Ezra: I did and I think if we’re talking, you know, taking a step back the content creation side of things, that episode 21 of ThinkActGet, which will actually be live by the time you’re listening to this episode, would be an episode worth listening to if you’re interested in the process behind creating long form content which is what a podcast is.
James: Is it?
Ezra: I think so, yeah.
James: I do short podcasts.
Ezra: Well it’s still long for a content when you take a look at the fact that most content created in our community is three to five minute, video type content.
James: Ok. But when I take the audio from that video and put it on my site as a podcast…
Ezra: Oh I see. Well I consider pod… I don’t consider that a real podcast.
James: I would change the definition to show, maybe, if it’s a show sometimes they’re going to be longer but yeah, I know what you mean. Dedicated… it’s a dedicated show, a podcast show. You also do podcasts, too, James.
It’s a really common thing within our small group because I’ve been a real advocate of this since I got introduced to it by another podcaster and it’s been… You know, we’re actually gone survey where my best customers came from. So many of them have come from the podcast because it’s a great way to differentiate. How’s the podcasting been going for you?
J. Reynolds: Fantastic. It’s been… It’s been great. I think what’s so good about is it is as I said, it can be a long form piece of content and it’s probably one of the only opportunities you get to be in someone’s ear but it’s almost in a one to one fashion for 60 minutes.
In your case even 90 minutes when you did the session the other day and that’s unique you know. You build up trust with people, they get to know you and yeah I’ve had some really good payoffs. Ezra’s been a guest in my podcast.
Ezra: I like you podcast. I listen to your podcast and I like your artwork. You just have an epic, your content is really really good. I want to point out that in the SilverCircle day, before FastWebFormula 4 started, you asked, “Who here found out about me on the podcast?” and almost every person raised their hand.
James: There were two thirds… that’s a lot, yeah. And these are, more than a thousand dollars a month customers so I also record our podcast after the SilverCircle day with a couple of our members. Most SilverCircle members are podcasting and at the least being guest at other people’s because it is such a great traffic technique. So that was a lot of fun and I’m going to look forward to watching a video of that as well just for extra medium.
On the side note there, when I put the course out, it comes with videos but also we transcribe it and we strip out the audio because a lot of people like to consume the entire event in audio format or they like to read it. In fact this might sound crazy but I like to read the transcripts of my previous events. I find that that’s the fast and easy way for me to remember what was discussed by just reading the word for word transcript.
Ezra: You know, It’s interesting when you have a look at the world that we’re in today and how different people prefer to consume media in different formats and it’s so easy to cater to each different format because you only need one piece of content to have a video, to have an audio, to have text, to have image. It all comes from one piece of content.
J. Reynolds: Well that’s what you guys pretty did the other day, right? I mean that’s what it was, everything right there up on stage. You got the video, you got the audio out of it and I guess that’s transcribed as well so.
James: It will be. Someone’s transcribing this call and I always sympathize with them, thinking every time I actually say a word, they’re going to have to transcribe that too, like this one and that one and the next one. OK. We then had dinner and it doesn’t sound very remarkable but it was a great dinner. One of the keys to this event was to bring together the community. I mean when you have 125 people seated 10 to a table.
It’s like 12 tables? And it was so noisy. I asked the DJ, you know, could you put some music on? And the DJ said, it is on. And the voice, the conversations were overpowering the music in the background because people were just so connected to each other, deep in conversation. And it went from 7 till almost 12 actually.
Ezra: It was just such a high touch event and that’s one of the lessons that I took away as someone who puts on events and gather people together.
James: As someone who’s sitting there on a FastWebFormula 4 hoody.
Ezra: In a FastWeb… exactly. That… the details really do matter. You know, you really took care of everyone and made sure that the tablecloths were nice and the menu was beautiful. Everything was just so… all… you paid so much attention to the details that everyone felt so well taken care of. Who wouldn’t want to have the experience again?
James: You know you said the magic word there… again. No kidding. It’s the experience. We’re in the experience economy so I want people to have an experience. I give them clothing. I feed them. We entertain them and we give them good content. We did have a comedian there and you made it hard for him Ezra because half his jokes were about you and you had a little sleep after such a huge day and jet lag and everything else.
But there were some very very funny gags there, we have Joel Ozborn and he’s tremendously generous. He went well over his, the amount of time that I booked him for and had some crack at jokes. Do you remember any of them that stood out for you James?
J. Reynolds: Well I remember he was tremendously bendy. He managed to get his whole body through a tennis racket at one stage. You missed that Ezra. I don’t know how he did it but somehow he went through the tennis racket and came out the other side. Yeah I know it was good stuff because it had the crowd in fits of laughter and it was a great end to the day. Great conversations followed by great laughs. A real good fitting way to finish Day 1.
James: I like how he, you know the story of Steve Owen, the missing mouse right? My friend Steve O who’s quite often on these podcasts. There’s always a bit of a joke that he may or may not have borrowed one of my mouse years ago, an actual computer mouse. Well I got him back by nominating him as the volunteer. That sounds weird, volunteer.
He went over to Steve O and said, if anyone would like to volunteer, just put your hand up. He was like saying it in Steve’s face quite where he understood that he was the volunteer.
He had Steve up there on the stage and he blindfolded him and he then got lighter fluid and squirted it all around Steve O and all over Steve O’s trousers and then asked the audience if he could borrow a lighter, which someone happily gave him, and he bent over to ignite the lighter fluid and then stopped and looked up and said, seriously, no one’s going to stop me?
James: And then he said, “You guys are terrible. This is unbelievable. I’m about to set fire to this man…” and Steve O was in a blindfold so he didn’t know what was going on. Now, it was obviously water, not lighter fluid. And there was nothing bad happening but it was such a great visual gag. Alright so the next morning, we dug into a topic called “Simplify” and the point of that was to really drum home this idea that we can do this.
We got to stop trying to do so much. Do a lot less and I thought, one of the cool things was actually to ask you to come up, James, because you do the business model way, you’re dealing with customers, providing them really really good solutions. And the way that you do your business is simple and so many people struggle with it.
I’m not going to cover the details of how that works here but anyone watching the recordings of this would see how elegantly simple it is and I mentioned you probably got a lot of people coming to you afterwards, saying I get it, I get it now.
Ezra: That whole simplified module was perfectly in line just with the sentiment of the two days. The amount of conversations that I had. I’m just like, you don’t need to be doing that, you can make it much more simpler than you’re trying to make it. I think people try and justify the effort by making it actually harder themselves and it’s just not necessary.
James: If they do that even before they have a single customer and the way you do business allows you to serve your customers better by being so focused in making sure your customer is happy and that’s why it so aligned with how I think it should be done.
And I’ve been really really focused on exactly the same thing the way I on my piece of that puzzle is to make sure that my customers are very very happy as well and everything works really well. Did you enjoy that module?
Ezra: I missed it. Right, yeah I see.
James: There you go. It’s so simple, you don’t even have to do it. Well that’s why we recorded it buddy. Yeah I’ll be watching. You really did need to sleep you know.
Ezra: Yeah, I was wrecked.
James: So anyway, we then went to conversions with Clay Collins and he had a popular, popular presentation there because he sees a lot, he knows a lot about this. He’s been on SuperFastBusiness many times and he did say he was actually surprised how many people in the community are so switched on already.
They’re using LeadPages, they are getting good conversions and he even had some of our audiences come up and share some of their best conversion techniques and how they got some test results with very, very high percentage conversions. I think the way how Clay is so direct and raw was really appreciated. What do you think of that session?
Ezra: I just think Clay is a genius. I love Clay, he’s a good guy, he’s hilarious and he’s unfiltered and he has his attention on that subject. He is simple. He’s paying attention to that he does it really well and about half of the things he said, I’ve already implemented so I was really happy about that session.
James: Yeah and some of the test results that I had and some of templates I’ve given him, he implemented that for everybody and the whole system which was fantastic.
J.Reynolds: I think what’s great about Clay is that he has access to so much information, right? I mean, you know, people that are using LeadPages. To know what Clay is presenting is bang on the money and actually really what’s working right now and that’s fantastic. Simple stuff in many cases but really big wins. Again looking at 4% just a few things applied can make a massive difference to the business.
Ezra: Yeah and I don’t think that there’s anyway to get ‘cause what he has is access to platform level conversion data. Not just one business but templates across that whole platform, every industry and it’s pretty amazing, the data we can get.
James: It’s always massive, high-volume customers ask him if he can build stuff that they’re doing into the template and make it easy for them and then everyone gets to share that, and he asks for commission of course which is great. So then after the conversions one, we had one of our favorite sessions because we had three different people coming out, three different topics.
And it was really good to do after lunch on the last day because we got some unexpected stuff. First up was Ryan Spangler. Ryan is a video production expert. I’ve interviewed him on the show as well and he is instrumental in helping me get my videos looking better.
He came up and talked to us about how he is using video. He’s also another SilverCircle member and he’s had tremendous success using videos to do things where he used to do it manually, like replacing actual calls to customers while making a video instead. And he likes making videos and he’s good at it so it’s a natural fit.
He also showed us exactly what equipment we can buy for just around the $2,000 mark. We can end up with some pretty good gear that is well above the standard stuff that most marketers are putting out, if they are even doing video, and not far off the studio level stuff that you would have to pay a lot more for.
You get right close to that mark using some good gear. So, I really enjoyed Ryan’s presentation. He totally got the brief, it was a stunning quality and the audience really appreciated it too. Did you get something from it?
J. Reynolds: Yup. I got sense from it and it was interesting to see that, you know, the whole audience got a lot from it because later in the day there was actual videos submitted which had been submitted prior to Ryan’s presentation and so many of the crowd were going “Well, that’s not following that tip and it’s not following that tip,” so they’d obviously picked up the information which was great.
It was a classic “How to get started” and anyone who’s not doing video would have moved very quickly from, you know, producing probably quite poor or average videos to really good high quality stuff from that presentation.
Ezra: I missed Ryan’s presentation as well and I want to point out why because I’m going to go back and watch it because I follow Ryan’s blog and he is a genius. You know one of the things about these live events is there’s such a good opportunity for networking and for doing business deals.
So, I’ve got a crew of people here in Australia now that I’m friends with and that are interested in what I do and one of them offered to take me to lunch. It was really nice, we talked all about his physical product business and we’re going to end up doing his, you know, I’m going to get business out of that and that wouldn’t have been possible if I hadn’t been down here for this event.
James: Yeah, going to live events is crucial and it’s something that I plan for and fund.
I mean, both of you guys are from another country, so, but you don’t seem to have a Dubai accent, James.
J.Reynolds: No. Well, I’m not Australian, clearly. Though many people think I am, funny
enough, when I bump into people in Dubai where I actually live now. But no, I’m English,that’s who I am but living and residing in Dubai right now.
James: Yeah, going to live events is all about… in fact, that’s how I met you, since
travelling to Dubai.
J.Reynolds: Yeah, three and a half years ago now.
James: Yup and…
Ezra: Where did we first connect? Like really connect was at a bar and I don’t even
James: 2000 yeah, in San Francisco. So, it is imperative to travel if you
want to notch your business up. Now, the Ryan lessons went… fit really well into the next one which was Allan Irvine and Allan came and talked to us about acting. He actually fielded questions from people about what they’re scared of or being on camera.
He gave some terrific recommendations about eye lines. He actually revealed to the audience what I do that saw few people do with my videos that allow my videos to pull it off versus when people look insincere or shifty. He actually highlighted the difference. He gave some techniques for overcoming nerves.
And one piece of advice that I thought he gave out that was really honest and that is that it does take time to build confidence on camera and you just… the more time that you have on camera, the more comfortable you become with the camera. So, I won’t tell you what the thing that I do is, you’ll have to watch the video for that one.
But I thought that after that, again, when the other videos were played, people would have been able to contrast their performance with what he had taught us and if you took the audience after those presentations and asked them to make those videos again, I think they’d be even better. But here’s the thing, out of 125, we had I think around 25…
J.Reynolds: There were, I mean I was surprised by the number there was a lot of video
James: …a lot of video submissions and there were at least half of them were of a
better standard than you normally see out there in the marketplace and I think it’s because our community is very video- and content creation-savvy compared to the average bear.
Ezra: I mean half of them were epic, really nice, well done, well thought out, high production value videos.
James: We’ll come to that section but yeah, that will be a fun discussion (Laughs).
Kyle got on then and talked about selling services to local businesses, Internet and traffic services and he taught as much as he would teach in an entire course over weeks in 30 minutes.
And when it boils down to it, it’s way way easier than people think and I’m going to be recommending anyone interested in this, just spend 30 minutes to watch Kyle’s video about how to get this services business. He gave us the top four things you need to do.
J. Reynolds: Yup.
James: It was four things and they were simple things and I actually regurgitated that information today on the telephone to somebody who was having a mental blockage around how they’re going to be going about doing this and I just gave him the shortcut version and they totally clicked with it. They got it. It is a simple business model.
I mean, I’m sitting here looking at your mug there Ezra, which is an “I Love SEOPartner” mug and that at some point, that domain name I picked up for $500 on a GoDaddy auction. So, I’ve taken a $500domain, turned it into an entire seven figure business and now it’s got its own mugs and T-shirts but the whole thing is when I started, it was such a simple idea.