26 Jun June 26, 2019 – YouTube Star Dagogo Altraide, Unstoppable CEO Steve Gordon and Retirement Planning Nahum Daniels
Building a following and getting something like this going, most of the time more often than not, isn’t going to be instantaneous.
Dagogo Altraide is the founder of ColdFusion Studios, a company including a professional YouTube channel, as well as a design and music production agency. ColdFusion is officially partnered by YouTube Australia. Its YouTube channel has almost 2,000,000 subscribers, and has been featured on multiple technology websites. Its content has been aired on international TV and streams on Roku, Watchable and Vessel. ColdFusion creates documentaries and infotainment videos about cutting-edge tech-science, making complex topics simple to understand. Dagogo is also the marketing manager for Electro.Aero Pty Ltd. Electro.Aero is pioneering electronic aircraft, having already created the world’s first electric light sport aircraft and the world’s first commercial electric aircraft flights.
Steve Gordon – Founder of The Unstoppable CEO™ and Steve Gordon Marketing Systems, Host of The Unstoppable CEO™ Podcast, Author – Read interview highlights here
I think content marketing, done well, is serving your audience.
Steve Gordon became CEO of his first business at the age of 28. Like many businesses, his initial marketing efforts relied on word of mouth. Ultimately, Steve grew frustrated with the uncertain and inconsistent results of his hands-off marketing methods, so he buckled down and learned the skills needed to market his company and find his ideal clients. Later, he founded Unstoppable CEO™ to share his insights and help other businesses share in his success. But he doesn’t just share knowledge and processes for a price, he brings his teams to do the work of zeroing in on clients and building marketing systems that allow companies to meet their goals. He takes the frustrating work of pitching and selling out the hands of businesses, so that CEOs and their employees can do what they do best: Focus on their customers. Steve is the bestselling author of Unstoppable Referrals: 10X Referrals, Half the Effort and The Exponential Network Strategy. He also hosts the The Unstoppable CEO™ Podcast to share his knowledge and help others grow their businesses with no out-of-pocket costs.
Nahum Daniels – Founder of Integrated Retirement Advisors and Author of Retire Reset!: What You Need to Know and Your Financial Advisor May Not Be Telling You
A balanced portfolio of stocks and bonds cannot be relied upon in
retirement. The key to appreciating the utility of a portfolio like this
is not the average returns that those assets have returned. The key
is the sequence of returns.
Nahum Daniels is a Certified Financial Planner, and Retirement Income Certified Professional. He is a fiduciary, bound to consider and serve the best interests of his clients, rather than serving the interests of banks or his own accounts. Nahum has over 30 years of experience advising and counseling affluent retirees and their families, affording him robust insight that he employs on behalf of his clients. His goal is to encourage people to invest in a way that can help them achieve their dreams, rather than settling for less. His recent international bestselling book, Retire Reset! What You Need To Know And Your Financial Advisor May Not Be Telling You, delineates a new approach to retirement investing that serves as an alternative to the conventional thinking about stocks and bonds, allowing those who heed his advice to live better lives in retirement than they ever imagined in their working days.
Highlights from Steve’s Interview
Becoming CEO at 28 was a whole lot of luck. I ended up at that company out of college; I think I was either the 10th or the 11th employee there. And the founder took me under his wing, and mentored me for those first four years. I was probably not the best technical person there. But I could go out, and speak to the other humans, and do presentations and things like that. And I think through all that, he saw something in me that led him to believe that I could continue to grow the business beyond and he was thinking. I think in a really advanced way about his exit. He was thinking the decade ahead for when he would be exiting the business, and then really preparing for that, which most business owners don’t do.
I was maybe 60% ready when I took over. He’d been giving me the responsibility through those four years. Starting from knowing nothing, and moving up fairly quickly. But no, I wasn’t ready at all. In fact, when I got the call, I was out for two weeks vacation when our first child was born. I get this call midway through saying, “When you come back, you’re taking what this is.” This is not what I had planned, but certainly a welcome opportunity. And it turned out to be a really great thing.
The operation side, it was certainly challenging, but easily understood. As with most small businesses, we didn’t have a clue about how we would get new customers. I mean, we had theories. And like most small businesses, we relied on referral at that time, but we hadn’t gotten sophisticated enough to where we were doing anything to influence whether or not we’d get a referral. Some days or some weeks, the phone would ring off the hook, and it’d be all kinds of new projects, and engagements coming our way. Other weeks, it’d be crickets. And we didn’t have any idea what made the phone ring one week versus not ring another week. And so I focused on fixing that. We began to have, at least some influence, if not some control over the growth. That really was a huge change for us.
I read a lot of books. Not knowing, not having a business background, not knowing much about marketing, I went down a lot of roads that didn’t produce much. It was a lot of trial and error. I think the biggest failure we had was investing in about $50,000 worth of print advertising, and a big statewide business publication here in Florida that I actually had to sign a personal guarantee on, and it didn’t produce even the first result. A lot of it was very expensive tuition at the school of hard knocks, but what we began to find is that when we were able to make the referral process easy, that we would see results. Then we did things like going out and creating content and being an authority, and this was in the 90s, before content marketing was a thing. And doing that through speaking and presentations and really writing articles, anything we could do to get our ideas out there, with that we tended to have more success. Taking that experience into this new business, that’s the foundation or the philosophy that we use, as we work with our clients now.
I do think that the idea that you’re going to go out and educate the people in your market is in line with long-tested advertising principles. If you go back to some of the early folks in advertising, back to David, Ogilvy Eugene Schwartz, some of the real masters of it from the last century, they all invested a great deal of time in education. And now with the internet, we have a lot of different ways to do that. In a lot of ways, there are more effective means of doing it, certainly easier means of doing it.
But that’s really what we started doing there in the 90s. And because there wasn’t the technology we have now, it was a lot of getting in front of a room speaking to deliver the message, writing articles, sending things out, doing everything we could to educate, and take people through that buyer’s journey. Then they can move from understanding that they have a problem, and then seeing all the facets of that problem, and the implications of it. All the way through understanding what the different solutions are, and helping them judge which one might be the best for them. That’s serving the market, and serving your potential clients. I think that that’ll never go out of style, that will always be very good advice.
I think content marketing done well is serving your audience. There’s content marketing done well, which is actually valuable when you see it, when you read an article on the web, and you walk away with a greater understanding of some problem or challenge that you’re faced with. There’s value in that, and whoever created that is trying to serve you before you give them money.
Then there are other forms of content marketing, where you look at them, and it’s a clickbait headline that promises the three easy ways to make a million dollars by Saturday morning. You read it on Friday night, you wake up Saturday morning, and all 15 minutes you read, you invested in that article. So there are degrees of quality in content marketing, no matter how you deliver it. What we would advocate is taking the approach that the client that I’m trying to win over is a client today, even though they haven’t paid me, that I’m going to use the leverage of the internet to communicate with them, because I have virtually no marginal cost to that. So I can help them without costing me much. And in the process, I’m going to gain their trust. I’m going to leave them better off than I found them, whether they do business with me or not.
First and most important—and this is the one that I think most business owners resist with the greatest amount of force—is getting focused on who your ideal client is, who you want to do business with. In the past, we’ve worked with a lot of financial advisors. For a financial advisor, they have a particularly difficult problem, because, as one of them described to me, his market was everyone with a heartbeat and a wallet. When that is your market definition—and for a lot of businesses, that’s it—when that’s your market definition, you can walk up and down the aisles of the mall or the grocery store, and everybody’s a prospect, and you have no way to determine who you should invest any time or energy or effort into.
By getting focused, you will immediately see opportunities to get in front of that type of potential client that you were blind to before they were there. But because you lacked the focus, you weren’t aware of them, you weren’t tuned into them. We see this over and over and over again with our clients. The minute that we focused on a type of ideal client to pursue at the moment, their progress begins to speed up. First and foremost, that’s, that’s the key. Now, does that mean you have to niche your entire business down to that type of client? Now, of course not. And in a lot of cases that wouldn’t be appropriate, or at least appropriate immediately. But you can focus your marketing and your communication, so that you’re trying to attract that type of client, somebody else shows up with money and you want to do business with them. I’m not going to be critical of that, do what you need to do. But for that communication piece, focus your speech.
Number two is get a clear focus on referrals and begin influencing referrals. For most people, when they approach referrals, they are thinking that if they just do a really great job, then referrals will show up, word of mouth will happen. And while there is some truth to that, the flip side of the truth is that it’s completely unpredictable. You’re basically sitting back and hoping that somebody thinks of you, or they stumble upon prospects that will fit. What we end up doing most of the time with referrals is we take all of the hard work in a business, which primarily is around identifying a prospect and then nurturing that prospect to the point that they become a client. And we’re hoping that magically, our clients will go do that for us. And we call that a referral. We think that’s a bad approach. The way to change that is to take back on the responsibility for identifying who the prospects are, take back or take out the risk from the whole process. So the old model of referrals is just rife with risk for your client. They’re going to go to somebody that they care about, and they are going to pull them in, and try and sell them on having a meeting with you. We call that a sales meeting.
The only way we measure success in that meeting is if at the end of the day, you do business. And so there’s a ton of pressure on the client who’s trying to make that referral, because of the mechanics of it. But if we can go back to content, go back to information, and create an information piece or package that’s up, that’s easy for your client to distribute to everyone that they know, because it’s more like a valuable gift, rather than a really scary meeting that they’re trying to pull someone into. Then you really begin to get a lot more referrals. You get them more easily. Clients liked the process. Instead of dropping into the witness protection program right after you asked him to do that. I could help, the way I help you, which is that one old outline that we all like to use. They will come back and go, “People really liked this thing that I gave them, do you have some more of them?” And now you’ve got this virtuous referral cycle going, and so that’s really the second key.