’t happening as much now, but I mean, before I had my podcast, my 19 books … right now, you see the potential over several years manifesting itself, but before that ever happened … let’s say, for instance, I just did episode one of my Breakthrough Success podcasts, no credibility whatsoever, and six years younger, so I was 14, and I bombed the episode. Well, people of that time would have said, “Aw, he’s too young,” so my bad. People have said that at some point where it’s like, “He’s too young to be doing this,” and stuff like that. That was like very early in the journey. I don’t really get that anymore, but there are some people who still say things like, “He’s too young. He doesn’t understand,” different things that are happening, like serious things that happen, like challenges with maintaining a life, like with family, and things like that, so obviously I don’t have a family in the sense of parents do.
What I’m trying to say is that I have received it on my end where I do see that snarkiness come at me. I feel like the more you establish yourself, you go from that person who receives a lot of the snarkiness to now a whiz kid who people are not snarky at, but they’re just going to, to get value from, to see what’s happening. I feel like with millennials it is an uphill battle at the beginning, but if you do put in that work, and you’re able to stand out at this really young age, then it’s the reverse. All that time you spent fighting uphill, you now have a nice cruising downhill because people respect what you’ve been able to do in the time that you’ve been here.
Phil Singleton: That’s awesome. That’s great insight. What would you tell … and I get this all the time. We get people that like, “Okay, Phil, we understand you’re in web design,” or particularly interested in SEO and want to get their kids interested because all these guys that I deal with already have kids in high school and college, and they’re just asking me what’s the best way for them to learn about stuff because they see the importance of … because to me, you get into digital and the stuff that you’re doing, it’s not just about them. This is almost becoming like a life career skill, knowing how to get yourself around on WordPress, or trying to build up your own personal branding. It’s not just in the digital marketing space. I mean, this is something that’s like everybody’s got to use at some point, because this is what differentiates yourself. It applies to just about every business.
So as somebody’s that’s super, ultra successful at this … and that’s where I consider you are right now. I mean, you’ve had access to people. Seth Godin, Neil Patel, John Lee Dumas … the people twice your age haven’t been able to do yet. You’ve been hosting your own virtual summits, which I’m twice as old as you, at least, I haven’t done my own virtual summit yet, so you’re basically out there running circles around folks. A lot of it, I’m sure, is based on your own talent, but what do you tell … like I tell people … what do you tell people that are just kind of regular guys like you were regular kids like you were at some point in your life to kind of take that step? Because I, personally, think that everybody should be doing some form of this for their own personal branding.
Advice for Younger People
What do you tell the kids of some of these people that I know that are like, “What’s the first steps you think they should take to start establishing themselves as an authority?” And should they do it? Do you think this for everybody like I do, or do you think this is only for a certain amount of people that want to go a certain way?
Marc Guberti: I think this is something that everyone should at least try. Some people, like blogging is not for them. Maybe video is for them. Maybe this whole content creation thing isn’t for them. But I feel like there’s not enough of an awareness yet that, “Hey, like I’m a teenager or a little younger than that, and I could actually create my own content.” I feel like it’s gotten better over the past few years, that you see more of these young entrepreneurs who are dominating, but I don’t really see that … I feel that we need to make that a bigger part of our culture. I feel like the best thing that we have going for that direction is like some CNBC article, “Hey, look at this teen, made millions of dollars, and then.” That teen’s still successful, and stuff, but that article isn’t in front of our face every single day. So I feel-
Phil Singleton: How about at your school even? Do you see this? I mean, do you have other peers that are trying this? Do they push … at the college that you’re at right now, is there anything that tries to help people kind of launch into digital and get more experience with this? How much is this a part of the curriculum, just out of curiosity?
Marc Guberti: There’s not like so … I can’t speak because I haven’t graduated yet, but so far there’s not really a focus on social media and content marketing. I feel like those are just two topics that don’t receive as much attention. Of course, I have two years to go, so that could drastically change. But I feel like, I mean, even like … This isn’t something that you start learning about in the college level. I feel like this is something you should about at high school, because it doesn’t really matter what you’re interested in. You could use social media or content marketing to help you. No matter what you’re interested in, you create content around it. I create content that teaches people how to market their content and get more exposure, things like that. But it’s not like people are only creating content around how do you create more content in marketing, there’s content in gardening, Mac products-
Phil Singleton: You’re coaching those people on how to their pieces, so you’re kind of like a coach’s coach type of thing. Do any peers that you hang … you’re probably in and around your gang, your group of friends probably do this … but even at your school, do you see more people trying to do this, or is it still not … Are you kind of a one-off at what you’re doing and nobody’s even really trying to do this kind of a platform?
Marc Guberti: I haven’t seen anyone-
Phil Singleton: Even attempt it?
Marc Guberti: … actively pursuing it as much.
Phil Singleton: It’s really interesting. I think, to me, if somebody came to me out of college and was like … because I’m not going to have probably your level of success because you’ve been doing it for so long and have really found your niche … but if somebody came out of college with their own blog post, with their own podcast, with this kind of stuff, it just seems to me like they would immediately be much more hireable than most other people that are coming out of college. Like in your case, you’re likely going to come out and never have to have a job because you’ve already created your own lucrative career path and that kind of stuff, which is great. But even if you hadn’t had gotten to that point, you now have a track record on here that would get you hired by virtually, probably, anywhere you went.
I think just by having some … even if you didn’t have that much of a track … somebody else try to do this, a little bit of it, and show that kind of an effort and that kind of a fluency with the attempts at doing this kind of stuff, they’d probably be able to get hired at 10 or 20 different places with a great job. That’s kind of my opinion at looking … and again, I’m kind of 20 years out, looking back, but this would be really impressive for me for anybody that tried it.
So any advice on some of these guys like that, like how you would get started? Let’s just say I heard this. I’m either the parent of a college student or high school student, or I’m a high school student or college student myself, what could I get started on, do you think, today? Maybe I’m not going to take Marc’s direct path and try and build a whole business on it, but what would you tell them? Say, “Hey, just start with this, and then work on this a little bit, and then see if you can develop it, and use this as a way.” What would be the starting point? Would you tell them to start with a podcast? Would you tell them to start with a website? Would you tell them just to be more active in a business sense, maybe, on LinkedIn or something like that? Where would be your first kind of couple one or two steps there?
Two Steps: Get Published & Self-Educate
Marc Guberti: I have two simple steps. First step, get your content. Get some piece of content published. I don’t care if it’s a written blog post, a video, or a podcast. Get it published. As a side note, podcasting is the best because you connect with so many awesome people at podcasting, but that should not influence your decision right now. Just get the content out there in the easiest way possible. For a blog, that means WordPress. For video, that means YouTube. For podcasting, that means Lip and now Libsyn, out of the three. You do have to pay for storage and stuff like that. It’s not that much per month, like we’re just talking maybe $10 to $20 per month, depending on the number of episodes you do. WordPress and YouTube, though, are free, so you may want to just do the free options to start with so that you have some skin the game before you pursue a big adventure like a podcast or even a virtual summit if you want to get really advanced.
The second thing is to just self-educate. You can’t rely on any individual entity to give you the education that you need. You need to pursue this education outside of … just within yourself. I listen to, when I’m biking, stationary bike, I’ll listen to an audio book. Every single morning I get up and I read my book. I read it on my bed because my body doesn’t think it’s got enough yet, but I’m actually actively able to read a book, get motivated, and slowly get up. You really need to self-educate yourself. Publishing that piece of content is just your way of saying, “Okay. I’m in this. I have something tangible now. People can find me on the web. I have my own place.” But that self-education is where you go from where you are now to achieving monumental growth. You can even achieve monumental growth to the point where you achieve that same level of growth that your role model has, but self-education as much as possible, and taking action based on that advice.
Phil Singleton: Marc Guberti, that is fantastic advice. What I love about it is you’re giving advice from somebody that’s actually, yourself, who is somebody who actually is getting real results and just having some tremendous success with it. So tell us, tell our listeners now, what type of things you’ve got going on in terms of courses or offers, where they can find you online. Particularly, where are you most active on social media so we can make sure we have those showing up, too, if somebody wants to kind of connect with you or follow you there.
Marc Guberti: So for people who want to learn more about me, the best place to go is marcguberti.com, that is Marc with a “C”. You can also go hit the consulting tab if you want to get a one-on-one consultation with me. That is something that I recently started offering to expand on the services that we mentioned before. You can also get my book, Content Marketing Secrets, over at marcguberti.com/book. If you want something for free, just to get a little taste, a toe in the water, before you invest in anything, you could get my free ebook on Getting a Hundred Retweets per Day at marcguberti.com/retweets. On social media, I’m the most active on Twitter, that being @MarcGuberti. A lot of the social networks, also Marc Guberti, like Pinterest, LinkedIn, Instagram as well, also Facebook, but that’s slightly different.
If you search me, you’ll find me. But Twitter is the social network that I’m, by far, the most active on. It’s the one that I started out with and I focus on that instead of trying to be mediocre at all of them, just master one of them, so that’s why I have a lot more followers on Twitter than my other social networks put together.
Phil Singleton: That makes sense. One question, then let you go, is on your coaching course clients, is there a particular ideal client that you have? Are you coaching younger people? Are you teaching older people? Is it a wide mix? What’s kind of a typical buyer or client of yours kind of look like?
Marc Guberti: It varies. I would say it is just someone who wants to take their business, their content brand, to the next level. They take the idea of creating content and social media very seriously. They see these as great avenues to grow their businesses, but they want to tweak a few things, optimize them, or they just need help with the whole process.
Phil Singleton: So anybody who’s at that stage who wants to kind of jump in and say, “I realize the importance of this. I need some help in getting more involved and somebody that’s done this successfully.” It doesn’t really apply to a certain age group or type of business, but that makes perfect sense.
Okay. Hey, Marc. Super pleasure to have you on the show, very special guest. We haven’t really had anybody with this kind of experience anywhere, so I’m really going to be excited about publishing and putting this out there, and I really appreciate your time.
Marc Guberti: It was a pleasure to be on the show. Thank you for having me.
Phil Singleton: Awesome. All right. Have a good one.
Marc Guberti: You, too.