In today’s episode, we help Luke grow his audience to get more consistent membership sales.
Jocelyn: Hey, y’all. On today’s podcast, we help Luke take his education business to the next level.
Shane: Welcome to the Flipped Lifestyle Podcast, where life always comes before work. We’re your hosts, Shane and Jocelyn Sams. We’re a real family that figured out how to make our entire living online. Now we help other families do the same. Are you ready to Flip Your Life? All right. Let’s get started.
Shane: What’s going on everybody? And welcome back to the Flipped Lifestyle Podcast. It is great to be back with you again today. We are super excited to have another member of the Flip Your Life community on today’s podcast, on today’s show. And we’re going to celebrate some big wins with them and help them take their business to the next level. Our guest today is Flip Your Life community member Luke Reed. Luke, welcome to the show.
Luke: Hey. Thanks for having me.
Jocelyn: It is great to have you today, Luke. And we are super excited because just a few minutes ago before the show started, I heard some gentle mooing in the background. And we determined that this is the first ever cow appearance on the Flipped Lifestyle Podcast.
Shane: Yeah. [inaudible 00:01:08]. As we talk to Luke, and he is standing outside in a cow pasture apparently, right now. You’re going to hear some mooing. Our dogs are in the house. They may come in and start barking at the cows mooing through the microphones.
Jocelyn: And you know what, it kind of surprised it’s taken us over 200 episodes to get cows on the podcast because-
Shane: I know. Right? We lived out in the country.
Shane: We have a cow pasture. We should go out, Jocelyn, to the cow pasture next door. And maybe our cows could talk to Luke’s cows. That would be amazing.
Jocelyn: You can never have too many cows on a podcast. Right?
Luke: Why don’t we try it, see?
Shane: Where are you and why do you have so many cows surrounding you right now? And should we be worried for your safety?
Luke: No, I am perfectly safe. But I’m in the middle of a cattle ranch, so there are cows about 200 yards away from me right now.
Shane: Nice. Okay. Well, if they charge, you let us know and we’ll pause the recording. And we’ll edit out any trampling that happens. Okay?
Jocelyn: If this whole cow thing doesn’t work out for you, we need to know a little bit more about what you’re doing online, so tell us a little bit about you, your family, your background, and your online business.
Luke: My online business started as many of your members, after listening to Pat Flynn and hearing your story on Pat Flynn’s podcast. And I heard your story, and it just sounded so real. It really resonated with what I wanted to do and the freedom that I wanted to try and build for my family. I really took off after listening to that. I’m in the education business, so I was able to model a lot of what I’ve done after what you started with, with Elementary Librarian and US History Teachers. And it’s gone pretty well. In, let’s see, it’s been just about exactly one year, I found a business partner to do the curriculum side of the business. And we built the website and put together the curriculum. Now we’ve got our first few sales already, so it’s gone pretty quickly.
Shane: Tell us a little bit about your family and where you’re from. Where are you at? What is your background? Like you said, you’re in the education field. Tell us a little bit more about that. Tell us about your wife, kids, stuff like that.
Luke: Okay. I’m in Central California. I was born and raised in a little town smack dab in the middle of California. Grew up here and went to school here. Got my degree at the most recent University of California campus, which opened just as I finished my bachelor’s, so I went on and got graduate degrees done. My wife is the reason that I’m now renting a house in the middle of a cattle ranch. Her father is a rancher, so she grew up raising cows, working cows. And it turns out that her dad and herself, they have a genetic mutation that causes heart failure, early onset heart failure, so part of my reason for wanting to do the online business is that. I want to be able to have freedom to spend more time as my wife goes through the health problems that she’s dealing with.
Luke: And we’ve got two little boys. Our older son is our biological son. And then our younger son is adopted, so we just recently finished that adoption process, so got two boys now. We really like the bigger family. Two kids is just so different than just one.
Shane: Oh, yeah. My father-in-law always used to tell me, and I’m sure this is going to offend someone out there who only has one kid. My father-in-law used to tell me when we had our first kid. I was like, “Yeah. I’m a parent now. I’m a real grown up.” Right? That’s how I felt. He’d just laugh at me. And he would go, “You’ve got one kid. You’re not a real parent until you have at least two.” And I used to get so mad at him for saying that.
Jocelyn: But then after we had two we’re like, “Oh, he’s kind of right.”
Shane: We were like, “You were right, bro. Pops, come on, man. You were right.” It’s hard.
Jocelyn: It’s true.
Shane: I can’t imagine going to three or four. I can’t even fathom that.
Jocelyn: I can’t either. Two is good.
Shane: I’m not tough enough for that. I know I’m not. I am not man enough to go. I’m running man to man coverage right now. I do not want to have to go to zone. You know what I’m saying?
Jocelyn: A couple of things kind of struck me about what you were talking about. First of all, that you live in a cow pasture in the middle of California. People probably weren’t expecting that.
Shane: People are like, “Wait. There’s cows in California?”
Jocelyn: There are because I’ve seen those commercials about cheese.
Luke: Yeah. The happy cows.
Jocelyn: That’s right. Happy cows in California, so Luke’s cows are happy I guess. Another thing that you said that kind of struck me was that you are in California, which means that it’s like 6:00 AM there. Right?
Luke: Yes. Well, 6:20 now, but yeah.
Shane: You’re doing what it takes to get up and make this online business thing happen. That’s why we love you, Luke. That’s why we wanted to bring you on the show too, just because I know you’re doing the work. And I know you’re dedicated. And your why is so powerful because you’ve got this really real threat in your life to the health of the person that you love. And to be able to say, “Hey. It would be really cool not to go to work,” and be able to come home, and to be able to work with your wife, around your wife, and spend more time with your wife as she deals with these health problems. That’s a really, really powerful way.
Jocelyn: Right now you’re still working. Right? Tell us a little bit about that.
Luke: Right. I have a job as a lab coordinator, instructional lab coordinator, actually at the school where I got my degree. I finished-
Shane: What’s your degree in? What is your degree in?
Luke: My degree’s in chemistry.
Shane: Chemistry. That’s right.
Luke: I work as lab coordinator there. And it’s actually a really good job. It’s very flexible. Working at a university is pretty friendly towards the workers. There’s not a lot of hostile environment of get more work done and make us more money. But it is still a job and you have to go there. You have to be there. You have to do what other people want you to do. If I can move on from that at some point, I would really like to. And that’s the goal.
Jocelyn: Lately we have been making some changes to our podcast. And what I mean by that is that when we started the free trial in our membership, our members started growing, so we have a lot of people in the membership now. And when we first started out, it was sort of just like a perk for being a member for so long that you got to be on the podcast. But now that we have so many members, we can’t really do that anymore. So what we’ve decided to do is, we look for people who are posting success stories regularly. And the reason that we do that is because we know that those people are doing the work. One of the ways that we know Luke is doing the work is because he is posting regularly in that success stories thread. And recently you told a success story to us that I would like for you to share with the listeners.
Shane: It blew our mind when we read this because this was like the epitome of online business. Right? This is why you do it. Tell us a little bit more about that success story that you shared.
Luke: Yeah. It was my first online sale. And it was for an annual subscription to the lesson plans that I’ve made with my business partner. And it actually happened while my wife was in the hospital recovering from a blood clot that lodged in her kidney. So we had been there. Let’s see, we got there on a Thursday. And they got her in, they got her into her room. Got her pain under control. She was there for four days. And on that fourth day, I had gone to my parents to see my kids, take a little break from the hospital environment. And as I was there relaxing, I heard notification come through on my phone. I went and checked it. Thought it was just going to be another email. And I pulled it up, and it says, “You just received a payment, $397 for an annual subscription.”
Jocelyn: Yay. There was a celebratory moo.
Shane: Instead of celebratory mood. [crosstalk 00:09:44]. The cow is happy. You’re happy. We’re happy. The listeners are happy. This is the best podcast we’ve done in weeks. Amazing. Yeah. When you saw that, did you feel like the magnitude of, I have spent the last four days taking care of my wife in the hospital, and in the background my marketing, my website, my social media, everything kept working for me? Even though I couldn’t pay total attention to it, even though I could only check it here and there from the hospital room, did it hit you? Like man, if you could make your whole living like this, then all of these things, your kids getting sick, your spouse getting sick, you would be able to deal with those things instead of business.
Luke: Honestly, it didn’t hit me. That was the reality. But what actually hit me was pretty much complete freak out moment. This can’t be right. I don’t know what’s going on. I think I need to contact this guy. And he probably wants-
Jocelyn: Somebody accidentally typed in their credit card numbers.
Luke: Yeah. Yeah. I think what I really realized instantly was that, oh my goodness, I’ve got a horrible problem with fear of success. And it took me another day and a half to settle down and be okay with the fact that somebody sent me money. And then it started to sink in. Oh, this works no matter what you’re doing.
Shane: Did you tell your wife? Did you call her immediately and like, “I just made a sale”? What was that?
Luke: No, actually I waited until I was … I processed it and I was over the initial reaction of this had to have been a mistake. And I told her a couple days later, and she was feeling a bit better. She could handle some news at that point. So it wasn’t until a couple days after it happened that I told anybody. And then she just kind of looked at me like, “Okay. Well, you’ve been working on it, so there you go. What’s the big deal?”
Shane: Right. Exactly. You know?
Jocelyn: I’m reading through some of the things that you wrote here. And I love what you said. It says, “Anyone who says they don’t have time for online business doesn’t want it badly enough. If I can use the time waiting for my wife to be out of surgery to answer questions and work on blog posts, anyone can find some time.”
Shane: Wow. That’s deep, man.
Jocelyn: That’s very profound.
Shane: And it’s also powerful because we’ve had family members get sick. And their spouse had to go to work to be able to pay for their bills, to be able to do … And they literally, someone has to go and sit with the spouse while their husband or wife had to go to work. Right? And it’s just incredible to hear that I can sit in the hospital, in the room, and work on my business while taking care of my spouse. My family member can go to surgery. I can take care of my things, but be there when they wake up for surgery. And these opportunities that we have to take control of our lives are just amazing. And we have to take advantage of them because 20 years ago, people didn’t have that opportunity. Right?
Luke: Yeah. Yeah, it is quite an opportunity. You can do it anywhere, whatever’s going on. If you can sit down and focus for a few minutes, you can get something done. It’s quite an opportunity. And it would be a shame to just let it go by.
Jocelyn: I totally agree. You clearly don’t struggle with time. That’s something that a lot of people say that they struggle with, so that is really cool.
Shane: Well, first of all, congratulations for everything that’s got you to this point, and on getting that first sale, especially such a big sale. I think back at our 11 cent moment. The first money we ever made online was 11 cents on an ad click, and I thought that was the greatest thing ever. And you’re dropping $400 bones in your back account like nothing. Right? But I want to go back and just point out you have been an active member in the Flip Your Life community. You post your success forums. You post your action plan posts. You go in there and ask questions. You did a workshop with us. You worked with us. We worked with you one on one a little bit in coaching and call environment. And you’ve really put in the effort and the investment to get to that point of that first sale, because I don’t want anyone out there to listen and say, “Well, he started a website, and someone found it. And he got lucky.” Right?
Shane: Because Luke did not get lucky. Luke put in the work. He put himself in the right place at the right time so that someone could find that product and make that purchase. You need to just look in the mirror and say, “I deserve success,” because you’re putting in the work. And some people get really overwhelmed when people send them that money and think, “Wow. Do I deserve this? Am I expert enough? Is this really me?” And then imposter syndrome kicks in. And we’ve got to kick that to the side right now because if you can get one person to give you $400, then you can find 100 people to do it. You can find 1000 people to do it because there’s more people out there just like that buyer. And it’s just amazing watching your journey. And when we see these success stories in the Flip Your Life community because Jocelyn and I know all the background. And I just wanted to really bring that up because the listener may not know that, that you’ve done the work. And you deserve this, and you deserve everything that’s about to happen in your business going forward.
Luke: Thank you. Yeah. It’s definitely a lot of work. Everybody hears the polished side and sees the stories. But yeah, there’s a lot of work that goes into it behind the scenes.
Jocelyn: Definitely. For sure. All right. Well, let’s talk a little bit. You’ve already overcome so many things to get to where you are now. But let’s talk about what is going on inside your head, or maybe something else that’s holding you back right now. Do you have any fears or mindset issues, maybe something else that you think is keeping you from reaching the next level?
Luke: You know, I think there is some of the imposter syndrome. Every time I sit down to send an email out to the list, I struggle with that because my business partner is actually the one who does all the teaching and does all the curriculum. She’s the one with the experience. And when I send the emails, it’s hard because I feel like I’m saying things that aren’t really from my background, so I feel that imposter syndrome. That’s a challenge. Communicating to these people, I have about 300 people on the email list now. Sending emails to them, I get so nervous every time I sit down to do that.
Shane: Interesting. What are you sending? And this is really good because a lot of people pick a niche where they’re not necessarily an educated degreed person and you get to do this. I have a master’s degree in that subject. That’s not what’s happening. A lot of people pick a niche because they know a little bit about it. They do research. They learn more about it and they become a teacher in it. Right? What are you sending people? Just like, hey, here’s a cool resource. Are you just relaying information from your business partner? What’s in these emails that’s making you so nervous?
Luke: It’s just relaying resources for the teachers to use. And of course I’ve got high school teachers that are signing up for the emails. Sharing resources, sharing stories from my business partner’s past and experience, sharing blog posts that we put up, just things like that. And I can’t tell you why, but it just really feels like it shouldn’t be me sending the email. I think that’s what it is.
Shane: Basically because you’re not the teacher when you send the teacher stuff. Even though you’re just literally relaying information from someone else, that freaks you out a little bit because you’re afraid people are going to be like, “Well, the person that hit send is not the actual expert.” Right?
Luke: That’s correct. Yeah.
Shane: This reminds me. Okay. Let’s say you’re walking down the street. Right? And I see you. I’m new in town and I’m lost. So I pull over, I’m like, “Hey, buddy. How’re you doing?” You walk over and say, “Hey, man. I’m just out walking my cows. Moo.” And I’m like, “Hey. Can you tell me how to get to the next town?” And you’re like, “Sure. All you’ve got to do is go down this road, take a right, and go this way.” Right? Or maybe you don’t know where it is, so you pull out your phone. And I don’t have a GPS, so you pull up your map. And you’re like, “Okay. Here’s a map I got for you. So you go down this road, you go left, and you go straight.” So you give me those directions. Right?
Shane: Wouldn’t it be ridiculous if I looked up at you and said, “That’s great. But are you a cartographer? Did you make that map? Did you literally draw that map that you just showed me? Are you a member of the Army Corps of Engineers that built these roads that get me to the next town? Are you really an expert at that?” That would be ridiculous. Right? But that’s what you’re doing. You’re like, “I’m not the guy that drew the map, so I can’t show anyone how to use the map,” and you’re not even involved in the expert enough. And you can even be honest with this and be like, “Hey, this is Luke. Here’s my business partner,” whatever. You could even make up a persona if she doesn’t want to identify herself. And be like, “She wanted me to send you this thing.” You could even put a buffer zone in between. But don’t ever be afraid to relay information, to curate things and give it to people because nobody cares. They just want the answers. They just want the solutions.
Jocelyn: And I think probably the story that you’re telling yourself is that somebody’s going to ask you a question you don’t know how to answer.
Shane: Ooh, that’s deep.
Jocelyn: Or somebody is going to say, “Hey. Who are you to say this to me? You’re not even a teacher. You’ve never even been a teacher.” Is that part of it, do you think?
Luke: Oh, yeah. It is. Definitely.
Jocelyn: Yeah. Sometimes you have to kind of dig underneath the surface and figure out what’s really going on. And I think that might be what it is. What you have to do is, you have to rewrite that story and say, “If I don’t know the answer to a question, or if someone says, ‘Hey, you’re not a teacher,’ then you’re going to tell them.” Hey. I don’t know the answer to that question, but I’m going to find it for you. Or no, I’m not a teacher. But my partner, who works with me, is and she’s an expert in this area.
Shane: Yeah. That’s also, we invent problems before they happen. And then our mind has to deal with them. And that’s a problem, and that’s something that me and Jocelyn really fight against is what ifs. What if someone sends me a question that I don’t know? What if someone calls me out? They send me a reply and they’re like, “You’re not even a teacher. I can tell”? What if? What if? But until it happens, it’s not really a problem. We can prepare for that. Like Jocelyn said, you can have the script ready. You can rewrite it in your brain. But until it’s a problem, don’t make it a problem because we have enough problems to deal with in online business and any kind of venture, that are real, that we have to deal with today, to invent problems that may never even exist.
Jocelyn: And that’s something that is really effective for me. I was just saying to go ahead and prepare for that. It’s something that I’ve done a lot. When I was doing Elementary Librarian years ago and I was raising my prices, I was raising them from $89 for the full year, which is insane, to $400 and something for the full year. And I knew that when I did that people were going to be upset, that they weren’t going to like that because they’re used to paying this price. And now they’re going to have to pay a new price.
Jocelyn: One of the things that I did is, I wrote a response because I knew I was going to have people say, “Hey. Why did you change this price? This is bad. I don’t like this.” I went ahead and wrote a response to those people. I had not even increased the price yet. But I knew that I was going to have a problem with doing it because I perceived that people were going to be upset. And how many times did I have to use that script? Maybe two or three, maybe. But it made me feel better to know that I was prepared if someone had that response.
Shane: Your brain kind of dealt with it. You just kind of dealt with it. So maybe you could write down the four things you think someone … What are you afraid of that people are going to send to you? Like, hey, are you even really a teacher? What’s your response to that? And then categorically like: Why should I pay for these things? You just write a response for that. Maybe if you just do two or three of those, you’ve got them in your back pocket, and then you can say, “Now forget about any other ghosts that I’m imagining. I’ll deal with them as they come.” Right? But at least you’ll have a couple responses to the big one. And you can just kind of move on.
Luke: That’s a good idea. I like that. I had not thought of doing that.
Shane: Yeah. From talking to you so much in the community and on member calls and in our workshops and stuff, I feel like you and Jocelyn are kind of on the same wavelength. You know?
Jocelyn: I’m sorry, Luke.
Shane: Yeah, right. Yeah. But I don’t deal with things like Jocelyn does. I’m kind of just like, “I don’t care. I’ll just deal with it when it comes.” Like that, but that’s how I mentally deal with, because I have the same struggles. I worry about people doing this. I worry about people thinking that. My solution is just ignore it until it becomes a problem, and then fight it then. But I think you’re more of the, hey, I want to be prepared for this. I want to dot my Is, cross my Ts. So maybe think of the four big things you are afraid of, that you think people are going to call you out for in that imposter syndrome. Go ahead and write a quick two paragraph email for each one of them and have it ready. And then forget about the rest until you move on.
Luke: Okay. I will do that.
Jocelyn: Okay, Luke. We talked about some fears and obstacles that you’re having in your business right now. Let’s talk about how we can help you grow more. What is your question for us today?
Luke: I think my question kind of centers around sales. I had the first annual sale. And then there was a bit of a pause. And then a few more sales came in. Now I’ve got actually three annual members and five monthly members, so it’s growing and it’s moving. But it’s not as quick as I’d like it to be. And I’m struggling with knowing what’s next. What lever do I pull next to get things flowing more effectively? Do I do more ads? Do I send more emails? Do I do a bit more of everything? What should my focus be? Where should I put my efforts?
Shane: What a great question from today’s guest. We’ll get to the answer of that in just a moment. But first, did you know that you can get the answers you need to start, build, and grow your online business too? All you have to do is join me and Jocelyn and Luke and all of our other members inside of the Flip Your Life community. You can get all the training, coaching, and support that you need to build and grow your own online business. The best part, you can get started today for free, absolutely no cost to you.
Shane: All you have to do is go to flippedlifestyle.com/free, and you can start your one month free trial right away. Join hundreds of other family focused entrepreneurs from all over the world inside of the Flip Your Life community. You can learn how we started an online business, replaced our income, quit our full-time jobs, and now we get to work from home. You can build a life that you want, and you can get started today at no cost. Just go to flippedlifestyle.com/free and start your free month today. Now let’s get back to our show and back to our guest’s question.
Shane: All right. The interesting thing about your story, Luke, is where you’re at because you’ve been doing this now for a while. You finally made the first sale. You finally made the second, the third, the fourth sale. You’re getting some traction. You’re getting that monthly recurring revenue going. And even though you feel like you’ve been in the game for a while, and you want things to accelerate so fast, you’re just at the beginning. Everybody thinks the beginning is the day that they sign up for the Flip Your Life community, or start their website, or make their first product. But all of that other stuff is just preparing you for the beginning. I kind of think of it like an athlete. An athlete start … Our kids play sports. Anna Jo does gymnastics and cheerleading. Issac does basketball. They’re both really young right now. They’re just in lessons to learn how to do the flips and learn how to shoot the free throws and learn how to do the lay ups. They’re just starting to play in their first games and do things like that.
Shane: And then they’re going to go to middle school. Then they’re going to go to high school. And let’s say that some day they get to go and play in college. Right? Well, really the first day of your career as an athlete starts there. All that other stuff has been leading up to that moment to get you ready for your actual career. And that’s kind of where you are now. But the problem is we want it to happen now fast. You want to go straight to the NBA. Right? You’re like, “I’m ready. Let’s go pro, coach.” But it’s like, it can’t happen that way. You’ve got to kind of look at yourself and say, “No. I’m still in … This is the beginning. This is the true beginning, the foundation of my business.”
Shane: It’s not like you’re going to be able to pull a lever and just wow, 500 members in the next three months. What we’ve got to do is, we’ve got to figure out a progression. We’ve got to figure out drills, those everyday things that you do to start adding this thing brick by brick. And I say that only to get you ready for this mental shift of, I’ve got to be happy with being the glacier and not the forest fire. I want to be a slow moving thing that adds something every day to my membership. Maybe it’s a little bit of ads. Maybe it’s a little bit of promotion. Maybe it’s a Facebook Live. Maybe it’s an email, whatever it is. But we’ve got to get you mentally shifted to now growing slowly because the turtle always wins the race every time you read the book.
Shane: We don’t want to burn out. We don’t want to get 50 members and then it dies. We want to build an everlasting, long running, stable, successful business. That’s what I want you to be really focused on first is that mental shift of, it doesn’t have to happen fast. It doesn’t have to accelerate, especially now because this is really your first step, is getting these first few members. Next year is where you might make a 10X growth. You know what I’m saying? That’s what we found. We were steady Eddie for the first year. And then month 13 is where we accelerated. Right? And I don’t want you to go into this thinking, “Why do I not have 100 members? I’m a failure. Why didn’t everything grow? Why didn’t everything happen?” It’s because this is really just the first step.
Jocelyn: With that being said, there are definitely some things that you can do right now to grow this thing already. And I imagine that you’re already doing some. You’re clearly … You said you have ads on Google. You have Facebook. You have Pinterest, which is great. But I think right now what you need to do is figure out a way for the people who are already at your website to kind of spread the word for you. And the way that you do that, especially in this education field, is to find a way for them to share you without, first of all, blatantly asking for it because nobody likes that. And second of all, a way for them to increase their status.
Jocelyn: The way that I used to do this on Elementary Librarian is that I would offer free trainings. It would be something that they wanted. For instance, right now is back to school time, so for librarians, I made a webinar about open house, some tips for open house, things that you can do. It’s very timely. It’s relevant. They want to share it with another librarian. It’s totally free. It’s something cool. It’s something that everyone needs, so right now is the perfect time to do that. I’m not saying that open house is the right answer for your audience. I’m just saying find something that they would think is really cool and they would want to tell their friends about it.
Shane: We grew our history business Facebook page to almost 5000 people, not by sharing cool lesson plans, not by running ads to sell them things, but we developed a strategy about two years ago. And we just made a commitment to we are going to share a funny meme every day that only a history teacher would really get. Right? And the result wasn’t, hey, I want to grow my Facebook page to 5000 teachers. It was: Hey, what can we do to get people to share this page that are probably US History teachers? You have to focus on the steps and not the result. Everybody gets so into goal setting. And everybody writes their goals and puts their post-it notes on their mirrors and all this crap. Nobody ever does anything because they say, “I want to quit my job,” instead of saying, “Hey, if I did X, Y, and Z every day, I would eventually get to quit my job.” Everybody says, “I want to lose 50 pounds,” instead of making a commitment to working out and eating healthy every day. Right?
Shane: I’m going to eat … I’m going to only drink water every day. If you did that, a year from now, you would look very different. Right? Same thing here. If you make a commitment to two or three actions to grow your page, to grow your site, to do what Jocelyn said, to give people status. The reason we picked memes is because people love to share funny stuff because then someone says, “Hey Bob, thanks for being funny and sharing that meme with me.” They get the credit for it. Right? You’ve got to think outside the box and quit thinking about your content. And think, “How can we share? How can we grow? How can we do what it takes to get more eyeballs?” Because more eyeballs equal more money. Right? And then put the daily things in place and say, “I’m going to share a meme every day. I’m going to do like Jocelyn said. Maybe we’ll do a free training once a month.” How involved is your partner? Is she doing things live, or is she just making content? She doesn’t want to be on camera, or what does she want to do?
Luke: Primarily she just makes content. I don’t think she really wants to be on camera.
Shane: Okay. Then what you want to focus on is stuff like blog posts. That could be very interesting for teachers. So instead of a live video training, maybe you get her. Say, “Hey. Would you write me a blog post? Five tips for blank.”
Jocelyn: Maybe it’s about new standards come out all the time. I don’t know for sure if there are any new science standards right now. But maybe it’s a guide to new science standards, something that people need and something that they would feel good about telling their friends about.
Shane: And then maybe you could have her send you funny things that she sees about teaching because I’m sure she’s in teacher circles. Your business partner’s around people. They’re probably sharing stuff with her. Just be like, “Hey, if anyone sends you anything hilarious, send it to me.” And then what you do is, you take it and you kind of fudge it to whatever your people are. What we do is, one of the big things is, I can’t wait until back to school, said no teacher ever. Right? What we do is, we say, we just take that same meme and we’ll change the picture of it a little bit. And then we’ll put, “Said no US History teacher ever.” Or we’ll just kind of bend it a little bit over to our thing to kind of focus our message in, and make sure that it’s history teachers [inaudible 00:32:58].
Shane: One of the things I shared this summer was we had Independence Day, July 4th. Right? People share American flags and something like that. And I put a British teacher sent me this, and it was a British flag. And it said, “Happy Traitor’s Day,” or something. I don’t remember what it was. But it was just like something that only a history teacher would actually laugh at and share. Think of things outside the box. You’ve done so much content work now. And you guys are really focused on education and curriculum. Now you have to build a tribe. If you sent a thing to all these email lists, you’ve got 300 emails. Right? Are they all biology teachers, chemistry teachers, science teachers? What are they?
Luke: High school biology teachers.
Shane: Right. Send them an email that’s funny. If you see one of these memes about biology teachers or something. I’m sure there’s something funny about a dinosaur or something you can figure out and find. Right? Don’t be afraid even to email all 300 of those people this funny picture just to brighten your day. And it says something funny. And then put, “Forward this to all of your teacher friends,” because there’s probably more than one science teacher in the building. Do the same thing on social media. Find a strategy that lets people want to share your stuff, and not just, hey, I have a lesson plan for tomorrow.
Jocelyn: But the big key for me is to do it in a natural way. You don’t want to say, “Share this with all your friends.” Don’t do that.
Luke: Especially on social media.
Jocelyn: You want it to be something that they’re going to share on their own without being asked to do it.
Jocelyn: All right. I would start there. I think that is a great way to grow your audience, mostly just by serving them. Think about what they want, what they need, and what they would be willing to tell their friends about.
Shane: What ideas have you guys had, have you had, to grow your audience? Forget about sales right now because if you focus on audience growth, the sales will come. Right? Forget all the ads. Forget all the promotions. And forget all the flash sales and Black Fridays and all that stuff. How have you thought to grow your audience in this space based on what you’ve learned about them in the last year?
Luke: You know, honestly, I don’t think there’s been a real focus on how to grow the audience. It’s been on content creation and ring ads and the technical side of the website and some blog posts, but no real focus on: How do we grow an audience of high school biology teachers?
Shane: Right. And that’s what you’ve got to figure out next because if you don’t get more eyeballs, then you can’t possibly have hands attached to them that can reach for their wallet. Right?
Shane: Ads can be a part of the strategy. There’s nothing wrong sometimes with promoting stuff that’s not necessarily sales related like a good blog post that only a biology teacher would care. Those are things you can promote to create awareness, to get more people on your list. And then once you get people on your list, you can sell to them. But no audience, no growth, no business.
Jocelyn: Just knowing you like we do, because you’ve been part of our community for a while, you’re willing to do the work. You just need to focus on promotion now.
Shane: Yeah. I think the main thing here is, and this is the lesson to take away. What could you do every day and every week and every month? And if you just did it consistently, you would have no choice but to grow your audience. Things that we’ve chosen in the past, like our daily thing was a meme. Our weekly thing was a piece of content. And our monthly thing was an ad campaign or a webinar. That’s something we’ve done in the past. And it’s like if you just do that every day, every week, every month, and you just say, “Hey. This is the path. I’m just going to do this. My business can’t help but grow.” Six months from now it’s going to look really different. You’re going to have 3000 people on your list instead of 300 because you did those things.
Shane: Think about: How can I get more people to like our Facebook page? How can I get more people then to click something to give me an opt in? And how can I do that every day, every week, moving forward through this year to build this audience that will create explosive growth next summer, or as we go along? Right?
Luke: Okay. Consistent, steady growth of audience and a little less focus on making more courses and more material and more content.
Shane: Yes. That’s always. Anytime anyone says, “Should I make another course?” We usually nine times out of 10 say no because you’ve got tons of curriculum. And also too, she’s making the curriculum, your business partner. You know what I’m saying? You don’t even have to worry about that. You just need her input so that you can get creative and say, “How could I do X every day?” And maybe it’s a five minute thing. Maybe if you schedule it on Sunday night and just something happens every day. But every day, your biology teacher audience has an opportunity to share something. Because if you don’t give them the opportunity, they can’t do it. If you’re not doing something every day, they can’t do it. That’s why I email my list every day, because if I email my list every day, and I give them value, and then I give them a link to click and make them pitch something … Or to pitch something, they then have an opportunity to go join the free trial or buy something from us.
Shane: If I don’t do it that day, I did not give anyone an opportunity to buy something from me. If we share a meme every day on our history site, well, every single day all those history teachers have the opportunity to share that. I think one of our last posts got like 1000 shares. And it’s because we gave them the opportunity to. Really, you’ve just got to give people an opportunity to become a member of your audience. And then you can give them an opportunity to buy your product.
Luke: Okay. Seems so straightforward when you put it out there for me.
Shane: It usually is. People want the magic button. They want the magic tool. They want the magic whatever. But really, it’s like if you just did these things consistently and prolifically every single day, your business couldn’t help but grow. You couldn’t help but lose the weight. You would overcome the obstacle if you just did it step by step over and over. And also, that mindset shift of be patient. It’s not time yet for that growth. That growth usually happens at a tipping point. You get the snowball. You roll it down the hill. It looks like a snowball. It looks like a snowball. Whoa, it’s getting bigger. Whoa. What happened? All of a sudden, now it’s like 2X, 10X. It’s an avalanche. That’s kind of what online business has to do to run its natural course.
Luke: Huh. Okay. I’ll stop looking for the avalanche.
Jocelyn: Well, you can look for it, just not right this second.
Shane: Yeah. The avalanche isn’t caused by the avalanche. The avalanche is caused by the gust of wind that blew the first snowflake into the snowball. Right? And that’s how the avalanche starts. Or it’s the guy that yelled, and it echoed and it rumbled. And then it all came down the mountain. That’s what you’re trying to do right now.
Jocelyn: But keep doing what you’re doing because I think sometimes people are constantly looking for something new to do. But you’re doing a lot of the right things. You just need to do more of the right things.
Luke: Okay. Yeah. That’s been another one of the shiny object syndrome. It’s like, okay. Check mark. Got that one. Sale made. What’s next?
Shane: Yes. And like really, that’s usually where most entrepreneurs fail because what you should say is, “I got the first sale.” And then you got three more. What caused those sales? Do that every day for a year. That’s all you’ve got to do. That’s why we switched our business model to this free trial thing because we were like, “Okay. What if people got in our membership? They would see how awesome it is and they would stay.” Right? The answer was let’s just let everyone into our membership for free for a month. And then they’ll see how awesome it is, and they’ll stay. And that’s what happened.
Shane: But now it’s commitment though. You can’t … If you’re going to do one thing, you’ve got to do one thing. We’ve got a sales page up, but you can go in there for free and you’ll see what it’s going to cost the next month. But everything’s free. Everything points to the free. Everything does that. Whatever caused that thing, hey, I ran an ad that got this, that did this. I shared something that got shared that did this. Just do more of that. Find what works, find the nail and just hammer it until it stops working. And then you find something new. Shiny object syndrome says, “That thing worked. I wonder if something else will work too.” [crosstalk 00:41:22].
Jocelyn: And we deal with this too. We were just talking about this the other day.
Shane: All the time.
Jocelyn: Shane’s like, “What about these 18 things?” And I’m like, “Well, the business is not broken right now. Let’s just do more of what we’re already doing.” He’s like, “Oh, yeah.”
Shane: Right. I’m just passing on Jocelyn bombs. She told me that two days ago. Right?
Jocelyn: Yeah. Sometimes I think we try to invent problems, even though we really don’t have any problems. You’re getting members. You’re getting paid members. You don’t have problems. You just need to keep it going, grow more.
Shane: And also too, it’s like a mentality of it’s now or never. It always feels like that, doesn’t it? In your online business, it’s like, if I don’t do it in August, I’ll never do it. If I don’t do it in July, I’ll never do it. If I don’t do it in September, I’ll never do it. I’m getting sales now. I need more sales now, or it’s going to all fail and go away. And it always feels now or never. But that’s not really it. It’s just like: What’s the strategy this month? It might change a little next month, but it’s going to be the same things with different content. Right? You’ve just got to get that mentality of one step at a time, baby step it, keep going forward. Okay?
Jocelyn: All right, Luke. It has been a fun conversation today. I have loved the mooing especially. Before we go, we always ask our guest: What is one thing that you plan to take action on in the next day or so based on what we talked about here today?
Luke: I think what I’m going to go and do is sit down and face my imposter syndrome and find out. Make some templates. Make some emails, some responses to questions that I’m afraid of having in my inbox. And just let my mind be okay with the fact that they may come, but if they do, I’m ready.
Jocelyn: Exactly. I love that. I think it is a really important strategy even if no one ever asks the question. And they might not. At least you’re prepared. It just makes you feel like you have a mental check box that you’ve checked off.
Luke: Yeah. It sure does, so I like that plan.
Shane: All right, man.
Jocelyn: All right. Thank you for [crosstalk 00:43:14].
Shane: We’ve got another call. And I’ve got one at my door, so we’re going to jet. You take care of those cows, and we’ll talk to you soon, brother.
Luke: Thank you. Bye now.
Shane: All right, guys. That was another great interview with one of our Flip Your Life community members. Before we go, Jocelyn, I always like to share a Bible verse at the end of all of our podcasts. Today’s Bible verse comes from Proverbs chapter 13, verse 11. And in the Bible it says, “Wealth from get rich quick schemes quickly disappear. Wealth from hard work grows over time,” so do what it takes to build a stable, successful, growing business. Put in the work. Make the investment. Don’t look for the get rich quick schemes. Don’t listen to all those people out there that tell you, you can do it fast. Build your business so it will be there for you and for your family in years to come. Until next time, do whatever it takes to get out there and take action.
Jocelyn: Bye. I hear some gentle mooing in the background.
Shane: I do hear gentle mooing. Are you near a cow pasture by any chance, Luke?
Luke: I live in a cow pasture.
Jocelyn: That’s fantastic.
Shane: I think that’s a first on the Flipped Lifestyle Podcast. Mooing. We’ve had dogs barking. We’ve had kids walking in eating bags of chicken. We’ve never had a cow. Never had a live cow on the show. Good job, Luke.
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