Adam Broetje, CEO of Odd Dog Media
Tell us about your business.
According to Broetje, Odd Dog Media started by accident.
“I was initially working on a project in the commercial diving industry. It was a big issue when Hurricane Katrina hit in that oil rigs really had to get certified by divers to ensure they were safe to run before they could get back to pumping oil. When Katrina hit there was so much business down in the gulf that they literally couldn’t find enough divers to get this work done. So, I went to work with a diving company that specialized in suppling divers to this industry. I thought it was ridiculous that it was so hard to find people within this community to do this, and so we kind of constructed and put together a whole website dedicated to this commercial diving community with the goal of offering resources and job-listings, and information for these divers. It really took off and it became the number one community for commercial divers in the world, and on the heels of that success, we started talking to other businesses around Seattle, telling them about what we did. It was a strong combination of everything I’d done in my past from web design, to search engine optimization (SEO), to social media, to email marketing. Businesses kind of perked their ears up and said, “Can you come do that for us?” and we said “Yeah! We’ll jump in and figure it out.””
Broetje started with local companies, and then the projects became bigger—up to the point where he worked with enterprise-level companies on really large design project integrations.
“We got up to that point, and actually recently we made the decision to go back down-market. We really enjoy the small, local-businesses and that is something where we really thought that If we take what we learned at the enterprise level, and can package it up and make it really efficient for local businesses to run, we’d be giving them what they’re looking for–people to show them what to do and how to do it. We’ve created foundational packages for local business, and once we really have that foundation in place, we work with them on a more consulting basis. We do as much or as little work as we need to in order to service these businesses.
Where did the name “Odd Dog Media” come from?
Simply put—they have dogs. However, Odd Dog Media seemed fitting for a group that Broetje describes as a “weird breed” of the business-minded marketing people and tech-savvy developers companies get when they bring Odd Dog Media on board.
What makes your company a leader in your industry?
“A big area where we lead is the multi-location search optimization. It gets really complex, especially when you get up to managing hundreds, if not thousands of locations. The architecture and structure of how you set that up and how you go about doing it and doing it at scale, so that it’s efficient, is complex. There are software’s out there that can get crazy expensive—to the tune of millions of dollars a year to help manage this stuff for you, but we built systems and tools that we use internally that help us to be far more efficient in that. The other piece that we do really well is actually the lead attribution. Marketing companies in our industry can throw a million different graphs and numbers at you. What companies can’t fake or make up are the true, legitimate leads that are generated and where those leads are coming from. So one piece of software we developed is what we call a Lead Manager and that actually measures every lead that comes through or website, which allows us and our customers to see where the lead came from and delete them if they end up being spam or junk.”
Who or what has influenced you to begin Odd Dog Media?
Broetje cites his parents as his biggest influencers. His mom worked in the corporate world for the entirety of her career, and his dad worked in the small business sector.
“Growing up, I was able to see both avenues. I guess I really gravitated toward the small business. I really liked the idea of being able to build and create something on our own, and being able to rally a team around a cause. At the end of the day, our favorite thing about having our own company is really being able to pick and choose the companies we work with. We want to work with good people and we like being in control of our own destiny. We do things and spend time on projects we enjoy.”
What contributions have you made or are willing to make around the Seattle community?
“Right now we are really passionate about the climate change and green energy. We are currently working on a program to promote sustainability.”
Odd Dog Media is working to not only make sure that everything they do is green, but make sure that they are offsetting the entire carbon footprint of their business and employees.
“We are looking for other ways to get more involved and really use the skills that we have to work on messaging and education around that, but that is all still very new for us right now.”
What key qualities do you look for in team members?
“Culture is vital to us. We learned over the years when you come into a small company, the personalities of the people around you really shape how you view your entire day and how you view your job. One thing I always tell people is I really don’t like egos in this business. I like people to be friendly and accommodating, and willing to do whatever it takes to make things right for the customer.”
What words of advice do you have for others looking to grow their business?
“Pay attention to the metrics. Especially the metrics around business being generated. There are a lot of companies and a lot of people around this digital marketing space that will focus on fluff and do things without really knowing why. Don’t let the reason you do something be because someone told you that you should. The reason you do something should be because you derived business from it and it is financially worth the time and the energy to do it.”
Be sure to check out Odd Dog Media at: www.odddogmedia.com and on Facebook and Twitter @Odddogmedia
Contributed by: Super Julie Braun Written/Edited By: Alexandria Rae Martinez, PR Agent