Today I’m talking with a longtime friend of mine, Brad Pilon. We’re part of the same masterminds, we’ve traveled together with our families, we’ve known each other for years.
Brad is one of the original gangsters in our space. He is the one man who really started the whole topic of intermittent fasting, way back in 2006! He released his book, Eat Stop Eat—which has become the bible of intermittent fasting—and at the time, it truly broke every rule out there with respect to dieting and fitness.
Besides Eat Stop Eat, Brad has also started another company called Venus that became the most successful product on ClickBank for three years. We’re talking absolutely monstrous numbers here, which he will get into in the interview.
If you’re wondering what is possible when building an online business … If you have a product, a book, a course and you’re wondering what can happen in terms of numbers and volume, you have to check out what Brad has to say.
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In this episode, Brad and I discuss:
- Self-publishing vs. traditional publishing
- Commitment to one idea
- The intermittent fasting journey
- How to deal with negative responses from customers
- Setting your business up to be flexible
- Brad’s crazy twitter story
4:00 – 11:00 – The Eat, Stop, Eat journey.
11:00 – 18:00 – The Venus story
18:00 – 26:00 – Flexibility and scaling
26:00 – 32:00 – Using email effectively
32:00 – 35:00 – Rapid Five questions
35:00 – 39:00 – Yuri’s notes from the conversation after the conversation
What You Missed:
In the last episode, my guest was Mario Tomic who is a certified physique coach, public speaker, digital entrepreneur, world traveler, and a digital nomad.
Mario lives nowhere—he travels all over the world, generally moving from country to country every three months, and runs his online fitness business from anywhere he can get a wi-fi connection.
In this interview, Mario gave us a glimpse into what his digital nomad life looks like. He’ll also shared some cool lessons from his days working as a digital marketing consultant for some big companies, and how he has translated that into helping him grow his own business.
This was a very intriguing conversation you’ll want to check out.
If you missed my interview with Mario, you can check it out here.
Hey guys. It’s Yuri Elkaim here. Welcome to the Healthpreneur podcast. Hope your day is going great.
Today, I want to ask you a question. Have you heard about intermittent fasting?
Well, I’m sure you have. And honestly, intermittent fasting has been a buzzword for the past several years at least, and there’s a reason for that. There’s a number of people who have become really well known for talking about intermittent fasting—what it does to the body and health and all this great stuff.
But there was one man, really, who started it all (at least I think so). His name is Brad Pilon and he is our guest in today’s show.
Now, I’ve known Brad for a long time. We’re part of the same masterminds. We’ve known each other for years. We’ve traveled together with our families.
We’re good buddies, and he’s one of the original gangsters. He actually had his business going online before I even came online, and his book Eat, Stop, Eat has really become a bible for intermittent fasting. It was one of the first resources that I ever came across online.
I ended up buying it because it’s such a great book, but it’s been such a staple in the health and nutrition industry when it comes to fat loss and changing people’s perspectives with respect to meal frequency and so forth.
In this discussion, we’re going to talk about some of the challenges that Brad had getting a new concept like intermittent fasting to the market at a time where people thought that starvation was a bad thing, and how he kind of overcame that.
He’s also going to talk about his other company, which became the most successful product on ClickBank for three years—and ClickBank is a digital marketplace for selling information, products, and supplements. When I say top of ClickBank, I’m talking monstrous numbers, and Brad will share exactly what those numbers are in this interview.
So if you’re wondering what is possible in building an online business … If you have a book, a product, a self-published book, a course—what is possible in terms of volume and numbers? Just listen to what Brad is about to say in a few minutes.
Brad is very humble—I think—but his self-disclosed bio is author of Eat Stop Eat. That’s pretty much all he has for his bio, so that’s all I have to say about that.
But basically he’s used his online businesses to create an untroubled life where he’s free to do the things that he wants when he wants, and that’s really what matters to him most. So if you want to learn more about what he’s up to, you can head over to EatStopEat.com.
And without any further ado, let’s bring Brad onto the show and have some fun.
Mr. Brad Pilon, welcome to the show. How’s it going, buddy?
Brad: It is going great. How are you doing?
Yuri: I’m doing well. It’s always great to connect with you and hang out. We’ve known each other for a long time, we’re very fortunate to be part of our own private mastermind called the Baconators that we started years ago.
We’ve traveled with our families together and done a lot of cool stuff. Most recently fired some rifles and machine guns, which was pretty cool.
Brad: Yeah. We’ve done some cool stuff. For sure.
Yuri: That was pretty good. So what’s new and exciting these days in the world of Mr.Pilon?
The Eat, Stop, Eat journey
Brad: It’s basically a lot of the same. It’s been that Eat Stop Eat business since 2006.
But the amazing thing about online is you have access to the entire world, so every day to millions of people you’re brand new and a brand new business, so you can constantly if not reinvent yourself, reinvent your business.
So we’ve been sort of actively working on that with Eat Stop Eat right now—reinventing it a bit and making sure we see it through the eyes of the newest customer, the newest potential customer. And trying to figure out exactly what it is they’re seeing as opposed to what I’m seeing as someone who’s looked at the exact same bloody thing for 10 years now.
Yuri: Well, I love how you responded with pretty much the same thing, because that really should be the response, I believe. Right?
Brad: Oh yeah.
Yuri: It’s not like, “Hey, I’m jumping on this new thing tomorrow.” You’ve committed. Since I’ve known you, you’ve had Eat Stop Eats, and you’ve just been a dog on a bone with that thing and that’s pretty awesome, so great job.
Brad: That’s the beauty of self-publishing; in a traditional publishing model, you’ve got three to four months of fame and then they move on to the next big thing whereas when you’re publishing yourself, as long as you’re willing to blatantly self promote yourself, you’ll stay relevant, so that’s what it is.
It’s constantly finding ways to stay relevant in a way that’s actually relevant to your business, and that’s all it is every day.
Yuri: You talked about the new potential customer for this program, so just for all of our listeners, Eat Stop Eat is basically the bible for intermittent fasting as far as I’m concerned.
Brad: Yeah. 2006 was when Eat Stop Eat first came out. It was sort of in the era of the eight meals a day dogma, so you were breaking every rule in the book if you weren’t eating eight meals a day.
Yuri: Hold on. We’re not supposed to eat eight meals a day?
Brad: I know, right? I have like twenty. No. I came out with Eat Stop Eat and that sort of changed everything.
It was an uphill battle because at first you were a crazy. But, well, it caught on. And that drastically changes how the average consumer now views fasting and thus now views Eat Stop Eat. So you’ve always got to make sure you’re viewing what you’re saying through the user’s eyes or their lens, and that’s what I’ve been focusing on these last couple months.
Yuri: Well, you were kind of the Copernicus, right? You were saying, “Hey, listen. The earth is not the center of the solar system,” and now it’s just accepted.
Intermittent fasting is everyone’s buzzword. Everyone’s using it. Everyone’s talking about it, and you were definitely one of the first guys to really own that space.
With Eat Stop Eat, what’s been that journey? What does that journey look like? The ups and downs, the good and bad that maybe a lot of people don’t know about?
Brad: A lot of it is, again, getting into the mindset of when people hear about it. Because you know that when people hear about it, the very first thing that’s going to come across their head for 90% of the population is “That’s got to be bad for you.” Right?
If it’s got to be bad for you, your job is to convince them that it’s not bad for you. In fact, it’s worth investing a couple bucks into reading a book about it. That’s all I’m asking them to do. I’m just saying, “It’s least worth your time to learn more about this topic,” right?
It’s actually a really interesting lesson. Something I’ve never understood is the people who are always like, “Ignore the haters.” I’m like—they’re a valuable resource. You can’t let them emotionally hurt you, but you’ve got to read what they’re saying and then read in between the lines, because they’re responding that way for a reason.
Whether they’re just trolling or whether it’s an emotional response to what you’re saying. And then you have to accept that you can be completely right, but the way you’re saying it or the words you chose to use isn’t getting your message across the way you wanted to get it across.
It’s just hammering away at that. Now, the people who buy your book and love your book, they’re a great source of ego and they keep you going, but they’re not a lot of help to figure out how to reach the other 98% of the people who hate your page that day, right?
What you want to do is focus on the people who send you the mail that makes your blood boil, because there’s no civility, no manners, they’re just spewing words out. But you don’t know what’s going on in their life, right? They had a bad day at work and then they got rear ended on the way home. They got home and their house is a mess and then they get an email from me and they’re just like, “I am going to destroy this guy.”
The people who you can imagine slamming the keys as they’re typing? They’re the ones giving you the most raw feedback, so you can’t take it personally. Realize that they’re not the adversary, you’re looking for the hints in what they’re saying.
It tells you, “Okay, yeah. If I change these couple words, the push to buy the book is just as effective, but now maybe someone like this would be curious. Or maybe I just address this one issue before this big push here and that would get rid of this person’s main complaint.” It’s learning to adjust to what the customer is seeing as the main negatives of your product and then cutting them off at the pass.
Yuri: Well, I think what’s worked well, again, from an outsider’s perspective—I think A) the title is very easy to understand. Eat, Stop, Eat.
Brad: It’s the whole point of the book!
Yuri: It’s very intuitive. You kind of like, “Okay, cool. I can kind of grasp what that looks like and maybe let’s go a little bit deeper.” But also, at least the new version of the sales page is it’s basically just like, “Don’t change anything. Just try this once a week.” Right?
It’s not a huge overhaul of someone’s lifestyle, which I think is really attractive once people kind of come to grasps with no food for a day or so, right?
Brad: Right, yeah. You’re looking at your target demographic and who’s interested in reading your book because I’m just looking for a reader here, right? My target market is anybody who’s willing to buy an online book, so I just want them to read.
I’m not asking them or telling them they have to change their life. I’m saying, “This might be something you want to implement on top of whatever you’re already doing.”
That takes a lot of the stress away. There’s people who are like, “I don’t want to change everything I’m doing.” I’m like, “Oh, you don’t have to. Just read this and maybe this is something you can do on top of it.” That tends to cast a very broad net that you can draw from.
The Venus story
Yuri: Now, you’re also one of the co-owners of one of the most successful online digital programs called Venus. Is it Venus Index or Venus Factor?
Brad: Venus Index, Venus Factor, Venus Something.
Yuri: You just own the planet Venus and all its derivatives.
Brad: Yeah, we just bought the planet and then we just sort of marketed that, yeah. It’s great.
Yuri: So you were doing Eat Stop Eat, and then talk to me about how this opportunity came up.
You obviously joined forces with a couple other really smart dudes, and then you guys became the most successful product on ClickBank for what, almost three years?
Brad: Yeah. It was a good run. It was about three years of Venus being number one.
It’s a long story. It starts with John Barban and I, and John’s been a business partner of mine forever and we had a heated argument at a coffee shop about why people work out—whether it was for strength or for muscle … And then finally we realized most people get started just to look good.
Most. I know there’s some people out there who do it for health reasons and good for them, but most of us, they’re like, “I just want to look better,” right? And then we realized there was no real metric for that, so we started working away at equations and we basically did physiology meets art history and art theory and came up with these equations for how to build a good looking body, right?
It started off as the Adonis Index, and that was really easy because it’s no problem telling guys how to shape their bodies, right? There’s no real stress there.
The big push was doing it for women, and I’m like, “Oh, dude, we’re going to be two guys telling women how to make their bodies look. This could be horrible.” Until John pointed out, he was like, “Well, actually if you look at what we’re doing, instead of saying the answer is thinner, no matter what, just keep getting thinner—we’re giving cut offs of no, you only have to get to about here and then you don’t diet anymore.”
And part of the measurements is that you need muscle mass. He’s like, “So it is a good message.”
I’m like, “Oh God, okay. All right, let’s do it.” Right? That sort of feeling like, “This could go horribly.”
But it started to work, and then after a bit, we got introduced to a guy named Brad Howard, and Brad came on board and was like, “Okay, the idea’s good, but the implementation is kind of horrible.”
Brad jumped on board and we were working sort of three of us now on it. Then Barban ended up meeting a guy named Kyle who does the advertising, and Kyle basically looked at it and was like, “Yeah, the idea is good, but you’re the world’s worst marketers.”
We’re like, “That is actually a true statement. That’s cool.”
So then he came on board and did the advertising. We kind of ended up being a four headed monster of advertising, tech, affiliate communications and then product development, product support that just sort of turned out to work.
Yuri: Yeah, it’s a very unique situation because you guys are kind of a perfect storm of really complementary skillsets.
Just so our listeners have some perspective as to what’s possible—you don’t have to name any numbers—but where were you guys when you started and where did you guys get to when you were at the top of ClickBank? Just so people understand what’s possible with a great program online.
Brad: Oh, yeah. When you’re the top one, two, three of ClickBank, you’re looking at thousands of sales a day. Not hundreds. Thousands.
Depending on the amount of money you’re making per customer acquisition, you can just multiply that out. If a product’s averaging on the ClickBank marketplace at $40 a customer, and you’re making thousands of sales a day, you can imagine it gets pretty extreme.
So that leads to some interesting issues when you have four very headstrong guys with giant egos who always, always, always think they’re right. You really have to learn how to manage the conflict and the ideas and which direction the company can go.
Flexibility and scaling
The biggest learning experience was that, plus it takes 10 years to be an overnight success. I love that statement, but there are periods of time in that 10 years where all of a sudden things do that mythical 5X, 10X in a week or a month type of thing, and if you don’t know how to scale and if you’re not ready to scale, it’s disastrous.
And the only thing worse than that disaster—because at least with that disaster there’s money coming in—is when that traffic cuts in half, how do you descale?
That’s a big issue, so your business always has to be extremely flexible. No matter how big it is, you need to be able to move and change with times.
Yuri: What was the inflection point? For you, what was the hockey stick moments where you said, “Holy shit, overnight”?
Was there something you guys changed with the marketing side of things or the advertising or was it something else?
Brad: I would go perfect storm. We’ve got a very, very robust stats department now, but back then it was basically four guys plus a couple coders staring at whatever analytics you got off of ClickBank, trying to figure out what the hell was going on.
So it was really hard to tell what the exact inflection point was, because at the same time as we’re testing the front and video sales page—which is obviously a massive part of it—we’re testing the pricing and the upsell flow, which is also a massive part of it, right?
So all of that just combined. I guess it was basically a bunch of wheels going and all of a sudden, they kind of clicked, like a one armed bandit. All of sudden, it’s just all cherries across. It was that kind of feeling where you’re like, “Whoa.”
And then the problem is—okay, so it’s working. Something made it work. We want to test and make it work better, but we don’t want to mess it up, and it’s all of a sudden that feeling of “Oh, okay. We don’t know.”
And each one of us has a different opinion of what’s making it work, so you’re like, “Hey, we’ve got to just be systematic here and start workin’ our way through what we think is working, what’s not working.”
And the hard part is, you can ask a customer, “Hey, what do you like about the book?” And they’ll be like, “I like the way it was written. I like the font. I like the color. I like the message.”
Yuri: All valuable information. [laughing]
Brad: But you can be like, “Hey, what made you buy?” And the minute you ask that, you bias it by their own cognitive biases of what they think made them buy. So they’re not a valuable resource there, right?
It’s not really useful to have a one on one conversation with a customer and be like, “What was it that made you buy? What was it in my upsell flow that made you take a bunch of stuff at 11 at night when you’re sitting around the computer?”
So you just have to go with whatever stats you have and start feeling it out. But the problem is when you get to the point where you have excessively detailed knowledge about any phenomena, it just leaves you with massive amounts of anxiety because you don’t know which data is important and which data isn’t.
There can be really important data and then there can be a bunch of data that just is noise, and it’s really hard to tease out which is which.
Yuri: That’s interesting. That’s a good distinction. I remember last time we were in Toronto, you were saying something to the effect of … You really get to see the best and worst of people when you have no money and when you have a lot of money.
Yuri: Can you talk a little bit about that?
Brad: Yeah, well I like to say that if you’re going to have a business and you’re going to have any partnerships—I’m not talking about partners as in you and your buddy, you’re both going to be shareholders—I mean any partnerships, whether it’s with coders or what have you.
Any partnerships. Anywhere where there’s your spending money and that money might be variable. You have to sit and look, “Is this fair when the company’s making $500 a month and is it fair if the company’s making 50 million dollars?”
You really have to think your way through. “Is this agreement fair here? Is it fair there? Is it okay?”
“These prices look great because I only have 3,000 customers in my list now. What if my list all of a sudden hits 300,000?”
“I’m looking at the way you’ve marked this up and you would be a significant portion of my monthly expenses just because of the way you’ve done your whole exponential increase. So we’ve got to negotiate this now.”
It’s kind of like a pipe dream to most people that you’re ever going to get to that level, but on the odd chance you do, well what happens? You don’t want to be taken advantage of.
Along the same lines, if everything’s going awesome and you hire some people to do some great work for you and you’re making unbelievable amounts of money—you’re being generous and you’re giving them good money and then all of a sudden, things get tight. And you’re looking and going, “My company’s going to sink if you keep getting paid the amount of money you’re getting paid for what you’re doing now. Even though that money was meant to be what you used to be doing six months ago when the volume was high.”
You have to always look at things from both sides because the fear of loss is massive, and people will fight you tooth and nail. You’re never going to go to an employee or a contract worker and be like, “Hey, you know what? You’re doing a great job and I understand the call volume is really high, so you know, give yourself an extra 100 dollars a month on this contract.”
No one’s going to be like, “No, nah, it’s cool. Don’t worry about it.” But if you’re like, “Look, I gave you a raise in your rates eight months ago back when you were fielding 2,000 calls a day, but you’re down to 100 calls a day, and I just can’t pay you that much. I’m going to have to scale it back,” people would be like “No, that’s not fair.” Right?
You’re like, “Well, it’s fair because the other option is I have to let you go.” So you need to build in flexibility. The way things are online, you need to always think like a small business. Right?
You’ve got to think that the traffic can go away.
Your number one affiliate, who’s been giving you 300 sales a day and you’ve got this great relationship and you bunched up his take a bit—and then one day he tests something new that I put out and he’s making 10 cents more per customer than with me, and all of a sudden, he’s gone.
Gone. You’re like, “Well, 300 sales just disappeared. Okay, why?”
He’s like, “I’m sorry. I’m just making more money on this offer.”
You’re like, “Okay, well that changes my entire business plan.”
Or you’re cruising along on Facebook—and this is one of my favorite ones and Facebook loves you and you’ve got a rep and your rep’s telling you how great you are and all your ads are approved and your rep is helping you tweak your ads in the name of the best interest of Facebook, and then boom, they shut you down.
You’re like, “Wait, but … Your rep told me to do that.” It’s like they’re all of a sudden this spiteful ex-girlfriend or boyfriend.
You’re like, “But you’re not even returning my calls. You just literally took my last invoice from me. I paid it, and you shut everything off. But I was ramping up my business. I actually spent ten thousand extra dollars this month because of the success we were having and the way you were leading me to believe everything was good. I actually hired people to handle a Facebook advertising division of my company, and then you just shut us down with no reasoning.”
You’re not going to win that fight.
Facebook’s one of the largest companies in the world. They don’t care, right? They’re not that interested in getting back to you in a timely fashion or helping you out. You’ve got to be prepared for that.
A great example for me was, I was Twitter contacted. So they contacted me, all right? They’re like, “Hey, you should really try our advertising platform.”
I’m like, “Guys, I’m not interested in advertising, but I like Twitter, so sure, I’ll try it out.”
I was working with a Twitter rep, the guy who called me. He was like, “Well, what do you think?” I’m like, “Well, let’s just try these couple tweets that I did that got re-shared a lot. Let’s just put some money into them.”
And it worked. I’m like, “Ah, it’s cool. Let’s add an image.” That worked.
I’m like, “Alright, well let’s spice it up a bit and talk about weight loss,” and that worked. Everything was going really well, and I’m working directly with Twitter—who were the people who actually called me and gave me $500 to get started—and then I woke up one day and it was shut down.
That was maybe two years ago, so every three months, I email Twitter. I’m like, “Guys, I know my account was suspended. I understand that somewhere I broke your terms of policy use or whatever and I apologize, even though I was working with a Twitter rep setting this all up. But all I’m asking you for is I just want the ability to promote tweets again. I don’t want an advertising campaign. I just want to hit that promote tweet button and just promote the tweet that’s already out there.”
Every time I send that message, two days later they send me back an automated message conforming that I am correct, that I was not allowed to advertise because of what happened previously.
I’m like, “I know.”
Yuri: You’re banned for life. [laughing]
Brad: Yeah. I’m like, “But the learning curve was literally you contacting me, getting me to spend some money, and it’s almost like I hit some threshold.”
They’re like, “Yeah, that was about $10,000. That’s good. Cut him off.”
Brad: Right? As a business, you’ve got to be ready for that, because one of two things could’ve happened there. That didn’t happen and that ad, all of a sudden I woke up and I’m like, “Holy crap, we just did 3,000 sales today.”
Or “Holy crap, all my sales just went away.” You’ve got to be prepared for both at all times. It’s a perplexing situation to be in, but it’s the nature of the online beast.
Yuri: Sure. Knowing what you know now, would you do anything differently if you started all over again knowing the peaks and troughs that may happen with this type of business?
Brad: With advertising, no. Because until we get to the point where the Facebooks and Googles and Twitters of the world, when they approve an ad, it’s somehow binding.
Like it’s basically approved for three months as long you don’t change anything, this ad is allowed. Then in three months, we have the right to review. Until that changes, advertising will always be this wild, wild west where they turn you on or off depending on thousands of factors.
But I myself, I would make sure that I’m never relying on any one mode of getting customers because blogging was big, and then went away, and now it’s useful again. Twitter is big and it’s kind of full of hate and more hate now, but still useful.
So make sure that you’re at least working with a couple different types of platforms to reach people, but work with the ones you naturally enjoy. I don’t really like being in front video. YouTube just never felt overly natural to me, so I don’t really do it.
But as much as I dislike Twitter for what they did with the advertising account, I like their platform as a way to communicate with people. I like the challenge of actually making some sort of sense in a 140 characters.
I do like blogging, so I do that every once in a while, but my favorite one is email. So I stick to email, but I make sure that I don’t abuse email. If email’s my number one way to communicate with my customers, I try really hard not to infuriate my customers with what I put in their inbox.
Using email effectively
Yuri: Let’s talk about email for a second because we haven’t talked a lot about email in the show yet. People think that email is dead or they don’t want to email too much or they’re emailing their list once a month because they don’t want to piss people off. They’re so worried about unsubscribes.
What advice do you give to somebody who is in the space—you’re sitting down in Starbucks, you’re having one of your special Smarties cookies or whatever the flavor of the day is—what advice would you give them when it comes to email marketing? To do things that are profitable but obviously on the cool side of things too?
Brad: Okay, simple. Email is ridiculously simple and I think people fret over it too much.
Write an email that you would want to read. Right? It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to sell a product or not, right?
Maintain a level of civility in your writings, so be polite to the person reading that email. Treat them the way you would want to be treated and tell them something cool. If you’re selling them your best friend’s product, you don’t have to hide—people know now. Right?
A lot of emails are like commercials, right? A commercial is meant to sell people stuff. That’s the whole point of a commercial is brand awareness and making a customer buy something. Yet every Super Bowl, the entirety of North America is pumped to watch Super Bowl commercials because they’re the commercials we want to see, right? We’re actually excited to see them.
Your emails are exactly that. Let’s be honest. Most of your emails are commercials. Even your content emails that have no links in them whatsoever are branding to make sure that people get you and get your philosophies and get what you’re trying to do.
Your emails with links in them are more direct. They’re a commercial. You literally want them to click that link to help you make money, right?
They’re commercials, but commercials don’t have to suck.
There’s tons of really, really good commercials, so just have some civility and some manners. Make sure that you’re not just being an ass on email.
Then write an email that you would actually want to read. And then send that email. And people will read it and like it and eventually you’ll be sending promotional emails and people will be enjoying them because you’re giving them the one thing no one else is giving them, which is good, well-written promotional emails.
Yuri: Sure. That makes sense. What type of frequency would you recommend? Does it really depend on the business, or does it matter at all?
Brad: I think it depends on the business and what your people are expecting from you.
So I send two to three times during the week, once on weekends. I find that’s kind of enough. It’s mostly because I don’t want to write an email on Monday.
Most of my emails are broadcasts, they’re not pre-designed followups that I wrote five years ago or anything like that, so a lot of it is me just sitting down with my morning coffee and writing to people.
If I were doing some sort of intense three week program, then I would probably be emailing people once, maybe even twice a day. But if you’re just trying to keep people interested in what you’re doing and what you’re thinking, I think that a couple times is enough.
It’s hard because we don’t really email personally as much as we did, but think of texts. Everybody’s probably got that one friend who if they didn’t get a text from all week, you’d kind of wonder what’s up. But then you’ve got that one buddy who, if they text you five or six times in a day, you’re not reading them all.
So you’ve just got to find whatever that balance is based on what it is you’re talking about. If someone is going through something, something in their lives, whether it’s emotional or awesome, you’re going to expect more texts, right?
If nothing much is going on, they’re just sending you a “hey, Yuri, what’s shakin’?” text, then you might expect that once a week, so you can flow and ebb with it depending on what you’re talking about.
You just have to think of it like natural communication.
If you were to text me, and let’s say you wanted to go out for dinner on Friday and you know that I’m notoriously horrible at responding to texts, leaving my house, going out for dinner, that kind of thing … You know you’re going to probably text me to invite me, then you’re going to text me and be like, “Pilon, look, come on, let’s do this.” Then you’ll be like, “ARE YOU COMING?”
Yuri: “Are you alive?”
Brad: Because if you’re just sending me a text being like “Hey man, what’s shaking?” You just have to send the one.
So it can vary. It can ebb and flow depending on what you’re telling your customers and the people on your email list, what you’re talking about, that sort of thing.
Brad: Don’t get too stuck in some sort of optimal pattern because it changes.
Yuri: Yeah, that’s good advice because I don’t know if there’s a one size fits all for every business, right? Everyone has their own personality, their own philosophy of how they want to run things.
So I think it’s great advice, what you said. Write an email that you would want to read, which I think as a fundamental principle is a really, really good piece of advice for anyone to follow, whether you’re sending daily or whatever it is.
Brad: And your product will dictate. So if your product, whatever you’re selling them, if it’s an urgency based product, if the copy they got from the buy was all about the urgency, if the product itself is all about speed … So let’s just go with a two week diet or something like that.
If I’m buying Yuri’s two week diet and I get an email from you on day one and an email from you on day 14, that sucks. Right?
Because I wanted you helping me. Obviously if I’m a two week diet, I’m probably getting ready for a wedding that’s in two weeks plus a day. I want your help the entire way.
I want the morning email and I want the night time email and I want you to tell me exactly what I should be doing and how I should be keeping on track and all that kind of crap. If I bought Eat Stop Eat, which is a book about fasting once or twice a week, then I don’t know, maybe an email once or twice a week makes sense.
Yuri: Read, Stop, Read.
Yuri: There you go.
Brad: I like it.
Rapid Five Questions
Yuri: All right, Brad. This has been awesome, buddy. Are you ready for the famous Rapid Five?
Brad: I am more than ready.
Yuri: All right. Here we go. You have no idea what these questions are. Whatever comes to mind, just blurt them out.
Brad: Got you.
Yuri: Your biggest weakness.
Brad: I’ve got a really healthy ego and I like to be right.
Yuri: Your biggest strength.
Brad: I’m not afraid to admit when I don’t know and I’m open to the idea that I could be wrong.
Yuri: Cool, and biceps probably as well?
Brad: Yeah. They’re pretty good too.
Yuri: They’re good. Okay, number three. One skill you’ve become dangerously good at in order to grow your business.
Brad: Oh, the openness of email communication—just writing like I’m writing to a friend.
Yuri: Nice. What do you do first thing in the morning?
Yuri: Complete this sentence. I know I’m being successful when.
Brad: My stress levels are low. I find stress and success are very strongly correlated.
Yuri: I’ve got one more bonus question for you actually. This is outside of the rapid five, but I know you’ve got two young kids, and what has having kids taught you about marketing or business?
Brad: Family and friends is more important than success and money.
Yuri: Very nice. Awesome. Well, there you have it, guys. The man, the myth, the legend, Mr. Brad Pilon. What is the best place for people to check out Eat Stop Eat or stay up with your shenanigans online?
Brad: Alright guys, on Twitter I am @Bradpilon. You get my witty, witty musings on there.
On Instagram, I am Brad Pilon, and you get pictures of random inanimate objects, typically books on there.
My blog is Brad Pilon.com. You’re going to see a trend going on. And you get more properly thought out ideas, but just as many grammatical errors. Then finally, EatStopEat.com is where you got to check out Eat Stop Eat.
Yuri: Awesome. It’s very smart too, you know exactly what is happening on each platform.
Yuri: That’s very smart.
Brad: Keep them separated.
Yuri: Awesome, man. Brad, this has been a lot of fun, man. Thank you so much for taking the time to join me. As always, it’s great to connect and reconnect and just thanks for all the amazing work you’ve done. It’s really inspiring, and I know our listeners will get a lot of value out of this episode, so thank you.
Brad: Thank you. I really appreciate that.
Yuri’s notes from the conversation after the conversation
Funny story, so just after Brad and I finished our recorded conversation, we actually started talking for another half an hour about life and what’s going on and all this new stuff, and it was so funny because I’m like, “I should’ve kept the record button pressed.”
Because there was so much more value that was extracted from what we were talking about, and I just wanted to share one of the insights that I got from our conversation after the conversation. Both Brad and I have been online for 12 years plus, and we’ve recognized that sometimes you have to go and do things that you think you need to do … to realize that ultimately that’s not what really matters.
And by that I mean we both started out by building big teams and all this kind of stuff, and we got to the point we’re like, “What exactly are we doing here?” Anyway, I’m going to save all the thoughts about staying lean and nimble for another solo round, and this is again another reminder to get around people like myself, like Brad, like other guests we have on the show here.
When you get around people like this at events, in coaching groups, in masterminds, is you’re able to have these conversations. You’re able to have these candid discussions over a drink where you’re just kind of chilling out by the bar for an hour or two or having dinner together and you’re able to tap into this wealth of wisdom of people who have gone down the path, who can give you these nuggets of “Hey, this is something I realized.”
That’s what I’m trying to do my best of with this podcast to really bring to you, but it really never replaces in person interaction. That’s really where the magic happens.
Anyway, I just wanted to share that with you because there are so many cool things that we got, obviously during the interview, but also in our conversation afterwards. And I just thought I’d share some of that stuff with you, which is again—the power of the journey.
There’s a lot of value in staying in this for the long run because you’re going to learn a lot. You’re going to meet a lot of people. You’re going to make mistakes. You’re going to get to what you think is success and then ask yourself, “What am I doing? Why am I even doing this?” Then almost going back to the drawing board and saying, “Hey, if I were to start everything from scratch, what would be different this time around?”
So a lot of this wisdom comes from just being in the trenches for a long period of time and yes, you can expedite that process by getting a coach, by getting a mentor. Those are very, very valuable, and those can help you accelerate this process, but you still have to go through the journey, right?
There’s no magic pill, as we’ve talked about before.
Anyway, just wanted to share that with you because I thought that was rather interesting.
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