Join Brett Gilliland with Ryan Cote as they talk about keeping a family business fresh with new ideas and approaches to offer to their clients. Ryan is the director of digital services and partner at Ballantine, a family-owned and operated print and digital marketing company. In this episode, he shares why small businesses can still be competitive against larger competitors.

Business Runs in the Family
Ryan is the third generation of their family, and together with his brothers, cousin, and uncle, they run the business. Ballantine was started by his grandfather and great-uncle back in 1966, printing catalogs and inserts for publishing and mail order companies. At present, they have a growing digital marketing division as they adapt to the demand of the internet age. Ryan believes that the habits he had and the decisions he made compounds his life today. In high school, he sold baseball cards; he started doing e-commerce and affiliate marketing in college. As a result, Ryan enjoyed his personal growth that helped their family business thrive.

Small Business, Big Ideas
Ryan says that their company, Ballantine, is a small business, but that does not equate to having small ideas. The digital marketing space is a level playing field for all, whether big or small companies. While Ballantine’s budget is not the same as those larger competitors, Ryan argues that they have the same tools. One example would be their marketing, where they put together a whole integrated approach to creating videos and how they are using it on social media for content. They also make use of search engine optimization (SEO) for their keywords on Google ads. All it takes is some creativity and innovation to use the same tools big businesses have.

About Ryan Cote:
Ryan Cote is the director of digital services and partner at Ballantine, based out of Fairfield, NJ. Ryan has been with Ballantine since 2003 and is proud to be the third generation of Ballantine, founded in 1966 by his grandfather and great-uncle. He currently manages the growing digital marketing division, primarily responsible for sales and strategy.

Outline of the Episode:[01:55] Entrepreneurship that runs in the family[04:56] Authenticity and providing value make a lot of noise in social media[08:29] Small business marketing does not equal small ideas[11:02] SEO for lawyers, accountants, and financial advisors[13:59] Advice on how to generate leads, drum up business and find new clients[17:25] Lead generation explained[19:59] Why and how to invest in personal development[25:15] Words of encouragement for people working in a family business[26:56] Ryan’s website, personal growth podcast, and blog