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Dave Lukas, The Misfit Entrepreneur_Breakthrough Entrepreneurship

The weekly podcast with serial entrepreneur, Dave M. Lukas, devoted to giving you incredibly useful and unique insight from the world's top entrepreneurs with a focus on their non-traditional methods for achieving success, their Misfit side. Misfit was created to give YOU the breakthrough entrepreneurship strategies and actionable advice to accelerate your success! The show's open format and Misfit 3 concept, combined with Dave's intuitive and engaging interview style quickly uncover each guest's key tools, tactics, and tricks that listeners can start using in their lives right now. Learn more about the show at www.misfitentrepreneur.com and become a member of Misfit Nation by signing up for the Misfit Minute, the FREE weekly email with specific resources from the week's "Misfit 3," and actionable tips and items from the world of Misfit Entrepreneurs. It is delivered every Friday to your inbox!
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Now displaying: June, 2020

The weekly podcast with serial entrepreneur, Dave M. Lukas, devoted to giving you incredibly useful and unique insight from the world's top entrepreneurs with a focus on their non-traditional methods for achieving success, their Misfit side. Misfit was created to give YOU the best, actionable advice to accelerate your success!

The show's open format and Misfit 3 concept, combined with Dave's intuitive and engaging interview style quickly uncovers each guest's key tools, tactics, and tricks that listeners can start using in their lives right now.

Learn more about the show at www.misfitentrepreneur.com and become a member of Misfit Nation by signing up for the Misfit Minute, the FREE weekly email with specific resources from the week's "Misfit 3," and actionable tips and items from the world of Misfit Entrepreneurs. It is delivered every Friday to your inbox!

Jun 24, 2020

This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Anthony Sarandea. Anthony is an interesting Misfit Entrepreneur. Not only is he known as one of the top customer generators in the world with a business that drives over 1 million new customers a year for clients, but he’s been featured alongside Snapchat Founder, Evan Spiegel as one of the entrepreneurs changing the world.

He’s one of the top Forbes 30 under 30 entrepreneurs, philanthropist, and is even getting into acting. But, the thing that impresses me most is how methodically, consistently, and quietly, Anthony built a powerhouse that works behind the scenes driving the business and customer acquisition of some of the largest companies in the world. They rely on him and his businesses to make them go.

And today, I not only want to talk about the secrets Anthony has learned on how to find and get customers, but also the lessons he learned in building businesses doing 10’s of millions of dollars that not many know about.

Anthony Sarandrea on Instagram

www.AnthonySarandrea.com

Anthony grew up in a lower middle class family. His dad was a police officer and his mom was nurse. He was taught to work hard and had talent in sports, specifically basketball. His dream was to play pro-basketball and went on that path. Halfway through college, he found the internet. He saw a guy in a fancy car running around on a Tuesday and asked him what he did. The guy told he worked on the internet.

Anthony convinced the guy to let him learn from him and started essentially shadowing him working 18 hour days learning everything he could from all sources he could get information.

His knowledge turned into skill and his first business where people hired him for online/internet projects running ads. He grew and hired his brother, then another and then other employees, etc. and kept growing it. He built it out to where today, Anthony’s business is basically a Lending Tree for services needed by distressed Americans – basically a lead generation powerhouse for products and services for people that have challenges like too much debt or low credit scores, etc. The market had been ignored and underserved and Anthony stepped in to help people get the services to help them.

What does it mean to “Own the Customer and Not the Offer?”

  • You want to be in the business of owning the customer
  • It is a lot more scalable as one customer is a good fit for multiple offers.
  • The key is to position yourself as the go to place for businesses with offers to get customers.
  • You want to be in a position to build an ongoing relationship with the customer, so you can work with them over and over again in different ways.
  • This way, you don’t shove a square peg into a round hole and best help the customer, but also monetize them in multiple ways for your business.

At the 9:52 mark, Anthony breaks down his business and how it operates….

  • Anthony gets an ad for a specific type of product such as health insurance.
  • They spend 6 -figures a day on paid ads on everything from Facebook to Direct Mail.
  • All of the different platforms are just channels to get in front of a consumer.
  • When a customer clicks on the ad, they go to a landing page with more detail and criteria.
  • The goal is to get them to take an action. For example, for health insurance, it is to make a call to discuss their needs.
  • Anthony has a whole call center setup on the back end with his business clients in which calls are routed to their call centers and sales teams.
  • Anthony gets paid every time the phone rings, every time a customer signs up, even based on how long a call lasts.
  • There are differences for each business customer that Anthony’s business customizes to maximize success.
  • There is whole routing system behind the scenes that slices and dices customer information to determine who a client is sent to.

How did you figure all of this out?

  • It started when built his first ad business. He got to with a bunch of different segments, which gave a diverse view of needs.
  • Eventually, he productized the service
  • His job was just then to sell it businesses. And he had a win-win.
  • He would deliver a customer at a great price agreed upon with a customer and he didn’t get paid unless he delivered the customers.

How do you get your business customers?

  • It’s much easier now that he has a track record.
  • But, it is also easier because Anthony takes on the risk and only get’s paid when he delivers.
  • He would also pay to speak at conferences and gain credibility.
  • He found a niche in large, but still up and coming players in different markets.

Since you are dependent on a clients success, how do you impact that?

  • It’s how you structure a deal
  • More importantly it’s how you align to the interests and what a client is really looking for and then speaking in those terms and structuring things.
  • One of the greatest skill sets to have is to look at a deal from a different perspective.
  • Flip the script – if you are taking on the risk, you need to vet them more than they do you.
  • In Anthony’s case, he’s doing the hardest work in getting people to be interested in a product and make a decision to learn more.
  • He even tests out a client’s process and give feedback and recommendations to improve their process before sending a lead to make sure it can be successful.

Tell us about your customer acquisition strategies…

  • Focus on a specific niche within a niche. For example, don’t just focus on moms, focus on divorced moms just on the east coast, etc.
  • Demographically niching down is what wins over time.
  • Tactics will change by platform in how you make an ad look or the content.
  • You job is to be more interesting than someone’s mom, dad, sister, brother, friends, etc. on their newsfeed to spur them to act and learn more.
  • To do this, you need to be highly specific and talk in terms of deep down psychological benefit.
  • Anthony literally becomes a “method actor” when focusing on niche and actually gets himself into the same situation he is focused on serving.
    • For example, he purposely defaulted on his medical bills so he could feel what people go through. The collections calls, letters, anxiety, etc.
  • He then uses these experiences to write his ad copy.
  • Too many companies spend their time on talking about their product, service, offer, or benefits, when their only focus should be on connecting with a customer in terms of the real-life reality of the situation they are in – their deepest psychological pain points.

What works and what doesn’t when it comes to driving traffic?

  • Use all mediums – things like direct mail aren’t dead.
  • Start on a Facebook or Instagram and go from there.
  • Right now, a lot of brands have pulled back budget, but there are more people on the platforms, so it is a great time to advertise.
  • Every platform works, but the tactics for each one vary widely. Start and get good at one and then go from there.

Any resources to help people get started in the basics of doing ads?

  • Yes, there is a Facebook Ad Buyer Group you can join and learn from
  • Things move so fast and literally, what works today can change tomorrow, so it is a constant learning curve.
  • Just start. The best way is to start paying some money and start learning. And as you lose your initial money, it will push you to focus and learn how to make it work for you to stop the bleeding.

What are the best lessons you have learned in entrepreneurship that you apply every day?

  • Find the most world class people. Hire the best. Hire the A players today, because you will always come back to them.
  • Fail fast
  • Don’t fall prey to mommy effect, where you only listen to people telling you things are great. Seek out the naysayers and get the critical feedback. Listen to them.

How do you find the best? The A-players?

  • Look at who is working in highest levels of your competition and doing well or who is closest to your business or industry.
  • If you find someone who is really successful in an area you want to learn in, go above and beyond to get their attention and curiosity to speak with you. Anthony will Venmo a payment for an hour of their time without even speaking with them to show he’s serious.
  • Find people who are where you want to be and ask them how to get there. Connect with them in multiple ways.
  • Make sure you are up front and make sure they know that speaking to you or meeting you will not be a waste of time.

 

Best Quote: "Too many companies spend their time on talking about their product, service, offer, or benefits, when their only focus should be on connecting with a customer in terms of the real-life reality of the situation they are in – their deepest psychological pain points."

 

Anthony's Misfit 3:

  1. Fail Fast. Fail and find that one win every day.
  2. Surround yourself with the best of the best, the A-Players.
  3. Purposely make time every week to help others and give of yourself. It give perspective and perspective is the key to happiness.

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Jun 17, 2020

This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Dr. Benjamin Hardy. Ben probably needs no introduction, but for those of you that haven’t heard of him, he is an organizational psychologist and bestselling author of “Willpower Doesn’t Work.” Ben’s works have been read by over 100 million people and he’s featured regularly on Forbes, Fortune, CNBC, and many others. He is a regular contributor to INC and from 2015-2018, he was the #1 writer, in the world, on Medium.com.

But, what is it about Ben that separates him and has helped him to have such an influence on the world? Well, having read some of Ben’s works, I think I know. It’s his uncanny ability to challenge societal norms and go against the “herd,” but do it in an easy and understandable way that is practical and can be put to use in your life.

He’s recently released his latest book “Personality Isn’t Permanent” and when I learned the focus of the book, I had to have him on to discuss it, and of course, his thoughts on entrepreneurship as well.

www.BenjaminHardy.com

Ben’s journey started when his parents got divorced when he was 11. It caused a lot of trauma. He father became deeply depressed and a drug addict after. It got so bad that Ben could not see him anymore. With everything going on, he barely graduated high school and spent his days playing video games.

You need a future to have hope and happiness. It is hard to have meaning in your life without a future. Ben didn’t have a future at this time in his life. He was not happy.

So, he reconnected by going on a church mission. He did it by himself. It was meaningful and an escape to start fresh. He did it for a few years and it was transformational. He also got into journaling during this time. He got to where he was journaling an hour a day. This helped to find himself and learn to live intentionally. He squeezed as much as he could out of his time and this led him to study psychology and this led to him getting his PhD.

This experience was what helped drive him and shape how he thinks and what he studies and writes about. Ben now continues to write and be a thought leader and lives in Florida with his family.

Why is the story that someone tells themselves so important to their life and their success – and underpinning to their personality?

  • Identity is more important that personality.
  • Personality is a byproduct.
  • Identity is something that you can control.
  • Your identity is the story you tell and use to explain yourself.
  • Most don’t take the time to consciously reframe their stories.
  • Your identity can and should be based on the future and who you want to be.
  • You are different than your former self.
  • It is good to view your current self as different from your future self.
  • You can set better goals to pursue and become a better version of yourself in the future.
  • Beware overly defining their current self. “I am X or Y…” It is better to explain yourself in terms of how you want to be and where you want to go. It is a better form of storytelling and doesn’t lock you in.

If someone wants to be deliberate and re-craft their story, what would you tell them to do?

  • Being deliberate is the separator – deliberate practice or intentional learning. A process that translates to a specific goal and you need a view of your future self to do it.
  • The first place to start is your identity of your future self. It is more important than current self.
  • It is impossible to make good decisions today if you don’t know who you want to be tomorrow.
  • Use a 3-year time frame. Clarify your future self and who your want to be in 3 years.
  • You have to choose who you want to be in the future. If you don’t choose, that is a choice. It comes down to choice.
  • Choices must be made even with the uncertainty around them.
  • Many times we don’t have choice of our circumstances, but we do choose how we respond.
  • Once you begin to tell yourself your new story, you begin to live into what you tell people you are.

Tell us about the book, why is personality not permanent?

  • Listen to the TED talk called “The Psychology of Your Future Self.”
  • Dominant views of personality don’t reflect the science. Your personality is not innate or your authentic self. It can chance and does change.
  • Are you the exact same person you were 10 years ago?
  • Study after study has shown that people are not and their personality changes over time.
  • “Human beings are works in progress that mistakenly think they are finished.”
  • People that keep telling themselves the same narrative become rigid and stunt their personal development.
  • This why personality tests can be debilitating as they can confirm a personality type, create bias and lock people into something that may not be the best for them and their growth over time.
  • Additionally, your environment, social group, and roles you are in also affect your personality and they change over time.

Ben breaks down personality into 4 levers….

  • Trauma – Former experiences that are not reframed and shape your subconscious
  • Narrative – The story you tell and where you are going – this actually acts against your subconscious as it is shaping your future self in that you will be different than who you are now.
  • Subconscious – Where you are right now and your comfort zone.
  • Environment – The influences around you

At the 32 min mark, we discuss how this topic has been shared in numerous ways throughout human history, but most still don’t learn it. We also talk why personality tests don’t work.

  • Beware living by a label or labeling yourself.
  • The biggest problems of personality tests is that they overly define your current self and stop you from thinking about the future an choosing your future – labels trap you and aren’t accurate.

What is the difference between a wannabe entrepreneur and an actual entrepreneur?

  • There is an identity shift required to become an entrepreneur.
  • People who invest in their future goals, business, and identity get their faster.
  • Your willingness to “put your money where you mouth” is helps you succeed as an entrepreneur.
  • We are kept from our goal, not by obstacles, but by a clear path to a lesser goal.
  • Additionally, your ability to recovery from a setback or past experience and get back to creating the future has an impact on entrepreneur success. ​

Tell us about the 100% Rule…

  • Ben learned it from Clayton Christiansen
  • Committing 100% is a lot easier than committing, say 98%. If you don’t’ commit 100% it becomes a slippery slope. What if you were only 98% committed to your marriage?
  • Not being 100% can lead to identity confusion and issues with willpower.
  • Situation will beat environment if you are not decided. 100% Decisions cut off alternative outcomes.

Habits?

  • Habits are the byproduct of the goal.
  • Some are good for everything – constant learning, journaling, serving others, morning/evening routines, etc. ​

Any big lessons you’ve taken from your adoption journey?

  • No other success can compensate for failure in the home.
  • Invest daily in your kids.
  • It helps you realize that so many other things don’t matter as much.
  • Patience and empathy toward your children. Measure the gain, not the gap.
  • Don’t overly define your kids around their current personality.

 

Best Quote: "You need a future to have hope and happiness. It is hard to have meaning in your life without a future.

 

Ben's Misfit 3:

  1. Clarify your future self. Clarity creates motivation..
  2. Tell people about your future self.
  3. Continually invest in your future self and try new and better things. The bigger the future, the better the present.

 

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Jun 10, 2020

This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Rytis Lauris. Rytis is the co-founder and CEO of Omnisend, the Powerful marketing automation platform focused on moving eCommerce marketers beyond generic email marketing tools. It’s currently the fastest growing marketing automation platform in the industry. Because of this, Rytis has gained a lot of notoriety within the eCommerce community for his insights on omnichannel and the future of eCommerce.

With over a decade of experience building and boostrapping successful startups in e-commerce, I wanted to have Rytis on to discuss the importance and future of marketing coming out of the Wuhan Coronavirus quarantine and how important it is for you to understand the different ways you need to market to stand out.

www.omnisend.com

Rytis Lauris on LinkedIn

Rytis graduated with a degree in political science and no experience in technology or marketing. When he was 21, a friend ask him to help with a business he was starting. He had no experience but figured it out and made it work. He never looked back and has been an entrepreneur ever since with a number of businesses. He got into digital marketing (which Onmisend was born from) and had success, but while running that business, started a few others that didn’t work out. One was a postcard business and the other was a polling tool for presenters on stage at conferences and events. He learned a major lesson in that every business has to solve a real problem. The two failures were “nice to have” products, but not necessities.

“You have to find a monetizable customer pain/problem to solve. That is the only way to build a proper business.”

What is Onmichannel marketing?

  • It is a way to communicate with a customer based through multiple mediums at once including email, text, chat, messenger, push notification, Facebook/Google/social ads and retargeting.
  • It is one tool where you can market through all channels at lunch.
  • It can be customized to communicate across the different mediums at different times and different ways to customers during their lifecycle.
  • You need a way to meet customers where they are – and nowadays that is in a number of channels.

At the 12 min mark, Rytis talks about Omnichannel in action with examples…

  • Marketing needs to follow the same path in how buyers behave and each customer will have different preferences and behavior.

What works best for a B2B and for a B2C strategy with Omnichannel?

  • Most of the work Rytis does is with B2C and mainly physical goods.
  • Omnichannel works better for B2C.
  • B2B doesn’t typically buy through things like Facebook Messenger and typically has a more formal process and decision-making process.
  • It does depend on what the product is as some B2B products may make sense for Omnichannel.
  • The consumer channel is the bigger opportunity for Omnichannel.
  • Omnichannel can work for informational type products or services as well for B2C.
  • It is especially good for things sold online as it can track everything.

Are there any changes or shifts you see happening or coming because of the virus?

  • Massive change that will make a major impact for the future – almost all businesses are transforming to a digital presence by nature.
  • Consumers have all gone digital and expect it, so your business has to accommodate it.
  • In harder times, businesses turn to selling into their customer base instead of investing to get new customers. This can work as it is a warm market, but they have to be careful not to sacrifice the future and keep a focus on gaining new clients.

Amazon? Friend or Foe? Should it be a part of an Omnichannel strategy?

  • It’s a tricky question, but ultimately, the answer is yes.
  • Everyone should have Amazon as a part of their strategy, but not rely on it solely.
  • It is easier to start on Amazon. It has the traffic and the platform and the tools you need to get going.
  • Once you are going, you need to be building your own brand, own platform, and owning the customer journey.

What is the difference between a Omnisend type solution and a Hubspot type?

  • Hubspot is more for B2B needs, Onmisend is built more for B2C.
  • Hubspot and other tools like it are more CRM and drip campaign type tools.
  • Omnisend has order follow up sequences, synchronizing with your online store, etc. Hubspot does not.
  • They are really completely different types of solutions and focuses.

If you had to give one of your best pieces of advice, outside or Omnichannel, for entrepreneurs to market their business, what would it be?

  • Be consistent.
  • Deliver what you promise.
  • Respect your customers and they will respect you.
  • Marketers and businesses need to think in terms of campaigns and lifetime values of customers.
  • It needs to be about what customer want to hear from you, not what you want to say to them.

How important can the little things be such as reviews online, etc?

Very important!

Social proof and reviews are critical for selling online and validating your products/services.

You customer feedback is gold and must be listened to.

Another little thing is keeping people informed and up to date.

What has surprised you most on your entrepreneur journey?

  • Rytis never thought of himself as a creative person, but entrepreneurship brings that out in him and has made a large impact on his success.
  • The 80/20 rule is real. 20% of the effort drives 80% of the results. Stay true to this.

What is your best advice for an entrepreneur starting out?

  • Just do it. Whatever it takes – find a way and make a way.
  • And there is no better day to start than today.
  • Plan on the move… ​

Anything else you want to share?

  • Use Omnichannel
  • Be consistent
  • Think in terms of customer lifecycle.

 

Best Quote: "You have to find a monetizable customer pain/problem to solve. That is the only way to build a proper business.”

 

Rytis's Misfit 3:

  1. Just do it. Take action and take the first step.
  2. People overestimate what they can do in a short amount of time and underestimate what they can do in a longer amount of time.
  3. Dream responsibly.

 

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Jun 3, 2020

Hello Misfit Nation! Welcome to another edition of "Lessons for Hannah!" In November of 2016, we introduced a new format that we are putting alongside our regular episodes called “Lessons for Hannah.” Hannah is my daughter and one of the main inspirations for the Misfit Entrepreneur. I wanted to have a place where she could go and learn from her daddy and his Misfit friends throughout her life….even after I am gone. If you haven’t listened to the first episode of "Lessons for Hannah," I urge you to as it gives some more background and tells the amazing story of how Hannah came to be in our lives.

"Lessons for Hannah" are short, very useful, and sometimes comical lessons, that I have learned which I want to share with you and give to Hannah to help in your lives. Because I want Hannah to have these for her life, I’m going to speak as though I am talking directly to her. These episodes are a lot of fun and if you think there is a lesson that we should include in these episodes, please don’t hesitate to send it over to us at support@misfitentrepreneur.com. We’d love to share it.

This week’s Lesson for Hannah

Hannah, I can’t believe it – we are now at episode 200 of the Misfit Entrepreneur. What a milestone and what an awesome honor to have it be a Lessons for Hannah episode. I am going to take a break from doing the Wuhan Coronavirus updates and change things up for this episode with a very simple, yet incredibly important lesson. After a few months of being quarantined and working almost every day, because, well, there wasn’t much else to do – we decided to take a week off and go to our cabin at the lake. We originally had planned a vacation during this time, but because of travel restrictions, we had to cancel it. But, we could go to the cabin.

And after a week of being there, it reminded me of a very important lesson we all need to remember in our lives and as we have approached episode 200, it has come into even more focus. We must take the time to truly relax and recharge in our lives! I didn’t full appreciate and realize how much I was not relaxing until after about 4 days into our time there. In fact, the first day we were there I used the morning to do a 70.3 triathlon in and around the lake. It was great. Just me and 5 hours of exercise. But, even after that, I was checking the computer and my phone to “see what I had missed.”

The next day I woke up and checked email, etc. before the day started and then we went out to the boat and hung on the lake – but of course, I would periodically still check my phone. Over the weekend, family came in and we spent the long weekend hanging out, boating, etc. As the weekend went on, I felt less of a need to check in. I even started reading a really good book, The Last Odyssey by James Rollins and devoured it in about 3 days. I started to feel myself loosen up and begin to relax. I even slept in a little longer as the week went on and gave myself a few days off of doing any exercise, etc.

By the end of the week, we were just hanging out, enjoying time as a family, having fun, and not worrying about things. It was very nice and made me realize how much we are on the go – even during a lockdown. In a normal week, I am going from 5:30am in the morning to early evening, you are doing your schoolwork with mommy, then jumping on web meetings for classes for your Tai Kwan do or other activities, and your mother has her work and priorities. We are literally, non-stop every day. And it takes a slowdown, a change of venue, and pace to shock yourself out of that daily grind to show you that you are in need of time off and time to recharge and relax.

By the end of the week, I felt better overall. I felt like we all connected as a family in a larger way that we haven’t in a while, and I had new perspective to go back to things with. You had a blast playing with your cousins, hanging out on the boat doing things like tubing, fishing, and all the other fun stuff we do at the cabin. I could tell you needed that after being basically relegated to home for 2 months with your mother and me. And your mom got to catch up on some sleep and enjoy some much deserved R&R. ​

Hannah, it’s important that we take the time in our lives to break out of our daily grind and routines and get recharged. It helps us reconnect with our family and ourselves, see things we have been missing, and enjoy life in different ways. I urge you to take these times in your life, at least several times a year as helps you to be even better in all areas of your life. The week at the cabin reminded me of that and reminded me that we need to do it more often and I have a feeling we will spend more time at the lake this summer. Here’s to 200 more great episodes with some recharging breaks in-between!

I love you, Daddy.

 

Best Quote: It’s important that we take the time in our lives to break out of our daily grind and routines and get recharged. It helps us reconnect with our family and ourselves, see things we have been missing, and enjoy life in different ways.

 

Misfit 3:

  1. We often don't realize how much we need to relax and recharge until we take the time to do it.
  2. When we take the time to recharge, it breaks us out from our daily grind and helps us reconnect with ourselves and those around us.
  3. We must make it a point to take several weeks per year to recharge ourselves and relax in our lives.

 

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