Getting business on LinkedIn

Joining me is somebody who’s been on Mixergy before. His name is Josh Turner and he was first on here to talk about LinkedIn University.

That’s was where he said, “Look, there’s a way to get business from LinkedIn.” And he was one of the first people to say that.

He’s back here today to talk about something new.

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Josh Turner

Josh Turner

LinkedSelling

Josh Turner is founder of LinkedSelling which helps businesses generate leads.

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Full Interview Transcript

Andrew: Hey there, freedom fighters. My name is Andrew Warner. I’m the founder of Mixergy, where I interview entrepreneurs about how they built their businesses. Joining me as somebody who’s been on mixer G before Josh Turner was first on here to talk about linked university. This was where he said, look, there’s a way to get business from LinkedIn and Josh.

You were one of the first people to say that. I thought Josh Shaw at the time that I first talked to you, that LinkedIn was just a place to get a job and you were doing it and he was doing training. And then I remember one time I was at some conference and at a dinner there, everyone erupted in applause because you had like the biggest sales campaign and your affiliates were making a lot of money.

Do you know what I’m talking about?

Josh: That was probably our first big like JV partner launch that we did for one of our training programs. That would probably the one in 2016.

Andrew: Do you have a sense of how big that was

Josh: In total with like upsells and everything. It was around 4 million in sales, something like that. So it was not, you know, some record breaking, like, you know, Russell Brunson, Tony Robbins kind of numbers or anything like that, but it was pretty good for a small business like ours.

Andrew: and in the room you are the man, you are the person who everyone was looking up to and saying, wow, look at what he did. And I was looking at you. And you had the serious look on your face. Like, what are we celebrating here? Like, what is this? This is a waste of my time almost. And I was intimidated to come over and congratulate you and say anything.

Cause the look on your face. And then

Josh: That was probably just like my, my awkwardness around accepting praise and you know, all

that kind of stuff. Maybe, you know, I don’t know.

Andrew: Um, then Kim Phillips, one of my past interviewees messaged me and said, I sold my agency. I said, congratulations. Who’d you sell it to. Josh Turner, you bought her agency.

Josh: Yeah, that was a few years ago. Yep.

Andrew: Okay. Then I started hearing about your software connect three 65, and now you’re in the software business and you’ve got the agency, you’ve got the software business, this thing that everyone was applauding with the JV thing where you were teaching, you’re not doing that anymore. You’ve moved on to bigger businesses than that, right?

Josh: Yeah, well, we’re still doing a lot of joint ventures and partnerships and affiliates that promote our products and stuff, but we’re just. We’re selling something different now in terms of software versus straight training programs, that was a few years back.

Andrew: If I were to sum up what you do, it seems like you’re in the business of getting leads for small businesses. You do it through your agency, which is called linked selling, and you do it through your software where people can basically do self-serve it’s connect three 60 five.io. Am I right? And I’m going to ask you how much revenue you’re making and you’re going to give me one of those looks that intimidates me, but I’m going to stick with it and ask you what type of revenue you’re doing.

Josh: Yeah. Connect three 65 is around a 3 million annual run rate right now. Um, so you know, you’re, you’re on 250,000 a month in MRR. Um, And then, uh, the, the agency is, is somewhere around 4 million a year. Something like that right now. Um, I’d have to look at the exact numbers I used to spend.

I was a former CFO and I used to like obsess over numbers and I’ve started realizing that like really paying lots of attention to my numbers all the time at this stage, isn’t like improving my business or life as much. So I’m just always focused kind of on what’s next, as opposed to what’s in the rear view.

But that’s roughly where we’re at.

Andrew: Too. I I’m a numbers, obsessed person. I need numbers in order to feel good about myself. And so I look at them, but I realize in business it could be destructive. Right. It makes me start to think of each person I talk to as how a potential addition to my numbers. And that’s when I, they could feel it it’s, it stinks and it runs my relationships.

Josh: Yeah, I don’t, I haven’t thought about it that way. It’s, it’s almost just like, you know, I’m much more focused on my projections than what we did in the past,

Andrew: And what are you projecting? What do you, what do you hope to see for yourself? Five years out where where’s Josh Turner’s business.

Josh: Well, you know, connect three 65, which is my full-time focus at this point, you know, is, is really, I think. Got a, a huge upside for growth too, in terms of revenue, like how much revenue we’ll be doing five years, a lot more than we’re doing now. I expect and suspect, but I think that the, the short-term path for us is probably in the next year or two, um, probably they’re taking on a major investment in, or being acquired emerging or something like that.

Because I think that we’re at a place where there’s some really key areas in the business that we are not. Experts in and that like bring ha being able to combine forces with somebody who really knows how to build a world-class product and expand our marketing in a bigger way. And some of those things, um, is something we’re we’re we, you know, I think we could struggle along and figure it out maybe, but I think our path is probably partnering with somebody that can help us get there faster.

So that’s kind of where we’re going.

Andrew: Than what I described earlier. And I should say this interview is sponsored by two phenomenal companies. The first, if you like what dash is doing, and you want to start publishing your own content, start teaching. And start building a business, go to hostgator.com/mixergy. The second, if you have a team you want to pay them, do what my guests have done.

Go to gusto.com/mixergy, but I’ll talk about those later. Josh, more concretely three connect three 65. I said it’s about getting leads for businesses. What are we talking about? What are the features of the software?

Josh: Really, um, our, our customers are small businesses and, and our, uh, entire mantra philosophy is, is that, you know, the biggest thing that prevents small businesses from, from growing. And I’ve seen a lot of small businesses that have failed. As a result of this problem, including one in my family, one that I worked for over 10 years ago is not having good systems in place to consistently bring leads in the door.

Like it’s so many businesses that I see are just reliance on word of mouth and referrals. And so we’re, we’re trying to solve that problem. And so what our system and software does, and really we’ve developed them with a methodology. Um, over the years for how to connect with prospects and build a relationship with them in a short amount of time so that you’re not just connecting and being a leg.

Humper, it’s what we call the people who are like on LinkedIn and they just connect with you and send you a sales pitch.

Andrew: Be more specific. So what do you, when we talk about features it’s I know that you have an email marketing component, which is kind of like MailChimp and, uh, active campaign Infusionsoft, except you use people’s individual Gmail or outlook email to send out messages. So they’re, they’re more personal.

That’s one feature. What else are you doing?

Josh: Well, we’re, we’re teaching people how to go find prospects in all sorts of different ways so

Andrew: So there’s an

Josh: continuously what’s that.

Andrew: so there’s an educational component.

Josh: Absolutely.

Andrew: Okay. What else, what else does this software do for you? For

Josh: software itself, in addition to automating personal emails, which is the big thing most of our professors use it for, uh, it also automates social media.

Uh, so we have direct integrations with Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn, LinkedIn, the big one that most of our customers come to us for. Um, and the, the thing that we automate is the posting. Um, so for anyone who’s familiar with Hootsuite or buffer. It’s like that, except that we also have a team of writers behind the scenes that for our clients that want this help, they actually create the posts and updates for you as well, because with our methodology, um, positioning and keeping your name in front of people.

On social media is a big part of it, of building the relationship and maintaining top of mind awareness so that when you start reaching out and emailing people, they, they kind of already know who you are and it’s not just like a cold pitch. Um, and so, uh, the challenge though that we’ve seen over the years for a lot of our clients, is that a lot of people struggle with figuring out what to say or.

Putting the time together to be posting on a regular basis. Uh, so we, we take that off their plate as well. Those are the two big things like over the years when we were selling training programs, as you alluded to at the beginning, um, the, the, the, the big stumbling blocks that our clients faced was there was a big part of our process is sending lots of personal messages to prospects.

And then the, the other part that people struggle with is the posting of the content on social media. So those two things. The software kind of takes off their plate for the most part.

Andrew: So you started out teaching? No, actually you, you were doing some agency work right back in

Josh: Started with the agency. Yeah,

Andrew: And then you said I’m going to teach people what the agency does. Then a lot of the people who are learning said, can I just pay you to do it? And so the agency started to take off. And specifically, what were you doing at the agency?

Josh: All right agency, which is still going strong today is really companies hire us to just do all of this for them

Andrew: What was it in the beginning in 2010? This was back when you had a full-time CFO position and you were doing this, it seems like, kind of on the side. What, what did your agency do?

Josh: Well, in 2010, when I first started the company, I was working as an outsource CFO. So I had, you know, five or six, seven, eight clients at a time here in St. Louis. And the way I was getting some of those clients was being really active on LinkedIn, connecting with prospects. I started a LinkedIn group. I was doing all this stuff that was kind of the, the, the, the foundation of what we do now for people.

And in some of those CFO clients asked me if I could do that stuff for them. Cause they saw what I was doing. One of them hired me to do it and was super successful. And then I was like, well, I could probably start a business. To help other people do this. In fact, right now these days, like you go, go look for, uh, an agency that says they specialize in LinkedIn marketing and you’ll find tons of them back in 2011.

That was not the case. Uh, and so I’ve thought, well, it doesn’t look like there’s anyone really specializing in this. And, uh, that’s why I linked selling as an agency really took off. And then I stopped doing the outsource CFO stuff within six months or so. Um, and, uh, you know, so that’s, that’s where we were the first couple of

Andrew: What was working for you in the early days for LinkedIn marketing? Um,

Josh: it was just connecting with prospects.

Andrew: you would take over your, your client’s account connect with prospects for them. And then, and then.

Josh: with prospects, um, design a messaging campaign to over the course of a couple months after you connect with them to kind of warm, warm them up. Before you make an ask, uh, part of the process is building a LinkedIn group to, um, that would be for your prospects. Um, so like that first client was a woodworking company

Andrew: Okay. Tell me about

Josh: all over the country.

And so they, we helped them create a group called commercial construction professionals. And that group is now over 20,000 members. But they, um, you know, then they would invite all these people to join the group, et cetera, et cetera. And then those people would see them as a leader in the space, see their content over and over.

Basically give them a reason to reach out to people, to invite them to something and start the relationship, you know, similar to what a lot of people are doing with podcasts these days, same kind of a play.

Andrew: The play that you’re talking about is where people will ask someone to do a podcast interview as a way of getting to know them and then reaching out to some of their network and others like them. Yeah,

Josh: Yeah, it’s a good way to get your foot in the door.

Andrew: not enough people do that. I, there was a guy who worked with me, who just turned his whole business into that, that all he does now is do interviews with people so that he could get to know them.

And I wouldn’t say pitch them on his business, but eventually it leads to that.

Josh: absolutely. I think it’s a good strategy for

Andrew: it’s a

Josh: that have to want to put the time in. Yeah.

Andrew: That’s the thing. It takes a little bit of time and it takes putting yourself out there and risking saying the wrong thing and being awkward and then having it live on forever.

But if you’ve got that stomach for it, it’s definitely worth it. You get an hour with someone,

Josh: absolutely.

Andrew: hopefully at the end, they don’t hate you. How are you feeling about me right now? I’m still trying to read your eyes.

Josh: I’m feeling good.

Andrew: Were you the person who was actually doing that first connection, who is, who is doing the work you mentioned when you talked about the original contract, you said we did this, we did that.

Was it you going into their LinkedIn account and sending out offers and putting people in a group?

Josh: That first client put me over the threshold of what I could manage on my own. So my business partner, Ben Kniffen, it was that very first client of mine that said, do this LinkedIn stuff for us. I called him and said, Hey, can you come over to my house this weekend? And, and help me bust out some of this work cause it’s really manual stuff.

So he came over on a Saturday and, uh, and helped me crank out a bunch of messages and connection request to get the campaign started. And then from that point on, he kind of worked with me on a part-time basis for the next few months with, uh, basically just managing that one client. Then we got another LinkedIn client.

Like within the first few months. And I said, why don’t you come do this with me full time? Because now we have enough revenue with these two clients for me to pay you a salary. And I’ve got these other CFO businesses still paying me. So let’s, uh, let’s try and turn this into a business. And that’s what we did.

Andrew: I like the outsource CFO business, by the way, just to detour for a moment, I’ve tried to find that now why aren’t there more outsource CFO services, somebody who will come in, give the founder, give the team some outside insight and perspective. It feels like it’s just a no brainer. When I hired someone from top health to do it for me, I think within the first two conversations, he more than paid for a year of his time.

Josh: Nice. Yeah. I mean, I think there’s tons of them out there nowadays. Yeah, there’s there’s uh, and there’s some organizations now that have turned it from, you know, I was just a guy doing it out of my house. Now there’s some, some serious companies out there who have like hundreds of them under their umbrella.

Andrew: Total no-brainer and then these guys can’t help themselves. I think he was even giving Olivia advice about the insurance that you should get for her, from her job. And then he started going into 401k and it’s just like, he just couldn’t help himself going all over the place. Uh, how did you end up getting more customers for, uh, linked selling when you

Josh: the early days,

Andrew: Yeah.

Josh: it was all the stuff that we do on LinkedIn doing it for ourselves. Um, a lot of content marketing, a lot of webinars. Um, and then, you know, just organic and SEO is big for us too, and then referrals from customers. So those were the, kind of the core things we weren’t doing. Any Facebook ads or things like that in the really early days.

It wasn’t until we started launching our, our training programs that we started getting into that stuff and getting a little more sophisticated with it.

Andrew: how much is your training program doing now?

Josh: Zero. We don’t,

Andrew: You don’t do any of it at all. Wow.

Josh: Yup. The training program now is really part of connect three 65. And so in a sense, we, we give it away for free. Um, and the software is the thing that people pay for, which makes the program and our methodology easier to implement.

Andrew: Okay. All right. Let me take a moment to talk about my first sponsor and then come back into this, um, and figure out how you came up with the idea for software. My first sponsor is HostGator. If you’re seeing what Josh did and you’re saying, Hey, you know what? I do have a skill that maybe is undervalued under appreciated, but I think I could do something with this.

Just go to hostgator.com, set up a website and go out and get clients will pay you. To do the service that you’re good at. I can imagine somebody right now Josh saying I’m really actually, I can’t imagine. I know one specific dude he’s really good at Tik TOK. He’s been showing me his numbers and what he’s been fricking Tik TOK.

Um, can you imagine someone like him just saying, I’m going to do this as an agency, I’ll help businesses like Andrew. It was like, Josh has just get on Tik TOK, the numbers when, when he shows them to me are outrageous. I don’t know how much of connection there is with the creator there because people are more just into the feed there.

But anyway, imagine if it’s that, whatever it is that you’re good at, take it. Build an agency. And when you need your website, go to hostgator.com/mixergy. When you use that slash Mixergy at the end, you’ll get a great low price and they’ll take really good care of you. And of course, I’ll get credit for sending you over it’s hostgator.com/mixergy to host your website.

Right? When did you decide to come up with software?

Josh: Well, I w I, um, I went to, uh, an event that Ryan Laveck was hosting in Austin, Texas, and I think it was 2017. Um, I can’t remember exactly, but let’s just say that’s when it was, uh, it was either whatever. Um, and I sat next to Nathan Lanka there. I don’t even think he knows this story. I haven’t really, I haven’t talked to him about it since, but anyways, so Nathan is, is, you know, was at the time, was running a company called Heyo.

He may have just exited that business. I’m not sure. So we kind of, we had had some talks before about doing some joint venture stuff with each other and whatnot. And then, and so what he was doing at that time was getting really more deeply into starting other SAS businesses and what he, he really just kind of broke down for me, like.

The the, if I started a software business on the back of what I’d already created, because with our launches and stuff, he knew we had a really big email list and community and following all these JV partners that work with us, all that stuff, you know, and, and he was like, with everything that you’ve got there, you could.

Build a software business that would be worth so much more than a marketing agency is worth because of the multiples that people are paying for your SAS businesses. And, um, I, uh, I really hadn’t considered it that way. And I thought, you know, you might be right about this. So that was like one of the first moments of saying let’s try and build some software and see if we can, you know, Turn around and sell it someday for some great multiple.

And I’ve come to realize it’s a lot more to it than that, you know? Um, but that was like the first spark that kind of got me pointed in that direction. And then of course, when we decided to think about like, well, what should we build? You know, we looked at what we were already doing and, and what do our customers and community need more help with?

Like how could we serve them better? And that’s, that’s really where it was born and why the software now does what it does.

Andrew: Was connect three 65, the first software that you create created. And then what were the needs that you saw that you wanted to address?

Josh: Okay. So, um, essentially the, the email component of our process was, was built on using clunky spreadsheets and mail merge, essentially to send personal messages to lots of people at the same time, but it’s not elegant at all. And you can’t. It’s really difficult to track things. And then what if you want to have a campaign built with followups and one, if you don’t want the next message to go to anyone who already replied to the first message and all these things.

So we really just initially built the software to solve that problem so that we could give our clients, um, a much better solution to doing that part of our process.

Andrew: It was just that email sent out more methodically than you were doing with a spreadsheet, but essentially the same

Josh: Yeah. Yeah. So it looks, I mean, the functionality of it when you’re inside the software really just looks just like, if you’re like what MailChimp or constant contact or a Webber Infusionsoft, any of that stuff looks like. But it uses your actual personal email. There’s no unsubscribed link, et cetera, et cetera.

And so the emails get, uh, on average across our total customer base, over 40% open rate. And the reply rate is huge, but it’s a really specific type of email. So it’s not a replacement for those other email softwares. It’s really, you know, in combination with that.

Andrew: So give me, can you give me. Use case that you are addressing maybe a first customer to help me understand what three 65 was doing different from all those other email service providers.

Josh: All of those other, you know, email services or you don’t want to go connect with people on LinkedIn and then dump them into your MailChimp account and have them start getting your newsletter.

Andrew: I’m sorry to interrupt you, dude. People do fricking do that. The founder of a company, just say that they do do that. And the thing that, that, that gets me is it ruins it for all the MailChimp email it’s been done so much. I went to MailChimp. I said, find a way to block all my domains, all the emails on my domain from MailChimp, because there are too many people who do that move.
Josh Turner is founder of LinkedSelling which helps businesses generate leads.

Sorry. And it’s a stupid fricking newsletter. It’s just, it’s the worst newsletter. It’s not even something useful.

Josh: Yeah, most of the time, that’s, that’s kind of what it is that people are doing with that, with that approach. And it doesn’t work, it just upsets people and you get unsubscribes and it’s not very effective. And

Andrew: friends. And now, Hey, guess what? I put you on a mailing list. That’s that’s a way to introduce yourself again, to me. All right. Okay. So you’re saying you don’t want to do that. What do you want to do instead?

Josh: So instead, if you connect with somebody on LinkedIn or if you find their information on some other, there’s all these different databases online to build lists, to find prospects it’s. If instead you reached out to them with a personal email to introduce yourself, they kind of let them know why you’re reaching out.

And there’s a lot of different strategic ways to do that. One could be

Andrew: strategic way. What’s a good thing to do. If you’ve got someone on LinkedIn who just connected with you, you can get their email address pretty easily. What’s the first intro that you should send out.

Josh: The easiest thing to do without having to set up other marketing assets to go along with it is just to tell somebody that, you know, you, you appreciate recently being connected to them on LinkedIn. Thanks for connecting with me. I’m looking forward to keeping in touch. You know, every few weeks I usually send an update to my connections here.

So I hope that’s okay with you. You know, if you’d rather not get it, let me know. But otherwise, like I look forward to keeping in touch with you here and you just kind of get permission from them at that point to send them, uh, you know, uh, here’s what’s going on in my world message every few weeks and there’s

Andrew: ask. No, let’s do business. And though let’s get on a call for 15 minutes. Nothing. Just thanks for adding me on LinkedIn from time to time. I’ll check in with you. Let me know if that’s a little awkward. That’s it.

Josh: And then the, the other there’s, there’s a lot of ways to approach it. That’s the easiest, if you don’t have anything else to offer to them, but then some of our customers are using Facebook or LinkedIn groups. So the first thing I do is invite them to be a part of the group. We talked about the podcast thing earlier.

So it’s no matter what though the first step is not. Let me tell you about what I do and, and how I can help you and let’s get on a call so you can. Buy my services like that, that doesn’t work.

Andrew: Oh, those guys just get me. So fricking fired up angry that I have to hold myself back. That’s where I need discipline. I will time screenshot them just to publicly shame them because some of these guys, including this one guy today from, I guess it’s called rocket, he said, This is my last chance. And then I promise I’ll be out of your life forever.

I wanted to go find, and I’m on Twitter and say, here’s a screenshot. You promise, stop emailing me. And then I just stopped myself. And then I emailed him back. I started, I hit reply and I said, thank you for promising to never email me again. I hit send. And then thankfully my email program has an unsend I unscented and I deleted it.

There’s no sense doing that, but, Oh, that gets me so angry. I don’t know why it’s so unreasonable. Who cares?

Josh: Yeah, I mean, They’re going after the, the tiny sliver of the market that is currently in the market for what they do. Like, obviously there’s

Andrew: a pay off, you’re saying.

Josh: yeah. So there’s um, in the, in the book, ultimate sales machine by Chet Holland, he’s got this thing called the demand’s pyramid and basically they did some study and they found that roughly 3% of your target market is currently in a buying mode.

Like meaning that they have a buying intent for what you do right now. And so what those people are doing who are using cold email or LinkedIn connections and pinches, et cetera, it’s just like trying to blanket as many people as they can with their sales pitch and hopes of hitting that the 3% of people who are actively in the market for that thing.

Right. And I think, but for most of our clients, That’s that’s really a destructive way to go about really churning and burning through prospects. Whereas if you, if you build relationships with people first and play the long game a little bit, you know, you’ll get a much bigger chunk of that pie. Um, over time.

Andrew: Even if I come back a month later, there’s 3% or two months later, the 3% we’re going to be in the buying framework. And then the other 97% maybe are a little bit more warmed up and more interested.

Josh: Well, a lot of them aren’t even problem aware at this point. And so you’re pitching people who maybe fit some avatar, but if they don’t currently have the problem, then they’re not going to respond to a cold sales pitch. And on the other hand, if you build a relationship with them and keep your name in front of them and put some case studies in front of them, maybe over the course of a couple months, they’ve not only been thinking about your thing more, how it might help them.

And now they’re, they’re moving from this, like not even aware of the problem zone into now, it is in their mind that maybe this is something that I do need to focus on. And so they’re going to be, you know, at that point, a better lead.

Andrew: Yeah. Yeah. I, you know what, when we were doing, when I was doing scotch night at the office, before we were asked to stop for COVID. Conversations would go in all kinds of random places. I remember one night the conversation went into these people who are doing nothing, but sending these emails out that are aggressive as I’m talking about and how effective it was for them.

And then they were talking about the strategies they used to get to get away with it. It’s like have another domain that’s similar to your company domain. That’s completely different so that when you get that blacklisted, you’re back on with Gmail. And it’s like, ah, I, and I was smiling and nodding and happy to see that the results were there.

And then I thought afterwards, well, I’m glad to know about this stuff. And I’ll cheer anybody on who was an entrepreneur, frankly, Falco pawn did an interview with me or had scotch with me. I go, this is killer. What you’re selling booze when you’re not supposed to it. How, but, um, but I also feel like that’s just not as effective as, as spending a little time with someone.

All right. So that was the first version you did a big launch to your list. Is that what you did? What Nathan suggested.

Josh: Yeah, initially, I mean, not necessarily Nathan suggested, but initially we built the product, used it internally. Uh, and then we invited some people that use it who were like really good customers of ours to try it out. So we had maybe like 20 customers who were using it, um, making sure it worked good. And then we did a little launch to our list to, to kind of open the doors for the first time and give those people, um, I think they got a lifetime deal out of it.

So you ridiculously low pricing compared to where we’re at now. And, um, and then it’s just, it’s really evolved over the years. So we’ve, we’ve really been doing it now for three years. And, uh, so it’s gone from, you know, zero to, we have a little over 3000 active paying customers right now. Um, and we’ve gotten them through the same kind of marketing that we were using to sell the training programs.

Um, so we have JV partners do promoting launch stuff. We have, uh, Facebook ads that drive people into automated webinars, um, you know, promotions to our list, organic SEO, LinkedIn stuff, all the, all of the above really.

Andrew: I see. Yeah. And by the way, I was one of your partners for something I didn’t even do it for the revenue. I just, I liked your software. And I, more than that, I liked the feedback that I was getting from people who are, who were working with you. This was maybe a year or so ago. One of the things that I noticed about, about you and your software is that.

You do market it like an info marketer, like the upper right. Doesn’t have join. It says request an invite. There’s no link that shows what the, um, what the price is. I feel like you’re playing to your strengths. I wonder if you feel you’re playing to your strengths there. If you’re wondering if you’ve bought yourself into this info background, instead of going more towards a SAS approach.

Josh: Well, there’s there’s, I mean, the, the truth is probably somewhere in the middle. Um, but you know, I think that we’ve done really, it’s grown really fast. There’s a, you know, you can find examples of companies that have grown faster, but we’re really happy with the growth. It’s basically more than doubled every year for three years.

And, um, And I think, you know, yeah. We have played to our strengths. I, I talked to our team about that a lot about like, let’s what are we good at? Let’s let’s try and do that stuff. And I thought, I mean, when we, when we were at the very early stages of this, that was really the plan was to play with play to our strengths.

Let’s market, this the way we know how to do it. Um, get all of our JV partners involved in the same kind of way, but instead of selling a $2,000 training program, it’s a monthly subscription that people can cancel any time. Um, and so it’s, uh, you know, We’ve been successful with that, but going back to some of what we talked about earlier with where we’re going, long-term with the business, that’s only going to get us so far, we’re at a point now where we’re having to start to do things differently than that.

And not that we’re going to throw all that out the door, but we’re, we’re just, we have to get more sophisticated. We have to, to add to it and do some things differently, but you can look at really successful businesses like click funnels and, you know, they’re. You know, a lot of ways, you know, driving that business through a lot of the info marketer kind

Andrew: info marketing, Emmy literal. They, they lead with their info. I remember they flew me out to go and interview Russell Brunson at an event. I brought his people on, on stage, the ones who were buying ads. I go. Why are you buying ads for his book and for his like, Oh, I know what it was. It was, why did I just pay you guys $65 for a keynote presentation that shows me how to lead a webinar online instead of like, why are you selling that when you’re running a software company is because you bought it because it sells better than software.

Because I have numbers that show that when we sell an info product, people are more likely to buy it. And if we’re trying to sell software, there’s a lot longer commitment and a longer sales cycle. And so, yeah, you’re totally right. It completely works for them. All right. I want to know what you, what you’ve got in mind for the future.

And then also how you changed both the pricing and the product. But first I should say the second sponsor for this interview is a company called Gusto. Funny that like I’m interrupting our conversation to do an ad and this feels totally fine, but anything that’s like info marketing, we have to stop and ask, is this a valid technique?

How do we talk about it? Um, How do you feel about being here while I’m doing an ad? This is like the unique mixture I keep, I kept, uh, I keep guests on and I talk at them with my eyes.

Josh: I like it. I think it’s good.

Andrew: I love it too. You guys do bookkeeping? I mean, do you guys do your, do payroll, do you have employees at all?

Josh: We have outsource payroll. We don’t do our own payroll, but we have a controller that does all of our books and stuff.

Andrew: All right. At some point you’re going to consider, should we move to another company or not? I’m going to suggest that you at least take a look at Gusto. You’re not going to go and say, Hey, sign up for Gusto because I heard Andrew talk about it, but I’m going to tell you, if you go to Gusto, they’re going to make it less than 10 minutes for you.

They’ll handle your, uh, medical, visual, dental. They’ll do not just employees, but 10 99 contractors. And they’ll have certified HR professional ready to work with you if you need it. All emerging you and everyone who’s listening to me to, to do is just go to gusto.com/mixergy, and frankly, do your research.

You’ll see, people love them. They one of the big unicorns here in Sanford, and I don’t even know if they’re still in San Francisco, but in Silicon Valley, they are one of the big unicorns. Um, what do you have in mind for the future? I feel like you’re, you’re sitting here in 2021 thinking I can’t wait to do this.

There’s something I need to do. I can’t wait to do it. There’s something that’s missing. What is that?

Josh: our next big things are, you know, we need to do a lot better with content marketing and organic. Um, and we need to, um, take our. Um, our product and development team to the next level. Those are two areas that we’re not excellent at right now. And we just need to get to the next level, like we have a great development team, but it’s small.

So we need to figure out how to grow our team and effectively manage that. And, and what do we do with those people and what, what should we be working on with the product? Take the product to the next level, which is, seems to be a huge ingredient too. No improving churn and increasing activation and making our customers love the product even more.

Um, so those are the biggest two rocks for the year for us in the content marketing thing with organic, you know, I just, there’s so many companies out there who are maybe a similar size. This is us. All of their business comes from organic and SEO and all that stuff. And that’s like 10% of our leads and trials right now.

Andrew: let’s be open who’s who’s especially good at that. Who are you looking? I’m going, how are they doing that? Well,

Josh: Um, well, like Sujin Patel

Andrew: yeah.

Josh: is really well-known and regarded for that. Of course. Um, you know, yeah. So I hit people like him in that, and there’s not necessarily like one company that I want to emulate. It’s more of. You know, I just, I see, like I talked about Nathan locker earlier and I listened to his show a lot to hear what the, um, you know, uh, how other people are, are doing it.

And I, over and over again, I’ll hear people who are like, yeah, we’re getting like a thousand trials a month. Organic. And, you know, they’re putting out a lot of blog posts and this and that, and we are doing content, but we need to do a lot more and be smarter with it. So, you know, we’ve, we’re investing in an agency that we’re working with that’s, you know, not cheap and really kind of doubling down to, to do much better in that area.

Andrew: I feel like just like you taught your. Clients to host the party by having a group online on LinkedIn, I feel like it’d be great if you were hosting some kind of dinner or party with other people who are more of the Silicon Valley types of people who are great at product who have this vision for how to make the thing look like the software that people are buying.

You know what I mean? You know what we know, what comes to mind is a guy like I’m not, who comes to mind as the person who fixes it, but who who’s constantly fricking surrounded by these people, Shane Mac, he started working with staff.com. He’s the guy just like helping them out as a, as an advisor. He’s the person who constantly networks in with all these product people every week, he sends me a link to something that he’s, that he’s doing.

Um, All right. I get, I get where you’re going with this. I see, I see the vision and I see where you’re trying to expand. You’ve I feel like you’ve rocked this world of JV partners. You’re one of the best at it, right? If people are saying, who do we role model, I got to believe you’re one of the people comes in you’re you’re one and maybe Ryan Laveck is one.

Um,

Josh: I think the best is click funnels and Russell Brunson.

Andrew: yeah.

Josh: They have an army of, of people that just makes us look like chump change, but yeah. In, you know, if you move on from them, um, yeah, like myself and Ryan Laveck would probably do pretty well in that area. Sure. And there’s, there’s lots of people

Andrew: who’s the, who’s the guy. Why am I blanking on his name? The guy who will organize the internet happy, uh, of the thing in Austin, David Gonzalez. Yes. Yes. He he’s good. You’ve worked with him. I think.

Josh: We worked with David for many years, many years, and, and really working with them was one of the key reasons that we were able to get started in the whole JV space. That first launch that we did, that we talked about, um, they brought a lot of those partners to the table. So, you know, they, we worked with them for, I think, four years.

Uh, and they ran all that stuff and helped us recruit new JV partners and stuff. Uh, and so yeah, I’d recommend them to anyone who’s trying to do more in that area.

Andrew: All right. If there’s someone who’s listening to us right now who wants to sell more this year, who says, this is the thing, what do you got for them? You got some kind of you’re working on some kind of challenge, right? What’s what is this?

Josh: Well, I put a link together for your people that what we’re doing is we’ve got a three-day challenge coming up. Um, and we, we have a big promotion happening in January and February. That is really including, um, one of the best deals we’ll probably ever have on our software and the training, and a lot of done for you services that are part of it.

Um, but it all, it all starts with this three nature challenge called create your automated sales process. So for, for anybody who, who wants to. Um, you know, dip their toe in the water and see, and learn more about our system for connecting with prospects, building relationships with them, uh, and driving them into sales appointments and doing it the right way in a way that really is.

I said, building relationships, but really in a way that builds trust and isn’t just sending sales pitches, um, uh, So, yeah, if you, if you want to learn more about that, we’ve got this three-day challenge that will, uh, you know, allow you to start putting the pieces in place to, to get it up and running. And it doesn’t take much time really to, to implement it because you know, our software makes it really easy and it’s affordable because small business owners are really who we serve and we want everybody that needs it to have access to it.

Andrew: And so what you’re doing is for anyone who wants to book, who sells through booking calls, demos, that type of thing, your software helps them. And instead of just saying, go sign up for my software. You’re saying let’s work together for three days. Let’s implement some techniques here. Let’s get you going.

And then if you want to continue to use our software, go for it. All right. And that’s it. Uh, connect three 60 five.io/mixergy. And this is again, you kind of playing to your strengths. Anyone else would be listening. Most SAS, people would say, go try our software. We’ve got a very generous, free, whatever you can send up to 50 messages a month and then upgrade later on.

You’re saying my strength is I’m going to teach you my strength is I’m going to get you to actually write the right message. I’m going to get you to actually take it out and walk you through using the software. Right.

Josh: I mean the, the whole concept of the challenge in the way we structure webinars and stuff is to get folks to take action and put the pieces in place. Uh, so that it’s, you know, because. In so many ways, like nobody is just walking around saying, boy, I want, and I want some new software. Right. But, so, so what we really focus on is trying to solve this problem that so many businesses have of not enough prospects coming in the door, they’re not getting enough leads and not getting enough clients, the revenue isn’t where they want it to be.

And we’re trying to solve that problem. The software is really like one component of it. And we actually have clients who will go through our challenge and. And join our program and almost never even used the software because we have so many other resources that we help people with. The software is just one component.

Andrew: All right. Let me close out with just asking you a little bit about yourself. What are you doing? What do you do for fun? Help me get to know you. So the next time I see you when people are clapping or you’re kind of standing in the corner and I feel like maybe you feel, I don’t know, to James Bond for the event.

And meanwhile, you’re just saying, I got to get back to my room and do something. That’s more fun. What’s your thing? What do you, what do you like to do?

Josh: So right now, my two obsessions are, um, fishing and drinking wine. And, uh, I bought, uh, a lot, there’s a little Lake next to my house. It’s like 126 acres. I bought a lot on it so that I can have access to the Lake. And that was just a few months ago. And I’d been out there fishing my ass off.

Andrew: Wow.

Josh: It’s really cold right now.

So I can’t, I can’t really get out there now. It’s kind of frozen over, but, um, I’ve just, I I’ve been loving fishing and, uh, and the wine thing I’m really ended to studying wine, reading about wine, getting wines in from different parts of the world, getting wines that are really aged that you can’t find in stores and, and experimenting with that.

So more than just like, you know, getting buzzed and whatnot, really studying it.

Andrew: And what is it about fishing that you like?

Josh: My dad has been super into fishing all of my life. And for my first 20 years on this planet, I really never gravitated toward it and kind of pushed away from it if anything I’ve, but I’ve really come to enjoy it. Um, I’ve got some good friends who are also really into it. And over the last 15 years, or just gotten more and more into it.

I just love going out there. It’s like, you know, time flies when I’m on the boat fishing. And even if I’m not catching anything, it’s, it’s a great time. So yeah, that’s it.

Andrew: I’ve been finding myself really gravitating towards things that I can’t do with a cell phone, like running. I can’t though. I’d have to actually now leave my phone at home because I will go and do something. But things like, things like that are just so. So good for me. And they don’t require the effort of staying focused because there’s nothing else to do.

You’re, you’re stuck running. You’re stuck fishing. I imagine for hunters is like that too.

Josh: Yeah. I’m sure people love hunting for so many of the same reasons. Like, I don’t know. I’m not, I’m not into that. I’ve never gone and killed a deer or anything. It’s not my thing, but I could see the appeal

Andrew: I never did either, but you know what? My assistant told me about, um, how her kids were doing it. Then I started asking her kids about it and you could see it there with their older kids. They’re with their father, they’re quietly sitting and I guess it’s called a blind right for hours. What else can you do where your kids sit quietly with you, even when they’re adults.

And you’re together, you know? All right. If anyone wants to go check out the software, the site is connect three 60 five.io. If you want to take on this challenge, it’s going to be starting in a couple of days from when we publish this interview, here’s the URL. It’s connect three 60 five.io/mixergy. I’m not collecting any payment from this I do, of course.

Want to hear from you what you think about it. I want to hear about your progress. I want to hear about everything. You could always email me, andrew@mixergy.com about that. And then finally, I want to thank to two sponsors who made this interview happen? Hostgator.com/mixergy and gusto.com/mixergy. Josh, thanks so much.

Josh: Hey, thanks for having me. I really appreciate it.

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