Today on the More Cheese Less Whiskers podcast we're talking with Mark Pettit from just outside of London in the UK where Mark has a nice coaching and consulting practice helping people gain clarity, get their vision right, get their goals straight, and improve their productivity.
He also helps with the business strategy, often increasing their business 3x in as little as a year.
We spent the call talking about how to really package what it is that he does and create system to attract the right people.
If you've listened for any time, you can imagine one thing we focused on was selecting a single target market, the importance of that step, and the leverage it can provide to everything else you do.
If was a great conversation that I'm excited to share with you.
Want to be a guest on the show? Simply follow the 'Be a Guest' link on the left & I'll be in touch.
Download a free copy of the Breakthrough DNA book all about the 8 Profit Activators we talk about here on More Cheese, Less Whiskers...
Transcript - More Cheese Less Whiskers 123
Dean: Mark Pettit
Mark: Good afternoon, Dean, how are you?
Dean: I'm so good, how are you?
Mark: I'm very good. It's a real privilege to be speaking to you.
Dean: Well I am excited. I've got the whole hour blocked right off here. I've got my evil scheme catching notebook here, I'm in my favorite chair,
Dean: It's a beautiful Sunday morning. We've got everything going for us.
Mark: Excellent. Are you in Florida or are you in Toronto?
Dean: No, I'm in Florida, yeah. I understand, I got the report today that there's some snow up in Canada, so that's not for me.
Mark: No, I'm guessing it's still pretty hot over there, isn't it?
Dean: It's beautiful right now, yeah. So where are you?
Mark: I'm in the UK. So I live in a town called Colchester which is in Essex, which is about an hour outside London.
Dean: Okay perfect. Which side of London, where would that be?
Dean: Okay. I've been to-
Mark: Southeast of London.
Dean: I've been around a little bit, there. I went to a place in Cheltenham called the Cowley Manor Inn, which is a really great spot. It was beautiful, loved it.
Mark: Okay, good. Do you come over to London sometimes? Do you do your Breakthrough Blueprint in London?
Dean: I, yep, I do a Breakthrough Blueprint every year in London the last week of June. I've been doing that now for six years, so next year will be the seventh year.
Mark: Wow. How times flies.
Dean: It really does, doesn't it?
Mark: Yeah, yeah. Do you do the Breakthrough Blueprints in a number of cities around the world, do you?
Dean: Yeah, I do mostly in Orlando, all winter. Like I'm here now, for the year. Then I go to, each summer, I do a little world tour. I go Toronto, London, Amsterdam, and Sydney Australia.
Mark: Oh wow, okay. That sounds good.
Mark: Because you do so many different things, don't you? So that's pretty cool, to be doing around. Because that's your product, isn't it? That's just you working with a number of business owners.
Dean: That's exactly right. Yep.
Dean: So cool.
Mark: I mean I've been, I listen to I Love Marketing quite regularly. I have been for the last few years.
Dean: Well that's awesome. So what's the Mark Pettit story here? What are we going to focus on today for us?
Mark: Okay cool. I'm a coach, a business coach. I set up my business, I've been going just shy of two years. Before that I used to be a managing partner in a 50 strong marketing agency in London, working with a lot of FMCD brands. Quite a lot of work with some alcohol brands. So we work mostly with Heineken. We did a lot of their B to B, a lot of their trademark things. So a lot of big brain campaigns. I was a mixture of client services director, handling the big clients in the agency as well as the strategic ones at the agency. Working with the team and building the team up and coaching the team. I decided I've got a young family and traveling up to London and coming home late and all that kind of thing. I really decided I wanted to set up on my own.
Mark: When I was thinking about getting out, I could have gone down the marketing route and working with people that I've consulted or coached or set up my own business there. I decided that I wanted to work with entrepreneurs across their whole business. Which would also allow me to bring in some of my marketing talent to help them as well.
Dean: I love it. What kind of clients are working with now in that capacity?
Mark: I think that's one of the interesting things. I'm working with such a variety of businesses. I'm working with quite a few solopreneurs, it's just them and their business. They may only be in the first couple of years of their business as well as businesses which have between five and 10 employees. I'm working with the founder to help them free up their time to a large extent as well as helping them build the right structure and framework to help them grow their business. It's team based companies as well as solopreneurs.
Dean: Okay. What kind of focus do you have in helping them? What's your approach?
Mark: I think people have come to me for different things initially. Then what happens is when I actually start working with them, we then get into the whole everything to do with their business growth as well as freeing up their time. I've had people come to me in the first instance of one particular client wanted to build a loyalty scheme. I've had lots of experience building loyalty schemes in the past when I was at the marketing agency. That was the rooted. Then once I then started, I then started helping at the old division for the company and freeing up their time and getting its focus on the highest value activities.
That was the root in. Then I've had other people which they come to me because they want to completely free themselves up. They're just taking on, they've got too much responsibility, too many complexities, too many different things going on. They needed someone to help them really simplify, set goals with them, hold them accountable for achieving the goals and just make them a lot more focused and a lot more productive. People have come to me for different things, some people have come to me because they know my background.
Mark: My marketing background and I guess my strategic direction and overseeing businesses. They've come to me for that particular reason.
Dean: Got you.
Mark: Which I think is why it may be slightly a little bit difficult for me from a Profit Activator point of view in terms of having an absolute clarity on my single target market.
Dean: Well the good news is you don't have to only ever have one single target market, that's the misconception that people have about Profit Activator One. When you're applying this model, I look at this as an overlay. You have to overlay and you create a completely different blueprint for each target market. I say select one single market at a time. But you can easily have multiple ones, but it's hard to then lump them all in and try and do especially a before unit marketing program for an umbrella term that people make up like solopreneurs or It sounds like a single target market, but it's not as specific. What's your hope for today? What would be the things that we could talk about and maybe help you out the best with?
Mark: I think brainstorming some ideas would be incredibly useful. I think it's working through the different processes. I have a reasonable amount of clients I work with. The thing that I do in the moment, just in terms of from a, I don't know. Let's call it a service point of view or an experience point of view. At the moment my business is purely one-to-one.
Mark: There's opportunity and I think that one model to potentially move into is group coaching in the future. Where obviously that allows me to leverage my time a little bit more and create an impact with a higher number of people as well as a Mastermind in the future working with 10 to 12 different people.
Dean: Okay. What are you the best at? What's the thing that if you could say, "This is the thing that I can really help people with the best."
Mark: I think one of the things is I get people to really think about their business. I'm good at asking questions and I'm good at getting people to think a lot more into the future than they currently are. I ask them questions about getting clarity around a much much bigger vision, which could be three years or it could be five years. To get them to start thinking about what they really want to achieve in their business. To actually help them create that framework. I'm also very good at helping people really understand their strengths, what they are best at. Where they can add the biggest value to their clients and to their team. I guess I can get them a lot more focused and a lot more productive on what really matters to them in the business.
Mark: I think a lot of business owners that I talk to they're not really clear on what their own strengths are and how they can best move their business forward. I guess a lot of the thinking tools are the questions that I ask them to get them to that point in time. I guess I just make people a lot more effective and a lot more productive.
Dean: Okay. How do you measure that?
Mark: Okay. Then there's two things, one is in terms of turnover. Most of my clients have seen increase in turnover in their business.
Dean: Okay, that should make for our largely American audience, turnover means more business, more revenue, more sales. Not turning over your staff, which is what turnover means over here. But more revenue, more sales, increased revenue.
Mark: I think that it's having more time, if I work with people at the beginning and they're completely overwhelmed and stressed and stretched and all that kind of thing, if I can measure in terms of reducing their workload, so they actually have more freedom.
Dean: I like this.
Mark: Those are more tangible measurements. I think the other, I guess the more intangible ones are they've got more clarity, they've got more confidence and they've got more focus.
Dean: How long do you typically work with somebody? What's a typical engagement look like with you to go through this process?
Mark: We normally have it where I work with people initially for a three month period. What has happened with 90% of clients is they've continued with me for at least a year, 12 months.
Dean: How much do you charge for the three months, for the first-
Mark: I charge 3,000 pounds, which I think is circa four and a half thousand dollars.
Dean: Same thing. That doesn't matter.
Mark: Or something like that.
Dean: It's 3,000 for a three month engagement. In that, how often do you talk to them? Is it in-person, is it on the phone, is it on Skype?
Mark: Yes it's a mixture of the two. I personally prefer to work in-person, but I do also work with people via Skype. Typically, we'll meet either once a week for an hour or we'll meet every two weeks for two hours.
Dean: Okay, once a week.
Mark: A large part of that is because of the accountability side of things as well.
Dean: Yeah I've got it. They're on a road map. Do you give them? Are you taking people through a standardized process that you have that's a 12 week process or are you everyone is original work that you're doing?
Mark: The latter. It's bespoke based on where they are in their business, where they want to get to. What particular challenges that they're struggling with or particular areas of focus that they want to build into their business.
Dean: Okay. Through this process, everyone is different, every experience is different, it's not that you're taking somebody through a curriculum? Through a process.
Mark: I guess my thinking tools and the way I work, there's going to be a lot of familiarity and a lot of I don't know repeating some of the ideas and some of the way people can think or look at things differently.
Dean: Part of this thing that would be very interesting for you to look at is that if you think about the way that you interact with people, even if it seems like you're doing original work and you don't come into it with a set standardized process for it, that if you on reflection looked back over the last three or four engagements, what percentage of the same would they be? Where there was some overlap if you were to say, "Well with this client we worked on this and this. We did these exercises or thinking tools." How much similarity would one have to another? Are they 100% unique, are they 20% unique, what would you say?
Mark: I would say that it's probably, I think there's maybe 50 to 60% of the same thinking tools, strategies, processes that I would work through with everybody, then the rest of it would be unique, so probably 60%, 60% things that are processes that I would go to with everybody. In terms of... There's a time management system, way of working from a setting goals way of working, from building a vision way of working some of the goals that there would be a process that would follow through with everybody.
Dean: Okay, so part of that when you look at that part of the thing that's going to leverage you, because right now if you look at it, just the baseline of what you've got going. You're working one-on-one with people for roughly $250 an hour is about what it works out to be. Do you have any homework or deliverables or anything that you do in between or is it just the engaged time while you're on the phone with them?
Mark: It's the engaged time. There are occasions where people will call me if they've got a specific challenge that they're going through. They talk it through outside at the time we get together or they may send me an email about what do I think about X, Y and Z. Which I'll then go and answer, so there is a little bit of additional time.
Mark: I'll also just send some very, very top line notes after the meeting.
Dean: Okay, so how many people do you work with on this basis? Would the first dream come true for you to have...? What would you consider a full practice?
Mark: A dream come true for full practice would be 25 people, one client.
Dean: That 25 people one-to-one. That would be a great process, just doing the same thing the way that you do it now. Then how long, if I just push the accelerator for you on that, then how long do you think that would be the dream come true?
Mark: I think that would only be the dream come true probably for about six months.
Dean: Right. Exactly.
Mark: Because I would like to-
Dean: Because it wouldn't be a dream come true after that if we were to put it-
Mark: The dream come true after that would be to build a group coaching program.
Dean: Yes, how far off a full practice are you right now?
Mark: I'm 12 people off.
Dean: So would it be okay with you to just skip that going to 25 people and jump right to the group program?
Mark: Yep, absolutely.
Dean: Yeah, because that's often an interesting exercise. That's one of my favorite things to do with people like that is to start to think, "Let's push the accelerator pedal and see what this actually looks like." It's interesting that you had the foresight to realize that that's only going to last for about six months and you're going to say, "Okay, this isn't the dream that I thought it was. It's twice as much work as I'm working right now." Functionally that little bit of extra money isn't worth it to work that hard. It's not really going to change your life. If we could figure out a group program where you could work less for more.
Dean: That's the case. If we say we bring people on for 90 days first for three months. Then what you're longest if we were to say that 90 days is the one. What would be the longest running client that you have?
Mark: The longest running client that I have is 15 months.
Dean: How long do you see that going on?
Mark: Realistically probably, maybe another three or four months.
Dean: Okay. If there's the thing where you think about, is it something that you could imagine that what you have is an 18 month process ultimately. That's three months and then six months and six months and three months or something like that, right?
Dean: Or three months and then two six month periods. Then that might be a good process for you and that there is there an appetite for the way you're presenting it? Is it easy for you to get people involved with this or do you have to sell it or convince them of the benefits of it or is it something they're seeking out?
Mark: No, they're not raising their hand. I don't have the volume of people raising their hand to use one of your examples. I have people inquiring. I don't have the volume of people inquiring that I would ideally want. I'm not in a vending machine scenario yet.
Dean: Right. Right. Right. That's why when I was asking you. First step one is we need to figure out what's the dream come true for you. Dream come true for you would be a either not going to 25 hours engaged a week, which that's tough. That's five hours a day. You know yourself that that's a full day. I think you would... I'm impressed that you thought six months you would last, but that's a grind compared to what your schedule is right now. Looking at getting to where you could imagine in the same amount of time that you're willing to put, that you could leverage that time and get more people, which definitely means that a group type of thing.
Now what we also then have to figure out is what would be a dream come true for your clients. It all has to come down to getting the economics of this right. The economics of marketing are that somebody, we exchange money for goods and services or outcomes. We're exchanging for a benefit, for an outcome. So what we have to really come down to is what is the benefit that you're going to be able to articulate to somebody that shows them the ROI of engaging with you?
Dean: So what's the outcome that you could produce, aside from that you help people get vision, and clarity, and strategy so that in 90 days this is the outcome. That if somebody would point to their hope for the engagement with you, what is it that they're buying?
Mark: Yeah. I think the two key ones are more freedom.
Mark: High levels of freedom and increase in revenue.
Dean: Okay, now how much of an increase in revenue, let's talk about that one because If you can tie what you're doing to revenue then that's the easiest thing to launch from because that becomes then just pure mathematics that then you're selling money at a discount. How much extra revenue do you think you could help somebody create or have you demonstrated that you can help somebody create?
Mark: Yeah I mean I guess probably the best one is three XM in a year. And again I think where I am in the moment is there's quite a wide sphere of turnovers. We all know that when you're turning over less than 100,000 a year and it might be a one or two person business it's a lot harder to create the revenue growth in a short period of time and it's much, much easier to find ways to increase revenue growth when the business is turning over a lot more money.
Dean: Yeah. That's true.
Mark: I mean a perfect example is your nine word email. I mean your nine word email is going to work a lot better with a much, much better list and the right kind of list than a smaller list, the others show the ROI or I could look at something in terms of how can I could work with people to increase the lifetime value of particular clients and then get them to spend a lot more money a lot quicker by focusing on getting people to actually understand who their highest value clients are or their highest value activities that they could focus on.
Dean: Yes. Okay. Yeah, I think that that really could go a long way. How confident are you in the strategies that you do that you would be willing to bet your payment on being able to create that result?
Mark: I'm very confident.
Dean: Okay, so that goes a long way. That goes a long way. When you're finding the right people like that. When you're able to articulate the outcome, and of course when I say that to people, right, I always say to people what would you do if you only got paid if they get the result?
Dean: That's an interesting outcome. Now could you, excuse me, could you do that, could you create a result like that for somebody in 90 days or would it take a year?
Mark: No, I mean I think it could be done 90 days.
Mark: I mean there's a number of different ways of looking at it, isn't there? Your example that you just kind of said, I know that you've done that with websites haven't you?
Mark: Where it's creating the website and then being paid on, I think it's, what is it first order I think, something like that.
Dean: Yeah, first transaction, yeah.
Mark: So I mean you could kind of look... It's interesting isn't it? For some people to actually make it self-liquidating that if it cost X amount for 90 days and you actually make that amount for them in additional revenue it becomes self-liquidating anything on top of that is a pure bonus.
Dean: Well that sets up your one year program.
Dean: I mean if you could set it up that your 90 day program is going to setup your one year program, somebody goes that pays you $3,000 a month or $3,000 for the 90 day program that you're creating enough money that that pays for that plus the 12 month program.
Mark: Yep, yep.
Dean: That might be an interesting thing, right? Get the fast wins and the setup for them.
Mark: Yeah I mean that's a good irresistible offer isn't it? Is the fact that essentially, I mean and there's a number of ways you could position as well isn't it? There's the way that you're talking about with a website where essentially you don't pay anything until you get your first transaction, or there's the you pay for the coaching and if in the 90 days we don't deliver in excess of that amount of additional revenue you get your money back?
Dean: Right. And people say It's really interesting because when I start talking about this with people, what I have to just point out is that I'm not advocating at all times that everything you do has to be a don't pay until you get the results offer. I'm not saying that, I'm saying that would be a great place to come from if you could. But what I am saying is that if we look at a line, on a horizontal line that represents the spectrum of offers, right, on one end at the one pole of the offer is all sales final, no refunds, no exchanges, that's one level of offer. On the other end is don't give me any money, I'm going to work with you, we're going to create the money and then you pay me when this works.
That's the other pole of this with zero friction, zero resistance on that. And every other offer, every offer that you're making lies somewhere on that spectrum between all sales final or you don't pay me until you get a result. The closer that you can get your offer, the further you can slide your offer over to the, well this is crazy, I'd be crazy not to do this, that's where it all comes. Because what you're finding from that, especially when you've got a process that you're confident in and you know works that sometime that was what I found with the websites was that sometimes it's less expensive to just get the result for somebody than it is to convince them to give you money to get the result.
Mark: Yeah, absolutely, yeah, yeah.
Dean: Right, so you might find that you have to, some amount of your time or your process to engage with a new paying client involves talking to people and going through meetings and pitching your service. Not everybody takes it so there's some, some cost of it to do that. Some cost of your time and money. How do you find people right now that you work with? What's your process for filling your practice here?
Mark: There's a number of different ways. I guess the primary is referrals from existing. I get some work from being kind of referred in different Facebook groups. There's my own Facebook page where I put a lot of my articles out or thought pieces and some people get in contact with me on the back of that. I have LinkedIn, so again it's a lot different building relationships, and posting.
Dean: How do you classify yourself on LinkedIn, how do you title yourself?
Mark: LinkedIn's an interesting one because I guess my headline piece within LinkedIn is kind of freeing up your time, doubling your productivity, multiplying your business growth. Then in the summary underneath it's kind of, I then have my title I guess. Business coach, helping people, helping ambitious entrepreneurs do X, Y, and Z.
Mark: Then I guess the other thing that I do is that I write. I write for Lifehack.
Dean: Oh nice.
Mark: I think I've written like 10 articles for Lifehack.
Mark: On a variety of different things. The thing about Lifehack is that they give you pitches or they give you articles to write based on your area of expertise. Mine is productivity for them, so I write a lot about productivity, a lot about mental strength, work/life balance, all of those kinds of things which is a great from a, I don't know, a building more visibility and awareness of what I do. I haven't really advertised or pushed this too much, I created a quite a simple kind of productivity mastery daily planner, just in terms with this content and what I've done is I've kind of promoted that a little bit to different Facebook groups and my Facebook page to begin to build up my list, but my list is not particularly big. It's something, a hundred people.
Dean: Okay, and so those hundred people you probably are including people that you've already worked with or you're working with right now?
Dean: Yeah, okay. That's all part of it, then. In order to really build this group thing, we're going to need to figure out how we can do that's a controllable way for you to build your list up. Do you have anything that you're doing paid ad wise to build your list?
Mark: I haven't done so yet, no, so I was considering using the Daily Planner as the content piece to do some ads around and then what I intend to do in so to kind of use that. And then in January I'm going to create a productivity guide, how you can maximize you're productivity, which again would be something that I would use. I guess I don't see a number of people having almost like content upgrade so if they write an article then there'd be something else on the back of it.
Mark: To learn more as a way of building your list. I haven't done that so much. I've just kind of focused on creating the planner and then I'm going to do a productivity guide and then I'm going to do a guide to goal setting and then I'm going to do a guide to time management.
Dean: Part of this is that you only need one to start the ball rolling. Like a lot of times people want to get all their ducks in a row, like get all these guides and stuff, but the fact is you just need one piece, you need to get moving on advancing people through your process here, right? Because right now you probably have more exposure than you actually have contacts. There's probably more people who read your Lifehack articles, read the stuff in the Facebook groups and all that, but you don't know who they are. You have a lot of invisible followers maybe.
Part of it, you're in the perfect time of year actually if you really think of it, right now coming into, ramping up for planning for next year. Because right now people, they're near the finish line for the year and they may be kind of tallying everything up and realizing they're either falling short of their goals or they're right on target or they need a last push at the end here to get across the finish line of their goals. But either way It's definitely an inflection point, this last, last six weeks of the year. It could be the perfect timing for you to have that kind of thing out there.
Mark: Yep, definitely.
Dean: Yeah, now part of the thing would be so much of the response rate to anything is how the titles of stuff work. Like what would be the title of your planner. And I would definitely package up the planner along with something as a context for it. Rather than just planner, you know?
Mark: Yeah I mean I guess it's all about maximizing their productivity.
Mark: It's about simplifying their day so it's got a section where you only lay out five things you're going to focus on each day. There's a little space to lay out what they're doing in their morning routine and then there's a little space at the end from a gratitude perspective in terms of what they've achieved each day.
Mark: It simplifies as gets them more focused on I guess their more important activities of the day.
Dean: Yes, and that's interesting, I don't know if you follow Brendan Brouchard.
Mark: I do.
Dean: Is a perfect, okay so perfect example of High Performance Habits is a really great title right now. That's what he's going out into the world with and he had before High Performance Habits, he had a one page worksheet of How Millionaires Plan Their Day.
Mark: Okay, yep.
Dean: That's an interesting thing right and because there's a lot of curiosity around that, a lot of curiosity around, and the implication is that this is what these people, when you're saying you're working with people who would be aspiring millionaires or aspiring successful entrepreneurs so when you start thinking about that, part of the thing might be to think about what would be the approach or the difference. You know the differentiation between your approach and just a planner per se.
Mark: Yeah, yeah.
Dean: What is your approach? I mean what would be different about that? What would get somebody's attention? Or do you have anything that when do offer it that it seems to be well received?
Mark: I guess the thing that is best in terms of being well received is my coaching and my articles. I mean my articles on Lifehack, they all kind of range from like over 12,000 views so they get a reasonable amount of views.
Mark: I think that my, and I get quite a lot of positive comments on the articles I write because they're all quite actionable.
Dean: Yes. So it sounds like you don't have a call to action in your Lifehack articles, though, then.
Mark: No. You're not allowed. Ideally it would be perfect if you could, but you're not able to put CTAs in there. Every single article that I write outside of that for my website that I then post, there's a CTA. The CTA is to download my Productivity Planner, it's to join my email list or there's also a CTA in terms of scheduling a call with me. I don't know I guess your super signature there's three next steps that people could kind of go through with me.
Dean: Yes, exactly. That's what I was looking for from you. How to really get that process started where you're starting with one thing and then leading to the next sort of progressive things that somebody could do.
Dean: Yeah. Do you have any coaching or guidance or philosophy around planning that makes the planner work or that it's different?
Mark: I think it's the idea of there's lots and lots of people putting articles out there and talking about the benefits of creating a morning routine. Everything's about a morning routine and putting all of that kind of thing upfront. I think sometimes it's the second area of the actual end of the day actually expressing your gratitude and actually looking at what you've achieved during the day and then setting up for the next day.
Mark: So I think that that's, where the planner includes both setting up the morning routine but then also looking at your achievements to kind of create that, building momentum and then setting up the next day.
Dean: That could be an interesting distinction in itself that it's the, how to end your day, that's kind of an interesting, that's an interesting approach. Everybody puts a lot of emphasis on the beginning of the day, starting your day, your morning routine there.
Mark: Yeah, that is a nice point of difference isn't it is to kind of focus on. Because I think it's the whole gratitude thing, isn't it. It's just sitting, taking a step back, looking at actually what you've achieved, thinking about what you've done, and then setting yourself up for the next day-
Mark: Which a lot of people just don't do. They just kind of finish their day and that's it and then they do whatever, wake up the next morning, start again.
Dean: Right. What it has to come down to then is if we look for you, the progression is that having a specific planner and are there a specific type of entrepreneur that you work with? Is there anybody more than another, like when you say solopreneurs, what are they, what kind of businesses are they running?
Mark: Yeah I mean a lot of them are running creative. So a lot of the solopreneurs, they're running creative businesses. Whether that's in the marketing space, in a PR space, in a photography space, in a branding space.
Mark: Which I guess, because of my background, because of my marketing background there's a nice synergy there.
Dean: Yes. And so what, part of the thing that's a very specific differentiator is thinking about photographers for instance as a specific target audience. Or designers, solo graphic designers, freelancers is really what they would be, right? Somewhere between what they would consider freelance or agency on their way that they want to have a nice design business. The beauty of Facebook is that it perfectly allows us to do what I talk about in Profit Activator One which is select a single target market.
Right, you can target, you can target your message to just photographers and have a planner that is specifically for photographers, right? If you start thinking about those kinds of things like if you start thinking about the millionaire photographer or something like that as an aspiration that you're helping people move towards or the million dollar photographer, or what would be their dream come true? Six figure photographer, whatever that makes sense that if this is the planner that is the foundation for building a six figure photography business or a million dollar photography business, then that would be a great way to go.
Mark: Yeah. I guess that's an interesting way of looking at it isn't it is in terms of focusing on those different areas where there's photographers, designers, marketing agencies, PR agencies.
Mark: And then creating a specific piece of content. I guess it's whether the planner is a strong enough entry point or whether it needs to be something a little bit stronger whether it's around goal setting for X or whether it's around time management for X because the time management and freeing people up. As you well know is one of the biggest challenges many entrepreneurs face just simply managing their time.
Dean: Yeah. But you look at the way like, I use often as an example, since we're talking about photographers, one of the biggest examples that I use is a photographer actually in the UK that they have a website called weshootbottles.com and that's all. When you go to that website all it is, is beautifully photographed bottles, packages. If you have a product that's packaged in a bottle, you're going to feel like this is the place for me because there's so many examples of beautifully photographed bottles.
Now that may seem like a limiting thing for a commercial photographer, which that company is, but they also have, then, a sister website called weshootcans.com. When you look at this, what I'm talking about with this planner is that you can have a planner that's specifically geared towards photographers and reinforcing the habits, and the activities, and the focus that a growth oriented photographer would need. Same thing with a growth oriented PR specialist. That you can focus it like that which makes it seem like even on the surface, this is the planner for me. Rather than one of those generic planners.
Mark: Yeah, absolutely.
Dean: That's the curiosity and the specificity of that is always at a premium. I was just speaking at an event this last week and one of the things that I always love to do if I can when I'm speaking about converting leads and lead generation, that I like to go into the pharmacy here and I like to buy a bottle of Excedrin Migraine and a bottle of Excedrin Extra Strength and you always pay at least a 30% premium for Excedrin Migraine over Excedrin Extra Strength. The funny thing about it is it's the exact same pill. There's zero difference in the ingredients, but you're paying a premium because it's packaged to tell you this is good for migraines. If you're thinking about the daily plan for growth oriented photographers, or the million dollar photography planner, that's much more specific in two ways. It's specific in that it's calling out to them as exactly what they are, but it's also then calling out to them in alignment with what their aspiration is.
Mark: Yeah, absolutely. I mean the Excedrin example is really good because it's all about it's been packaged and targeted, isn't it?
Mark: It's been packaged in the right way and it's targeting people who suffer from migraines.
Mark: So it's very specific.
Dean: Which they perceive that a migraine is different than a regular headache.
Mark: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yes, and people who experience migraines will tell people that it is very different from a headache. Yeah, that's good. When you, because a lot of the stuff you did in the past, wasn't it, was a lot in real estate?
Dean: Yes, absolutely, still is.
Mark: Still is, okay.
Dean: Yeah. We have a whole division of our business that's exclusively for real estate agents and there's the perfect example. I on the front end of this I have a book called Listing Agent Lifestyle which is the exact words that are appealing to a real estate agent. They want to be a listing agent, but they don't want to have the... Traditionally the success in real estate is counter to having the nice lifestyle. It's very time consuming so to combine those words, and in it I lay out an eight point plan for eight elements of living the Listing Agent Lifestyle.
I use that, it's a short book, I have a company called 90 Minute Books and we create short lead generation books. I did a 90 minute book, I advertised that on Facebook and the last I'll spend let's say $25,000 a quarter on ads that generate seven or 8,000 leads from that and I do a weekly podcast called Listing Agent Lifestyle where I'm highlighting all of the things about the Listing Agent Lifestyle. And doing things like this, More Cheese, Less Whiskers where I'm working with a real estate agent to help them plan their plan for the Listing Agent Lifestyle. Then I lead people into my GoGo Agent membership platform. That whole thing flows where it's all started by selecting a single target market. Even when you say real estate agents isn't enough, I'm specifically focused on people who are attracted to the idea of being a listing agent, you know? And that's the model.
Mark: Yeah, yeah, absolutely.
Dean: That's the model.
Mark: So that's the aspiration, isn't it, that's the aspiration they're looking to try and achieve?
Dean: Yes, and so part of the thing that you have as a, that you have as an opportunity is if you were to pick, because you're starting from scratch really in a way that you've got some clients right now that are a great baseline for you that you've got a good income, you've got some stability in that. You're not like scrambling to try and figure out how to make some money to get by here. You've got a baseline and you've also got some freedom. You've got some extra time because you're only at half what a full practice would be. I'm saying lets redeploy instead of aspiring to get that to 25, let's focus on redeploying that time and building a system that gets you all the photographers. If you pick one, that's your key because now you can create a system to help them grow their business and all the assets and the insight and the tools that you're creating will be equally applicable to other photographers and so you're kind of building something that will be easier to do as a group.
Mark: Yeah, definitely. And the thing, the potential would be irresistible offer that we kind of touched on earlier. That's a really interesting route in isn't it?
Dean: Yeah, because now what you're doing is you are creating in the first time that you do it you're creating case studies. You start with one, that N of one study and that would be one photographer and you give it your all for the next 12 months here and you document everything you're doing.
Mark: Yeah, I think that's a very, very good point. I think one of the things when you kind of go through and you work with people and you even know some of the themes, and some of the tools, and some of the concepts are the same-
Mark: It's all about actually laying it out and documenting.
Mark: Because sometimes when you're kind of in it you just... even though you know you're doing, you haven't laid it all out. There's not a real, an incredibly clear structure around it.
Dean: That's right.
Mark: Yeah, yeah.
Dean: Now once you've done it and you've got a case study. You've got the algorithm, you figured it out, because the good news is, photography, among of a lot of things, photography requires being local. Photographers, It's not a business that you could have a broad area. Most photographers are focused very locally.
Mark: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I think one of the other things that I always kind of help a lot of, well help quite a few of my clients is, is to raise their prices.
Mark: So obviously just the simple act of raising your prices actually makes quite a tangible difference to revenue very quickly.
Dean: Yeah. And there we go. That's the same, and that would be, yeah, I think that's a great plan there for you.
Mark: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, it's a good roadmap isn't it just to kind of layout and actually build something. I think that what this will allow me to do is to actually take a step back and layout what a three year vision would be for this.
Mark: And then begin to then work back and then layout very clear 90 day goals.
Mark: Around things, okay.
Dean: I like what I'm hearing.
Mark: Yeah, I know. It's good. Yeah, it's always inspiring to kind of sit down and go through this with someone like you Dean so very much appreciated.
Dean: Yeah, I enjoy it. I think you got a great plan. Stay in touch because I'd love to see how this progresses for you.
Mark: No, no, no, I definitely will. I'll drop you an email. Are you still doing the I Love Marketing podcast? Is it weekly you're doing it currently?
Dean: We don't do it weekly, Joe and I together, we put out, there's always something out there, but we were just together in Chicago and mentioning that we would need to get more on a regular schedule, but I'm putting out these podcasts, More Cheese, Less Whiskers, every week. And then I do one with Dan Sullivan called the Joy of Procrastination.
Mark: You did the procrastination one don't you?
Mark: Yeah, brilliant.
Dean: And that's a fun-
Mark: Yeah, yeah, I've listened to a few of those, they're very, very good.
Dean: That's a fun podcast too.
Mark: Yeah, because it's a massive challenge that a lot of entrepreneurs are facing.
Dean: That's it, that's right.
Mark: Absolutely. Okay, it's a pleasure Dean, I really, really appreciate you taking the time to run through this.
Dean: Thanks Mark, I really enjoyed it. I'll talk to you soon.
Mark: Great. Okay, thanks Dean, see you, bye.
Dean: Thanks bye. And there we have it. What a nice set this was, it was a good conversation, I really enjoyed talking with Mark. Now I think that getting your starting out with you can help solopreneurs or small business owners with clarity and productivity and focus is a different sort of thing than helping photographers build a million dollar practice. There's a different thing when you get very specific with not only who this is for, but what the outcome is. The promise of where the benefit, just like what I mentioned about with the real estate focus of the Listing Agent Lifestyle. That there's an outcome that people are really focused on. I think that Mark's going to really take some action here. He seems like an action taker and so I asked him to stay in touch and I'll keep you updated on what happens. But I think that this idea of having a specific planner for specific industries, especially with Facebook right now allowing us to be able to target people by different categories, why wouldn't we? It's so easy.
I'm always amazed when I walk into the pharmacy and that the Excedrin Migraine is always selling for a premium over the Excedrin Extra Strength, even though it's the same thing. One if generic, one is very specific. I think that's the big lesson there for you. Here's what to do, if you want to continue this conversation you can go to MoreCheeseLessWhiskers.com, you can download a copy of our More Cheese, Less Whiskers book, and if you'd like to be a guest on the show just click on the Be a Guest link and we can get together and hatch some evil schemes for you. We talked a lot Eight Profit Activators and if you'd like to see how all of that is affecting your business and watch a one hour video about the Eight Profit Activators from a presentation that I did at our live I Love Marketing conference. You can go to BreakthroughDNA.com, BreakthroughDNA.com and you can download a copy of the Breakthrough DNA book that goes along with it. That's it for this week. Have a great week and I will talk to you next time.