Ryan Allis

Ryan Allis is the CEO and co-founder of iContact, a leading on-demand email marketing service. As CEO, he's managed iContact from its start in July 2003 to its current size with more than 90 employees and 25,000 customers worldwide. In 2005, Ryan was named by BusinessWeek as one of the "Top 25 Entrepreneurs Under 25." Ryan is also the author book Zero to One Million: How I Built a Company To $1 Million in Sales and How You Can Too, published by McGraw-Hill. As an email marketing expert, Ryan will provide guidance in his blog posts on how to enhance and improve your online marketing campaigns.

After a nearly two-decade hiatus, Indiana Jones is back in a new adventure that is ripping through box offices across the world. Ever since Raiders of the Lost Ark captured the world’s imagination in 1981, philosophers, professors and college students alike have tried to decipher Indy’s iconic image. They say, “Look, we know this is fantastic entertainment, but what does it all mean? We love the movies, but what can Indiana Jones possibly teach us about life?” As it turns out, there are many parallels between the persona of Indiana Jones and the drive and persistence that it takes to run a business. 

If you’ve seen the movies, then you know Indiana Jones is more than just an action hero/renegade archaeologist. His alter ego is Dr. Henry Jones, a dashing and highly respected professor of history and archaeology at a fictional Ivy League university. No matter how tough the questions about archaeology, Dr. Jones always knew the right answer or where to find it. After years of researching and writing about history, he not only knew the essence of his subject front and back, he knew how to teach and inspire his students.

Think of Dr. Jones in the context of email marketing for your business. As a passionate business owner, you know the ins and outs of your product or service. You spend many waking hours doing market research and thinking of ways to improve your product. You use an email marketing service like iContact as a way to disseminate information about your unique product and to keep in touch with your customers. Through your accurate and informative emails, your customers will be able to feel the passion you have for your business. They will be inspired to remain loyal customers for years to come.

However, you know that this is only half the story. Email marketing is a fantastic way to build up a customer base and showcase your product, but sometimes it takes getting out there and networking in person to make your company take off.

Indiana Jones also became a legend for the things he did outside the confines of academia. He had a “whatever-it-takes” swagger that he carried with him on all of his adventures, and (despite his questionable slash-and-burn archaeological techniques) in the end his perseverance prevailed.

Take this attitude with you and network your business at trade shows or local entrepreneurial events. Offer yourself to the media as an honest and straightforward expert in your field. Soon, people will begin to view you and your business as synonymous with quality and integrity.

Like Indiana Jones, you know you will do whatever it takes to make your business succeed. However, instead of chasing after an ancient relic, you’ll be chasing after your entrepreneurial aspirations.

I hope you have a great weekend, and I’ll be back next week with more email marketing and business advice.


Ryan Allis

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