Step into the fast-paced world of ‘Real Marketing Real Fast’ with me, Doug Morneau. Each episode is a power-packed journey through the twists and turns of digital marketing and website acquisition. Expect unfiltered insights, expert interviews, and a healthy dose of sarcasm. This isn’t just another marketing podcast; it’s your front-row seat to the strategies shaping the digital landscape.


Tips on marketing funnels for professionals from Ben Adkins

  • Marketing tactics vary from place to place and industry to industry. There is no “one size fits all” marketing strategy.
  • You have to know the time it takes for a funnel and marketing strategy to work. Don’t give up too soon!
  • Get as much data as you can
  • If you offer something for free, have something that sets up the next sale
  • How can we help small businesses without having to charge them these giant chunks of change? It’s systems.
  • What is my job as an entrepreneur? It’s to build a megaphone that I can get my message out there, make sales.

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You have to know the time it takes for a funnel and marketing strategy to work. Don’t give up too soon!

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Doug: Well, welcome back listeners to another episode of Real Marketing Real Fast. Today, I have got joining us in the studio, Dr. Ben Atkins. He is a licensed chiropractor, physician and the founder of Closer’s Cafe. Ben grew his chiropractic clinic using Facebook marketing and then went on to help other local businesses do the same with his agency. Ben created the Closer’s Cafe blog and a mastermind to be a resource for those that are looking to build their own Facebook agency. So I’d like to welcome Ben to the Real Marketing podcast today.

Dr. Ben Atkins:  Hey it’s so good to be here, how are you?

Doug: I am excellent, I’m hoping that somewhere through this episode today I can get an adjustment as we go.

Dr. Ben Atkins: I tell you if I can figure that one out the one that I can do over the phone, you and me both we’ll make a million dollars with it, at least, at least right. Surely, so love it.

Doug: So, tell us a bit more about what you’re doing? I mean we had a brief conversation before we started recording and I said to him, “You know what’s your superpower and your passion?” You said your passion is helping small business so why don’t you expand a bit on how you do that.

Dr. Ben Atkins:  Sure. So, When I got started I came out and I was a chiropractor, I’d been to school for years and years and years and came out working for another doctor for a little while and did that for about a year and half to two years. And then I said, “You know what. It’s time for me to strike out on my own.” And so I started my practice. I remember I drove and I picked up a table. I think it was like four or five hours to go buy a table from someone on eBay. Drove it back and so I had something to adjust people on and opened up my doors a couple weeks later and pretty quickly I figured out, “Oh my god. I’m going to have to actually work to get people to come through the door.” Right. So I think that’s the grand realization that all small business owners, it hits them eventually that this is not just going to happen on its own.

Doug: You mean they didn’t flood in as soon as you opened the doors-

Dr. Ben Atkins: No, no. Like the first week, I had one person come to the door and it was my accountant and he was just trying to lock my business in. So, good for him, he was really smart. Because I remember to this day but, so really quickly I was like, “Okay. We’ve got to do something.” Right around that time was a time where Facebook was something that was up in front of me, the ads platform was just starting to sort of get its legs underneath it and so I didn’t have a whole lot of work. We’d have a couple patients filter through, I’d take care of them and then I’d sit down in front of the computer and learn what was going on. I did a lot of stuff wrong but I tried everything. So within, I would say a few months of trying a lot of things that didn’t work we found a few things that did work and I would say that within about five, six months of that practice we had a chiropractic practice that was just as big as people that had been there 20 years.

Doug: Wow.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Yeah. That was me too. I was just like, “Well this is interesting.” So we started doing this stuff and we were cranking along and the practice was growing really well and then all of a sudden I look up and I’m getting business owners from around me and from other towns over and they were saying, “Hey. What are you doing over here? Because we noticed that it’s working.”

Doug: We noticed there’s a lineup outside your door.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Yeah. We noticed that you’re doing something right and can you come to help us. So, I just totally backed into, I guess having an agency without realizing I had an agency. So I would help these folks and they would pay me a little bit of money to help them and to get their stuff going, and along the way I picked up some things that didn’t just work in my practice but worked for other people’s businesses that weren’t chiropractors and we had some chiropractors too, that we were helping. So that was cool. I was like, “Okay, Awesome.”

And then along the way I started getting so busy with my own practice and so busy with the clients that I’d taken on that I kind of got in this spot where I was like, “I don’t have a whole lot of time to be doing any more of this.” So I started writing this stuff down, I was writing it down into a … At the time I thought I was the first person to think of this of course. I was writing it down into a Microsoft Word document and taking it down, saving it as a PDF and putting it online and you know terrible sales copy but people were buying it. Because they wanted to know what I knew and what was working for us, and I was just writing down stuff that was working for myself and my clients. I did this, not because I was like, “Hey, I’m going to be a big online marketing, selling information person.” It was just … I had people asking me for help and I didn’t have time to do it, so that was the best way that I knew how to sort of help them without that.

And then I look up one day and I realized we had people from all over the world that was using this stuff with success and was asking me questions. And so I said, “Well you know what. Maybe I should start focusing a little more on helping people with this Facebook thing and driving business in.” And along the way, I realized, “Hey. We’ve got something figured out that’s sort of special that I don’t see going on anywhere else.” And it just sort of kept growing and growing and growing and that’s sort of where things got to where they are.

The grand scheme of things we figured out a few key things that you can do with you know, an email autoresponder, an opt-in page, and a Facebook ad that ended up being a little bit special and people wanted to know more. To me that’s how it started, I wish that I could tell you that I had some grand plan to be someone that was really good at this stuff but no, I was just trying to build my practice and it turned into something I could not have imagined.

Doug:    Well that, I really like that because you know, I tell people when they talk about business and marketing or financial, whatever they’re looking for information on or advice, I say, “Never hire anyone who hasn’t done what you’re willing to do or is willing to pay the price that you’re willing to pay.” So I’ve been kind of anti-education if you want to call it that because I’m not interested in people who can give a good lecture. I’m interested in people who got their face dirty, their hands dirty, spent some money, and found a bunch of them that didn’t work and had some real-life experience like you did, because that’s really where it’s at. It’s like you’re living this every day opposed to, I learned this and higher education, I’ve been teaching it for 20 years but I really don’t know how to log into the Facebook page I have.

Dr. Ben Atkins: No, I totally feel you. It’s one of those things where you know I think me and you are the same way from our conversation before. I don’t go into anything anymore you know, trying to experiment. I always am hiring someone to teach me that’s done it, that’s gotten their hands dirty and that’s a big on-my-wall thing too. You don’t learn unless you do it and if you don’t have time to go do it yourself you pay someone that has gone and done it. So, we’ve ended up building a pretty big agency doing that but we’ve also ended up teaching a lot of other people how to build their agencies doing some very specific things for clients that are very much proven over and over again.

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You have to know the time it takes for a funnel and marketing strategy to work. Don’t give up too soon!

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Doug: So let me just change the direction a little bit. So what’s the biggest myth about this tactic? And I’ll just introduce my questions a bit. There’s a lot of people teaching Facebook and Facebook advertising and there’s a lot of people who say it doesn’t work and those who say, that do. So what’s the biggest myth about your approach to using Facebook landing pages and email autoresponders to drive business?

Dr. Ben Atkins: Sure. Well, I can give you here, in a minute like a very specific funnel, I can actually walk you through an example if you want. But I think leading into that, the biggest myth I think is that you can take something that is proven in one office in Arkansas and you can take it to an office in California that’s instantly going to work. There is nobody out there that has that thing going because it’s just … it’s the nature of what we do and the nature of different markets, it’s not going to work.

But there are very specific patterns and templates that you can use and as long as you set the stage and frame for a client … Let’s say another chiropractor, I can tell them, “Listen. This is what we’ve got working here. It’s going to be different in this market for who you’re after. But if we can get a month to two months, and sometimes a couple of weeks to start working on this and to start seeing what the data tells us, we can very much build this up to something that works for you forever.”

If we have time to get it and I think a lot of people, where they really mess this up and where a lot of people out there are … what they’re saying, at least what I’m seeing is go use this, go do it, tell them that we’ll have them this many, you know people coming through the first month. And what happens is it works in four out of 10 but six out of 10 it doesn’t and that’s where I think people get a really … They’re like, “This doesn’t work at all. This Facebook thing doesn’t work at all, it doesn’t work for us.” It’s because they’ve not put in the time. I have walked into so many offices that we’ve run the exact same offer but they quit running the offer right before it was about to start taking off for them. And I think that’s the key, is you have to know sort of what the timeline is for something like that to work.

Doug: That’s Napoleon Hill’s Three Feet From Gold right?

Dr. Ben Atkins: Oh, absolutely. Absolutely and I’m a firm believer in that.

Doug: So I’m just going to push pause in that for a minute and just I want to emphasize that to our listeners, so what you heard Ben say was he needed to get enough data and it takes a month to two months, sometimes two-weeks so don’t listen to the two-week part, a month to two months to get enough data, and we find that with pay-per-click, when we’re doing Google AdWords, for example, people say, “Well I have this budget and I want to spend this much today, we want to scale your budget back, we want to start small, we want to learn, we want to see what the data says, we want to get your ads optimized, get the price as effective as we can and continue to drive it down while we get engagement up.” And they’re going, “Well, why can’t we just spend all the money now?” It’s like because you’ll have that conversation, “Hey it didn’t work.”

Dr. Ben Atkins: Right. Well and that’s the thing, you know we’ve got one particular funnel now for instance that we’ve just kicked off and the initial numbers were really great right, so this was one of the ones that actually worked the first time out of the gate. It was great, a client wants to get excited and pour a lot more money into it.

But what those of us that have done this understand is this … No, we need more data, we need more data coming through because you know, one week of something working is, it can totally be an anomaly. But once we get several weeks stacked together we start to know the real percentages of what this is going to do and when we know the real percentages then we can actually start making the tweaks that we need to make to up those percentages number one, but then scale.

And I think that’s the thing, is there does come a point to where you say, “Okay. Let’s pour a lot of money into something.” But it’s certainly not usually in the first month and even two months. Usually about month three is when we really start going to the client and saying, “Okay if you’re ready to scale-up and your staff can handle it, we have the data that we need to actually make this thing go.”

Doug: Yeah. So I would say, maybe that really is the biggest myth for business owners. Is that there’s instant predictable success. So you can say, “We’ll run this ad, we’ll get this many people in the door.” Like you said and the reality is, for you and I and people like us and CMOs that are actually in the trenches doing the marketing, we realize that we can have our best guess based on previous experience, however it’s going to take some time to see the fruit of that as we look at the numbers.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Absolutely. And like I said, I can train you right now on a funnel that you can go use but if you’re using this with a particular client, yeah absolutely you have to frame that in a way where they understand, “Hey this is going to be something that could really grow your business in a really big way if you’re patient in the first try.”

Doug: Okay. Well, I’m up for that. Let’s walk through our very first funnel so at the end of the podcast we’ll have people that can go out there and set up their first funnel and watch the numbers.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Sure. So, I talk about chiropractic all the time and I think, let’s do something else in a different niche and I can always give you more chiropractic stuff. But dental is something that I think is always very interesting. We have dental clients that we work with and what I think is really interesting about this is, this is one of those stories where you’ll walk into just about every dentist office in the world and they’ll tell you that they’ve already tried what I’m about to tell you, but it didn’t work for them, but it works for us.

So with dentist office, and you go into a dentist office and most of them have tried the standard, what everybody tells the dentist to do, which is to offer free or discounted teeth whitening, right?

Doug: Yeah.

Dr. Ben Atkins: I mean that is just such a standard thing and I’ve had dentist tell me, “Well, we ran this in the paper, we ran this on the radio, we’ve done it online, and the people that came in were just freebie seekers or it just was a very, very bad set up for us. It just didn’t work, it was a bunch of money wasted and we wasted our time too.” And I get that and when you actually dive into most dentist offices you see something very glaring that they messed up when they did this. And so let me walk you through the funnel of how we do it and when we go into an office how we rock this thing out.

What we want to do is, we want to offer teeth whitening. The reason teeth whitening is typically … when somebody gets teeth whitening a couple key things happen. They have to sign up for it, they have to typically call and book the appointment, and I’ll go through that in a second.

But once they come through the door they typically have to have at least a little bit of an exam which helps the office to point out, “Hey there’s this other thing we can take care of for you later on if you want.” So that sort of sets them up for, “Hey we’re doing the teeth whitening today, it’s awesome, but here’s something here that you might want to pay attention too.” So it gives the office an opportunity to sort of flex their expertise and to let them know of some problems that could be coming.

And that’s important with any sort of legion campaign, there’s got to be something that sets up the next sale. Typically, what we’ll do is, we have a campaign that we’ll do for free teeth whitening, the big mistake everybody makes with teeth whitening for dentist offices is they do this, they say anybody that wants teeth whitening here you go and they put an ad out there, they just blanket anybody that will pay attention to it and that doesn’t work. When you’re doing offers, especially on Facebook you have to give people an excuse as to why they deserve it, the offer. Otherwise, it just seems like a marketing ploy and that doesn’t work too well, people are used to that.

Doug: They’ve caught onto our tricks.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Yeah. They’ve caught on to it and you know stuff that worked a few years back doesn’t work so well anymore so you have to give people an excuse as to why you’re actually running this offer and then they really don’t care if it’s a marketing thing because they understand why they need it.

So one of the big things that we’ve done is when we do teeth whitening we are always targeting one particular set in general and it’s typically brides-to-be, okay? So we always love targeting brides-to-be with teeth whitening and there are a couple key reasons here. Number one is, brides-to-be typically fall into what we call our dream demographics for dental, meaning this is someone that will come in and if they have a good experience will refer their other half to come in and will also refer their kids, later on and will probably refer their other family to come in later on. And these are people that, at least in our experience with chiropractic, with dental are the ones that absolutely are the access point for lots of referrals. So that’s a good start.

Doug: Totally makes sense, you always wonder how you get the family in, you start with the mom or the wife-

Dr. Ben Atkins: You definitely don’t start with us goofy guys. We are not the portal of entry for … you start with the smart one in the family when it comes to health care, that’s the absolute truth, right?

Doug: Yep, yep.

Dr. Ben Atkins: So the other side of it is, is what does a bride-to-be have coming up that teeth whitening might come into play in a very big way? And it’s pictures. They have pictures coming up. That’s something that you can tie in very easily. So with our landing page a lot of times that’s what we’re advertising, is we will actually target people that have a wedding coming up and you can typically do that pretty easily and if you don’t even if you were to not target directly on Facebook people that have a wedding coming up you can absolutely put an ad out there, creative that says this is who we’re targeting with the image and so we’ll put that out there and what will happen is they will see that, hey you’ve got pictures coming up, we’d like to offer you a free teeth whitening so that your pictures are the best they can possibly be.

Now they have an excuse. This is something that they’ll say, “Well this offer applies to me, specifically for me because I’ve got this big thing coming up.” We get to of folks that are taking this particular offer, so you send them to the opt-in page that’s usually a really high click-through rate because it’s a very specific audience, it’s a very specific offer. So the ad gets cheaper really quickly because we’re targeted well and then we get a lot of opt-ins but then this is where most people drop the ball, you get that first opt-in and then nothing happens.

Pretty much immediately right after we will make a bonus offer. So they opt-in, they come through, they hit the landing page actor that tells them, “Hey you have to pick up and call. Because we have limited spots for this.” Even though we’re giving it away for free but we’ll stack some sort of value on too if you call now, we’re going to give you this. And typically that is a take-home whitening kit, or a wedding basket, something that is still very specific to them but they can benefit from, so we add the value if they call right away.

They’ll pick the phone up, they’ll call and they’ll book their appointment. When they come in the goal is like I said, is, of course, to do the teeth whitening and give them a great experience but also to look for anything that they might want to be on the lookout for like cavities, things like that. This is a great thing because typically you can a hygienist or an assistant do this stuff, where the dentist can come in and say hello but they don’t have to put a lot of their time into it. This is something that the core sort of person in the business doesn’t have to spend a whole lot of time, the assistants can help with that part. So that’s good.

The key after that is typically to get them to come back at least once. If somebody walks into a dentist office, a chiropractor, or really any business twice you typically have them as a patient. So a lot of times what we’ll do is, if we’ve got something that they found that’s great, but if we don’t have something like that we’ll typically have them come back just to pick up their extra thing later, like if we do teeth whitening a lot of times they’ll do a mold of their teeth and they have to come back and pick that up.

That’s sort of the setup there and what’s so great about it is, once they come in, once they feel like they have been in an office and they feel at home, that typically right there, just because they’ve been in that office, goes into their buying decision. Now the cool part about dental, of course, is the average upper dental lifetime value of a patient is between $5,000 and $8,000 so giving away a free $100 to $200 teeth whitening works out pretty well. But that’s the ballgame and there’s nothing fancy about that but that is the offer we lead out with. Now as we said, it usually takes a few months to dial that into something that’s huge but that particular offer, just about in every market we’ve gone into, has been something that’s really killed it for a dentist, because we gave people an excuse.

Doug: That’s really cool. I don’t know if you’re familiar with Dan Kennedy?

Dr. Ben Atkins: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah I love Dan.

Doug: Do you remember Dan’s example of the dentist giving away Schwinn bicycles?

Dr. Ben Atkins: Yes, okay.

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Doug: Yeah. So the story really was that, if you brought your kids there and the kids got check-ups with them, and your mom and dad came in and you had your good report card after so many visits this dentist would give them a bike and he became one of the largest purchasers of kids bikes.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Yeah. And I think that’s where a lot of people, marketers especially would be afraid to even present that to a dentist. But you get a dentist onboard with something like that and they’re going to explode because who’s not going to pay attention to that office doing something crazy awesome. But, you’d say, “Well, I’ve got to buy a bike every time.” Well yeah, but look at the lifetime value of what you’re doing when you actually bring that crew in. Actually, I love that story and that’s absolute genius.

Doug: It wasn’t right away and so the parents are happy because Johnny now has to have a good report card as well because he wants to go back to the dentist and show his report card so he can get some more stars towards his bicycle.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Yeah. Absolutely and it’s just everybody wins and it’s just a win, win, win, across the board.

Doug: Well I guess it comes down to a lifetime value. I had this conversation with a trainer, I was working at his gym, and I said to him, “You know I’ve got a really good idea. I think you should offer a trip to Hawaii for clients who have been clients like us.” And he said, “Well, I can’t afford to that.” I said, “Well we’ve been training with you for six years and it’s a $1,000 a month so we can do the math and then I buy supplements from you so I’ve spent about a $100,000 with you over six years.” Do you think you have $2,500 margin in there?

Dr. Ben Atkins: Yeah. Exactly.

Doug: So tell people if you stay with me for five years, I’ll send you and your wife to Hawaii for a week. He goes, “I can’t afford to do that.” I mean you don’t get the numbers. The numbers are really simple.

Dr. Ben Atkins: And that’s, I think as a consultant and as someone that is running an agency, I think the number one thing that we can do to help businesses, that ultimately gets us business, but we can actually sit down and have those conversations of the numbers behind real marketing, places that have actually blown up and have more business than they know what to do with, and they’ve hired help and those kinds of businesses, if that’s what you really want, this is what it requires and then to actually show them the math. When people actually see the math, you start to get the kinds of clients you want, too.

Because the kinds of clients that are scared won’t sign up with you and you don’t want those kinds of clients anyway. But the kinds of clients that are going to be the kind of clients you have for next 10 years and are paying you thousands of dollars a month for the next 10 years. Those are the clients you want and those are the ones that are going to do what it takes to actually grow and they’re not going to be the ones that get frustrated when something doesn’t work because they went half in and they end up blaming you. So, that is the key.

Doug: And it’s like you said. You were very focused on your offer and I think often people want to put a general like you said a general ad out to the world. So it probably wouldn’t be a stretch for the same dentist to do a grad promotion, very similar maybe the same process. I don’t know, but again it would be different creative, so get away from the idea that I can just design one ad and I can use it everywhere for everything and people will just flood to my business.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Right, Right. Well, and that’s the thing, it’s always about when you have a business are you being specific to the market that you want to come in and are you offering something that can really help them. And if you are, nobody is going to be able to compete with you. It’s just, they can try but they’re just to going to be able to compete.

Doug: So let’s talk a bit about what you’re doing now in terms of your agency. So you’re now working with entrepreneurs that want to have their own agency, working from home, I guess the ad would be work from home in your underwear and make, you know zillions of dollars. How does that work? So what are you doing to help entrepreneurs that want to say, “Hey I like what Ben’s talking about and maybe I don’t want to do that for my existing employer but I want to have my own side hustle.”

Dr. Ben Atkins: Well I think one of the things that really held me back when I first got into this because I didn’t even know what I was doing in the beginning. It was when I was doing something … I didn’t understand systems and scale, and it took me years to get the systems that I have down, for helping a client so that I didn’t have to charge a client an arm and a leg.

One of the things that really drives me crazy is you’ve got all these people that are wanting to help these small businesses and they’re wanting to charge a few thousand dollars a month. And listen we have clients that absolutely pay us a few thousand dollars a month for higher ticket type services. But most businesses out there need help with Facebook posting or they need help with their website or they need help with writing newsletters every month to their existing patient base or existing customers to come back in.

And you have people that want to charge thousands of dollars to do those things and that’s just not something that most people can afford so they’ll look the other way. Or at least, even if they make a value on it they can’t afford it right away. And so, one of the things that I’ve gotten really good at is how can we go in and help a business do their social media, do their Facebook page, and have content coming on because it’s so important. How can we go in and help them write their newsletter, how can we help them with their website without having to charge them these giant chunks of change, and it’s systems.

So one of the things that I’m really big on when I’m training people to do things for small business owners and help them is how can you go in and make a recurring income with this person every month that they’ll never think about. So how can I go in to a chiropractor’s office or a dentist office, do their Facebook page for them, have two post a day going up every single day and only charge them a $100 to $200 and it be something that is perfectly profitable for me that I never think about again because they’re paying me monthly and I’ve got software doing all the work for me. And so that’s a big focus of ours is we want to show people how you can be the best deal they’ve ever seen to help them with their marketing, but have software run it so that you can actually scale a business and you’re not spending a lot of time having to do a lot of grunt work, like schedule post.

That’s the key. We teach a lot of people, hey in the very beginning wouldn’t it be nice to have 30 clients that never want to talk to you, but are paying you a $100 to $200 a month and you’ve got a piece of software that’s running this thing every single month and that gives you a good foundation. Now out of those 30 clients, how many of those people are ready to run a Facebook ad campaign and they’ll pay you at that point a thousand, so out of those 30 well maybe it’s three that will pay you a few thousand dollars. But those are the ones that absolutely are going to be great clients for that. So now you’ve got 30 clients who are paying you $200 dollars a month and we’ve given you the systems to do that, but you’ve also got three clients that are doing the Facebook ads stuff and they’re paying you a few thousand. You start adding that up and you’ve got a pretty good life sitting at home just helping people to do what they need to be doing.

Doug: That’s a really good point. I’ve seen businesses, I had some guys I meet in the Philippines at a marketing event and they set up a Facebook agency and they were focusing on realtors. And they got just slammed. I mean they were doing well and so they didn’t have the systems and I don’t know what caused their business to close but I’m guessing it may have been that they were so good at what they were doing they just didn’t have the systems so they couldn’t hire enough staff and train them and onboard them quick enough to keep up with the demand so customer service, obviously starts to fall behind.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Sure. Well, and that’s the big thing for us is, when I take on a client to do their social media typically we’re charging them a $100 to $200. I’ve got a set of posts, typically it’s about a 120 posts that we go in and we say, these are the posts that are going to post two times a day for three months and we get to the end of those three months our software is going to turn around and just rotate them and post them again because they did well the first time, why wouldn’t they do well the second time.

And so somebody that we take on as a client we let them know, these are the 120 posts that we’re going to post for you, you’re going to have content every single day and after three months it’s going to rotate again so you’re going to start seeing those posts again but it’s going to be what it needs to be. The really, really cool part of that is, it’s all software that handles it, they’ve got a price every single month that is super easy for them and we can use those exact same post with another chiropractor let’s say, or dentist in a different market that’s not their direct competitor.

So we can go all over the world taking on clients with the exact same set of 120 posts that are focused on that niche. And it becomes a business that is a very profitable plus, and this is what I tell people, if we lose one client at $200 a month, I’m not losing sleep over it. It’s not a large percentage of my agency. And I think that’s another big thing too if you want to have those big-ticket clients, we teach those big-ticket services too. But you always want to have a foundation of clients that are paying you the $100 to $200 a month and really work on building up that foundation too, so that you never are really in a bad spot.

Doug: That totally makes sense. Yeah, I get that. You’ve got to have some of both.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Yeah, absolutely. So that’s the ballgame and to me, it’s exactly what you said. You can be extremely successful, have a great product, but if you don’t have the systems to scale and the systems to continue to provide great customer service and be able to get on the phone and say, “Hey, How are things going?” Then it’s going to absolutely fall apart, you won’t have that great [inaudible 00:29:11]

Doug: Yeah, and there’s lots of stuff like that. I mean I’m just revising all my systems, we’ve just hired additional resources, staff resources for the podcast because when I started the podcast a year ago I didn’t realize, I didn’t plan enough and realize how many moving pieces there were to make it work.

Dr. Ben Atkins: So many, yes.

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Doug: I don’t know how to use Audacity and edit anything. I don’t know any of those things. I can talk to people, so I need to figure out how to get somebody else to do all the rest.

Dr. Ben Atkins: No, absolutely.

Doug: Yeah. So once it’s systematized people go well, I had a podcast it was too much work, I burnt out. And I’m thinking well, now all I do is talk to people once a week. And kind of everything else happens.

Dr. Ben Atkins: And it’s the exact same thing and I don’t want to get up on a tangent but I feel you. We do a podcast too and people don’t understand, we shot ten episodes in a day and it makes it where the works not so much on you and it’s the same thing with our agency. We bulk things together like tasks get bulked together and they get systematized so that we never get burnt out and we never feel like, “Oh my gosh we’re having a new post for these people, this is too much.” It’s a big, big part of the whole game.

Doug: That’s funny. So what are you most excited about in the next six to 12 months?

Dr. Ben Atkins: I would say the next six to 12 months, one of my absolute favorite things that we are doing is we are busy putting together a turnkey package and we’ve just now got it done and I’ve not really told anybody about it, but what I found out is when people-

Doug:    Okay, we won’t tell anybody[crosstalk 00:30:41]

Dr. Ben Atkins: No. You don’t have to tell anybody at all. But what I’ve been working on for the last probably eight months or so, we have been putting together something for if somebody wanted to start an agency, what are all the pieces that they would need so that they don’t have to go do it themselves. How can we really do everything for them and so with Closer’s Cafe, one of the things that we’ve been working on really hard is, how do we put together all of these things?

And you know, just as well as me, all the things that I need are not necessarily all the things that other people need. Because I have a staff, I have people that can help me with stuff. So, over the last eight to six months it’s not been just me thinking, “Okay this is what I think.” But we’ve actually had a lot of people come in that we’ve helped build up an agency and we said, “Okay, what are you missing?” We’ve had some people that are really good at going out in person and doing things. And that’s great but someone else, they’re confined to their house most of the time and it’s something that they can’t go out and do. So we’ve had to build all these pieces into a package where, “Hey, if you jump in and you get started, you’ve got a leg up on everybody else out there that would be trying to do what you’re doing.”

And so, if I could say what I’m most excited about and I don’t want this to turn into an ad for that and that’s the last I’m going to say about it. We’ve been working really hard on putting that together and we’re finally to the point to where we’ve tested it with enough people that we know we’ve got something really great. That’s what I get pumped about, is giving people that want to help a chiropractor like me eight years ago that was struggling, they have the pieces that they need to go do it and to automate it and to deliver the service that they promise and you know end up delivering the results that they promise too.

Doug: Well, your story’s so encouraging and so inspiring because often there’s resistance in the marketplace, I mean you kind of have two sides. You have everybody wants to be an entrepreneur like Gary Vaynerchuk, like him or not like him. And then you have the other side saying, it’s tough to run a small business. But I think today the playing field is so level that you can get in there and compete with the biggest of brands. Because I interviewed someone and this girl produces unbelievable content and so she grew her social media following very fast and I compare her to major brands. She lives in London and in London, she has more engagement. So it’s really not about how big the company is, it’s really about who you are, being authentic, and providing value and helping people.

Dr. Ben Atkins: And I think that’s the thing, it’s exactly what you said. What is my job as an entrepreneur? It’s to build a megaphone that I can get my message out there, make sales. What is my job as the agency? It’s to give my clients that megaphone because they don’t know how to do it. I think you’re right, I think today more than any other time in the history of the world, somebody that has a tiny little small business doesn’t have a whole lot of resources absolutely has the opportunity if they’re doing the right things to compete with huge business with endless cash flow.

I tell you, it’s exciting when you can give those tools to a business who they’re so busy being a chiropractor they don’t have time to do that stuff. And when you can actually put that together with someone that’s skilled that way, it’s super powerful. That’s where I get really excited, you’re right we’re in a very unique time period where the playing field, business wise at least is very level if you will open yourself up to doing some of the things that are in front of you.

Doug: Well, and I would say the one book that really wrecked me was, Tim Ferriss The 4-Hour Workweek.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Oh, I didn’t even get to tell you that story. That one broke my brain too, I remember the very night that I was in bed reading it but go ahead.

Doug: No, you go first.

Dr. Ben Atkins: This was when I was a chiropractor before I really got into being super successful with the agency stuff. I was laying in bed one night and I got to a certain part in the book and I just remember sitting there, with just this feeling of dread washing over me, being like, “Oh god, I’ve messed up.” And it was because reading the book I realized I was building a chiropractic practice, that the busier I got as a chiropractor, the more I would be in my chiropractic clinic and the busier that I would be, and there was no automation are any of stuff. And so that book I remember, just like I said, it started out with a giant feeling of dread but pretty quickly I started to think, “Okay, there’s all these tools but I’ve got to be in an actual business that I can remove myself from.” That was my story, tell me yours.

Doug: Well, I read it and it did the same thing. I sat in my back deck and probably was just having a glass of wine one afternoon, and I read the book. And I must have read it 20 times now, I’ve highlighted it a dozen different ways and I thought, “Wow.” The idea that you have to get a job for a good company, work there 40 years and retire has never set well with me, so that’s why I’ve been an entrepreneur for the last 30 years. But the idea of working the hours, I was putting in hours and hours and hours and he’s going like, “Why? Just get your stuff done quickly and automate it and work less.”

But I still find today that people wear that as a badge of honor, I was meeting with a client and he said, “Well, you’re tough to get a hold of.” I said, “What do you mean, I’m tough to get a hold of?” “Well I emailed you in the morning and you don’t respond until like later in the morning.” I said, “Right.” He said, “Well, why not?” I said, “Well because that’s how my system is set up.” He said, “Well, what do you mean?” I said, “Well because I don’t check most of my business emails until after 10:00 AM.” “Well, why don’t you do that?” I said, “Well I read this book.” And he goes, “Well I respond right away.” It’s like, “Good for you.”

Dr. Ben Atkins: How the hell is that working out for you, right?

Doug: Yeah. “Well I work really hard in my business.” “Well I work really hard too. I just don’t work hard and long, I work-

Dr. Ben Atkins: I don’t work a lot of hours, right.

Doug: And so then when we started … That’s when I started putting things in like going to the gym, it’s not discretionary time. I’m in the gym three, four days a week and I don’t take any appointments, regardless of who the client is, unless it’s my family and they need me, I’m unavailable. And people go, “How do you have time for that?” It’s like, “Well, what I noticed was the better I was physically, the clearer my mind was mentally, the more I could get done. So I’m actually getting more work done now by taking an hour a day and going to the gym then if I sat behind my desk.” So that book wrecked my mind in a whole bunch of ways, health, and wellness, systems, outsourcing staff, it’s made a huge difference in how we run our business.

Dr. Ben Atkins: No and that’s the thing with how we actually do our agency stuff. That was my thing when I first started helping clients with their social media, we were actually programming in post manually and when the month was up, we’d have to program another one in. And so we finally got to the point where we had to come up with a system that freed us. We had to do a lot of work to get it set up in the beginning, right. To get all those posts created, to hire the art directors, things like that to put it all together.

But, once it was done we had this asset that could literally make us an unlimited amount of money. We have a set of posts for chiropractors, we have a set of posts for dentists, and we have a software that runs them and rotates them. We were very upfront about it but that is enough and literally, we set that thing in motion and we never have to come back to it again.

And it’s exactly the same principles that you’re talking about that are in that book and like I said, if I had not read that book it would be different because I think a lot of us and I don’t know if our parents gave us this or somewhere along the way we do we have that badge of honor that, “Oh I work hard so I must be valuable to society.” Well no, it’s what am I producing? Not how hard you work. And I think that’s the key.

Doug: Or how many hours you work.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Right, exactly. It’s whatever you’re actually getting out and producing, are you giving value to the world or are you giving value to your clients? And if you are, you can literally work an hour a week and you’re fine. I mean as long as you’re delivering what you promised or more. So I think that’s the most valuable lesson I’ve ever learned and that’s how we run our agencies and that’s how we teach people how to run theirs.

Doug: Well I’m hoping I’m going to see a shift in the economy that way because now it’s freed up. You’ve got entrepreneurs that are really living the laptop lifestyle where they’re really legitimately working on their computers and they’re traveling and that’s why I don’t do many face-to-face meetings. Most of my clients are overseas, they never see me, they don’t care to see me, all I need to do is send them a Swift code so they know where to send money and we produce work.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Exactly.

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Doug: So I found it was an advantage of getting out-of-town clients because they don’t monitor who’s in the office and when they’re in the office because they don’t know. They send you an email or they phone you and you talk to them and you do the work and they’re happy.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Well, I think that’s where we’re at and I know we’re getting off on a little tangent here but I think it’s good. I think that we’re about to be right in the middle of a results economy, not the economy that we’ve been living in for the past … It’s something that’s going to be very violent change for some people because they’re so indoctrinated into, this is what it’s got to be but I tell our chiropractors that we work with, I tell our dentist that we work with, I tell the folks that we train to help them, it’s got to be about what you do in a couple hours a day because that’s where the bulk of your works going to get done.

You can set your life up to really work that way, you can have absolutely the life that you want and you can serve a lot more people because when you’re really looking at what can I get done in a couple hours or one hour a day, you really get a lot done during that hour.

Doug: Well they say, just pretend you’re going on vacation. How much do you get done the day before you hop on the plane? A lot.

Dr. Ben Atkins: It’s amazing right?

Doug: Yeah. Just book a vacation every week.

Dr. Ben Atkins: It’s perfect. I love it.

Doug: So who’s one guest I absolutely have to have on my podcast?

Dr. Ben Atkins: You know, I think that if I Had to tell you, someone that would be really good, I have this great buddy that I came up with when I got into this whole teaching people all over the world how to do stuff and his name’s Donald Wilson. Donald Wilson is into … He runs a company called GearBubble and they are into printing t-shirts, printing on demand type stuff. Even getting away from what he does, he started off as somebody who worked for the IRS and he got tired of doing that and-

Doug: I can’t imagine why.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Right. Right, exactly. He was a bill collector and then he got into teaching people the online stuff and then eventually formed a company where they were doing a lot of e-commerce and I think that he is someone with a great story and someone that every time I talk to the person, I get to hear the struggles that he’s been through, and he’s been through a lot. From getting banned from Facebook at one point over something silly to fighting his way back and then being one of… I think one of the best Facebook ad people on the planet. He’s definitely someone that I think would be a great interview and you guys would hit it off.

Doug: That’s really cool. I will look him up. So where can people hunt you down and find you?

Dr. Ben Atkins: Come to closerscafe.com. That is pretty much my Diary, anytime that we do something that actually works, I write it down there. I usually save the stuff that doesn’t work, every so often you’ll find a post that tells you the stuff that doesn’t work, but Closer’s Cafe is a great place plus if you go there on the sidebar I’ve always had six funnels that you can go steal that we’re doing for chiropractors, we’re doing for dentist, you can actually go look at the stuff that’s working for us, download it and I’ll show the exact funnels that work. So there’s a lot of cool stuff there that I think you can grab if you’re the kind of person that wants to go out there and help power small businesses with great marketing.

Doug: That’s really cool. So there we go. Listeners, there is another episode I want to thank you, Ben, very much for taking time out of your busy day.

Dr. Ben Atkins: Thank you.

Doug: And I would suggest that … I’ve had a look at Ben’s website, I’ve gone through some of the content and the details. He’s got an offer on his site I need to sign up for. I’ll go through that and experience that as well. I’m always learning so I would recommend that you do that. Take a look at the funnels and if you’re considering running a business or a side hustle or expanding what you’re doing I can’t more highly recommend having something online so you can really work from where you want to live. Just have access to your bank and you can pick up some money once in a while and just carry on so. Thanks again for tuning in. I look forward to your comments and our show notes will have this transcribed. We’ll have links to Closer’s Cafe and some of Ben’s social media sites as well so thanks for tuning in. Looking forward to serving you on our next episode.

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"Innovation isn't just thinking outside the box; it's about setting the box on fire and building something extraordinary from the ashes."

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