Welcome to this week’s More Cheese Less Whiskers podcast.
Today I'm talking with Chris Fontana. Chris is a financial advisor in Florida, but not just any financial advisor. They specifically, through listening to the I Love Marketing podcast for all these years, have narrowed their focus to a single target market of medical professionals. They’re focused on working with doctors, specifically physicians who are coming out of medical school, starting their career.
We talked about the brilliance of that strategy and the lifetime value of the relationship he's building at the very beginning with these people. I love the fact they have such a long-term focus, building the foundation for a really, really successful long-term businesses.
We had a great conversation and talked about the challenge of compliance, but the benefits of building the ‘scale ready algorithm’. The compliant vending machine in the before unit that will keep delivering leads. We discussed what really needs to be worked on to set up the components for that, and I think you'll hear as we come to some of the breakthroughs.
All of this is totally applicable to any other business, so I think you’re really going to get a lot out of it.
Want to be a guest on the show? Simply follow the 'Be a Guest' link on the left & I'll be in touch.
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Transcript - More Cheese Less Whiskers 043
Dean: Chris Fontana.
Chris: Yes sir.
Dean: There he is. How are you sir?
Chris: Very well. Thank you.
Dean: Well welcome to More Cheese, Less Whiskers.
Chris: Good to be here.
Dean: I'm excited to hatch some evil schemes here today.
Chris: Yeah, I've been telling a couple friends about this at the office. Yeah, very excited.
Dean: Awesome. Cool. We're recording right now. We've got the whole hour here that we can hatch some evil schemes for you. Why don't you kind of set the stage? Tell me what you're up to and what we can focus on.
Chris: Okay, so I'm a financial advisor. I've been following the I Love Marketing podcast for about, gosh, three years ago I started listening to the episodes and then when you switched over to this podcast, listening to them. I'm trying to figure out how I can use the concepts in my business as an advisor, because we have the one thing that's different is we have a compliance aspect. I'm trying to integrate the drip campaign, those types of things, when you have, everything has to go through compliance.
I did take the concept of going to like a single target market. For the last couple of years, actually probably for the last seven years, I have been working more and more with medical professionals. They were doctors, dentists, those two areas primarily. Then about 18 months ago we started our own DBA, which is called Florida Medical Advisors. Focusing solely on those areas. I still have clients that are outside the medical market, but for the most part all of my attention is focused on getting more clients in the medical areas, doctors and dentists primarily.
Dean: Perfect. Mostly in Florida?
Dean: Where are you? I'm in Winter Haven.
Chris: Yup, I'm in Tampa.
Dean: Oh wow, you're close. Okay good. How's that shift been for you so far? How's it going in terms of the finding them and being able to help them?
Chris: Right. The marketing that we do at the moment, it's education based marketing but it's education like it's time intensive. It's me, having established relationships with the university here in Tampa. I go into the university and I do educational classes for the doctors that are in training there. Then like yesterday I did a lunch and learn for eight or nine physicians that are graduating this year. Half of them said, "Yes." Kind of filled out the evaluation form, said, "Yup, I'd like to follow up and please contact me." Now my guy that works with me, he's making the phone calls to schedule those meetings. Then I'll go in and we'll get them going through our process.
We're using it, but that's been the approach. I have this huge database now, of all these clients, and I just can't seem to find, one is a good tool, like a CRM type of tool that I can use in my industry that's specific, or at least malleable to financial advisors. That I can contact those people, that's one issue. Then not really sure what to do every month, how to keep that engagement going.
Dean: I gotcha. How many do you have? How many would be in the ...
Chris: In the database?
Chris: Yeah, it's a few hundred. I'd have to look to see what the most recent number is, but I'm adding about seven or eight new physician, medical professional clients every month. I've been doing that for a couple of years now, like steadily. Then next weekend actually, over in your neck of the woods, my team and I are going and we're going to be at the Women In Surgery conference, which is held in Orlando. We're actually going to be presenting to about 400 women surgeons at this thing. We're expecting a pretty nice in-flow of leads from that as well.
Chris: I need some help.
Dean: Okay perfect. Well have you got a ... Let's back up for a second. You're talking about physicians who are graduating, going into being doctors, is that your primary focus? Is starting out with the people who are just getting going and being an advisor that way? What kinds of things do you, like if we were to encapsulate your during unit, what's the result that you're able to deliver for people? What's the thing that you do for them?
Chris: Okay good. They come out of school and I like working with them when they're young, a mentor of mine told me that several years ago actually, "Think young and think long, because they're going to have a long career." When they come out of school, when they're in school they're making maybe $50,000 as a resident. They're doctors, but they're making 50 while they're doing their training. Then they graduate and they're immediately going to be earning 200, 300, $400,000.
What I find is that a lot of the doctors that I meet when they're in their 40s or 50s, they are earning these big salaries and they're spending even more. They're actually in bad shape financially, whereas if I can work with them when they're younger, it gives me a better opportunity to help them to establish good habits. The end result is, when they graduate they have a financial model in place so that they know how to make decisions when it comes to buying a house or a new car, sending their kids to college. They're saving large percentages of their, usually upwards of 20 to 30% of their salary they're able to save.
Dean: That's just great.
Chris: Then in the during unit we're usually going through and explaining to them what's the biggest risk that they face? For most of them it's if they got hurt before they actually started earning this money. We talk a lot about making sure that they protect themselves from that risk. We do financial products. We do all the investments, retirement, kids college, all those types of things, 401k's. Then we also are licensed for disability insurance, life insurance. It depends upon what they need. Most of the young doctors, they need to have disability insurance, and they know they need it, so it's not a stretch for us to bring it up, and they usually end up getting that from us.
Dean: Right, and that's great because it's almost like you're giving them a playbook, that they don't even know what to do. If you're kind of setting them out with the, get the right foundation going. Like you said, there's that gap, just that one year, is it one or two years as a resident?
Chris: Well it could be five to seven sometimes. The shortest is going to be three years, where they're making 50. Then the longest is like a neurosurgeon, they'll be in training for seven years. They're not graduating and actually practicing and making money until they're maybe 34, 35 years old. They've been in school for a crazy amount of time.
Dean: Okay. Then how does your model work? Are you a fee based or commission? What's the economic model here for you, with one doctor? Let's just lay out the kind of immediate plan and lifetime plan.
Chris: Right, okay. We're licensed for the insurances, so if they need that, if a doctor comes to me and they're ... Like the one I'm meeting with next week, he's graduating this year. He called me and said, "So and so referred me to you and I need to get disability insurance." He's coming in for a product, and if we just to the disability insurance, like any other insurance there's a commission that's paid because we placed the business for him. You have to use an advisor to get that. We're compensated that way. For most of them it's assets under management. We typically, unless it's a business we typically don't charge financial planning fees, we'll do assets under management. If a person has a million bucks invested with us, these are older doctors, that they have a million of investible assets with us, we charge a half of a 1%. 50 basis points.
Dean: $5000 is for a year of that.
Chris: Exactly. Yup.
Dean: Okay. How does that model work in the beginning then? Because typically they're going to have probably a negative net worth, coming out with large student loans and all that, I can imagine. What's a typical scenario for one of these new doctors that you bring on?
Chris: Yeah. Typical is we start with where they're at, which that means getting them ... Like a lot of it is, our model is we want to educate and give them, like I tell the younger guys in my office, treat them like they're already your client. Just start, if they call you and ask you for advice, you can give them information. Don't hold things back because it just creates distrust. If they're asking for something, give them information. Really I want to become the authority that they reach out to, so that if they have a question they're going to call me.
At the beginning, Dean, it's usually I'm only being compensated for whatever small disability policy or life insurance policy that, you know. Like I've got a client with five kids. He's the sole breadwinner and he needs life insurance, so I'm like, "Okay great, we do a little life insurance policy. I make a few hundred dollars on the sale of that. Disability insurance, make a little bit of money on that. That's renewal income as well, so every year that they have that policy and they continue to pay the premiums, and the policies are very good so they don't cancel these things. There's renewal income so your book of business builds up. I'm not as worried about them having a lot of money to invest early on, because I've got a couple hundred clients already gone through the process that are kind of paying the bills.
Dean: Yeah, okay perfect. Love it. That would be, and so then your graduation kind of at the next level, once they make that jump from all of a sudden their income has tripled, quadrupled, maybe more, then that's phase two, kind of thing I guess. If you've got a whole blueprint for them, a career blueprint in a way. Like how that goes, like what's up next for them, so they're prepared in advance. Okay, now when you start making more money, here's what we're going to do.
Dean: Then you say they already get into where they're used to, they've been living on 50,000 and now they're making 250,000. It would be pretty easy for them to save 50,000. That's kind of your ...
Dean: Okay. Then that just keeps snowballing. As they go, then they're looking for the end. That's really good.
Chris: Yup. That's the idea.
Dean: I imagine in that kind of a situation, I know with most financial advisors that it's a very long term relationship. I love that you're thinking sort of long like that. Most people don't think that kind of situation. They want to jump up and just look for people who have all their assets already, that are nearing retirement and just kind of take over from there once they've got a couple of million bucks.
Chris: Right. Yup.
Dean: I gotcha. Okay. If we were to create a vending machine for you, I want to hear about how you look at your before units in this. If we were to say that's the ideal for you, do you have a sense of how many there are? Like how many are in Florida that are graduating each year, if that's your real, that's a good benchmark for you, right?
Chris: Yeah. That's a good question. We did a little research last year but it wasn't just on the residents. We looked at the total amount of physicians that were in the, just the Tampa Bay area. There were north of like 8000 physicians in just the Tampa Bay area.
Dean: Oh wow.
Chris: Yeah. When you add it in, so the residents, the university here in Tampa, which I've been doing things for them for the last several years, they graduate every year probably about 300 or 400 residents will graduate.
Dean: Oh that's so great.
Chris: Yeah. There's a large number. Then there's other programs. Johns Hopkins has a residency program that's actually based in Tampa. There's the the community hospitals here as well. Again, I'm only scratching the surface on just the young, graduating, in training ones. Then you have all the area hospitals that hire new physicians that are out of school from other states that are now relocating to Florida. The vending machine, that's why I'm trying to figure this out. How can I make it so that it's not me having to go in there and do these educational things? I just can't get my arms around how to create like that vending machine approach that you talk about.
Dean: Yeah. Well the good news is like, so you've set a good context there. What's your aspiration for this? Are you basically geographically focused in Tampa Bay, or do you go further afield from there? What's your aspiration here?
Chris: Sure. Well we branded ourselves Florida Medical Advisors so that we wouldn't just be Tampa, but it is Florida. I bought other domains just in case I didn't like that one. We have other options to scale it larger, but we need to have some infrastructure, or at least make it so that it's not so time intensive for me. My partner, Trip, is also in this as well. He does most of the back end case planning things, and then I'm sort of the person out front that's going into the schools and doing these things.
The aspiration is I'd like to, right now I'm capturing I feel like maybe 10 to 15%, which is a pretty good percentage considering you have hundreds of financial advisors trying to talk to these young physicians. We're capturing a pretty good percentage of the graduating people. All that being said, my aspiration is to control everything that's going through that university, and just kind of become the only person in town, if you're a medical professional and you're looking for financial advice, I want our firm to be the only place you look. Whether you're a dentist, a doctor or veterinarian.
Dean: Yeah. That's great. First of all, you've chosen a really great foundation name. That's something that you didn't tie yourself into it as much, it's not like Fontana Advisors or anything like that. The name carries some sort of institutional weight for it, so you've got some advantage there. That when, if we crack the code here, if we can create what I call the scale ready algorithm for this, that you can show other people how to do this. It's not like other advisors. It doesn't necessarily have to be you doing all of this personal stuff. You can imagine that Florida Medical Advisors, that you could become a source of trusted financial and education for the Florida medical field. I think you've got that kind of like, when I say institutional weight, you've got that sort of baked into the name there.
Chris: Good, okay.
Dean: That opens up a whole opportunity for you there. If we look at it then, I mentioned creating a vending machine. If we look at your during unit as, if we delivered you a graduating doctor, physician, that they, you would be, you've got all the infrastructure and everything in place. You know how to deliver a great experience for them, and you've got a long term vision for them. Would that be right?
Dean: You've got it set up, you can deliver the result for people.
Chris: That's correct.
Dean: Then if we look at the before unit as your, I always talk about the before unit as, imagining it as a supplier to your during unit, or like a vending machine. Where you can describe what it is you want and push a button, and out they come. What would be the price that you would be cheerful to put on the button? If you could push it and say, "There's one."
Chris: Okay. I've never thought of that. I've never thought of it that way, like what would I be willing to pay for that? To get somebody into the during unit.
Dean: Yeah. Like if you're saying right now, like you're, and this is why when I was talking about the, I start with first your ability to get the result. Crystal clear on what that is. I think that your position and your role is ultimately going to be to be there and shepherd a new physician through their entire career, all the way through to retirement. That you're going to grow with them. You're going to be there at every step along the way, and as their assets grow, your assets under management are going to grow that way.
You're kind of, it's like, I'll use a Florida analogy. It's like starting an orange grove, in a way. You're going to plant the trees and it's going to take three to five years before those trees start producing fruit, but you've got a valuable asset that's going to yield fruit for 20 years. That's really what you, that's kind of the way here. It's almost like orange grove thinking, or orchard thinking. If we look at it that way, somebody who's investing in a grove, and this is kind of the way that I would have you think about your before unit, is to think about the money that you're investing on the front end of your before unit more as a capital investment than an expense.
By that I mean that you're probably, and I'll get into more specific numbers with you and metrics with you here, but you're probably in a situation where, and you've already acknowledged it, that the reality is that there's limited payment that you're going to get for the first couple of years, while they're in residence. Which would mean that maybe you'll get the life insurance and how much would a typical disability premium pay to you?
Chris: Usually it's, because they're in school we do a special program where it's cheaper because they're still in training. It's kind of artificially low while they're in school. That's another reason why, until they graduate it doesn't really increase to where, what it should be. Usually the premium that they would pay is going to be maybe $125 to $150 a month. That would give them coverage until they're age 65 or 70. It's a really good policy. Then typically the advisor would make a first year premium on that of maybe like 50%. $1500, you're going to make half of that in a first year premium. Then obviously that's pretty much it. The renewals are there as well, but they're much, much smaller.
Dean: Okay. You look at it that that whole, is it typical that it would be a three year period, on average, before they would become where they move up? What's more typical? Three or five?
Chris: Well by the time I meet them and by the time they're ready to actually begin this process, they're usually a couple years into their program. Let's say that the average residency time is going to be a five year program where they're going to be in training for five years. I'm usually starting to work with them somewhere in their second or third year. That's probably safe to say that they'll be working with me and still in school for about three years.
Dean: Yeah. Okay perfect. If you look at that, so then you're really talking about that maybe there's, if we divide up your situation into phases there, that you've got that two to three year period of phase one, which may be you may end up getting a couple of thousand dollars on that phase, let's say. Then the next phase would be kind of the ramp up phase. Now that they're kind of like, the first few years of their salary bumps up and they're now ... You've probably got some protocol, things that they're going to be doing then. They're starting to save and they're starting to set up some other things for themselves.
Chris: Yup. That's exactly right.
Dean: Then there might be another phase where they're full into their peak earning years, kind of thing.
Dean: Then the wind down kind of phase, would that be?
Chris: Yup, that's right.
Dean: Okay. I think that kind of a thing, if you're setting the stage for somebody, have you written down or made a process of your unique process, your unique approach to this? For your clients.
Chris: Yeah, we have not. Our parent company has gotten some things, but most of their marketing stuff is just god awful. It's 100 plus year old company so it's very stale, for the most part, their marketing. We'll create things and then submit it to compliance and then get it back from them and they'll tell us whether we can use it or not. We've started just now to create some of those items to explain what we do in terms that are more understandable to a layperson. We haven't gotten it all laid out, like the way you just said, where there's phase one, two, three, four. We haven't done that.
Dean: The thing about it, I think that sort of like long term view of stuff, you're dealing with people who are used to long term planning. To be a doctor, you don't all of a sudden just decide one day you're going to change your major to, "You know what I'm going to do? I'm going to go into medicine." Those guys have, since high school or earlier, been on that track. They've been on that medical track. I think that really goes a long way, that if you were to have a blueprint or a road map, or some other word if we thought about it, that's kind of like the plan for them. They could see where they are on the path. If you laid it all out and you showed them, "This is where you are right now. Then this is what's going to happen here. Then this is what's going to happen here. This is what's going to happen in the end." You're painting the picture of what they really want at the end. That you're tying that in to a long term expectation. That you've set it up right from the beginning that way. That here's how it is. That this is how our relationship's going to unfold, in a way.
Dean: That might be a great element for you to really have as a tool, to explain how the relationship's going to go so people see where they are and see what the next steps are. The reason that I asked you that, and to go through the thing, I wanted to get a sense of the revenue, the lifetime value of a new client for you. If you're saying now, if we take them into that next phase, and now they start accumulating. Then they start growing and then they start doing other things that we're able to help them with. What would be sort of the, if all things go according to plan, the lifetime value of a physician relationship?
Chris: Let me think of a couple that I'm working with currently in different stages. When they start having kids, then you've got college planning that we do. Again, that's like assets under management. If they buy a practice, then we're talking they're going to need business planning, which my firm, my partner Trip, he does all the business planning. That's where we may charge fees. Again, that's a small percentage. There might be one or two people out of 100 that will be needing those types of services. Lifetime for somebody earning $300,000 to $400,000 of income, they're probably, lifetime each client would be worth somewhere around at least $100,000, if they're with us for a long term career.
Dean: Yeah. Right. That's what we're really looking for, right? You're planting orange groves now, and each class is like that. What I started looking, the reason I was bringing up that analogy of a grove, is that the way that your before unit would be a healthy way to think about it is as a capital investment. If we looked at bringing on a class, think about how many classes like that, that's probably a good thing.
If you think about the graduating class of 2017. Let's say you brought on 100 physicians as an aspiration, say. That that, if you look at that group as a whole ... This is where whenever I do this kind of lifetime value thinking, I don't want to put it all on just one person. It's so much more stable to think about it in terms of a cohort of 100 people. If you look at it that that graduating class of 100 people is potentially going to be worth $10 million. You're investing right now in a $10 million asset. Right? This cohort. If you were a, that's the maximum, if you kept everybody. Say your retention rate, that's really what you're investing in right now.
Chris: Right. Okay.
Dean: You start to think about that, is how much would, and I don't know how to do the financial calculation on it, but you're an asset thinker and a financial advisor. What would you advise somebody if they were considering investing in an asset today that is going to potentially yield $10 million over the next 20 or 25 years?
Chris: Right. Yeah I mean that's a huge unit. Whenever I do seminars or lunch and learns I always go in with what I want. I used to think that I wanted to earn my money back or to make twice as much back. Whatever the number was. Then from listening to you over the years, I've changed my thinking. I'm like, no, I really want like a 15 to one return on, if I'm spending the money on lunch or something like that, or doing a seminar, I want a higher return on it. Yeah I mean that's, I've never thought of it that way. I've always thought about the before unit as an expense. Like these things as an expense, but you're right, it really is more of a capital investment.
Dean: That's where, especially, different approaches for different models. Your model is truly back end loaded. Your model is definitely, it becomes more and more and more valuable each and every year. You're truly starting a lifetime relationship with somebody. It's not a transactional value. It's not a transactional thing where you're selling them a car or you're selling them something. It becomes more and more valuable. That $10 million, when you start really thinking about that, out of that 100 people, that's not even considering the referrals that those people. When you build your sort of after unit around nurturing lifetime relationships, and orchestrating referrals, that's a multiplier for it.
Getting back to this. What would you say, how many advisors could you ... Not advisors. I keep saying advisors. How many physicians could you bring on as new clients this year?
Chris: Last year I worked with about 115 new clients altogether. I added that to my database. Of course in the industry too, I have to do reviews with everybody as well, and I want to maintain those relationships. That's where I'm trying to figure out, like scaling this. My partner and I have talked about like, we're going to need to bring on another person to help us to manage these things. Right now we're trying to figure out who that person may be. Because I have to offload some of these things. That's why I'm hoping, with your help to figure out how can I automate as much of the process as possible so that I'm not having to remind myself or remember to send out the emails and the birthday cards and all that other stuff. It's just too much to keep up.
Dean: Right. Well this is part of the thinking of this, that you really, this is where you start to think about the before unit, the during unit and the after unit as all separate divisions, all with their own goal, their own responsibilities. Ultimately driven by one person who's in charge of that particular thing. I think that that really is part of it here. Thinking ahead, beyond you. As I mentioned earlier, you've baked in the opportunity for it to be bigger than you. You have all of the right things here to systemize your process of how to map people through that.
It's almost like you've got that opportunity to go beyond there, kind of thing. It's interesting. I want to get you thinking even bigger than, "We're going to have to bring somebody on here." Almost like reluctantly we're getting to big, like you're trying to contain it in a thing. I'm saying, of course you're going to bring somebody on. What's this going to look like with 100 people that you've brought on? I think you've got that kind of potential level for something like this. You know?
Chris: Yes. I agree. Like I said, we're focusing just on, at least personally, been focusing on the younger physicians. Then like I'm missing out on the 40 somethings and the ones that are retiring. Yeah, there's a massive opportunity.
Dean: I think so too. I think you're doing the right thing. You start at the poles. You're building, digging your, planting your grove right now. That's going to be the long term, sustainable thing. I'll share because it's kind of interesting in that I do a lot of work with real estate agents. I take that same kind of approach in that I have a program called Six Months to Six Figures, which is for new real estate agents. People who are just getting started, want to build traction, get their foundation laid. That's what they're most interested in, getting to that level.
Then another language, or another thing that we have is, I'm just working on a book that will come out in the fall, called Listing Agent Lifestyle, which is for the agents who are further down in their career. They want to get now to where they're doing less work and having a more lifestyle approach business. Everybody at every level has different aspirations, and so I look at that brand new, that first three years of what you're doing there, as one piece of it. I think that when you look at each of the kind of benchmarks along the way, that there's potentially a great market opportunity for you there, in each of them.
Dean: Especially because that role, that name, advisors, you've got the opportunity with everything financial around it, in terms of their insurance and their disability insurance and life insurance and other alternative investments. Potentially under that umbrella, mortgages, all of that stuff could be under that kind of banner, you know?
Chris: Exactly, yeah.
Dean: Very cool. The way, getting back to my question now then. If we just isolate this new physician opportunity here, because each one of those is going to be you're planting a $10 million orchard with each 100 of these. That's the way I want you to think about it, kind of thing. To think, okay, we're planting a $10 million orchard here. What would that, or an orange grove, what would the, as an advisor, what would you sort of set as the allowable capital cost for acquiring today a $10 million asset over 25 years?
Chris: Yeah, that's what I'm trying to, I'm still thinking about that question. I mean obviously yeah, you think you could easily spend a couple hundred thousand dollars, if you're going to acquire an asset that's going to be printing out money over the long haul. There's almost no amount of money that you would not allocate toward that.
I just, I'm not quite sure because, like I always explain to the doctors. They come out of school with these massive student loans, and a lot of them, they're freaked out because they owe 300, or I've got a husband and wife that owe $700,000 between the two of them in student loans. I explained to them, I said, "Well yes, but if you were a business and you were starting a Mcdonalds or something, you might have a million dollar loan that you're taking out, but that business is going to generate a quarter million dollars of income to you personally every year for the next 30 years." That's really what you did is you took out a loan to buy a franchise that's going to print money for you for the next 30 years. I try to put them ...
Dean: Just look in the mirror when you say that, because that's essentially the same thing I'm saying to you.
Chris: Right. It is. The problem Dean is that it's my money now we're talking about.
Dean: I know. Now exactly. There you go. That's the thing. The good news is that I'm not saying or advocating that you're going to have to spend a couple of hundred thousand dollars for that. When you look at it, is that what would, it's going to put things in perspective when you start to think about that. If we isolate these, what access do you have to your ideal audience here? How many like, are they, they're visible prospects, do you have access to them through, are there lists that you can get of them?
Chris: Yes, okay. There are some. The university, actually any of these schools, like over near you there's University of Central Florida, they have a medical school. The University of Florida has a dental and a medical school. There's like these little patches everywhere. There's all these, like you said orchards, there's orchards all over the place. They're very political, so going to like the heads of the departments and saying, "Hey, I'd like to come in and talk to your general surgery residents on finance." You're going to get shut down for the most part.
A lot of what I do is, it's built over the years. It's word of mouth. It's me working with the chief resident, him or her, then that girl or that guy will hand me off to the next one coming up that's the new chief. Then I just schedule with them to do things either on campus or off campus. Off campus things are, like I'll do a dinner in the evening at a restaurant and invite 20 of them to come. Maybe half of them will have off that night so they'll be able to attend. It might cost me anywhere between a few hundred to $1000 or so for that dinner. We'll pick up maybe five or six new clients from it, so I always look at those as good things to do if I can get in front of people. That's the access that I have. I have, over the years, increased access.
Dean: Your access is only through a gatekeeper really. Is that the ...
Chris: It is to an extent. The gatekeeper would either be the chief resident or somebody else who's working in that capacity. Either the secretary who manages their schedules, or the chief. I usually do that. Then I gather emails whenever I do my presentations. Sitting next to me here on the chair, I have probably about 30 or 40 evaluation forms with emails from the people who came to, they've seen me speak in the last three months. I get their emails. I specifically ask for email and phone number. We do a good job about not contacting them if they don't want contacted. If they do check off, yes, please follow up with me, then I have kind of their opt in, but I don't have that system to trip on them. Unless I'm making phone calls or sending the emails personally, it doesn't happen.
Dean: Okay. As far as the system, just go to gogoclients.com. That's your whole CRM and autoresponder, landing pages, voicemail, all that toolkit that you need to do all of the management of these, is there.
Chris: I thought that was more for realtors. That would work with ...
Dean: Gogo Clients is all of those tools, for every business. What I've done then is I've taken the Gogo Client's toolkit and I've layered on top of it all of my real estate programs. I have Gogo Agent, which is specifically for real estate agents. The same tools. It's the same landing pages, auto responders, toll free voicemail so you can use recorded messages or text to get this. Like if you're speaking at an engagement and you can offer something that somebody wants to get. You can, on the screen say just, to get this just text your email address to this phone number right now, or go to whatever the URL is. They can do it right there while they're at the conference so you can gather up the leads that way. Then you can program that to then send the automated follow ups. If you have a sequence of, these are the messages that we want to send to people, that's what you can do.
Chris: We could do a drip campaign?
Dean: Yeah, of course.
Chris: Let's say I spoke, like for instance next week we're going to be at this surgery conference in front of a couple hundred surgeons. If we had that we could say, like we have a couple compliance approved free reports that we put together. I say to them from the stage, "If you want this free report, text to this number, your email address and it will automatically send it to them? Will they ...
Dean: That's exactly right.
Chris: Okay. Then can you set up drip campaigns through there as well.
Dean: Yes, of course.
Chris: Let's say, okay. I wouldn't need a Constant Contact or MailChimp or anything.
Dean: No, no, no. This would replace that. The Constant Contact is really just the email. This is the CRM and the landing pages and the auto-responder and being able for people to text their email to join. All of that stuff that you would need. Then you can program it so that when they ask for this, when they go to this landing page and they leave their name and email, you can automatically send them what they're looking for. Then two days later you could send them something else. Three days later and every week for as long as you want, if you have it already pre-done, you can set that sequence in motion. This is what I would recommend to, is that then each week you send a broadcast to that whole group. You could select everybody and send one email that personalizes it and sends it to each of the people in your list.
Chris: The email, it would look like it was coming from my work email? It would have ...
Dean: Yes, exactly. You set up whatever return email address you want.
Dean: All the emails that you get from me are sent through Gogo clients.
Chris: Okay. All right. Dean, I thought you were sending me all those personally.
Dean: Right. Exactly. One on one I send them. It's all I get to do. I just record podcasts and send individual emails.
Chris: I'm floored. All right, that's great. That might solve, that kind of solves the biggest issue that I felt like I had. Actually exposed a bunch of issues I've got, but that was one big one. Okay. That would be kind of a one stop shop for those items. Okay.
Dean: Yeah, exactly. That'll become the hub then for all of your things. That way you can tag people, class of 2017 or class or 2018, or whatever it is. One of the things that, because they're largely gatekeeper held, is there no other access to them through licensing or records like when they ... Are they licensed or is there any sort of ...
Chris: Right, right. No, there are public ways to get. When they apply for their medical license, and we've actually, we didn't know what to do with them. We got a list of physicians somehow, my partner got it, and it had emails and it wasn't scrubbed very well, so a lot of them were useless. It was interesting because we had them, we just didn't know what to do with them.
Dean: Okay, so you can get them.
Chris: Right, yeah. We can get them for sure. Then like all the attendees at this conference next week, because we're a partial sponsor, we'll have access to everybody's email that comes to the conference as well.
Dean: Perfect. That's kind of great. That's really a, there's an opportunity then to now think about, in profit activator two, how are we going to get them to raise their hand? What's been the best thing that you've been able to do? Getting into the gatekeeper, arranging to invite people to a dinner? Have you got something that will, that's sort of predictable that you could do without any intervention from somebody else?
Chris: Not really, no. Other than, when I go in ... I listened and did the Unique Ability book, and so the reason I do the presentations is because when I did all that unique ability, when I went through the Kolbe and everything, I'm supposed to be doing the presentations. Speaking to them, because I've got a lot of clients so I can tell them, I do a lot of stories, like personal examples of clients so that they can kind of grasp the concepts. When I'm in front of people I get huge engagement and it's always greater than 50 to 70% will, in your vernacular, like raise their hand, but I mean, they'll check off the box saying, "Follow up with me."
Dean: Okay, so you're great at that. I get it then. That's really the thing.
Chris: That's the only thing I'm doing though.
Dean: Yeah. Your strength is in that profit activator four. I would say that sort of being in front of people, doing those workshops, doing the presentations, is a profit activator four thing, because that's a gateway into your during. At the end of that you're saying, "Would you like to work with me?" Yes. We like to get together and talk about how we can work together. Yes, that's the gateway. That's where your role is. If we could just fill rooms with people who you could talk to, that would be the ideal scenario for you. That would be the great output for our before unit.
Chris: That's right. Yup.
Dean: Okay. We're narrowing it down. How big a group, how many people do you normally do these for?
Chris: Depends on the program. Like emergency medicine has 30 residents, so usually when I speak to them there will be 20 or so in the room, maybe 25.
Dean: I get it, so classroom style.
Chris: Yeah, exactly.
Dean: Not to hundreds. Okay, so 20 would be a good size for that.
Dean: See the whites of everybody's eyes and it's all one conversation. I get it. Okay, so if we're engineering a before unit machine here for us, that if we could fill a room with 20 people every two weeks or something, that would be a great thing for you, right? Get you in front of 20 people at a time. That's what that vending machine would be perfect for. Now, when you say you speak to 20 people, what would happen from there? Have you got sort of predictable metrics that you could say, "If you get me in front of 20 people, I'm going to get an appointment with this percentage of them and this many people are going to become clients."
Chris: Yeah. If we have an opening meeting, like an initial consultation with somebody, if we do the initial consultation, about 90% of those people will end up going through our process.
Dean: Perfect. That's great. That's magic.
Chris: It's a high percentage.
Dean: How many people, if you sit in front of 20 people, how many of them will check the box to do an initial meeting?
Chris: At least 50%. I don't think I've had anywhere it's been less than that.
Dean: Okay. Perfect. You get ten of those and then that could be eight or nine new clients. If you sit in front of 20 people you might get eight or nine new clients out of that. Does that sound right?
Chris: That is correct, yeah.
Dean: Okay. All we need to do then really is to look at, how can we create a vending machine that gets you in front of 20 people at a time so you can do your thing and then meet with them? That's what we really look at. That is, if our goal, if we're aspiring to bring on 100 new ones, that would be, we've just got to get you in front of 250 of them basically.
Dean: See how I just work backwards and do the math? We're getting a sense of the scale of what this is. Now if we look at it that for practical purposes, if we look at the first three years that you're going to maybe get $1500 or $2000 from this relationship over that couple of years with them, until they kick into where they're getting their salary bump. That might be a thing where we could allocate or attribute the cost of getting them from that revenue. We're on that scale, kind of thing. I imagine that once you start, if you take somebody through that first two and you're all the while preparing them for, and over serving and getting them into the launch phase, once they get to the celebrating their launch of their career, that they're going to stick with you for that. They're not going to abandon ship. They're going to stick with you because you've been guiding and advising them all the way.
Chris: Yeah. That's the goal. The thing is that because we don't have an exclusive relationship with the university, there's constantly going to be other people trying to get in there. That's where ...
Dean: We need to bypass the university. That's what I'm thinking here.
Dean: That's the only predictable thing, is I don't want to depend on our access to them being only through the university. There's going to be ways for us to get new licensees, like trigger data, that will get that and we'll be able to identify them. The way that I want to get you thinking is, if we were able to offer them something, if we were to send a postcard to them. We identify who they are, we can send a postcard or a mailing to them. What could we offer them that would get them to raise their hand?
That's really, the whole crux of this is profit activator two, to get them to turn from invisible prospects into visible prospects. We just want them to start that conversation. My thought, and my thing that I would kind of task you with is to say, what would be the title of the book that this audience would definitely want to have? If it was available. Maybe there is a book. Is there something that they would, what is it that they're definitely interested in? What's on their mind?
Chris: Okay. Yeah. Well the things that they all ask about, for the most part, are how to manage their debts that they have. A lot of them will ask, "What do I do first?" What's the first thing that I should be doing, like right now? That's typically what we hear from the physicians, is those two questions. That kind of, if you're tapping into this, it's on their mind, is like that if you could get in that conversation that's going on, that's the thing that's on their mind is, "Holy cow, I have $300,000 in student debt here. I'm never going to get out from under this." In a way.
Dean: Right. You start thinking about like, I did a call yesterday, or two days ago, about titles, book titles. One of those things, I think the power, as an emotional trigger to get somebody to raise their hand, having the right words at the right time is a big thing. Somebody, you talk about financial stuff, I think one of the best book titles ever is, Financial Peace. Dave Ramsey's book is, if you imagine that somebody is in financial turmoil or under stress or worried about money, it almost feels like just holding that book in your hand is going to lower your blood pressure. You know what I mean? It's like, okay I got it.
Chris: Exactly, yeah.
Dean: The life raft, you know? Those kinds of things where you've got that sort of approach there, that there might be a great opportunity to focus in on that and have that be the focus to start the relationship. Something about the depth.
Chris: Right. I know. It's interesting because we don't get paid on that. That's, I keep mentioning a couple people. We don't make any money on it. There's really, from a financial aspect, there's no incentive for us to even address it. Most financial advisors don't. They just say, "Well you're going to make plenty of money so don't worry about the debt." We kind of make it a focus because it is something that's on their mind. Like I've heard you say numerous times, get into the conversation that's already happening.
Dean: Yeah, that's why I was asking you, what would be the book that they would definitely want to own? What's the information that they would definitely love to have? That's certainly one. I think if you look at the idea of having that as a focus, I think that could be a great thing.
Chris: Okay. That's a good idea. What would that be, that would be like an email, or is this like a ...
Dean: Well it would be a postcard. I like, because if you've got the ability to identify where somebody is. The thing about direct mail, what still is, as much targeting as you can do on Facebook and all of those things, it's not the same as having a uniformed government employee deliver something right to somebody's doorstep.
Dean: That's what direct mail is. For a dollar or less, you can have somebody deliver a message to exactly the person that you want to talk to. Not a lookalike of somebody who looks like that person maybe, the exact person. You can specifically target the message there. We've done things where, if you're getting into the mind of them ...
Something that I might look at this is, if then sort of headline formulas that I've used. If I would look at something that I may do, if you have more than $183,000 in student debt, if you're a licensed physician with more than $183,000 in student debt, read this. Go into talking about that and offering a guide to managing student debt, or whatever the things are. If there's anything that could make it seem like the rules are different, or what governs or what the ins and outs of it are. If there's any guidelines, anything that sounds official about it, about student loans, would be a good thing.
We've done that with the financial advisors. I just did an ad with a financial advisor in Canada that said, if you invested more than $250,000 in mutual funds prior to December 31st, 2015, read this. It's almost like they're, it gets their attention because they're like, "Uh-oh, what do I need to know about this?" Because it's already on their mind.
Chris: Right. Okay, that's really good.
Dean: Then if you've got, now you get them to raise their hand. They come to the landing page. They leave their name and their contact information. Now you're engaged in a dialogue with them. You can have a conversation. You can invite them to a workshop.
Chris: That's brilliant.
Dean: All the pieces come together here, you know?
Chris: Yeah, that's really good. I've never done any ... Well I take it back. The only direct mail I've ever done, but it really isn't a direct mail, it was just like, from listening to you and implementing just some examples and things that you did back with Joe Stump, a decade ago.
Dean: Oh you've been around a long time, yeah.
Chris: Yeah. I remember him talking about, you guys talking about doing the postcards that were like, they weren't testimonials but they were like examples of how you helped somebody.
Dean: Yeah, evidence of success.
Chris: There you go, yup. I've done, but again, it was like super labor intensive because I was the one doing all this stuff. I really didn't feel like I could offload this to somebody else. The website, so like the landing page kind of thing. I just need to, for instance I own the domain UFDental.com, like the University of Florida Dental School, I bought the domain UFDental.com. This would be something where I could ...
Dean: That's not it, for that one, for this situation. That wouldn't be the right one for this situation.
Chris: Right, okay. What would be like a, what kind of domain would ... This would be like for a squeeze page or something, I would have it set up?
Dean: Yup. That's it. Yes.
Chris: Okay. All right. Then the postcard would be like, that's a great example with the student loan debt. I like that one.
Dean: Yeah. That's what they're talking about. You've already set the stage. If you're a physician, you've got more than $183,000 in student loans, read this. Then you're outlining a plan for how that can work. Within your advice on that, in that guide format.
Chris: That would be something they'd go to the website, they'd put their information in and you're sending them like a, either a message or a white paper or something like that.
Dean: Or a book. Yeah. A simple book. That's the thing, there's nothing as powerful as a book, but it also doesn't, it's not making the boat go faster. They don't know or care whether the book is 50 pages or 250 pages. You can do, that's the whole idea behind the 90 Minute Book, that you get all of the benefit, all of the good stuff of having a book. Avoiding all the bad stuff, the slaving over a book and thinking all that through. When really, the most important things are that you've got a book, you've got a title that the moment your ideal client reads it they say, "I want that." You've got a way for them to get it.
As soon as they ask for it, the book has done its job. The job of the book is to get you in the conversation. Nobody's going to read it. Very few people are going to read it. Only half the people that even buy a book even open it. That's books they, that's across the board. I think you've got a really great opportunity here. You've got a really well thought out target audience. You've got a great name. You've got the right bones for it, the infrastructure. That name gives lots of room for growth, it's got authority built right in. Lots of all good things.
Chris: Okay. All right. That's outstanding Dean.
Dean: Very good.
Chris: I'm taking notes like crazy here.
Dean: Well if only we had recorded this.
Chris: Yeah. This is great.
Dean: Yeah. I'll get you the recording. You're just right down on the corner. You can come and do, I think it'd be really good for you to come to one of my Breakthrough Blueprint events, where we can spend three days laying out the blueprint for this.
Chris: Yeah. You do those right there in Winter Haven?
Dean: I do them in Orlando, at Celebration.
Chris: Okay. Yeah, we were just there last week. All right, okay. Excellent. Great. I got a lot to do here.
Dean: You do.
Chris: Last thing, just a quick question. We're doing this talk next week and so we're going to be in front of, like it's funny you just wrote down, like we need 250 leads. We're going to be in front of probably 400 female surgeons next week. From the stage, if I have one thing that I could do to get them, would you recommend doing like the text to, if you want information on this, text to this number?
Chris: I can do that.
Dean: I would do a report or some valuable thing. What would be the title of the thing that they would definitely want?
Chris: All right. Then the page itself. If I'm sending them to a domain or ...
Dean: You can send them to a domain, but I would model the simplest things. Right in Gogo Clients there's the template for the exact ones that I use. For emailmastery.com and 90minutebook.com are on that exact platform. That's how simple the landing page is.
Chris: Okay, so there will be examples when I go to sign up for Gogo Client.
Chris: Okay. All right. Thank you Dean. I can't thank you enough.
Dean: That's so great.
Chris: I'm pumped about this. I'll look to see when your next Breakthrough Blueprint is.
Dean: Perfect. Okay man.
Chris: All right, thank you very much. I appreciate your time.
Dean: Okay. I'll talk to you later. Bye.
Dean: There we have it. Another great episode. That was a really great conversation. I love talking to people who've got long term views, who've got long term plans and big, big aspirations to get there. You hear it all starts with really thinking about setting up that scale ready algorithm. No matter who your target market is, you've still got to be able to get them to raise their hand. You've got to be able to get them to identify themselves so that you can educate and motivate them. Then you can make an offer to get together with them. Luckily Chris, when he gets in front of people, that's his unique ability, is profit activator four. If he can get in front of a group of people, there's a good chance that they're going to want to meet with him. If they meet with him, there's an excellent chance that they're going to form a relationship. Lots of great stuff. I really enjoyed talking with Chris. I'm going to keep an eye on what they're doing there.
a couple of things that we talked about in the episode. gogoclients.com, if you're looking for a tool that can help you automate and do all of the things that we talked about in the before, during and after unit. That's the tool that I use. Every email that I send you, every landing page I use, all of your information, if you're one of my subscribers, is held in my Gogo Client CRM. It's the tool that I use every day. That's available for you. You can get a 30 day free trial at gogoclients.com.
We talked about books. There's nothing better than a book to get people to raise their hand, and I've got a whole team of people standing by to help you write your book and get your book out into the world, generating business for you, at 90minutebooks.com. Love to help you with that. If you'd like to be a guest on our show, just go to MoreCheeseLessWhiskers.com. You can download a copy of the More Cheese, Less Whiskers book. If you click on the be a guest link, you can come on the call and we can hatch some evil schemes for you. That's it for this week. Have a great time and I'll talk to you next time.