Online Consulting

An Hour with Jonathan Marks


Stuck with a particular dilemma? Trying to work out a new direction? Perhaps you need to rethink the role of your department and the best way of bringing about change? How can you break through the internal barriers? Have others already solved this challenge?  We both know that you can’t do this alone. The On-line Consultancy is the answer.

Why we launched the On-line Intensive Consultancy Sessions

Hiring a full or part-time consultancy bureau quickly gets into five figures per person. It’s slow, when answers are needed fast. Many organisations have drastically cut back their R&D budgets. That’s why Critical Distance takes a very different approach. We’re offering you access to world-class strategic thinking, analysis and brainpower in 60 minute segments.

It’s bite-size, focused assistance that is tailor-made to your needs. And it is always strictly confidential.

What’s the deal?

It’s easy to set up a session with Jonathan Marks. Use the request form below. We’ll get back to you fast to confirm the date, time and payment. Then we’ll send you a pre-conversation questionnaire that helps us prepare the session. At the appointed time, we’ll connect up on the phone or via Skype. We’ll discuss the strategic goals of the call, and then start to talk about the bigger picture. We’ll focus on practical tactics…what can be done to tackle the challenges. How have others in your sector solved the same problem? How can you get a team on your side when you’re changing direction?

What are the topics you advise on?

  • Digital Storytelling – How to build an open narrative to get support and realise the dream. Who can help get the word out? Practical, hands-on advance. 
  • Understanding how Audiences Change –  We’re actively monitoring how audiences everywhere are becoming more engaged. Second screen is becoming the first screen. There are huge opportunities for every company to build a collaborative community. We share examples.
  • Disruptive Digital Marketing. Every company is becoming a media company. But the impact of social media as well as disruptive innovation by small start-ups is often difficult to recognise or change.
  • Understanding where Social Media is going. And how can you integrate Social media into a clever media strategy. We also look at the 10 things never to do.
  • Smart Cities  & The Internet of Things. We’re evaluating how people will build conversations safely when more and more devices connect to the web. 
  • What Smart Media Needs to Do Next. Netflix is disrupting traditional media channels. Production Guilds are upsetting the corporate business models. But paths forward are emerging. 
  • Media in Fragile States. What have we learned from the ways in which media have influenced audiences for good and evil. For policy makers and media practitioners.

What will we discuss?

The conversation will be about the challenges, but also the opportunities. I’m often asked to critique current (mobile) websites to give advice on what needs to change to draw people in and increase conversion. I look for weaknesses in the story. I give feedback on what’s not clear. Some clients have shared a beta-version, prototypes, outlines and asked for honest feedback. We have also helped in scripting or re-writing elements of a website or TV documentary. We know what’s working and not working. 

But it will also be honest and frank.

I have helped companies realise they are taking the wrong path, perhaps with the wrong team. If that becomes clear during the conversation, then I will share my thoughts about possible scenarios. Recently, this has helped several clients make more productive use of their time and save huge amounts of money heading in the wrong direction. I have also helped start-ups make the decision about when to launch a new idea, how to get traction, and when to exit. I use an adapted form of the Lean Startup Methodology and the Business Model Canvas to build a success of their business.

What to expect

One hour of focussed conversation. Plus follow-up links and suggestions after the call. We know that take-aways are important.

What you won’ t get

This is important, we know. You won’t get lectured to.  There’s no small talk about what’s happening in my life. I understand that your time is precious and that you’re paying me for focused consultancy. I understand what’s out there. But I am not selling any products or recommending specific services. I have always been independent. I give objective analysis on who is doing what, including my observed strengths and weaknesses.

Who am I to advise you?

I have a proven heritage working with leading brick and mortar communication and broadcast companies. These include, BBC, RTL, ARD Germany,  Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Singapore MDA, Al Jazeera, UN Media, iHub Kenya, VC4Africa,, Liberty Global, Discovery Channel, NDTV India, and VRT Brussels. I am also delighted to have worked with startup accelerators such as Startupbootcamp, now one of the leading brands in Europe. For the last ten years I have focussed on emerging media platforms, writing articles, making video documentaries and organising conferences and workshops. That has always involved meeting people and discussing what’s happening next. I thrive on discussion and interactions.

Check out over 100 recent testimonials on Linked-In. Many of my clients request confidentiality. But I can supply recent case studies on request.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there going to be a match?

I speak the language of creative entrepreneurs. I understand how to develop the company so as to give you an unfair advantage against the competition. You should be running an operating business or in closed beta. Then I can help with dilemmas on how to move forward. I can also advise on building a media strategy so that others will know about your ideas and you can grow your audience or build a customer base. I’m searching for clear stories and directions. If you’re doing the same, then we have a match. If I don’t know a specific answer, I will say so. But I usually know someone who does.  That’s the power of developing an extensive media network.

What does Jonathan Marks need to know before the call?

Once your session is confirmed, I will send you a short open questionnaire. It won’t take long to fill-in – less than 4 minutes. It helps me prepare. Some people send me links to websites or campaigns they would like me to study. Others have sent me videos of keynotes they have given which they want me to dissect. All this material is kept is confidential, as is my advice to you.

What about face-to-face meetings?

This type of consultancy is only by phone or Skype. This has sometimes lead to face-to-face consultancy and projects at a later stage. I’m based in the Netherlands, but frequently travel to visit clients in other countries.


It hasn’t happened yet in several years of this type of consulting. But if you cancel within 48 hours before the session starts or don’t show up for the appointment, I’m afraid there are no refunds. This is a professional service. That comes with clear terms and conditions.

What happens after the session?

People normally ask me to record the conversation so they can listen back later. I send this via we-transfer as an mp3 file within 5 working days. I usually make a list of further reading, links and specific suggestions. This is usually sent within 7 working days.

Booking Fee and Contact Details:

The fee for a Critical Distance on-line session with Jonathan Marks is 800 Euros, paid in advance. I always issue an invoice for all the work I do. Clients resident in the Netherlands are subject to VAT (BTW) at the current rate. Drop me a line using the web form below. I usually respond within one working day. 

Digital Strategy Workshops
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