How SimplerTrading quadrupled membership

Joining me is a guy who saw an investor newsletter and said to himself, “I could create and sell something like this.”

So he did.

And he built a business around it.

John Carter is the founder of SimplerTrading.com a site that wants to make options trading easy.

John Carter

John Carter

Simpler Trading

John Carter is the founder of SimplerTrading.com which seeks to make options trading easy.

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Full Interview Transcript

Andrew: There you go. Super.

John: I’m a little casual. I’m in the Cayman Islands.

Andrew: I like it. You don’t have your whole mic and whole setup.

John: No. I have one of those big headphone sets, but I thought with the Mac it might work out okay and everything like that.

Andrew: It does.

John: But we’ve down here a couple weeks.

Andrew: Let’s not even do a full intro. Let’s just go directly into the conversation. I’ll introduce you in a moment.

John: Okay.

Andrew: I sent you an email a few weeks ago because I feel horrible. I thought we recorded the interview and I somehow lost it and lost track of the whole thing.

John: I saw your email and I was going to answer because I was thinking, “Wait a minute…” That was my fault because I the time zones mixed up. We never did it.

Andrew: I remember. You know what? Our system is so rock solid. If I have to trust my memory or my system, I have to go with the system. Everybody on the team said, “He’s on the calendar, Andrew, you must have recorded.” And I couldn’t find the interview.
John: Yeah. It’s good.

Andrew: What are you doing in the Cayman Islands?

John: So, typically usually in July when our kids get out of school, we’re doing three weeks this time, get to come down, gives my team a chance to try to run the business without me and get to scuba dive and hang out with the kids and stuff like that too. We’re actually thinking of now doing the next six months or so, like pulling the kids out of school. I have a little bit more flexibility to travel and things like that. So, we’re trying to figure that out too.

Andrew: And you guys are going to home school them?

John: That’s what we’re trying to figure out. We don’t know. It’s either home school or hire a tutor. They’re nine, seven and five, so it’s not like high school kind of a thing.

Andrew: I wonder what a tutor would cost. It can’t be that expensive.

John: I’m assuming it’s a teacher salary kind of job.

Andrew: Plus you’re going to the Cayman Islands. I’ve got to believe that all this travel is part of the perk of working with you that would mean they would charge a little bit less.

John: That’s a good point. One of the things I’ve done is I’ve turned down a lot of speaking opportunities at conferences just because it’s like, “Well, I don’t want to be away from my family that long.” But one of the things we started thinking of was, “How do you…?” Part of the benefits of running a business is that you can incorporate a lifestyle into it. So, hopefully we’re trying to figure it out. We’re down here for another ten days. So, we’ll get that figured out. Actually, talking to you helps. I may just jot some notes down here.

Andrew: What’s a note that you just took from the little conversation we just had here?

John: Hire a tutor. It’s like one of those things where it’s such an easy thing because it’s like, “Well, if you’re going to do this, wouldn’t you hire an expert to do it and help you?” I don’t have time to do it. My wife’s got her blog and things that she’s doing. We don’t our kids just sitting there playing iPads all day.

Andrew: Plus I kind of feel like spending time away from my son who’s a one-year old only, but at this stage, spending time away from him makes me love him more and spend more energy when I’m there with him because I’m not exhausted the whole time. All right. Let me do this. Usually before I start–sorry?

John: I agree. It’s a healthy mix.

Andrew: Usually before I start–and we’re already, fully rolling in this interview, I just want to let it go as it goes–but before I start recording I usually ask the guest, “What’s in it for you? How do make it a win for you?” And I’m looking here at Pipedrive. You suggested–no, it was Jeff Roth who suggested the interview?

John: Yeah.

Andrew: Right. You know him. What’s the deal here? Why did you say yes to doing this interview?

John: Well, a big part of it is I enjoy talking about my experiences. Most of the things that we do are related with the financial markets. Obviously a main part of that is running and growing a business. What I have found is that by doing this, it just creates an exchange of ideas either with you or your listeners well I honestly end up benefiting from it more.

Andrew: Just because we’re going to be talking about how you built your business and will force you to think about it and maybe reexamine some areas that you wouldn’t have given much thought to.

John: Correct.

Andrew: All right. Well, cool. I’ll do the intro now. Joining me is John Carter. He is the founder of Simpler Trade–excuse me. Is it SimplerTrading.com?

John: SimplerTrading.com is kind of a parent company. There are actually seven or eight websites.

Andrew: Yeah, because now I’m on SimplerOptions.com.

John: Futures, Simpler Stocks, etc.

Andrew: Gotcha. And what you’re doing is trying to make trading easier.

John: Correct. It’s essentially online financial market education. Myself, I’ve been in the industry for 20+ years in terms of the trading side of it and everybody that we have that teaches this stuff actually does it. They were first successful doing it and now show other people how to do it. That’s what we do.

Andrew: And the revenue model comes from…?

John: About 40% of it is continuity in terms of subscriptions and then 60% of it is like online classes, indicators, different things like that.

Andrew: And continuity is a membership site.

John: Correct. Subscriptions.

Andrew: What do you guys use to run your subscription?

John: That’s one of the things that we have to upgrade. So, we use a great piece of software called MemberGate. It’s ColdFusion-based, so it’s that kind of stuff. But they do multiple memberships better than any other software that I’ve found. We’ve tried WordPress plugins and different things like that. We are starting to look at other more potentially robust models, but it’s actually a really great platform if you’re figuring out a membership site.

Andrew: I’ve never heard of MemberGate. I’m looking at their website. I’ll be honest with you, their website looks like it was created in the ’90s by Microsoft.

John: It’s a little old. It’s old software yet robust. But there are pros and cons of it. The pros are it handles memberships better than just about anybody but the cons are its older architecture.

Andrew: What do you mean? What does it do better than everyone else?

John: So, one of the things is that we found is when we tried different WordPress plugins, a lot of different software, one is that if we had somebody that was a paying member, they could give their password and their username to hundreds of people if they wanted to. Not that they did, but some people, they could do that. It didn’t matter. People could log in, log out. It didn’t track it. MemberGate is really good about tracking that.

Andrew: I see. So, if your customer gives ten other people access to his account, you guys can know about it and can stop it if you need to.

John: Not only will we know about it, but the software will automatically stop it.

Andrew: Got it.

John: Once we switched to that, our memberships increased like quadruple simply because that was the means.

Andrew: All right. That’s a big benefit right there.

John: Yes.

Andrew: All right. You saw an investment newsletter years ago and you said to yourself, “I can create something like this.” So, you did. That’s how you built your business and that’s how you got it where it is today. What kind of revenues are you guys doing today?

John: From the first year I had the website, I just wanted to replace my income. I was working as a financial analyst. When I made $100,000 on the website, it was awesome. Last year, we did $14 million. This year we should do about $16 million. We hit number 21 on the Inc. 500 a couple years ago.

Andrew: I saw that. That’s how I was able to validate this. Frankly, I don’t know you, John at all. I don’t know friends in common with you. I said, “Is this guy snowing us?” I said, “They could now us, but it’s really hard to snow Inc. Magazine.” Actually, I was pausing there for a second because I don’t like the think people could snow us. We really do our research here. But Inc. Magazine requires you to send them–isn’t it audited financials?

John: Yeah. You have to get an accountant to sign off on it. It’s an audited deal. It’s got to be real numbers to get on there.

Andrew: All right. And I don’t know if I introduced myself. My name is Andrew Warner. I’m the founder of Mixergy, where I interview entrepreneurs about how they built their businesses and I try to pry into things like what software they use, what revenues they have and how they built it up for one simple purpose, so that the person who is listening to me–so you, you are the person who is listening to me–can learn from them and then build your business by taking away at least one idea. Often it’s dozens of ideas.

I should also say, John, that this interview is sponsored by Pipedrive. Do you mind if I do a Pipedrive commercial?

John: Go for it.

Andrew: Pipedrive will organize your sales and help you grow the number of sales that you make. As an entrepreneur, as a sales person, if you’re out there making phone calls, trying to close sales yourself, I know you have a few challenges. One is you’re not making enough calls on a regular basis. You think you are. You think you’re sending out enough emails. You think you’re making enough calls. But I guarantee you are not making as many as you think you are and if you have the staff, I promise you they are not either.

Because we’re all sending out emails, getting a few rejections and then we kind of walk away thinking nobody loves us. That’s part of the sales process. Either everyone thinks we’re the best people in the world and we can close tons of sales or we get some rejections and internally we think no one is loving us and we start walking away and thinking that we emailed a lot of people and they haven’t said yes.

Pipedrive will keep track of how many people you contact. Pipedrive will make sure that you keep progressing with your sales by making you organize your sales process into a set of steps that they put into columns. Every time you have a new potential customer, they create a card for that customer in Pipedrive.

You move them into the first step of your sales process. Maybe it’s finding their email address. Maybe it’s shooting them an email. Maybe it’s finding their twitter account and then sending them a tweet, whatever it is. And then it forces you to send them to the next step and the next step and the next step and it holds you accountable because if you don’t do it, that card will go red. If the other person on your team doesn’t take the step they’re supposed to, to close the sale, they will send them an alert saying, “Hey, you’ve got to deal with this sale and close it.”

John, I feel like this is one of those pieces of software that I should show people what it looks like to show them how revolutionary it is.

John: I’ll check it out. I haven’t heard of it. I always like to check out technology I haven’t heard of and anything that will help with sales is good.

Andrew: It is fantastic. It’s not for… Well, it is for inbound sales. It’s not for email sales. It’s for sales that are one on one, where if you have a sales person that needs to close a sale, this thing will do it. And if that’s who you guys are listening to me, I can’t really describe it well. You can see here I’m trying to figure out how to explain to you what this even looks like. I think the best thing for you to do is if you’re making any sales, the way I described it one on one, I think you should go to Pipedrive.com/Mixergy.

You will get three months for free to try out this software. If you love it, if you’re part of the cult of Pipedrive the way that I am and so many people are, then you can continue. If it’s not for you, you’ll know it frankly within a month, maybe within two and you can walk away. But I know that if you’re making sales and you want to grow your sales, you’re going to need this software and Pipedrive will help you.

Pipedrive.com/Mixergy. Write it down. They don’t usually do three months off. They’re just doing it as a trial with me. Even if you have a friend who needs it, they will thank you for it. And I’m grateful to them for sponsoring–Pipedrive.com/Mixergy.

So, John, you were in finance. What was it that you saw? What was this newsletter that gave you the idea that you could do it yourself and eventually led you to this $14 million business?

John: So, I was always trading myself. I grew up, my father, stock broker, so he kind of got me into trading. I never wanted to go into Wall Street. I never wanted to be a broker. I just thought this was a cool kind of side gig. I got to the point where I had made money and lost money three times, took $10,000, ran it up to $50,000, $10,000, blew it up. It was like ah, so frustrating. I wanted to just finally learn it–I had to make a choice, learn how to do this or just give it up because it was kind of a costly habit. I got into a routine, learned how to do it. It was like a $100,000 account creating a couple grand a month in income.

Andrew: And this was your living?

John: Yes. And so, I was working at the time and just thought, “Wow, this is something I could do.” I quit my job, traded for a couple years. And it was awesome, but after a while I got bored. I’m in a room by myself. My wife is going to the office. I’ve got a goldfish that I talk to during the day. I was following a newsletter and one day I just realized like I could be doing this. I was evaluating the newsletter going like, “They could do this better.” I had no clue about websites. I’m not a programmer. This was how it started.

Andrew: This was in the late 90s.

John: Yeah, late 90s. And the website that I started–you’ll laugh at this because today you can put together an awesome website for pretty much for free–$25,000 to put together a very basic website. This was during the internet go-go days and stuff like that. I got my first paying member. I remember his name was Skip, $95 a month. I was suddenly a newsletter.

Andrew: What was the domain? I know I looked it up before we were scheduled to do our interview the first time, but I don’t have it here. What’s the domain?

John: So, the very first website I ever had was SimplerTrading.com. That now has become kind of the corporate entity. It doesn’t have any specific trades recommended.

Andrew: So, I’m going in the Internet archive, the Wayback Machine, to 2001 to the very first time the site was up.

John: I have to check that out, Wayback Machine.

Andrew: Do you want me to link you to it?

John: Sure.

Andrew: I’ll link you directly to the very first snapshot they have on your site.

John: Okay.

Andrew: It says, “Welcome. SimplerTrading.com is an online provider of short-term stock market research designed for both swing and intraday trading of stocks and options.” There’s a free trial to sign up and then member access gives people what back then?

John: I have never gone back. That’s a trip down memory lane.

Andrew: It’s fun to go back and see what the site used to look like.

John: I will totally check it out. That’s awesome.

Andrew: Yeah. Have your beer, look back and realize how far you’ve come.

John: It will be a good thing to do here in the Cayman Islands.

Andrew: Yeah. By the way, what are you drinking?

John: So, this is a beer I found on the Cayman Islands. It’s called Dream Machine IPA. It’s pretty good. I had never heard of it before, but I thought I’d give it a try. I have no affiliation with them whatsoever.

Andrew: Even if you did it’s fine. So, you had to still write this newsletter that was something that Skip–was that his name?

John: Yeah.

Andrew: That would make Skip feel happy that he paid for it. How did you put this newsletter together?

John: So, back then, it was a little clunky. I’d put it together in a Word document. First it was a Word document. Then it got created to PDF. At some point, I was able to figure out how to convert it to HTML. For a while, when I got to the point where I had about 100 subscribers and it’s like $10,000 a month coming in, that was pretty cool. I remember joining a mastermind group of other entrepreneurs, mostly internet-based because I didn’t really know anything about internet stuff.

Somebody said, “All you need is 1,000 fans. If you can provide a valuable service to 1,000 people out there, you can have a $1 million a year business.” At that point, I actually really hadn’t quantified it. I was like, “Oh, cool, $10,000 a month?” That’s really the first time I started thinking of it as a business. I was like, “All right, I need to hire someone.”

Andrew: Before we even get to that, I want to just deconstruct that early period. When I say, “How did you put it together?” I don’t mean what software, though it’s interesting that it was just word and they had to figure out how to convert it to HTML. I’m thinking that someone is about to pay you for your stock market wisdom, for your trading wisdom. You have to figure out what to say to them that’s worth the money. How do you figure this out?

John: Sure.

Andrew: Or were you one of those people who just walked around with tons of opinions all the time?

John: Here’s the thing–even today, there’s tons of free information out there on the stock market. You turn on CNBC. You turn on Bloomberg. Everyone’s got an opinion, right? So, to provide something that’s valuable in the space, you have to save people time. You cannot sit there and throw out, “Oh, I think Greece is going to do this,” or, “I think the stock market is overvalued.” You need to give them specific ideas based on specific mostly technical indicators and cut out all the fluff. That’s what valuable information is.

So, I had kind of learned that myself just kind of being in the industry and kind of recognizing what’s the difference between a free opinion, which is worth nothing, versus what is a valuable piece of information that people would be willing to pay for. That’s been honed, obviously, over the years.

Andrew: So, in the beginning, what did you think was going to make it really valuable? I understand that you were going to cut out the fluff. You were also going to show your analysis?

John: Sure. So, two bullet points–it can be as easy as that. Based on where the stock market is now, you need to be taking profits. “We’re at some highs. This is a place to sell. Or a stock like Apple, the stock here, it’s a great stock. The stock is at $100. We’re trying to buy it at $95. Here’s our stop loss.” Specific information the busy person could look at and say, “Cool, this is something that I can do something with specifically.”

Andrew: I always wonder about guys like you who are creating these newsletters. Why not trade it yourself? If you know it so much that you can give people directions right to the dollar, why not just do that?

John: So, here’s what I’ve found because my life would be a lot easier if I just traded. I trade my own seven-figure account. It’s obviously grown over the years. I show people this. I show them my statements and things like that. What I have found is that by me having to essentially make my opinions and my trades public, it gives me greater discipline and the more discipline I have, the better I trade.

Andrew: I see.

John: In a way I do it kind of for selfish reasons. But the term drinking my own Kool-Aid doesn’t really sound right, but it’s like I’m following the advice. I believe in it so much that I’m actually using it myself.

Andrew: What’s TradetheMarkets.com? Is that the first site?

John: So, TradetheMarkets.com was another site. That focused mostly on commodities, like S&P futures, bonds and things like that as well. That’s another site that we continue to run to this day.

Andrew: Okay. Which one came first?

John: Simpler Trading.

Andrew: Simpler Trading. I see. Where did you find Skip or how did Skip find you, the very first customer? I love that his name is Skip.

John: It’s a great name. So, the very first customer came about because I had my sister in law Rosa, who was 14 at the time–at the time I lived in Boston and she lived in Texas–I had her spam the Yahoo message boards in the finance section. I had a very specific thing because I had been doing it. So, I know, “Okay, this is something that would be useful information,” I just didn’t have time to do it. She started doing that. When she did that, my business exploded. I got my first–

Andrew: Your first how many customers? Sorry.

John: When she started doing that, I went from zero customers to about 100 paying subscribers in two months.

Andrew: I see. What did she say that persuaded so many people to come over to your site?

John: One of the things would be as simple as like a stock that would be popular, like say Apple, if it had a move that day, it would be something as simple as, “This newsletter caught this move and Apple perfectly and here’s the link,” back when you could still do that.

Andrew: Yeah. I’m trying to see–by the way, if my eyes keep wandering all over the screen it’s because I’ve got a giant monitor and if you say something like that, I try to see if I could find it on Yahoo Finance, but I couldn’t find that.

John: That was 15 years ago.

Andrew: Sometimes Google will find stuff like that.

John: Will it? I’m making a note. I’ll see–

Andrew: See if you can find what you used to do. Let me see… Let’s do 2000.

John: So, think of a stock back then. Gosh…

Andrew: Yeah. You wouldn’t have linked to Simpler Trading or maybe you would have directly.

John: You could still directly link to Simpler Trading. CNET, that was a stock that was traded heavily then, CNET, so some stocks like that, Qualcomm, QCOM.

Andrew: Okay. I see. But spamming has actually been a really popular way of getting started. When someone doesn’t have enough revenue or enough money to start buying ads, spam seems to work.

John: It’s not even the money. It’s not even knowing how to do that. Like, at the time, I had no idea about email lists. Today, our primary way of marketing is email. Back then, I didn’t know to collect emails. I didn’t have a database of emails. I just thought of that as simple as this–how do I find information on the web? Well, I go here and I check this out. So, I would go there and post my stuff. It was as simple as that.

Andrew: I see. So, you had 100 customers you said, charging them each $100?

John: $100 a month.

Andrew: $100 a month. So, you got $10,000. You’re basically at your salary from before.

John: Oh yeah. That was cool. It kind of took some pressure off. It validated my research, which I thought was good because it was working for me. Of course, when you’re doing something like that, people are always going to be skeptical and it’s like, “Oh yeah, people are really going to subscribe. And it’s like, ‘See, I told you.'” So, that was cool too. It was all of sudden it was like this was a viable business model.

Andrew: Wow. I actually see now one of your old reports. This is from 2001, January 10th, 2001.

John: You’ve got to send me the link.

Andrew: You want me to link it to you?

John: Yeah. That would be awesome.

Andrew: Okay. Here. I’ll put it in the Skype chat. You say, “General Market Commentary: Yesterday bulls had the perfect opportunity to light a fire under the bears and make things interesting. At first it looked like this was going to happen. The markets opened strong, hung on to gains for a while and then a curious thing occurred.”

“A wave of short selling hit the markets and continued sporadically into the close. We spoke to a number of traders’ desks as well as our market maker and specialist friends on the floor to see what was up. They told us they were handling a ton of small lot short sales. In other words, the general public is starting to short stocks. This is all thanks to CNBC, which had a special on how to short stocks last week.”

You were actually calling into desks or is this just…?

John: Yeah. I actually did. What would happen is once I started posting stuff, other people would start contacting. I actually started building up a really cool network of traders. I needed up going to New York, spending time on desks down there, meeting what I would call more not only floor traders but traders on desks that take orders and do things like that.

That was cool because I got to start learning the other side of the business that way, which I didn’t know about, that wasn’t my background. Even to this day, there are contacts that you just start building up over time where it’s like somebody knows something going on, which is great.

Andrew: I guess as you start to become a publisher or a writer, people want to contact you. They want to influence what you’re writing. They want to help understand better. They want to get connected to you. I know that’s happened to me here at Mixergy. What did you use to sell before you knew–what software did you use to sell before you knew about mailing lists and AdWords and so on?

John: There are two things that happened when we really jumped up. We started learning early on. Today webinars are pretty popular, GoToWebinar and all that. We did those a lot. I love the software. I would say we were one of the first. In terms of internet marketing and things like that, we were doing that pretty early on, 2003, 2004, doing them more as a class.

At some point, we would do something where we would do a one-hour webinar and just give a ton of cool information that literally people would use the next day and the last two minutes would just be a pitch saying like, “By the way, we’re going to do a class this weekend that’s going to cover this in more depth.” We were just very surprised. It’s like, “Wow.” Suddenly, instead of having $100,000 a year in subscriptions suddenly it’s like, “Wow, we just had a $500,000 year starting to do classes.”

Andrew: Interesting.

John: Which is interesting. It’s still a technique we do to this day. Webinars are so easy.

Andrew: Outside of teaching, how do you–I get that the teaching is important. But tell me about the sales? How do you sell in a webinar? When someone comes in to learn, how do you get them to buy?

John: The key with a webinar is that you’ve got to give good information. So, if it’s a one-hour webinar and it’s just a pitch fest, people are smart. If I saw that crap, I would click off. There needs to be value there.

Andrew: Okay.

John: My whole goal with a webinar like that is that at the end of the free webinar, they should have some tools that they didn’t have before. If the free stuff is so good, they should be thinking, “Gosh, I wonder what the paid stuff is like.” At that point, it’s a very simple, “This is what we’re doing this Saturday,” or, “We’re going to be doing some live training. There you go.” It’s not like a psychological take them through all these key steps. It’s just like, “Here’s some cool free information. If you’d like to see some even more cool information, this is how much it costs.”

Andrew: How do you make sure that the cool information is so valuable that people want more?

John: That’s a fine line. That was something that took a while to figure out. Here is what I found that works the best. I’ve seen this actually could transition across different mediums. But the idea would be like there are six setups that I really, really like in the stock market and the options market and the futures market. And you take one of those setups and go in depth and just show them everything on that one setup. It’s like, “Look, I hope you found this one setup useful. I’m going to teach five more on Saturday. If you want to see those too, here’s the link.”

Andrew: That’s my wife calling. She knows that I record every Tuesday at 4:00.

John: My wife knows that the market closes at 3:00 and she’ll still call me at 2:55.

Andrew: Strange, right? And she has my calendar. I’m really public with my calendar. I wonder if something is going on. She’ll text me if something is really urgent. So, what’s a setup, actually?

John: Okay. So, a setup–here’s the easiest way to think of a market or a chart. You have a bunch of different human beings–by the way, computers are programmed by human beings, so it’s still human beings–and at a moment in time, all these things come together. And when that moment in time happens, there’s a higher probability of one thing happening over the other.

That’s a long way of saying that if we get to this point, there’s an 80% chance that it’s going to go up. If we get to this point, there’s an 80% chance that it’s going to go down. What we’re doing is we’re waiting for those points and that’s kind of a trigger. And then at that point, we’re like, “Okay, let’s buy some Amazon stock or let’s buy some call options.”

Andrew: And that’s what you’re taking people through.

John: Correct.

Andrew: All right. Tell me more about the sale part. It’s not enough to just say, “Hey, you know what guys, if you like it, you can go buy.” People know there’s a lot they need to buy. I know that I actually need some medication for my leg. I’ve had a rash there. My doctor gave me the medication, told me exactly what I need to do. I still haven’t gone to Walgreens to pick it up.

John: You maybe need a Dream Machine.

Andrew: Oh, I’ve got a Dream Machine at home. It’s called whiskey. It doesn’t help with this.

John: Well, my ideal person that I’m going to work with is not somebody who’s brand new. So, you have a niche. To me, the typical kind of, I would call, perfect client for myself is someone who’s been kind of dabbling in the markets, maybe fairly serious for, say, three years. They’re getting to a point where they’re getting frustrated where even though they’re making some money, they’re not consistent. There comes a moment in time where people are like, “Ah, I just want to be consistent at this so I can rely on it.” That’s where I can be most helpful.

There’s plenty of free information out there on basics. I’m frankly not interested in teaching that. Someone who’s more intermediate to advanced, that’s the person that I like to work with. We have other people on our team that are very good at working with beginners. I’ve had a couple of people that [inaudible 00:25:56] to where they are now. So, they’re really, really good at more the beginning stuff and I’m just not. It’s just not as interesting to me.

So, I think a big part of that is you want to focus on stuff that you’re passionate about. I love that aspect of trading. I’m passionate about it. I like doing it myself and I like showing other people. It’s kind of like I wish somebody would have showed me. The fine line is being able to do that in such a way where your time isn’t sucked in because I want to spend time with my kids and my wife. So, the internet is a great medium for that because you can do a webinar and the webinar is over. There are ways to stay in contact via forums and things like that.

Andrew: By the way, where are you right now? Your wall looks very similar to my wall? Are you in a hotel room or where?

John: So, this is a condo we bought down in the Grand Cayman Islands. We come down there about three times a year. My kids are nine, seven and five. So, we’re down here for three weeks right now. I’m taking time off from the business. We’ve got a webinar tonight. I’m not doing it.

Andrew: You said you’re not doing the webinar tonight?

John: One of the things I’m very clear on–this was not like this in the beginning–if you’re going to have a successful business, it should be able to run without you, otherwise you have a job. So, for a long time I had a job and now over the last couple of years it’s trying to do it where it’s actually a business.

Andrew: What did you do to transition to this?

John: There are a couple different things. I would say a big part of that is getting clear on your goals. I don’t know if you’ve heard of Dan Sullivan.

Andrew: Yeah.

John: He’s kind of an entrepreneurs coach, strategic coach. He’s awesome. So, I’ve worked with him. I’m going up to one of his next sessions in Toronto at the end of this month. He said a very interesting thing. We were in a workshop. Somebody was like, “I have no time People call me 24/7.” He’s like, “You trained them that you’re available 24/7.” He really just starts making you think about your business and your life and how you want it like that. I never thought of it like that. And he’s got books out, things like that too.

Andrew: Tons.

John: Yeah. That’s just where–are you creating a business that’s sustainable without you?

Andrew: So, what’s one thing that you did, the most powerful thing that you did, other than train your people that you’re not going to be available every minute of every day?

John: so, the most powerful thing I’ve done is get out of the office. So, for a long time, I was in the office all the time. I was meddling in everything. And people learned to delegate up. If they couldn’t figure out how to do it, they would have me do it because I could do it. It was my business. I knew what needed to be done.

So, I got out of the office and stopped answering the phone and emails. I stopped going in there on Mondays and Fridays. That doesn’t mean I’m not dedicated to the business. I love the business. I want it to thrive. I want the people in the business to thrive. But me being in the office holds them back because it’s like, “Oh, well John’s here. He can make the decision.”

Andrew: How do you help them make decisions when you’re not there so you know the decisions are still in line with the way you’re thinking and now every single person is taking it in a different direction? Sorry, the connection just dropped for a moment. What were you saying?

John: One of the things I try to be clear about is that I’m completely fine with people making mistakes. I’d rather people try something and it not work than be scared to try anything. So, a lot of it is like, “Look, here’s who we are as a company. These are the guidelines. If a customer’s got a problem, you can handle it.”

Andrew: So, you give them a set of guidelines so they understand how to handle things. Is that right?

John: Yeah. It’s a lot of discretion too. It’s guidelines, but it’s just really saying I’ve gotten to the point now where before, I thought my role was to manage and control people, now my role is to get things out of their way so they can do a better job.

Andrew: I’m still not picturing it. I remember when I interviewed Sam Carpenter about how to systemize a business. Do you know Sam Carpenter, the author of “Work the System?”

John: I don’t.

Andrew: One of the things he said was–and that’s what we use at Mixergy to organize things. Like booking you here was a Sam Carpenter inspired process.

John: Okay.

Andrew: He said, “Start off by just writing out how you operate as a business.” I forgot the actual name of this document that he said to make. I didn’t want to do it. But someone on the team said, “Look, Sam insists on this. Why don’t you do it?” And it forced me to think about how do we operate? What do we do? One of the things we stand for is if there’s something new you want to do, just start out really small and then improve. It’s okay if it’s really small and pretty crappy as long as you launch is to a small group of people and you keep improving.

If someone has an idea, they know we’re not going to try to get it perfect right away. We’ll just take a small version of it. We’ll run it to a small group of people and we’ll keep improving it. That’s how they think without me. Do you have a process like that or any system like that to make sure everyone is working in the same way and you don’t have five different approaches to business when you’re away.

John: I think that’s something that we can improve. We always have five main goals, like, “Here are the quarterly goals. This is what we’re going to do.” It’s completely fine to try new things. We’re a big believer in testing. “I wonder if people would like this.” Well, let’s not go spend $100,000 on ads. Let’s do a small email to a segment of people on our list and see if they respond–that kind of stuff all day long.

That’s the beauty of it. People can kind of test the ideas they want to and we can see the response. If the response is good, we can expand it. If it’s not, we can kind of tweak it. The main goal is just kind of like, hey, if it’s not a useful tool that can help people in this journey, that’s not something we’re going to do. It’s a focus on that.

Andrew: How clear are you in expressing to the team who your ideal customer is? How do you do that?

John: What’s nice about this is that we do a couple of live events a year, even though it’s not my favorite, but it’s priceless in terms of getting to know our clients. I’ve made some great friends from doing that. There are a lot of very smart, intelligent people out there that are like, “Okay, I want to go out there. I want to learn how to trade.”

And we also let people come by our office. It’s helpful for people that are on the front lines to sit down with someone and go, “Oh, you are the person we’re trying to help. How can we help you?” And that’s so different than just talking to somebody on the phone.

Andrew: Wow. That’s really powerful. I should do more of that. I do invite people to come over the office. But when they come to the office, they do it after hours and it’s just me that they meet. That’s why I have a sense of who’s in the audience. The other people on the team, I need to find a way for them to meet the people in the audience.

John: One thing that we’ve done that works well is literally it’s like two events a year but we’ll have one day it’s like–we played poker. We had like 50 people come out and have a poker tournament and a cocktail reception. The entire team gets together and they get to mingle and talk. That just sets things in motion because it’s like–

Andrew: Sorry. “Because we’ve got now something…” It’s because of the connection that we dropped the last part of your sentence. You said, “Wow, we’ve got…”

John: I forgot. Now, it’s like especially in the online world. Like this, we can see each other. But a lot of times when you’re doing a webinar, you can’t see anybody. You have no idea what they look like. But in something like this, you now have a picture in your head of, “Oh gosh, this is that person. This is who I’m trying to help. They have a wife. They have a family. They have kids,” or whatever. It’s different because now you’re actually helping someone as opposed to, “Okay, we’ve got to push a product,” kind of thing.

Andrew: You know, I’m usually very business-minded in these interviews. Maybe it’s because you’re drinking and because of where you are–sorry?

John: It’s only my second one.

Andrew: Just even holding the bottle puts me in a different mindset. The reason I’m saying it is because I’m going to text Olivia. Let’s see what’s up. Maybe there is an issue.

John: Go for it.

Andrew: “Hey, I’m interviewing. Any issue? What’s up?” Oh, plus, “I love you.”

John: That is the key right there.

Andrew: That is important. Three years into your business, you start doing real revenue. You’re at about $500,000 a year and a guy comes over to you and wants you to merge. Who is this guy?

John: Oh god. So, the best thing about business is no matter what happens you learn stuff. This clown, he hit me at the right point. He was all flash, huge home, Southern California, multi-million dollar mansion on the beach. I was like, “Wow, this guy really knows what he’s doing.” I don’t want to use the word scam because I think he thought he could do something big with the business, but he could not. So, it was to the point where six months into it, I realized I had to get out of there.

Andrew: So, you actually did merge with him?

John: Yes. Merger is a joke. It was one of those things where it was just like I was bright-eyed, bushy tailed. This was, “Oh wow, this is the next logical step,” and it was just a disaster, to put it lightly. I had to get attorneys to extricate myself from that and essentially start over.

Andrew: Really?

John: But you know what? It was a great lesson.

Andrew: What do you mean start over? Don’t you get to keep your customers, your membership base?

John: That’s when we started TradetheMarkets because originally it was Simpler Trading. That was the company that merged. I extricated myself from that. But in the break up, so to speak, I did get my URL back.

Andrew: And then he got your customers?

John: No. They all didn’t like him. So, they all came back with me. So, that was fine.

Andrew: Wow. How do you deal with that on an emotional level? I would be so pissed that it would distract me from my work.

John: The only way I can think of it–so, one of my favorite books, have you heard of James Clavell? He wrote “Shogun,” “Tai-Pan,” “Noble House.” I read those books probably three times each during that time. It’s just the whole idea that it doesn’t matter what’s going on in your life, there is an attitude that you can bring to it that is a Zen kind of mindset. It doesn’t matter if you’re sitting on the beach [inaudible 00:39:38] or if you are in a whirlwind of complete crap, you can still kind of control your attitude. That pretty much saved me. It was stressful, but I kind of realize like, “Wow, this is the adventure that I get to tell one day.”

Andrew: What’s the name of a book that would do that for me because I tend to be very aggressive, especially when things are going bad?”

John: So, these books, I would call them hard to read because they’re not like the short quippy books that are out today. The author is James Clavell. His first book is “Shogun,” which is like a 1,000-page novel. The first 300 pages, you’re going to be reading it and you’re going to wondering, “Why did John recommend this?” I’ve read that book 15 times easily. And then his other ones are “Tai-Pan,” which is amazing, “King Rat,” really good, and then “Noble House.”

Andrew: Let me see if it’s available on Scribd. Do you know Scribd?

John: I don’t.

Andrew: I interviewed the founder and boy, the guy was just promoting Scribd nonstop in the interview. It was enough already. But the product was actually good. For like $9, you get unlimited audio and textbooks–unlimited audio and eBooks, I should say. Yes. Actually, there we go, the audio, his book “Shogun,” his book “Tai-Pan,” his book, “Gai-Jin.”

John: “Gai-Jin” isn’t that good.

Andrew: “Cloud of Sparrows,” is that one of his books?

John: The only four that I’ve read are “Shogun,” “Tai-Pan,” “King Rat,” and “Noble House.”

Andrew: All right. I need a good book. I’ve been pretty freaking bored with the books I’ve been reading.

John: I think you can learn most of life philosophy and business philosophy from those four books.

Andrew: All right. I’m saving “Shogun.” I could use a good book. Actually, I see here in my notes, he comes to California to meet with you or you go to California to meet with him?

John: Who?

Andrew: The guy who you–sorry, not James Clavell, but the guy who you merged with. Apparently, you met with him California. He comes with five thugs to dinner with you?

John: Yes.

Andrew: Is that right?

John: It’s right. So, it was one of those where it was literally a scene out of TV where it’s like, “Hey, I’ve got this debt. I’m transferring it to you. You now owe these guys.” I’m like, “Are you kidding me? This is really happening?” I was pretty conscious of the fact that this was a scare tactic. I really wasn’t in any danger. But it was like going out in the parking lot, getting pushed up against the wall, that kind of thing.

I remember getting away from that. I called up my dad and was like, “What is this?” He kind of laughed at me and was like, “Look, if you’re going to be dealing with business people,” he’s like a stockbroker. He deals with business people. He’s like, “Real business people don’t act like that. If you go into your next partnership, ask them for three years’ worth of tax returns. If they’re legitimate, they’re going to show them to you. If they’re not, they won’t.” That’s actually been a great filter.

There are a lot of people out there that I call, for lack of a better word, con men. If you’re starting off in business, they are going to prey on you. I don’t mean that to be scary, it’s just that when you’re new in business they’re going to try anything. And there are people out there that pick up on that. If you wear your ambition like a crown, people are going to take advantage of it.
First of all, don’t do business with single men from Southern California. That’s a good lesson. That’s tongue-in-cheek, obviously. But if someone’s not willing to share their tax returns from the last three years, they’re hiding something. So, you shouldn’t be doing business with people who have something to hide.

Andrew: I didn’t even think to look for that, but that’s a really legitimate thing to ask for.

John: It’s helped a lot.

Andrew: What kind of partnerships do you have now that you’re able to ask for that or that you need to?

John: Well, people that are willing to do that, first of all, the team that I have today, the partners I have today, I wouldn’t trade the for the world. We all have our pros and cons but we trust each other. I trust them to do things while I’m away. I trust their decisions.

Andrew: Why do you even need partners? Why can’t you go at this alone, John? You’ve got the reputation. You’ve built the site. You know what you’re doing.

John: I’ve thought about that. Here are the pros and cons of it. I want other people in the business who have an ownership mentality. So, part of it is giving some equity to people who are going above and beyond the call of duty. I like the idea of ownership mentality versus employee mentality. It’s pros and cons, but I’ve found that you can structure things in such a way that that works.

Andrew: What’s the key to structuring it right?

John: There’s something called a put-call clause, which means that if somebody at some point had a problem with someone–this is something, again, I learned that hard way–then it’s just a buyout clause.

Andrew: They get to buy you out or you get to buy them out?

John: It’s kind of both. One of you mentions a number and you’ve either got to pay up or if you’re bluffing, the other person gets to buy you out.

Andrew: And you’ve had to do that?

John: Yes.

Andrew: Wow. How do you raise that much money to buy someone out?

John: Well, a lot of times it’s with minority partnership. So, if they wanted to buy out my 80% interest, it’s going to be a lot. If I wanted to buy out their 10%, it’s not going to be a lot.

Andrew: I see. So, you have 80% of the business.

John: Correct.

Andrew: You talked about Dan Sullivan. Do you have any peer groups that you talk to?

John: Yeah. So, the two groups that I really like are Joe Polish. He’s got a 25k group. And I’ve just found that those two groups, you can go there and it’s business owners talking about business owner problems.

Andrew: And he matches you up with a handful of other entrepreneurs?

John: It’s kind of a networking event, but also you spend a couple of days, “What kind of issues are you having?” [Inaudible 00:46:02] wife and kids and you’re running a business, you’ve got different problems than your neighbor down the street who might be a lawyer. It’s just your problems are completely different.

Andrew: But you don’t have anything ongoing like on a monthly basis or even more frequently than that?

John: I actually recently the Entrepreneurs Organization, which is something I didn’t even know existed. It’s funny. If I would have done that ten years ago–I started doing that a year and a half ago. At that point, I was actually well beyond startup phase. But it’s a group where you go in and you share that 5% that you’re not willing to share with anyone else. This is a peer group that will understand that, that will listen, where it’s personal, whether it’s business.

Andrew: I’ve heard really good things about them. That’s EONetwork.org for anyone who’s interested in joining. What have you gotten out of it that’s been helpful?

John: I’ve been able to voice things that in the past I kept locked up. Just by voicing it and hearing people–they don’t give feedback. The whole idea of it is that you’re not giving each other advice. Somebody tells a story and then that triggers some sharing. Then you share your own experiences based on what you just heard. That just gets a lot of stuff out in the open that you would not be able to do in any other group.

Andrew: I see. So, they’re just asking you questions to draw you out, but they are giving you advice. They are allowed to tell you–tell me if I’m wrong–I thought they were allowed to say or encouraged to say something like, “When I was in your situation, here’s how I handled it,” right?

John: That’s the sharing. It’s kind of like, “I wasn’t in that same situation where some thug stuck a knife in your back, but in a situation where I felt under pressure, this is what the situation was and this is what I did.” It doesn’t matter what the situation was. Somebody who was in that same mental thing and they’re able to share an experience, you’re like, “Oh, cool. Okay. That helps.” You got to draw some notes or something like that.

Andrew: I see. It does keep it from being preachy. Sometimes entrepreneurs feel like we know everything. “How could you have this simple problem? I could solve it for you in a second.”

John: Well, the whole idea of EO–and this is something that I’m trying to be more conscious of–you’re assuming that everyone in the group can figure it out themselves. So, instead of sitting there going like, “You need to do this. You need to use this software,” and then it’s up to them to figure it out. That’s just more of a peer group as opposed to, “This is what you need to do.”

Andrew: So, how did you figure things out until you joined them? How did you figure out that webinars were the way to go, that there was this membership program called MemberGate? By the way, one of the things that bugs me about them–I don’t want to put them down–but their copyright notice on the bottom of the site is out of date.

John: Yeah. I can’t defend them.

Andrew: By the way, anyone who is listening, just look at the bottom of your site. It’s so easy to change the copyright notice. Just change it. It makes your site look like you really care. Let me take a look at mine. I know we actually checked it on January 1st to make sure it worked. A lot of companies have that problem. But we should all look at the bottom of our sites. So, who do you talk to that lets you know about MemberGate and webinars and so on?

John: I’ve just found masterminds that are really good, the 25k group, Joe Polish group, to me that’s a mastermind where you’re meeting other entrepreneurs who are doing things and you get ideas.

Andrew: What’s the format there that you like?

John: You just share stuff. So, they’ll have things like a ten-minute talk. “Here is something that’s helped me make $250,000 a share. That’s the criteria. Someone will say like, “Well, we’ve been doing this webinar stuff or this is what we’ve been doing with Infusionsoft.” I see and they all have to teach something.

Andrew: Yes.

John: And what happens is if I need a new software program or some tool, I’m not going to Google it because you don’t really know what that piece of software is. I’m going to go to this group and say, “What are you using for project management software?”

Andrew: And do you do it in between sessions to or only at the live event?

John: You can do in between sessions. But it’s typically at the live event where you’re getting most of the information. Yeah.

Andrew: How’s this interview going for you?

John: Oh, it’s fine. It’s great.

Andrew: Is it a pain in the butt that towards the end of the day you had to have an interview? Did it gnaw at you? It would gnaw at me if I was on vacation.

John: No. Here’s the thing. I didn’t remember it until this morning. That helped. I don’t mind–I’m not planning any notes or anything. I don’t mind doing stuff like this. It’s a conversation. You’re a good interviewer and we’re having a conversation. So, I could be down at the local restaurant talking to someone and instead we’re going it like this.

Andrew: Let’s add a little more heart to this. What’s one issue that you had to bring up to EO that was tough for you to bring up but by talking about it openly, you found some comfort and you understood how to solve it or what’s an issue you would have if you could have?

A One issue that I did not I had but through EO I realized is that probably my biggest problem as a manager is having a need to be liked. That’s good and bad for a lot of reasons, but I never understood. What we did is an exercise where I spent 30 minutes going through why I thought that–and everybody’s got their thing, right? So, parents divorced, whatever it is, needing to feel needed.

Andrew: Was it literally that, parents divorced and you needed to feel needed?

John: It’s one of those things where you’re not really sure. I think people are just kind of hardwired sometimes. It was a repeatable pattern that I would say–and you could ask members of my team–I would say that they would think that I’m very fair but I’m probably a little soft.

Andrew: What’s an example of a time that you wanted to be liked so you made a bad decision or expressed yourself in a way you regret?

John: Hanging onto partnerships way longer than I should have. I could have sat down and had a very frank conversation instead of trying to keep it going.

Andrew: And you wanted the partner to like you and you wanted the team to see that you weren’t someone who couldn’t’ work it out with this partner. Is that it?

John: Yeah. So, that was a good lesson. What was interesting, what was fascinating about sharing it with this group is that a couple of them could completely relate and a couple of them couldn’t, which was even better. One, she runs a business in Austin. She’s like, “I can’t believe that’s even an issue. I don’t care if people don’t like me at all.” And it’s great listening to that because it’s like, “Oh, okay, you’re a successful entrepreneur. You don’t care what people think.” What I’ve learned, it’s a disservice not to tell people what I’m really thinking. It was a breakthrough for me.

But instead of trying to placate everybody–there’s something to be said though. I don’t want to be a complete asshole and treat everybody like dirt. I value my team. I want to be fair with them. But it’s a disservice to them if I’m not expressing myself, “This is what I want.” And it could be frustrating them. So, it was just acknowledging that and realizing it. That was a forum that I could do that and figure it out and I couldn’t do that anywhere else.

Andrew: I do that with my team too. I know they want me to tell them what I’m thinking of something, but I always feel the need to say something nice about it first and then get into what’s frustrating. Part of that is because we’re a remote team and it’s hard to read that I’m not pissed and don’t undervalue you just because I’ve got negative feedback on what you just did.

John: Yeah. I think part of it is I don’t want people to be disheartened. It’s like, “Look, you screwed up, whatever, yes I’m pissed.” But it’s more like, “Okay…” I’m completely fine with people making mistakes. I get frustrated when people start treating something like “Oh this is not something that you care about. If you don’t care about it why are you here? Go find another job.” So, that’s the stuff where it’s just like, “I just need to speak my truth. This is what’s going on here,” and not worry about if I’m being liked or not because it’s a disservice. That was something I didn’t realize.

Andrew: If you were standing in front of Joe Polish’s group of entrepreneurs and you had to share with them and teach them one thing that helped you get–you said a minimum quarter-million dollars in the last year–what’s one thing you’d teach us here today?

John: Add a zero. When in doubt, add a zero.

Andrew: What does that mean?

John: What I mean by that is so, if you have an idea for a webinar and you’re like, “I think I can make $75,000 from this webinar, add a zero. Well, what could you do to do $750,000? Or another way to do that is compress time. So, I got really excited when I was making $100,000 a year from my website. Well, what happened if that turned into $100,000 a month. And then what happens if that turns into $100,000 a week?

Andrew: So, how do you? If you were to sit down and do this exercise back then and say, “All right, $100,000 a year is terrific. Now I’m going to go a little bit further, a lot further. How do I get to $100,000 a month?” What would you do with that desire?

John: So, first of all, you’ve got to figure out what that looks like? So, at the time I had 100 members paying $100 a month. So, if I was going to do $100,000, instead of doing $100,000 a year to $100,000 a month, I needed 1,000 members. So, how do I get 1,000 members?

Andrew: And how do you then get that? Do you hire more 15-year olds to start spamming more message boards? No. That forces you to think outside of your current system.

John: It forces you to think outside your current system. So, that’s when I started realizing, “Wow, I need to hire someone. I need to join a mastermind.” So, that’s when I went and sought out other people who could help that. But first, I had to actually establish that goal.

If I were to say, “How do I grow 20% this year? So, instead of doing $100,000, let’s do $120,000.” That’s not growth. But if you’re really adding a zero, you’re suddenly having to just explode your thinking. It’s not like a huge leap. People do it all the time. You’ve just got to have–oh, that’s what I want to do next. And you go out and find the way to do it.

Andrew: So, you’re now doing $14 million, you said?

John: We’ll do $16 million this year. My goal is to do $30 million by 2017.

Andrew: If you had to add a zero to it, what would you do?

John: That’s a good question. So, if I wanted to do $160 million, I’d have to get my arms wrapped around the idea of when, because you have to have a due date. That forces me to expand my thinking. I think $30 million by 2017 is actually a very comfortable goal. If I really wanted to explode it, then yeah, I need to sit down and figure out if I wanted to do that in three years, there are some things that I have to do differently.

Andrew: What’s the last thing that you did that exploded your business, that really shot it up?

John: The first thing was I wrote a book. So, I had McGraw-Hill. It was back in 2005. It’s a book called “Mastering the Trade.” That was actually very, very big.

Andrew: Why? I saw that actually in my notes here and I kept meaning to bring it up and didn’t. Why was that so dramatic for you?

John: I actually didn’t think it would be a big deal. What I’ve learned is there’s a lot of authority given to what I would call a real book. “Wow, this is like a publisher, McGraw-Hill.” It’s a hard-backed book as opposed to–and I’ve obviously done eBooks and things like that too. But what happens with that is that when people read it, at the end of the day, when they read it, they either are a client or they’re not.

So, it sells 10,000 copies a year. It’s not going to give “Harry Potter” a run for its money. But it’s a small niche. 10,000 people read it a year. Most of them read it and like it and they come to the website. It’s one of those things where it’s the same thing where in that book, I give people enough information and you pour your heart out in a book and they read it and they’re like, “This is great. This is all the information I need. Maybe I want to go to the website and kind of do this more.” So, that was something that took us from–instead of doing like $500,000 a year, suddenly two years later it went $3 million a year. That was a legitimacy factor that helped.

Andrew: I could see that. I was looking to see if that was on Scribd. No, that is not on Scribd.

John: You have to go to Amazon.

Andrew: It’s definitely on Amazon.

John: And then from there–gosh, what were some of the big things? I never did affiliate marketing. I never thought that was a good idea. I was like why would I give 30% or 50% of my profits to another group? We finally started doing that in 2012. That’s when we went from like $4 million to $11 million.

Andrew: Really?

John: I was really surprised. I was really surprised.

Andrew: What was it about the affiliates that got them to do it?

John: A big part of it is our refund rates are very low. So, we have one percent refund rates, which for online info products that’s very low, but it speaks for the product of it. I think I heard this from Mary Ellen Tribby. I don’t know if you’ve heard of her.

She has like an entrepreneurial mom site and different things like that. She had done some work. She had said you’re stupid not to do affiliate marketing because that’s just free money that drops to the bottom line. I started thinking about it and I had this beef that I had to pay 50% out to somebody that wasn’t even doing any of the work.

But she’s like, “John, this is a client that didn’t know you existed before. So, what if you give $500 of a $1,000 sale to this other person? Now they’re going to be your client. And you’re not even paying it up front. Somebody is paying you first and then you pay the affiliate.” So, I was always a non-believer in affiliate marketing and then I was like, “Oh, okay, that makes a lot of sense.”

Andrew: I see. MaryEllenTribby.com is here website. How did you get to talk to her directly?

John: It was through a mastermind group? She had done some work in the financial space. It was Stansberry, very smart lady, very entrepreneurial, online-savvy and everything.

Andrew: All right. Congratulations on your success. The website–actually, what’s a good website? Should I just send people to SimplerTrading.com?

John: That’s probably best because most people probably haven’t traded options. So, if you’re into options trading, like trading options on Apple and Amazon, go to SimplerOptions.com. Otherwise, Simpler Trading will show you kind of like Simpler Stocks. That’s a good way to get interested in the markets and things like that and different things.

Andrew: And at the bottom of your website, copyright is up to date.

John: I’ve got a good team. I didn’t do it.

Andrew: Yeah, you do have a good team. It’s so good to have you on here. Thank you so much, John, for doing this interview. Everyone else, thank you for being a part of the Mixergy community.

If you like what you’ve heard here, you should be subscribing to this podcast. All you have to do is go to your favorite podcast app, type in Mixergy or Andrew Warner or frankly, “this American life,” because I SEO’d that. “This American life,” people were searching for it. So, I figured when they search, they should come up with Mixergy. Test that for me, guys. If you love the podcast, please rate it on iTunes. It helps more people discover it.

John, thanks for doing this interview.

John: Thanks, Andrew. Thanks for having me.

Andrew: You bet. Thank you all for being a part of Mixergy. Bye, everyone.


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  • Colin

    Hey Andrew, first of all your interviews are awesome and always have great info but your advice about updating your copyright date is incorrect. Your copyright date should reflect the original publish date not the current year. This is true even for when changes made. While it’s not even necessary to claim copyright as it’s automatic (in the US), if you really want to you can add years separated by commas for example “copyright 2003, 2005, 2010” adding a year when an update is made. Like I said this isn’t necessary and personally I would just roll with the original year of publish or none at all.

    -Colin

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