EFP 47: 8 Strategies To Bake Engagement Into Your Business

Justin Cooke May 16, 2013

Joe and I have both spent quite a bit of time in recent weeks talking to other entrepreneurs and business owners. A common theme seemed to be a struggle when it comes to building buzz and engagement with prospects and customers. While we’re not experts at brand engagement, we wanted to sit down and share some of the tips we’ve used to help build our brand over the last few years and also to share some of the things that have NOT worked.

8 Engagement Tactics You Can Implement Right Now

The “build it and the will come” approach doesn’t always cut it. Why do some brands seem to take off and others sputter or fail to get started at all? There are no formulas or blueprints for success that will guarantee success here, but you can look at some of the strategies others have used effectively and find ways to bake them into your business where appropriate.

Check Out This Week’s Episode Here:

Direct Download – Right Click, Save As


“If you’ve got business chops, you can make it work (anywhere)” – Justin – Click To Tweet!

“If you have a content schedule…stick to it!” – Joe – Click To Tweet!

Topics Discussed This Week Include:

  • Business Chops make even off-the-wall businesses easier
  • Being controversial and taking a stand
  • Headlines – Fair marketing strategy to get better open rates or just an irritating tactic?
  • Skipping the n00bs and writing for your peers
  • Overdeliving for your clients (Don’t cop out…it’s tough for everyone)
  • Passing the stage test


  • iTunes Reviews – Leave a review to be entered into the drawing!
  • Our Case For The Philippines – Our best arguments for packing your bags and getting your business up and running right here in the Philippines!
  • Pat Flynn on Mixergy – Andrew gives Pat a bit of a beating on this episode (and they BOTH come out better for it)
  • “I Want Your Monies” – Our blog post on reaching out to people the “right” way.
  • Inform.ly – Yeah, we keep mentioning Dan Norris. That’s because he’s KILLING it at producing excellent content for his peers.
  • Tropical Talk Radio – The Stage Test – Great point we dug into in this podcast.

Have some tips on engagement you’d like to share? We’d love for you to hear your thoughts below or on Twitter! We’d particularly like to hear what you think about whether metrics are ALWAYS the best way to track success.


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Speaker 1:                           Welcome to the Empire Flippers Podcast. Are you sick and tired of gurus who have plenty of ideas but are short on substance? Worried that ebook you bought for $17.95 won’t bring you the personal and financial freedom you long for? Hey, you’re not alone. Join thousands of others in their pursuit of niche profits without the bullshit, straight from your hosts, Justin and Joe from Empire Flippers.

Justin Cooke:                     Welcome to episode 47 of the Empire Flippers Podcast. I’m your host Justin Cooke, and I’m here with Joe hot money Magnotti. What’s going on buddy?

Joe Magnotti:                    Hey everybody.

Justin Cooke:                     Little under the weather, man. You feeling all right?

Joe Magnotti:                    I’ll get through it. I’m a trooper.

Justin Cooke:                     I dragged his ass out of bed today and he was like yeah, dude, we’re doing the podcast, man. We’re doing the podcast.

                                                Anyway, we’ve got a great episode lined up for you this week. We’re going to be talking about our top eight ways to build engagement into your business, so how to get people excited, interested and really engaged with you. Before we do that, we’re going to go over some news and information.

                                                First one, we’ve got some new iTunes reviews buddy.

Joe Magnotti:                    What a surprise. Hit me up.

Justin Cooke:                     We’ve got two five star reviews. The first one was from Seed Trench, love the podcast. Joe and Justin taught me so much about building websites and the entrepreneurial mindset. Highly recommended. Another one is from Preet. He says solid stuff. I’ve been listening to you guys for the past two months and I appreciate the practical advice. Well, we definitely appreciate you and the five star reviews. Thank you very much.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, keep them coming guys.

Justin Cooke:                     So the next thing we want to talk about is we had our first six hour consulting gig and we started this week with Jennifer. I think it went really well man. It was more fun than I thought it was going to be. It was really exciting. We can take her from not really understanding niche sites to knocking them out on her own within a couple of weeks, I’ll be really happy about that.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, it makes you really realize how much knowledge we have in these empty skulls of ours and we’re able to help somebody like Jennifer come a long way along. So yeah, I thought it was exciting too. I’m looking forward to the next session.

Justin Cooke:                     And it’s funny too, I’m just not like a self modesty thing, but it really is kind of surprising. You’re like really? People want this information or want to figure out how to do it? So it’s kind of, it’s humbling a bit and it’s also really cool that we’re able to share that with her. I really hope she gets a ton of value out of it. So I’m looking forward to our next sessions.

                                                Next we want to talk about briefly is I’ve been hanging out a bit with our friends, your friends, Andrew and Jaymar a bit. They run local businesses here in the Philippines. And it’s funny because here in the Philippines we tell everyone don’t get involved in local business. Don’t open a massage parlor, don’t open a bar, don’t sell stuff and make pesos.

Joe Magnotti:                    Pig farm, yeah.

Justin Cooke:                     Pig farms, rice farms. It’s just a bad idea.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. And I would say the general reason why we say that it’s that people that want to open those heads of businesses, they don’t have any business chops from back home.

Justin Cooke:                     Yeah. And that’s the thing about these guys. But they’re definitely the exception to the rule. I mean, one of their first businesses or one of their early businesses was like painting crab shells, like coloring up crab shells and selling them and like a kiosk at the mall.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. And now they still have popcorn machines. They have franchise popcorn machines all over the place.

Justin Cooke:                     Yeah, but the thing is they go this crazy, like it’s called Zoofari, It’s like this four level kid’s place that they can rent out. They’ve got like the balls and everything and the kids can jump in and play with and pee in and do everything kids too. But yeah, they’ve got this really cool place. They’ve got this like amazing outdoor place called outback grill where they have like fire dancers. They got you know, stage with live band and to see these guys killing it with local businesses, it just goes to show you that you’ve got business chops, you can make it work in a restaurant business in the Philippines, which Oh my God, I would never advise anyone to get into. But they are killing it.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, they are doing really well. So it can be done here. And if you take the right approach and you take some successful techniques that you’ve used at home that maybe they don’t know about so much locally, that’s definitely an advantage in the marketplace.

Justin Cooke:                     Well, the other thing, and then everything they do, they don’t sell food. They don’t rent their place out, they sell fun, right? Like everything they do, it’s always like around fun. And I think that’s kind of their approach and their concept and that’s their shtick and that works for them. So next thing I want to talk about are some new AdSense features. So Joe hit me up buddy. What we got?

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, this is pretty neat. You know, I see the direction that Google is moving here. They’re trying to get more analytics data into AdSense without having to actually put their analytics code on there. So, and that makes a lot of sense to me, right? Because if you have the AdSense code there, I mean, you’re collecting this information anyway. Why do I need to go to Google analytics to get all the other information?

Justin Cooke:                     Yeah, it’s a pain in the ass. Having to switch between platforms and pull your little bit of data here, a little bit of data there. A lot of people were trying to solve this problem with dashboards and stuff, but I mean it’s a tough problem to solve because there’s so many disparate systems you have to work with, right?

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, so right now all you can get from AdSense is countries and platforms, which okay, it’s not astoundingly useful, but you could see where it’s going. You can see that this is just the tip of the iceberg where Googles going to start introducing all of this other information to AdSense and that’s going to make it really valuable because I’m always [inaudible 00:04:57]. What’s the most revenue producing page on Google analytics? Sorry, on one of our niche sites. It’s really hard to determine that.

Justin Cooke:                     Yeah. Just stepping back a bit. If you take a look at flippa.com/blog I did a post there recently, a guest post, talking about basically I’m arguing the case for starting a business in the Philippines and just for example, let’s say that you and a couple of buddies have a startup and you’re not collecting angel money, you’re bootstrapping it and the Philippines is a great place to go, I made the case so you can get a house with like all the amenities, maid service, everything taken care of for you for 500 bucks a month and you can live like a king, right? Just have your house bills paid and I really recommend that you take a look at the post if you’re at all considering a place to like get your startup going, take a look at it and let me know what your thoughts are. I’d be interested to hear.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. And I just got an email from somebody that was looking to come to Davao from Thailand and you know, I definitely think there’s a significant cost savings over Thailand and doing business here is much easier.

Justin Cooke:                     I’d say do it yourself. We also have another option where we set up, which is, it’s our idea kind of a capture center where you know you can, it’s like renting our license and our relationships and we can set you up with an office, set you up with a team, get your people directly paid on payroll, right. And make sure everything’s straight up and legit. It’s a good kind of like interim position until you set up your Philippines Corporation. So basically you can, it’s like a rent to own deal for businesses so you can actually rent out our licenses and our stuff and set up your Philippines business before you have the corporation set up.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, I really see how this is appealing to small businesses and medium sized businesses that know they need to outsource. Know they want to get started here, but don’t want to get caught up in the paperwork.

Justin Cooke:                     Anyway. Enough about the Philippines. Let’s get right into the heart of this week’s episode.

Speaker 1:                           This is the empire flippers podcast.

Justin Cooke:                     So the impetus for this episode basically comes from that. Yeah. The evidence for this episode really comes from talking to other entrepreneurs, other business owners, friends of ours that have struggled a bit to build engagement or to get people involved in their business.

Joe Magnotti:                    Especially when I see a blog or a podcast that I love, but they’re just not getting traction. I feel like they could benefit from some of these guidelines we’re going to set up.

Justin Cooke:                     So we’ve got eight tips we want to cover. The first one is to respond to everything.

Joe Magnotti:                    We say this all the time, Justin, but I think it’s so true and it really, you got to take it to heart.

Justin Cooke:                     And some of them were saying, well, how am I supposed to respond to everything if I’m not getting anything right? Where you’re getting something, you’re getting people that sending emails that are putting a couple of comments that are tweeting right? Tweet them back and ask them what they liked about the show, what they liked about the blog posts and try to do more of that. But the more you engage with the people, the more they’re going to engage back with you. And it’s just a cool thing to do. Like I love when I tweeted out a blog post or something and they show appreciation like, hey, thanks for that or whatever. It’s really, it’s really cool and it kind of brings me back. I might go check out their site again where I might not have otherwise. Do you know what I mean?

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. And setting up multiple Google alerts for your name, your blogs name and different variations of your name just in case and going to those pages and engaging with them in the conversation that it’s important.

Justin Cooke:                     Plus it’s fun to freak out new bloggers right when they like, but it’s like the third blog post wherever and they gave us a mention and I pop in, I’m like, hey man, thanks so much. Like, Oh man, that’s so cool. So, but I mean when you’re able to do that and engage with the people that are reading your stuff you can get them back to your site and they’re going to be appreciative of it. Right. Second point is to be a bit controversial, like it’s okay to take a stand on something because the thing is, is that a lot of people worry about pissing other people off. Like I don’t want to upset anyone. I don’t want to rock the boat. I just want to kind of be appealing to everyone. The problem with that is you’re just, it’s boring, right? Like you don’t want to appeal to everyone. You want to appeal to your tribe or the group that you’re particularly looking to target.

Joe Magnotti:                    I know what you’re saying here Justin but I’m gonna disagree with you a little bit. I mean, I don’t think you should do like blog posts on abortion or like gun control or stuff like that. Especially if you’re just in internet marketing and you want to be controversial just to be controversial.

Justin Cooke:                     I should probably clarify that then. Yeah. I’m not saying like, you know like talk about gun laws and whether they’re good or bad or you know the president or whatever. No, I’m talking more like within your niche. So has to be topical. But if something sucks and it seems like other people were kind of afraid to say it, say it. Because you’re not the only one thinking it. There are other people thinking it too.

Joe Magnotti:                    I especially think this is true in interviews. If you’re interviewing someone and something doesn’t make sense. I mean you don’t have to be a jerk about it, but be challenging. Ask the question, if there’s something that doesn’t make sense seems a little fishy, or something that you disagree with or challenge your guest.

Justin Cooke:                     Yeah, yeah, yeah. Challenge them a bit and like say, “well can you explain this a bit further,” and not be a jerk about it, but like ask the questions that your audience really wants to ask themselves. Like they may not ask if they were on the show, but they’re hoping you’ll ask it cause they really want to know.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. That’s going to make for deeper conversation rather than the same old, same old every-

Justin Cooke:                     Top talking points and they’re going through their spiel specially with people who get interviewed all the time. They have their talking points and we don’t even get interviewed all the time and we have like a specific spiel we go through when we’re getting interviewed, get them off of that, get them, get them like in depth information from them. Right.

Joe Magnotti:                    They’re just doing a circuit and they’re doing their thing and they’re doing their spiel and you got to knock him off the conversation.

Justin Cooke:                     Yeah. And honestly, I think your guests, if you have a podcast or you have a video show or whatever, your guests are going to appreciate it too. And they may, they may feel a little like you’re attacking them a bit. But I think that’s, I think that’s acceptable. A good example of this, I was listening to a Mixergy podcast, the one with Pat Flynn from smart passive income and he beat him up, man. He was beating him up a little bit about the whole passive income thing and, and it really, it kind of threw Pat off a little bit. You know, Pat’s really good. He’s polished right. Threw him off a little bit. And it was a really interesting interview and honestly I don’t feel any worse towards Pat from listening to it or to Andrew Warner, but just asking those questions threw Pat off enough to where like it was a little more in depth and engaging than I thought it might be otherwise. Really cool.

                                                Anyway. Yeah, so being controversial means just [inaudible 00:11:04] and we did a post called, I want your monies right. And it’s basically about people that email and that and in a roundabout way or basically saying you have some monies I’d like to have some of your money is, can you give me some of your monies? It’s ridiculous. It’s like the worst approach to approaching someone that you could possibly take. And so we thought we’d beat, we thought we’d hammer it home and you know, that could definitely be taken the wrong way. And then some people are like, oh my God, but you know, so what? I mean, that’s the reality of what was happening. We thought we’d talk about it.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, and it was a popular post. So I mean, I think it’s on other people’s minds as well.

Justin Cooke:                     Our third point is to elicit feedback, so get feedback from your audience, ask them questions, open loops at the end of the blog posts, that type of thing.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. I’m going to beat you up a little bit here, Justin, because I’ve been asking you to do this since, since we started AdSense flippers, which is why don’t we do more surveys. I think surveys would be a very engaging way to bring customers, especially podcasts listeners back to the page and say, “Hey, which one of the eight ways of you know, engaging in your business do you think is the best one?”

Justin Cooke:                     All right Joe, so I’ll give you some props on this one. You’re right, you have beat me up about it a little bit and you are right and that we should do surveys. The problem I think, or one of the reasons that I’ve hesitated to do it, is because we don’t have a way to do anything after we do the survey. So let’s say that I ask people a bunch of questions, “what kind of information are you more interested in, buying sites, selling sites, building sites.” and we try to like kind of categorize based on their interests, right? I can’t actually categorize them by email or by groups. I can just get a few feedback on what they want, but I can’t actually then split the message and send them the right message. So that’s why we’re looking at office autopilot to help us do that. Right? So I think surveys are coming a lot more powerful after that. So I think, and hold me to this over the next couple of months guys if you’re not getting emails that are surveying you, that are asking kind of what your interests are. So I can match our content with your interests. Then I screwed up basically. So you can you go hold my feet to the fire on that one.

                                                The next point is enticing headlines. This is your point Joe, run with it.

Joe Magnotti:                    Well I thought that, you know when we talked about this a little bit offline, we talked about this before the show, but I always thought that writing an enticing headline, especially when you have an engaged list that opens your email is a positive thing. You’ll get more people to open your email, you get more people to come to the blog posts and therefore you get more people to participate in whatever’s going on in your site.

Justin Cooke:                     That’s absolutely true. It is true. Well, so we could do things like, and we have done this, this is where we split test headlines and emails, right? And you know I sent it out 20% 20% and then send the winner to 60% the problem is when you get too tricky with things like that, you’re not really like, maybe your headline isn’t as topical or it’s tired. So you do you know how we’re doing it right? Right now top eight ways. But you know like where you do like just the list posts and it’s not really like in depth, your headline isn’t very specific, it’s just not as cool. It’s off.

Joe Magnotti:                    Hmm. So you’re saying like when you’re split testing these enticing headlines, usually one you always know it’s going to be the best one. That’s the one you have gone with anyway.

Justin Cooke:                     Okay. So let’s say I send an email and one of them is the exact title of the blog posts and the other one says something like, “your mother was wrong.” Right. And let’s say more people open the, “your mother was wrong.” Headline rather than titles of blog posts. They may open it, but they get inside and it’s about something else. They may end up feeling tricked. It’s a little, so yes, our open rates went up, but was it really cool? I mean like it’s a tactic. It’s a marketing tactic employed and I think it’s better to be, I think there’s a value in being just straight up with things like that.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, I think that’s, you should probably stick to in general. But remember we had that a AdSense account banned posts that we did it with a long time ago on AdSense flippers.

Justin Cooke:                     Yeah, yeah. I know a ton of people open it, said oh my God, I thought your AdSense account was banned. I know it was popular, but it was a bit tricky. I’m not sure that I just, I don’t like it as much.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. I guess you shouldn’t trick your audience to the fact of hurting your brand. Right. That’s not what I’m saying. What I’m saying is if you’re just writing boring ass headlines every single time, just matching your blog title, I could see how your open rates would go down, down, down. People just like it just gets mixed in with the rest of their email. Whereas if you do have something like, “Oh here’s a marketing tip Your mother doesn’t want you to know.’ That’s kind of a subject that someone’s more likely to open.

Justin Cooke:                     Well, I mean, let’s ask the audience. So I had an argument with someone about this not that long ago, and their point was, if the goal is to get them to opt in, anything you do, you should split test everything. Whatever works better for getting in the opt in. That’s the route you should take always, right? You should always lean toward more opt ins, opt ins to more sales, more sales to more money, bigger business, blah, blah, blah. Vehemently don’t believe that’s true. I argue that to the core. So I’m really interested in what you think. Leave a comment on the post for this on empire flippers. I love to hear where you think about it, but I don’t think that’s right. I don’t think the goal should be always more opt ins, more sales, more money. Now we’ll talk about this in a point that we’re bringing up here in a second, but next point is actually Write for your peers sometimes, and this is kind of like ties in, if you’re always doing like you know top seven ways to you know, this, that the other and it’s like you’re not writing for the people that are going to ,that are thought leaders that are going to share your information that are going to make a difference and like make your post or your podcast episode more seen or heard. Do you know what I mean?

Joe Magnotti:                    I mean if you’re always writing for the noobs and the noobs are going to pick that stuff up there and to learn that one thing and they’re going to move on because they’re going to consider you a beginners type of blog information site.

Justin Cooke:                     There’s a lot of money, right? With beginners. I mean we definitely have some beginners podcast and post I think as well. So, and I wouldn’t say just beginners either. Like let’s say it’s step one, step two, step three for example, your way to transfer a site, right? And it’s informational. Anyone needs to transfer site can go there and get that information and that’s helpful. But there are other things that are more mindset that are more trying to, to help your peers and talk about your struggles because they’re dealing with the same thing too and it’s going to relate better to them.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. I really like this point actually because I definitely see how you have to mix this in if you want your blog to be successful, you can’t just always write to the same segment of your audience. If you don’t start writing to more advanced users, users that are your peers, then you’re not going to have those people actively engaged on your blog. And like you said, they’re not going to share your information with other people.

Justin Cooke:                     I think it also leads to like not treating your audience like morons. Right? No, it’s true. I mean, some people treat their audience like morons, I’m not going to call anyone out right now, but they do just, they treat them like they’re all brand new and here you need to follow my lead and here’s exactly what you need to do. And that’s just, that’s douchey. It is. Right? It’s douchey, a douchey thing to do. A great example of not doing that. A guy that’s on point is Dan Norris from informally, right? Like he always treats his audience with respect, but he’s also like really doing detailed stuff for, I think his peers. I mean, I think probably maybe even too far, maybe even too far, but I like that it’s so cool and I have no problem sharing his stuff because it’s just, it’s so on point. So good. Right, right. And I think that he does an excellent job of that compared to the people that are like, okay, here you go. People listen to me. Here’s the path you need to take. Right. That’s just assholeness. The next point we have is to over deliver on service. So whenever you have a customer and make sure you go above and beyond, right?

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. I think that this is easy for people that don’t have many customers and probably easy for people that have lots of customers cause they have the money to pay people to actually provide the service. It’s somewhere in the middle that you start to get stuck.

Justin Cooke:                     I don’t know.I think that’s weak sauce. I think that, personally, I think that’s you kind of like, cause here’s the thing, if you’re just starting out, you’re going to say I don’t have the money or I can’t really hold on.

Joe Magnotti:                    You don’t have any customers.

Justin Cooke:                     I don’t really have the money. I don’t have any customers. I can’t over deliver on the three or four customers I’m getting a month and the people at the very hand or like Oh my God, I, it’s hard to track. It’s hard to deliver that great level of service, that real human touch at a very large scale. We’re in the middle and you’re saying, oh the middle’s kind of the hardest place. I think no matter whether you’re in the beginning stages, middle stages or like up full scale stages, you’re always going to have an excuse. Right. And, and I think, I think oh way over delivering for your customers at any stage along the line is the absolute best thing.

Joe Magnotti:                    Agreed. It’s like going to the gym, right? You can always make any excuse why i didn’t go.

Justin Cooke:                     Exactly.

Joe Magnotti:                    You can always say, this is why I broke my diet. Right? But in the end you do have to be obligated to your customer to provide the best service possible. And this will keep people coming back because you know what, even if things get screwed up and they will, things will get screwed up. If you provide good service and you’re on top of it, they’re going to thank you for it at the end of the day.

Justin Cooke:                     Example like CD baby, whenever you would buy from them, they send you this email that says, you know we’ve hand painstakingly hand wrapped your CD and it’s on its way or whatever and they have this nice little email that goes out. They would often send like candy or like little, you would ask for something and they would send it. Like one time they sent like dried squid cause someone asked for something crazy like a squid in the bag and they sent it. And these are the kinds of things that people talk about, right? They’re going to tell their friends they’re going to, who was it? It was Shopify. We sign up for a Shopify account and I got an email from them. It says, hey guys, look, I’m a real person. There’s like a picture of the guy holding up his name or whatever. He’s like, yeah, you know?

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, your name actually.

Justin Cooke:                     yeah, my name. Yeah. It was so cool. Right. Okay. This is a real email from a real guy. His name’s really Brad or whatever it was, and I tell him the people that story. That’s the kind of stuff that carries on. That’s what other people hear about and they’re passing on entities, small little things that really make the difference between delivering a fair product at a fair price and a fair time period to going, oh my God, these guys are killing it. So cool.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah. And I would say in the online arena, it’s really important to have less for the customer to do or if the customer does have to do a piece there on their own, make sure that there’s good training material and a good support system in case they get stuck. So you know, and if they do have to migrate sites themselves, something like that, you have a guy to step by step guide but you also some out and provide a good 24 hour support system for them to get an answer from a real human being.

Justin Cooke:                     I think we can improve our process a bit on some of the support stuff, especially where we’re at now Joe, I would to thinking about the thought lately, but there are some things we’re doing so right, like some of our agents are just on top of it. Whenever they get a ticket, they’re responding, they let us know right away if it’s something that needs to be upgraded to us and they’re really nice people. I really trying to help people out with their problems. Right. And that’s pretty cool. And that’s, I mean, again, it’s one of the benefits of being here in the Philippines is we’re able to have extra people and find the right people that can handle customer issues.

                                                Our next point, our seventh point, is consistent in your message.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, so this was kind of my point and I really think that if you’re going to commit to a content schedule then you have to stick to that content schedule, I think the worst thing to do is say I’m going to do two blog posts a week, then do two blog posts a week for the first week and then one blog post a month for the next year. And you know, nobody knows when the content is coming out. If you have a content schedule, stick to that schedule and make sure it’s reasonable for you to come up with good content. But that’s what you need to stick to it.

Justin Cooke:                     I couldn’t say I disagree with you on this one, Joe. Honestly. have you ever heard of, you guys have probably heard a podcast where you’re listening to it and then you listen to the next episode. “Sorry guys. It’s been way too long since we were able to do our last podcast.” They get on the next one. “Oh it’s been things have been so busy,” and they’re like making excuses and stuff and it’s like it’s just irritating cause maybe you’re just listening to them through. It’s been a long time. The episode was on and it just, it’s like what are you doing right? And like don’t put yourself in a position where you have to make excuses for your weak ass schedule.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, it’s [inaudible 00:23:10]. It’s definitely a minor league kind of stuff.

Justin Cooke:                     So our eighth point, and I love this, we’re stealing this, were a ripping, pivoting and jamming on this. Now we’re stealing this from the lifestyle business Podcast is what they call the stage test. And I think this is fantastic. It’s basically is what you’re doing defensible, would you get up in a room full of your peers? And be able to make the case on what you’re doing in your business and why.

Joe Magnotti:                    Right.

Justin Cooke:                     right. So if you have a show, you’re, let’s say you’re constantly pitching affiliates or you’re doing product launches, is that defensible? Would you feel totally comfortable getting up in front of people and saying this is exactly what I do, this is how I do it? Or would you not?

Joe Magnotti:                    I know some people definitely would, but I wouldn’t. And There are parts of our business that maybe aren’t as defensible as others, but in general just, I mean, I feel good about what we do.

Justin Cooke:                     Yeah. I mean, but think about some of some people we’ve talked to some business owners and some of the people that are entrepreneurs that are working on stuff that they’re doing it, but what they really feel comfortable like saying it publicly or still or what they’re doing publicly. And I think that’s probably it. That’s not long ball, that’s not longterm positioning for your business. If you’re not able to defend that. And I’d say there are some weaknesses in our business. I’d say I’m 90, 95% comfortable. The fact that we’re just building a bunch of niche sites. I don’t know. I mean, it’s not something I want to Brag to my grandkids about someday and you know what I mean? Like it’s not really, I don’t think.

Joe Magnotti:                    but that’s one piece of our business. I mean at the end of the day.

Justin Cooke:                     I think that piece probably doesn’t pass the stage test, but I’d say building teams of people here in the Philippines, knocking out some of our longer term projects, all of that I feel really comfortable about. But I mean, it’s good to turn the table or turn the focus back on herself. I mean, we can talk about everyone else’s business all day, but we need to make sure we’re applying the same requirements ourselves into our own business.

                                                All right, so let’s talk about our niche business idea of the week. So I’d been dealing with this a bit with OAP now that we signed up and we’re finally getting the ball rolling, but it’s supposedly it’s easier than a fusion soft. It’s still a big pain in the ass. Oh my God. Like the email funnels and trying to make sure that everyone is getting the emails and the content that they’ve kind of opted in for that they’re interested in. Right now it’s kind of like everyone gets everything and that’s not great. Right. Cause maybe you don’t want this particular type of info, but basically setting up the process for where those go and when different surveys or pieces of automation kick in is fairly confusing.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, I think I like this, this idea. I’m thinking the market would be a little bit small, but yeah, having a business where you set up the email funnels, you don’t actually write the emails. You just write out a flowchart using mockingbird or you know, presentation software, whatever you want to use to make sure that the person graphically understands how the workflow is going to work through the email funnels.

Justin Cooke:                     Yeah. So they’ve got like third party onboarding for infusion soft. But what why not have more third party onboarding for office autopilot? So let’s say you know office autopilot like the back of your hand. Do you know, maybe two hours of kind of like understanding two to three hours of understanding the business a bit, taking best practices that are already established based on you know, different kind of automations that you can use inside office autopilot or some of the stuff that you know, like people that have amazing funnels and basically kind of modeled them out and then custom tailor it to that person’s business. You could charge a good amount of money for that and there are people that need it. I think.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, I definitely think if you talk to the leaders in the industry and found out the best funnels that are working by having them describe their funnels, that might make for good models for you to have to start to work.

Justin Cooke:                     Really. I think that’s something that if you really want to work on it within three or four months, you could really get a really good understanding of it by talking to the right people, figuring it out, and then starting to offer that service right away. I think he could make some serious cash for that. I mean that’s probably worth at least a thousand dollars probably a couple thousand dollars to get that fully up and running for a real regular size business, small or medium sized business.

                                                All right, let’s get right into our tips, tricks and our plans for the future.

Speaker 1:                           You and listening to the Empire Flippers podcast with Justin and Joe.

Justin Cooke:                     Alright, so no tip or trick this week. We do have a plan for the future so we want to talk a little bit about the format for the podcast and we’ve been doing a lot of interviews lately. I think that’s continue. I love talking to sharp people about what they’re doing in their business, what’s been successful, what’s working for them, what’s not working for them. I think we get a ton of value out of that. I know our listeners do as well. We also want to do a little bit more regarding the round table discussions. We’ve had some requests for that and so we just want to let you know we’re listening to you and we appreciate that as well. So we’ll probably talk about, we’ll have like debates and then probably you know, conversations about things that are struggles, of our struggles and our business and how to kind of work through them.

Joe Magnotti:                    Yeah, I’ve met some good people in my little travels lately that I think would be great to have on the show.

Justin Cooke:                     There’s Cody McKibben, I think it’d be fun to like kind of debate the traveling entrepreneur cause he’s got kind of a different interpretation on how that should be done then we do. That’d be kind of fun. So yeah, and I think some debate podcasts would be pretty interesting too where we can battle it out.

Joe Magnotti:                    But if you guys have any suggestions for guests you’d like to see or debate topics that you’d like to hear, please let us know.

Justin Cooke:                     Well that’s it for episode 47 of the Empire Flippers podcast. Thanks for being with us this week. You can check us out on Twitter @Empireflippers and we’ll see you next week.

Joe Magnotti:                    Bye Bye everybody.

Speaker 1:                           You’ve been listening to the Empire Flippers podcast with Justin and Joe, be sure to hit up empireflippers.com for more. That’s empireflippers.com thanks for listening.


  • Jeremy says:

    Is this the episode where you talked about how you have fans who aren’t even in the adsense game? That’s me. I come back every week for the awesome podcast. I’ve leveraged tips from this podcast into making big sales, and I sell women’s clothing.

    Just heard your name come up from Dan TMBA on Rise To The Top.

    • Justin Cooke says:

      Thanks, Jeremy!

      It definitely seems to be the case with our podcasts. That probably has something to do with us being a bit more open-ended or business focused in the show…more than we have been on the blog, I think.

      Yeah, I heard that Rise To The Top episode…Dan was on fire with that one! heh…tons of knowledge bombs dropped.

  • Keith Mander says:

    Chaps – I think it was on this podcast that you mentioned that you received this cool email from Shopify with a photo of the customer support rep. I don’t suppose tou could be a legend and forward that on to me (or a screenshot). I’d love to show that to some people. Thanks a mil.

  • Jimbo says:

    “Building a bunch of niche sites is not something I’d want to brag about my grandkids about….that piece doesn’t pass the stage test”…..le sigh. Between you and the LBP boys, AdSense is looking more like a biz rather than a business.

    • Justin Cooke says:

      Hey Jimbo,

      AdSense is a monetization method and not a business of course…but I think what you’re referring to is niche sites.

      I think it’s about positioning. I don’t think building a few niche sites and making a bit of cash out of it is much of a business. (Definitely more of a “biz”) I think that niche sites are probably the best way to learn how to start building an online empire (low-cost + higher success rate) but a business requires more. We talked about it at some length in this podcast:


  • Hi guys .

    This writing about your peers made me think . My mentality was write your your costumer/your ideal reader etc . But , you can’t ignore your peers , because they give the very much needed social proof .

    I guess you should try to strike a balance .

    Be healthy and smile .

    • Justin Cooke says:

      I think you’re mostly right, Ilias. Putting out content for an avatar of your perfect customer (and actual customers) is the best strategy most of the time. Still…you’ll want to write some content for your peers as well. This will help establish you as a leader in the niche if you can bring together your peers/competitors and get the conversation started with them.

  • I really enjoy listening to you guys. I think everyone has it’s own strategy some may work and some may not, every business is different.

  • Long time listener, 201st time caller…

    I love when you guys do these types of episodes. You have done such a great job in a short amount of time and there is no doubt you know what you are talking about in building an audience.

    Wait for it, insult sandwich in 3,2,1…

    But to use Justin’e vernacular I “vehemently” disagree on your headline stance. The point of a headline is to get the reader to read the next line, period, end of story.

    There is a reason that the greatest marketing & copywriting minds of the last 100 years place so much importance in them, and that is quantifiable proof that they are a vital precursor to success.

    I need to listen again because the episode was SO good, also going to steal one of your ideas and write a rebuttal post to that specific point, expect the link in a week or two.

    Love you guys!

    • Justin Cooke says:

      Thanks, brother!

      I see what you’re saying regarding the headline. You didn’t say it, but I was trying to make the point that adding “at all costs” when it comes to reading the next line shouldn’t apply.

      An exaggerated example of this would be something like “Joe passed away…” in the headline. I’m guessing it would boost open rates, but I’d be an asshole when I flip it into letting you know we have sites for sale. 🙁

    • Dan says:

      Context is important too, if you have a standing relationships with readers and are writing “wholesale” content– stuff directly to your current audience– they can feel ripped with over- clever headlines. Also in many cases it is the most clever move to have an understated headline, a lot of stuff that gets picked up in the entrepreneurship space can be understated.

      Anyway I came here to say I liked this episode and your interpretation of the on-stage test– a bit different from what I envisioned but I think you added an important element to it (the defensibility bit).

      I like to call “writing to your peers” is being a wholesale blogger, writing to the plebs is “retail” blogging.. I’ve long wanted to do a post on this but I’ll just say it here

      ANYWAY back to work 🙂

  • Justin and Joe,

    You guys mentioned doing polls to segment your list. Shane Melaugh just came out with this awesome plugin…it might be useful for you http://viralquizbuilder.com/

  • Tung Tran says:

    Wow a lot of tips put together by 2 experts . Great!

    Actually I listened to this podcast 2 times 😀

    Thank you guys 🙂

  • Don Shelton says:

    On pushing for every opt-in, every lead, etc. no matter the method, I think it depends some on whether you are long-term or short-term oriented. If you’re in a business that you don’t think you’ll be in a year from now (maybe it’s trend-based), you’ll probably do better resorting to less savory methods of attracting eyeballs and clicks now. If you take a long-term viewpoint, most of those short-term tricks to goose numbers will hurt in the long run. Customers aren’t stupid; they do figure out gotcha marketing after a while. For me, I can usually smell BS from a hundred miles away and will have nothing to do with hype and gimmicks; most aren’t as reactionary on that as I am, but they do know when they’re being tricked and will react negatively over time. If you’re trying to create a brand, you gotta be real.

    • Justin Cooke says:

      Thanks for the comment, Don.

      My BS detector is pretty well-tuned as well. Maybe some of the short-term tactics are better with one-off sales, but definitely not helpful when it comes to relationship marketing/sales, for sure.

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