While other entrepreneurs focus on vanity metrics like number of Twitter followers or blog hits, Dane Maxwell says there are only two metrics that matter to him: leads and profits.
In this interview you’ll learn the process he uses to go from idea, to leads, to product, to profits. You may have noticed in the previous sentence that getting leads comes before building the actual product for Dane. That’s how he ensures success with minimal risk.
Dane is the founder of Zannee, which makes real estate tools for recruiting and retaining brokers.
The FULL program
About Dane Maxwell
Dane Maxwell is the Founder of Zannee, which makes real estate tools for recruiting and retaining brokers.
At age 22, Dane started out of his parents toy closet building an intranet website for real estate companies. By asking them countless questions and passionately learning about their problems, it grew into much more. Fast forward 5 years, and Zannee.com now works with hundreds of the real estate companies, helping them with real estate recruiting websites, real estate intranet websites, and real estate transaction management systems.
You can get direct access to the Rockerfeller report Dane wrote here.
Three messages before we get started. First, my new sponsor is Site5. Site5 hosting is the inexpensive way to bootstrap your Ruby on Rails, Python, or other applications. If you look at RatePoint, you’ll see that 713 reviewers gave Site5 a near perfect score of 4.95 out of 5. Site5.com, a lot of 5’s in that spot, right? Site5.com.
Next, what could your site do if you let users import their Gmail or Yahoo or other address books using CloudSponge? Well, maybe you can grow virally, the way Facebook did, or maybe you can give users an online address book the way Plaxo did, or you can let users talk to their friends the way Twitter did. Or maybe you can come up with your own ideas for letting your users upload their address books to your site. It’s a snap with CloudSponge, and if you use discount code “Mixergy” you’ll get a few free months on CloudSponge.com.
Finally, Grasshopper.com is where you go to supercharge your company’s phones. You can give your phones unlimited extensions, or you can add a toll-free number to your phones, or you can get your calls transferred anywhere. There are many more features, many more powers that you can add to your current phone system on Grasshopper.com.
Here’s your program.
Andrew: Hey, everyone. I’m Andrew Warner. I am the founder of Mixergy.com, home of the ambitious upstart and the only place that brings you entrepreneurs talking about how they really built their business and me bringing you their best ideas so you can go out there and build your company, too.
Well, today’s guest says that most founders are focusing their time on the worst parts of business, the biggest time wasters like Twitter followers or number of hits to their websites. He is Dane Maxwell, founder of Zannee which makes web apps for the real estate industry. His software helps real estate professionals do things like follow up with leads, recruit agents, go paperless, and communicate with their co-workers.
Dane, let me start with this. You’re saying that most of the entrepreneurs listening to this are focusing on the wrong things and wasting their time. What is the right thing for them to focus on?
Dane: Leads and profit, period.
Andrew: Leads and profit.
Andrew: What do you mean by leads? Leads for new customers who will then bring in profits?
Dane: Well, it’s certainly not Twitter followers because that doesn’t equal money, and if you’re in business, the primary purpose of a business is to generate a profit. By generating a profit you have a viable business. By having Twitter followers and hits to your website, you don’t have a viable business until there’s profit. So focusing on generating leads and emphasis on generating leads and an emphasis on closing then to customers so you have that profit, that’s all you should be focusing on.
Andrew: Most people start their day by checking Twitter to see if they have any messages coming in, maybe to see how many hits they have to their website, maybe e-mail. How do you start your day? What’s the first thing you do?
Dane: Every day the first thing I do, the very first hour of every day is revenue generation, period. Nothing else. I don’t do anything else until I spend an hour on revenue generation.
Andrew: What do you mean by revenue generation? I’m going to ask you in a minute what your revenue is, but what do you mean by revenue generation? What is it for you?
Dane: Stuff and activities that bring in money.
Andrew: What kind of stuff, what kind of activities bring in money in your business?
Dane: Lead generation and closing leads.
Dane: Specifically, a lot of my success in building my company has been event based marketing, product launches, e-mail marketing, and webinars.
Andrew: I didn’t realize that software, especially software the kind that you sell, is sold by webinars and squeeze pages and all the tactics that I associate with info products. Where did you get this? Where did you get this method?
Dane: I think I learned it first from Perry Marshall.
Andrew: Who’s Perry Marshall?
Dane: He’s the Google AdWords expert.
Andrew: I see. Okay. And the Google AdWords was basically saying use all the info product tactics to sell your software, sell anything online.
Dane: Sort of, yeah, yeah.
Dane: Well, he was arguing that it’s a pretty good practice to pay for traffic because then you’re forced to optimize to make more than what you’re paying for it.
Dane: And if you’re paying for traffic, why would you ever send someone to a website . . . okay, basically, if you have 100 people that come to a website at a two percent conversion rate, which is a good number, 2 out of 100 buy. The other 98, they’re gone forever. If you have optimized lead capture page, now for 100 visitors that come to your site, you could have 25 new e-mail addresses. Instead of two new e-mail addresses, you’ve got 23 more, 25 total because you’ve generated those leads that you can now follow up with and close, so more customers.
Andrew: I saw that every single site that I saw that you created had a video and a big prominent box asking for my e-mail address. And in order to even do research on you, I had to give you my e-mail address and then proceed to the next page where, as we’ll talk about later on in this program, I was offered a recurring payment based product.
Andrew: That’s what you’re saying, get people to the website and immediately get their e-mail address and do everything you can afterwards to get paid by them.
Dane: Yes. Absolutely. If you believe in your product and service, you are doing a disservice to the world if you don’t do everything in your power to get them to be a paying customer. If you truly believe in what you do and you’re not doing everything in your power to inform them and educate them and close them so they can benefit with your products, you’re really, I think you’re offering a disservice to the world.
Andrew: So, how hard a close do you give people?
Dane: Not hard. It depends. No, not hard at all. If you talk with any of my clients, you know, I have amazing rapport with all of my clients.
Dane: My client base is in the hundreds. It’s not in the thousands. I like it that way because that allows me to have a lean lifestyle while I’m working. Just take care of a select group of people, and they take care of me. So, how hard is my close? It’s like, here are all the facts. Here’s what you don’t get if you walk away. Here’s what you get if you make the decision. It’s up to you.
Andrew: And what are your prices? Can you tell people?
Dane: Yeah, yeah. Well, it depends on the product. We’ll just stick with the most popular products I have, I guess.
Andrew: Sure. Yeah. How many do you have?
Dane: Well, failed or successful?
Andrew: You asked that because you’re just launching products, and you see what works. Grow that, kill what doesn’t.
Andrew: You actually, if I understand this right before we get into the list of products, you will even launch a page offering a product that you haven’t created yet, see if you can sell people on it, and then you create it, based on whether you are able to sell them
Dane: Every day, all the time.
Andrew: Every day?
Andrew: What’s the most recent product that you created that didn’t really exist and won’t exist unless somebody pays you money?
Dane: Well, they don’t actually pay me money and then I go build it.
Dane: That would be a little . . . that would be completely dishonest.
Dane: To sell something you don’t have. But you sell them on the promise and end result of whatever it is that you are going to be providing will give them, and then you get an opt-in and an e-mail address. As soon as you have so many opt-ins, you can assume there is interest, and then you can proceed the product launch sequence to sell that product.
Andrew: Okay. Give me an example of a product that you created that way, and I’m going to come back. I’ve got so many questions here. I’ll come back to the list of products you already have in existence, but I’m too curious about this one question. Give me an example of a product that came to you one day in the shower, what you did with it, how you tested it, what the results were, and then how you ended up building it.
Dane: Sure. And I think it might have been a little misleading to say every day. I’m not creating a new product every day, but every day it’s going on either automatically or passively without me. I’m signing up someone to a lead list that may be a product in the future.
Dane: So you want to know a specific example. Well, there’s only one thing you need to start a business, one thing. And it’s not a Twitter page. It’s not a Facebook page. It’s not a website. It’s not a company phone number. It’s not a logo. It’s not a business plan. It’s definitely not venture capital. It’s a paying customer, the only thing you need to start a business.
Once you realize that, you can just go start doing things that are just important. You can do the least amount of work possible to sell that thing to a customer. So, if you only need a paying customer to start a business, then you don’t really even need an idea for a product because you can just ask them what their problems are, which is exactly how all of my products are built. I didn’t come up with any of the ideas on my own.
Andrew: Make it concrete for me. Give me an example so that I can walk through your process with you.
Dane: Let’s do recruiting steroids or sexy recruiting.
Andrew: Sexy recruiting, okay. What was the idea that popped in your head for sexy recruiting?
Dane: I’m going to take the Michael . . . Dan Kennedy is a person that I follow a little bit religiously, well, a lot religiously actually. There’s a guy in there that sells an information product on how to use teleseminars and event based marketing to sell your products.
Dane: So, I took his teleseminar concept and applied it to real estate for brokers to do recruiting.
Dane: So, before I built the product, I threw up a really ugly squeeze page to ask for their e-mail address. I say, here’s a calendar from . . . it was November, no, October, November, December. I’m going to teach you over three months how to do an event based teleseminars for recruiting, and here’s what it’s going to cover, kind of like college curriculum. Colleges do this really well. In fact, colleges are probably the most ingenious marketers in the world because they prey on people’s desire to be credentialed, which doesn’t even really matter in most cases unless you’re doing brain surgery, of course.
I told them here’s what I’m going to be doing. I’m going to be teaching you this program. I’m going to help you hold three events. It might recruit agents. It might not. But it’s going to be a lot of fun and you can give it a shot. It’s a hundred bucks. In a week, I had 30 people sign up, and so it was three grand extra I made that week, and I didn’t have the product created yet. Once those 30 people committed, then I taught them over three months.
Then, I think, like two months in, then I said, “All right. It’s worked for these 30 people. We’re going to take 10 more. That’s $300.” And so, I made another three grand, six grand total on this, on a product that never existed. I funded its creation by charging upfront, being upfront with them about what they’re going to learn, and then now I have a product that was all created without any risk or anything like that.
Andrew: Okay. I want to dig into that and then come back I promise to all the questions that I passed on earlier. The first page that you offer, that you had up was just asking for an e-mail address, saying this is essentially what I’m offering you, the course, the details on the course, but the first step was getting their e-mail address, right?
Dane: Yeah. All the time, always.
Andrew: The next step is getting payment?
Dane: No. The next step is . . . that would be too simple.
Andrew: Okay. When they hit submit, what do they see after that?
Dane: Thank you. If there’s enough interest, I’ll be in touch.
Andrew: Oh, really? So, you’re not saying, give me a deposit or anything. You’re not saying, pay me. If there’s enough interest, then I will put this thing together.
Dane: Right. No, I had like 150 people opt into that, and 30 ended up buying.
Andrew: So, you have 150 people, and at that point you say, it’s probably a go. I’m going to now do what? Create the sales page where people can give you their credit cards?
Andrew: Okay. And then 30 people paid and you said, “Boom, $3,000 to have a few phone calls or a few webinars. That’s worth my time. I’m in business.”
Andrew: Gotcha. Okay. How did you get the people to your website in the first place?
Dane: E-mail marketing to a rented list or a purchased list and then promoting a very valuable piece of information to them so that it’s not perceived as spam. And then getting them to opt-in to my permission list on a lever and then following up to see what their problems are so I can help them solve them there.
Andrew: So, what you were doing was buying lists, which sounds like spam though.
Dane: I haven’t done it for probably a year, but that’s how I started. I think I started in ’06 or ’07 actually, buying or renting a list or doing an endorsed promotion. So, I’ve got all the RE/MAX brokers’ e-mail addresses. I can send them out and be like, “Hey, do you need any help recruiting?” That’s exactly what’s on their mind all the time. So when it comes in, I’m identified with them. Do you need help recruiting? They’re like, yes. They don’t even stop to consider that it would be spam.
It might be spam, but it’s all spam compliant with the unsubscribe and people can unsubscribe. So, I don’t think of it as spam, really.
Andrew: Okay. So, you get their e-mail address because I could get it pretty easily, too. RE/MAX agents are very willing to put their e-mail address up on the Web because they’re looking for new customers.
Andrew: In fact, all brokers are. And so, you got their e-mail addresses that way. How else do you get e-mail addresses, or how else do you get people to these squeeze pages that you create?
Dane: I’ve just initially, in the last 30 days, started doing pay per click. I have a whole automated webinar sequence where if someone would click a Google ad, opt-in to a list, get a sequence of e-mails, go to a webinar that’s prerecorded and automatically plays back and generates a sale, all on auto pilot. So when I was traveling the last part of 2010, this webinar was going through, and it was all driven through pay per click for keywords, like real estate recruiting.
Andrew: And you were doing the webinar while you were away?
Dane: No. It played automatically without me.
Andrew: Okay. All right. Okay. So you started recently doing some pay per click. You also get e-mail addresses off the Web. How else do you get, or how else in the past did you get people to your site to give you their e-mail address, to take action on that squeeze page that you created?
Dane: That’s it.
Andrew: That’s it?
Dane: Yeah, yeah.
Andrew: Okay. All right. To me, actually, between you and me that does sound a little bit like spam. If you’re taking people’s e-mail addresses and sending them offers that they didn’t ask for, that does seem intrusive.
Dane: Yeah. You’ll get like one percent of the people might say something.
Dane: But in the end there’s more value being created with the world, and I’m not sending offers for Viagra or sex stimulants. I’m saying, here’s some information that will help you with recruiting. If you want it, it’s here. If not, no problem.
Andrew: OK. All right. Now, that’s an info product, too. That’s a webinar. You also have other products like . . . what’s the one I saw which gives real estate agents an e-mail address that they can use. When they find a new prospect, they e-mail that prospect’s contact information to the system you create, and then you follow up with them and tell them how they should follow up with their prospects.
Dane: I consider that a failed product, Andrew.
Andrew: You consider that a failed product. Okay.
Andrew: How much money did you invest in creating that software?
Dane: Thirty grand.
Andrew: You invested 30 grand in that?
Andrew: Okay. What’s behind the scenes going on?
Dane: A couple hundred. It makes a couple hundred bucks a month.
Dane: You asked what’s behind the scenes?
Andrew: Yeah. What else beyond that auto responder system?
Dane: Oh, well, that’s ClientLunchBox. ClientLunchBox.com.
Dane: People are paying for it, but I still consider it a failed product because it’s like a contact database for realtors who don’t like contact databases, and I did everything that I always do to reduce risk. I had a squeeze page up, hey, here’s the product. Here’s a story, like one realtor and how they use it. They can opt-in, and they can request that. Then, I had 500 agents opt-in and say I really want the system.
I product launched it without any payment system, like 37signals teaches. Launch your software without a payment system until you see people actually using it. And then, they signed up and then I found out that even though they asked for it and even though I did everything to reduce the risk, agents don’t want to be accountable people, and a contact database forces them to be accountable.
Andrew: I see. Okay. So, you spent $30,000 and you discovered that. What would you do differently now? Would you ask for payment, maybe, before you started building it?
Dane: Oh, I don’t think so.
Dane: I just wouldn’t sell anything to realtors.
Andrew: But everything you’re selling is to realtors, isn’t it?
Dane: Oh, no, no. My clients are real estate companies.
Andrew: Oh, gotcha. So, give me a successful product.
Dane: Recruiting Ninja.
Andrew: Recruiting Ninja, and that RecruitingNinja.com for anyone that wants to see.
Dane: That’s my automated webinar sequence, so if you wanted to see how I do the whole auto responder, you can see how I do the drip follow-up and how they go to the webinar. And they can go there and opt-in and sign up and see how the whole process is done.
Andrew: Okay. And at the end of it, what are people buying?
Dane: The $1,000 setup fee, the $200 a month Internet based recruiting system. So, that’s $3,400 they’re paying me in the first year and then $2,400 a year after that, if they stay.
Andrew: And what do they get for that?
Dane: They get a complete Internet marketing system, step by step, to do their Facebook marketing, their Craigslist marketing, their Twitter marketing, their e-mail marketing.
Andrew: This is software?
Dane: Yeah. Well, yes. I’ll explain. And a completely custom website that they can use to promote, like a career page for them to send agents to so they can learn about the company without the broker’s time.
Andrew: Gotcha. Okay. So, it’s a web page and it’s some educational content. And how does the software fit in?
Dane: Well, the software produces the website. It’s like a CMS, but then I’ve got this thing that I came up with where it’s called the Ninja checklist. It’s a step by step checklist that walks them through everything they need to be doing. It’s the 20 percent of the effort, 80 percent result gold mine sweet spots that a broker can use online to get the highest impact with their Internet recruiting.
Dane: So, it’s really cool. Each checklist . . . you might actually consider this for your Mixergy action step.
Dane: Things that you’re doing. I have a checklist item, and it says there’s three pages that a broker really needs to have on their website if they want to be as influential as possible when recruiting. One is a page targeted towards experienced agents. One is a page that talks about their lead generation system that they offer an agent, and the third page is the testimonials of other agents and how happy they are at the office.
Each one of those three things would be its own checklist item, and it would create an experienced agent page. And then, there’d be a “show how” video, and you click “show how” and it slides down ad there’s a three minute video explaining how to implement that step. I use Wistia for that, which I think I found through Mixergy.
Andrew: Oh, cool.
Dane: And then, they can check that item off, and then go to the next item on the checklist. Real estate brokers are incredibly untech savvy. In fact, they really kind of fear the Internet in a lot of ways because it’s just changing so fast. Heck, some days I fear the Internet because I feel like I’m losing track. I’m pretty up-to-date and I still feel like I’m sometimes behind.
Real estate brokers, they really need help. So, the benefit of this is that instead of spending five hours on implementing a recruiting system on their own, they can spent 30 minutes following my checklist and implement it and even get better results.
Andrew: Okay. So what you’re saying, you’re going to create a website for them and you’re going to walk them through the process of building that website out and customizing it to their needs. And then every month, they pay you $200 to maintain that website, and do they get anything else for that?
Dane: Yeah, absolutely. They get a complete step by step checklist for how to set up their Facebook page, how to do their status updates. Real estate companies have terrible status updates. It’s like, another year and another number one ranking for our company, and like, we don’t care.
Andrew: I saw that. I see that all the time. They’re so eager, too. When they want to relate, they’ll say, “Isn’t the weather great out today?” Just completely awkward.
Dane: Yeah, yeah. Well, I did a survey of real estate agents, and I asked agents, “What pisses you off about your current real estate broker?” Oh my gosh, you wouldn’t believe some of the responses.
But I condensed all the 160 responses down to 14 recurring items, like agents want to be paid on time. They don’t want any surprises when they get their commission checks. They don’t want any favorites played in the office. They don’t want the broker to hand off leads to their mistress that they could be sleeping with or playing favorites and stuff like that. We took all those 14 items and crafted status updates that target each of those needs.
Andrew: Oh, you wrote the status updates for them?
Dane: Yeah, yeah.
Andrew: I see. That way they could . . . I see, like Cyrano. You’re whispering in their ear what they should be saying to their prospects.
Dane: Right, right.
Andrew: Gotcha. Okay. Then, people pay you two hundred bucks a month for that after paying you $1,000 set-up fee.
Andrew: And actually that leads into a set of points that you and I talked about before the interview, ingredients that you put into every business that you have. And one of them is recurring revenue. Why do you look for recurring revenue instead of reducing the risk for your customer and saying, pay one time, come back if you’re happy?
Dane: You know, the bane of every business is customer acquisition. It’s the most painful thing to acquire a customer. So why go to all that work to acquire a customer and only charge once, when you can get recurring revenue and further help them solve their problem than they would be able to on their own.
So recurring revenue, because I do a ton of work to acquire a customer, I want to continue to benefit from them if I help them. Secondly, to live a freedom based lifestyle, a freedom based business, a lifestyle business, recurring revenue is not negotiable. It’s critical. You have to have it.
Andrew: Okay. I said earlier that I’d come back and ask you about your revenue. What do you feel comfortable saying about your revenue?
Dane: Sure. Revenue’s last year in 2010 were around $400,000.
Andrew: You were traveling a lot. You and I met by e-mail because you signed up for Mixergy at some point last year, and you said, “Great to meet you, Andrew. I love your stuff. Don’t bother e-mailing me back. I’m going to be away for three months.” How much of last year were you away, and where were you traveling?
Dane: The last three months of the year. I was gone from September 14th to December 14th.
Andrew: To where?
Dane: Bouncing around Europe, Indonesia, Thailand, Egypt, Denmark, Amsterdam, Rome, Venice. I didn’t go to Germany or France. I’m looking forward to going back there, and I didn’t go to England. I’m kind of castle hungry. I want to see some castles, too. So we have a wedding we’re going to in April, my girlfriend and I. It’s going on in Florida at the end of April, and we’re going to take a 14-day cruise across the Atlantic to England and tour some castles and then fly home. I don’t have to plan anything. I don’t have to give my notice anywhere. We just go. I could close the laptop right now, and we could go wherever we wanted.
Andrew: What did you have to do while . . . sorry?
Dane: And that’s because of the recurring revenue.
Andrew: Yeah, I was going to say. So what do you have to do while you’re away to babysit the recurring revenue and make sure it doesn’t disappear while you’re away?
Dane: Well, the products are really good so brokers don’t cancel them. Some do, but we still have automated marketing systems that bring new leads in and new customers in. So the revenues hold. Revenues didn’t drop at all while I was away. In fact, they might have gone up a little bit. Does that answer your question?
Andrew: Yeah, yeah, it does. All right. So recurring revenue, that’s one ingredient that you insist on having in every one of these businesses that you even test. If you come up with the idea, you want it to have recurring revenue. The other thing is automation. You’ve talked about automation throughout this interview so far. How are you automating, and what kind of automation are you using?
Dane: The simplest, most effective is, I think, AWeber auto responders.
Andrew: Where you get someone’s e-mail address and through Aweber, you give them a response right away, and then maybe a response in a couple of days and then another e-mail after that. And you just keep dripping the marketing to them.
Dane: Yeah. An example sequence would be, meet five of the most successful recruiters in the country. And so, they put their e-mail address in, and every day they get an auto responder message where I introduce them and they learn from one of the top recruiters in the country that I interview. And each of these top five recruiters just so happens to use my product, and so they really want the product after they go through that.
Andrew: Ah, interesting. Okay. I see. So if I land on this web page, what I see is an offer to get some interviews or to learn from the top recruiters. The only way that I get to take that offer is to give you an e-mail address, and then you drip those interviews to me via e-mail. I see. All right. It’s clever.
I should have done that with Mixergy. I could have done nothing but 50 interviews, dripped them all to you, and then at the end of every one of these interviews that I dripped to you by e-mail, I should have probably said, well, the real package that teaches you how to use all this stuff and not just get entertained by it, that will cost you a thousand bucks upfront plus two hundred bucks a month or something like that. That’s what you would have done if you had been in my shoes, right?
Dane: But your market is a little different because you have a really tech savvy crowd. A lot of them can resent lead capture. And so, it depends on how you want to present information. One of the things, I think, a tremendous mistake that people make in business is that they build a page, like I’d ask, “Why don’t you do lead capture on your site?” “Oh, I wouldn’t do that.” “Okay? Well, do you think a certain percentage of people will?” The answer is yes. It always is yes. Just because you won’t do something. That’s what I see sabotaging a lot of people.
They make decisions for their business based on what they think they would do in order to do it, and I make my decisions based on time tested, timeless, proven principles that have worked for years.
Andrew: Do you create the automation as soon as you create the idea for a product?
Dane: No. I’m kind of lazy. I only do it when I have to.
Andrew: So the first thing you do is just put that squeeze page that squeezes the e-mail address out of the user, and then afterwards when you get enough, you say all right, what can I send them and how do I automate that process of sending them those e-mails? Okay. All right.
The next thing that you and I talked about is no accounts receivable. You said it’s important for you to have people pay up front. That seems like a no-brainer, if you can do it, right?
All these businesses, you’re collecting their e-mail address. I’m sorry you’re collecting their credit card information. Are you using PayPal to collect it, or are you using some other system?
Dane: I use a couple of different ones. I use Authorize.net with a custom shopping cart, and then I also use Braintree which is a PCI compliant payment gateway for paperless clients.
Andrew: Authorize.net is your connection to the credit card processor.
Dane: Yep, yep.
Andrew: And the other company, what is it? It’s your shopping cart.
Dane: It’s actually Braintree, and actually it’s a different Authorize.net.
Andrew: I see. Okay. Why do you need two?
Dane: They’re PCI compliant.
Andrew: What’s that mean?
Dane: I don’t even know. It just means that you don’t get in trouble. If you store credit cards on your server, they have to be encrypted a certain way, and there’s always legal requirements, and they just handle all of that.
Dane: 37signals uses Braintree, which is how I learned about them. Ideally, I’d like to have everything on Braintree. But I just kind of do things as I learn.
Andrew: Okay. All right. Sell Shovels, tell us about that.
Dane: Yeah. The person that got the wealthiest in the Gold Rush it wasn’t the people digging for gold. It was the guy selling shovels, and it was the guy selling jeans, Levi Strauss. These are the guys that made the most money in the Gold Rush, and they did it by selling shovels. They did it by selling tools.
The modern day example of this would be 37signals being a consulting company digging for gold, doing website design which now transferred into them selling shovels, tools, and software.
Andrew: I see. So now, they’re selling the tools to other people who do website designs and other businesses, and that’s what you want to do. You want to build the tools. That’s why you’re not in real estate and weren’t in real estate and won’t be in real estate even if the real estate market heats up. You want to sell them the software.
Dane: Sell the tools, yeah.
Dane: I was a realtor, actually. I did one transaction with my parents and I hated it. We went to closing. You’ve got to sign your signature on 15 different pages. No kidding, like 15 different ones. Have you ever bought a house?
Dane: Fifteen different pages you’ve got to sign your signature, too. I’m like, dude, I don’t like this. I want my Google auto fill toolbar. So, I got out. Plus I realized when I was working as a realtor, that’s when I learned all the problems I could solve from the technology side.
That’s why I’m really passionate about it. I’m really good at it, the technology side helping people because there’s a lot of trash out there being sold to brokers and realtors and it’s just pure garbage. So when you make a quality product, it’s pretty easy to stand out.
Andrew: All right. Actually before I continue with this list, the one thing that’s in my mind now, and I’m sure is in my audience’s mind, is the way that you acquire the users in the first place. If we leave them with a system that depends on them going out and grabbing e-mail addresses off the Web, they’re not going to do it and it’s also not the right way for them to build their business right now. So how else do you do it, or how else can this whole system get started?
Dane: Google pay per click is a good way.
Dane: I think grabbing the e-mails and sending them is one of the best things that ever happened to me.
Andrew: Really? You would just go on different websites. You find e-mail addresses of the real estate brokers. You say, they’re probably going to be customers of mine. I’ll add them to a list. Actually, no one would take those e-mail addresses. You can’t take them to AWeber, put them in there and start soliciting.
Andrew: You can’t put them in your Gmail account, because if you get enough spam complaints, they’ll shut you off.
Dane: That’s why you don’t send spammy stuff.
Andrew: So you still use your Gmail account?
Dane: I use Vertical Response, and I’ll use my Gmail account. A lot of times I’ll personally e-mail one broker at a time or copy like 10 brokers into the BCC that might all be from one state. I’ve also done, where I’ve hired someone from HireMyMom.com to cold call Keller-Williams offices and offer them a free report on 14 items, things agents are looking for in an office and asking for their e-mail address on the phone there.
Andrew: Oh, interesting. Okay. HireMyMom.com, that’s the website.
Dane: Yeah, yeah.
Andrew: So essentially, you did a squeeze page by phone?
Andrew: All right. That doesn’t seem to scale, does it?
Dane: Well, if massive revenue is your objective, probably not.
Andrew: But it was a test. You want to test whenever you can, whatever ideas you can come up with.
Dane: Yeah. Well, if it works and it’s profitable and it doesn’t require my time, why not?
Andrew: It’s all direct response marketing. Why? Why is everything that you touch direct response?
Dane: Because once you’ve done direct response, like, you’ve actually written and practiced direct response, you just won’t want to go back because your results are just great. You don’t have to be like, “Well, I’ve spent $1,000 but I haven’t made any money. Maybe I should spend $3,000″
No, it’s like, with direct response you’re either profitable after the first hundred or not. And you can cut it.
Andrew: I see.
Dane: Direct response acts for the person to take a direct response to your ad, whether it’s put an e-mail address in, submit their credit card and that becomes a conversion. And then, you can split test which I am a big fan of split testing for conversions.
Andrew: You say it’s important for entrepreneurs and businesspeople, in general, to learn to make offers. Tell me about that. What does it mean to learn to make offers?
Dane: Learn how to ask for money and be good at it and have fun with it and smile while you do it and don’t feel guilty, either.
Andrew: Don’t learn how to blog. Don’t learn how to tweet. Learn how to make offers.
Andrew: What have you learned about how to make offers? I feel like that could be a whole interview in itself, but maybe you can give us a few tips that you’ve learned as you’ve made all these offers.
Dane: Right. You know, it’s interesting going back to the e-mail marketing. There are about 2,800 RE/MAX brokers in the country, and I’ve got their e-mail addresses and I’ve been emailing them. I go to conferences and brokers, they buy me drinks. They give me hugs. They just love me because I’ve improved their life and I’ve helped their business. It’s been tremendous, and it’s because I have been able to craft good offers, honest, ethical, and irresistible offers to them via e-mail, and it’s just been . . .
Andrew: How do you do it? How do you make an offer irresistible?
Dane: Well, that’s like one of the questions I always ask myself. What is the path of least resistance in my marketplace? Because there’s a path of least resistance everywhere, and if you’re encountering resistance in something that you’re building or selling right now, I’d be really nervous. A lot of times it could just be your message, but other times it can be the product, and the only way to tell is get on the phone and present the product to people and ask them if they’d use it. Ask them what they think.
I’ll write copywriting sometimes, and then I’ll call up someone and tell it to them on the phone. If they respond to it, then I think that’s good copy. How are you good at writing offers? You copy sales letters by hand. That’s the skill.
Andrew: You take a sales letter that you like. You sit down with a pen and paper, and you write it out?
Dane: By hand, and no, you don’t take one you like because that would be going back to I didn’t put lead capture on my site because I wouldn’t do it.
Andrew: Oh, okay.
Dane: Now, not only are you being an idiot about that, but you’re also sacrificing the success of your business by not using tested principles. So you take sales letters that you know that work.
Dane: Here’s the nutshell thing. Go to InfomarketingBlog.com and you’re going to find ads. You want to pull up ads by Eugene Schwartz. He’s one of the greatest copywriters of all time, and you’re going to want to copy his ads by hand. You want to copy at least five. And you want to do it . . . like if the first hour of the morning was revenue generation, I would consider copying sales letters by hand revenue generation. I wouldn’t do it every morning, but I’m learning how to generate more revenue. I’d do that first thing in the morning, half hour, copy five of them. By the time you’ve copied the fifth Eugene Schwartz ad . . . like Eugene Schwartz, he’s written ads that have pulled in, like, millions and millions, hundreds of millions of dollars actually from copywriting. His headlines will be like, “How to burn disease out of your body using nothing more than the palm of your hand.” It’s awesome, right? It’s like a Chinese doctor. It’s all legitimate. He’s not lying. Good copywriting doesn’t mean you’re deceitful. It’s just finding the path of least resistance.
What I did is I copied sales letters by hand for three months diligently, every morning. I copied John Carleton. I copied Eugene Schwartz. I’d go to ClickBank.com and I’d find the top selling products, and I’d copy those sales letters. You copy those sales letters, and you learn how to make offers. You know after you copy those because those things sell. They convert like crazy.
Andrew: What are you going to say though to people who are listening to us right now who say this is nuts. Those crappy long form pages, the ones with all the copy on them that make you scroll infinitely almost, that’s what Dane and Andrew are telling me to go do?
Dane: Not go do them yourself, copy them by hand.
Andrew: Go copy them. But you’re teaching the audience how to recreate those, how to learn from them.
Dane: Right. How to create irresistible offers that sell. It’s pretty funny. A lot of people are really turned off by these long form sales letters. If you go to JumpManual.com, JumpManual.com. It’s an incredible product that teaches people how to increase their vertical jump by so many inches, and it’s totally legitimate and it’s a long form sales letter, and it’s been seen on ESPN. It’s been seen on Men’s Health. It’s been seen everywhere, and it sells like crazy. Long form sales letters, they just work.
Here’s what happens. When we look at sales letters and we’re not interested, it doesn’t solve our problem. Here’s another one, StopYourDivorce.com. You go to StopYourDivorce.com. You copy that one. Copy StopYourDivorce.com because that’s an incredible sales letter. That’s the ugliest looking site. There’s no design. It’s all black text, a picture of like a wedding consultant. You copy that close. If you copy where he starts to ask for the offer, you’ll know so much about making offers.
Sales letters are nothing more than salesmanship in print. Like I told you, I just got off the webinar before this, where I was doing a webinar for brokers. It was how a 700 agent office went paperless. So I interviewed a client of mine who’s a 700 agent office and talked about how they went paperless. After that presentation was over, they left and then the other 25 people in the webinar I closed them, and I asked for the sale.
Andrew: After it was over, sorry we missed part of that. What happened with the 25? Who are these 25 people?
Dane: There was 25 people on the webinar, and after I got done with interviewing them, I said, “Okay, for everybody else that’s on, if you have any interest in using the same system that Ray’s been talking about and giving it a shot, I’ve got a risk-free way for you to do that.”
Dane: And then, I go into the close. I close just like a written sales letter would, but I do it verbally in a webinar. So just because you’re copying sales letters by hand, doesn’t means that you have to recreate sales letters. It means that you’re reprogramming your mind to learn how to close and make offers.
Andrew: I see. Okay.
Dane: That totally changed my life. After I copied sales letters for three months, I went to the next RE/MAX convention, and I would sit and have beers with brokers. I would actually be talking, and I would feel the sales letters working in my mind as I’m talking to these brokers. At the end of the thing, the brokers around the table were like, “I’ve never met a better salesman than you.” I don’t consider myself a very good salesman. I don’t think it would have happened if I hadn’t copied those sales letters by hand. When you copy good sales letters by hand, it reprograms the way you think.
I remember when I would do it for a day for like an hour. I’d copy it out by hand, and then I’d go through and mark it up. I’m like, here’s where he’s adding a risk reversal. Here’s where he’s adding credibility. Here’s where he is adding urgency. Here’s where he’s doing a price anchor. He’s where he’s doing . . . learning how they do all these copy things.
Andrew: Tell me about some of these terms, price anchor. What’s a price anchor?
Dane: Well, on one of my highest converting webinars of all time, I had 120 brokers on and 30 of them signed up from the webinar, which is like some 30-some percent, well, no 28. It’s a good close rate, 25 to 30 percent close rate. I price anchored it multiple times, basically just making my price seem small compared to what they get in return.
Andrew: How do people do that? I’m telling you. This could be a whole interview in itself. How can someone right now who has . . . I’m looking right now at an analytics website that one of my past guests created. They’re selling their package for about, let’s see, sixty bucks a year. How do they anchor their price? How do they make that $60 a year seem cheaper than it is?
Dane: That’s about the easiest thing in the world to do for that one.
Andrew: Tell me.
Dane: You take five clients as a case study, average out the amount of revenue that they’ve earned, subtract that from what they were currently making, so it would be revenue lost without the product. Then, you would have a page that would say, clients that don’t use this lose on average $2,000 a year.
Andrew: I see. Emphasize what clients who don’t use this lose. Let my audience feel like in comparison to what they lose or what they could make, this is nothing. What’s sixty bucks a year?
Dane: Yeah. That’s dirt cheap.
Andrew: That’s the way you would do it.
Dane: They should raise their price a lot.
Andrew: That is dirt cheap. It’s a really good price, but they’re competing against Google Analytics, so what could they do?
Andrew: Okay. All right. So write all the copy by hand, learn to make offers, do it on a regular basis, don’t be embarrassed by it, and learn some of these techniques that are standard in the copywriting space, like anchoring, like risk reversal. Is there a good book where people can learn that?
Dane: Yeah. There are multiple ones, like “The Ultimate Sales Letter” by Dan Kennedy. There’s “Breakthrough Advertising” by Eugene Schwartz, which is now out of print, which I have been unable to buy. But I don’t think that you should be reading books. I think you should be copying by hand.
Andrew: Copying by hand, and you gave them a lot of resources. Go find those resources. Put the copy on your computer screen and with a pen like I’ve got here in my hand, write them all out.
Dane: What do great artists do when they learn to paint?
Andrew: I see them all the time in museums. My wife is an art lover. We go to museums a lot, and I see them sit there, and they’re copying the thing that’s up on the wall.
Dane: Exactly. That’s the same thing with the sales letters. You’re only becoming an artist for sales.
Andrew: All right. Minimalistic selling is another thing you and I talked about before the interview, and I wrote it down to come back and ask you about it. I didn’t ask you before because I wanted to keep it fresh. Now, I’m going to ask you. What is minimalistic selling?
Dane: One of the things that would be kind of nice to do, if people actually enjoyed this interview with me, I could come back and actually talk about this whole sequence of how I actually launch a product from script scrap to completely finished. Minimalistic selling is one part of that process where you do the least amount of work necessary to test the viability and sell your product, least amount of work to test and sell your product.
A lot of people, what they do is they make the website seem really big and impressive. They do all this stuff that doesn’t matter like, when I launched Paperless Pipeline, which is now a six figure product and has 40,000 closed transactions and 700 real estate companies and 500,000 files all stored on it. It’s a totally legitimately, amazing company that changes lives for real estate offices. It just completely changes their life.
It was all launched from a webinar. I didn’t have a website to promote it. I had the e-mail lists from the list that I had generated, and I e-mailed the other RE/MAX brokers. I launched the whole thing with the recruiting secrets of a 200 agent office in Tennessee. We talked about how he used Paperless Pipeline to recruit agents and how he uses the product. We had 110 people on that webinar, and I closed and asked for the order. I had 16 people sign up, and that was what launched Paperless Pipeline.
It was funny. We didn’t even have Braintree. It was not integrated into the Paperless Pipeline yet. We couldn’t actually accept credit cards. So I asked my friends, maybe, I’ll just have them register free and try the service. They were like, “No, no, no. You’re doing all this work. They’ll be ready to buy. Make the offer.” So, like, I hooked up E-junkie through my Authorize.net, and I charged them the minimum monthly price of what the minimum plan would be. After that I forwarded them to the free registration page, and that’s a big thing. When you do event based marketing and you have an event or a date, you have to do it no matter what. That’s a big secret, not a tip, a secret, whatever of mine.
Andrew: I see. Have a date that everyone’s expecting you to perform by, because if you do, you’re going to work like mad to get it out there? You’ll find a way to do it.
Dane: I would have never thought of doing Authorize.net to E-junkie. I would have just been, we’ll wait another week and get that integrated.
Andrew: I see.
Dane: You know, set a date. Event based marketing is life changing.
Andrew: Hey, you’ve been saying webinars a lot. That seems like a lot of work for a guy like you who seems to just throw up squeeze pages. Creating a webinar is a lot of work. You have to write out the information. You have to wrangle people. You have to make sure that they all show up at the same time. They can’t just show up when they want to, which means that you limit the number of people who show up. Why all these webinars?
Dane: I think that webinars are the biggest growth driver for my business, and I have fun. They’re just fun. I’m not adverse to working hard at all, and I feel like my life is kind of similar to an entertainer. You know, entertainers, they’ll train and train and train and perform at an event, and then they have time off. Then, train and train and train and then perform at another massive event, but then they have time off. That’s kind of what the four-hour work week lifestyle is really like.
Andrew: Okay. How many hours a week are you working now?
Dane: Right now, like four to six hours a day and those are productive hours. Actually, I’m lying. Four hours would be productive. The other two are just being bored at home because I’m back at home and it’s winter now. I think six hours a day is the maximum that I’m productive, so that’s the max I work in a day.
Andrew: What’s the deal with the e-mail that I get? Whenever I e-mail you, I get an e-mail back that says, “Don’t bother me. Here are the real people you need to contact.”
Dane: I took that down after I got home. That was only for my trip across . . .
Andrew: While you were away. Okay.
Andrew: It wasn’t actually phrased the way that I phrased it. It was, “If you need information on this product, here’s the e-mail address. For the other product, here’s the other e-mail address.” Be a lead gen company, you’ve said that a lot and I’ve got that in my notes to come back and talk to you about. You mean, before you create your own product, get leads for other people’s products and sell those leads to them?
Dane: You can do whatever you want after you have the lead. If you’re actually selling the product, you’d want to sell them on yours.
Andrew: I see. You don’t mean be a lead gen business the way that people who are collecting leads for the local mechanic might be or for people who are collecting leads and selling them to the University of Phoenix. You mean understand that your job isn’t to get hits to your website, it’s to get leads to your business. I see you’re nodding very strongly, very assertively there. That’s what you mean. You are in the business of collecting those leads, people who are interested in what you’ve got to offer.
Dane: So you want to become a lead gen company. One of the things you want to do is start your marketing now. If you have a product or an idea that doesn’t exist yet, get a lead page set up and start driving leads for whatever might exist. I don’t know why. Maybe I do, but I don’t want to try and talk about why because I’m not that clear. I don’t know why though, but people want to build a product out and get everything in place before they start their marketing.
Andrew: They do. I feel that they want to do it because they want to be sure that they could produce what they’re about to sell, and they want to feel a sense of completion of one step before progressing to the second. Why is that wrong?
Dane: Because it’s not important to your customer.
Andrew: The product isn’t important to my customer. Why?
Dane: No. You being ready is not important to the customer.
Andrew: Really? If they’re going to come in and pay, don’t they expect that the product is going to be ready?
Dane: Well, I’m not telling you to charge for something that doesn’t exist. I’m telling you to generate leads, like get an e-mail address for something that doesn’t exist.
Andrew: I see. Okay. You’re saying before you start developing anything, start developing your leads.
Andrew: Create a page that gets people’s e-mail addresses.
Dane: Yes. Ask for their e-mail addresses. People will build the products out. They’ll go to all this work and get all this stuff in place, and then they go to start to market it, and gosh their whole business fails because their product sucked and they didn’t know it in the first place because they never tried to get anybody interested by generating leads.
Andrew: All right. And then, I guess the lead is just offering what you’re going to build.
Dane: Yeah, yeah.
Andrew: What you plan to build. What happens if you don’t build it? Your friends have seen it, your co-workers, the guys who you said, hey, take this job and shove it, too, they’re taking a look at this page. They’re adding their junk e-mail address to your lead squeeze page because they want to follow up and see what you’re up to and nothing happened. That’s pretty embarrassing. That’s one of the reasons why people don’t do it.
Dane: Is it? You can be straightforward about that, like on your lead page, you say here’s what I’m thinking about doing. Here’s the problems it solves. If I can generate a couple hundred people that are interested, I’m going to do it.
Andrew: I see.
Dane: Then, they opt-in. You’d be like, okay, great. Then every week you’re like, we’re up to 60. We’re up to 70, and you never reach 200, and then you just have to send out an apology, but they don’t blame you because you’ve been clear and upfront from the beginning.
Andrew: All right. I’m actually noticing that even WordPress comes with a theme that will allow people to collect e-mail addresses while they’re building their WordPress site behind the scenes. I see that more and more people are getting onto this or understanding the value of it.
Let’s see what else I’ve got here in my notes. Work to learn. I got that quote from you from before the interview. You said that one concept changed your whole life, right?
Dane: Well, the book, “Rich Dad, Poor Dad.”
Andrew: Okay. That’s one of the concepts from “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”?
Dane: It’s like ten or something.
Andrew: All right. I don’t remember that, but all right.
Dane: It’s like in the first chapter, Andrew.
Andrew: Oh. I listened to the audio book. Maybe it was abridged and I didn’t catch that.
Dane: Oh, yeah.
Andrew: I’ve got to tell you that whole book didn’t move me the way it moved some people.
Andrew: That’s fine.
Dane: Some books work, some don’t. I don’t consider myself a very intelligent person, and “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” was very simple to me. Like, it went in and reprogrammed my wiring. My successful products, like successful people in general, they aren’t any smarter than unsuccessful people. They just do more stuff. I’ve tried 15 different product things in the past two years.
Meanwhile, the person who has never gotten started with anything, is still unsuccessful. They haven’t tried one thing, and they wonder why. You’ve got to do more stuff. But “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” taught me to work to learn. Instead of working for money, you work to learn, and this changes everything.
It changes everything because I read that book. I called up my uncle who owned a RE/MAX office and I said, “Hey, I just read ‘Rich Dad, Poor Dad’ and it talks about real estate. I want to learn about real estate. Can I come work for you? I don’t want any money. Don’t pay me anything. I just want to learn.”
And Rob, he’s the foreclosure king here in Des Moines, he did more foreclosures than any other office. I worked in his foreclosure department, going to the houses, setting them up and cleaning them out and all this. But I didn’t want to get paid anything. He still paid me. I said, “Rob, I don’t want this. I just want to work to learn.” And that is why I’m here today talking to you now because that’s when I got to see all the problems in real estate and be able to solve them, all because I wasn’t worried about the money and working to learn. That was when I was a senior in college, so I could do that.
Andrew: Work to learn with everything. You also said personality tests that you took helped you to understand yourself and to change things. What’s that personality test? That’s another book and I didn’t take down the name.
Dane: Yeah, yeah. That was life changing. When most people take personality tests, they’re like, oh, I’m a driver. I’m a this; I’m a that. They just have one word. They’ll spend 40 minutes going through a personality test, and they’ll be like, oh cool, I’m a driver. This is like four words. You just completely bumped the effectiveness of that personality test.
What happened, the reason my life changed was because I dived into my type and I found out my unhealthy habits and my unhealthy states. I’m an enthusiast and I’m an achiever. These are very destructive together at times, because an enthusiast seeks new experiences all in a circle, and the achiever seeks to complete.
So, I tried 15 products and I completed all of them. And now that I’ve understood that, I can back off and now I’m just focused on two products instead of creating new ones because I didn’t realize subconsciously that’s what was driving me.
Andrew: But you were also saying in the beginning of the interview that you create products all the time. Help me understand that.
Dane: You asked how often I do that, and I said every day I’m driving traffic to a page that is selling something that might exist.
Andrew: I see. So you’re not actually creating the product itself, you’re creating a page for a possible product all the time.
Andrew: And the response to those pages helps you determine what products to create.
Dane: My best ideas have actually come from just talking to brokers on the telephone. If a broker calls me on the phone, what would be a five minute call will turn into a 40 minute call, and I’ll get amazing value out of it.
Andrew: The phone number on the bottom of your page, I meant to call it. It says, call the grand Poobah. Where does that number go?
Dane: It goes to Google Voice, where they leave a voice message.
Andrew: Okay. It doesn’t go to your cell phone or anything.
Dane: No, it’s on “do not disturb” so it goes straight to voicemail, and then they leave their message. Then, I have in 30 seconds what will usually take 10 minutes, and I can call them back and answer their question right away, and then spend the rest of the time on the phone being productive with them and learning more about them and what their problems are, things like that.
Andrew: All right. Anyone who goes to Zannee.com is going to notice a resemblance to a site, well, to 37signals. Why? Why does it look so much like 37signals?
Dane: Yeah, yeah. Absolutely. I love 37signals, and I model them as closely as I can. Paperless Pipeline’s design resembles a lot like Backpack with the design application on the right and stuff on the top left. And I just built it with what brokers actually wanted inside the middle of that. I remember when I had 37signals, when I saw their page, I have four products. This is laid out so perfectly. These guys are the design experts. I’m not. I’m not going to blatantly rip off everything, so I hired a brand new designer. We changed the colors and we changed things so it’s not exactly identical, but absolutely that’s exactly where I got it from.
Andrew: All right. I like to end all these interviews with one piece of advice. I think I’m going to ask you for one suggestion for what people can do after this interview to become better salespeople, because I think you’re especially good at that. We don’t spend enough time on it. There’s no college class on selling, for example.
Dane: Yeah. That’s a good question.
Andrew: I see you’re looking at the notes that you had before the interview.
Dane: Right. I would become a very passionate student of direct response marketing, and that’s where you would want to start. I was thinking about, why do I have more freedom at age 27 than a 7-year-old or a 70-year-old? I have more freedom than both of them. I have more freedom than I did in college.
It’s because I focus on minimalistic selling, and I focus on doing the least amount of work necessary to sell a product. It doesn’t make any sense to me to build out an entire business around a product that you don’t even know won’t sell yet. I think that by understanding what’s important to the customer and what’s the least amount of work you can do to sell a product, that you can reduce your risk and finally get started.
The neat thing about . . . a lot of people, what paralyzes them is they’re confused, and confusion doesn’t come from too many things to do. It comes from a lack of priorities. And by focusing on what’s important to the customer, what’s the least you need to do to sell a product, then you can really take action with those ideas and finally implement them.
Andrew: So, focus on what’s the most important thing and do just that.
Dane: Important to the customer. Yeah, to sell the product.
Andrew: How can you tell? How can you tell what’s the most important thing? Because I might look at it and think that it’s one thing and you might look at it and think it’s something else.
Dane: Right. Well, you read a line, like your copy out loud and you say, does that explain the product, or is that something about something else, or does that further them into actually learning more about the product or not? There’s definitely no set system. It’s more just experience, I think. But typically Jason Fried does it really well when he’ll write four pages, condense it down to two, and then condense it down to one. That’s what minimalistic selling is except you don’t do all the work up front. You just try to do the one page right away.
Andrew: All right. How can people connect with you, beyond looking at your website, beyond checking out Zannee.com? Where else can they follow up with you?
Dane: This is a good question. I want to bring up one of my side passions, that I’m extremely passionate about. It is studying the great achievers, the Rockefellers, the Benjamin Franklins, the Carnegies, Michael Faradays, all the people that had an impact on the country.
One thing that I’ve created is I read the 800 page biography of Rockefeller. It was really painful to read, but it was so worthwhile. I spent 80 hours reading it, studying it, and condensing those 800 pages down into 40 pages of Rockefeller’s personality traits, his habits and his skills and his dark side, his down side, his negatives, and exactly how he was able to monopolize the industry and to this day still be the world’s richest man with $600 billion in net worth, and at one time made 20 percent of the GDP of the entire country. No one has ever been able to do that, so I’ve condensed this down into 40 pages. Maybe, we could share a link to that report, and then within that report there’s a link to my Facebook page, if they want to friend me. I spent 80 hours on it, but I just want to give it away free and share the magic of Rockefeller with the world.
Andrew: All right. What’s the link? Do you have it up yet?
Dane: I’ll give it to you.
Andrew: And we’ll have it up on the post where this interview is.
Andrew: All right. I like the way you operate, and you’re showing people how a marketer ends an interview.
Dane: There’s nothing to buy here, absolutely nothing. It’s just I want you to learn from Rockefeller because there are . . . here, one quick thing. Rockefeller did double entry accounting. So he would write everything down on one page to the penny. He’d go to another notebook and do the same thing again. That is insanity.
So what I’ve done is I’ve implemented inDinero accounting software and QuickBooks online, and then I run profit and loss from each one and I find differences. So, I do double entry accounting, and I’ve really been able to get a handle on my numbers by using that Rockefeller habit.
Andrew: Oh, cool. I think double entry accounting means something different, doesn’t it? Doesn’t it mean . . . I get what you’re saying though.
Dane: It probably does.
Andrew: All right. But I see what you’re saying. You’re doubling up just to make sure that you’re accurate.
Dane: Yeah, yeah.
Andrew: Okay. All right. Well, Dane, this has been great. I’m glad that I got to meet you. I hope we get to have another conversation, and I’m looking forward to the feedback. Guys, come back to Mixergy. Give me feedback. Do you want more from Dane? What else do you want from Dane? Dane is willing to do more interviews here. I want to know what you’re curious about. What didn’t we hit on? What do you want more information about? What do you feel about this interview completely? How do you feel about him going to HireMyMom.com or whatever that website was and having somebody call up brokers and get their e-mail addresses?
I want to want as much feedback as you’re willing to give me. Come back to Mixergy and give it to me, and we’ll also give you a link to the Rockefeller report. Bye everyone.
This transcript brought to you by www.Speechpad.com.
Sponsors I mentioned
Grasshopper – Don’t make the mistake of comparing Grasshopper with other phone services. Check out their features and you’ll see why Grasshopper isn’t just a phone number, it’s the virtual phone system that entrepreneurs (like me) love.
cloudsponge – Your users have friends. cloudsponge gives you their address books. (Now get 3 free months by using this discount code: MIXERGY)