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Part 1 of 3: 57 Actionable Insights From 57 Episodes Of The Productive Insights Podcast (2015 — A Year In Review)
It’s been almost a year since I released my first podcast with Neil Patel in February 2015. I’ve released 57 episodes so far this year.
I thought it would be a good idea to extract some of the key actionable insights that stood out for me from each of the podcast episodes.
The format I’m going to follow is: Tell you a bit about each episode and then tell you the key actionable insights and action points that stood out for me. This isn’t a substitute for listening to the actual episodes because, of course, different things would strike you as important and actionable depending on your individual experiences and inclinations.
Anyway, in this 3-part series, I will share some of the things that really stood out for me and each podcast episode that you will hopefully find useful. I will also include links to each of the episodes (below) in the show notes so you can always go back to those episodes and listen in more detail.
As always, if you find this information valuable or helpful, then please do share it with friends via social media or email so it can reach as many people as possible. Also, please do stop by iTunes and leave a five-star review if you feel so inclined. It would mean the world to me.
001. Neil Patel (Kissmetrics Founder) On How To Make Better Decisions Around Client Selection, Branding and Investing:
- At around the 3-minute mark, we talk about Neil’s criteria for selecting clients … Guess what? It’s not financial in nature! The most important thing is about helping someone out and enjoy the process. “If you can’t help them out, what’s the point in taking on a client?” – Neil Patel
- Action step: Only take on clients when you know you can deliver results.
002. James Schramko On How To Use The Recurring Income To Maximise Profit And Fund Your Perfect Lifestyle
- James explains the Profit formula at around the 2-minute mark: Customers = Traffic x Conversions. And then, you have: Customers x Transaction Value x Frequency x Margin. This is what James used to build a low maintenance and high-profit business that facilitates a freedom-based lifestyle. The Farming vs Hunting analogy is how he explains it at the 3-minute mark.
- Action step: Consider creating a recurring income business model, so rather than trying to acquire new customers every day, you’re selling more products to the same customers that have already done business with you.
003. Jon Morrow (Copyblogger) On How To Use Blogging To Build A Highly Successful Business Online
- Jon Morrow, founder of Boost blog traffic, can’t move from the face down. He has spinal muscular atrophy. His story about how he traveled 5,000 kilometers to Mexico to fund his high medical expenses and build a business that makes 8 figures.
- Action step: Practice writing great headlines (we talk about it at around the 18-minute mark in the podcast).
- What Improper Sleep Does To Your Circadian Rhythms. Could Your Poor Sleep Habits Suddenly Become Deadly? How Poor Sleep Affects Your Productivity, Concentration And Focus. What Inadequate Sleep Does To Your Creativity and Problem Solving Skills. What Lack Of Sleep Does To Your Metabolism, Your Immunity, And Your Health. Is Sleep Deprivation Causing You To Make Mistakes?
- Action step: Get 7-8 hours of sleep every night (most folks need at least 7 hours of sleep).
005. Jake Hower (Fuzed App Creator) On How To Increase Customer Retention Through Automated Marketing
We talk about what we mean by the term automated marketing and discuss quite a few concepts around marketing sequences with a focus on customer onboarding sequences.
Action step: If you can afford it … Get a specialist to help you! Don’t try and do it yourself. (We discuss this at around the 20 min mark.)
006. Chris Garrett (Copyblogger) On How To Use Content Marketing To Win Online (Including A Simple 5 Day Plan To Get You Started In A Week!)
- Great conversation about content marketing. Chris teaches content marketing at a university. We talk a lot about how content marketing can really transform a business. Biggest takeaway: “Content is an answer to a question and that question could be critical to your customer making a buying decision.” A buyer is already having a ‘conversation’ with sellers online and content marketing allows you to be part of that conversation.
- Action step: Have a content creation system in place and if you don’t create one now. Your business’s future depends on it! Get started in an incremental fashion. (We discuss this at around the 18-minute mark.)
007. How Kate Erickson Used Productivity And Focus To Help Steer A Business To Over $433K In Revenue
- A great discussion around Kate’s contribution to the rapid growth of the Entrepreneur on Fire podcast. Kate and I talk about productivity and how she helped build a very successful business. Her biggest secret is themed days.
- Action step: If you have certain projects to really focus on, consider using themed days where you work on one project for an entire day. This reduces context switching which is damaging to productivity.
- Narration of a guest post I wrote for lifehack.
- Action step: Learn to say no to everything unless it’s a “heck yes!”.
- Hilarious episode called “Blind man driving” has a great story about the piece of copywriting I saw written on the side of a truck.
- Action step: Get Kevin’s book ‘The 60-second Sales Hook’ from 60secondsaleshook.com.
- Narration of a blog post where I talk about 7 common mistakes we make regularly and what to do about them
- Our tendency to avoid threats — as opposed to our tendency to maximize opportunities
- Gamblers fallacy and how to overcome it
- How to deal with cognitive dissonance
- How to become aware of confirmation bias
- Learn how not to confuse selection factors with results
- How to not fall victim to price anchoring
- Dealing with overwhelm by not falling victim to the paradox of choice
- Action step: Be aware of the paradox of choice (the fact that today’s information overload environment throws way too many choices) and use mindfulness to stay focused on your goals.
011. Dan Norris – Startups explained and how to start your own startup (Part 1)
- Dan Norris is the author of the books ‘7-Day Startup’ and ‘Content Machine’. We talk a lot about startups and what they are and his motivations. At around the 7-minute mark, Dan talks about his view on consistent revenue model (as opposed to recurring income businesses) and explains it in the context of his company ‘WP Curve’. He talks about how recurring revenue can reduce your market size. WP Curve has a hybrid of recurring and non-recurring revenue, heavily discounted annual membership, one-off jobs, and monthly unlimited for a minimum of 3 months.
- Action step: If you feel that moving to a Recurring Income Business Model is too much of a jump, then consider the Consistent Revenue Model that Dan talks about.
012. Dan Norris – Content Marketing For Startups (Part 2)
- The conversation with Dan moves into a conversation about content so it ends up being a separate episode. This episode is all about content marketing for startups. At around the 4-minute mark, he talks about the three keys of successful content marketing which are: 1. Actionable content, 2. Emotional connection with the audience and 3. Contrarian ideas (grab attention). At the 18-minute mark, he talks about design.
- Action step: Create content that is actionable, that emotionally connects with your audience and has a contrarian element that grabs the attention of the readers.
013. James Reynolds On How To Create A Highly Successful Services Business
- We talk about the definition of services business and how to get started within the services business industry.
- Action step: Work out how to solve a customer’s problem then deliver the solution and build a business on that FIRST, then worry about the other bells and whistles. Don’t get stuck in the website or the logo.
- This episode is on Facebook advertising with Ralph Burns from Dominate web media (I featured Keith Kranc the founder of Dominate Web Media as a guest in episode 21). We talked about custom audiences and Facebook advertising at around the 9-minute mark. That was important.
- Action step. Set up a Facebook remarketing pixel on your site today. Don’t wait! Start building custom audiences. Make a post on your business page and click on “boost post” …. That’s your gateway drug to advertising.
- Mike Rhodes is one of the leading authorities in the world. He was mentored by Perry Marshall and it would be fair to say Perry has passed the mantle to Mike. Mike and I talk about google adwords, remarketing, etc. Two rules to succeed online: make it easy and make it relevant (at around the 6-minute mark).
- Action step: Install a google remarketing pixel on our website. This is the highest leverage activity you can do.
- Video is a powerful form of social proof. Before people make buying decisions, they look for proof to buy. They want reassurance and video is the strongest form of proof out there. For example, you can use video to get testimonials on a bathroom renovation and the person speaking about the renovation. When creating your video, start with the challenge you’re having in your business … And then, see if video can solve this challenge. Don’t see video as a blanket solution.
- Action step: Start your youtube channel and create videos of your own. Collect video testimonials as often as possible when you deliver a good customer experience — you can always use them later.
- Time-boxing is essential to your productivity. It is a fantastic way to tackle procrastination. When you set yourself a limited amount of time to work on something using the pomodoro method, you’re much more likely to make a start on the task as compared to thinking that the tasks stretches into painful infinity. Action is to USE the pomodoro technique. Secondly, allocate high-energy tasks to the early part of your day, assuming you’re most functional early in the morning.
- Buck and I have an awesome chat on how he built an eight-figure business with repeatable systems and an excellent organisational culture. “What do we want this company to be?”. Have a purpose and an attitude of service to a large number of customers (at the 13:32-minute mark). Figure out ways to prioritise what you’re working on. What are your top 3-5 things. What is your top 1 of those things? Communicate this to the team.
- Action step: Figure out a way to decide on your top 3 priorities and communicate the most important one to your team. Work through the list.
- We have a great chat about the importance of simplicity and ‘white space’. Greg stresses the importance of simplifying each of your web pages for a single purpose.
- Action step: Make sure each web page on your site should have only one call to action to maximise your conversions.
- Jon Henshaw, founder of RavenTools, and I talk about integrated marketing solutions. Do your research to find out where your audience is. Where do they hang out? Are they on Facebook? Are they on a forum? Once you’ve found this out, then start applying your targeting tactics (around the 29-minute mark).
- Action step: Find out where your audience or your prospects hang out and then start applying your targeting tactics.