The REACH OR MISS podcast is about the customer focused entrepreneur. Hayut Yogev chats with Guy Kawasaki, John Lee Dumas, Michael Stelzner, Kate Erickson, Chris Brogan, Mark Schaefer, Joe Pulizzi, Marcus Sheridan and more successful entrepreneurs and opinion leaders about their Customers Approach and Focus.
The goal is to help entrepreneurs and startup founders to reach business success with the right strategy, marketing and sales approach.
Ep. 204 – Josh Little founded four tech companies. With two successful exits and third pending, he’s currently trying to save the world from “death by meetings.”
Josh Little is the founder of four tech companies–Maestro, Bloomfire, Qzzr, and Volley–that have collectively been used by hundreds of millions of people. With two successful exits and third pending, he’s currently on a mission to save the working world from death-by-meetings with his fourth creation, Volley.
Most passionate about
I am trying to save the world from “death by meetings,” as we all have gone remote with the recent pandemic and realized that we still need to talk to move work forward.
We are aiming to fill the gap between Slack and Zoom. Most people would say, “Well, I don't see a gap there. I'm either Slacking my team or I'm Zooming with my team back to back all day.”
There's this whole spectrum in between that Volley is aiming to solve. With Volley, you share asynchronous video messages. Imagine video texting. If you could text someone with a video, that's kind of what Volley is like.
Volley allows teams to move work forward faster by replacing their meetings with asynchronous video conversations. The ultimate goal is to have productive conversations that don't interrupt each other's productivity because meetings are quite interrupted.
Josh’s career and story
I started as a teacher. I was a preschool teacher, a social studies teacher. I actually was four years into a music education degree. The only reason I wanted to be a teacher was to be a music teacher, but I did realize that the same skills that made me a good teacher also made me good at sales.
I left teaching to go into sales. I went to three Fortune 500 companies and did really well at each of them. I'd usually become the number one rep in the division the first year I was there. They would invite me to be the sales trainer and show everyone what I was doing.
I left Stryker, which was my last corporate job, and started my first company, which was Maestro.
From Maestro, we built Bloomfire. Then, after Bloomfire, I built QZZr. After kind of a long break and pondering what I wanted to build, the next idea, Volley, came.
Best advice for entrepreneurs
Be remarkable because the definition of the word “remarkable” is “worthy of remark.”
To truly be remarkable is to have people talk about the way that you engage with customers, the way that you show up in a conversation.
I aim for every interaction with a customer to be in some way remarkable, where they walk away from that conversation and say, “Wow, he really cared,” or “He really understood my problem,” or “I love how he was vulnerable there at that moment,” or “That was really funny what he did.”
The biggest, most critical failure with customers
With customers, my biggest failure has been withholding truth or withholding reality from a customer because you want to make customers happy and you don't want to initiate conflict.
Biggest success with customers
I believe that I'm doing the best work of my life right now. I've had great success.
With two of my companies, I've had successful exits. I really think what we're doing for teams and communication right now with Volley is extremely important work.
The reason I say that what we're doing is a success—and this is very recent feedback we've been receiving from users—is that Volley has helped increase team connectedness and brought back the fun and the spontaneity that we once had as a team but that we then lost when we went remote. I think that's really powerful.
Josh’s recommendation of a tool
Volley: That’s a tool that I'm using right now for reaching out to my customers. We're using our product as our support tool.
LinkedIn and Zoom: LinkedIn is a great way to connect, but then, when you want to have a deeper, more meaningful conversation, text is just a very thin medium. So, you need to move to either Volley or Zoom.
Josh’s one key success factor
I think it's changing. It used to be “Do what you say yo
Ep. 203 - Scott Prisco thought CBD was going to sell like hotcakes. The slow start led him to establish a successful wellbeing company.
Scott Prisco is a nutritionist and entrepreneur with a passion for helping others. He founded Priscotty Pure, a wellness company that assists people in reaching their optimum state of well-being through unique supplement blends and an electrifying health movement.
Scott is also a mover and shaker in the CBD space. He founded Inception Industries Extracts, a manufacturing company that specializes in the production of high-quality, water-soluble powders and liquids, made from hemp-derived cannabinoids. The company uses a proprietary nanomolecular encapsulation technology to drastically increase the bioavailability and effectiveness of its outputs. Inception Industries Extracts formulates ingredients for clients in the nutraceutical, nutricosmetic, and functional foods industries, both domestically and internationally.
Most passionate about
Right now, I'm most passionate about helping people. We are a wellness supplement company. We make supplements and blends—from beauty products to CBD, sleep, digestion and everything in between.
I am also passionate about my other company, Inception Industries Extracts, which is a CBD manufacturing company.
We manufacture water-soluble ingredients for beverage companies and functional food companies, both domestically and internationally.
Scott’s career and story
About three-and-a-half years ago, I suffered from depression and anxiety. I started using CBD when it first came on the market and became popular.
I found a little bit of relief from the anxiety. It helped my mood.
I have a nutrition background and I've always been into science. I read a ton of journals and scientific studies, and I really love chemistry as well.
I linked up with a guy who had been making water-soluble ingredients for a world-renowned beverage company for the last 25 years.
I took that and we applied it to the CBD. I started Priscotty Pure, which began with one product: a water-soluble CBD powder.
We started selling that and then we got a lot of interest from other companies. We ranked pretty high on Google and got a lot of interest internationally and domestically, from beverage companies, functional foods, and nutraceuticals.
I think that the CBD market really got played out a little bit. There were a lot of people getting involved in it and putting out products that weren't very good.
So, it started as a CBD company, but then we pivoted and ended up selling other things.
Best advice for entrepreneurs
Be open, be malleable, be ready to pivot because you really don't know who your customer is.
A lot of times, the best way to decide who your customer is, the proper customer you should be targeting, is to put out the product and see who interacts best with it.
Don't think you know everything. Just be open.
A lot of times, you’ll see that who you think you're going to be targeting and who you think is going to be buying your product will be different when the sales start rolling in. That’s what we’ve seen. Analytics help us on the backend.
The biggest, most critical failure with customers
I’d say it was when we first started Priscotty Pure with that one water-soluble CBD product.
We anticipated a higher volume of sales.
We didn't really plan.
It was such a slow start.
We thought it was going to sell like hotcakes.
Luckily, we got a lot of wholesale interest. We focused on that for a little bit, as we were building up the Priscotty Pure wellness business.
We just fell into that and it really helped hold us over. It allowed us to eventually re-reinvest that money into Priscotty Pure.
Biggest success with customers
My greatest success would definitely be knowing that my products are helping people. That's really what I love.
Scott’s recommendation of a tool
The first thing we do is Google it and read what other people are saying. Then we come to our own conclusions.
A lot of stuff starts on Google.
Ep. 202 - Why the law of focus is the most important law for your entrepreneurship today, And what does it mean in a practical sense?
Unfortunately, you won’t find my room on Clubhouse. Not because I’m not on Clubhouse. I am. There are some fantastic rooms there, and I’ve heard some meaningful discussions. I actually thought about opening a room, and I even decided what it would be called and who my partner coordinators would be.
But then I realized that I had totally forgotten the law of FOCUS. This law has a few meanings. I first read about it 25 years ago in what I consider to be the best marketing book I’ve ever read: “The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing” by Al Ries and Jack Trout.
The law of focus says, “The most powerful concept in marketing is owning a word in the prospect’s mind.” We must create a clear identity in the minds of our target audience. The best way to get ahead of the competition is to be very clear and focused about what word we own.
But it starts much earlier. There are two decisions you should make regarding the basis of your market strategy: Who are your target customers and how should you define your product or service so that your potential customers understand its value?
As an entrepreneur today, you are probably confused. There are so many options, so many people who might need your product, and so many ways you can present your product to your customers.
Because there are so many options out there, you must find the customers who feel that they must have your product, that it solves their problem or best fulfills their need.
The problem is that to focus and be the best solution for one or two specific target audiences, you have to give up on so many potential buyers. Here comes the law of SACRIFICE—you have to give up something in order to get something. There are three things to sacrifice: product line, target market, and constant change.
So many opinions are out there. Everyone knows what you should do, who your target market is, and what marketing activities you should run.
But here is the truth: NOBODY KNOWS. You can’t know until you search the market from the point of view of your potential target audience.
Searching the market is not complicated today. In most cases, you don’t need an expensive research company. You can learn more about how to do it from my short guide, https://www.reachormiss.com/entrepreneurs-challenge-how-to-find-potential-market-for-a-new-product/ (The three free, practical steps to researching and finding your market).
Here are two examples of entrepreneurs who managed to build a successful brand by focusing on and owning a single phrase in the minds of their target market.
How did they manage to do this? They focused on the right things and sacrificed other options.
The first entrepreneur is Mike Stelzner, who created the leading social media blog “Social Media Examiner” and the Social Media Marketing World global conference.
Stelzner managed to own the phrase “Social Media” in the minds of his target audience.
Michael Stelzner is the founder of Social Media Examiner, the author of the books Launch and Writing White Papers, and the man behind Social Media Marketing World, the industry’s largest conference. He’s also the host of the Social Media Marketing podcast, the founder of the Social Media Marketing Society, and the host of the weekly Social Media Marketing Talk Show. Michael’s Career
“I started as a writer. Then in 2009, I did what I call ‘my great experiment’ when I was able to secure the website, SocialMediaExaminer.com for $10. I connected with some of my friends who were writers and encouraged them to write for this movement that I was starting, called Social Media Examiner. In 2009, not a lot of websites were giving out a lot of free information, and this thing just took off. In months, all of a sudden I had a crazy successful blog on my hands!
And then the rest is history … right? From that blog, we were able to launch an online confere
Ep. 201 - How to become more profitable and have more “take-home” money - with Annette Ferguson
Ep. 200 – The secrets behind entrepreneurial marketing success
My podcast, REACH OR MISS for entrepreneurs, reached its 200th episode, and - as part of the celebration - I decided to change its title to REACH OR MISS - Entrepreneurial Marketing Success.
The 1st secret - your “big idea” or what you are “one of a kind of?”
As I see it, the power and beauty of entrepreneurship is that it allows you to share or create what you are “one of a kind of” (the best at). That’s what entrepreneurs should focus on.
I’m aware that many people choose to enter the entrepreneurial world to leave their 9 to 5 jobs or to make more money, and these are good reasons; not every entrepreneur wants to change the world or make an impact. However, once you decided to become an entrepreneur, your chances to make an impact on more people and move the needle is significantly higher if you focus on your unique, powerful abilities.
I believe entrepreneurship is changing the world, not only because it can create technological or behavioral revolutions, but also because it enables entrepreneurs to choose to do what they are the best at and that means less mediocrity and much more greatness in our world.
What any entrepreneur should look for while deciding about his/her professional direction isn’t only where they can make a living, make more money or determine the leading trends today (although these are good and important parameters as part of this decision). Entrepreneurs should start to look for their professional direction after answering the question, What am I “one of a kind of”? Meaning, what will I be outstanding in doing?
The answer to this question lies in the meeting point between what you are best at doing and what you most like to do.
That will also be the direction where you have the best chances to achieve significant success
Once you’ve found what you are “one of a kind of,” you should find what product or service you should create or offer - one that answers a true need and brings value to a significant number of people or businesses.
Blake Jamieson is a fantastic example of an entrepreneur that is one of a kind at what he does, and he literally created a new market category that fit his talent.
Blake Jamieson is a pop portrait artist in Manhattan, NY. He paints pop art portraits for professional athletes and celebrities, including Howie Mandel, Drew Brees, Joe Montana, Gary Vaynerchuk, and over 250 other professional athletes in the NFL, NBA, NHL, MLS, and PLL.
Blake’s path to becoming a full-time artist was far from traditional. Despite his passion for art at a young age, Blake decided to forgo art school for a more “practical” degree, studying Economics at UC Davis. After graduating, Blake began his career in digital marketing at Zynga. He worked in digital marketing for nearly a decade, working for small tech startups to publicly traded companies.
On his 30th birthday, Blake decided it was time to stop building someone else’s dream, and start to following his own passions. He began painting full-time nearly five years ago, and has carved out a niche that allows him to paint every day.
Most passionate about
I’m a portrait artist located in NYC. I’ve had an interesting rollercoaster of a journey up until this point, but what I do now is paint portraits of professional athletes.
Primarily, I have worked in the NFL, although I do work with other athletes who play soccer, lacrosse, hockey, and more.
I created this niche for myself where an athlete, or the spouse or girlfriend of an athlete, is looking for a painting that will capture special sports moments for them. I’m often the person they turn to and I’m very fortunate to work with awesome people and get to paint every single day.
I grew up in a very creative household. I was always encouraged to paint, or draw, or do photography – all the things I do today. However, I convinced
Ep. 199 - The 5 recommended tools for entrepreneurs that will help you win in business
On my weekly podcast, I ask my interviewees about the digital or technological tools that they recommend using. However, I tell them that I’m not looking for the shiniest tool in the endless list of them. I’m looking for the tool that they use most and that helps them succeed.
Five tools help me as an entrepreneur who has worked with thousands of entrepreneurs on their marketing success.
My first tool is Canva. Canva is also one of the tools that Guy Kawasaki recommended in his interview.
Canva helps me get much more traction with attractive, powerful visuals. With a huge free photo stock, and very easy and intuitive design options, Canva is here to stay.
My second recommended tool is LinkedIn. You probably want to tell me “LinkedIn is a social media platform, not a tool.” That’s right, LinkedIn is defined as a social media platform. However, for me and many of the successful entrepreneurs I interview on my show, LinkedIn is a tool that we use daily to find and engage with potential customers, close deals, and turn them into loyal customers and fans.
Guy Kawasaki was the chief evangelist of Apple and a trustee of the Wikimedia Foundation. Today, among his other positions, Guy is the chief evangelist of Canva, an online graphic design tool.
When I asked Guy what he is most passionate about today, he talked about Canva. “Professionally, I’m most passionate about Canva. Canva is democratizing design, trying to enable everyone to make great designs very easily.”
When I asked about the tool he uses most, Kawasaki answered:
“In general, social media is a gift to entrepreneurs, but within social media it’s https://www.facebook.com/ (Facebook)! Facebook is so fantastic that you can target a specific age group, gender, in a specific geography with a specific interest. It’s the best marketing thing that exists.
“The second social media platform I would highly recommend is https://www.linkedin.com/ (LinkedIn). LinkedIn is for your personal branding, for your personal awareness, and for your personal professional development. As a person, if you don’t participate in LinkedIn, you don’t exist in the world. LinkedIn and Facebook, that’s about 80% of my social media activity.”
My next tool is Feedly. Feedly is a content curation tool that provides me with endless updated content topics.
Using a content curation tool not only helps you to build a constant presence in social media but also allows you to build yourself as a leader in a specific market by providing current information and relevant analysis in a specific field.
I learned about using content curation tools from Richard Chowning.
Chowning is the founder and director of Africa Mentor, whose mission is to help businesses put their best foot forward in Africa. Chowning is located in Texas. Africa Mentor has official representatives in the Ivory Coast and Ethiopia and has relationships with governments and private sector businesses throughout Africa.
“I want to recommend UpContent, which is a curation tool,” Richard told me. “My dream was, when I decided to establish Africa Mentor, to help the economy of Africa, help people and companies that want to establish their businesses in Africa get into the continent, succeed, and create more jobs and lift the standard of living…
“…I’ve chosen to use a lot of social media to become known. I have more than 16,000 followers on Twitter, 4,000 on LinkedIn and Facebook, and I need to be knowledgeable about Africa and about entrepreneurship. I need to publish content beyond what I write. UpContent enables me to find a lot of relevant content to publish on social media.”
The fourth tool I’d like to recommend to you is Buffer. I talked about using content curation tools to build my presence on social networks with endless updated relevant topics. Buffer allows me to manage the d
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I really struggle with Focus, and Hayut's interview on the topic of Focus was just what I needed! Really wonderful podcast.
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