You're Just One Funnel Away...
Kate Mikado Wednesday, February 1, 2017
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The accounts were frozen. All of them. Being an entrepreneur is tough especially when you have to fire your friends and family. Some of them left on their own. In one day 50 employees were laid off and then another 30. Payroll was $500,000, and they weren’t going to make it. For 18 months Russell wondered, “How do I not go bankrupt so I don’t go to jail.” This was his real life nightmare.
While looking back, he was going through something he calls cycling. He felt like he was on top of the world and then had to let go of all the people that worked for him. Humbled he had just ten people to help rebuild the company. He owed 100K to the IRS and wished that he had a boss to fire him.
In this tragedy, he had to give hope to the people that were still working with the company. It was two weeks until the accounts were unlocked. Russell had to do everything in his power to keep his sales people who were commissioned based and couldn’t process the orders they were bringing in. Once the accounts were unlocked, the merchant had them at 100% reserve, meaning they would keep everything. For six months payroll was locked. When they told another merchant account they would be processing 100K; the company still froze the money. All Russell could think was, “If I stop trying I go to jail.” How did he get here…
It was a late evening, Russell was watching TV with his father when an infomercial aired. Some may remember the get rich quick scheme of buying tiny ads in the newspapers and making money with them. A little bit like what Facebook Ads are now without the metrics.
Russell asked his dad to buy him the product; he made Russell work for it. So Russell worked his tush off and bought the product. He signed up for all the direct mail ads he could get his hands on. And he was hooked. Fast forward to college, as a wrestler he needed to support his wife and new family. He saw another infomercial on making money on the internet, which was hosting an event.
He mentored under Mark Joyner who taught him the importance of having an email list. He then mastered writing emails learning from Andre Chaperon how to engage an audience with storytelling, which is now in everything that ClickFunnels does. He then added Dagen Smith’s concept of starting at the peak emotional state and then give the backstory to create emotional impact. Taking that to the next level with Ben Settle’s “Seinfeld Email”.
Taking advice from Jay Abraham, Dan Kennedy, Bill Glazer (whom he calls his “marketing dad”) and many books and podcasts he was able to quantify his results. After 2 years of study, Russell had his first internet success: a potato gun info product. The first upsell was partnering with the people who sold the potato gun kit. Sales came from Google Adwords. The cost of the DVD was $27, and the upsell was $100.
Before Russell finished college he was making 1 million in gross sales (profit minus the ad cost). Using Google Adwords worked for awhile but soon the market became saturated, and he began losing money. Russell attended a marketing seminar, and it was his first time experiencing people running to the back of the room. He did the math, 60K than 100K and he realized that real money comes when you learn to sell. He was inspired by the book Ready, Fire, Aim and started speaking on stages.
For his first offer no one bought. He took 15 different courses to learn and spent two years on the road speaking 2 to 3 times a month. At Internet Prophets Live when Russell introduced ClickFunnels before his talk finished people were raising their hands to buy. He wasn’t even allowed to make an offer at that event. Russell had figured it out. He went from the stage to webinars and then helped to craft “The Perfect Webinar.” In one year his client hit 1 million in sales. From there he built several companies: Supplement, Coaching, Software, Dating, Weight loss. With a team of 8, they were build funnels, and it took them three months to go from idea to launching the funnel. He would have conversations with people, and their eyes would glaze over at the complexity of what they would need to do online.
At the time a traditional web build took $15k and 2 months. Russell saw a pattern in the way they were building that the elements were the same and only some of the pieces needed to change. Initially, he hired six developers to create ClickFunnels and were still unsuccessful after four years. Russell brought on two key partners to help build ClickFunnels, Dylan Jones and Todd Dickerson.
It took Todd only three months to build the code for ClickFunnels. Russell says the key difference was that Dylan and Todd had a different mindset that the employees. Between Russell, Dylan, and Todd they equally split ownership 33%. “For anyone out here that thinks it’s the Russell Brunson Show, it’s not.”
ClickFunnels Runs on ClickFunnels: The code for ClickFunnels is Ruby and allows the user to work in a gooey platfrom. This means you don’t need to know code in order to build a page. There are ways that you can use code for the more savvy FunnelHackers.
Russell flew Dylan out to Boise, paid him a check and launched the beta for ClickFunnels. Dylan is responsible for the look and feel of how ClickFunnels works for it’s users, the user interface (UI). Todd built the backend. With the help of 2 developers hired from Toptal, they used Ruby to make ClickFunnels work. Russell identified the base of what ClickFunnels needed:
· Landing Page
· Shopping cart (Stripe)
The three core pieces:
1. CF build funnels
(initially had to integrate with CRMs)
2. Shopping cart/Affiliate (Backpack)
3. Email automation (Actionetics)
ClickFunnels, Backpack & Actionetics: Now ClickFunnels runs with Actionetics the CRM software which has tagging, smart lists and much more for keep track or your customers. The second piece that was added was Backpack which is the cart integration that also allows you to track your affiliates.
When ClickFunnels launched, it didn’t have all of that functionality. Initially, they had to integrate a shopping cart. After getting customer feedback, they sent out an email for people to sign up for ClickFunnels for no charge the first 60 days.
It didn’t go well. The user interface was initially ugly. Six people received Free Access for a lifetime. They set a goal of 10,000 members by the first month. It took them a year. At first, they had a handful of users (1,200) then that dropped to just 200, and not all of them were paying. Filled with doubt, Russell wondered, “What went wrong?” Todd and Dylan did some split testing and came to the conclusion that people didn’t understand it. Russell spoke with Mike Filsar of Webinar Jam and landed a speaking gig in San Diego at his 3-day event.
Russell created his “Funnel Hacking” presentation with a special offer. 38% of the room closed. At the event, Russell realized that he needed to share that it applied to all industries when he spoke with the audience at the back of the room.
He had a friend with a list. After promoting ClickFunnels he did 100k in sales, then he promoted to his own list and made an addition 150K. Both emails were sent on the same day, and he made 250k.
He offered a trial of ClickFunnels on the landing page and with a split test found that webinars worked better for the home page selling 3 to 4 times more trials. With the free trial link, people wanted to see it, but Clickfunnels made less money as a SaaS website.
Russell did the webinars himself as the CEO and seller for the company. He brought on John Parks to handle the Facebook Ads.
They were out of the woods…or so they thought.
“I was taking my family, and we were flying to London to speak to a bunch of entrepreneurs out there about ClickFunnels. So, I’m on the plane flying across the ocean with my family. I brought my wife and my kids, amazing experience. We land. You don’t have the Internet initially. I [check in] to make sure everything is good. I started seeing messages on Facebook and Skype and everything blowing up that we’re done, like, “What does that mean?” We’re racing to the hotel trying to get in there. It turned out the database server company we used in the past had kind of like handcuffed us. We were trying to move over to Amazon’s Aurora; I think it’s called, their high-end database servers. This company handcuffed us like, “No, we won’t let you leave. If you do leave, you’re going to be down for a day to two to be able to migrate everything over.”
Then all of a sudden the databases and the backups all just crashed. I guess that like on the timeline, they said to restore the databases, they said it was going to be a 24-hour thing. It ended up taking three weeks before this database server had been restructured. We would have been down for three weeks. Luckily our CTO and Dylan, these guys are geniuses. They saw that. They went to Amazon Aurora servers and rebuilt the whole database structure, migrated everything over. We were down I think for about six and a half hour or so. So, I’m sitting there in London not doing anything. Everyone is freaking out. ClickFunnels is down. My sites are down. I’m losing money. Everyone is losing money. Everyone wants to kill us. I was just like, ‘What do you do?” As the leader in this situation, do you try to ignore it?
Do you blow it off? This is my first time as a real CEO. I don’t know the right thing to do. All I remember is how pissed I was, and I thought, “I’m going to let our community know how upset I am because I don’t want to try to hide this and so I got my iPhone out, and I’m sitting in the hotel room in London, I’m tired. My kids are going crazy. I just told everybody that it was unacceptable. I was mad. Everything was unacceptable. We were pissed. This was not okay that this happened to us and to you guys and everybody. I made this video. I posted it in our Facebook group. We had at the time about 10,000 people in our Facebook group. I posted it, and I said, “This is what’s happening. We’re sorry.” I didn’t know what was going to happen. I didn’t know if people were going to be mad at me or whatever. What was interesting was from that, we ended up getting 500-600 comments of people saying, “We understand. We’re here for the long haul. I don’t care what happens. We’re here through thick and thin. We’re with you guys. We’re praying for you guys.” Even Stripe who’s our merchant provider, they sent us this huge gift basket in the mail, like, “We’re here. We want to make sure you guys…” All this stuff, it was like this really weird rallying of our community that everybody came together and like supported us. It was the coolest thing in the world, and then six hours later, we were back up, and everything was functional. All these little hiccups we had been having over the last two or three months–we found out later it was because of the database server. We moved it over; it was done. All the issues were gone. Stability was perfect. We were looking at our log like, “If we’re down six hours, people are going to leave.” I can’t tell you how stressful it was. We looked at the logs, our cancellations. Our cancellations during that time did not dip at all.
It was just this thing where our community loved us, and what we’re doing so much, so they said, “We’re behind you.” It was just this really cool experience where I feel like we shifted from like a company to a community. I feel like the community did that as well. Ever since then, it’s been cool. But it was definitely a very scary, very painful day.”
Russell loves working with Entrepreneurs and helping people to get their message out. “People’s lives change because of ClickFunnels.” In their first year they achieved 12 million in revenue and an additional 5 million in coaching, their second year they are performing at a million a month. When profits are at 40-50% margin, you know you are doing something right. With affiliates, buying ads, word of mouth and organic growth Russell can do some pretty crazy things.
Like, pay for leases of dream cars for his affiliates. How was he able to this? Something Russell calls the manyana principle. Most people will push things back to tomorrow, again and again, and again. Russell doesn’t leave the office until it’s done. Tomorrow is not an option. He also talked about how it’s like the Mexican mafia that comes into your house in the middle of the night. They have a bag of gold in one hand and a gun in the other. Lead or Gold. Most people make a choice for gold. Don’t deviate.
This commitment comes from his background in wrestling. You have to make weigh-ins, or you don’t get to compete. You might be wondering what got Russell out of the pickle he was in at the beginning of the story. Well if you’ve ever met or seen a video of Russell you know that he loves webinars and here’s why. The webinar saved his business. Russell went from broke to 1 million in 3 months with the webinar, which got him out of the situation. “Get one webinar that works.” If he knew no one and only had his current knowledge, a laptop, and $500 what would he do: In 1 week he would get the trial of Go To Webinar. Pitch the webinar - pick/create product/service he loves. Then he would spend the $500 in FB Ads. Do the webinar and sell the product. That simple.
The best advice he got was from Mark Joyner, and the only thing you focus on is “the list.” Russell emails every day or at least he tries to. The point of the emails is to be entertaining, exciting, and fun. He treats it like The Russell Show similar to the way that Ellen Degeneres and Oprah Winfrey had their daytime talk show. People are on your list to be entertained so focus on 90% entertainment and 10% content when it comes to emails. Russell talks about the attractive character being the center of the email sequences. He created the attractive character from a relationship expert. Build the relationship and then blast to everyone and cross-promote products.
The Dream 100
How do you find the dream people that you want to partner with? Well, Russell figured out this one too. After working with Chet Holmes author of The Ultimate Sales Machine, He identified that first, you have to figure out who is your dream partner. Dig Your Well (before you’re thirsty). Do homework ahead of time. Ask yourself: How do I build a relationship? Comment on Posts, Follow, Friend, buy products, subscribe – get to know the people that you want to rub shoulders with. Start your own Podcasts (show) – exposure (push their message out) which Provides Value. You need a platform. Send gifts to build a relationship. A great example of this was someone that wanted to build a relationship with the author of Ask Ryan Levesque. Ryan loves Legos, and so the person sent him Lego figures of Ryan and his family.
For $10 in shipping and handling, that person made themselves memorable.Promotion: Products (Package as a gift), Deliver random pizza with a note (yes Russell did that too.) Parasite marketing – Facebook Ads to target (Tony Robbins, Zig Ziglar) push messages to their audience and finally JV.
Hawk: What are some of the three key secrets that you’re going to be sharing in the Expert Secrets Book?
Russell: Cool, so the Expert Secrets book, if you look at it as a whole there’s a couple of things. The first thing is to try and teach people how to build a huge following. One of the biggest problems people have when they’re trying to sell things online is that they’re selling to cold audiences or they’re not building a following. I’ve done a ton of research on how cults are built and how are movements built and all these kind of things. The first step is, how do we build a movement of people to follow you and to listen to you? That’s probably the first big pillar of it. The second thing is after you have a group of people, how do you speak to them and communicate to them in a way that gets them to change their belief patterns and to want to follow you and to buy your products and things like that? It’s understanding how to sell correctly in a cool way that gets people to like you and doesn’t make you feel all sales-y and weird.Then the last piece is now you got this thing, what are the funnels that are tied to that? What are the funnels that get people in so they can hear the message so they can buy your products and follow you into your movement that you’re starting? Those are some of the core things.
Hawk: Awesome, what’s one of the things that you feel is really important to be able to market your book? Is this one going to be a free plus shipping as well?
Russell: Kind of. We’re going to be doing a kind of different funnel. Yes, it will be for free plus shipping book, but then we have a kit that’s called a funnel hacker kit. It’s going to have both the Dot Com Secrets book, the Expert Secret book, and then nine other booklets that come with it. It’s going to be either the book or for super cheap like 30 or 40 bucks they’re going to get the kit with basically nine books in it. It’s going to be kind of a different funnel. In my mind, if someone has this kit with both the books it’s like the full system of what everything you need to be successful in life. While we’re doing the book free plus shipping, the goal will be to get people to buy the kit, which is everything.
Hawk: Okay, and that’s going to be the bump order around this one?
Russell: I’m not quite sure yet. I’m not sure if it’s going to be a bumped order. I think it’s going to be two options. I haven’t designed it all yet, but in my mind, it’s going to be two options either the book or the kit, and then there will be bumps on either of those depending what you pick.
Kate: I love Simon Sinek’s Start With Why. I’d love to find out why you decided to write this book.
Russell: It’s kind of funny because I swore I’d never write another book again after the Dot Com Secrets book because there was so much pain associated with writing it. What I found in our community as a whole, I feel like the Clickfunnels community has become really good at building funnels. That’s what the Dot Com Secrets book was about, the strategy behind funnels and how they work and how they interact with each other. I feel like as a community, everyone’s amazing at that.I feel like where people are really struggling is selling in those funnels. How do you create the right offers to sell? How do you communicate with your audience? That’s what people are missing. I see people that put all this time and energy and money into a funnel, and they roll it out and then it doesn’t work for them, and it’s almost always tied to the fact that they do not know how to communicate. Persuasion, how do you get somebody to actually purchase your product or your service? It was almost like there was so much frustration around people getting stuck. I was like, this was the piece that’s kind of missing. That was kind of the reason why ... I mean there’s a lot of reasons why, but that was one of the big reasons why. This was the piece that people are struggling with and it’s so powerful when they understand it. When you get it, it makes this whole process simple.
A good case study is Justin Williams was in my inner circle, and they flip houses. They flip 100 houses a year. He gets over a million bucks doing that. They went out, and they were like, “We want to teach people how to do this.” They created this course and had these funnels and tried to launch it and for the life of them, they could not have success. They tried over and over. They were like. “We created this. It’s amazing. It would change people’s lives, but we can’t get people to give us money in exchange for this thing we created.” They almost gave up. They were literally on the brink of shutting down their information business and sticking with the real estate. Then as a last ditch effort, they came to Funnel Hacking Live and then they joined the inner circle. When they came into it, all we had to do was teach them how to sell. As soon as we taught them how to sell, within eight months, they did a million dollars in sales with it. This year they’ll probably do three or four million. It’s just been skyrocketing.
The one piece they were missing, they had the great product, they had everything they needed, they just didn’t know how to get people to desire their product and to want to give them money. It was such a simple transition that when we gave that to them, it became really easy. I’m like, “If we can give this to everybody it will give them the ability to sell the products and services.” The reason why I like working with entrepreneurs is that when entrepreneurs have a product or service, it changes people’s lives. The moment you can change people’s lives if you can break their faults, belief patterns, get them to actually invest in your product then it unlocks the gate to that. It’s like, “If I can get entrepreneurs better at the selling, then they can serve more people, they can change more people’s lives.” It kind of fits back to what my mission is, which is helping entrepreneurs to have what they need to be able to effect change in their customers’ lives. That’s kind of the why behind it.
Hawk: From that, you mentioned he made a couple million. I saw your post about the two comma club. What inspired that?
Russell: Yeah. In fact, if you wanted, you can go look, if you go to 2commaclub.com, the number two and comma club, there’s a video there that tells the story as well. When I got started in this business, my goal was to make a thousand bucks a month. That was what I aspired to. I’m like, “If I can do that I’ll be rich.” During that process of me trying to figure out how to make a thousand bucks a month, there was John Reese, during that time he launched his product Traffic Secrets and they did $1,000,000 in a day.
When he did that, I remember getting emails about him and talking him; I remember looking at that and was like, “Man, he made $1,000,000 in a day.” My whole perception of what was possible in this business and my life shifted. I thought my reality now like this is possible.
As soon as I knew this was possible I was like, “I want that, I need ... “ He has proved that that’s possible. Just like, what’s his name? Roger Berscher? The guy that performed in a mile. Everyone thought it was impossible and then he did it and afterward everyone else did it. Same thing happened with John Reese, he made a million dollar day and then me and Mike Filsaime and all these people were like, “We got to make a million dollars,” and then we all did. It gave me something to shoot towards and have belief; I could actually do this.
That’s what Two Comma Clubs about. I want everyone to see there are tons of people who are doing this.
I think right now there’s 51, 52 something people in Clickfunnels who had a funnel made over $1,000,000. I want to put those people up on a pedestal, so people see it and then they’re like, “Holy cow, lots of people are doing this, this is completely possible,” and now they got something to shoot towards and work towards. You give them belief that it’s actually possible. That’s kind of the focus and the goal for the Two Comma Club. Almost like a light that people can look at and, “That’s where I’m going, that’s where I want to get to.”
Hawk: Based on the Expert Secrets, how would you say, what’s the quickest path to go from wherever they are now to that Two Comma Club and get them to the Two Comma Club from there?
Russell: Yeah, so if you look at Expert Secrets book, the first half of the book is picking the market and figuring out how to build your culture. All those kind of things. The second half of the book is I’m teaching basically my perfect webinar script. That’s half the book, is the perfect webinar. If you look in my inner circle, I would say probably 70% of the people in there has made their money, they wrote a perfect webinar, and that’s where they made all their money so far. I think for me, that’s the fastest way. If you create a really good product framework from 300 bucks to a couple of thousand dollars, create a webinar around it. If you look at the way the webinar is structured, it’s not selling on the webinar, it’s figuring out what your audience’s false beliefs are and reframing them for them. Then they’ll buy the product in the end. I think that’s the fastest way. That’s why this whole book, it’s a whole bunch of set up to help them understand who they actually are and how they can contribute and change people’s lives. It’s like this is the tool, the presentation. To give you money. I think that’s the fastest way for someone to hit the Two Comma Club.
Hawk: How can you build your culture? How do you create that environment and build that group? You’ve got the CF Group; you have the Dot Com Secrets group, I’m sure there will be an Expert Secrets group, how did you develop that in a way that truly just magnifies itself and continues to build on itself?
Russell: Well, one thing in the Expert Secrets book, you’ll see the first three chapters about that. I looked at when I was doing all this research on maximum it sort of started ... It doesn’t matter who you look at; you can look at anyone from the way that Hitler did his thing to the way that Christ did his. The evil spectrum, the good and evil spectrum. Both of them did it the exact same way. There are three things that are the pattern. The pattern is number one is there’s always a charismatic leader; number two is there’s a vision of where things are going and number three, the charismatic leader offers everybody a new opportunity. It’s not like I’m going to teach someone how to become better, or whatever. This is a whole new opportunity. We didn’t plan that initially, but as we started doing it and I started looking for patterns and started seeing it, it’s like there’s someone out there that’s the face of it, so that’s me. Then there’s what’s the movement and what’s the new opportunity?
The new opportunity was easy for us. It’s this thing that’s called funnel, ClickFunnel; this is this new opportunity we’re offering. The second thing there is what’s the movement? How do we get people to buy into this thing we’re trying to do? It happened as an accident initially. If you look at the webinar that launched ClickFunnels was called the Funnel Hack webinar. On the webinar, we talked about funnel hacking and then a little while later we made a t-shirt that said funnel hacker on it. Then we started like, “Hey let’s give this away to people when they join ClickFunnels.” We started giving away these funnel hacker t-shirts, and everybody started getting these t-shirts and what was cool is they started self-identifying with that thing. “Hey, I’m a funnel hacker.”
In fact, I had a guy email me; he was like, “Hey, I’ve been a member of Clickfunnels for three or four months now, when I signed up I got the t-shirt. I’ve never actually logged into ClickFunnels and used it, but I wear the t-shirt every single week, so I’ve never canceled because I feel like I’m part of this community, I feel like I’m a funnel hacker. I just wanted to let you know that I’m going to keep paying forever because of the t-shirt I feel like a part of something.” I was like, how crazy is that? That’s so powerful that people will keep paying monthly because they feel like they’re part of something bigger than themselves.
Kate: I think we have five or six funnel hacker t-shirts. We’re definitely in that culture and self-proclaimed funnel hackers, right?
Russell: I know, isn’t that cool?
Hawk: If you were working with someone in your inner circle, they’ve got something that’s rock solid, it’s working well, and they want to bring in other people to promote them, what would you tell them?
Russell: Basically, there are two sides of it. There’s one side of people that are already affiliates that are good at being affiliates, and there’s another side of people who aren’t affiliates but are your customers who love what you’re doing. We treat both those groups differently. In fact, right now I’m looking at a big box of Clickfunnel Avenger comic books that we just had designed, and we’re going to be sending out for our Dream 100. I’m sure you’ve heard me talk about it before, it’s called Dream 100. Those are people that are already really good affiliates, and basically, they’re promoting stuff no matter what, we need to somehow get them to see us and want to promote us. We actually send out a package almost every single month.
It started out as Dream 100; I think it’s Dream 5 or 600 now, of people that are influencers who have the email list or big following, we want them every single month to be hearing from us, and trying to get them to promote something. That’s half the strategy.
The other half is everyone has customers who buy your things, and they love what you’re doing and if they knew that they could get paid for referring others, they would. For us, it’s hard because we tried to tell people, “Hey, promote it,” and then no-one knew what to do. We created an actual training course. If you look at affiliatebootcamp.com, it trains people how to be our affiliate. I remembered probably nine or 10 years ago, Stu McLaren and I did a course teaching people how to launch their own affiliate programs. Stu was managing Dan Kennedy’s and a whole bunch of people with affiliate programs; I had my own affiliate program with about 30,000 affiliates at the time. We were teaching people how to get affiliates, how to attract them. Stuff like that.
One of the guys we had on a call, Marlon Sanders, he got up and it was interesting, he was talking, he said, “You know what’s one interesting pattern between everybody who has a really successful affiliate program? What’s the one thing they all have?” I couldn’t think of what it was. He said, “Every single one that has a successful affiliate program has a product teaching people how to be an affiliate.” Teach them how to be an affiliate and then how to sell their products. When I got that, I was like, “Holy cow.”
Every time, I think it’s like three more times in my business that I’ve launched a really good affiliate program, every single time I did it behind training teaching people how to build affiliates. With Click Funnels I feel like the boot camp is the training program teaching people how to be affiliates for us.
Kate: It’s such a powerful training. The attractive character, I got it, I understood what you were sharing, but it wasn’t until I got the boot camp training and we really did that deep dive with it that I was like, “Oh. I understand it on a whole new level.” It’s an incredible training. It’s amazing that you share that and it’s free. I’m like, people sign up, it’s free.
Hawk: In terms of your best-converting funnel, what would you say for somebody who wants to promote you and promote Clickfunnels and promote everything, what would you say the best converting funnel is for them to jump in on?
Russell: Ooh, that’s a good question. It honestly kind of depends on the audience in terms of relationship you have with the audience, things like that. We had the most successes with the webinar funnels. Typically, that works for those people who already have the email list to get people in the webinar. It works less for affiliates that are driving Facebook ads to a webinar, because it’s not quite as good. Whereas, something like the book funnel where they’re giving away free books, or a free MP3 player, usually works better on more cold traffic because it’s such a small community. “Get this free book; this is why I recommend it.” The free things typically do better for those kind of affiliates. It’s hard to say if there’s a best one.
I think more importantly for me as an affiliate; I typically look less at what’s converting the best, and more which thing am I going to promote, can I provide the most value? All the things that I’ve been a really good affiliate for, and I’ve been a good affiliate for ten plus years, I won Ferrari’s and all sorts of stuff, and it’s a product that I’m really passionate about. Because of that, I can create my own things to provide more value if I promote it. If I were going to promote the Dot Com Secrets book, I wouldn’t just drive and ask for the book, I would go and I would make a whole bunch of training or make a whole bunch of funnels and quick funnels that are all the funnels inside of Russell’s book and I would be like, “Hey, if you buy Russell’s book from my link you get all these funnels.” Then people would go ... I’d be like, “How do I create more bites for this offer that’s already there?”
Kate: What advice do you have for people that maybe want to write a book? We’re creating this from scratch, I know you wrote Dot Com Secrets, and you have Expert Secrets, but what advice would you give someone so they want to put a book at the beginning of their funnel and that’s where most of the work is, right? We all know building the funnel is easy, but writing the book is the hard part. What advice would you have for someone who’s sticking the book at the beginning of the funnel and how they can get from idea to printed and sent out as quickly and easily as possible?
Russell: Yeah, well, I would say writing a book, at least for me, both my books took a year and a half of actual writing time, so it was painful. There are easier ways to do it. I know that I got friends like Rob Cosberg and other guys, you pay them whatever and they will help write your book, and they will get it done in a month or a month and a half or something like that. What I even say is, it’s funny, if you look at all the front offers that we have right now, the one that converts the best is the perfectwebinarsecrets.com, which is one piece of paper and a CD of me explaining the paper. That’s our highest converting, highest cart value front end we have. I almost look at it like, what can you create that’s easier. We just launched the market in your car MP3 player. It was just me taking a whole bunch of my pre-recorded stuff, putting it on a MP3 player from China, and that was way easier to create than a book.
I’m going to say the book is the hardest thing on earth to make. I would shift away from that unless you’re already doing it, then I would find someone who’s a good writer. Kind of the way I do my process is I have a super detailed outline, and then I record myself teaching all the stuff, and I have a writer who puts that in order and sends it back to me and I rewrite it from there. I don’t know if that saves me time because it still takes me a year and a half to write a book. Anyway, the time, it’s a lot easier to talk your content than it is to write it.
Hawk: Yeah, so what would you give as an expert in the funnel world? The expert, I should say in the funnel world. What would you say to somebody who’s getting started and they just got a quick funnels account or they’re just about to buy a quick funnels account through our affiliate program and through an affiliate link, what would you say to them to say, “Here’s what you need to do to actually get started and make money within 14 days or within 30 days?”
Russell: What I would do, if it were me, I would first off figure out what you want to do long term. I know I want to be in the weight loss industry, I want to be in internet marketing, I want to be in four X, figure out whatever it is you’re passionate about and then find someone who’s got a funnel that’s crushing it in that already. Let’s just say it’s weight loss. I go, and I find some Venus Factor beyonddiet.com or one of the ones that are doing really, really well.Go back and look at what the funnel looks like, but then I would not go and recreate it, I would become an affiliate of that person because I would want to see if I can figure out how to get traffic to buy their product before I went and created my own.
It’s kind of similar, what we teach inside of boot camp. I’d set up a squeeze, a landing page, and I would drive traffic to it selling their product as an affiliate. If I can make the numbers work, then I would go in and build my own funnel that’s similar that would then replace theirs with mine and then keep all the money. A lot of times, especially in 14 days, there are so many pieces you’ve got to learn. You got to build the funnel; you got the copy, the design, you got to do all these things. If you can say let’s take all those things out and just figure out how to become good at one thing, which is like driving traffic or whatever that piece is, focus on that to a funnel that’s already working and see if you can make that work. Then coming back and say okay, now I’m going to figure out how to build a funnel and I’m going to figure out how to make a product and plug in other things after you’ve kind of proven the model.
Most of the funnels we do nowadays are successful, and they ask, how do you pick, which markets you want to do stuff in? For me, it’s 100% tied to, do I know where the traffic is going to come from to make this funnel profitable. If I can say, “As soon as this funnel is done this is where I’m buying traffic from.”
If I can see it, this is the email list, or this is where on Facebook, or I know that then I’ll go into that market. I don’t want to build a funnel and then be like where’s traffic at and try to wander around hoping I can find it. I want to know exactly where it’s at. As soon as I find it, now I want to make sure that traffic is actually good. Become an affiliate, drive it somewhere else, see if it’s going to convert, see if it’s going to work, and if it is, cool now I know where traffic’s at, now I know what funnel works, now I can build a funnel that’s going to compete with that. That would be the way that I would definitely do it.
If you guys have the funnel emersion package, in there, we’ve got the recordings from the very first funnel hacking live, and Richard Cousins did a presentation in there that was the most brilliant...He’s kind of really smart, so most people miss the whole point of it, but if you watch that presentation, he explained that in super nerdy number terms. I’ve seen the guy when he goes into the market, he does exactly what I said, and he’ll go list seven, eight, nine thousand people before he gets the product done he does it all profitably. He’ll get paid to build this huge list, perfects the market, perfects the traffic, then puts it in the funnel and he’s just off to the races. He’s brilliant at it. That’s what I would do.
Hawk: Just to clarify, you create a landing page, capture an email, name, phone number potentially, whatever information you want, then from there you drive them to the sales page or the order page for the product that you’re affiliate selling?
Russell: Yeah, one step beyond that is, this is what the new survey element’s coming out hopefully this week in the editor it’s amazing. We’ll start teaching that a lot more as soon as the survey element is done.
Hawk: All right, do you have any recommend-ations for people, because I know a lot of the people come to us and say we have ClickFunnels and we have InfusionSoft. They are asking, how do we get rid of InfusionSoft, how do we go so we can fully automate and have that sales pipeline functionality? Do you have any recommendations for the people who are interested in going purely to Clickfunnels or having that one last piece integrated with one of the other tools?
Russell: I know there’s one, is it Polio or Podio? There’s one in real estate, all the real estate that use Clickfunnels use what’s called Podio, is that right? Yeah, Podio. I think you can integrate that really easily, that’s what a lot of guys are doing. The other thing I think is I think people should upgrade their business models. I had a sales force, 60 sales guys on at one time, that was awesome, except for it sucked, every second of it did.
We had all these people and all this overhead and everything and then we were able to replace one auto webinar, and two sales guys replaced 60 full-time dudes, and our CRM right now is Wufoo.
Our sales guys they get a Wufoo form, they print it out, they put it on the desk, and that’s it. We’re making more money with two dudes and no CRM than we ever did with 60 people in this all complex CRM. It’s like I have people that focus on getting better at selling, it replaces a lot of that stuff. It’s probably not the popular thing to say, but honestly, I think people upgrade their business, those things aren’t necessary nowadays, nearly as much as people think they are.
Kate: No CRM is perfect either, and that’s what I’ve found. It’s like that’s almost a better solution to this question of how do we keep track of people. I appreciate you sharing that with us.
Hawk: I know it cracks me up.
Russell: We knew the guys we were working with. You’ve got a new high ticket funneling starting to integrate all these huge and complex systems and stuff and they’re not even making that much money. I’m like, dude, we literally print out Wufoo forms, and we set them on the sales guy desk every morning. They call those forms, and they sell people stuff, and at the end, we’ve got three baskets. They put the forms in. This person was broke; this person’s not interested, this person calls back in a week or two. That’s it, it works, and it’s magic. We make a lot of money with it. I don’t know; I do think they’re going to be something we’ll look at.
Kate: What is your favorite part of the book?
Russell: I think the biggest ‘aha’ that people are going to get is we talk about the creating of new opportunities as opposed to selling improvement offers. I think that’s like when people get that piece of it, they’ll make infinitely more money. Most people are selling improvement. Improvement is the worst thing on earth to sell because for somebody to say yes, I want to become better; they have to admit they failed. Whereas when you structure your offer as a new opportunity, then it gets rid of all past failures, all past expectations. Every offer I’ve had that has blown up and made insane amounts of money has always been a new opportunity I offered my audience. I think that’s the piece, which when people get that, it’s like the big domino knocks down everything else.
Kate: Do you have a fun fact about the book that people might not know?
Russell: I was six months into writing the book, and I was on a family vacation doing one of the final rounds of editing, and I got so angry at the book I highlighted 240 pages, and I deleted it live on Snapchat and started over from scratch. That was really painful, but it was funny.
Kate: I was in one of Darren Hardy’s funnels, and I saw the link, Clickfunnel and like shoot Darren Hardy’s using this. Can you share the people that are using ClickFunnels? Can you share so that people know who they’re in company with as far as who else is using ClickFunnels to make tons of money in the industry?
Russell: Definitely. I always tell people it’s not a matter of if you’re going to used ClickFunnels, it’s a matter of when because it’s the future. I think we’re a day or two away from passing 30,000 active customers, which is insane. Tony Robbins is using Clickfunnels, Darren Hardy; Success Magazine is using ClickFunnels, Dave Asprey from Bulletproof. All the top weight loss gurus in the world are using ClickFunnels. Honestly, I don’t know anyone who’s having success out there right now that’s not really using ClickFunnels. In any market we have the top financial trading coaches, they’re all using ClickFunnels. E-commerce, if you look at the people who are in Two Comma Club, I’d say half of them, probably more than half, are all eCommerce people.
They’re shifting away from Shopify and Amazon and moving their platform over to ClickFunnels because it’s an easier way to do business. If you look at any guru in almost any market, if you look at their sites, it’s probably a Clickfunnels page. We did a test, probably five months ago, went to Facebook and started clicking on every single ad and nine out of ten ads we clicked on all went to ClickFunnel pages, which was awesome.
Hawk: Why would somebody want to join the Certified Partner Program?
Russell: I think for a couple of reasons. One, it helps your skill set. Helps you to be good, not just from a funnel building standpoint, but from how you find clients, how do you treat clients? Even if you are just working for yourself or you’re working with partners or an employer, there’s still the setting of expectation ... All of that kind of things go into it. I think that’s the first thing. Number two is now there’s such a good network of certified partners that are helping each other, in fact, Liz Tennis is working and actually flying up here today, she’s working on a second level group that a partition of people that are certified that are done that have ... Then being in a group by themselves out of people that are certifying and getting to there you’ve got this unique mastermind group of people who are in the same business, doing the same thing, kind of a cutting edge thing. I think there’s a lot of opportunities that happen there. I send all my inner circle people. I send ... everyone talks to me, I send everyone to the marketplace, the certified page. I think there’s a lot of leads going there. As the marketplace starts growing, that’s going to keep dramatically increasing. There’s lead flow; there’s a lot of other good things as well. That’s some of the reasons.
Kate: Is there anything you want to say to the readers in advance? I know your following has been blowing up. There are over, I think, 40,000 people in just the Clickfunnel official group alone. Anything you want to share with them?
Russell: It comes back to what our theme is for Funnel Hacking Live. The theme of you’re just one funnel away. I want everyone to understand that and believe that. I look at my business the last 12 years like the rises and the falls, every time I’ve had huge horrible problems; it was the funnel that saved me. I almost had to declare bankruptcy twice, and both times the funnel saved me from that. Everyone is one funnel away. It’s worth it to keep trying and testing and trying.
Kate: What were the funnels that saved you? That’s pretty significant to go from bankrupt to we’re back to millions. What funnel does that?
Russell: I’m going to be actually at the Funnel Hacking Live, I do a whole 90-minute presentation to walk through the history of all the funnels that have saved my butt, and it’s going to be really cool. It’s been a lot. Sometimes it’s been webinar funnels; sometimes it’s been the high ticket. Every step in the journey there has been something different that saved my butt. It just depends. If you get the right message, the right audience, the right offer, the right time, it can change everything.
Kate: When does the book come out, so everybody knows and where can they get it?
Russell: Launch date is April 18th, and it will be at