In the podcast:
00:58 – Working magic on failing businesses
02:39 – A real life case study
06:50 – From 6K to 60K email signups (yes 10X!)
09:23 – The formula for profit most business owners do not know
12:24 – Do THIS to increase conversions
16:11 – How to make payments more frequent
21:01 – The concept of 10×10
24:19 – An easy margin win
27:22 – Important takeaways
31:10 – Do this for a massive pay day
33:55 – In closing
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James: James Schramko here, welcome back to SuperFastBusiness.com. This is Part 4 of a 6-part series that we are doing here with my co-host, Matthew Paulson. Welcome to the call.
Matthew: Thanks James, how are you?
James: Good. You enjoying this mini-series we’re doing?
Matthew: Yeah. We’ve talked about a lot of different topics, and we’ve got a couple more, and I’m looking forward to diving into how to turn around your failing website or a failing business.
James: Yeah, this is something that, I mean hopefully, people don’t have to do. But it does happen. And if you have this skill, you can apply it not just to your business, but to other people’s business, and you can make good money from it and it’s certainly something that I used to do as a job.
Paid to turn businesses around
My last actual job as a general manager was to go to Mercedes-Benz dealerships that needed a bit of a hand, and to do something magical with them. And I did it 3 times in a row, actually, where I took a small or struggling team and started from scratch. And it took several years, in this case, to make substantial impact.
Certainly the first one, with a small team, easier, 6 months or less, no trouble. Next one was a huge mission. We’re talking about a business that was approaching a hundred million dollars a year in revenue, so we’ve got big cogs to deal with there, and culture, and lots of people. And the last one, there was more than 70 staff members, it was a $50 million a year business. It was actually losing a million bucks a year or a little more when I started there, and after a few years it was making 7 figures in profit. So big turnaround on the bottom line.
Some people can’t believe that such a big business could make such a small margin, but it is a very difficult business, just because of the staff, the stock, the land required, and the constraints on business. And you have 7 competitors within 7 minutes’ drive selling the exact same product.
So, Matthew, what story would you like to start with for doubling revenue in a failing business?
Matthew: I don’t know if I can compete with that. I’ve never turned around a Mercedes-Benz dealership.
James: It’s not a competition, but I’m sure you’ll have a unique perspective on this, and we have to be relatable, because I don’t think any of our listeners have a large Mercedes-Benz dealership. Let’s talk about even the tiniest, weeniest little website or somewhere in between.
What Matthew did for US Golf TV
Matthew: All right. So there was a local publishing company, it’s called US Golf TV, they had been trying to do the whole infoproducts business, they had a website, they had a TV show,. They were making maybe $75,000 a year just from selling ads on their TV show and selling ads on the website. And they were doing a pretty poor job. I already had the skills to kind of know how to do all those things.
They weren’t even writing Google Adsense or anything like that, so it was pretty easy to take the monetization skills that I had from my existing business and just apply that to the business that was failing and just turn that around pretty quickly. They already had some traffic, we were able to grow the traffic, we were able to get more email opt-ins. We’ve got 50,000 email opt-ins in the last 12 months. We’re making 10 to 15 grand a month in Google Adsense now, and just by implementing all the best practices I knew from my other business.
I took a 20 percent stake in that company just for providing them that help, so I worked in the business for like a month. I turned everything around, and now I don’t do much other than go to a meeting every other month to kind of know what’s going on with the business and providing some advice. So that was a good deal for me. Not as big as when you’re turning around businesses, but in that space it worked out pretty well for me.
James: That was a lot of information in just a few minutes there, Matthew. You are a machine. A couple of questions here, if you’ll respond to these. When you said you took a stake in the business, remember in Part 3 of our 6-part series, when you’re selling your website, you had a reluctance for your buyer to send you payments. Do you ever find that when you take an equity deal in a company?
Matthew: No, because the only way the other owners get paid, there’s 3 in this business, is that if they get paid, I get paid, so if the guy that owns 70 percent of the business wants to take money out of the business, then I get a check too. So that doesn’t seem to be much of an issue in that business.
Matthew: And I think it’s just because of how we structured the deal.
James: And is the deal based on percentage of the business revenue, or is it on the profit?
Matthew: It’s equity, so I own just 20 percent of the whole business, so if there’s profit, I get 20 percent of the profit.
James: Nice, OK. So we talked about before you came along, they were struggling. And that struggle was probably impacting their ability to survive. You covered a few of the things that you did.
James: So what were a few things that you did when you got there?
Matthew: Well, the first thing I had to understand about that business, it’s a digital publishing company in the golf space, and it was run by golfers, not Internet business people. So they made a lot of the mistakes that you would expect. They kind of understood the broad strokes of how an information products business should work. They knew that you had to get email addresses, they knew that you had to have a product to sell, and they knew to sell it over email, they just were doing all those things not quite right. So just by going kind of step by step by step through that entire funnel, we were able to really create a business out of that.
So it started, you know, on a website, OK, where are we getting traffic? Oh I see these types of articles are doing well, let’s just do a whole bunch more of those. And traffic, when it because of that we got the site into Google News, Bing news, to get some additional traffic. Then we put some opt-in forms on the website, an entry popup, that tends to work well. We put some other opt-in forms on that to get emails, we put Adsense on the site to generate ad revenue, we did their email campaigns and Infusionsoft, to be more effective.
And we created a new product as well to monetize the existing email list that they had, too. So it was a lot of different things throughout their entire sales funnel, but it was just a matter of checking out every step of their sales funnel, saying, OK, what are we doing now, what can we do better, and making those improvements, just over the course for a couple of months.
James: Right. And it’s also sometimes handy to have a what should we stop doing aspect to it as well.
Matthew: Absolutely. There is.
James: We have a start-stop-continue methodology.
Matthew: I agree.
James: The continue’s important as well. Sometimes we do something that’s really effective, but we forget to do it. And that’s one of the main things that I used to find when I was retraining people in the car dealership, is we’d set up a good process, and then you’d have to go and check on it to make sure that it’s continuing, because these things tend to stop with human inertia unless they’re really habit.
The results of Matthew’s efforts
So what happened with this business after those changes?
Matthew: We started these changes about 12 months ago. They had 6,000 emails when I signed on, and now we have about 60,000, so just implementing the best practices that I talk about, with an entry popup and you know, having good copy and that kind of stuff has enabled us to build a big mailing list in a short amount of time. We have that new revenue stream from Google Adsense, that’s $10,000 to $15,000 a month.
We’re selling a lot more products to our mailing list, we’re doing affiliate sense, ad sales through email, and we’ve just become a much better business. We’ve actually made $70,000 to $80,000, and this year we’ll end at between $200,000 and $250,000. And after that initial couple of months, I haven’t really put a whole lot of work into the business, it’s maybe 2 or 3, 4 hours a month, and I get a few grand every month just by doing those 3 hours. It was a lot of upfront work, but down the line it’s not a lot of work.
James: Sometimes the marketer gets a little bit of heat, because we do have a lot of knowledge, and we apply it early, and then over time the other partners seem to forget how all this happened in the first place. Hang on, Matthew’s doing nothing. We’re sending him all this money. We’re sending him 20 percent of our profit, and he doesn’t do anything. How do you handle that?
Matthew: I kind of told them upfront how it was going to work. I said, hey, I’m going to work like crazy on this business for a month, and then I’m not going to do a whole lot. I’ll be there when you need help, but I’m not going to be operationally involved in this business at a heavy level after the first couple of months.
They had an IT guy, they had a tech guy, they could write good enough marketing copy where I didn’t need to be doing that stuff, so I could just tell the guy what to do and he would do it afterwards. I made it clear in the written agreement that we had, which, it was an expectation upfront that I was going to do a lot of work right away, and not a lot of work down the line.
James: Right. Again, so a lot like when you’re selling a business, in the last episode, it’s a matter of having very clear agreements and expectations in place.
So we talked about what happened. What would you say would be a prescription for someone to have a look at for their own business? And I have a few ideas on this, too.
Matthew: If your business was failing, and you needed to turn it around?
James: Well, let’s not even say it’s failing. Let’s just say you want to double revenue. Your business is OK, but you suspect that you could do more, just like all of the people that I work with in their business. What sort of things do you think they might look at doing?
Matthew: That’s a good question. I think you might have some ideas. I think you should go first.
The profit formula
James: All right. Well, this really is my sweet spot. You bring so much value in all the other things that I’m not good with, like selling a business and building a huge email list. Let’s start at ground zero and talk about the profit formula, because once we understand that, it really helps us find areas to improve. And that’s simply: leads times conversions equals customers.
So this is what we often hear about as, most conversations in the Internet marketing space revolve around these 2 aspects. They’re always talking about prospects. Where do I get customers? What traffic sources? And then they’re talking about conversions. What opt-ins do you use, what split test do you use? And we even talked about that in Part 1. So that’s a valid conversation.
Once you’ve got a customer, then other factors come into play. What’s the dollar amount of the purchase? How frequently do they purchase? And what’s the margin, what percentage margin do we have? If you multiply those things, then that’s going to give you the profit.
And as we talked about in the previous episode, when we’re selling a business, profit is a great number to base a sale of a business from. Profit is better than a loss, so if we have a failing business, we want to quickly turn it into profit. So manipulating some of these things, where you’re going to get a big change, and one of the real secrets to this is to focus on the smaller numbers first.
The smaller numbers are conversions and frequency. So if I had to rescue a business, these are where I’d be diving into first. Because we could add more leads, yes, we could increase the sales price a little bit, we could even double it. Or we could halve it. Or we could cut costs. But you can only ever cut a hundred percent of the costs. We can have infinite upside.
Let’s have a look at conversions, for example. If we’re converting 1 or 2 percent, which is pretty standard for a website, if we can take that to 2 or 5 percent, then that could actually give us 200 percent or 400 percent or 500 percent increase on our profit. Like 5 times. So in the case we talked about very early, the dealership, if you have a $50 million a year business that losing a million bucks a year, and you change some very small things around conversions, that could end up with a million dollars’ profit in the bank. It’s only a $2 million shift. That is not a lot in percentage terms, but it’s a lot of cash. You don’t need a lot more customers.
Matthew: What are some of the easy wins that you often find when you’re doing this kind of work, like what are mistakes that people make in terms of conversion optimization, and what are things that you look for first when you’re looking at a business that needs to improve their conversions?
James: Yes, so what you do is you list all of these things across the top of a whiteboard: leads, conversions, dollar amount, frequency, margin. And then under them you list the top things you can think of that might impact that. So for conversions, it’s often going to be the sales process.
How the sales process impacts conversions
So if you’re selling high-ticket coaching, the thing that’s going to impact conversions a lot is to build up trust and profit, to do things like podcasts, funnily enough, which also bring in traffic. But they really ramp up conversions, because you’re only dealing with warm or hot leads now. And then it’s the sales script that someone’s going through. It’s that 5- or 6-minute conversation that when you speak to someone and with the right positioning and the right questions, and a good understanding of what selling is, you can increase your conversions.
And my strength in most of my career was based around selling. So having a good understanding of what a sale actually is, and having the right words to use can make a huge difference to conversions. A bad salesperson might sell 1 in 10, a good salesperson might sell 1 in 2, or even more than that in some cases. Most students will get like an 80 percent conversion ratio from a phone or Skype call with a prospect, if they’re doing their conversions well.
Matthew: So when you were training around these dealerships, was it a lot of just training salespeople to use the right language and do the right things to sell a customer, or what were you doing to…?
James: Exactly. in one case, my second last place, I inherited a team of 6 or 7 “salespeople,” and within 6 months I had one of those left and I hired all new ones, and I ended up with a team of 21 salespeople, of which there was one from the original crew. I just start from scratch. But the secret was, I didn’t hire salespeople. I hired service people.
I hired people from hotels, I hired airline pilots. I hired the guy who came to the front door looking for a job, enthusiastic and keen. And what I did was I created the industry standard benchmark of sales recruitment, induction and training. I wrote good sales advertisements to get the right candidates, I had great telephone interview techniques, I had interview checklists, I had final interview checklists, I had induction training that went for 2 weeks covering theory and practical, and I had role play based, I had certified competency based training program that would see someone meet with success far quicker than your average car industry star. Which is usually, “Hi Matthew, there’s your desk, don’t make a d***head out of yourself.” (We just found the grabber for the front part of this episode, by the way.)
So that’s basically what my training was when I started in the car industry. They didn’t even show me where my key was to get the car on the first day to drive home, and when I went for the key board, I got the last key on the board, which was the crappiest car, and it didn’t even have petrol. And it was pitch black, I didn’t know how to turn the lights on, and I had to go to a fuel station on the way home and figure out where the petrol cap was. That was my induction.
I had such an amazing system for people that we churned out all the top salespeople. My salespeople, just like I had before them, were winning the sales competitions. They were dominating. And now, 10, 15 years later, a lot of my sales hires, who were not salespeople when I hired them, are now running the dealership. So this system was strong.
If you want to increase conversions, you create good sales paths and good scripting. And if you want to take it to an online sense, that means your messaging has got to be clear, it means your email communication has to be strategic, Part 1 of this 6-part episode really covered some of the must dos for that part.
Look at your payment frequency
So conversions are good, but my sweetheart of this equation is the frequency. Just at the moment, one of my great students, and I’m talking great in terms of execution, has really taken this on board. And he sent an email out to his customer base saying how he’s changing his business, and he’s changing it because he realized that what he was doing before, selling one-time products, was OK, but it’s not the best way to solve the customer’s problem. And he really cares about his customers, and he wants to help them, so what he’s doing instead of selling one-time products is now creating a recurring subscription membership.
And this is what I’ve built my business around, is recurring subscriptions, because I see the power of recurring subscription. That effectively takes frequency from often, one, or maybe 2 if you have a good CRM system or customer relationship marketing system, that takes it up a notch.
That puts people on a customer for life program. It basically is going to up that frequency to 12, 30, 60. I have some customers who have been in my SilverCircle program for the entire time I’ve had it. Six years, so 6 times 12, what’s that, Matthew, you’re smart, 72? Seventy-two purchases at hundreds of dollars per month, not quite a thousand dollars per month.
And also, when I started my retail SEO/Internet marketing agency, at exactly the same time I quit my job, because it was the thing that got me out of there, I had 2 customers who were paying $5,500 per month, each, and I had those customers for 7 years straight. So think about the recurring nature of that. Imagine 7 times 12 times $11,000. That’s a lot of money.
So the frequency part’s where I would suggest a business have a look at. What products or services could be put on recurring billing? That’s a good start.
Matthew: Yes, it is.
James: In the car business, it’s finance that has recurring subscription. If you can’t have a recurring subscription, and if you have a longer sales cycle, let’s imagine a car where the average sale cycle might be 24 months, or 21 months, somewhere around that depending on the model. Some of them are 18 months, like AMG. Family cars can be more like 36 months. On a long cycle like that, it’s imperative that you have your direct response letters going out at certain intervals, bringing people back into the service department, where you can sell some time. And I said time then, I know, that’s not a mistake. That’s what service sells, time. It’s weird, right? They sell time and they sell parts.
And then you want to send out a reminder to refinance the vehicle. And then you want to value that vehicle when it’s in for service and sell another vehicle. And when they’re there, why not sell some umbrellas and key rings and jackets? So if you think of your business into different divisions, how can you have at the very least a recurring relationship, but if not, a recurring subscription?
I’m pretty sure your newsletter is a recurring subscription business, right?
Matthew: Yeah. We have a couple of different tiers. You know, there’s the free tier, where I make money from advertising, there’s a paid tier for $15 a month, and then there’s the higher end tier for $35 a month. I know that the average customer will stick around for 25 months, so if I can get somebody paying 15 bucks a month, that’s 15 times 25, so I think maybe $325 out of a person instead of just selling a one-time product, which is kind of nice.
And then if you get people to buy 2 products, that’s, you know, just double that. I think it’s great business.
James: Right, so if we want to have a look at some of the other areas, things like the dollar amount, that’s where you look at packaging. I had this idea that to increase the average dollar amount, we need to sell more expensive vehicles. So what I did is I rang up head office, and I said, hey, what’s the most expensive car you’ve got? And they said, oh, we’ve got an S600 sitting here. And I said, can you send it over here and let me put it in the showroom?
And we were able to do that on consignment. In other words, we didn’t have to pay for it. We could loan it from head office, and if we sold it, we then buy it, if we didn’t sell it, we send it back. I said, listen, do you want it sitting there in the paddock gathering dust, or do you want it all polished up on the chance that someone might buy it? So by someone purchasing a $430,000 vehicle (by the way, our cars are really expensive here) then that is going to lift the average sale price.
The 10-10 principle
Now, I’ve got a 10-10 concept here. Pretty straightforward, I don’t know if I invented this or if it’s someone else’s idea, and apologies if someone has walked before me, and possibly they have, but my idea with the 10-10 is that you’ve probably got 10 percent of your customers would be happy to pay 10 times more for whatever you’re selling.
So a simple thing is to just add a top level product from the get-go. And this is why I got a bit of a problem with people who talk about the ascension model. I don’t believe in the ascension model. It’s flawed. The one where someone has to buy – they get something for free, then they buy a little priced product, or a tripwire, and then they buy an expensive product, and then you can offer them the more expensive product as an upsell, etc.
The problem with that is that there’s a lot of people who just want to have the most expensive product right now. So a simple win for a business that’s struggling is to go and find your most expensive product, and then 10X the value and the price, and then market to your database and find that 10 percent of people who want it right now.
Matthew: Yeah. I think there are people that have a lot of money, and when they’re buying something they just want the best one. Like if I go to a conference, I want the VIP level ticket, because I don’t want somebody else to have a better experience than I do. It’s like I don’t care what it costs, like I want the VIP, whatever, I want to talk to the speaker. It’s like, OK, just show me what the most expensive option is, and I’ll take it. And there are people like that. People just want the nicest watch, the nicest car.
James: And there are people who have a lot more capacity. That’s right, I have a nice watch, I have a nice car. Some people say, what’s the point of having that watch? I’ve got a watch that’s $7 that tells the time perfectly. In fact, it probably tells the time better than my watch. My Rolex is notoriously not accurate for time, just as an aside. But that’s not why I have the watch.
Matthew: No, you have it because you wanted it.
James: I have capacity, and it’s within my means, and it’s nice. So same if I go to a sporting goods store and I want to buy a nice warm jacket to go travelling with. I want the nice one. It doesn’t matter if it’s $400 or whatever.
Matthew: Just imagine walking into a car dealership and you say, I want the nicest thing on the lot and they say, well, we’ll just sell you a keychain first and then we’ll sell you this used junker and then maybe we’ll sell you a nice car.
James: Exactly. That’d be ridiculous. Yeah, start with a bicycle here, give that a roll and if you like that… So they’re actually underselling. And they’re not meeting the customer’s requirements, because that’s not going to satisfy the client. So simple win is increase the price of your most expensive product. Put a product above it, that’s an easy win, and it’s so simple to do.
Online business, information business. If you sell a sub $100 product, then 10 percent of those people will probably pay for a sub $1000 product, and 10 percent of those people will probably pay for a $10,000 product and 10 percent of those people will probably pay for a $100,000 product. And if you think I’m joking, try it, and come and post the comments, because it’s just such an easy win.
Have you considered this margin win?
I’ll tell you some of the other easy wins, too. I’ll tell you an easy margin win. This is something that I’ve asked most people. When they come on board for coaching, I have a diagnostic audit. So I formulated this checklist when I was at the dealership, which really went deep into each part of the profit formula. And I had sort of transferred that idea to coaching.
So when someone comes on board, I go through a complete diagnostic audit of everything that they’ve got. And one thing that I find quite common is that they never ever asked their merchant or PayPal for a better rate. And if you can imagine, let’s say you’re doing $1 million per year in sales transactions, and you’re paying 2 ½ percent with PayPal, you can probably get it for 1 ½ percent, which would save you 1 percent on $1 million. And again, that’s not an unsubstantial amount.
Matthew: No, and I’ve done that with PayPal, where the default is 2.9 percent in the United States. Just by going on a website and clicking the right button, you can get it down to 2.2 percent pretty easily if you have a decent amount of sales volume. And I’ve done that with Stripe too. You know, Stripe says that they don’t negotiate their rates, but they definitely do. I’ve done that with multiple businesses.
James: They definitely do. And they’ll be really interested if you’ve also, if you’re comparing to PayPal, for example. So introducing competition is a good way to do it. But I have for multiple million dollar per year revenue, and I’ve asked PayPal and my merchant for a better deal, and both of them provide that. And that is worth a lot.
There are other things too, some super cool windfalls. I talked about one in a recent episode with a student of mine who travels around the world. In Australia, you can access an export marketing grant that will pretty much fund your airfares and every day away from home to develop your marketing business overseas. They might even help you with your staffing costs, and your advertising costs. Like, imagine if your AdWords and Facebook campaigns can be funded for 7 years. Pretty good windfall.
Matthew: It’d be a pretty good deal. I wish that was available here.
James: Right. Good old Australian government is very interested in us developing business overseas, because we bring all this business back and then we pay tax. So it’s a good idea, and it works for the right reasons. But that is another way to really hack up that margin there, is to basically have your marketing costs paid for. These are things I share with students, so someone might pay $1,500 to come on board, and I’m showing them how to get $100,000 a year back straightaway. That’s not bad.
Matthew: Yeah. And there are more of these things out there than you think. I live in a small state, United States, and they want people to create jobs here. So if I create a job as an internship, they’ll give me the first $2,000 to pay that, just to give the employee a salary. We just have to go out and look for those kind of things.
A summary of points
James: Exactly. So it’s a good idea to go through your business, and have a look at each of the parts of the business. Where do you get your leads from? Someone asked me today, why do I focus more on podcasts and Twitter and Facebook, and not so much on Instagram and Periscope and Snapchat, I don’t even use that, Pinterest or LinkedIn? It’s because that’s where I found that I get the best leads from, I get a really good return on my investment of energy, and I’ve like quadrupled down on it, because it’s so effective.
So that’s a simple thing, is just turning up the things that work. So find your best lead source, do more of that. Do less of the ones that suck. Have a look at your conversions, where are you converting your customers? It’s all analytics, pay attention to your marketing channels. I know that podcasts drive sales for me, because people listen to us over and over and over again and they get to know you and trust you.
Then look at your dollar amount. Put a package on top of your best package, and then, you want to go for gold, turn it into a recurring subscription. Imagine if you 10X the highest priced product you have right now, and then put it on a month-to-month subscription. That is definitely a possibility.
And then go and have a look at some ways that you can shave some of your margins, whether you use a pay for things as you need it service instead of hiring someone full time, whether you ask a high-volume provider for a better deal…
And by the way, I learned this one in the car dealership, because we did so many repair orders. That’s what they call them when you put your car in for service, it’s called a repair order or an RO, this is industry slang. What we found is if we offered people to update the batteries in their remote control, then we could sell 50 batteries a day. Twenty-five repair orders a day, 50 batteries a day at like $10 each, that is, what, $500 over 280 workdays a year? That’s quite a big boost. So small hinges swing big doors. That’s why we focus on the little numbers.
And your profit is going to go up if you work on one thing, the top thing for each area, starting with the smallest numbers first, you could have a 10 times, 20 times, 100 times change.
Matthew: Yeah. And if you think about your business as a funnel, out of every 100 people that land on your website, say 10 of them might get to your landing page, and out of that, 50 percent might make it to the payment page, 20 percent of those people might actually buy, and if you can widen the funnel between one step to the next step to the next, it tends to have an exponential effect. So if you can make 3 or 4 different improvements, those will compound each other and make a dramatic difference in the number of sales that you make.
James: Exactly. Stacking good ideas on top of each other is the secret. Also have checklists. Just have checklists that you revisit, because you want to start doing some new things, you want to stop doing the things that don’t work, and you want to continue doing things, you got to lock them down into a pattern.
I always like to look at that Pareto Principle phenomenon of the 80/20. It’s so powerful that people don’t really realize it, but just 4 percent of the things you do get 64 percent of the results. So I would suggest, list everything you can think of under each of the columns, and then circle the one that is by far more important than everyone else. Because there will be one that’s far more important. Start with that. Then do the next one and then do the next one. You can quickly turn a business around, often in days.
The power of one email
And here’s another concept, and it might be Gary Halbert that said this, it’s been big in my own coaching group lately, and it came about because I’m about to go away on a trip, and my friend wanted to come on the trip too, but he said, oh, I can’t afford it. And I said, listen, you’re only one email away from a big payday. And I crafted an email for him, it was a 9-word email which was a Dean Jackson-style email.
If you have existing customers, this is so much easier than any other possible way. Your existing customer is where your next profit will come from. Just send a well-crafted offer to your existing customers, and you’ll be surprised at the reaction. It might be for that 10 times program, it might be that you’re moving to subscription, it might be something that helps initiate a sale. In this case, he’s a surfboard shop owner, and the email was, “Hey, Matthew, do you happen to have any surfboards sitting around that you’re not riding at the moment?”
That was the email. And the email is designed to flesh out existing customers and to have them make inquiries about perhaps selling that surfboard they’re not using, and possibly even trading it in on a new one. Because we’re changing season here.
It’s just a simple email. His biggest fear was that he doesn’t want to upset people, he doesn’t want to cause them to send him hate mail. But then here’s the way that you can think about that. My friend Dean Jackson, who was with me at the time on this rescue mission, said to the shop owner, “If you had a customer walk into the shop right now, would you ignore them?”
James: And he said, “No”. And he said, “Well, that’s what you’re doing with your opt-in. You’re not sending them any emails, it’s pretty much they’ve said, hey, I want to find out about stuff, and then you’re ignoring them.” He goes, “Well, when you put it like that…” So it all made sense. So if you have a resistance around making an offer, just keep in mind that people decided to get your information. They want to know what solutions you have, to solve their problems. And if they want to invest more in themselves and you can provide a solution, hey, why not?
Matthew: Yeah. I mean, what’s the worst thing that’s going to happen if you send an email offer, is that somebody unsubscribes from your list or they just ignore it or don’t respond to it. It’s not like somebody’s going to come through your computer screen and attack you and say, “Why did you send me that email?” It just doesn’t happen.
James: That’s what I learned when I was debt collecting on the phone. They can’t punch you in the face over the phone.
Matthew: No, they cannot.
James: Matthew, it’s been fun. Do you think we’ve covered the topic sufficiently?
Matthew: I think so. I think we’ve come up with a lot of different ideas to turn around a business or just help grow a business that’s doing OK but could do better. I think there are a lot of great principles in this podcast, just recurring revenue is huge, obviously, selling stuff to people multiple times, conversion optimization… there are many things that if people just did them in their business that they could see big growth.
James: Exactly. And the action step from this Part 4 of 6 is to write down the top 1 idea, or if you’ve written a whole lot of notes, which you probably have, circle something. Circle it right now, and commit to doing that thing.
Come back to the comments section and tell us what you did, and what result you got. That would be sufficient fuel for Matthew and I to feel very excited about what we’re doing here, and knowing that we’re making a difference. And we look forward to joining you on Part 5 of 6, which is the next one in this series, called How To Successfully Change The Name Of Your Business.
And if you want to check out more information for Matthew, head over to MattPaulson.com, and of course you already know where SuperFastBusiness is. Take care.
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