COLIN BOYD: “I'm a big believer that psychology is actually really practical because I think that if your mindset is not set right, that can make a huge difference, whether you project certainty in your offer or whether you don't project certainty. And at the core of it, people are buying a system from you when they buy a course or program. But essentially, they're buying a feeling. They're buying a feeling of certainty.
“Now, the way I view offers is that for me, an offer is, which is like your digital course or your coaching program, your offer is a sacred place of transformation. Now, what most people view it as is they see it as something that they're trying to get their audience to give them money for. But what if we shifted it, and we said, ‘Your offer is actually a place that you need to protect’? And so the place that, the offer that you're making, which is really opening the door for people, and going, ‘I've created a space where you can see a transformation in your life. And if the goal that you have aligns with the goal of this space, then I would love to welcome you into this space. However, to get into this space, it takes commitment because I don't want you to just be in this space; I want you to see a transformation.’”
INTRO: I’m Amy Porterfield, ex-corporate girl turned CEO of a multi-seven-figure business. But it wasn't all that long ago that I lacked the confidence, the budget, and the time to focus on growing my small-but-mighty business. Fast forward past many failed attempts and lessons learned, and you'll see the business I have today, one that changes lives and gives me more freedom than I ever thought possible, one that used to only exist as a daydream. I created the Online Marketing Made Easy podcast to give you simple, actionable, step-by-step strategies to help you do the same. If you're an ambitious entrepreneur, or one in the making, who's looking to create a business that makes an impact and a life you love, you're in the right place, friend. Let's get started.
AMY PORTERFIELD: Hey, there. Welcome back to another episode of the Online Marketing Made Easy podcast. I'm so glad you're here. Listen, I know there are tons of podcasts that you could spend your time listening to, so I'm extra grateful that you've chosen mine. So thanks for being here, friend.
Now, also, if you'd be so kind, would you mind sharing this episode with an entrepreneurial friend? I think it's so valuable when a friend sends me a text and says, “Hey, I just listened to this episode,” or “I love this podcast. I think you would love it as well.” Those are the podcasts that I listen to. So if you would grab the link and text a few friends, it would mean the world to me. And if you're loving Online Marketing Made Easy, will you leave me a review? Reviews really do help my podcast get into the hands of other people that might not know about it yet. So reviews really do help that algorithm. And I, again, would be forever grateful.
Okay. So I've got a question for you. What if every time you hopped on to give a masterclass or a webinar, you felt excited and confident and actually looking forward to promoting your product, selling your product or your course versus dreading getting to the pitch? Could you imagine how you would show up for your audience? Can you imagine what that confidence would do, how much value you could offer them if you were focused on being present instead of battling anxiety about the inevitable pitch about selling at the end? So whether you're preparing for your very first webinar or you've given a hundred, no matter where you are, selling is always going to be a part of this. And while it does get easier with time, there are some strategies that you can implement easily to fast track that feeling of selling or pitching with ease.
My guest, Colin Boyd, is an expert when it comes to coaching entrepreneurs to sell virtually in a non-pushy kind of way. Colin is a certified speaking professional, and his clients have included Coca-Cola, Suncor, Fuji, and Hewlett-Packard. He primarily runs his flagship program, Sell from Stage Academy, and Sell from Stage ELITE group-coaching program, which helps people turn their presentations, whether it be on live stages or in webinars and masterclasses, into money-making machines. He advises some of the biggest names in the world to confidently offer value and create webinars that convert. And in this episode, he’s spilling all of his strategies. Wait until you hear about conversion stories. Wait until he talks about infusion selling. Both of these strategies blew my mind.
I worked with Colin many, many years ago, where he helped me sell a five-thousand-dollar weekend program from stage. And I don't do a lot of selling from stages, and I was terrified. And so he walked me through this entire process. I sold hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of this program from stage. And it was at a time—well, I talk about the timing of it when I get into the interview with Colin, so I'll make you wait for that one. But I took everything he taught me, and I also applied it to my webinars.
And today he primarily focuses on virtual trainings, summits, webinars, and how to sell on them, so it's very relevant to what many of you are doing. I think you're going to love every minute of this episode, and so I won't make you wait any longer. Let’s get to it.
I've got a podcast recommendation for you, I mean beyond Online Marketing Made Easy. If you love this podcast, you're going to love the podcast by Scott D. Clary. It's called Success Story, and it's brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network and features Q&A sessions with successful business leaders and keynote presentations and conversations on sales and marketing and business and startups and entrepreneurship, all the stuff we love, right? And you can hear episodes like “Unleashing Your True Potential: A Practical Guide to Boosting Self-worth and Wealth through Authenticity” and another episode, “How to do Content Marketing Properly.” So listen to your Success Story wherever you get your podcasts.
Welcome to the show, Colin. I'm so excited that you're here.
COLIN: Hi. It's a pleasure to be here, Amy.
AMY: We go way back. Before you came on, I was thinking, “When did I meet Colin?” And I know exactly when it was. We were in a James Wedmore mastermind many, many years ago. That's right, isn't it?
COLIN: Yes, absolutely. Yeah. And that was, like, five years ago, maybe? Or something like that. So it’s cool.
AMY: Feels like a lifetime ago.
COLIN: I know. Things change so much.
AMY: So much.
But one thing that hasn't changed is that your message is tried and true. The strategies you're going to teach us today, what we're going to talk about, you have been talking about this for a long time. You've gotten even better and better at how you've honed in on the strategies and the insights you're going to share with us. And I remember way back when, we had some of these discussions. So I'm excited to revisit them in a new, fresh way and do it on my podcast so others can hear the conversations we've already been having, and I’ve really gotten so much value from you. And so what I said in the intro, that you didn't actually get to hear, is that you also helped me do an amazing talk on stage that helped me sell hundreds of thousands of dollars in a program I was selling. And so I, first of all, thank you for that. It was a great experience and so much fun.
COLIN: That’s a pleasure.
AMY: And it was at a pivotal time in my life. Colin, one thing that you don't know is that that was the first thing I did when I got out of my partnership. So it was the first time I was on stage, on my own, kind of closed a huge chapter, and what I was doing needed to be successful. I needed to generate money quickly. And you helped me do so. So you were a huge part of a story that I tell in the book of, like, getting back on my own. So thank you for that.
COLIN: It's a pleasure. I remember having the conversation with you about naming your Digital Course Academy.
AMY: Oh, my gosh. Yes.
COLIN: And you were like, “Colin, I like the word academy.” And you’re like, “Online is taken. What about digital course?” This is, like, before the word was even created.
AMY: Oh, my gosh. I forgot about.
COLIN: But you created that idea and put it into the language set of the marketplace. And then, you inspired me for my program, Sell from Stage Academy as well. So I was like, “I like that word academy. So I put that on mine as well.”
AMY: Okay. We help each other. Who even knew? I love that so much. So, yes, we have some history, some really good history. And it’s about time I had you on the show, so I’m so glad you’re here.
So I talked a little bit about your accolades in the intro. But if I were to say, like, “How did you get your start? Why are you doing what you're doing?” what would you tell people?
COLIN: So when I first started, I remember I was sitting on this old brown desk that I bought at, like, a ninety-nine-cent store. It literally had two and a half legs, and one leg was held up by phone books. Do you remember phone books, like, back in the day, right?
AMY: Oh, yes.
COLIN: I'm sitting there, and I had half a client. I don't know if you've ever had half a client, Amy, where they kind of turn up every other month—
AMY: Oh, yeah.
COLIN: —and semi-pay you every other month and things like that.
AMY: Yeah. Half a client. I love it. I think a lot of people are shaking their head like, “Yeah, I can relate.”
COLIN: Right? So I had this half a client. We're living in a two-bedroom apartment—I'm newly married—and I had these big desires of growing a life-coaching business at the time—I was studying life coaching— but I had no idea how to get started. I had no idea how to get clients, what to do, etc. And this is kind of like even pre webinars and things like that. And so what happened was I got a phone call from a buddy of mine. He said, “Hey, there's an event coming up.” He said, “I can't do it. In fact, I've been referred to it by another person. It’s completely free. Would you like to speak at it?” So obviously, it's, like, a hot lead, right? No one wants it.
AMY: I thought you were being serious. I was like, “Okay, yeah.”
COLIN: No. No one wants it. No one wants it. So I said yes. And this was, like, my first-ever speaking engagement, right? because I wasn't a speaker. I didn't know what it meant to speak, etc.
And I come into that night, and it ended up being literally a dark and stormy night. I've got my amazing wife, Sarah, who I know you know. We're walking up the stairs. She's, like, on my arm, but really I'm on hers because I'm freaking out. And the event organizer comes to me. He's like, “Colin, you wouldn't believe this. Biggest night we have ever had in the history of our events. We've got a hundred thirty-seven people here.”
Now, for me, this is bad news because it just meant that there's going to be more people who are going to know that I'm an idiot and I don't know what I'm talking about, right? And so that's what I'm telling myself, right? because I'm freaking out about my speaking engagement.
And I ended up speaking that night, and I made an offer. And I didn't realize it at the time, but it was an irresistible offer. And out of the hundred thirty-seven people, a hundred twenty-five of them gave me their personal details.
AMY: Oh, what?
COLIN: I followed up. I ended up doing a whole bunch of discovery calls, if anyone does discovery calls. I signed twelve clients full time in coaching. Four days later, HP called me—there was a director sitting in the room—and he asked me to speak at their next global training day, which ended up having five and a half thousand people at it. That's a whole other story.
AMY: Okay. So you went from about a hundred to how many?
COLIN: That was five and a half thousand. That was my first paid—
COLIN: —speaking engagement. And they ended up being a client for over ten years. We traveled around the world with them. And for me, that was this transformational experience of, wow, the power of just speaking, of the ability to be able to communicate the word. And, you know, if you look at any market leader, including yourself, the ability to communicate your ideas on a stage, whether that be a virtual stage, like a webinar or a live stage, is just fundamental to becoming a market leader and growing your business. And that ended up being the core element of how I grew my business, and then transitioned on the webinars about five or six years later, which we can tap into today as well.
AMY: Yes. Okay. So we are going to tap into webinars because initially I wanted you to come on and talk about selling on webinars. And just so everyone knows webinar, masterclass, I'm talking about the same thing. Typically, a free training that you are then going to sell your digital-course membership program, whatever it might be, on the back end of the webinar.
So if you're in Digital Course Academy, it's the webinar model that I'm teaching you in that program, and you all know that I teach you how to sell on webinars. So I wanted Colin to come on here because many of you struggle with selling on webinars. You really clam up. Things get really awkward at that point to sell whatever it is you're selling on the webinar.
But Colin, when I was talking to you about this, you were saying, like, it actually, what you're going to teach today could go beyond webinars.
COLIN: Yeah, well, I just think that if anyone has any desire in their heart to bring a message to the world, they need to learn to speak. And that could be on a virtual stage, like a webinar or a virtual event, or it could be on a live event. If you want to get on a live stage, especially post-COVID now, live stages are opening up. So just this skill of speaking is so powerful.
But I'd love to dive into this idea of if people have, like, a fear, a reluctance around selling on a webinar, because it definitely is—there's, like, levels, right? There's one-on-one selling, which is, like, one level. But then there's selling on a virtual stage, like a webinar, that's a whole other level, which I think we can all aspire to and actually do, especially if you've got a formula to follow and stuff like that.
But do you want to dive deep into, like, some of the psychology around getting comfortable with selling?
AMY: Absolutely. And you can take me wherever you want to go. My first question was going to be this, but tell me if you want to first hit something before we go here: I've heard you say that on webinars that sell something, you are helping the audience make a decision. So I was going to ask you, like, what does that look like for you?
COLIN: So one of the mistakes that people make is that when they create content for a presentation that sells is they go into their course to look for all the content for their webinar. And there's a big difference between a course and a webinar that sells. And so a course is a lot of how-to content. Obviously, it's got inspirational content. But a webinar that sells is about helping people make a decision.
Now, what I mean by that is the problem that people have is that they feel like, “If I can just like provide heaps and heaps and heaps of, like, how-to content, then they're going to be blown away, and the next step will be to work with me.” But the problem is, is that if people aren't fully committed to the next level in that topic yet, it will just be more information that's overwhelming that they won't do.
And it's kind of like this. I live in America. I used to live down the road from you, but I know you have moved now. But for about four or five years, I was considering moving to America. And so what I did was—
AMY: From Australia.
COLIN: From Australia, yes.
AMY: I just wanted to point out the sexy Australian accent. We can't get far without me mentioning it. Keep going.
COLIN: So what I did was I did a ton of research, right? So I'm, like, researching, how do I move from Australia to America? I'm taking people out; I'm picking their brains, right? I'm like, “Can I take you out for coffee?” picking their brains. I'm doing all the research, and I research for, like, two or three years. And literally at the end of two or three years, I was more confused about how to get to America than I was at the start. And it wasn't until I decided, you know what, I want to hire an international-immigration lawyer. I want to hire an international accountant. And I just literally followed their system. In other words, I invested money. I followed a system that worked. I made a decision rather than—my kids call it kerfuffling around it. Like, you kind of kerfuffle, right? You’re just, like, researching in research mode. And it wasn't until I made a decision that everything just happened very quickly. And in fact, within six months, our feet hit American soil, and we've been here ever since.
And so it was the decision that I needed to make, not the gathering of more information, that was going to change my life. And so the mindset change here is that when you're creating a webinar that sells, the goal is to think about your content in a way that, is this helping my audience to become motivated to make a commitment to themselves, to make a decision, as opposed to just gathering more information about the topic?
AMY: Mm. That is good. Okay. I love that. If you start to approach your webinars as, “I am going to create content that will help them make a decision,” that feels very different than, “I'm just going to wow them and inspire them and give them a lot of information so they can see how smart I am,” which sometimes that happens with webinars. And so I love this idea, starting with the decision.
Now, tell me this. You were saying that we can dive into selling on webinars and the hesitancy and the fear and the anxiety that people fear about selling on webinars, or just doing webinars live in general is fear inducing, for sure, for a lot of people. But I want to talk about, first, the mindset that you mentioned and if there's some mindset shifts that need to change, and then some tangible ways that people can shift their thinking so that they can start selling with confidence. Maybe there's a few things that you can suggest that people can practice and work on right now so that they can be more ready for their webinars.
COLIN: I'm a big believer that psychology is actually really practical because I think that if your mindset is not set right, that can make a huge difference, whether you project certainty in your offer or whether you don't project certainty. And at the core of it, people are buying a system from you when they buy a course or program. But essentially, they're buying a feeling. They're buying a feeling of certainty.
Now, the way I view offers is that for me, an offer is, which is like your digital course or your coaching program, your offer is a sacred place of transformation. Now, what most people view it as is they see it as something that they're trying to get their audience to give them money for. But what if we shifted it, and we said, “Your offer is actually a place that you need to protect”? And so the place that, the offer that you're making, which is really opening the door for people, and going, “I've created a space where you can see a transformation in your life. And if the goal that you have aligns with the goal of this space, then I would love to welcome you into this space. However, to get into this space, it takes commitment because I don't want you to just be in this space; I want you to see a transformation.”
And the currency of commitment is a few things. It's money. It's time. It's energy. It's attention. And so when you're asking for money from someone, you're actually not asking for money—like, obviously, you are—but at the core of it, what you're asking for is a commitment to themselves on a greater level. And so when people think about an offer, when you're making an offer, one of the things, one of the practical things I do when I'm teaching people to sell on a webinar or a live stage is to literally have a visualization in front of you as you're sharing your offer of someone who you're truly wanting to help. It could be a picture of someone. It could be a past client who you've helped. And you literally have this picture of this person. And when you’re sharing the offer, you're speaking through that person. And you're actually inviting people to enter a sacred place that you're protecting because you're requiring commitment to enter. And so the energy's very different. It's not “Buy my stuff.” It's “I would love to invite you into this space if this is something you're committed to also.”
AMY: Okay. So I like that a lot. And I think a lot of my students and my listeners will feel, like, a sigh of relief about that because the last thing they want to do is be salesy or aggressive in anything they do online. But creating the space that you're inviting them in, it's a protected space. They are making a commitment to be working with you, so that's got to feel good. But is there something you need to do to make that happen?
COLIN: Yeah. So well, I mean, one of them is, like, a visualization of, like, who you're helping. And another one is, like, asking yourself better questions. And so let me dive into this.
It is, for me, there are three levels of certainty that you'll come to with your offer. The first level of certainty is you've seen a personal transformation yourself. Most people in this space, they're teaching something that they've seen a change from or they've learned from. And so the first level of certainty you're going to communicate is you've seen a personal transformation yourself.
The second level of certainty in your offer is when you've gotten really clear on what the offer is, how it helps people, the modules, the steps. So it's, like, the clarity. I know you help a lot with that, right? It's this process of, like, clarifying the offer. Creating the course, you've got process clarity. And when you've got that, communicating your offer from the “This is the outcome. This is who it's for. These are the steps you take. These are some results we've got, etc.” like, it just becomes a lot easier.
But the third level is where you have social certainty, and social certainty is where you've gathered enough feedback from external people that your process can see a transformation and a result in other people's lives. And I think that's a journey. It's not, like, a yes or no. It's, like, this journey of certainty in your offer.
And so for me, that's the journey that people go on. They go from personal certainty of the transformation, process certainty, and then social-proof certainty. And you're going to build on that. And so you might be, like, at the start of that journey, and that's okay. Like, just speak from that place when you're sharing your offers. But you're going to grow in the space of where you've got social certainty. And you know that if they're a right fit, you know that that will transform their life if they come in committed. And so that's, like, the journey of becoming confident in sharing and selling your offers.
AMY: Okay. So one of the ways that I know you help people feel more confident on webinars and masterclasses and even on stage is through storytelling. And you've been working on some really cool strategies around this, and concepts around storytelling. So can you talk to us about how that fits into webinars? because some of my listeners will say, “Amy, if I tell too many stories, it's going to make the webinar too long, and I'm not going to be able to get to the things I want to get to.” So I think sometimes they're hesitant to go down a really great road for a story. So talk to me about stories, and where do they fit into webinars?
COLIN: Yeah, well, when I think about any great presentation, the most engaging part of it is usually a story. And so when you design the right stories, what I love about stories is they actually move past the conscious mind. And so a lot of the time, information or when you're sharing, asking people to do something, they're going to have resistances. Things are going to come up.
But when you share a story, it enables people to move into that story, and they actually go almost unconscious, and their unconscious mind comes forward. Like, even when I shared my story right at the start, about me sitting on this old brown desk, you probably weren't thinking about yourself. You were starting to think about my story and my journey. And as I shared the story, you may have even started to think about your business and your life and your growth, because that story I shared at the start wasn't my story, by the way. I mean, it was. It was completely true. But it was shared in a way where you could actually see part of your story in it as well.
And so when a story's done properly, which is what I call a conversion story, a conversion story is a story that when you share it, the audience doesn't just see your story; they see their story. And when they see their story, all of a sudden, unconsciously, there's going to be a greater level of trust and connection that's built with you as the speaker. And even more than that, if you do it in the right way, what's going to happen is it's going to impart a revelation in the audience's hearts and minds that will help them to work out whether working with you or taking that next step is the logical next step for you.
And so the conversion story, kind of the differences are, there's, like, classic storytelling, which is, you know, the story arc from a challenge, the difficulty to the journey, the breakthrough, all the way through the result you've got. That's, like, a classic story, which is great.
But a conversion story is different, and a conversion story is really about combining how you connect with the audience, sharing your credibility, but aligning it with your core idea. And so we can dive deeper into that if you want.
AMY: Please. Yeah, let's do that.
COLIN: Yeah. So for me, there are essentially three things you need to do with a great conversion story. A conversion story, first of all, connects with the audience. And so that's vulnerability. And so people are going to have strengths in one of two areas. They're going to have strength in showing their credibility or strength in showing their vulnerability. And so you got to think about it for you as a listener, going, am I better at showing what I'm good at, or am I'm better at showing what I haven't done well? Right? So people are going to sit in one of two camps, but you've got to get a balance. And so a conversion story shares your journey from vulnerability, which is the question that people ask is, are you like me? That's the first question that people ask. So when you start sharing your story, rather than going straight to the credibility of how awesome you are and all the achievements and accolades you've got, you have to answer that question in the audience's mind, which is they're going, are you like me? In other words, do you actually get me? Right? That's the first question that they're asking unconsciously when they hear your story.
The second phase of it is you have to show that you've seen some credibility. Like, you've seen, you've achieved some things. You've seen some breakthroughs. You've had some victory. And that second question is, can you lead me? So they go, are you like me? And then they go, but can you lead me? And that is you sharing your journey of your breakthrough and the revelation that you had and so forth.
Now, the secret sauce of this comes in when you align it with your core premise or your core idea, sometimes referred to as, like, the big-domino belief or the big idea, right? And that is the one idea that if you can have your audience believe that or have a revelation of that, then working with you or your offer would be the logical next step if they resonate with you and they’re a right fit.
And so that third question is actually going, is there a path that I can follow? So the three questions that they ask unconsciously is, are you like me? Can you lead me? And is there a path that I can follow? And if your story can answer those three questions, you've got a conversion story.
AMY: That is some good stuff, Colin. I’ve just got to take a minute. What Colin just shared with all of you is what I call frameworks. He has his own framework for a conversion story. So those of you creating content, that was a masterpiece, right there. Like, that is such a good example.
So I want to repeat those questions because I always am going to use them from this day forward. So when I tell a story, a conversion story. So number one, are you like me? Number two, can you lead me? And number three, what was number three?
COLIN: Is there a path I can follow?
AMY: Is there a path I can follow? So a conversion story is going to include all three. But tell me a little—I cut you off, so tell me a little bit more about that because when I'm telling a story, what might I do instead of that? Like, I feel like I tell stories a lot. What am I typically missing?
COLIN: Yeah. So, I mean, not every story is going to be a conversion story.
AMY: Okay. When do you use a conversion story?
COLIN: Yeah. You use a conversion story instead of an origin story. So what most people see as their origin story is the story of their whole journey. So they'll go in a lot more detail about the steps they took, what they studied, where they're from, how many kids they've got, you know, where they live. It's like, that's a cool story. And like, your mom really loves that story, but your clients probably don't. They’re like, “That's cool. It's nice to know a little bit about you, but it doesn't do much for me.” And so, like, that's, yeah, I mean, that’s—
AMY: I love that. Your mom's going to love that story. That makes perfect sense.
COLIN: Yeah. We love our mom, like, but that's probably not your ICA, right?
AMY: Yeah, exactly.
COLIN: So we love our mom. But that story is not the story you should be sharing on your presentation if you want to get conversions. The story you want to be sharing is your conversion story, and the conversion story answers those three questions. And it finds a specific moment in time in your life where you had a transformational experience with the vehicle that you help people with.
AMY: Okay. That's where the path, do you have a path? Like, give me an example of what you would share.
COLIN: Well, the one I shared at the start was an example of mine. That is one. I could share another one right now if you want.
AMY: Okay. Let's do one more.
COLIN: Okay. So I remember when I first started running webinars, and I was super excited about them and the possibility of them. And so what I did was I designed my first course, right? This was before DCA, so I wasn't able to get help from you. And I designed my first course, and I spent, like, six months designing the content. I booked a videographer. I spent five days in the studio, spent thousands of dollars on the course, created this, like, video series because I thought that's what I needed to do. And I launched it to the world. I had six hundred people sign up. And by the way, this is back in the day when, like, Facebook was the Wild West. You could DM as many people as you want and not get banned. So I'm doing that, right? I'm getting down and dirty with Facebook.
AMY: Six hundred is great.
COLIN: Right? It's the Wild West out there. I'm doing all this stuff. I end up getting six hundred people signed up. I run this series, and I'm thinking, “This is going to be insane. Like, I'm going to make so much money. I'm going to help a lot of people. I'm going to grow my business. It's going to be incredible.” Open cart; no one buys. Crickets.
AMY: Oh, ah.
COLIN: Day two. I'm thinking, “They're getting ready for day two.” No one buys.
AMY: And you've already done webinars at this point.
COLIN: No, I hadn't done webinars.
AMY: Oh! Okay.
COLIN: This is before webinars, right? So day two, open cart; no one buys. Day three, no one buys. I’m thinking, “Day four. Everyone's waiting for the last day.” Someone bought the lowest-payment plan in the last four hours, and that was it. And I was devastated.
AMY: Wait. I want to stop you. I'm so confused. You said six hundred people signed up for the webinar.
COLIN: No one bought. Oh, sorry. Sorry. It was a video series. I meant to say, it was a video series.
AMY: Oh, gotcha. Okay, so you did a video series. Six hundred people signed up. No one bought.
COLIN: No one bought. Absolutely no one bought.
AMY: Soul crushing.
COLIN: No, no, sorry. One person bought. On the last four hours, one person bought the lowest-payment plan.
COLIN: Right? Devastated.
But then, I was looking at people. I'm thinking, “People are doing this.” And so I decided to design a webinar for the first time. And I remember running my first webinar, and I did about three thousand dollars in my first webinar, and I only had, like, about eighty people sign up. And I was stoked. I was like, “Three thousand dollars. That's cool.”
I refined the webinar, ran it about a month later, and we did about eight thousand dollars. And then I refined the webinar, started to learn a bit of ads, and then we did, like, a thirty thousand and then, like, a fifty thousand. And then, within about six months, I'd run a hundred-thousand-dollar webinar. And I remember looking back going, “Oh, my gosh. I literally just made a hundred grand in one hour on a webinar.” That was like, “Oh, this is blowing my mind.”
But the crazy thing was that it was the same webinar that I ran over and over and over again, just refined each time. I didn't make huge changes. I just refined it, grew my audience, and it just expanded. And so the revelation I had was that all you need is one irresistible presentation that you can start to scale up, and you can create the business of your dreams.
And so I’ll press pause. That’s another example of, like, a conversion story for me.
AMY: Okay, great, because number one, so are you like me? You're like, “In the beginning, I didn't even know what I was doing. I created a course. I didn't even know how to do that. Then I did this thing, and it didn't make any money.” So they can relate to you. That struggle is real. I have lived it. So, number one.
Number two, can you lead me? And so in the story you're talking about, “But then I started to figure it out. It actually started to work for me. I started to see success.” So there's clout there. Like, “Yeah, I could follow someone who's making a hundred thousand dollars on a webinar.”
But then the part of, do you have a path? I think that came out with, “I started to refine my strategies. I started to figure out what was working. I started to do it better.” That's the path part?
COLIN: Well, the path is the presentation itself.
AMY: Oh, okay. So it's not part of the story?
COLIN: No. The path is the core idea. The path is not necessarily, like, laying out the whole thing. It is the core revelation that the audience—so it could be for you, it could be that, “I need a digital course.” Like, that is the path. And if you want to get access to the whole path, then you join the program.
AMY: Got it.
AMY: But the conversion story, then, really hits, are you like me, and can I lead? But the presentation, that's going to show the path.
AMY: Got it.
COLIN: And then the offer is if they want to know all the how-to of actually building that path.
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Okay. So let's talk a little bit about talking about your offer on a webinar, because one of the things I hear from my students a lot is, “When I get to that point, Amy, I feel like I'm so salesy,” and their voice cracks a little bit, or there's this weird pause between teaching the content and getting into selling, and it just, they really struggle with it. So do you have anything to share around putting together that offer that they feel good about selling or transitioning into the offer or any tips you can give that when they're actually talking about their course, that makes it easier for them to sell?
COLIN: Well, first of all, I think that when you're talking about your course, you need to sell the experience of it, not the process of it. What I mean by that is what most people do is they do something like this: they say, “Amy, would you love to go on a vacation? What you're going to do is you're going to wake up early, and there's going to be an Uber out the front. You're going to get your bags, get in the Uber; you're going to go to the airport. Then, you're going to get on the plane. You're going to catch the redeye,” which I saw you post the other day—
AMY: Ah, I hate redeyes. Maybe I don’t want to catch a redeye.
COLIN: —“You're going to catch the redeye. Then, you’re going to land. And then, you're going to get a taxi to your hotel. You're going to get in a hotel, and then you're going to lie by the pool, eventually. You're probably going to be a bit exhausted, but it's going to be so worth it. And you're going to have a nice drink and enjoy your vacation.”
Like, that's what people—like, that's how people sell their offers, right? where if you sell the destination more effectively, like, “Imagine—”
COLIN: —”Amy, imagine lying on a pool bed. You're drinking your favorite drink. You've got the people you love around you. You've got the cool breeze washing over your skin, and you're looking over this magnificent blue ocean. And you're just taking this deep breath, and you're feeling all the peace and the exhilaration that you've always wanted on this vacation. Do you want to go on a vacation?” So most people sell the Uber ride.
AMY: Okay. When you were saying that, I was like, that made sense to me. Okay. Yeah. Walk me through. What am I going to do? How am I going to get there? But you're saying instead of selling the Uber ride and that whole experience, it's the destination. So when you're there, here's what this is going to feel like and look like.
AMY: That's a huge distinction.
COLIN: Yes. So specifically, if we look at it like when you're going through the modules of your program, don't take them on the Uber ride. Show them the destination of each module, not the Uber ride. And so describing the results and what they’re going to install in their business and their life is more important than showing them all the steps. The problem is, is that as content creators, we're super excited about the steps.
AMY: We think it's the greatest thing in the world.
COLIN: Like, we're like, “Oh, my gosh. You're not going to believe it. There’s this worksheet that you do, like, seventeen steps, and then you get clear on this.” And then, we're, like, pumped by it. But the audience is just going, “Oh, my gosh. That just sounds like a whole lot of work that I'm not going to be able to do,” or, like, “It's just going to overwhelm me.”
AMY: Yeah. I know that in my past people haven't bought on a webinar from me because at the end they're like, “Holy cow, I do not think I have time for all of that. I can't possibly get that all done,” or “That feels way too advanced for me,” because I got way too much into the Uber-ride experience verses the whole concept. Like in my case, when you have a viable digital course in your business, everything can be easier because now you're doing this and you’re operating like this, and it feels like this. Like, that's such a different conversation. I love that you brought that up.
COLIN: Mm, beautiful.
AMY: That's good stuff, Colin.
Okay, so tell me this. When you work with people on their masterclasses, their webinars, even speaking from stage, and they're going to sell something, what are some of the biggest mistakes that you tend to see, and what can we do instead? because you've worked with tons of people, helping them with their selling on stage, selling in webinars, the whole gamut, right?
COLIN: So I think some of the biggest mistakes that people make is they put too much information.
AMY: Yes. Amen. Everything and the kitchen sink. I think they do it—I'm sorry. I keep talking. I'm talking way too much in this interview. Normally, this is my favorite topic. So this the last thing I'll say, and I'll let you talk—I think they do it because they're like, “Let me prove to you all I know, because if you're going to spend money with me, I need to prove all I know.” And then all of a sudden, their webinar has way too much information.
COLIN: Yeah. It becomes this behemoth—
COLIN: that people just get overwhelmed by. So the, you know, for me, what I think you need to do instead is you need to ask the question of is this content, first of all, is it aligning with the offer? And one of the ways that I teach is what I call infusion selling. And infusion selling is speaking and selling at the same time. And so what most people do is they speak for forty-five minutes, and then they sell for fifteen to twenty minutes. And it's like this weird, energetic, completely different off shift. And people are like, “Wait. Hang on. How come you're making an offer now? This is weird. I didn't know you were going to sell something to me.” where infusion selling, what infusion selling does is when you're speaking and teaching your content, you're actually selling your offer without it feeling like you're selling.
And so what that looks like, I'll give you an example, is your conversion story. That's a classic example. It is you're telling your story. And it doesn't feel like you're selling anything to the audience or even to yourself. But what happens is, is the audience is slowly moving on a journey of going, “You know what? That's actually something that I need help with. You know what? That's actually something that I would love to work on. And I think they're the person who I would love to do it with.” And so when you speak and sell at the same time, it becomes one thing as opposed to selling at the end.
I'll give you another example. Another infusion-selling strategy is what I call micro decisions. And micro decisions are small decisions that people make throughout the presentation so that when they get to the big decision, which is, are you going to join? Are you going to join the offer? they've actually already worked their decision muscle throughout the whole presentation.
Now, a lot of people, you might go to some webinars or some presentations where you know everyone's going, “Yes!” “Is this for you?” “Yes.” Like, “Do you want to achieve this?” “Yes.” “Do you want to make a million dollars?” “Yes.”
COLIN: “Yes, yes, yes.” Right? I'm not talking about that, right? For me, that's kind of old school. It's a little bit salesy. I prefer to ask really good-quality questions throughout the presentation that gets the audience to move to a place of feeling and experiencing the result that they want. And so that could be a question like, “Imagine you had created a presentation that absolutely crushes it. Like, you know that every single time you run this webinar, you're going to get clients. How would that feel to have that in your business? I want you to feel it right now because it's important to feel it. If you don't feel it, you're not going to move towards it. So what would that feel like? What would that create for you right now? Put that in the chat right now.”
So, like, that's an example of one, of asking a question where you're getting the audience to make a commitment to themselves and to the outcome that you would help them with, or that you are, will help them with. But it's done in a way where it's more elegant, it's more sophisticated, and it just, it weaves beautifully into the content as opposed to making it just whacking a sale on the end.
AMY: Okay. This is so great because, so, I remember you teaching me infusion selling when we worked together. And that's what it's called, right? Infusion?
COLIN: Infusion selling, yeah.
AMY: And I really love this concept, so I'm going to share one way I've done it, and then I have a question for you on top of that. So one thing that I've done in my webinar for Digital Course Academy is I share a few of my students’ stories of what they stopped doing in their business once they had a profitable digital course. So one of my students said, “I stopped cleaning my own house. It was something I didn't want to do. It was taking way too much time. I'd rather be working on my business. So I hired a cleaning crew so that with the little extra money, I put toward that. And it's really freed me up.” Or one woman, she was a baker, and now she teaches baking in our digital courses, and she said, “I stopped taking one-on-one clients that I didn't want to work with and I didn't want to bake their cakes and special-occasion pastries,” that she does. So she said, “I stopped taking clients I no longer wanted.” And then, I turned to the audience, and I said, “What's one thing you would stop doing once you have your profitable digital course?” I'm assuming that would be an example of infusion selling.
COLIN: A hundred percent.
AMY: Okay, great, because it always works well.
COLIN: Case studies are another infusion-selling strategy.
AMY: Ooh, yes.
COLIN: It's another infusion-selling strategy. And so what you've done there is you've allowed people to enter the identity of that person. And so I think really powerful selling is you're actually not even selling a course; you're selling an identity. And so if you can help the audience move to that place of seeing themselves of “I am a digital-course creator. I am an irresistible speaker. I am an irresis—”whatever that identity is that you help people with, all of a sudden, it doesn't become about the course; it becomes about stepping into that new level of identity of who they want to become. And that, that is deep selling.
AMY: That's good stuff, for sure.
Okay. So when you were talking about infusion selling and instead of saying forty-five minutes you teach, teach, teach; totally overwhelm them; and then the last fifteen minutes, you're like, “By the way, I've got a course,” that's not the kind of webinar that we want. But one of the questions I get, and I’d love your opinion on this, some of my students say, “Amy, should I mention early on in my webinar that I'm going to make an offer?” however they mention it. But should that be part of the conversation? What would you say to that?
COLIN: I don't teach that, because my intention is that people are going to get value no matter what. Like, whether they join the program or not, they're going to get value. And so one of the things that I recommend people to do is you can share that at the end of the training. “I'm going to share with you some next steps for those of you who resonate with me. And for those of you who want to take the next step, I'll share with you what that looks like.” But the biggest ask is that you would take action on the ideas, that you would take action on these practical ideas, that you would be an action taker. And so usually it's something like that is kind of what I'm sharing. So I don't do that.
AMY: I'm more on your side with that as well. I think it just puts people on guard if you don't have a connection with them yet. And you're right, the way you said it was beautiful. You're going to give them value no matter what. You know I have a motto. I've told you this before on my podcast. Whether they buy or not, they walk away today feeling excited, inspired, and driven to take action. My motto before every live webinar. And so I know they're going to get value out of that.
I was thinking about this infusion selling. Another place that I feel like it could be really valuable is in the Q&A. Do you have any thoughts about how people do Q&As—I'm putting you on the spot—but how people do Q&As on webinars, how it works well, and how it doesn't work well?
COLIN: Yeah. So, well, Q&A, first of all, it should be prepared, pre-prepared.
AMY: And what do you mean by that?
COLIN: Your own questions. So don't wait for the questions from the audience. You should have seven to nine questions that are pre-prepared that you're going to answer. You need to say Q&A, not as Q&A. It really is belief reversals, belief handling, objection handling. That's really what it is.
Now, yes, it will be Q&A like. You know, how many hours does the course take? Like, it could be some of those things. But at the core of it, Q&A needs to be objection handling. And so you want to write down, what's wrong with my course? That's the question you want to ask. What is wrong with my course? What are the things that people would say, “Yeah, but…” “Oh yeah, but that's really hard”? And that could be, how many hours it takes, how easy it is to implement. What if I'm beginning? What if I'm already advanced? What if I've done a course like this before? How is it different? Right? So these are all questions that might come up before someone would make a decision. And so I think pre-preparing questions and answers is really key.
And then you can field questions on webinars, because, I mean, Amy and myself, like, when we're running webinars, we've got a lot of people on there, so there's a lot of questions coming at us. But when you're starting out, you may not get many questions. And so I think it's good to just, like, start with some base questions.
Now, when you answer those questions, do you want to come up with a reframe? And a reframe is simply answering the question but reframing their thinking. Now, a great way to do that is actually with a story, and you could tell a story about a client. And so you could ask a question like, you know, “We get the question of, what if I'm just starting out? Is this too advanced? Well, I mean, to be honest, we actually just had that in one of our groups. Jenny asked it. And Jenny, she was just starting out, and she actually wrote she followed the process. And in her first webinar, she did these results. And so I just really want to reinforce to you, if you're just starting out, you kind of like Jenny, that's totally fine as well. It's going to suit you just fine.” Like, something like that, yeah.
AMY: Yes. Answering a question with a story that paints a picture that they can see themselves in, I love that. So now we've included infusion selling as well as conversion story all in one. So good.
COLIN: Come on.
AMY: Okay. I'm loving that.
Now I want to go back a little bit to something you said earlier that I think we really need to touch on, where people put way too much into their webinar. And my question is, how do you decide how to pare it down without leaving out really important details? And how do you find the right balance between teaching great content and also making sure that your audience knows the opportunity and they're excited about it?
COLIN: So for me, when I'm thinking about a webinar, usually the content, like, if it's a sixty-minute webinar, the content’s going to be about thirty-five to forty minutes. Like, of actual, the core content. And so I like usually between three to five key ideas that I'm going to share. So I decide what are three to five key ideas that I would like to share?
And it's not just any ideas; it's ideas that are going to do three things. It's going to shift people's thinking so that their mind is ready to get past any old challenges that they had and bring on the mindset of making a change in their world. That’s the first piece of content that I’m looking at.
The second piece of content I'm looking at is, what's something I can share that's really valuable for people? And so for me, one of the areas I'll teach a lot is storytelling. So I'll teach that in a webinar or a training series that I'm running. I'll go deep into it. So no matter what, like, people are going to walk away with some really valuable content.
And then, the last piece I'm looking at of content is, how do I display the vehicle of what I help people with in a really unique and simple way? And so that is usually, like, a visual framework or something like that where I can show them, “Hey, this is the path you can follow if you want to get the type of results that we're talking about.”
And so those three content chunks is what I'm looking at. And for me, I usually look at, I want to share, like, a case study or a story under each of the points. I want to ask some questions. I might share, you know, a few examples, or I might do a framework. I'm really thinking about, how do I get just enough balance of some emotion; some engagement; but also a little bit of statistics and, like, left-brained people who like the justification, some numbers, and things like that. And so I'm looking for a nice balance of that, but not trying to overwhelm people with heaps and heaps of how-to.
And so there's this line that I call the lose-the-sale line. So the lose-the-sale line is as soon as you get into too many steps and actions and details, the problem is, is that you're going to overwhelm the audience. Now, those steps need to be in your course. But if you share them too early, it's like for me, when I was researching how to get to the U.S., right? It just created more confusion for me because I didn't have the commitment level yet that I needed to actually do the thing. And so I was actually doing myself a disservice in trying to gather all the information before I made a decision. It wasn't until I made a decision that I followed someone's formula, which was, you know, the lawyer at the time, that I just got the result very quickly. And so if you reveal too many of the steps before people are fully committed, you actually do them a disservice because it puts them in a place once again of analysis paralysis, of doing nothing, feeling overwhelmed. People often get these comments of, like, “You know what? I'm just going to work on the stuff that you gave me for the next nine months.”
AMY: That's when you know that webinar did not work. Ah.
COLIN: Yeah. “And then I'll think about joining your course after.”
COLIN: Getting those comments, it's a great indicator that you've gone too much into the details.
AMY: That's great.
Okay. So before I let you go, sum that up again, those three tips that you just had for us when people are like, “What do I put in this webinar? How do I not teach so much that I don't overwhelm?” Quick summary.
COLIN: Yeah. So the three content chunks for me are, what are the beliefs I need to shift in order for people to get ready to make a commitment? The second chunk is, what's something really valuable that I could share? So for me it's storytelling or some infusion-selling strategies. And then the third chunk is, how can I show the vehicle of what I help people with in a really unique and simple way so that when they see it they’re like, “I could follow that path.” And if you hit those three chunks, people are going to feel excited, connected to you, and ready to go.
AMY: Wonderful. I love a good summary, Colin, so I appreciate that.
COLIN: So good.
AMY: Okay. So we just covered a lot. Definitely one of my favorite episodes because it's so tangible. So tell me this: people are going to listen to this. They're going to get so much value, and they're going to say, “I love this Colin guy, and I love his Australian accent, and I want to know more about him. I want to learn what he does. I want to work with him.” So where do we send people to learn more about you?
COLIN: So I am quite active on Instagram. So just @colinboyd. C-O-L-I-N-B-O-Y-D. I've got a podcast as well if you want to check me out on—it's called The Expert Edge. And if people are curious about conversion story, they can check out conversionstoryformula.com. And that's just got a bit more information about, like, how to create those stories.
AMY: Nice. Conversionstoryformula.com.
AMY: Okay. And we'll link to all of it and your website in the show notes. So we'll do that.
But Colin, it's so great to have you on the show. I love that we've been friends for so long, and you offer so much value, and you have done for me as well. So thank you so much for being a part of my life and for being on the podcast.
COLIN: Yeah, it’s been a pleasure. Thanks, Amy.
AMY: Oh, my goodness. I'm absolutely going to take some of these strategies and principles and apply them to my webinars. I think my biggest takeaway was to remember the principles in conversion stories, because I tell stories on my webinars, but I don't think I do it through the lens of a conversion story. I think I could do a much better job. So I'm going to kind of unpack that. And I love that Colin shared a resource for all of us that we can go dive deeper into learning that framework of conversion stories. I think it's crucial for everything we do. So I'll link to everything in the show notes. So I love everything that Colin shared. I hope you walk away with takeaways, and you get into action.
Also, if you'd be so kind to share Online Marketing Made Easy with a friend or two, I would greatly appreciate it. So grab the link; text a few friends. Better yet, if you love this so much, post about it on social. And let's get some entrepreneurs that are feeling overwhelmed or not sure what to do or looking for guidance, let's get them the support they need.
All right, my sweet friends. Thanks so much for tuning in. I cannot wait to see you next week, same time, same place. Bye for now.