5-ish Questions: Data, Digital and Being a Dad with Adam Kuhn
5-ish Questions is an ongoing series in which we introduce you to the “who”s that make our “what”s so relevant.
Like any trade, we toss around a lot of acronyms in the marketing world. SEM, PPC, SEO… to the common person, our conversations can sound, well, FUBAR. While our jargon may be a bit esoteric, the principles behind them are grounded in data, research, and more than a little experience. For that, we turn to Adam Kuhn, VP Digital Marketing Director at ZG.
Since joining the team in December, Adam has helped turn simple service offerings into a fully realized area of practice. When he’s not bragging about his kids or laughing at our Packers-induced anguish, he’s lending some data-driven street cred to everything from information architecture to SEO strategy.
Although we’ve offered digital services for years, for all intents and purposes your position here is a new one. Tell me a bit about what you’re hoping to accomplish.
I’m actually a journalist by education and trade, but in today’s advertising and marketing world, storytelling and content sharing is just brand journalism anyway, right? When ZG reached out to me gauging my interest in, essentially, supporting this discipline internally and making PPC, SEO and SEM and integrated part of its services offerings, it was an opportunity and challenge that I couldn’t pass up.
ZG already has a great reputation in the area, I like to think I help make it even smarter. Being certified across the board by Google doesn’t hurt, either.
From a client perspective, why do you think this such an important addition?
Frankly, offering optimization services should be a requirement for any marketing or advertising agency in 2018. As much as a lot of other disciplines in this industry may want to deny it, SEO really is at the core of any digital strategy. Your website (or other digital property) is arguably your largest single piece of marketing material. The design and UX of the site itself can’t be experienced by your target audience or consumer if they can’t find it in the first place. That value in these services is right in the acronym itself – “optimization” – a solid SEO strategy that optimizes for free, organic traffic while leveraging other paid mediums – that’s the sweet spot.
Now for the elephant in the room: You’re a Vikings fan in Packer country. One, how dare you? And two, how’d you end up here?
I am, and I’m quite proud (and vocal) about it. Born and raised in central Minnesota, I bleed Purple… SKOL Vikings! I came to Wisconsin after graduating from college to take an anchor and reporter job up in Wausau. I was the weekend sports guy, and, wouldn’t you know it, I started to fancy the weekend anchor. Many advances later she finally let me take her out on a date and the rest is history. We moved to Milwaukee because she took a job at a TV station down here and that happened to be when I made the move into digital marketing.
I guess that’s fair. Wait. You don’t root for the Cubs, right?!
… To dig my hole even deeper here, while the Twins are my baseball team, Ryne Sandberg was one of my favorite ball players growing up so I followed and began to call the Cubs my NL team (remember, this was back when the Brewers still played in the AL).
You’re killin’ me, Smalls! Besides being wrong, do you have any other hobbies?
I am the proud father of two boys, Elijah (5) and Branson (6 months), who don’t really understand (or care) about what I do outside of making funny faces and “working by the tall buildings.” I used to be an avid homebrewer before kids began sapping the majority of my free time. I even was awarded a Gold Certificate for an entry in the American Homebrewers Association 2015 National Competition for my Imperial Grapefruit IPA.
Ah. Well at least we can still bond over beer.