Success stories had never failed in illuminating many people’s torch of fighting spirit. Admitted or not, everybody admires listening to these picture-perfect kind of tales.
We all love how they ignite some spark into our hearts, and provoke us to push beyond our limits again. And, to envision ourselves in the same exact direction where these triumphant people are precisely moving on is very much encouraging.
In fact, it sometimes shifts our mood from ‘I’m scared to do it. What if I fail? I hate failures.’ feeling to the mentality of ‘I want to try it. I don’t care how many times I fail as long as I do my best. I can do it! If they can do it, so am I! I will do it!’. It’s as if there would be no obstacle that can hinder us from reaching the mountain top.
However, whenever a strong wind is almost putting out the fire of the torch, some people’s inspiration will fade away in a snap. This is when doubt, blame, and regret come in. As a result, we tend to question our abilities, asking, “How did those triumphant people climb the mountain top that fast while I am moving so slow?!”.
We just go back again to the success stories we used to listen to.
This is exactly a cycle of reality wherein people who aim to be successful misinterpret those success stories as a pattern of easy going pathways and calm rivers, without realizing that these stories are real life.
And, in real life, not all stories end with a happy ever after.
It’s not like reading a book and skipping some chapters, and going forward to the happy and exciting ones you would only like to read. Instead, it’s more of reading the conflicts and why did the character arrived at such climax. See, the truth is, we make our own life story, and to only rely on motivation from other people will really never help us move forward. Yes, they can inspire us but in the long run, there would be nobody else who can push us every minute of every single day except ourselves.
People who wonder why others are moving fast while they move slow in climbing the mountain top or the hill of victory is that they, literally, are moving slow towards what actions they can to change and improve their own stories.
Reality check: the path to success is to take massive action, because ideas, and an optimistic point of view is never enough. But with the combination of perseverance, focus and determination, nothing is impossible to achieve!
According to Anthony Robbins, ‘If you talk about it, it’s a dream. If you imagine it, it’s a possibility. If you schedule it, it’s real.’ So, it’s always up to you. All these beautiful thoughts had been instilled in the mind of Frank Kern, a prominent American entrepreneur, the man whose salary is almost $1.4M,and the estimated net worth of $28M, and the man who made his boring history catalog into a journal of success!
For those who are new to the name, Frank Kern, is one of the most influential and fulfilled personalities who has flourished in the glamorous world of business.
Aside from his signature blonde surfer-style look way back 2012, he is also widely known for his astonishing entrepreneurial capabilities and business appeal, and for his unique chosen industry: the online business. Yes, he is an internet marketer. Also, he is a business consultant, referred to as one of the best business gurus, and a motivational speaker.
But, before all the smiles, the bright spotlights, the applause, praises, and standing ovations, Frank Kern never imagined that he would gain such attention today, after years and years of hard work.
On his interview with Hawk Mikado, the publisher of Funnel Magazine, he was asked when everything started, “The entire world has acknowledged you as a widely-known entrepreneur, a direct response marketer, and a very splendid centrepiece of the industry of internet marketing for more than 20 years. When did you realized that you craved people’s attention in this kind of industry, specifically online marketing?”
Frank Responded, “Well, it began when I had myself a door-to-door selling type of job for a credit card processing system in Macon, GA. And, I could honestly evaluate myself as the lowest-scoring member of the team in terms of social interaction. I didn’t like much of being slapped with rejection almost every single day. Those two things, out of many factors, mainly pushed me to find another way to sell to people without receiving personal rejection and without being seen as a kind of introvert person. And so, I came up with a brilliant idea: why not sit behind a computer and hide all day long, while selling millions of stuff to people and receive millions of approvals. Since then, I’ve been interested in selling stuff online.”.
When he concluded that selling stuff on the internet is a much better way to benefit, he began innovating ideas and improvising products that might bait potential buyers.
He studied every scheme online, he investigated what people need, what people want and desire, and everything he might find profitable. He even listened to Anthony Robbins tapes in order to gain more knowledge and wisdom, and read a lot of business books in order to enhance his latent qualities.
He performed many online researches. One example was the huge demand of parrot owners to teach their parrots to speak.
Frank risked his funds when he hired a writer from Elance for $650 to encode the book ‘Teach your parrot to talk.’. Fortunately, this book squeezed him an income stream of approximately $3000 every month.
He was amazed with the results and it was the ‘boom’ he was waiting for to turn the tables around. He never stopped learning and trying things out. Plus, he craved for more accomplishments. He did the same thing: invest his money, time, and effort to a thing that might not possibly work in a positive way.
He focused on another type of pet and was able to develop a course for more than 600 various breeds of dogs. He studied again regarding with fun facts about dogs and perceived that these animals can actually respond to positive reinforcement.
Then, he used the similar book for all breeds but on different websites. His technique may appear to be an unsophisticated technique to sell, but mind you, it gathered him the amount of $1,000,000 in the year 2005 and 2006.
Additionally, some of the products which Frank Kern created, like Mass Control, Mass Conversion, List Control, Screw Google System, etc. boosted his esteem in the marketplace. One more thing that made him successful was the StomperNet launch that made him earn a total of $18.3M in just a day.
After all the hardships, the failures, and the realizations, he began to spread his knowledge and wisdom to other aspiring business people who wanted to be big-time entrepreneurs. He began teaching people about the procedures in making money online.
No wonder his name has been spilled all over the social media sites, on commercials, and several magazine articles.In the same interview, Hawk raised another question, “A lot of people are also aspiring to be like yourself, a very good businessman. How do you actually make a productive and fruitful business?”
Mr. Kern replied, “For me, to focus on what’s working and to discard what’s actually not, would make things profitable in an easier way. But of course, they will never know what’s working until they search and probe things out. Look, a lot of things that can be seen online easily grab people’s attention, since there are also a lot of magnificent concepts out there that may also work for them. However, it sometimes covers the fact that these concepts might also not work for them, and basically, waste everything they had invested. So, I suggest to check out only one of 9 million things that best suits the criteria of the most potential thing to sell, and the aspect that must be enhanced. In simpler words, people who want to make money online must guarantee themselves that they are spending and risking on the right track, or if not, they can easily get back on the right track. Anyway, in connection to what my colleagues and I did and are continually doing, in order to be very good businessmen in the online industry, was to sort things out first. Afterwards, we stopped doing a million things and just deeply focused on what has already worked. By the way, these are the exact same things we teach our customers in the continuity program. On the other hand, I advise people to be brave enough to explore and gamble. The Business world is naturally filled with trial and error stuff. Have no fear. So that once they find the most profitable thing to sell and the strategy for it, it’ll be easier to focus and strive.”
Hawk noted, “Awesome! I see how much important courage and determination is when it comes to business, and how much it can help a businessman to work on profitable stuff. It’s a big part of the progress.”
Speaking of failures, of course Frank Kern had also encountered many unfortunate events in his life. He was devastated, to the point where he almost lost everything he had when a flood destroyed his property in Macon, GA.
And, guess what? The calamity transformed him from a wealthy man into a homeless one. He had no choice but to move into a single-wide trailer Milledgeville, GA, with plywood floors, a table made of peach crate, and a mattress on the floor to rest at nights. Also, he was not able to afford heat or hot water for his mini trailer home because he could not afford the gas bill.
Yet, soon enough, he had the luck of being hired as a service crew on a Greek fast food restaurant which, at least, gave him an income of $4.25 per hour.
He lived a slum life for a while, until he worked for one of his cousins in a used car sales lot, and used that as a chance to get back on the right track again.
Frank believes that if you set your comfortability boundaries into a short-term period only, you will not get used to uncomfortable things and you have to face the truth that wherever you go, in the real world, uncomfortable things will stick to you no matter what. Therefore, if you want to achieve your goals, do not be afraid to encounter the possibility of discomfort, such as pressure, failure, stress, disappointments, etc. or else, it’ll be harder to move forward. He said, “The best thing about Failures, Stress, Disappointments and Mistakes is that it helps people to slowly overcome fear, and just give the best shot they can. Also, these things may form more advanced ideas, and teaches us to grow in different aspects. Trust me, I know it. I’ve been there.”.Frank shared his experience about making a big mistake in his career, way back August 2008, which he also considered as a blessing in disguise.
He said, “I remembered having trouble with authority long time ago, when the Federal Trade Commission sued me in 2003. I was actually one of the board members of ERA. Our mission was to coach and educate marketers. I remembered working on a certain project. We were looking forward to how can we design a device, like a black box, that provides the right information to our customers, with how the marketers can cope with their business and stuff like that. Everything was in a pretty state and we were so focused on it. The only conflict was that I had no idea about the existence of a Federal Trade Commission, and I was so clueless about their advertising regulations. They sued me. It cost me a lot. I probably would not cross that line again. But, ironically, I could say that aside from my wife and my 3 adorable children, being sued was one of the best things that ever happened to me because it served as an eye opener.”.
Hawk noted, “, Awesome! But, let’s talk about Kartra. We recently discovered that you switched to Kartra now. What was its significance to your business life? Can you please share a brief story about it? ”.
Frank said, “Yeah, sure. Well, discovering the potential of this Kartra thing is one of my examples of me exploring many things then focusing on one thing in particular, and just adding on top of what’s working. Basically, I was still researching things I could add to my list of profit-potential products. And, I first just noticed my dear friends, Andy Jenkins and Hector Youngway, on how they actually spent billions of dollars in building Kartra. So, I understood that there are many people who are willing to spend a lot of money for such a hobby. And so I convinced them to collaborate with me on bringing up Kartra in the market, and they miraculously agreed. Then we were able to establish a company with Kartra wherein the customers can not only take on another automated platform, but also where they can effortlessly press some controls, and everything will be created for them, such as the page templates and email automations. It turned out pretty awesome, although I needed to hire an in-house person, paid about $30,000 a month, to fully-operate the application for me.”.
Hawk said, “Yeah, I also got the opportunity to play with it. And, I loved the design of clicking buttons and it just completed everything. What I only had to do was to start filling in all the blanks. Fantastic!”
Frank mentioned, “Yes it was. And now, the good news is that we’re working more into enhancing the app. In fact, I conducted surveys about people’s struggles and their visions of where they wanted to be, and anything that has to do with our company as big help to their burden. We also studied and observed the things about our app that can serve as a complication to the customers. I was affected by the truth that the ‘texting stuff or filling the information was a little too much of a hassle for some of them.
Luckily, we upgraded the app to the point of automatically filling in on the blanks on the copy for the customers. Unexpectedly, the notion became more alluring to people, and we are looking forward to improving it until it’s at the very best quality. Overall, I just want to share the one thing I had learned from this process. You know, selling stuff is easy. It’s just a matter of offering people things that would make them happy and then, endorse and sell them things that would make them happier.“.
Hawk remarked, “Right. But, you must have done a lot of strenuous activities and a lot of stressful methodologies to create such a successful business, and to last long enough. Is this your key on building a $10 million plus company? I wonder how many people you had recruited in order to work and accomplish this with you.”.
Frank responded, “Well, I believe that the real secret to success is when you move out of the comfort zone and work like hell. But in contrary, we don’t do extremely extraneous things. We just work very, very hard all along together. I have just about five full time employees with me. We fix one core product which is the continuity program, at the moment, and have one core strategy that clicks. That’s it. For me, recruiting a lot of people is totally irrelevant”.
Hawk declared, ”Amazing! It makes sense to me. By the way, I want to know more about your continuity program. Why did you build the program and who was it intended for? Tell me about it.”.
Frank replied, “Primarily, we decided to sell the program because we found it very profitable. It was one opportunity for us, the company and I, to increase the number of our customers, and to select the targeted offers. We built the program for people who are already at the middle of working out their business. I hosted video conferences every other Wednesday, and had live seminars twice a week, in addition to sending newsletters in the mail, campaigns, templates, etc. What we did was to provide them some useful information that is concise and straight to the point, regarding investigating details of their businesses, focusing on some particular aspects that needs the most appropriate strategy. Everything was all about simplified growth. Furthermore, we also created the Private Client Group in which we guide the entrepreneurs to examine what’s going around their businesses, and to see if there are conflicts that we can resolve. Thus, to see and try thousands of plausible things and techniques that can fix the business itself.”.
Frank Kern believes that we are the author of our own life story. Each one of us is given a pen and a piece of paper, or opportunities to decide what kind of tale we want to tell the world. We can do anything or be anyone. We can also let other people’s story of success touch our lives. We can invite some people for writing more ideas. But, we can never call on anyone to write the whole plot of our own life story. Only a person can help himself, and he can only help himself if he would start putting words into actions. Nothing is impossible. It is you and your persistence that will make you a successful person. Now, it’s up you ‘what kind kind of story you want to tell the world’.
Hawk: Hey, everybody! This is Hawk Mikado, publisher of Funnel Magazine and I'm here with Frank Kern, out of his studio. Thank you very much for inviting me today.
Frank: Thanks for having me, thanks for coming, thank you for having me in my studio.
Hawk: So, you've been an entrepreneur, you've been a direct response marketer, you've been just one of the brilliant cornerstones of the internet marketing industry for over 20-plus years.
Frank: A long time, yeah.
Hawk: So, how did you get started in this?
Frank: Abject failure. I was a door-to-door salesman. I am a level nine million introvert, I actually took an evaluation brain scan thing at a clinic and I scored the lowest you can possibly score on social interaction. They were like, “Dude, this is literally, you can't get worse than this.” So, I was not very good at door-to-door sales. I started looking into how can I sit behind a computer and hide and not have to actually face personal rejection every single day and that was it.
Hawk: So, your introvert allowed you to excel as an internet marketer, that’s really cool.
Frank: It well, it didn't make me excel, it made me at least get interested in it, you know? Yeah, pig-headed perseverance, I think made me moderately good at it.
Hawk: It says here that you are making 2018 your most profitable year ever. How are you doing that?
Frank: More of what's working and less of what's not. So, it's really, really easy online especially to get super distracted by stuff. I'm on the same list all you guys are on, you know, and everyone's email copy is so good that you're like, “Dude, I've got to try this thing,” you know? And so then, you go down the rabbit hole with the new thing and some of them work, and some don't. And what we decided to do as a company was to focus on a singular thing, we've actually had that singular focus since 2016 which is our membership. That cause last year to be our most profitable year ever and creating all that, we set everything out to be relatively self-managing. Now, the continuity just works, you know all the funnels just work. Who knew with this whole funnel idea, you know kind of works pretty good. We added more on top of what was working. Our most insightful thing that we experienced as a company was to stop doing a million things and to just look at what has worked really, really well, and then just do that with very intense laser focus.
Hawk: So, you recently switched over to Kartra.
Hawk: Can you share a little bit more about the experience with that?
Frank: Obviously, I'm very biased because I own equity in Kartra. So, I got very fortunate and the guys, they started Kartra. Andy Jenkins and Hector Youngway are friends of mine, and they spent about four million dollars or so, building Kartra, and then at the last minute I came in and I said, “Hey, I'll tell you how to really take this to market, if you'll give me a piece of your company.” And they agreed, miraculously. So, therefore, my review of Kartra is very, very biased. But it's been extremely easy to integrate with them because what we did as a company with Kartra was to make it not just another automation platform. We wanted to make it a situation where you can come in, press create campaign button and it just builds the page templates, builds all the email automation, and everything for you. So prior to doing that, I was an Infusionsoft user and they're a great company, I found it personally, maybe because I'm not so bright, to be very, very difficult to use. I had to have an in-house person that was around $30,000 a month just to run that application for me. So with Kartra, I don't have to do that, it has been awesome.
Hawk: I've had an opportunity to play around with it, as an Affiliate Marketer as well. I love how you can literally just click in and it fills out everything, and you just fill in the blanks. So, if that's your idea, awesome.
Frank: It was, yeah. And we're building more into that. So in fact, I'm on the list this week of like things Frank has to do, is to build tutorials for a book funnel. So someone could come in and just press the button, and how the book funnel pages are built, and all the invite sequences and webinar stuff are built, then that'll just continue to get more robust. I've done these surveys a lot. I first did a survey of this nature, I think in 2006, asking people what their biggest challenge was and getting to where they wanted to be. I was overwhelmed and it became specifically narrowed down to overwhelmed with the text stuff, you know because the text stuff is a pain, no matter what platform you're using, it's always a hassle. So we figured, “Hey, you know if we can make it work, someone can press a button.” It's good to get rid of that problem and then the added ability of filling in the blanks on the copy, I mean you really can but of course, you have to have some skill with your copy, but to take away a lot of that learning curve, really made it more appealing for people and so it worked pretty good.
Hawk: You've built a $10 million-plus company and have a staff of just five full-time employees, how do you make that work for you?
Frank: This company is not at 10. This company in combination with other companies, I have pieces of, but this company you're referring to...last year I think we did seven point something, seven and a half, give or take and we don't do a lot, I don't mean that we don't do a lot of work but we don't do a lot of extraneous activity, we have one core product which is this continuity program, we have one core process that sells that, of all things a funnel and then, we just built two other programs that are all here, physically. So, it is unnecessary to have a lot of people.
Hawk: So, can you tell me a little bit more about your continuity program? How you developed it and why you decided to go with that?
Frank: Yeah! Well, certainly I did it because it's very profitable. But the difference between the one that we created and most that you would see is number one the price, it's probably around ten times more than the average continuity programs, as we have $400 a month. The target market is different, this is typically for people who are already doing things, it's not a beginner, it's not unfriendly for beginners but a beginner would find it to be a bit much, you know, and it's personal interaction. So, we shoot live workshops for members every week, twice a week in fact, and then I do live video conferences for them every other Wednesday, in addition to sending them a newsletter in the mail, and campaigns pre-done, templates, and all that kind of stuff. And the reason we built it was because of two things: Number one, I tested it years ago and it worked and so again, going back to the thing that's why these years were so profitable and last year as we just keep doing what's working, you know. But Number two, it was the gap in the market. I think that courses can get you very, very far but eventually, you're going to need somebody to talk to, you know and so, we provide that somebody. So literally, I just finished a video conference with members where I'm looking at them, they're in the studio over there where I can see them on the screen, I could see their computer screens, you can see their campaigns, and answer their questions personally and that's not really readily available in the marketplace.
Hawk: So, how do you see it progressing? Because we've been coming out, I would say “coming out of the information age” and moving towards more mastery or actually being able to implement. How do you see that progressing in your business and in the businesses of the members that you have?
Frank: I think that we will enter the insight age. So I think, to speak to implementing, I think there will be a continuing demand for professional services which is the “they do it for me” thing. I think information went from being very, very valuable that maybe ten years ago to now being, it's still valuable within context but it can also be the source of overwhelm and stress for people, I mean it's literally you're bombarded with every day. So, what people need now and what they want now is more insight which is “Please just tell me, like the one thing or two things and don't give me seven thousand videos to watch, just give me like the one thing, so I can go do it.” And so, I think there will be a large evolution towards that but I don't think that the concept of selling information will go away, ever. I just think that more opportunity will open up within more insightful, more concise training for people.
Hawk: Awesome! How do you guys drive traffic to your program?
Frank: Ads, primarily Facebook. We have a little bit of Google, we test it. But we are committing the marketing sin of using primarily one platform and we don't do the, tried to build the page up or whatever, I don't even know how many fans I have if you would call them that on Facebook, I don't care, you know? I mean, it's nice to have them and everything, I mean it that way, but we buy traffic. So, I'm not an affiliate guy, it's all media. I want to be able to control the media coming to me and turn that into a profit.
Hawk: So, you created this private client group which you involve ten entrepreneurs that come in. They spend $30,000 one-time payment, no payment plans and you bring them in three times a year. How does that impact their business? How does that help you grow your business?
Frank: Well, it impacts them all horribly, and they just hate it. That was a great question because it really makes it where I can say good things about the program. Yeah, well I don't offer it anymore because we sold it out. So we, I started out I said, “I'm going to have 13 groups,” and we're going to do it, that's why we have this big echoey studio here because of the vast majority of the space is actually utilized by them, when they come. And then it pares down to six groups and I was like, “I think, four is plenty,” because this is a lot of work, you know? So, it's these two-day meetings with just groups of ten. So, it's a lot of two-day meetings, and the core thing that they get in that, aside from just being able to call me or whatever, so these are very high achievers, it's not a beginner's group or anything like that nor is it a mastermind. So, private client literally means private client. it's like I mean, look at your stuff, let me see the ads, let me see the numbers, let's get in here, and you know, tweak things and make them better or fix them where needed. Aside from the benefit of that which is they get 19 years of experience, we're not having to do the 19 years of work is, it’s clarity, it's a lot of focus on clarity. So, every single one of these people come in and they're like, “Okay, I want to grow and I have nine million things I want to do,” which is normal and so our job is, “Okay, great. You have nine million things you want to do. Let's look at all of them, let's look at the ones that have produced the most revenue and then, how about we focus on those? Then let’s build a very simple process around that.” So, everything we do as a company, whether it's from our own company or that we try to get for our members in continuity or our private clients, it's simplified growth. I'm very sold on the “80/20 principle” and the idea of “less is more” when it comes to growing a company.
Hawk: Awesome. So that's sold out. Do you guys do a Mastermind at all?
Frank: We don't do a Mastermind now. We have another program called Flagship which is for people who are at six figures all the way up to seven and that's newer, and we're in our second group now. But I personally don't enjoy Masterminds in the traditional sense of the word, where day one, we're all going to sit around, we're going to say what's working and then we're going to try to make it better. Then on day two, we're going to all talk about what needs fixing, we're going to try to make it better. For me, I find that disorganized and I personally don't get value from it, so we don't do that in our program. That program, that's for one-day meetings a quarter in a straight curriculum based. So, it's very instructional where it's here's a tool, here's a thinking process to use, here's how to gain clarity and focus. The idea is you leave with like a thing to do, not 9 million things, not a bunch of new ideas, but a very clear vision of here's what I want to get done, here's exactly the plan to get it done, and then between those meetings, we talk to clients every week on focus calls to help them stay on track.
Hawk: Awesome, and between that, and you also have a podcast called the “Your Next Million.”
Hawk: Can you share with me a little bit about what you talk about and what you do on the podcast?
Frank: Yeah, I noticed there was a lot of material online within the internet marketing space for people who are getting started but there is not a lot of material for people who were already up and running, and want to do better. So I figured I would fill that gap because that's my perfect client anyway. I'm terrible with new people, I just, I don't have the, I'm not nice enough, really. My dude, I told you what to do yesterday, hurry up, so it doesn't go over well with them. I don't think they enjoy the process. So, I recognize that gap in the marketplace. So, your next million is designed specifically to take the person who's at six, seven, eight figures, whatever, they've got 9 million plates spinning and with every episode, give them a usable concept and worksheet that they can use to get to where they're going. So again, this is the whole focus of it, it's very simplified growth.
Hawk: That's awesome. So, I am the same way when we work with private clients, I don't work with newbies.
Hawk: And when somebody new wants to come, it's like, “Okay,” it's three times the investment because you need to go do all these other things. So, how did you figure that? How did you, in your business and in over the last 19 years figure out if or who your ideal target audiences?
Frank: It was personal preference. I just prefer to work with them. I mean, if you imagine in the business you and I, we're trying to get an entrepreneur a result. If you metaphorically look at that as we're trying to take a 20-ton rock and move it. If that rock is not moving, we're not going to be able to do it, you know? I mean, maybe through some Herculean force, we can do it but if that rock is moving a little bit and we just have to move it faster, we could just go like that. And now, we're doing our job, so I would much rather just go like that, then like hit me and you have 15 other people and break our bags and try to move this stagnant 20-ton boulder. So, that's why I choose the clients that are already doing things and plus I can do a better job with them, you know? It's hard to get results for somebody with zero momentum. At least it is for me, it's not my strong suit. I'm very, very good at being able to say, “Oh, you're doing that. Well, let's add this to it, or let's tweak this,” or whatever. So, there was a function of evolution in terms of the results for that, personal brand or preference.
Hawk: Awesome. So, you've been incredible with email copy, that's been something that I've seen email headlines, just one of the things that consistently captured my attention. Can you share with me some of the tips and tricks that you have for somebody who's looking to up their game with email?
Frank: Don't try, yeah. So, I don't mean don't try to up your game with it but when you're writing email, you really need to write something like you're writing to a friend. So, every media has context like the blog typically delivers news, or instructions, or opinion. An email contextually is usually going to be received from one friend to another and is usually going to be very short, very conversational. So, if you want to do better at email, if you want to write good email making, you want to just be a lot more colloquial in it and have a lot shorter copy, and don't make it seem salesy. So, all my stuff, I literally write to my list like I've known them forever and they're friends of mine because most of them have been on my list forever. I consider them to be friends of mine because they've helped me build everything I have. So, I just assume that familiarity, you know, and it works well and there's very little, gosh I'm really killing any chance I ever have of selling an email copywriting course but nor would I ever want to, there's very little strategy to it. It's just like, here's the thing, I want them to go click this, check it out, you know? The function of the email is primarily to get a click and how would I write it if I was writing it to my friend Andy Jenkins or something, “Hey man, check this out, it’s pretty cool. See you later.” That's it. So, in the course of email copy, I don't think my email copy is particularly good, I just think that if you compare it to other marketing based email copy, the other copy is pretty bad because it screams “I'm trying to sell you something,” and when I'm trying to sell someone something, I just tell them, “I'm trying to sell you something, right now. Here's why you should buy,” which is exactly what you would say to your friend.
Frank: Some works pretty good.
Hawk: That's awesome, I love that. One of the things we interviewed Ryan Levesque about I was just curious if you've seen anything with this, he mentioned, “Instead of writing, putting a sales letter together, putting the same thing you'd write in an email using that as an ad on Facebook.” Have you guys ever tried anything like that?
Frank: Like long form Facebook copy?
Hawk: Yeah, basically using the Facebook copy.
Frank: Long form, ads are long form, yeah. So, and you know, you never know if this is a universally applicable principle. What are the dangers of listening to people like us? Is it, if it works for us it doesn't necessarily mean it'll work for every other person in the world? We have found personally that longer form has had greater longevity and they convert better. If we do a lot of pre-selling in the ad copy and even if initially a short copy ad will perform better, it won't last, it just gets burnt out for whatever reason.
Hawk: Yeah, short ads definitely have a shorter life.
Hawk: So, what are some of the free optin gifts that you give through your ads?
Frank: I just started doing opt-ins like a month ago. So, from May of 2016 until a month ago, there was none at all. It was “buy this book at $5.60, it’s pretty good”, and then that self-liquidated and it led into my Continuity Program and that's how we built it. Once the Continuity Program had hit the financial goal that we built it to hit, then we started deviating our focus from that into creating Flagship and Private Client Group. Our campaign for Flagship right now is because I found dealing with webinar software to be a pain in the ass, it's just an on-demand class which is a fancy way of saying video. So, it's an automated webinar but it's not just opt-in and here's the video and so it's presented as an on-demand class.
Hawk: There's a lot of controversy around automated that looks real, using something like every webinar.
Hawk: Automated that doesn't look real, it tells you it’s automated or just doing the on-demand, what have you found in testing that works best?
Frank: I haven't tested. I haven't really paid attention to the testing of one versus the other. We have done automated that looks real, however, it was largely real because a real human was there moderating the chat and actually answering people. And we ran it for about three months and it worked. I did not test that against not doing things, I really wanted to do it in there, it was a seven-hour class. So, I wanted to have a guy in there answering questions, engaging people, and trying to do a good job, and all that stuff. I think that if you deliberately deceive your audience into thinking they're getting one thing and they're not, then that's a pretty bad foot to start with. So, and I doubt we'd be successfully fooling anybody, if you're like, “Ok, here's a real webinar,” and it's like everybody knows if it says WebinarJam on it or EverWebinar, or ClickFunnel, or whatever. It's not a stupid real webinar, so why bother? You know what I mean?
Hawk: If it’s playing in the next 5, 10, 15 minutes, or even the next hour, not probably a real webinar.
Frank: Yeah. I think an on-demand class is pretty good, though. It's like, it's clearly not live because it's on-demand. So, if you go watch the Stones on-demand, it's not like, “Oh dude, we’re on-demand! Okay Keith, tune-up. Bill let's get the keys ready. Charlie you good? Okay, go.” That won't happen.
Hawk: We've worked a lot of corporate clients and in corporate, you do not do an automated webinar, it's either on-demand or it's live. So, it's really interesting that you've taken that into the small business world.
Frank: Well it was literally that distinction between using the word “webinar” and “on-demand training” that’s a couple of weeks old. It wasn't even that the webinar software is a pain because I segment the data based on gross revenue. So, I'll give one offer if someone's under a certain growth revenue that's, “Okay, you should join our Continuity Program.” If someone is over a gross revenue, I'll put them on a training that's at the end, I’d said, “You know, you should consider joining Flagship.” And I couldn't figure out how to make them auto-register for the automated webinar based on the tags that were applied, I know this is techy boring stuff but this is funnel magazine.
So, probably the readers are familiar with this kind of thing, I couldn't figure out how to make the tech work, so I was like, “Screw it, man I'm just going to do it as an on-demand class and hopefully it won't hurt conversions and it had absolutely no difference whatsoever,” like no one cared, they're like, “Huh? Okay, cool.” I know if it's a webinar, it's going to be a video anyway. So, a video on a page, it's no difference.
Hawk: So, have you used products that use the PLF or multi-video series type launch funnel so far?
Frank: Yeah. I've even automated this, it works pretty good. It's been years ago, so I think I'll give you some data. Actually around this, we spent around $300 grand and this is maybe 2015. So, 2015 or 2016 a while back, we spent $300,000 running traffic to automated webinars and automated the launch funnel where people were opting in for a mission specific video like “here's how to do a thing” and then a blind ad where people would opt in for a report called the “Future of Internet Marketing.” I think I was like, “Here's some benefits in this report,” but it wasn't necessarily like here's how to do a thing, there's no objective behind it. Every single person who opted in, regardless of where they opted in, went through our entire behavioral dynamic system. So, they saw every offer we had overtime when we ran this thing forever, spent a lot of money on it. And then at the end of that task, we looked and said, “Okay, which opt-in source had the greatest amount of revenue per registrants?” And the greatest amount of revenue per registrants was webinars which are really surprising because they're more committed. Especially if you're choosing a time and showing up, and filling out the extra fields, and all that. But it was interesting which the reason I bring that up is because to address launches, I think they're amazing, especially if you do them internally to your own list and don't involve affiliates, I really like them. I think they're amazing with affiliates involved as well. Although I think you can have a diminishing of goodwill towards the end of it because you got nine million people using scarcity tactics with your name in front of it. So it's like, the money's nice but then they have the repercussions of that problem here. I would not accept something I would prefer to endure but it's an automated system that worked pretty good.
Hawk: I know you mentioned earlier that you don't really have affiliates who promote you. What was the decision behind that and has that impacted your business?
Frank: It has been amazing for the business. The decision behind it was I don't want to share the money. I would rather buy a customer for less than I would have to pay an affiliate and source matters. So, I don't want some random person going and promoting my stuff and sending me customers, and I'm not sure what promises they're making when they're sending the customers. It might be a biz op type customer or beginner customer, or whatever and therefore that person might go, “This is awful. I don't like this guy’s stuff. He's talking about strategy and thinking tools, and all I want to know is what color buy button should I use on my page.” So, for those reasons, oh and there's liability which people don't realize. There's a tremendous amount of liability when you have affiliates. So, if you're my affiliate, you say “You're going to make a million dollars in ten seconds if you buy Frank’s stuff.” I'm liable for that and I don't want to be liable for that. And it was financially motivated, I can acquire a customer for less than the commission I would pay to an affiliate, and paid media is not going to ask me to do a reciprocal mailing for them. “Cygnus, I don't think anyone’s signing up on my list. Connor, I hope Frank promotes the latest product launch to me. I'm hoping he's going to send me cut and paste emails just like the other 19 people were sending me this week about the exact same product. If only he'll do it.” I don't think that’s happening. So, I'd much rather not have to be in that situation with the people that are completely responsible for the financial well-being of my family.
Hawk: Awesome. So, breakeven is the number one thing you're just hiding that cost less to acquire customers and affiliates. How does somebody from your perspective, get to a breakeven point in their funnel?
Frank: Depends on the funnel. The only way I know to answer the question is to give you numbers. Our book funnel that we ran forever... It was, and this is funny, it is funny to speak on this topic about how much marketers model each other without any thought, whatsoever. Our book funnel was my consulting book. I don't run it that much anymore because I'm just mainly promoting Flagship or Continuity things, relatively full. I can get customers if I want them from the list or whatever, and that started as a free plus shipping book funnel, classic, and I like to maintain goodwill with the marketplace, than ever possible. I was like, “Alright, most people are charging, like $8 shipping,” but then, you see the comments under the app, people are like, “Hey, doesn't cost $8 to ship a book. You're ripping us off.” So, like “Well, that's kind of a good point.” I went to USPS gov, and I looked at the bulk media rate shipping cost for like, anywhere in the United States Continental is five dollars and sixty cents, I said, “Okay, I'm going to charge five dollars and sixty cents shipping,” and it was costing us around 13 bucks or whatever to fulfill one of these books. So, I said, “Well gosh, you don't wonder what would happen if I didn't ship the book and told him it was a download.” I said, “Change the app from free book reveals to new book reveals.” and I said, “This is an instant download, left the price the same because it was working and had no effect on conversion at all.” So, and this I know, I'm not directly answering the question but I will. But what's funny is now, if you go and you look at a lot of book funnels, they're charging five dollars and sixty cents without realising that I have no idea whether or not that's actually a good price. I literally chose it because that's how much it cost to ship a book in the continental United States by the US mail. I wanted to be truthful in the advertising. Here the numbers on that over, like all this time, right? We would get, if we spent a hundred grand on media for the book funnel, the book funnel consisted of a book, an order bump, an upsell, a down sell, and in a second upsell. That little chunk of the book funnel would get us about a twelve percent return on cash collected, over that thirty day period, which is not a lot. One, or twelve, or a hundred thousand dollars, but it of course crushes Wall Street, but it's not a lot, and to get to that point, our primary focus was two things: Number one, lower the cost to acquire the book buyer through better copy, which we never tested any other copy. It was always through, “Okay, let's see.” You know, what happens when we scale and what if we add an order bump and like, logical things like that. What we would see over time was that, after about day sixty, that 12% ROI would end up being around 40% because some of the upsells were on payment plans. That was pretty good and the whole purpose of it was just to acquire a customer at a self-funding profit. Then they could all join our Continuity Program which would be a series of offers, you know, for Continuity and that worked.
Hawk: So, what are that back-end offers? What's the bump in the upsell, downsell?
Frank: So, for the book funnel, I want to really make it clear that all of these prices are really extracted. There's no class, so for all I know, they're the worst prices ever. You change it by a dollar, it converted, it just worked, and I was like, “Screw it.” I'm really not a big split tester, quite frankly the tech was never there to be accurate. Split testing, in my opinion, until Carter came along, and now, I'm just like, “I don't want to bother.” Because I'm used to not bothering, whether it was so long that I've got to get it right the first time, a lot of times. Our order bump was 37 bucks and that was, they didn't know they were getting it, was about two hours of seminar footage that went along with the book. The first one click upsell was another seminar presentation called “Reframe” and the sales angle on it, and this is a good sales angle for one click upsell, is that it solved a problem that fulfilling on the book’s promise created, which sounds weird, so I'll explain. If someone followed all the directions in the book, they weren't getting a lot of leads, and so now your problem is, if you're a consultant, how do you pitch a free consult to someone repeatedly, without being annoying, alright? There's like, you know, you don't want to keep that, “You want a free consult? How about now? Now?” The training taught them 13 different angles of approach on how to do that. So, that was the first one click upsell, $297 no idea if this is a good price. Totally, just like, “$297?” and never split tested it against any other price. “Rohan, it was horrible.” We converted around 2.5% for that, give or take, over time. Like one day, you know book funnels are, like, “Well, we're 5% converting, we're going to be rich,” the next day, it's nothing like, everything's terrible, the tech is broken. If they said no to that, there would be, “Ok, do you want to do it for three payments of $97?” “Yeah, and that was pretty much the VS selling” like, “Ok,” looks like nothing particularly good. And the final one was a Video Black Box which was an instructional angle. Both those points are important because while the conversion rates might not have been as high as what other marketers could get, both of those pitches, whether it was the pitch for Reframe or the pitch for Video Black Box, actually helped the person who watch the video.
So, regardless of whether or not they bought, they came away learning something, you know. In the case of Reframe, I actually taught them one of the angles and scripted it out for them in the videos like, “Here's an angle you can take. Here's the scripting for it. If you want the other 12, you can buy it.” In the Video Black Box, one, I taught them the framework for a video which is patterning interrupt deliver concept or pattern interrupt deliver content, and then ask for results, I gave them examples. And the reason I tell you all of that is because, very rarely do I do well on the front end. I'm not that great, I'm not a particularly good copywriter, I don't make very hard-hitting VSL. I'm very, very aware of compliance matters with, the long-ago sued by the Federal Trade Commission in 2003, and I'm a board member of the ERA, so our job is to educate marketers on compliance. Therefore, I'm not like a hard-hitting copy guy. The reason our stuff works is because of the relationship built and then, communication over time, yeah.
Hawk: That must be interesting getting sued.
Frank: It was. It was entirely my fault. I had no idea there was a Federal Trade Commission and nor did I know that there were advertising regulations. I was just literally clueless. I was 30 years old, this is 2003. And probably the best thing, it unpleasant and very expensive, it was arguably the best thing that ever happened to me, outside of marrying my wife, Natalia and having our children, and obvious things like that, you know. So, I wouldn't want to do it again, but I certainly wouldn't take it back for anything, it was an eye-opener.
Hawk: I shared with you a little bit before the interview, we had a pretty traumatic experience that led to the creation. What are some pivotal moments, other than being sued that have actually skyrocketed your business because you had to take a different approach?
Frank: Well, getting sued was a big one. Although that inaction conquered the business, that killed the business because they're like, “Yeah, all this stupid crap, you're doing, you can't do that anymore, ever again, and you're an idiot.” They didn't say it, you know, I mean, they're very polite. Actually, if you ever get sued by the government, I hope that anyone who ever goes through it, at least has a similar experience to me, where they're friendly and while they were freezing the assets and taking the money, it wasn't, like you know, men and women, and what do you call them, windbreakers with, you know, billy clubs, smashing our stuff. They were like, “Hey, here's some papers, give us your money.” Yeah and I said, “Okay, sorry. Didn't know you existed. Really, feeling stupid, right about now.” “Yeah, yeah, yeah, whatever, get out of here. Don’t do it, again.”
So, that did not explode the business, at all. But the result of that was, maybe I should learn how to do this the right way. Then, I actually ended up selling dog training materials. I was so afraid to do anything with marketing. I was like, “I can never sell anything with marketing, again. It's going to make them angry.” You know? So, I'm going to sell dog training material because that's very innocuous. Then, it's who knows if it's impossible to get sued, but it's less likely than if you're selling success information.
Aside from that, it was always things of like, necessity, you know? I mean, I created Mass Control which was a thing that really put me on the map, years ago, and I did it because I had a tax bill, like, I was very content being completely behind the scenes, doing the dog stuff. The dog business was doing ok because I'm making a million dollars a year. But at the time, well, this is amazing. You know? Like, I literally talked to nobody, ever. I hit refresh all day, and I surf, and I'm getting a million bucks a year. It wasn't all net or anything, we're still, I'll take it, you know? I had a tax bill because apparently taxes are not optional, so I was like, “Well, I'll do this Mass Control product, and teach people how I did all this stuff,” and then, watch it, and then, that worked. So, I said, “Okay, I'm going to keep doing more of this.”
And another thing that helped was getting a tremendous amount, well, it felt like a tremendous amount of haters. Back during all the product launch era, where the internet community got very tired of being on the same email lists, coming all the time, like clockwork, “Hey, you know, you better buy this thing right now.” And that made me think, “Okay, well, if the marketplace I'm serving, doesn't like this, then I should probably find a better way.” Which is what caused me to think, “What if I just advertise?” Well, here's this novel idea. Yeah. Again, back to what we started with, you focus on what works and then do more of that. I built the dog business from cold media, like nobody knew me. I did it under a survey, well, not a survey, what do you call? A pen name! You know? I started with nothing, and started running ads to this funnel, and it worked. It was like, “Wait a minute, what if I just did that, and never did any of this affiliate stuff, again.” And it was huge, very, very successful.
Hawk: That's awesome. You mentioned you're a part of an EFT group or something like that.
Hawk: ERA, thank you. Can you share a bit more about what, how the ERA helps entrepreneurs?
Frank: Yeah. The ERA stands for Electronic Retailing Association, and man, this is an unbelievable organization. Talk about masterminds and stuff, you know? And like, people like, with my mastermind, we got everyone’s seven figures. If you're in the ERA and you're seven figures, you go to one of those meetings, you're like, “Yeah, I'm just a seven figures.” Like, I'll speak to them and the guy will answer or ask a question, it's like, “Yeah, I'm spending about fifty million dollars a year on media,” and I'm wondering, how I can get a better return? Like, “Oh my god, dude, that's your spend?” You know? “What are you making?” He's like, “I know about 250 million dollars.” That's the kind of people who are in that, a very, very big player in direct response.
And the purpose of the ERA is to be a collaborative bridge between the direct response world and the regulatory world. Our job is to try to educate marketing folks about, “Hey, you know, there's these things called rules, and we're supposed to follow them.” And then, work with the regulators to say, nobody understands that law because it's written by lawyers and stuff. How can we make it where people actually understand what this is, and you know, tell us what you see, that's going on, that you don't like, so we can say, “Hey, don't be doing this. They don't like it.” So, our job is kind of to raise educational awareness around stuff that'll get you in trouble. And as a result of that, you end up with a bunch of really, really accomplished direct response people, all in one singular community, sharing ideas, which is cool. And man, they make us internet people look like, just children, the same like, I thought, I was something, until I went to the first ERA meeting, I'm like, “Well, I've got a lot to work. I got pretty good at, like, one thing, over the past 19 years,” and these people are like, 20 times bigger than me, you know? So, it's cool.
Hawk: So, what's the website, so somebody can get involved?
Frank: It’s retailing.org. Yeah, and I would recommend everybody join, it doesn't cost a lot of money. It's not expensive, and if you want them to, they'll check your stuff, and check to see if you’re compliant, and if you're not, they'll tell you. And if you ever get a letter from the ERA and it says, “You need to change your marketing.” I would strongly suggest responding to the letter and changing the marketing, because if you don't, it goes straight to the top of the pile at the Federal Trade Commission.
Hawk: What's something that used to work, that no longer works?
Frank: I really don't know if there's anything that used to work, that doesn't work. You know, and I'll tell you the reason why is because we drive traffic into a funnel and then follow up with them. So, I'm not very good at staying on top of the latest tricks and hacks and all that kind of stuff. I would probably assume things like Adsense Farms or whatever that kind of hacky stuff might have been really great a long time ago but isn’t now. But the Direct-Response Association, I think was it called Direct Marketing Association, DMA I think it was started a hundred years ago and it's the same. Yeah, look it up it’s crazy, it had a different name I think, but I did the research on it. So, our profession is over a hundred years like direct responses around seventeen hundreds and I can't remember the dude's name. There's like the whole coupon, direct mail stuff that's all the way back then and it's the same stuff, I mean there's nothing really different, so we have different sources of media, it's cheaper now. You know it used to be extremely difficult. We got to run a radio ad and hope that works, and then the dude has to pick up the phone and call or something.
And now, we run a Facebook ad and you get results in minutes, whether they're good or bad. But in terms of true direct response principles, they've never stopped working, I doubt they ever will.
Hawk: Have you seen anything with the camera Jen Lucas scandal?
Frank: No, I didn’t. I never watch those nor do I actually get on Facebook. I'm all over it with ads, but I don't have it on my phone, I have no idea what people are saying about me or to me on Facebook.
Hawk: So, in the last month have you seen an increase or a decline in your ad production?
Frank: No, but here's one thing we did learn in the last month which is, I don't know what this means, maybe it's a one-off, all right? So, to be clear, I'm not slandering Facebook, they're amazing, thank you for giving us a good advertising platform, and thanks for letting us like profit off of the thing you built. We tested very extensively well, I don't know maybe $30 grand or so, where the tests going to audiences that had income demographic targeting on there. When someone registers for one of our on-demand trainings, there's a drop-down box that says, “What's your gross sales?”
You know under $100K, over $100K and they're like four or five options, or whatever. And we ran this test to audiences that liked marketing stuff like the obvious ones, you know? People who like me, Ryan, you know the low-hanging fruit.
Anyway, we put that income overlay, and the income overlay will show it to people with net worth of over $500K, a net worth of over a million, a net worth of over two million. They were like, this is going to give us a lot of people with successful businesses which is who we target and we looked, and measured the ratio of people who said I'm under $100 K, versus over a million, or whatever. And there was no difference within any statistical relevance between the amount of over $100K people that came from the very expensive highly segmented targeted traffic of this income data versus the same audiences that did not have the highly targeted income data.
So, one of these things where people all freaked out about like, Facebook's got my data and they're using it's like, “I don't know, got it or not.” Because we tried to use the income stuff which they provide. Only show this to people with this much money and it had zero effect at all, except where it costs more.
Hawk: Yeah, a lot more.
Frank: About double, yeah.
Hawk: If you're only paying double, I want to know what all they are doing.
Frank: I got a good Facebook guy.
Hawk: Yeah because when we did it, I think it was about five times as much.
Frank: It's ridiculous! Absolutely no difference. So I'm like, “Dude, what? Come on! We're believing that this is good data and maybe it is, maybe we did it wrong.” Again, Mr. Zuckerberg, please don't throw lightning bolts at us and blow up the studio here.
Hawk: One of the things we’ve done, we’ll acquire a list, specifically for the purposes of adding it to a Facebook audience. Have you guys tried that for other graphics purposes?
Frank: We'll take book buyers and upload them where we used to, we don’t really do it anymore, and create look-alikes from it and all that kind of stuff.
Hawk: This wouldn't be a look-alike, this is going to a data.
Frank: You mean by the list?
Hawk: By the list.
Hawk: For cold traffic.
Frank: No, did it work?
Hawk: Yeah. Actually, makes it a lot less expensive.
Frank: That’s pretty good!
Hawk: That’s about 30%...
Frank: So, what size of list history did you buy?
Hawk: Usually, they are from a couple hundred thousand to a couple million and from there, we take that...
Frank: On a localized type of campaign or something?
Hawk: No, just it's specific, like let's say you wanted to sell Kartra, you'd go buy a list of Infusionsoft.
Frank: Oh, yes.
Hawk: Right? And you could then target people who haven't known or who have previously had a known Infusionsoft account. You could then sell specifically...
Frank: That’s smart!
Hawk: Then, you know there's a cost to acquire the list, so we know we're going to produce from that ongoing and then from there, just targeting those people, there's literally no demographics in basements...
Frank: --- office like, “Are they buying my list? Those bastards,” for the record you're probably not buying Infusionsoft customers with that direct for sale.
Hawk: Correct, yeah. It's not Infusionsoft, other people who know, right?
Frank: Yeah, yeah. Broker, useless broker.
Hawk: They have so I was just curious if you've ever done that?
Frank: We haven't but I probably never would even though it's less money because the audiences are so small, we try to just target a lot bigger audience to scale. I'll pay more for them if I can just get more of them. My belief is look, I'd rather make 10% of a million versus you know, I don't know, 30% of fifty thousand or whatever. Actually, I bet that the math doesn't equal that. I was almost like what if 10% of millions less, but math is not an exact science, you know because I’d rather just get the speed up but that's a smart thing. That's why we don't do it, it's this deliberate what is like, “Yeah,” I was like, “Okay, let's just get a bunch of them in.”
Hawk: Yeah, because I sign a list of you know, hundreds of millions expensive. We buy this list...
Frank: Yeah I'll buy it. We just had a guy, a client today who he's got a three million person list, he's geographically limited. So, he's kind of like that's all he can do and he can't spend his budget anymore because the list is really not that big, you know? I think the algorithm is what, 19% of the list size is actually going to be on the platform at any given moment and all this kind of stuff. So, we try to work with bigger audiences just for that reason. But we do, you know, I was paying on the book funnel. We got up to about 30 something dollars a book buyer. That’s what it cost, settled at $5.60 a book. And for a qualified, on-demand class register right now, about 24 bucks.
Hawk: For a webinar, on-demand webinar?
Frank: For a qualified one. Yeah, which is over 100k because they give us their...
Frank: We ask because I'll see a different offer, why offer someone something they shouldn't buy, you know? So, we don't offer them our Flagship Program unless they qualify for it.
Hawk: So the same book offer of the training and different offer on the back-end?
Frank: Yeah, it's literally the exact same webinar and the ones under 100k.So, if you like a trial of our Continuity, you can take one, very low. You know if you want it, try it. It's not our target, so I don't want to go referral, I don’t want to send him a million affiliate emails to them. We just make a little offer and some take it, some don't but it's not our main concern.
Hawk: Yeah, very cool.
Hawk: What, by the way, your book, I know somebody who's bought it multiple times.
Frank: You know the fourth time is the best, I think.
Hawk: Fourth time is the best?
Frank: Yeah, that's when you're really like, “I'm going to read it now.”
Hawk: I just, I thought it was funny, they get it shipped and it was, this was before you changed. They got it shipped every single time.
Frank: It's a little handy.
Hawk: I know. We're pretty much wrapping up here. If you had one thing that you could share and if they took nothing else away from the rest of this interview, they were to do one thing today with their business or in their life, what would that be?
Frank: Alright, one thing here. I don't know if it would be a do, it would be more thinking. So, who watches this, where are they on the entrepreneurial journey? Are they starting?
Hawk: We have a lot of agency owners who watch this and experts in funnel marketing, different kinds of marketing, ads, everything and then we have people who are learning and trying to figure out, most of them are trying to figure out who they should hire.
Frank: That's great!
Hawk: Personally, I don't like selling information. I like selling implementation and the only time we give away like we have programs up to the wazoo, we give away and you know all of our competitors...
Frank: Take this program, so you can realize what a pain in the ass this is, I hire, it's exactly.
Hawk: We actually have a program, we don't offer the service anymore but we give the program away for free and we say, “This is literally everything you need to know about this. At the end of this program, you can either give this to somebody on your team to do it or you can hire us to do it.” And when we have it live, I think about 90% of the people who went through like actually completed it, came back to us and said, “Hey, we don't want to do this ourselves, can you either train our team to do that, like come in and do like a VIP day with our team or just do it for us.”
Hawk: And people are like, “Why would you give away all this content for free?”
Frank: You're using the old demonstrate, you can help them by actually helping them trick, how nefarious and underhanded Sir, you evil marketer. That's great! I like that methodology. Alright, so the one thing for both of those guys would be a shift in thinking because it’s never tactical. I mean Dude, it's right copy and put it in front of people, and if it doesn't work, repeat the process until it does. Clearly that's not, you know I mean it doesn't matter, see I don't sell courses anymore, so I don't have to try to Church it up, you know? It's like this, try again. So, I would recommend a shift in thinking which is understand that we're really in the business of multiplying capital and if you look at the richest people in the world, they are typically investors. You've got, of course, some entrepreneurial stories like Steve jobs, although he's no longer with us but traditionally these are entrepreneurs who then parlayed that money via investments and business is absolutely no different. And if you look at historically, exciting investments that make the cover of magazines and has historically brilliant people, they'll get maybe 20% a year return on their money. We're in advertising, it's not unusual to get double your money in like seven days where these guys are taking a year. So, if the mindset shifts from viewing advertising and marketing as an expense to be avoided which is where a lot of affiliates come in and say, “Well, if I can just get other people to promote my stuff.” To instead thinking of it as an opportunity to multiply capital which is literally all we're doing, it doesn't matter what you're selling, we're multiplying capital by leveraging assets. You know period, our assets, our funnels, and/or expertise, and the capital, we multiply capital expended in advertising. If you start thinking about business that way, the brain will start looking for how can I continue to leverage even more of this capital and multiply it more, and as a result, you’ll make a whole lot more money.
Hawk: So, when you run an ad, you create a product, or launch anything, or do anything, do you have a time frame that you say, “If it doesn't work by X point, I'm not breaking even or more, by X point that I need to either kill it or revamp it?
Frank: No, but again we had one singular funnel until January. So, the timeframe that I gave us for scaling Flagship to coat media, we've literally just started coating media in the same recently, was that four months? You know 120 days. Yeah, that's four months and it was a $120,000 budget to do it. That's probably unpalatable to a lot of people. They'd be like, “Dude, you're out of your mind!” That's a, well yeah, I am, but we use an actual process and the thing is, we get the clients, it's a decision-making process. You look at and I know it's not a direct answer to the question but it's the right answer to the question which is well, what's my main goal for the business period? What's the purpose of the goal, a long term vision of it? What's the thing that I'm considering and then what’s the success criteria look like for this? And then, what are the long-term benefits of this? You know if it actually works out and then you look at what are the things that can go wrong, and then you just weigh those against each other. So, that's the process I go through. I don't actually say, “Okay, there's 90 days at breakeven or I'm done.” Because that's more short-sighted than the way we look like, I'm never retiring, I'm not going to sell this business, I'm not going to stop you know, I'll be 80 years old if I live long enough. I'll be like, “Well, you should try a better headline.” You know the exact same thing people that say, “We were hundreds of years now, I'll just say it with the old man voice.” So, we look at it a lot longer term than that.
Hawk: Awesome, thank you so much. You've been awesome. Again, this is Hawk Mikado, Publisher of Funnel Magazine and we have had the blessing of being here in Frank's studio and getting his brilliance, wisdom and insights.
Kate Mikado is the Editor In Chief of the San Diego based publication Funnel Magazine focused on the online marketing industry. This industry specific magazine focuses on strategic marketing and sales, lead generation, metrics, social media, and most importantly funnels. Through Funnel Magazine we work with experts in the industry like Russell Brunson, Caleb Maddix, Frank Kern, Lewis Howes, and many more.