Liz Murphy

Liz Murphy

As Quintain’s resident content manager and AP Stylebook devotee, I spend most of my days crafting engaging content, helping clients develop style guides for their brands and wrangling wayward commas. I originally joined as a marketing manager back in the summer of 2014. And a few months later, I was promoted to senior marketing manager.

Over time, however, the undeniable relationship between Quintain’s goal to become an industry leader in content creation and my extensive editorial and inbound marketing background manifested itself. And thus my charge as our content manager was born. Before hopping onboard the Quintain train, I worked for over 10 years in various editorial, marketing and client relations roles for brands including LivingSocial, CQ Press, MultiView and myTaxi.

I’m a Washington, D.C., native, but I currently live in Annapolis with my husband, Patrick, and our two dogs, Horatio and Nugget. When I’m not at the office, I’m writing the beer column for the Capital Gazette (owned by the Baltimore Sun), running my personal beer blog and studying for the Certified Cicerone exam – the beer equivalent of a sommelier. I am also an enthusiastic, albiet unbalanced, yoga nerd, and I consider myself emotionally allergic to olives.

P.S. Since my two favorite words are “challenge” and “accepted,” I hold six of the seven HubSpot certifications; that is until they add new certifications. Sigh.

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Recent Posts

What Inspired This Episode?

Right now, the Quintain team is up in Boston at HubSpot’s annual INBOUND conference - but that doesn't mean we don't have a new episode of Creator's Block for you.

This week, Jessie-Lee and I invited my friend and immensely talented photographer Allison Zaucha to talk to us about a very important topic that most marketers overlook - or at the very least take for granted: the use of visuals and photography in their marketing. 

Even though we all have very different professional roles, we've all worked with businesses that are creating great content and telling compelling stories who completely fail, when it comes to leveraging visuals. 

It's a shame, too, considering how it's an indisputable fact how much visuals matter in the world of marketing and sales. 

So, grab a notebook, pull up a chair and listen as we unpack everything you need to be doing - or stop doing - when it comes to photography and visuals for your marketing and website projects.

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What Inspired This Episode?

We've talked about websites before on this podcast - how your website isn't about you, and how it can be a bit of a balancing act to get the content creation and design processes just right for a website project. However, even though most people have at least a vague understanding that a lot of work goes into a website, there is one question we get from clients, prospects and others on an almost daily basis:

"Why do websites cost so much?"

In order to answer that question, first you need to understand that some people don't understand the effort that goes into a website project. And then there are those who, quite frankly, want a champagne website on a water budget - and that just isn't happening. 

The reality is that what drives the cost of a website up or down will depend on the project itself. But as a rule of thumb, you can expect to get out of a website design or redesign project what you put into it - from both a time and money perspective.

That said, we know, "Well, it depends," is a completely obnoxious answer. So in this episode, we get brutally honest about our processes, the hard numbers and what really goes the pricing of a website. (Spoiler alert: As my modest two-bedroom apartment can attest, those larger price tags are certainly not designed to pad my own wallet.)

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As Quintain’s content manager, I often find myself between a bit of a rock and a hard place. On the one hand, my job is immensely rewarding. I spend my days interviewing and coaching clients on how to articulate and share their ideas in a way that resonates with the right audience, and creating compelling and engaging content opportunities for brands.

On the other hand, I sometimes feel like the parent that has to remind her children that, yes, you need to brush your teeth. No, once a week doesn’t count. No, I don’t care that you brushed your teeth for a whole five minutes this morning - you still need to do it again, right now.

Like brushing your teeth, creating content is something you have to do consistently if you want to see ROI.

You can’t just do it once or occasionally. And you can’t take a photo of yourself from the one time you blogged a month ago, put it on the mantle like a trophy and then later point to it anytime someone challenges your blogging prowess.

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What Inspired This Episode?

As Quintain's art director and content manager respectively, you might say that Jessie-Lee and I have a bit of experience in the art of giving and getting feedback about our work. Unfortunately, the quality of the feedback we receive is not always created equal.

This isn't a simple lesson of, "If you can't say something nice, don't say something at all," nor is it a petty diatribe against someone who didn't like our work, so our feelings are hurt. Jessie-Lee and I are both in agreement that if you work in any sort of commercial creative discipline - especially in an agency setting - being able to ingest and react productively to constructive criticism is part of the job description. (Many times, those challenges from our clients push us to create even better work.)

In this episode, we're talking about issues that transcend differences in aesthetic. Those instances when the "how" and "why" a nugget of feedback is delivered can be counterproductive and costly, as well as symptomatic of a much larger problem - the kind of problem that can evolve into something bigger, if left to fester.

So how can marketers and entrepreneurs who work with content creators and designers determine if the feedback loop they have in place is healthy or not? And if it isn't, how can they fix it, so the work their teams are producing top-notch with audience persona-resonance and creativity?

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The Guide to Creating Mind Blowing Content

Let's face it, there is a lot of content out there. How do you get yours to stand out?

Simple, make it mind blowing!

42 pages full of ideas for creating awesome content that converts visitors into leads and leads into customers!

What Inspired This Episode?

Both Jessie-Lee and I have "been around the block" here at Quintain - although her moreso than myself, by a few years. In that time, both of us have come to realize the importance of the relationships we establish and nurture with all of our clients. (Seriously, we love our clients.)

As we've discussed in the past, however, these relationships can be broken or don't always work out. And in recent months, through conversations we've had with our own clients, we've come to realize that many of the "truths we hold to be self-evident" about agencies and clients also hold true for the majority of B2B relationships out there.

So this week, we laid it all out on the table for a candid discussion around why those partnerships sometimes do and do not work, as well as what agencies, agency clients and other stakeholders can do to prevent those often avoidable breakdowns that can happen in any business relationship.

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What do you do when you are sitting on a mountain of valuable data, but are stumped as to how to share that information in a way that is not only meaningful and comprehensive, but is also visually compelling and engaging?

This was the challenge Brandobility, a vibrant and forward-looking digital asset management consulting firm, faced this summer, with their annual State of DAM survey.

Working with Quintain Marketing, Brandobility used the principles of inbound, as well as HubSpot marking automation software's landing pages and forms to conduct the initial survey. Then, Director of Sales Whitney Harmel shared the results as part of a webinar conversion offer - also using landing pages and forms - in mid-September.

Even though a recording of the webinar is still available as a HubSpot landing page conversion offer in their Knowledge Center, Harmel wanted what many others do in the inbound world - new and innovative methods of packaging content beyond words in a blog post or PowerPoint presentation. 

She wanted to take a comprehensive set of data points and insights and present them in a way that was shareable and digestable. She wanted to truly engage visitors and empower them with information, not just present them with an endless wall of numbers.

The answer was simple: an infographic.

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What Inspired This Episode?

As a content manager at an inbound marketing agency, one of the most common complaints I hear in some form or another is: "Blogging is hard!"

No matter how many times clients or colleagues agree with me about the mission critical importance of blogging to any inbound strategy, it's still a task a good number of folks look upon with disdain. (That is, if they aren't outright avoiding it all together.)

But I want to know why. Why does the idea of blogging cause such middle school-esque angst in some of the most savvy entrepreneurs, business owners and marketers around? So in this week's episode, we sat aside our usual litany of tactics and tools, and got real with each other about why blogging is considered to be "so hard" - for ourselves and for our clients.

And before you say this isn't an earth-shattering topic, ask yourself this: When was the last time you were brutally honest with yourself about why you don't blog?

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What Inspired This Episode?

Not only is Jessie-Lee back from vacation - finally! - it's now September. The kids are going back to school, fall (my favorite season) is just around the corner and football season is on our doorstep. 

As we all grudgingly plug back into our daily and weekly routines, it's a great time to evaluate what you've been doing. However, we don't just mean evaluating what is and isn't working, from a tactical perspective - although that's important, too. This annual momentary pause is the perfect opportunity for you to consider the most important component of your business:

Your marketing strategy.

Over the past few weeks, we've been having some great internal discussions about our own strategy. But it made Jessie-Lee and I realize that many people don't have a marketing strategy. What's worse, they don't even realize it! So in this episode, we're staging an intervention and asking you a question.

Do you have a marketing strategy? Are you sure?

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