This email came across from Brendon Burchard today. Please read it carefully, and again. The advice it contains is worth it’s weight in Gold.
You’ve all been awesome to me lately, so I wanted to help you back.
- You helped me reach 4.2MM fans on Facebook; 40MM views on YouTube alone; and over 1MM online graduates from our courses or video series.
- You’ve been blowing up my podcast and new blog.
- And you continue to share The Motivation Manifesto. Over 1,000 reviews!
To say thank you, I’m answering — in absurd detail! — the questions so many of you ask:
HOW do you do all this, Brendon?
What cameras do you use? (I like my iPhone, but when going fancy I use Cannon C100s).
What systems do you use for marketing pages and online sales? (The new Kajabi, almost for everything these days).
What kind of team/staffing? (Yep, I’m hiring, see below).
It’s all below – everything I do to reach so many people.
Just my thanks for your awesomeness.
I feel blessed to do this, so I hope these long instructions serve you in some way.
Enjoy, and THANKS again for believing in me!
HOW I DO IT ALL:
If you’re a fan of my personal development work, but unaware of my overall career, a little context…
My business isn’t that complicated, even though it seems quite large. (Consistent 8-figures per year in both reach and revenue).
I teach motivation and high performance, or I teach business and marketing. In that capacity, I create emails, videos, podcasts, and blog posts to add value and instruct others to achieve their goals and improve their life.
This is my 10th year doing this full-time.
Before that, I studied these areas for 10 years for my own personal development. I’m still just a student – always learning.
Ultimately, to make a living (and provide my audience with continuing education), I sell books, online courses, seminar tickets, and coaching programs.
I feel deeply blessed that I get to do all this, and I can’t believe the amazing results we’ve gotten recently.
Those results sound fancy, but the truth is that almost everything I do involves posting content on public platforms (Facebook, YouTube, iTunes) that require almost no cost or advanced technical knowledge.
You certainly don’ have to be a tech guy to succeed online these days.
The hard part used to be building marketing pages, accepting money online, hosting courses — you know, all the systems stuff.
These days, that’s all pretty simple.
Personally, I do almost all my marketing using a system called Kajabi. I also use a separate CRM and email provider. (All my tools are below!)
MY MARKETING APPROACH
I’ve keep it simple:
I post content on social media to add value and get people to share or subscribe to my accounts. Then I drive people to an opt-in page that promises them a free download or video series so that I can capture their email address. Then I email them 4-5 valuable training videos. Then I offer them something for sale – books, seminar tickets, online courses, etc.
Here’s the tools I prefer below.
My home page is on a custom WordPress theme because back then Kajabi wasn’t as robust as it is now. Tumblr and Squarespace are also great alternatives to WordPress or Kajabi.
Marketing Pages, Accepting Money, Membership Site System
Almost all my business is online and involves hosting and selling some kind of content (mostly online courses or downloads). I host and sell all my online courses through the new Kajabi. I also use it to build all my new web pages now; to manage affiliates; to drip content to customers over a series of weeks; to sell books, seminar tickets, whatever I’m offering. They rolled out their new system this year and I’ve never had greater success in my business, so I invested in them and give a strong recommendation and discount here.
Video Production & Hosting
For shooting videos, I follow all the setup advice from Travis in his Shoot Videos that Sell course. Travis has shot all my videos since 2009, with the rare exception when he’s out of town and I shoot and edit them myself. We use 3-5 soft boxes for lighting and 2 Cannon EOS C100s for cameras. (Those are fancy cameras! I started with Flip video cams! Travis has lots of cheaper recommendations in his course, like the Canon VIXIA HF R700). We host most of my videos on YouTube. However, we host videos on Vimeo when we want more player controls. (For example, we host my sales videos on Vimeo because it allows me to prevent people from skipping ahead or embedding it elsewhere). In the past, I also used Viddler and they were great too. Wistia is another great option. For our course content, Kajabi includes hosting so we just use them.
Customer Management (CRM)
For advanced email marketing, managing contacts, taking orders, client record management – all that complex customer relationship management stuff – I use Infusionsoft. Ontraport is also a great system. These are both robust systems, ideal for experienced marketers. Most people, especially just starting out online, would be fine just using Kajabi (or Shopify or Squarespace as alternatives) along with an email provider like iContact or Mailchimp. If you have over 200k contacts, I recommend Maropost for your email provider. So, we use Infusionsoft for CRM and email autoresponders, but for our weekly big email broadcasts we use iContact or Maropost. (We use multiple systems simply because I’ve been doing this for a long time. If I started all over again, I’d do the stuff in the “If I Started Over” section below).
I host our popular podcast, which appears on iTunes and Stitcher, via Libsyn. So, you see my podcast on iTunes, but all the uploading and setup is actually done on Libsyn. Most major podcasters use it.
Marketing Strategy Online
Again, I just put good things out there, get people’s email addresses, add value, make offers. Here’s a video that explains the big picture. If you’d like in-depth training on any of this, just join us at my April LIVE Experts Academy seminar.
WHAT ABOUT TEAM?:
As far as team, I was solo for my first seven figures in revenue.
Yes – I literally did it all until I had made my first million dollars.
Then I started adding contractors, mostly for customer service and event support.
Until last year, I did 100% of my marketing, except for shooting and editing my videos, which Travis has helped me with for 7 years now.
Yep, I still do every single post on my Facebook fan page, even with 4.2MM fans; I still write and send almost all the emails you receive from me, including this one; I still setup most of the marketing funnels and integrations, even the payments part.
I think it’s important for people to hear that. Because this career is doable without Silicon Valley venture capital or hiring sprees.
I personally did 100% of my marketing for 9 years, reaching tens of millions of people and launching 3 New York Times bestselling books and dozens of 7-figure online courses.
I say this because the tech isn’t the barrier – it’s your determination to figure out what is necessary to serve and grow.
You should never avoid learning the skills required to succeed in any endeavor. That means I had to learn video, email marketing, the systems, etc.
Along the way, I’ve had 1-4 customer service folks for years. Without my customer service team, I’d be pretty lame and I certainly couldn’t handle this scale. Led with excellence by “Dmac,” they keep everything running while I focus mostly on creating content, marketing and delivering. I love them like family and they take great care of you guys.
This year, I also hired a bunch of people to help me with marketing because I’m scaling at unprescedented levels and have a huge vision and multiple brands to support now.
At my events, we also have my mom and an extended family of volunteers who help us manage the huge audiences.
But I’m always fond of reminding people that to start… you just need YOU… the you that shows up ready for work.
As you’ve heard me say:
When you knock on the door of opportunity, never be surprised that it is Work who answers.
IF I STARTED OVER AGAIN FROM SCRATCH
People always ask, “Brendon, if you were just starting out, and you had little to invest, what would you do?”
First, I like to remind people that this is a real career and a real business.
Like any business, there are always costs.
You have to invest in yourself and some systems or resources when starting any career or business. Right?
That’s why you have to decide if you REALLY want to do this.
You can do anything, so only jump in to this expert industry if you really care about the mission of inspiring and instructing others to achieve their goals and improve their lives.
For me, this is how I’d start over again:
- I would get on Facebook and Instagram, and I would post on each four times per day.
- I would get on YouTube and release a new video every week. I’d shoot the video with my iPhone, unless I had enough budget to get a nice camera like those mentioned above.
- I would start a blog, using WordPress which is free unless you get a fancy theme. Each week, I would do a blog post that was basically the YouTube video embedded in it, with a written summary of the video and maybe some images or quotes that people could share.
- I would get an email provider. Many are cheap until you get lots of signups. MailChimp, Constant Contact, iContact. They’re all fine until you get bigger, and they all allow you to create signup forms to capture names and emails. Just choose one and start.
- I would create an online course, and I’d host and sell it with Kajabi. Why Kajabi? Because it also allows me to create opt-in pages, marketing pages, checkout forms, membership sites, affiliate links, etc.
- I would regularly drive people from my Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and blog over to an opt-in page to collect their emails. Then, once per week, no matter how small my email list is, I would email them a link to the latest blog post. This adds value to their lives.
- Every three weeks or so, I would email my list and encourage them to signup for my online course (or other products). I’d also try to partner with other people to promote my stuff to their audiences. (Read The Millionaire Messenger for my seeking partners email scripts).
- I would go to marketing conferences or enroll in online courses relevant to what I wanted to do. (My dad, who was my biggest influence, lent me money to go to my first conference). I would network network network because that’s how you find promotional partners.
- I would stop pretending to be a perfectionist and just get stuff done. Perfectionists are liars, as explained here.
- After I made a few sales, and felt comfortable with Kajabi, then I’d start selling other stuff (books, webinar series, coaching, more courses, etc) and I’d hire a personal assistant to help me manage customer service and growth.
I would never, ever, under any circumstances, doubt my ability to learn, to figure things out, to add value to others.
With enough time, focus, and persistence, I would know that I could master the fundamentals and succeed.
I would be okay with the fact that my audience would be tiny at first, but that after years and years it suddenly would be an incredibly large community of caring and driving people, just like you.
I wouldn’t treat 50 subscribers differently than I would 500k.
I would bring the joy to every activity of my life.
I would remember that the first time I began, it was tough, like I shared here.
I would know that my students would teach me so much more than I would ever teach them.
And for that, I love you all.
I hope that sharing all this serves you in some way.
Sending you love and appreciation for your kindness and support,