How to Build a Highly Profitable Business Only Selling 3 Products.
How to Build a Highly Profitable Business Only Selling 3 Products.
John Meese is an economist-turned-entrepreneur on a personal mission to eradicate generational poverty by helping entrepreneurs create thriving businesses which is why he wrote the #1 bestseller Survive and Thrive: How to Build a Profitable Business in Any Economy (Including This One).
John is CEO of Cowork.Inc. Co-founder of Notable, and host of the Thrive School podcast.
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You know, from experience. If you have any customers that people get results when they pay, they pay attention when they pay money, what's the most amount of transformation you're going to let a customer go through? What's the most amount of life change and transformation you're going to give someone access to? How dare you hold back? What's the full experience? What is the life changing, dramatic experience that you can offer to someone? And that's your flux our product. That's the big Kahuna. It's the epitome of the full transformation of everything you you teach and you offer.
Welcome, everybody. I am super excited today to have John Meese on to share with us about a few things, specifically how three products can help you 10x your revenue with less effort. Thank you so much for joining us today.
John. It is my pleasure to be here. My joy to be here. Thank you so much for having me as a guest. And I'm excited to dive into our conversation today.
Awesome. So John is an economist turned entrepreneur on a personal mission to eradicate generational poverty by helping entrepreneurs create thriving businesses, which is why he wrote the number one bestseller, Survive and Thrive, how to Build a Profitable Business in any economy, including this one. I am all over. It highlights everywhere, really solid stuff. John is the CEO of Cowork Inc. Cofounder of Notable and the host of the Thrive School podcast. So again, thanks for joining me. Maybe just start out. You and I have been entrepreneurs for a while.
We've both studied under some really solid people in the field. And yet I know so many people who are students of really awesome teachers, and they're missing something. And from my experience, it's not that the teacher is doing something wrong. They're missing things. Start a little bit if you don't mind. What's this just even the concept for you. What's thrive mean to you as an entrepreneur? And why are most people or so many people struggling to make that happen when most of us are working hard?
Yeah, over at all. You just said it. I mean, we're all working hard, right? So whenever someone says you just need more hustle, so I doubt that. I really seriously doubt that. And so I suppose what you might call part of the anti Hustle movement. But when I commit to helping entrepreneurs create thriving businesses, for me, thriving means several things. I mean, yes, your business does have to be profitable. You have to generate revenue and you have to keep a good bit of it. You have to be profitable to be successful.
But that's not enough. And so I typically measure the thriving kind of equation based on three different things. Is your business effective? So are you effectively solving? Are you creating a real solution to a real problem for real people? Right. That's the effectiveness aspect of a business. Then this is the efficiency aspect. Are you managing those resources, your time and your money, right? I'm not saying go work 70 hours weeks. I'm saying, are you managing your time and your money wisely so that there is margin left over in your bank account and in your calendar for you to enjoy the life you do, which is that third part, which is the enjoyability factor, which is that do you enjoy the work you're doing?
Because really, the only way to sustain your business over the long run is free to enjoy the work that you do. And so I don't shy away from saying, do something that you enjoy. But that's not enough. It's not enough just to say, follow your passion. You have to create a real solution to a real problem for real people and do that in a way where you manage your time and your resources wisely. It's a good comment real quick on the point that you made that there's a lot of incredible, incredible entrepreneurial Giants, really, of the last 2030 years, even 100 years that you and I are both students of.
And yet there's still all these gaps. It seems that we're entrepreneurs get lost. My good friend Mike Kim, he Wade the point to me that he said he feels like, you know, when it comes to teachers, specifically, there's idea preneurs and how to pour. And there's been a lot of incredible idea preneurs. I mean, people like Seth God is a great example of this, where he comes out with things like Purple cow. It's one big idea that's the idea that you should just be exceptional and stick out and really special so people can't stop talking to you about you.
And those ideas are really powerful. But the how to preneur like me. That's where I step in as a how to preneur and way to have a hundred. You're also in this camp that come in and say, let's break this down. What are the step by steps? And the reality is we need both. And we've had, I think, a shortage of how to preneurs outside of the MBA classroom over the last 100 years. And so this is why people like you and I are kind of stepping up to fill this gap and say, we need these resources to be accessible to everyone of how step by step.
You actually put these big ideas into practice.
Absolutely. I have told people it's really this simple. If I could figure out how to get people to buy my course for $1,000 and get a million of them to do it. I do it. I just can't figure out how not all of us can figure out. And some of the idea preneurs are either more brilliant or they're better at marketing or some of them just prefer that. So this is the other part where sometimes people get caught up in what's better or what how can it be done?
And yet I just remind some of the people I work with look, a lot of those top name idea preneurs. They're simply too busy to be a how to preneur or how or for somebody of a teacher. And so we need both. We need that person that inspires us that we can look and say, yeah, this person has a lot of people that are reading their books that are saying yes on Amazon, wherever is. Yes, this is a good book. And so these are great ideas.
But we also need people to make things happen and execute the same way we all might have an accountant, even though we might have read a book by a great accounting person. So chilly.
Well, Greg Man is another great example of that that he's probably my favorite contemporary idea preneur. And then he has two books Centralism, which is about the practice of doing pursuing less but better and effortless, which is sort of the question, the big idea, what would this look like if it was easy? And that's really his whole claim to Fame? Are these huge ideas that then he spends all of his podcasts and newsletters and speaking engagements just really hitting the point home that these ideas are important.
And then it's up to us to figure out how to actually apply that. But we need people like that. We need idea preneurs to come up with these really big concepts and to make a really compelling case for a we need to listen to them. But we also need how to preneurs to actually help us practically apply this SaaS. I am a how to producer.
Awesome. So one of the things I hear with a lot of entrepreneurs when we talk things a few different ideas, do we love the money will follow or just follow the money or just follow somebody else's mouth? There's all these different ideas and entrepreneurs for people who are sometimes accused stereotypically of being so greedy. Some of us have such an interesting relationship with money. And you talk about this entrepreneurs paradox. Could you share a little bit about that?
Yeah. So the entrepreneurs paradox, as I see it, is that entrepreneurs get paid, but they don't work for money. And you see this show up time and time and again in successful entrepreneurs. And that the fact that, yes, you need to get paid. If you're not getting paid, then you can't sustain your livelihood, your business. And so that is a prerequisite. But the way the path to profits is you're serving people. And so the best business, the best entrepreneurs gets us right where they realize that business at its core is creating a real solution to a real problem for real people that were just so I have a background in economics and that's kind of like from the inert economic side perspective, the only way you actually add wealth to the world.
I don't mean transfer wealth. I don't mean take your money. I mean create new wealth, the only way you create new wealth is by solving real problems in a way that it makes the world a better place for everyone. It's a net gain. And so that's what entrepreneurship does, that's an entrepreneurship is at its best. And so I mean, that's the short answer to the question. But I think that's an ongoing journey of remembering to what that means is also that your business is not just a collection of products on a shelf.
Your job is not to sell more. Do Dads, your job is to solve someone's problem. And if your dad can help them solve that problem, great. But if the time, if the facts change and your dad can no longer help someone solve that specific problem, well, then you need to sell a different do, dad. I mean, the point is that you're in business to solve problems, not to sell do, Dads?
Yeah, absolutely. One of the things I used to struggle with how to say it to people when I would watch some of the people that would talk about flipping real estate and flipping real estate in the way, if not, I'm going to fix it up and then sell it just outright flipping it. And it makes me think of, let's say, the ticket scalper at a sports event that unabashedly says I'm adding nothing to the equation. I just got in line first. And what I've now come to learn is what some people say that's a zero sum game or there was no value created.
To your point, it was just a transfer of wealth. And I remember one of my mentors, Dan Sullivan of the strategic coach. He talked about the difference between South South America, North America as far as the creation of wealth, and the idea that when people came to North America, they did not land in Texas and oil reserves. They landed in the Northeast. They didn't have resources. So they had to learn to create value and create wealth. Whereas in South America there were minerals. There is gold.
There was all these different things copper. And maybe there was ten older Coper. There's silver. I might be getting on. But there's definitely copper, silver and long story short, the way to amass wealth was to conquer and take it from other people. And so if you even look at the cultures, there's a different sense of more of a buyer beware down in the South American culture, my wife's from improve. I love the culture. This is not a criticism, but because that's how you would make things happen.
Whereas in North America there's this idea, what did you create? And definitely I think there's got to be a win win. Otherwise, it just doesn't seem to be sustainable, because then somebody's gonna be hungrier than you, somebody's gonna create something better than you. And then you're on is the whole thing that I just created the greatest product in the world. But now it's just already in China a week later. And again, no disrespect to China, but that often very happens. Question for you. There's this article.
You not very familiar with the Thousand True fans. So many people seem to be going for millions. And again, as an entrepreneur, I've heard people say, oh, you guys are so self absorbed, and I'm like, no, we're actually fearful if we don't get to a million fans that we're not going to make enough money. You don't have a social media huge presence. You've narrowed it down when you share a little bit about why you chose to are your social media presence and how that even links to that approach of being more dialed in as far as who your true fans are.
Sure. Well, first, let's give credit to the original concept of Thousand True fans. This was an essay published in 2008 by Kevin Kelly, who's the editor in chief, perhaps or the time he was, I think, but he's the founder of Wired magazine. And he wrote this essay of really just commenting on the early days of the Internet and just saying, like, we pass the point where you don't really need a million people to know about your work. You need a thousand True fans, because if you can Wade goes into lots of examples of this.
But the concept is if you have a thousand people all over the world who are fans of your work and willing to pay, let's just say $100 a year for your products. It's $100,000 a year. I mean, that's a good income no matter where you live in the world. Now, of course, that's a very over simplification, because that doesn't take into account cost of goods or your marketing expense, all that kind of stuff. But the point is true, which is whatever the number is, whether it's 1000 or another number, you don't need millions of fans.
You don't need this massive growth. And obviously some of this probably like my own bias and prejudice, is that I'm a dad. I'm a father with three little kids. I got a six year old look at for year old, a one and a half year old. And I'm married to my best friend and my wife. And I love the life that we live. And so the business is a path to fuel that lifestyle. Right? By the way, this term lifestyle businesses sometimes thrown around in some circles.
I've heard it thrown out as an insult where they'll be like, oh, you're just creating like, a lifestyle business. Like what other kind of business is there? I've never understood that. Why would you create any business that doesn't fuel your lifestyle? I mean, that's what we're here for is to live right now. I'm a fan of the work I do. I love the work that I do, but I love my wife and kids more. I mean, I'm not ashamed of that. And so for me, so that's sort of like my philosophical, I guess, how I got here, but then social media.
Why am I not on social media? Well, one thing I found is that as I started to build a social media audience is that I kept running over a over running into things where I'm like, it seems like no matter how many followers I have, it doesn't really move the needle a lot in terms of sales or actual revenue in my business. Well, it turns out that's true. Across the board, there is what I call a visibility bias in today's business where if you're building your business and you want to be successful and you look around at other businesses like yours and you say, Well, they're successful already.
What can I do that they're doing. The only thing you can see this is where the visibility buyers comes in. The only thing you can really see is that they're posting on social media. People are liking it, people are commenting it, and therefore they are successful. You can't see how many subscribers they have on their email list. You can't see how many people find their website from search results. You can't see how big their ad budget is on different sponsorship campaigns they're running. You can't see any of that.
You can't even see if he have an affiliate program. Or maybe you can see if the have one. But on how active their affiliates are. So the vast majority of how someone else runs their business is out of sight. It's invisible to you. And so there's ends up being visibility bias, or we look around and we say, okay, they are successful and they're on social media. Therefore, I need to be on social media to be successful, and so much time and energy is wasted in social media.
Now, social media across the board is not categorically a waste of time and effort, but it gets too much attention. And so I deleted all of my accounts and backed off. And then I said, okay, after I've taken a break from this, let me strategically decide how to social media fit into my business because I've already decided it doesn't serve my personal life. It's just for me, it doesn't serve my personal life. I'd rather have coffee this morning with 20 men that at a men's group, then post on Instagram and hope I get a bunch of likes and comments.
So I've sent rejoin LinkedIn and you can find me there. I enjoy that as a professionally beneficial network for not only learning things, but connecting with smart people sharing ideas. It's a great network for what I'm after, but I tried joining TikTok and it was actually too good. What the problem was that I wasted too much time on it. It wasn't driving results in my business. It was just a really, really fun distraction from my wife and my kids and my hobbies and things like that.
So I deleted that account too. So all that to say I'm on LinkedIn, but that's why I'm only on LinkedIn. But the point here is not to say that you should delete all your socialmedia accounts, although it's probably worth taking a break and kind of stepping back and saying, Why do I do this? Why do I have this? But across the board, there are countless studies that show statistically social media is one of the one of the lower drivers of sales results in most businesses, in your direct response to your customers, what you need, and that's things like your email list, perhaps an SMS list.
Sometimes it's a sign or a Billboard. I mean, it really just depends on what your business model is. So it's social media. But social media is also a category. So you got to get more specific within that, too, of how you're going to use your time. Nd energy.
Yeah, that's something I noticed for me. Definitely. Snapchat was a very short experiment. Tiktok was a very short experiment. And even Twitter just actually, since list in your book, I deleted a couple of my Twitter accounts just because. And I've been thinking about doing this since I played this back and forth. And initially when I looked at, okay, what's my reason for being on here? And it was FOMO. It was totally fear of missing out on what the sale is going to happen. Now. I've been an entrepreneur 20 plus years.
I've not used social media hardly at all. Other than the last two or three years, I've been a six figure, Grossy entrepreneur just about every year in those 20 years. Never had social media yet. Somehow because I see people like you say it's that correlation versus causality. Just because it happens to be happening at the same time, it doesn't mean it's there. So that's something that really just I'm even looking more and more. It's almost like it's the seductive thing of okay, well, now when I do my social media post, hit the extra button that then posted this other platform.
But I was like, oh, wait. But then that one, I've got to take out the hashtags or add the hashtag. So it's like, okay, so it's still not because if it's literally a net zero time transaction, you'd say, okay, well, why wouldn't I theoretically reach more people? But even in that, I realized it's still not a net zero time transaction. And I've certainly done the automation of posts. And there's nothing wrong with that. I've just found for me it does not move the needle. And I look at some of the entrepreneurs that I see, for example, on LinkedIn.
I can think of one chat Willards on. He's a financial advisor. He's just really good at writing content. Every once in a while, he'll drive something about his family. He'll put a picture, maybe three paragraphs, and it goes back to that. Well, how do you get people to fill your work? You do really good work. And then if you do really good work, people will share it. If you get people to think.
I think that should, yeah, I went. If I can add to that, I would share in the example of saying, when you're looking at other people's companies. But this is true when youre looking at your own company, too. Like the example you just gave. I can't count the number of times I've come in to work with a client for a while after a service where I was like, a fractional CMO. So I'm coming in as a part time chief marking officer and a company that's doing two to $5 million a year, and they want to scale inevitably, one of first things that happen with they were like, they were like, we're not sure about our Instagram account or whatever it is.
It might be Facebook. I have nice when they're like, we're on TikTok were pretty sue. That was holding us back. And I'm like, really, do you get a lot of sales results from your Instagram account right now? They're like, Well, we have hundreds of thousands of followers in Instagram, so obviously, that's where we're successful and say, okay, let me just dive into the data. Let me just look at and it I would come back and say, do you know that 40% of your traffic and sales and your website comes from SEO comes from search search results?
And they were like, no, we've never optimized for SEO because you don't get likes and comments and shares and dopamine hits from somebody finding you on Google? And I was like, okay, well, do you know that another 50% of your sales results right now are coming from your emails and they're like, Well, no, we just kind of send out an email every Tuesday with a link to our latest podcast episode every once and always send a sales letter. I'm like, okay, well, maybe we can upgrade that.
So maybe there's a 10% of your sales and results. This is just true with some customers I work with that we can't actually attribute it like, we just can't figure out where it came from. Some of that probably came from social media. They're like, See, it does drivers, you know, but inevitably it would just be a shock to them. They were like, Well, we're going to hire a full time social media manager. We figured that was the trick to make us grow, and it's like, Well, look at where your results are actually happening in your business and optimize that it may not be the sexy side of your business.
They may not give you all the dopamine hits of the likes and the comments and the shares or the vanity metrics that your peers can look at and say, wow, you have how many followers on Instagram, but that's not why I'm in business. I mean, I don't think that's why most of us are in business at least once we get to the heart of the matter. Are you serving your customers? Are you making the better place? And are you feeling your life to hell? I mean, are you creating a system that consistently generate wealth?
And if you're doing that, you can get clear. And what's the path for you to do that? And of course, I'm sure we'll talk about that now. More detail. But those are also the kind of things that if you're wondering, well, then how do I grow my business, if not post more on social media? Those are the kind of things that I do teach in my book.
Yeah, that's one of the things I found for me with social media that's helped is it's given me a branding thing that people like, oh, you do this thing. Okay, great. But that doesn't necessarily turn into a sale. And certainly a lot of, like you said, the vanity metrics for me. And again, this is if you founded Twitter in your listing, very arrogant of me to think or whatever. Great people don't really care what I ate this morning, at least in my business model. Another business model.
Maybe if it's Instagram, you know, Kissy Face, maybe other people. I'm not gonna make money doing Kissy face. I'm about to be 50 if others can. God bless you. There is no judgment here. If I would, I could, I can't. But most entrepreneurs are like me, like, okay, I just need to find and I'm willing to do the work. And this is the part, you know, I've talked about it willing to do the work. And yet then we get back to this idea of, okay, well, then you have to have some sort of solution.
And in your book, you talk about Niching with either your target audience or niche with the type of solution you have. And it seems to me that people, first of all, aren't even aware of that distinction. But second of all, they just kind of go to whatever sounds easiest or as entrepreneurs, we really think that our entrepreneurial gut is awesome. And as I tell people, look, if you ask me to do something I know and you ask me my gut feeling, well, then that matters. But if you ask me to do brain surgery and you ask me my gut feeling on where to cut my intuition doesn't actually probably like, Dude, I have no idea because it's not well informed intuition.
How do people get clear about whether they should or shouldn't target to people target their solution and throwing in one more thing. So I just remember this I didn't put in my notes. So I still remember that you made a remark in your book that the most important decision you're going to make is who you choose to target. So I guess that is a little spoiler. What's coming, but share a little bit about that if you would about the idea of targeting the people versus targeting to a solution.
Yeah. Well, I said this a couple of times. It will say it again. Your business is built on creating a real solution to a real problem for real people. Well, the most important decision there is who are the real people you're serving with your business? And these are your potential customers. Right. So once you get clear on who the real people are. And by the way, this is another reason why I get frustrated with social media is because it dehumanizes things where you'll be in a meeting with an entrepreneur or they're an enter their leadership team.
They're talking about how many followers they have or how many they'll be talking about those engagement metrics. You just realize you look around everyone's eyes in the room that we've forgotten. These are real human beings on the other side of that Instagram like or comment. Those real human beings have hopes, dreams, fears, frustrations, sleepless nights, sick kids, spouses. Well, whatever it may be, all the same stresses and mortgage payments, all the same stresses that all the rest of us that we have as entrepreneurs. And so I think it's important to remember that, too.
And I think that then what I would say on top of that is okay. Once you get clear on the real people. And I mean so clarity, so much clarity that you can picture a real life human being in your mind, who is a good representation of your target customer, that you could begin to develop empathy for them because that is a human superpower that we're all born with this ability to put ourselves into the shoes of someone else. And I mean, literally, can you can you Journal a day in the life as if you were that person or can you close your eyes and walk through?
Okay, they wake up. And what's the first thing they think about? Okay. And then what about when they go to what are they eating for breakfast? Where are they in their breakfast? I just walk through all the little details of their life. They become real to you, and then you start to think about, okay, what what are they really worried about? What are they concerned about? And how can I serve them? How can I take away those fears and those frustrations by creating real solutions? Now, that's smart from lots of reasons.
It makes it a lot easier to market your products. They allow you to design products that will sell. But it also helps you remain relevant because as the world changes and that's what it does, the world changes as the world changes, the people are the pulse of the future of your business. And so as people's needs as your real people's needs change, you need to adapt your products and your services and your experiences to be able to meet those needs. If you don't and you end up stuck on the street corner trying to sell yesterday's products and then frustrated that it's not working.
I mean, there's lots of people out there with warehouses full of 10,000 fidget spinners because there was a point where for a minute everybody wanted a fidget spinner, and lot of people thought this is it. This is my moment. And I'm going to strike goal, and they bought a bunch of fidget spinners, and he they're stil sitting the warehouse somewhere because the point is not to sell products, it's to solve problems. So that's the first thing I would say. The second thing I would say is if you're going to when you are kind of choosing how to focus your business, you can specialize.
In other words, you can become increasingly specific and niche down with either the people you serve or the solution you offer. Best case scenario to do both. But a great example of this is like in medicine, for example, you know, a general care practitioner, a general care practitioner said, is like a primary care physician. They are a kind of a generic as it gets in medicine. It's like I can help you with all of your health problems. And I can help pretty much anybody with all their health problems.
And so don't get me wrong. Doctors get paid pretty well, although there's a lot of Hoops for them to jump there to get there. But in terms of on a relative scale, those the medical experts that we charge the least. Right. The ones who charge more specialized in one of a couple of different ways. One of them is there are increasingly based on the solution they offer. That's more common in the medical field specifically to say like, oh, yeah, I'm a heart surgeon or a brain surgeon.
It's like, okay, what you're specializing in the specific, the specific type of solution you offer. Still generic audience, but you can charge automatically more for that. Now, if you can specialize and go even further and say, I specialize in brain surgery or heart surgery for children under the age of ten. Those are the high paid medical professionals in the world because they're specializing in the type of people they serve and all the solutions and also the solution they offer. And so you want to take that same price but apply to your business and figure out how can you specialize in who you serve and how you serve them in such a way that you can become build a reputation of excellence around that.
And that's something that I think again, you don't have to have a million fans here, right? Maybe you have to have more than a thousand. Maybe not, though. Can you design your business in such a way that a thousand customers is enough because that's actually a calm, stress free business. Okay. Stress fee. That's probably too old promise, but less stress, at least. How about that? Yeah.
It's funny. You say that, though I've studied so many brilliant mentors of marketing like Jeff Walk or Friend Eberhard about building lists I still have never had. And I'm not saying this is awesome. It's just simply an observation. I've never had an email list much larger than about 1500, but because, well, I have a software business that is a recurring subscription business. I do coaching, so I have this niche. And in some ways I was an unconscious competent. But I was very clear. And we'll talk about those paths to growth, the five paths you've identified or with some help of some other experts.
But basically that's something where to your social media point. Most of them I can't even get them to interact on social media. Like, wait, I don't really do social media, but if you send me an email, I'll do something. Now. You made a point in your book that most people don't know where their customers came from. And just a while ago you mentioned something, which I think is so true. The stuff that makes us a lot of money is usually not very excited. And the stuff that's very exciting very often doesn't make us a lot of money.
And to me that's the whole three day weekend paradox, can you get comfortable with? Okay, it's not always going to be exciting. And sometimes your point with TikTok, you're going to be working on something that makes you no money. And so your questions and going to be is this really just me yachts and around when I should go hang out with my family or my friends or go do some stuff? Or should I go do some work that actually makes money? Like, should I really drive a hard line between the two?
And it doesn't mean you have to hate your org, but really get clear. Is this work or is this me just sort of avoiding work, which is comfortable and easy and it can feel like work.
And we do that SaaS what Michael Hyatt calls it downhill work.
Versus uphill work, like, uphill work is the work that you make progress, but it's really challenging. And so as soon as you start to go up Hill, you're like, oh, OK. There's downhill work over here. I could post an Instagram post or a Tweet, and it feels like work, but it's really easy. I can just coast. Yeah.
And it's something I think of. So even for example, with my podcast, the most impactful thing that I've seen, but from a different metric from the metric of building relationships has been how well I promote an episode when I have a guest on, because more than anything, it's a sign of respect. Like, hey, I took the time to do this at a level that maybe other people aren't doing, but it doesn't usually lead directly to sales. It leads to it's a longer game, and it's not even a game.
I like meeting awesome people and learning from them, and that sort of stuff and the people that really do a great job of it, whether as a guest or as a host that works. But it's not something like because I just posted this particular post that money comes in. And so even with that, I've got to be careful because I enjoy. I enjoy talking to people. I could do it all day. I recently dialed up the episodes baking. I'm now down it right back. Like, okay, some of these other money making activities have been suffering.
And, of course, that's the most important part question for you. The five Paths to Growth if you'd share a little bit quickly what they are. But I noticed two of them. Number two and four are less humanistic, and one and five are almost more humanistic, and three is somewhere in between. So I just know I look at him. I was like, okay, well, I'll let you list them. I talk about them a little bit, but I'm curious because I noticed, like, I naturally gravitate towards some I have a bias against two of them, and it's unjustified.
It's literally not my comfort area. And so what I noticed is I read your book was okay. Wow. I'm I got, like, a Preduce against these simply because I'm weak in them. And so I'm staying away from that. And I'm glorifying the others to you, doctor, there you go.
I prefer professor. I'm just kidding. Okay, well, that's actually great. I'm glad you said that. First of all, let me just say that all these growth models, and so there's there's only really five ways to go business, and you're thinking, John, there's like, a thousan ways to go business. But hear me out.
There's only five ways to grow a business. All of them are humanistic, because at your core, your business is based on creating real solutions to real people, not real solutions to real people. Real solutions to real problems. For real people, we don't need to solve people. But when you solve their problems. So in that sense, all these growth models are humanistic, but it's completely natural that you might find yourself gravitating towards one of the growth models or a couple to growth models more than the others. And that's excellent, because the first thing I would say is your goal is not to become a master of all five growth models.
Your goal is to understand these five growth models exist that you're probably already working in some combination of all five of them or three of them. Maybe get clarity on what's the one that you want to choose to master and hyper focus on that. That's where you're going to see more dramatic growth in your business. So what are these five growth models? Well, the first three come from the book The Lean Startup, by Eric Reese, and I've kind of expand upon this a little bit, but he's the one who originally identified these where the first is viral growth now, vital growth doesn't mean you got 10 million views on your TikTok video, although that would count, I guess.
But that's not the point here. Viral growth and what it means is that your business and your products and worried about your products spread from person to person, from human to human without your direct involvement, much like a virus spread from person to person without having to go back to patient zero every time, which is causing other problems right now. But in this case, this is a good business thing, right? So if you walk up to someone who tells them about your business, then that is not a viral growth that's you telling someone about our business.
But if they go tell a friend who tells about your business, who tells a friend about your business, who tells a friend about your business. That is viral growth. Now, of course, online. This can happen through social media, through organic post on social media, gets shared or like. But it can also happen through a referral program in your email in this letter. Or it can happen. There's lots of different ways that can happen. This is actually especially for, like, small brick and mortar businesses. This is a phenomenal way for them to grow.
This is probably the biggest way that brick and mortar businesses grow in their local community, although they're not usually trying to, like, optimize it. It just kind of happens. It's like someone says, if you try that new restaurant, they're great. You should go check it out. So that's viral growth the second is paid growth. Now this is I think one of the ones weighed you said that you have an aversion to is that right?
Yeah. Because I'm horrible at it. And I just feel like I ended up throwing money at stuff, and I'm like, and it just feels like I'm left with nothing. So even if my Instagram account doesn't generate something, I feel like I've got something to show for it. Now, my podcast setting is a better asset to show for it. So I think I've evolved in that, but it just felt so, so unsatisfying. Like, okay, I've got a couple of clicks here. I've got a couple of views on a channel or whatnot, but it didn't do anything.
And as somebody who comes from a brick and mortar world, where to me, the way you build the businesses, you do awesome work and you help people, and then they tell their friends, or they dont always tethered to the Nth degree. He'll her friends a certain amount. They certainly won't tell their friends are on the street for them who are competitors. So you're like, okay, there's a problem inherent in that model, as far as it really scaling huge. But yeah, it feels it didn't feel humanistic to me, though.
I hear what you're saying. I because it just felt like I'm looking at a number through a thing. It feels impersonal, I guess, because I'm missing that connection with some person in that.
And it may be impersonal, but that doesn't mean it's not to monistic. I just want to make that distinction there that it may be impersonal, and it's completely natural. Wade, like you, like many people, may not be attracted to paid growth. So many people are allured by the group because paid growth at its core, the promise of paid growth is the promise is whenever you put a dollar in, you get $2 out. And if you could do that, if you could put a dollar in and get $2 out, how many times would you do that as many times as possible, right?
I mean, that's a good deal, but unfortunately, it is a little bit too good to be true. A company called Wicked Reports, who analyzes ad spend data for a lot of different companies. In 2018, they reviewed $1.5 billion in Facebook and Instagram advertising data, and they found that the average pay growth campaign costs more money that I made. And on average, after four months of optimization, on average, each paid advertising campaign had a negative ROI. So what that means is that your you're putting $20 in to make $10 or you're putting $2 in to make one dollars.
That is called a bad deal. That's what that's called. That's a technical term, but a lot of people are doing it because they are lashed onto the promise of paid advertising. Now, paid advertising can be incredibly lucrative, but you have to be willing and capable of drowning and data of swimming and data of immersing yourself in it and having a very clear path for how each dollar an ad spend leads to revenue. And that's a unique skill set. Now, you can outsource some of that. But if you want that to be your primary growth model, you, as the entrepreneur, need to have some level of competency in that.
So it paid growth. This could mean Facebook ads or Instagram ads or ticktock ads. It could mean that you're sponsoring an industry conference, or maybe you're paying for billboards or the local golf course keeps calling me to see if my co working space wants to sponsor the 8th hole on the map at the golf course. So that's an option, which actually, I looked at their map. You know who that's really lucrative for? Are people like financial advisors and attorneys. So that when you're chatting with someone at the a toll out of the field, I got to be really careful.
I don't know any golf terminology. You got to be careful what I say here, but if you're putting out of the pole, is that perhaps so that's good enough. Okay. Great. Thank you. And you're chatting with a guy about a problem, and he looks down at the map and he's like, Well, here's a good number for a financial adviser, right? He why don't we just call him up and see what he has to in say other words, that works well for them. But again, the point here is not to just kind of pay for a bunch of sponsorships and say, and then our business grow.
You need to have a way that you can track the results from every specific Advertisement you do. Billboards are notorious for this that they actually Billboard, surprisingly, can be more lucrative than you think while they are an old technology. But most people who run Billboard campaigns aren't putting a unique link on each Billboard or anything like that or a unique number on each Billboard. Right. So they just run into a bunch of billboards, and then they're like, oh, good. Our sales grew. Which of those billboards actually drove results?
I don't know.
I'll tell you, real quick store with billboards. There's a I live in Naples, Florida, and there's a certain path you take up the interstate to go to Disney World. And there's a guy who pre advertised for a company called Vaz Web for Vasectomies. And apparently, this guy is really good because two of my friends have had vasectomies from him. One had reverse resect me, and he's good. So he's also competent, not just present. Here's the funny thing, I think he changed recently, but when they first came out, you would see the ads when you were driving to Disney World, you wouldn't see them on the way back.
And if you came down from the north, you'd see them on the way to Disney World, and you wouldn't see them on the way back. So I just had that. I'm on my way to Disney. Well, my kids. Oh, you got to be flipping kidney were beset me. Okay. Boom. I'm gonna get that. Yeah, he I think has that dialed in?
Yeah. So sounds like he was very strategic in his placement. Maybe, I guess not. After you've had a good time with your kids, it just need. But just during the long road trip where you're maybe thinking, I don't know if I want to do any more of this.
Well, yeah. So that's a great example. The pay growth is a second. The third is sticky growth. Now, sticky growth is actually one of the most lucrative, but it's really challenging. And this is where you develop irreplaceable infrastructure for your industry, where you become, you know, just the backbone of your industry. In some ways, QuickBooks is my favorite example of this. And the fact that if you use QuickBooks to run the accounting in your business, you're not even thinking about switching. I mean, that's where you might have years of financial records, tax filings, even payroll records, perhaps all that kind of stuff in there.
That's where you go for your financial reports. It makes a lot of sense that now they've expanded to offer loan business loans in the QuickBooks app itself as well as checking accounts. It's one of the things that once you start using a platform like QuickBooks. Even if you're using a different one, it's really tough to switch. The switching cost is very high. And once you get sticky growth, you're playing the long game in your industry. And so you can actually invest in a lot of things that I wouldn't typically recommend for most businesses, because once you get a customer, they're really valuable customer.
So you can pay for some ridiculous conference sponsorship where you're not going to be able to track results specifically because, you know, in 18 months, one of those people is going to become a customer and they're going to stay a customer for ten years. Or you can pay a team to do cold sales calls, you know, or do best a brand awareness campaign. There's all kinds of things you can do if you've got sticky growth. The fourth. And I think this is also one of the ones that you said you were maybe averse to Wade.
Is that right?
I'm not averse to it. I'm horrible at it. Okay, again is one of those ones that felt at least I think I am. Okay, I tell my kids I speak and people give me money when I talk too much. Sorry, the SEO to me. I've tried, I've played with it, but it always seems like I know it's not voodoo, but it feels like, okay, now I'm on top. Okay, now I'm down. And because I can't see the connection, it's very frustrated me. And to your point, I've not drowned in the data.
I don't want to drown in the data. So for me, it's like, okay, I'll make sure I get the basic concept of Tags and meta Tags or hashtags or whatever it is. But overall, because I'm not good at it, I would quicker hire somebody, give them a short term to see, can they make an impassion? They did. And be like not to say, see, it didn't work, but okay, that's really tough. That's like 1% or 5% or.
Yeah. So what you're describing is a lot of misconceptions around SEO growth. That's reallyhelpful for you to share hose. We can just talk about this for a second, but that's the fourth model is SEO or search engine optimization. For anyone who's not familiar with that term. Now, search engine optimization. It's very similar to viral growth because you're getting people to kind of spread from person to person without your direct involvement. But the difference is, it's like robot referrals. That's how I like to think about it is that you've got Google out there telling people you got to go check out Wade stuff.
He's got the answer to your problem. But the key to SEO growth that that is going to be your primary growth model is that your objective is to become the answer key to your industry. So that every time in your specific industry for your specific customers, when they go and they have a question and they type it in Google or Bing or Yahoo or Duck Go. But basically, Google, if they go to type that question in, then your answer comes up. And so this allows you to have very specific content that answers very specific questions that are unique to your target customer.
When you do that really well, you don't just get people showing up because you're showing the answer. But also people start linking to and you could, of course, optimize this. I'm just saying. But the idea is that you want people to link to your content as if it's the answer key, as if it's the reference site. And that's actually there's over 100 things Google looks for in terms of ranking where your website fits in terms of search terms. But one of the most important things is backlinks is they want to know our people linking to this as if it's the reference or the answer key.
And so you got to create content good enough that I answer people's questions that when other people get asked the question, they say, oh, I'm just going to link to Wade article. It's the best article on the subject. And so it's about creating in depth, quality content that answer very specific questions for your target audiences. So growth. So it does help people. Right. It is. But it does also require it does require a bit of data crunching in terms of just tracking. Okay, well, where am I trending and how fast is my website?
Because every half a second effect of how fast your website is effects where you show up in Google, which search terms are you talking about? And what questions are people actually asking for you to answer? There's actually a great resource for this called Answer the Public. This is, I guess, a free ad for them. They go to answer the public. Com and type in any term, and it brings you up a list of all the questions people are asking really to that subject. And he's a real question straight pulled straight from searches that people make.
It's a great inspiration. It's a great source for creating content if you're thinking, well, I want to talk about Bitcoin, but I don't know what to say. We put the word Bitcoin in there and they'll show you a thousand questions that people are asking about Bitcoin. And there you go. There's your list of content to create. Awesome.
Thank you. That's very helpful, because that I get if you're the guy that has the best answer, the Gal that has the best answer to something that I can at least I can at least aim for that, because everything else the gimmicks to this to that.
Yeah, I'm not into the Gimmick because the reality is the algorithms change all the time. And so there are people experts who follow the algorithm changes. But the reason why the algorithms change is because the algorithm is trying to get better and better at predicting which piece of content is the best answer to someone's question. Well, once you to skip the algorithm and focus on creating the best answers to the questions people are asking and let the algorithm figure out the details.
Absolutely. Because that's what Google and any other search engine one delivers that you used us, and you got your answer. That's their business.
Exactly. That's their business model. So the model, the fifth growth model is affiliate growth. Now affiliate growth. You could think, Well, it's kind of like paid growth. It's kind of like viral growth, but it's a combination of the two and affiliate growth is based on you have people. Often I usually Briars and two categories. Usually it's a combination of super fans and industry influencers where you have people that spread the word about your business and your products in exchange for a Commission off of sales degenerate. The biggest difference between affiliate growth and paid growth is that you only pay once you get results.
So if somebody recommends your product or your service or your business and then whoever they recommend it to become a customer, you might be that might mean that you are then giving somewhere between ten to 15 of the revenue back to the affiliate as a thank you. But if they get zero referrals, you owe them nothing. And so it's a way to incentivize people to spread the word about your business. And there are many businesses that have done really well on just affiliate growth. Convert at is a great example of this.
I mean, they're now about to hit $30 million a year in recurring revenue. In other words, automatic money. And that's because you could argue that for lots of reasons. But I would say the biggest one is that they had a really strong competitive affiliate program when they first launched. And so a lot of people were saying, okay, well, I'll give this convert a shot because, hey, if I recommend convert it to my people as an email marketing platform, then they had an affiliate program. They still have it, which is where you get 30% of the customers revenue as long as they remain a customer.
In other words, I did a promotion for Convert when they first launched six years ago, that I still make a $1,000 a month from six years, five years later. That's five or six years. I don't remember exactly. But the point is I still make over $1,000 a month from a promotion that I ran five or six years ago as an affiliate because it was such a good it was just such a long term deal. And I could see that, which is why I push it so hard as an affiliate.
That's awesome. So one of the things that people are listing this again, go to the book. There's a lot of depth in here to this, and sometimes it's difficult. I try to tighten these interviews. But again, when they're good, they're good. So thank you for sticking with us. Thank you. The three main product types. You talk about the idea that people in their business can have three product types. Now, I've heard this before in different ways, but I really like the way you nail down the specifics of it in the sense of what that would look like.
And also, I think the biggest thing for me is especially after I've heard it before from some other mentors. And in yours I saw. Okay. Yeah. This is really it in the sense that one of my fears is if I don't again, the FOMO, if I don't create that fourth or fifth product, am I missing out? And yes, might I miss out on this small percentage? But it seems to me if you get these three products right, you're going to get the main people you need.
You're going to get again, 80 20. You're going to get most of what you need, share a little bit if you don't mind about the three types, and then what are people stumbling with with that that maybe that can help them make it simpler.
Sure. In my stance is this and by the way, we haven't really talked about where all this stuff comes from. But let me just say that because I think this this concept is important. But let's talk a little about where this all comes from. I'm a serial entrepreneur myself. I've started three different businesses from scratch, and so I have some measure of success and experience from that. But for this book, for me, that wasn't enough. And so when I wrote the first draft of the book, but then I went around and I interviewed three dozen of really just the best and brightest minds in business today.
I mean, people that I really respected, people like Michael Hyatt. Ray Edwards and Philips Stuts and Casey Graham and Mike McCalla and many others. And I interviewed them. And many of those interviews are now on my podcast. But as a way to try to unpack the patterns of what they were teaching and what was consistent in their experience, because I wanted this book to really be comprehensive, not just about John Meese way to build a business, but about the step by step pass to building a profitable business in any economy, including this one.
So one of the things you can do right now to set your business up for success in times of transition and chaos, where you're going to thrive now and when the times are good, you're going to thrive even more. And so as I came across that and also my own experience working with clients, there was this pattern that kept coming up of the three different products that I saw drove dramatic success in each of these businesses also have an economic background. So a lot of research beyond this, but that's beside the point.
The point is, all you need are these three products you don't need any more. Now you can have more. And I'll talk about that in a minute about how you can have more. But the first is a gateway product. Now, the Gateway product is designed to be a painless purchase that gives your potential customer the opportunity to switch their identity from follower or lead to customers by purchasing something at a low price that allows them to come into your world and to give it a shot, essentially to test you out.
Now this could be something, of course, the price point I said low, but I was kind of big on that because that really depends on who your target audience is. If your consulting services are normally five or $10,000, well, then a Gateway product might actually be $500. If your products are typically going to be more in like the 100 $500 range, your gateway product might be more like $10. For me, my Gateway product is actually this book that we're talking about. It's $19.95. If you buy a full price on Amazon or anywhere else, it's on all the places, not just Amazon.
It's 999. If you buy the ebook or the audio book. I mean, that's pretty cheap for how to grow your business. For a guide on how to grow your business. But to the Gateway product is not designed for you to make a lot of money off of it. This is where people get confused because you got to price it low enough that you're not making a ton of money. What you're doing is you're earning a lot of people's trust and you want to go way above and beyond.
So when someone pays you $10 for a product, your goal, then is not to give them $10 in value. I like to try to ten axes and say, Well, how can I give them at least $100 of value or $1,000 in value? How can I go way above expectations to earn their trust? If you could do this? This is a phenomenal way to keep growing your customer base. Now, the second product is your flagship product. Now your flagship product is on the other end of the spectrum.
This is the big Kona, the epitome of everything you offer. This is the full transformation experience. So if you have, this is where you want your customers to be willing to spend a massive amount of money. This is like the highest price product in your business to be able to grow your to be able to get the full experience with you. And this is your flagship product. Now, the reality is over of your customers are probably never going to going to purchase the Flash product, and that's okay because it exists.
It does a couple of things. It communicates to all of your customers that something to aspire to. It tells them what you stand for. But it also does mean that for the few customers that do purchase your flagship product. That's a lot of money from just a handful of customers, where you get to give them a lot of time and attention and really see dramatic results in their businesses in their life. And the third is the continuity product. Now the continuity product is like a subscription product.
Think about this is something that's the glue that holds someone to your business. It's an ongoing connection to your business, where they have an ongoing subscription. They might be paying $5 or $10 or $50 a month for access to software or content or training, whatever it may be. But the Con your product is the glue that holds it together where you have what John Walo calls the automatic customer. They keep becoming a customer a month after month. If you have those three products, that's really all you need to build a thriving business and be successful.
You can have other products, but you want to make sure that they're either complimentary or supplementary to this core three, where they're either add ons or replacement or down fills. But to your customers perspective, you want them to know that this is where you start the Gateway product, and this is what you aspire to the flasher product. And this is what you do in between the continuity product.
Yeah. I'd like to unpack a couple of things on that if you don't mind. So the Gateway product totally agree book something very simple. And this is where I know sometimes maybe well, as marketers, we try to do things different at this is tried and true enough. Like, okay, if you like, somebody read the book and as a coach, if somebody won't read my ten to $20 book, I'm not sure they're going to be a great client. I'm not saying they won't be. But if you won't do the hour or 2 hours of the audio book or whatever it is.
But on the other side, I think a lot of people struggle with I know I've struggled with this as entrepreneurs. Again, we so want to help people and you say, okay, what do I do now if I give away too much of my model? I think what Jeff Walker did with his launch book, where he did, he pretty much gave away his product launch formula book in the book. And I had a lot of mixed fees. I'm like, Well, dude, I paid $2,000 for the course, which is awesome.
But I also did get the live event, and so I was like, okay, so in my mind, I was thinking that as a customer and as somebody delivering like, okay, am I okay with this, Wade? Okay. No. Okay. I got to the experience and he delivers awesomely. So I was like, okay, that's good. And on the flip side is like, but but then what if I'm losing my position of having something that's too low? So what do you find people's concerns and are there other good Gateway products, or is something like a Booker?
Is that really one of the best anchors?
Well, no, it really depends on your I mean, your other product categories. So for me, as a teacher, where I've got, like, I've got a conference, I've got a membership site, I've got some consulting offers that I do. A book is a great Gateway product, but your Gateway products could be. I mean, think about this, for example, that let's just pick a coffee shop. For example, when you walk into the average coffee shop, they've got a hundred things in the menu. Half them you can't pronounce and you're kind of just sit there staring.
You wouldn't watch any customer to coffee shop. They sit there and they just stare at this board for about three to five minutes until they just take a deep breath and they say, okay, and they pick something. And it's probably good. But can you imagine how so much simpler that transaction would be if they had a little sign right when you walk in? And they said, Is this your first visit? Try our homemade house late for $4 or $5, whatever it is. And they just had a sign that tells you this is the Gateway product, and someone comes in, they're like, oh, my gosh, yes.
I want to try your homemade house late for $5. I'm happy to do that. It takes all the stress out of the transaction, and it gives you a chance for them to taste it and go, wow, this is really good. Obviously, you should not tell them a product doesn't men. It's just your cheapest product because your cheapest product in the coffee shop is probably just black coffee. But that's not actually a good experience for most customers. So the point is, you want to sample what's to come.
And so that could be it could be that if you're like. So, for example, if you like, there's a pediatrician service that we use called Blueberry Pediatrics. It's a subscription service, actually, that allows us as parents to be able to, like, hit a button and call a doctor or a nurse to give us a video call and tell us if our kids okay or not, whatever is going on. Well, I thought for a while I thought, Man, I'm glad I'm a customer, but it would have been much easier to become a customer if on their home page, they had a button that was like, book a one time on call consult for $25 or something like that, which for them is like a three minute video call.
And so it's not going to be a huge money maker for them. But it would take all the stress out of saying, wow, I just called a pediatrician at two in the morning. I got a video call with advice about how to take care of my kids. Yeah, I'm going to become a customer. I'm coming back. That's the whole idea of a gateway product.
Awesome. And you just help me with something. I just thought about some of my clients that just don't like to red books, so that would not be a good, great, great products. They're like, I'd rather coach you. Wait, I'll pay you 250 or 500 or whatever for this one specific answer. Usually, I guess somewhere in there also, like you said, I love the fact that it's so clearly the first one. Okay, let's go to the other side if you don't mind the the flagship, this is where now all of our imposter syndrome are.
Okay. Am I charging too much? Am I charging too little? Am I doing that thing where I said, well, you know what, John? You could make a million dollars for this. So I'm going to charge you 100,000. And people like, yeah, that's not worth 100,000 versus my average client will get a ten X or a 20 X or 30 X on this. How can people reasonably start? Let's say their first flat, because if somebody's been doing this, well, they're probably presumably already kind of figured this out.
Where is that first flagship? And I'm actually going to drill down if you don't mind, because a lot of my audience are coaches. So your coach, you're somewhere in a in the business side, because if your personal growth, sometimes it's more, there's a different price points in general, whereas in business, usually there's money where you can say, I invested in X, I made y. It's not just abstract or emotional spiritual. Where should a person start with? What is that like? How do they even get a sense of that?
Is it their best customer is? What do they do with that?
Yeah, well, of course, it's a mix of art and science here. Unfortunately, there's no magic answer here, but, I mean, I go off the ten X rule generally that I want the average good client. How about we'll say it that way? Not necessarily the average client, but the average good client to get at least ten times what they paid me. And actually, I would say ten times the cost of the program. The cost of the program isn't just what they paid you. It's also the time they invested in going to the program.
If you got to take that into account, too. So if you're a coach specifically and you're thinking about that, you want to think, okay, what's a time investment from them. What kind of going to be are you guys meeting in person? What kind of travel costs? I mean, literally, if they pay the airline, they're not paying you. But that's part of the cost of the program. So you need to think about that. So you got to make sure that you structure it in such a way to the average good clients.
Who does the work is going to get ten times the ROI. For me, that's a minimum threshold. That's not the target. That's a minimum threshold. And so I would probably design it to do more than ten times that. I think you don't necessarily want to have apples to apples from like, an hourly rate to the price of your flagship program. But it can be helpful if you already have an hourly rate to think. Okay. Well, what's my time investment? And that's why minimum threshold that if this is the equivalent of so many coaching hours.
And I know I need to make $5,000 at least minimum from this flagship program for it to be worth that for me. So I would think about it that way. But you want this to be. I mean, if you know, from experience, if you have any customers that people get results when they pay, they pay attention when they pay money. Right. Well, what's the most amount of transformation you're going to let a customer go through? What's the most amount of life changing transformation you're going to get someone access to?
How dare you hold back what's the full experience? What is the life changing, dramatic experience that you can offer to someone? And that's your flash or product? That's the big Kahuna. He is the epitome of the full transformation of everything you you teach and you offer. So the price point, of course, you've got to also consider the budget of your customers. So for a business client depends again on how big the business is. But, I mean, we're probably talking about their minimum of $2,000 product here, maybe a 5000, maybe 10,000, maybe a 50 or $100,000 program.
I mean, that really just depends on who your customer is and what kind of experience is included.
Awesome. Thank you. I love the way you Wade. That how big of a transformation are you going to allow them to have? And this is where I think we get through the magic of you and I both know is course creators. It can be frustrating that there's very often a low completion rate with people in forces. And of course, the more you put that into either a live workshop or a mastermind or an ongoing well, there's more implementation because people have that some sort of continuous meeting with people or some sort of follow up.
So if you're helping the client get that, it can actually at least something I've learned is it can actually be more loving, more accurate, more valuable to charge the person more and then actually walk them through the steps as opposed to because, again, what's a non used gym membership worth nothing as opposed to. Yeah, I paid more, and I got the personal trainer, but I actually did the work. Thank you.
Yes. And that's a great example.
And then flagship. Is that necessarily between those two prices usually is not flagship. The continuity is the continent, usually between and and where is the continuity? Because some people say, Wait, I just charged this flagship, and it feels weird I think most people can see the gateway to the continuity ascension concept. But then it's kind of like, well, what do I do after the person's done the flagship? Do I compliment? Do I bring them in? What do you find in general? And what is a flagship usually look like again in that same model where let's say you've got the book on one end.
You've got the premium again, sticking with our coaching model. For this example, coaching workshops, group coaching, maybe a couple of private calls, whatever. What's that continuity maybe look like?
Yeah. So I can give a great example of how we're doing this right now. So two of my business partners in my core business coworking, we just put together an offer where we're going to be helping business owners go through a strategic planning exercise where they plan their goals and for next year. But they also do a refresh on their purpose and their principles and all these good things about running a business. Well, we've got different packages for that. But the flagship product for our business is a $25,000, you know, full day experience with three of us.
You've got a CMO, a CFO and COO in the room for $25,000. That's a flasher product, right? So, yeah, if you pay that for me to then come back after that and say, okay, now pay $100 a month to join Thrive School Pro. It's kind of laughable, right. You're like that's not anywhere close to it. But what we're planning to do for that customer. So Fri School Pro will be our continuity product for most of our customers. And as you said, the attention from, like, $17.95 book to $100 a month continuity program.
That kind of makes sense. I mean, that kind of makes sense. Once you've got a flagship product, you also want to think about maybe you've got this is where complementary and supplementary products come in, where I want to have a supplementary or an alternative continuity product for my flagship customers. And so we've already kind of outlined a little bit of it. We don't we haven't sold it yet. But we've outlined a little bit of okay, we're going to offer essentially a retainer for next year for someone that's done the strategic planning flagship product with us where they can come in and once a quarter will do a reset.
Or maybe we talked about probably will include one kind of like a Pivot meeting that will be just included in the core product. If something goes wrong in February, and you're like what? We revisit all of our goals. Okay. Great. That's included. We'll do that. But if you want to have another meeting once a quarter, well, then we'll have another fee for that. That will be some sort of retainer type agreement, which means that we can check in once a quarter or once a month to check in with your strategic plan and with your team and just make sure everything's going according to plan.
So that's that's a real life example of how I'm using this principle.
Awesome. Thank you. And some of the best advice I got on this was just the idea of how much would you have to deliver for it to be worth X amount. If you do know this is exactly what my clients need. This would be their dream. Well, then to me, that is, unless you forget me from wrong, that is what you should deliver. And then you might have to figure out what the price is on the flip side. If you're not sure. I remember a young guy that worked for me once.
He's like Wade. I like something about it being clear and even just $10. $100, some multiple of a thousand, like two figures, three figures, four figures at the very least, makes it simple and something to aim for it. And one of the things I've heard is, look what you're going to offer them is not going to be worth it. I mean, you can't charge $5,000 for a $5,000 problem. They've got at least have a $50,000 problem in general and a good chance that if they implement to your point and invest, I don't know, five to 10 hours, not $500, because otherwise they would just do it themselves.
So what I'd like to do if it's cool to you. And by the way, there's a listing. This might be longer than a normal interview. We do, but I'm learning a lot. Hopefully, y'all are so and John's great enough to spend this last bit of time with us.
So it's my time.
I try not to apologize for helping deliver extra values. Right. See, I just complimented you, and I complimented me. Boom. Two birds. Well, actually, two birds. That's not appropriate. I helped two birds with one piece of bread.
I actually I had a vegan client once who told me she said, you can feed two birds with 1 St. See.
Two birds with 1 St. I like that. There you go.
Because she was a vegan in a more rice client, and she really didn't like the phrase kill two birds with 1 St. So she was all about feeding two birds with one.
We will feed two birds with 1 St. That's awesome. And it'll be gluten free and it'll be organic and all that other good stuff. Awesome. So anything else you'd add for that person that is saying, how do I get started? So actually, final question on these three main product type. If you have nothing set up right now, you're literaly. You're starting from scratch. You're a sidehustle. You're saying okay, I got to get something to get some traction. Is the gateway the place to start or not necessarily.
Okay. Yes. Yes.
You'll feel traction immediately. You might not be generating a full pay day from that, but you'll get traction because that's the easiest sale, especially when you're new to your territory. They're new to your industry, right? It doesn't take a lot to convince someone to risk $10 or $20 or $50 and one of your products, and it gives you a chance to win a lifetime customer. Yeah.
And I even found with some people in the market I've been in for 20 plus years, and I used to work with a company that was related to it. People didn't worry about it. I was going to steal their money. But in other things, people might say, well, this person might not deliver. And I've had actually, I'll just say famous person because it wasn't a high level for what the person did, that they charged. There's a $10,000 program and it didn't get delivered upon. And I didn't get my money back because there was excuses and blah, blah, blah.
So I just know again, if somebody says, okay, I don't know who this Wade guy is, but I can afford a $10 loss. And if I if I don't get because just in case, it's a fly by night. So that's great. Okay. So I've got the closing round of questions. If you're good, these can be quicker. But again, you're providing huge ideas for us. And by the way, that's not all the book. There's more in the book. There's two biases here. One, I got that far in the book in time, and I just got John's book.
I'm going to get to the last part of it. So there's a little bit of bias there, but also a lot of this is the stuff that I think that people were working with or struggle with most. So. Okay, question number one, if you could give your entire target audience one skill, what would that skill be?
Empathy. And the good news is you're born with it. It's just the ability to put yourself in someone else's shoes to in empathize with them and to understand what they're going through and recognize that that's your superpower.
Okay. So not just to be a nice guy, there's actually some right.
Yeah. Empathy is specifically about being able to put yourself in someone else's body, but not like a weird spiritual way, just like, you know. Yeah. Empathy awesome.
What's the costliest? Business mistake you ever made? And what did you learn?
Oh, my gosh. Okay. Well, Wade, a lot of really expensive decisions. You don't open a brick and motor Co. Working space 58 days before the entire country goes into lockdown. That's definitely the most expensive business decision I made a mistake I've ever made. That one. I think what I learned was just that I learned that you need to stay focused on serving the real people that your business is designed to serve. And so for me, that entrepreneurs. And so when our doors were closed by government order, then the entrepreneur center couldn't Wade people in the door.
Then I locked the door and wrote a book. So I learned to stay focused on serving my people.
Awesome. What's the best business? And that's not an easy one to recover from. But most people, if they've been an entrepreneur five, seven years, at least they've got at least a couple of doozies, and they're definitely north of five figures. Yeah. Okay.
Yeah. I try not to think about the cost of that one.
Well, it's the life tuition, the NBA and hard knock. However you want to word it, you got to get it somehow. What's the best business decision you've ever made and how did you execute it?
The best business decision ever, Wade, I think becoming an entrepreneur and how executed it was. I documented everything much better than I do now. Honestly, where I just started blogging about things I was learning, and I actually started my first online course that I created. But I was like software tutorials for a very niche group, like literally only 3000 people in the world used the piece of software that I was credit tutorials for did a launch did pretty well. I made $10,000 in ten weeks, or I'm sorry, ten days from that first launch.
But what was even cooler was the fact that I documented that because I wrote a blog post that I broke in every detail of the launch. The blog post took off way bigger than my little software tutorial company, and so I ultimately became someone who teaches people how to build businesses. But that was only just because I was documenting publicly what I was learning.
That's awesome. What's your best tip to help people get more results in less time?
Remember that as an entrepreneur, you are responsible for output, not input. In other words, you only get paid for results. You don't get paid for whatever you put in. An employee gets paid for input. If they show up and they log X number of hours, they get paid for. X number of hours. As an entrepreneur, it doesn't matter if you spend ten minutes or 10 hours on a really high leverage decision in your business, you could pay the same. So focus on that. And remember that with every action you take?
Absolutely. Thank you. What's the one thing that most other entrepreneurs do that you find unnecessary. And you said social media. So is there any social media? Socialmedia. There you go.
A list. A social media. I mean, come on. Simply.
Okay, that's that's right there. And if you jumped around, it's going if you go back to that part, there's a lot of good stuff and what he said there what's the first thing you believe every entrepreneur should delegate?
The first thing I should delegate? I think that probably varies entrepreneur to entrepreneur. I know. For me it's my inbox in my calendar. I mean, it's just that's just where I lose so much time and energy is trying to optimize this endless task list of an inbox and this endless math machine of where everything fits on my calendar. So anytime I get myself out of those two of my business benefits for it.
Awesome. What have you dropped from your business or your life? That has been most liberating to let go of it social media, there you go. And then two more. What are you most excited about in your business right now?
I'm most excited about right now. I'm working with a company where we're going to actually take my book and adapt it into a kids of an illustrated kids book series on entrepreneurship, because more kids need to know about they're reading books about firefighters and policemen and soldiers. And that's fine. But I want them to read books about entrepreneurs, too. And so I'm probably going to do a Kickstarter campaign in January to fund the whole series. And we'll have this beautiful illustrated kids book series and entrepreneurship. And we're actually part of the deal is we're also hiring former Disney voice actors to do, like, animated videos of each book, too.
So I think there'll be five books in the series, but that's obviously I'm pretty excited about that.
That is awesome. Congrats. Give me posts on that. We'll make sure I will that. And then what are you most excited about in your life right now?
Jujitsu, actually, I kind of stumbled into a Judi gym one day, and I've been going for about four months, and so I just passed the point of I've just moved out. A victim status like that came naturally being a victim on the mat. But now I know just enough to defend myself a little bit. So I've learned a lot about it, and it takes between ten to 15 years to get a black belt and in Jujitsu because it's so rigorous. But I'm on that path. So that's what personally enjoying and excited about right now.
Awesome. And we'll put the links for this. But in general, where can people learn more about you and your work?
The best places to go to survive and Thrive book. Com if you go there, that includes everything. But of course, you'll find the book we talked about today where youcan get yourself a copy, check it out. And you can also get there are some free resources there, as well as well as links to find me on LinkedIn, the one social media account you could find me on if you like to and join, of course. And there you also find links to join to follow the Thrive School podcast or going through School newsletter if you're interested in that kind of thing.
But please get a copy of the book if you do nothing else. I genuinely so many people, including you to have left incredible reviews of how this book has helped them. And I'm excited about that. I put a lot of work into this and I want it to be. I mean, it's just a bunch of pages of paper with some glue on it, unless you read it and put it into practice. And that's when it becomes useful.
Absolutely. Tell my kids that with my books, they've read a couple of them. The rest is like they're really good door stops or paper weight. And looking forward to you taking more of an advantage of them than just their physical properties and abilities to do that. Man. Thank you so much. And again, sometimes I'll say this after I've listened or interviewed with a guest for those your listing. I can't think of a thing he said. That is not at least either fundamentally true. Not necessarily fact. Not every details all to be fact in every situation, but just outright true of what you're learning.
So part of why I hopefully listen to podcasts like this is to shorten your learning curve and learn from the mistakes of people like us who have done things and made some very expensive mistakes.
My wife tells me now you can invest your time to make mistakes. Please don't make those five figure mistakes with our money. Do it with your time. If you want to invest 100 hours and something and it works. So yeah, it's still not great because I understand time value money. But at the end of the day, let's keep those dollar mistakes to a minimum. Thank you so much for joining us. I look forward to seeing more the success of your book. And again, thanks for coming out.
Thank you, Wade, and thank you everyone else. Keep up the good work.
Absolutely. And it's always I look forward to helping you impact more people and make more money in less time. Do what you do best so you can better enjoy your family, your friends, and your life. Thanks for watching.
Author of the #1 Bestseller 📘Survive and Thrive: How to Build a Profitable Business in Any Economy (Including This One)
John Meese is an economist-turned-entrepreneur on a personal mission to eradicate generational poverty by helping entrepreneurs create thriving businesses which is why he wrote the #1 bestseller Survive and Thrive: How to Build a Profitable Business in Any Economy (Including This One).
John is CEO of Cowork.Inc. Co-founder of Notable, and host of the Thrive School podcast.