An Interview with Joshua McNary

Idea + Passion + Guts = Success!

Last year, the Collective Data team decided it was time to update our website. After vetting several vendors, we decided to hire McNary Marketing & Design to do the job. One of the biggest deciding factors was that the McNary team looked at websites a little differently than the rest. Owner, Joshua McNary, explained it as a “marketing technology” approach instead of looking at the website as standing on its own.

Marketing Technology, Defined

As defined on their company website,, Marketing Technology is “the use of technology at the intersection of business, marketing, and technology (in that order) to allow organizations to sell more and do less.” The concept made sense to us. McNary’s proactive approach to attracting customers, capturing data, and effectively utilizing it to reach our business goals was visualized in a unique way that has shaped our messaging.

Fast forward six months, we are fully utilizing our new website and have plans for the McNary team to help us with more projects that dig deeper into our business goals. As we gotten to know Joshua McNary personally, we started to wonder about his experience as a local entrepreneur, so we asked him some questions. We learned a lot about how he got his start.

Going Entrepreneur, Starting A Mar-Tech Firm

It took over 10 years of working for other companies to make his move to business ownership. He spent that time building network of business contacts who became his mentors. He also found inspiration from following the success of Eric Engelman, Geonetric Founder, the advice of Michael Hyatt, Leadership Mentor, and the inspirational book Quitter by Jon Acuff. His drive to start his own business was first validated when his wife approved of the move. They have three children together, who were young when he launched the firm fulltime in 2014. “You need to have support. In life, not just in business”, Joshua said, “having her support was the most important thing.”

The genesis of McNary Marketing & Design started when Joshua moved to Cedar Rapids from Washington D.C. in 2006. He continued to do adhoc freelance work for old and new connections, mostly websites and graphic design jobs, while working as an employee at Aerial Services, Inc. of Cedar Falls, Iowa, which he credits he learned much about marketing, business strategy, and new technology driven ideas. In 2012, he then joined Vault Coworking (now managed by NewBoCo) and worked there a couple days a week when not traveling to or for Aerial Services. This experience gave him the start he needed, including a business address and a group of like-minded people to network with alongside.

With a leap and a prayer, Joshua gave notice that he will be going out on his own. On January 22, 2014, his message began, “I’m excited to tell you that I’m following a new dream.” He explained that he had changed had learned much from his past work and colleagues, and would be expanding his mar-tech business. He signed the letter, McNary Marketing & Design LLC.

Joshua made the move in a deliberate and calculated manner. He was sure to do the math, so he would “know the off ramps” if things weren’t going well. He used spreadsheets to work out how much he needed to make, developed his pricing model, and framed up his business plan. He still needed to pay the bills, so earning income the first year had to be part of the plan. He worked over 40 hours a week to get things rolling. So the adventure began.

Evolving & Growth

He perfected his pitch. “We are not just a marketing agency, we area marketing technologists.” Joshua has a way of putting businesses at ease, knowing that the team will make sure the technical details of projects are aligned with business goals. “We try to walk hand-in-hand with our clients and partners.” With a solid pitch like that, it’s no wonder that he is looking to hire staff only a few years into the business start-up.

We asked what advice he would give to someone looking to start his/her own business. Joshua said it “starts with a passion, formed by independence, financial gains, helping people, and the belief in your product or service.” He said, “The more of these things you have on your side, the better off you will be.” It isn’t all an upward climb, however. “It’s a roller coaster,” he said honestly, “you need thick skin and learn how to balance the ups and downs.” It is much different when you are running the show. “You need faith that you’ll make it through, even if you don’t, you will have help in pick yourself up, just like story Christ says in the Bible: “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?.” (Matthew 6:23)

Now Adding People To Serve People

The McNary Marketing and Design team is currently made up Joshua, three others and growing. As far as new businesses go, they are shooting for the stars and achieving their goals. Collective Data is proud to have a working relationship with this great team of professionals and would gladly share our experience with anyone who would be interested in learning more.

Want To Learn More?

To learn more about McNary Marketing & Design, their Marketing Technology services including Proactive Web Development, Sales & Marketing Systems & Integrations, and other Digital Marketing services, please visit

Learn More About McNary Marketing & Design

To learn more about McNary Marketing & Design, their Marketing Technology services including Proactive Web Development, Sales & Marketing Systems & Integrations, and other Digital Marketing services, please visit

McNary Marketing & Design
Fleet and Asset Management Software