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.


Lead generation tips for consultants and advisors with Tom Poland

  • It didn’t matter how good I was as an advisor, as a consultant, if I didn’t have fresh leads coming in I was going to be dead in the water like the world’s best-kept secret.
  • The number one reason that marketing messages don’t work is that they’re mostly quite introverted.
  • The first thing is we want to get cut through and secondly, we want to motivate people to take action.
  • One is we need differentiation, two, it must be benefit rich, and three, it should contain specifics.
  • The major obstacle is a lack of focus that’s caused by the diverse range of complex options that people are told that they have for lead gen.
  • The best audiences are other people’s networks.
  • The best asset is the online meeting because it combines the oldest most successful marketing method in the world, which is speaking to groups of people.
  • You don’t want a 100% conversion rate because you can’t help 100% of the people.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _


[just click to tweet]


It didn’t matter how good I was as an advisor, as a consultant, if I didn’t have fresh leads coming in I was going to be dead in the water like the world’s best-kept secret.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Doug: Well, welcome back listeners to another episode of Real Marketing Real Fast. Today, we’ve got a real special guest for you if you’re interested in generating leads for your business. Now, we had a great conversation. I think you’re going to enjoy this. One of the things I really liked about Tom, is that Tom makes sure that he has some skin in the game. So, if you are interested in having new lead show up in your calendar every day of the week and having somebody else share the risk to make sure that happens, then I’d suggest that you listen in.

Tom is a best-selling author. He is the author of a book called Leadsology. It’s a series that he started and he sold numerous businesses with multi-million dollar revenues. He tells me that he is voluntarily married to a pretty, little, German Frau who he affectionately refers to as the Bavarian bulldozer. They live quietly and happily in the sand next to the waves at little castaways beach in Queensland, Australia. I’d like you to join me in welcoming Tom Poland to the Real Marketing Real Fast Podcast today.

So, super excited to have you join us today, Tom. Thanks so much for taking time out of your day. Welcome to the Real Marketing Real Fast Podcast.

Tom Poland: Thanks, Doug, looking forward to it.

Doug: I looked at your background pretty extensively and through your websites and all your social media and you’ve got a very impressive background. But why don’t you share with our listeners just a bit of the backstory of how you got going in your business and move us through to where you are today.

Tom Poland: Okay, well, the journey starts wow, close on 40 years ago now. Most of the time I’ve had my own businesses and the business I started when I was 24 years old, I figured out pretty quickly that I had to get leads coming in. And it didn’t matter really how good I was as an advisor, as a consultant, if I didn’t have fresh leads coming in I was going to be dead in the water like the world’s best-kept secret.

What I did is I dug pretty deep and I invested in a lot of programs and courses and little books and did workshops and seminars. This is pre-internet of course. I admit I was flying around a lot all over the world and sitting at the feet of the great marketing masters as they were back then. And I’d come back and I’d implement. About two months later I’d wake up and have a look at my bank account and it was empty. That’s pretty much all I had to show for all the courses and workshops and seminars I did.

Once you do that for 10 or 20 years or so, you start to get pretty annoyed, and you think, “Well, there’s got to be a better way. That’s really half the backstory behind how Leadsology came about. Because it was born out of actually years and years of frustration and disappointment and losing money, giving money to people who basically said, “Trust me, give me your money and I’ll show you how to generate some new clients.” And it didn’t at all work.

The sales training worked well, but sales training is only good if you’ve got the leads if you’ve got the inquiries. So, long story short, I set out to figure out how I could generate leads for my consultancy and advisory business. It became so successful that people wanted to know what I was doing and that’s how Leadsology was born.

Doug: Here we are today talking about how to generate inbound leads.

Tom Poland: Right.

Doug: I noticed that one of the questions here that you suggested we talk about, and that is that 99% of your marketing doesn’t work or your messages don’t work. I’m guessing that once we figure out the audience, the messaging needs to be right. So, why don’t people’s marketing messages today work?

Tom Poland: The number one reason is that they’re mostly quite introverted. So, it’s a description of our products, our services, our mission, our vision, our value statement, what we do. It’s all very introverted and quite egocentric. I can understand why that’s the natural place to start. Because most of us are quite passionate about what we do. And we think what we do is pretty cool. But the marketplace, of course, doesn’t really give us stuff about that. What they’re interested in is what’s the transformation we are offering?

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _


[just click to tweet]


It didn’t matter how good I was as an advisor, as a consultant, if I didn’t have fresh leads coming in I was going to be dead in the water like the world’s best-kept secret.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Once we move beyond the fact that most of the marketing messages, and we can call them USPs, unique sales propositions, elevator pitches, whatever you like could be the title of a book as a marketing message or title of a training webinar as the marketing message and so on. Once we move beyond the fact that most of them are egocentric and introverted, the other is that our work is very often they’re not particularly differentiated from what our competitors are saying.

I could say something like, “Gee, grow your business and have more free time.” There are about a million business coaches around the world saying something quite as similar. We’ve got to have three characteristics in any effective marketing message. Let’s maybe even take a step back from that, what’s the objective of a marketing message? Two things; we want to get cut through. We want to get inside the reticular activating system of the brain, of the person’s brain. Nobody gets noticed and stands out. The second thing is we do that by being differentiated, of course, but we also do a by targeting the message to the person’s conscious need.

The first thing is we want to get cut through and secondly, we want to motivate people to take action. That action might be to opt-in, the action might be to reach out and book a time to talk with you, the action might be to buy the book to register for this training webinar, those are the two things. That’s the context, that’s what we’re trying to achieve.

To achieve those, we need to have three characteristics. One is we need differentiation, two, it must be benefit rich, and three, it should contain specifics. Specifics are very often even when people have a benefit-rich statement, the differentiation, the specifics is very often what is missing. If someone says, “What do you do Tom?” I say, “Oh, I’m a marketing guy.” Okay, so, not a lot different about that. But if I say, “Well, I felt independent professionals generate a weekly flow of high-quality inbound leads. There’s quite a lot in there that specific and it’s differentiated. If it’s an independent professional who has lead gen issue they want to fix, and they hear that message, then it gets cut through, and it motivates them to take action.”

Doug: Yeah, that makes sense. When you start working with a client, where do you think the low hanging fruit is? You’ve been doing this for a long time, and I think I read that you had helped over 2000 businesses and professionals to implement your system.

Tom Poland: Correct.

Doug: What are the major obstacles that are preventing people from getting success?

Tom Poland: Well, I think the major obstacle is a lack of focus that’s caused by the diverse range of complex options that people are told that they have for lead gen. If you want new clients, you can buy books on or go to seminars or workshops or do courses on blogging to get new clients, on the podcast will get you, new clients, on writing books to get new clients, on speaking gigs to get new clients, on webinars to get new … And the list goes on. There are all the social media.

Last time I checked there were 115 different ways you get new clients. If you’re presented with a swirl of options, very often people just get stuck like a deer in the headlights going where the heck do I start? If they do start, they often bounce from one shiny idea to another.

Doug: Sure, that makes sense.

Tom Poland: I don’t blame people for not making a whole lot of progress with their marketing because they just frankly often don’t know where to start. If they do know where to start, maybe it doesn’t work so well, so they go to the next thing.

I think if you look at marketing and where to start if you want to get beyond word of mouth marketing, which is random and unpredictable. If you want to get beyond the personal effort or personal energy and time market, which is like going to business networking and being it will help me get lucky? You want something more predictable and more scalable, then you need three things. People imagine this in their mind, they’ve got a blank whiteboard at the top of the screen you could right audience. You’ve got to have an audience. In the middle of the screen, you could write, asset. You’ve got to have the asset and at the bottom, you got to have actions. So, audience, asset, action.

Audiences are on LinkedIn, they’re in Amazon, they’re in Google pay per click or organic search, they’re in other people’s networks, they’re in JV partnerships, they’re on billboard ads. There are audiences all over the world, which is the best audience if your marketing services or an independent professional.

You go to assets, What’s the best asset to get in front of the audience? So, webinars, podcasts, blogcasts, surveys, diagnostic tools, which is the very best one? Which is the best audience, which is the best asset, and what’s the best call to action? Is it an Optin, is a book a time to talk to me? Here’s what I figured out. We go straight to the bottom line, if you’re an independent professional, by far and away, the very best model is for the audience. You use other people’s networks. Use other people who have an email subscriber list and are marketing into your target market with a complimentary service. That’s the very best audience because it’s free, and it’s an inexhaustible supply of leads because there are so many other people’s networks out there, and it’s generally very high quality compared to say Facebook leads to something else.

The best audiences are other people’s networks. The best asset is the online meeting because it combines the oldest most successful marketing method in the world, which is speaking to groups of people. If you have any doubt about how that is true, just think about the number of clients Christ, Buddha and Mohammed have put together, those are billions and all those three guys did be speak to groups of people. So, best audience,  other people’s networks. Best asset is the online meeting combines that oldest most proven successful marketing method in the world with the newest marketing medium, which is the internet, and the best call to action reaches out a book a time, have a chat and see if we can help you.

That’s the model in a nutshell. The audience, other people’s networks. Once a week you have someone that drives their subscribers to your online meeting, which is your asset. At the end of that, then you offer people for the book of time to have a chat with you about becoming your client.

Doug: If we look at the audience, when we get past the avatar, I don’t want to use up your valuable time talking about avatars, but let’s talk a little bit more of the online meeting. What does that look like? You identify the audience. So, maybe somebody else has got a list, they’re going to mail your offer to, come to this online meeting. What is that going to look like once they show up?

Tom Poland: Yeah, great question. There’s a very carefully synchronized sequence on what happens at that online meeting. They’re not going to run a training webinar. But there’s a big difference when you’re running a training webinar and running an online meeting that actually generates leads, massive difference.

There are five things we want to achieve during that online meeting. When you understand what we want to achieve, a bit like the marketing message. When you understand the objectives, then you can work back from there, and figure out the content. The first thing you want and the most important thing about an online meeting that’s going to generate leads is a demonstration. We need to be able to clearly demonstrate to the prospects on the call that you have the ability to transform whatever it is they want to transform. To take them from broke, to wealthy. To take them from being overweight, to slim. To break them from being, whatever it is we’re offering. From a broken down relationship to a healthy happy relationship.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _


[just click to tweet]


It didn’t matter how good I was as an advisor, as a consultant, if I didn’t have fresh leads coming in I was going to be dead in the water like the world’s best-kept secret.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

That’s number one. We want to achieve this demonstration of your ability to complete the transformation for them. Number two is elimination. We want to ethically, logically and rationally eliminate all their other options other than working from you if those other options are not going to work as well for them. So, elimination. Number three is we want a qualification. We want to know, we want them to know what your fees are. So that if they do reach out to you at the end of the meeting to book a time, you don’t they have that one on one meeting, and you get to the point where they say, “Well, what does it cost to work with you?” You tell them, they go, “Oh, my dear. I had no idea that was so expensive. I’m sorry, I can’t do that.” Wasting their time and wasting your time.

So, demonstration, elimination, qualification, and then we want an education. We want them to be very well educated about how you work with your clients. Again, once they get to the meeting, it’s not a conversation about that, it’s a conversation about whether you have something that’s going to help them. They already know what you charge and how you work with clients. And finally, motivation. Are we want the right people to be filtered in and motivated to read a book a time with you to have a chat. They are the five objectives; demonstration, elimination, qualification, education, and motivation.

Doug: Then from there, the goal like you said is to book a one on one conversation?

Tom Poland: That’s exactly right. At the end of that meeting, they have had the chance to get to know you. You have established rapport. Hopefully, click, click. Respect for your professional integrity and your ability, reliability, which means that they feel that you can relate to this situation. Finally, reciprocity. You’ve given them some pretty cool stuff. At the end of all that, yes. You say, “Well look, if this sounds like you, if you can afford these fees and if this is your situation, you want this, I don’t work with these people but I do it with these people. Here’s my link, you can book a time and have a conversation with me and we can talk about whether or not it’s a good idea for us to work together.

It’s not a sales ambush. You’re selling us what you have to do when your marketing sucks. But in marketing right, the only people you are going to be speaking to, by and large, the vast majority of them, they don’t need selling, they just need confirming. There’s no convincing, there’s only confirming.

Doug: Yeah, that sounds a lot like a speaker I heard talk, that Matthew Kimberly. It talks about the red velvet rope. Where you’re really trying to qualify and just let the right people in. So, it’s not about trying to get everybody in, it’s getting the right people in.

Tom Poland: He’s 100% correct. You don’t want a 100% conversion rate because you can’t help 100% of the people. This is not just about getting leads and selling. Ultimately, we have to align the lead generation filtering and qualification system with your ability to deliver value to that particular individual. If you can’t deliver value to that particular individual by reason of whether just not a fit for what they need or they can’t implement or they can’t afford you, then we shouldn’t be generating that lead.

Doug: I had one extra step that is really, is this the type of person I want to have a conversation with every week? They may meet all those criteria but if it’s not somebody I’m comfortable working with then that’s going to be a no as well.

Tom Poland: I can help an egotist, but not a narcissist. You’re right. You got to draw the line somewhere. I can’t help people are ignorant. But I can’t tell people who know it all because they already know it. So, you’re right. That’s why I offer the consult, is that I want to have a conversation with this person. It’s not that arrogant style of a market, “Well, let’s see if you qualify to be good enough to be a client of mine.” It’s a mutual exploration.

So, let’s see if we agree that working together is a good idea. If one of us doesn’t agree with that, that’s totally cool, we had the conversation, got to know each other and we see each other all the best. If I have a consultant and someone says, “I really need to think about this, Tom. Is that okay?” I say, “Absolutely. Take as long as you like, no problem.”

Doug: That’s really just being authentic. I’m not a big fan of this offer expires in 15 minutes.

Tom Poland: Yeah, there’s a time and a place for that. But if you’re selling high ticket services, that is not the situation where you want to do that, where you want to stop pressuring people. My clients are going to pay me anything from $500 a month to 25,000 a month. That’s a lot of money for a lot of people. I don’t want them to feel that they are pressured into making that sort of decision with that much money. A person convinced against their will is a person who remains unconvinced.

Doug: I haven’t heard that. I’ll make a note of that one. Can you drill down a little bit deeper on what that conversation may be? Obviously, you can’t give away all your secrets. But when you have that conversation, that consulting conversation, this thing of our listeners are going, “Okay, well, how do I have that without solving their entire problem on the conversation, and moving them from, “Okay, I’m qualified, I’m interested, I can afford you.” But now you need to say yes without me giving you your recipe and solving your problem.

Tom Poland: Right. That’s a great question. Let’s remember they’ve had an hour online with me and I’ve shown them how … Because it’s not a training webinar, I should have made that clearer. What I do is demonstrations. My clients do demonstrations. If you’re interested in knowing how I work my clients and how we get this results, please come along to this meeting and I’ll show you. There’s not a free training webinar, it’s a demonstration.

That gives me the opportunity in the promotion and it’s also, by the way, a much more direct transparent and honest value proposition. It’s not like bait and switch, where you go to a free training webinar and half the freaking thing is the sales pitch. Because that’s the first thing, is that coming to the meeting already knowing how I worked with my clients, the results we get, what the deal is, how much they have to pay when they have to pay it. They already know that because we’ve told them we’re going to show them what the deal is with my clients, how we work with them.

That’s the first thing. The second thing is this that at the end of the meeting, you send them to a filter page. I have a filter page and I don’t want people to use this to book a time with me. But just so they can see what it’s like. It’s bookachatwithtom.com. If they go to bookachatwithtom.com, please don’t go ahead and book a time with me. It’s just so you can have a look at it and see how I do it. At the end of the online meeting, I direct people to that page.

On that page we say to them, “Look, if you want to book a time with me, I’m really up for that. But just please understand it will not be two things. First of all, it’s not going to be a sales trap where I twist your arm and try and get your credit card details. I’m not going to do that. Second thing is, it’s not going to be a free coaching session where I give you a bunch of ideas. Because if I did that, and you left that meeting thinking, “Great, I know how to implement.” I will be doing you a disservice.

So, what it is going to be it’s going to be a conversation between two adults to see if I’ve got something here that’s a fit for your needs. If it is, if I do have, if I think I have, then we’ll have a conversation around that. And I’ll explain why I think would be good for you and I’ll leave you to make your own decision, you’re on time. If I don’t think we have a fit, then we’re going to have a conversation around that and hopefully, I can refer you to someone else so.

If you’re cool with that, please tick the three boxes at the bottom of that page, which indicate you can afford my monthly fees, you understand it’s not a free coaching session and so on and then they can book a time to talk with me.

Doug: You’re setting expectations and you’re making it really clear up front what to expect when they come for the online meeting. And then the further when they have the one on one conversation with you.

Tom Poland: Very direct, very clear, I’m very honest on the open value proposition. Because if I did something different, I did what a lot of people do, which is bait and switch, which is dress something up to make it look like it’s something that is not like free training webinar when it’s really just a sales pitch. Or let’s do a free brainstorming session one on one, Doug, and I’ll give you lots of ideas. But that’s another sales pitch. Then, what is the value [inaudible 00:18:32] are going to be like? If I’ve been disingenuous, and frankly, deceitful right up front, is it going to get any better once you pay me money? Probably not.

Doug: No, that’s just my saying. If the service isn’t great at the beginning, as soon as you have my money, it’s going to get a lot worse.

Tom Poland: Yeah, exactly. There are too many people out there that are just flogging stuff and they think that whole ballgame is about getting money from people. Well, that’s about 5% of the ball game. The other 95% is delivering the value that you [inaudible 00:19:01] the whole promise you’re going to deliver them.

Let’s get back to the consult. What happens during the consult, and that was important because that sets the scene for the consult, it’s a discussion between two adults to see if I’ve got something here that’s a fit for you. All the marketing, and if they had been pre-sold, they come to that meeting, they want you to confirm, 90% of them literally want you to confirm that working with you will be the right thing to do because you’ve done such a great job during that online meeting.

When we kick off, I asked him, I said, “Well, look, this is what I have in mind for an agenda. See if you’re okay with this. I want to ask you questions about your business where it’s at, where you want to get to. I ask them about the marketing they have tried, and how that worked out. And I know it probably didn’t work out too well. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be talking.

I asked them about their revenue, what they’re currently generating each month because that gives me a clue as to which program they can afford, and which one’s probably going to be the right thing. Who their ideal client is, what the service, all the information I need, the questions I need to reasonably, accurately tell them whether I can help them or not.

That’s just the questions I need the answers to figure out if I can help them. It normally takes about 20 minutes. Then I say, “Well, on the basis of what you’ve told me, I have a program that would be ideal for you. It’s 495 a month, or it’s 1500 a month. Here’s the landing page. You can go and read all about it. And the order button’s there. You can pay monthly, you don’t have to pay me anything to start with. One of the things I do is I say, “Well, look, if you want to work together, my strongest recommendation is that you don’t trust me.”

Doug: Wow,

Tom Poland: People go … Because we got Zoom happening so I can see them in the webcam and their eyebrows go up. You can see them, they look sideways. I say, “You’re probably wondering why I would say, don’t trust me if we’re going to work together. It’s like, “Well, don’t I have to trust you, Tom.” And then I say to them, “Well, let me ask you this. Have you ever heard anyone say trust me, give me your money and I’ll show you how to get clients.” And they go, “Yep, I’ve heard that.” I say, “Did you give them the money?” I go, “Yes.” “How did it work out? Did you have my experience where two months later, you just had an empty bank account balance?” They go. “Yep.” I say, “How many times have you done that? Three times?” “Yep.” “Five times?” “Yep.” “Seven times?” “Yep.”

So, this is not working for you, right? They go, “No, it doesn’t really work very well.” So, let’s stop doing that. Let’s stop giving money to people who say, “Trust me, give me money and I’ll show you how to generate. My value proposition is pretty the opposite. I’ll trust you. You don’t have to trust me, I’ll start working with you, I’ll give you full complete access to everything, all the IP is online there up front from day one, don’t pay me a cent. If at the end of the month … “Oh, by the way, I’ll meet with you two to three times every single week to help you implement. If at the end of the month you think I’m the real deal, that I’m [inaudible 00:21:41] Yep, I’d like to be paid for that month. Thank you very much.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _


[just click to tweet]


It didn’t matter how good I was as an advisor, as a consultant, if I didn’t have fresh leads coming in I was going to be dead in the water like the world’s best-kept secret.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

But if at any time during that first 30 days you think this is not what you thought it was, or you think I’m not the real deal, just cancel, don’t pay anything. That conversation happens during the consult, and it’s a shock to some people.

Doug: Yeah, I don’t think I’ve heard that very many times.

Tom Poland: But if you think about it Doug, I’ve done this, I’m not Mother Teresa. As we know, it’s a progress to me. I think we’re both talking before about still learning, we both, we all are. But when you think about it, when someone says, “Trust me, give me your money and I’ll give you this the stuff. What they’re also saying is, I don’t trust you. So, you should trust me, but I don’t trust you to pay. That’s why I need your money up front.

I reckon that a fair way of doing this to say, look, I’ll put some skin in the game. Now, me being the seller, I’ll prove to you this stuff is good. I’ll work with you for a month and you got to put some skin in the game because you’re going to have your credit card in my system, and we’re going to charge that card at the 30-day point unless you think I’m a bullshit artist.

The client has skin in the game because the clock’s ticking, they want to implement, and they want to start getting some value before their credit card gets charged. I’ve got skin in the game because they don’t have to pay me a cent until I’ve proven what I’ve got is good. I like that, I like the fact that I’ve got skin in the game, that I am financially incentivized to care about every client. Hence, the three sessions a week, we have a 24/7 messaging system, we have a client community. Every client regardless of what they pay me, regardless of the lowest fee range, they get my mobile phone number. I’ll meet with them up to three times a week. We go all out for 12 months of their Leadsology experience to make sure they have as much support as they need.

People say, “Well, that’s amazing.” I say, “Well, I don’t think it is. I just think that’s what everyone should be doing. I’m not some sort of saint, it’s just I like to sleep well at night.” If we go, I want to create this world-class implementation experience. Because isn’t that the problem we all have is that we buy these courses, that we do these programs and some of them are actually quite good but we don’t [inaudible 00:23:54] I want to get people over the line with that.

Doug: Yeah, I’ve done that. Bought really great courses and then not executed at all.

Tom Poland: Yeah, it’s even worse if you get it for free.

Doug: Yeah, true enough. Do you want to share an example, a case study, maybe if it’s a client that you’ve worked with? You can name the client or not name the client, that’s entirely up to you.

Tom Poland: Yeah. Okay. I’ll give you the client that I’m proud of stuff. Because Derek lives in South Africa. He’s regionally isolated other than living in a country where the economy is crumbling, and there aren’t many opportunities, he’s a waste consultant. If the sale of your pretzels in Estonia is starting to go down, Derek will figure out what needs to change in terms of the flavor of those pretzels in order to get sales going back up again.

Now, his clients in the past of being people like Heineken, Coca-Cola, some of the biggest food and beverage companies in the world, conglomerates, massive massive companies. The people who make the decisions are normally the person second from the top. The Vice President for example of Pepsi just hired Derek. Vice President global of Pepsi.

So, how do you get people who your ideal client is the execs of the top, virtually the top of some of the world’s largest corporations reaching out to you to talk about becoming a client? That’s why I’m picking Derek. His target market is primarily Western Europe and North America. He’s landed, using my model, he’s landed clients from some of the world’s largest food and beverage companies. Some of the names I’ve already mentioned. He’s gone from sitting around, twiddling his thumbs, doing articles on LinkedIn, making a few phone calls, sending a few emails, getting a couple of interviews done. And hoping that in hell, that someone reaches out. He’s very good at what he does. He has a database that’s an accumulation of 30 years of taste preferences I every major region in the world. He is phenomenal.

But how do you get the attention of someone who’s a corporate executive, who’s so busy and so time poor and gets pitched to so often Derek’s a good example? You wrote me a lovely little email and said, “Look, I’m just so delighted. Please use this in the marketing.” It’s something to the effect that I now have a full pipeline of new client inquiries. Some of the execs, some of the most senior execs of some of the world’s largest companies, and I thank you for that. That’s a good example.

Spin the globe around, go to New Zealand, Christina is another one that I use. Because she’s in the SME market. So, she works with commercial photographers. Not showing them how to take photos but how to make a business out of taking your photos. We got her into running online meetings, getting audiences from other people’s networks and she again wrote me an email, very nice email. Said, “Look, I just can’t believe how many leads I can generate in so much less time.”

Now, she already had a six-figure business. It wasn’t like she was starting out, it was a pretty good business already but she was killing herself six and a half days a week running around hiring conference centers, trying to get bodies in there, flying around, driving, parking, expensive complicated time-consuming. I’ve done 500 of those gigs myself. So, I know how complex and how expensive they are. So, we switched to the online meetings using other people’s networks, called to action the consult, and that was the result.

Doug: The thing I agree with you, the reason I like Derek’s example is often, and I’m sure our listeners will give me some feedback on this. The point always is oh, I can’t niche down, I can’t niche down. Everybody’s my audience. You’ve just demonstrated that he’s probably one of the toughest markets to potentially reach online.

Tom Poland: Yeah, it is.

Doug: As you said, he’s killing it doing that.

Tom Poland: What I think people want to say to you Doug is, yeah, but senior corporate execs don’t go online meetings, they don’t go to webinars, but they do go to boardroom briefings.

Doug: Sure.

Tom Poland: The boardroom briefing is like a webinar but there’s any a couple of people there and there are webcams on.

Doug: Right on. That is so cool. What industries do you find, or do you want to have an industry discussion that this works best with, or that it works across every industry?

Tom Poland: Does not work across every industry, there’s no question about that. It’s a specialty. Most of my clients are either business coaches, executive coaches. The business coaches are working with SME owners, small-medium private [inaudible 00:28:33] owners, entrepreneurs. Executive coaches are working with managers in larger organizations.

Let’s see, financial planners work really well for them and related; So, wealth creation, property investment. Not real estate selling, but more about personal financial independence. We have a business coach, executive coaches, financial planners, people marketing online courses, consultants and corporate trainers. They are the six categories that this thing works really well for.

Doug: When someone works with you, do you bring all the pieces together? Because quickly you’ve laid out several different steps to make this work. I’m thinking there’s probably some technologies, some other pieces that need to plug into this.

Tom Poland: There are. There’s not a lot. The beauty of the model is, you can do it with our sets without cost or complexity. If someone has an internet connection, and they have PowerPoint, they can do everything else for free. You can set up landing pages for free because you do need a couple of landing pages. People need to be able to register for the meetings, and you need to have something like bookachatwithtom.com, your version of that.

Some people choose to have paid calendar systems, for example or paid webinar systems, but there are free versions available. Most of my clients end up spending a couple of hundred bucks to get the things set up professionally. But we cover every single aspect of it. We cover the technology aspect, which is a pain in the butt, and I get someone else to do that because it does my head in. But how do you set up the landing page? How do you link it to your CRM? What’s the title of your … We have six steps to get the right title for the presentation because that’s critical. You get that wrong, no registers. There are actually 27 steps in the whole system; getting the audiences, building the right asset and having the right call to action. 27 steps, everything you need to get to wake up every Monday morning, sip your coffee, open your iCal, your Google Cal, your Outlook thing and see, looking from prospective new clients who know your fees and are motivated and just hoping to confirm that working with you is the right thing to do. That everything they need to create that as a reality, that’s what my clients do.

Doug: Well, that’s really exciting. I’m used to having conversations about what a CRM to use, or we’re using Infusionsoft or we’re using HubSpot, are using this, are we using that and lead funnels and how deep stuff funnel and how many pages of copy you need to write and how to run Facebook ads and on and on it goes. This sounds like a little simpler process than that.

Tom Poland: Yeah, it’s a lot simpler. I actually have frontal lobe damage. Not a lot of people realize that. That’s not something you broadcast every day. But I had this horrendous accident as a kid and I can’t handle complexity. For me to build a marketing system, it has to be simple. I’ve done Facebook ads, and it’s just too complex. So, I wanted a system that was simple, that was almost cost-free. I say without cost or complexity. Most people are the same. The reality is, my estimation, Doug, is that 97% of marketing efforts fail simply because the person attempting that marketing method doesn’t want to do it. In the heart of hearts, they don’t want to do complicated online Facebook funnels, ads, tripwires, autoresponders, split testing, killing off the losers, challenging tracking pay per click. Most people don’t want to do that.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _


[just click to tweet]


It didn’t matter how good I was as an advisor, as a consultant, if I didn’t have fresh leads coming in I was going to be dead in the water like the world’s best-kept secret.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

If you don’t want to do something, there are only three outcomes. One is, you’ll either never start it, or you’ll start it and stop it. Witness the number of blogs out there where they’ll post five posts and the last one was April three years ago. Or the very best. If you don’t want to do something, you do it inconsistently.

Doug: Right. Or I find people will hide behind they’re doing it. I’m going to learn how to run this stuff on Facebook. I’m going to learn how to run Facebook ads, I’m going to spend six months doing that. They’re complaining about their business. It’s like, why are you not working on your business? Well, I’m learning Facebook. Well, you can hire someone to do Facebook if you really want to do Facebook Ads.

Tom Poland: Yeah, very true. Facebook Ads, I’m over them. They’ve become very … When we first started doing them. Well, 2009, 2010, something like that, it was like $1 for an Optin. Now, they’re 10 to $12 for an Optin. There just too … And they’re complicated. You have to keep at them the whole time. The idea that you can do a Facebook ad and sit on the beach with the laptop for half an hour a day and just let all the money wash over your beautiful body, that ain’t true.

Doug: I love getting the offers. Everyone wants to help me to be a six-figure business owner, I’m thinking, you’re not going to help me, I don’t want to get a pay cut. Know your target audience before you offer. That’s not really your [inaudible 00:33:05] that you’re standing in front of. I can see the dealership sign in the back.

Tom Poland: Yeah. It’s not your Penthouse Suite you’re in.

Doug: What’re some of the bad advice? This is a Tim Ferriss question that I really like. We all go out, and we’re experts in our own field. You’re the expert in generating leads. What really makes the hair in the back of your neck stand up?

Tom Poland: Well, the ubiquitous bullshit and hype really get me angry. So, false scarcity tactics, countdown clocks, see if you can qualify to be good enough to work with me. All that bullshit. That really gets me angry. I would say the bad advice is to do anything where you feel your personality, your ethics and your values have to be manipulated in order to make the sale. If it doesn’t feel right, if it doesn’t smell right, it ain’t right, don’t do it.

The difference between generating leads authentically in a win-win manner, versus the bullshit hype manipulation techniques, is simply the absence of a creative idea. So, keep exploring until you find the right method, a method that reflects your ethics and your values, your vision, your personality, and jump on board with that method. When you’re desperate, I’ve been desperate. I swear to God, my IQ dropped by about 40 points when I was desperate. I would buy anything. I just needed something to work.

So, take a few deep breaths if you are a little desperate, and don’t do that stuff that is positioned for the gullible, the naive and the desperate because it doesn’t work. Those people just want to take your money. They don’t really give half a ton of baked beans whatever works for you. Find stuff that you can relate to, that’s authentic, that’s genuine. That is to say, that honors your values, your personality and do that.

Doug: That’s great advice. Lots of times you look at stuff you cringe. You’re going, “Well, maybe I can do that and it would work.” But deep down inside, you know that you’re not comfortable with that tactic. I’m just finishing up a blog post now that’s talking about email marketing saying, all the things that you don’t like that people do to you, don’t copy those and do them to other people. Because they don’t like them either.

Tom Poland: All right. Well, as I said, I’m not Mother Teresa. I’ve had my desperate moments, and I’ve done things that I look back. I wouldn’t say I’m not totally embarrassed. But I do cringe a little, I think, come on, Tom, it wasn’t really honoring who you are. We all do it from time to time. It’s not a beat up about that. It’s just an encouragement to find something that’s authentic but feels like it’s a reflection of your personality and ethics and does that thing.

Doug: What are you most excited about in the next three to six months with what you’re doing in your business?

Tom Poland: What I’m really excited about is that we are on the verge of this community feeling with clients. I’ve so wanted to do this for so many years and had so many failures. But now, we’ve got a client community, we’ve got clients from 27 cities around the world, 15 different time zones, 74 clients. A lot of them are engaged. We have a Slack platform that we use. If people have not used Slack, it is freaking awesome. We’ve used in the past HipChat and Stride, are pale imitators compared to Slack.

We’ve got clients helping each other. We’ve got clients meeting outside our normal meetings, talking to each other, doing cross webinar promotions, cross interview promotions. That’s what I’m excited about. I’m excited about how much value my clients can give to each other. I’m excited about the diversity of different cultures. We’ve clients in the UK, Ireland, Spain, Portugal, Germany, the United States, Canada, South Africa, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand. That brings a lot of diversity. That cultural diversity excites me as well. So, that’s what I’m excited about.

Doug: That you basically have a built-in mastermind, if you will, that’s part of your community.

Tom Poland: It’s a mastermind, but probably not as people would normally know it. Because I ran mastermind groups for, gee, I think about 12 years. I just love sitting here on the sand next to the waves of little castaways beach and I don’t want to go out and run mastermind. What we’re wanting to do is replicate the energy and the richness of experience that a physical mastermind group might have, but online, so no one else to leave home. That doesn’t appeal to anyone, is like we’re like a black jellybean. People love black jelly beans, while I hate them.

But the people that want to do what I want to do and just sit at home and help people and get new clients and have a great lifestyle, yeah, it works for them. I’m excited about that community. I’ve got clients reaching out saying, “Hey, I’ve got an idea for our community. We could do XYZ.” “That’s a good idea.”

Doug: Yep, that’s awesome, yeah.

Tom Poland: I really am. I am excited about that because we haven’t had that before online. We’re really just on the verge of making it something that’s interesting and engaging and valuable.

Doug: Well, that may answer my next question or may have already answered it. And that is what you do to keep your clients engaged to execute? Because I’ve bought programs and I know other people who sell programs. Sometimes their goal is, like you said, get the credit card, and they don’t really care if the client finishes. That’s not the feeling I get from looking at your stuff and talking to you, you want your client to be successful. The only way they can be successful is if they stay plugged in and they execute.

Tom Poland: That’s right. That’s part of that community engagement. That’s one element of it. We charge them money every month. Every month they get their invoice, they go, “Oh, I’m paying for this thing. I better use it.” So, that’s an element. Currently, we have three live support sessions every week. For an online program that’s unheard. Most of them run one Q&A session a month. If you imagine three elements to this program, one is the online modules people access at their own time, 27 steps, go ahead and put them in place. But they do a step, and then they upload the results of that step. Maybe they’ll do a landing page, maybe they’ll do a title for the online presentation. Maybe they have a list of other people’s networks.

Then they upload that step to our client community center using Slack and they ask questions. “Tom, have a look at this, see what you think. Everyone else, have a look at this and see what you think.” We’ve got one guy, we’ve got the whole community voting on his title. So, we’ve got six different titles. Which one do you think is most effective?”

They do the module, they come to the community center and post their questions and their work, and I comment on it, the other client sometimes jump in and comment on it. And then they come to one of the life support sessions for a week. Where we’re talking … I’m not taking questions so much, is that we’re having a conversation about the question, about my response to their question. That keeps people engaged and motivated. I say to every client, “Look, there are three sessions a week, pick one and make sure you get to that session every single week regardless of how great your previous week was in terms of the implementation. Whether you got busy, or whether your cat got run over by a truck and you have to take to the vet. No matter what happened, get to that meeting because that’s your point of focus and accountability and recommitment.

Everything we can do, we send clients text messages. We’re looking at an app so we can send push notifications to their mobile phones. Everything we can do, we’re happy to do that to make sure that people engage. Oh, the other thing I do, I have a notification system. If a client hasn’t engaged for a month, I have a little notification that comes up and says, “Hey, I just sent one up to Maria. Maria hasn’t been in the community center for a month.” Email, “Maria, hey, how are you doing? How are you tracking? Do you need a hand? You want to jump on a one on one call?”

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _


[just click to tweet]


It didn’t matter how good I was as an advisor, as a consultant, if I didn’t have fresh leads coming in I was going to be dead in the water like the world’s best-kept secret.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Every single client we got a program, but every single client I say to them regularly, if you need a one on one, let me know. By the way, here’s my mobile phone number. So, if you really feel stuck, and the program is not serving your needs, reach out to me. We’ll book a time, we’ll get you unstuck. Everything we can do move, that’s pretty much what we will do.

Doug: That’s amazing.

Tom Poland: Thank you.

Doug: I’m surprised. I’ve seen a lot of online courses and I’ve talked to a lot of guys, I’ve traveled a fair bit as well. I’ve just never seen anyone put that much time and focus in making sure that people are that plugged in that together.

Tom Poland: Right. Well, I don’t know why I’m like that. I just am. I don’t know if people think I’m a saint or something. I’m certainly not. It’s just something I feel compelled, I’m excited about it. I honestly can’t tell you why. I just love the whole idea. I’m not doing it because I have some sort of high ethical standard, I don’t think. It’s just, you wake up and you do what you want to do, and that’s one of the things that excites me. I’m fortunate in that regard.

Doug: Well, that’s the goal I think. Every entrepreneur needs to be able to wake up and do what you want to do.

Tom Poland: Yeah. I do. Look, I’ve got to pinch myself. I was talking to someone this morning and they said, “Look, I really appreciate you, Tom. I know you’re busy.” I said, “Actually, I got like about six hours to spare every day. So, I’m not so busy as you might think.” That’s the beauty about-

Doug: That’s funny.

Tom Poland: Marketing online like the way I do, that’s one hour week I can do all my marketing in that hour. Then the value deliveries, you’ve got the online program and delivering, that’s really scalable as well. So, that’s pretty cool. Sitting here next to the waves on a little beach on the sand on little castaways beach in a little house. I’ve got these three big screens. I like my technology.

Once a day I go to the cafe religiously. I go to a cafe with my laptop. My wife sees me walking out the door and she says, “Ah, you’re going out for a change of screen?” Because I’ve gone from my big three screens in my office to my little laptop screen. Change of screen. Yep, it’s my time for a change of screen.

Doug: That’s excellent. It’s funny, people assume that you have to grind and grind like seven days a week, 24 hours a day. If you’ve built those systems, obviously, that’s not true. I often share how much I work because people I don’t think they would understand that.

Tom Poland: Right. The hard yards is, the hardest part of the whole thing I think is the first seven clients. If you’ve got a rinse and repeatable system that will give you predictably one new client a week, and you can rinse and repeat that seven weeks in a row, that’s the hardest part of any single business, I believe. Because once you’ve got that, you can systemize that and you can do it every single week. Then you’ve got money to build systems and hire contractors and so on.

That’s hard yards getting to that point. We can short-circuit that for clients. But once you’re there, you’ve got the money and your time and a lot of money are going to be spent building that business. But once it’s built, it’s like a big jet plane taking off from a runway. It’s a lot of energy, a lot of power needed to get it up to cruising altitude. But once you’re at cruising altitude, it takes a lot less energy and you find you have less time and more money.

Doug: Yep, that’s true. Once it’s off the ground, you’re up and running. Two more questions, let you go back to your day. One is, who’s one guest I absolutely have to have in the podcast?

Tom Poland: One guest you absolutely have to have on your podcast. Tell me the sort of people that you like to have on your podcast?

Doug: I like guys like you. I also like technology companies that are service providers that are in the marketing space. I’m looking for what’s not the shiny object? What’s working? What’s tried and true?

Tom Poland: Yeah, it’s something like fair dinkum, that actually works, that’s maybe someone’s original thinker?

Doug: Yep.

Tom Poland: Okay. Well, it sounds like you’ve already interviewed Matthew Kimberly.

Doug: I have not. I’ve met him a few times, and the other guy I haven’t interviewed is Jim Sheranko who’s in your neck of the woods as well.

Tom Poland: Right. Well, I’d definitely go with Matthew on that one. I’ve interviewed both of them.

Doug: I’ll follow up with Mathew. He is a really sharp guy.

Tom Poland: Nick Sonnenberg would fit the bill. Nick Sonnenberg is from getting Leverage. He’s got both the technical and the marketing background. He’s doing some cool stuff in terms of outsourcing. He’s a specialist that I think would really be a great interview for you. If you want someone that’s really quite wacky and interesting, Carolyn Cole, she’s from boomtank.com. One of the favorite people I interviewed was Hillary Weiss. Hillary is a copywriter in New York. If you want an original, authentic and effective, I wouldn’t go past Hillary, Hillary Weiss. Hillary with two L’s weiss.com. Weiss.

Doug: There you go, you exceeded my expectation. I asked for one and you gave me half a dozen. Now, the most important question and that is where can people find you?

Tom Poland: Great question. Glad you asked. If people want to see how I do these online meetings they can go to leadgendemo.com and book themselves. They’ll see leadgendemo.com, as in lead generation demonstrations. But leadgendemo.com. But other than that, they can head off to leadsology.guru, which is our main website, leadsogology.guru. I apologize for .guru, but.com was gone. Anywho, we just go it’s not a guru as a spiritual master, its start again guru. Just like the authenticity would use that one.

Doug: There you go.

Tom Poland: But yeah, leadgendemo.com, they can see actually how I work through the different sequence and the elimination demonstration qualification education and motivation as free. So, that’s a really good price.

Doug: Absolutely. Any parting thoughts, anything you want to cover off before we wind up for the day?

Tom Poland: Yeah. Well, people don’t know where to start. They maybe don’t have an email list, they don’t have a presentation, they’ve been doing random acts of marketing. Very often they say, “It’s okay for you, Tom, you’ve got an email list.” Or, “It’s okay, you’ve got a great presentation.” Or, “It’s okay because …” I say to them, “Look, we were all born naked. None of us came out of the chute with an email list. None of us started with a PowerPoint presentation. None of us started with … We were all born naked. The most important thing you can do is start. [inaudible 00:47:24] said, the moment one commits, all manner of unforeseen circumstances comes to one’s aid and taking action has power, genius, and magic in it. So, just start.

Doug: That’s great advice. I say, start with where you’re at and with what you’ve got. As you said, you don’t have to have a list. You don’t have a list, get started. Everyone that didn’t have a list at one point got started and they built a list.

Tom Poland: Absolutely. They were born naked just like the rest of us.

Doug: Absolutely. Well, I want to say thanks so much for taking time and thanks for just being so blunt, and straightforward and sharing what you do and how you help people.

Tom Poland: It’s been refreshing to be part of your show, Doug because your questions really draw out that authenticity, and like attracts like.

Doug: Well, I just love the sales and marketing field. The goal of my show is really simple, is to find the smartest people I can in the industry and expose my listeners to them so they can have some new opportunities and new direction and some new people to connect with.

Tom Poland: Sounds like a plan. Thanks for the opportunity.

Doug: Well, thanks so much. Thanks for tuning in listeners that’s another episode. As per usual, we’ll transcribe the notes so I’ll make sure that the URLs that Tom mentioned in this episode are there for you to click on. You can also find them on social as well. So, we’ll make sure all those links are there. Thanks for tuning in and we look forward to serving you on our next episode.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _


[just click to tweet]


It didn’t matter how good I was as an advisor, as a consultant, if I didn’t have fresh leads coming in I was going to be dead in the water like the world’s best-kept secret.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Get in touch with Tom:

Find out more about Tom:

Links to other related podcasts and or blog posts:




Do you need help generating leads and sales?

Regardless of the economy, there are opportunities to generate leads and make sales.

Fill out the form to apply for a free consultation with our experts, 1-on-1!

Looking forward to meeting you!

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

Doug Morneau