AMY PORTERFIELD: Welcome to another episode of the Online Marketing Made Easy podcast, I'm Amy Porterfield and thank you so much for being here today.
I've got to take a deep breath because I have been burning the midnight oil lately.
I went to Australia to speak at the Problogger event. Darren Rowse invited me to be a speaker and it was a great, great event. But when I came back, literally the minute I stepped off the plane we had jumped into launch mode for my final Facebook Marketing Profit Lab of 2013.
If you've never heard of that program, I do it once a quarter usually and it's a 6-week interactive program. It's my only program where I do 6 weeks of live Q&A, I have a VIP group where I answer questions every day throughout the program, so it's really interactive. It's a lot of work, but it's also a lot of fun. It's a great program, my very favorite program I do.
By the time you hear this, we're going to be 4 days away from actually closing the doors and starting the program, so right now doors are open, people can enroll, it's been my best launch ever.
Really exciting numbers. People that are doing great things have joined, so I'm excited about all of the new members and I love doing this program. If you're interested, you can find out at AmyPorterfield.com/profitlab. You can get all of the details and I'll link to them in the show notes.
Really, why I tell you that is although this has been the best launch ever, I'm really excited about the results and about the members that have joined, it hasn't gone on without a hitch. Meaning when I do launches, I do live webinars, and on the morning of the second live webinar, I woke up–and remember, I'd just gotten off the plane
from Australia, so when you go on international trips you always pick up some kind of bug, and I lost my voice COMPLETELY. I could not talk. My husband had no idea what I was saying.
That has never happened to me! It was–it freaked me out, because one you don't like being sick and two, I had a webinar that had 3700 people signed up for the webinar, and I knew not all of them would show up live that morning but still, people are counting on me! Regardless that I was in launch mode, I was more worried about these people that had signed up, took the time out to listen to me and now we were just hours away from the webinar and I couldn't talk.
I had to cancel the webinar, reschedule and I thought “okay, I'm screwed!” Because the last time I did my launch at that exact same time last quarter, that was a $20,000 day in my launch. My webinars do really, really well when I give a lot of great free content and tell people about the program. So I thought “I just lost $20,000 today.”
But you know, as an entrepreneur, someone that runs my own business, I knew that I couldn't stay in that scary place or nothing would get done. So I just plowed through, we rescheduled, we put some more strategies in place to make sure we were covered and everything turned out allright.
But because I had that big scare last week, I started to think about the makeup of my business. I'm really lucky that I have some systems in place, some processes that really work and a very small team–they're small but mighty. So I thought “I wonder if it'd be really interesting to my audience to hear about how I set up my online business.” Because I know that when I first started back in 2009, I would've given anything for some of the people that I follow on a regular basis, those people that were really getting some big successes. I would have loved them to pull back the curtain, let me know how they set up their business and what tools they use to get things done. That would have been really valuable to me.
So that's exactly what I'm going to do in this podcast today, show you how I set up my business and specifically getting to the tools that I could not live without in terms of building my programs, creating my content and just running my business overall. So that is what we're going to do today. We have a lot to cover, let's go ahead and dive in.
First, we're going to talk about how my business is set up. I thought I probably should start, for those of you who are fairly new to my content, I should probably start out and tell you what I do.
I create online training programs focused on online marketing, and I always have an emphasis on Facebook although I tend to go beyond Facebook in a lot of my programs.
My programs are for people that want to create an online business. I have three programs, FBinfluence, FB Ads Insider, and then the program I already told you about, Facebook Marketing Profit Lab. I also do some affiliate marketing. I do once a quarter when I find a really great program I believe in, I will promote that as well. So I do a little bit of affiliate marketing but it's definitely not something I rely on, and then I sell these three programs that I have.
Now, what I think is important to know is that I didn't start out my business this way, however I always wanted it to be this way. I knew that the day I left Tony Robbins, I wanted to create a business where I created my own online marketing programs where I taught people how to build up their online business.
However, I was brand new to online marketing when I left Tony Robbins, and so what I did is I started consulting, which I think a lot of people do in the beginning just to make sure they're building up their clientele, they're getting in the trenches, they're working with customers. I think it's important and I'm glad I did it. However it was really, really a rough time.
I didn't enjoy taking on one-on-one customers because it felt like I had a bunch of–I always call it “a bunch of little bosses.” Before when I was working with Tony Robbins, I had one big gigantic boss, literally, then I quit and started my own consulting business for, really, social media marketing, and I had a bunch of small bosses that were telling me what to do.
And so I did not like that at all, but I had to go through the pains of that and it was a HUGE year of learning that first year out. And then finally when I knew it wasn't for me, I knew I wasn't enjoying what I was doing, I thought “I've got to fire my clients and I have to do what I set out to do in the beginning, which is create these online programs.”
That was a really rough time for me. Quite honestly, that first year I definitely wasn't making a lot of money. I was in the red for most of that year until the end of the first year and it was a lot of ups and downs. That was an emotional year, that first year out, if I'm being totally honest, wasn't my favorite year.
But I quickly realized “Okay, what do I want to do and how am I going to do it?” And that was I knew I needed to start creating online programs and really run with that and put my whole focus there.
And I found webinars. Lewis Howes was the first one to introduce me to creating webinars and what they can do for your business. I feel that if you're building an online business and if you teach anything, or if you have some kind of educational business, webinars are definitely the way to go. And I'm going to tell you some of the tools I use for my own webinars. But the reason why webinars have been so instrumental to the success of my business is not only have they allowed me to have a platform to sell my programs–that obviously is a great thing–but they also allow me to build my authority and to become the go-to source in what I do.
Because if you teach someone something for an hour, and they go out and try it and they get results, they're going to come back for more, whether they ever bought a program from you yet or not. And so with me, the webinars have been a really big piece to connect with people, to teach people, to give free content, and really to build my authority.
So I can't say enough about webinars. I'm working on a podcast all about every piece of the puzzle with my webinar strategy, because anyone that wants to create webinars, I think you would find that really valuable. I've made a lot of mistakes along the way and I don't want you to make them as well, so I'm going to outline that. That's coming soon.
For the sake of this training, I just wanted to set it up and let you know how I run my business. Now I do not take one-on-one clients, I do zero consulting that 100% of my profits come from my own program and then a smaller piece comes from my affiliates as well.
In addition to that, I do a lot of email marketing, something that I didn't do in my early years when I was struggling, because of course I didn't really have a list yet. Once I really started focusing on list building, I use that list and I segment as much as I can to make sure that people are getting emails from me in terms of emails that they really want. They're getting emails from me that make sense to the behaviors, different steps they've taken along my different sales funnels so that the emails mean something to them and they're excited to get the content and they're excited to work with me as well.
So email marketing over probably the last 2 years has been a huge part of my success as well.
Also, I'll say one more thing–because email marketing and list building have been such big pieces of my business, I recently created a 4-part free video series all about how to use social media, with a big emphasis on Facebook of course, to grow your email list. So I'll put a link to that in the show notes because, again, it's totally free and it's brand new, so it's all updated, really good stuff, and it kind of outlines how I've grown my email list with social media and how you could do it as well.
I just thought of that when I was talking about how I set up my business.
And then I obviously have a blog and a podcast, that you're listening to now, and I use my blog and my podcast as ways to generate content on a very consistent basis. Having a podcast that comes out regularly, blogging regularly, it really puts me on a schedule and it allows me to make sure that I’m constantly putting out new content that's valuable to my audience. That's really my platforms, those two are my platforms for generating new content.
That is my business. I have to tell you that I keep things really, really simple. I say–at least I'm trying to say “No” more often than I say yes to opportunities that come my way, because in my early years i said yes to everything–which, in some respects you kind of have to. You have to figure out what's going to work for you and what's not going to work. If you say no all the time you'll have no idea.
But I found out pretty quickly the things that I should be spending my time and the other opportunities that look so good, that if I really dug a little deeper I would've saw that it probably wouldn't have gotten me the reach or exposure that I thought it would have. But I said yes anyway and kind of had to go with it. That's what the first few years look like.
Now I'm really trying to be really careful with how i spend my time, what I say yes to and new projects I start. Like, for 2014, another podcast I am working on that I will release before the New Year is how I set goals and how I set up my business for the New Year. One thing I'm really focusing on is not creating a bunch of new programs but perfecting the ones I have.
I put so much effort into those three programs, and I always want to make them better, so I want to make the content better, I want to market smarter, and I want to really focus on building, or filling up those funnels so that people can get exposed to these three programs I put so much time into. So when you're thinking about your own business, instead of thinking about all of the new things you're going to create and new people you're going to work with and partnerships you want to do and all of these different things you want to try, That's GOOD, but first I want you to look at your business, how it is right now, what's already working that you can perfect and put on overdrive.
Or, even better, put on autopilot. What's working now that you can put on autopilot so you don't have to constantly be working at it but it will be producing for you over and over again? I'm going to give you some tools to help you do that today but I think it's really important that we look at what we already have and what's already working for us instead of constantly creating new things and we have a bunch of stuff that's maybe good, but not great. I want all of my stuff to be stellar, and the way that I do that is I'm going to create less but make what I do have even better. It's just my philosophy, how it works for me, but I know it really allows me to cut down on the stress and be feeling like I'm being pulled in a million different directions.
Okay, so let's switch gears now and talk about my team. Now, again, this is a small but mighty team. I'm going to tell you exactly who's on my team and how many hours they work a week and then who I actually do contract work with, versus taking them on the team–or putting them on a team with a monthly retainer.
I have a VA, her name is Trivinia, and she is AMAZING. I love her dearly. What Trivinia does, really, is manage SO many emails that come in each week. Thousands of emails that come in each week, and she manages firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com and a few other different ones that we have up there.
This is really, really valuable to me, because before, I was getting all of these emails, for at least a year and a half of my business in the beginning. At that time I wasn't getting as many emails, but they were starting to really get me overwhelmed because every time I went in my inbox there were so many emails that needed attention right away, and people had to wait a long time to hear from me because I couldn't keep up. So that's when I knew “Okay, I've got to do something about this.”
So Trivinia, what she does is, she'll filter everything. So requests for me to speak on stage, requests for me to do online presentations or online summits and webinars and
all that good stuff, or to get interviewed on other people's podcasts. All those requests go through her, as well as people are constantly emailing me Facebook questions and she'll take care of those as well.
What we've done with the Facebook questions, because they started to come in at record speed over the last year, we either encourage people to post on my Facebook Page, and I try to get to those throughout the week, or we have a few questions that always come in, like “What's the difference between a profile and a page?” or “Do I need a business page if
I already have a profile?” So I've written responses to those questions I get asked all the time so she can literally do a lot of cut and pasting. She has probably 15 different cut and paste type emails of questions or concerns that we get regularly from people. The great thing is, she's really efficient because we've done the work up front and we know what kind of requests or questions that are going to come in pretty regularly.
So Trivinia also is really great at saying “No” because I am REALLY terrible at saying no, in terms of I want to make everybody happy. I'm definitely a people pleaser, so I have to work on that, and I hate letting anybody down.
So before Trivinia came on, before I had a VA–I'll tell you before I had Trivinia, I had a different VA–but before a VA came on, I was saying yes to everything and really, I mentioned this earlier in this podcast, it really becomes too much. So Trivinia's my filter. I don't have to say no, she is the one who will make a lot of the decisions, so I don't see everything that comes through. If I did, I'd probably go crazy.
Now, we use a tool called Rhino Support. We're fairly new at Rhino support, but right now we're really getting used to it, I'm enjoying using it because everything's in one place. So you can check out Rhino support, I'll link to it in the show notes, but what it does is it filters all emails into one place, and then Trivinia's in charge of making sure that I only see the ones that I need to see, so I'll have a folder in Rhino where she'll push certain emails to me, she can write notes about those emails, find out if I want to do a presentation for a certain company or how do I want to handle a certain concern or anything like that. So I have a folder that has maybe 20 emails in it a week, versus her thousands of emails that she gets through. She is truly my filter.
Now, I also–that's Trivinia. Really, she's the filter for everything first. I also have a personal email that a lot of people have, probably too many people have, so I get hundreds of emails there a week as well, but I'm the one who handles those. A lot of
them are my peers and people that I'm building relationships with and all that good stuff, so I want them to come direct to me.
In addition to having a VA–and Trivinia works about 20 hours a week, might be 25 hours a week, and I put her on a retainer basis versus a per-hour type of thing.
Now I also have a content manager. Rebecca is my content manager, and Rebecca used to be my VA. What happened was, Rebecca's really good at writing and she loves to create content. She has her own business beyond just being my content manager, where she teaches how to create content and repurpose content.
What's great about having Rebecca on the team was, before she was my content manager she was my VA, so she really knows my business well. She basically expanded her role and we created a new role for her based on her skill set.
In addition to that, when I first met Rebecca, she came to me and she offered to do some editing for me in exchange for me to help her with her Facebook marketing. This was years ago. It was more than two years ago because we just celebrated our 2- year anniversary working together.
At the time, when I wanted to hire Rebecca as a VA, I had no idea what I was going to have her do, I was a little be worried about paying her. At that time I was still not–I didn't have a big email list, I wasn't creating online programs regularly, so I was struggling just a bit with my business to get it off the ground. but I've always been told to hire a VA before you are really desperate to have a VA. Hire before you might even need that person.
Best advice I could've gotten, because together Rebecca and I figured it out. So when you hire a VA, hire someone who's going to be willing to offer suggestions on ways you can streamline your business. And offer their feedback and insight as to what you can leverage to them. So Rebecca's constantly like “Give that to me! Let me take that on! I'll try to build a process for that or a system.” I was very lucky to find someone. And I interviewed her and knew her personality instantly was someone that was a go-getter and I'm always looking for people that want to take action right away and jump in, and that was Rebecca.
I just say that because anybody thinking “Do I need to hire someone?”–hire before you're desperate, is my big suggestion there.
Again, I have Trivinia as my VA, Rebecca is my content manager– Rebecca probably works, I'm going to guess 20 hours a week as well, she's on a monthly retainer, and then I have a project manager.
My project manager, her name's Gina, she was brand new the middle of this year, maybe early this year. The reason why I brought her own is I do these Profit Lab launches every quarter and I knew that I needed more help with them. They started to get bigger and I thought “Okay, this is a little bit too much for my small team to handle, so I need extra support.” So, really, Gina's main focus is on my launches.
Now, although Gina's been really valuable in terms of creating systems and processes and looking at our launch and finding ways to streamline it. Really, where she's been valuable is pushing me to try new things.
Gina has a lot of knowledge about online marketing. She's a student forever. She's always learning new things with launches. She has her own business, as well. I think it's important, if you're not going to hire someone full time, it's important that they're doing something outside of your own business that you could benefit from and Gina has her own business where she creates programs for Pilates instructors and Pilates business owners how they can market their business. So it's very niche, but she knows online marketing well.
So going back to Gina, the reason why she's been so instrumental in my business is that she's the one that's pushed me to do maybe a little bit more email marketing than I've done in the past with my launches and she's pushed me to do more live webinars during the launch mode, and she's helped me with some of the mail copy and the overall big picture with the launch.
Now, why this is so valuable is because I went from 40 people in my first few profit labs to well over 300. I think we're at 350 people in this current profit lab, and part of the reason is because Gina suggested we try different things in the launch. Now I'm doing two different levels–independent level, which doesn't include as much 1-on-1 with me and the VIP level that's limited to 100 people, but it does include a lot of 1- on-1 with me in a private Facebook group throughout the whole six weeks. So breaking it up into 2 levels and allowing people to sign up for what would best fit their needs has really, really made a huge difference in the number of enrollments. A lot of those ideas came from Gina.
Why I'm telling you this is that when we are entrepreneurs and we're a one man or one woman show and we're not getting feedback and insight from other people that have been in the trenches like us, it's a little scary sometimes and you have limiting beliefs.
I never thought the Profit Lab could fill up with 350 new members every quarter. That is just insane. But we've seen that happen a few times this year. Surrounding yourself with people that are going to push you to try new things always so very important, especially when you're running an online business.
So a review–I have a VA, a content manager–oh! I got to say. What I didn’t say about the Content Manager role, I have to tell you a little bit about what Rebecca does. She does a lot of repurposing of my content. Sorry, I'm jumping around a little bit. But going back to the content manager role–I do a lot of live presentations and create tons of different webinars, whether they're for online courses or free content or they're live where I go to an event and present, so I have all this content, and before I would create it, I'd deliver it, let's say to a room of 500 people, and then it would never ever go anywhere else. It would just be dead in the water. That is so silly because so many more people could enjoy that content!
So what Rebecca does is she'll take my presentation and she might break it up into 5- mini presentations and put it on SlideShare or she'll create different blog posts based on an hour webinar that I did for free or for a group live. She'll take the content and she'll repurpose it. She won't put it out there exactly how I delivered it in the same type of platform but she'll make it into something new, breathe new life into the content I already have.
This has DRAMATICALLY changed the way I do content because now I'm constantly putting out more and more content, repurposing it, because you have to remember there's a lot of people we haven't reached yet, a lot of new eyeballs on your content– it's possible if you use different social media platforms, Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube, SlideShare–those are the ones that I probably use regularly, and LinkedIn.
In addition to that, even if somebody sees your content twice, it's not the end of the world. At first I was a little nervous, like “What if people have already seen this webinar and now we're putting it out into a blog post?”
People love to look at the content in a different way! I can promise you they're probably not even going to know. And if they do know, looking at the content in a
different way maybe will help them take action. So don't get stuck in that fear of repurposing your content and the same people seeing it. If you put a little slant to it or put it out in a different way, it's almost like it's a brand-new content.
So content repurposing is truly the #1 role of Rebecca, my content manager, and it's freed me up some time to not always have to create new content but allow her to take what I've already spent hours and hours and hours creating and breathe new life into it. So that has been a huge, huge improvement to my business this past year with Rebecca in that new role.
So we've got the VA, the Content Manager, the Project Manager. All of them are on monthly retainers. And then I do outsourcing to contractors. So my website programmer, my designer, the guy who records all my videos and my podcast editing and uploading and then I have membership sites for my programs. I also outsource the creation of those membership sites. So these are contractors where I hire them only on an as-need basis per project. They're not someone that's on a monthly retainer.
Speaking a little bit about my programmer, the programmer does all of my website updates, any challenges or snafus that we come up against with my website, he's my guy. And also he creates all my sales pages and lead pages and all that good stuff, if I'm doing a lead page from scratch. And then my designer, anything that needs designed she will have a part with that.
And then also my video–I call him my video guy, Luke, he is actually a guy that comes over probably once a month and we batch a series of videos. So I might do 3-4 videos at a time when Luke comes over. Luke charges me between $250-$350 per video depending on length, and he records them as well as edits them. So all I need to do is upload them wherever I need them to go. This has saved me a lot of time.
Now, why do I use a professional video guy versus setting up a camera in my house with a tripod and maybe some lighting? And the reason is that one, I never thought it was going to be so much work, to be quite honest. The set-up, the lighting and the video camera and to check it a million times to make sure it's actually working correctly when I'm trying to shoot these videos, it just became a little too stressful for me, and I would not show up so great in those videos, I think.
Also I'm not a video editor, but I'd spend hours trying to edit this video, and I thought “this is just not a good use of my time.” In addition, and this is kind of a mindset thing,
I knew that I wanted to take my business to the next level, and part of doing so has to do with perception, and having really nice polished videos. I'm not talking about a quick video where you might throw it up on your blog where you teach something. Those videos I see nothing wrong with using your webcam on your computer or doing it yourself.
But when I'm creating videos like sales videos or videos to encourage people to sign up for my webinars or launch videos of any kind, I feel that the better they are, the better they look, the more people will connect with me. They'll see that I've got a polished business, things look streamlined, I've got it together and there's a perception behind that. So years ago I might have taught “just throw up any video you've got, it doesn't need to be that great, no big deal, it's all about just putting the video out there, the more organic it is the better!” These days, I think something's changing with that.
I was listening to a podcast–Internet Marketing Mastery. Am I saying that right? I sure hope so. And in this podcast they were saying they see a trend where videos are getting better and it's a good thing and I totally agree with that. Internet Business Mastery. Did I say that wrong earlier? I think I did. Internet Business Mastery is the podcast, I love this podcast! And they were just talking about this trend and I completely agree with them.
So without getting on too much of a tangent, what I'm trying to say here is that I think investing in really great video production and editing really matters. When you can; not everybody's ready to put money toward that, but when you can I think it should be at the top of your list as to how you want to spend your marketing dollars, because I do believe that it allows…when people see a really great video, they're a little bit more curious, like
“Who is this? What kind of business does this person have?” And they want to pay attention. So that is truly one of the reasons why I upped my video game, because I wanted to take my business to the next level, and I felt that really good video production was part of that mix.
And again, I said that I have someone that edits my podcasts and uploads them and does the show notes and all that good stuff. It's actually Rebecca. Rebecca does that as another business she has, so she doesn't do it as my content manager. She has another business where she actually does podcast editing, show notes and upload and all that good stuff. So she does that for me.
And then my members area. I use a tool called Wishlist Member. I'll tell you about that in a minute. But I usually hire a contractor to make all my membership sites look really good and work really well in the process. We'll talk about that in just a minute.
So at this point of the podcast, what I thought we would do now that you know what I do in my business, a little bit about my team, my small but mighty team, and a little bit about my outsourcing as well, what I thought I would do is get really specific with you and tell you about the tools I use pretty much on a daily basis in my business.
I want to start with InfusionSoft. If you have never heard of InfusionSoft, it's an email service provider that includes a shopping cart and quite honestly so much more. And I'm wanting to get into all the details about what's included in InfusionSoft but here's what I'll tell you.
When I started my business I started with AWeber. And AWeber worked for me for about a year, but I stayed with AWeber for about two years and I wish that I would've left earlier and transitioned and did InfusionSoft.
The difference between AWeber and InfusionSoft is InfusionSoft just does a lot more. But really what it came down to me is, in terms of “does a lot more' what I mean specifically is that they allow for greater segmentation and greater automation. Those were two things that I really wanted to streamline in my business. I wanted to segment my list more so that my email communication was more targeted and I wanted to more on autopilot so I wasn't hustling every minute of the day trying to find new customers.
I knew if I could put more in automation, I could build out funnels so I could actually focus on my list building. But once it came into my funnels, all the automation would do the work for me, meaning send them specific emails, encourage them to sign up for different webinars, tell them about different products. I could write all of that in advance and then
people would go through different funnels depending on where they sign up for one of my free giveaways. Hopefully that makes sense, but that's really the automation part of it.
The point being is that I wish that I moved to InfusionSoft earlier than I did. I got some advice from someone I really admire still to this day and she was telling me that she felt that you shouldn't move to InfusionSoft too early in your business. But the thing is, if I had moved there a year earlier, I would've had a smaller list where I could've
experimented and made some of the mistakes that I made because you're going to make mistakes when you move to any big email service provider, no matter what it is. And so I was making mistakes with a list that was 40,000. I wish I was making those mistakes with a list of 20,000 or even less.
I feel like if you move to something a little bit more robust before you need them, kind of like the VA thing, you'll figure it out and you can do more experimenting and make those mistakes that you're inevitably going to make anyway, so that's my advice. I'd move there before you probably need all of those bells and whistles.
In addition to that, I think moving to a bigger system is a mindset shift as well. Not only did I move to InfusionSoft and now I've got all of these new features and I was paying more–you're going to pay more for InfusionSoft then you'll ever pay for AWeber–so there's a lot that came with that, but also I started looking at my business differently. And I started to look at ways that I could segment even more, who my audience was and then once I figured out who my audience was how can I divide them even more so that I could cater my email communication.
In addition, of course I talked about automation as well. I never had any automation with AWeber, but because InfusionSoft is known for allowing you to automate so much of your email communication, now I started to look at my business in a different way.
So I'm truly, truly glad I moved to InfusionSoft. It has not been easy. It's a huge learning curve. However, definitely worth the time and effort I put into it.
I do hire, speaking of contractors as I mentioned earlier, I do hire a guy that's named Steve to help me with some of my Infusionsoft strategies, and he helps with implementation and some of the overall strategy ideas as well. And I don't have him on a retainer all the time, but I'll probably maybe 6 months out of the year really focus on my InfusionSoft, and during those 6 months I'll keep him on a retainer and then I'll pull back and focus on other areas of my business. So I do spend some money on a contractor with InfusionSoft as well.
But I wanted to talk to you a little bit about how I use InfusionSoft. How I use InfusionSoft is specifically my funnels, how things are set up. So I have a few different places that you can sign up for either a free webinar or a free video series, like that free video series that I mentioned earlier, how to build your emails for social media. So that's a new giveaway I have.
So I have some opt-in pages out there where people can give me their name and email in exchange for the giveaway. Once someone gives me their name and email, depending on what free giveaway they signed up for, I have a series of value-added emails that will go out once they've signed up, so I'm not promoting or selling anything, I'm just building my relationship with them.
Once they've gone through these value-add emails, let's say over a few weeks, depending on what free program they've downloaded from me, I might send them an email about FBinfluence or FB Ads Insider or the Profit Lab, it just really depends, or one of my affiliate partners that I'm promoting their programs.
But I've built this all out into multiple funnels depending on where they came in and the behaviors they took, meaning “did they click on this, or did they click on that?” It's pretty intricate. It sounds very complicated, I'm sure. But once you're inside you can see how it all works.
I've created these funnels so that I don't have to do all the work. So I'm sleeping and people are getting specific emails based on the actions they've taken with the free giveaways or emails that I've sent. And that is why I really, really love InfusionSoft. It allows me to automate all of that and really track their behavior, their clicks, and what they're interested in, what they've opted out of, so that I can cater my email communication as much as possible. I have seen my business grow by leaps and bounds since I've added InfusionSoft.
So I'm a huge advocate. I think it's great for any online business where you want to grow your email list and maybe talk to people in different ways based on their behaviors and their actions with your content. And that is exactly what InfusionSoft does for me.
Again, it's taken me time. I've hired support to make sure that I'm doing it right. I could not do InfusionSoft all by myself. But it's been worth every penny.
Okay. So that is the first big tool that I use. That's probably my biggest investment on a monthly basis. I want to say I pay a little less than $500 a month on InfusionSoft.
My second favorite tool is LeadPages. You might have heard me talk about LeadPages but I pretty much could not run the business that I have today without lead pages. LeadPages is
a tool that allows you to set up opt-in pages, which are basically pages where people give you their name and email in exchange for something you're giving away.
I use LeadPages for signups for my webinars, and I use Lead Pages for all of my free giveaways like the 3-part video series I've mentioned here as well as I use LeadPages for my replay pages. So when someone watches a live webinar, I usually send out a replay, and I can put that replay on a LeadPage.
I can put a timer to show when that replay is going to come down, I can add a big button to send people to my Profit Lab program, which is what I talk about in my latest webinar. So I have a big button that goes right to my sales page. There's so much you can do and there's zero coding involved. I'm going to give you a link to LeadPages so you can check it out. It'll be in the show notes, but it is probably my favorite tool right now.
There's even cooler things inside of LeadPages. You can set up a special LeadPage for your podcast. You can set up Lead Pages for your 404 page when someone goes to a Page on your website and it doesn't exist. You know, you get that 404 error? Well, they have Lead Pages where you can say “Hey, this isn't the page you're looking for but I've got something really cool you might want to check out!”
I love that Lead Page. It's really great. It captures unexpected traffic. There is so much you can do with the Lead Pages tool. The price varies, so you definitely want to go check it out. It's not free but it's also not really expensive. They've got year memberships that I think are the best way to go. That's what I do. I pay yearly. I think I pay $197 a year. I could be wrong about that because I've been using it for a while now, but definitely go check it out. I'll give you a special link where it will take you to the page where you can learn about Lead Pages but also see the different pricing options as well. So that is my second favorite tool.
My third is GoToWebinar, which pretty much all of you have heard, but I just want to throw it out there that–some people ask me what I use for my webinars, and when I do a live webinar, I use GoToWebinar. Now, here's the deal. The reason why I love GoToWebinar is that I've been using it forever so I know it really well. It's extremely reliable. You can record your webinars now–this is a new work feature, where you can hit a record button and all of your live webinars are recorded and they've got some great recording capabilities as well, so I'll know who actually showed up live for my webinar versus who just registered and didn't show up live, how long they stayed on
my live webinar, when people jumped off, so the analytics are really valuable for me as well.
I also use GoToWebinar for my live Q&A sessions in the profit lab, so when someone signs up for the Profit Lab they get 6 weeks of live Q&A and all they need to do is register for one webinar and that link will work for them for 6 weeks. So they don't have to sign up six times for each week of the Live Q&A and every week they'll get a reminder that the webinar's starting, but it's always the same link which makes it really easy.
And then I do weekly calls with my team and we use GoToWebinar–it's called GoToMeeting, but it's all within the same interface where everyone jumps on to a live meeting page and we can show each other our screens and all that good stuff.
So I use it in a few different ways, but the #1 way I use GoToWebinar is for live webinars. The only downside, and I hope they fix this soon, is you can only get 1000 people on live. So I have to be really careful–sometimes it's really hard when I have to shut off my webinar registration because too many people have signed up.
On average, between 30-50% of people usually show up to a live webinar so you have to play with it. I always let more people sign up because I know not everyone will show up live, but sometimes I've overshot it and more people want to show up live and they can't get in. In the beginning I thought years ago “Look at me! I've got 1000 people on the webinar, people can't come in, isn't that so cool? I filled up the webinar!” Then I thought about it–one, it's extremely rude when people have booked time to spend with me and then they can't get on the webinar, so I started looking at it, thinking “That's not great customer service, Amy.”
And two, these are people that could potentially buy a product and they can't get on live! So there's nothing good about that. So I've really tried to start creating more live webinars so that it won't fill up to the 1000 capacity, because that is a downfall of GoToWebinar.
Just for those who are listening who are new to online marketing, I did not fill up webinars like that in my early days. My first year, I might have gotten 50-100 on live and I felt really good about that. This has been over the years that I've built up these strategies to make sure all of my webinars are full. So, no comparison here because it took me a while to get there for sure.
Another tool I use is Evergreen Business Systems. Evergreen Business Systems is what I use for my automated webinars. For those of you who follow me religiously and you know my content well, you probably are thinking “Well, wait a second Amy! You used to promote Stealth Seminars.” And Stealth Seminars is a competitor of Evergreen Business Systems.
Now, the reason I've switched, not because I have any problem with Stealth Seminars–they still are great and I think they have probably the best customer service in the world. But the reason I switched to Evergreen Business Systems from Stealth Seminars is because I wanted more customization from my registration pages for my auto webinars and I just couldn't get that from Stealth.
Also, I think that Evergreen Business Systems has a cleaner user interface and it's just a little bit easier to follow and they have more options for the registration page, the playback page. It tends to be a little more streamlined and for me a little more easier, Evergreen Business Systems, but if you use Stealth you're in good hands. I still have some of my auto webinars on Stealth and it's a great company.
I almost feel guilty telling you about another one because I've been loyal to Stealth for so long, but I really do think that Evergreen Business Systems is a fantastic company and I will link to them as well in the show notes. Definitely worth checking out.
So let's talk about strategy, here, and why I use this tool. So, GoToWebinar is for my live webinars but Evergreen Business Systems allows me to create registration pages and playback pages of my webinar so that it's the webinar that's recorded and on autopilot. So what I do is I record a webinar, I load it up into Evergreen Business Systems, I create a registration page, and people can go to the registration page and they can sign up for a specific time that that webinar's going to play back.
I don't say it's a live webinar, but the reason why I want people to sign up for a date and time versus just pushing a playback to anybody out there, is that when you have a date and time to show up you're more likely to watch that webinar, and if people aren't watching my webinars they'll never ever digest all my content, because I do mostly webinars. So the date and time option of having them register allows for more accountability and they're more likely to watch the webinar.
In addition, the recorded webinars are how I do a lot of my Facebook ad strategies. I'll drive traffic from a Facebook ad to a recorded webinar, and because those ads are on auto pilot and because Evergreen Business Systems is on autopilot, those ads can run
for weeks and weeks and I can have people signing up at any time of the day and the playback's automatically happening.
They'll get emails saying “Your webinar's in 24 hours” or “your webinar's starting now, make sure you jump on, and then in addition to that if someone comes to one of my recorded webinars and they watch half of it, the system will let me know and I can send out an email that says “Hey, I noticed you watched my webinar but you didn't get through the whole thing so you probably don't know I have a special program called FB Ads Insider!” because I know they never saw the pitch at the end.
Or, if they don't show up to the webinar at all, I can send them a special email that says “Hey, you missed it! I know life gets busy, I can totally relate. Here's the replay link if you want to check it out.” So I know the behavior. And again, knowing the behavior of your audience, being able to put that on auto-pilot allows you to reach people on a more genuine level–and when you hear “Auto-pilot” you don't really think genuine communication, but it's smarter communication so you're not bothering people with messages that mean nothing to them.
A message saying “I know you signed up for my webinar and I know you missed it?” That's going to mean something to that person.
But just sending out mass emails to everybody to get on a webinar and not knowing if they've actually watched it or not will do nothing for your business. So Evergreen Business Systems allows me to communicate in a more strategic way and allows me to get more people on my webinars and build up my email list because I have ads running on autopilot to these registration pages and that's really the big strategy I'll use, and what I'll talk about when I release my podcast all about creating webinars that convert.
The next tool I use, and this is something I use for my programs, my online programs. Remember, I have 3 online programs, and I use Easy Video Suite to house my videos for playback. So I'll upload a video to Easy Video Suite. I can then format it in a way so that the buttons look good and there's a frame around the video or maybe not. There's a download button or maybe not.
There's all these options I get to choose. And then from there, I actually take the embed code and I add it to my membership site, so that's–Easy Video Suite is the tool I use for my video playback in all my member's areas.
Here's the really cool thing. My videos in my member's areas are not flash, which is a good thing for those using devices like iPhones and iPads to view my content. So Easy Video Suite is compatible with all devices both on PC and Apple. And this is important, especially nowadays when most people are watching things from their mobile phone and their iPads. So all my videos are now compatible with these different devices.
I really like it, especially because it allows me to have the option to have people download my content or not download my content. In Facebook Marketing Profit Lab, everyone can download the videos instantly as they're released so they can watch them on their desktop and they don't have to do the streaming thing. Well, I think that's a really great perk for when you're creating a program.
Speaking of my membership sites, another tool I use is Wishlist Member. Wishlist Member is a really, really awesome tool. IT's a plugin really for WordPress sites. The reason why I like it so much is it's 100% compatible with your WordPress site. It allows you to create log-in capability so people have to login and they can access your content, so this is for my paid programs, and I'm really into, you've probably heard me say the word a million times in this podcast, streamlining things and making things work really well as well as look really good. That's important to me.
So Wishlist Member allows all of my content to be streamlined, it can drip content, meaning in the profit lab if you–when you enter the program you get module 1, but the next week you get module 2, the week after that module 3. A Wishlist Member allows me to program that all in advance so it will, on certain dates, release new content. So I love the idea of dripping new content throughout the different weeks.
In addition to that, there's so many other bells and whistles you can use if you want with Wishlist Member, so each of my programs looks a little bit different depending on the features I want to turn on and turn off within Wishlist Member.
So it's a really, really great tool. I used to use Kajabi, for anyone that knows that tool. And that tool worked for me for a while but I just felt like there's too many restrictions. I didn't like how it looked–again, I'm a little bit big on the aesthetics of a membership site–and the logins got really confusing at one point, so I thought “this isn't working for me, we need a better solution” and we moved over to Wishlist.
I have to say one little total disclaimer, I'm great friends of Stu McLaren, who is one of the founders of Wishlist, but I used it before I even met Stu. But anyway, Stu is so
passionate about his software, and he's constantly looking for new ways to make it better, so I know it's always evolving and staying on trend based on online marketing trends that are happening and how people are delivering content constantly getting updated, so you're in great hands when you start using the tool.
The great thing about Wishlist Member is that you pay one fee and you can have multiple sites. I mean, it can't get better than that, right?
Now, a few other tools that I use pretty regularly, these are smaller tools but they definitely have helped me along the way. One is ScreenFlow. If you've ever watched a webinar of mine, recorded webinar, that's all done through ScreenFlow. ScreenFlow is a piece of software that I have on my Mac, so I use Mac products, it's on my Mac and it records whatever I'm doing on my screen.
So if I create a bunch of Keynote slides and I'm flipping through the slides, Screenflow is recording all of that. It's recording my voice as well as my slide deck that I’m flipping through. I have used Screenflow from day 1. I do pretty much the majority of the editing of those videos. It's pretty easy and I am not techie at all. I can navigate through Screenflow pretty easily.
An option if you're not on a Mac is Camtasia. I think Camtasia works on PCs. So you can look into that as well.
That's how I record all of my online trainings that you'll see in every single one of my programs and it's how I record my webinars as well.
And then another tool I use is Snagit. Snagit allows me to take images of what I see on the web. The reason why I wanted to bring this up–this is a tiny tool compared to the other big boys I've been talking about here, but Snagit is really cool for two reasons.
One, I love to take screen grabs of different things I see on Facebook and use those screen grabs as teaching tools, teaching images inside my trainings. And then from there I make sure I put that image so I can find it later.
If you just take a bunch of images and you don't actually take the time to file the image correctly, it gets REALLY confusing. So if you're going to use Snagit, make sure that every image you take, you actually put a file name to it, and put it in the appropriate folder so you can find it later.
I also use Snagit as a way to create swipe files. So not only do I take images of things I want to include in my trainings, but if I see someone's sales page and it looks really good, or I love some email copy I see on the web or anything I see that I want to either model or learn more about or just remember that type of strategy for later, I take screen grabs. Snagit will do video or images, so you can do either-or. And I put it in different folders on my computer that have swipe files. So email copy, design, opt-in pages, all that good stuff.
Snagit has proved to be really, really valuable to me to help me with my creativity and coming back to ideas that I see on the web that I really liked that I'll never remember unless I take a quick picture of them. So Snagit is my tool of choice.
And then the last thing I'm going to say–we're going to wrap up here. The last thing is that all of these tools are great and i thought it would be valuable if you heard a little bit about how I set up my online business. But there's another component to the success I've had over these years, and it comes down to mindset and accountability.
One thing in terms of mindset is that if your head's not in the right place as you create your online business, there's so many challenges and obstacles that come your way. Quite honestly, at times it can get really lonely as well if you're, again, a one-man or a one-woman shop kind of thing and you're learning all this stuff online, it definitely can get a little daunting. And so with me I've always had mastermind groups from the day I left Tony Robbins until today, so that was back in 2009, 2010. And here we are almost 4 years later. I've always been in Masterminds.
When I started out, I paid to be a mastermind. I was in Marie Forleo's Rich, Happy and Hot mastermind. You've got to love that name! And I did that for two years, where I paid between $17,000 and $20,000 a year to be in these masterminds. And some of you are saying “You are crazy!” I can hear you over the mic right now. You're saying “WHAT? That is a lot of money!”
And it WAS a lot of money. But it completely shaped my business. Not only did I get access to Marie completely throughout that time, where she literally helped me figure out what my niche was going to be, how I was going to set up my business, where would my focus be, all that good stuff, she was part of that, but in addition there were these other women in the group that were building their businesses, some much farther than I was at the time, and it's always great to surround yourself with people
that are way more successful than you, because it's always something to aspire to. So being around these people was really valuable to me.
And yeah, it was a hardship. Financially it was really hard that first year to do this. But I made it work. That's why I was taking so many clients because I knew I needed to make up for this money and then of course then some. So sometimes I had to do work I didn't necessarily love, but the payoff was so much better because I got to be a part of these mastermind groups. For two years I did that.
And then I started to build friendships and had peers in the online marketing world that asked me to be a part of their masterminds where I didn't have to pay, we just came together as a group and mastermind it. And now I'm in one that I absolutely love. It's a really small one.
We meet every quarter. We actually physically get together and it's been the best experience I've ever had in a mastermind. And again, I don't have to pay for it. I say that because I feel that it's EXTREMELY important to surround yourself with people that will help you, build you up, call you on your BS kind of stuff, and really give you a little tough love when you need it and support when you need it as well.
So I've also been in mastermind groups that haven't worked for me. And I've had to excuse myself from them. So it hasn't always been completely rosy, but I found the one that finally worked for me. So just know that if you get in one and you think “Hmm, this isn't working” go with your gut and don't stay too long because that could actually hurt your business versus help your business.
Also, I'll tell you this, I invest in online training programs. I still, to this day–you know, my early years I bought tons of online training programs and that's truly how I built up my knowledge, but still to this day I try to stay, make sure that I'm learning and constantly understanding what other people are teaching and how they're doing it and what they're teaching, so I'm a student of online training programs. I never stop learning, and I think that you're probably very similar to me in that respect if you're listening to this now, you love to consume knowledge and I think that's a big part of becoming a really good online entrepreneur.
I read a lot of books, of course. My favorite one right now is Rework. Now, Rework's been out for a while, I have no idea how I didn't know about it before. If you haven't read it, you HAVE to pick up the book today. I'm hoping to get one of the authors on this show when I talk about planning for the new year, because I think there's so
much in the book that helps you shape your business but I'm all about simplifying and making things as easy as possible but really productive and that's what this book is all about. IT's going to blow your mind about how they're, like, “Stop doing all these crazy things that we're doing” and really break it down to the bare bones and stick to what's working and keep it simple. That's truly what I got from this book and I love it.
The last thing I'll say is that I, in my business, have created top business drivers, where literally on my computer I organize all my files based on these 7 drivers of my business. So for example, one might be online programs. Another driver might be free webinars. Another might be affiliate partnerships. So there's different things I do in my business to build my exposure, create my brand and make a profit.
So these top business drivers allow me to be more strategic when I say yes or no to new opportunities that come my way. And so I just want to tease you with these top business drivers, this idea, because I’m going to talk about it when i put out my episode before the end of the year about how to plan for the new year and how to organize your business better, so I'm going to talk about these top business drivers that kind of got to tease you, so you'll want to check that one out as well.
This has been one of my longest podcasts. I try to keep them short and sweet and to the point but I had a lot to say here. So I truly hope that you've enjoyed the backstage pass to the inner workings of my online business. We've covered a lot, but really my hope for you is that you've learned some new tools or methods today that you can apply to your own business, or have gotten some ideas of ways that you might want to streamline your own business to make it less stressful and quite honestly more fun for you and create more freedom in your life based on getting things a little more streamlined overall in your business.
All the links we talked about in this show today can be found at AmyPorterfield.com/ 18, just the number 18. And also if you like the podcast, I would really love for you to tell your friends. Just go to amyporterfield.com/love and you can tweet about it to help me spread the word.
Thank you so much for spending your time with me today. Until we connect again, make it a great week.