Do you run a small marketing agency and struggle to attract enough new clients to meet your growth goals?
Would you like to discover a way to put client attraction on autopilot?
In this episode of the Bright Ideas podcast, my guest on the show is Shaun Whynacht, founder of Blue Cow Creative, a small marketing agency based in Nova Scotia, Canada. I learned of Shaun at the last Infusioncon and when I heard that he’d doubled his revenue in just a year, I asked him to come on the show to share his story.
When you listen to this fascinating and informative interview, you are going to hear Shaun and I talk about:
- (02:13) Who he is and what his company is all about
- (04:13) The results they’ve achieved (doubling their revenue!)
- (04:58) What they did prior to what they’re doing now
- (06:13) A big investment they made, and the cost of signing up
- (08:13) How they capture leads
- (10:53) Specific tactics they use for lead magnets
- (11:53) Their focus on educating prospects
- (13:13) How they segment their list
- (15:49) The type of lead magnets they use
- (18:43) Which social networks are working for them
- (19:58) How they drive traffic
- (21:13) A description of their lead nurture process
- (22:58) How they are using the phone to follow up
- (25:03) How they are converting prospects
- (26:43) How they qualify leads
- (31:13) How they are using testimonials
- (33:53) How Infusionsoft has exponentially improved their nurturing
- (38:13) How they are using Infusionsoft for operations
- (39:46) Lightning round
- The Bright Ideas Marketing Mastermind
- Book: Permission Marketing by Seth Godin
- Bright Ideas Lifecycle Marketing Webinar
- Technology Tool Tip: JobChangeAlerts.com
More About This Episode
The Bright Ideas podcast is the podcast for business owners and marketers who want to discover how to use online marketing and sales automation tactics to massively grow their business.
It’s designed to help marketing agencies and small business owners discover which online marketing strategies are working most effectively today – all from the mouths of expert entrepreneurs who are already making it big.
Dyrsmid: Hey there, bright idea hunters. Welcome to the ‘Bright Ideas’
podcast. I’m your host, Trent Dyrsmid, and this is the podcast for
marketing agencies and entrepreneurs who want to discover how to use
content marketing and marketing automation to massively boost their
business.On the show with me today is a fellow by the name of Shaun Whynacht,
who is the founder of a company called Blue Cow Creative, a small marketing
agency. I learned of Shaun by way of attending InfusionCon this past year.
Shaun started to use InfusionSoft, and in the year following his using it,
he was able to double the revenue of his firm. Being as he’s got a
relatively small firm, just two people, I wanted to get him on to tell his
story because that’ll be a great story of significant results with someone
who maybe doesn’t have a huge pile of resources to work with Shaun’s story
is exactly that.Before we get to the interview, I want to give you my tool tip for
this episode, and that is something called JobChangeAlerts.com. If you want
to know when someone who you are connected to on LinkedIn changes their job
description or profile, which might be an opportune time for you to get in
touch with them to sell them your services, JobChangeAlerts.com will do
that for you. Will actually send you an email, so it’s a super-cool little
tool and it’s totally free.The other announcement is, my next life cycle marketing webinar,
which you can register for at BrightIdeas.co/webinar. If you are not yet
getting as many leads as you would like, or you’re not doing a good enough
job converting those leads to customers, or you’re not getting enough
referrals from your existing customers, this webinar will definitely help
you to improve your results. So, BrightIdeas.co/webinar, to register.So, with that said, please join me in welcoming Shaun to the show.
Hey, Shaun, welcome to the show.Shaun
Whynacht: Thanks for having me.Trent: It’s a pleasure to have you on. I think you’re the first
Canadian that I’ve actually had on my show, which is significant for those
in the audience who don’t know, because I’m Canadian.Shaun: Excellent. It’s a pleasure to be on, and be the first.Trent: Go, Canada, go. [laughs] All right. For the folks who do not
know who you are or what you do, please take a moment and introduce
yourself and your company.Shaun: I consider myself an entrepreneur of life. I’ve had a business
since the age of 17, and a couple since; but most recently, what I’ve been
doing is a company called Blue Cow Creative Design and Productions, Ltd. We
do a lot of content creation for clients, including social media marketing
and lead capture, drip marketing, those kind of things.Trent: Okay. So, very much a marketing expert in the marketing agency
space, which is ideal because a lot of the people who are listening to this
show either run a firm like yours, aspire to run a firm like yours, or
could use the services of a firm like yours.You came to my attention because InfusionSoft profiled you for some
of the success that you’d been having since starting to use their
application. I want to talk a bit about that because obviously I’m a big
InfusionSoft fan. I use it myself and I think that there are people who are
considering using it, or could be using it, and I’d really love them to
hear from people who are having success with it.
With that said, you run a two-person agency?
Trent: Okay. Let’s jump to the conclusion first, So the people who are
wondering, ‘Why do I want to listen to this interview?’ Since starting to
use InfusionSoft, can you tell us a little bit about the results that
you’ve been able to achieve?
Shaun: We’ve been using it almost two years now. After the first year
of using it, we’ve noticed that our revenue has doubled from the previous
years. It wasn’t just a banner year just because of the economy, it was
actually what we have proven to be attributed to the benefit of using
InfusionSoft through educating our prospects before they actually decide to
work with us. And then the service after the sale, that it’s allowed us to
- That’s really what it has done for us and it’s almost like having two
other people working 24/7 for us when people are inquiring online.
Trent: Yeah. That’s pretty significant. Doubling your revenue and the
work of two other people.
Before InfusionSoft, how did you used to do what it is that you’re
doing now? Or did you even do it?
Shaun: If anybody listening is familiar with the old show MacGyver, I
say that we’ve MacGyvered a system together, where we had multiple
different systems out there running, one for invoicing, one for emailing,
one for contacts, and none of them really worked together. It wasn’t that
we looked at them as systems that didn’t work together. We just didn’t know
that there was a solution out there that would do it all in one.
When we heard about InfusionSoft and did the online demo, we were
hesitant that there was a claim that there was a service out there, that we
could subscribe to and use their software, and do all that. It took
probably six months for me to convince myself to take that leap and
actually try it, but it was the best decision we’ve done since then.
Trent: What you just said there is not uncommon. It’s a reasonably
good-sized investment up-front, a couple thousand dollars, and then it’s a
couple hundred dollars per month. I’ve had people email me who’ve listened
to the show, to ask about the pricing, and then right away, ‘Oh no, that’s
too much money.’ Did you think the same thing when you were looking at it
to begin with? Was that one of the things that was causing you to not pull
the trigger right away?
Shaun: Definitely. It wasn’t because I saw it as I didn’t have the
money to invest in it, it was just a big investment, especially for a small
business, a young entrepreneur who was just trying to make ends meet month-
to-month. Then, actually doing it, and looking at the other systems we used
where commonly they were considerably less per month, but you get what you
pay for. The time it saved us to not have to go between all those, it
actually works out cheaper if you figure out the time you’ve wasted with
the other services, by using their all-in-one solution.
Trent: Was there subcontractors that you used to use for various
manual processes, that now you’ve been able to automate and so you don’t
require those subcontractors, or even just your own time?
Shaun: It was my own time. It was replying to people’s inquiries about
common questions and those kind of things. For us, for what we do, because
a lot of the work is in creating a project and training our clients to use
it and be able to pedal on after the sale and use those solutions. To
educate them after, and have that resource there that they can come back
to, and currently drip information out to them after the fact to enhance
that service, was something that I would have had to spend a lot of time,
for one with a calendar and figure out, when do I send all this stuff, and
then actually physically have to do it. InfusionSoft just makes it all
simple for us.
Trent: Indeed it does. There’s three main pieces to InfusionSoft.
There’s the CRM component, there is the online shopping cart so you can
receive payments for whatever you would like, and then there’s the whole
marketing automation/email/autoresponder, however you would like to
describe that. I just call it the marketing automation piece. Are you using
all three pieces?
Shaun: I use all three. I use, more so, the campaign manager and the
campaign builder for a lot of the stuff. Probably about 80 percent of the
function we use it for, is for that. We have a lot of free resources on our
website where people can come in and request to download a free eBook or
free report, and then they get into a campaign where they’re getting drip
information about that, to convert them down the road, about when they want
to make that decision to move with a company like us, that they’re already
educated about what we do. We do that before the sale.
Then, after the sale, we use a lot of follow up through that, getting
people into education sequences, going out. We use the CRM, obviously, to
keep track of all the contact information, but also keep track of a lot of
the pertinent information regarding that client’s account, whether that’s
passwords, and things of that nature.
When it comes to the online payment and the eCommerce side, we don’t
use it as much. We don’t have an online store, but we do have certain
products. We do workshops where we get people to register and it processes
through that and puts them in the sequence for those workshops.
We wrote a book last year on marketing for small business and we sell
that through there, as well. There’s definitely a lot of power there on the
shopping side that we don’t use, but a lot of clients in different
industries could use it a lot more to their advantage than we do.
Trent: Yeah. Good segue into my next bit of questions. You started to
talk about free reports and capturing leads and so forth. I want to shift
to that because I think lead generation is a big problem for a lot of
people, especially when they are first starting out, or even when they’re
thinking about starting out. That’s probably the biggest fear I find in
people: How am I going to get my customers? In the next bit of the
interview, we’re going to talk specifically about what’s working for you
for lead generation, what you’re doing to nurture and educate those leads,
and then how you’re converting them to customers. Then, if we have time,
because I want to keep this under an hour, for sure, We’ll talk maybe a bit
about some of what you’re doing for up-sells and cross-sells and referrals.
Shaun: What we do for lead generation: when we started doing this kind
of thing, it was looking at people that were similar in our field and
seeing those mass numbers of contacts. Whether it was social media and
looking at their Facebook pages, to hearing about their email lists and
hearing about the thousands of people that they have, and being overwhelmed
by that and wondering how you can do it.
We’re looking to build quality connections as opposed to quantity. We
do it a lot through offering free webinars. We do a lot of them live, and
then we’re getting into more writing little white papers, two or three
pages, on things like permission marketing and Facebook advertising and
those kind of things.
In our industry here, most of the business community are owners over
45 years of age and up. So a lot of them haven’t grown up with the social
media side. They haven’t grown up with the technology. A big part of it
based around education. We don’t base it around, if you do this, you’re
going to make X amount of dollars, you’re going to bring X amount of
clients through your door. It’s education first. Then, they try it for a
bit, and then they want to take it to the next step. That’s usually the
point where they get in contact with us.
We do a really good job. We give them maximum information with
minimum commitment to begin, and that’s the key to lead generation. If you
want somebody to download something, if you want to email them something,
all you really need to give them, or for them to give you, is their email
address. You don’t need their address, you don’t need their phone number,
all that stuff. The more you ask for, the less you’re going to get. As you
get them through that whole sequence, and educating them, and building that
trust that you know what you’re talking about, then they’re going to be
more willing to give you that information down the road. That’s what we’ve
seen. It’s what we heard about first, and we tried it, and we see that it
works, so that’s what we’re doing.
Trent: Let me ask a follow-on question for that. You, like me and
probably everybody else, when you get that email address from an
individual, we really don’t know anything about them. In the case of Bright
Ideas, they could be a small business owner, they could be a marketing
consultant, they could be the CEO of a marketing agency, they could be
somebody thinking of starting a marketing agency. The way that I would want
to nurture and educate, because I have products across a couple of
different spectrums. Some products would be applicable to more than one of
those four categories, and other products wouldn’t. I don’t want to just
start sending out all my stuff to everybody, so I start to segment.
What is it that you do? You must segment somehow, because it’s not so
difficult to do. Can you talk a little bit about what you’re doing to make
sure that you get your list segmented in the right way?
Shaun: The information they’ve put out there for those lead generation
tools are very specific to that certain area. For example, we have one
where it’s a ten-video series on how to use Facebook, how to set it up, how
to do the very basics of it. We know that the people that are signing up
for that are very basic users. You’ll have the odd person that’ll sign up
because there’s something for free, but the majority of them are that way.
They’ll go through those ten videos, and then at the end we’ll make them an
offer to go to a more advanced phase, or they just sit there for a bit and
they just get periodic emails.
If they make the step up, then we know that they’re looking to go a
little further. The key is not, get an email and send them everything but
the dog’s lunch, it’s very segmented and making sure that you make them the
ones that control when they want the next bit of information. We find that
it works really well. Every webinar that we do, we do them for free, we get
a couple of really good leads that turn into clients, so it does pay back
itself multiple times after the fact. A lot of our clients that we try to
teach this to haven’t really grasped the concept of giving away something
for free. It’s like, ‘Why should I spend my time doing that if I’m not
getting paid for it?’ Well, you nurture them now, they’re going to pay you
back later if you do a good job at it.
Trent: Absolutely. It’s not as though you’re restricted to giving away
this information to one person at a time. The beauty, obviously, of a
webinar is that you can leverage your time by giving one bit of information
to many people at one time.
Shaun: The key that I’ve found with using InfusionSoft specifically
for this is that you’re not set to a start and end time. You spend the time
to create these products, create these sequences, and depending on when
people come into the funnel, whether it’s today or three weeks down the
road, they’re in the program. They’re getting the information based on the
time that they went in. It’s not like somebody’s going to miss some
information, and I think that’s what’s key to that. It allows us to
leverage the power of InfusionSoft above and beyond doing it manually, like
we had before.
Trent: Going back to what you were talking about with the lead
magnets. A lead magnet, by the way, in case people are unfamiliar with that
term, is what you are giving away to get the email address. It sounds like,
Shaun, that you have more than one lead magnet. How many different ones do
Shaun: We’ve done the webinars. We’ve recorded them, so those are now
available. People can go on there, sign up, then they get the link to the
videos. There’s probably two or three of those right now. We’ve got our
Facebook video series, we’ve got our book that we wrote, that’s now
available in eBook format and audiobook format for free as well. We’re
working on one right now, that’ll come out in probably the next couple of
weeks, on permission marketing.
Trent: Cool. Of those three, which one works the best for you?
Shaun: The videos. People like to be able to watch a video. The way
that we do them is solely with screencast for the trainings. People
actually get to see what we’re talking about, as opposed to giving them a
printed report. The printed report does all right, but not as well as
video, especially if you have some information to give out, just turning
the camera on and talking to the person will have a higher engagement, we
Trent: I also think it goes a long way to build more trust, as well,
because they’re hearing your voice, and I think that we form a lot of our
opinions about how we feel about another person when we can either hear or
see them on our screen, versus just reading some text that they’ve written.
Shaun. Yes. You get to hear their voice, you get to see them. It’s all
those things that you would have if you were in front of that person. My
background is in video, so I’m a big fan of it. I think people are using
video more and I think they can use it even more as we move forward.
Trent: Speaking of video, I’m actually right in the process of
creating a new lead magnet myself, called The Conversion Tactics Toolkit.
If you’re listening to this on iTunes and you have not yet been to Bright
Ideas, go to BrightIdeas.co and you’ll be able to have an opportunity to
opt in to The Conversion Tactics Toolkit. It is an entirely video series.
All right. Is there anything that, in terms of capturing email
addresses, that’s working particularly well for you that I’ve not yet asked
you about, that you would tell somebody if you were sitting in a coffee
shop having this conversation?
Shaun: What I tell people is that if you’re doing this kind of thing,
and you’re on different platforms like social media, Twitter and Facebook,
is you need to have all your lead capturing/lead generation tools available
in all those different platforms. That’s worked really well for us. When we
create something new, we send it out to our existing email newsletter list
that we’ve gained over the years. We also put it on Facebook and do some
promotion there. We put it on Twitter and LinkedIn. The more relevant that
the information is to the networks that we’re doing, then we find we’re
getting some really good engagement that way.
Trent: Do you find that there is one social network that tends to work
better with the business audience than the others?
Shaun: Not really better, it depends on what we’re doing. Depending on
whether it’s a video series, or if it’s-, specifically let’s talk about the
Facebook one, because we had a higher engagement promoted out on Facebook
because they were in that medium when we were doing it. Whether it’s doing
that there, or sending it out by email, I think it’s relevant to what
Trent: That makes a lot of sense. People hanging on Facebook would
obviously want to know how to use Facebook for marketing.
Shaun: Time of day, too, when you’re posting things. If you’re
targeting a business owner, which in most of the cases we are, we find a
higher engagement when it’s near the end of the day, as opposed to the
middle of the day because most people are engaged in their business. Even
on the weekends, surprisingly enough. At least here, we have a high
engagement of business owners that will subscribe to stuff on the weekends
because it’s low cost, in most cases free, for them to opt into it. That’s
when they’ve got some time to be online.
Trent: What are some things you’re doing to drive traffic to all these
offers? Are you getting traffic to your blog because you’re blogging, or
are you doing paid Facebook ads?
Shaun: We’ve done a little bit of paid Facebook ads, and they do
convert quite well for us. The majority of the stuff that we’re getting for
new leads is through our existing emails and through referrals. Most of our
new business, probably about 85% to 90% of it, is all referral-based. We
don’t do too much advertising. A lot of it comes through other people
sharing the content, being on our Facebook page, and those kinds of things.
Trent: Do you think there’s anything that you’re doing specifically
that’s stimulating those referrals, or is it just people who are genuinely
happy with the services you’re providing them?
Shaun: I think it’s the fact that we’re very real in the way we
present ourselves. We’re not making any false claims. We’re not giving them
the ‘This is the be-all solution to all your financial freedom.’ We make it
known that these are steps that you need to take to learn and know this
technology and we’re here if you want to take it to the next level. People
really appreciate that we’re not leading them in and making them sink or
Trent: Yeah. All right, let’s transition to nurturing now. You’ve
talked a bit about it. You’ve talked about the importance of educating
people, but I want to get a little bit more specific now, if we can. Let’s
use your video series, ‘Lead Capture,’ as the example of the guinea pig for
this part of the conversation.
Someone, they see your lead magnet, they give you their email
address, they hit the submit button, or the sign-me-up button, whatever
you’ve called it. What happens in that campaign builder? What have you
built, and what’s going to happen to that new subscriber? Walk us through
Shaun: Once they sign up, they’ll initially get an email welcoming
them to the series, explaining what each of the videos are going to be
doing, and giving them the realistic expectation that they come out every
three days on a weekday and they spend whatever the length is there. In the
videos at the end, they’re then given a link to them. So that if for some
reason they can’t watch one, they’re going to get that in the end for that.
Throughout the process, then about a quarter of the way through,
we’re prompted to mail them out a letter just to introduce the company. No
sales or anything is in that letter. Just excited to have them going
through the series. Just introduce our website and those kind of things a
little bit more. Then, near the end, once they’ve finished, we’re prompted
to give them a call and see what they thought about it. See if they had any
further questions. They can talk to me personally about their journey
We’re promoting it also as education, to use it on a personal level,
so we’re getting both sides of the fence there. Because I truly believe
that even though somebody might not be in a business and might not use it
for a business purpose, they know somebody that could. We’re not
eliminating educating those people that want to know how to use it for a
personal reason, too.
Trent: I’m very happy you mentioned that there was a call in your
sequence. I think that some people are needlessly scared of the telephone.
When you say call, they think cold call, and they think, ‘Ugh, I don’t ever
want to do that. That would be horrible.’ But, you’re not making a cold
Shaun: No. That’s the key with putting the call near the end of the
sequence, as opposed to initially, at the beginning. If we put it right
when they signed up, we would technically be cold-calling them. Whereas at
the end, we’ve provided them ten videos, ten contact points of information
where we’re helping them every time. We’re never asking for the sale. Even
the call is not sales-oriented. It’s not, ‘Here we have a paid program’, or
anything like that. It’s ‘Just wanted to thank you for going through that.
Do you have any questions? If you ever want to take it to the next level,
this is who we are.’ We thank them for doing that. In most cases, we get
thank-yous back. Other times, we even get people saying that they’ve never
actually had a call that wasn’t pushy sales.
Trent: When you’re making these calls, do you find that people…
‘Hey, this is Shaun from Blue Cow,’ they’re like, ‘Oh hey, Shaun’. What’s
the response that you get, the vast majority of the time when they answer
Shaun: They know who I am, even if I’ve never met them, because
they’ve heard me. Each of the videos are probably 15-20 minutes in length.
Some are shorter. They hear my voice throughout those videos. They know my
name. I introduce myself at the beginning, so it’s kind of like they
already know me when I call. It’s a familiar voice on the phone, as opposed
to getting somebody else to call.
Trent: Definitely it’s an easy phone call for you to make and it’s an
easy phone call for them to receive.
Shaun: That’s right.
Trent: How many times, even though you say it’s not a call to ‘be
pushy’ or ask for business, how, in your experience, are you finding that
some people are volunteering, ‘Hey, actually I would like to work with you
to do blah, blah,blah.’ or if that never happens, how are we starting to
convert some of these prospects to clients?
Shaun: Probably I have just over 50% of those people openly, as soon
as I thank them for that and I ask them if there’s anything else they might
need education on, they’ll openly tell me what it is. The rest of them, you
have to dig a little bit about that. I’ll ask, ‘How are you using
Facebook?’ first, if you have a business, and then I’ll ask, ‘How are you
using Facebook in your business?’ and they’re hoping to do some advertising
and that kind of stuff, so I lead them to one of our webinars on Facebook
advertising. Or, we have a report that goes with that and I tell them about
that. But probably more times than not, they want to schedule a time to
talk on the phone, and then, if we do a good job and convert them, then we
end up working with them.
We’re not scared to admit that the relationship is not a fit, if
that’s the case. A lot of people will not do that. They’ll just push and
push for the sale, whereas we want to work with a certain demographic of
business owners. If it doesn’t fit for us, and it doesn’t fit for them,
then we thank them and we both go our separate ways.
Trent: That’s a really, really important point, that you’ve brought
- Because a lot of small business owners, they get a few years in, and
then they realize they have this hodge-podge of customers, 20% of which are
generating 80% of the revenue. The other 80% are, kind of, a pain in their
butt because they took them maybe out of desperation in the early years. Or
they just took them for reasons that weren’t really solid reasons. Does
that sound familiar to you? Did you go through that experience, or were you
very choosy from the beginning?
Shaun: No, I was not very choosy. Starting out, any hook that came
into the water, I was biting at it. Using the InfusionSoft system, it’s has
allowed us to qualify those people and see, when they receive emails, what
are they clicking on? What are they doing? To see how interested they are,
so that when we talk to them, we can tell now if they’re really going to be
a key client. If we can’t help them, there’s no point in even going through
Even if the money’s there, we’d still do this work if we didn’t have
to get paid. We just enjoy doing it, especially if it’s helping people. But
also, that need to help people led us, in the early years, to jump at those
early leads because we feel that people were needing our help. We would
just do stuff. We’d discount some services just so they could use what
we’re doing. But in the end, like you said, that’s probably that 80 % that
just takes up more valuable time than you have, when really, they’re just a
one-off project whereas we’re trying to build long-term relationships.
Trent: You mentioned qualifying. I want to dig a little deeper into
that, if we can. In InfusionSoft, there’s something called lead scoring?
Trent: I apologize to the audience for all the frogs in my throat
today. I don’t really know why I’m having such a problem here, but I’m
doing my best. Are you using lead scoring, and if so, how are you using it
to help qualify the prospects that are in your funnel so that the people
who deserve the attention, be it the phone call and so forth, are getting
Shaun: We currently don’t use lead scoring. I know the power of it. I
just don’t think that where I’m currently at with the business, that it
works for us the way we’d want it to. We do a lot of our qualifications by
the initial phone call and talking with people. We make it known that this
is what we hope to get out of this call and this initial consultation and
get them to commit to that first. Then we sit down. Just talking to people,
we find, is the best way to do it.
That doesn’t mean that I don’t go in and look at the back history to
see how many times they’ve been checking out our website, what they’ve been
looking at, before we sit down, so I can see how interested they are; or,
if they just decided to come to our website and call right away.
The lead scoring is a powerful tool, especially if you’re in a
business where you might even have a sales force or a sales team where it
can figure out if they’re a hot lead based on their interaction and those
kind of things.
Trent: When you are interviewing a prospective client, do you always
meet with them face-to-face before they become a client? Or, are you
sometimes getting clients who aren’t in your town?
Shaun: It depends on the situation. I prefer to meet face-to-face
whenever possible, but I realize sometimes that time restraints, distance,
and weather don’t allow that. We do a few phone calls for this kind of
thing, but in most cases we try to sit down. I think one of the key things
is to not come across as selling them something. But them identifying what
their needs are, what their goals are, and realizing that what we could
offer will be a solution to that. We find that’s really good.
One of the first things I ask somebody is, ‘What do you hope to get
out of working with us?’ They tell you right away. ‘This is what my problem
is and this is where I’d like to go with it.’ Now it gives us a target to
work towards. In some cases, that goal is something we can’t attain for
them, so it’s either try to get them to a realistic level, or just say,
‘Maybe there’s somebody else better suited for that.’
Trent: That’s a very powerful thing to be able to do. I know that when
I was running my last technology company, and this was in the early 2000s,
before any of this fancy-schmancy marketing automation stuff, that I was
aware of it maybe it existed. One of the first questions we would ask when
we would get a meeting with a new prospect is, ‘Why’d you take the
meeting?’ That was a really terrific way for someone to tell you their
agenda right at the beginning, so that you knew the points that you needed
to speak to so you’d have a chance of converting them into a good client.
Shaun: Yeah, for sure.
Trent: We’ve talked about how you’re capturing leads. We’ve talked
about how you’re nurturing leads. I think we’ve covered how you’re
converting your leads to customers as well, unless there’s anything else
there. Is there anything that’s major in your process on the conversion
part of it that we haven’t talked about?
Shaun: Because a lot of our new business and new leads comes from
referrals, it’s using the power of asking for testimonials. I’m a big fan
of testimonials and people telling their story of why they chose to work
with us. What they liked working with us, so we can use that on our
website, on our blog, on our social media, to promote that experience.
Because I think working with a company should be a positive experience as
opposed to just hiring somebody, and then not really understanding what it
is that we do. That talks back to what we do in the early stages with the
education. It’s not really a lot about educating them about what’s out
there. But educating them about the process we take with them, in the early
stages. So that they know they’re involved in that process and they don’t
feel left out.
One of the things we’ve heard a lot is that they’ve worked with other
companies and they don’t hear from them for a few days and they don’t
really know what it is that they’re doing. Then, they get a bill in the end
and hopefully the project is good, or not. That’s key to what we do.
Trent: How do you ask for testimonials? Do you just call them up and
ask them? Or do you have a process, campaign, something?
Shaun: Yeah, we just have a little note campaign that we add to that
contact at the end. Just thanking them that the project has completed and
we’ve successfully launched, depending on what it is. And just ask them to
go to our Facebook page and write their testimonial, as opposed to just
emailing it to us.
Trent: Wow, that’s cool.
Shaun: In most cases, but if they’re not on Facebook, then obviously
we take it by email, but we want it to come authentic from them and not
seem like we’ve reformatted it and pushed it out after the fact.
Trent: Then, you can take a screen shot of it on Facebook and reuse
that particular image wherever you like.
Shaun: That’s right. Plus, immediately, all their friends see that
they’ve posted something on our wall, and it helps that way.
Trent: Golden nugget, there it is. I’ve got to write that down –
testimonials on Facebook.
Shaun: You can always copy and paste it and use it in other things
after, but at least the original source is authentic.
Trent: Yeah. Okay. This nurturing process that we’ve been talking
about obviously is working very, very well for you. And you’d mentioned,
before InfusionSoft that this was not so easy. Did you nurture, in any way,
shape, or form, like you do now, only you did it manually and it took a lot
of work? Or, were you like maybe a lot of people out there who would get a
prospect, call them three or four times, ‘Nah, they don’t want to take the
meeting’, and then just give up?
Shaun: Yeah, the last one there, that was pretty much me. A lot of the
process of using InfusionSoft was learning the keys to nurturing and that
that was actually a key point to doing business. The benefit with
InfusionSoft is not just that they’re a software, but there’s a whole team
of people there that are invested in your growth and the well-being of your
So if you have any questions about, ‘How could I use this element?’
It’s not just the p’s and q’s, and click here and do this. It’s ‘Here’s how
you take it offline, here’s how you use it.’ So I think that they’re really
great that way.
I’ve also been down to both InfusionCons in the last two years.
That’s a huge event that really helped me focus my business, learn what I
needed to do, and realize that I didn’t have all the answers, but I could
learn them down the road.
Trent: That is such an incredibly good point. I’m wondering if you do
this: back when I was running my technology company, I participated in a
couple of mastermind groups where, in one case, one of them was called True
Profit, and another one was called Vistage. We would meet, I think one of
them was four times a year, and the other one, I can’t remember. I think
also four times a year. You’d sit down in a room with other people who are
running companies exactly like what you’re running, just in a different
marketplace. And we would openly share a huge amount of detail in every
area, from marketing to operations, so that we could all learn from each
I can’t emphasize how valuable that was, because you’re learning from
people who are doing exactly what you’re doing, and they’re running their
own businesses. Do you participate in anything like that?
Shaun: I currently don’t. I’m currently looking for something like
that. I do see the extreme value in a mastermind group, but just in the
area that we’re in, we haven’t found that kind of thing. We do a lot of
networking and talking to businesses in other areas that cover a lot of the
key basics of bookkeeping and all that other kind of things that we need to
talk about. But when it comes to specifics, we currently haven’t done
anything like that.
Trent: Okay. Well, I’m going to introduce you to something like that.
Bright Ideas does have a mastermind group. If you go to
BrightIdeas.co/mastermind, you can learn more about it. It is specifically
targeted to people who are marketing consultants and marketing agencies.
However, with that said, because that’s what, when you read the page,
actually by the time this is published, there will be a full page
explaining everything, Shaun. If you go there right now, it’s just what I
call the pre-launch page, where you can register for updates and so forth.
Even though, on the full page, which, people when they’re listening
to this will see it, I want them to understand that the principles and the
things that we talk about, and it starts off with a two day workshop, two
day online workshop. The principles that we talk about are going to be
highly applicable to whatever industry you’re in, but most of the people in
the group probably will be running marketing agencies. With that said, one
of my facilitators, and you probably know him, his name is Dustin Burleson.
That name ring a bell with you?
Shaun: No, it doesn’t.
Trent: Oh, okay. He was one of the Ultimate Marketer finalists at
InfusionCon this year. He’s the guy that has the orthodontics clinic
Shaun: Okay, yes, now I know.
Trent: Four clinics now, because he’s using, it just blew up once he
started using InfusionSoft. He’s going to be inviting a number of the
people who attend, other orthodontists who attend his seminars. This first
one that we’re going to do, I’m not exactly sure of the mix of the people.
Regardless, if you’re looking for a mastermind group, just head over to
BrightIdeas.co/mastermind and there will be information there for you to
All right. Sorry, again, for all the frogs in my throat. I don’t know
why. What do I want to ask you about next? We were going to make a
transition, how are we doing for time? We’ve still got a bit of time.
Are you still – got a few minutes left?
Shaun: Yes, certainly.
Trent: I know. I know what it was. This wasn’t on my list of
questions, but you talked about this early on. We’ve talked a lot about how
InfusionSoft and the campaign builder is helping you with marketing, but I
want to talk about how it’s helping you with operations, and stuff that
happens after people become a client.
Can you speak to, because the campaign builder, I mean, campaigns
don’t have to be marketing-oriented. Because all a campaign is, is a
sequence of communication and activity, which is more or less any, and
almost every, business process. Can you talk about anything that you’re
doing in that regard?
Shaun: Well use a lot of the CRM side of InfusionSoft, with the custom
fields and and the custom tabs, to tailor it towards the information that
we need to keep about each client’s project. When we’re dealing with people
that we’re building websites for, or setting up online accounts, we keep a
lot of their account details in there; attach their records, so that if I
need to go in, or somebody else needs to go in later to send them that
information, it is there for them.
The other side is, also, using a lot of the tracking of the emails
that we send out. We can send them out through that so we can see when
they’ve opened them and any links that they clicked on. As for using any of
the sequences internally for the actual project building, usually once we
take on the project, when we finish it, a lot of that communication is just
done one-on-one with the client by our team, or any subcontractors that we
use. Then, after the sale, we go back and give them some resources about
using that service or that product that we’ve created for them.
Trent: Okay. All right, Shaun. Well, I want to thank you very much.
Oh, before I go, my lightning round. Can’t forget the lightning round.
Trent: Question number one: what are you most excited about for 2013?
Shaun: For 2013, what we’re more excited about it we’re launching a
new area to our business called the Seniors Learning Academy. Because here
in Nova Scotia, we have a large contingency of seniors who are using iPads
and a lot of them don’t know how to use them. This whole project is, first,
teaching them how to use these new pieces of technology for their
lifestyle. We’ll be rolling that out in a DVD learning series for them.
That’s what we’re really excited about, coming up.
Trent: Now is that a product you’re going to sell?
Trent: Okay. I was going to say, because how does that fit in with
lead gen? But now I get it. That’s just a revenue producer in its own
All right. What is your favorite business book?
Shaun: Ooh, well, I’m currently reading, and I’m really liking, Seth
Godin’s ‘Permission Marketing.’ I really like the mindset of that. Anything
that he writes has been stellar, right from ‘The Purple Cow,’ to ‘Meatball
Sundae,’ I think is the latest one that I read before this. Anything Seth
Godin puts out, I think, is golden.
Trent: Finally, for the folks who have been listening to you now and
think, ‘Hey, I might like to do business with Shaun’, what’s the number one
easiest way for them to get in touch with you?
Shaun: The best way is to go to www.BlueCowCreative.ca.
Trent: Terrific. Shaun, thank you so much for making some time to be
on the show. It’s been a pleasure to have you on.
Shaun: It’s been a pleasure being here.
Trent: All right. To get to this show notes from today’s episode, go
to BrightIdeas.co/66. When you’re there, you’ll see all the links that
we’ve talked about today, plus some other valuable information that you can
use to ignite more growth in your business.
If you’re listening to this on your mobile phone, just text TRENT to
585858 and I’ll give you access to the ‘Massive Traffic Toolbox,’ which is
a compilation of all of the very best traffic generation strategies shared
with me by the many proven experts that have been guests here on the show.
As well, you’ll also be able to get a list of, what I feel, are the very
best interviews, thus far, that I have recorded. I can promise you will
discover many bright ideas as a result of those interviews.
Finally, if you really enjoyed this episode, please head over to
BrightIdeas.co/love, where you will find a link to leave us a rating in the
That’s it for this episode. I am your host, Trent Dyrsmid, and I look
forward to seeing you in the next episode. Take care and have a wonderful
Recording: Thanks very much for listening to the Bright Ideas podcast.
Check us out on the web at BrightIdeas.co.
About Shaun Whynacht
As a leader in social media consulting, Blue Cow is on the leading edge of technology application, combining an up-to-the minute understanding of current tools and trends with proven skills in creative design and video production to offer clients the latest, hippest approach to their business needs. But Blue Cow’s approach dictates that superior customer service and a personalized approach is the hallmark of their operation; here high tech meets down home.
It’s a business acumen that has made converts of business operators who have experienced the philosophy; developed by company President Shaun Whynacht; of educate, engage and accelerate in which clients learn about the options available, buy-in to those concepts, and then, through applying those tools and trends, meet their goals. But it’s a process that is preambled by Blue Cow’s astute understanding of the technologies and deep interest in the needs of the client. There’s no love-‘em and leave-‘em in these relationships – Blue Cow and their clients stay committed to each other for the long haul!
And with that track record, it’s no wonder that the youthful Mr. Whynacht (he’s, amazingly, just 32) has earned the attention of regional business leaders who have featured him and his firm in High Flyers, a showcase of the region’s most promising up-and-coming entrepreneurs.