Today on the show we have Charles Byrd. Charles is going to teach us about a couple of different really, really powerful strategies that you can use to grow your business fast. But first, as he’s going to share about how he does outreach and connects with different influencers and movers and shakers in the many different markets that he works with and how he can build these connections in a powerful and authentic way.
He’s also going to discuss joint venture marketing which is basically partnering with somebody over a webinar and selling a product and splitting the profits. This is one of the fastest ways to grow your list, get known, and to start channeling some revenue towards a really good digital product or service that you have.
[3:55] Starting a joint venture
[7:34] How to build an audience
[10:40] Making the right connections utilizing social media
[15:59] Taking your wins and parlaying them into bigger wins
[17:36] The process of executing a successful joint venture
[19:42] How to build long-term supporters and raving fans
[20:54] The method of creating successful webinars
[23:25] The first steps to take towards a successful joint venture
Charles Byrd Information
Book: Getting Things Done
Transcript of Podcast
Hello everyone and welcome to The Story Engine Podcast. Without further ado, let’s get over to Charles. Hey, Charles welcome to The Story Engine Podcast.
Thank you so much, it’s a pleasure to be here, Kyle.
Now, I’m so excited to be talking to you because you’ve got two different businesses that you run simultaneously and I think at first glance, it doesn’t make much sense how they fit together but you have this amazing method of reaching out to people, building up human connections and creating partnerships and joint ventures that fuel both of these businesses that really make it this powerful engine for you. I would love for you to just get us started by telling a little bit about your story and everything you’re working on right now.
Sure, so the short version of the story, worked in the Silicon Valley for 15 years as a director at a billion-dollar software company. I was able to impact and reach the 6,000 employees with my training and programs and apps that I would roll out and decided I wanted to become an entrepreneur and really help a lot more people at scale not to mention have a lot more freedom. In deciding to become an entrepreneur I wanted to help people in the areas of productivity and so I decided to make a course teaching entrepreneurs and professionals how to apply EverNote to their business and their life. So I started making this course but I didn’t know really how to market it. I was asked to speak at a real estate conference and that presentation I created for that is still the underlying foundation of my presentation today. Of course, it’s been vamped up but it’s interesting how many slides are identical to the very first one.
Then I started studying internet marketing, launches, joint ventures, all kinds of different approaches ’cause there’s so many different paths and angles, Facebook ads, getting traffic, content marketing, which you’re an expert at, and I didn’t know what to do so I thought I was gonna make a hybrid of all the different courses I had purchased and invested in and figured out I needed a foundational strategy and for me that was joint venture webinars. So I learned joint ventures working with one of my biggest clients who the first time I met him, well the next call we had he asked if I would book all his joint ventures and I was like, um, never done that.
So I was smart enough to take him on as a client, fortunately, ’cause I was on the fence and learned how joint ventures work but then took my project management, Silicon Valley, program management background and researched the best tools in the world to systematize the process. I also figured out very early on before the course was even done, relationships would be the foundation for having anyone to sell it to ’cause I had no list, no connections. I remember the first time I even heard what a mastermind was, I didn’t understand it all and I’m Googling this word. I’m like what even is this? I was truly clueless, then just kept doing research, going to events, doing as much learning as I could, getting into Facebook groups with other people doing these similar things and it even took me quite a while to realize you can connect with those people on Facebook. ‘Cause up until that time Facebook was just for my friends that I hang out with.
It never occurred to me to use that for business and connecting and expanding your network. So, when I figured out you could add the people in those groups as friends and comment on their posts and look for the movers and shakers in a group and start providing them value back, that’s when things really opened up. I went from a crazy schedule in corporate to dead silence as a new entrepreneur with no connections. Which was actually isolating, to then starting to build relationships and it’s been one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done. Not to mention the thousands of people whose lives have changed by hearing my message.
Well that’s really cool. So let me, there was a lot of different really interesting pieces in here. And let me make sure I got everything right. So you started with building a foundational training on productivity, which you specialize in using EverNote in particular but, you’ve got all kinds of different systems that a many of which I’ve used thanks to you. So how you’ve done that, how you’ve really grown it and gotten a lot of attention is not using Facebook or other things to build up an audience and build up a following of your own but you’ve actually leveraged the following and the audience many other influencers out there and you’ve developed these systems to create a connection with them, create some rapport, and build up opportunities with them. Is that right?
Yeah, that is correct and it’s always about providing value first. It’s not about you it’s about them, every time. When you engage with someone you’re looking for commonalities, you’re learning about what their goals are, what they’re up to, what communities they serve. I’ll loop back briefly on the audience building when you present to other peoples audiences, that’s what builds your audience and we’ve been able to build, we went from zero on our last two, the number of leads we generated is approaching 40,000. Of course, lists ebb and flow and people stay on and it changes all the time but we were able to grow a substantial list in two years to the point that first client I referred to asked if he could buy the company after the fact.
It’s remarkable but what simply building connections does. You’re an expert at writing, you’re an expert at systems. I read your book, congratulations on that by the way, it’s fantastic.
[bctt tweet=”It’s remarkable what can be accomplished by simply building connections. -Charles Byrd” username=”kylethegray”]
Our minds actually work very similarly. We have processes for what we do but pretty much no matter who you are you’re good at something and what I like to point out, at this point I am good at marketing and different topics like that but in the beginning, I wasn’t, but I still found ways to help people. Even seasoned marketers, one, in particular, I connected with at two live events in different cities and he was running webinars that were doing tens of thousands of revenue per webinar and I pointed out I’m like, “Hey, you’re reaching all these people but your microphone doesn’t compliment what you actually sound like. You might consider upgrading your microphone. You might consider updating your slides with these kinds of images that would connect.” And of course this is very constructive and positive but that was finding a way from my background with really no marketing experience but using expertise audio as you and I both have, we’re both musicians so, it’s just a simple example of how to take something in your wheelhouse and share it with someone else to provide value.
Or even just listening to what they’re trying to do and provide them intros to other people who could help further their roles.
I think that that’s great. I’d love to hear maybe a specific story because you have so many great and charming stories that just evolve into these really cool partnerships. About, I think a lot of people want to get started on this and though I am so with you, I highly recommend attending events, I think that’s one of the fastest ways to grow your network and to make connections like this. But do you have good stories of some of the online outreach that you’ve to kind of, you maybe did some research on somebody and offered a way to help them and how you developed that into a joint venture partnership that was really fruitful for you?
Yeah, well one example is a friend of mine named Joss who at the time, he lives in Australia. To this day I haven’t met him in person, although we’ve chatted probably literally hundreds of times and we were both in the same Facebook group, it was a marketing group and I was systematically going through the group looking for the people who were posting really good stuff and you could tell they were getting results.
They were providing value, and like I said, just started commenting on this and that, sharing posts in the group so other people would see contributions coming from my end, and then just messaging them, and I messaged Joss and I was doing this all the time, but we got on a call and hit it off, and for probably a year and a half we almost talked every two days.
We talked all the time trading ideas, and he runs an agency in Australia. He’s got, several employees. They do funnels and ads and copy and all this stuff. So, we just hit it off as friends, and I provide intros to him ’cause I was meeting so many people, so I’d send people his way and even just a week or two ago I got an intro from him to a really solid marketer in Australia and these things just … Ebb and flow. We met with a person who has a training in learning languages in Europe and I don’t even think … we didn’t even line up a webinar with him personally, but we’re trading intros and I just got an intro. I’m having Jonathan Levi on my show next week, who he’s huge on Udemy and works with the genius network and his partner Anthony, their memory and learning experts. And in a way, it’s come full circle ’cause when I first wanted to make an online course I was looking at platforms like Udemy which I prefer how I rolled out my course in a platform like that.
But Jonathan was the biggest person on that site, reaching tons of people. So, it’s actually quite satisfying to build the connections and relationships and it’s almost come full circle now, connecting and working with some of the top people. In fact, someone who heard my webinar reached out to the partner that hosted it. Got an intro to me. We’ve met several times. He sent me his book. It’s Greg Boyden. Gregg introduced me to David Allen who came on my show last week, and I’m doing a podcast interview with another person he introduced me to another author and speaker the next day.
So, you create this web of relationships and providing value, and I’ve sent so many introductions to different people and they magically come back in spades, and it’s very satisfying too ’cause you’re hanging out and trading ideas with some of the smartest people in the world, and it helps you develop and grow. You can help them develop and grow, and it’s again, always providing value. Expect nothing back. You’ll be in good shape.
So that’s just incredible because it’s so simple, but so many people seem to miss the core point of this where really, yeah, it’s finding those people that are easier to find than you think, especially if you’re really clear on who you wanna serve and where they’re spending their time, and then, again, leading and just finding ways to connect and communicate and it can be as simple as commenting on their posts and saying, “Great post. Asking a good follow up question.”
Maybe even giving a little bit of feedback on how you applied those ideas. And then all of the sudden new doors can start to open. It’s not too difficult. And I think that that’s really encouraging to people out there who, just like you did not long ago, started with no list, no inherit reputation or anything and used these simple connections to leverage your course and to grow a really big audience, now, yeah. We are working with David Allen who, for those of you who don’t know, he’s pretty much the godfather of productivity. He wrote a book called Getting Things Done which is a tough read. It’s just very good systematic structures, but yeah, you’ve just gotta keep getting through it and you’re like, oh man, I don’t wanna set up all these things.
I remember at least going through this too, but the more you do it that it just frees up so much mental capacity, so much clarity. But the point being, he’s one of the most well-known people in the space that probably if you just would have reached out with an email saying, “Hey, let’s do a joint venture,” or, “Hey, do you want to promote my course?” Would have never made a connection.
But with this attitude and with this strategy it’s come to you.
Yeah, and it’s just remarkable. And you can take these wins and parlay them into the next win and you’ve attended my events where we teach some of this, but basically, you take whatever momentum you have in your pocket. It’s what you’re doing right now today. And in the very next conversation, you roll that in. Like the David Allen example, that’s from last week.
So it’s super fresh and it builds momentum into other conversations. So, you meet someone you haven’t met before, and of course, most people aren’t bumping into David Allen so it’s not gonna be … you can use this at any level.
You take whatever your little win is. You parlay it into the next and into the next, but the gentleman who booked to be on my show next week. I mentioned who was on my show last week and he was on board. If I just reached out … you’re telling a narrative and you’re building credibility that makes them comfortable to spend some time getting to know you.
I think that’s great. And I think another thing that you do that makes these relationships and these connections go so well is you really get results with these joint venture opportunities because just like you have a really good system in the process for building relationships, you’ve got an excellent process for executing on these joint ventures. And I would love for you to take a little bit of time to explain the bones of what makes a great joint venture and how it all fits together.
Sure. So, it’s everything from common deal structures which range from the product types you have and how much of your own personal time is involved in delivering product verses to just being a purely digital product, but that really isn’t a ton of effort for you to fulfill and deliver. So, it’s understanding what you have to offer. Being able to articulate that. Getting the deal booked and to get a deal booked, you’re never pushing anything. You’re listening to what their goals are, what audience they’re serving, and if you think, hey, I know that group could probably benefit from this, then you can bring it up.
[bctt tweet=”Listen to what your potential partners’ goals are; what audience they are serving and find where you can provide value and communicate that to them. -Charles Byrd ” username=”kylethegray”]
If it’s not a great fit, you might say what you do, but you don’t have to go into a ton of detail. ‘Cause again, it’s always about them and what they’re trying to do, but if you do think it’s a fit, you can bounce it off them, get their thoughts on it, and when you get one booked it turns to the operation side of this, which possibly is what you were also seeking input on.
And before we go into that, just to make sure everybody’s on the same page with us, just the simplest version of this is a joint venture webinar is something where a person with a large list or maybe not necessarily a large list, but a list, will offer to host you and your webinar or your presentation to their audience and then you present, for example, your course or there’s many other different ways that you can fulfill that.
But in this case, of course, for example. And depending on how many people buy or opt-in, you split the profit between you two.
Right, and the whole goal of the webinar, at least in my opinion, some people, a webinar is all about selling. For me, it’s not about that. Of course, that feeds into making a living, but my goal for my webinars and what I teach to my students, the goal is to provide value. In my free Evernote webinar training, we cover every single one of Evernote’s core features, how to use them and how to apply them in your world.
So, whether you buy the course or not, you left tangibly knowing how to use something, being inspired at what’s possible with it. Simple tricks, mnemonics to remember how to use it. And then if you wanna take that further, then, of course, the course is available for that, and we have a good deal on the course, and then you can buy implementation calls to go with it.
Some people want extra support. So, the whole point of it is to provide a lot of value, and that’s how you build long-term followers and supporters and raving fans.
There are other people in the industry that the whole webinar is about selling, but people like you better and you feel better if you’re providing a lot of value.
Yeah, yeah, of course, and that’s what will create the word of mouth and the new introductions and connections for that.
Yeah, exactly. And then there’s the back end of these types of promotions and that involves email lists, landing pages, webinar software, email sequences both to invite their audience to a webinar and then the follow-up sequence after a webinar that … ’cause if you just go do a webinar and that’s the last they hear of you, your sales will only be about 30% of what they would be, maybe even less actually.
So, you have a follow-up sequence. We run ours for five days, and people get emails and more value. They get access to the webinar replay, and then we have … our offer closes and in our case, the course is always available, but on the promotion, it’s half price.
And like you said, as revenue comes in from those sales, the revenue is shared between the person who had the audience and you for creating the product. So, it provides a lot of value, it builds relationships one to one with the partners you’re working with.
It builds you a list and it provides you sustainable revenue. We do two to six webinars a week, I delivered three last week, I was on business success dot com today, I have another one tomorrow. It just turns into a self-replicating snowball of happiness and freedom.
That’s amazing. That’s so great and yeah it’s a beautiful system. It’s something that I’ve been working on implementing my own business, and I would love to hear your take so far on if somebody is just starting out, maybe they’re in their early stages of this, and maybe they have their course, maybe they don’t quite have their product yet, what are the first couple of steps that they can take to start positioning themselves, to start doing these joint ventures, because again it’s a super fast way to grow your list, you don’t just want to wait on search engine traffic or building up organic social media or anything like that, although those things are incredibly important and should not be overlooked but if you’re relying on those as the foundation for your business, well it’s a business model but you can go a lot faster, and so give us the rundown on what are the first couple of steps somebody could take to get started in this?
Okay, so to your point, step one is assessing what your traffic sources are, and what your product is and personally I know people like Susan Garrett, they don’t even have partners, they have tiny lists and they make millions a year. So you should assess what your market is and analyze the traffic source options from content marketing, Facebook, everything else but if you determine, you know what joint ventures are a good way to go and even Facebook superstars like Scott Oldford, he wrote this massive high-value Facebook post saying, if you want to get your business going quickly, and he’s the guy who at the time was selling Facebook courses, Facebook ads, he’s like joint ventures, he’s like that’s how I started my business and if you want to see who’s doing it right, you should follow Charles.
So it is, bar-none one of the fastest ways to grow. So initial steps analyze who your market is, know who you serve. In my case, Evernote could be useful to a vast array of markets, like unequivocally. They have 215 million users, they’re across probably every niche that exists, it’s very vast but I wanted to choose who I serve, who do I want my list to build from, who do I want to work with.
So this gets back to some basic stuff, choosing your avatar types of people you want to help and work with, and then … so I wanted to work with entrepreneurs because that’s my group. I wanted to work with professionals because I come from that background. So I started looking for the people who have my people on their lists. Now, of course, they’re not on my list at the time but those are the people I know I want to help. So you can look at the leaders in a particular space who are providing that type of content and then go to where they’re hanging out.
Are they at that other leader’s live events, are they all using a certain tool like Click Funnel, so there’s … you can go hang out with some of those people in the Funnels Facebook group. There are many avenues to find where those people are and then you’re back to looking for the movers and shakers in any of those groups to start liking their posts, commenting, sending some good vibes their way and finding ways to help them and ultimately setting up a meeting to get to know them, and at this point, now it wasn’t always like that this and it isn’t always like this every time but at this point I can get someone I’ve never met on the phone, Skype or Zoom, and have a webinar booked with them in 20 minutes whether they’ve seen my stuff or not, and it’s because of this system.
It’s because of A, I’m probably talking to them because of an intro from some other person that I’ve done a webinar with and had a wonderful result. So that takes the authority of the person who introduced you and gets them on the phone. You can also reach out to people cold, I mean one of my bigger partners, I just liked one of his write-ups in Inc. Magazine and started emailing him. That was a way longer process but I completely got him on board and had him do his first joint venture ever. I walked him through the whole process and we did three more because they sold a lot of internet courses.
That’s so great and there’s this theme that you’ve been touching on that I really want to drive home for the listeners right now, is throughout this whole time, introductions, recommendations, referrals have been happening at all parts of this conversation and I just want to reiterate to everybody listening out there that this is very possible and of course you know you’ve got to … If you’re really, really starting from the ground, from zero then it’ll take a while to build these relationships but you’d be surprised even with a small business, even if you’ve attended just a couple of events here and there, the connections that you already have, and the potential networks that you have access to if you just start learning how to leverage it.
This is the same thing whether you are booking joint ventures, whether you are trying to get on stages, whether you are … whatever you want to do, whatever your big goal is, leveraging these connections can accelerate things so quickly and I think very few people utilize that to their fullest potential.
[bctt tweet=”Whatever your business goal, leveraging your connections can accelerate things very quickly. -Charles Byrd ” username=”kylethegray”]
I agree. There’s something I teach in the webinar it’s called, the fortune’s in the follow up, most people pack up their stuff, leave their work for a week to go to a conference, break out of their shell, start a conversation with someone, hand them their business card, trade cards, come home, no one follows up. You can stand out instantly by being the person who follows up. Of course, I teach how to do that with, Evernote and using tools that make that easy for you but you and I met at an event. Then you came to my event and you were introduced to people in my network and I mean think of all the people you met that could just be great connections, and you can help them and they can help you just from coming to … well, certainly the event we met and at my event and all the many others that you go to.
It’s kind of astounding how much, just value can be generated by connecting, showing up and follow up.
It is truly astounding. Charles thank you so much for joining us. I would love to hear maybe one closing thought, one closing idea if that didn’t drive the point home enough and then where can we go to learn a little bit more about you, to learn about your events and to connect with you.
Sure. So number one, I was about to say get started but it’s really the commitment. It’s commit to a path, you lay out your options, you pick the one that you’re gonna do whether it’s this or any other one, and you say that is what I’m doing, and I’m sticking with it for this duration and it’s the commitment that … You’ll see a road start forming in front of you, it just starts forming.
[bctt tweet=”Commit to a path, stick with it and the road will start forming in front of you. -Charles Byrd” username=”kylethegray”]
There’s some saying, that I’m sure I’ll ruin but basically, if the universe knows what you want, it can help you get it but until you choose the destination, no path will form or they’ll vanish the second after you start walking. So A, commit. B, get started. The people who put in the work get the results. No one will do the push-ups for you.
If you want the body, you do the push-ups. So get started. Just be altruistic in your approach, just try to help people. Don’t expect anything back and I was actually talking with Jordan Harbinger about that as well because he does the exact same techniques. I saw him present and I was like, that is exactly what I teach and that’s what worked and it’s remark … people like him, his connections go to crazy heights. So anyway, get started and you can find more about joint ventures at purejv.com, purejv.com and then as far as my company, it’s birdword.com again.
You had mentioned the challenge of connecting the product lines, the productivity market and then the joint venture market. The way I kind of bring those together is you have your personal productivity, your team productivity, and your business growth and that’s what ties into the consulting wing of this. It’s a foundation and it opens up totally new lines of business too.
Absolutely brilliant. Charles thanks so much for taking some time to share this with us. I’ve had a great time and I know many of our listeners are gonna get a lot of value from this.
Awesome, thanks so much Kyle always a pleasure.
See you soon.
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