Search Interviews:

Marty Menard is the President and Chief Business Development Officer of GIANT Creative, a data-driven marketing agency focused on performance marketing and lead generation. With a deep commitment to the power of data, Marty steers GIANT Creative in delivering comprehensive marketing strategies across multiple channels for clients like McDonald’s and Sola Salon Studios. As a serial entrepreneur, he has a track record of building businesses and investing in growth and leadership. At GIANT Creative, Marty’s entrepreneurial spirit shines as he develops trusted partnerships while driving innovation in marketing. 

tune in

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • [00:22] Marty Menard’s entrepreneurial background and the birth of GIANT Creative
  • [03:31] How GIANT Creative uses data to shape marketing strategies that resonate with niche audiences
  • [05:06] The similarities between franchising and nonprofit marketing
  • [08:48] Crucial lessons learned in the franchise marketing space and how it has evolved
  • [11:55] The innovative processes at GIANT Creative that lead to successful client campaigns
  • [14:18] Insights into the dynamic and competitive world of franchise lead generation
  • [19:56] The creative elements that contribute to resonating campaigns and conversions
  • [24:24] Debunking misconceptions about remarketing and its effectiveness in engaging potential customers
  • [33:21] Marty’s personal entrepreneurial motivations and the decision to co-found a marketing agency
  • [38:39] The meaningful stories and significance behind Marty’s tattoos

In this episode…

Have you ever wondered what it takes to build a marketing strategy that truly resonates with its audience? Why do some campaigns convert while others falter at the first hurdle? Could the secret lie in understanding and tailoring messages to a precisely defined niche?

Serial entrepreneur Marty Menard explores how GIANT Creative overcomes the marketing challenges in industries like franchising and nonprofits. He delves into the specifics of data-driven marketing, sharing valuable lessons on creating a successful agency from scratch in a competitive landscape. Marty emphasizes the importance of research, the power of understanding your audience, and the role of personalized content in driving meaningful engagement and conversions. 

In this episode of the Inspired Insider Podcast, Dr. Jeremy Weisz interviews Marty Menard, President and Chief Business Development Officer of GIANT Creative, about the intricacies of data-driven marketing strategies. Marty shares how GIANT Creative uses data to shape marketing strategies for niche audiences, its processes for successful client campaigns, insights into the dynamic and competitive world of franchise lead generation, and how to build resonating campaigns and conversions.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Special Mention(s):

Related episode(s):

Quotable Moments:

  • “Data informs everything we do — it’s easy to make things look pretty, but it has to resonate with the audience you’re speaking to.”
  • “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.”
  • “Marketing is storytelling. If you’re going to engage with somebody on a meaningful level, you need to speak to them in a relevant way.”
  • “If they get success, I get success. And that’s a wonderful relationship with my clients — many of whom have become my friends.”

Action Steps:

  1. Invest in understanding your audience through in-depth research: It helps tailor campaigns that resonate more deeply with potential customers, leading to better engagement and conversion rates.
  2. Identify and focus on niche markets: Concentrating on niche markets allows for the creation of targeted messaging, which can effectively differentiate and position a brand.
  3. Harness the power of storytelling in marketing: Storytelling captivates and connects with audiences on an emotional level, fostering lasting brand loyalty.
  4. Employ remarketing in advertising strategies: Remarketing keeps your brand top-of-mind, reminding interested consumers to take action, thus increasing the chances of conversion.
  5. Foster genuine relationships with clients: Building trust and partnership with clients leads to sustainable growth and opens doors for further opportunities and recommendations.

Sponsor for this episode

At Rise25, we’re committed to helping you connect with your Dream 100 referral partners, clients, and strategic partners through our done-for-you podcast solution.

We’re a professional podcast production agency that makes creating a podcast effortless. Since 2009, our proven system has helped thousands of B2B businesses build strong relationships with referral partners, clients, and audiences without doing the hard work.

What do you need to start a podcast?

When you use our proven system, all you need is an idea and a voice. We handle the strategy, production, and distribution – you just need to show up and talk.

The Rise25 podcasting solution is designed to help you build a profitable podcast. This requires a specific strategy, and we’ve got that down pat. We focus on making sure you have a direct path to ROI, which is the most important component. Plus, our podcast production company takes any heavy lifting of production and distribution off your plate.

We make distribution easy.

We’ll distribute each episode across more than 11 unique channels, including iTunes, Spotify, and Google Podcasts. We’ll also create copy for each episode and promote your show across social media.

Cofounders Dr. Jeremy Weisz and John Corcoran credit podcasting as being the best thing they have ever done for their businesses. Podcasting connected them with the founders/CEOs of P90xAtariEinstein BagelsMattelRx BarsYPOEOLending TreeFreshdesk, and many more.

The relationships you form through podcasting run deep. Jeremy and John became business partners through podcasting. They have even gone on family vacations and attended weddings of guests who have been on the podcast.

Podcast production has a lot of moving parts and is a big commitment on our end; we only want to work with people who are committed to their business and to cultivating amazing relationships.

Are you considering launching a podcast to acquire partnerships, clients, and referrals? Would you like to work with a podcast agency that wants you to win?

Contact us now at [email protected] or book a call at

Rise25 Cofounders, Dr. Jeremy Weisz and John Corcoran, have been podcasting and advising about podcasting since 2008.

Insider Stories from Top Leaders & Entrepreneurs…

Never Miss an Episode and get Free Updates

Episode Transcript

Intro 0:01 

You are listening to Inspired Insider with your host, Dr. Jeremy Weisz.

Jeremy Weisz 0:22 

Dr. Jeremy Weisz here founder of, where I talk with inspirational entrepreneurs and leaders today is no different. I have Marty Menard of Before I formally introduce you, Marty, I always like to point out other podcast episodes people should check out. Since this is part of the top agency series, I had Jason Swenk on. Jason Swenk talk about how he built his agency up to over eight figures and sold it and then he was buying up agencies and he’s got an agency group as well. So check those two episodes out. And he talks about the kind of evaluation in the agency space business in general, really great episode.

Todd Taskey, also was a good episode. And he matches peers, private equity with agencies, so he helps sell agencies and he’s got the Second Bite Podcast, because he’s found that sometimes people make more on the second bite than they do on the first when the private equity sells. Again, that company has a percentage equity and makes more than they did on the first bite. So it’s really interesting perspective and also talks about just m&a deals and valuations and just a smart guy. And another one that was good as Kevin Hourigan, who’s had an agency since 1995, who were on Spinutech. So it was interesting to hear the evolution of the Internet at that point and how he pivoted his business and the ups and downs. So check those out and more on

This episode is brought to you by Rise25. At Rise25 we help businesses give to and connect to their dream relationships, and partnerships. And how do we do that? We do that by helping you run your podcast, we’re an easy button for a company to launch and run a podcast. So we do the accountability, the strategy and the flux of fusion, and Marty, we call ourselves the magic elves that work in the background to make it look easy for the host so they can create amazing content, develop amazing relationships, and actually, most importantly, run their business.

For me, the number one thing in my life is relationships. I’m always looking at ways to give to my best relationships. And I found no better way over the past decade to profile the people in companies I most admire and share with the world what they’re working on. So if you’ve thought about podcasting, you should if you have questions, you can go to to learn more. I’m excited to introduce Marty Menard. He’s the president of GIANT Creative, and their company is a leading advisor to many nonprofits, franchises, and to national brands that include McDonald’s Canada, solo salon studios, Chairman’s brands, and many, many more. And Marty is a former serial entrepreneur. And he knows what it takes to build something from the ground floor and how to best invest resources for growth and leadership, and much more. We’re gonna have some great conversations around those today. Marty, thanks for joining me.

Marty Menard 3:13 

Thanks for having me. I’m excited to be here.

Jeremy Weisz 3:16 

Just start off and talk a little bit about GIANT Creative and what you do and for people listening, there is a video version. And so I’m gonna pull up their site and we’re gonna poke around as he’s talking. Marty tell us about GIANT Creative?

Marty Menard 3:31 

Yeah, GIANT Creative, we call ourselves a data-driven marketing agency. We really believe in the power of data. So we are an end-to-end marketing agency, we look for client partners where we, there’s not a part of the equation that we don’t want a piece of. So whether it be performance marketing, and all that falls under that, whether it be conversion campaigns where we’re driving leads to sell franchises, whether we’re driving leads to sell pizzas, whether we’re driving donations for our nonprofits, performance marketing and lead generation are a big part of what we do.

But we have a full team here, you know, end-to-end marketing. So whether it be there’s nothing on the Omni channels that we can’t contribute to what happened. And as you’re pulling up, I think you can see McDonald’s, Canada, you can see Linen Houses Sciences Foundation, to great clients that represent two of our big strong verticals, where we get to do end-to-end marketing, where we’re not being hired, as say, just a service provider, where it’s not simply, hey, build us a website, and then we’re done. Shoot us a bit of video. And then we’re done. We want to work with you from, NDN from ideation to execution and everything in between. And that’s kind of our approach.

Jeremy Weisz 4:49 

I want to talk about niche for a second. How did you decide on nonprofits and franchising? I know a lot of businesses, all businesses and specifically agencies sometimes struggle with niching.

Marty Menard 5:06 

It’s interesting, right? And I think in the beginning, when we started GIANT Creative, and I think it’s important to note that we’re barely four years old. So we’re a relatively new agency. And as you mentioned off the top serial entrepreneur, myself and my business partner, Andrew, Andrew Stephenson, big shout out our CEO and director and our chief video officer, he and I were entrepreneurs at heart. As you play up there, you also have Kyle GarageBand, who is our Chief Marketing Officer. And that’s the leadership team right there. But Andrew and I started this company four years ago. And we did what a lot of entrepreneurs do in the beginning, right? You kind of like, you’ll take whatever, someone will hire you.

So if a client reached out to us, I had a network, he had a network, we came from different backgrounds, he came from video, I came from other agencies. So we have a network there, someone said, we need a website, okay, we’ll figure that out. We need some video content, excellent. We need a digital campaign. Great, we can sell it to you take that sale, take that money and reinvest it in the company. And what happened, as we started to go through, we started to learn which clients were getting the most success with, and which clients that allowed us to be able to look at that end-to-end picture, and kind of forward the kind of client partnerships and relationships that we wanted. And that kind of fed into where we can work with a variety of verticals.

But there’s something so beautiful about the nonprofit world, and their strong need. And it’s such a competitive space, that any opportunity to differentiate is really attractive to us at GIANT Creative because it gives us the opportunity to get big wins for them in a space that it’s very challenging. Everyone’s vying for donor dollars, and we’ve come up with some really great solution that allowed us to get success. And then on the franchising side, to be honest with you, I came from a franchising background in terms of marketing. And I have a great network there. There’s an organization in Canada called the Canadian Franchise Association.

And I’m a very big participant in that organization. I’m on one of the marketing day committees. I do a lot of that, this weekend coming up, not this weekend, in the following, I’m doing a couple panels at one of the big shows, I’m running a roundtable at their big convention. I’ve been there immersed in that for quite some time. And I know it really well, I know what their needs are. I know what their challenges are. And we’ve been able to because of that network, it was just a natural fit. Nonprofits kind of happened by just the right company, the right organization working with us, and us developing successful strategies and being able to double down on that, and then we brought it up, we started working with Child Fund International and the YMCA and a whole host of other nonprofits because we really understood it.

Franchising is one of those things that I was, I had 10-15 years’ experience, and I just brought to the table. So you can’t be everything to everybody. But those were two niches we could really double down into. And interestingly, Dr. Jeremy, there’s a lot in common. And even though they may seem like very different niches, the approaches are very, very similar, from end to end, in terms of looking at the first-party data, and being able to create really interesting and engaging campaigns and speaking to the right targets, to I mean, whether you’re getting a donation or whether you’re selling a pizza, or a pizza franchise, you’re still looking, the tools that get you there and the mechanisms that get you there. There’s a lot of alignment.

Jeremy Weisz 8:43 

Talk about some of the lessons you’ve learned in the franchise space.

Marty Menard 8:48 

Well, there’s a lot of lessons to learn there. Right. So I think one of the first things you come up against when it comes to franchising is up, you might be surprised to find this out. But I mean, we work with some fairly big brands, McDonald’s, Canada, champion brands, Family of Brands, they have five successful brands and 300 locations collectively across Canada. And remember, Canada is not the United States right. Our whole population is 38 million people. So, it’s smaller population-wise than the state of California. So when you’re looking at how, when you’ve got 1200 unique franchise organizations, all vying for the same dollar all vying to try to find that same franchise leads allow them to reach their growth goals of we want 25 new franchises in southwestern Ontario?

Well, there’s 1,200 other franchises vying for that same franchise lead, and I’m not sure how familiar you are with that vertical, but I mean, there’s as many franchise brokers out there working on behalf of franchise organizations, as there are car dealerships and it’s a really cutthroat killer be killed approach. So what was really good a few years ago, maybe 10 years ago, that approach no longer works anymore. It’s really important now that when we look at franchising, we do approach franchise lead generation, no differently than donor registration. When we look at, well, who is the targeted buyer for a pizza franchise, in northern Ontario, versus who’s the buyer for eight from McDonald’s, Canada, in Western Canada, right?

There’s often a quite a different buyer persona. So we need to look at that first-party data. And we needed to dive into a content strategy, that people weren’t doing that as much five, 10 years ago with a franchise, they were like, like McDonald’s Canada is a great example. They, for the longest time did zero franchise advertising. They just put their website up with the franchise alike, and they just got loads and loads of leads, but that changed for them. And though they still get a high volume of leads, organically, the quality of those leads continues to drop down and because there was no engagement piece. And no piece that spoke specifically to these targeted demographics.

And not even doing that, taking that first-party data and turning it into really meaningful buyer personas. That’s why their leads were dropping, but they didn’t know why. So they had to almost create a new department in the last few years. And franchise lead generation from McDonald’s Canada is really relatively, it’s less than 10 years old. And they’ve actually only applied a real budget over the last I’d say, four or five years. So it’s much smaller than their budget for just selling their products, right. So it’s a really busy space. And franchises are just starting to realize that they need to spend money on lead gen in a way that they didn’t have to do even five years ago.

Jeremy Weisz 11:55 

I want to talk about your process, because this relates to that. But it’s really interesting, because I would think they would want to spend a lot of money on this because they make a recurring percentage of every single one of these things. So I would think the budget would be high, they get one of these, I don’t know what it is, I’m sure it ranges from five to 10%. And that is significant lifetime value of a client when you’re talking about lifetime value. Right?

Marty Menard 12:24 

We’ll look at McDonald’s, I mean, even enter into the application process, you’re gonna need a million dollars, X liquid, right? And think about that in a country like Canada with 38 million people. And who has liquid a million dollars. So that’s going to shrink that number significantly. Right? So we agree with you. It’s shocking to us to this day, that these franchise, development departments are given the smaller budgets. And I’m not going to get into obviously, how much they spend, because we love them as a client. And we’ve got great success for them, which we can speak about. But it’s pervasive that this is something that is really new to a lot of his organization.

Now, that being said, there are some very successful organizations that know how to spend and allocate a lot of dollars and get great success. There’s a client out there, that’s not ours. But I’m familiar with the agencies that do good work for them in Canada, called cobs, bread, and they’re a wonderful agency and one of our partners, Cadence franchising, we love them. They do a lot of lead nurturing for their franchise leads, that organization, they spend the required amount of resources, and they’re the fastest-growing bakery franchise in Canada. And they’re doing it right, so they become a new model. And those models are allowing us to go back to these other organizations and say, listen, this is what success is, this is the investments necessary, and we’re starting to get that buy-in.

And because I have a bit of that, I have a, again, it’s a small community, and most of them are connected to the Canadian Franchise Association. There’s a bit of a trust factor that can happen there. But these are organizations, whatever the 2024 budget is, that’s what it is for now. And I have to prove that either double that for 2025 and beyond. And it is surprising, but it’s remarkably common.

[Continue to Page 2]