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How to Maximize Conversions with Trackable Links

Do you ever wonder how much of your traffic is coming from people typing in your URL vs people clicking links in your emails?

bi-ultimate-marketing-automation-guideHow about that post you shared on Facebook? How much traffic did that wall post send you? Or how about that tweet about your latest webinar? Did it send much traffic?

Answering these questions is exactly what using trackable links are for and in this post, I’m going to dive deeper into showing you exactly how you can start using trackable links to gain much deeper insight into what is working and what isn’t when it comes to using your content and social networks to attract traffic to your site.

About Google Analytics Custom Campaigns

Google analytics is a very powerful tool and I’m only just starting to scratch the surface of how to use it most effectively. One of the parts that I have been experimenting more with as of late is the custom campaigns.

By using trackable links, you can easily create custom campaigns that will tell you exactly which pieces of content are generating the most traffic for you.

Why should you care? Well…if you can identify a trend in the type(s) of content that generate the most traffic, then it might be a good a idea to continue to create, or even just spend more time sharing, more of this particular type of content, right? You bet.

The first step to creating a custom campaign is to create a trackable link with the Custom URL Builder. By using this tool, you can easily create specific links for each of your campaigns and then use these links to share your content on your social networks, within your site, or in your emails (or anywhere else you want).

Creating Your First Trackable Link

In the video below, I’m going to show how exactly how this can be done using the URL Builder and Infusionsoft.

How to Analyze Campaign Effectiveness

Once you have begun to use trackable links, you are going to want to start to track the effectiveness of your various campaigns. To do that, all you need to do is log into analytics and navigate your way down to the section devoted to Traffic Sources…and then within that section, you will see the campaigns section.

campaign-results

Helpful Hints

The very first thing you should do when you begin to use trackable links is to create a spreadsheet to track all the parameters you are using.

For example, in the video above, my campaign source parament was “bi funnel” because I wanted to track all the traffic I get from the subscribers who are going through my sales funnel. If I didn’t make a note of that in a spreadsheet, the next time that I went to create a link I might forget that I’d used “bi funnel” and instead I might type BI-Funnel, which from Google’s perspective, would be an entirely different campaign.

When entering your parameters, it’s also important that you separate multiple words with an underscore. So, instead of putting ‘wall post’, you’d want to use ‘wall_post’.

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Infusionsoft Tutorial: Marketing Campaign for Consultants and Agencies

In this Infusionsoft review, you are going to see how you can totally automate your entire prospecting and nurturing sequence so that you can significantly increase your conversion rate.

bi-ultimate-marketing-automation-guideWhat do you traditionally do with the leads that you capture? I am assuming that most of you will call them or send them an email. If they don’t respond, you will call them again or send them another email. If they don’t respond again, you will probably call them again or send them another email.

Now, here’s the real question. What do you do next?

If you are like most small business people, you stop trying to contact the prospect and they end up in the trash.

Do you realize how much business you potentially throw away every single day? Imagine the impact on your business if you could convert an extra 10% of the leads that go in the trash.

Have you ever wondered why it’s so important to nurture your prospects?

It’s because 81% of your sales happen after you make seven or more contacts to your prospects. Seven contacts! How many of you can honestly tell me you attempt to make seven or more contacts to your prospects.

Please don’t feel bad because 85% of the time, we stop after 1 to 2 contacts.

Have you ever wondered the cost of not making the additional 4 to 5 contacts to each of your prospects?

Let’s say you do a campaign to 10,000 people. This could be by email, direct mail, etc. Out of those 10,000 people, 100 people say they are interested in your product or service. Out of those 100 people, 10 people end up buying your product or service.

I’m assuming many of you would be thrilled by closing 10% of the people that were interested in your product or service.

The question I always like to ask is: what happens to the other 90 responders? Most of them fall through the cracks, have zero follow-up, or will end up buying from your competitors.

In other words, most of these 90 responders will end up in the trash.

What if, on the other hand, you had a way to easily stay in touch with them? What if it was automated?

What if this system allowed you to convert 15, 20, or 25 people instead of just 10? How much of an impact do you think all that extra profit would have on your business?

It would be huge, wouldn’t it?

That’s what I’m talking about! If you aren’t systematizing the lead nurturing process, you could be leaving thousands, or tens of thousands of dollars of profit on the table…for someone else’s business to grab.

Now, that’s just not good business!

As you can see, the key to great nurturing is AMAZING follow up. This is where so many businesspeople drop the ball. They are great at making lots of contacts and connections but they lack the skills necessary to follow up properly.

This is why most businesspeople need a specific campaign or path to follow to deliver the right follow up and this is the exact problem that is easily solved with marketing automation software like Infusionsoft.

Infusionsoft: A Much More Efficient Solution

If you are an Infusionsoft user, there is there is a much more effective way to achieve greater results with less effort (and frustration).

In the video below, I’m going to show how exactly how this can be done.

Want a Copy of This Campaign?

If you purchase Infusionsoft via our affiliate link, we will provide you with a copy of this campaign for free.

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Infusionsoft Tutorial: How to Automate Birthday Reminders

One of the many ways that you can build relationships with your customers and prospects is to send them an email or a card to extend them a birthday wish.

bi-ultimate-marketing-automation-guideThe challenge with this is that, as your list of customers and prospects increases in size, sending out birthday cards or emails can become a significant resource drain – unless you have a means of automating it.

There are plenty of ways to do this, of course. However, unless you like adding complexity to your business, the most effective ways will not require you to add yet another “system” for you or your staff to maintain.

Infusionsoft: A Much More Efficient Solution

If you are an Infusionsoft user, there is there is a much more effective way to achieve greater results with less effort (and frustration).

In the video below, I’m going to show how exactly how this can be done.

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Shaun Whynacht 4 in x 6 in x 300 dpi x FC

Digital Marketing Strategy: How Blue Cow Creative Doubled Revenue in 12 months with Marketing Automation

Do you run a small marketing agency and struggle to attract enough new clients to meet your growth goals?

Would you like to discover a way to put client attraction on autopilot?

In this episode of the Bright Ideas podcast, my guest on the show is Shaun Whynacht, founder of Blue Cow Creative, a small marketing agency based in Nova Scotia, Canada. I learned of Shaun at the last Infusioncon and when I heard that he’d doubled his revenue in just a year, I asked him to come on the show to share his story.

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

  • (02:13) Who he is and what his company is all about
  • (04:13) The results they’ve achieved (doubling their revenue!)
  • (04:58) What they did prior to what they’re doing now
  • (06:13) A big investment they made, and the cost of signing up
  • (08:13) How they capture leads
  • (10:53) Specific tactics they use for lead magnets
  • (11:53) Their focus on educating prospects
  • (13:13) How they segment their list
  • (15:49) The type of lead magnets they use
  • (18:43) Which social networks are working for them
  • (19:58) How they drive traffic
  • (21:13) A description of their lead nurture process
  • (22:58) How they are using the phone to follow up
  • (25:03) How they are converting prospects
  • (26:43) How they qualify leads
  • (31:13) How they are using testimonials
  • (33:53) How Infusionsoft has exponentially improved their nurturing
  • (38:13) How they are using Infusionsoft for operations
  • (39:46) Lightning round

Links

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.

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Transcript

Trent
Dyrsmid: Hey there, bright idea hunters. Welcome to the ‘Bright Ideas’
podcast. I’m your host, Trent Dyrsmid, and this is the podcast for
marketing agencies and entrepreneurs who want to discover how to use
content marketing and marketing automation to massively boost their
business.On the show with me today is a fellow by the name of Shaun Whynacht,
who is the founder of a company called Blue Cow Creative, a small marketing
agency. I learned of Shaun by way of attending InfusionCon this past year.
Shaun started to use InfusionSoft, and in the year following his using it,
he was able to double the revenue of his firm. Being as he’s got a
relatively small firm, just two people, I wanted to get him on to tell his
story because that’ll be a great story of significant results with someone
who maybe doesn’t have a huge pile of resources to work with Shaun’s story
is exactly that.Before we get to the interview, I want to give you my tool tip for
this episode, and that is something called JobChangeAlerts.com. If you want
to know when someone who you are connected to on LinkedIn changes their job
description or profile, which might be an opportune time for you to get in
touch with them to sell them your services, JobChangeAlerts.com will do
that for you. Will actually send you an email, so it’s a super-cool little
tool and it’s totally free.The other announcement is, my next life cycle marketing webinar,
which you can register for at BrightIdeas.co/webinar. If you are not yet
getting as many leads as you would like, or you’re not doing a good enough
job converting those leads to customers, or you’re not getting enough
referrals from your existing customers, this webinar will definitely help
you to improve your results. So, BrightIdeas.co/webinar, to register.So, with that said, please join me in welcoming Shaun to the show.
Hey, Shaun, welcome to the show.Shaun
Whynacht: Thanks for having me.Trent: It’s a pleasure to have you on. I think you’re the first
Canadian that I’ve actually had on my show, which is significant for those
in the audience who don’t know, because I’m Canadian.Shaun: Excellent. It’s a pleasure to be on, and be the first.Trent: Go, Canada, go. [laughs] All right. For the folks who do not
know who you are or what you do, please take a moment and introduce
yourself and your company.Shaun: I consider myself an entrepreneur of life. I’ve had a business
since the age of 17, and a couple since; but most recently, what I’ve been
doing is a company called Blue Cow Creative Design and Productions, Ltd. We
do a lot of content creation for clients, including social media marketing
and lead capture, drip marketing, those kind of things.Trent: Okay. So, very much a marketing expert in the marketing agency
space, which is ideal because a lot of the people who are listening to this
show either run a firm like yours, aspire to run a firm like yours, or
could use the services of a firm like yours.You came to my attention because InfusionSoft profiled you for some
of the success that you’d been having since starting to use their
application. I want to talk a bit about that because obviously I’m a big
InfusionSoft fan. I use it myself and I think that there are people who are
considering using it, or could be using it, and I’d really love them to
hear from people who are having success with it.

With that said, you run a two-person agency?

Shaun: Yes.

Trent: Okay. Let’s jump to the conclusion first, So the people who are
wondering, ‘Why do I want to listen to this interview?’ Since starting to
use InfusionSoft, can you tell us a little bit about the results that
you’ve been able to achieve?

Shaun: We’ve been using it almost two years now. After the first year
of using it, we’ve noticed that our revenue has doubled from the previous
years. It wasn’t just a banner year just because of the economy, it was
actually what we have proven to be attributed to the benefit of using
InfusionSoft through educating our prospects before they actually decide to
work with us. And then the service after the sale, that it’s allowed us to
do. That’s really what it has done for us and it’s almost like having two
other people working 24/7 for us when people are inquiring online.

Trent: Yeah. That’s pretty significant. Doubling your revenue and the
work of two other people.

Before InfusionSoft, how did you used to do what it is that you’re
doing now? Or did you even do it?

Shaun: If anybody listening is familiar with the old show MacGyver, I
say that we’ve MacGyvered a system together, where we had multiple
different systems out there running, one for invoicing, one for emailing,
one for contacts, and none of them really worked together. It wasn’t that
we looked at them as systems that didn’t work together. We just didn’t know
that there was a solution out there that would do it all in one.

When we heard about InfusionSoft and did the online demo, we were
hesitant that there was a claim that there was a service out there, that we
could subscribe to and use their software, and do all that. It took
probably six months for me to convince myself to take that leap and
actually try it, but it was the best decision we’ve done since then.

Trent: What you just said there is not uncommon. It’s a reasonably
good-sized investment up-front, a couple thousand dollars, and then it’s a
couple hundred dollars per month. I’ve had people email me who’ve listened
to the show, to ask about the pricing, and then right away, ‘Oh no, that’s
too much money.’ Did you think the same thing when you were looking at it
to begin with? Was that one of the things that was causing you to not pull
the trigger right away?

Shaun: Definitely. It wasn’t because I saw it as I didn’t have the
money to invest in it, it was just a big investment, especially for a small
business, a young entrepreneur who was just trying to make ends meet month-
to-month. Then, actually doing it, and looking at the other systems we used
where commonly they were considerably less per month, but you get what you
pay for. The time it saved us to not have to go between all those, it
actually works out cheaper if you figure out the time you’ve wasted with
the other services, by using their all-in-one solution.

Trent: Was there subcontractors that you used to use for various
manual processes, that now you’ve been able to automate and so you don’t
require those subcontractors, or even just your own time?

Shaun: It was my own time. It was replying to people’s inquiries about
common questions and those kind of things. For us, for what we do, because
a lot of the work is in creating a project and training our clients to use
it and be able to pedal on after the sale and use those solutions. To
educate them after, and have that resource there that they can come back
to, and currently drip information out to them after the fact to enhance
that service, was something that I would have had to spend a lot of time,
for one with a calendar and figure out, when do I send all this stuff, and
then actually physically have to do it. InfusionSoft just makes it all
simple for us.

Trent: Indeed it does. There’s three main pieces to InfusionSoft.
There’s the CRM component, there is the online shopping cart so you can
receive payments for whatever you would like, and then there’s the whole
marketing automation/email/autoresponder, however you would like to
describe that. I just call it the marketing automation piece. Are you using
all three pieces?

Shaun: I use all three. I use, more so, the campaign manager and the
campaign builder for a lot of the stuff. Probably about 80 percent of the
function we use it for, is for that. We have a lot of free resources on our
website where people can come in and request to download a free eBook or
free report, and then they get into a campaign where they’re getting drip
information about that, to convert them down the road, about when they want
to make that decision to move with a company like us, that they’re already
educated about what we do. We do that before the sale.

Then, after the sale, we use a lot of follow up through that, getting
people into education sequences, going out. We use the CRM, obviously, to
keep track of all the contact information, but also keep track of a lot of
the pertinent information regarding that client’s account, whether that’s
passwords, and things of that nature.

When it comes to the online payment and the eCommerce side, we don’t
use it as much. We don’t have an online store, but we do have certain
products. We do workshops where we get people to register and it processes
through that and puts them in the sequence for those workshops.

We wrote a book last year on marketing for small business and we sell
that through there, as well. There’s definitely a lot of power there on the
shopping side that we don’t use, but a lot of clients in different
industries could use it a lot more to their advantage than we do.

Trent: Yeah. Good segue into my next bit of questions. You started to
talk about free reports and capturing leads and so forth. I want to shift
to that because I think lead generation is a big problem for a lot of
people, especially when they are first starting out, or even when they’re
thinking about starting out. That’s probably the biggest fear I find in
people: How am I going to get my customers? In the next bit of the
interview, we’re going to talk specifically about what’s working for you
for lead generation, what you’re doing to nurture and educate those leads,
and then how you’re converting them to customers. Then, if we have time,
because I want to keep this under an hour, for sure, We’ll talk maybe a bit
about some of what you’re doing for up-sells and cross-sells and referrals.

Shaun: What we do for lead generation: when we started doing this kind
of thing, it was looking at people that were similar in our field and
seeing those mass numbers of contacts. Whether it was social media and
looking at their Facebook pages, to hearing about their email lists and
hearing about the thousands of people that they have, and being overwhelmed
by that and wondering how you can do it.

We’re looking to build quality connections as opposed to quantity. We
do it a lot through offering free webinars. We do a lot of them live, and
then we’re getting into more writing little white papers, two or three
pages, on things like permission marketing and Facebook advertising and
those kind of things.

In our industry here, most of the business community are owners over
45 years of age and up. So a lot of them haven’t grown up with the social
media side. They haven’t grown up with the technology. A big part of it
based around education. We don’t base it around, if you do this, you’re
going to make X amount of dollars, you’re going to bring X amount of
clients through your door. It’s education first. Then, they try it for a
bit, and then they want to take it to the next step. That’s usually the
point where they get in contact with us.

We do a really good job. We give them maximum information with
minimum commitment to begin, and that’s the key to lead generation. If you
want somebody to download something, if you want to email them something,
all you really need to give them, or for them to give you, is their email
address. You don’t need their address, you don’t need their phone number,
all that stuff. The more you ask for, the less you’re going to get. As you
get them through that whole sequence, and educating them, and building that
trust that you know what you’re talking about, then they’re going to be
more willing to give you that information down the road. That’s what we’ve
seen. It’s what we heard about first, and we tried it, and we see that it
works, so that’s what we’re doing.

Trent: Let me ask a follow-on question for that. You, like me and
probably everybody else, when you get that email address from an
individual, we really don’t know anything about them. In the case of Bright
Ideas, they could be a small business owner, they could be a marketing
consultant, they could be the CEO of a marketing agency, they could be
somebody thinking of starting a marketing agency. The way that I would want
to nurture and educate, because I have products across a couple of
different spectrums. Some products would be applicable to more than one of
those four categories, and other products wouldn’t. I don’t want to just
start sending out all my stuff to everybody, so I start to segment.

What is it that you do? You must segment somehow, because it’s not so
difficult to do. Can you talk a little bit about what you’re doing to make
sure that you get your list segmented in the right way?

Shaun: The information they’ve put out there for those lead generation
tools are very specific to that certain area. For example, we have one
where it’s a ten-video series on how to use Facebook, how to set it up, how
to do the very basics of it. We know that the people that are signing up
for that are very basic users. You’ll have the odd person that’ll sign up
because there’s something for free, but the majority of them are that way.
They’ll go through those ten videos, and then at the end we’ll make them an
offer to go to a more advanced phase, or they just sit there for a bit and
they just get periodic emails.

If they make the step up, then we know that they’re looking to go a
little further. The key is not, get an email and send them everything but
the dog’s lunch, it’s very segmented and making sure that you make them the
ones that control when they want the next bit of information. We find that
it works really well. Every webinar that we do, we do them for free, we get
a couple of really good leads that turn into clients, so it does pay back
itself multiple times after the fact. A lot of our clients that we try to
teach this to haven’t really grasped the concept of giving away something
for free. It’s like, ‘Why should I spend my time doing that if I’m not
getting paid for it?’ Well, you nurture them now, they’re going to pay you
back later if you do a good job at it.

Trent: Absolutely. It’s not as though you’re restricted to giving away
this information to one person at a time. The beauty, obviously, of a
webinar is that you can leverage your time by giving one bit of information
to many people at one time.

Shaun: The key that I’ve found with using InfusionSoft specifically
for this is that you’re not set to a start and end time. You spend the time
to create these products, create these sequences, and depending on when
people come into the funnel, whether it’s today or three weeks down the
road, they’re in the program. They’re getting the information based on the
time that they went in. It’s not like somebody’s going to miss some
information, and I think that’s what’s key to that. It allows us to
leverage the power of InfusionSoft above and beyond doing it manually, like
we had before.

Trent: Going back to what you were talking about with the lead
magnets. A lead magnet, by the way, in case people are unfamiliar with that
term, is what you are giving away to get the email address. It sounds like,
Shaun, that you have more than one lead magnet. How many different ones do
you have?

Shaun: We’ve done the webinars. We’ve recorded them, so those are now
available. People can go on there, sign up, then they get the link to the
videos. There’s probably two or three of those right now. We’ve got our
Facebook video series, we’ve got our book that we wrote, that’s now
available in eBook format and audiobook format for free as well. We’re
working on one right now, that’ll come out in probably the next couple of
weeks, on permission marketing.

Trent: Cool. Of those three, which one works the best for you?

Shaun: The videos. People like to be able to watch a video. The way
that we do them is solely with screencast for the trainings. People
actually get to see what we’re talking about, as opposed to giving them a
printed report. The printed report does all right, but not as well as
video, especially if you have some information to give out, just turning
the camera on and talking to the person will have a higher engagement, we
found.

Trent: I also think it goes a long way to build more trust, as well,
because they’re hearing your voice, and I think that we form a lot of our
opinions about how we feel about another person when we can either hear or
see them on our screen, versus just reading some text that they’ve written.

Shaun. Yes. You get to hear their voice, you get to see them. It’s all
those things that you would have if you were in front of that person. My
background is in video, so I’m a big fan of it. I think people are using
video more and I think they can use it even more as we move forward.

Trent: Speaking of video, I’m actually right in the process of
creating a new lead magnet myself, called The Conversion Tactics Toolkit.
If you’re listening to this on iTunes and you have not yet been to Bright
Ideas, go to BrightIdeas.co and you’ll be able to have an opportunity to
opt in to The Conversion Tactics Toolkit. It is an entirely video series.

All right. Is there anything that, in terms of capturing email
addresses, that’s working particularly well for you that I’ve not yet asked
you about, that you would tell somebody if you were sitting in a coffee
shop having this conversation?

Shaun: What I tell people is that if you’re doing this kind of thing,
and you’re on different platforms like social media, Twitter and Facebook,
is you need to have all your lead capturing/lead generation tools available
in all those different platforms. That’s worked really well for us. When we
create something new, we send it out to our existing email newsletter list
that we’ve gained over the years. We also put it on Facebook and do some
promotion there. We put it on Twitter and LinkedIn. The more relevant that
the information is to the networks that we’re doing, then we find we’re
getting some really good engagement that way.

Trent: Do you find that there is one social network that tends to work
better with the business audience than the others?

Shaun: Not really better, it depends on what we’re doing. Depending on
whether it’s a video series, or if it’s-, specifically let’s talk about the
Facebook one, because we had a higher engagement promoted out on Facebook
because they were in that medium when we were doing it. Whether it’s doing
that there, or sending it out by email, I think it’s relevant to what
you’re offering.

Trent: That makes a lot of sense. People hanging on Facebook would
obviously want to know how to use Facebook for marketing.

Shaun: Time of day, too, when you’re posting things. If you’re
targeting a business owner, which in most of the cases we are, we find a
higher engagement when it’s near the end of the day, as opposed to the
middle of the day because most people are engaged in their business. Even
on the weekends, surprisingly enough. At least here, we have a high
engagement of business owners that will subscribe to stuff on the weekends
because it’s low cost, in most cases free, for them to opt into it. That’s
when they’ve got some time to be online.

Trent: What are some things you’re doing to drive traffic to all these
offers? Are you getting traffic to your blog because you’re blogging, or
are you doing paid Facebook ads?

Shaun: We’ve done a little bit of paid Facebook ads, and they do
convert quite well for us. The majority of the stuff that we’re getting for
new leads is through our existing emails and through referrals. Most of our
new business, probably about 85% to 90% of it, is all referral-based. We
don’t do too much advertising. A lot of it comes through other people
sharing the content, being on our Facebook page, and those kinds of things.

Trent: Do you think there’s anything that you’re doing specifically
that’s stimulating those referrals, or is it just people who are genuinely
happy with the services you’re providing them?

Shaun: I think it’s the fact that we’re very real in the way we
present ourselves. We’re not making any false claims. We’re not giving them
the ‘This is the be-all solution to all your financial freedom.’ We make it
known that these are steps that you need to take to learn and know this
technology and we’re here if you want to take it to the next level. People
really appreciate that we’re not leading them in and making them sink or
swim.

Trent: Yeah. All right, let’s transition to nurturing now. You’ve
talked a bit about it. You’ve talked about the importance of educating
people, but I want to get a little bit more specific now, if we can. Let’s
use your video series, ‘Lead Capture,’ as the example of the guinea pig for
this part of the conversation.

Someone, they see your lead magnet, they give you their email
address, they hit the submit button, or the sign-me-up button, whatever
you’ve called it. What happens in that campaign builder? What have you
built, and what’s going to happen to that new subscriber? Walk us through
that.

Shaun: Once they sign up, they’ll initially get an email welcoming
them to the series, explaining what each of the videos are going to be
doing, and giving them the realistic expectation that they come out every
three days on a weekday and they spend whatever the length is there. In the
videos at the end, they’re then given a link to them. So that if for some
reason they can’t watch one, they’re going to get that in the end for that.

Throughout the process, then about a quarter of the way through,
we’re prompted to mail them out a letter just to introduce the company. No
sales or anything is in that letter. Just excited to have them going
through the series. Just introduce our website and those kind of things a
little bit more. Then, near the end, once they’ve finished, we’re prompted
to give them a call and see what they thought about it. See if they had any
further questions. They can talk to me personally about their journey
through Facebook.

We’re promoting it also as education, to use it on a personal level,
so we’re getting both sides of the fence there. Because I truly believe
that even though somebody might not be in a business and might not use it
for a business purpose, they know somebody that could. We’re not
eliminating educating those people that want to know how to use it for a
personal reason, too.

Trent: I’m very happy you mentioned that there was a call in your
sequence. I think that some people are needlessly scared of the telephone.
When you say call, they think cold call, and they think, ‘Ugh, I don’t ever
want to do that. That would be horrible.’ But, you’re not making a cold
call.

Shaun: No. That’s the key with putting the call near the end of the
sequence, as opposed to initially, at the beginning. If we put it right
when they signed up, we would technically be cold-calling them. Whereas at
the end, we’ve provided them ten videos, ten contact points of information
where we’re helping them every time. We’re never asking for the sale. Even
the call is not sales-oriented. It’s not, ‘Here we have a paid program’, or
anything like that. It’s ‘Just wanted to thank you for going through that.
Do you have any questions? If you ever want to take it to the next level,
this is who we are.’ We thank them for doing that. In most cases, we get
thank-yous back. Other times, we even get people saying that they’ve never
actually had a call that wasn’t pushy sales.

Trent: When you’re making these calls, do you find that people…
‘Hey, this is Shaun from Blue Cow,’ they’re like, ‘Oh hey, Shaun’. What’s
the response that you get, the vast majority of the time when they answer
the phone?

Shaun: They know who I am, even if I’ve never met them, because
they’ve heard me. Each of the videos are probably 15-20 minutes in length.
Some are shorter. They hear my voice throughout those videos. They know my
name. I introduce myself at the beginning, so it’s kind of like they
already know me when I call. It’s a familiar voice on the phone, as opposed
to getting somebody else to call.

Trent: Definitely it’s an easy phone call for you to make and it’s an
easy phone call for them to receive.

Shaun: That’s right.

Trent: How many times, even though you say it’s not a call to ‘be
pushy’ or ask for business, how, in your experience, are you finding that
some people are volunteering, ‘Hey, actually I would like to work with you
to do blah, blah,blah.’ or if that never happens, how are we starting to
convert some of these prospects to clients?

Shaun: Probably I have just over 50% of those people openly, as soon
as I thank them for that and I ask them if there’s anything else they might
need education on, they’ll openly tell me what it is. The rest of them, you
have to dig a little bit about that. I’ll ask, ‘How are you using
Facebook?’ first, if you have a business, and then I’ll ask, ‘How are you
using Facebook in your business?’ and they’re hoping to do some advertising
and that kind of stuff, so I lead them to one of our webinars on Facebook
advertising. Or, we have a report that goes with that and I tell them about
that. But probably more times than not, they want to schedule a time to
talk on the phone, and then, if we do a good job and convert them, then we
end up working with them.

We’re not scared to admit that the relationship is not a fit, if
that’s the case. A lot of people will not do that. They’ll just push and
push for the sale, whereas we want to work with a certain demographic of
business owners. If it doesn’t fit for us, and it doesn’t fit for them,
then we thank them and we both go our separate ways.

Trent: That’s a really, really important point, that you’ve brought
up. Because a lot of small business owners, they get a few years in, and
then they realize they have this hodge-podge of customers, 20% of which are
generating 80% of the revenue. The other 80% are, kind of, a pain in their
butt because they took them maybe out of desperation in the early years. Or
they just took them for reasons that weren’t really solid reasons. Does
that sound familiar to you? Did you go through that experience, or were you
very choosy from the beginning?

Shaun: No, I was not very choosy. Starting out, any hook that came
into the water, I was biting at it. Using the InfusionSoft system, it’s has
allowed us to qualify those people and see, when they receive emails, what
are they clicking on? What are they doing? To see how interested they are,
so that when we talk to them, we can tell now if they’re really going to be
a key client. If we can’t help them, there’s no point in even going through
that process.

Even if the money’s there, we’d still do this work if we didn’t have
to get paid. We just enjoy doing it, especially if it’s helping people. But
also, that need to help people led us, in the early years, to jump at those
early leads because we feel that people were needing our help. We would
just do stuff. We’d discount some services just so they could use what
we’re doing. But in the end, like you said, that’s probably that 80 % that
just takes up more valuable time than you have, when really, they’re just a
one-off project whereas we’re trying to build long-term relationships.

Trent: You mentioned qualifying. I want to dig a little deeper into
that, if we can. In InfusionSoft, there’s something called lead scoring?

Shaun: Yes.

Trent: I apologize to the audience for all the frogs in my throat
today. I don’t really know why I’m having such a problem here, but I’m
doing my best. Are you using lead scoring, and if so, how are you using it
to help qualify the prospects that are in your funnel so that the people
who deserve the attention, be it the phone call and so forth, are getting
it?

Shaun: We currently don’t use lead scoring. I know the power of it. I
just don’t think that where I’m currently at with the business, that it
works for us the way we’d want it to. We do a lot of our qualifications by
the initial phone call and talking with people. We make it known that this
is what we hope to get out of this call and this initial consultation and
get them to commit to that first. Then we sit down. Just talking to people,
we find, is the best way to do it.

That doesn’t mean that I don’t go in and look at the back history to
see how many times they’ve been checking out our website, what they’ve been
looking at, before we sit down, so I can see how interested they are; or,
if they just decided to come to our website and call right away.

The lead scoring is a powerful tool, especially if you’re in a
business where you might even have a sales force or a sales team where it
can figure out if they’re a hot lead based on their interaction and those
kind of things.

Trent: When you are interviewing a prospective client, do you always
meet with them face-to-face before they become a client? Or, are you
sometimes getting clients who aren’t in your town?

Shaun: It depends on the situation. I prefer to meet face-to-face
whenever possible, but I realize sometimes that time restraints, distance,
and weather don’t allow that. We do a few phone calls for this kind of
thing, but in most cases we try to sit down. I think one of the key things
is to not come across as selling them something. But them identifying what
their needs are, what their goals are, and realizing that what we could
offer will be a solution to that. We find that’s really good.

One of the first things I ask somebody is, ‘What do you hope to get
out of working with us?’ They tell you right away. ‘This is what my problem
is and this is where I’d like to go with it.’ Now it gives us a target to
work towards. In some cases, that goal is something we can’t attain for
them, so it’s either try to get them to a realistic level, or just say,
‘Maybe there’s somebody else better suited for that.’

Trent: That’s a very powerful thing to be able to do. I know that when
I was running my last technology company, and this was in the early 2000s,
before any of this fancy-schmancy marketing automation stuff, that I was
aware of it maybe it existed. One of the first questions we would ask when
we would get a meeting with a new prospect is, ‘Why’d you take the
meeting?’ That was a really terrific way for someone to tell you their
agenda right at the beginning, so that you knew the points that you needed
to speak to so you’d have a chance of converting them into a good client.

Shaun: Yeah, for sure.

Trent: We’ve talked about how you’re capturing leads. We’ve talked
about how you’re nurturing leads. I think we’ve covered how you’re
converting your leads to customers as well, unless there’s anything else
there. Is there anything that’s major in your process on the conversion
part of it that we haven’t talked about?

Shaun: Because a lot of our new business and new leads comes from
referrals, it’s using the power of asking for testimonials. I’m a big fan
of testimonials and people telling their story of why they chose to work
with us. What they liked working with us, so we can use that on our
website, on our blog, on our social media, to promote that experience.
Because I think working with a company should be a positive experience as
opposed to just hiring somebody, and then not really understanding what it
is that we do. That talks back to what we do in the early stages with the
education. It’s not really a lot about educating them about what’s out
there. But educating them about the process we take with them, in the early
stages. So that they know they’re involved in that process and they don’t
feel left out.

One of the things we’ve heard a lot is that they’ve worked with other
companies and they don’t hear from them for a few days and they don’t
really know what it is that they’re doing. Then, they get a bill in the end
and hopefully the project is good, or not. That’s key to what we do.

Trent: How do you ask for testimonials? Do you just call them up and
ask them? Or do you have a process, campaign, something?

Shaun: Yeah, we just have a little note campaign that we add to that
contact at the end. Just thanking them that the project has completed and
we’ve successfully launched, depending on what it is. And just ask them to
go to our Facebook page and write their testimonial, as opposed to just
emailing it to us.

Trent: Wow, that’s cool.

Shaun: In most cases, but if they’re not on Facebook, then obviously
we take it by email, but we want it to come authentic from them and not
seem like we’ve reformatted it and pushed it out after the fact.

Trent: Then, you can take a screen shot of it on Facebook and reuse
that particular image wherever you like.

Shaun: That’s right. Plus, immediately, all their friends see that
they’ve posted something on our wall, and it helps that way.

Trent: Golden nugget, there it is. I’ve got to write that down –
testimonials on Facebook.

Shaun: You can always copy and paste it and use it in other things
after, but at least the original source is authentic.

Trent: Yeah. Okay. This nurturing process that we’ve been talking
about obviously is working very, very well for you. And you’d mentioned,
before InfusionSoft that this was not so easy. Did you nurture, in any way,
shape, or form, like you do now, only you did it manually and it took a lot
of work? Or, were you like maybe a lot of people out there who would get a
prospect, call them three or four times, ‘Nah, they don’t want to take the
meeting’, and then just give up?

Shaun: Yeah, the last one there, that was pretty much me. A lot of the
process of using InfusionSoft was learning the keys to nurturing and that
that was actually a key point to doing business. The benefit with
InfusionSoft is not just that they’re a software, but there’s a whole team
of people there that are invested in your growth and the well-being of your
company.

So if you have any questions about, ‘How could I use this element?’
It’s not just the p’s and q’s, and click here and do this. It’s ‘Here’s how
you take it offline, here’s how you use it.’ So I think that they’re really
great that way.

I’ve also been down to both InfusionCons in the last two years.
That’s a huge event that really helped me focus my business, learn what I
needed to do, and realize that I didn’t have all the answers, but I could
learn them down the road.

Trent: That is such an incredibly good point. I’m wondering if you do
this: back when I was running my technology company, I participated in a
couple of mastermind groups where, in one case, one of them was called True
Profit, and another one was called Vistage. We would meet, I think one of
them was four times a year, and the other one, I can’t remember. I think
also four times a year. You’d sit down in a room with other people who are
running companies exactly like what you’re running, just in a different
marketplace. And we would openly share a huge amount of detail in every
area, from marketing to operations, so that we could all learn from each
other.

I can’t emphasize how valuable that was, because you’re learning from
people who are doing exactly what you’re doing, and they’re running their
own businesses. Do you participate in anything like that?

Shaun: I currently don’t. I’m currently looking for something like
that. I do see the extreme value in a mastermind group, but just in the
area that we’re in, we haven’t found that kind of thing. We do a lot of
networking and talking to businesses in other areas that cover a lot of the
key basics of bookkeeping and all that other kind of things that we need to
talk about. But when it comes to specifics, we currently haven’t done
anything like that.

Trent: Okay. Well, I’m going to introduce you to something like that.
Bright Ideas does have a mastermind group. If you go to
BrightIdeas.co/mastermind, you can learn more about it. It is specifically
targeted to people who are marketing consultants and marketing agencies.
However, with that said, because that’s what, when you read the page,
actually by the time this is published, there will be a full page
explaining everything, Shaun. If you go there right now, it’s just what I
call the pre-launch page, where you can register for updates and so forth.

Even though, on the full page, which, people when they’re listening
to this will see it, I want them to understand that the principles and the
things that we talk about, and it starts off with a two day workshop, two
day online workshop. The principles that we talk about are going to be
highly applicable to whatever industry you’re in, but most of the people in
the group probably will be running marketing agencies. With that said, one
of my facilitators, and you probably know him, his name is Dustin Burleson.
That name ring a bell with you?

Shaun: No, it doesn’t.

Trent: Oh, okay. He was one of the Ultimate Marketer finalists at
InfusionCon this year. He’s the guy that has the orthodontics clinic
that…

Shaun: Okay, yes, now I know.

Trent: Four clinics now, because he’s using, it just blew up once he
started using InfusionSoft. He’s going to be inviting a number of the
people who attend, other orthodontists who attend his seminars. This first
one that we’re going to do, I’m not exactly sure of the mix of the people.
Regardless, if you’re looking for a mastermind group, just head over to
BrightIdeas.co/mastermind and there will be information there for you to
check out.

All right. Sorry, again, for all the frogs in my throat. I don’t know
why. What do I want to ask you about next? We were going to make a
transition, how are we doing for time? We’ve still got a bit of time.

Are you still – got a few minutes left?

Shaun: Yes, certainly.

Trent: I know. I know what it was. This wasn’t on my list of
questions, but you talked about this early on. We’ve talked a lot about how
InfusionSoft and the campaign builder is helping you with marketing, but I
want to talk about how it’s helping you with operations, and stuff that
happens after people become a client.

Can you speak to, because the campaign builder, I mean, campaigns
don’t have to be marketing-oriented. Because all a campaign is, is a
sequence of communication and activity, which is more or less any, and
almost every, business process. Can you talk about anything that you’re
doing in that regard?

Shaun: Well use a lot of the CRM side of InfusionSoft, with the custom
fields and and the custom tabs, to tailor it towards the information that
we need to keep about each client’s project. When we’re dealing with people
that we’re building websites for, or setting up online accounts, we keep a
lot of their account details in there; attach their records, so that if I
need to go in, or somebody else needs to go in later to send them that
information, it is there for them.

The other side is, also, using a lot of the tracking of the emails
that we send out. We can send them out through that so we can see when
they’ve opened them and any links that they clicked on. As for using any of
the sequences internally for the actual project building, usually once we
take on the project, when we finish it, a lot of that communication is just
done one-on-one with the client by our team, or any subcontractors that we
use. Then, after the sale, we go back and give them some resources about
using that service or that product that we’ve created for them.

Trent: Okay. All right, Shaun. Well, I want to thank you very much.
Oh, before I go, my lightning round. Can’t forget the lightning round.
Three questions.

Shaun: Okay.

Trent: Question number one: what are you most excited about for 2013?

Shaun: For 2013, what we’re more excited about it we’re launching a
new area to our business called the Seniors Learning Academy. Because here
in Nova Scotia, we have a large contingency of seniors who are using iPads
and a lot of them don’t know how to use them. This whole project is, first,
teaching them how to use these new pieces of technology for their
lifestyle. We’ll be rolling that out in a DVD learning series for them.
That’s what we’re really excited about, coming up.

Trent: Now is that a product you’re going to sell?

Shaun: Yes.

Trent: Okay. I was going to say, because how does that fit in with
lead gen? But now I get it. That’s just a revenue producer in its own
right.

All right. What is your favorite business book?

Shaun: Ooh, well, I’m currently reading, and I’m really liking, Seth
Godin’s ‘Permission Marketing.’ I really like the mindset of that. Anything
that he writes has been stellar, right from ‘The Purple Cow,’ to ‘Meatball
Sundae,’ I think is the latest one that I read before this. Anything Seth
Godin puts out, I think, is golden.

Trent: Finally, for the folks who have been listening to you now and
think, ‘Hey, I might like to do business with Shaun’, what’s the number one
easiest way for them to get in touch with you?

Shaun: The best way is to go to www.BlueCowCreative.ca.

Trent: Terrific. Shaun, thank you so much for making some time to be
on the show. It’s been a pleasure to have you on.

Shaun: It’s been a pleasure being here.

Trent: All right. To get to this show notes from today’s episode, go
to BrightIdeas.co/66. When you’re there, you’ll see all the links that
we’ve talked about today, plus some other valuable information that you can
use to ignite more growth in your business.

If you’re listening to this on your mobile phone, just text TRENT to
585858 and I’ll give you access to the ‘Massive Traffic Toolbox,’ which is
a compilation of all of the very best traffic generation strategies shared
with me by the many proven experts that have been guests here on the show.
As well, you’ll also be able to get a list of, what I feel, are the very
best interviews, thus far, that I have recorded. I can promise you will
discover many bright ideas as a result of those interviews.

Finally, if you really enjoyed this episode, please head over to
BrightIdeas.co/love, where you will find a link to leave us a rating in the
iTunes store.

That’s it for this episode. I am your host, Trent Dyrsmid, and I look
forward to seeing you in the next episode. Take care and have a wonderful
day.

Recording: Thanks very much for listening to the Bright Ideas podcast.
Check us out on the web at BrightIdeas.co.

About Shaun Whynacht

ShaunWhynacht-PromoShot-SmallAs a leader in social media consulting, Blue Cow is on the leading edge of technology application, combining an up-to-the minute understanding of current tools and trends with proven skills in creative design and video production to offer clients the latest, hippest approach to their business needs. But Blue Cow’s approach dictates that superior customer service and a personalized approach is the hallmark of their operation; here high tech meets down home.

It’s a business acumen that has made converts of business operators who have experienced the philosophy; developed by company President Shaun Whynacht; of educate, engage and accelerate in which clients learn about the options available, buy-in to those concepts, and then, through applying those tools and trends, meet their goals. But it’s a process that is preambled by Blue Cow’s astute understanding of the technologies and deep interest in the needs of the client. There’s no love-‘em and leave-‘em in these relationships – Blue Cow and their clients stay committed to each other for the long haul!

And with that track record, it’s no wonder that the youthful Mr. Whynacht (he’s, amazingly, just 32) has earned the attention of regional business leaders who have featured him and his firm in High Flyers, a showcase of the region’s most promising up-and-coming entrepreneurs.

Casey Graham 4 in x 6 in x 300 dpi x FC

Digital Marketing Strategy: How Casey Graham Reached 5,000 customers and $2 Million in Sales in Just 3 Years

3 years ago, Casey Graham was at rock bottom. He was $80,000 in debt, he’d just missed out on a major family event (because he was on the road making sales calls), and things at home weren’t exactly firing on all cylinders.

For many early-stage entrepreneurs, this is an all too familiar story.

Fast forward 3 years, and Casey’s company has become extremely successful, all thanks to a major realization he made on a trip home from overseas (when we was missing out on that important family event).

While on the plane, Casey realize that the way he was delivering his product was wrong, he sales strategy was wrong, and if he was going to ever realize his dreams of owning a successful business, he was doing to need to do a number of things differently.

In this episode of the Bright Ideas podcast, I’m joined by Casey Graham, founder of The Rocket Company, and also the winner of Infusionsoft’s 2013 Ultimate Marketer award. Having made some pretty big changes to his business 3 years ago, Casey now generates over $2 million a year (with very high profit margins), is completely debt free, and is having more fun than ever!

When you listen to this interview, here are some of the things that you are going to hear Casey and I talk about:

  • How entering his company in the Infusionsoft Ultimate Marketing Finals really helped his team to get ultra focused
  • (10:52) The story of how Casey fired himself from his last job to start his own business (and how awful it turned out)
  • (19:12) How his very first email broadcast from Infusionsoft earned him a few thousand dollars (something that he’d NEVER done before)
  • (20:12) Casey’s traffic generation strategy, and specifically, how Twitter played a pivotal role in growing his list from 832 to over 47,000 in just 3 years
  • (25:12) How Casey sets up automated nurturing campaigns in Infusionsoft
  • (28:16) How Casey warms up his new leads in a very special warm up sequence, which is then followed by a webinar sequence that results in the vast majority of their product sales
  • (32:42) How webinars play a crucial role in Casey’s sales funnel and how he structures them to produce maximum conversions
  • (34:00) How he presents an offer in his webinar so that more sales result
  • (37:30) How Casey generates substantial additional revenue via up-sells and cross-sells
  • (38:30) The 3 types of up-sells that Casey uses and how to replicate what he’s doing in your own business
  • (47:12) How Casey is building “relationship capital” with his customers with specific examples
  • (52:00) How the success of all of this has massively changed Casey’s life
  • (55:10) What he is most excited about for 2013, his favorite business book, and how to reach him
..And so much more!

Links

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.

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Transcript

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 today is Casey Graham, founder of The Rocket Company. I
first learned of Casey when I was at Infusionsoft’s annual
conference. His company one the annual 2013 Infusionsoft
Ultimate Marketer of the Year award. To do that, he had to beat
out some pretty impressive competition. You’re in for a real
treat with this interview.In the interview, we’re going to talk about how Casey, a couple years
ago, was essentially broke, driving around in a little red
pickup truck, and really trying to make his business a success.
Fast forward three years later – He’s got a mailing list of
47,000 people, he’s doing over $2 million a year, he and his
family are completely debt free, he’s got a wonderful team of
people helping the company continue to grow. He’s actually now
removing himself from all operational roles so he can focus more
on strategy. Like I said, this is going to be a very fantastic
interview.Before we get to that, a couple of special announcements – My tool
tip of the week is a brand new tool called PlusThis. You can
get there, if you’d like to use our affiliate link, by going to
brightideas.co/plusthis. PlusThis is essentially a library of
add on tools for Infusionsoft users. One of the tools there,
for example, is the integration with GoToMeeting. One of the
things, if you’re doing webinars with GoToMeeting, wouldn’t it
be valuable for you to know who attended and who didn’t attend?
You can get that information from GoToMeeting, but you have to
manually export it from GoToMeeting and then import it to
Infusionsoft, and that creates duplicates, labor, and
inefficiencies. That is one of the many things PlusThis can
help you automate.The other announcement I wanted to make is that our next webinar on
life cycle marketing – If you haven’t yet seen one of these
webinars, they’re a huge hit because it really goes into detail.
I show what I do, and what guests on my show have done to
increase the pace at which they are attracting new customers,
which obviously makes our companies more profitable, which
allows us to invest in further growth. If you want to get
registered for one of those, just go to brightideas.co, join up
on the mailing list, and you’ll receive a notification of the
next time I’ve got that webinar running.Please join me in welcoming Casey to the show.Hey Casey, welcome to the show.Casey: Thanks for having me on, I appreciate it.Trent: No problem at all. First off, congratulations on your
recognition as one of the Ultimate Marketer finalists this year
for Infusionsoft, that’s quite an accomplishment to say the
least.Casey: Thank you. I’d never heard about it until a year ago, and then
we went to InfusionCon a year ago, and we saw them on stage and
decided to apply for it this year. Somehow we were able to make
it through the rigorous interview process and the cuts and all
that and be a part of all that. It was awesome. We learned a
bunch from the other guys that were finalists as well, and are
actually continuing to learn from them. I would highly
recommend being a part of the Infusionsoft Ultimate Marketer
process, just from the relationships that you build.Trent: Yeah, no kidding. Both Dustin and Andy have been on the show
as well.Casey: That’s awesome, you’re getting it done.Trent: I try to make it my effort to get all of the Ultimate Marketers
on the show now. I think you’re being a little too humble here,
you didn’t just make the grade, if I remember correctly, you
won.Casey: Our team won. Me and Michael, and The Rocket Company won the
award. It was awesome to win, and to be a part of that. I
don’t know we won, the other guys were so awesome. Dustin and
the other guys, BlueChip, they were doing so much. It was cool.
Like I said, the process – I don’t know if everybody who
listens to this in an Infusionsoft user or not, but people that
Infusionsoft should be a part of the Ultimate Marketer process,
because it helps you think through your processes, since you
have to present them to people. What it did internally for us
was great. The award was awesome, but what it did internally
was solidify a lot things that needed solidifying. I really
appreciate you giving us a shout out for that.Trent: For the folks who don’t know who you are, and I normally start
my interviews with this, but I kind of skipped it, a little bit
on purpose because I wanted to send you that congratulations.
People don’t necessarily know who you are or what The Rocket
Company is. I want you to introduce yourself in just a moment.

For the folks that are listening, the big why on why you want to
listen to interview, and I think Casey is probably going to get
into it, is he was driving around in his little red truck trying
to find customers, and was not having a real good time at it,
and I’m going to let him tell that story, and then here he is,
some amount of time later, I don’t remember if it’s a year or
two later, he’s the Infusionsoft Ultimate Marketer of the Year,
and his business has absolutely blown up, in a good way, as a
result of that. We want to get all of those things out in this
interview, and I think we’re going to do a real good job with
that.

With that said, Casey, thanks for being on the show. Please take a
moment and tell us just a little bit about what your company is
and does, and who you are.

Casey: The Rocket Company is an online learning for pastors and church
leaders. Church leaders get caught a bunch of things in college
or seminary – It’s kind of like us, even as entrepreneurs, you
can go to business school, but then there’s all of this stuff.
People that are actually listening to podcasts now, they’re
going, “That’s great, I learned that in business school, but
what is it really?”

That’s what The Rocket Company for churches, go, “That’s great, you
learned all that stuff, and you learned some theology, you
learned something in school. There is real stuff you have to do
as a pastor, like preach better sermons, and raise money, and
deal with volunteers. The Rocket Company provides online
training, learning and coaching for pastors in that way. It’s a
totally online model, except for some live events that we do.
It’s all digital, it’s all online, and it reaches all across the
world now. We have about 5,000 customers that are connected to
The Rocket Company, and that’s the niche which Rocket Company
serves.

Very simply, why we do it is that we believe in the church and we are
trying to help the church be successful. We’re tired of pastors
preaching boring sermons, we’re tired of cheesy TV pastors
trying to raise money on TV and doing it the wrong way and
turning people off, and we’re tired of volunteers burning out in
churches because there aren’t enough. We’re creating solutions
and coaching in those areas, that’s what we currently do.

Trent: If I was to really shorten that into a super simple
explanation, you help churches become more effective at the
business side of being a church.

Casey: Yes, and no. Yes, I think that’s right in a lot of ways, but
there’s a heavy relational slant on it. It’s not just business
as usual, we help them develop the interpersonal skills to be
able to pull off raising money, volunteering, preaching, and all
that stuff. Yes, you’re right. It’s where the rubber meets the
road. Simply, when people ask us what we do – We help the
church succeed. That’s what we do, and we feel like these are
the areas that make the most impact right now.

Trent: The reason I said that is that I think that probably few, if
any of the listeners right now, are involved in the church
business. I don’t want them to click the stop button, thinking,
“Oh, this is for churches, it wouldn’t be for me,” because that
couldn’t be further from the truth as they’ll learn, as they
keep on listening to this.

Casey: Well, we’re a business that serves churches, so you should
listen because we’re [inaudible 08:55]. 86% of churches are
broke or behind budget this year. The clientele we’re serving
do not have a lot of money, and the other reason, the clientele
we’re serving don’t get a financial benefit from using our
services. If they’re giving [inaudible 09:14] to the church,
they don’t get a percentage of it, they’re not a salesperson,
their salary stays the same.

It’s all on goodwill, so it’s much harder to sell to somebody. If
somebody is buying a product and you’re increasing their income
or business revenue, they’ll keep buying from you because they
get a personal benefit. For us, it’s the complete opposite.
We’ve still been able to find success even with having niche and
as 86% of them are broke or behind budget.

Trent: How much success are you guys having? How much revenue are you
guys doing a year?

Casey: We are over two million last year, for 2012. In 2013, we’re
projected to be 2.4, 2.5.

Trent: That’s a pretty nice growth rate.

Casey: Actually, this year will probably be the slowest one on
purpose. We grew about 832% over the last three years. We went
from about $212,000 in revenue to over two million in three
years. We need to catch our breath, hire the right people, get
the right people, get the systems in place, that kind of thing,
because we just grew [inaudible 10:18] and we’re trying to
organize now.

Trent: I’m so glad you mentioned that, because that’s the story I
really wanted to dig into. Let’s go back to the red truck,
let’s go back to pre-Infusionsoft. Tell us a little about what
your life and your business was like, and how you got into this,
because you had a real struggle. I want people to understand
that anybody can go from a real struggle to where you’re at now.

Casey: Here’s the deal – I was on staff at a church. At 27 years old,
I fired myself from being the CFO of a church, and I hired
myself as the CEO of a startup company, that I was going to go
out and help churches. I had no plan, no strategy, I’d never
started a business before. Here’s what I had – A wife that
wanted to stay home with a one year old baby, that is the
hardest work you can do, but unfortunately, she doesn’t get a
paycheck for staying home. That was that, and then we have
$36,000 saved up in the bank. I said, “We’re going to go after
this, I’ve got $36,000, and I think churches need to have money
for ministry. They need to learn how to raise money better.
I’m going to go out and do it.”

We started, and we did the good old fashioned Casey driving around,
in my 1998 Red Ranger Ford pickup truck that I got as a junior
in high school, and literally going into churches and walking up
to secretaries or assistants, and say, “Hey, I want to talk to
your pastor about our services.” Just doing the old fashioned
cold calling.

Also, cold calling anybody. In fact, I would drive by churches and
see the phone number on the side, and call it. It was cold
calling, driving around doing that. I did that for about two
years, and the strategy was so amazing that second year in,
here’s what the results were – I missed dad’s night at my
daughter’s school. People listening to this may or may not have
kids, or are maybe single or whatever, but the point is this.

I started a business, not only to help people but to create autonomy
where I could be at dad’s nights, and I was missing them. I was
missing family dinners, I was traveling around the southeast to
try to get deals. We ended up being $80,000 in debt in the
business. I had a business partnership I got into. I ended up
the worst, the bottom of the barrel when it comes business is, I
had to lay off three people at one time – Not because of
anything that they did, but I just thought business was all
about sales and growth, and I wasn’t managing the back end of
the business, and it just got away from me honestly. I had to
tell the ladies – I set them down and said, “Hey, in two weeks
we’re not going to have enough money to pay you, so I’m going to
have to let you go.”

Being at the rock bottom, at that point, I literally went around the
world. I went to the Philippines. Only a dumb entrepreneur
would do this, and I said I was going to go to the Philippines
to outsource, we did some outsourcing for churches, and decided
to outsource the outsourcing to try to save money. While I was
there, literally, I can’t get all the story, but a guy climbed
through my window, it was a totally random act of violence, he
came in literally with a knife, bloody, trying to kill me,
randomly. I ended up running down 13 flights of stairs with an
armed guard in the middle of the Philippines with a machine gun,
looking up at this guy hanging off the side of a building on the
13th floor getting in there to kill me. I know this is the
craziest story you’ve ever heard.

Trent: It is a little unusual.

Casey: Here’s the point – I got so low that I was traveling around the
world trying to save a business $80,000 in debt, with a bad
business partnership, and I was rock bottom. I said, “You know
what, something’s got to change.”

In that moment, at being at the bottom, and literally being around
the world and flying back is when I started the process of
realizing the problem’s not the market, the problem’s not the
economy, the problem is not anything – The problem is me. The
way were doing it wasn’t working, and we needed some changes.
That’s what happened in the first two years of our business.

That was probably too many details, but that’s the real story of
where this thing came from.

Trent: I wish we could have got those last two sentences out to the
entire planet, because you said something there that was so
incredibly profound, that entrepreneurs say, but that few others
do – The problem wasn’t the economy or the world, or this or
that or the other thing, the problem was you. That is something
I find is unanimous in entrepreneurs, we are never the victim.
Our success and failures are always our own. As soon as you can
adopt that mindset, in my opinion, you set yourself free,
because then you’re in control and you can choose to change the
outcome, which you did, and we’re going to tell that story.

I do want to offer up one other idea. You mentioned at the beginning
of this, that you were doing it the good old fashioned way, and
then you went on to tell how you were prospecting. It may have
been old fashioned my friend, but I don’t think it was good.

Casey: That’s funny. That’s true, it was terrible.

Trent: There was nothing good about making about making cold calls,
missing your daughter’s event, and being around the world, there
was nothing good about that.

Casey: [inaudible 16:03] everybody I met said this was how to do it –
You go to leads groups, and you pass business cards out, and
this how you do it, it was the old fashioned way to try to do
this deal, and we live in a different time. I just had to learn
the hard way. That’s what the story was.

Trent: You and me both. I have often said to people in conversations,
and maybe even on my show here, that I never get it right the
first time. I always duff it the first time, and then I get it
figured out the second time around.

Let’s get into your discovery of Infusionsoft, when was that?

Casey: That was at that point, right after that trip around the world,
about three years ago, middle of 2010 – I was searching online
and I saw a donate redirect on a website I was on, and it said
Infusionsoft, and I was curious what it was, so I Googled it and
went to their website. I was low with no money, no team, I was
worn out and they’re making these promises on their website like
– Infusionsoft is like having 25 people sell for you while you
sleep. It’s automated, and all this stuff.

I thought, yeah, whatever, but it was worth me putting in my e-mail
address for the demo. I got an e-mail back late at night, and I
thought man, these people are on top of it, they work all hours
of the night. I’d never heard of an auto responder before. They
sent me e-mails, and finally got me on the phone and sold me on
Infusionsoft, and I put money where my mouth was and did things
differently. That’s how we found it.

A big transition happened though – When I used what was called the
Infusionsoft Success Coach, there was Brandon Steinwig, he got
on the phone with me, and said, “Thanks for getting in on the
call today. When are you going to send your first broadcast?”

I said, “What’s a broadcast?”

He said, “Well, that’s why you bought Infusionsoft, right?”

I said, “Well, I bought it because of all these promises.”

He said, “Let me tell you what Infusionsoft actually does. Do you
have an e-mail address?”

I said, “We have 832 e-mail address.”

“Do you have anything you can sell online?”

“I’ve got $80,000 and a red truck if someone wants it.”

He helped me understand that you can sell something online, and that
people would buy stuff that we had done, it was just sitting
around my office. I was like, “I’ve got this old seminar I did,
we just recorded it because there was a machine there, so I
recorded the three hour seminar I did for church leaders.”

He said, “All right, let’s put this on a website, let’s send an e-
mail out to them. I’ll help you write the e-mail and get things
started.”

Within a couple of days, we put it up there and I sent the e-mail out
to the 832 people I’ve never e-mailed before. I said, “Hey, I
just want you to know, I’ve been driving around doing all this
high-end consulting, here’s a $99 product you can buy right
now.”

Within the first couple of days, we sold a few thousand dollars
worth. I was like, “You have got to be kidding me. I have been
doing all this stuff, driving around, missing dad’s nights,
trying to make money, and I just sent out one e-mail and made a
few thousand dollars?”

That was the point when everything started to change, it was an aha
moment for me.

Trent: In three years you go from guy in the truck, no money, to guy
with a $2 million plus business which has a very healthy profit
margin. I hope people who are listening to this get inspired
and fired up, and think man, if this guy can go from broke,
selling to churches that have no money to this wonderfully
successful business, maybe there’s something about this whole
marketing automation stuff that I could use in my own business.
The answer of course is “Yes there is.”

Let’s try to dive into more details, and let’s talk. It all starts
with lead generation, can you tell us about the process that
you’re using for attracting and capturing leads for your
business?

Casey: Yep. Our attraction strategy is very simple. After going
through hell and back, we said, “We can’t do everything, but we
can do something.”

When we learned about attracting traffic to our website, we said,
“Here’s what we’re going to do – Number one, we’re going to have
blog.” Everybody on this call can have a blog, and everybody
can write three times a week. If you say you don’t have enough
time to write a blog three times a week, that isn’t true, unless
you’re incapacitated and almost dying in a hospital.

Every single person can do that and add value to people who could be
their potential customers. That’s the outpost through which all
of our stuff happens. We put stuff on the blog.

Our strategy to attracting traffic is that we know where pastors are,
unlike business people, because a bunch of business people
aren’t on Twitter. Most pastors, when you speak at a
conference, say how many guys are on Twitter, 80%–I don’t know
the exact number–but it would be 8 out of 10 people would raise
their hand. That’s where pastors are, so what we said is we’re
going to dominate one thing. I know there’s Google+, I know
there’s pay per click, I know there’s SEO, I know there’s
Facebook, I know there’s all these other things, but we’re going
to dominate one thing and what we know how to dominate is
Twitter.

I’m on Twitter, our teen is on Twitter, we know Twitter, we know
pastors on Twitter, so that’s what we decided to do. We put all
our eggs in the Twitter basket, and so here’s what we’ve done –
We went out and found celebrity pastors that we can either buy
their time, you can rent anybody’s time, and we get them on an
online event, and we have them tweet out the links to our
landing pages. Part of them being a part of it is that they’ll
promote it, and that drives a tremendous amount of traffic to
our website.

In the last three years, with the Twitter strategy of getting famous
people to tweet to us, and for us using Twitter to generate blog
content, we’ve grown our list from 832 contacts to about 47,000
contacts in a three-year time period. That’s what we did.
That’s it, and that’s all we did. We know there’s other things
we should do, and we’re going to do those in the future, but to
start out and be simple and dominate, that’s where we started.

Trent: Man, that is impressive. 832 to 47,000, wow. I think anybody
could do this in a business, they could find out who the
celebrities are in their space or niche, contact those folks,
because they’re all looking – Did you have to pay them, or did
they come on because they wanted the exposure?

Casey: Most wanted to just help people. Most wanted that, but we paid
them anyway. What I found is that you had to pay some, it’s
just the way it is. The point was, people hear that and go,
“Oh, I don’t have anybody. I’m in the salon business, there
aren’t any salon celebrities.” Yes, there are. There are
absolutely places you can go where there are salon people that
other salon people learning from and listening to.

People say, “I’m in a retail location, what is there to do in a
retail location?”

Well, that’s why smart companies have Justin Bieber as a celebrity
that drives people to their retail locations, because they’re
renting a celebrity at the top end of their of funnel. It
associates them with that person, and that is a lead driver, a
lead attraction, a lead magnet that they can pull people in.
Every single niche has people that people listen to. If you can
align yourself and go as hard as you can to reach those people,
don’t quit because the first one tell you no, you can get
aligned with those people and they’ll help you significantly.

Trent: That’s a very good idea. I want to give a quick shout out to a
resource on this topic of defining your nice, if you got to
brightideas.co and on the navigation bar, you’ll see the life
cycle marketing guide, scroll down through the links, and that
links to a whole bunch of articles, but in the attract interest
category or section, you’ll find an article on how and why to
define your target market. There’s a whole bunch of details
there for you.

Let’s move on. Your strategy worked exceedingly well, your list grew
like mad. Here’s the thing – Just because they’re on your list
doesn’t mean they’re whipping their credit card out and willing
to buy your stuff, right?

Casey: Totally different.

Trent: Correct. So, what happens between getting them on the list,
and getting them buying stuff. There’s something that happens
between those two things, what is that?

Casey: What we found is that–I hate to say this, I probably shouldn’t
say this but I’ll say it anyway. It’s a great way to [inaudible
24:55]. Most people try to treat this like sex on a first date.
They get somebody on their list, and then they try to close to
the deal. It’s like, come on. People do that to me all the
time. I get on a list and they’re trying to close the deal with
me. If that’s how you do real life, I’m sorry, but if you
understand that a healthy relationship is built over time and
built on trust.

Between attracting traffic and converting the sale there’s a whole
thing we call building relationships on the list so what we try
to do is build the relationship. Here’s a couple things that
have worked. I’m giving everybody practical things that you can
do. I like everybody to know that I’ve had a red truck. The
reason why, is that the only thing you remember from my
introduction speech is that I had a red truck. It’s a red
truck.

I like people to know I have a family when they come onto our list.
When we’re e-mailing our list, and we’re sending stuff out, I’m
not only introducing them to stuff that can help them, I’m also
introducing them to my family. The reason why, is that we’ve
found people trust people and have an affinity for them if
they’ve seen their family, and they see they have kids, and what
they look like. Do they look like weirdos? Are they normal
looking? Can I relate with these people? That kind of thing.
The red truck story, like a story of struggle, here’s where
we’ve been, here’s how long we’ve been doing this, that sort of
thing.

The third thing we like to send is connecting us with famous people
in our niche so that we gain credibility. If we’re sending out
e-mails or doing videos and people see you and they associate
you with the leaders. That builds credibility. Inside of that,
we’re building a healthy, what we call like a dating
relationship via e-mail, via video, and warming people up. We
don’t send people directly into a sale unless they ask for it,
if they ask for it or click on a link to buy something, they can
go buy something. For most people, we do what’s called a warm-
up sequence. We are warming them for the point in which we feel
like we can move in to take action and create a purchase, so
that’s what we do.

Trent: Let’s dive into that a little bit. Let’s say I come to your
site, and I get one of your lead magnets, I fill out the form
and give you my name and e-mail address, hit the submit button,
the first e-mail, is it going to give me just what I asked for,
“Here’s the free report,” or whatever it was? Is there going to
be anything else in that first e-mail?

Casey: The first e-mail, we’re just giving them what they ask for, but
we’re also tell them there’s more coming.

Trent: What comes next? When do you introduce the truck, the family,
and the celebrities?

Casey: That’s a great question, and it depends on where they came
from. We have a very complex business now. I’m going to start
where it was really simple. We used to do 10 emails over 30
days as our warm-up sequence. The point of those e-mails was
those different things: likeability, trust and credibility. If
say something about the red truck, it’s, “Hey, I used to drive
around the Southeast in a red truck, and here’s what I learned
about that and learned from pastors.” Then we do something very
helpful.

Again, the whole thing’s not about the red truck, it’s just a mention
in a what we call a by the way moment. We’re mixing those in
throughout the 10 over 30 days, and that’s how, when we first
started, when we were selling just one program and it was a very
simple operation, that’s how we did it and we mixed a little bit
of personality in with a lot a bit of helpful content. It was
about 20% personality, 80% helpful content.

Trent: Okay, excellent. Yep, go ahead.

Brian: Key in that, we would put in the PS, “Oh, by the way, we know
you downloaded this report on church giving, we have a cool
coaching program called Giving Rocket, and you can click here
and you can go check out all of that kind of stuff.” Again, it
was there. If somebody wanted to go get it, they could. During
that first 30 days, we’re building the relationship and
nurturing them and getting them to know us and us to know them.

I’ll tell you a trick – One of the best e-mails we ever do,
especially when you’re small, and you’re trying to get off the
ground or try to grow in Internet business, just do an e-mail
that says, “Would you please reply and let me know?” [inaudible
29:36].

Just ask them a question and the question and the question of what we
found out is a question about either their personal life. I
would send one with a picture of my family in it, and say, hey,
tell me about their family. I’d love to get to know you and who
you have in your family. Again, I ask them to divulge some
information to me, and I divulge some to them, when it’s a two
way street and a conversation starts, those people end up being
low hanging fruit that will buy just about anything from you.

Trent: I do something almost like that now, and you’ve given me an
idea how to improve. Anyone who’s on my list will know that in
one of my first e-mails, I say what they’re struggling with the
most, and I ask them to reply because I want to get a
conversation going with these people, and it does work. Not
everyone replies of course, but the ones that do become your . .
.

Casey: No, but the people that are opening and reading and engaging
do, and those people, man, those are some of the best people.
Some of them are weirdos, but a lot of them are great people.

Trent: Absolutely, I couldn’t agree more. If you don’t have an e-mail
in your warm-up sequence that says reply, you might want to
consider doing that.

I’d love to dive deeper into what you’re doing with your advanced
strategy, but I’m going to keep on keeping on here, because
we’re going to run out of time, and there’s still some other
categories of life cycle marketing I want to talk about.

Before I move on, you’ve got the 30 day warm-up sequence. What
happens the end of those 30 days?

Casey: We transition them to a webinar sequence after that. A webinar
is where we sell the most, and so after 30 days we put them into
our webinar sequence. It’s built for over a two-week period to
get them on a webinar, and to get them to hear helpful content.
About 80% help, and there’s 20% sales. Sales is woven
throughout the webinar, and that’s where we get the most sales.

What we found is that when we consistently did webinars like that,
every single month per niche topic we have, that’s where the
huge growth came from, was consistently doing new content
webinars. They got everybody on the nurture list, after they go
warmed up to us, then we got them on the nurture sequence, which
is where we’d move people to listen, buy, and hopefully become a
customer.

If they don’t become a customer, they still get helpful content, but
they’ll be invited to the webinar that happens next month. If
they come to that one, we’ll come to different topics to reach
different types of people, so that’s how that works.

Trent: In you webinars, you mentioned you weave in 20% sales
opportunities. Do you make an offer at the end of the webinar
that says, “Hey, if you want more you can go this page and you
can click this buy button and get this thing.”

Casey: Our webinars are very simple in structure. Most of them around
about 45 minutes long, and the beginning of the webinar we
always do success stories. After I introduce myself and success
stories, we tell them that’s why we have Giving Rocket. You’re
going to see a button below as I talk throughout the rest of the
webinar, and you can just click that button, and by the way, you
can click it if you want to right now and see everything that’s
listed for this webinar offer, and my voice will keep playing
because it’ll open in another tab. That’s right within the
first five minutes.

We come back as we’re doing helpful content, so we’ll say that when
it comes to fundraising, here’s something they could do. And
that’s why we did it with Giving Rocket. With Giving Rocket, not
only do we tell you what to do, we’re going to do it for you.
It’s done for you, fundraising resources. If you click the
button below, you’ll see all the stuff you get da-da-da. That’s
what’s called a by the way pitch.

Then, at about the 70% mark of the way through, we turn it and we do
about a ten minute full on explanation of what Giving Rocket is,
why we have this Rocket, how it can help them, special offers
and bonuses if they do it within the next 48 hours, click the
button below, that kind of thing. Then go back to helpful
content at the end. We found that putting it about 3/4 of the
way thorough, with pitching the by the way moment as you lead up
has worked very well for us.

We have a page, and on the page it has one button, and the button is
always below they video, and they can click it, and there’s a
special offer per webinar. That’s how we sell.

Trent: Are these webinars live, or live simulation?

Casey: No. We got away from live webinars a long time ago. I am not
a fan of live webinars. If you want to do a live webinar,
that’s great for you. I don’t like doing them for many reasons.
Ours are prerecorded and pre-done in advance, and that’s how we
do all of them. [inaudible 35:00]

Trent: I would imagine, in you particular niche, these folks have
probably never even heard of a webinar simulation, and I know
that you’re not saying these things are live, but do you say
they’re recorded, or do you just not say?

Casey: We don’t say either. We say we’re going to have a webinar at
this time, and that you can sign up and show up. Here’s what we
do: On the webinar, I’ll say, “Guys, tweet us right now at the
Rocket Co., we’ve got our teams, they’re waiting right now.”

They’re interacting with The Rocket Company on the webinar, not Casey
Graham who’s doing the webinar, or Michael Lukaszewski, my
partner who’s doing the webinar. They’re interacting with the
company, not us as a right to interaction. We still get
interaction, but it’s with the company. We always have somebody
scheduled to be available during those times do all of our
social media interaction during the webinar.

Trent: Brilliant. What software tool are you using for the recorded
webinar?

Casey: I have no idea. I know that the video is on Vimeo, but I don’t
know what the technology piece is. I’m not the technology guy,
so I have no idea for that. I just record the things and send
them to our team, and they do all the technology. I’m sorry, I
hate it that I don’t know that.

Trent: That’s okay. One of the ones that is very popular, it’s by a
guy named Geoff Ronning, it’s called Stealth Seminar. It’s been
around a long time, a lot of people use it, I’ve used it in the
past. There’s another one I’m not as much of a fan of us,
because I tried it and it sucked initially, but apparently it
works quite well now, it’s called Evergreen Business Solutions,
I think what its name is.

There’s more and more of these webinar recording software platforms
that are available, so if you just Google around you’ll find all
sorts. If you type the word review after whatever name, then
you’re looking for, you’ll find people reviewing those products.
Be mindful, when you’re reading those reviews, most people are
an affiliate with that particular software platform, so read
between the lines and make sure it’s as objective as a review as
possible.

Casey: That’s good, good words.

Trent: Now we’ve got some conversions happening, we’ve captured leads
in this discussion so far, we’ve nurtured them, we have
converted them with recorded webinars – Which is brilliant by
the way, because you can put it all on autopilot. Once they buy
something, they probably might by some other stuff. In other
words, would you like fries with that?

Could you talk about what you’re doing to upsell, cross sell, and
generate repeat business?

Casey: Yes. The upsell that we’re working very hard on, which has
worked very well, is something we’re really excited about is, we
sell on CustomerHub. CustomerHub was bought by Infusionsoft.
We use it deliver all of our content.

Let me tell you why we use it deliver all of our content – It’s that,
and I didn’t know this until recently, that’s why we implemented
all of this, this is what we’re currently doing. You can one
click upsells inside of CustomerHub. People that are in there
consuming content of module one of your program, how to be a
better real estate agent or whatever, you can have a little
video on the side or inside CustomerHub, that says click this
button and you can get this da-da-da for free, because you’re
watching module one and we’re going to give you a special offer.

They go to a secondary page in CustomerHub, and it’s a one click
purchase. It says, add this to my account or I agree with this,
or whatever. It’s just one click, and it goes on their credit
card, which is on file. That has been huge, because we’ve taken
all the go get your credit card back out to customers, and we
can just create banners on the side.

Does that make sense? I know I’m beating inside the weeds here, but
one click purchase inside of CustomerHub, and if it’s not
CustomerHub, you need a solution that creates a one click
solution for repeat buyers. It’s the PayPal effect.

What I mean is that people ask me to give money all the time, but
they’re little project fundraiser things they’re going to do.
Anytime there is a PayPal button, I will click the PayPal, and I
can just enter the amount and be done with it. I don’t have to
get my credit out and all that kind of stuff. That’s how your
customers feel.

Don’t make them get their credit card out again, that works really
well. That’s number one of selling inside, it’s where your
customers are consuming content. If you’re not giving them
places to consume content, I would rethink that. I would give
them a portal or a place to consume content that also has
natural upsell opportunity in the same area. That’s just my two
cents, that’s not how we started, that’s where we are now.
That’s number one.

Number two is what we’ve done as well is the good old fashioned build
the sequence out in advance. If somebody buys core coaching
project – Let’s just keep using Giving Rocket, to help increase
church giving – We just go ahead a write a three day sale into
that sequence that happens automated whenever they get to day
78, 79, and 80, whatever those days are, and those e-mails just
go.

It’s a three day sale for everybody in that sequence, and it’s on a
product that is related to the core coaching program of Giving
Rocket. That is the fries that come with it. It can come two
months in, we have some six months in, some 12 months in, that
kind of thing. That works really well. That’s just scheduling
e-mails in advance for people who have currently bought
something.

The third thing we do is we upsell [them the] store. At the point of
purchase, if you’re buying this, we’ll give you 50% off this
systems bundle or whatever, because you’re buying this product.
Hit add this now, and they can just click inside the
Infusionsoft checkout and add it, and we have a lot of people
who do that. It surprises me. A lot of people, and I don’t
know the percentage, click on that and take that offer. Those
are three ways we upsell.

Trent: All right. So I want to dive in those a little bit. Let’s start
at the back, and then we’ll go backwards. The way you just
described on the Infusionsoft order form, you can very easily
put an upsell on there, is that what you’re talking about?

Casey: Not the order form, but in the store. You can’t upsell on the
order form unless there’s something we don’t know about.

Trent: You can.

Casey: You can?

Trent: You can. I do.

Casey: I need a blog post or something, I would love to do that.

Trent: I’ll just send you an example on one of my order forms, and
you’ll see. I put a little video in. My videos are hosted with
Wistia, which is a sponsor of Infusionsoft, a shout out to them,
thank you for that. It says, “Hey, here’s another thing that’s
complementary with what you just bought, if you want to add it
to your order, click the button right below.” They click the
button, it adjusts the total, and they check out.

Casey: That’s great. We want to learn from that. Ours is done in the
store, if they buy a store product, the e-commerce thing
Infusionsoft provides.

Trent: I haven’t messed with the store yet, I’ll make sure I do that.
Maybe your way is better than mine, but I’ll make sure to share
a link with you.

Casey: That’s awesome.

Trent: I’ll also put it in the show notes, this episode, so if you’re
listening to this and you want to see what the heck I’m talking
about, there will be a link in the show notes. I’ll give it to
you at the end of the show, in the post production there will be
a link to that.

One other question I wanted to ask on point number two was – You said
you built the sequence out in advance. Are you, for Giving
Rocket, dripping the content over time?

Casey: Yes.

Trent: Can you talk about little bit?

Casey: It’s 12 module program. They get one module per month. They
can unlock all the modules by paying an upfront fee with a
discount, but we still drip the content out over time. The
reason we do that is that… This is where we’re different from
a lot of Internet marketers that just want the payment and all
that stuff. We found that there is a significant amount of
customers, that if they get all the content at once, they never
do anything with it.

Trent: Yeah, it’s too much.

Casey: What we’re trying to do is to continue to market them to watch
a video, not all the videos. Even if they buy up front, we
still drip out, “Hey, did you know in module two, you can watch
all this.”

We give them benefits to pull out and that kind of thing. They’re
busy, just like us – How many times have we bought a book or a
seminar, or something. With great intentions, you listen to the
first thing and then you don’t ever do anything else with it.
It’s because they didn’t continue to sell to you after the
purchase. We keep continually selling. Go to the content now.
There’s another reason we do this as well. Guess when they go
to the CustomerHub, and they watch a video inside CustomerHub,
guess what they’re seeing on the side?

Trent: An upsell.

Casey: Getting them to consume the content again and again we found
works well for us in all the programs we sell.

Trent: Do you have an e-mail sequence that is reminding them to go
back, saying that there’s more and more content?

Casey: Yes. It drips out. There’s two e-mails a month. One says,
there’s module one, it’s available. Here’s what’s you’re going
to learn, blah, blah, blah. In the second one, we do some kind
of piece that’s helpful. For example, something like a written
version of something helpful. We also do two other e-mails a
month to our customers that we can put in our sequence that are
sales e-mails that are upsells, “Hey, you’re in Giving Rocket
month 2, but did you know that we have something called
Volunteer Rocket, and if you click this link you can just add it
on with one click, and it’s only another $49 per month, and it’s
50% for the next… whatever.” I’m making that up, 90 hours,
whatever the deal is.

You can build that stuff in, build the upselling into your e-mail
sequencing of delivering your content. Most Internet marketers,
actually none I’ve bought stuff from do that.

Trent: Brilliant. Giving Rocket is a monthly pay for 12 months,
correct?

Casey: Yup. $99 a month for 12 months.

Trent: If they want to unlock it, get it all now, what is the discount
they?

Casey: $997. They save about $200, basically two months for free.

Trent: Very good stuff man. You’re giving me lots of what I call
golden nuggets, so love getting those.

How are we doing for time? We’re at 44 minutes. I’ve a got a few
more questions in what I call the lightning round, and I want to
ask you how you’ve changed your life from the red truck to
today. Before I get to that, is there anything I haven’t asked
you, Casey, that you think has been a huge aha for you that you
want to share?

Casey: Here’s the number one I think would say creates the
competitive advantage. If somebody comes to your McDonald’s and
plops down a Burger King, what’s the difference? If somebody
comes and does your exact business, what’s the difference?

Here’s the number one difference is that we spend an inordinate
amount of time and money building relational capital with our
customers. We don’t Infusionsoft the whole customer life cycle
marketing, to me, it’s 50% of it. The other 50% is that it’s a
care software, it’s building – We are caring for our customers
in unique ways using Infusionsoft. We are reaching out to them
and deeply caring about what’s going into their lives, who they
are, who their family is, that stuff isn’t tactics, it’s core to
us.

For anybody in the info business, or anybody that’s trying to sell
something online, or whatever you’re doing, whoever is listening
to this, I would say that your differentiator is not your
marketing, it’s not your product, but it’s the relational
capital you have with your customers. I would build in as much
capital as possible to love, care for, take care of them and
deliver a tremendous – you can sell an average product with
great customer care, and people will love you. A good enough
product.

Everybody tries to have the best product, but they suck at taking
care of people. Take care of people, period. We have great
customer care, great response times, great service, all that
stuff, and that’s where we put our eggs for long term. It’s not
in being a better marketer. We love being the better marketer,
but what we believe is the best is taking care of people and
treating them right.

I know everybody will agree with that, but here’s my question: If I
looked at your business budget, how much are you spending in
customer care? How much are you spending in proactive customer
care? How much are you sending direct mail to them that’s not
asking for a sell, but thanking them? How much time and money
do you spend on referral partners, thanking them for referring,
not just asking for more referrals, and really building that
side of it out? That’s where the gold is.

You see I get real passionate when I talk about that, because most
Internet market people you learn from are just about getting
paid, and getting some money out of people, and selling. Or I
live on the beach, or I’m a guy that’s just on the mountain
somewhere and I just live in my mansion and I have all these
customers that pay me millions of dollars. Well, that’s great,
but we care more about our customers than anything else so
that’s what we spend time doing. Sorry for the long answer, but
that’s my heart.

Trent: That’s okay. Can you give us an example of exactly what you’re
just explained?

Casey: Every customer that buys from us, we send a personal,
handwritten thank you note every time they buy something. When
was the last time you or anybody listening to this has bought
something off an Internet marketing website and gotten a
handwritten thank you note from somebody on the team, that’s
personalized to you and what you bought? It’s rare.

Trent: Let’s go with… never.

Casey: That’s one that everybody listening can do. What people do is
they send that crap on Twitter. They’ll go “I got a thank you
note for The Rocket Company, I just bought a $79 product, and
they sent this.” Here’s the other thing – we ship a box.

In the box, we’re The Rocket Company, so we send a bunch of finger
rockets. They’re things you shoot across the room, and they’re
awesome. We send a coffee mug and a Rocket Company t-shirt
that’s actually a cool, nice looking t-shirt that’s not a piece
of crap. We send that out and tweet that stuff, they put it on
their Facebook pages, and they say, “The Rocket Company is over
the top when it comes to customer service, I just bought this
$99 product, and they sent all this stuff to me.” That’s
practical stuff we do.

The other thing I’d say we do is, we hired Call Ruby. Have you ever
heard of Call Ruby?

Trent: No.

Casey: It’s an outsourcing company that we use that answers our
telephones for us all the time. Nobody knows it’s Call Ruby,
it’s just an answering service. When anybody calls our phone
number, we always have somebody who picks up and answers the
phone, they get routed – They may go to voicemail ultimately, or
they may go to whatever, but when they call, somebody answers.
That’s a $250 a month investment we make, and it is a huge
investment because nobody ever says that they can’t get in
touch with The Rocket Company – They won’t e-mail me back, or
answer the phones, that sort of thing. Those are practical
things we do.

Trent: These finger rockets, the coffee mug and the t-shirt, you don’t
tell them in advance they’re going to get that stuff, do you?
It’s not on the sales page, you didn’t like say hey, if you buy
this, you’re going to get a t-shirt? No.

Casey: No. It’s surprise and delight.

Trent: How has all this good stuff changed your life from the days
back of the red truck?

Casey: We went from $80,000 in debt and then I had about $200,000 in
personal debt from a mortgage. About $300,000 in total, to now
our family is debt free and business is debt free. From a
personal standpoint, we’re all out of debt. That’s huge for us,
and the reason is not so people can go, oh great, you’re out of
debt, because nobody cares if I’m out of debt.

What is cool is now that we can make better decisions, because I’m
not making business decisions on I wish I could get out of debt.
It’s allowed us to then go we can invest more money here, we
can put more money there because we’re really caring about the
business not just about trying to make a rich owner. That’s
huge.

The second thing is from a time off perspective. Obviously, driving
around in a red truck doesn’t promote much time off. You know
what, if I’m your listener – People hate when people talk about
how good their life is, but honestly, selling online and selling
recurring income online – I took four weeks off last week and
went to Belize and went on a Disney cruise, and went to the
mountains with my family for some rest and relaxation. I wasn’t
worried one bit about what was happening because I know that we
have automated processes that work. We have a great team of
people of that are helping people step off. From a time off
perspective, it’s been huge.

The other thing is that we’ve been able to help so many more people
by Casey waking up and realizing that I was the problem, and
that I couldn’t do it one at a time, this is not working, and
being willing to say that I’m going to struggle as a business
owner and I’m the problem. There’s two problems and I’m the
problem and I’m the issue. From that point of saying that it
wasn’t anyone else’s fault but mine, and saying that we’re going
to create this has allowed us to reach so many more people.

Now we have 5000 people we’re serving. I couldn’t serve five
effectively when I was driving around doing it the old way.
We’re able to accomplish our mission, and that’s where the
personal satisfaction comes. It’s not that we created an upsell
opportunity, that doesn’t make me satisfied. What makes me
satisfied is when we get the success stories back in from some
guy in Australia who says “I’ve bought you product, and here’s
what’s happening in my church,” and we get a success story
unsolicited that comes back.

We get, I think the last count was 109 success stories in the last
100 days of people, unsolicited who just come in and say, “This
is working, thank you for what you do.” That’s really the pay
off and the reward, so that’s how my life has changed.

Trent: Yeah, that’s pretty cool. All right, lightning round – Three
questions and then we’re done. What are you most excited about
Casey for what remains of 2013?

Casey: I’m most excited about getting out of all the operational roles
from Rocket Company, and I’m focusing on creating the exact same
thing we did in the church space, I’m doing in the business
space. We’re creating a place for people listening to this, for
you, for anybody who wants to create content for the life cycle
marketing thing, for any piece of it, for attracting traffic,
for building relationship, to converting the sales in webinars,
and we’re creating a high end opportunity for them to come in,
and for me and my team to be content creators and do it for them
in two days by the time they walk out of the room.

We’re excited about doing that content creation machine which is
awesome. We found that that’s a huge thing. I can create a
webinar in fours hours and have people on it in 24, some people
think that’s hard to do. It’s so easy, so we’re just going to do
it for people who need to create content that will be part of
life cycle marketing. I’m super excited about that. That’s
probably the thing I’m most excited about right now.

Trent: What’s your favorite business book?

Casey: My favorite business book is “The Advantage” by Patrick
Lencioni.

Trent: “The Advantage”, okay. Lastly, for anyone who wants to get in
touch with you Casey, what’s the best way for them to do that?

Casey: It’s Casey C-A-S-E-Y@ultimatemarketers.com.

Trent: Okay. All right, man. Thank you so much for being on the show.
It’s been a fantastic interview. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I
learned some things and I hope the audience has as well. In
just a few moments, when Casey and I sign off, I will announce
on how you can get the show notes. If you have questions for me
or Casey, just go to the bottom of the post where this will all
be help, and just leave your comments there and we’ll be sure to
leave you an answer.

Thanks very much, Casey.

Casey: Thank you.

Trent: To get the show notes for today’s episode, go to
brightideas.co/62. When you’re there, you’ll see all the links
we’ve talking about today, plus some valuable information you
can use to ignite more growth in your business.

If you’re listening to this on your mobile phone while you’re driving
or doing whatever, just send 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 go over to
brightideas.co/love, where you’ll be able to find a link to
leave us a rating in the iTunes store. I’d really appreciate it
if you’d take a moment to do that, because it helps the show
build its audience, and of course the more audience members we
have, the more we can help to massively boost their business.

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.

Announcer: Thanks very much for listening to the Bright Ideas
podcast. Check us out on the Web at brightideas.co.

About Casey Graham

caseygrahamIn 2008, Casey Graham started The Rocket Company out of a passion to reach church leaders worldwide – to train, speak, coach, consult – all to help the church. With barely any money in the bank, a stay-at-home wife and a one year old daughter, he set out on a dream which almost failed a few times. Five years later, The Rocket Company is reaching thousands of church leaders and expanding its service offerings. In 2013, they won Infusionsoft’s Ultimate Marketer of the Year award and are now helping other business leaders grow their businesses. Casey lives in Atlanta with his wife and kids.

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How to Measure Customer Engagement with Infusionsoft

When it comes to nurturing your prospects, by far the the most important thing you can to is to provide them with valuable educational content and then devote your energy to following up with those that are most engaged.

bi-ultimate-marketing-automation-guideThe challenge is to know which of your prospects are most engaged without having to actually call each and every one of them!

With traditional outbound prospecting techniques, most of our efforts are focused on following up with every prospect to ask some version of “would you like to buy now?”.

As you might guess, the effectiveness of this ‘old-school’ style of prospecting is rapidly deteriorating, because neither sales reps nor customers enjoy this type of phone call.

Worse yet, due to the manual nature of making so many calls to unqualified leads, it’s an extremely inefficient use of time!

A Much More Efficient Solution

If you are an Infusionsoft user, there is there is a much more effective way to achieve greater results with less effort (and frustration).

In the video below, I’m going to show how exactly how this can be done.

As you can see, this is an extremely efficient way to ensure that you are reaching out to your very best prospects for any topic or product that you have for sale.

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Scott Martineau 4 in x 6 in x 300 dpi x FC

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

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Connect with Trent Dyrsmid:

Transcript

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
that?

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
times.”

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
thing.”

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
go.

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
companies.

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
success.

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
that.

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
entrepreneurship.

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
victim.”

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
that.

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
customers.

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
realized.

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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How to Track (and Respond to) Video Engagement Using Infusionsoft

When it comes to engaging your audience online, there is no substitute for video. With video, you can do more to convey what is unique to you and your brand than you can with virtually any other form of content.

bi-ultimate-marketing-automation-guideArmed with this high level of engagement, the question then becomes: what are you going to do with it?

With traditional video analytics, such as those provided by YouTube, all you get is the number of views, if anyone has favorited, liked, or disliked it, and if they’ve left any comments, which if you chose, you can manually reply to.

What is completely lacking is any sort of ability to automate a response to viewers based upon how much of the video they watched.

A Much More Efficient Solution

If you are an Infusionsoft user, there is a new application out called Plusthis which, among other things, gives you the power to fully automate how you would like to respond to subscribers that have watched some or all of one of your videos.

In the video below, I’m going to show how exactly how this can be done as well as give you several examples of the types of responses that you can very easily automate.



As you can see, this is an extremely efficient way to ensure that you are reaching out to your very best prospects for any topic or product that you are using video to promote.

There are literally endless ways that you could put this type of marketing automation into productive use. Below are just a few ideas to help you get the wheels turning.

  • Product launch
  • Blog post containing video
  • Affiliate promotion
  • Customer service

Note: If you are already a Bright Ideas subscriber and you clicked a link in an email to get to this post, just watch at least 3 minutes of the above video and then check your inbox. If you aren’t yet a subscriber, become one today and never miss out on another post like this one.

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Measuring Customer Satisfaction with a Net Promoter Score and Infusionsoft

According to Qualtrics, customer satisfaction is one of the most essential elements of customer retention, customer loyalty and product repurchase. The art and science of customer satisfaction involves strategically focusing on creating and reinforcing pleasurable experiences.

bi-ultimate-marketing-automation-guideEffective businesses focus on creating and reinforcing pleasurable experiences so that they might retain existing customers and add new ones.

Customer satisfaction matters. But where does a business get started?

How to Effectively Measure Customer Satisfaction

Measuring Customer Satisfaction is absolutely critical if you want to encourage the maximum number of referrals possible. Sadly, most small businesses don’t have a systematic way of tracking overall satisfaction.

Even worse is that fact that they have no way to receive instant notification of those who aren’t likely to spread the good word about their company, thereby leaving the unhappy customer to say whatever they like on their social networks!

When it comes to measuring customer satisfaction, one very popular method is called the Net Promoter Score.

The Net Promoter Score, or NPS®, is based on the fundamental perspective that every company’s customers can be divided into three categories: Promoters, Passives, and Detractors.

By asking one simple question — How likely is it that you would recommend [your company] to a friend or colleague? — you can track these groups and get a clear measure of your company’s performance through your customers’ eyes. Customers respond on a 0-to-10 point rating scale and are categorized as follows:

  • Promoters (score 9-10) are loyal enthusiasts who will keep buying and refer others, fueling growth.
  • Passives (score 7-8) are satisfied but unenthusiastic customers who are vulnerable to competitive offerings.
  • Detractors (score 0-6) are unhappy customers who can damage your brand and impede growth through negative word-of-mouth.

To calculate your company’s NPS, take the percentage of customers who are Promoters and subtract the percentage who are Detractors.

measuring-customer-satisfaction

Image Credit: NetPromoter.com

Automatically Measure Customer Satisfaction

In the video below, I’m going to take just over 4 minutes to show you exactly how you can use Infusionsoft (affiliate link) to automatically measure your company’s Net Promoter Score.

More importantly, I’m going to show you how to configure Infusionsoft to automatically notify you whenever someone submits a score that makes them a detractor – so that you can take immediate corrective action.

How to Improve Customer Satisfaction with Infusionsoft

Improving customer satisfaction begins with talking to the customers that aren’t happy with the product or service that they have purchased from you. In the video above, I’ve shown you an extremely easy way that you can find out who these people are so that you can reach out to them.

Below, I walk you through what a campaign for measuring customer satisfaction could look like.

nps-campaign

As you can see in the image above, customers will be routed down one of three paths (called sequences) depending on the answer they give on the web form shown below.

nps-webform

Once they make their selection and then complete the form, the magic of Infusionsoft takes over once again and routes them down the appropriate sequence (Promoter, Neutral, Detractor). The way this is done is via what is called a decision diamond.

decision-diamond

Configuring a decision diamond is very easy to do. All you do is create rules that tell the diamond which way to route the user, based upon what actions they have taken; which in this example is the rating from 1 to 10.

Below is a partial screen shot of the decision diamond configuration screen.

diamond-configuration-1

Based upon the logic shown above, the user is now routed down the appropriate sequence.

For example, if the user had chosen a 9 on the form, they would be classified as a promoter and routed down the sequence shown below.

Promoter-sequence

Had the user selected a 6 or lower, then they would have been routed down the detractor sequence, shown below.

detractor-sequence

Once you begin to track your Net Promoter Score, you are going to want to have easy access to it so that you can see at a glance the state of your overall customer satisfaction. This is easily accomplished by installing a widget onto your Infusionsoft dashboard. I’ve included a sample screenshot below.

nps-widget

As you can see, when you use the Net Promoter Score, combined with the automation power of Infusionsoft, you are going to have much more visibility into how your customers feel about your company’s level of service, and, perhaps more importantly, you are going to be able to instantly reach out to those that aren’t happy so that you can rectify whatever went awry before they start saying negative things about your firm on their social networks.

Additional Resources

Articles

Books

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How to Segment Your Email List with Infusionsoft

When it comes to building a list of prospects for your product or service, by far the most important thing to do is to segment your list so that you can effectively communicate with each of your prospects as an individual, as opposed to just another subscriber.

bi-ultimate-marketing-automation-guideNot bothering to segment your list is, in my opinion, the equivalent of email marketing suicide because when you just send everything to everyone, your message relevance and open rates will suffer. As a result, the number of people that opt out of your list will also go through the roof.

How do I know? When I first started email marketing a few years ago, I was a total rookie and didn’t know anything about how to make it easy for my subscribers to segment themselves so they only receive the content and notifications that they actually want to receive. Like most rookies, I just sent everything to everyone.

Oops.

How to Segment Your List Automatically

They key with segmentation is to allow your subscribers to segment themselves. This can be done directly or indirectly. In other words, you can segment by asking direct questions, or you can segment based on the actions your subscribers take.

Segmenting with Direct Questions

Direction questions work very well for segmenting. All you need do is ask your subscribers direct questions and then ask them to click links that correspond to their answers. In the video below, I show you how to do this.



Another way to use direct questions to segment your list is to allow your subscribers to choose the categories for the types of content that they would like to receive. In my case, I have a form that looks like the image below. My subscribers can update this form anytime they wish, just by clicking a link in the emails they receive from me.

Manage Email Preferences

On the backend, Infusionsoft is applying or removing tags that correspond to the check boxes on this form. When the boxes are checked or unchecked, the decision diamond (enlarged in the image below) then looks at the logic and routes the subscribers down all the appropriate sequences. Each of the sequences then are set to either apply or remove the appropriate tag.

auto-segment

Below is a screenshot of a portion of the decision diamond that I enlarged in the image above. As you can see, configuring the logic is pretty simple. You just click each of the blue links and then Infusionsoft will give you a choice of your available options for each rule. No programming experience is needed whatsoever.

decisiondiamond

With this automation in place, we now have lists of people who have these tags that we can send broadcast emails to when we publish new content.

For example, if a subscriber was to place a check in the box for case studies (above), then whenever we publish a new case study, only the subscribers with that tag in Infusionsoft would receive that notification.

Indirect Segmentation

With indirect segmentation, instead of asking direct questions, you are going to segment based upon your subscriber’s behavior.

For example, if you published 5 pieces of content (over time) that all revolved around the topic of lead generation and you then emailed your list each time you published a post, whenever a subscriber clicked the link in an email notification you sent them, it would be a pretty safe bet to assume that this particular subscriber was pretty interested in lead generation.

In fact, if a subscribe were to click all 5 of the links in all five of the emails, the chances that they are interested in learning more about lead generation would be extremely high.

Fortunately with Infusionsoft it is extremely easy to identify these hot prospects with something called Lead Scoring – which I will cover in more detail in an upcoming post.

Until then, just know that you can easily apply a tag for every link click that occurs, and in aggregate, the tags give you the ability to segment your list in pretty much whatever way you would like. This is made possible via the very powerful contact search capabilities that Infusionsoft has built into the CRM portion of their application (shown below).

contact-search

Other Segmentation Criteria

Depending on your business, you may want also want to segment your list in a variety of other ways. This can be accomplished by adding additional questions to your lead capture forms. Just bear in mind that adding too many questions to your lead capture forms will result in diminishing returns as the more info you ask for, the lower your conversion rate will likely be.

Here are a few ideas on questions you might want answers to:

  • Industry
  • Organization Type
  • Job Function
  • Buying Frequency
  • Seniority Level
  • Education Level
  • Interest Level
  • Company Size
  • Geography

To see a more complete list, be sure and check out 27 Ways to Slice & Dice Your Email List for Better Segmentation from Hubspot.

Want to Learn More?

As important as list segmentation is, it is only one small part of an effective overall marketing strategy. The real key to running a success small business is to understand and embrace something called Lifecycle Marketing. If this is a concept that is unfamiliar to you, be sure to check out our Lifecycle Marketing Guide for Small Business as well as to register for our next webinar.

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