Arlen Robinson [00:02]
Welcome to the eCommerce Marketing Podcast. Everyone, my name is Arlen and I am your host. And today we have a very special guest, Hal Smith, the Founder of H Street Digital, is an adept entrepreneur cultivating business growth through data-driven digital advertising. Focused on scaling leads and new customers for consumer brands, his leadership propels the company with triple-digit growth annually. With a track record of managing over $100 million in digital advertising campaigns and a knack for objective data analysis, Hal ensures H Street Digital empowers brands to scale customers profitably. Welcome to the podcast, Hal.

Hal [00:51]
Awesome, thanks for having me, Arlen.

Arlen Robinson [00:53]
Oh, thank you for joining us. I’m really excited to talk to you. We’re going to be diving deep into your bread and butter, which is of course, digital advertising. Um, and, uh, you know, it’s kind of the name of the game for you and what you’re, uh, I guess you could say probably knee deep in day in and day out. So I would imagine you’re quite an expert in that. So really excited to, to see, uh, you know, what you have to offer. But before we get into all of that, why don’t you tell us a little bit more about your background and specifically how you got into what you’re doing today.

Hal [01:22]
Yeah, so I guess it started off, first job out of college was actually in political advertising. So that’s where I kind of kick things off. It was an interesting first job. I worked on a presidential campaign and it’s a very unique situation, but I think the best thing I can say about it is presidential campaign is basically the biggest playing field you can be on in terms of digital advertising. It’s the biggest budget, shortest amount of time.

really super high impact in terms of what you do. So that was my first job and I got a lot of experience working with a lot of really smart people and learned a lot at kind of the biggest scale you can do. And so after working on that, you know, I worked across a couple other.

political opportunities, working for a consulting group, working with senatorial, gubernatorial, and congressional campaigns doing advertising as well. And then I decided I was pretty sick of political advertising. So, yeah. And then did some corporate advertising for a bit, working for a startup performance advertising agency and there worked with a couple of big Fortune 50 brands. And then…

Arlen Robinson [02:22]
Got you, got you.

Hal [02:37]
I started my agency in 2020. I had a good first year, but then got a pretty good offer by one of my clients to go in-house with them. So I did that for about a year. I basically learned that I don’t like working for a boss and I don’t like having a boss. And so, 2022, I left it and then started up the agency again. And so, since then, it’s gone from just me and a laptop to now 18 people, about 10 clients, and we’re growing pretty fast

Arlen Robinson [02:52]

Arlen Robinson [03:04]

Hal [03:06]
point, really excited about what we’re doing this year. And yeah, we’re very focused on what are called like direct to consumer companies, e-commerce stores, driving new customers, driving leads.

Arlen Robinson [03:07]

Arlen Robinson [03:14]

Arlen Robinson [03:17]
Yeah, good stuff. Good stuff. Thank you for sharing that background. And, um, you know, interesting, like you said, going from the political advertising to what you’re doing, dealing with, you know, uh, product based companies, e-commerce companies in the consumer world. But I can definitely see how that political advertising was a huge, uh, I’m sure learning experience for you in almost like a proving ground, because like you said, they’re, they have almost, you know, these days, most of these big presidential campaigns.

have huge budgets and so they can throw money at just about any type of ad campaign, social media network, you name it. I’m sure it was a great opportunity for you to see what was working and what doesn’t work. So yeah, good stuff and thank you for sharing that. Now with respect to digital advertising, one of the things that I think on the pulse, not only for brands but…

I’d say even consumers these days is privacy and data. And so over these coming next few years, how do you see digital advertising evolving with all of these privacy and data protection concerns in the forefront of people’s minds?

Hal [04:34]
Yeah, it’s a great question. It’s something that I would say is probably the most important thing from a performance advertising standpoint, which is what we do, because so much of this data collected gave us a lot of leverage in terms of who we’re targeting, learning more about our customers, figuring out better audiences. And you know.

being able to craft our creative messaging much better. And then there’s also too, it’s more of the, I would say more automated kind of data side of things. So, you know.

that the pixels, cookies, the lookalike modeling that we can use on these platforms before, that all was dependent on massive amounts of data being collected about people. And so like the biggest change then was, I was 14, that update, which I think happened in 2020, that was kind of the first step. And then now we have like, well, around that same time, it was like CCPA and all these other kind of like.

regulation around people’s ability to delete their data from people’s database and then also to what was collected on them. So for me personally, I’m concerned because we’ve lost a lot of leverage in terms of audience targeting and then also these ad platforms have gotten less efficient, less smart about

because a lot of those data pipelines are just cut or it’s reduced. What does the future look like? There’s like a technical thing where I believe a lot of brands are gonna have to be much smarter and more strategic about how they manage their own customer data. And so that can be in a couple of ways. One is how they…

Arlen Robinson [06:01]

Hal [06:17]
communicate to their customers how they’re collecting their data, and then become much smarter about what’s called in-house data management, and basically having potentially in-house data scientists to manage that themselves and not rely on third-party data.

Arlen Robinson [06:25]

Hal [06:30]
platforms to kind of give them access to these insights, but instead doing it themselves. That also entails like having good like email programs and better customer profiles themselves, instead of like relying on third party data providers or these platforms like Meta to kind of provide those insights. I think another thing is, what does the future look like in terms of regulation? And then how much…

these platforms have to either allow users or brands to allow users to know what data is being collected on them. I think that’s still like very, it’s almost like not a whole lot.

Arlen Robinson [07:06]

Hal [07:13]
Not a whole lot of people know what that actually entails right now. Like currently, like with CCPA, you should be able to message any brand or any platform and say, I want all my data that’s collected on me to be deleted. Right. That’s like kind of one of the key things that’s there. Uh, but what does that mean going forward? It’s kind of messy because a lot of these platforms is more, uh, the advantage is predictive data. Right. And so what does that mean too? Because like you can delete your information, but they also have these kinds of predictive, you know,

Arlen Robinson [07:16]

Arlen Robinson [07:23]

Hal [07:39]
aspects that they’re collecting about you. And so it’s like, do they delete like what they are predicting you might be able to do? And then all of it’s like based on like anonymized data that’s collected on YouTube. So, you know, there’s lots of loopholes for these platforms to kind of play in. And so what is like, I don’t know what the future means. It’s really tough, but I do say that, you know,

Arlen Robinson [07:41]

Arlen Robinson [07:45]

Hal [08:05]
For me as a performance advertiser, I’m more trying to also kind of work like the brands are to find loopholes or find ways that kind of work around this. Another example might be what’s called like server to server connections where you have like a server that’s owned by a brand that’s like collecting data about people. And then you have this server that’s like run by a platform like Facebook, and you’re kind of connecting that data that works around like cookie tracking, right? There are things like that. So I don’t know, it’s kind of like one of those, you know,

Arlen Robinson [08:13]

Arlen Robinson [08:28]

Hal [08:34]
It’s like an arms race between these platforms trying to work around regulation to be better about tracking things that are not so obvious. And then, you know, regulation trying to stop them from doing that. So I mean, I know it’s like not a direct question with not a lot of specifics, but it’s so hard to actually speak specific to like different changes because so much of it is changing so quickly and it’s so hard to actually understand like how these platforms are responding to it as well as how like third party data providers are responding to it and advertisers. So.

Arlen Robinson [08:41]

Arlen Robinson [08:55]

Arlen Robinson [09:02]
Yeah, yeah, very true. It’s like you say, we’re still kind of at the early stage of all of these changes. And a lot of, you know, I guess, depending on what side of the fence you’re kind of pulling for, if you’re on the brand side or the consumer side, you know, the brands, most of these big brands, you know, as we already know, typically can kind of get away with doing a lot of stuff.

kind of behind the scenes, whether there’s regulations or not. And I don’t think there’s too much we can do to stop that. From the consumer side, yeah, it’s just about what are people willing to give up? And I guess how many advocates are we gonna have on the side of the consumer that are gonna try to vie for the consumer rights?

Hal [09:29]

Arlen Robinson [09:57]
These days, I don’t know, I don’t see too many. I think, you know, a lot of people’s stance is that, you know, yeah, they know they’ve been marketed to, yeah, they know these brands have my information. I think we’re at the stage that this whole data thing, people are so accustomed to giving up their data and being able to be targeted in various ways. They’re almost kind of used to it in a way. And so, yeah.

Hal [10:17]
Thanks for watching!

Hal [10:26]
Yeah. I mean, well, the thing that I actually hate to hear is when people say, oh, I’m not doing anything wrong. So why would I be worried about this? Right. And it’s not, it’s not about you, right. It’s about how invasive this has become. Right. And so I will say, you know, my job, like what I do is kind of dependent on this data collection and I’m more successful if data is more data is collected and it’s more strategically like managed. Right.

Arlen Robinson [10:27]
a lot is really going to change.

Arlen Robinson [10:36]
Right, right exactly

Arlen Robinson [10:42]

Arlen Robinson [10:54]

Hal [10:56]
But I will say as a consumer myself, I have a VPN on my phone. I have all these ad blockers up. Like I have all these things because I know what is collected and it concerns me, right? And so I do think there needs, you know, the consumer protection side of things, consumer advocates, like that is extremely important, even though it might ultimately jeopardize, you know, the success of what we’re doing in terms of an agency on the performance side, but.

Arlen Robinson [11:09]

Hal [11:24].
It is really important that people do wake up to this because it’s incredibly invasive. And people are so used to it.

Arlen Robinson [11:29]
Yeah, true. Yeah, that’s, that’s the thing. And I agree with you. I do hate people who say, yeah, you know, I’m not doing anything wrong. I don’t have anything to hide. But like you said, it’s not really about you or you hiding anything. It’s like you said, it’s, it’s more of the fact that the evasiveness and the fact that brands are getting, you know, having all of this access is the main is the, it’s kind of the main concern there.

Hal [11:56]

Arlen Robinson [11:57]
Now, along with data, privacy concerns, kind of the next big thing in digital advertising is AI and machine learning. You know, it’s really starting to transform digital advertising strategies. I’ve had a lot of these agency owners on and things are changing so quickly. Within your agency, how has H3 Digital leveraged, you know, these technologies, AI and machine learning, you know, to optimize your campaign performance?

Hal [12:26]
Yeah. So one, the biggest way it’s changed how we do things is really how the ad platforms operate today. So that’s Google Ads generally, and then Meta, which is Facebook and Instagram and TikTok. So the biggest change for us has been the fact that we’re not doing it on a daily basis.

Campaign management, like the tactics around how to set up campaigns, how to optimize campaigns, that’s no longer a skill. It’s commoditized because these platforms know how to do this best. How it’s really changed us is we’re primarily focused on the inputs. So we’re focused on creative that we put into these ad platforms because

Effectively, all you’re doing today is generating images, videos, scripts, like copy. You put it into the ad platform. You allow meta to combine it to find the best people to deliver the ads to and basically optimize those campaigns itself. It’s extremely powerful. I used to do a type of media buying that was, we called it building in bulk, but I would go and set up campaigns that had.

Arlen Robinson [13:21]

Hal [13:31]
thousands of iterations, if not like 10,000s of iterations. And I’ve built them in spreadsheets, upload them to Meta through a third-party app, and then pull down the data, figure out best combination of things, and then re-upload campaigns with like the best combination of like creative, images, audiences, all that good stuff. At that time, it was really powerful. Meta does all that stuff today. So you don’t need to do that. And it learns much faster and it’s much smarter about it.

So any performance media buyer, like effectively, they’re just a really good creative strategist. And then they’re a really good landing page CRO strategist, like conversion rate optimization strategist. So you look at the inputs you put into the machine, and then you look at how people interact with your product pages, basically. That’s it. And so we’ve had to completely change our teams to be like more creative strategists and then landing page CRO strategists. Like in terms of like managing the campaigns, I mean, we’re not doing a whole lot.

Arlen Robinson [14:05]

Arlen Robinson [14:10]
Got it.

Arlen Robinson [14:16]
I got you. Okay.

Arlen Robinson [14:24]

Arlen Robinson [14:28]

Hal [14:28]
machine learning campaigns, and those are significantly more effective than the campaigns we can build ourselves.

Arlen Robinson [14:37]
Hmm. Yeah. Interesting. Yeah. That definitely has changed the game a bit. And I can understand where you’re coming from as far as the creative aspect of it. There’s definitely have to be a focus on that. Getting eyeballs on it and then getting people to convert once they’ve come through and then going to the landing page. I can I definitely understand how that’s the major focus right now. Now, speaking of.

campaigns and the focus of the results of these campaigns, what key performance indicators do you guys usually prioritize when you’re assessing the effectiveness of any ad campaigns that you’re doing for your clients?

Hal [15:21]
Yeah, yeah, great question. Cause I love this because we’re very metric focused. We’re very data focused. So the way I look at this is we have a model of the customer journey from when they first see an ad to when they make a purchase, right? And we have a metric.

for each area where I call them like friction points. And so you have two types of friction. You have psychological friction, and then you have like what’s called like technical friction, I guess. So psychological friction is an example would be, is this ad convincing enough to make you wanna click on the ad? If it’s not convincing, you have friction there, they’re not gonna click on the ad, they go away. And then the technical friction might be the landing page takes too long to load. And so you have a high bounce rate. And so what we do is we try to

out all these friction points. So we have what are called like the hook rate of a video right and so that the metric is like you know three second view over impressions okay. So we have that first it’s like did the ad stop the user from scrolling right and that’s the first metric we look at and then it’s like at click-through rate or like the view through rate of an ad.

when someone clicks on the ad, then they go to the landing page, we have landing page view rate, which is clicks to the actual page views. Then we have landing page conversion rate, and then we look at the average order value. Any of those key metrics we look at,

There’s also lots of other kind of submetrics. And so like these big ones and then the other ones that kind of sit between big ones again. And what we do when we start working with a client is we go and we model this out. It’s like, this is the ideal scenario that would get you maybe a return of ad span of like five X, right? And then we take all the metrics they have today and we compare them side by side. And what we look for is the biggest discrepancy. So.

Hal [17:09]
You know, it’s like your kind of ideal click-through rate today is 1.2%. But your click-through rate currently on your ads is 0.4%. So what we’ll focus on immediately is like how to improve the click-through rates of your ads. And we’ll kind of go down the line of this model and get all those metrics to the kind of the projected one where it would be most ideal. And that’s all we do. And so we’re figuring out that area where there’s the biggest difference. We run a lot of tests around that. We optimize for it. And then we solve that. We get it closer to the ideal one.

and then we just keep working on it. And so, yeah, but I would say the main things are hook rate, click through rate, landing page view rates, landing page conversion rates, AOV. That’s what we’re looking at most of the time.

Arlen Robinson [17:39]
Mm-hmm. Okay.

Arlen Robinson [17:51]
Okay. Good stuff. Good stuff. So yeah, it sounds like, um, you know, other e-commerce lists, uh, brand owners that are listening can definitely, um, follow suit and, and follow those same, uh, metrics just kind of as a, as a good rule of thumb. Um, now I know when you’re, when you’re doing all of these things and you’re working with your, um, customers, cause I’m, you’re, you’re dealing with multiple campaigns that you’re running over time. You guys are seeing.

a lot of the changing patterns with regards to consumer behavior. And that’s one thing, of course, it’s your question, I control, we have no control over certain things over time. Consumers are more receptive to certain types of ads, but then, you know, that’s, that’s always going to be changing. So I wanted to see, could you share an example of how you guys have had to shift your, your advertising strategy based on meeting, changing consumer preferences?

Hal [18:22]

Hal [18:48]
Yeah, God, that’s the, it’s so tough. Because I mean, that’s most, like why I think agencies are still in business is because there’s so much change that happens with consumers and then these ad platforms. And you just have to constantly be ahead of it and then watching those trends and then adjusting for it. So on the consumer side, let me think. There’s

Arlen Robinson [19:02]
And yep.

Hal [19:14]
Let’s see here. OK, one kind of very obvious one, but it’s very trendy in the last couple of years, is user-generated content. And so instead of having a really well-polished ad, you basically have someone with an iPhone speaking direct to the phone. We’ve invested in that a lot in our creative strategy. And what I found is the reason it’s actually effective is for two things. One, all of our

Arlen Robinson [19:24]

Hal [19:43]
you know, social platforms we use today, it’s basically people speaking to videos, right? That’s what TikTok is, that’s what Instagram is. And so when you’re serving an ad in someone’s feed, you want it to fit the native context, right? And so that’s why UGC content works really well for ads. The other thing I think is really important here is like authenticity, right? And so there are a couple of kind of sub pieces to that. One is, you know, when it seems like…

Arlen Robinson [19:48]

Hal [20:11]
And it’s actually hard to do UGC with real authenticity. A lot of times the ads kind of come off as fake and it’s pretty obvious, but you see it and it’s like, oh, this is somebody just like me who has the same problems I do and then solve those problems using this product, right? That’s kind of what you wanna do. And then you have to think about who you’re using for those actors too, to make sure that actor kind of matches your customer profile, right? But that’s just an example where, you know.

Arlen Robinson [20:17]
You’re right. You’re right, right.

Arlen Robinson [20:26]

Arlen Robinson [20:34]

Hal [20:38]
I would say there was a time on social media where you could kind of throw anything out there and it worked. It evolved quickly to like all these platforms are now video first platforms. So UGC content became the best way to deliver messaging because it fit the native content. And then it became, you know, I would say it became very saturated and then it lost a sense of authenticity. And then you had to figure out like new tactical things to make those UGC videos more authentic, right?

Arlen Robinson [20:43]

Arlen Robinson [20:59]

Arlen Robinson [21:04]
Yeah, yeah, very true. And I’m thinking of an example of, I had somebody else on a previous podcast and I was telling them, yeah, the usage generated content is, it’s, it’s huge now. And I think what a lot of brands now are doing with on Instagram and some of the other platforms with these short kind of real style clips they’re using, they’re, they may be real customer testimonials, but what I starting to see is a trend where they look like a customer testimonial, but it’s not really a customer.

They’re little, the actors, like I said, these brands have to be very careful on who they select because some of these actors seem a little too polished and they don’t seem like a real customer. I just saw one the other day, telling someone it was a type of solid cologne for men where you kind of rub it on. It’s kind of like an oil-based type cologne. And when I first saw it, I was like, oh, okay, you know, seems interesting. And the guy telling the story about it and how, you know.

Hal [21:34]

Hal [21:43]

Arlen Robinson [22:02]
the women around him were so receptive to it. He seemed just way too polished. It, but it doesn’t seem like just like the average person just trying it. So I was like, yeah, is this guy an actor? Is he really a customer? It was, it was one of those things where you couldn’t tell. And I think that’s where brands have to be. They have to be very careful with if they’re going to go that route, because, you know, these days, most people are, are pretty savvy. And if it’s something, um, too fake or an obvious actor, you know, it’s, uh, it’s not going to come off as, as genuine as it.

Hal [22:07]
Yeah, yeah.

Arlen Robinson [22:32]

Hal [22:33]
Yeah, and that’s, that’ll really cause problems. Like, towing that line of authenticity is always extremely difficult, but if you do it wrong, it does not work, right? So, yeah.

Arlen Robinson [22:37]

Arlen Robinson [22:44]
Yeah, exactly. Um, well, how, as we get ready to, to wrap things up, um, you know, looking ahead at different emerging trends and technologies, we’ve talked about AI, we’ve talked about what’s going to happen with the data, um, and privacy is a lot of changes kind of on the horizon. Um, do you believe, um, what are some of these trends that you think are going to really have the biggest impact on, on digital advertising and how has your firm kind of prepared to adjust with these changes?

Hal [23:15]
Yeah, so I think generative AI for creative is probably gonna have the biggest impact because as I mentioned before, we change our services around making the inputs, right? Getting really good creative, testing a lot of creative, being very smart about how we research that creative and then put it into these app platforms. Well, Meta is already doing this where they have generative AI that they’re creating themselves and then testing it. And so…

Arlen Robinson [23:21]

Got it.

Arlen Robinson [23:37]

Hal [23:44]
As that gets better, and I’ve talked to a couple of different software companies that are building out like really interesting, really good generative AI ads, right? And they do UGC ads. And so it’s wild because it’s like an actor, it’s a person, and they can kind of say anything or do anything, they completely can change the ad. So that’s going to get really interesting. But I think the kind of

Arlen Robinson [23:53]

Arlen Robinson [24:00]

Hal [24:06]
For me, this is a really interesting concept here. So when we test ads, we have a bunch of ideas and we throw them into a campaign. And then we see which ads are generally doing best. We pull those out and we build iterations off of them. We throw them back in and they get incrementally better over time.

The only issue is there’s a time, there’s timing costs with that. Right. So if you’re going to go make a new ad or a new iteration, you have to give back to the creative team. They have to analyze it. They have to rebuild it and then go put it back in the ad platform. That is like, yeah, it can take a couple of weeks. Right. With generative AI that’s plugged into these ad platforms, they can learn and iterate in real time. So all of a sudden you can have this kind of super ad that they learn to develop in like hours.

Arlen Robinson [24:37]

Arlen Robinson [24:44]
Oh wow.

Hal [24:50]
And so I, you know, potentially if it’s done right and it’s authentic enough and it’s believable enough that you could have like, I would see it as like kind of like these quote unquote like super ads that just they learn super quick, like what is the best ad to serve to you? And it’s like radically more effective because effectively like, you know, digital advertising is pretty inefficient. Like you have people kind of guessing what they think is going to be effective for a target audience and you can kind of test it and refine it, but that takes a long period of time.

Arlen Robinson [24:50]

Arlen Robinson [25:11]

Hal [25:18]
But all of a sudden with these machine learning platforms, they could like immediately create that perfect video for somebody and drive a much better action and do it significantly more efficiently. Right. And I see that as it’s pretty wild and I see that as a future and then I won’t have a job and I won’t be doing more podcasts. So yeah.

Arlen Robinson [25:28]
Hmm. Yeah.

Arlen Robinson [25:36]
Right. So yeah, we hope that doesn’t happen too soon, but yeah, I mean, that is some pretty crazy stuff. I think one of the things also, I guess that can be done with it is you’ll be able with these platforms, you know, adopting that type of technology, they’ll be able to really have countless iterations of the same ad distributed to different people based on that person’s likes and interests. And so.

Hal [25:40]

Hal [25:58]

Hal [26:03]

Arlen Robinson [26:03]
Let’s use that, you know, the clone as an example. I’m looking at it one day and I may see, you know, a certain type of actor in a certain scenario describing a certain story. You pull it up on your end because you have different preferences. You may see a totally different actor, something totally different. And all of that is just generated just on the fly, which is, wow, that’s some crazy stuff.

Hal [26:21]

Hal [26:29]

Arlen Robinson [26:29]
But yeah, unfortunately it looks like we are headed that way. The question is just how soon are some of these things gonna be released? I guess this is the big question.

Hal [26:40]
Yeah, I see it as being sooner than you think because of how, you know, the more scale that these platforms have, the more users they have, the more data they’re collecting, the faster they’ll learn on what to do. And so, but that actually goes back to the kind of the data privacy question, because if there are better regulation around what these platforms can collect about you, it could limit somewhat how quickly these platforms learn about you to serve these types of ads, but.

Arlen Robinson [26:44]

Arlen Robinson [27:03]

Arlen Robinson [27:06]

Hal [27:08]
No, we’ll see. I mean, like TikTok’s content delivery algorithms are insane. You can, you’ll watch a couple of videos and then it knows almost exactly what type of content you like to see. And then all of a sudden you’re on it for an hour and you had no clue you spent that much time on it. Right. So yeah. Yeah.

Arlen Robinson [27:12]

Arlen Robinson [27:18]

Arlen Robinson [27:22]
Exactly. Yeah. But I’ve seen that with a lot of the platforms, you know, it’s, it’s in behind the scenes there, that data that is capturing on, you know, how long you’re viewing on it, what are you liking on that particular video or that reel? And then after that it’s, it’s off to the races. They’re going to start serving you things based on what you’re responsive to. And then, you know, fortunately you can kind of get sucked into a rabbit hole of, you know, watching these things. So,

Hal [27:40]

Hal [27:48]

Arlen Robinson [27:51]
Yeah, it’s pretty cool stuff, but at the same time, it’s kind of a little scary to see the direction we’re going with some of this stuff. But, you know, I guess time will tell.

Hal [28:00]
Yeah, I guess my biggest thing is, you know, in terms of consumer interest, or really just, you know, people is I think there should be pretty serious guardrails for political advertisers to go into that because like you can imagine a bad, a bad actor having that type of leverage. Uh, it’s not a good, not good, right? So yeah.

Arlen Robinson [28:14]

Arlen Robinson [28:17]
Oh yeah.

Yeah, not, yeah, not, not at all, not at all. So yeah, we’ll see, we’ll see what happens. We have this upcoming presidential election. And so we’ll see, we’ll see where this goes with that. And I’ll definitely kind of keep an eye out on some of the different ads that I’m getting and just see kind of where this technology is going, but, uh, going to be interesting if we don’t see it in this election, I’d say definitely, um, within the next, the next one, um, this stuff is going to be a lot more advanced and so it’s going to be interesting to see.

Hal [28:35]

Hal [28:47]

Arlen Robinson [28:49]
how they’ve adopted it for that type, for those type of campaigns. Well, Hal, this has been an awesome conversation. I could definitely continue to talk to you about digital advertising for a lot longer because there’s so much going on these days with it. But yeah, you’ve definitely brought a lot to the table. This has been a great conversation. And I know our listeners and viewers have been empowered with what you’ve said. But lastly, before we do let you go, I always like to close things out with a.

closing fun fact about yourself that if you don’t mind sharing that you think we’d be interested to know.

Hal [29:21]
Fun fact. It’s a good question. This is completely random, but we’ll just go with this. As a kid, we had a childhood pet that was a peacock. So, yeah, that’s very, very random. Fun fact. But the other wild thing about it is it showed up at our house randomly and it stayed with us for about 10 years and then it left and we never, we didn’t know where it went. Yeah.

Arlen Robinson [29:31]
Okay, wow. Okay. Gotcha.

Arlen Robinson [29:39]
Yep. Wow. Oh, wow. That is pretty crazy. That’s very random. Wow. So where did you live at the time?

Hal [9:52]
Lexington, Virginia. It’s a small town in Virginia, so it’s kind of the southwestern part of Virginia.

Arlen Robinson [29:54]

Arlen Robinson [29:59]
Okay, I was wondering. Yeah, that’s interesting. Yeah, because I’m in Orlando, Florida, and I see Peacocks where I am. I’m in a suburb of Orlando. And actually I saw some last Saturday in a little area. That’s interesting. So it just wandered into your guys’ property. And then you guys became a pet of yours for 10 years. And then it just disappeared after that.

Hal [30:03]

Hal [30:07]

Hal [30:17]
Yeah. Yep. Fed it. Fed it dog food. So yeah.

Arlen Robinson [30:21]
Oh, really? Okay. Wow. And it just kind of stayed around, kept coming back. And just all of a sudden just said, all right, it’s time for me to go. Wow. Interesting. Very interesting. Well, that’s definitely an interesting, fun fact. Thank you for sharing that. How, um, but lastly, before we do let you go, um, if you don’t mind letting our listeners and viewers know the best way for them to reach you, if they want to reach out to you and pick your brain anymore about digital advertising.

Hal [30:29]
Yeah, yeah, that’s pretty much it. So, yeah. Yeah.

Yeah, yeah.

Hal [30:49]
Yep, for sure. The best place is probably LinkedIn message. I’m Hal Smith and then if you want to look up Hal Smith and then 8th Street, you’ll probably find me and I’m also on Twitter and it’s Hal, the number four at so Hal4ad. Not that active on Twitter, more active on LinkedIn, but just send me a message on LinkedIn. That’s probably the best place to reach me.

Arlen Robinson [31:03]

Arlen Robinson [31:08]
Okay, great, great. We’ll definitely have the course of show notes to your agency in the show notes of the podcast and then we’ll also encourage people to reach out to you on LinkedIn. All right, Hal, it’s been awesome talking to you. We really appreciate having you on the e-commerce marketing podcast.

Hal [31:27]
Likewise, Arvin, thanks for having me.

Arlen Robinson [31:29]
Thank you.

Podcast Guest Info

Hal Smith
Founder of H Street Digital