My Own Brand of Journalism

by Rebekah Brown

Rebekah Brown The Marketing SquareI became a professional journalist in 1984. Holding a notepad and a pen still give me a reason to be in a lot of different places.

Journalism remains my method for looking at life and issues and trying to figure out and decipher the answers.

I chose print journalism because I had a crippling shyness that kept me far away from TV or radio news. But I have always been competitive and driven to learn and know more about what people wouldn’t say out loud. I developed a knack for knowing when people lied because I listened and I watched more than I spoke.

I liked asking questions that I knew people didn’t want to answer. To do that and refine just the right angle, I’d research and look, call and find ways to get to the bottom of things.

It’s a Nerd’s Life

Reading, writing, researching were the beginning of what many consider a nerd’s life, but I put it to work for newspapers, ad agencies, then, for my own business, The Marketing Square.

The difference today is that I use practices and philosophies honed from journalism, combined with advertising and I added search engine optimization and online marketing to create my own brand of journalism. It’s actually a proprietary content generation and website management system.

The tactics work. Clients are making a lot of money and The Marketing Square celebrated year five August 2015, with clients and offices in several states.

I start work at 8 a.m. every morning and have been fortunate to have gathered a group of very talented people including Jon Maue, Maggie McLeod, Daniel Erdeg, Franklyn Galusha, Larry Perry and Kai Reichel. They are some of the smartest people I’ve ever worked with and I thank them for all that they do. The Marketing Square wouldn’t be here without them.

How I Gather Information Today

award winning journalist rebekah brown

I learn from books, publications and the Internet. I don’t have cable. I don’t watch TV.

I am online eight to 10 hours a day reading and writing content, editing video, posting elements on websites, coding websites, and formatting digital assets that will be posted online.

I watch and gather information and research website tactics trying new things to keep websites on the edge of what’s next.

My job is to generate content and manage websites year-round for clients who are busy being doctors, lawyers and CEOs. The Marketing Square’s job is to make sure that their websites appeal to visitors and appease Google to be found continuously online in search results.

Personally, I listen to the radio and read multiple publications because I want to learn from all sides of issues. I don’t need to be surrounded by comfortable opinions or placated by stories from favorite journalists.

I want to hear and discover facts from multiple reliable resources. I’m constantly astounded at things that people post online, but it’s different every day. It pushes me to develop new forms of content to see how people will react to website changes.

When I’m Not Working

Websites at WorkI use Facebook and truly enjoy keeping up with my friends this way because most people share whatever’s happening with them on Facebook. I’m not big on sharing personal information which comes from years of making the story the focus.

I thought I’d share a few things about myself here. When I’m not working, I read books I’ve collected including John Grisham, David Sedaris, and many of the classics in literature. I’m compelled to read the styles of language used, hear the stories and experiences shared through words that have withstood the test of time.

I go to the movies and will see everything but horror flicks. My favorites are 3D Marvel action flicks. I watch sports on weekends including boxing, MMA, the Badgers and the Packers at my favorite sports bars.

I enjoy working and talking with clients and I learn a lot from them through their businesses. What I don’t understand, I research in law and medical books and publications. I have to keep up with what’s current in their fields to make their websites interesting.

Research+Hard Work=6 Continents

Newspaper journalist SEOOne thing that hasn’t changed is that I like to figure things out through research and testing theories. My job still demands that. I enjoy a good challenge and my motto has always been: “If it were easy, everyone would be doing it.”

The research and hard work pays off every time a client tells me that they’ve gotten new clients. Recently, a second client announced signing a client on six of seven continents through their website built by The Marketing Square. Other clients are earning five and six figures a month from their websites and clients are local, national and international.

That is pretty remarkable and it urges me on to my next achievement wherever my notebook and pen–or today–my MacBook Pro and my Canon cameras will lead me.

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