In this week’s episodes of GSDdaily, we’re going to talk about fuck-ups. We’re going to talk about failing. We are going to talk about mistakes and pivoting fast. We’re just generally going to not have a whole lot of fun if you’re me. Here’s why. Over the weekend I downloaded a book. I listen to a lot of audiobooks. Anyway, last summer I went on this personal development journey. It was before last summer, but I started getting my shit straight last summer, towards the end of the summer. And I didn’t post on social media a whole lot. I didn’t do too many outward things. It was just one of those things where I just kept closing myself off and off. We’ll go into that at some point, we’ll go into why I did that maybe, or the mistakes that were made or any of that stuff.
My personal development journey…
Basically what happened was I was going through this personal development journey, I started listening to Anthony Robbins and I read these two books, two books at the same time. I read Superbetter and I read Anthony Robbin’s first book, the one he wrote in late 1987. Oddly enough, I read them at the same time. One was downstairs, one was upstairs. I just picked whatever one was available to me. And I’d read it.
Well, what happened was kind of odd because I was going through this Tony Robbins book and it was talking about changing your mind, changing your patterns, doing a lot of NLP, doing all that stuff. At the same time, I was reading Superbetter, which is how to live like gainfully. I was going through this particular section in Superbetter that was about these challenges. For those of you who know my story, I was a Pepsi truck driver 14 years ago. I went from high school, started working at Pepsi, making good money. Then I was sitting in the backroom one day, repacking these cubes or repacking like 12 packs.
Basically, when you go to a grocery store and somebody drops a 12 pack, those cans get put into a basket and they get shipped back to the Pepsi plant. Well, once they’re back at the Pepsi plant, there’s usually a back room, and all it is, it’s a huge room and it’s got a bunch of cans, there are bins and containers of like loose Pepsi cans that are chilling all over the room. And then there’s a wall of shelves with 12 pack containers and cubes and all of that stuff.
They didn’t have anything to do for me that day. I’m sitting on the pallet, packing these cans and I’m like, motherfucker I had a 4.4 GPA in high school but I decided that I didn’t want to go to college. I wanted to go out and work. So I landed at Pepsi making $60,000 a year, driving a semi-truck at 18, 19 years old. And I thought, I mean, at the time it was like, it was great money.
The realization that I need to go to College…
I’m sitting in the back, packing these cans and I’m like, I’m smarter than this. I can do more than this. That night I went in and put in an application to go to a local college, Mercyhurst or North East now. I live in North East actually, but I put the application in whatever. I was accepted. Ended up going to school full-time. And I’m driving a Pepsi truck full-time too.
The Pepsi truck, I’m working 50-60 hours a week driving a Pepsi truck. I’m going to college full-time at the same time. The one thing that got me through that, because all in all, it’s 80-90 hours a week. I’ve always worked a lot. I pull the Pepsi truck into the college, I park it long ways in the college parking lot, I go in, take a class and then I come back out, I jump in the Pepsi truck and I drive away. I continue on my route. The thing that got me through school was the fact that this particular college was trimester. Only 10 weeks of college at a time. All I had to do, I had to take three classes, four classes sometimes, and just concentrate on them for 10 weeks. Anybody can do anything for 10 weeks, anything.
If I had to work my ass off for 10 weeks, and then I got a little break and then I had to do it again, there was at least an end goal. I at least saw that end goal. I saw the end of that 10 weeks. And then before you know it, I’m in my second year of college and my third year of college. I was in college for five years, finished with two degrees. I started my business third year of college, quit Pepsi.
That was 14 years ago, 13, 14 years ago. Which leads me to now. Getting back to my original Superbetter Tony Robbins story. I am reading this Tony Robbins book and I’m reading the Superbetter book at the same time. And Tony Robbins is teaching you how to remove blockers, remove limiting mindsets, program your subconscious so that you can start moving ahead. At the same time, Superbetter is talking about these mini-challenges to do. And I was like, you know what, I could do anything for 10 weeks. That’s how I got through college. I could do anything for 10 weeks. Well, now I know that I can do anything for 30 days.
I just made up my mind then. Last July, my first goal was to stop drinking Pop. So I stopped drinking Pop. It sucks because I was drinking a lot of Pop. Every month, it was kind of like my thing, like, we’ve got to noon, start drinking Pop, whatever. I didn’t drink a lot of water. So in July, I stopped drinking Pop and then successfully did that. I stopped drinking Pop. Then in August, I decided to stop chewing tobacco. I did that in August and that was fucking hard. I’m not even going to get into that on this show, but in September I decided … I just took two things that I liked. After all, I liked it because I liked chewing tobacco and I liked Pop. I just took two things away from myself. So now I need to give myself something back.
I started waking up early and I started, I was waking up at 7:30, at 8 o’clock every morning, going to bed at midnight. What I did was I stopped watching stupid ass Netflix shows at the end of the night, after my wife went to bed at like 9:30, 10:00, and just decided to go to bed with her and wake up in the morning and replace all the stupid shit that I was consuming at night with reading and stuff in the morning. So September, that was my September challenge, to start waking up early.
I started waking up at 6:00 or 6:30 and then 6:00 and then 5:30 and then 5:00. Then I settled at 4:30 being the time that I kind of woke up and that was good waking up when I went to bed at like 9:30 and wake up at 4:30, have ever since last September. That was successful. That was a successful 30-day challenge.
Then in October I was like you know if I could stop drinking Pop and I could stop chewing tobacco, two things that were, what I heard were hard. And they were fucking hard. I gave myself back time. I gave myself three hours a day in the morning before the rest of the world even wakes up. I’m reading the news, reading all the shit that you see me post in the morning, like on Done For You and the groups and all that stuff. All of that stuff is posted before 5:00 AM. So I just sign up to Hootsuite and I post that. If I see something that I think you guys are going to like, I post it.
All that shit is scheduled. Today’s articles, all scheduled. It’s done. I mean, everything you see from me today minus this video, it’s all going to be done. I gave myself back time. And then in October, I was like, you know what, we’re just going to fucking go for it. In October, my goal was to lose 30 pounds. And I’d fucking had no idea if I was going to be able to do it. No idea whatsoever. I was able to do me when I was younger. There was one time when I was like 18, I ended up losing like 90 pounds in 90 days. I was like 18, 19. You can do anything when you’re fucking 18, 19.
Now, being 39 … Or I’m 39 now. I was 38 last year. No idea. Maybe, maybe not. Ended up going through October, lost exactly 30 pounds. So now I’m down about 50. I kind of leveled off through the holidays and I’ve dropped and I’m kind of like leveled right now because of the pandemic and having to stay inside and all of that stuff. Man, I’m fucking like this is odd for me because people close to me know this, some of it even, but not like a whole lot. This 30-day challenge was the biggest kind of stepping stone into getting everything back on track.
Set a Goal
In the meantime, so I set some very ambitious goals. One of the goals that I have currently right now and for this year is to read one book a week. Well, in reading one book a week. There are some books that I started that I put down. Not many, but a couple. I post stuff sometimes on Facebook, but my wife and I had just started this book over the weekend, called The Power of Vulnerability. So this book is why we’re doing this week. It’s why we’re doing the week of fuck-ups. The things that I did wrong in my business and my life.
There was one particular thing that she shared in the book, Dr. Brené Brown, and that was the world is full of how-to’s and the world is full of roadmaps, which is true. I post a lot of that stuff. I post so many how-to’s and so many roadmaps and oftentimes like … Because that’s how my brain thinks. That’s what I look for. It is where I learned from, is I learned from how-to’s, I learned from roadmaps, I learned from processes, but a lot of people don’t. And if all you share as to how-to’s and you don’t get to the foundational piece of everything that is kind of getting something … Not troubling, but if you don’t share some of the story and some of the mistakes and some of the issues and some …
All of that stuff is equally important. It’s as important as the how-to. That’s why we’re going to go through and talk about some of the issues that I have been through, kind of in the bigger mistakes I’ve made. So all of that, that 14-minute litany to introduce this idea. I’m going to share this week the mistakes that I’ve made in the hope that you don’t make them too. We’re going to talk about things that I fucked up and tests that have failed and things that I didn’t even know that I was doing wrong until I looked back and then saw that I was doing them wrong.
The first one, the one that I’m going to share with you today is this idea, and it’s a very prevalent idea right now, everybody cares and everybody’s talking about pivoting fast. This person pivoting fast. This business pivoting fast. They went from doing one thing and pivoting fast it towards a new direction. They went from making fucking T-shirts and now they’re selling masks. Awesome. Now, here’s the problem with pivots.
The disadvantage of Pivoting too many times
When you pivot too many times or when you do too many things, then your customers lose track. If you don’t give your idea, your thing, enough time to grow and to breathe into or enough spend, like ad spends, to grow into breathing, then it’s going to fail. It’s not going to fail because it was a bad idea. And it’s not because it didn’t have great execution. It’s going to fail because nobody fucking knew about it. That’s the nature of the internet. Nobody knows about the shit you’re building until you tell them about it.
My friend Mike Hill, posted a long time ago. It was kind of just a throwaway Facebook post, but I actually took a screenshot of it and I revisit it every once in a while. It’s this idea that everybody starts a business they create, an offer they create, a product, they write a book, whatever. They think that they made it, this is their thing. They could put it out into the world and people are going to buy it. When the truth and reality are, nobody even knows it fucking exists. You need to not only create the thing, bottle up your genius, but then you also need to write the posts. Also, you need to throw up the ads, you need to write the blog posts. You need to incessantly tell people about it for the next decade of your life, for it to sell.
Some things do go viral. Some things take off. That stuff happens, but it is very rare. It’s capturing lightning in a bottle. So what I still do on occasion and have done a lot of in the past is I create a bunch of shit and then I don’t ever give anything room to breathe or room to grow or I don’t ever pay enough attention to it. I mean, like literally, some of our software, we use it for clients, but we don’t necessarily promote it as we should. Same with books. Same with some courses every once in a while. My past is littered with products and offers and courses that I created, that I spent a lot of time creating because I love the creative part, but I didn’t do anything to help them grow.
Curately.org: Content Curation Software
We have a content curation software called Curately and we’ve made some money on it. We’ve done well, but nobody in my audience has seen anything about it for the last three or four years, because we basically moved it inside Axis and it’s kind of going through some recoding and stuff, but at the same time, me saying that is a fucking excuse, literally, you just witnessed it. The fact is, I mean, it’s great software, it works well. It’s in this transition, and I’m letting it be in this transition, even though it doesn’t necessarily need to be because I’m focusing on doing other things at the moment.
In looking at the things you’re creating, the businesses that you’re growing, look at the products that you’re creating. Some people have like one product, two products, three products, and they just go full board into that. So there’s a thing that Brendon Burchard, I remember like a decade ago when he started ramping up his business, way before the millions of people followed him, he used to share that his goal was to do and launch one thing a year, one product a year, one launch a year. And me, the incessant creator, I remember thinking, Jesus, I mean, you can create 18 products. You can create 18 businesses in a year.
1. Launch Product Annually
But here’s the thing. Brendon Burchard now has a million fucking followers, millions, billions, like 100, 10 million, 20 million, 30, whatever his number is, it’s ridiculous. His model was the right model, where you build something. You stick with it and you try different things, grow it and you think about it and you ponder it and you figure out all the different ways that you can bring somebody in. So way back then he launched a product called, it was the Experts Academy. Then it was Total Product Blueprint. Basically, he would launch a business, launch a product and then hang out and just do that thing for a year. Then the next year you would launch another product.
2. Give Offers/Products Room to Breathe
Five years into his career, he had five products. Then he started doing some books, then he did The Millionaire Messenger and he started writing some books and stuff on the front side, which is awesome. But he gave each of his offers room to breathe. Now, I am kind of in execution mode right now. Part of me talking through this idea with you is just that, it’s talking through it, because right now we’re creating a lot of content, we’ve got some books, we have some core offers. Everything that we are doing now is kind of being added to the matrix in the way that it needs to be added to the matrix so that we have some front ends and then we have some upsells. Or you can start at the top and go down.
Everything is being patterned correctly to sell and to be sequenced the most.
We’re, of course, using like sales funnel best practices and all that other stuff. I am not creating things to then just let them flail about. A long, long time ago, there was one week where I created three digital products. I remember being so excited about that because I went through and I brainstormed three products on a Monday. Then like Tuesday, I ended up creating all the slides for those three products. Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, I created all the videos for those products. And then I edited the videos through the weekend. I thought I was a badass. I was like, three products, one week, done.
Collectively, looking back on that, I wasted a week’s worth of time because none of them sold because I didn’t give any of them a chance to sell. I didn’t have any ads and didn’t do paid traffic. I don’t know, I might’ve emailed the list maybe once about each one of them, or maybe twice, kind of linking to a sales page. And then that was it. Whereas if I look at some of the more successful things that I’ve created, so Scriptly being one of them, all of the Done For You service offerings, being most successful. It’s the things that I continually revisit. Scripting, I promoted Scriptly incessantly for 9, 10, 12, 15 months after we launched it. Scripting is four and a half years old. Now, what’s part of Axis and email copy up and everything.
But I literally, every week it was an email about Scriptly. I did monthly bonuses. I had like this entire month marketing calendar where all I did was I just created new front ends for this fucking piece of software. That is giving your offer room to breathe. It is growing a business. That is doing what you can to grow your business, grow your offer. And Scriptly was our most successful piece of software. In looking back, was it the most successful because of the promotion, or was it the most successful because it was a great piece of software? I guess that it was both things that contributed to it being our most successful piece of software.
But at the same time, I put mental bandwidth and I put effort and time, and energy into it. The same with our sales funnel stuff, same with any of Done For You service offers. We crushed those things because not only are they great offers, but we continually make them awesome offers and we continually make them awesome front ends. That is my mistake number one.
Making sure that you are creating things and then giving them enough room to breathe, giving them room to grow, putting marketing around them, writing blog posts, and content.
Because if you don’t do that, then you will always fail. Your products will always fail. My products always failed. The ones that I didn’t do anything with, I created to create, but I didn’t focus on them enough, those are the ones that failed. They will always be the ones that failed because a good idea is not enough. Great execution is not enough. Having a sales funnel is not enough. What do you do with it?
At the end of the day, that’s what you need to answer. It’s not having a sales funnel, it’s not having a website, it’s not having a product, it’s not having a book. It is what do you do after those things are online. It’s not enough to put a retail shop somewhere, on some street corner if it doesn’t get any traffic, nobody’s going to drive by, nobody’s going to see it. Your digital business is no different. If you just kind of throw up your signpost and that’s it, nobody’s going to buy it. So you have to put the effort into the marketing and the funnels and the traffic and the blog posts and all that other stuff.
That is a fuck-up number one for GSD Daily. Some of that felt good to talk about and some of it not. Tomorrow we’re going to do something different. Tomorrow we’re going to talk about fuck-up number two. I don’t know what it’s going to be yet, but I think … I just came to this morning. As I was running or jogging, I can’t classify what I do in the morning as really running. I run. I jog. So, yeah. And I was like, well, let’s talk about some of the mistakes that we made, I made, and then what people can do to avoid them and we’ll go from there.
For Questions and Guide
If you liked today’s episode, I hope you did, then give it a like or a thumb up, thumbs up. If you would like to get on and talk about an action plan call, get on and talk about your action plan for your business, and how you can avoid massive screw-ups like the one I just described, go to doneforyou.com/start.