Interview: Seth Rand, CEO of Wizard Digital Marketing

by Jerome Knyszewski
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Seth Rand, co-founder & CEO of Wizard Digital Marketing

Seth Rand is the co-founder and current CEO of Wizard Digital Marketing, where he looks at the “strategic growth of the organization,” and where he involves himself in “all business development efforts.” As CEO, he exercises his passion for devising and coming up with great and “highly effective sales and marketing strategies” that not only achieve the company’s “predicted objectives” but surpass them.”

For over 16 years, Seth Rand has spent his time in the field of digital marketing, where he finds joy in “helping entrepreneurs and business executives” fulfill their companies’ profit goals and grow their business with only minimal costs, through a practical and strategic approach. He also finds the time to give back to his community.

Through his career, Seth Rand says that he has “always enjoyed” marketing since he can use it as a tool to help businesses succeed through “growth and cost savings initiatives.” His skills, knowledge, and experience in marketing are also massive contributors for companies who wish to improve their bottom line.

Seth Rand has built an impressive resume through the years. He has been a Premier Google Partner, and his agency was named part of the Inc5000 list for growth. He operates with a high standard, using his attention to detail and empathetic ability—derived from experience—to serve businesses as a marketing expert.

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Jerome Knyszewski: Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you got started?

Seth Rand: I grew up in a family of small business owners. I gained that entrepreneurial spirit and work ethic from my father and grandfather spending nights with them at their wholesale handbag business. While working with the family business, I identified my natural skills within e-commerce and SEO. And combined them with my entrepreneurial passion and sales ability to peruse what would be my career.

Jerome Knyszewski: Can you tell us a story about the hard times that you faced when you first started your journey? Did you ever consider giving up? Where did you get the drive to continue even though things were so hard?

Seth Rand: My first business I had some challenges in partnership. I struggled with being a minority owner before opening up my first digital marketing agency. In simple terms, that means that I didn’t control the expenses. Over time, I became frustrated when I felt like my perception was that I was working harder and generating more income, but my partner was reaping all of the benefits. I learned a tough but valuable lesson there which is a quote that I often share with my employees: “all feelings in life are based on perception”.

When you launch a business, you’re not eligible for a loan from the bank or an SBA loan unless you are acquiring a certain level of income. The investment for the business either comes from your own savings, taking on debt such as credit cards and home equity, or you bring on investors. The cash has to come from somewhere and it’s not going to come from the bank. To meet payroll and what they call “service to debt”, it can get stressful when you are first starting out.

My number one priority that keeps me going is my family. It is so important to me to make them proud and be a good supporter. Second is my responsibility to my staff. When you work for me, you are like family. And I know that my employees have to help provide for their families, too. And three is my clients. I made a promise to my clients the moment they signed on to work with me, and I owe them what was promised. Those who know me know that when I give someone my word, I mean it. Those three things along with supporting causes that are personally important to me is what drives me every day. I have plenty of reasons or excuses to crawl back into bed every morning. But I know that I need to support my kids, my staff, and the things I am most passionate about.

Jerome Knyszewski: Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lessons or ‘takeaways’ you learned from that?

Seth Rand: Getting into the agency space was one of the best choices I made in my career. And while I was sad to leave my partner at the time to open my first marketing firm, I knew It was the best decision for me and my family, long term.

Back in January of 2010 I remember telling my interns to show up for work, but there wasn’t even any internet service yet at the office space. So, we worked out the McDonalds down the block for our first two weeks. I don’t think the employees at McDonalds were so happy with us, so we would buy things off the menu to do our small part.

And then when we finally got internet, we had to deal with not enough chairs and leftover desks. I was so eager to start signing clients and providing services, that I didn’t want to wait for all of the infrastructure to be in place. This is part of why I eventually came to partner with Luke Freeman at Wizard a few years down the line. I learned to invest a larger capital into office furniture and equipment, probably even more than should have.

My experience launching Wizard Digital was much different than when I launched my first digital marketing agency. Part of why I value my partnership with Luke in launching Wizard Digital was the ability to have a reduced capital investment and overhead costs during the initial growth stages. The initial capital investment that Luke and I made for Wizard Digital was able to be saved for our growth stages a year and a half in. Having that cash reserve has been incomparable to the credit card interest that I dealt with at my first marketing agency. Here, we’ve prepaid and been able to get reduced subscription rates.

Jerome Knyszewski: Can you please share your “Five Things You Need To Know To Delegate Effectively and Be Completely Satisfied With the Results?” Please share a story or an example for each.

Seth Rand:

  1. Hire smart, trainable eager people. Hire what you can afford and who can grow with you.
  2. Take the time to train each employee and have a solid system in place.
  3. Establish an efficient and streamlined process.
  4. Invest in the right tools/software.
  5. Delegate weaknesses. For me, I don’t consider myself a good writer. Those are the first things that I delegate. The things I’m not so good at or don’t enjoy

Another part of delegating is handing over tasks based on best use of time. Sure, I can do it well and I know I can. But it is important to ask yourself, is it something I can pay someone a minimal fee and free me up for bigger things? It may be something I might enjoy or am good at but keeping the big picture should always be top of mind.

The stuff that I keep for myself are the things that I’m great at and the things I enjoy most. This includes the things that have the most ROI for my business. For me, that is why I am the CEO. I handle all the biz-dev and get involved with marketing strategy because that is my strong suit. I don’t believe that delegating any of those things is in the best interest of my company or my clients. I try to delegate everything else, like processes and procedures so I don’t feel like I need to micromanage.

Jerome Knyszewski: One of the obstacles to proper delegating is the oft quoted cliche “If you want something done right do it yourself.” Is this saying true? Is it false? Is there a way to reconcile it with the importance of delegating?

Seth Rand: I think you want to hire people that are smarter than you and identify your strengths and weaknesses. You’re not best off doing it yourself if it is something that is a weakness of yours. Step one is to effectively delegate your weaknesses so you can focus your time and attention on tasks that feed into your strengths. Its then debatable whether you should be completing tasks yourself that fit your strengths or delegating them. I often ask myself, what would it cost to delegate this task, and is it the best use of my time? And if it is something that can be effectively delegated, it will free me up to do things that are more valuable to my company or family, then I do so where possible.

Jerome Knyszewski: How can our readers further follow you online?

Seth Rand: You can keep up with Wizard Digital Marketing at, as well as on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.

Jerome Knyszewski: This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent with this!

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