How much more successful would you be if you had lunch once a week with an insanely successful entrepreneur who shared their biggest secrets on how they think and achieve success? Well, now you can! Grab your seat at the table as successful entrepreneurs reveal their step-by-step strategies, fascinating stories, travel hacks and other delicious tidbits each week with serial entrepreneur/business strategist, Roland Frasier.
Taking a Project from Start to Finish with Roland Frasier and Ryan Deiss
Starting a new project is easy; finishing what you start is crucial.
If you want your business to grow and scale, you can’t just do one thing. But you also can’t just have a bunch of great ideas, start a bunch of projects, and never finish them. 80% done is zero.
In today’s episode of Business Lunch, co-hosts Roland Frasier and Ryan Deiss take an honest look at some of the struggles they’ve had lately in their multiple businesses. They talk through some challenges at DigitalMarketer in particular. Things haven’t been getting completed at the speed, frequency, and level of excellence they want them to.
The good news? They’ve had some hard discussions with their leadership team, and they’ve finally solved this challenge. But it has involved relearning lessons they’d already learned from past mistakes. If this happens to you too, you’re not alone.
One Team Takes One Thing at a Time from Beginning to End
It’s a classic mistake—trying to do too much with just one person or one team, stretching people too thin. This temptation is always present, but it never works out.
Roland and Ryan’s longtime friend, Carl White, talks about half-built bridges. Instead of building a whole bridge, you keep starting bridges. You put in tons of labor, and it’s worth nothing, because nothing is finished. It’s not that, if you get it to 80%, you’ll get 80% of the results. Nope. You’ll get zero results.
They’re not saying your business can’t do more than one thing at once. In fact, you have to, if you want to grow and scale. The iPhone doesn’t go away while Apple is developing the iWatch. But you have to acknowledge that one team can only take one thing from beginning to end at a time. When you have a team working hard on something, you can’t ask, “Hey, can you do this thing too?” Whatever gains you get on the new thing, you’re going to lose on the first thing.
What Roland and Ryan did to solve this was very simple. Each team stopped doing everything but this one thing. They tackled until it was done and it was great. Every piece of it. Then they moved on to the next thing.
So how do they solve for the long term? How do you start something new and keep the other things running?
Don’t Ask a 0 to 1 Person to Do a 1 to 10 Job
You have to know the difference between a “0 to 1” person and a “1 to 10” person. These are two totally different personality types. A 0 to 1 person takes a project from start to finish, but then they’re done, and a 1 to 10 person takes it from there. They run it, manage it, optimize it. And the 0 to 1 person starts something new.
One mistake they’ve made in the past: asking a 0 to 1 person to do 1 to 10 job in their spare time. A second mistake: giving the 0 to 1 person a team and hoping they can do both the launching of new projects and the maintenance of old projects. You wind up building a team of people who aren’t as talented as the 0 to 1 person. And, even more importantly, you’re asking a 0 to 1 person to be a manager. That’s not in their wheelhouse. They want to get things done quickly and correctly, not take the time to teach other people how to do it.
The bottom line: if you want to do multiple things at the same time, you need multiple 0 to 1 people.
What This Looks Like in Real Life
At DigitalMarketer, one of their portfolio companies, they’ve had marketing and products centralized for the longest time at the holding company level. Now that they’ve hired a general manager, they can begin to build a marketing team made up of “1 to 10” people.
They’ve also identified this at Scalable as something they need to fix. Entrepreneur founders are often 0 to 1 people who burn out or don’t have the skillset to go to the next place or continue at a subscale level. The whole idea behind Scalable is that the tools you need to be the 1 to 10 entrepreneur are available, and
Selling Less and Profiting More with Russ Ruffino, Founder of Clients on Demand
What if you could sell less but make a bigger profit?
Sound too good to be true? Russ Ruffino, creator and founder of Clients on Demand, helps experts, coaches, consultants, and thought leaders do this very thing. In this episode of Business Lunch, Russ sits down with host Roland Frasier to talk about how he went from selling products that cost less than $10 to selling programs that cost $10,000 or more.
Russ started out in online marketing in 2011. After some affiliate marketing success, he realized the real money was in creating his own stuff. He bought everything he could afford on his bartender salary and started selling products at a really low price. It didn’t take long before he decided to flip the model on its head. Instead of selling thousands of copies of something that cost $7, why not sell a handful of something that costs $7k?
The Model Is Simple
Russ tried a massive experiment. He designed a funnel, found some committed folks to enroll in his program, and they got results. His income went from $20k/month to $200k/month as soon as he got it cranking. They scaled and scaled, and now they’re doing around $1.7 million/month.
He says his model is simple and elegant. It’s what’s left when you toss out everything extreme or unnecessary.
ad webinar phone call new client
They run ads on YouTube and Facebook and drive traffic into a 40-minute webinar. On the webinar, they invite people to book a call. On the call, they book them straight into their high-ticket program. And that’s the same model they teach to their clients. Their program is 8 weeks long. On the back of that, they have a 1-year mastermind ($24k). Then they have a higher-level mastermind for $85k/year for people who want to go to multiple 7, 8 figures.
The vast majority of their clients are in the health space, relationship space, nutrition space, real estate space, NOT the business building space. They don’t want to create their own competitors.
Their ideal customer is anyone who can solve a major life or business challenge. They have to have something to teach people and an outcome they can help people achieve. One of their clients is a handstand coach. He teaches how to do a press up to a handstand, which is the holy grail of yoga/fitness people. Russ was skeptical at first, but it’s wildly popular and way more than just a handstand. There are a cascade of benefits—no back or shoulder pain for the rest of your life, literally being an inch taller—that make it well worth the high ticket.
What About Downselling and Outsourcing?
A lot of people believe you have to warm people up by starting with a low-ticket item, then move toward a high-ticket program. What are Russ’s thoughts on the value ladder concept? His method works without a warm-up. He’s filtering out people who aren’t willing to invest and commit, and getting right to the people who are.
He might be leaving money on the table by not having a downsell, but he doesn’t know what he’d even sell. He could do an information-only program without the support, but that defeats the whole purpose. It’s like giving a stick of dynamite to a kid.
About 95% of their enrollments come on the first call. They have 30-35 people a day reaching out to his company, and he has 5 people on the phones full-time. They watch the webinar, then book their appointment right after.
He says he hasn’t had much success with outsourcing sales. It’s difficult to find someone completely aligned with their values. They only make an offer to 80% of the people they talk to. They firmly believe in only selling to people it’s really going to work for. When you have an outside commissioned sales team, they’re not going to abide by that. They just want to sell.
They don’t work with copycats. They don’t work with people whose niche is too narrow or whose market is too hard to reach. And they make a judgment call on the spot about whet
The Creator Economy, Sales Models, and Privacy Invasion with Roland Frasier and Ryan Deiss
There’s a lot of buzz right now about a surprising new privacy announcement from Apple and a “new” thing called the creator economy.
Of course you can count on co-hosts Roland Frasier and Ryan Deiss to have some thoughts about it all. Summer is over, and Roland and Ryan are looking forward to getting back into the normal groove of business, which they both love. Traffic & Conversion Summit is just around the corner. These are exciting times. And, hey, if you’re enjoying the podcast, take a minute to review it.
Today’s episode is a virtual smorgasbord of great topics, and they start off by discussing a recent article titled “The Year that Everyone Became a Creator.” The article essentially states that we have this creator economy right now and, as a result of that, anyone and everyone can be a creator, someone who is able to scale without permission.
There’s Nothing New Under the Sun
Ryan says this development—individuals thinking more like businesses—is a good thing. In the past, an individual putting themselves out there was a fairly limited business model. They’ve shown they can monetize their own stuff, but then go beyond that and leverage investments in other businesses.
His only problem is with the terminology. This idea of a creator economy, or even creators in general, is just a rebranding of the word “entrepreneur.” It’s not new. Sure, there are more opportunities right now, so we have more winners. But businesses have been doing this forever.
Like Roland says, it’s a reskinned version of an age-old thing. Ryan’s marketer side thinks it’s brilliant to rename a category, but the teacher in him warns us not to lose the opportunity of learning from all the models we have in the past.
Roland agrees. He’s a fan of reading the classics in business and finance and marketing. Like that Shakespearean assertion that there are only 7 plots in the world, all of this has been seen before. Don’t go out and read all the new books on becoming a creator. It’s called business.
What Goes Into Being a Business?
So, to break this down, what does every business need to do? Three basic things:
They’ve got to have something to sell. They need a distribution channel. They’ve got to have monetization.
A lot of creators/influencers right now (on TikTok, etc.) are entertainers. There are no more gatekeepers. You don’t have to get on the radio or TV. You still need to have something you’re selling—a product or a service. Entertainment is a service. You still need distribution and monetization. And there are a lot of opportunities to cross-monetize your celebrity. A lot of people are now able to get into micro-funds, to micro-invest.
Roland and Ryan are developing a fund that will help small businesses. They’ll put their own money into it and raise money as well. It’s an example of creators investing in other creators and keeping small alive.
There’s a great opportunity to create your own network, like they’re doing with their podcast. It’s just eliminated the giant infrastructure with investment. Democratization is an overused word, but it’s appropriate. Don’t limit your monetization. Do all the things you’re doing but also make semi-passive investments in other companies. Diversify how you make money.
Is Our Privacy in Jeopardy?
The host switch gears for a bit to talk about something pretty important: your privacy. Apple announced recently that, in hopes of stopping child trafficking and abuse, they’re going to be scanning your personal devices for red flags. When the iOS 15 rolls out, they’ll scan your personal devices and Cloud uploads to match content against prohibited content (child pornography).
On the one hand, this is very noble. On the other hand, it seems really dangerous. Apple is now protecting us from advertisers but not from the government. Red flags go to a panel at Apple—made up of hum
Building a Company to Sell with John Warrillow
Build your business smart, and you can make a lot of money when you sell it.
In today’s episode of Business Lunch, host Roland Frasier sits down with John Warrillow, founder of ValueBuilder, author of three great books, and all-around good guy, to talk about building and selling businesses.
Each of his books is geared toward a different phase of your business. Built to Sell is for anyone feeling trapped in their business and shows you how to create a business that can thrive without you. The Automated Customer is for anyone looking for a recurring revenue stream. And The Art of Selling Your Business is for anyone on the last chapter of their entrepreneurial journey.
He also has an exclusive offer for Business Lunch listeners who want to apply the lessons from his latest book to their own businesses.
Listen in as Roland and John dig deep into how to build and sell your business well.
Building a Company You’ll Eventually Sell
John has a radio show called Built to Sell where he interviews a different entrepreneur each week about their exit strategy. He says there are a few dozen people out there playing at a higher level, out-maneuvering and outthinking the other side. They were the inspiration behind his most recent book. What tactics can we learn from these people? What mistakes can they help us avoid?
The biggest issue entrepreneurs face when they go to sell their business is: what do you want for it? John says if you put a super-high number out there, you’ll lose people before you even start the process. On the other hand, if your number is too low, you’re cheating yourself. There’s virtually no good answer to this question, but this is a decent one: “Hey, I’m a reasonable person. I’m happy to review any offer you think is reasonable.”
He tells them that he’s willing to look at an IOI (indication of interest) if they want to put that together. An IOI is not the same as an LOI (letter of intent). An LOI gives a specific price and includes a no-shop clause where you agree not to market your business to anyone else. That’s a dangerous document to sign. You’ve lost leverage. You want a process to try to get multiple bids from multiple people at a time.
The Importance of Building Your Own Media
A lot of Business Lunch listeners own ecommerce companies, and right now FBA (Fulfillment By Amazon) roll-ups are all the rage. They’ve raised over $1 billion in funds and hold workshops on how to get the most for your business. They create a deal flow mechanism—How to Sell Your Amazon Business—then go in and buy at low multiples. They’re like the fox in the henhouse. How would John advise someone who gets an offer from one of these groups to proceed?
He asks the question: who owns the customer? If Amazon is seen as the ultimate owner of the customer, and you’re a fulfillment house with a 3rd party product you sourced, you don’t have a direct relationship with the customer. This puts you in a weak negotiating position.
If you own the brand, the customer list, and you have multiple marketing channels, one of which is Amazon, you can do a lot better. You don’t want to be dependent on the traffic from one platform, and you want access to your clients.
John tells a story about Ben Leonard who built a cool workout platform, Beast Gear, selling weight lifting straps and gloves. He started selling on Amazon and, in the package he included a note that says, “Make sure you tag us on IG when you get a PR. I’d love to know about it.” Then he DMs anyone who posts, says something like, “I can’t believe you dead lifted that many pounds!” and builds rapport. On top of that, he gives them a $20 gift card for the Beast Gear website.
This lessens his dependency on Amazon, which is always a good thing.
Selling Your Business to a Private Equity Firm or an Individual Investor
Entrepreneurs thrive on freedom. If they wanted to go work
Good Ideas vs. Great Ideas with Roland Frasier and Ryan Deiss
You need a process for distinguishing a good idea from a great idea.
It’s fairly easy to tell the difference between good ideas and bad ones, but what about good ideas and great ones? As many people have said in a lot of different ways, sometimes the enemy of a great idea is a good idea. (For great ideas delivered to your inbox weekly, sign up for the Scalable Memo.)
Good ideas are a dime a dozen, and if you say yes to all of them, you’ll never have the capacity to try out some really great ideas. At a recent strategic planning meeting, Roland and Ryan sat down with their team to look at where they’re at as a company and where they’re headed. They felt frustrated that growth hasn’t been what they’d hoped of late.
They concluded that they’d been investing too much time and money into good ideas, instead of great ones. It was time to let some of those good ideas go. But how do you know when and how to do that?
Tweaking the ICE Model and Clearly Stating the Hypothesis
The ICE Scoring Model is helpful when deciding whether an idea is good or great. You rank your project on a scale of 1-10 in each of three categories: Impact, Confidence, Ease. Then you multiply the numbers to get the ICE score.
To make sure an idea is great, and not just good, Roland and Ryan have decided to go for a high score in all three categories, not just one or two. If something will have a high impact and is easy, but you don’t have confidence in it, it’s not going to be great.
They also decided to get very clear on their hypothesis from the beginning and put it in writing. A simple paragraph is fine. “We believe that, if we do the following, it will achieve this particular result. And we’ll know when x happens.”
Don’t just say, “We think that, if we do this, we’ll get more leads.” That’s not specific enough, and there’s no time frame. You need to know when to kill if something doesn’t work as quickly as you wanted. You need a system for identifying whether or not an idea lives up to expectations in a stated time frame.
Just because you have the capacity doesn’t mean you have to take on a project. If it’s not a great idea yet, let it bake.
Getting Your Employees to Think Like Owners
The theory is that the more we can help employees to think like entrepreneurs, to have an owner’s mindset, the more aligned we all are toward achieving our goals as owners. But how do you do that? How do you instill an entrepreneurial mindset in the people who work for you?
Ryan thinks most people are at one end of the spectrum or the other. They’re either a serial entrepreneur who’s always starting something new or someone who just wants a job where they clock in and out and do what they’re told. He doesn’t see many people in the middle.
One way to motivate employees to act like owners is to offer variable compensation (incentive on top of a base salary used to motivate and retain employees). But Ryan hasn’t seen that work. He thinks you either have that mindset or you don’t, and their company isn’t going to pay a salary at market rate and put variable comp on top of that. For owners, if there’s no money, there’s no paycheck. If lots of great ideas bring in lots of money, they get more. You can’t have your cake and eat it too.
When you’re interviewing, you look for people who take ownership of things. Ask them questions and see if they get responsibility and already take ownership of their lives. People with owner mindsets are going to make decisions for the good of the company, not just themselves.
Micro-Ownership as a Prerequisite to the Owner Track
There are two tracks: the employee track and the owner track. Instead of offering variable comp right away, you can do a probationary period. Give someone micro-ownership, see how they do, before you put them on the owner track and give them more opportunities to be entrepreneurial. Make
7 Attributes of a Successful Sales Person with Neal Tricarico, Head of Sales at Scalable
Learn the importance of systems when it comes to inside sales.
Before Neal Tricarico joined Scalable as Director of Sales, inside sales was one of the biggest missing pieces in the business. Scalable was born from a digital marketing company, and they didn’t have anybody on the phones. They were literally missing out on half the sales they could have made.
They snagged Neal from the Tony Robbins organization, and he brought his vast experience, impressive credentials, and his great personality with him. He has developed several systems that have proven wildly successful with sales teams, and he amped up Scalable’s inside sales in no time.
In today’s episode, he sits down with host Roland Frasier to share some valuable information with listeners, including exclusive access to his brilliant Sales Strengths Identifier (SSI). Whether you’re hoping to improve your inside sales—or get it started in your business—Neal has just what you need.
An In-House Sales Team vs. an Outsourced Solution
What are the pros and cons of hiring your own sales team vs an outside sales team? Basically, the biggest advantage to an outside team is a lower investment risk. And an internal team is more aligned with the culture and values of your company, which is a huge advantage.
Neal says that hiring your own team means your sales reps “have an opportunity to eat their own dog food.” They can experience what they’re selling. An outside sales team, on the other hand, has a potential disconnect from the products they’re offering. There’s no buy-in. They’re just doing their job.
What’s the First Step to Bringing Sales In House?
That first hire is most important. Scalable brought in Neal, and he brought in his own successful system. Then he recruited and hired sales reps who understand and work in that system.
If you’re just starting out, you’re looking for a player-coach, someone to roll up their sleeves, be sales rep #1 so they understand what’s actually happening on the front lines. They can build out the framework of success. Then you can scale and hire more reps.
Great. So, how do you find that person?
Neal believes there’s a confluence of science and skills. There are specific capabilities required. You can assess someone to see if they have those skills with The Sales Strengths Identifier, which Neal invented. It’s both data-driven and experiential, and you can match it with your interview process.
So, what are those strengths/skills?
Strength #1: Mindset
Mindset is the critical foundational step in this process. You need someone who has the ability to shift their focus from their own needs/wants to the client’s. Mindset-wise, you’ll never feel bad or smarmy when doing sales, because you know the value of what you’re offering exceeds the price. You’ll feel good about it the whole way through.
Strength #2: Rapport
You want someone who has the capability of establishing rapport with clients—and quickly. You have to earn your customer’s trust and respect as soon as possible. First impressions are huge.
You establish this rapport by focusing first on the client. Seek to understand before being understood. No old school small talk; that’s a turnoff. Instead, ask an open-ended question: What led us to this call today?
Strength #3: Diagnose Needs
A doctor who prescribes without diagnosis is guilty of malpractice. It’s the same with sales. When we pitch or present our solution before we’ve actually diagnosed the client’s needs, we’re guilty of malpractice. Your moral obligation is to conduct a gap analysis that helps the prospect understand what they actually need.
Strength #4: Build Value
In old school terms, this is your pitch or presentation. This is where you’ve won the right to engage the how. You’re tying their needs to your product or service. You can solve their wants and whys.
Strength #5: Create
Required listening for entrepreneurs, marketers, and big thinkers
This podcast was already becoming my number 1 favorite before Roland started co-hosting with Ryan Deiss, and now it's even better.
Between the two of them, there's a TON of actionable advice on how to grow and scale your business, lots of thoughtful insights on current business events, and out-of-the-box thinking on marketing, creating multiple revenue streams from everyday transactions, and mergers and acquisitions with zero cash out of pocket. Brilliant!
It really does feel like "a seat at the table" with two exceptional business thinkers and has already had a positive impact on my own businesses. Listen to just one episode and you'll be hooked.
Loving Ryan Deiss
The new dynamic between Ryan and Roland is a great, new addition to business lunch!
MY FAVORITE PODCAST!!!
Top notch info for anyone who wants to be successful in business! Tons and tons of big picture thinking about how to take your business, wealth and lifestyle to the next level! Highly, highly recommended for business owners, entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs, etc.! Thanks so much for putting this together! Love it!
PS. I am loving the new format with Roland and Ryan co-hosting together! Great stuff!