Content Marketing Demystified with Andrew & Pete
Andrew & Pete
Content Marketing Experts
Andrew & Pete is a MemberMouse Customer
"If you want to attract new people to your business, you need content. It's there to build people's trust in you, give confidence, and ultimately to draw them in to a sale. We see content marketing as a way to make people feel happier or smarter and then draw them into your sales funnels."
Do you have a strong content marketing strategy that’s working for your membership site?
If not, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed, frazzled, and fried (like those two above) as you’re creating one. You can wade through blog after blog, podcasts, video trainings, case studies, ebooks, whitepapers and more, just trying to put the pieces together.
The truth of the matter is that we’re swimming in a sea of content that grows bigger, more chaotic and overwhelming each year. There are more people, businesses, and causes competing for our attention on a minute-by-minute basis than probably ever before in human history.
And yet, as entrepreneurs and online business owners, we’re told that we need to have a content marketing strategy.
We’ve all heard it: start a blog, create videos, record a webinar, yadda yadda yadda.
So that begs the question:
How on earth do you create content that breaks through the noise, grabs, and more importantly keeps the attention of your audience, prospective customers, and members?
Finding an answer to that question is the exact reason why we invited Andrew & Pete on to our podcast.
If you’ve not yet heard of them, they’re an award-winning marketing duo who specialize in helping solopreneurs and small business owners succeed through effective content marketing.
Whether you’d like to generate more leads for your business, acquire new customers and members, or build your business and brand, Andrew & Pete can help. They’ve been featured on many of the leading blogs, podcasts, and publications in the digital entrepreneurship and marketing space such as Entrepreneur on Fire, Social Media Examiner, and The Huffington Post.
Andrew & Pete also run their own membership site and share their perspective on content marketing as entrepreneurs who run a member-based business. If you’ve ever felt like you just aren’t getting the traction you want with your content marketing efforts or are simply overwhelmed by the thought of beginning a content marketing strategy, this is a must-listen episode for you.
Towards the end of this episode, we also discuss ATOMICON — Andrew & Pete’s upcoming digital marketing conference. It’s their very first time putting on a marketing conference like this. They share how to organize an in-person event for an online membership community, how to choose speakers, and how to approach potential sponsors. We’re really looking forward to their lineup and excited to be one of the event sponsors.
|3:40||Andrew & Pete give a crystal-clear definition of content marketing|
|4:56||Are you boring & technophobic? You can still succeed with content marketing!|
|6:15||Traffic + Reaction: The formula for creating traction with your content|
|8:48||Why most people are wrong about content marketing being a "long-term strategy"|
|10:30||The crucial difference between average and awesome content|
|14:40||Practical advice for solopreneurs who want to get started with content marketing|
|18:47||Real life examples of content marketing working for small businesses|
|25:48||Why you should trust marketing processes over blueprints|
|31:06||How Andrew & Pete started and launched their first in-person conference ATOMICON|
|40:04||Evidence that the size of your audience is really not that important|
|42:05||The #1 question you should be asking yourself when it comes to content marketing|
|48:16||Andrew & Pete reveal to Eric the 3 best ways to say goodbye as a Brit|
“If you want to attract new people to your business, if you want to build up trust en masse, on scale, for your membership site, you need content. Content is something that can get found by anyone and everyone around the world. And it’s there to build people’s trust in you, in your knowledge, give confidence, and ultimately to draw them in to a sale. We see content marketing as a way to make people feel happier or smarter and then draw them into your sales funnels.”
You’re listening to Pete Gartland give us his definition of content marketing. He’s half of the award-winning marketing duo called “Andrew & Pete.” And yes, they are from across the pond. You may not have heard of them yet, but if you’re at all interested in digital marketing, I suspect you’ll be seeing and hearing a lot more from them in the near future.
As a team, Andrew & Pete specialize in helping solopreneurs and small business owners succeed through effective content marketing. Whether your goal is to generate more leads, create more customers, or build your business and brand, Andrew & Pete can help. They’ve been featured on many of the leading blogs, podcasts, and publications in the digital entrepreneurship and marketing space such as Entrepreneur on Fire, Social Media Examiner, and The Huffington Post.
Andrew & Pete also operate their own membership site called Atomic where they teach their methods, techniques, and strategies for successful content marketing. I’m happy to have them on the show today and know you’ll benefit from their insights.
If you’ve ever felt like you just aren’t getting the traction you want with your content marketing efforts or are simply overwhelmed by the thought of beginning a content marketing strategy, this episode is for you. Andrew & Pete share with us their formula for creating traction with your content, the critical difference between average and awesome content, and real-life examples of content marketing working for solopreneurs and small business owners.
Andrew & Pete were a delight to interview and I know you’ll love this episode. As always, I’m your host Eric Turnnessen and this is episode 116 of the Subscription Entrepreneur Podcast.
Eric: Welcome to the show Andrew and Pete. Thank you so much for joining me.
Andrew & Pete: Whoot! Whoot! We are so excited. You’re going to have to sound more excited though Eric than that – I mean.
Eric: Last night I went to andrewandpete.com. I signed up for your membership and I started watching your first Content Mavericks show. I realized that I really don’t have to talk to you today. You already answered all the questions. There so much content in there. I’m like, “why am I even going to bother getting on a call with these guys?”
Andrew: Well, that is a great testimonial! I am loving that. So, what you’re saying is that everybody should stop listening to your podcast and go join Atomic instead?
Eric: Well they could do that. We could all just go to the pub. I think that’s what you call it.
Andrew: I love how Americans say “pub.” It always comes with a slight pause afterwards, like to confirm that they’ve said it right.
Pete: We are from the UK – everybody. I hope you can hear what we are saying. I will try to speak slower for you. [laughing]
Eric: Great. The thing is you guys have so much content on your website. You have a lot of blog posts outlining specific tactics and strategies for content marketing. These posts cover everything from social media tools and strategies, setting up chatbots, how to come up with ideas for blog posts, etc. Before, we go deeper into tactics, can you help level set everybody on what you believe content marketing is.
Pete: Yeah, definitely. For us, content marketing is everything. If you want to attract new people to your business, you want to build up trust on mass scale for your membership sites then that’s what you need to do. You need content. You could go networking. You can go face-to-face meetings, but really if you want to scale, you need content. Content is something that can get found by anyone and everyone around the world. It’s there to build people’s trust in you, and in your knowledge, in your confidence and to ultimately draw them into a sale. We see content marketing as a way for people to feel happier and smarter. You either want to entertain, inspire or educate someone with your content. Then draw them into your sales funnel. That’s what we see content marketing as.
Eric: If people aren’t Andrew and Pete, can they still have the chance of being successful at content marketing?
Andrew: I mean it’s much harder. [laughing] Of course, anyone has success and can be successful at content marketing.
Pete: Even – sorry to butt in – but even technophobes. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you can still have success with it.
Andrew: One of the biggest challenges that we get is people say, “but Andrew and Pete I’m not like you guys, or I’m not as funny or good looking or as great at creating content.” You don’t have to be, right? The answer isn’t to be more like Andrew and Pete. The answer is you need to be a bit more of yourself. Although content marketing is great, it’s not like a novel thing anymore. There’re thousands, millions of blogs published every single day – so many podcasts, so many video shows. The key to being successful with content marketing is to not necessarily follow people that have done it already and just duplicate what they’ve done. Yeah, we can learn from them, we can learn what works for them, but you always have to put your own spin on it. You have to bring something new to the party. That’s how you’re going to stand out with content marketing.
Eric: Given like you’ve mentioned, with that we’re inundated with information these days. If you’re just getting started, or even if you already have the ball rolling, how do you get it so that you’re not just releasing things into a vacuum and people actually end up watching your content or engaging with it.
Andrew: We break that down into two key areas: traffic and reaction. Traffic and reaction together nicely make the word “traction.” We love this. When you’re creating content, what you should always be aiming for traction on that content. Or, you just end up doing what you just said. Just publishing blog posts out onto the internet somewhere just hoping that someone somewhere is going to stumble across that and then become a customer. Which, 99% of the time does not happen, unless you have a good traction strategy. Let’s break that down. Traffic – you need some kind of traffic source. We always break down traffic into three main key areas. We could get a little bit more complicated, but for the sake of keeping things simple let’s look at search – search engine. How people search online for what kind of content you are creating. Social – are you building up a nice social media following, a nice tribe on a specific social media platform. Then, email – we absolutely love email marketing. We think it definitely has a place in 2019 still. We use email marketing to drive traffic to our content. We’re not saying you have to use all three of them to get traffic, but you do need to have a nice mix. Maybe pick one or two of them and make sure that is built into your content strategy. Then, you need to get a reaction. One of the best ways to get your content to more people is to get current people who are already on it – already consuming it talking about it. Getting them to react to it in some way. Whether that’s commenting on it and Facebook so you get some algorithm love or whether that’s sharing it with their friends or sharing it on Twitter. You want to get that reaction. We get that reaction by not just creating vanilla content.
Pete: One of the most important things that we see is people – they’ll write a blog or they’ll do videos or do Facebook Live and then they’ll get average reaction to that or, perhaps no reaction to that particularly. They’ll just continue to do it. They’ll post an average blog and will get no comments, no shares, no real feedback. The next week they’ll do it again and again and again. Month after month – never really getting better. Just hoping that one day with blind faith that it will take off because we’ve all been told that content marketing is a long-term strategy by experts out there. It is a long-term strategy in the sense that the longer you do it the better you should be getting and the more results you should be getting, but that’s not going to happen all of a sudden if your content isn’t actually getting better. For example, with our own journey we spent years and years blogging and not really getting any results. The moment that we started to create really, really good blogs and in fact take it to another level and start doing video content – that’s when we started to see a lot more reaction and traction, as a result of that. The funny thing is it was almost an overnight switch. All of a sudden, we went from no comments to 10 comments and people sharing that stuff and people subscribing to our email. Then “oh my gosh someone bought from us based on our content!” This is amazing. It’s this amazing realization that it actually doesn’t take years to get sales from content. It just takes one bit of awesome content. So, you need to break that habit of just creating content for the sake of it.
Eric: Given that one of the main things that you’re saying is create good content as opposed to average content.
Pete: Not even good.
Eric: Awesome content?
Pete: Yeah. Ridiculously good.
Eric: What’s the difference between average and awesome? Is that experience? Is that strategy?
Pete: The average blog length, let’s just say that as a metric is around 1,100 words. The average blog length on a study of 1,000 bloggers. However, that’s average so, the people that report the best result have over 2,000 or 3,000 word blogs because it’s more in-depth. That’s just one measure of how to improve your blogs or your content is length, depth, but there’s plenty of other ways to do it as well. For example, our videos what’s the difference between our videos and someone else’s? I’m not going to say average video, but
Andrew: Regular. [laughing]
Pete: The difference is we actually make it fun. Since I like to go a lot more in-depth than other people. There are two differentiating factors on our content compared to someone else’s. You need to find the differentiating factor between your blog or video or podcasts or social media videos compared to your competitors.
Andrew: A good way to do it is what we call the logo test. So if someone took a logo or the branding of your video a podcast or whatever, could it just be someone else’s video or podcast and blog? Or is it unmistakably yours?
Pete: I think a really good measure is whether you get engagement? If you create a piece of content and it doesn’t get engagement well then, it’s just good – it’s not great.
Andrew: We’re not just saying you should be getting hundreds or thousands off the bat, straight away, but you should be getting something if it’s good enough. If it’s good enough you’ll have at least one person that drops you a comment or an email to say, “wow that really helped, that was really, really funny,” or really, really whatever. We just see so many people do the same thing over and over and over again thinking “one day – this will work.” Are they doing it because they’re feeling it like they should be doing marketing? It’s just like a nice tick on the “to do.” If you’re creating content for that reason then we would argue well your time is better spent calling a potential customer.
Pete: People think that doing something is better than nothing, but actually it’s probably not true. For example, an Instagram story. You might be saying “oh I haven’t done a story today on my Instagram so, I’ll just pop on do a quick photo or something that I’m doing.” It’s really random and it has no context. It’s got no her story in it whatsoever. What is the result of that? Is that better than doing nothing? Well I would actually argue that it’s not. Yes, you’re getting your stuff out there, but in a bad way. If I scroll onto your story, it’s boring and there’s no context. I just swipe across. Next time you have a story pop-up, I don’t want to click on it because the last one was boring. Which means basically the algorithm is going to start putting you down the list of stories so that I never see you again. The result of doing something rather than nothing or something great. It’s actually worse for your business. If you post average content, you’re training people that it’s average and not to come back. It’s actually worse for your business I would argue.
Eric: What advice do you have? You work with solopreneurs a lot. You work with small business owners. What are you seeing from them? I understand everything you’re saying. I think everything you’re saying makes a lot of sense. Some questions that come to mind, just for the sake of role-playing, I think if people are thinking about getting into content marketing then there may be some fear factors. There may be some doubt and uncertainty, but the ball needs to get rolling somehow. Day one if you’ve never done something, you’re not going to be awesome at it. There has to be a learning curve. A way and the path that people can follow, right?
Pete: Totally. Up until this point, we just kind of ranted and said “no don’t do this rah rah rah.” There was a solution – don’t worry. I think one of the major things is that people feel the need to be everywhere to get started and to do everything – to be in front of everyone. Whereas in actuality the reality is to be everywhere you don’t need to be everything. What we mean by that is if you were to focus your efforts into doing one thing remarkably well then everything else follows, and that relieves all this overwhelming stress. We call this our 90/10 rule. You should spend 90% of your efforts doing one piece of content remarkably well and the other 10% experimenting and plugging on with everything else. What this allows you to do is dedicate your time to create that awesome blog or that awesome video. What we see a lot of people do is they have a blog, they have a podcast, they have a YouTube channel and they also create little video clips for Instagram, they try to do Instagram stories and they try to Pin it as well and they’re trying to do stuff on Facebook and they’re trying to build the build a book. All these things are dividing up your time. You end up doing average content.
Andrew: That is just completely overwhelming. We completely understand how that can be ridiculously overwhelming to somebody that’s just getting started. It can also be hard to get good at something. Often if you try to do everything you stop being consistent, right? Do one thing. Do it really well and do it consistently. Don’t expect to get amazing, amazing results off the bat, but every little thing should be improving. You should be getting better at it. That’s so much easier to do if you adopt the 90/10 rule.
Pete: And there’s a huge difference between not getting any engagement now and not getting any engagement in five year’s time – doing the same thing. As opposed to trying your best to improve and do something remarkably well now – getting no engagement, then a little bit better engagement, then a little bit more engagement, and then a lot of engagement and then loads of engagement – a few months down the line.
Eric: You’re basically saying it makes more sense to dig one well then to dig many shallow wells.
Andrew: Exactly. That is an Instagram quote.
Pete: I like that metaphor.
Eric: Are there people who shouldn’t be doing content marketing? I ask you this because I get people who are looking to build membership sites and it’s clear from the way that they talk about it and the way that they perceiving it that they are not ready to start a membership sites. To me, this is important because if you can know that there’s something you shouldn’t be doing that saves you time. That allows you to find the things you should be doing. You mentioned one already. If you’re just thinking about doing content because you think you’re supposed to, that probably means that you shouldn’t be doing it. Are there any other things like that where they are disqualifiers from people being the correct people for doing content marketing?
Andrew: I guess there are some cases. If you need at least five customers and each of these five customers are going to pay you 20 grand a month, or whatever. Then there might be an argument – well actually if you called 10 people, signed up one of those a month. that might be a better way to get customers. If you’re looking to launch a membership site though, which I’m guessing most people listening to this podcast are then it’s really hard to create a membership site when you don’t have an audience. It’s really hard to build an audience if you’re not creating free content to build up the audience. I guess if you want to create a scalable business then I don’t think you can get away without doing content marketing, off the top of my head. Would you agree Pete?
Pete: Yeah exactly. 100% agree.
Eric: I would agree as well.
Andrew: Awesome. That would have been awkward if not it.
Eric: We are all in agreement. What are some of the best examples that you’ve seen of content marketing working for small business owners and solopreneurs?
Andrew: There are so many amazing success stories. A lot of success stories are focused on the 90/10 rule whether they know that they’ve been doing it or not. One of our favorite examples is a guy called Joe Wicks. I don’t know if he’s famous over in the states yet. Joe Wicks the body coach. He is a mini celebrity in the UK right now because his content marketing has gone that well.
Pete: He’s gone mainstream TV status.
Andrew: He was just an average Joe – Wicks. He was a fitness trainer. Tons of fitness people do content marketing. What he did, he focused on the 90/10. He focused 90% on Instagram videos. He got on that straightaway when Instagram Videos started. He started creating these really fun, what he called “Lean In 15” videos. They were just really fun recipe style videos where he just throws in food to the pot. You learn how to make a whole meal in 15 seconds. That just completely blew up. He’s got millions and millions of followers. I think like a 7 plus figure membership style business. It was all because he didn’t follow what everyone else was doing from a content marketing point of view in his industry. He did something completely different. What’s your favorite example Pete?
Pete: My favorite example is Brian Dean. He is an SEO expert. Basically, his competition creates prolific amount of content about SEO and —–. He thought, “you know what if I try to compete with them and try to create these amazing blog articles every week, I just don’t have the resources to cope with these competitors and these other companies out there.” Instead what he did was he actually spent six weeks writing his blogs. He put a ton of effort into them – hours and hours and hours. His blogs are like the most beautiful, in-depth, ridiculously helpful blogs on SEO on the planet that you’ve ever seen. They are incredible. Because of that, immediately, when you go onto his website and you read one of his blogs, you’re like “oh my God this is amazing and I need to share it. I need to need to tell the world about it. I need to link to this blog article.” In fact, what he did was he wrote a bunch of guest articles linking back to that because he had the time. He wasn’t publishing once every week. He was publishing once every six weeks, which meant that he had the time to put the effort into not only to write the blog, but do guest blogs for it as well. Because he did this he now gets hundreds of thousands of people coming to his website every month to read his blogs. In fact, he won’t even consider writing a new blog unless he’s 100% happy with the current ranking of all of his current blogs. Which, is insane if you think about it because most people are like “okay well done. Next blog.” What he’s actually done is he’s focused it to make sure that every single blog has the best possible chance in ranking. That’s how he gets traffic. That’s how he grows his email list. That’s how he gets business.
Andrew: I love how those two examples are complete opposites. Brian Dean is literally writing once every six weeks – “I’m going to pump out the best blog in the world.” Joe Wicks is like “I’m going to do these weekly and they’re going to be the quickest recipes ever.” It must have taken him no time to create it.
Pete: In fact, he did the first 180 days back to back. One video a day.
Andrew: But both went against what was normal in their industry.
Pete: Two extremes of creating great content
Eric: For the sake of devil’s advocate, there are tons of people creating content every day. Now, it’s not awesome content.
Pete: That’s the difference.
Eric: Here’s the thing, awesome is subjective, isn’t it?
Eric: Which I think goes back to your point earlier about – you need to find your own voice. If you are speaking from a place where you’re trying to be something you’re not. There’s going to be a certain set of people who are willing to listen to you. It may not be a million people, it may not be a thousand people. Not everybody needs that many people. I think again some of the challenges I see people having is they put their focus on the wrong thing. They are thinking about what other people want, which is you want to do, but at the same time what can I offer? What can I give? Which, should be I think more of the focus in the beginning because who is going to listen to you if you haven’t put out there that’s an offering. Not everybody’s personality is a sensationalist like Joe Wicks. It doesn’t mean that you can’t just be yourself and you can’t just be quiet, if you’re a quiet person. There’s thousands people out there like you who are on the internet looking for that too. The only way that you can truly deliver to those people is if you own it first.
Andrew: Another point that’s coming up for us as well is that it’s really easy to try to appeal to everyone. We would encourage you to not try to do that. You almost want to try to create – say you are a quiet person. That might put off the people that like our stuff, or like Joe Wick’s stuff, but that’s okay. You almost don’t want to create content that doesn’t put people off. You want to create content that draws to you people that do like your style and do like what you have to say. It almost makes it really easy to put off the people who don’t like your stuff. It’s really rare these days where a member joins Atomic that we don’t get on with. When we jump on the welcome call or we jump in the group, we can tell that they are our kind of people because they’ve been drawn to our personalities, so we find it quite easy to go on with him.
Eric: You guys are a great example actually because there’s going to be no surprise – having gone through your sales copy, your videos. There’s no bait and switch. You guys are yourselves. It’s a simple point, but I think that this is part of the challenge. People looking to create content especially, sales videos or sales letters, they skip this step of finding their own voice and they think, “let me just copy this thing.” In which case, they come up with something that may have cost them $20,000 and it looks good, but ultimately people get inside and they’re like, “wait, I just want this really amazing sales process and now I’m in the ghetto.”
Andrew: It’s marketer’s fault. It really, really annoys us when we see marketers pitching things like “download the blueprint” or “download the exact email template that help me built this” because what works for you isn’t necessarily going to work word-for-word which, a lot of these things are, for somebody else or someone else’s audience.
Eric: This is great. I love you brought up the blueprint because you guys work with people one-on-one, but if there’s no blueprint – how do you approach that?
Andrew: There are processes. Yeah you can follow – like we’ve got Content Mavericks. Content Mavericks is a process that lets you come up with your own unique thing. When you join Atomic don’t expect us to say “copy and paste this email” into MailChimp, send it and you’ll get customers. It doesn’t work like that. The marketers that are kind of pitching that probably know themselves that it doesn’t work like that, but they know that people want that because it makes it easy.
Pete: It makes it sound easy.
Andrew: It makes it sound easy right.
Eric: Watching episode one of Content Mavericks last night you very clearly state, “sorry you’re going to have to do some work. We can’t do it all for you.” Right?
Eric: That’s a damaging omission. It sounds weird to say, but it’s a damaging omission. You are expecting the people who paid you to do something, but really that’s what it takes to be successful. You’ve gotta do something.
Andrew: So true. It’s the biggest to thing that kind of kills us because if you want to learn from us, and if you want to join a Atomic then yeah it is hard work. In a way we are selling hard work, but we kind of say it’s going to be a lot harder if you want to go out and work out that it’s hard work yourself, first. Spend your time creating blogs that get nowhere, or you can pay us and we can teach you the process for coming up with something unique. It is, like if it was easy, if anyone could copy and paste email templates or sales page templates that, then everyone alive would be a millionaire. It just doesn’t work like that.
Pete: Yeah. There’s just so many people that if you don’t put in the effort than you’re not going to create the demand that they need to fuel the growth for their business. They’re going to have to work three times as hard to hustle to bring onboard clients desperately cutting prizes to just have some kind of income.
Eric: Then you’re just trying to save a sinking ship it.
Pete: Exactly. Exactly.
Andrew: When we say it’s hard work, what we don’t advocate for is the whole hustle mentality. If I just keep working harder and harder and harder then I’m going to get some work eventually. That’s kind of exactly the same thing as a pump out the same crappy blogs. We’re not saying you need to hustle either, it’s just about working smarter. Look into what people that have success have in common and how can you apply that to your own content, you’re on audience, your own product.
Eric: Well, also something that you reference specifically in your course as well is persistence, consistency. You have to be consistent and do something over and over again. It doesn’t have to be everyday like, Joe Wicks, but some routine every day in six weeks. Find a schedule that works for you and do consistency because that’s how you learn. Just to clarify too, when we’re talking about hard work, that’s the benefit of listening to people who have been there. There’s a balance. You want to find mentors and people who have been there and can give you a perspective from the top of the mountain, but you really want to be very wary of people who say they’re going to give you everything.
Andrew: I’m so glad that we agree on this, because this could have been really awkward podcast for you. Surround yourself with inspirational people. That’s what we have tried to do for the past maybe four or five years. We very much focused on our local market before that. It was actually when we went over to the States for the first time and went to the Social Media Marketing World in San Diego. Our eyes were just opened because we felt before then we were very much insular. These are our customers, people we can drive to, people that come to our office and these are the people that we look up – other people that work locally in marketing in our area. Then all of a sudden there was a big wide world out there. We need to become friends of these people. We need to and talk to as many of these people as possible.
Eric: Can that be a movie on the BBC? Andrew and Pete come to America.
Andrew: One day. That is on the bucket list.
Pete: I would watch that movie.
Andrew: Andrew and Pete Take New York. But, yeah – find people. There are communities out there like Atomic. Loads of membership sites or, communities or, Masterminds where you can surround yourself with inspirational people. I don’t necessarily copy them, but learn from them and what you can apply to your own business.
Eric: Right. That’s the balance. You have to be willing to give and take. Speaking of surrounding yourself with inspirational people, you have Atomicon coming up. Which is your live event. What was your inspiration for Atomicon and why did you do it?
Andrew: We launched at Atomicon based on the demand from our members. We had built Atomic and our members really wanted to meet up and they’ve been pushing us for years now actually to have a live event. We always kind of put it off. We just thought, “let’s just go for it.” Our members really blew us away. We were expecting maybe a 100 people tops at our first event. We looked at our own budgets and that’s what we said, a 100 people is what we wanted at our first event. We expected to maybe sell 40 of those tickets in the first week when they went on sale, but then in the first week we sold 280 tickets and then sold out at 300 tickets. We were like “oh my God this is crazy.” They really did want an event. It’s going to be a full day of inspiration, marketing tactics and how people have succeeded online with the digital marketing. In Newcastle we have some awesome speakers from loads of different topics. It’s just going to be fun. We hate boring events. We go to a lot of conferences and some of them we struggle with to be honest.
Pete: Tee tee hee.
Andrew: We are really really focused on not just making it an event, but a full-on experience.
Pete: Not just an event. We’ve got people speaking that we think are undiscovered talent. They deserve to be on the big stages. Often you go to a conference and you’ve been drawn in by this big-name speaker and actually their talk is pretty boring. You don’t actually learn anything from it. Then you’re like “that was rubbish. I learned more from that breakout session from that random guy no one’s ever heard.” Our conference is full of those people. We’ve seen them, we know them and we see the results that they get. Often times they make more money than these so-called big names. That’s what the event is about.
Andrew: Everyone on our lineup is someone we have learned from.
Eric: Also, some of the people you have are big names.
Pete: Yes, not to put anyone down. Yeah there are smart people with big names as well.
Andrew: Including us.
Pete: Also, we have an implementation webinar the week after. The week after you go because after you go to a conference you have all these ideas, but then what do you do with it? The whole purpose of the event is to actually be that catalyst for change. Make change happen.
Andrew: You’re forgetting the most important – I’m most looking forward to.
Andrew: The parties.
Pete: True. Yeah.
Andrew: We love meeting people at conferences. The network is one of our most favorite things. We have one conference, but two parties. We have the pre-party and then we have the after party. They’re going to be so great. They’re going to be made for meeting fellow attendees and getting inspired by other people’s stories.
Eric: Let’s talk about the meta thing that were talking about here which is community. You put an importance on community. You do it in your marketing for adnrewandpete.com. You have your Facebook group and I think that that is part of the success.
Pete: Definitely. One of the most rewarding things in our businesses is the community. If we can do something and then the next day our members say “oh we’ve made an extra thousand pounds this month because of that.” Or, they’ve they’ve just saved themselves three days because of a tech tip we’ve told them.
Andrew: Or, because of something one of our other members have told them, more importantly.
Pete: Yeah. One member talks to another and gives him advice. All of all of a sudden, they’ve banked their dream client. That’s life-changing stuff for them. It’s amazing for us. It makes us feel good. As a community spirit that’s just phenomenal. One of our favorite things is – we call it “win of the week” which, should really be “win of the month” but, Win of the Week has alliteration. Basically, what we do is we give away a prize. It could be anything from a big bar of chocolate to a pizza that night or something. We basically encourage our members to share their wins. They tell us the most incredible things. They are all doing amazingly well. It’s really inspiring. Not just for us, but the other members to get to see all that. We get comments all the time about how inspiring it is to read what everyone else has been up to – to be a part of that.
Eric: Yeah because you know we’re talking about persistence. We’re talking about hard work and the fact of the matter is there certain personality types who can lock themselves in a room and find it within themselves to push through and do whatever needs to be done. I would think most people aren’t like that and would benefit and do benefit from having a group of people they’re taking the journey with. Not to mention, this is a great retention strategy. I know you’re not doing it for strategic reasons.
Pete: But we are. Everything is strategic. [laughing]
Eric: I was trying to make you look good.
Pete: I know.
Andrew: I’m not doing it for strategic reasons.
Pete: We just want to share the love.
Eric: Well that’s why you balance each other out. It’s a great strategy because when you can share things with other people who are going through the same things as you, and you can motivate yourself from seeing other people succeed, that is a great way not only for you to be successful, but I’m more likely to share something with somebody else – say I’m a member of this great thing, you should be a part of it too.
Pete: That’s what we see happening. Not only do members Inspire each other to take more action, but outside of that, it’s incredible because they’ll talk about it and they’ll be excited and proud to be a part of it. As soon as the proud to be a part of it then they’re more likely to share and talk about it which, is really important for the growth of your membership site.
Eric: This also falls under content marketing, right? User-generated content.
Pete: Yeah, exactly and if you can encourage people to do that, that’s even better. For example, when someone tells us that they’ve had a really good win what will try to do is post a “wi-five” which, is a wireless high five for us. It just says “woo-hoo, well done, I’m doing or winning, or getting whatever.
Andrew: Being awesome.
Pete: Being awesome. That’s a graphic that they can share. We see people share that all the time.
Andrew: It’s a great strategy. I know we’re kind of joking about it, is it just a strategy or is it out of the goodness of our heart? If you do want to grow a membership then actually putting some thought into how you are fostering that community spirit within it I think is really really important.
Eric: I think really anything that works can be called a strategy, but before it’s a strategy it worked because somebody did it because it was who they were. That’s why getting back to what we were talking about a number of times is it’s mostly important that you find your voice. What you want to talk about? Where do you have value to add? Honestly, it doesn’t even need to be valuable. There are so many people that I would never watch because it’s just gibberish to me, but there’s an audience for that.
Pete: There’s an audience for everyone.
Eric: When I say audience, I mean in purely numbers standpoint. There are people who have a lot of followers who I personally don’t understand, but it doesn’t matter because I don’t need to understand it. It’s their audience that resonates with them.
Andrew: I think a lot of business owners compare themselves to a viral YouTube sensation and you just don’t need. If you think of what a million people looks like, it’s crazy. We’ll have members complain that their YouTube videos only get 50 views or something like that. We’ll say to them, “look can you actually imagine what if 50 people look like?” If you’re going to a network event and you speaking to ten people maybe, if you’re lucky or, you can create a video and speak to at least 50. That’s quite a lot of people.
Pete: You can sell and make a lot of money from a small audience. We have big brands and even Fortune 500 companies come to us and yet – you know what our YouTube channel doesn’t have 10,000 or 50,000 or a million subscribers. We don’t need that many. That would be nice and we want to get there.
Andrew: From a vanity point of view.
Pete: Realistically, if you think about money and income you don’t actually need that much.
Eric: Right, it’s quality over quantity. The more fine-tuned and consistent you are, in terms of what you talk about, the more your audience will reflect that. They’ll know what you normally talk about and if they’re interested in that they’ll follow you.
Pete: If you go back to the whole brand thing, if you had a room full of a hundred people and if your brand was so blasé that there was 400 people that just forgot about you the next day, that’s your option. The other option is to divide the room, I would much rather have half the room ignore me and half the room love me and buy everything then 100% of the room forget about me the next day. Coming back to the brand thing, why it’s so important and why we take a stand point on that straight away within Atomic is because first of all, you want to attract the right people, but also it helps to give you ideas. Like, the “wi-five,” or the “win of the week,” Where did we get that idea? Well, it comes from our brand. Our brand is all about promoting and inspiring action in people. Well how do we do that? We start thinking of ideas and when we came up with the idea “win of the week” that was really on brand and that has helped us get more attention? Yes, great well then let’s keep doing it, but if we were like more analytical and less fun then maybe we could have a stat of the week and you all post your balance rate on your website and we all have to see if it’s improved. Well doesn’t that sound boring?
Eric: Okay here is maybe not my final question, but close to my final question. I’m not a content marketing expert so I apologize for if I’ve probably been asking you very basic questions.
Pete: No, I think they’re good questions.
Andrew: This has been great.
Eric: Thank you. I’m going to say to you, what is the question or questions people should be asking in this space?
Andrew: I think people should be asking – how do I make money with this? What we’re discovering is that a lot of people don’t necessarily have a marketing problem. They’ve read all the books that have been on every webinar. What they don’t have sometimes is some type of grasp on fundamental business rules. Like, how does this actually lead to money. What is the most sensible business model for me? Should I be launching a membership site or should I be focusing more on one-to-one stuff? I think just having that business model in place, and not only what your business model looks like now, but what it looks like in 12 months, can form a much smarter marketing strategy. They might be allured by the membership model, but is that realistic for you right now? I’m not sure.
Pete: Or vice versa, maybe you really want to get on it and build your membership site, but actually you’ve taken on one-on-one clients and that’s just eating into your time that you should be using to grow your membership site. You need to make a decision of when you are going to drop those clients.
Pete: What’s that strategy? Can you up your price on those clients so that you can do less client work and you can focus more on growing membership site? It’s all about getting smarter with your time and the money you bring in with that time.
Eric: Knowing you guys when you say business plan I know you’re not talking about a big pack of paper with a table of contents and graphs and stuff.
Pete: What do you think about us Eric?
Andrew: You know what we do geek out on which a lot of people find surprising – spreadsheets. We do love a spreadsheet. Especially one that shows us how much money we could potentially make if we stick to our marketing plan. A lot of people need that spreadsheet. From the templates that are on Atomic, one of them is a template that will show you exactly where you’re going.
Pete: For example, if you map out where people first come across Andrew and Pete. We first did this it showed up and it showed us four main streams of where we got our members. The top one was from our content, our YouTube channel and our social media. The second one was other people’s content like a podcast or other people’s webinars. The third one was recommendations and referrals from our members. The fourth one was events.
Andrew: That was very hard.
Pete: That was weird wasn’t it. It made us realize that actually if we want to grow our business and we’re going to have to focus more on our own content because that gives us the most about our business and guesting on other people’s. If we can increase referrals while doing that then great. Maybe we shouldn’t go to as many events because that gives us the lowest amount.
Andrew: Maybe we should cherry-pick which events are really good for us? I think being smart with the data you collect is really important. Just asking that if you currently have a membership website, if you don’t ask “where did you first come across me or where did you first come across this membership site” then you’re missing a big, big trick when it comes to your marketing.
Eric: Right that makes sense. I think you probably should have done more research before coming on here because I’m actually not going to be sharing this with anybody. This is just for me. I’m just going to listen to this myself.
Andrew: Well, let’s at me interview there, then shall we?
Eric: That makes a lot of sense. You’re basically saying if your time is a limited resource, if you’re going to be investing it in something, make sure you understand how that is going to lead to somebody coming to you. If you can’t answer that question, even conceptually, then it doesn’t make any sense for you to be spending your time doing that thing.
Andrew: It’s just working out that reality. I don’t think a lot of people work out the reality of where they are currently are with their cash flow and where they’re going, or what they need to do to get themselves there. Even though we have a lot of fun, we are very much grounded and strategic in what are we doing that is going to help us achieve these goals. I think that there are other questions you should have asked us Eric.
Eric: Starting over… As I mentioned in the beginning, you guys have an amazing membership site: andrewandpete.com. I’m looking forward to continuing to go through Content Mavericks and learning myself from your sage wisdom. The first thing I thought when I logged into the back end of your website is I thought this is “wow this is like Netflix for marketing.”
Pete: Nice! That is the effect we wanted. Thank you.
Eric: So, I really appreciate you putting all that content together.
Pete: It’s only like 12 hours in that you’ve been a member. That’s a great compliment for 12 hours.
Andrew: We should also just return the favor. It’s all power by MemberMouse which is we we love. If you want to launch a membership site then MemberMouse all the way.
Eric: I appreciate you saying that. I am very much looking forward to meeting you guys in person when I come out to Atomicon on this year.
Andrew: We will take you to the pub.
Eric: Oh, I do have a question about that. I’ve been watching the BBC.
Andrew: [laughing] We do have better channels in the UK though.
Eric: There are many ways it seems to say goodbye to people. I want to know which one is the one that will make me seem the most cool. Here are the options that I know of. There is “tinkety tonk,” there’s “cheerio” and what was the last one? “Toodle pip!”
Pete: You know I think you should go for “ta ta!”
Andrew: I think you shouldn’t say anything but those three. If you just say any of those you will be the coolest American in town. I guarantee it. If I had to pick one, I would say “toodle pip.”
Eric: Just so I don’t get off track your site is andrewandpete.com. Are there any other places where people can reach out to you and learn about you?
Andrew: Yes, our favorite place is YouTube. We create content every week on there. If you go to andrewandpete.tv that will take you right to that. We’re pretty much on everything as “Andrew and Pete.” Just search in a finder. Please do say “hello.” We do man everything ourselves so please do say “hello” if you are watching this in whatever platform you are on and one of us will say “hello” back.
Eric: We talked a little bit about Atomicon and I I’m really excited about going there. There’s a number of speakers that I’m interested in hearing what they have to say. Is there a way that maybe sometime in the future you’re going to be releasing this content on your site somewhere?
Pete: Yeah, all links that can be found at andrewandpete.com but the direct link is atomicon.uk. That’s Atomic-o-n, atomicon.uk. You will be able to get yourself on a waitlist so when we released tickets for the early bird 2020 event you can get access to that.
Andrew: The majority of the sessions will be on Atomic if you did want to get a virtual pass, but Atomic 2020 is going to be epic. We’ve started planning that now as well so, if you’ve missed out on 2019 then come to 2020 for sure.
Eric: Awesome. Thank you so much for coming on and chatting. I really appreciate it.
Pete: Thank you so much for having us.
Andrew: And thank you to everyone for listening.
Pete: Thanks everyone for listening we hope to hear from you. Please, please, please do drop us a comment on our YouTube channel or social just so we know that you listened to this podcast and made it all the way to the end.
Eric: I appreciate it guys. Again, I look forward to seeing you again in March.
Andrew: Toodles Eric.
Pete: See you Eric. Bye.
Andrew: Ta ta.
Pete: Toodle pip
Eric: Toodle pip
That concludes episode 116 of the Subscription Entrepreneur podcast. Many thanks to Andrew & Pete for joining us, sharing from their extensive knowledge and experience, and keeping us entertained all the while.
And thank you for listening to this episode. It’s my hope that you found this episode valuable, inspirational, and even a bit entertaining. If you did enjoy this episode, please subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Google Play, or Stitcher and share with your friends, family, and colleagues.
In our next episode, we secured a rare interview with a world-class web developer and designer named Ryan Murray. Ryan isn’t one to typically appear on podcasts: he’s usually too busy building powerful WordPress sites for Fortune 500 companies and solopreneurs alike. Ryan has over 20 years of experience developing WordPress sites and joins us to share his insights into what it takes to succeed online. He also has a knack for getting his clients to page 1 on Google and gives our listeners some advice on SEO.
So stay tuned to the Subscription Entrepreneur podcast, we’ll see you next time!
And, as Andrew & Pete would say… Toodle Pip!
Thanks For Listening!
We hope you enjoyed this episode and found it inspirational, educational, and yes… entertaining! If you did, please join our discussion below and let us know what you liked most about this episode. We’ll make sure to pass it along to Andrew & Pete as well.