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01:57 – What is human-to-human marketing?
07:17 – A business’s number one asset
09:44 – Adding ‘feeling’ to marketing
12:23 – Most businesses forget this…
14:13 – Be the purple cow
16:30 – Building the trust factor
18:11 – The other kind of marketing
22:40 – What drives sales?
25:08 – Relationships are like bank accounts
30:21 – Go-Giver takeaways
34:44 – Defining sales
35:44 – How to treat your team
39:06 – What to expect from SFB Live
Forge lasting customer relationships with James’s personal coaching
James: James Schramko here. Welcome back to SuperFastBusiness.com. Today we’re going to be talking about human-to-human marketing. So I brought along a fabulous human, Angela Henderson, welcome.
Angela: Hey James, how are you today?
James: I’m great. We’ve become good friends because we’ve met in person several times now, haven’t we?
Angela: Yes, absolutely. I think I initially met you… When did I initially met you? ProBlogger, I think, back with Darren Rowse a couple of years ago. And then the Maldives and yeah, a variety different events.
James: I think when I walked into the room there, you helped me organize a drink. So you immediately became a valuable contact for me.
Angela: When in doubt, I knew your drink, especially your different types of coffees that you like. I know you like them strong and Italian, so yes.
James: I do like them strong. And you were a speaker at that event. I got to see you present, which was wonderful. And since then, we’ve been actively communicating. You’ve been a part of my community, which is wonderful. You’ve also come along to the Maldives mastermind, so we did get to spend a lot of time together. And I’ve seen you when you visited Sydney on occasion. And then up in Queensland, when I went up to speak at an event there, and we had a local meetup for SuperFastBusiness members. And you’ve become invaluable, helping out with that.
What is human-to-human marketing?
So firstly, a huge thank you for everything that you do. You’re certainly inspirational and you bring a lot of energy and creativity and great ideas to the table. So it’s super cool that we could actually record a podcast and talk about one of your favorite topics, which I think’s likely to be one of my favorite topics, as well. Let’s talk about human-to-human marketing and what that actually means.
Angela: Yes, absolutely. So to me, human-to-human marketing, at the moment, is something that I believe we’re going to start to see more of. And the reason why I say that is, as we’ve talked about many times, James, there’s a place for automation, there’s a place for bots, there’s a place for webinars, there’s a place for all that. But I think at the moment people are over all of this automation, and that people actually just want human-to-human contact. They want to be able to know that they’re not being treated as just a number. And that people, if they’re going to give their credit card for a sale, know that they’re going to get treated kindly.
And funny enough, when I was on my way to the Maldives, I was in Singapore for a layover. And as I was there, I called each one of my students, because my eight-week program had actually closed at midnight, and I was at Brisbane Airport at 8 AM to catch the flight to your mastermind. And when I was at the airport, I called every one of my clients that had signed up. Now, there was 20 for that particular round, so we’re not talking about hundreds of numbers there or anything. And they knew I was going to the Maldives and they were all completely shocked that I taken the time to pick up the phone, to give them a call, and just say, “Thank you so much. I’m really looking forward to that.” And I had zero refunds on that particular program. And so I do believe that there’s an element that human-to-human marketing is more important than ever before.
“There is probably no higher conversion medium than a face-to-face conversation.”
James: It certainly can be really handy at the very initial stages of a business, when you’re trying to prove a concept. There is probably no higher conversion medium than a face-to-face conversation. If you can’t sell something face to face, it’s going to be much harder online. Because, you know, as you start to leverage out, you dilute the intimacy and the ability for you to garner great feedback, and to have that instantaneous dialogue. So I do agree with you, I think there will be a revolution back to more organic methods. I guess that the old is new. It’s happening with food, right? We want organic food that hasn’t been tampered with. We’re going to go on a digital diet at some point, when we realize that it’s all gone a little bit too crazy, back to actual humans.
Angela: 100 percent. And I remember when I was at Chris Ducker‘s event in the Philippines a few years ago, there was an amazing man by the name of Lou Mongello from WDW over in the United States. And his presentation was called “Hugs and a Handshake”. Now, I use this as an example so many times, because that’s where I really got into the human-to-human kind of marketing. And what he talked about was, he answers every email himself, and funny enough, we were just talking about you know, how you’re really big to making sure that you’ve got those touch points with your own clients, James, before we start recording, but he answers every email himself. He believes in that hug and a handshake. So when he started out, he would tweet like, “Hey, I’m going to be at this cafe in Chicago. Would anyone, I’ll buy you a coffee.” And initially, only a couple people would show up. But now Lou has to actually book out entire restaurants, and cruise lines actually team up with him now. Because what they do is that they know that he actually will give every single person a hug and a handshake that ever is in any, like, vicinity of him. He sells out within like hours of these particular cruise lines with Lou going on board because people just want to be around him. And what he has found is that he pays very minimal. Well, at the time of Tropical Think Tank, he had paid zero dollars in advertising, because when he valued the people, they actually became his act, like, his marketing people for him. They would be like, Oh, my goodness, you got to come to this event with Lou. He’s like the nicest man ever. And so he’s paid, from what I understand, and following and post that event, He’s paid very minimal on advertising, because of the fact that he treats people like humans vs. numbers.
“People want experiences rather than products or services.”
James: Yeah, I learned a long time ago, I think it was maybe a book called The Experience Economy. And it’s sort of a related topic, that people want experiences rather than products or services. But people don’t like to be processed. If you think about dealing with a telco or financial institution, we don’t want to be processed, we don’t want to be placed in a box. That’s why I’ve had great success with things like using Bonjoro videos that are personal to individuals, so you can tell that they’re not part of a synthesized, automated thing. You know, like people try and make these lovely sort of extra steps, but sometimes if they’re not sincere, or there’s no effort expended, they’re probably not as valuable.
You do a great job too, sending out lumpy mail, which is good. And I was off to the post office again, yesterday, I’m regularly sending things out to people. And that has a big impact. I’m a huge fan of running live events, because the relationships that happen at those events go well beyond that single event. They go on for many, many years. I’ve made some amazing friends. It’s changed my life. I wouldn’t be surfing if I didn’t run a Hawaii retreat with Ezra Firestone many years ago with our Think Act Get audience, and that’s how profound it can be. And of course, I love local meetups for our membership, and I’m not using a whole lot of bots and technology on the customer-facing. We still have a human-manned support team, for example. I’m huge on support, and I think that came from being at Mercedes-Benz, there’s just a certain standard that I wanted to provide for our audience. And when people make inquiries with us, I want fast and human service.
A business’s number one asset
Angela: Yes, but I also think there’s an element there that fast and human service, but it’s also about retention. And so if you look at the number one asset that most businesses can have is the customers you’re already servicing, you know? They’ll buy more from you. I started off… What did I buy? I think I bought the Maldives trip with you initially and then, you know, from there I bought your membership, and then we’re looking at doing one-to-one coaching. It’s about that ongoing retention, too, and I think people forget about that. They’re so worried about getting more leads and getting more leads that they forget to actually value the people, those humans that have already been sitting right in front of them.
James: I’d be high-fiving you right now.
Absolutely. My entire business is built around the concept of a lifetime customer. And I’m spending the vast majority of my energy on retaining customers, just delivering results for people who have come on board has been a wonderful business model. That’s what’s enabled SuperFastBusiness membership to be around for ten years. I’ve outlasted and out survived a lot of other people in my space because I turn up and I do care, I want my clients to be able to get phenomenal results. And that includes things like answering my own emails. I have just had a guest talking about emails on our podcast. And a lot of people are handing that over to other people. And that’s terrific if it’s bogging you down. But I do think certain emails can be the big difference for you for keeping a customer. And I certainly feel a lot of buyers these days are going to do some little pressure tests on a potential business that they want to do business with. They might send a few inquiries, or nibble away at the edges and see what sort of response they get. And how you answer is going to determine if they proceed or not. What do you think about that?
Angela: I definitely think that. I mean, people are getting smarter. The people know that they’re in, what would you say, a funnel, for the most part, right? And some of the funniest emails I get is when I say to people, like obviously, I send out a weekly newsletter. And obviously, yes, that goes out to my email list. But if I say to someone, please hit reply and I will answer this personally. People actually email me just to test that it’s actually me. And then I’ll say, I’ll take a photo of me. And I’m like, Oh, yeah, I’m just sitting here, my pajamas, I hope you’re having a good day. And they’re like, oh, my goodness, I didn’t actually think it was you, Ange. I thought that you would have your VAs or your project managers or whoever responded. But again, that’s where that trust comes in, James, is that if you genuinely say that, it’s you, it needs to be you. And I think again, it just goes to, it increases your sale, it increases your overall presence, your credibility, your authority. I mean, it’s just a hand in hand.
Adding ‘feeling’ to marketing
And I just feel for those people, like, you can see it a mile away, we were talking about Facebook ads before we started recording. And you can see those people who are genuinely wanting to add value to their community versus those people who are trying to get someone’s credit card. And again, talking before, you’re adding value every day by doing your videos. I think you said you started off with doing one last year, a day, now you’re doing two, and you’re showing that expertise. But again, when people hear your voice through video, and they see your mannerisms, and they get to know you, there’s so much wealth and goodness that comes from that. And it’s the next best thing to being able to see someone and give them a hug, you know, like at a live event. So yes, I think it’s so important.
James: Some of the crazy correspondence I’m getting these days is people who just send me, I get handwritten letters. And I get emails from people. And I get private messages from people saying how they’ve really gotten a lot of value from the podcast, or the book or the videos, and they’ve had a transformation. And this is even before they become a customer. I mean, certainly, if they bought the book, they’re already a customer, you know.The podcast and the videos, for people to start implementing on that, it’s a great use of demonstration and the power of proof, and definitely consistency to to show up. So looping back around almost to a year since I started doing the videos again, and as you said, yes, we’ve increased it to two a day from one a day. And I think it’s had a profound impact on the business. And it’s a way to be there. Because it does take effort, and it’s doing something that your competitors are not doing. Other people are just buying ads and driving people to automated machines. And that might work to get new people over and over again, but it’s not much of a retention strategy.
“The feeling part is missing in marketing.”
Angela: No. And people drop off, like, they will drop off. And you see that with the unsubscribes. I mean, you always get unsubscribes at most times you send an email out, but you’ll start to see higher numbers. And there’s a quote, I can’t remember who it’s by. But there’s a quote where it’s like, I’ve learned that people will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel. And I think that again, that feeling part is missing in marketing. And that’s why again, we need to really go back to that human to human. There’s nothing better than looking someone in the eyes, or again, hearing their voice, or, you know, when I saw you and your son, Jensen, in the Maldives giving you guys each a hug and, you know, laughing. There’s something about the way you make people feel, and that needs to start being incorporated into day-to-day marketing.
James: Yeah, certainly, when you go to an event like that, you have to be prepared to share a little bit, because you’re on a live-aboard-boat scenario for a week. So there’s no escaping it if you’re an ultra introvert. You can certainly slink away to your cabin but it does get warm down there during the day.
Most businesses forget this…
It helps if you can open up a bit, and the deep relationships that have formed are just phenomenal. I’ve come away from those events with remarkable next level, like, irreversible relationships with the people who I’ve spent that time with. And some of them have been so generous in how they share and contribute goodness into your life. And, of course, some of the facilitations there really speed that up and deepen it and make it more effective. But it’s also the organic conversations that happen on the couch or in the between periods, especially around the meals, they’re just so amazing.
In fact, we did do an audio documentary from that trip, which we published on a previous episode. And it’s fun to listen to that if you want to get behind the scenes on that Maldives trip and find out what’s going on there. And also get an insight as to why it’s booked out till like 2020, at this stage. It’s got a phenomenal re-subscribe rate. It’s somewhere in the region of 90 percent, which as a creator, I’m happy with. That’s the ultimate test – would someone come back? And that’s what I want to see. Same with the annual live events that we run, it’s really great to see the same people and to follow their journey over time as humans. That human transformation is a real joy of being a coach. And when it comes to emotions and feelings, Angela, I think you’re right up there as a benchmark for high EQ in my world.
“They’re forgetting that their customers are humans.”
Angela: Well, thank you for that. Thank you. And I also think there’s one funny thing, I was doing a presentation once, and I said, one thing you need to know about human-to-human marketing is that most recent studies have concluded that your customers are human, and everyone just, like, start laughing. But people are forgetting that, James. They’re forgetting that their customers are humans. And it’s these humans that are going to either stick with you, or they’re going to leave.
Be the purple cow
And also there’s a book, I believe it’s called (I’m going to mess this up), the Purple Cow. Hold on, it’s Seth Godin. I think it is the Purple Cow, I think the book is called. I could be wrong, so excuse me, Seth, if I’m wrong here. But basically it talks about, you must stand out and you must be the purple cow. What he talks about in his book is, if you’re driving through the paddocks, or the fields or wherever part of the world you live in, and you’re driving, and you see black cows and white cows and brown cows, but there’s no purple cows.
And that’s how marketing is becoming, everyone is the brown, white black cow. They’re the same. And in order for your business to really kind of exponentially grow or to stand out or to be different, you have to be the purple cow. And I know it’s a weird analogy that I’m using, but I think it’s important that if you’re just doing what everyone else is doing, and this pendulum I’m telling you now, I believe in the next 12 to 18 months, is going to switch where people want that human-to-human marketing, they’re going to get left behind. So either embrace it now, but don’t complain when the pendulum starts to swing and you’ve automated everything to the point that you no longer look at people as people.
James: Yeah, it is called Purple Cow. And the whole point of that book is to be remarkable. And I read that book when I was a manager at Mercedes Benz. And I took one lesson from that book, which was a story about an ice cream parlor where the owner put his phone number on the wall and said, you know, if you want to talk to me about the experience here in the ice cream parlor, I’m the owner and you can call me on this number.
I thought that’s profound. And I went and made a customer satisfaction form that was to be handed over, for every single car that we delivered. And on it, it was like, Hi, I’m James Schramko. I really want to know how your experience was. So you know, I put, again, the form, and an envelope. And the envelope was already addressed to me, private and confidential. And I put our fax number, for the younger people listen to this, it’s a device that used to sit on a desk and a bit of paper would come out of it. It had the fax number, email, my personal mobile number and my direct office line. I said they could call me any time of the day or night. And they could fill out the form, pop it in the envelope in and it’d be sent straight to me, no one else would read it. And that’s how we turned our customer satisfaction, from the place that I went to fix up, they were actually scoring very low. We went from last to first on that Customer Satisfaction Index, using that one technique that I pulled from Purple Cow. So big thanks to Seth Godin.
Building the trust factor
Angela: Yes. And Seth again, it’s the simple things. Back in the day, everything was back again, yellow pages. For those young people who don’t know what the yellow pages are, you know, you’d always get the phone books delivered to your house. But your phone number was readily available everywhere. That was what you needed in order to market, back in the day. I mean, I wasn’t there at that stage, but I do remember the yellow phone books, the yellow pages, I should say. But it was. It wasn’t like your phone number was sacred, and no one could get ahold of it. I know, I think at some stage when you and I first started talking, you were like, “If you’ve got any more questions…” You did offer your phone number and an email to me, James. But the thing is, is when people do that, I never abused it. I never rang you.
But the fact was, my trust with you had exponentially gone through the roof. Because I knew if I needed you, I could call you. But I’ve never rang you personally on your phone. We talked via other avenues, but I’ve never had to ring you. And it’s the same thing when I do my presentations. I talk a little bit, as you know, about mental health. But one of the times I said, and I learned this through Peter Shankman at Tropical Think Tank was, if anyone out there was suffering and you generally need to get help, please feel free to call me. I’ve had one person ring me. I gave them the help they needed and that was it. But that number is one slide, very small amount of my time, James. But I mean, I’m talking, if I’m talking to a group of 100, that number is available to all of them, but no one has ever abused that number. But what it has done is, people know that I’m there if they need it. So again, you demonstrated that to me, I saw that Peter Shankman at Tropical Think Tank, and now I do it. And I can tell you that I do it because I genuinely want to let people know that I’m there to help. But it does, I guess as a side benefit, does help build that trust factor.
James: Absolutely. You know, that’s what Seth Godin talks about in his more recent book, called This Is Marketing.
Angela: Yes, I haven’t read it but it’s on my wish list to do.
The other kind of marketing
James: I think you’ll like it. He talks about how shameless marketers have brought shame to the rest of us, with their shameless tricking and coercing, and they actually brag about it, how they’re profit-maximizing, short-term hustlers. And he said, there is another kind of marketing, and I’ll quote it, “The effective kind. It’s about understanding our customers’ worldview and desires so we can connect with them. It’s focused on being missed when you’re gone, on bringing more than people expect to those who trust us. It seeks volunteers, not victims.” Isn’t that interesting?
Angela: So interesting.
James: The revolution begins as soon as someone with that sort of publishing reach is definitely going to make people think a bit about the way they’ve been marketing. I would have to say, my method of marketing hasn’t really changed the whole time I’ve been online. I could never understand why people were marketing like that when I started online, which was 2005. You know, it’s taken a long time, and I think a little bit of social media, for people to have a voice and to say, hey, we don’t like this pushy, aggressive, one-way marketing channel. We want to feel valued. And if we’re not getting looked after, we’re going to speak up about it. And lately, there has been some uprisings either in social media groups and also Netflix documentary. People are actually starting to broadcast and publish their dissatisfaction with unethical behavior or sloppy integrity. It will get shouted to the rooftops, so it’s a good time to to get real with your audience if you haven’t already.
Angela: Are you talking about Fyre? Is that the movie?
James: I did watch the Fyre Festival, yes.
Angela: Yeah. I mean, that is one example where, you know, necessarily they were all about the numbers. I mean, it’s quite complex what happened in that particular movie. But it came down to, again, it’s through the power of social media. It benefited them very much at the beginning. But it absolutely came down. Do you know what I mean? Because of their lack of actions and forgetting about the people, and just worrying about the dollar. It definitely backfired, that’s for sure.
James: There’s basically a huge reconciliation. And one thing that is different about their scenario to a lot of other products and services is, they had a deadline and a hard event. They had a discovery. People were going to find out that it didn’t work.
James: Which is different to some of those other schemes, you know, like, sometimes I talk about MLMs. It’s not my favorite, but it’s an example where people might not necessarily figure out that it doesn’t actually work because there’s no hard deadline, there’s no actual event that’s going to show that. And some people’s products or services might not be that good and the customer could possibly never know or even feel like they’re blamed for it.
You know, if you happen to bump into a bad agency practitioner and they burn your account, they might tell you that it was your offer or whatever. If you buy a course, but you never follow all the modules, you might not know if it gets a result or not. So there is a bit of murkiness out there in the world. But certainly influencer marketing, it’s taken things to a whole new level hasn’t it? Where almost everyone I know who’s got a large Instagram following has simply purchased the follows. I haven’t actually found one who’s organically grown them yet. And I’ve asked most of my peer group, like, how did you get 30,000 followers? And they’ll just say, I’ll just bought a service and they added followers.
Angela: Well, I can be been one of your first. So with Finlee and Me, my first business, we sit just under 20,000 Instagram. And again, it was through ProBlogger and through Jada, actually, back in 2015. I went into that particular event with 4000 subscribers because I wrote that particular number on my book that day. And within a year I had grown to 15,000, and that was because of Jada’s suggestion about partnership and collaborating with other brands who share the same ideal client, but you’re not distributing or selling the same services. So I did a lot of teaming up and building again, that human-to-human relationship first. Because I believe, again (this is where people go wrong), you can start with partnerships, but if you start asking people for things right away, you’re going to get burned. So I did a long time, you know, following people, building relationships, asking questions, you know, commenting on their things, and then going in and asking them Hey, would you like to do a giveaway together? So, all of ours was done organically. We bought zero followers. But again, it was time and effort. So you have to, you know, weigh up, but those are loyal followers who have been with me now for, I don’t know, 6, 7, 8 years, you know? So yeah, but again, it took time. It wasn’t an overnight success. And it was strategy around how do I connect with these people on a human level. And to make sure that it was the right demographic to be teaming up with.
What drives sales?
James: And you also got into the market at the right time.
“Emotional motivators drive consumer behavior.”
Angela: Yes, it was a lot easier back then, 100 percent, than what it is now with different algorithm changes and etc. And I also think that when we’re talking about human-to-human, one of the things that people also forget is that emotional motivators drive consumer behavior. And when you drive consumer behavior, then you also have sales.
And I hear so many times, I don’t know about you, James, but obviously my cohort is more startup, you know, early-phase businesses, and there’ll be a lot of complaints sometimes that “I don’t have sales, I don’t have sales.” And then when I work with them, either in my group or in my one to one or, you know, courses, etc, that again, when I go down to what are you looking at, how are you really diving deep into, what are their emotional motivators, how are you connecting them as humans? People just aren’t doing it, James. But again, if you want the sales, you need to tap into those emotional motivators. And you’re going to do that best by developing a human-to-human or H2H marketing strategy.
James: You’re so right, it’s just too shallow. Yesterday, when I was buying lunch for my lovely wife, someone sent me a message on Facebook, and it was like, hey, you’re going to Traffic and Conversion this year? And I replied back and I said, no, not this year. I’ve got something on. And then they replied back, what are you working on at the moment? And I replied back, my live event is coming up so I’m just checking that. Just for context, I don’t know this guy. He is not a friend of mine on Facebook. Anyway, I’m just being polite. And he goes, Oh, what’s the site? Let me have a look. I send him a link. He’s all, oh, that looks fantastic! I think you’ll go really well with that. How many people will come to the event? I told him, there’ll usually be a couple of hundred. And he replied, yeah, that’s fantastic. And he said, I’ve got this great product such and such. I think your audience would really love it. Would you like me to send across some details? At that point, I was like, I just want to scream a swear word. It’s like, you’re going about this all wrong.
James: I looked up the product. And it’s some hypey, stupid launch from that scene that, you know, you might get in the very beginning, where they’re all patting each other’s backs, and doing big bonuses, and all this sort of stuff. I’m like, that is so not my market. And it looked like a janky tool anyway, not something I would use or recommend or endorse. He would have been so much better to say “Hi, such and such here. You don’t know me but I’d love to send you over a copy of such and such to see if you’d find that useful for your team,” something like that. At least, he could just made it a little bit more upfront. I was just waiting for the punch to come in. It came and it was just so predictable and so disappointing.
Relationships are like bank accounts
Angela: Yes. And I think that people are forgetting that a relationship, the way I look at it anyways, are kind of like, not from like, a tick box, you must do this. But even in like, my best friends, for example, you know, my best friend from Canada is Lisa, we’ve been best friends for 25 years. And I would even use this as an example is that, it’s what you put in. So it’s kind of like a bank account. If I put in and I’m the only one putting in to make that relationship work, and she wants to withdraw something, so example, that guy, he’s trying to withdraw a favor from you, and he’s done nothing to build that rapport, that relationship and nurture it, it’s going to go bad. And people are too quick to try and withdraw from a bank account that’s empty.
You must, must nurture those relationships. And it’s not all about, if I nurture this relationship, what can I get? I’m not saying that. But if you just look at your life, and your relationships, as a collection, those people who you’ve genuinely valued and put time and effort to, you could call any one of your friends up that you’ve done that too, if you were in a bad spot, or you needed something, they would be there to help you, because you’ve equally added value to their life, you know? And I think people need to be looking at that as their prospective clients.
James: Yeah. And over time, you can actually get interest on that account too. I’ve been investing in other people for so long. I’m constantly amazed that my good fortune of the generous things people do just seemingly out of the blue for me that blow me away. When someone gives me a big shout out for my book or something, someone famous says something nice about me that I didn’t expect, those things are just incredible. I’ve had a couple of occasions where I’ve been invited to speak on big podcasts that have definitely moved the needle for my book sales and found me new customers. And I’m super appreciative of that. And in many cases, those relationships have been developed over years. And I’ve never asked for anything.
Angela: Exactly right.
James: I’m a bit shy to ask for stuff. I still think I’m a bit of an introvert, which is funny. It makes people laugh.
Angela: But you can also look at Pat Flynn at the moment, who’s done an amazing job on his Kickstarter campaign, okay? But Pat is one of the most genuine, nicest guys. And if you want to look at human-to-human, he’s a great example of that. He is so kind and generous and willing to help. Pat is just like the package of human-to-human, okay. But in this particular, I mean, I think his Kickstarter campaign’s only been going for a week, correct me if I’m wrong, James. Obviously, he’s got a brilliant audience so that helps it. But some of the influencers that he’s been able to work with, because again, he’s developed relationships over time. And they’ve been willing to help him, you know? And this time, he’s absolutely killing it. And I’m so proud to watch Pat’s journey at the moment with this Kickstarter campaign. But again, he put the time and effort to developing both relationships with his peers but equally with potential new clients or customers of his.
James: And another part of that story there is that he developed a fantastic product that really solves a problem, that people resonated with. He was using the power of demonstration, he got himself to the right events, the video conference type events. He showed people the product, they liked it, they asked for it, he sent it to them. He didn’t pay for them to make videos about it, they did it because they liked the product, and because he didn’t disrupt the flow of it by doing anything bad. And, you know, I was one of the first people to share that Kickstarter and to purchase the product, because I could see what’s gone into it behind the scenes. I’m very fortunate to speak with Pat most weeks and watch his journey from a really close vantage point. And as you said, he’s an incredible human, very generous and inspiring to see how he’s leveling up in from where he started. He actually started about same time as me, which is great. And it’s wonderful to be on this journey together. And I think they smashed it out of the park. Just the first day, they got their threshold, and then doubled it the next day. And today when I was chatting to him, he was full on into production mode. They’re just getting stuck into making that product. And I think the big wave’s yet to come for that stuff. Because once the product’s broadly distributed, that’ll be a phenomenal, successful product.
Angela: And I think even more so, you’re on hundred percent. Why though? Because those people who have bought from him, a large part of them have been on his journey for a very long time. Because again, he’s valued them as people, alright? He’s solving a problem, yes. But all of those people now, once they get that product, will buy just because the products awesome, but they’re also going to talk about it. So from a marketing perspective, he’s going to get this beautiful essence of marketing happening, because of what Pat’s done. He’s valued their relationship at the beginning, he’s listened to their problems, he’s now solved their problems, and they’re going to do that. So again, I think this is just the beginning for Pat. And I can’t remember the partner who he teamed up with, but yeah, this a beautiful segue to just watch him at the moment.
James: Well, that explains a beautiful partnership where each person brings something different to the table.
James: No doubt, Pat brought a huge audience to the product, and no doubt the partner’s handy with the product side of things.
Angela: There was another book that I read, and it’s one of my favorite books called the Go-Giver. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of it, James, from Bob Burg and David Mann.
James: I’ve had Bob Burg on this podcast. In fact, my son, Jensen, just read that book a few weeks back.
Angela: I’ve read the book multiple times. And it’s just one of those things that he talks about, the Five Laws of Stratospheric Success. And he talks about, just real quickly I’ll talk about him, about like the law of value. And he talks about your true worth is determined by how much more you give in value than you take in payment. And he talks about the law of compensation, and that your income is determined by how many people you serve, and how well you serve them. You know, the law of influence, your influence is determined by how abundantly you place other people’s interests first, versus your own. The law of authenticity, the most valuable gift you have to offer is yourself. And the law of receptive, I can never say the word, James, receptivity, is that right? The key to effective giving is to stay open to receiving.
And he was a big influence on me around along with Lou Mongello around that human-to-human marketing over the last few years. And he goes into depth about, most people try and market by you’ve got a prospect, you go into qualify, you present, you overcome objections, you close, you follow up, and maybe you’ll provide customer service. But in the Go-Giver, they really talk about creating value, touching people’s lives, building your networks, being real, staying open, and when you do that, you will be profitable. So again, it sounds very counterintuitive to a lot of people. But I can say, for example, I do one-to-one coaching. I’ve been doing it for two years now, specifically with women in business. But my Facebook group, up until I ran my eight-week coaching course in June, I’ve never paid for advertising. Zero. I’m completely booked out with my one-to-one clients. I’ve never paid anything in advertising for that particular element of my business. And it’s because I show up, I add value, I’m real, and I treat them. And because of that, you know, there’s a level of profit that comes, because again, I’m treating them like people not as numbers.
James: Yeah, well, that’s the way to do it. By the way, it’s Episode 496, if you want to listen to that one. He said, both parties need to win in any transaction in order for it to be a successful transaction. That’s a nice sentiment. I think the big takeaway from me from that book was where he’s talking about, most people want the heat from the fire, but they’re not prepared to put the logs on it. You got to put the logs first, then you get the fire. You don’t say, Hey, give me some heat and then I’ll go grab some logs.
The other big profound thing that I learned from that book is that you can’t give without receiving. You can’t breathe out without breathing in. Try it, you breathe out, you’re going to inhale again. So when you give, give, give, it’s going to come back to you somewhere, someway, maybe not exactly where you put it. That’s, that’s my other sort of discovery, you could give, give, give in some direction, it doesn’t seem to come there, but then some windfall will happen in another area. But that’s like some karmic universe balance. And it’s great that you can sell out programs for years in advance. I mean, a great example is SilverCircle, which has been around for about nine years. I’ve never really marketed SilverCircle, I don’t advertise it. It’s just sits there on its site. But when I get someone like Pat Flynn, referring me a customer, because he’s so happy, then like, what are they going to say?
Angela: Exactly, right.
James: It’s just like this daisy chain of positive referrals from people who are happy with the product and get great results. If basically, you’re reflecting back on Pat’s Kickstarter and some of the other things we’ve said, if you have a fantastic product to start with, that’s half the battle won. And then if you actually, really care about people, and you show up and back it, then people will take notice, because it’s rare, it’s unique. It’s so unusual compared to what’s out there, as the Purple Cow book talks about. It’s remarkable.
Angela: As the purple cow, exactly right. You stand out. The amount of opportunities I’ve had, and I know people will say, and you and I’ve talked about this also, is that when you add value to people’s lives, it’s inevitable that good things will come, you know? And it might not happen right away. But just keep adding value. Obviously, you can’t do stuff for free for a very long time. But also, you know, when I add value, I’m not then going, and by the way, buy this. I add value, I leave it. And you demonstrate that very well in your videos that you do every day. You give a little bit of a tidbit, not too much so that people aren’t feeling overwhelmed. But again, people start to learn, James, that you’re the go-to person for a variety of different things, especially for scaling businesses. And it’s just because you add value every single day. You’re showing up, you’re being consistent. You don’t even have to sell, because the selling is done just by the value that you’re giving.
James: Yeah, and a lot of it comes down to your definition of sales. And my understanding of it is quite simply to create an environment where someone will see that moving forward will result in them being better off. So you don’t have to have coercion, you don’t have to have pressure. You could literally do a demonstration or a case study, and people can join the dots. In fact, they’re more powerful if the customer makes that transition themselves instead of you forcibly doing it. And that’s a whole other conversation.
Angela: Yeah, that’s another podcast.
James: I could go deep on the sales topic. I think we’ve really, apart from creating a big book order list for somebody, we’ve got a laundry list of books here. I love books, you know, you can tell I’m passionate about it. I’ve read a lot of books, still the single best return on investment you could ever have. You could spend $1,000 on Kindle and you’d have a world-class education on just about all the topics you need. But aside from that, we really have touched on this human-to-human idea. And I do want to just add this: apply the same things to your team.
How to treat your team
Your team are not cogs. They’re not a machine, they’re not numbers for processing. They’re people. And if we could have a human relationship with our own team, then it will transform your business as well. Are you on the same page with me there, Angela?
“Your team are not cogs. They’re not a machine.”
Angela: Oh, gosh, exactly. I mean, I’ve learned, I think very early on, that if you treat your employees or your team well, they will always treat you well, right? And it just to me, again, is hand in hand. At the end of the day, they’ve got their own things going on in their life, whether or not their kids are sick, their husbands are being deployed, whatever that is, but they’ve got human hearts. And again, as I said, at the beginning of it is, sorry about your customers, but they’re humans, just like your staff. They need you, they have different wants, desires, etc. And if you treat them kindly and lovingly, again, they will reciprocate that back to you through, you know, making sure that your business runs smoothly. And it also means that your retention, I think, James, you do a really great job, your team has been with you for a very, very long time, which means that you’re not paying for advertising, you’re not having to retrain people, which we know the cost to bring on a new team member when someone leaves is, you know, quite costly for a lot of businesses, especially in the startup phase.
James: Yeah. I absolutely adore my team. They’re so talented, they make my life so much better. And I want to their lives better. Like, I want them to have a fantastic life. I have trouble asking them to take holidays. Sometimes, they just don’t go.
It’s quite extraordinary. Like, we don’t track days off, hours worked, annual leave, or any of that stuff. They can have whatever time off they want. They can have the most flexible routine if they want. They just stick together. And they work together so well. They allocate the tasks in the business autonomously. It is like a dream. And I’ve been able to create that sort of environment for lots of my clients. So you know, if what I’m talking about sounds like an absolute fantasy, it is possible. It just takes time. And the longer you can marinate that, the better. So some of my team members are coming up on 10 years. And the newest team member started about five and a half years ago, maybe six years now. So for context, yeah, it’s a work in progress.
Angela: And I remember when we were up in the Maldives, for those, again, I know we’ve talked about it, but it’s a miraculous trip. But at nighttime, we have our mastermind up on the very top deck when the sun is setting and we’re drinking mojitos, just to make you all a little bit to understand how awesome it is. And one of the things we were talking about was retention, and something along the lines about what do you do for retention and if people need this. And one of the things that stuck with me, being a woman obviously and obviously also having kids, is I think one of your staff member was going off on leave for maternity leave, and you paid her, like there was no questions. Because you valued her, James, and I just remember I got a bit teary when you just talked about it that night, because not all males understand the capacity of how hard it is for women. That’s another topic I know, but I just want to say that because you showed them value, you know she’ll be with you for years to come. Because during that greatest moment of her having a baby, you stuck by her, where not a lot of employers around the world, regardless of who you are, may do that. So that was one thing that definitely stuck with me when we were at the Maldives.
James: Oh that’s nice. Yeah, there’s a pretty high chance she’s editing this podcast, so get the Kleenex.
I do love my team, but I take my team surfing when I go and visit. We hang out, I cook them meals. We’ve become friends, and I know a lot about them and they know a lot about me. And we’ve built this great working relationship, so that’s a wonderful thing.
What to expect from SFB Live
Now, gosh, we’ve gone from meeting each other at Darren Rowse’s wonderful ProBlogger event to you coming to the Maldives, and becoming a member of SuperFastBusinesscommunity. And now, apart from us podcasting, which is a fantastic milestone, you’re going to be speaking at SuperFastBusiness Live in Sydney, which I’m super excited about, because you’ll be covering a topic that you have been so successful with, which is challenge marketing. And you’ll be talking about the five core things that you really need to get right when it comes to doing your challenge marketing. And like everything that you teach, you’ve studied it, you’ve implemented it, you’ve got results, you’ve been able to repeat the results for other people, and you’ve refined and refined this particular technique over years. So I’m really excited to see how that presentation gets received. I know that we’ve had good pre-event survey feedback on that session. So thank you for putting that together. Are you excited about coming to the event?
Angela: Oh gosh, I’m so excited. I mean again, as you know, when I first met you I said, James, how much one-to-one contact do I get with you? How often do I get to see you? You were like, you are a lady, Ange, of contact. and I’m so excited not only to be speaking at SuperFastBusiness Live event, but more importantly, if I have to be honest, is I just love hugging everyone and seeing everyone. So I’m a bit of a hugger. I wear my heart on my sleeve. So to see, you know, Tim Papadopoulos from the Maldives and Carl Taylor and all those guys, I’m so excited. The merrymakers, Emma and Carla, are coming. There’s so many people that are coming that I just love it. I love to karaoke and I love the energy, so needless to say, if you can’t tell from my level of enthusiasm, I just love live events. So yeah, speaking is phenomenal, James, but all the other little bits, I’m so excited for.
James: I’m most excited about the dinner, because we’ll all be there eating, drinking, talking. We’ll have some entertainment. I’m also going to be giving away a website design.
Angela: Woah, that’s fun.
James: Greg Merrilees is put out there, from Studio1Design.com, is giving away a website design to one lucky attendee, so that will be pretty cool. I mean, that’s worth far more than the ticket price. Someone’s going to walk away with a fresh look. I use Greg for all my designs, so I’m a big supporter of his product and I know this is going to be a great bonus for somebody. But yeah, a lot of people are going. I mean, I probably know the most people at this event, because I’ve been dealing with a lot of them in various ways. Of course there’s a few strangers each year, but they don’t remain strangers for long.
Angela: Gosh, no.
James: Maybe until the first morning tea break, that’s about it. And then you become part of the the tribe, so to speak.
Angela: One hundred percent. I’m counting down the days until we’re down in Sydney, all of us being together again. The world of entrepreneurship can be quite lonely, but once you find your tribe and your people, that goes away fairly quickly. So I’m always glad to be surrounded by the local SuperFastBusiness members here in Brisbane, but also the Maldives and equally the event. It’s going to be epic.
James: Fantastic! So Angela, we can find out more about you at AngelaHenderson.com.au. What sort of things do you help people with?
Angela: Ah, yes. So what I help is, I specifically work with women in business to grow a sustainable and profitable business. And I do that through one to one coaching, my eight-week coaching. And I also have a four-day, three-night women in business retreat on the Gold Coast once a year. So those are my three main avenues.
James: And it’s just for women?
Angela: Yes, I know, but my niche market is women, so I need to stay true to that. So yes women in business, my four-day retreat is.
James: That’s very nice. Thank you, Angela.
Angela: You’re very welcome.
James: I look forward to catching up with you very soon. And I appreciate all the wonderful discussion items we’ve had today.
Angela: No worries. You have an awesome day, and I hope you have a great surf, if you haven’t already been out today.
James: It’s about to happen, you know it.
Angela: Alright. Have an awesome day James, and we’ll see you soon.
James: Okay, see ya.
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