How do you create a 1-page marketing plan?
Is it possible to create a marketing strategy and plan that you will actually use and reference? And further, how do you change that plan as the world and industry evolves?
Joining me for this episode is Allan Dib, a serial entrepreneur, rebellious marketer and #1 bestselling author. His book The 1-Page Marketing Plan has been an international bestseller for the last four years. Allan helps businesses all over the world develop and improve their marketing capabilities using the 1-Page Marketing Plan (1PMP) framework.
In the past Allan has started, grown and successfully exited multiple businesses in various industries. Allan grew his previous business from startup to four years later being named by Business Review Weekly (BRW) as one of Australia’s fastest growing companies.
Allan gives listeners actionable tips on:
- [1:30] What is marketing?
- [3:10] Why Allan wrote the 1-page marketing plan
- [5:05] How often you should be looking at your marketing plan and making adjustments
- [7:00] Should your marketing plans change based on the economy?
- [9:25] How to create a 1-page marketing plan
- [19:10] How to implement and evaluate our marketing plan
- [28:25] Awareness vs. action when it comes to marketing
- [32:55] Finding optimal clients
- [38:30] Delivering a world-class experience
- [39:55] Allan’s book recommendation
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Connect with Allan here:
Connect with me
[00:00:27] Allan: Hi, I’m Alan Dib. Uh, I’m the founder of Success-Wise and I’m best known for my bestselling book, the One Page Marketing Plan.
[00:00:34] Karin: Alan, thank you for being here. This is a great episode. Uh, because this quarter we are really focusing on marketing strategy, and we’ve talked to a lot of people about the anatomy of marketing.
The what strategy is, why you need it, why what, what’s gonna happen if you don’t? Excuse me, and this time in this episode, we are gonna focus in on actual. Good takeaway information because your book is, like you mentioned, the one page marketing strategy. So that kind of gives away our, our, our title for the show.
But we are going to talk about how do you create a one page marketing plan. So I feel like the, you know, I got an mba, most of our marketing plans were not one page , and they were very long and detailed and went on and on and on, and, So let’s first start with, uh, let’s, I know you’ve talked a lot about just the definition of marketing to begin with.
Mm-hmm. , what, what is it? What is marketing?
[00:01:37] Allan: Well, uh, glad you asked that. And literally in my book, I assume nothing. So meaning that I assume that whoever’s reading the book, uh, is a technician really good at what they do, doctor, lawyer, butcher, baker, candlestick, maker, whatever. And literally in the first chapter of the book, we.
what marketing is, and so I use a little analogy there and uh, I’m happy to read it for you. It says, if the circus is coming to town and you paint a sign saying circus coming to the showground Saturday, that’s advertising. Yes. If you put a sign on the back of an elephant and walk into town, that’s promotion.
Yeah. If the. If the elephant walks through the mayor’s flowerbed and the local newspaper writer story about it, that’s publicity. And if you get the mayor to laugh about it, that’s public relations. Yes. If you get the town citizens to go to the show, spend a lot of money at the booths, that’s sail. And if you plan the whole thing, , that’s marketing
[00:02:31] Karin: this. I love this. I love this because I’ve, over the course of my career, I’ve had so many people ask me what the difference is between all of those elements. Yeah. And isn’t that just marketing and isn’t it just basically putting together an ad or, you know, doing any of these things? Yeah. And uh, I, I think that is such a perfect explanation of all the various pieces that can make up a good market.
Plan and campaign and all the different pieces that might go into it. Okay. So we’ve got all those ideas and now we need a plan. Before we do any of those ideas, we need a plan. Yeah. So it’s kind of backstepping into the, I the whole idea of marketing is where you start is with this plan, but yeah, tell us how we can do this in one page and what, how, how does, how does, how do you even begin when you’re thinking, okay, this is gonna.
Single page, one page. .
[00:03:28] Allan: Well, uh, I, I wrote this book, uh, for myself. You know, maybe about 10 years prior to to, to starting my first business because I struggled with this so much. So, uh, I had hired an expensive consultant to help me put together marketing and a business plan, and it was many, many pages long and.
I, I’m sure he had an mba and it had charts and graphs and projections and all those sorts of things. And of course, what did I do with that plan? I shoved it in the top drawer of my desk, never saw it again until I was, uh, moving out of that office, dusted it off through, threw it in the trash, and was sort of angry at myself for wasting a lot of money on, on something that I’d never used.
Yeah. And so, uh, really I wanted to see, look, could we synthesize, , the 80 20 of putting together that big long plan and putting it together on one page. And why one page? Because one page feels easy to do. One page is easily shareable. So for example, if we’re, uh, we want to share our marketing plan with our web developer, our copywriter, our SEO guy or whatever, we can easily say, Hey, this is our marketing plan right now.
So, so that you’re aware who our target market is, who our message is, um, what technology we use, so on. Forth. Yeah. And so, uh, it’s also easily updateable, so it’s a, it’s a living plan. So what, when we get better and more information, we know, hey, this message lands better with our audience or whatever else, we can just update that at any time.
Yes. And so what that, that to me was a very important element because these big, long, intensive plans, um, they generally don’t get updated very often, if ever.
[00:05:03] Karin: Yeah. I, I, I wanna actually dig into that for a minute because. I feel like people do this once and they think that it is now written in stone. And so this is the marketing plan and, uh, we can’t stray from this even if the data is telling us something different.
Exactly. So, so how often should we be looking at it and making these adjustments and, and how much should we adjust it? So if we adjust it, like, let’s say more than a certain amount, are we, should we just start.
[00:05:39] Allan: Uh, sometimes you start over, but generally speaking, it evolves over time. So when I look at my marketing plan, um, I, I evolve the message over time.
Sometimes we will recalibrate with what audience, uh, we’re working with. So for example, we start working with a particular type of audience, a particular, particular type of client, and we find out, wow, these guys are really ideal for what we do. And so we may recalibrate, readjust, uh, some of our message, or, uh, some of our sales team will.
Test out a message with, with an audience, and we found, wow, that message really lands, it really converts. So of course we’re gonna update our plans. So really, I think of it as a living document that whenever we get better and more information over time, when we get better data, when we get feedback from the marketplace, either in the sales process or maybe in our support desk, um, we will absolutely update that.
So I always look. , you know, that nodding head when I’m, uh, uh, speaking, yeah, either on a podcast or live or on a sales call or whatever else. Um, I look out for messages that get really good responses via email, via whatever. And so I’m always updating the my own one page marketing plan to reflect better and more information, better data.
And so really, I mean, it’s, it’s not like, hey, you, you need to be doing in a particular cadence once a week or whatever, but whenever you get better and more information, You can just update your plan and because it’s a single page, easily editable, you can just do that at any time. You don’t need to spend hours and hours or hire a consultant or do do those sorts of things.
[00:07:10] Karin: That’s okay. So, um, What I’m hearing is that you kind of take the data that you’ve got from your clients and as you’re working through, but what about in a lot of questions I’m getting lately are related to the economy. So if we’re headed into a recession and should I be, uh, backing out of changing, adjusting, revising, rethinking my marketing plan?
Based on what’s happening in the economy,
[00:07:41] Allan: 100%. You should, you should, you should always be riding the relevant conversations and trends that people, uh, uh, that’s happening in the marketplace. So, you know, back when the economy was booming, your message may have been around, Hey, here’s how you make more profit.
Here’s how you can grow. Growth was a very big factor. Now, a lot of people are kind of shoring up the walls and think, You know, how do I tighten things up? How do I reduce costs? How do I make sure I stay in business and ride this out and, and be there for the next boom? So absolutely you, you, you should readjust and pivot your message with whatever’s relevant and whatever’s happening.
And again, that, that’s a great reason to be updating your one page marketing plan and saying, Hey, we we’re just gonna recalibrate our message a little bit. We’re gonna tone down the, the stuff about growth. Yeah. And, you know, and all of that sort of stuff. And then we are gonna, Focus more on how do you survive the recession?
How do you cut costs? How do you be sus a sustainable, profitable business through this time? Yeah.
[00:08:38] Karin: I remember, um, early 20, no, maybe mid 2020 when we were kind of getting into the pandemic and I was talking to, uh, an advisor about these. Kind of global marketing, uh, phrases and trends and concerns that that, you know, just globally people cared about.
And the things that they anticipated people caring about at that time before they had any sense of, of covid being part of the picture had been completely flipped upside down. So, you know, at that kind of what you’re describing, they had anticipated and made all these marketing plans based on growth and, you know, just kind of making incremental and valuable.
But then all of a sudden, COVID came along and what people cared about, what clients and customers and people cared about in their marketing was an understanding that they were safe. That, um, there was a community that, um, that there was. There, there was an adjustment being made for covid and the safety of meetings and all of that stuff.
Mm-hmm. And you saw that across every website and every kind of marketing channel. Yeah. And the people who weren’t paying attention to that, um, you looked outdated. You looked like you were not paying attention, like it was Totally. You know, you, you need to kind of be up with what’s happening in the world, , it seems like.
Totally. Yeah. Um, okay. So let’s, let’s dig into this one page marketing plan. So how do you.
[00:10:06] Allan: Okay. So, um, for, for, for the visual people who are listening or watching, um, if you visualize a single page divided up into six blocks, so there are, there are three blocks, uh, at the top, three blocks in the middle and three blocks, uh, at the bottom.
So the first three blocks are what we call the before phase. So that’s before anyone. That you even exist. And so those three blocks, uh, that make that that phase up are called, uh, your target market is the first block. The second block is messaging, and the third block is media. So, uh, market message, media, they’re the three things that we really need to get right for someone to become aware that you exist.
Okay? So, uh, that’s, uh, that’s our messaging. Who, who we want our clients to be, and then how we’re going. To reach those clients. This, the next, uh, phase is called the during phase. So it’s before, during, and after. So the during phase is somebody’s raised their hand and said, look, hey, I’m potentially interested in what you’ve got.
And that may be in, in the case. Uh, it might be phoning your office, it may be submitting a contact form. It may be opting in on one of your blog posts. Um, any way that someone’s become aware of you and they, that they’ve kind of raised their hand and. I’m vaguely interested in what you’ve got to offer.
Tell me more. Yeah, and so the during phase, uh, we do three things again. So we capture those leads, we nurture those leads, and then finally we convert those leads. So there, there’s the lead capture, lead nurturing. and lead conversion, uh, during that phase. And then a lot of people feel, Hey, marketing’s done, done after, then, you know, yes.
You know, we’ve, uh, we’ve converted them to a paying client for the first time. Yep. Done marketing. Well, nothing could be further from the truth. The most profitable part of our, our journey is the after phase and the journey, the after phase has three steps also. So the first one. delivering a world class experience, so turning people from their first transaction to being a raving fan.
Um, the the next step is, uh, increasing customer lifetime value. So how do we take someone from purchasing once or twice and increasing either the frequency or volume? Or ascension of the level of the product that they’re on, uh, and doing business in more volume, more frequency, um, uh, higher price level, whatever’s relevant in, in your industry.
And then the final step is how do we. Orchestrate and stimulate referrals, meaning turn one client into multiple clients. How do we get one clients to refer to each other and do that in a systematic way? Because most people think of referrals as kind of, Hey, I hope and pray I’ll do a really good job. I hope and pray someone will gimme some referrals.
[00:12:49] Karin: And I, and I will say that, I can’t even tell you the number of conversations I’ve had with potential clients where if you picture those nine boxes, they start the conversation. We’ve basically, our entire marketing strategy is box number nine. We get all of our business exactly through referrals.
We don’t need seo, we don’t really need marketing. We find it kind of like they, there’s a lot of attorneys who don’t wanna think of themselves as business people. They wanna think of themselves as this kind of higher calling. and, um, you know, I’m here to be a rude awakening to let you know that this is a business and you, you don’t call them customers.
I know the, the legal industry all has, you know, fancy words for everything. Clients and their firms, not businesses, but. You have to make money at the end of the day or you can’t continue to serve those clients and serve that higher purpose that that is at the core of what, what you’re trying to do. So just having Vox number nine as your entire marketing strategy, like even if you just picture this as this nine Vox grid and you’re only do focusing on one out of nine, it’s pretty clear that you are really missing.
Most of you know the other really important pieces.
[00:14:04] Allan: Well, referrals are an incredibly important, uh, important and, uh, powerful part of our marketing strategy. But, uh, for the most part, we are putting that in other people’s hands, right? Yes. And so we want to control our own destiny. We want to control our own lead flow.
And the other thing is, Referrals are a longer term strategy. So it can take 10, 15 years to build up enough lead flow from referrals only, right? If that’s the only thing that you’re relying on. And so, yes, of course we wanna do a great job. We want to please people, we want to fulfill our vision and all of that.
But if we. If we, uh, lose the business or if we go out of business, we’re not gonna be able to fulfill, uh, our vision and Right, our purpose and all of those sorts of things, right? So, uh, I, I say in my book, um, , you know, when you’re on in an airplane, uh, they say, look, in the event of an emergency, fit your own mask first.
Yes. And then help other people. Right, exactly. Why be, because you’re not gonna be able to be any use to anyone if you’ve passed out to, and you don’t have enough oxygen . And so the oxygen of business is cash flow.
[00:15:07] Karin: Exactly. Okay, so you’ve got your nine box. and then we’re still kind of limited to a single page.
So are we talking a sentence, a couple bullets. What, what kind of information do you fit into each one of those boxes? Um, just a few words. How do you, what’s the next
[00:15:24] Allan: step? Yeah, they’re mainly bullet points and some people want to expand on those bullet points, and that’s fine if you want to turn it into a nine page marketing plan.
You know, one page for each, each of the sections, that’s totally fine. The point is that it can be done very, very quickly and very, very easily. Generally, bullet points I find is, is pretty good. So for example, let’s say we are selecting our target market. We want to be. very, very specific about who that is, and we can do that in a few bullet points.
Sure. So we might say, look, hey, I’m interested in people who, uh, uh, have suffered a personal injury event in, in la, um, and who maybe have a claim of this particular size or whatever else. Uh, you can be very, very specific about who you want. Sure. And so we, we can specify that in a few bullet points because, uh, what we want to do is we want someone.
uh, who sees that person or hear is hears of that person to say, ah, hey, uh, uh, I know who can help you with that, uh, that issue. Whereas if we say, look, you know what, we can help anyone and anyone with, with everything. Yes. Um, That’s that, that’s not gonna help us identify who our ideal target market is.
[00:16:34] Karin: Right? And it’s not gonna keep you top of mind for anything. Like if you’re just a broad-based generalist, then when any issue, particular issue comes up, the, you know, your referrals think, I’m not quite sure if they do that kind of thing. Yes. Um, whereas, , you know, this is someone that their, their friend has this very specific kind of injury.
They know that you’ve done injury, personal injury law in the past, and they say, oh, I know. I know this person. I know they’ve done this kind of case. I’ve got the name for you.
[00:17:05] Allan: Exactly. So if you look at your, I mean, reverse engineering things, if you look at your Google search history, and we’re not gonna ask anyone to reveal their Google search history.
Yeah. . But if you look. It’s, it’s going to be very, very specific. You’re probably not typing in lawyer in the search box. You’re typing in personal injury lawyer, orange County. Yeah. Or what, what, whatever is relevant. So y y you are, you know, when I, um, I had some knee issues, uh, and so I found a guy who was an.
and, and a specialist in helping people get their knees strong. His name is t Knees over Toes guy. He’s got millions of followers on Instagram, on TikTok, whatever. Exactly, exactly. And, and so very, very specific. Now he could probably help you with your neck. He could probably help you with your back. He could probably do whatever, but knees over toes guy.
And so, uh, very, very specific. So people are searching very, very specific things. The other thing about being specific. , uh, you want your message to really land in a way where someone says, Hey, that’s for me. Yes. Whereas if you’re too general, that’s never gonna happen. Right? all things to all people.
Nobody’s ever gonna be, wow, that is exactly what I need. That’s for me. Yeah,
[00:18:15] Karin: exactly. Cuz then they have to do their, they have to do the, the work to figure out if you do that kind of thing. I saw a great, um, recording of Seth Godden one time and he was talking about, um, where he was traveling in Canada in the middle of nowhere somewhere.
And, and kind of what you were describing, he had this knee injury. And he, uh, it was his left knee, and he said, if I could search for a specialist who only did left knees, I would want him to, because maybe there’s some difference between my left knee and my right knee, of course. And instead of searching for.
Doctor or some, you know, and I’m gonna trust that that person is going to do it. Exactly right. They’ve done this before. They understand. Um, and so when you think about your own specific needs for whatever you’re searching for, even if it’s just you’re searching for lunch, you’re not gonna just search for lunch, you’re gonna think, okay, today I really want a sandwich, or I’d like some soup or whatever you, you’re gon, your needs are always very specific.
And so trying to be, I get a lot of, um, younger. Attorneys or people who are just going out on their own and they think I just, I need to pay the bills. And so I need to take any kind of case that I can take just to get started. And they think about it in the reverse way. I, I think I need to list every kind of PR practice area.
Yeah. Um, because I’m worried that I’m gonna limit my income by only saying one thing.
[00:19:41] Allan: Yeah, exactly. It’s, it is counterintuitive. It’s where you think, Hey, I’m going to create a wide net so that I can get the largest amount of business possible. But it, uh, that’s, it’s really quite counterintuitive. And, and I’m not saying that you can’t take business outside of your specialized niche, right?
If someone comes to you and says, Hey, Help me out with this, that’s totally fine. But who are we going to go after with our valuable time, money, and effort in, in a, in the marketing process? Who are we going to target? Who are we gonna spend ads going after? Who are we going to, uh, reach out to? All of those sorts of things.
So we want to be very, very targeted with our use of our. Limited resources, which is our limited funds for advertising, our limited time, our limited energy, and our limited team. Yeah. So we wanna be very, very specific about how we deploy that, those resources.
[00:20:29] Karin: Okay. So we’ve got our one page marketing plan.
When we fill in each of those boxes, we’re gonna do just a very specific, very clear, and yes, uh, very niche. Bullet points under each of those, uh, boxes. So then how do we, how do we implement this? And I know you’ve got this thing called a scorecard where you kind of go Yeah. Kind of evaluate your marketing with a scorecard.
Um, how do you, how do those work together?
[00:20:56] Allan: Uh, So the scorecard is designed to help you to figure out where you are currently strong and where you are currently have maybe some gaps or challenges that need, need, uh, fillings. So some people are really, really strong with creating really good content, but maybe they’re not great at.
Converting that content. Yeah. Or some, uh, others are, Hey, once I get on the phone with a client, I can absolutely convert them. No problem. It’s just that I don’t have enough lead flow coming in the, in the top of the funnel. So, uh, the scorecard really helps you figure out where you, where you’re strong and where you need additional help and, and gaps filled.
And it’s probably similar to the intake process that a, that a lawyer or, or doctor takes. It’s like, you know, there, there’s a diagnosis process. There’s like, uh, you know, if you go to a doctor, you know where. It and does it hurt if I twisted this way? And how did this happen and how long has it been going on?
Is it acute pain or is it a dull, dull pain? And so on and so forth. So you get to a, a diagnosis. So we do something very, very similar from a marketing perspective. And so, uh, people can take the scorecard quiz, it’ll give them a report around where they’re strong in their marketing process, where, where they’ve got maybe some challenges and gaps.
And then really we, we want to take, uh, Uh, data and use it to help either modify or, or create their one page marketing plan. So, um, so they work really well in conjunction, which with each other people can take the quiz for free on our website or, or download the one page marketing plan canvas on the, on the website as well.
So, um, so you get the scorecard
[00:22:26] Karin: and then it’s gonna align with. You know, it’ll kind of give you a score for each of those nine boxes, right? Yes. Okay. And so then it tells you, okay, so you are, like you were saying, you, you’ve got some, uh, what’s the word I’m looking for? Leads coming in , but you’re not converting them.
And so what’s, what are some of the bullet points that you would put, for example, under that lead conversion box? Make that better or, you know, make, make that work in a better way. If you find that, you know, that’s the area of weakness.
[00:22:59] Allan: Yeah. So for example, if you’ve got a conversion problem, as you mentioned, so, uh, that’s really the during phase.
So, uh, are, are you, are we capturing leads? So that, that’s one of the first things we, we would look at. So, hey, you’ve got lots of traffic coming to your. . Um, is that traffic just bouncing and and leaving? Or are we getting them into our funnel? Are we capturing those leads? Great. We’re, if we’re capturing those leads, but they’re still not, uh, leading to conversion, well, we’re gonna have a look at the nurturing process.
I what are you doing to nurture your leads and lead nurturing is in. Incredibly important, you know, so, you know, so many times, uh, people, uh, I mean, everybody knows how to convert a client who’s ready to buy right now. Yeah. You know, you’re ready to buy it right now. Great, great sign here on the dotted, gimme credit card, or gimme a credit card or whatever else.
But where it takes some sophistication is how do you keep someone warm who’s not ready to buy today? Yeah. How do you keep them, how do you nurture them? Over 30 days, 60 days, 90 days a year, two years time, and. When they’re ready to buy, still be a, a significant factor in their mind. And so what a lot of people do is a massive missed opportunity is they think, ah, look, this guy is a tire kicker.
Yes. He’s not ready to buy whatever. So next. Yeah. And what we find is that only about 3% of your addressable target market. are ready to buy today. And they’re the 3% that everybody’s fighting over. They’re, yes, they’re, they’re running ads for them. They’re trying to reach out to them. They’re trying to convert them.
But there’s a massive second bucket of people who are ready to buy sometime in the future. And that could be 30, 60 days, 90 days a year, whatever else. And when I look at our revenue and our. The vast majority of our revenue comes from people who have known about us for a significant amount of time. Yes.
I recently spoke to someone who joined our coaching program, said, how long have you been on our mailing list? And he said, two years. Yeah. Right. Yeah. And so , if two years ago I had discounted this person as a tire kicker or whatever else, that’d be a massive missed opportunity. Exactly. And we would’ve a only have a fraction of our revenue if we, we didn’t have a long-term nurturing process.
[00:25:10] Karin: Well, I was gonna add that. So my own, uh, you know, our clients are all lawyers and our nurturing process, I have, I have had clients that are even have stuck around for even longer than that. Um, oftentimes they, uh, are at a firm. They know, they have like a five year plan that they wanna start their own firm.
And what was fascinating for me is during Covid, all of a sudden a lot of those plans were expedited for various reasons. Yeah. But you know, they. They either were pushed out of a, a firm or they had this sort of life moment where they decided, yes, okay, this is it. This is my, this is my time. And they had been following and reading my stuff for years.
And so sometimes I, and I can tell in, in these initial calls because I’ll get on the first call and they’ll say, I feel like I already know you cuz I’ve been following you. Yeah, for for years and years. And that’s such a good sign because at that point you really have to mess up for it to not go well because they’re mostly sold by the time they’ve got on a call and they’ve been following you for that many years.
They wouldn’t bother scheduling a call if they didn’t think that this was the right.
[00:26:22] Allan: Totally. I mean, the, the best kind of prospects are people who know you like you. Yeah. They’re pre-motivated, pre-interested. Um, it’s a very, very different kind of dynamic when you get on a call with someone and, uh, you are, they know who you are.
They know how much you charge. They know what you’re about versus getting on a call with someone and then like, all right, what do you offer? How much does it cost? Yes. Right? Yes. That’s a very, very different dynamic. Yes. So, Uh, so if we’ve done the first five steps of our marketing process, which is, uh, capture those leads, uh, have a good message, um, figure out our target market, our media, and nurturing all of that, the sales conversion process becomes very, very easy and natural.
Right? Yeah. It’s like, it’s essentially becomes order taking, uh, rather than, uh, trying to figure out creative ways to, to convert someone. So, and that doesn’t mean we can’t use creative ways to convert someone. . It just becomes so smooth and easy. You know, I, I used to hate sales, uh, because back in the day, I, I was trained up on all of these crazy Yes.
Closes yes. And these hard sell kind of things. And I would fear getting on a, on a sales call because I’m an introvert. You know, I, I, it feels weird to kind of put pressure on someone and do all of this sort of, sort of stuff. And I thought that’s what sales was. But now I absolutely love sales because now I understand that sales is, Diagnosis, you know?
Yes. I’m, I’m there asking probing questions. They are speaking 90% of the time. I’m saying, well, tell me about your situation. Well, what else have you tried and how long has that been going on? And, uh, tell me more about that. And so on and so forth. And so really they’re, they’re telling me, uh, about their problem, and I’m listening and I’m figuring out, Hey, are we a good fit or are we not, not a good fit.
And most of the time the call ends with them converting themselves, them saying, okay. Tell me about your program and how do I join Exactly.
[00:28:17] Karin: I, uh, it sounds like maybe we have had experience in, there’s, there’s been countless numbers of coaching programs that I went through years and years ago where they give you these sales scripts and there was a voice in the back of my head that was telling me, This is not right, but I had to learn the hard way because I was so sold.
Like the, the people who sold the coaching programs were geniuses and they were great salespeople, , uh, and I got sold on them. But what finally convinced me was watching my numbers take this huge dive and it was, there was no other thing I could point to other. This changed in my approach and it was very, um, canned, salesy.
There was this thing where you had to, um, this silence is golden idea where you just kind of go quiet and like let the, the person on the other end sort of fill the silence and, and sell themselves, which never worked with my clients and just created this weird, awkward silence. And, um, I had this script that I would go through.
And meanwhile I was like, I don’t really even understand what I’m asking. And I finally, , like set it all aside, figured out a much more, uh, natural and kind of, and like you were saying, this conversational approach where you’re doing all the listening and just asking very detailed questions about their firm or what they’re needing from you.
And that’s what works, and that’s what works in any kind of a sales process, just sitting back, listening and, and then providing the, the necessary info. Um, okay, so, so we are talking about, so the conversion is, That that’s what we’re talking about, the conversion and the sales process, nurturing that conversion so that you even get to that point and recognizing that you’ve got this huge bucket of potential clients that are.
Sitting there waiting for the right moment. Um, so what else, what else is, is important to know about this one page marketing strategy that we haven’t covered? That, um, you know, not everybody gets quite right.
[00:30:22] Allan: Yeah. So we, we, we’ve covered. Awareness, and you know, obviously awareness is a world of difference from action.
Right? So the first, the first phase is about awareness. Okay? They’re aware of us. The second phase is about conversion. Okay, great. We’ve converted that awareness to our first SA sale or our first transaction. Now we, we’ve kind of done the hard and expensive work of our marketing process there, and so the money is really.
In the j the after phase. So the final phase where we deliver a world-class experience, we increase customer lifetime value, and then we orchestrate and stimulate referrals. So, um, the first is, how do I deliver a world-class experience, a, a real wow experience where I turn these people from just their first transaction.
To being absolute raving fans. Where, where we are building a, a tribe, uh, of people who are going to be net promoters. Yeah. So sometimes marketers talk about a net promoter score. So that’s people who, who would say positive things about them, who refer them new people. And there is a world of difference from someone who gives you a dollar who is just transactional.
Versus someone who gives you a dollar, who is really a raving fan, some, and you know, your bank manager will tell you those are equal dollars. But I call that the principle of the unequal dollar, right? Yes, there are, uh, you know, there, there are people who will pay late. Always complain. Always wanna speak to the c e o.
always unhappy. Drain your, you and your team, um, versus people who love what you do are really grateful. Pay on time, easy to work with, um, and refer people to you, um, and really give you and your team energy. Yes. So, um, world of difference and really that that’s again, a, a great reason why we wanna start with defining our target market so, so well because, uh, there are gonna be people in.
Customer list who are awesome to deal with, and there are gonna be people down the bottom who are not so awesome to, to deal
[00:32:21] Karin: with. And don’t you find in your own work that the, the ones that are not so awesome to work with, their projects never turn out as well either, even if you, you know, put the same amount of effort and you set all the feelings aside, the ones who are awesome to work with.
inherently always end up with a better result as well. So it’s in everyone’s best interest to not go in with this sort of authoritative, uh, problematic sort of approach because you’re gonna end up with. , uh, you know, a less, less great, I guess for lack of a better English, uh, but you’re not gonna end up with a great result either.
So, you know, I, I, I don’t know what I’m trying to say. Basically, you know, be nice, be cooperative. Go in with, with this idea of, you know, being a great team player and it, it’s gonna work out for, for.
[00:33:14] Allan: Well, well, I’ve found almost exclusively throughout all of my past businesses and all the businesses I’ve consulted with are the, the most valuable clients, meaning the clients that pay you the most, that are the most profitable are almost always the easiest to deal with.
Yes. Uh, are the ones who pay on time. You know, there’s this little meme I saw going around the marketing community. $500 client. I love this one. Look. Tell me about the value you provide. I’m not really sure. Yeah. All of this, you know, I have to be sure about the results.
[00:33:43] Karin: Paid proposal. I need to talk about proposal of like five phone calls.
Yes, yes. Yeah, yeah, exactly.
[00:33:49] Allan: $50,000 client. Uh, I’ve wire the money. When, when can we get
[00:33:52] Karin: started? Done, paid. Yeah, exactly. We’re ready. And, but there’s something there about that client who understands the value, they know what they’re getting, and the other one who’s gonna nickel and dime. And I just, I guess where I’m going with all of it is if you feel like that might be your approach where you feel like you need a nickel and dime, it’s probably because you haven’t had that, those results.
And it’s this kind of cyclical thing where, um, by kind of finding those, Agencies to work with that really provide the value where you can then step back and, and give the trust and confidence it’s going to work out better in the end. Um, I guess that was a little bit of a tangent, . I apologize for those, but, um, Totally makes sense.
But I, I do think it’s a really important part of the overall strategy that we’re all working together, we’re all on the same page, and we all feel good, feel good about it. And so, even from an agency’s perspective, don’t take those, those projects that you, that you know right away, they’re red flags.
They’re not, it’s not gonna be a good one.
[00:34:55] Allan: Totally. Um, so we, we really want more optimal clients because that’s going to. That’s going to feed your team and, you know, rather than drain your team, the other part of delivering a world class experience, which I think is incredibly important, is your business systems.
So, yes, you know, uh, you know, can you, is your system able to reliably, uh, create a, a similar result? I’ll give you an example. We all know McDonald’s, you know, the not the best burgers that you can possibly get , but they’re consistent. Right. And I mean exactly. Maybe, maybe consistently bad, right? Yeah. But you know what you’re going to get.
Yep. You, you know, there’s gonna be no surprises. You know, if you pull over on, on the side of the road, you, there’s a McDonald’s, you know what you’re going to get. Yeah. Whereas, um, there’s a cafe nearby that. That I often have lunch at really good cafe. I, I enjoy it very much, but depending on what chef is, is on
The, the same meal that I order is gonna be done a, a little bit differently. Sometimes it comes with a, with a sauce, sometimes it comes with some pesto, sometimes it’s whatever. And so it really just depends on the whims of, of the chef that day. And that, uh, that tells me they don’t have very tight systems.
It’s kind of just dependent on what’s in that person’s head that day and, and you, you get what you get. And so, uh, I think having really tight systems is a very important part of delivering a experience on giving people a consistent experience and have having a system that you can calibrate over time, where you can say, Hey, At this step, we’re actually going to improve our on onboarding strategy.
This is what we’re, we’re gonna do this a little bit better or whatever. So onboarding is a very, very important part of the, uh, customer
[00:36:37] Karin: experience. Yeah. And when you’re talking about law firms and the potential issues that you’re dealing with with your clients, these can be life-changing things. And to have these checklists to not only make sure that they have a good experience, but to make sure it’s done correctly and that all of the boxes are checked and that.
That you are not forgetting anything. Your team’s not forgetting anything. To have all those systems in place to, um, to deliver accurately and. You know, appropriately
[00:37:06] Allan: a a and that the intellectual property isn’t siloed in someone’s mind, right? Yes. Because people, people get sick, people leave, people, uh, move on to other, other jobs or get busy or whatever else.
Yeah. And, uh, it’s a real scalability blocker if, uh, you know, all the intellectual property is in someone’s mind. So we want to, to. Uh, checklists, systems that we tick off, um, things that we go through systematically. Um, there was a, there was a great book, I think it was called The Checklist Manifesto. Yes.
Which, um, uh, which was really demonstrated this, uh, so a as you know, surgeons, yeah. Uh, before and after they did checklist had a massive difference in their mortality rate. And, you know, it was just simple things like, Did you wash your hands before? Yes. You know, treating this patient and, you know, it’s just something that you, you would think would be a normal part of, uh, an experienced surgeon’s routine.
But, you know, like, like most people, their surgeons are imperfect and sometimes they forgot to wash their hands before they handle the pregnant woman or whatever. Exactly.
[00:38:06] Karin: Well, and the longer and more detailed the process, the more likely that you’re gonna forget a step or two. And so all the more reasons for those checklists and, uh, I know, I, I, uh, talked to.
Uh, Jack Newton from Cleo a few weeks ago, and he was talking about these, he does all these legal tr trend reports about what clients are looking for, and the, the phrase he kept coming back to is that they just want it to be very easy and they want things to be very clean and easy and clear, especially when you consider most people working with lawyers, probably.
worked with a lawyer before. Mm-hmm. , unless you’re a business lawyer and they’re coming back to you over and over, but oftentimes it’s the first time they’ve worked with a lawyer. So if you have this system and you can say, listen, we’ve. Three steps in this system. I’ve got a checklist. I’m gonna send you this checklist.
It’s gonna be quick and easy, and I’m gonna walk you through it and it’s straightforward and you sound confident you know what you’re talking about. It conveys that to that client. But then you also have confidence in your team. It, it really is part of your marketing strategy, as strange as that may seem.
[00:39:11] Allan: Uh, very, very much so. And, and really it’s about showing people, uh, that you are organized exactly as you said and you know what you’re doing. And there, there’s a roadmap. So, uh, in a previous business we had a telecommunications company, and part of it is there would be sometimes maybe a two week gap between the time that someone placed their order and that something would happen.
Now, a two week gap is a long time for someone to not hear anything, right? Yeah. And so what we introduced, even though. We, we are just waiting for the lines to get connected, and it’s just gonna take that long. And even though we tell people that people are getting, Hey, what’s happening? What, what’s, so we introduced a little step called a known news update, which would be, Hey, uh, Karen, um, everything’s going really well.
Everything’s on track. We’re expecting your, your service to be delivered in the next week or so. And so it’s a known news update. You know, so it’s just keeping you in the loop that, Hey, we haven’t forgotten about you. Everything’s fine. Everything’s on track. We’re, we’re all on time. And, you know, we’ll be in touch in a few days for, to range installation.
[00:40:14] Karin: love that because we try to check in and do a weekly like status. , even if nothing has changed and we’re still waiting for the same thing that we were last week, I’m just gonna remind you of that, and I’m gonna continue to remind you of that so that you know the ball is in your court or maybe the ball is in our court.
But what I’m gonna, I have not disappeared off the planet. I am not, you know, forgetting about you. You’re still here. We’re all together. And here’s a little, um, nudge that just lets you know that we’re alive and. . Exactly.
[00:40:44] Allan: Yeah, exactly. So, awesome. It’s a, it’s a nice, it’s, it’s a nice step, especially for something that goes over a longer p uh, period of time.
Yeah. And, you know, this is one of many things that you can do to de deliver a world class experience. So, um, uh, cover that obviously in a lot more detail. But, um, but yeah, there are a few things that you’d really wanna think about is systemizing and just creating that. Uh, that easy experience. Real, I, I call it being frictionless, right?
Yeah. So when you, when you think about like, some of the new payment methods that are coming, coming in where you can just, with one click, you play, you place an order that’s frictionless. Whereas some websites, you, you go and you have to fill in 10,000 different forms and details and all of, and you’re like, forget it.
Yeah. Like, I don’t
[00:41:25] Karin: want . Well, and I think there’s going to be, um, this is just sort of a future. Kind of foretelling. Um, I think all of the cookie messages and the yes disclaimers and the pop-up ads, sometimes I have to. Click or tap, depending if I’m on my phone four or five times before I can even get to the homepage, which drives me absolutely bananas.
So I think there’s gonna be a reckoning with that, where we’re gonna have some variation because people are, users are just, it’s so frustrating and such a problem with kind of the user experience. So let’s, uh, I know there’s so much more in this one page, even though it’s a one. Very succinct and simple marketing plan.
There’s a lot more, obviously, we will link to the book where it goes into much more detail, but now it is time for our book review. So what is the book that you have to recommend to the audience today that kind of relates to all the good stuff we’ve been talking about?
[00:42:21] Allan: So, uh, a good friend of mine, Dave Jenns, wrote a book called Systemology.
So we think very much, uh, alike when it comes to business systems or marketing also. So it’s really about how do you systemize what you do? Uh, pretty much exactly what we’ve been been talking about now. And, you know, uh, the one page marketing plan. is really a marketing system. Yes. But yeah, there are mul many, many systems that you’ll have in your business.
There’ll be your administration system, there’ll be your delivery system. Uh, there’ll be, you know, multiple different systems. Now, the marketing system, I think is, is the most important potentially, um, certainly one of the most important. And so the one page marketing plan talks about how do you, I. A marketing system in your business?
You know, uh, I’m from an engineering background. I’m not from a creative marketing background. I’m not, you know, one of those bearded skateboarders or whatever in a loft or something like that. , I, I, I’m a geek, right? I, I, I come from an engineering background, and so I’m like, okay, what’s step one? What’s step two?
What’s step three? How do I figure all, all of this out? And so, uh, I’ve always taken a very systematic approach and that’s really served me well. Yeah. So, um, so yeah, I, I believe very, very, very much in business systems because I think it ma it makes your business more valuable. Yeah. It makes your business more valuable from a couple of perspectives.
For, from your perspective in, in terms of, hey, uh, it’s gonna make my life easier. I can go for holidays if I get unwell, or whatever the business keeps running. But also, for your ultimate customer, which is the person who puts you out of business, which, which is, you know, puts you out of business in a good way.
Meaning they’ll write you the biggest check that you’ve ever seen. One day you’re going to want to retire. Yeah. Or sell the business or scale the business or whatever else. And so if it’s all in your mind, . Um, and, and if all the intellectual properties in your mind, then that’s not a very valuable business because your business disappears once you disappear.
Yes. So we want someone to write you the biggest check you’ve ever seen because you’ve got a valuable business that you have sy systemized. Yeah. And so, um, when I look at the businesses that I’ve sold in the past, I’ve able to been able to sell. Far more than they were worth, purely based on their revenue and their profit because the acquirer saw the value in the intellectual property and they could see, hey, if I acquire this intellectual property, I can apply that, that to my current business, my current customer base, and get a, a margin uplift or whatever else.
Yeah. So, uh, so I think systems is an incredibly important part. And yeah, I think Dave’s written a really good book, uh, called Systemology. . Yeah.
[00:44:55] Karin: I think there really is no other way to organize and look at if, if, let’s say you are the potential buyer for that, that agency, the firm, the law firm, whatever it is.
Hmm. There’s no other way to evaluate and, and find the value if there’s no systems in place. So if it’s all either in your head or just kind of, you know, disorganized or you know, in some way that, that. Systematic. Um, then, then you’re gonna be either low balled or have no interest. And, and so, you know, to your point, uh, if that is part of your goal, which it should be for any kind of business, um, you have to have these systems in place in order for you to even find the value.
But then also in, as part of your marketing and sales process, if you have these clients coming, You can’t confidently say that you can execute and, and really perform if you don’t have a system for, for, you know, whatever that is that you’re trying to sell
[00:45:52] Allan: them on. Yeah, exactly. So the business is either gonna be one of a few things.
It’s either going going to be worthless, or you, as you mentioned, you’ll be low balled or you’ll just get the standard industry multiple. It’s like, okay, in our industry, the multiple is whatever, three times, four times, okay, what’s your revenue? We’ll give you three times that. Or, or, what’s your, your profit?
We’ll give you, give you the multiple of that and you want, you really want to get away from that because if you can have a conversation with someone who’s buying your business around, hey, Look, if you, yes, you’re gonna get our revenue, yes, you’re gonna get our customer base, that’s fine. But the real value is the intellectual property.
Yeah. You applied that to your business and you’re gonna get this, you know, geometrical benefit. Um, that’s a very, very different valuation discussion than, Hey, here’s three times, uh, revenue or whatever else. Yeah. It’s
[00:46:39] Karin: kind of like, uh, this is the last thing I’ll say, but it’s kind of like if you’re looking at a house and you realize that the kitchen has not been redone, and so you go in and you say, okay.
um, I’m gonna have to go in and spend all this money and make the kitchen work because, you know, yes, it’s not livable. The kitchen need, we, we all need a working kitchen that doesn’t, it isn’t 50 years old, so either someone is gonna come in and, and put a system into your. Firm or you’re gonna do it right and you’re gonna pay for it either way.
So if you pay for the system up front and then you can resell that at a higher price, it’s, it’s a better business place to be . Most definitely.
[00:47:18] Allan: Yeah. And that doesn’t mean that you have to sell it. A lot of PE people are like, Hey, I love my business. I love what I do. I never wanna sell. Great, but who knows?
Maybe one day you may get bored of it. You may, uh, find a different opportunity that you want to move onto you. You may want to do something else or retire. At some
[00:47:34] Karin: point you
[00:47:34] Allan: should retire. Retire having. Having that option, you know, optionality is so important in, in business and in life. Um, that’s gonna be, uh, very, very important.
Very, very powerful for
[00:47:46] Karin: you. Yeah. Okay. That’s a great book, systemology by Dave Jenns. We, we will link to that on the show notes as well. All right. So Ellen, last question. What is one thing that you know that works. .
[00:47:57] Allan: Okay. So this is the major shift that I had that changed everything for me in my first, uh, business.
So it is really understanding that I’m not my in incidentally, my first business was an IT consulting business. Okay? So, uh, um, and so I. Understanding that I was not in the business of IT consulting. I was in the business of marketing IT consulting. Yes. That, that mindset shift, um, that was massive for me because, uh, when I thought I was in the IT consulting business, I thought the better I was.
At the technical thing that I did, you know, the more certifications I got, the more skilled I got. All of those sorts of things, that was gonna be the thing that was gonna make my business do well. And you know, I just hit the wall with so many frustrations around growing the business when I had that mindset versus, hey, my business is actually marketing it, consulting services.
[00:48:51] Karin: And so how did you change, and, and so what did you change to when, when you had that epi? ,
[00:48:57] Allan: well, I started taking marketing and sales ser seriously, because I, I, I, and I thought I was mixing up majors and minors. You know, I thought I’ve got the major thing already done, which is, Hey, I, I’ve got really good, uh, uh, technical systems.
Uh, I’ve got really good knowledge, both myself and, and in my team. I thought that that’s the major piece of the puzzle, which I’ve solved. Now, this minor little piece called sales and marketing. I need to figure this out. Really, I had that completely backwards. Yeah. Yes, of course. The technical part of what you do is important and it is important to provide a great experience, but that’s, uh, customer or client retention, right?
Yeah. And before we think about customer or client retention, we need to think about customer or client acquisition. Yeah. And so that’s how we are building the, the business. And so everything changed for me when I really understood that and had that mindset shift. And that’s really what I hope for, for everybody listening and.
part of what I do is really help them have that mindset shift and l help them learn to be marketers. And you know, it’s because it’s, it’s not your fault either. Because right when you go, when you go to law school or medical school or chiropractic school, you know, they’ll spend five, six years, whatever, teaching you the, the technical part of your trade.
And there’s not a single class on how to get new clients or new patients or new customers in their door. Yeah. So
[00:50:10] Karin: that’s what this. For . Exactly. That’s exactly right. So you just need to go to law school and then listen to the podcast. . Perfect. I love it. That is a perfect place to end. So Alan Dib is an entrepreneur and founder, and he’s the author of the One Page Marketing Plan.
We will link to that on the show notes and link to the book that you recommended as well. There’s so many good things here to take away then, and you also mentioned that there’s links to download the, um, the framework and everything for your one page marketing plan. So I, I feel like that is such a great place for everyone to just sit down, throw a few notes into each one of those nine boxes on that one page thing, and, and realize, like you said, take that scorecard and realize where your weaknesses are and, and use that as a starting point.
So Ellen, thank you so much for being here. That was really an awesome conversation, Karen.
[00:50:59] Allan: It’s been my pleasure.