Today on the More Cheese Less Whiskers podcast we're talking with Robin Hannah from Paris, and Robin is a young 25 year old guy who has really made a name for himself in the fashion world in France.
He had a very early career as a growth director for a very popular fashion site, that he made a big success of and he learned a lot of things along the way, but Marketing is really his passion, so we had a really great conversation about where does he go from here, at 25 years old knowing what he knows now.
We also talked about knowing what I know now at 52, looking back at being 25 and realizing what an amazing opportunity, knowing what he knows about marketing is!
We talked about starting with his business idea, his dream, and what would be the thing that would keep him excited and motivated for the next 25 years.
I think you're really going to like this conversation and all the possibility it has.
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Transcript - More Cheese Less Whiskers 119
Dean: Robin Hannah.
Robin: Hello, Dean.
Dean: How are you?
Robin: How you doing?
Dean: I am so good. I'm very excited. Where are you in the world today?
Robin: I'm in Paris right now.
Robin: I live in Paris.
Dean: What a great place to be.
Robin: Yeah, yeah. Last time I called you, I was on the South of France and the connection was back and everything.
Dean: I remember.
Robin: Now, it's good. It should be good.
Dean: Perfect. Well, let's start out and tell me the Robin Hannah story here then, we'll figure out what kind of evil schemes we're going to hatch today.
Robin: Cool. First of all, thanks, it's a pleasure to be on your podcast. I don't know if you have interviews with French people before on your podcast, the first one.
Dean: That's right. I had a guy from France, Tony Lux, came to one of my break through blueprint events in London.
Robin: Oh, okay, so I'm the second one.
Dean: That's right.
Robin: It's still good.
Dean: No, but I actually don't know that he's been on the podcast. So you're the first, you might be the first Frenchman on the podcast so welcome.
Robin: Cool, cool. I'm 25, and I have been the last two years have been crazy, because I was the Head of Growth of a big French fashion startup that became the biggest French style magazine for men, which is also financed by its own clothing line. It exploded and I was the director of growth of the thing. I became a little bit of a public figure in the startup marketing place, which gave me a lot of credibility really fast, and actually come with this, that have led to amazing opportunity.
Today, I'm a teacher at the French Fashion Institute, and I've quit my job one and half year ago with my associate, was also in charge of marketing, to help the fashion companies do better marketing. Because, at first, before I was recruited by the startup, I created a fashion brand, luxury leather shoes made in France, only sold online without a store.
Robin: But, without a physical store, because I have been passionate about marketing and direct response since age 11, when I first tried to sell my first eBook online.
Robin: In German, because I am half German, and I put like an eBook online. I tried to sell it, and I noticed that putting something online didn't mean that it ... It's not a guarantee to make sales.
Robin: I put an eBook online, was told that I didn't make any sales, because my eBook was also targeted at 13-years-old, like teenagers, and 10-years-ago, teenagers didn't have any credit card or stuff to pay online.
Dean: Yeah, gift cards or whatever. Gift cards are the currency.
Robin: Exactly. It was like the first time that I noticed that I didn't know my audience too well, and so I asked myself, how do you sell stuff? This is how I came to that piece of marketing. I was very interested in fashion, because fashion is ... I thought, nobody, no author I read, no Joe Polish, no John Carlton, no Dan Kennedy, nobody talked about luxury fashion. Because, it's difficult to sell something, I find it difficult, to sell something without giving the direct benefit of it.
Because, people don't want to hear when they ... I think, when I sell a Rolex to someone, the guy is buying it for the status, but he doesn't want you to say to him that, "Oh, people will see that you have a lot of money." It was really interesting, and I thought to myself, if I can sell $500 shoes online, I can sell anything, and this why I went to the fashion.
Dean: That's great.
Robin: That's my challenge.
Dean: That's awesome, so where does that go from here? What's on your mind?
Robin: That's the topic today. I have been really spoiled by a good network and the recognition, so as soon I started my consulting company, I had clients coming in from everywhere, because people knew of, and we never had to prospect or anything. Today, if you want to grow more, we need to generate leads. It's the whole lead generation part that is a problem today. It's not a real problem, it's just that we have been so spoiled that we never thought about doing it again. Because, every time I wanted to do lead generation, new clients came in from, I don't know where, they just came in and we took them.
Dean: You're saying now, you need to do lead generation?
Dean: For your consulting business? Is that it, what you're saying?
Dean: I got you.
Robin: I have, the first problem with this, if I take profit, activate one, it's a target market. Because, I target something that I will call the luxury entrepreneur who either sells really nice goods, or really nice services. Of the people that don't have a lot of clients, that have really good clients, well established relationships, and big lifetime value, and can sell high margin goods. I don't know if it's focused enough, I don't know if I want to do service, because the clients I had were not only in fashion, they were also, I had champaign, I had high end cosmetics, so the whole lifestyle industry.
Dean: I got you. What can you do? That's the thing, so much of selecting a target market is going to be, really, the best way to select a target market is to start with the thing that you really want to do, and that you can do better than anybody. I always start with this idea of what would you do if you only got paid if your client gets a result? Not that you're, that's necessarily going to be the way that you do it. But, that thought process of what is it that you're so certain that you could do, that you would be able to ... That you feel like you have 100% certainty of getting the result for somebody? What is the result that you're able to create?
Robin: That's a question, I have been reading your emails for a few straight years. It always comes back and it haunts me. The thing I can do is the thing that I normally do with clients that are a little bit afraid of direct response marketing, and so I tell them, first things we do, I'm going to rewrite one of your sales emails, and we're going to test one against the other.
Robin: Then, they see that there's results in that, and that I can easily increase their sales by 30, 50, even double them just by with one email. I say, "Okay, let's do this. What are your other strategies," and they're all in. I always, the first thing I do is always selling something right now, and comparing my selling method to theirs.
Dean: That's perfect, so now there's the thing is that, you're at a point where that is a very, very easy thing for people to buy into, is let me just do a test. I'll test it against one of your emails. Something that's a quick win, where you're able to create a result for people. You start to think about that as the starting point. Now, if you were going to do that, then what makes the most sense is, to stack the deck in your favor in a way, by looking at who are the best people. Who would be the best candidates for you to be able to do this? What type of company, what minimum, if you weren't ... Often you can get into who it is for, by identifying who it's not for too, right? That's most important.
Robin: Oh, yeah.
Dean: If I said to you, "Okay, you're only going to get paid if you get the results, but you get to choose who it is." What would disqualify somebody from you being able to work with them, and it maybe that they, maybe for you it's that they don't have a list, or that they're a brand new startup, or that they're not willing to, they're not open to testing. They're too married to tradition, or the past, or the history of the brand, or they're too guarded with it. A lot of these ways, the target market, as much as it's demographic and identifiable by attributes, it also can be a mindset or an emotional thing. They've got to have a certain openness to stuff.
Robin: That's a little bit of a challenge in the industry I'm in. If people are really used to look at their competitors and at the branding of their competitors. I think, there's no other industry where people are so agency focused, and they compare to each other. It's really, the hierarchy is crazy in this business. Everybody is someone's boss. I love to work with people who have a company that is decently sized, like at least 500K in sales a year. Also, a company with an owner/operator.
Robin: That's how you say it, I think.
Dean: Mm-hmm, so somebody who is at the helm. They're not delegating it to somebody else.
Robin: Exactly. Yeah.
Dean: Have the authority, right, somebody who's worried about losing their job is not going to make the right moves, right.
Robin: Yeah, exactly. Exactly, and that's the whole thing. I've worked with big companies before, and in theory it's nice. You get in, you do some stuff, or you teach some stuff. They don't do it, but you get paid. But, it's really frustrating to teach people and not see them get the results.
Dean: Yes, I get it. Of course, that's not the ... Yeah, that's the worst part, right? When you know what they could be doing.
Robin: Even if they're happy afterwards. If they're, "Oh, that's really interesting." Yeah, but I wanted to give you something.
Dean: I think what's important to you about it, right? What is it that, if you were to say, "This is what I'm trying to build here," rather than just trying to get clients is, what is it that, if you've got a blank slate like this, if you got an opportunity, you're going to pick some direction to grow in. Why not start with building it around the life that you want, or what you actually want to do?
Robin: That's also, I think, it's when I quit my last job I imagined my life, what I wanted to do. I wanted to work with clients I liked, which I did, and which I still do. But, I didn't acquire them on my own. I wanted to have high paying gigs, and I also wanted to be, if it's a big company, I didn't want to be just on a result, because there's too many variables involved in big companies. What I did is, today, I do workshops with my clients, like four or five workshops with a high ticket price. I work with the client, I work two days a month and my associate also. The rest of the time I can read, I can travel, I can write. But, I want to, I see the potential. I see this as big potential and a lot of leverage that I haven't activated any marketing yet. I want to go bigger, but I don't really know why. I want to go bigger, but without working too much. I don't care if I work too little. I know, I'm sounding like a whinny kid.
Dean: No, no.
Robin: But, it's just, I don't know what is asked of it, and I don't see anybody doing it or having it.
Dean: Right. Well, part of it is that, that's when you're 25, right? Is that what you said?
Dean: You're really young, and you're going to realize that I'm just, I'm 52 now, so I remember being 25 like it was yesterday, right? That is what's amazing is how fast that goes, and how young I still feel. I still don't feel any difference in my inner feeling, or enthusiasm, or my love, my passions, everything that I love about marketing and stuff has been there for that whole 25 years. The thing that I think you've really got the opportunity to do is, to really just embrace whatever, starting with the life that you want.
One of the best things I did, about 20 years ago, I with Thomas Leonard, I went through this process and created my guide post for defining my definition of success. When I looked at it, I wanted it to be something, I wanted to go ahead and push the accelerator pedal and look forward and see what will it be, what will it look like when I'm being successful in the present moment, as opposed to something aspirational, right?
Dean: I went through an exercise of just answering and filling in the blanks of the question or the statement, I know I'm being successful when. For me, I went through these things where my top three were that, I know I'm being successful when I can wake up every day and say, "What would I like to do today?" I know I'm being successful when my passive revenue exceeds my lifestyle needs. Number three is that, I know I'm being successful when I'm working on projects I'm excited about and doing my very best work. Those three things, there's 10 of them that I did, but those three things are the guideposts of everything, right? I would be very guarding of those things. It was clear that my time freedom is the most important value that I have, that's the thing that I value more than anything.
I was just in Strategic Coach in Chicago this last week, and we were doing an exercise, but I had gone through, and I was looking at the time, and so my, the total time burden or commitment to run my base business, I would say, which includes doing the podcasts, doing my breakthrough blueprint events, my email mastery calls, my go-go agent calls, all of that all in is 417 hours a year is my, that's what I, if I look at the time involved in that. What that means, now what we look at is, it was a really interesting perspective to think about now all this time that I have, and to put a currency on it, in that what we were looking at was, what if I took this and said, "I have 1000 hours to invest."
If I think about my time, and my intellectual capital, my mind, and my energy, and whatever I have. If I have that, if I have 1000 hours that I'm willing to invest, I don't need to invest those 1000 hours to pay the mortgage, or to sustain me. My base business is more than what I need. I've got, now, this opportunity to take these 1000 hours and invest them like a, I coined a phrase, venture collaborist, looking for opportunities where I can collaborate with people on creating a bigger result, and creating the opportunity to create value together.
For you, what you know is, and your unique ability the things that you know are valuable to somebody else. If you could just, and it's from concentrate even, that's the thing. Your ability to layout a strategy and define what to do is, you can do that far faster than any company could execute that strategy. It doesn't require all of your time. Is that, what is the favorite thing that you really like to do? If you were to look at is, what are the things that bring you the most joy?
Robin: That's a question a friend asked me last time, and it was really eye opening. A friend asked me if, because I told him that I wanted to be recognized on a bigger level, on a national level for my marketing ability. He told me, "Okay, so if, let's imagine that in 10 years, there's a guy, a professor in a business class who introduces one of the theories you created." Because, he doesn't know a lot about marketing. He asked, "Is there was something that you would enjoy?" I didn't even have to think about it. I was like, "No, what I really like is, I would love to be recognized by a few people that would tell me, 'Man, you have impacted my life in so many ways.'" That's why I wanted to write, and I love to write. There are no really good books, marketing books in France. A few have been translated from English, but I would really love to write them.
Robin: That's the thing I really enjoy, to teach.
Dean: Mm-hmm (affirmative), and so do you like to write?
Robin: Yeah, I love to write.
Dean: There you go, so you don't have a problem like, do you procrastinate writing, do you get into ... Can you just sit down and write?
Robin: Yeah, I have no problem writing.
Dean: I wish that I had that ability. That's something, because I would enjoy having written as well, but it's like I just, I can't get myself to sit down and write. As much as you think about, wouldn't it be great to get a place in the South of France, and wake up and go to your writing spot with this beautiful view of the ocean and write. Then, go for dinner, and this whole thing. The writer's life, that's a great kind of thing. Does that appeal to you? Are you introvert or an extrovert?
Robin: I'm more of an extrovert.
Dean: That would be, does that life actually excite you, the being alone in a room writing life, or?
Robin: Yeah, I like it.
Dean: Then, you get your extroversion after, and you go out and have, go see all your friends, and all that kind of stuff.
Robin: Yeah, exactly. That's what I usually do, yeah, when I write. The problem when I write is that, I have too many different things I cannot control, because I can write, that's not a problem. But, another project I started, which I wanted to, it doesn't need anything to be finished. I wanted to create an online marketing course, business launching course, but for people with a high education who don't buy into, who are completely biased, because all they have seen is weird ads on Facebook that tell you how to get rich quick. They think that all online entrepreneurship is this kind of stuff.
Entrepreneurship would be something for them, but they despise it, because they think it's all, or I don't know what you call it. I would love to get to this sort of people, because I have friends who are big engineers who are like come from big consulting firms who work like 60 hour weeks, and I know that they would love to do something else, but they despise entrepreneurship. Because, it's like, why did they get a degree to become an entrepreneur? I want to show them that it's a good thing, so I wanted to create a start your business class for those people.
Dean: It's so funny, because 20 years ago when the internet was just getting started, it was still that same thing. It's how to make millions online, and how, that get rich quick online. I did a ... We did a really nice course on getting started online. But, the appeal was exactly who the person was, who this was appealing to is that how to turn ... The headline on the postcard that we did, or on the ads that we did was, how to turn ... Let me see if I can remember it. How to turn a free email address and few hours a week into an extra monthly income.
We weren't making any claims of how big that income was, or how the thing, but the practicalities of it. That, yeah, I've got an email address and I've got a few hours a week, and I'd like an extra monthly income. That was appealing to the right people. I think that there's so much opportunity for the person who wants to make a few thousand dollars a month online as a part-time extra thing, there's so many opportunities for that.
Robin: Yeah. Do you want to talk of the thing I wanted to launch?
Dean: What is that?
Robin: I'm going to try to translate it live. It's, how to make an extra $1000 online with a side business, without quitting your job, without sacrificing your social life, and without spending all your economy in Facebook advertising.
Robin: The idea is, what I wanted really to emphasize is, the whole, there are a lot of people who are always think of escape 9 to 5, escape 9 to 5. French people actually use the term, rat race in English, because we have no word for it now. There are a lot of people who like their job, who are just not completely satisfied with it.
Dean: I love the fact that here we are. This, I want to pause for a second, that here we are that the French notoriously internationally regarded as the country that's pointed to, who has the work life balance of working 35 hours a week, and six weeks of holidays, and all of this. That they actually refer to that as the rat race. I love it.
Dean: That's the best. Even that, even the French, as much as we look at them as having balance, they still think that 35 hour week is the rat race.
Robin: Yeah, because when you get something, I think, when you get something that's a society of people, you are happy about it. But, then you forget it, and it becomes status quo, so you always want more.
Robin: Tomorrow you can quit your job and you can get two years of your salary from the state.
Dean: Yeah, that's amazing. Wow.
Robin: You have two years to figure out what you want to do if you quit your job. Even we have held it for six months. You can't get license, you can't get anything. It's a really great place for entrepreneurs, if you want to start something. Tax wise, it's a bit more complicated, but if you want to start something, it's the best place.
Robin: Because, you don't risk anything.
Dean: Yes. Yeah, especially. You could go, you got your two year salary. That's something. Do they adjust it if you start making money on your business, do they deduct that?
Robin: Yeah, they deduct it. They deduct it, but you can, if you put all this money you make on the side, if you put it in a company and you don't touch it, they don't deduct it.
Dean: I got you.
Robin: You can't get it.
Dean: You've got two year to grow. Maybe there's a-
Dean: That's an interesting thing that you could, that you've got some, you can create this squad of young marketers who start stuff, figure out the business, and they got two years of free internship to figure that out. That's a cool thing.
Robin: Yeah, two years is amazing. I didn't get it, because you only get it if you go to your employer and you tell him, "Okay, I want to quit," and he says, "Okay, let's do an agreement," and it's an agreement he wrote down on paper and you get it. But, if you go to your employer and you say, "Okay, I'm quitting, and here's my letter of resignation," you don't get it.
Robin: All employers give that if you want it. But, I didn't want it, because I didn't want to have the security.
Dean: I got you.
Robin: I wanted to be on my own. I wanted to do all the stuff.
Robin: That's what, I would love to create a course for those people. That's another thing. I want to do so many things. But, I want to focus on what I told you, on the lead generation for my consulting business, first of all.
Dean: Yes. Part of the thing, so that's, what I was asking about your consulting business then is, what, starting with the end in mind here, if you could pick any outcome for this. We're going to push this button, and the advertising that we deploy is going to create an outcome called, full practice, or whatever you're ... What does that look like for you? What is the outcome? What's the dream come true outcome that you could imagine, and describe?
Robin: For my clients?
Dean: No, for you.
Robin: Oh, for myself.
Dean: Yeah, for you, regarding your clients. If you could say, what would be the best possible outcome for you, that you push this button and you've got a lineup outside the door of people who are waiting to work with you, that are your dream clients? What would they be? You've got your choice of clients.
Robin: I think it would be business owners without a big team, without maybe, I don't know why, but I like people who have a store, who have managed a store before. Because, they know their client, and they easily relate to what I tell them. Because, they tell me, "Oh, it's like when I sell face-to-face to people." If the marketing isn't that difficult, or isn't that different, and even marketing business are different.
Robin: People who are salesmen understand direct sales marketing, and they understand also internet marketing, and they are happy to know that it's not that different, and that they have been afraid of it for nothing. That's the first thing, people who have a decent size company, who sell really nice things with high margins, who have a few clients, and who have high end client. That would be the dream.
Dean: Maybe, some of these, would you love to have a company that, if you think about in France, I'm sure there are lots of high quality craftsmen. People who make things like your shoes that you talk about.
Dean: That sell them locally, but don't have the international exposure kind of thing. Could that be a-
Robin: Yeah. Yes, that would be something. That would be something additional I could offer. Because, the problem is with international site, French people are really about French. But, they tell you, the first thing they want to do before even starting marketing, before even starting marketing to the French market, they tell you, "Oh, French people are annoying, French people have no money, French people don't buy anything. So, I don't even want to sell to them, so I want to have my site done in English before even having the French one finished." I try to tell them, no, no don't. If you scale something that doesn't work, it won't work either in the English market. Americans aren't just like staying there waiting to give you money for nothing.
Dean: Yes, yes. I think that there's, this is you brought up another point here, because in your evaluation process, what's going to be valuable is to understand what you really like to do. What you're likely to want to get involved in. If you look at this, that is you likely to want to scale something, or are you likely to want to figure out, just crack the code on how to scale something?
Dean: I have to talk about the difference. There’s three levels of make it up, there's make it real, and there's make it recur. The thing in the marketing standpoint is that, you can be the one that cracks the code, figures out how to, what marketing actually works, and then take that and scale it, and grow it all the way. Follow it all the way through, or you can focus on just cracking the code. On figuring out theoretically, or actually how it works. But, then the scaling of it is a different thing. My unique ability is in cracking the code and creating what I call, the scale ready algorithm, right?
Dean: If I figure out what is the message, the offer, the sequence, the email, what is it that converts one person, but with an eye to it being scalable. Meaning that, I'm doing something that you could scale. As soon as I crack the code on it though, that's where I lose my unique ability, is I'm not interested in taking that and scaling it. I'm much more interested in cracking the code.
Dean: That self-knowledge, and it took me a long time, and I wish this for you that I've, in the last 10 years or so, it's really been where I've realized that, that on its own, is valuable and it's okay. Because, I was saying, talking with Joe Polish the other day in Chicago, we were at Strategic Coaching. We were saying how, as a society we almost fetishize this, the execution and scaling something, right? The discipline to execution of being an operator, and taking something all the way, kind of thing, right? We discount the value of creating the algorithm that is scalable, the steps, the messaging, the thing. We value execution over ideas. But, the reality is, the ideas are where all the magic is.
Robin: Yeah, that's right. I think I haven't precise, the thing with our, with the startup I was in before, it was so admired because it got from zero to five million of sales without any funds. Without, it was all bootstrap.
Robin: It was bootstrap, it started out as a media with a lot of visitors. They built a community, then they created an eBook, then we created a course about fashion, and then they created their own fashion brand. People always want to know, how, what did you do with this company? What did you do with your own previous company? Because, the company, the shoe company still exists, is doing really well, and also marketing is automatized. I have a recipe and I go to my clients and I deploy it, because I teach it to them. Instead, I go to the next lines. I don't do anything myself.
Robin: Maybe I write something, just to show them the power of it, but that's it.
Dean: Yes, perfect. When you realize that, it's like you are a, you're an artist in that way, right? That you're a creator. You've got something.
Dean: You see how that works. There's something to that, and so that, I was saying how I liken the way I think about what I do now, is more as if we were talking about music. I look at it as being a music producer and song writer.
Robin: Yeah, you mentioned Max Martin.
Dean: Max Martin. That's exactly it.
Robin: Max Martin, yeah, I read about it and I'm obsessed with it, because of one of your emails.
Dean: That's what I talk about, is that Max Martin, the thing, Justin Timberlake, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, all these people with all these number one songs, right? They wouldn't be able to tour and do all the things that they do without those songs to carry the load of it, right? That they're essentially, the song is the scale ready algorithm. He's in the studio with them helping them create the best song, songs, compiling them, packaging them, making them real, putting them on the album.
Then, as soon as they're real, his involvement is done. Now, they take the next two or three years and go tour the world bringing, scaling the value of those songs. The value is that people love those songs so much that they want to come see you in concert, and they pay money to do that. But, you have to go, as an artist, and tour the world and do it. That's not the creative part of the business. Max has zero interest in that part, but while Katy Perry is out touring the world, he's in the studio with Justin Timberlake making the next album.
Robin: He has the time to think about it.
Dean: That's right.
Robin: And, to go further.
Dean: Yeah, that's it. That kind of thing, he's learning and knows what ... A hit song is very much like marketing automation in a way, right?
Dean: If you figure out a chassis, you figure out the rhythm, and the chord progressions, and the things that are no different than figuring out a landing page format, or an offer format, or an email sequence. All of those things that your toolkit is coming, and that becomes the most amazing thing. That's where I'm, as I get more and more clarity on this, at 52, I wish that I had this level of clarity at 25. Because, I wouldn't have gone against what my natural grain is to beat myself up or feel ... Figuring out how to be good at the thing that everybody fetishizes, which is the execution, which I'm not good at. But, I'm okay with that now, because I'm very successful anyway. It doesn't matter, I have the best life of anybody that I know.
Dean: I've been able to get away with that for 25, 30 years. Right, and I don't see it slowing down or wanting it to. If I could look back, the same things that bring me joy today, are the things that brought me joy when I was 25. It's spooky, but life is great like that when you really realize it. I would say to go with your gut on this, right? To be looking for those things. If you've already, you're coming from a position, that's why my number ... If you breakdown my top three things of I know I'm being successful when I can wake up every day and ask, "What would I like to do today?" That's about time freedom, right?
Dean: Then, the second one, my passive revenue exceeds my lifestyle needs, meaning I have confidence in my base business that it keeps things rolling regardless. I don't have to spend the time in that to make it happen. That gives you financial freedom that way, and then the, I'm working on projects I'm excited about and doing my very best work, that is infinitely scalable. Because, I'm going to be excited about many different things over the next 20 years. Doing my very best work is going to constantly evolve, because I know way more about marketing now, than I did 25 years ago. My best work now is much better than my best work when I was 25. I imagine that at 75, my best work is going to be better than my work at 50, because I've been now honing down, narrowing down, narrowing down to this is the thing that I do better than anybody in the world.
Robin: Yeah, that sounds exactly like what I want to do.
Robin: I just have this second question that I need to figure out. Because, I can't, I need to figure out how to keep my business afloat. Because, I get all these clients, et cetera, they come to me, but I don't want to count on them. It seems too magical, and I'm afraid of it, it could stop. I don't know if it could stop, but it could, so I want to, I have to just figure out this little part of my business. I have created some lead gen funnels in the last two weeks, and if I figure that out, then I can, I'm not all done with it. I can sit on my two years and ride, and do whatever I want.
Dean: Well, part of it might be that you definitely want to build your audience, right?
Dean: If you're, you're saying French and in France, and how many people, how big is your reach right now in France? How many people do you have on the email list?
Robin: I have about 800 people.
Dean: That's a start, and are they potential clients, do you think, or potential people that you want to teach?
Robin: No, not all of them.
Dean: No, okay. You want to start thinking ahead by, it might be a good idea, one great way of keeping things rolling is a podcast. Where, you can share all the things that you're doing, all the things that you know you can help people, just even the way that I do More Cheese Less Whiskers, right?
Dean: That you're doing exactly that in French, helping people with their lead generation, if that's the, if you want to narrow it down to specifically something. That could be a good start for you.
Robin: Yeah, doing a podcast, because I thought about doing YouTube, but YouTube is too complicated.
Dean: Right. Well, the podcast is effortless, really. The good news about it, is that all those emails that I send are all, they all come from things that I've said on the podcast, right? They're not, I'm not writing the emails. I'm speaking, I'm doing this, and I'll probably, sometime in the future, the things that we've talked about today, some of the things that I've said, will come through as an email. You'll say, "Oh, I was there when he said that," right? But, that's the leverage that we have, and the consistency of it, right? The through line, the connective tissue of all of it is, that I'm every single week there's a new More Cheese Less Whiskers podcast. That's, right, and that requires one hour of my time.
Because, I don't spend any amount of time before or after with anything to do with the podcast. We didn't speak before and do a pre-interview and this stuff. We had that one, we tried to record a while ago when you were in the South of France. We had to reschedule, because of the connection. But, other than that, we've really had no interaction, or we haven't met. Everything that's happening is contained within this hour, right? Everything that happens after that, is not the magic, so it doesn’t.... I'm not doing it. I'm not going to now take this audio and process the audio, and put it up on iTunes, and put it on the website, and send it to the transcript. I'm not doing any of that stuff.
I do this. This is what it's about. If you can set up that routine, that, there's so much leverage from that. Then, if you do write your book, and I wouldn't advise even that it has to be a long book. You just think through yourself, what would be the title of the book that the person I want to be in a conversation with would definitely want to have in their collection? You just offer that to build your list.
Robin: That's what kind of what I'm doing. One of the last, the reason magnets I created, because I have a tendency to create things, then see them, get annoyed by them, and stop them. I know that I shouldn't get annoyed by my own advertising, because I'm always in front of it. It's classic content.
Dean: I get it, yeah.
Robin: But, it's how it goes is, I write like 10,000 word post, it's not a problem.
Robin: I can write short books, and they get shared, they get liked, and everything all the time. It's not a problem.
Dean: There you go.
Robin: I don't have a problem doing this.
Dean: More important about the title and getting in front of the right people.
Robin: Of course.
Dean: But, that it's all there, and then guess what? You build this audience, and then whenever you want to do a workshop, you can do a workshop. That's part of the thing, so you get into that rhythm. I know every year I'm going, I do nine or 10 breakthrough blueprint events. Mostly in Florida, but every year I do a tour. I go to Toronto, London, Amsterdam, Sydney, and it becomes-
Robin: How did you decide the location?
Dean: How what, sorry?
Robin: How did you decide on the locations?
Dean: The places I wanted to go. The great thing is, I wouldn't, there's no way I would be able to do those things if it wasn't for having a podcast that builds an international audience, that has international reach. I couldn't come to London if nobody knew who I was. If I didn't do a podcast, nobody would know who I was, right?
Robin: Yeah. That does make sense. Is your podcast your biggest lead generation asset?
Dean: The podcast is not a lead generation, it's a lead conversion.
Robin: Yeah, lead conversion.
Dean: That's the thing, right.
Robin: I don't remember how I came to the podcast. I think I heard, the first time I went to your podcast was when I was listening to, I Love Marketing. Yeah, so I'm trying to remember how I found it.
Dean: Well, that's, there you go, and that's part of the thing is that, you never know how. Once it's out there, we've had for seven or eight years now a top 50 podcast. That makes a difference.
Robin: I also have one other asset. I'm kind of well-known in my space.
Robin: My partner is, he was also one, she was the biggest trend YouTuber in the fashion space. He is really recognized, even in the street, wherever you go.
Dean: Perfect, so he might be the perfect person to do a podcast with.
Robin: Yeah, I think that would be the best idea. Him doing podcast would be crazy.
Dean: Right. Then, if you can set it all up that all you guys do is talk. Are you in the same place?
Dean: Yeah, so you can do a studio version, or you can be together when you do the podcast, or would you have to do it over the phone?
Robin: When you do your podcast with Joe Polish, do you have a lot of preparation beforehand, or are you just discussing?
Dean: No, uh-uh.
Robin: Because, it seems very natural.
Dean: Yeah, no, it's not preparation.
Dean: That's why, there's part of the thing is that, that's why doing a podcast with another person who, that you're both active, you're both doing ... We both run other businesses, right? That's our main things are, he's running Genius Network, I'm running my stuff. We've got all theses in the trenches perspective that we get together and talk about.
Robin: That's a really good idea.
Dean: I think that, the faster you can do that, yeah, the faster you can do that, the better. The bottom line is, it takes five years to have a five year running podcast. But, the faster you start, the faster, you know what I mean? It's like you can't jump start your way to having 100 episodes.
Robin: No, of course.
Dean: You got to start with episode one, right.
Robin: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense.
Dean: I think you got some. I think you got something there. It's really, I think, it's really getting clear on, that it's okay to be a creator. It's okay to do the thing that you really love, and do it at the highest level possible.
Robin: Yeah, if not you'll get annoyed by people who ask you, "Oh, you're not going to implement it for me?"
Robin: I'd refer them to other people who do that.
Dean: Right, yes, or to partner with somebody who can. Right. I have my, the only reason that I'm able to do as this, just focus on that is that, I've got an integrator who, he runs the operation. The faster you find that, the better.
Robin: I'll have to think about.
Dean: That's awesome.
Robin: Very cool.
Dean: Well, Robin, I think we've said it all.
Robin: Yeah, yes. Thanks a lot, Dean. Thanks so much.
Dean: What's your recap? I'd love to hear just how it landed here. What's your thoughts?
Robin: My recap is that I shouldn't try to fight what I want to do.
Robin: I shouldn't be, yeah. I shouldn't be, like it's not a problem. I think, sometimes I have too much ... I want to go too far too fast, and-
Robin: ... It's my place for where I'm at right now is really good.
Robin: A lot of people don't even get to my space at my age-
Dean: That's right.
Robin: ... In even a lifetime. What am I complaining about?
Robin: It's, I can take things slow and just focus, and enjoy what I'm doing. Because, I have so much free time, and I'm not really enjoying it, because I feel like-
Robin: ... Oh, man, you have to go faster, you have to figure out how to go faster.
Dean: Yes, and that's it. That really helped me, like this is where I'm coming from. What really, a breakthrough for me in the last week has been to put a currency around all of that time that I have, and I think about it, that I have, I'm a venture capitalist who has intellectual property and time that I can invest 1000 hours into something. That-
Robin: That is crazy.
Dean: Right, that's kind of, when you start thinking about where is the best place for me to invest those hours for the highest possible return. That's a, that's what you're looking for.
Robin: I've never thought about my time like this.
Robin: About that investment, and that I'm really rich if-
Dean: It's a game changer.
Dean: You really are. You've got these 1000 hours and your capabilities.
Dean: Right, that you've got smart, that's what they call smart money, right? Now, if you have money too, if you're got that, and time, and money, you're unstoppable.
Robin: Yeah. I can really live by just working on my money, on my money-money for three days a month, and all the rest is a time I can invest in other stuff.
Robin: I can yield returns on the long-term.
Dean: That's exactly right.
Dean: I'm excited for you.
Robin: Yeah, me too. Me too, I am going to grab a coffee with my partner.
Dean: All right, well set your calendar, and let's do the followup in 25 years. I'll be 75, you'll be 50, and we'll talk about how it all played out.
Robin: I'm holding you up to that.
Dean: Perfect, I love it, and we'll do it South of France.
Robin: Perfect, let's do that. Thanks a lot, Dean.
Dean: Thanks, Robin.
Dean: Bye. There we have it. I really liked where that conversation went. I think there's a lot of lessons in that really defining what it is that you want to do, only after you've defined what you want for your life. What is it that you want your business to do? I'm a firm believer that your, the purpose of your business is to support or help you achieve whatever it is that you want to achieve your life-life. The more you can get those aligned, the more you can get to be as close to getting paid for just being you, for doing what you would normally do. That's really a wonderful thing to imagine and engineer for yourself. I think that he's going to have an amazing career ahead of him, and I think that he's going to spend some time doing the thinking, the deep work to think about what it all means for him and what he wants to focus on.
I like these kinds of conversations and I hope you do too. If you want to continue the conversation here, you can go to MoreCheeseLessWhiskers.com. You can download a copy of the More Cheese Less Whiskers book, and if you'd like to be a guest and have conversations like this about your business, just click on the be a guest link and we will hatch some evil schemes with you. That's it for this week. Have a great week, and I'll talk to you next time.