And so when you look at marketing, I like to use the term total warfare, right? It’s everybody in the business.
How do we as entrepreneurs use all the assets at our disposal effectively? What are those things that maybe others don’t think about as marketing assets that in your experience of growing, what, 150, 200 million dollar company now you would say these are the assets that you don’t realize you have that are absolutely critical?
That’s a really good question. And it’s going to be a little different for the type of business that you have. I love your point that it’s total warfare. It’s everybody working together because you’re trying to create an experience.
You’re trying to wow the customer. Like when you create a brand.
That doesn’t happen the day they buy your product or your service. That comes from the relationship you build with them, it comes from the touch points.
And so, one of the things people should think about is, where does the customer have an interaction with us? Where is there an experience for Disney? You’ve got guests walking along the sidewalks or in the bathrooms. And so they want to make sure that that experience is great. Sometimes in your business, you don’t know. Disney didn’t just wake up one day.
It wasn’t like Walt Disney just said, let’s make sure the bathrooms are perfectly clean. They got feedback from customers that, Hey, what makes you different than the amusement park in my city is that you’re immaculate.
Or they got feedback that said, Hey, you’re not as clean as we’d like it to be. Whatever it was, they started to hone that and find that differentiation that would reinforce their brand and create that image in the mind of their customer.
So for the entrepreneurs that are trying to create raving fans, they’re going to have different things in their business that are going to really matter in the different ways they’re going to want to stand out. And that might be that their receptionist that’s answering the phones that they’ve got to do certain things with, it might be their accountant that’s following up on actions that they want to make sure does it in a certain way. It might be, the email that goes out that is helping the customer, the “how to be a good client with us” email.
How do you say that in just the right way? And so any touchpoint you have becomes part of your system of how you’re reinforcing your brand to the customer so that they become a raving fan.
And I almost think with Keap what that is, is it’s education. I mean, correct me if I’m wrong, but it seems that the difference between you and the myriads of other pieces of software is you guys are committed to not just providing a great piece of software, right, but to actually educating people as to how to grow, run, and manage a business.
Yeah, you’re exactly right.
And it’s funny because for people who watched the growth of our company, they know that we had kind of got off track as a company for a period of time where we were trying to create the Lite version of our software.
And there was all kinds of internal turmoil, and that’s a whole separate story for another day. But during that period of time, I brought in some people from the outside and they didn’t value the teaching part of what we do.
And it was very frustrating because we had a bunch of disconnect internally with management because they came from software companies where that wasn’t what we did and somebody else– no somebody else will do that. And we knew from the beginning that people don’t wake up, they don’t roll out of bed saying, Oh, you know what? I need to automate my sales and marketing, and here’s how I’m going to do that. You know, they just know I want to grow it. I’m frustrated. Like, why? Why am I having such a hard time finding the freedom that I set out for when I started this business?
And so from the early days we started teaching and you’ve been to ICON and our events and now we have, you know– but the point is we had a period of time for about three years where we got away from it.
And I hated it. It was like, you know, we stopped ICON and we stopped the training program of the company. And we did it because we were trying to put all of our resources into getting this Lite version of the product out.
And I can understand and see why the team wanted to do that. But I’m glad we are back to our roots now and we have the Lite version of the product. But you’re right, we teach, and that’s a huge part of helping entrepreneurs, you know, to liberate and empower entrepreneurs.
The teaching of sales and marketing automation is crucial.
I love that. I think in a real sense, it is your differentiation. And I think it’s the return to that is going to see the return of the greatness that you guys have always had.
Yeah, it absolutely is. And it’s already happening. For those who don’t know I was kind of on the outside for about three years and then got back to running the day to day operations beginning of last year, right before COVID hit.
We worked through all that stuff and by kind of the second half of the year, we started to get into our groove a little bit and we decided that we wanted to go even more into the education that we had done before.
So we started working on a concept called Keap Academy, and we created that at the beginning of this year and Keap Academy– they teach this stuff. I say they, but it’s we. We have a team of just amazing entrepreneurs and practitioners of sales and marketing automation, and we do workshops and we do events and we do blueprints that teach people how to put their playbook in place. What we call this process, I describe, we call it your playbook and you’ve got plays that you run that are all about following up and moving people through the through your process.
And Keap Academy teaches that. We have a whole customer success team that’s teaching more and more. And anyway, I think you’re right, it’s one of our key differentiators.
Well, I really appreciate the time that you you’ve given us today. This has been just an utter masterclass in how to grow our business, how to be a successful entrepreneur. And honestly, for me, as someone who’s been around Keap and Infusionsoft for quite a while, it’s an amazing glimpse into what has made you so successful personally in building and running this company and that passion that we can all see around these core issues and so thank you so much for that.