Tag Archive for: Conversion Tactics

Conversion Optimization: How Radius.com Created a Very Clever Testing Methodology to Maximize Trial Conversions

conversion optimization with john hurley

John Hurley is the director of product marketing for a venture backed startup called Radius. Radius has raised about $80M so far. They are selling an enterprise software solution to major brand players like American Express.

Today we have a very interesting conversation! We start with the content strategy that Radius uses to get traffic. Then we investigate their conversion process and the extensive multi-step test they conducted on how customers enter their software trial program.

This interview serves as an in-depth case study on detailed conversion optimization testing. It’s an area I’ve never explored in depth with a guest before and is full of great information.

Focus on how they drove traffic and how they maximized conversions. If you are with a SaaS company the issues discussed in this interview will be near and dear to your heart. Regardless, any company that wants to maximize traffic and conversion can pick up some great tips.

How to Identify the Emotional Drivers That Cause People to Buy with Dan Greenwald


As founder of a $3M+ agency, Dan Greenwald is definitely someone worth listening to.

In this conversation, Dan Greenwald shares what he is best at and sheds light on some of the psychological and emotional drivers that cause people to buy, including his take on B2ME sales and on creating an addictive experience. Curious? Listen to the interview now to see what lessons you can learn from this ultra-successful marketer.

Listen now and you’ll hear Dan and I talk about:

  • (01:05) Introduction
  • (02:00) Which niches do you specialize in?
  • (03:30) What are hospitals struggling with most?
  • (06:00) How does B2ME help companies to eliminate guessing who their target buyer is?
  • (10:00) How does your interview process work?
  • (14:00) Why are the drivers so important in the B2ME process?
  • (19:00) Can you give an example of this?
  • (22:00) Why is understanding the emotional connection so important?
  • (24:30) What is the addictive experience?
  • (30:30) How does gamification play a role in an addictive experience?
  • (35:00) What technology are you building these games in?
  • (28:00) What has the impact on your business been?
  • (40:00) Please tell me about your vision of AX on healthcare
  • (43:00) How did you get traction in the healthcare niche?

Resources Mentioned

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.

Listen Now

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Connect with Trent Dyrsmid:



Hey there bright idea hunters. Welcome back to another episode of the Bright Ideas Podcast. This is episode number 148, I am your host Trent Dyrsmid and this is the podcast where we help entrepreneurs to discover ways to use digital marketing and marketing automation to dramatically increase the growth of their business.

If you’re an entrepreneur and you’re looking for proven ideas to increase traffic, to increase conversions and ultimately to attract more clients, well you are in the right place. And the way that we do that is I bring proven experts as guests on to the show to share with you and to share with me exactly what they are doing to achieve success. There is no theories and no pufferies here, just real life stuff that is actually getting the job done.

In this episode my guest is a fellow by the name of Dan Greenwald. He is the head of an agency by the name of White Rhino and Dan’s agency is doing some really, really interesting things in the areas of creativity in the Addictive Experience. We also talked a lot about his B2Me process. So I think you are going to find this episode to be a little bit different in the topic than many of the other episodes that I have done with other agency owners.

So make sure that you grab your pen and paper and that you are ready to take some notes because there are some really cool stuff in here. Before we welcome Dan to the show, quick announcement, I get a lot of email from people asking me, “Trent what tools and resources do you use for landing pages and marketing automation or analytics or split testing or getting visibility into who is seeing your proposals?” or whatever.

I have a page that lists all that stuff and you can get to it at GrabTrentsBonus.com and as the name suggests if you do decide to use any of the affiliate links to buy any of that stuff, of course I get paid a little bit for that and you have my thanks for that. But you get a little bit more than that.

You get a bonus and there is instructions on the page and all you need to do is email me your receipt afterwards and I have a couple of my paid products of which I’ll let you choose from and you can have one of them for free.

So with that said please join me in welcoming Dan to the show.

Hey Dan welcome to the show.


Hey Trent, thanks for having me.


Yeah no problem at all, thanks for making the time to come and share your ideas and insights with myself and my audience. Folks what you are going to hear in this episode is some stuff that we haven’t talked about before.

I am going to let Dan introduce himself in just a moment but we are going to talk about something that he calls his B2ME process which I am particularly interested in and I think you will be too, once you understand what it is. And as well; if time permits; we are going to talk about something called the Addictive Experience and the reason that I think that these are going to be so interesting is Dan’s agency has become quite a success and I asked him before the record button.

I said, “Dan what are you really, really good at?”And these were his answers and that is why we’re going to be talking about them during this episode. With all that said, Dan, who are you and what do you do?


First of all, great intro, I think I need to be more synced in my intro. I am the founder and creative director of White Rhino. We are a strategic creative marketing agency based outside of Boston Mass. We specialize in B2B and healthcare clients and really we like the most complicated businesses. We call ourselves marketing masochists here at White Rhino. Whatever it takes to uncomplicate the complicated is something that we really enjoy doing.


And your agency is about a 3.5 to 4 million dollars a year agency in revenue at this point?


That’s right.


In the world of agencies it is a pretty decent size agency. So folks Dan is a very credible guy to listen to, grab those pens and note pads and get ready to take some good notes. Alright so you have talked about uncomplicating complicated businesses. Do you have a few niches that you have gotten more traction in with your agency than others?


Yeah, I realize that B2B is kind of a broad space but generally with the complicated B2B businesses we’ve been very strong. And also in healthcare space; notably in hospitals and hospital like businesses. So first of all when you think of B2B, a good example of a complicated B2B business is Enterprise ERP software companies. One of our clients is SAP, a very, very complicated business to explain.

I like to think of it this way. If you look at an ad and you see a sneaker or a glass of beer you know what it is right away but to understand what enterprise software is, it takes a little bit to get there. The communication is just a little bit more complicated. The same thing is true with our overall business model. Just the way that they sell through the different channels that they sell; it is a very, very complex business to understand.

Actually it takes years to understand it. The same is true for the healthcare business where you’ve got all sorts of complications going on in the healthcare space. I don’t have to explain that. I think that everybody understands that. Just to really keep it simple and uncomplicated and actually put the patient at the center of the experience is something that is very difficult to do for a whole variety of reason and we think that we are really, really good at that.


Let’s hang out on the hospitals here for a minute. Is that one of their biggest marketing challenges? What is their biggest marketing challenge?


I think there are a whole bunch of challenges for hospitals but one of the big ones is many, many hospitals are going to be incentivized to actually keep you out of the hospital; which is a very, very different business model than what we have right now.

Right now they are actually incentivized to provide services to you. In the past it has been in their best interest to run as many tests as possible to have you come in to have surgery and have procedures done but they are actually going to be incentivized to keep you out of the hospital.

They are also going to be incentivized to keep you satisfied as a customer, if you will and not just think of you as a patient. So what has happened to change the rest of the business world is going to be happening to healthcare too. Just making that switch and putting the patient at the center of all that and giving the patient much more control is going to be a big initiative because it is going to affect their pocket books if they don’t do it.


When you say incentivized is that by the insurance companies?


Right, it is by the insurance companies, it is also going to be by the government. So there are some complications there that are pretty interesting.


Yeah, no kidding; so in other words we used to pay you when you cut somebody open and now we pay you when you don’t cut them open.


Right, we are going to pay you in both ways. There are going to be all kinds of interesting things in place. This example is a bit over simplified Trent but let’s say that you are treated for something in the hospital, so your insurance company pays for it and then you are released, if you return to the hospital within 30 days for the same treatment the hospital can actually get wacked pretty bad for that.

So it is going to be in their best interest to keep you very healthy and keep you out; if that makes sense. That is one example of how that is going to happen.


We’ll just call that good customer service after the sale. So when you engage with a hospital like that as a client; they have got to get some message out. They have got to obviously differentiate themselves, they’ve got to make themselves look good, they’ve got to do all the things that you want to do, because at the end of the day with marketing they are trying to drive revenue. Is this were this B2ME process comes into play?

I know one of the challenges; and we talked very briefly about this, that many companies that I’ve worked with at my agency Groove (and I’m sure it’s the same for you).They don’t really have a super clear idea of exactly who their target customer is. They have sort of been successful in spite of themselves over a long period of time.

The marketplace is now getting more competitive, they want to embrace inbound marketing. They’ve got to create content but it has got to be for somebody.


That’s right, it is not just in healthcare, the same is true for a lot of B2B companies that we deal with. But you are exactly right. I don’t want this to come across in the wrong way but a lot of our clients are guessing what they think the target audience is. And not only that but what their attitudes are and what their key psychological drives are.

Just because you think it is true does not mean that it really is. And actually it is interesting that you bring this up because I wrote a blog piece last week which actually get a lot of traction on LinkedIn on this company called Solace Health. And I thought it was a great example of B2ME even though it wasn’t our client it is a great example of it. They are a fairly large mammography provider outside of Texas in the Texas area.

For some reason their business wasn’t growing as fast as they wanted it to. Even though the mammography business was growing; so they did a little bit of research to try and figure out why and what they had been using from a messaging standpoint was kind of fear messages like “Don’t wait until it is too late.”

“You don’t want to be that one of eight women that gets breast cancer. Be smart.” Those where the types of messages that they were putting out there but what the research showed was that what that was creating was more procrastination than appointments which is kind of interesting. So they ended up making kind of a bold switch which is instead of pressuring through fear what they came up with was, “When you are ready, we’re here for you.”

And that has really changed the way that they have been messaging and it has been much more effective. I think what that does is it creates comfort and it creates trust. Ultimately those are the kind of emotional drivers almost any marketer wants to give. But certainly in that space it has worked well.


Yeah, I could see that that being the case because if it is scary then I don’t really want to find out so I’ll just procrastinate and not do it.


When you say it, it seems like it is such common sense and it should be obvious but it is not. You really have to find out for sure.


How do you help a client get clear; let’s say you get this company and they are doing a couple of million bucks per year and they’ve got customers all over the map and they are not doing any inbound marketing, now they are going to start doing it.

What is the process that you go through to help them figure out who exactly is our target audience? What is their view of the world? What language do they use? Where do they hang out? This is all really important stuff as you are building your content strategy so you figure out who you are creating all this stuff for.

Is that the B2ME? Is that where you guys use that?


What you just described is what I think a lot of agencies are actually really good at. To try to understand who they are targeting. Where they are hanging out, what their PA points are; I think that there are a lot of agencies that are good at that.

I think what makes us a little bit different is that we actually dive even deeper. Our process is primarily an interview process, we don’t believe in doing mass quantitative analysis, we can do it with just a handful, five or six people in the audience from each segment that we identify. And what we do is; we actually have a process that was set up by a PhD, a psychologist and the questions that are asked actually go a lot deeper than the typical marketing questions that you might ask.

So what we end up finding out is what are the real key emotional drivers that might allow someone to do business with you and we sort of pave the way for that, that emotional connection. I think there is not enough emphasis put on the emotional connection. I like to explain to clients that it is really, really critical. And they will always say “Well it really isn’t as critical as you think there are other things.”

We had a healthcare client who is in the radiology business for example. What they felt very strongly was that their size was important; that they were a really large provider in the area to their customer base and that they have the most advanced technology and the fact that they were associated with a lot of high end academic institutions; were going to be the three things that their patients found important.

What we found out in asking a lot of questions and sort of letting the dialogue go naturally where our process took it; we found out that those were kind of away forces for these patients. They felt, “If I was going to be a patient at the largest radiation provider, that didn’t work for me because who wants to be treated by a McDonalds.” And then it was interesting, the concept of advanced technology, they just saw it is marketing BS.

“Shouldn’t you have the best technology? That should not be something that I would have to worry about.” What ended up being really, really important was just the warmth and the connection and the feeling; they wanted people to remember their name when they walked in there. They wanted people to understand what their insurance situation was. Who was driving them home. What it was like to be them going through one of the most difficult situations that life could possibly hand you.

Picture the typical waiting room in a healthcare institution of some sort. You have the uncomfortable chairs and you are sitting there waiting and reading cheesy magazines, maybe listening to lousy music. That situation actually creates so much stress for somebody who is going through cancer treatment.

When they just want to be relaxed and they want to feel calm. People told us over and over again for example that when they were just diagnosed with cancer, they can’t hear anything that the doctor is saying to them from that point forward. So the doctor is rambling off all kinds of things about what is coming next. What you should expect but what they don’t realize is that the person is completely shut down.

So we had to figure out a way to change that process and change the way that people are communicated with so that they wouldn’t shut down and when they were ready to hear it, they heard it loud and clear. So those were the types of insights that really drove our creative process.


Yeah and when you hear it, like you said before, it is a lot of common sense. Here you are having this incredibly traumatic event, warmth and comfort, I am going to be a lot more interested in that than features and benefits.


Yep, no question about it and that warmth and comfort concept, that goes for just about any industry as well, people need to feel comfortable with you. They need to trust you. And in the end the question is what buttons do you push to get there. There are lots of interesting stories about how we’ve gotten there just by identifying little key drivers in the audience that I would love to get into with you if we have time.


So let’s do if we can; and I am totally putting you on the spot for this so feel free to decline, but let’s move away from healthcare for the purposes of this example. Let’s say that you have a software company as a client.

Let’s say they make CRM software for small businesses. And there is lots and lots of choices out there obviously. It is a very competitive landscape. And you are trying to do a B2ME process on their customers.

How many of their customers would you want to talk to, first of all?


It depends on how many different segments we identify. So we would probably want to do half a dozen in each segment. So if there were three or four major segments then it is three or four times six.


Let’s just use one segment for this, so you get on the horn with these six people from this segment. If I’ve heard you correctly you are trying to understand how they feel about doing business with that software company. Am I oversimplifying it?


Let me give you a very specific example, since you are asking about software. So something that we did for SAP, they have been just as guilty as anybody of trying to sell features and benefits. They had come to us with a challenge which was they have this data analysis software, kind of like a business intelligence product.

They wanted to gain some traction, specifically they wanted to drive downloads of demos because that was really the path to sales for them. It is a fairly big ticket item, so B2ME process with their audience; so really what their audience are is what you call data analysts or business analysts. And these were people who were typically treated by SAP as number’s nerds or data geeks. So the question they had for us is, is there a different way to communicate with them.

So when we interviewed them and went through our process what we kept hearing, a theme that kept bubbling to the surface was they thought that in a sense they were the super sleuths. That they were pouring through this data that nobody really understood how to do it except for them. There was a lot of instinct involved in it, that they loved the thrill of the hunt, that they were looking for little clues about things that might be awry in the business somewhere.

Or there may be a reason that something positive was happening that nobody really understood about in the business and it was all in the numbers. And these are people that were just; you know there are certain people that can look at a bunch of numbers and see a pattern and begin to follow a trial. I am not one of those people but these people are.

And what we kept hearing over and over again was that they loved the thrill of the hunt and that they thought that they were detectives. And one of them even used the term, “It is a bit like we are forensic scientists. It is like CSI trying to track down the murderer in the crime. So what that told us was that everything in our creative campaign had to be a challenge for them. It had to be a puzzle or a problem to solve.

And we felt that if we made these challenges irresistible to them, that connected with them in this way, that they would respond. And that ended up being the case. We created this fictitious; we called it the Casino Data Challenge. So we actually created a fictitious casino caper. All the data we made was fake and you had to solve the crime.

Who stole the millions of dollars out of the casino? So we ended up giving RFID chip data, we gave data on how much money was spent at the tables, we gave data on what staff was on during what night. We dropped hints to the audience through email and social media. It drove a tremendous amount of downloads for them and a lot of buzz on the internet.

One of the reasons it drove downloads was because they had to actually use the software to solve the crime. That is an example of how you can identify some drivers. What it ended up doing was SAP realized there was another way of talking to this audience in a much more effective way.


To uncover those types of drivers you are not asking questions like, “why do you like SAP and what do you think of their customer service department?” and all the basic stuff. Give us an example of just two or three of the questions that you would ask to steer the conversation to where it really needed to be to uncover the gold.


Great question, I am actually not the one who asks the questions, there are a couple of people here who are very good at that. What is interesting is that they would start the conversation just the way anybody else would. So you might say something like: “Tell me about your job.” “What where you like as a kid that made you want to get into this job?” And so you end up getting some interesting stories like, “Oh I always liked math as a kid. I always loved solving puzzles. I could do the Rubik’s Cube in 38 seconds.”

Stories like that; and what are B2B experts are really good at doing is then just sort of letting the conversation flow. Getting to the point where people are opening up. If you are asking questions about what their business pains are or what they like or don’t like about SAP or what features and benefits they like or don’t like; you’re going to get some pretty generic answers.

But when you start making the conversation more of a shrink session some of the things that come out can be pretty amazing. So does that help explain it?


Yeah it does and it is a process that I pretty much use in the interviews that I do here. I come in; as my long term listeners probably know; I just keep on digging and digging and digging based upon what I am hearing from a guest and invariably we end up talking about something that I didn’t anticipate we were going to talk about; that wasn’t in my questions or show notes beforehand.

Those are the times that I get the most emails from people listening saying, “Man, you asked the question that I was thinking and that I was hoping you were going to ask.”


Yeah and what is interesting about that is that not everybody can do that. It is actually a very rare skill to keep digging and ask questions; the right questions at the right time to keep somebody talking and keep somebody interested. What you want to do in these interviews (and what you are really good at) is you want to get somebody into flow; where they are not even thinking about the answers anymore.

It is just sort of coming out of them. And when you are there and people are almost answering unconsciously you are in the right place.


So does that mean you can talk for the rest of this interview now and I can go make a sandwich?


Believe me, I can talk for a long time anyway. So I don’t think you want that. You got to rein me in.


Alright, with respect to your B2Me process, is there anything that is really important that I haven’t asked you about so that we haven’t talked about it yet?


I don’t think so. One thing that I want to point out maybe just to emphasize the importance of the emotional connection; I realize in your audience there is a lot of agency people and we do understand that but one thing that helps crystallize it for me is, we like to talk about that people are actually incapable of making a decision or your audience is incapable of making a decision unless they have that little burst of dopamine right before.

So the irrational connection, the emotional connection comes before the rational connection. So people will decide emotionally that they want to do business with you and then they will look for rational reasons afterwards. That is exactly backwards from the way most companies do it.


Yeah and I would echo that, I have been a sales guy and a student of sales for my whole entire life and you are absolutely correct. People make decisions emotionally and then they look for facts to support that decision so they can justify it to other people.


And you would think that may not be the case for an Enterprise software company like SAP but whether you are selling potato chips or you are microchips as Gladwell said, the emotional connection is what matters. The decision making is not rational.


There is an old expression: nobody ever got fired for hiring IBM. So over the years lots of people at lots of companies; when looking for a software solution there is Vendor A, Vendor B and then there is IBM. Maybe IBM is more expensive, maybe their stuff isn’t as innovative because they’re an older, bigger company; for whatever reason, maybe it wasn’t the best stuff but people hire IBM anyway.

It was an emotion that played a huge role in that decision and it was fear; fear of looking stupid, fear of getting fired. “So I’ll take the safe road and I will hire IBM.”


Fear is an incredibly powerful motivator and one that you have to be careful using as a marketer.


Absolutely, now you made a comment before and I was so busy writing notes that I sort of missed it and I want to go back a minute. You said: “There is something I want to talk about more if you let me.” I don’t know if that is enough of a trigger for you to go back to whatever that was but I don’t remember what it was. I know what we are going to talk about next but before we transition if you can remember what it was, let’s dive into it.


I think I was asking you if we could talk about other examples and I think we covered one or two in here so I think we are good. I think we are ready for the next subject and I can’t remember what that was.


The Addictive Experience, what is that?


Oh yes, that I would love to talk about. We have been having a lot of success for years developing these very cool campaigns that revolve around this notion that we call the Addictive Experience. First a little bit of background; the problem that the Addictive Experience solves, or we call it AX for short, (of course everything has to have its own acronym, there is just too many syllables for it so we shortened it to AX).

Think about it this way, you are a marketer an you’ve got your inbound funnel, hopefully, maybe you don’t but you’ve got to fill that funnel with all kinds of things like e-books, blog posts and white papers, infographics.

“What can I fill it with? What can I put somewhere in the funnel that is going to be pouring high octane gasoline on the fire to really ignite the thing?” In my mind, as much as I love infographics, I love all those tactics and we do them a lot but I don’t think the world really needs another infographic. It is getting hard to break through.


Hallelujah, I hate infographics to be honest with you I really do.




Yeah, I can’t stand them. I’d much rather read an article.


I would love to hear why because I go off on rants on infographics all the time.


Let’s hang out on this for just a second then. I don’t get it. I don’t understand why people get so excited about an infograpic. It is a glorified picture that conveys a couple of bullet points, big deal.


Yeah, the concept of the infographic is, to me it is archaic. I get it that people like to do them and when they are done right they actually can be things of beauty. But most of them are static jpegs highly interactive hi-tech online world; static jpegs that require you to scroll down very long distances and if you are on a smart phone for example looking at it you have to zoom in and read all this stuff.

By the time you are done with it you really haven’t grasped anything new. To me they are posters that should be on a wall. They should not be on my piece of content.


Thank you, that’s my point. Anyway.


We are on the same page. I do think there is a way of doing infographics that is effective and that falls into what we call Addictive Experience and we can talk about in a second. Other things too, we here clients saying things like, “What we do is boring, we have a boring product or service. There is no way to make it exciting.” Or we hear, “What we do is complicated, really complicated, it is really hard for people to understand what we do.”

We also here things about, “How can I educate my audience faster because it takes a long time before the audience understands what we do? How do I shorten the sales cycle? How do I make marketing and sales work more effectively? How do we make our sales team more effective and give them better tools to use?”

These are the things that we hear over and over again in terms of problems that marketers need to solve. Then you think about the types of content that are out there and what we know is effective. Even though I know you love reading Trent and I do too, reading is actually of the lower engagement items out there.

It takes a lot of work from the user to get there and the subject has to be really really good in order to grab somebody for a long period of time. But next beyond that is audio, like this podcast. You have better engagement with audio. It is a little bit easier for people to engage. And then as you move up the chain, pretty much anything visual is better than what you read except for infographics.

Of course video and animation has really moderate to very, very high engagement depending on how well it is done and how well it is hitting home. At the very, very top end is something that we would call experiential. And this is where our Addictive Experience comes into play where it not only includes audio and video and possibly some text but there is also the user engaging in a way and playing with it.

There is a game element to these addictive experiences. Now think of that infographic and instead of it being this long scrolling infographic, picture it being a very simple graphic that as you click on it, it is interactive and it expands and it goes where you want it to go. So if you click on something and it tells you that a particular region has something interesting going on and that region is not in your region then you are not going to care.

So you click on another region and you dive in there and you learn more and more and more but it is your own experience and it is highly engaging and it is highly interactive. It’s fun and somewhat addictive because as you move along, every time you click something, something fun happens. And that little dopamine rush keeps you engaged and you keep going; there are all kinds of game elements that we can build in and make that kind of thing work.

We are now to the point where we are actually even building very experiential 3D games that still work in the business world to get across very, very complicated concepts. One example is we had a client who makes X-ray equipment for Homeland Security and typically their products are very, very large. They have these huge X-ray machines that can scan trucks and cars and very large vehicles.

And they figured out a way to actually turn that in to a very small handheld item and they are about to release that item to the world. This is kind of like their big iPhone. It’s amazing that they are able to even do this. The problem that they are having is that they don’t think that the audience is going to understand exactly what it means to them to be able to have something that is handheld right away.

They also don’t want to send sales people all around the globe to give demonstrations because it is going to be too expensive for a product at this price point. So what we created was an actual 3D game where you get to be the Homeland Security officer going into a port or an airstrip or subway station and use this device in a virtual way to figure out if there are hidden drugs or if there are weapons or explosives or you name it.

So we actually turned it into a little bit of a game where they’re being educated all along the way. And that is an example of an addictive experience that actually serves a business purpose and really educating the consumer and providing a very long term period of engagment.


So a visual would be wonderful for this game that you are building or do you have another one that you are building that is on a web page somewhere that I can link to from the show notes for this episode?


Yes, there is a link up there that is at WhiteRhino.com /ax. And we are putting some links up there to pieces that you can take a look at including one that we just did for SAP which is basically the infographic example that I just gave you; the interactive infographic which was very successfully received.


Okay, so there is the SAP casino challenge, sadly the folks who are listening to this are not going to be able to see this but they will be able to check it out afterwards. So I see that there is a video there; if someone wants to get the visual representation of what we just spent the last five to ten minutes talking about. Is that video the best video to go and watch?


We are going to have a couple of other links up there, I will make sure that the three examples that we talked about here are up there so that they can go take a look at them. The one I just described with the X-ray content is for a client called AS&E and they can check that out. And it really is a great piece and what I think a lot of marketers would like; especially the content marketers, is that it integrates content marketing through the entire experience. As you are going through the experience there are little pieces of bait to get you to download content and give up your email address.

Once we have that, then you are into the nurture flow. So they are beautiful in the way that they bring it all together in a very engaging, dopamine ridden way.


From a functionality perspective this is landing pages on major steroids. Because on a landing page you are trying to get someone to give you to opt in and with appear to me that these would be far more compelling than a landing page because of the very nature of the fact that they are addictive and they are fun and if I click things, things happen and it keeps me going. It increases engagement and it is going to make me want to ultimately opt in when I’m given the opportunity to do so.


That’s right and what that does is it creates an emotional connection between the user and the brand that other competitors don’t have. The thing is it doesn’t have to be a 3D walkthrough for it to be effective. It doesn’t have to be that involved. Even just an interactive infographic; I think there is a study that has shown that it is about twenty times more effective than just a static infographic.

I may even have that stat wrong, I think it is even much higher than that. That concept works extremely well, the more you can engage somebody; and I do think length of time of engagement is important. I realize that the most important stat at the end is conversions but I think length of time is actually the express way to get there.

If you can get somebody to spend seven minutes on this landing page experiencing whatever it is; it is better than the typical web average which I believe is 33 seconds.


In what kind of technologies are you guys building these games in?


It is basically all just HTML5 with lots of JavaScript. All these tools that we used to have to build in Flash, God forbid we don’t use Flash anymore. We now have the ability to build it all in HTML5 with lots of JavaScript.

And the real advantage of that is that all these experiences are very search friendly. So that Google sees everything and we can also track every single click. So we know what behaviors people are engaging in and behaviors they aren’t engaging in so we can modify the experience on the fly.


And they are viewable on any kind of device.


Any kind of device; that is exactly right, cross platform out of the gate. One other thing about these addictive experiences that I think is important and it goes to the emotional connection. If you give people the choice between doing work (whatever the work times are, nine to five, eight to six) or doing something entertaining, they are going to choose the fun thing every single time which is why people will drop even reading your blog posts to watch the next cat video.

We are not going to be making cat videos but how do we make something that is very entertaining for the audience but that serves the ultimate goal of driving conversions for our clients.


I don’t know, if you made a hospital video and it was all starring cats but it conveyed the point it might work.


Yeah I think there is a cat agency out there somewhere at least a fake one.


So how long have you been creating the addictive experiences for your clients?


We have been doing it for about fifteen years. In the old days it was all based in Flash and it was really ineffective when it came to inbound marketing because Flash is blind. It doesn’t really work well so we have been really rapidly blazing a trail using the HTML5 tools that we have to make this work in the last few years.

It’s been extremely well received and it is not for every situation but it works extremely well for clients with very complicated business problems that they need to solve or for something that is abstract and they want to make it less abstract.


And that makes perfect sense to me. So the question that I wanted to ask, when you deliver these, do you find that they do a remarkable job of having that client refer you more clients because they’re so jazzed about this thing that they are showing it to everybody?


Yeah, it is funny that you say that. They are high powered marketing vehicles for us in and of themselves. And one of the things that we’ve seen is not only do we get referrals from clients but it gets shared a lot by the industry and people who are talented in the industry being interested in what we are doing. So it has been good building our brand from both ends; the client side and also from the talent side.


And have you been invited to speak at any industry conferences to talk about this stuff as a result of using these without proactively marketing yourself to get those speaking opportunities?


Yeah as a matter of fact I am. That has only been happening recently. It has taken a while for us to really get these to a point where they are more in the public domain but it just happened the second time a couple of weeks ago. We won an award and in this area it was a very big reward called the MITX Award for that piece I was referring to for SAP and as a result I was offered several speaking engagements.

So I am kind of in the process of getting them ready now and see what makes sense.


Terrific, alright, we are at the 40 minute mark and…




Yeah, so what haven’t we talked about that you think would be relevant to what we have been talking about so far or even if there is something that has been a remarkable experience for you that you think would make this interview richer for the audience? Yes there anything that comes to mind before we wrap up?


The only thing that comes to mind us our AX vision for the healthcare industry; it is pretty interesting and it is very different but it does cross over very nicely into the healthcare industry and I can give you maybe one quick example of what I mean that we are pretty excited about.


Yeah please go ahead.


Have you ever been to your annual physical and after the physical you get this lab report that is either printed out or you look at it in your email and it is unintelligible?


Literally last week, that happened to me last week.


Yeah so you have all these numbers, right? And these acronyms and it says like normal or out of range and there is no explanation for really what it is, what it means, what you should do about it. “Should I worry about it, who do I call?” Imagine that lab report in a very highly interactive, engaging visual format that allows the user to kind of dive into it in a very simple way.

And if something is out of range I can see how far out of range and if I want to learn more about why it is out of range or what I need to do to bring it into the normal range I can dive into that and learn more from imbedded pieces of content there.

And if we want to take you deeper than we can link you to content within our site and if you’re really concerned about something then can take it the next mile and actually have you make an appointment right through the app.

There is an example that serves both the purposes of making the patient centered experience work for the hospital but it also works very nicely from our business model in terms of helping deliver that kind of dopamine rush for the patient. They really feel like they’re taken care of with apps like this. So we are building things like that that have a really exciting experience.

That is sort of one pillar of our overall concept for AX health.


Is there anything we can link to on that?


No not yet. We are actually going to be unveiling that in November. My colleague Shaw Gross is going to be speaking at a healthcare conference and we are going to be showing all the, what we consider to be the next generation, technologies that we are developing in the healthcare space and that is going to be one of them. So we will keep you posted on that one.


A question that I want to ask before we wrap up, how did you get traction with healthcare to begin with?


Well it is funny because you mentioned speaking engagements. I was doing a speaking engagement and I have done them a lot for some of the local universities. And in this case I was speaking at an MBA program for a marketing class and at the end of the class I always had students come up to me and ask me questions and exchange cards, a lot of them actually had jobs.

One of the people that was there was a guy who ran a program at Massachusetts General Hospital and he asked me if I’d be interested in helping him do a marketing project and so we came in later that week and that ended up getting us a huge amount of business with Mass General Hospital who is considered to be a very prestigious hospital.

And that has led to pretty much all our healthcare work.


Fantastic, one speech and then many, many dollars of revenue as a result; did you ever figure out what that was worth for the hour?


No, I actually probably should. It was great, from those speaking engagements I think I got at this point seven new clients from just those speaking engagements alone.


So what did you do, did you call up the university and you talked to the person who runs the MBA program and you said, “Hey I want to come give a talk?”


That might work but that is not how I got it. The way I got it was, the first one was…


Alright, technical gremlin showed up there, I think Dan what I asked you was how did you get the opportunity to speak to the MBA class?


One of my clients was actually getting her MBA at Babson. So there was this great professor who I really like and I’m going to introduce you guys. You might make a good speaker for the class, I know I would love to hear from someone like you.

So that is what happened and the professor had me in and then from there, the word kind of spread to not only other professors but other schools. And I am kind of on a little bit of a circuit right now in the Boston area doing speaking engagements for mostly MBA classes.


Wow, terrific.


I actually just did one at an engineering school about a month ago that was really interesting and yielded some potential results, talking to some possible clients there too.


And what was the talk about specifically?


It was really the same subject. This is an engineering school that actually teaches business which is a little bit different and the business professor, this is kind of the entrepreneurial class wanted to have somebody come in and talk about marketing so I had a very similar conversation with him that I did with you about our B2Me process and our Addictive Experience.


Interesting, I’ll have to go ahead and contact my local university here.


I would recommend, it is a great way to get new business for anybody in this business.


Especially in the MBA because it is generally filled with people who are employed in the work force.


Yeah they are and sometimes what is funny is that the MBA students work for other agencies. I love it when that happens because you always have some very spirited conversations when someone is in the agency business.


You absolutely would. Alright Dan, we are going to wrap it up here. I want to thank you very much for coming on the show, it’s been a pleasure to have you here. I have taken pages of notes as I always do. It’s tough to do these interviews, keep your mind on track and write notes like mad. But somehow I seem to get it done so it’s been a pleasure.

For folks that want to get a hold of you, what is the easiest way for them to do that?


You can email me at dan@whiterhino.com or follow me on Twitter, @dgreenwald or LinkedIn with me.


That’s it, thanks so much.


Thank you very much Trent. I appreciate you having me on.


You are very welcome, take care.


Take care.


Alright to get to the show notes for this episode go to BrightIdeas.co/148 and if you enjoyed this episode please do me a favor and help spread the word by going to BrightIdeas.co/love where there is a pre populated tweet awaiting the click of your mouse.

So that is it for this episode, I am your host Trent Dyrsmid. Thank you so very much for tuning in and being a listener. If you have questions for myself or for the guest make sure that you use the comments forum right down at the bottom of the post. And we’ll so you again in another episode soon, take care. Bye-bye.

About Dan Greenwald

Dan Greenwald is founder, President and Creative Director of White Rhino, since 1990.

Dan has won of numerous industry awards for interactive, advertising, branding, direct marketing and design work.

His client experience is broad-ranging and includes B2B and B2C clients, from complex technology companies to high-end consumer products branding.



buyer persona

10 Things You Need to Know About Creating a Buyer Persona Template


Welcome back to another video in my series on content marketing. In this video, as the headlines might clue you in, we’ll be talking about Buyer Personas.

Creating a Buyer Persona is something that you don’t want to skip. This is really important because if you don’t take the time to define exactly who you’re writing for, and who you want to attract to your blog, ultimately you’re going to fail in three really important areas.

1-3. Relevancy, Engagement, and Sharing

Number one is relevancy. Without paying attention to your buyer persona, your content is not going to be as relevant as it otherwise could, and that can have a cascade effect on two other really important things:

  • If your content is not super relevant, your audience is not going to be very engaged
  • If they’re not very engaged, they’re not going to do a lot sharing on social networks

Don’t Underestimate the Power of Social Networks

When you produce copies of content (be that a video like the one above, or a podcast, or a written piece of content), if you really nail relevancy a lot of sharing can take place and it can actually have a very viral effect.

So how do you go ahead and get started with creating a buyer personas?


Start with research. You need to have a good idea of who you’re talking to and what their interests are. There’s a couple of ways you can do that:

4. Talk To Your Existing Customers

If you have customers right now, make sure that you pick up the phone and talk to them.

If they are your ideal customer you want more of those people, and this group is the easiest to contact. In order to track potential clients you need to understand precisely who they are (at the end of this post I’ll give you some materials to work with).

5. Audience Jacking

Now if you don’t have a lot of customers you can use a little term that I invented that’s called audience jacking.

Basically,  you’re going to go to your competitors blogs and look at who’s commenting on those blogs. Typically when people comment, their name is a hyperlink to their website and learn a lot more about those people.

6-8. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn

One other thing you are going to be able to do is find your audience’s social profiles.

When you figure out who they are, go to their Facebook page, check out their likes, and give yourself an idea of some of the interests of that individual.

The other thing you should do is go to their Twitter profile and look at their Twitter Stream, what site’s content they are retweeting, who they are following, etc. This is going to tell you a lot about the type of things that are of interest to this person, who is of course an interest to you.

It is the same with LinkedIn. Look at their LinkedIn profiles because there is a ton of data there for you to mine.

9. Quantcast

How do you find your competitors or learn about what their traffic is like?

There’s a free resource called Quantcast. If you type in any site URL into Quantcast you will get a lot of demographic information about that site. This is a great way to check basic demographic data and see what kind of traffic is coming in.

10. Quicksprout

Use this tool for any given website to find what the audience is most interested in.

Go to Quicksprout – Neil Patel has a tool there which does website analysis. You punch in the URL, let it crunch its numbers, then scroll down and you’ll see a list of all of the most shared pieces of content on that site – which, by the way, will give you ideas of the things that you should be writing about.

I want to continue to make these short videos for you and put out useful content regularly. So please, tell me what you think – I’d love to hear your feedback!

Resources Mentioned

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Digital Marketing Strategy: Jermaine Griggs on How He Used Marketing Automation to Build a 7 Figure Online Business

Jermaine Griggs, 30, is a minister, musician, entrepreneur, and public speaker. Having grown up in the inner city of Long Beach with just his mom and sister, he always envisioned life on the other side of the tracks. At 16, he started Hear and Play Music, an instructional music company specializing in teaching piano by ear. With only $70, he bought the domain name HearandPlay.com and launched the company that would not only change his life but hundreds of thousands of musicians around the world through his books, DVDs, and online training courses.

Today, what started as a high school hobby has gone on to produce 8 figures in revenue since inception. More than two million aspiring musicians download his online lessons every year and over 301,700 loyal students receive his regular newsletters.

While in college studying Law & Criminology at the University of California, Irvine, Jermaine relied heavily on automated follow-up and marketing processes to run his business while he made good on a promise to his family to graduate school. What resulted was a unique automation strategy and philosophy that he follows religiously til’ this day.

As a result of his success and uncanny ability to mesmerize audiences, Jermaine started attracting the attention of the business world. He’s been featured on Msn, Yahoo, Kiplinger, D&B, Aetna’s Innovators, Msnbc, and more. In 2011, he was awarded Infusionsoft’s “Ultimate Marketer of the Year” and teaches entrepreneurs how to repeat his success by working smarter and not harder. He recently launched AutomationClinic.com in 2012 as a place to share his marketing automation philosophies and strategies.

Having seen his company grow from a few hundred dollars a month into a multimillion dollar business without venture capital or loans, he now shares his inspiring story with young people and entrepreneurs all over the country. He’s been a mentor in organizations like Operation Jump Start, NAACP / ACT-SO, NCCJ, and speaks to school districts, churches, and youth groups regularly.

Listen to the Audio

Our Chat Today

  • What happens when a user opts into the funnel
  • An overview of how he uses negative tags
  • An overview of how he tracks how long people stay on a page
  • An overview of how he evergreens a product launch
  • How to do a broadcast to increase profits
  • How to ensure people aren’t receiving more than one email in a day
  • An overview of how he’s driving traffic
  • An overview of is custom dashboard and leadsources
  • An overview of how he’s using upsells
  • His advice on whether to focus on traffic or conversion

Additional Resources Mentioned

Digital Marketing Strategy: Robert Rose on How the Content Marketing Institute Uses Email Marketing to Land Consulting Clients

This podcast is a real treat. Robert Rose is the second guest I’ve had from the Content Marketing Institute (CMI), which is virtually an institution of knowledge on content marketing. Robert is CMI’s Chief Strategist there, and I definitely learned some new strategies taht I’m looking forward to sharing with you!

CMI’s stated goal is to advance the practice of content marketing, and one of the ways they do this is by training their consulting clients.

Robert walks us through the process they use to turn a brand new lead into a paying client, including details of their funnel and what they do if a prospect doesn’t buy.

He also shares some strategies that can significantly inflate the reach of your content as he walks us through how and when to use press releases for posts, and how to cross post influencers’ content.

That’s not all. When you listen to this interview, you’ll hear Robert and I talk about:

  • (2:45) Introductions
  • (4:45) An overview of how they are attracting consulting clients
  • (10:00) An overview of how they track where their leads come from
  • (11:55) What happens if their consulting leads don’t buy
  • (17:45) An overview of how to structure an agency funnel
  • (20:30) The different types of registration forms and how to use them
  • (22:45) An overview of the BrightIdeas funnel, and how it could be improved
  • (29:45) How a secondary call to action mid-funnel can improve the buyer journey
  • (31:45) Traffic or conversion, which is easier to increase?
  • (35:15) How to attract other writers
  • (38:45) How to engage a new contributing writer
  • (40:45) How & why to do a press release for a new post

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.

Listen Now

Leave some feedback:

Connect with Trent Dyrsmid:

About Robert Rose

Robert-headshot-2011-color-medium-300x240Robert is the Chief Strategist for the Content Marketing Institute, and Senior Contributing Analyst for Digital Clarity Group.

Robert is the author of the book Managing Content Marketing, which spent two weeks as a top ten marketing book on Amazon.com.  As a recognized expert in content marketing strategy, digital media and the social Web, Robert innovates creative and technical strategies for a wide variety of clientele.  He’s helped large companies such as 3M, ADP, AT&T, KPMG, Staples, PTC and Petco tell their story more effectively through the Web. He’s worked to help develop digital marketing efforts for entertainment and media brands such as Dwight Yoakam, Nickelodeon and NBC. And, he’s helped marketers at smaller organizations such as East Harlem Tutorial Program, Coburn Ventures and Hippo to amplify their story through Content Marketing and Social Web Strategies.

He is a featured writer for the online magazines iMedia Connection, Fierce Content Management and CMSWire and also a featured author in the book “Enterprise 2.0 How Technology, E-Commerce and Web 2.0 Are Transforming Business Virtually.

An early Internet pioneer, Robert has more than 15 years of experience, and a track record of helping brands and businesses develop successful Web and content marketing strategies.


Hi, I’m Trent Dyrsmid, Founder of Dyrand Systems and BrightIdeas.co… Ask Me Anything


I’ve spent the last 14 years of my life as an entrepreneur trying to create companies that help other businesses succeed. My first company was Dyrand Systems and it was recognized as a PROFIT 100 fastest growing company in Canada for two years in a row. My second company is BrightIdeas.co which provides software and training products for marketing agencies and consultants. My third company is….you guessed it…a marketing agency that will also run under the Bright Ideas brand.

Although I have failed plenty of times (you can hear some of my mistakes with Dyrand in this Mixergy interview), I’ve been fortunate enough to learn something from every one of my failures. For that reason, I want to do something different today, in which I want to share with you what I’ve learned over the years.

However, instead of listing out what I’ve learned, I want to make it as relevant to your business as possible so that it helps you succeed (thanks to Neil Patel for this idea).

The way I’m going to do this is to use a simple question and answer format. All you have to do is leave a comment with a question and I will answer it. The question can be about anything you like; a problem with your business, a technology question, or whatever you like.

And finally, don’t worry about holding back. You can ask me anything you like, no matter how foolish it may sound, as I plan to respond to each and every question.

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Digital Marketing Strategy: How the La Costa Resort Increased Revenue from Social Media by 65%

Do you know exactly which pieces of content are producing the most revenue for you?

If you did, you do think that would help you to better understand the needs and wants of your audience?

Of course it would. As a matter of fact, getting that kind of insight would be hugely valuable because it would allow you to create even more of the types of content that are driving the most revenue in your business.

How to Tie Revenue Back to Content

Using Analytics tracking links and custom campaigns is incredibly valuable when it comes to giving you insight into which pieces of content are producing the most revenue and new subscribers. To see a specific example of how to do this, have a look at this post.

When you listen to this fascinating and informative interview, you are going to hear Katy and I talk about:

  • (03:54) How La Costa Increased revenue by 65% via Social Media
  • (7:00) How Katy uses Google Analytics to track revenue and tie it directly to content
  • (14:20) How Katy is split testing Facebook ads
  • (21:20) How Katy’s team increased revenue from email marketing by 54%
  • (24:00) How Katy segments her mailing list
  • (25:00) How Katy is managing her editorial calendar
  • (28:00) How Katy is using re-targeting to increase revenue
  • (32:00) How Katy is using Twitter chats to increase engagement


Additional Resources Mentioned

Below is a screenshot of La Costa Resorts custom campaign tracking.


Below is a screenshot of Katy’s  editorial calendar for email.


Below is the screenshot of how we use Google calendar to manage our editorial calendar. Green items are done. Red items are “to do” and yellow (not shown in this screenshot) signify “in progress”. Oh..and blue signifies Liz and I’s wedding :)


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.

Listen Now

Leave some feedback:

Connect with Trent Dyrsmid:

About Katy Harrison


Katy Harrison is the Online Marketing Manager at La Costa Resort and Spa in Carlsbad, CA. She manages the luxury resort’s website, email campaign, social media and online presence. Originally from South Shore, MA, Katy moved to San Diego for the year-round beach weather in 2007. Prior to her role at La Costa Resort, Katy honed her PR and social media skills working at a reputable downtown San Diego PR and advertising agency with clients including The San Diego Museum of Art, Del Mar Racetrack, NTN Buzztime and BillMyParents.

Follow Katy on Twitter: @OmniLaCosta

How to Capture More Leads, Target Them More Effectively, and Sell More Products

Do you ever feel like there is just not enough time in the day to get everything done?

Do you feel like you have a crystal clear picture of exactly what success looks like for your business?

Would you like to hear from another small business owner who is successfully making the transition from owner/operator to just owner?

If you are looking for actionable tactics and strategies that you can use to spend more time working “on” your business, as opposed to “in” it, you are going to love listening in on the discussion that we have in this interview.

My guest on the show today is Brad Martineau, founder of Sixth Division – a leading source of coaching, training, and done for you services for Infusionsoft users.

When you listen to this interview, you are going to hear Brad and I talk about:

  • (9:35) Brad’s biggest challenge
  • (12:52) How to transition from Solopreneur to Entrepreneur
  • (18:05) The story of Pardot & what anyone building a business can learn from their strategies
  • (20:05) How to define what success means to you
  • (23:35) How plusthis helps capture more leads, target them more effectively, and sell more products
  • (27:15) How Iron Tribe (a past brightideas guest) uses plusthis with great success
  • (30:05) How to customize thank you pages
  • (30:10) How Laura Roeder (another past BrightIdeas guest) uses plusthis
  • (35:05) What transactional text messaging is and how you can use it to offer a speedy response to your customers
  • (40:05) How to use expiring promotions to offer time-limited discounts
  • (48:05) How to use a Cycler Tool to determine the order in which you deliver content
  • (55:00) Lightning Round

I learned a great deal in this interview, and strongly encourage that you go check it out now.

Links Mentioned

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.

Listen Now

Leave some feedback:

Connect with Trent Dyrsmid:



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. My

guest on the show today is Brad Martineau, founder of Sixth Division, a

leading source of coaching, training and done-for-you services for

Infusionsoft users. They’re also the founder of a company called PlusThis

which we’re going to talk about in some detail in the interview.I met Brad while attending Infusion Con 13 and I learned of his new

venture which I just mentioned, PlusThis. They were a battle of the apps

finalist. They do some really cool stuff that integrates with Infusionsoft

and that’s why I wanted to give Brad an opportunity and talk about it.Before we get to that we’re going to talk about my technology tool

tip of the week. That is something called ‘Buffer App’. I use Buffer App to

very easily schedule up a bunch of social sharing. whether I want to put it

on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter. When I’m reading my RSS feed each morning

and I see stuff that I want to share with my particular audience if you

just hit the tweet button it’s all going to go out automatically right away

and I don’t necessarily want stuff to go that quickly. I like to stagger it

out. Buffer App, which is a free tool to use, you can get it at

BufferApp.com is a super easy way to stagger your distribution and choose

which of your social networks you want to share that traffic on.Lastly I want to make mention of an upcoming webinar that I have.

It’s called the Seven Secrets of Success for Small Businesses. If you want

to attend that webinar you’re going to learn all about something called

‘life cycle marketing’ which is a seven step process that I absolutely

promise you will have a massive impact on your business once you understand

and then embrace these seven steps in the business. If you are not yet a

subscriber and you want to get notified of that webinar just go to

BrightIdeas dot C-O, enter your details and you’ll definitely get emails

from me making you aware of the next webinar date.With all of that said please join me in welcoming Brad to the show.Hey, Brad. Welcome to the show.Brad

Martineau: Thanks. Glad to be here.

Trent: You recently have come out with this new tool, I’ve just

started to use it really early on and that’s why I wanted to have you on

the episode to have you talk a little bit about the tool and how you’re

using it to build your business and how your clients are using it to build

their business. It’s called PlusThis, it was a battle of the apps finalist

at Infusion Con 2013. That’s how I learned about it and I want to talk

about that but before we dive into that for people who don’t know who Brad

Martineau is or what you’re doing maybe just take a quick moment and

introduce yourself.

Brad: Yeah sure. Obviously, my name is Brad Martineau. Funny how I feel

compelled to say that even though you’ve said that several times. But

that’s my name in case anyone missed it the first time around. I’m a co-

founder at Sixth Division which is a company that provides marketing

services and coaching primarily right now our target market is people who

use Infusionsoft but we see ourselves at some point expanding to work with

the small business population at large.

My background very quickly. I was the sixth employee at Infusionsoft.

I believe it was back in 2004 was when I started so I was the entire

support team and then we hired a support team and I moved into

implementation. I was specifically just helping people implement the

software and I ended up in product management which is a fancy way of

saying that for about five and a half to six years I got to work on the

front lines with customers to figure out how they were using Infusionsoft

and quite frankly other tools in their business to run their business,

being able to see what worked, what doesn’t work. My job was to work with

our developers and our executive team to create a product development

pipeline and build features that were powerful and also made sense to


I believe I had the best job that you can possibly have. Being able

to work with end users and customers and then being able to work hand in

hand with the developers. I had my fingerprints over pretty much every

feature that was developed the time that I was there. It was really fun to

see what technology could do and understand, at a level deeper than

probably any business owner ever cares to know and I don’t know that I

really care to still know that, but it was really good to get that deep

dive of, ‘This is what’s possible with technology,’ and have that blended

with, ‘Here’s what people are doing in the real world to build their


I did that for five and half to six years and I got to a point where

the stars aligned, planets aligned got to a point where it made sense for

me to branch off. I was going to solve all the problems in the world and

then reality hit, there was a learning curve like I think everybody goes

through of building and running and growing a business is a little bit

different in theory than it is in practice so there’s a little bit of a

learning curve but after a while I connected with Dave Lee who’s my

business partner. He also worked at Infusionsoft. We worked together for

about six years. He had subsequently left as well. We decided there’s a

need for a practical, down-to-earth yet elite team and service provider to

really help people grasp this concept of marketing automation and really,

as opposed to the tail wagging the dog, put the business owner and make

them be the dog that actually wags the tail. A lot of people get in and

jump on this train ride that is Infusionsoft and they’re holding on for

dear life. We want to put them back in control and really help them

leverage the power that Infusionsoft can bring their business.

That’s the short summary. I was at Infusionsoft and now we’ve got a

company over here where we help people unleash the full power of

Infusionsoft on their business. We’re having a blast, having a good time.

PlusThis was spun off…I don’t know if you follow 37 Signals but they

wrote a book early on and talked about by product and how some of their

products were created because it was just something they needed when they

were initially being a consulting company or building and designing

websites. PlusThis is the exact same thing. It was a, we were working with

clients… and maybe you’re going to ask where PlusThis came from so it’s

going to dovetail into that but we worked with a lot of clients and we

realised very, very quickly that there were almost zero implementations

that we could do, and do the way that we wanted to to really unlock

Infusionsoft without requiring a little bit of custom development. That’s

not to say you can’t make it work. It’s just to say that the way we wanted

to build it we needed some additional tools that weren’t available. We

started contracting a developer to build these little scripts that we

wrote, and we would install it on our customer’s web server and they could

do really cool things. We realized we were building the same things over

and over again.

I had had this idea when I left Infusionsoft to build a library of

scripts so we could put everything in one spot and once we realized we were

actually building the same scripts over and over again and the fact that

business owners don’t want to think about FTP or API or web servers or any

of that, most of them, so we wanted to build something so easy… we like

to joke around the office it had to be so easy that even Clate Mask could

use it, who’s the CEO of Infusionsoft. We set out to build this library of

features, that’s what PlusThis is and we ended up becoming a finalist in

Battle of the Apps. It’s debatable as to who should have won that contest

but we’ll let it go. That’s where we are now. We provide services and then

we have this software tool that we’re continuing to develop and add on to

and again, everything we focus on right now is helping the small business

get more out of Infusionsoft and really leverage the power that’s there

whether it be through services or through software.

Drysmid: For some of the folks who haven’t heard of Sixth Division where

are you located and how many people are coming to work there every day?

Brad: We’re in Chandler, Arizona so we’re ten minutes door to door from

Infusionsoft. Straight down the freeway from Infusionsoft. We have some

employees who are remote and who travel in to do services. We’ve got one in

Ohio, one in San Diego and then there are seven of us that work in the

office. So nine total plus a couple of contractors that do some pretty

regular work for us.

Drysmid: You’ve built a very nice small business. The reason I ask that

question is there are a lot of people listening to this who are a

solopreneur or maybe even a two person or a three person shop. I remember

when I was a solopreneur and I got to two and then I got to three. When I

was at three I was thinking, ‘Man, how do I get to six?’ When I was at six

I was thinking, ‘How do I get to ten? How do I get to twelve?’ I want to

make sure people understand that you’re a small business owner just like

they are and you have the same challenges in attracting new clients and

making sure profits arrive and systematizing and so forth to grow your

business just like they do.

Brad: Just one point on that. Our biggest challenge…and I don’t say

challenge like ‘we don’t know what to do’. It’s the next obstacle. But our

obstacle right now is creating systems and getting everything in place to

where my business partner and I can spend our time building the business

and not doing the work. There’s an interesting gap that you have to get

across, if you had asked me even nine months ago I don’t know that I would

have told you that within the next six to nine months that I would

literally be in a position where I would be building the business and not

doing the work. And quite frankly I don’t know that I would have told you

that I wanted to. I think that probably six months or so ago I wanted to

build a team because we needed more people to provide services but I was

excited about being involved in the work because it was my baby.

The thought process of how we go about doing what we do, a lot of

that was coming from me. My business partner’s more the marketing and the

sales side. The only reason I bring this up is because for the person who’s

sitting at three or even at six, depending on the type of business and

there’s variations, and all different types of business, but there’s a very

strong pull to want to hold tightly to the thing that you do, whether it be

providing a service or you’re building something. Whatever the case may be

there’s a very tight pull, almost magnetic, that you want to keep a grasp

on what it is that your company does. Really for the company to grow I’ve

had to come to realize and to learn that I have to get people that can do

that and empower them to do that because there is so much work that needs

to be done to establish a systematized business and then to create a

marketing plan to continue to bring in the leads. There’s a full time job,

if not multiple full time jobs, just to build a business and it’s what the

business owner should be doing. If there’s anybody listening that’s

struggling with that that’s something I definitely struggled with. There’s

definitely a mental shift that has to take place to go from ‘I’m going to

be doing this work, I’m going to be doing it,’ to get to the point where,

‘I could actually go hire people. If I could find the right people, I could

put the right people in place to be able to get myself to where I’m

building the business and not doing the work.’ But it takes a bit of a

shift of a mind set.

Drysmid: I’m glad you brought that up and I’m going to go down that

rabbit hole for a little bit before we shift and talk about PlusThis

because I think it’s a really importantly rabbit hole. The first thing is,

you talked about something and as you were saying I thought about this. You

can have growth or you can have control. I think that’s part of that big

mind shift. I’m interested in your opinion. Did you feel you had to give up

control to get to growth?

Brad: Absolutely. Infusionsoft offers this thing called ‘Elite Forum’. It’s

Clate and Scott teaching their methodology. Dave, my business partner, and

I were involved in that when we were at Infusionsoft. He made a really

interesting comment the last time I was there which was just a different

way – I’d never thought about it this way. He said, ‘Entrepreneurship is an

exercise in learning to let go.’ If that’s not the truest statement in the

world I’m not sure what is.

I believe 100% that in order for you to be able to grow, and not just

grow revenues, but to grow the business however it needs to grow you’ve got

to have the mentality of finding good people that you can empower to go do

the job. I’ll frame that and this is a critical point. You have to know

what you want out of your business first. There are a lot of people that

want a solopreneur shop and that’s what they want. They want the lifestyle,

they want to run everything and that’s great. What I would say is, know

what you want and then create a plan to get there. If you want the

solopreneur bit then don’t let other people convince you that you should be

hiring to grow. Because if you just want the solopreneur gig then make that

work and completely control your schedule.

What you do is, this is my formula. You start by saying, ‘What do I

want out of my business?’ Whether it’s solopreneur or build the business,

whatever it is create a plan that says, ‘This is what my life will look

like as a result of me building this business.’ For some people it’s going

to be solopreneur. For us, we know how big we want to get. We don’t want

100 coaches in our services business. That’s not what we’re trying to do.

That’s not what we want to build. Infusionsoft on the other hand, they want

the whole built-to-last approach.

I’m not going to sit here and even pretend to try and judge and say

which one is right because it depends on the business owner but the key is

to know what you’re trying to build and then once you know that, then the

next step is to create a business plan that allows you to get there. Once

you define your ideal lifestyle you should end up with a dollar amount and

‘This is what the profit needs to be so I can live this way and this is

what my schedule’s going to be.’ Once you have that defined now you can

create a business plan that says, ‘These are the products and or services

I’m going to offer and this is their price point and I need to be able to

sell X number of each one.’

I don’t want to take this too far down the rabbit hole but for anyone

that is chewing on that create-the-menu business plan I would read a book

by Michael Masterson called ‘Ready, Fire, Aim’ where he talks about your

first job is to sell your first product profitably. If you’re not at the

point where you’re into profitability and cranking with the product and

you’ve got five I’d cut four of them out and I’d focus on one. And I would

focus on your most expensive one because it gives you the most profit.

There’s a whole conversation there but first, identify your ideal lifestyle

and how many hours you want to be working and how much money do you want to

be making. Then you want to create a business plan. A business plan is

literally as simple as ‘These are my products and services. This is what I

charge for them. This is my margin. Here are my fixed expenses.’ You just

come up with an equation that will tell you exactly how many units you need

to sell. Once you decide on that you move to the next step which is go

create your marketing plan of how you’re going to get those clients.

I see a lot of people that every time they run into a roadblock they

go back and assume they have to change their business plan, their products,

their services or their pricing. I say, ‘No. Decide on that and move onto

your marketing and get better at marketing. Don’t blow up your business

every month because you don’t hit the numbers you want. Figure out how to

market the right product.’ That’s the formula that works for me. And that’s

what I’ve learned. Identify what you want your ideal lifestyle to look

like, come up with a business plan. What are you going to sell, how many

and at what price point and then go create a marketing plan to make that

happen. Then your energies and effort should be in the marketing plan and

making sure you’re driving that forward.

That forces you to have to let go of everything else because your job

is to then get those units to build the business to match whatever it is

you want your lifestyle to look like but you’ve got to let go of everything

else. You can’t be answering the phone when somebody calls in. You’re never

going to build the business to where you want it to be. Somebody else needs

to do that and you need to find someone you trust to do that. You may not

be able to take all the sales calls. I don’t do any sales calls and I

hardly do any implementation anymore on the services side and it’s a little

bit difficult for me at times. It’s hard to let go of that. But yes, I

agree 100% with your statement. we can either grow or I can have complete

control over everything. I’d rather grow and get to the point where we want

to build our business to because it makes everybody’s life better.

Drysmid: It does. Plus if you’re the solopreneur there’s never anything

that you can sell, you’re never building any equity. Nobody wants to buy a

business that is 100% dependent upon you. If you’re trying to build some

lasting value for yourself and your family and have the opportunity to

transition to retirement or real estate investments or whatever it is you

want to do when you don’t want to do this anymore you cannot be a

soloprenuer and make that happen.

Brad: Yeah, I’ll take thirty seconds. A really quick story to illustrate

that. I met a guy about six or seven years ago at a [inaudible 00:18:01]

Association conference named David Cummings. He’s the guy that founded

ParDot, the email marketing solution for bigger businesses. I don’t know

how many businesses he has but, very interesting, his model as the business

owner is he starts a business and the first thing he does is go out and

finds a president or a CEO to run the business. He builds everything around

systems so literally, he just sold ParDot to, I don’t remember who it was.

Exact Target or Vertical Response or somebody. He sold it. Because none of

the businesses depended on him…normally when you sell it’s going to be

cash less stock and then you’ve got to stay around for a year. He signed,

it was a 95% cash deal, he signed and and then he walked out, literally,

walked out the door the next day, in fact it was that day, and never went

back. Never had to do anything with it. There’s a lot of power and leverage

in having a business that can just run and crank and just go, all by itself

and you’re driving the business so that if somebody else wanted to buy it

they could just drive the business but the systems are already in place.

Trent: Just for my show notes, what was his name again?

Brad: David Cummings. For anyone who wants to follow he’s got an excellent

blog. He blogs everyday and it literally takes you two minutes to read it

and they’re amazing insights, short, bullet pointed stuff, but really,

really good insights. He’s a really good entrepreneur, great mind to


Trent: What’s his blog?

Brad: That’s a great question. I think it’s 10,000 Hours of

Entrepreneurship. If you just search for David Cummings it’ll come up.

Trent: I’ll make sure I include it the show notes. At the end of the

episode I’ll announce the link for how to get to show notes. Before we move

off this topic I wanted to offer up a book as well that I just finished

reading. In Canada there’s a company called 1-800-GOT-JUNK. They’re not in

Canada, they’re worldwide now. They’re one of the more phenomenal growth

stories of at least my hometown. Their COO for years, who has left them

now, I don’t remember his name, but his book is called Double Double.

Especially being a COO, he’s a real numbers guy and he talked a lot in

Double Double about pretty much, Brad, what you said.

Figure out what the outcome is that you want and then reverse engineer. His

name is Cameron Herold. Reverse everything you need to do to get there and

then figure out what your key performance indicators are and your job is to

watch those very closely on a weekly, daily, monthly basis to make sure

you’re hitting them. In his book he chapter by chapter breaks down how to

do all this. If it’s growth you want this is probably a book you’re going

to enjoy.

Brad: I don’t think it can be overstated, the importance of ‘decide what

you want and reverse engineer how to get there’. I think there are way too

many people who wake up every day and they go into an office and they feel

comfortable they spent eight, nine, ten, eleven, twelve hours in an office

and they go home but they have absolutely zero bearing on whether or not

they are closer or further away from their goal. Usually I see the problem

is people haven’t started by defining what their goal is. They have no idea

what success looks like. And if I can throw out one last little bit on this

and then we can be done with it. It’s not easy to figure that out. I think

some people get into it and they try and write it down and they feel dumb

because they feel it should be easy to figure out. It’s not. It is a pain

in the freaking butt to figure out and really identify what you want.

It takes a lot of thought because you have to balance everything in

your life. If you’ve got kids you’ve got to balance out how it’s going to

work with your family, how much time do you want to spend versus how much

time do you want to spend in the business? I Ultimately it just comes down

to making a decision. It’s not easy. It’s a simple process but it does take

time and it is hard because you’ve got a lot of stuff to balance and

because you’ve never thought about it before.

If you’re an entrepreneur or a business owner and you don’t have a

clear number, meaning dollar amount/time amount, that you’re working

towards, then there’s a certain part of you that is just wasting time every

day when you wake up and go to work. You’ve got to know. If you’re trying

to lose weight it’s easy. You know exactly how much weight you’re trying to

lose and then you work towards that every single day. Same thing in

business. what are you trying to make happen in the business and what are

you working towards? You’ve got to decide that. It pains my soul every time

I talk to someone that doesn’t know. ‘What are you doing then? How do you

know if you’re being successful or not if you have no idea what your goal


Trent: It’s like going for a drive and not knowing where you

destination is. Or just driving around. At the beginning of Cameron’s book,

that’s what he devotes his first three chapters to. In fact, chapter one is

called Vision/Painted Picture and it’s preparing for fast growth. Very

good. I’m sure you would love it.

That was a cool rabbit hole, I’m glad we went down it and I’m quite

sure we served the audience by doing so.

Now I want to talk about PlusThis. Infusionsoft as you know and I

know and anyone who’s listening to this already knows is an amazingly

powerful tool so much so that people who don’t use it really don’t even

get. They don’t comprehend. I get emails from people every week saying,

‘Could you spend a little bit of time with me showing me why you’re so

excited about Infusionsoft?’ I do a little Skype and screen share and show

them how much of my stuff I’ve automated and usually their jaw is just

hanging open. ‘I had no idea. I thought it was an email program.’ Which

couldn’t be further from the truth.

You build this thing called ‘PlusThis’ which integrates very smoothly

with Infusionsoft because there are all these little problems that you want

to solve that are not necessarily super easy to solve with Infusionsoft.

We’re going to give some specific examples of that in about ten seconds and

how solutions to those problems can benefit the business. Let’s talk about

a couple of the features that you guys have developed early on in PlusThis.

Let’s start off with Stealth Video Tracking. What is it and why should

someone use it?

Brad: Perfect, let me just start. All of these we go through, our approach

to PlusThis. Let me just give the backdrop for that, all those will make

more sense. The end result of using Infusionsoft in our business is we want

to make more money. We can make more money by converting more people. We

can convert more people by getting the right message to the right person.

That requires us to know a couple of things. One, we need to know a heck of

a lot of information about the prospects and customers in our database so

we know if they’re the right person to send a particular message to.

We want to provide tools in PlusThis that allow us to capture and

store more information about our prospects and customers. What are they

doing, who are they? Then we want to build tools that allow us to send more

relevant and more targeted messaging that will lead to increased

conversion. The big picture backdrop is, capture more information so we

can be more targeting and convert more sales and make more money. That’s

the idea.

Stealth Video Tracking. The generic use of this is if you’re using

YouTube, Wistia is a video provider, or Vimeo, anyone of those three, we

can help you track how long people watch any of the videos you use in your

marketing. Probably the two most famous examples of this are Jermaine

Griggs. I’ve got a whole interview with him but but Jermaine Griggs. His

entire model is set up, he’s got four videos that he gives to his new leads

to start his opt in piece. And what he does is, he uses his videos to build

relationships with his customers. Also, on each video, next to each video

he’s got a little mini survey that allows him to capture additional

information. So what he does is, he sends people to go watch his videos. If

they don’t watch them I believe he sends them up to three or four

reminders to try and get them to go back and watch the video. If they watch

the video a couple of things happen. One, he knows they’re engaged in the

content so he knows they’re better likely to get an offer and actually buy

something. Two, he’s able to make jokes in his videos and start to build a

relationship with these people and three, he’s got a higher likelihood that

people will fill out the survey and give him even more information about

who they are and what they’re interested in.

So with the video tracking feature what you are able to do is track

of whether people have watched your videos or not and then you can adjust

your marketing based on that. So, for him, if somebody watches his first

video right away then the next video gets ‘unlocked’ the next day. If they

don’t watch it, then what happens is they get a reminder the next day to

watch video one and they’ll continue to get reminders up to three

reminders. At the end of three he’s like, ‘Fine, if you don’t watch video

one I’m going to try to get you to watch video two’. But because he knows

whether they’ve watched the video or not he’s able to then adjust his

marketing to make sure he’s preparing all his prospects the right way. On

the front end marketing side that’s one way you can use it. If he had a

sales team that was picking up the phone and calling, he doesn’t, but if he

did then they would be able to, when they opened up a contact record, would

be able to look at the contact record and as they’re talking to someone

they would know what that person has watched and what they haven’t watched.

Another example is Iron Track Fitness, they were the Ultimate

Marketer winners in 2012. Jermaine won in 2011. They’re selling franchises

now. They’re a gym out in Alabama but they’ve started franchising and

they’re at like 40 locations or something. Now what they do is, on the

franchise side of it, when they’re selling new franchises, they have their

entire education and basically franchise, onboarding process built into a

membership center and that’s all video based. They have a ton of training

that’s all video based and they take people through classes. What they do

is they use the video tracking feature to track whether or not somebody has

completed a course or not, whether they’re watching the videos. The people

that manage how their new franchisees are moving through the process can go

in and they have a simple little dashboard that tells them whether the

person is watching the videos or not. If they’re not they can pick up the

phone and be like, ‘Hey, look. You really need to watch this video because

it’s going to affect your franchise in this way, this way, and this way.’

It allows them to have better customer service for their franchises.

Whether it’s on the marketing side or whether you have an info

product and you want to be aware of whether people are watching or not. If

you’ve got an info product or a course and somebody’s not watching, that

person is going to be at risk to cancel or request a refund so it’ll let

you highlight who those people are. You can pick up the phone and call

them. On the flip side if it’s any of your marketing content, people that

are watching all your videos are at a higher likelihood that they are going

to be willing to buy. They are more interested. Those are the people you

want to call first or engage with first.

Again, it’s about giving you more information so you can either

change your conversation you’re having in person or automatically adjust

the conversation you’re having through emails or whatever other follow up

you’re doing.

Trent: For the folks who are maybe are not yet using Infusionsoft I

want to make sure there’s no details that are missed here. All of this

stuff happens on auto-pilot. When someone watches a video to a certain

point, which you define, you can then apply a tag within Infusionsoft and

when a tag gets applied you can trigger in the campaign builder all sorts

of actions whether they be phone calls or additional emails or what have

you. When Brad says ‘Germaine adjusts what he does’ it’s not as though he’s

sitting at his desk doing different stuff.

Brad: Quite the opposite actually. I think he literally works an hour a

week on that business that’s cranking out. Because he has it dialled in.

It’s totally 100% automated. All you do is build it once and then it runs

every time like clockwork.

Trent: If you’re interested in hearing more about Forrest Walden I did

interview him. You can get to that interview by going to BrightIdeas dot C-

O slash 3. It was a fascinating interview. Jermaine is actually going to be

on the show soon so if you want to catch that interview make sure you

become a subscriber and you’ll get a notification.

Let’s talk about customized thank-you pages. What’s the big deal

about those?

Brad: Stealth Video Tracking is more about capturing more data so that we

can start to tailor our message. customized thank-you Pages is a tool that

allows you to actually display customized messaging. When you get into

Infusionsoft it’s relatively easy, like you just described, to have

Infusionsoft automatically branch your messaging where if they watch the

video send them this series of emails and if they haven’t continue to send

them this series of emails. You can do all that inside Infusionsoft with

your emails or your voice broadcast or letters. You can have it branch in

terms of what you send out of Infusionsoft to your prospects or customers.

What Infusionsoft doesn’t have the capability to do is let you control the

message that you display immediately after somebody buys a product or fills

out a web form and opts into your website. Or fills out a survey that you

sent them if they opted in previously.

A really good example of this is: Laura Roder is a client of ours.

She teaches people about social media, she talks about Facebook and she

talks about Twitter and she talks about LinkedIn and Google Plus and

there’s a whole bunch of different social media tools. When somebody comes

to her website and they opt in, she’s going to want to ask them ‘What are

you most interested in?’ or ‘What are you having the most problems with?’

It only makes sense that if somebody checks off the box and says, ‘Hey,

Facebook is my biggest challenge right now,’ then it only makes sense that

the next page that shows up would be a page that talks about Facebook as

opposed to having one page. Imagine 100 people filling out this form and

let’s just say they were spread evenly across Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn

and Google Plus. You have two options. option number one is on the thank

you page you give a generic message that talks about all four of those. Or

you get tailored and based on their biggest problem you take Facebook

people to Facebook, you take Twitter people to Twitter, you take LinkedIn

people to LinkedIn and then you take Google Plus people to Google Plus. The

more you can keep your message 100% on target the higher your conversions

will be.

She’s excited because she’s able to use it increase her profit per

lead because as people are coming in, based on what she knows about them,

she’s able to deliver a very targeted thank you page after somebody fills

out the form. Now, the email messages will most definitely be targeted

because that’s handled inside Infusionsoft but the follow up marketing

starts on the thank you page of a web form. Most people don’t think of

that. I’ll see a lot of people that put up a web form to capture a lead and

all they’ll put on the thank you page is ‘thank you’. Really? They’re at

the peak of their interest. They’re most interested right when they opt in

or right when they fill out the form and the very first message they see is

the thank you page and a lot of people just throw up a generic ‘thank you’.

It’s like ‘No.’ That’s where you either continue to conversation or that’s

where you start selling something.

Another thing Laura will do and several of our other clients is let’s

just say somebody fills out a form to request a new report Seven, whatever.

Seven Secrets of whatever it is. On the thank you page they want to up sell

a particular product, say Product A. If somebody’s already bought Product A

you don’t want to offer them an up sell at a discounted price especially if

they bought at full price. customized thank-you pages also let you

comfortably and confidently put pages out there and allows you to take

anyone that’s already bought that particular product you basically branch

them to a page that is about something else. Maybe it’s an additional piece

of content or Product B. Try to sell them that product. So, customized

thank-you pages let you start creating a completely tailored message not in

your first email but actually on the thank you page when they’re looking

at it right there. You have 100% open rate on that page. Everybody sees it.

Trent: For anyone who would like to hear the interview with Laura

Roder I’ve done that, it’s at BrightIdeas.co/44. She has done a phenomenal

job of transitioning from what used to be just a web design, solopreneur

business, so this kind of dovetails into what Brad and I were talking about

earlier, into a team and a seven figure business with a very healthy profit

margin that she runs from her laptop on the road. Again, BrightIdeas.co/44

if you’d like to hear more about Laura’s story.

Brad: So much so that when we worked with her, which was last year she was

about ten minutes late. She was like, ‘Sorry I’m late. On Monday we decided

to move.’ She was engaged and they are moving to London in the span of a

week and a half. This was inspiring to me that she had her business set up

this way. In the span of a week and a half she decided to move to London,

sold everything in her house, moved to London and it didn’t disrupt

anything in her business. It was really impressive. Anyway, really

interesting story.

Trent: That’s one of the reasons why so many of us are enamoured with

online businesses because it does give you that flexibility. Where are we

time wise? Okay, we’re still good.

Let’s talk about transactional text messaging. Again, what’s the big

deal? Why should I care about this stuff?

Brad: Text messaging. We have a ton of clients that use it for reminders

for webinars, to get people onto webinars. We have a lot of clients that

set up appointments. The way that they sell and the way that we sell set up

appointments to meet with someone and it’s a consultation and then we sell

out of the consultation.

We’ve got a guy, I forget where he is, anyway, Clint Barr. He runs a

fitness business and his whole model is people opt in for free information

and then he drives them to come into the office, sit down and have a

consultation. When you get into the gym world and into the MMA world and

all those they have insanely high close rates, 85% to 90% of the people who

get to an appointment will close. And it’s because, before you walk into a

gym you usually have a pretty good idea whether you’re going to buy or not

so their thing is getting people to come in for the appointments. We set up

a follow up sequence where we would do some email remainders and also a

text message reminder to get the person to come in because text message has

a much higher read rate than email. He was saying that before we

implemented that he would usually have six or seven no shows a month and he

got it down to one no show a month.

If you look at that and it’s like, ‘Well, those numbers aren’t

massive,’ but when you consider he’s setting maybe 20 to 25 appointments a

month. That’s 20% to 25% of the people that are coming in, that are

scheduling appointments don’t show up, and then he gets five more people

to show up, well five more people to show up at an 80% close rate means

he’s adding four new clients. You factor that over the life of the client

because they’re signing up for a three, six or twelve month contract then

all of a sudden it’s a little bit bigger deal. When you multiply those

numbers across any other business with larger margins or higher ticket

items it’s definitely worth it. Small hinges swing big doors. This is a

small hinge that could potentially swing a very large door.

The other potentially slightly different and, I think, maybe more

interesting use of text messaging that he has just recently implemented, in

his business, and I think this is true in a lot of businesses, he’s found

that speed of response is huge. When somebody opts in or somebody requests

an appointment the amount of time that passes between the time they’ve

filled out a form and he gets them on the phone to have a conversation has

a lot to do with whether or not that person’s going to convert. What he did

was he set up his system to where the transactional text message, he gets

one sent to him every time somebody opts in or requests an appointment.

There are some points where the clock starts ticking and whenever that

happens he has a text message go to him. I think he actually has changed it

to go to the assistant that actually makes the calls so the text message

comes in, ‘Heads up. Brad Martineau just filled out the form requesting an

appointment. Here’s the phone number.’ He clicks on the phone number and

can call it right then and literally be connected to the person within a

minute if they pick up. It allows him to cut down on his time of response.

Another interesting idea or use case for text messaging is not to

send it to prospects or customers but to send it to myself as the business

owner or a key employee or potentially even partners. There are a lot of

different ways you can use that once you start to realize, ‘Wait a minute.

I don’t have to send this to the prospect. I can send it to anybody I want

if I have their information.’

Trent: Excuse me, I have a frog in my throat today. I actually built

that feature into my…I have a plug in that generates leads for marketing

consultants and marketing agencies. If you want to check it out go to Mobi,

M-O-B-I, LeadMagnet dot com. I have that feature that built into the plug

in where when someone fills out the form on the landing page if I’m the

vendor, the guy who wants to get the customer, it lights up my phone and

says, ‘Bob just filled out the form two seconds ago.’ On my Smartphone I

just tap the phone number that came in and you can instantly be on the

phone with Bob and say, ‘Bob, I notice you just filled out my form.’ That’s

the moment you want to talk to somebody because they emotionally have made

a purchase decision and you don’t want to lose out on that opportunity.

Brad: Exactly, exactly.

Trent: All right. I’ll try my best to keep the frog out of my throat.

I guess I talked too much over the Memorial Day weekend so apologies to

everybody for me coughing. In Robert Cialdini’s book, I think I pronounced

that properly, on… gosh now I’ve forgotten the title. But it was,

scarcely, where I’m going with this, feebly I might add…

Brad: ‘Influence’ right?

Trent: Yes, ‘Influence’ is the importance of scarcity in marketing.

It’s hardwired into us to be more inclined to act when there’s the

possibility of losing out on something. That transitions us into this thing

called ‘expiring promotions’. What are they, why should I care about them

and how does PlusThis help me make them go?

Brad: Yeah, absolutely. Anytime you’re creating an offer of any kind, one,

your offer needs to be irresistible and amazing in and of itself. In

addition to that, any time I’m creating an offer, and this is whether it’s

an offer on a landing page, an offer for somebody to buy something or

whether I’m presenting something from stage, it doesn’t even matter in

which medium I’m delivering the offer, I’m always considering how do I…

the way s that I make the offer really great are, one, you’ve got to have a

good offer to start. Two, some type of a discount that’s available for a

limited amount of time. I’ll usually throw in bonuses for the first certain

number of people, because the idea of scarcity is so real you’ve got to

make sure you include some element of ‘I need to act now so I can get

this, this, this and this.’ The idea of creating an environment where when

somebody comes into buy…when I was at Infusionsoft the VP of Sales used a

term I’d never heard before and I really liked it. He called it a ‘forcing

function’. He said, ‘You’ve got to have a forcing function. You have to

have something that pushes the person to buy. They can’t just sit around

and say ‘Oh, that’s a cool offer but I know it’ll be there forever. I’ll

buy later.’ It needs to be something that causes the person to sit up in

their chair and say, ‘Wait a minute. I need to consider this right now

because if I don’t right now I’m going to miss out on something.’ That’s

the idea behind expiring promotions. With PlusThis it’s not a single

feature, you use a couple of features together to pull off expiring

promotions but the idea is that when somebody comes and they opt in, they

get you some free piece of information and at some point in the cycle

what’s going to happen is, you need to say, ‘By the way, I have this

product you can buy, product A and I’m going to give you a discount if you

buy it within the next seven days or within the next fourteen days.’ You

get to choose what your cycle is.

One of our clients, Sean Greely runs Net Profit Explosion, he helps

fitness businesses build their businesses up. He uses this concept where

when people opt in he’s trying to get them onto a consultation. Normally

they charge for their consultations. So his offer is that within the first

30 days you can get a free consultation instead of having to pay for it if

you jump. The key elements of creating an expiring promotion are you have

to know when the promotion ends and with it expiring you want it to be

evergreen which means it can work for anybody. We’ll take Sean’s example.

You’re doing a 30 day promotional window. If Jim comes and opts in today

then in 30 days from now his offer needs to expire and I need to be able to

talk to him about his offer expiring in 30 days from today. What’s today?

May, whatever. Anyway, today.

If John comes and opts in next week I need his promotion to expire in

a week and 30 days. It’s got to be built where no matter when somebody

comes into my system I can create this promotion that expires based on when

they’re coming in and on their timetable. What you do is, we have a feature

that allows you to calculate a date, it’s called What’s the Date, but

calculate a date in the future.

So what you would do is you would say, ‘The first thing I want to do

when somebody comes into my system is I need to calculate when does their

promotion expire.’ If it’s a 30 days window we have a feature where you

say, take today’s date, add 30 days and it will create that date and store

it for you inside Infusionsoft. Then we use another feature that’s called

Humanize the Dates, because they’re storing it as a funky computer date. We

want to convert it so it’s readable like a human would read it so that we

can merge it into emails. As soon as somebody opts in PlusThis says, ‘I

know today is May 1 and this guy’s offer needs to expire on June 1.’ So

what it will do is, it will calculate June 1 and then convert it into a

human date so I can put it in an email and say, ‘Thanks for coming and

opting in. I’ve got an offer for you. You can buy this product at half off

plus I’ll throw in this bonus, this bonus and this bonus and you’ve got to

buy before June 1.’

Then I can schedule all of my follow up emails leading up to that

expiration date but it’s specific to each contact so, again, if somebody

comes in on May 1 their expiration date is June 1. If somebody comes in on

May 15 their expiration date is June 15. For every single person that comes

in there is an automatic built in sense of urgency and scarcity because

they’ve only got a certain amount of time to take advantage of that

particular offer. So what it does is, it allows you to create that scarcity

and increase sales and you don’t have to do anything with it. Just like we

talked about with Jermaine’s system before, it’s autopilot. The thing just

runs. Every time they come in you’re cranking out your expiring promotion.

That’s the idea. We have a lot of clients that have used that all over the

board with a lot of great success.

Trent: I want to jump into that one a little deeper because I’m

thinking how I could implement that with my own. I have my info products

which are products within Infusionsoft and then I use an order form. I’m

very familiar with promotional codes and so forth that you could give a

discount. How does your expiring promotions tie into that? How does it

actually work? Would I have to create more than one order form? Do I have

more than one promotional code? Within that 30 day window let’s say, I

wanted, just hypothetically speaking, If you buy in the first week I’m

going to give you 50% off, if you buy before week two the discount goes

down to 25% off and if you wait till the very end it’s only 10% off.

Brad: The most sure-fire way to do this is with either the new order form

or the shopping cart where you can pass promo codes through the link into

the order form or into the shopping cart. And then what you do, here’s the

deal. This is where it gets tricky, right? You’re going to send an email

in week one that says, ‘If you buy within the first week you’re going to

get 50% off,’ they still have that email even when they get into week two.

They can click on the link from that email so it can’t be embedded in that

link that they get a 50% discount because they can go back to it and click

later. The third feature that you use is actually the customized thank-you

page feature. So what you do is you go in and you create a customized thank-

you page that will route to, let’s say you have three different offers.

50%, 25% and full price. You’ll create a customized thank-you page that

says if they have a tag that says I should give them 50% off I’m going to

send them to the 50% off link which adds the same product into the cart but

it includes a 50% off promo code.

If they have a tag that says they should get 25% off we’ll forward

them on to a link that says add the same product but give them a 25% off.

If they have a tag that says no discount then just add to product to the

cart like normal. And then what happens out of PlusThis, is PlusThis gives

you a URL and you plug that into all of your links across any one of the

emails. It doesn’t matter which email it goes in and then throughout your

sequence you’re going to apply and remove tags that control which promotion

they get.

As soon as they opt in this person gets a 50% off promo. That runs

for a week and at the end of that week we take that tag off and we put on

the ‘this person gets a 25% promo’. End of the next week we take off 25%

and put they don’t get any discount. What happens is no matter what email

they get throughout that calendar time frame, those emails will all point

to the PlusThis customized thank-you page URL so when they click on it,

whether they click on it during the first, second or third week, they’ll go

to PlusThis. PlusThis is going to check which promotion or discount they

should get and it will then pass them along to the appropriate URL and

because you’re passing the promo code through the URL when they get to the

shopping cart all they’ll see is your generic shopping cart URL at the top

and they’ll have no idea that a promo code was entered so they have no way

to spoof it unless somehow they figure out what that promo code is.

Trent: Slick. Excuse me, the frogs are back. That is a fantastic tool.

The last one is the ‘Cycler Tool’. I don’t even know what that is

because I haven’t used it yet. Why do I care about that?

Brad: You can do this without PlusThis if you’re really bored and like to

build a bunch of stuff out of Infusionsoft, which I’ve found most people

would rather make money. I think the first time I built this was for Laura

Roder, again she talks about social media concepts. When I opt in I might

say, ‘Facebook is my biggest problem but I’m also interested in learning

about Twitter and LinkedIn. I don’t care about Google Plus.’ Any time you

are marketing to prospects that have a wide variety of interests across

different topics you immediately come across this dilemma of ‘Okay, how am

I going to keep track of what people want and then how am I going to choose

what to send them and in what order?’ So you can get into Infusionsoft.

With her we built something called a ‘Cycler’. Think of it as a wheel

basically. When somebody opts in the first thing we want to try and pitch

them on is Facebook. If I know they’re interested in Facebook and Twitter I

want to try to pitch them on Facebook first.

If I know they’re interested in Twitter and LinkedIn I’m going to try

Twitter first. She’s got four kinds of messages in her library of content.

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google Plus. When she goes to decide what

she needs to send to somebody first she needs to know what the person is

interested and then second, know if she’s already sent something. Once she

knows those two things, then she needs to have a priority of how she would

normally send things, if somebody was interested in everything what order

would she send all of her content in. So what this tool does, is it allows

you to go into PlusThis and say, ‘My library of content is broken up across

these four topics.’ And I’ll stick with Laura as a specific example.

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google Plus. ‘If somebody’s interested in

all four I want to market to them, first I want to talk to them about

Facebook. If that doesn’t work I’ll talk about Twitter, if that doesn’t

work or even if it does, then I’ll talk about LinkedIn and then I’ll talk

about Google Plus.’ You go into PlusThis and you set those four up as

pieces of content that you have that you want to send out. You create a tag

for whether the person is interested in each one of those and then you have

a tag that says ‘start this content’, meaning either send this email or

start this entire sequence.

We also set this up for Casey Graham and the Rocket Company. They

were the 2013 Ultimate Marketers. They just came out and we built a similar

thing for them. Where, when somebody opts in, lets say somebody comes in

and says, ‘I’m interested in Facebook and I’m interested in LinkedIn,’

instead of choosing a sequence to start we just run an ACTP post to

PlusThis. PlusThis, say Okay, let me go check and see what this person,

it’ll basically say ‘Number one is Facebook. Let me go see if this person

has a Facebook tag that says they’re interested. If they do then I’m going

to go check and see if I’ve already sent them the Facebook content. If I

haven’t I’m going to start the Facebook content and I’m going to stop.

PlusThis doesn’t do anything else, it starts the Facebook sequence. Once

the Facebook sequence is done, then what I can do is I can run that same

ACTP post again and it will come back to PlusThis. Are they interested in

Facebook? Yes. Have I already sent the content to them? Yes. Okay, let me

move to the next one. Are they interested in Twitter? No, I don’t have a

tag for that. Okay I’m going to move to the next one. Are they interested

in LinkedIn? Yes. Have I sent it before? No. Okay, let me send the LinkedIn

content. It allows you to take this library of content and it allows you to

organize it any way that you want and you plug it into PlusThis and you can


For example, this may be a more specific example. you have a whole

bunch of interviews to talk about whole bunch of different stuff. Let’s say

you went through all your interviews, you’ve got at least 44. Because I’m

counting your numbers as you go up. As you look at all the interviews you

could categorize them and say, ‘This is a marketing interview. This is a

business building interview. This is a leadership interview. This is a

technology interview.’ You could label them all that way. Then what you do

is you say, I’m going to have people opt in and I want to know what they’re

interested in. I’m going to give them options. ‘I’m interested in marketing

and I’m interested in technology. I don’t really care about leadership and

business building.’

Instead of you building out this really intricate fancy campaign

inside Infusionsoft you go into PlusThis and you say, ‘Hey look. I’ve got

interviews for every interview you create a new entry in this cycler tool.

For all the interviews that are marked ‘marketing’ you’ll set it and say,

‘Hey if they’ve got the marketing tag I want to send this interview. Then

you have a tag that will kick off that interview and actually send it. Then

when you’re building out your ongoing [inaudible 00:52:44] you’re deciding

what email or what interview you want to release this week, instead of

putting an email in you put in an ACTP post that goes to PlusThis and says,

‘Hey, go grab the next interview that this person’s interested in that I

haven’t yet sent.’ It will automatically kick if off. It allows you to, you

basically put this library of content up and let PlusThis decide, based on

how you build it, PlusThis decides what to send and who it should be sent

to based on what they’e told you they’re interested in.

So as you add new interviews you might have a really hot interview on

marketing and you want to be sure that’s the next interview anybody gets

who’s interested in marketing. You go into PlusThis and add it to the top

of the Cycler and next time that ACTP post runs to PlusThis, no matter how

far down the list of interviews somebody is the next time it comes back

it’ll take that one first and say ‘Hey, are they interested? Yes, because

they said they were interested in marketing’. Second, ‘have I sent it? No.

It’s a brand new interview.’ And that will go out next to everybody who’s

interested in marketing.

Trent: That is very cool.

Brad: So anyway, what you get to do is, you build the logic of what kind of

content you’re going to produce and then all you have to do is just fill

the library. PlusThis will keep track of who should get what based on what

they’re already received and based on what they’re interested in. It

greatly reduces the complexity of, have I already sent this to somebody? It

allows you to leverage your content better too because you can just create

a library and you don’t have to think through who I should send what to.

PlusThis does it automatically.

Trent: Yeah that’s very cool.

Brad: That one’s a little harder to visualize so I apologize to everybody

on the call, once you see it it’s a little bit easier. It’s extremely

powerful in being able to cycle through different offers and promotions and

stuff like that.

Trent: Okay. Regarding the number of interviews it’s actually much

more than 44. If you want to listen to Casey Graham you can go to

BrightIdeas.co/63. I think we’re up around 70 or so, they’re not all up.

Two a week. I’m cranking them out. All right, so that pretty much sums up

all I wanted to cover.

We just dumped a ton of marketing automation madness on the audience

and I took feverish notes and I will mention like I say at the very end of

this episode what the URL will be to get to these show notes. Actually I

can tell you now. It’s going to be BrightIdeas.co/65. So there you go Brad

you’re number 65.

Brad: Sweet.

Trent: We’ll wrap up with the lightning round. Brad, what are you most

excited about for 2013.

Brad: I am most excited because 2013 is the year I’m going to go from being

an owner-operator to an owner and it will be two businesses. We’re starting

to treat PlusThis as a totally separate business from our services. We’ve

got some other software ideas that are bubbling but I’m excited because

this will be the year where we get our systems in place, we’ve got a killer

team in place that’s cranking and it will allow me to leverage my strengths

in way better ways than I ever could realize before. I’m stoked because I’m

starting to feel the freedom. It’s not the I went through the ‘Oh I’m

excited because I’ve freedom I can go do whatever I want. And then I

realized you know what, it’s not like-, I’m 33, I’m not at the point where

I’m trying to not work for a year. What I want to do is I want to have is a

manageable schedule and make cool stuff happen and starting to get to the

point of tasting the way that we’re going to be able to make really cool

stuff happen is by me not being involved in delivering all of the work, but

actually having the freedom to be able to apply a strategic vision to our

business. And we’ve got two really good product offerings that I think

we’re just scratching the surface of what we can do on both sides. I’m

excited because I’m right at that threshold of being able to get over the

humps, so to speak. And I feel like over the next couple of years we’re

going to be able to explode both PlusThis and the services side and I’ve

got a couple of other software things that that will hopefully be coming

out relatively soon.

Trent: Very cool. Make sure you let me know and if they fit with the

audience that I’ve got, which I’m sure they will, I’ll be happy to have you


Brad: Perfect.

Trent: What is your favorite business book?

Brad: That is a tough question. I saw this when you sent the question over

before when you at least you were nice enough to warn me that you were

going to ask that. It depends, is my answer. It depends on what area of

business, like, business is not like simple things. So there’s a bunch of

different aspects to it.

Trent: Absolutely.

Brad: So I’ll just rattle off a couple that I really, really, really like.

One of them is ‘Ready, Fire Aim’ by Michael Masterson. I jokingly refer to

that as one of my bibles for building my business. It is such a practical

down to earth and logical approach to growing a business and so, there’s a

quick summary and he gives four phases that every business goes through. I

have read the overview of all four and I actually have only read the first

section and a half because that’s all that applies to my business and I had

enough stuff to go run and work with. So, love that one.

I love Verne Harnish, ‘Mastering The Rockefeller Habits’ it’s a great

read. Pretty simple read too but a great read to start to wrap your brain

around metrics and how to track them. The only caution that I would throw

out is depending on where your business is that book may… read it as a

student, not as a follower. Meaning read it to take ideas and then realize

that all the stuff he talks about may not be critical depending on where

your business is, but it’s a great frame of reference. Like, ‘Yes, I need

to be doing metrics. I need to be having reporting in place.’ So that’s a

great book.

Let me think what other like.

Trent: Well lets stop with two.

Brad: Okay, we’ll stop with two.

Trent: Two is good.

Brad: Oh, I got one more. Sorry, one more. This one I think is

awesome. For pricing and sales. It’s ‘No BS Pricing Strategy’ by Dan

Kennedy. Amazing, amazing book to help you understand how to price and how

to sell. Great book. So those three, money.

Trent: Okay. And for people that want to get hold of you, what is the

one easiest way for them to do that?

Brad: Go to sixthdivision.com We do a similar interview approach. We’ve

done a bunch of video interviews with marketers, Jermaine Griggs is one of

them. You can go there, and opt in for the interviews and get access to a

bunch of content there and then.

If you are an Infusionsoft user and are interested in anything else

we have to offer you’ll be prompted to schedule a consultation but as you

go through that process… so sixthdivision.com on the services side,

that’s the best place to find out anything about what we’re doing and then

PlusThis.com on the software side. But that’s pretty much where we are.

That’s where all of our stuff is at.

Trent: All right my friend. Thank you so much for making some time to

come on the show. I really enjoyed this interview and I’m sure the audience

did as well.

Brad: Thanks for having me.

Trent: You’re welcome to come back any time you like.

Brad: All right. Awesome.

Trent: All right. To get to the show notes from today’s episode go to

BrightIdeas.co/65. When you’re there you’ll see all the links that we’ve

talked about today plus some other valuable information you can use to

ignite more growth in your business.

If you’re listening to this on you mobile phone while you’re driving

or doing whatever, just send a text – rather, just text TRENT to 585858 and

I’m going to give you access to the massive traffic toolbox, which is a

compilation of all the very best traffic generation strategies that have

been shared with me by my many proven experts that have been guests here on

the show.

As well, you’ll also be able to get a list of all my favorite

episodes that I’ve published thus far on the blog.

And finally, if you really enjoyed this episode, please head over to

BrightIdeas.co/love where you’ll be able to give or rather find the link to

leave us a rating in the iTunes store and I would really appreciate it if

you would take a moment to do that, because it helps the show to build its

audience and the more audience members we have, of course the more people

we can help to massively boost their business.

So that’s it for this episode. I’m your host, Trent Dyrsmid and I

look forward to seeing you in the next episode.

Take care and have a wonderful day.

Recording: Thanks very much for listening to the Bright Ideas podcast.

Check us out on the web at BrightIdeas.co.

About Brad Martineau

bradmug2-copyBrad Martineau, Co-Founder of Sixth Division, serves the small business community as the leading provider of coaching and software tools that help entrepreneurs tap into the power of marketing automation.  He’s consulted thousands of successful entrepreneurs, business owners, and top marketers around the world.  He loves teaching and helping people understand difficult concepts.  Nothing drives him nuts more than seeing someone NOT do something because they don’t know how.

Back in the day, he was the sixth employee at Infusionsoft, and spent over six years leading the product development efforts as a key member of the Infusionsoft leadership team.  He had a blast and learned a ton doing this, all while getting to rub shoulders with many very highly successful entrepreneurs.

Brad is married with five kids, loves playing basketball, is addicted to fitted hats, and is pretty into the whole entrepreneur thing.

Digital Marketing Strategy: How to Maximize Conversions with Content Marketing

Building a successful marketing blog is no easy task because there is a LOT of competition. Building a software company that sells software for a monthly fee is even harder.

Have success with on or both of these endeavors and you are on your way to one heck of an exciting entrepreneurial adventure!

In this episode of the Bright Ideas podcast, I’m joined by Dan Norris, founder of Inform.ly. Informly provides actionable data to help content marketers engage their audience and create content that grows their business.

When you listen to this interview, you are going to hear Dan and I talk about the following:

  • Why he started Inform.ly and where traditional analytics apps fall short for content marketers
  • How he hired coders to build his app (5:30)
  • A sidebar plugin he’s building that will display your best converting posts (7:30)
  • How he’s attracting customers (9:00)
  • His top 4 tips for building a highly successful blog (15:00)
  • Why conversions are more important than traffic (17:30)
  • How to maximize conversions from your blog (18:10)
  • His biggest screw up and what you should do to avoid repeating this huge mistake (26:05)
  • Why surveys aren’t a good tool for validating your product (31:05)
..And so much more!


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.

Listen Now

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About Dan Norris

current_bio_pic_DanNDan Norris is the founder of Informly and helps bloggers and content marketers create content that engages their target audience and drives leads. You can download his free ebook with his top 12 tips here.

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Digital Marketing Strategy: The Story of How Infusionsoft Became One of The Fastest Growing Companies in America with Scott Martineau

Would you like to put customer acquisition on auto-pilot? Just imagine how it would feel to have a steady stream of qualified leads that were all happily buying your products on a regular basis.

Now imagine that they were also telling all their friends to do the same.

Sound too good to be true? Well…you might be surprised to learn that if you embrace something called Lifecycle Marketing in your business, that one day in the not too distant future, the scenario I’ve just described will become the reality of your business.

In this episode of the Bright Ideas podcast, I’m joined by Scott Martineau Co-founder of Infusionsoft, ranked by Inc Magazine as one of the fastest growing software companies in America. Infusionsoft is absolutely amazing software and I can’t imagine running my business without it. If I did, I’d have to work far longer hours and my business wouldn’t be nearly as easy to run as it is now.

I recently attended ICON, Infusionsoft’s annual business conference, and while there, I had a chance to meet Scott and ask him to come share his story here on the show.

When you listen to this interview, you are going to hear Scott and I talk about the following:

  • How they first started Infusionsoft back in 2001
  • Why their first idea wasn’t working and the one thing they changed that has allowed them to create a 400+ person company today.
  • Why Goldman Sachs invested $54 million in Infusionsoft and what this means for the future of small business in general
  • The consulting business model vs the product business model and what you need to understand about the massive benefit of one versus the other
  • The importance of picking a target market and how to do it correctly (20:15)
  • An example of some early challenges and how Scott and his partners turned this challenge into a huge opportunity (26:15)
  • Why it is so important for an entrepreneur to have a strong mind and 3 thing you can do to make yours even stronger (33:15)
  • An overview of Lifecycle Marketing and why to embrace it in your business (39:45)
  • What’s next for small business owners (55:15)

Links Mentioned

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.

Listen Now

Leave some feedback:

Connect with Trent Dyrsmid:


Trent: 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 Scott

Martineau, Co-founder of Infusionsoft, ranked by Inc Magazine as

one of the top ten fastest growing software companies in

America. Infusionsoft is absolutely amazing software and I

cannot imagine running my business without it. If I did, I’d

have to work far longer hours and my business wouldn’t be nearly

as easy to run as it is now.

I recently attended iCon, which is Infusionsoft’s annual business

conference and while I was there I had a chance to meet Scott

and I asked him to come, I asked him, rather, to come share his

story on the show. Coming up in this episode, you’re going to

hear Scott and I talk about how he started Infusionsoft, some of

the early challenges that they had to deal with and how they

overcame them. We’re also going to talk about why so many small

business owners aren’t realizing their potential in terms of

profitability and revenue growth and what, some of the things

they can do about.

We’re also going to have an overview of something called lifecycle

marketing and how you can put it to use in your business to help

you solve those problems. If we have time, we’re also going to

get into some success stories and I will also link to those in

the show notes.

Before we get into the interview, I’ve got a couple of special

announcements. My tool tip of the week is something called

Optimizely. If you’re not yet running split tests, you

absolutely are leaving money on the table. A couple of months

ago I interviewed a guy and he told me, he scolded me because I

wasn’t yet running split tests on my main opt-in page. I went

over to Optimizely. I got myself a free account, not a free

account, a $20 a month account and I very quickly set up a split

test. You don’t need to know how to write any HTML at all to do

this and within three days I had doubled my opt-in rate. Just to

put that in, the gravity of that into perspective, I would have

had to of doubled my traffic had I not figured out how to double

my opt-in rate. Definitely go check out Optimizely.com.

The other announcement is I’ve got a webinar coming up on lifecycle

marketing and that is going to be a totally free webinar and

we’re going to be talking about the seven stages of lifecycle

marketing and those stages are how to attract traffic, capture

leads, nurture prospects, convert those prospects to sales, then

deliver and satisfy, increase revenue with upsells and generate

referrals. If you could use more customers in your business,

this is a webinar you definitely would like, or you should want

to attend. With that said, please join me in welcome Scott to

the show. Hey Scott. Welcome to the show.

Scott: Thanks, Trent. It’s good to be here.

Trent: It’s a real privilege to have you on my friend. I’m a big fan

of Infusionsoft. I use it to run my business. Love it. Was

actually just showing a guy this morning, earlier on, and he was

using another company and he said, “I don’t really get it,” and

I screen shared with him for about 15 minutes and at the end he

was like, “Can you get them to call me.”

Scott: That’s good.

Trent: I think there’s a lot of that going around but for the folks

who are listening to this podcast, who don’t have a clue what

I’m talking about, don’t know what Infusionsoft is and don’t

know who you are, let’s kind of set the table for where this

discussion’s going to go by first of all, just please introduce

yourself and a little bit about the company that you co-founded.

Scott: Great. My name is Scott Martineau and I started a company by

the name of Infusionsoft, we started this company about 2001, so

12 years ago or so and Infusionsoft really has one purpose, we

exist to help small businesses succeed and I think we’ll talk

more about how that came about but we’re an all-in-one sales and

marketing software provider that specifically focuses on small

businesses and we’re over in Arizona. We’re down in Chandler,

Arizona. We’ve got about 400 employees at the time of this

recording and we’re just, feel like we’re just barely getting

started with what we want to accomplish in the world but that’s

the little bit about us.

Trent: Thank you for that. Audience members, if you’re listening to

this and you are anything from a solo entrepreneur with a

business that’s generating revenue all the way up to somebody

with maybe 20 or 25 employees doing a few million dollars a year

and you feel like you’re struggling with working too much and

not getting enough of the results that you want to get in terms

of revenue, growth, customer acquisition and profits, I think

that you are going to get a ton of value out of this interview

and we’re going to do our very best to deliver on that.

Scott, you had a really big win recently and I think that this is a

wonderful vote of confidence from some very smart folks on the

future of this whole lifecycle marketing idea and your company

in general and it was a $54 million investment from Goldman

Sachs, so congratulations on that.

Scott: Thank you.

Trent: What I want to talk about is the story of how you got there

because not everybody gets a $54 million investment from Goldman

Sachs so you’ve got to be doing something right. Then, so we’ll

spend a bit of time talking about that and then I really want to

talk about, for the people in the audience who are running that

small business and working really hard, what’s this lifecycle

marketing thing all about and how can I automate all this stuff

and so we’re going to do as much as an hour will allow us to do.

Scott: Great.

Trent: Let’s go right back to the very beginning because I think a lot

of people really love the stories at how super successful

companies get created and it usually starts with a why. People

have a problem, you had a problem that you were trying to solve,

if my research is correct. You want to talk a little bit about


Scott: You bet. We didn’t actually have a very clear why when we

started the company. I’ll kind of give you the evolution, but at

the very core of our founder story was that my brother and I

were working for my dad in the family business that he had

started and it’s kind of a funny business. It was a company that

sent balloon twisters, these are like the clown, people that

make clown balloons, that type of stuff. Not necessarily clowns.

They would send these twisters into restaurants and they’d go

make balloon animals for all the kids while they’re waiting for

their food.

Our dad had built this company up to, in about 15 or 16 different

states in the U.S. here and he had this whole thing going but he

had some really weird things that he, not weird, but some time

consuming things that he had to do to make this business run.

One of those things was that every night he’d have to log in to

this voicemail system and he would literally download and delete

200 or 300 voicemails from these balloon twisters that were

checking into their restaurants and Eric and I, my brother were

like, “Dad, this is so old school. Come on. Let’s get with the


We ended up building for him a website, basically, that allowed

people to come in and check in. It was a web application, which

these things were just starting to become acceptable at that

time and it was awesome for us because we watched what happened

to, finally dad could not have to go make all those voicemail,

call to voicemail, listen to every one, delete every single one.

Check it off in this little database system. All the people

could just do all these things online.

That was kind of the first glimpse for us that we could finally see

how technology would enable a business owner to do something

that needed to get done without having to spend an hour of their

time or two hours of their time to do it. Around that time we

started having this idea, “Why don’t we go start a company

building technology solutions for people that could help save

them time.” We started this company and we didn’t have a vision

of anything. We just knew we wanted to do our own thing. We

didn’t want to go work for a company. We wanted to be our own

boss and all of the possibility for risk or sorry, for reward,

and that meant we had to take the risk and so we started this

company doing custom software development.

That was kind of where everything started right there in the

beginning was a custom software development shop. It was hard.

It was, that’s a difficult business to be in because here we

were starting and we’re trying to go sell custom development to

people, which usually was made up of an estimate. They’d call up

or we’d spend a bunch of time figuring out what they needed.

We’d go give them an estimate, they’d walk us down on the

estimate and we’d cave in and give it to them for less than we

should and we’d spend twice the amount of time.

It was a difficult business to be in but it really, at the very

beginning of our company, it gave us a couple of things. Number

one, our passion for using technology to solve problems was very

real and it was really kind of the thing that got us into the

business but I think most importantly, from the very beginning,

we knew what it felt like to be a small business ourselves. It

was difficult.

We had two different periods of time where we went for months on end,

one time it was between four and five months that we went with

literally no income and as you can imagine, Trent, that’s hard

to go home and talk to your spouse and say, “Come on, honey.

Just hang in there. We’re going to get this thing figure out.” I

think that that time period for us was critical because it kind

of baked into the DNA of our company and appreciation for the

challenges that small businesses go through.

Trent: So very true. Now I know I have a lot of people in my audience

who are not yet a small business owner or are very early in

their small business career so I want to take a very quick

little sidebar here. Let’s talk about business models for just a

quick second. When you started off your consulting business

model and now you’re a product business model and veteran

entrepreneurs, most of us will agree that the product one is

significantly better as a business model. Can you just very

quickly speak to why that is?

Scott: Well, I remember the very first time we got a stack of orders

when we started to sell software like a product and we actually

sold it with recurring revenue attached as well. I remember the

time when Clay and I walked out in the parking lot with a stack

of new customers who had just bought our product and we looked

at each other and said, ‘”Holy cow. This is nirvana. We got new

customers. We don’t have to go build custom software for them

and they’re just coming on. We don’t have to build from the

ground up. We’ve got what they need out of the gate and it was

just a beautiful thing.”

I think it’s a great point, Trent, that business owners need to

really consider the validity of their model. There’s product

versus custom, which is kind of what you’re talking about and

there’s some clear advantages there obviously with the amount of

time you have to spend to create the product to deliver to the

customer, as well as all the estimating. I think there’s also

just some general profitability things that people should be

aware. Does the unit economic of your, do the unit economics of

what you’re offering actually work?

In other words, if we could deliver to you a sales and marketing

system that would, and I’m not talking about software just if

you could double your sales, is that a good thing or a bad

thing? Frankly, some business owners have a business model that

isn’t worth doubling because the economics just don’t work out.

You’ll end up just working yourself silly and really not having

any profit at the end of the day to think about.

The time to have those considerations and to think about that is

really early on and sometimes it takes a little bit of risk. I

remember when we decided to move from custom development to a

product, we had to take one of our employees specifically,

[Shawn], and said, “Shawn, you own all of our custom development

and we can’t be around having a lot of lose ends here. We’re

going to go 100 percent and focus on this product business.”

That was a really risky thing for us because that was our bread and

butter. It was a pretty measly bread and butter but that was it

and luckily he owned in a great way and we were able to go focus

and convert, in our case, convert our service business, custom

development shop into a product business and I’m really glad

that we did. We wouldn’t be anywhere close to where we are today

without that.

Trent: No, you wouldn’t have and I wish somebody would have told me

that back in 2001 when I started my glass tech company because

I, like many new entrepreneurs, I just thought, “Well if I could

go out and do X hundreds of thousands or X millions of dollars a

year in sales, surely there’d be profits leftover,” because I

was very naive. It’s, in a consulting model it’s not that easy.

That’s why I asked you to go down that rabbit hole. I’m hoping

that we’ve provoked some thought in somebody who’s listening to

this who’s maybe in the early stage of their business figuring

out, “Maybe I should be thinking about this business model


Scott: A lot of it has to do with intent too because a lot of times

I’ve noticed people are, the first phase of their

entrepreneurial venture is actually just replacing their income,

their salary. If that’s really the only goal, there are some

fairly simple ways to do it but I think if you really want to

build a business that has profit, that can operate without you

being right in the middle of everything, you’ve got to really

think hard about the business model and be clear from the get


Trent: Absolutely. However, if you don’t have the cash to do that

there’s nothing wrong with starting this trading time for money

business model and figuring out how you can add some people to

your team like you did so that you can make that transition

without having to maybe bury yourself in debt or give away three

quarters of your company because it’s so hard to raise money in

the beginning when you don’t really have anything that’s worth

much. People, if they’re going to invest at all they want

everything and you get deluded and you don’t necessarily want to

do that.

I am taking us off on tangents. I’m going to bring us back on course.

Why small business? You hear all these companies and they’re

going to go out and they want to sell to the enterprise, they

want to go for the big guns. Why did you decide that small

business was where the opportunity and the gold lied?

Scott: I think part of it was just that that’s where our history was.

We had a passion for what the entrepreneur had to go through and

so we’re just connected emotionally, I think, to the plight of

the entrepreneur. Interestingly, you mentioned it but it is the

natural magnetic force in our space, at least, in the software

space, that people will, companies will come in and they say

that they serve small businesses but in reality, all they’re

doing is using the small business owners as a stepping stool to

get into bigger accounts and to grow up and serve mid-market


For us, there’s a very big difference between the S in SMB and the M

in SMB and we like to say we’re for the S in SMB because what

mid-size businesses need and what small businesses need are so

very different.

I think if I had to wrap all that together I’d say the

reason is because small businesses are the life blood of most

economies. We feel like it gives people the ability to go out

and to just own and create which is a beautiful process to be in

the middle of and frankly, it’s a lot funner, I think, to serve

small businesses. When we can go and help a small business owner

grow their business and they go from X to doubling or tripling

that business, the amount of satisfaction and joy that they have

is so much, for some reason, I shouldn’t say for some reason. I

know why, but it is way higher than taking, for example, a

manager in a mid-market company and providing them with software

that helps make their life a little bit easier.

We’re connected to the whole livelihood of the business owners and

for a lot of people that’s scary. They want to run away from

that but I think that’s where all the excitement is. We’ll talk

more later but I think more and more people are starting to

recognize how critical small businesses are to our economy and

are recognizing the tool sets that they need. Small businesses

need a very specific set of tools, not just a watered down

version of what a larger company needs. In a lot of ways, they

need a more powerful solution because they don’t have time to

think about, they’re already wearing five hats. They need

solutions that work for them not cause them to have to go

outside of what they’re already struggling with to go create


Trent: I couldn’t agree more. I’ve been a small business owner myself

for 14 years now and that’s really why I started Bright Ideas

because I learned so much in my first couple of years online,

about online marketing, something I knew really nothing about

when I ran Dyrand, my old company. I thought, “Man, there’s so

many people that need to know about this stuff.” It’s been just

an absolute thrill to have the privilege of being able to have

people like you and all the other smart guests on the show

because I get wonderful emails from business owners all the

time, almost daily, saying, “Thank you.” That puts a big smile

on my face.

Scott: I think it’s funny because most business owners, actually none

are required to have any degrees, per se, to start their company

and I like to say they don’t come out, entrepreneurs don’t come

out of the womb in their business really understanding all of

the concepts. There’s a lot of stuff to figure out. How do I

have enough capital to do what I need to do? How do I hire the

right people? How do I build the sales and marketing plan? What

tools do I need to be able to accomplish this? There’s just a

lot of stuff that you have to figure out.

I love that you’re out educating the small businesses because I think

that’s a critical component. I think, as much as I’d like to

think that software’s the only solution and that solves all the

problems, I don’t think it does. I think it’s actually the

education teaching small business owners that really solves a

need that they have.

Trent: That is a wonderful segue for my next question. One of the

things that I think I did a poor job of back when I started my

old business that I got really focused on when I started Bright

Ideas was defining a target market. Really getting specific

about, “Who am I creating this stuff for?” Because if you’re

just going to try and create for everybody you won’t resonate

enough with anybody and it’s very difficult to get traction. Can

you talk, did you guys in the early days of Infusionsoft, at

some point you must have said, “We really need to define who

we’re going after, at least initially.” Can you talk a little

bit about the importance of that and how you did that?

Scott: You bet. For us this has been one of the most challenging

things to solve. There’s a lot of things going on when you’re

trying to identify your target market. One of those is you’re

fighting your natural tendency to expand what you do to meet

everybody’s needs, which I think you said it accurately, when

you do that you really can’t solve anybody’s needs well. There’s

that going on.

We had some interesting challenges because we’re providing all-in-one

sales and marketing software which, in most business owners’

minds there actually are four or five different software

products that exist out there that we’re trying to combine into

one. Our message, we’ve struggled to keep our message simple and

to keep it accurate for people.

We started and we were kind of, we positioned ourselves as small

business CRM software. A lot of the business owners didn’t even

really know what CRM software was even though that was kind of a

big movement. We’ve toyed around with what are we? Are we

marketing automation software, so there’s, when it comes to

positioning, half of it is trying to be able to describe

yourself to your market and the other half is being clear on who

it is that you’re actually going after.

I think, I just can’t emphasize or add my support to what you’re

saying enough, that as the business owner, you’ve got to be

really clear and the approach that works the best is to get

extremely specific first and I have found that when people get

extremely specifically then their ability to grow their target

market increases over time. When you nail it for one, you’ll

create natural segues for other specific target customers but

when you try to just go for everybody, you sound like everybody

else. You’re a watered down nothing and you’ve got to stay

focused. You’ve got to be very clear.

A good exercise, Trent, that I found is that you need to be really

clear as a business owner about who are these people you’re

targeting and what questions do those people have? What are the

things that keep them up at night?

You’ve taught a lot about lifecycle marketing and it’s a helpful

exercise to ask yourself what questions are going through the

mind of my prospect through each phase of my customer lifecycle?

For example, in my case, I might ask myself the question, “Let’s

think about what are small business owners thinking about as it

relates to software before they ever enter our customer

lifecycle? What are the questions that they have?” That might be

things like, “How can I build a sales and marketing plan that’s

going to work? How do I know when I spend marketing dollars,

that it’s going to be on a marketing program that’s going to

actually deliver customers to me?”

Then once they engage with us in our sales process, there’s a whole

new set of questions that come about. “Can I actually use

software? Maybe I’m not very technical and so,” can you hear me

right now, Trent?

Trent: Yes. I can hear you just fine.

Scott: My machine just said there might be a connection problem.

Anyway, if you can become an expert at the questions that your

target market is asking, you will be able to create really

powerful marketing that just is there when they reach for

questions, you can be there to answer them and to establish

yourself in a position where you’re going to win the business.

Trent: For the folks who maybe are newer to Bright Ideas, I want to

mention another interview that I did that we really go into

depth on this topic and that is an interview with a fellow by

the name of Marcus Sheridan. If you go to BrightIdeas.co/27,

it’ll take you directly to that interview. Marcus has a company

called River Pools and Spas and got really good at figuring out

what questions people were asking and then blogging about the

answers to those. Go check out that interview to learn more on


The other thing I wanted to mention, there’s also an article, if you

go to BrightIdeas.co and on the navigation bar, if you go to the

Lifecycle Marketing Guide, there is, it’s divided into seven

sections, if memory serves me correctly. There is an article in

one of those sections that really goes deep into, again, how to

pick your target, How and Why to Pick Your Audience, is actually

the title of the article. It just makes such a huge difference.

My experience with Bright Ideas, I decided that I wanted to get

really focused on marketing agencies and it took me a little

while to do that but if I didn’t do it, I definitely would not

be experiencing the speed of the traction that I’m experiencing

as a result of that. If you haven’t done that yet in your

business, cannot emphasize enough how important that is for you

to do.

Let me go back to my list of questions here and find out where we

want to go to next. A lot of times early on in a business, not a

lot of times, all the time early on in a business we, the

entrepreneur, experience setbacks. Setbacks can be horrible at

the time but in hindsight they can also turn out to be some of

your most wonderful opportunities for discovery. I’m sure,

Scott, that you have many examples of setbacks. I’m interested,

would you bring one up, speak about it and then I want to ask a

couple of follow up questions.

Scott: You bet. Let me just enter a little point here too. Clayton and

I, Clayt, by the way is one of the other co-founders of the

company. We brought him on shortly after Eric and I started this

software company and he and I wrote a book called “Conquer the

Chaos” and this is, we hit really heavily on the mindset that

entrepreneurs need to have when they start their company.

We talk about emotional capital, which is kind of the emotional bank

account that you have and the need for entrepreneurs to be

always adding to that bank account and be very aware of what’s

going on inside your head and we also talk about the concept of

disciplined optimism which is that you are looking at, you’re

willing to look at the facts that surround your current reality

as ugly as they might be but you’re combing that with a

determination that you’re going to succeed and a lot of people

look at that and they feel like you’re just naive to think that

you can be staring that nasty situation in the face but moving

forward. We found that that is one of the keys to


I’ll go back maybe to one of the early dark days. I’ll start there. I

remember when Clayt, my business partner, his wife, who happens

to be my sister, so we recruited my brother-in-law Clayt to come

be in the company and I guess we weren’t fooling [Cherise] and

one day she said to Clayt, “Clayt, this is it, man. Go out today

and find a real job. We’re done with this whole small business

thing.” Clayt came into work with his tail between his legs and

he said, “I’m so screwed because I’m not going to go out looking

for something but I know that Cherise is expecting that of me.”

The reason is because we had just, this was in one of these really

difficult times where we just weren’t bringing in the income and

it was a really difficult thing. Luckily, when Clayt walked in

that afternoon ready to have a little talking to, Cherise met

him at the door and said, “Clayt, I’ve really spent some time

thinking and praying about this and I feel like everything is

going to be okay.” He said, “Good because I haven’t found a job

and I didn’t even go looking.” I’m really glad that he didn’t

but in that case it was flat out a sales and marketing

challenge. We just weren’t bringing in enough business to

accomplish what we needed to.

One of the things that we did in our company was actually, we had the

really great privilege of, kind of toward the end of our custom

software days we found a marketing coach who became a custom

software client. His name is [Reid Hoisington] and Reid taught

mortgage professionals how to be better marketers. Through the

process of serving him as a custom client, he was actually the

key to helping us transition to a product based business instead

of custom software. Part of it was because he was sick of paying

us custom software fees but he took us to these, he said, “Come

to my marketing seminar and I’ll let you get up on stage, you

can sell your software to all of my customers who need it

because I’m trying to teach them these marketing principles, how

to capture leads and how to follow up and nobody’s doing

anything because they don’t have the right tools.”

We said, “Great. We’ll come.” We went to there and we sold the

software. Well as we started going to these marketing seminars,

Reid ended up suggesting that we go to some other folks

marketing seminars, some other marketing coaches. We would go to

these places. We’d help the marketing coach get their business

in line and then we’d go sell at their events. While were doing

that we’re sitting out in the audience taking notes. We’re just

kind of like dumb software developers and we’re like, “Man, that

is a great idea.” We’re hearing all these speakers at these

marketing seminars stand up and talk about a lot of the stuff we

teach in lifecycle marketing. Here’s how you capture leads. Here

are some examples of how you could follow up with those people.

Here’s how you create a compelling offer. Here’s how you could

close the deal.

We had this bright idea one day that maybe we could actually use some

of these marketing principles on our own business. It was just

like the big duh moment of the century. We started to actually

implement this stuff. I’m giving you the solution to the really

difficult challenge that we had and so what we did is we created

our very first educational lead magnet and it was called Six

Secrets to Your Mortgage Marketing Success, or something like

that. Then there was just this thing we would offer that would

teach people. We taught them about the fundamentals of marketing

in a mortgage business.

It was amazing. I remember the day when Clayt walked into the room

where Eric and I were in there doing programming or taking

customer calls or something and he’s like, Clayt was our sales

person at the time, he’s like, “Guys, we are onto something.

This stuff actually works.” What had happened was he got a

string of calls back from people who we had put on to this

automatic drip nurture sequence. We send out this educational

information. We started following up. “Just following up. Did

you get the free report that we sent you? What did you think? Do

you have any questions I can answer?” Then a few follow-ups.

Clayt would get people calling back and saying, “Thank you so much

for following up. I think I’m ready to go.” These are people he

hadn’t talked to before. These were people that had requested

the information, received the education, and by the way, this

education was answering the questions that were going on in the

heads of these mortgage professionals and he was just on fire.

We call that our Infusionsoft moment and a lot of our customers,

they go through that exact same process where they start sending

out these follow-up things, based on some formulas that we

provide them and stuff happens.

I would say that the key when you have setbacks is number one, that

you’ve got to be emotionally strong and you’ve got to be really

clear and aware about what’s going on inside your head. If you

can’t control your thoughts as an entrepreneur, you are screwed.

If you’re the type of person who comes in and is tossed about by

every little thing that happens and you can’t go to that place

where you ground yourself, you’re going to have a really

difficult time. There is always going to be pressure on you as

the business owner that you have to learn how to accept. You

can’t go and blow up your employees because you’re having a bad

day. You can’t get depressed and get down. The job of the leader

of a small business is to help create the vision and maintain

that vision and that takes stability of mind.

Then, I think you’ve got to just learn. Learn the principles and the

practices that are going to create success. In our case we had a

sales and marketing problem and we learned and then implemented

something and sometimes that implementation can be challenging

because you have so many hats to wear but I would say strong

emotional stability combined with learning and executing the

stuff that you’re learning, that’s one example. Maybe I blabbed

on too much with that example but that’s what came to mind.

Trent: Give us two ways that you think that, two tactics, strategies

for emotional strength. Call it your mind workout. You go to the

gym, you pick up the dumb bells and you work out your muscles.

Your mind is another muscle. You’ve got to keep it strong.

[inaudible 33:04]

Scott: Fantastic. One thing I’ve noticed is that reading, reading is a

phenomenal tool to create raw material in your mind that just

keeps your mind active and alert. I didn’t really read a lot

before I met Clayt and Clayt and Eric and I, we started to read

books at the same time and we would talk about them. I just

think, that gives you the ability both to have the education

coming to you as well as providing you with new insights and

you’re able to hear successes of other people. I would encourage

that. That’s a really important part of mental make up and

develop some opinions. You don’t have to love everything you

read but be aware of what’s out there.

The second thing is I actually find that master mind groups is a

really powerful concept that helped us. When we started to find

like minded people that we could be accountable to, it really

helped. Most business owners, it makes sense. They’re out on

their own, so to speak. Sometimes family members don’t

understand them. The people around them don’t. Their employees

may not understand them and it takes connecting with another

entrepreneur that sometimes can just shake you, grab your

shoulders and look you in the eye and say, “Dude, wake up.

You’re thinking about this the wrong way. You’re acting like a


I think those two things are just really critical and I’ll give you a

little third one, just because I think it’s important. That is

as hard as it is, you have to spend time in what I would call

meditating and planning, which is you just, you stop the madness

and you get away and it might start out as a couple of hours but

I think it should grow into maybe a day a quarter where you just

let things, just let the busyness go on. Pretend like you’re

sick. For some reason we’re always okay doing this when we’re

deathly sick but we don’t ever create the time proactively.

I’m suggesting that we intentionally create a space were we can just

stop and think and we’ve developed a strategic planning

methodology here that allows us to, we have seven exercises

where we go through, “What are the accomplishments we’ve made in

the recent period? What are our lessons learned? What are our

strengths? What are we really good at? Or our weaknesses, what

are the opportunities, what are the threats?” We go through

exercises like this just to evaluate what’s going on but do it

from a place where I’m not hurried and I’m not rushed and I can

sit down and create a plan for moving forward that I feel

confidence in.

A lot of times that those emotional challenges come because you just

feel the chaos looming or just crushing in on us and you just

need to just ease that up and go spend some time thinking and

you’ll be amazed at how much insight will come to you when you

think about that in an intentional way.

Trent: That was great. You guys are starting to share what you’re

doing with that strategic planning, are you not? I think you

have a name for that and maybe if you do, maybe you could give a

URL if people want more info.

Scott: That’s great. We have, actually it was something that Clayt and

I talked about wanting to do for a long time. We had kind of the

best practices we had used to build our company and we realize

that most business owners want to have those same, they want to

understand how we do our strategy planning and how we do, how we

build our culture and so we created what we call the Elite Forum

and it’s that exact, it’s with that exact purpose is to help

business owners understand what they need to do. Let’s see, I

should know where that is right off the top of my head. I think

if . . .

Trent: You can get it to me after.

Scott: I think it’s actually just Infusionsoft.com/eliteforum, but let

me, yes. That’s exactly what it is. Infusionsoft.com/eliteforum.

Trent: For those of you who are listening in your cars, don’t worry.

At the end of this episode I’m going to give you a way that you

can just send a text and you’ll get all the information. You’ll

get linked to the show notes for this episode and so forth, so

just stay tuned because everything that we mentioned, books,

links and all that will be in the show notes.

I want to mention a couple of things. There’s a book called “Double,

Double,” which is written by the guy who is COO of a company

called 1-800 Got Junk, which is a very impressive growth story

in itself. It’s a book that I’m going through right now and he

talks a lot about creating this painted picture. If this is

something that, what Scott and I’ve just talked about that

resonates with you, either check out the Elite Forum and/or

check out this book called “Double, Double.”

Bright Ideas actually has a master mind group for marketing agency

consultants and marketing agency owners. If you want more

details on that just email me directly, trent@brightideas.co and

I will get you a link to the page. I just can’t remember it off

the top of my head and if I go searching for it I will get

distracted from leading [sounds like], this interview so I don’t

want to do that.

Those are a couple of very good strategies. One more that I wanted to

add and this is why I’m a podcast producer, listen to podcasts.

I, when I’m having those challenging times, I want to listen to

inspirational stories from other entrepreneurs who have overcome

adversity because it makes me feel like, “The challenge that I’m

dealing with maybe isn’t quite so bad after all,” especially if

I’m able to hear the story of somebody who overcame something

more challenging than I did. The beauty of that is you can

listen while you’re walking, running, exercising, driving, what

have you, which is hard to do with a book.

I want to shift gears now, if we can, Scott because I know we only

have 20 minutes left. Business owners, I think, as a whole, I

don’t think there’s anybody out there who would disagree that

they could always use more customers, more leads and more

customers. You mentioned early in our conversation that you guys

had a sales and marketing problem. I think that that’s probably

the number one problem in almost every small business on the

planet. How does lifecycle marketing, and Infusionsoft is built

to support lifecycle marketing, so let’s talk about lifecycle

marketing. What are some of the things that people should be

doing to overcome that, “I don’t have enough new customers on a

regular enough basis,” problem?

Scott: Well first I’ll totally agree with you. I think sales and

marketing is, it’s interesting how connected it is to, I think,

the core challenge that everybody recognizes and that is, think

about one of the key problems small business owner’s face is

they wear so many hats. You go to start a company, you have

visions of more freedom, more time freedom, more financial

freedom, etc. and what ends up happening is you get into this

business and it feels like the business is owning you. You feel

like you’ve got a job and the job is hard, and I think a lot of

that comes because the business owners don’t have the revenue

that they need to hire the people to do what needs to be done.

It’s always, there’s always a battle.

If I’m going to spend my, some of my profits to go hire an employee,

that’s literally taking away from my take home pay and so I

have found that in most cases the answer is that the sales and

marketing part of the business needs to be amplified. Think

about it this way, is there any problem that a small business

owner has that cant’ be solved with more revenue and more

customers? When you have the revenue and you have the capital

and you have the customers and stability there, you can solve

all the other problems. The one that seems to be most

intimidating is getting the customers. I’m totally with you on


Lifecycle marketing is a concept that I think represents a new

approach for small businesses. Most small businesses, when they

think about their sales, they think about it more like a hunter

where they wake up in the morning and realize, “I’m hungry. I’m

going to go out and I’m going to perform some kind of low

hanging fruit activities that allow me to get a customer.” In

our analogy that might represent the person waking up and going

out and finding the next deer and shooting it and pulling it

back and eating for awhile. Then it all, the cycle just repeats

itself and there’s always the next hunt that you have to go on

and you have to always be out chasing and chasing.

Lifecycle marketing kind of flips that on its head and it celebrates

one of the best inventions that’s known to mankind which is the

fence. It’s this idea that the hunter can go from having to be

out there at the mercy of the herd following that person around

to bringing livestock and plants and so forth into their fence

where they have control over that. They now go into a harvest

mode and yes, it takes planning and it takes work and it takes

foresight but it flips everything around. It creates a stability

of life for a farmer, for example, that just doesn’t exist when

you’re living the hunter lifestyle.

The way that we do that with lifecycle marketing is we take our

business and instead of just thinking about it very

monolithically and just saying, “We either don’t have enough

sales or we do,” we actually break the entire experience that

our customers have with us up into seven distinct phases and

that’s why we call it the lifecycle. Just like a plant or a crop

has a lifecycle, customers in our businesses have a lifecycle,

so our seven phases of customer lifecycle, and I know that you

teach this, Trent, but just for the sake of those who aren’t as

exposed to it, we start out by attracting traffic. When we’ve

got somebody’s attention, maybe they’re on our website or maybe

they’re in our store or at our booth, then we want to make sure

we capture the lead. We’ve got to get the people’s information

in exchange for something that we’re offering to them so that we

have the ability to follow up if we want to.

A lot of people have websites or telephone lines or trade show booths

where you have a lot of people coming up to it, visiting your

site, calling on the phone and if they’re not ready to buy

today, they walk away and they’re gone. Again, it’s more like

we’re at the mercy of, if they come back that would be great but

in reality, most of them won’t come back. We teach people to

capture leads.

Then we have some very systematic ways that people can follow up and

nurture prospects. That’s the third phase where the businesses

reach out and provide valuable information to nurture the

relationship so when that person who wasn’t ready to buy before

is ready to buy, we’re the people that are at the top of mind

for them.

Then we actually go and we have different strategies for converting

the sale, so when people indicate that their interest is high

and that they’re a hot lead, so to speak, then we have the

process in place to convert those leads into customers, whether

you’re doing that online or with sales people or just through,

kind of, promotions that you run in your business, there’s

systematic ways. I won’t go through all the details but after

that we make sure we are delivering and satisfying and really

wowing every single customer that comes through the door so that

we can get upsells and so that we can get referrals from our


I found that when business owners, when the light clicks on and they

realize how much opportunity is sitting there in the business,

it’s awesome to see. For some people, it can feel a little bit

overwhelming. They’re like, “I have a hard time thinking about

my business as it is. You want me to think about all seven

phases?” Well, the goal is not that you go focus on fixing

every single place of opportunity in your business. I think

lifecycle marketing provides a framework where you can go and

identify the next most important thing. For some people, they

already have traffic coming to their website, they need to focus

on capturing more leads. In other cases, people already have a

decent customer base, they need to focus on upselling their

existing customers, not necessarily going out and trying to get

a bunch more leads to the top of the funnel.

Lifecycle marketing provides this new framework for the business

owner to think about building a harvest based business where the

sales and customers are flowing to them and really it comes down

to them being in control. Infusionsoft, our software solution

exists, it really is the only software solution built for small

businesses to manage the entire lifecycle marketing process all

the way from attracting the interest. We just acquired a company

called Grow Social that lets companies create really cool social

media attraction campaigns. Then we have tools that allow the

business owner to capture leads and put all those leads right

into a database that allows them to be really well organized.

Then from there we can, you can initiate automatic drip follow-

up systems using some of our different formulas and that drip

follow-up gets people to bubble up and we have methods that help

you to convert those sales.

We’ve basically taken all of the different phases of customer

lifecycle, all the way from the very first time you hear about

somebody to the time they become a customer, until after they

become a customer, all the follow-up and nurturing we do there

and the collection of referrals and we’ve, I guess to further

the analogy, we kind of created the John Deere tractor that

allows somebody who wants to go to this new harvest based sales

and marketing to do it without having to spend their energy out

on their hands and knees. We allow it to happen automatically.

Trent: That it does for folks who maybe aren’t terribly familiar with

Bright Ideas just yet, if this is your first exposure, make

sure that you go to BrightIdeas.co and you have a look at the

lifecycle marketing guide because in that guide, and you can see

it right up on the Nav bar, you will see an extensive library of

content for each of those seven phases that Scott just talked

about. I have interviewed almost all, and soon it will be all,

of the Infusionsoft ultimate marketers and these are folks who

run businesses, everything from selling collectible trains to

music training to athletic wear to a bed and breakfast in

Champagne, France and they are all sharing on these interviews

how they embraced lifecycle marketing to achieve unbelievable

results in their businesses.

An interview that was just published with a guy by the name of Dustin

Burleson has built an unbelievably successful orthodontics

clinic as a result of his embracing lifecycle marketing and

Infusionsoft. Make sure, it’s all free. You can download it on

your phone, listen to it in the car. There’s just so many golden

nuggets in all of those interviews that you’re absolutely going

to love it.

I want to, we’re running out of time, so we’ve got a couple of things

here, Scott, that we’re going to talk about before we close out.

Is there, for anyone who hasn’t yet heard any of those success

stories, is there one that stands out in your mind that you

briefly would like to talk about? Maybe three, four minutes,

five minutes.

Scott: That’s a really tough question because we have so many

different, I’m going to actually, I’ll give you a little micro

versions of three of them and I’ll do it, probably in three

minutes [inaudible 49:06]

Trent: Perfect.

Scott: I really have, you mentioned our Ultimate Marketer Contest.

That’s something that we do every year at our annual user

conference which is to celebrate a business that’s kind of gone

above and beyond with their marketing. What I love about

watching that is seeing example after example of people who have

created their own version of success.

One of the gentlemen that won the Ultimate Marketer Award very early

on, Jermaine Griggs with Hear and Play Music, he cared a lot

about creating a business that was just turnkey without him

being in the business. He teaches people how to basically hear

music and play it and so I loved hearing his story where he

talked about all the different elements of places where he was

having to spend time that he could just completely automate and

he kind of built this whole turnkey business model to the point

where now he kind of has to figure out what to do with his time

because the system is on auto pilot, and that was really

important for him.

Another one of the contestants, Jeanette Gleason her story was

awesome for me because she and her husband were spending a lot

of money in these marketing programs that they just didn’t feel

like were producing results. I’m sure some of your listeners

have felt that experience before. In their case they were doing

really expensive dinners to try to woo clients and realized,

“This is stupid. Nobody’s really buying. They’re just coming for

free dinners.” She found out about lifecycle marketing, started

to gradually implement different components of it, and for her

it was really about kind of saving her husband’s business.

She was a stay at home mom and finally he said, “You’ve got to come

in and help me figure this stuff out.” She came in feeling

pretty nervous. Not technical at all and really grasped onto

lifecycle marketing and they put some really cool stuff in place

in their business. For them it was really just about re-

establishing the confidence in their business and in their

business model. Today, Jeanette is actually teaching other

financial planners, that’s the business they’re in, about how to

have successful marketing campaigns.

Trent: Let me, I’m sorry. Let me interrupt real quickly. You can hear

an interview with Jeanette if you go to BrightIdeas.co/#11 and

you’ll see how they cut their spend by 90 percent while they

tripled their revenue.

Scott: Who wouldn’t want to do that. That’s awesome. I love hearing

those stories. Then The Rocket Company, they were one of our

presenters this year and they shared their story about how they

took their business from, I think it was just over a couple

hundred thousand in revenue all the way up to two million in

revenue. For them, that was just, they’re really passionate

about their product. These guys are in the business of helping,

it’s kind of funny, they say, “We help preachers to stop giving

boring sermons.” They’re out servicing the market of churches

and they just shared their passion for the work that they do and

how implementing lifecycle marketing and automation for them is

now enabling them to reach more of their target customers, more

of these churches and just to really change their world.

The cool thing is, regardless of what your version or definition of

success is, whether it’s time you want to reclaim or revenue you

want to create or impact or confidence, when you follow the

principles of lifecycle marketing and specifically, I think,

when you can use Infusionsoft, I think for some of your

listeners Infusionsoft would be a great solution, I feel like

you can create your version of success. That’s what’s exciting

for me is that that vision people have for success can be


Trent: That’s exactly what I’m trying to do in my own business as well

and I’m using Infusionsoft to help me do that. By the way, in

the Lifecycle Marketing Guide on BrightIdeas.co, I am creating

an every increasing library of videos that show how I’m actually

using Infusionsoft in my business.

Scott: Very cool.

Trent: If you haven’t seen any of that stuff, like the guy that I

talked to this morning that I mentioned very briefly at the

beginning of our interview, he’d never actually, he’d heard

about Infusionsoft but he’d never actually seen it and I said,

“Do you want me to do a screen share with you?” He’s like, “Yes.

If you don’t mind.” I did about ten minutes and I showed him

lead scoring. I showed him my engagement campaign, my sales

funnel, my long term nurture, the automated how I register free

people for webinars and then how people get on my show as a

guest and how that’s all automated and he just, I could see him

just going, “Holy cow.” He says, “I had no idea that you could

do this much stuff.” He says, “I thought it was like an email

program.” I think that that is not entirely uncommon for when

people see it. It’s hard to grasp something, the power of

something until you’ve really seen it. Come and check out those

free videos and hopefully you’ll get as excited as this

individual did.

Scott: I love that you’re doing that and I would just encourage the

listeners, when you’re watching that, the temptation is to say,

“That person’s business, Trent’s business is a little different

than mines. Maybe that doesn’t apply.” If you fight that urge,

you will find application and ask yourself the question, “How

can I apply this to my business? What area of my business can I

use a strategy like this?” I think you’ll find that to be a much

more successful line of thinking.

Trent: I don’t think there’s most any, I mean, I think about this

stuff a lot. If somebody came to me and said, “I have a dry

cleaner, could you make me run better with Infusionsoft?” I’d be

willing to bet I probably could. I’m not even an Infusionsoft

consultant so please don’t email me to, but I can refer you to

one if you’re listening to this and you want one. I don’t think

that there is a business around that could not be improved

through marketing automation and Infusionsoft is a great tool

for that.

Let’s wrap up with a little view into the future. What do you see

coming next for small businesses and then we’ll go into, that’s

my last question before we go into the Lightning Round, which is

just a couple of quick ones that I always like to ask.

Scott: Well I think, the Goldman Sachs investment to me was kind of a

symbol and yes, I think it was significant for us to have

confirmation from a really well established company, but I think

even more importantly is that Goldman Sachs and others are, they

realize that the small business market is massive and that

excites me because we’ve been here with our feet cemented hard

into this small business space, helping small businesses succeed

but a lot of people don’t see the vision. I think they’re just

not willing to really understand small businesses.

You can imagine, a lot of businesses, large companies, who have

executives and so forth that have never been through what it

takes to be a small business, it’s hard for them to really catch

the vision but I think people are starting to catch the vision

for small business and that’s exciting to me. That means there’s

going to be more companies being, more companies who serve small

businesses being funded. More people who care and are willing to

go and create solutions for the small businesses. I think it’s a

really exciting time and I think that the technology

advancements that we can provide small businesses give them an

outsized advantage where they can start to look like a big

company and do the things that in the past were limited to only

big companies with massive budgets. I think it’s a really

exciting time to be a small business owner.

Trent: I couldn’t agree more. A couple of episodes from now I’m going

to be interviewing a guy by the name of Dan Norris, he runs a

site or a company called Inform.ly. He’s put, as you’ll hear in

the interview, only about $10,000 into building his software

application and his results, they’re modest at this point and

time. He only started actually selling this stuff a couple of

months ago and he’s up around $700 a month in recurring revenue

and it’s growing every month. He’s adding customers regularly.

The really cool thing is that business model has so much scale.

My old roommate years ago, I watched him do a similar thing and now

his business generates $100,000 a month and there’s two guys.

Two guys. There’s not even an office. Imagine the profit margins

of that much revenue coming in. It’s so incredibly cheap to

start a business now, 2001 when I started my other company, not

so much. It took a lot more. A lot more. I was many hundreds of

thousands of dollars in debt and that was not a lot of fun. If

you’re thinking about it, there has never been a better time to

go out and create a business and change your life.

Here we are in the lightning round, Scott. What are you most excited

about for 2013?

Scott: I feel like this is a game show. Just kidding. 2013, well one

of the things that we announced at our last user conference was

that we are, we’ve created a marketplace for campaign templates,

so it’s interesting that you brought this up but just as you are

working with the gentleman on the call or your friend, and

helping him to see a really specific concrete example of a

marketing campaign.

I’m excited because we’re unleashing a new round of, kind of a new

era where we provide business owners campaign templates which is

just something that’s already a proven strategy and all they

have to do is install that campaign template, go change it so

that it matches their branding and their company and make sure

that the wording works well and all that, but I’m real excited

about that. I think anything we can do to make life easier for

the small business owners, to me is the way of the future. It’s

really where all of our focus is. Totally pumped about that.

Trent: On that note, if you run, if you’re a marketing consultant or

you run a marketing agency and you’re thinking that you would

like to become an Infusionsoft user, if you use my affiliate

link, and they’re all over, there’s ads on the site, I have

built a specific nurturing funnel, webinar, the whole thing, a

year’s worth of content for your business and you get a copy of

all of those campaigns and all of those emails and everything

for free if you decide to use my Infusion link to become, sorry,

my affiliate link to become an Infusionsoft partner. It will

save you a ton of time and then you can go in and customize it

and tweak it and do whatever you do but there’s a year’s worth

of content there for you. Last question then, what is your

favorite business book?

Scott: That’s not a very fair question. A lot of books out there. I

think, I don’t know if [inaudible 01:00:04] is a business book

but one of my multiple reads that I really love is called “Made

to Stick” and it’s essentially a book about how to create ideas

that can be easily transferred from one person to another. The

reason I bring that up in this context is I think that every

business owner, they’re in the business of persuasion and

whether it’s creating ideas that need to work with your

employees or your vendors or partners or customers, I just think

that’s a really critical element to life and I like the way that

those guys talk about creating ideas that are sticky.

Another one I really like is “Banker to the Poor,” that was one that

Michael Gerber turned me on to. It tells the story of Muhammad

Yunus who created micro-financing and I love just, I love

watching him just intentionally go after his vision and not stop

at anything and just pound and pound until he figured out the

system that would work. Really inspiring.

Trent: Terrific. Thank you for sharing that and Scott, thank you so

much for making the time to be a guest on the show. I have

thoroughly enjoyed the interview and I hope the audience feels

the same. If you have questions for me or for Scott, when you

see the post, there’s comments at the bottom. Go ahead and leave

your comments and questions there and I’ll make sure that both

of us are notified of that.

Scott: Trent, thanks for having me, man. That was fun. I love talking

about this stuff and I appreciate you taking the time to have

the conversation.

Trent: No problem at all. You’re welcome to come back at any time.

Take care.

Scott: Have a good one.

Trent: To get to the show notes from today’s episode, head over to

BrightIdeas.co/60 and when you’re there you’ll see all the links

that we’ve talked about today plus some other valuable goodies

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 my by my many proven experts

that have been guests here on the show.

As well, you’re going to get a list of what I feel are the very best

interviews that I’ve ever recorded and you’ll also get an invite

to my upcoming webinar on lifecycle marketing that I mentioned.

Finally, if you really enjoyed this episode, please head over to

BrightIdeas.co/love where you’ll find a link to leave us a

rating in iTunes and I would really appreciate it if you would

do that. It helps the show to increase its audience the more

feedback that we get. There’s also a pre-populated tweet there

so all you have to do is click the tweet button if you like what

I’ve written and if you don’t like it you can just click the

tweet button and type something else, if you’d like.

That’s it for this episode. I’m your host Trent Dyrsmid. I look

forward to seeing you in the next episode. Take care and have a

wonderful day.

Recording: Thanks very much for listening to the Bright Ideas Podcast.

Check us out on the web at BrightIdeas.co.

About Scott Martineau

scott-martineau-onScott’s mission is to solve the challenges small businesses face in marketing their products and services. He leads the Demand Generation team and oversees marketing activities that drive new prospects and customers for Infusionsoft. His own entrepreneurial experiences and his understanding of what small businesses need enable him to continually evolve our software in innovative and successful ways.

Scott holds a Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems from Arizona State University.

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