Why it’s EASIER to 10x your business than to 2x it
March 10, 2021
“I had a seven figure agency with no website, no logo, no professional voiceover system, none of that stuff … but I DID have all that stuff with the multitude of failed businesses that came before.” On this episode of Fearless Business, I talk to Robin Wait about the time I thought my work ethic could solve everything … and the one mindset shift that actually solved everything, rescuing me from a twelve-year cycle of failure.
Robin shares with me the most tragic story of an entrepreneur procrastinating his launch, despite having all the pieces in place. His seed money was an inheritance from his parents, who died in a horrible accident. He was afraid to fail with his parents’ legacy! Robin’s advice to that aspiring entrepreneur is just the kind of reframe that so many struggling business owners need to hear.
We also discuss …
- Why entrepreneurs hesitate to hire the right person, even if that person is sitting right in front of them and available.
- How I write checks to my friends that they are free to cash if I backslide on certain good habits.
- Why charging high prices makes it easier to scale your business.
- The one piece of advice I would give teenage me.
About the Show: Robin Waite is the host of Fearless Business.
Introduction: You’re listening to the Fearless Business podcast. You’re in the best place to learn about how to learn about how to grow a business, get more clients, and make more money without fears and limitations. All while having fun in the process. Robin Waite is the founder of Fearless Business, a business accelerator helping coaches, consultants, and freelancers double their income and more. Now here’s your host, Robin Waite.
Robin Waite: Welcome back, everybody. It’s the next episode of the Fearless Business podcast. I’m your host, Robin Waite, the Fearless Business coach. I’m very honored to have a guest joining us all the way from Florida today. He is Dylan Ogline. Welcome to the show, Dylan.
Dylan Ogline: Hey, Robin. Thanks for having me. Good to be here.
Robin Waite: It’s my absolute pleasure. After growing his digital marketing agency into a seven-figure agency generating over a million in sales annually, Dylan turned his fix to helping other people start and grow their hyper-profitable digital agencies. Dylan undoubtedly believes that anybody could start and build their own digital agency that will allow them to have more freedom and live a life with purpose and meaning. Dylan, I’m super excited to drive straight in, and see if we can offer some value to the various coaches, consultants, and freelancers who are going to be watching this and listening, well in the UK, one rainy Wednesday afternoon here.
Dylan Ogline: Let’s do it, man.
Robin Waite: You talk about why marketing is the number one thing that every business should be focusing on.
Dylan Ogline: Yes.
Robin Waite: Go for it. Why is that?
Dylan Ogline: When I’m talking about marketing, I’m basically Google Ads, Facebook Ads, YouTube Ads, things like that. Once you have that figured out where you have a positive ROI, you know that, “Hey, I can spend $100 on Facebook ads and get $500 in sales back,” something like that. Once you have it figured out, you have your funnel figured out, you have the ability to then buy growth. And as a consultant, as a coach, I have seen so many business owners where they’re struggling, they’re making mistakes. Not just with marketing, but with growth, with hiring new team members, with building that next product, offering a new service.
They’re struggling and they’re making mistakes when it really all boils down to one thing, and that’s you don’t know how to get more sales. You’re scared to say “add that new employee,” and add that expense of that new employee because, well, now I’m doubling my expenses. I don’t know if I’m going to be able to double my sales.
Then people end up making all sorts of mistakes. They end up being cheap about things. They take forever to do things. When, in reality, if you just have your marketing figured out, you would have the confidence to make that right hire, as an example, hire the right people, onboard them, and know that, “Hey, once I add that person, I can then increase my marketing, do some more Facebook ads, do some more Google ads, whatever and double my sales or triple my sales. I have the ability to buy growth.”
Robin Waite: It sounds to me like some of the common mistakes then, they’re not really like traditional business mistakes as such. It’s more like a mindset issue about like they can’t envisage a future whereby like their income far exceeds their outgoings.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah. It really comes down to hear. And then what happens is you kind of make excuses. “Well, I can’t find the right”--and I keep going back to this hiring a person--“I can’t find the right person or I can’t find the right solutions. Or all the people dealing in the digital marketing space I’ve dealt with, say web design companies, where they go out and they hire this cheap developer. Because they don’t want to increase their expenses a lot, but they still want to hire a developer to help them out with their workload.
Well, then that developer produces crappy work because they’re paying them rock bottom prices, right? Well, if you would just spent the money and hired the right person, and onboarded the right team member, or went out and found a service provider that does the work the right way, you would have avoided all these problems. But the reason that people actually aren’t doing that is because they want to be cheap about it because they’re scared, they have fear about where am I going to get more sales? And if you just have the marketing figured out, you can make the cash register ring, you want to double your business, just double your marketing expenses. It’s that easy.
Robin Waite: I think that’s right. I mean, we have something in the UK called apprenticeships, so we get apprentices who come through very green. They’re not very good. Very like sponges, they’re desperate to learn. And we did this in our old web design days. I ran a web design agency for 12 years, and we used to take on these very green apprentices. And they were great, they were cheap, but the amount of time it used to take to train them up to get stuff done and they would do it in half the time a trained professional web designer could actually do it or an experienced web designer could do it in.
When we looked at it, it might be $15K a year to hire an apprentice versus, say, $36K to take on an experienced web developer. The $15K person can only generate about $30,000’s worth of income for the business. The experienced person, on the other hand, could produce $100,000 or even $150,000 revenue for the business. Hiring for skills is definitely the way forward. The other thing which I took from that as well, Dylan, and I think you’ve alluded to this. It’s the things which got us to six figures are not going to get us to seven figures, and that is actually a marketing problem being able to market and sell a higher ticket priced item.
Dylan Ogline: Oh, absolutely, yeah. If you’re at a premium price point, you definitely make scaling your business a lot easier. But something you said there actually stands out to me that six to seven figures. I like to say to people that it’s easier to 10x your business than it is to 2x your business. And this is especially critical for those that are like at that beginning stage. Maybe doing $50,000, $60,000, $100,000 a year. It is easier to go from that to $800,000, $900,000, a million a year than it is it to go from, say, $75,000 to $150,000.
The reason is that when you are sitting there and you’re thinking, “Oh, okay, I want to double my business this year. Last year I made $75,000, I want to make $150,000 this year.” You just end up thinking, “Well, I just need to do a little bit more of what I was doing last year. I was going to conferences.” Remember what those were like before COVID?
Robin Waite: Real people?
Dylan Ogline: Go to industry events. Yeah, yeah, where you would actually like get in a room, with multiple people, and be close to them. Not six feet apart and be close to multiple people.
Robin Waite: What is this strange world you speak of, Dylan?
Dylan Ogline: I know. Back in the Medieval days. Okay, so that’s how you get your clients, you go to industry events, and that’s where you end up getting your clients. Well, you end up thinking, “Okay, I did two a month. Well, if I just do four a month, I’ll be able to double my sales.” Well, if you’re thinking, “Okay, I want to 10x my business. I want to go from $75,000 a year to $750,000 next year.”
Well, you start to realize, okay, I can’t go to 20 industry events a month, like that’s just not possible. Then you start to think outside the box. You start to think in terms of what can I do differently not what can I do more of. It is definitely easier to 10x your business than it is to 2x.
Robin Waite: One of the things you mentioned as well is about like showing your value. There’s one understanding your capacity and your ability like how do you grow your business, but most people are very fearful around kind of actually one: shouting about how good they are and actually then showing up in the world as a high value, not even a commodity at this point, the opposite of a commodity. How do you start to encourage your clients to stop hiding behind like low prices?
Dylan Ogline: What I tell people is you have to realize, a mistake I see is that people try to go into the market. They tend to understand the whole niching thing where, okay, I want to only help, say, dentists’ offices, okay? Because I’m going to the dentist later this afternoon. I want to only do digital marketing for dentists. But you have to realize that, sure, you’re niched down into a specific industry, but there is not a service that you can offer that 100% of dentists’ offices are going to want to use. Whether it’s web design, some kind of coaching, consulting, some kind of digital marketing service like I offer. You’re not going to be able to offer a service that all of them want.
You want to focus on the small percentage of the market which might only be 5%, 10% of the market that is looking to invest in their business and basically tell for growth. They’re looking to spend the money to grow their business. Those people tend to be willing to pay higher prices, they’re paying a premium price, because they’re looking for a solution, they’re not looking for the cheapest option out there on the market.
Robin Waite: If 100% of the market had Dylan working for them, for example, no dentists have the unfair advantage.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah.
Robin Waite: Now because everybody’s got the same. And so if dentists are out there fighting over patients to come through into their client, like you need diversity in terms of products and services which are available, and the results which they deliver.
Dylan Ogline: And people, naturally they always think the best way to compete is on price. Just be the cheapest option out there. But the truth is, is that even if you were free, like you were to offer I will build a website for free for a dental office. There’s no catch. I’m going to build you a website for free. There’s still a percentage of the market that won’t go with that because they want the best of the best, or they want an extremely unique design. This could be digital marketing services, anything. There was a certain percentage of the market that even if you were absolutely free, they won’t go with you.
You want to focus on the percentage of the market that is looking to pay a premium price for a solution. And then those people end up 99% of the time they’re better to deal with, they don’t haggle on price, they don’t care how much time you are actually spending on their business, they are about getting a result. They are looking for a solution to grow their business, to make their business better, or to make it run more efficiently. You don’t want to be focusing on trying to think in terms of, oh, what service can I offer that 100% of the market will want? Because, the truth is, there is no solution that 100% of the market will want.
Robin Waite: And how do you go about identifying that 5% or 10% then? Because you can’t just go and poll all of the market and say, “Right, who’s got the most amount of money,” and then pick off the top 5% or 10% for leader board. Like how do they show up?
Dylan Ogline: I think this comes down to niche research. And you just kind of knowing your niche, knowing the industry that you’re working in. As an example, one of the industries that I work in, one of the verticals that I’m in is plumbing and heating companies here in the United States. And I just knew a couple people in that industry, and I knew that most plumbing and heating companies are looking for install projects, not repair projects. And just knowing things like that. When I would be looking for new clients, when I would reach out to those potential clients, just knowing that little bit of the market allowed me to segment into the certain part of the market that was looking to grow, looking to invest, to get more install projects. Does that make sense?
Robin Waite: Absolutely. 100%.
Dylan Ogline: Whatever your niche is, this comes into where you need to know more about your niche, more about your industry, and just simply do the niche research.
Robin Waite: Where did you start? What’s your story? How did you get into doing what you do?
Dylan Ogline: Well, my very first business was actually flipping cellphones on eBay. This is back when I was 14 or so. And for me, this was just the right time. I know Facebook didn’t exist, so this was 2003, 2004, but it was the infancy of Google ads at the time. Back then you could get clicks for like three or four cents. It was the wild west. It was absolutely ridiculous. But when I got into business, when I started thinking about this is the route I want to go down, it was just the hot thing was marketing. This digital marketing thing was just a game changer for businesses because you mean to tell me you could target specific people? you could target people that are already searching for my type of business? That was just earth-shattering to the business world.
Robin Waite: I’m smiling here because, do you know what, funny enough we had similar side hustles, actually. I was a little bit older than you by the looks of it, but 2001 and 2002 my first business was a side hustle because I had a job at the same time. But I was selling grade two listed laptops, okay? It sounds a little bit dodgy, but essentially what it was, the hard drive would fail, or a disk drive would fail, and it was all modular. It was Fujitsu. They would unplug the old disk drive, plug a new one in, it’s basically brand new.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah.
Robin Waite: But these specific laptops, this goes back to what you’re saying about your niches are in the riches, people, like that 5% to 10%. These laptops, they were specialist Fujitsu tablets. You think 20 years ago, a tablet, right? Flip screen, you could twizzle it around, they were used on construction sites because they were so rugged, right?
Dylan Ogline: Yeah.
Robin Waite: I used to buy them--this is pound sterling, I don’t know what the dollar equivalent would have been then--but 500 pounds and I used to flip them and sell them for 5K each.
Dylan Ogline: Wow!
Robin Waite: And a construction site would buy five, ten, 20. I think the biggest deal I ever did was for 40 laptops. Obviously, they got a discount for bulk buying. And that was so much fun. I remember one summer I made about 40,000, but the thing is then--and probably this happened with you with the phones as well--because the market then gets flooded over a very short period of time. Transport, a container ship comes over from China with a whole truckload of Fujitsu laptops.
Dylan Ogline: The prices dropped.
Robin Waite: I mean the thing is, this sounds dumb, right, Dylan? I could still sell them and double my money, right? I didn’t want to because I was used to like making ten times.
Dylan Ogline: You’re used to like 10x.
Robin Waite: Then I started looking at for all these different opportunities and then the prices just kept on falling, and then it just really wasn’t worth it by that point. And I didn’t find another opportunity, but that was at the point when I was like actually actually, I need a grown up business now, not flipping stuff but actually do like set up my marketing agency at that point. And it’s really rare that I hear somebody who had like an eBay or like a Google ads story that’s not Gary V from like 2002.
Dylan Ogline: How old were you back then? How old are you now?
Robin Waite: At the time I was 21. I was finishing up my degree, I’d been in a job as well at the same time for about two or three years.
Dylan Ogline: Gotcha.
Robin Waite: A little bit older.
Dylan Ogline: What happened for me, so what it was, at the time, I don’t know why this was, but Europe you guys had all like the pre-smartphones. I remember Sony Ericsson was a company. They made like these big, bulky cellphones, but like you could get your email on your cellphone. There was like an internet browser. This was game changing stuff, right? Europe had all the good cellphones, and we just had like the Nokia brick ones. I wanted one for some reason, and I ending up finding this wholesale company based somewhere in Europe. And I signed up and they just approved me, for some reason, they approved as a wholesaler.
I was able to get the phones for pretty much what retailers were able to get them for in Europe, ship them to the United States, and then flip them on eBay. I wasn’t getting 10x. I think if I sold like a $400 phone, I was probably pay like $200 once I got it shipped here and paid all the fees to get it here and whatnot. What happened for me is they found out, probably lasted for a year, and then they wanted to go send me my tax form, and they found out I was under the age of 18 so my merchant account shut me down.
Robin Waite: Oh no!
Dylan Ogline: I couldn’t process, couldn’t process credit cards. I think I made like maybe $20,000 to $30,000 that first year or something like that, but I was hooked, man. I absolutely loved it. And I played around with Google ads at the time. It’s hard to describe like how different it was back then and what it is now. It was just so cheap.
Robin Waite: It was like the land of opportunity though. I always tell this story, dawn of the internet age 30 years ago, 31 years ago now. There was a tenth of the number of businesses registered as there are today. You had all these great opportunities coming to us now that the internet had opened up. Like no competition, like everything now, and I think this is one area where people struggle so much with marketing is like every industry now is so overly saturated. And not only that, but like when we were marketing those businesses in 2002, 2003, 2004, Facebook only came about in 2003. That was when he built the first iteration of it.
Dylan Ogline: Oh, it is. Facebook ads were not a thing.
Robin Waite: Facebook ads didn’t exist. Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, Clubhouse, all of these like apps just didn’t exist. Or the ones that did, like YouTube was rubbish, because people had such terrible bandwidth on the internet, right?
Dylan Ogline: Yeah, nobody could watch videos.
Robin Waite: No. But you could upload them, and you could take half a day to download one, and then eventually stream it. But my point here is that now people think that marketing is easy because we’ve got this global marketplace at our fingertips, but the reality is it’s actually made it super easy to get online, but there’s ten times the amount of competition, so its ten times harder to get found. And I think people underestimate that, and that means that the ones that are going to stand the test of times are the ones that get super good at automation, super good at systems and scaling. They get good at gathering social proofs, so case studies, reviews, testimonials, and they can find a way to automate that. And then all of that like elevates their price point because they have this now established credibility and authority in their industry.
Dylan Ogline: I also think it’s critical. That certainly does, and I think with the competition, and how saturated. Especially the coaches, and consultants, and everything. There’s a lot out there and anybody can start that. Which is fantastic, this is where I think niching down is just absolutely critical. If you’re just a general business coach, business consultant, you’re going to really struggle. Because 10,000 other guys are doing the same thing.
But if you specifically help a certain type of business, and you’re able to talk about their problems. Like I mentioned the plumbing and heating companies how just knowing that, hey, you don’t want repair projects, you want install projects, like you’re speaking their language. And you can’t really get into that with multiple different industries and multiple different niches the more niched down, the more specific you get, the more narrow, the better. And that’s how you differentiate yourself in the market today.
Robin Waite: When was it that you kind of realized that? When did you know? Because reading your profile it sounds like you had a number of different business projects on the go after the phone flipping thing, kind of like that you got caught out. And so there was a turning point where you must have had to start to focus, not necessarily niche at that point, but certainly focus your efforts. Was that a learning point which said actually it’s not just focused on what I’m doing, but focused on who I’m actually doing it for?
Dylan Ogline: I mean it was probably one of the more life-changing events of my life was just cutting all of the crap that I was working on and just focused on one single business. One thing I do encourage people to do is, especially if you’re just starting out, is if there’s say like two or three industries that maybe you know a little bit about. Go ahead and try all three or four or five in the beginning just to kind of see like where can I get some bites? Who can I seem to help the most? That’s one thing I did when I decided to just focus on the agency.
I did go ahead and branch out into a couple different niches just to see like who can I help the most. But yeah, I think once you figure out your specific niche, kind of stick to that and get better and better and then you’ll be able to raise your prices and you become the premium solution provider. It happened both at the same time. I decided to just focus on the agency, decided to just focus on the digital marketing services, and then I also once I got through the three or four different niches just focused on two mostly.
Robin Waite: The key thing I picked out of that is this idea about testing and validating against the hypothesis.
Dylan Ogline: Fail fast.
Robin Waite: Yeah. That’s it. I think we can help these three or four different audiences, but hey, at least rather than imagine I’ll try and predict it, let’s go out and gather some hard and fast data that backs up our hypothesis. And it might be that this one converts at 20%. This one converts at 30%. This one converts at 45%, but it’s low margin, so we need to go with that one in the middle.
Dylan Ogline: Absolutely.
Robin Waite: Too many business owners get really caught up in this trying to plan and perfect everything before they actually launch and start making money. I’m like, “Go and pitch it to ten people, come back and tell me when you’ve sold two.”
Dylan Ogline: Yeah. That is by far the biggest mistake I made. After I failed with the cellphones and everything, I just spent ten, 11, 12 years of my life bouncing around, getting nowhere. I’m a natural perfectionist. Like my house is perfect, and everything is like clean, and organized, and everything, and I was the exact same way with my business. Everything had to be perfect before I would actually go out there into the marketplace and say try to sell people or try to get customers or whatnot. I would spend years, years of my life making sure I had the logo, and then I had the blog was up, and then I had content, and then I had the website was perfect, and then I had the business card, and I had the stationery. Wasted all this time trying to get things to be perfect. And then I would go out into the marketplace and nobody would want the product or service. That happened all the time.
Robin Waite: I feel a bit sad for you, Dylan.
Dylan Ogline: A lot of time. It was a painful ten…
Robin Waite: We have this thing, the tiniest violin, I’ll just play a little tune for you.
Dylan Ogline: Thank you. I need that. But now I teach people, especially because tools are just so good now. Like literally tonight, we were talking about web design earlier. Say you’re a web design agency. Go out tonight and build, say, four landing pages for four different industries or niches that you think you can help. And then tomorrow, work on trying to reach out to those businesses and get them to come to that landing page, and see who can you actually help? Like within one week you should be able to answer that question.
And it doesn’t take a massive amount of investment. Like to this day, with my agency, I use Squarespace, like that’s it. That’s what I use for my website. It’s like, what, $17 a month or something? Just build the landing page, get things out there. You want to fail as quickly as possible.
Since we’re talking to a lot of coaches and consultants here, another thing. I say take a step further and I like to say sell before you ever build. Let’s say you’re doing a web design agency, or you’re a coach who has a training program, or something like that. Don’t build out the ultimate version of your training program or know how to build the website, or do the digital marketing service, or consult a certain industry before you ever sell somebody in that industry. Like get the cash register to ring, get somebody to actually give you money from that particular industry, from that particular niche, and then figure out how to actually deliver the product or service.
Robin Waite: It’s almost like you’ve done your research on me because I did exactly that. The coaching practice, I mean, I’ve been running it since 2016. But one-to-one, started out one-two-one, did six figures in the first year, six figures again in the second year, and then I got lots of clients very quickly and thought, “This is getting a little bit too busy.” I switched to a group format.
But I see so many coaches make this mistake, which I didn’t do, I’ll add. But go out, they build their full like learning platform and spend months like creating these wonderful videos, and the workbooks, and all this sort of stuff. And I was like, “No, stop that. I’m just going to go and like go into my group, and I built up an audience of about 800 people by this point. I went into my group, and I pitched this, like over two weeks sent various emails out and things like that. Just went through the launch sequence and I sold 30 people onto my first cohort of the group program.
Dylan Ogline: Awesome. Awesome.
Robin Waite: Yeah, it was awesome. And then so now, it’s like November 2018, I’ve collected all this money, and my wife’s like, “When are you going to start?” And I was like, “Well, it starts on January the first.” She’s like, “Cool, so when are you going to build it?” And I was like, “Ah, yeah, good point. I’ve got to build the damn thing now.” I literally locked myself in my office in town, which I don’t have anymore, because I’m now working from home and stuff, so I ditched it. Locked myself in the office for four days between Christmas and New Year, and I built the whole damn thing.
And then we launched it on January the first. And I thought up here, if I’d listened to this, it was going, “This is a terrible idea. All of these videos are rubbish. Nobody’s going to like them. Everybody’s going to get really shit results.” I had all of that. I’m the Fearless Business coach, still the fear kind of wrapping around in my head. And then of course we launched, and everybody’s like, “This is amazing. This is brilliant. This is like never seen anything like it,” like the feedback was great.
I said, “Listen, be honest, if there’s stuff you either think that you want to see,” or there were several questions which kept on coming up over and again, like time and again. Like Avatar was a big, who’s your ideal client? Avatar. That kept on coming up. Every coach consultant was like, “Right, I need a module on this.” Three modules out of 80 videos which I put together, that’s all we had to add into it. And I think if I’d waited, it would have taken me months, if not years, to actually pull together that content before I had the confidence to do it. And now I tell people just JFDI, just fucking do it, just launch it.
Dylan Ogline: Just fucking do it. Yeah, and because of that time constraint, you ended up focusing on the absolute critical few things, and let go of the trivial many, and really narrowed down on what you needed to provide, like these are the things that I absolutely need to provide.
And then you also mention you asked the people, “Be honest.” I think that honesty part is critical. Tell people, like, “Hey, I just launched this. Please tell me what you need.” The best feedback you can get from the marketplace is actual people telling you this is what I need. You can only guess what you think the marketplace needs. By building just the most basic version of that product, that service, that course, and then telling people, “Okay, I know how to provide this solution. Here is this solution. What else do you think you need?”
Sometimes you’re going to get it right, but more often than not, like you mentioned there was a few videos that you needed to add to give people that extra little bit of value. How long would you have spent building that out, wasting your time, you probably would have overbuilt it, or you might have still missed those three videos and not included that.
I also know a lot of people who they will spend years building out their program, and then they go to sell it, and they find out that nobody actually wants it, and it’s the worst thing you can do. And we’re not tricking people here.
Robin Waite: What’s interesting there, Dylan, is about like the reason why people do procrastinate and not launch.
Dylan Ogline: The fear?
Robin Waite: One: that’s the fear of failure. Yeah. It’s basic fears. I met a really interesting guy once who was building out a software app that effectively it took a 3D photo of your body. It was a fashion app, so it would then dress you, and once it had a 3D version of your body, it would dress you in the clothes that they made, the outfits. It’s a really smart piece of kit, and they were starting to develop like virtual reality versions of it, and all this sort of stuff.
And I said to him, like, “It sounds like you put so much effort into this, and like, how long have you been doing this for?” And he’s like, “Three and a half years.” And it’s like, “This is amazing. You must have loads of customers.” He’s like, “No, we’ve got none.” I was like, “Why haven’t you got any customers? You got anybody on beater? Have you tested this?” He’s like, “No, we haven’t even tested it properly yet.” I was like, “So when are you going to launch them?” It’s like, “Well, no, we’re not. I don’t want to launch it yet. It’s not ready.”
But it transpired, and I think this is quite a key learning here. Unfortunately, his parents had passed away very recently in a car crash, and he’d inherited a load of money. Because of the accident, he left his job, and now he’s got all this money, had this thing about fashion. It was weird, it was like because it was his parents’ inheritance that he got.
Dylan Ogline: He didn’t want to fail.
Robin Waite: He wanted this product to be perfect. And I was like that’s about as complex as you could get a reason for not launching. And all he was worried about was just letting his parents down. It was their legacy. And I just said to him, “Listen, what do you think they would want you to do? Do you think they would want this to be successful?” And he was like, “Yeah.” How would you define that success? He’s like, “Well, I don’t know, it would be live. There would be people buying my products, and there would be people wearing my jackets, my trousers, and stuff.” I was like, “You’re actually letting your parents down by not spending their money, and not like giving this thing a shot.” And that was like, honestly, it couldn’t have been more complex than that, but what other things do you tend to see that stop people from actually like we’ve got to do this?
Dylan Ogline: Well, it’s 100%, it definitely comes down to fear. Another thing is because you get personally attached to your business, it’s your baby, you want it to be perfect. And one of the things I commonly see is people will look at other businesses, or we’re on a podcast right now, they’ll look at other podcasts and they’ll be like, “I want my podcast to be like this. I niche down, or I have this specific industry that I’m helping, but I want it to look like this.” And they end up looking at the biggest shows in the industry, or they look at other consultants who are extremely successful, and they see their website, and they see this, and they see that.
And people just fail to realize is that you’re not looking at the first version. You’re looking at the 50th iteration in that. If you’re looking at podcasts, if you look at like the big shows, like the Joe Rogan Show. Do you guys follow Joe Rogan over there?
Robin Waite: Yeah. Joe Rogan, I have never looked at John Lee Dumas’s podcast Entrepreneurs on Fire and thought, “I want some of that in my life.”
Dylan Ogline: Well, I think he’s on like, he’s probably on like episode a thousand, right?
Robin Waite: 3,000 he’s up to.
Dylan Ogline: Ridiculous amount. You’re listening to the 3,000th version. Your first version will never be as good as his 3,000th version. But the only way that you can get to that 50th iteration, or the 100th iteration, or the 1,000th iteration is by doing the first one.
Robin Waite: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: You want to get there as quickly as possible. This is especially important when it comes to putting content out there, videos, things like that. We were talking pre-show about video marketing and whatnot, putting out YouTube videos. People will look at these videos that get a million views or whatnot and be like, “Oh man, that’s amazing, like that would be great if I can do that for my business.” But you have to realize like that’s probably that guy’s like 400th video that you’re looking at. He didn’t start that good or she wasn’t that great in the beginning. The only way they got that good is by continuously doing it, continuously putting out better iterations, and just continuously improving. The best thing to do is just get it out there as fast as possible.
Robin Waite: Totally agree. Couldn’t agree more. And I’m a big fan of Eric Ries’s The Lean Startup as well if anybody wants a book on the principles.
Dylan Ogline: Actually, I think I have that right over there.
Robin Waite: The Lean Startup was actually the second business entrepreneurship book which I read when I started to get into personal development. I did the very typical thing, I left school and then thought, “I don’t ever have to learn and read a book again.”
Dylan Ogline: Of course.
Robin Waite: I stopped for years, and then midway through my business, with the agency, “I was like probably need a bit of help with this,” so I started listening to audiobooks. But I picked up Eric Ries’s Lean Startup, and then my first book is still on the shelf behind me, Built to Sell, by a guy called John Warrillow, who’s another great consultant; sold several multi-million.
Dylan Ogline: I like your bookshelf back there.
Robin Waite: Thank you. Yeah, it’s a bit out of focus, soft focus with this camera, but no, that’s very kind.
Dylan Ogline: You can’t see mine.
Robin Waite: VW camper over there, I’ve got my Range Rover on that shelf.
Dylan Ogline: I saw that.
Robin Waite: And I got a few other things so this is kind of like my dream shelf really of like pictures of the family and stuff. You mentioned about like kind of iterating fast, but obviously that’s a part of your process that you help your clients go through. What are the kind of typical steps which you take your clients through in terms of when you’re preparing them and taking them through scaling?
Dylan Ogline: The main thing that I teach students is fail as fast as possible, get things out quickly. Because most of the time, we were talking earlier about me and my perfectionism, and how you had to have the business card, you had to have the stationery, and the nice logo, and stuff like that. I really teach students like I tell my story of like I went through all this 12 years of pain trying to be a perfectionist, and then I decided I’m going to go as hard as I can in the other direction. I had a seven-figure agency with no logo, no website, no professional voice over system, none of that stuff. But I did have all that stuff with the multitude of failed businesses that came before.
I tell people realize that you don’t need all that stuff and you want to set yourself deadlines. When I’m having students go through my program, like I tell them--and I highly encourage all coaches and consultants out there to do this--deadlines are absolutely critical for getting your students or the business owners you’re working with to take action.
Like I tell people like the first week. You’re going to want a website, you’re going to want a name, you’re going to want an email system, and things like that. Okay, you’re doing that tonight. Like tonight, that’s the action step. I want you to do that tonight. By setting those deadlines, then you cut out, “Okay, I’m going to spend a week, or two weeks, or a month building out my website.” Like no, you’re building it tonight. I don’t even think you need it, but you’re going to wait it, you’re going to be more confident when you jump on a sales call with somebody, so build it tonight. I really think the simple solution was just simply having deadlines. Did that answer your question? I went off there.
Robin Waite: It’s kind of just getting an insight into kind of like how you work with your clients basically and how you encourage them to sort of scale their agencies. I think that’s given us a very good insight, actually, around sort of don’t be afraid of failing, it’s write as fast as you can, and get stuff done quickly because that gives you the fastest opportunity to test stuff basically.
Dylan Ogline: One other thing is the group element. People don’t like to fail publicly. I tell people like I’m beating into them like go post on Facebook. When we jump on a weekly group call or something, I want you to tell me what’s going on in your business so next week I can be like, “Hey John, did you such and such thing?” Because you’re not going to want to publicly admit that you failed. That like accountability is another critical thing to kind of push people to.
It’s just like you. You told people January 1st or whatever we’re starting. You couldn’t fail because you already have people that gave you money, or you told people, “I’m delivering this to you by such and such date.” It forces you, that accountability, and you have the deadline, you’re not going to fail if you have those two things.
Robin Waite: I love the fact that there’s like penalties as well for not getting the job done. You don’t want to publicly admit this. A friend of mine, we were sharing on a mastermind about what are good motivators. And somebody told us this story about how he had a bit of a bet with a friend of his. I think it was getting the first manuscript done for their book, so the first version of their book done. And they were trying to come up with various penalties, and one was well, if you missed a deadline, you’ve got to give some money to charity, or if you got to miss the deadline, you’ve got to give me some money.
And then what they came up with was like who do you absolutely detest in the entrepreneurial space? Okay, what’s going to happen is, and I’ll take the money off you now, but if you don’t finish your manuscript by this date, I’m going to give them the $500. And it was like he was like, “I don’t want them to have my money,” and he got the manuscript done.
Dylan Ogline: It’ll kick you in the ass so that you don’t do it. No, that’s an extremely powerful. I’ve never told anybody this. There were two friends of mine that have significant checks that I have written them if I do certain things in my life, which I won’t say what. But if I do certain things or go back on had habits, they are allowed to cash those checks.
Robin Waite: Nice.
Dylan Ogline: Literally like I write it out to them, I put the dollar amount, and I sign it. I have some of theirs too, and it’s just like this personal development thing where I don’t want to lose that money. I’ve already written the check. If I fail when I do this this person’s going to be able to cash this check. That accountability will push you in the right direction like 100% of the time.
Robin Waite: I totally agree. Gosh, I’m afraid we’ve got to wrap up, Dylan. We’ve come to kind of the end of the show. Honestly, I could sit here and talk with you for hours. Listen, what are you working on at the moment? I understand you’ve got a six-step download that you share on your website.
Dylan Ogline: Right now my main focus is my education business, which is ran out of my personal name. My website’s dylanogline.com. I do have a free eBook, people can check it out, it’s just Six Steps to a Six Figure Agency. You can go to my website dylanogline.com/six. All spelled out S-I-X. Put your email in and get the eBook.
Robin Waite: Nice. We’ll also share, you’ve given us your LinkedIn, and Twitter accounts, and Instagram as well so we’ll make sure we share those in the show notes so people can get a hold of you. Slight curveball now, Dylan, probably should have warned you about this pre-roll, but I’ve got a question for you.
Dylan Ogline: Fire away.
Robin Waite: We’re going to jump into the Fearless Business time machine. I always say to people it’s a bit like the DeLorean on Back to the Future, but slightly better, and less Iranians hanging around with guns.
Dylan Ogline: I’ve never watched that movie.
Robin Waite: Have you not? You get the concept though.
Dylan Ogline: I know what the story is, yes, but sorry, I’m meant to go, go ahead. Go ahead.
Robin Waite: You get to punch the date into the DeLorean and we’re going to go back to a year in your past, and you’re going to have a word with Dylan X minus however many years, okay, t-minus X years. When is it and what would you say to it?
Dylan Ogline: It would be 2005, I’d say, 2005, 2006. Whenever I was young, I had just dropped out of high school, and I was ambitious. I thought my work ethic could solve everything. There’s no reason I can’t have ten businesses going on at the same time. I’ll work a hundred hours a week, no problem. I would go back and tell that young man to focus. Focus on just one single thing. Get really good at it. There’s a proverb, I believe, that the man who chases two rabbits catches none. Well, if you chase ten, you’re certainly not going to catch any, so don’t. Focus.
Robin Waite: What about a few border collies helping you and a few greyhounds chasing them as well?
Dylan Ogline: If I just had one word it would just be focus.
Robin Waite: But I think to offer that younger Dylan a little bit of advice, it sounds to me like you needed to go through that painful process, and work all those hours, and try out all those projects in order to get to where you are now. If you had just focused on one, and it hadn’t worked out, and you’d lost your ambition as a result of that because you don’t know how you might have reacted, you might not have created anything that you got since. It’s like sliding doors. You could be in a completely different…
Dylan Ogline: I 100% agree with that. I don’t think it’s a good idea to look back on the past.
Robin Waite: I only ask the question because it’s always interesting to hear what people come up with.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah. No. But I don’t regret it. Like you said, I don’t think I would have lost my ambition, but I needed to go. I hate that I wasted so much time, but I’m a natural perfectionist, I’ve been a perfectionist since I was a young child. And I think I needed to fail over and over and over again for it to be beat into me that I need to go the other way and not be a perfectionist. And be comfortable with the messiness of building a business, getting some success going. It’s not this perfectionist thing, it’s messy. I agree, I don’t think I would have learned the lesson had I just been told to focus on one single thing back then. I would probably say that and buy some Amazon stock probably be a good idea.
Robin Waite: Absolutely. Well, I’ve always thought, I was building websites for other people in 2004. Apparently, I think a $5,000 investment in Facebook in 2005 or ’06 would have been worth something like $130 billion in today’s money. It’s just it’s nuts, isn’t it, when you think about it. But hey, it is what it is.
Dylan Ogline: I have a good friend who invested. He’s about ten years older than me, and I don’t know when, but maybe some time in the late ‘90s he bought like $5,000, $10,000 worth of Apple. And last time I talked to him, and he was like, if he would have held it, it would have been worth like $20 to $30 million, but he didn’t. He like doubled or tripled his money, but it’s incredible when you look back at those things. Or like Bitcoin, I would have told myself to buy some Bitcoin. Take that $15 you got and put some Bitcoin.
Robin Waite: Stock up 20 gazillion computers and mine a shit ton of Bitcoins, yeah.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah, just get all the Bitcoin you can. Put every penny you got into Bitcoin. I know we got to wrap up here, but when it comes to stuff like that, I wouldn’t have had the guts to hold it. There’s no way I would have. And very few people would. If you had bought Bitcoin when it was two cents or whatever it was at the beginning.
Robin Waite: I know what you mean. My, what do you call it, my risk aversion when I was in my 20s is very different to what I understand about investing and money now and wealth-building and wealth creation now.
Dylan Ogline: Absolutely.
Robin Waite: I’m actually, I would say that I’m risk averse when it comes to things like cycling down hills at 50 miles an hour. When it comes to investments, you understand that you’ve just go to ride out the storms, and you’ve got to wait three to five years to start to get those returns. But I’d have wanted that money like within a day like 20 years ago. Like now it’s like I don’t care, I’ve got the money.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah. People, especially younger people, I get a lot of young people in my training program. A lot of them are like, “What do you think the next Bitcoin is?” And I’m like, “Dude, there’s no reason to even try to guess that. Because I guarantee you, if you had bought Bitcoin at ten cents, you would have sold it like two dollars.”
Robin Waite: Yeah.
Dylan Ogline: There’s no way you would have held Bit Coin until it was $50,000.
Robin Waite: 10K, $10,000, put it into your own business. That’s the best investment that you can make.
Dylan Ogline: Yeah, the best investment is in your business.
Robin Waite: In yourself.
Dylan Ogline: In yourself. And then if you have extra cash, invest it in broad market index funds, and just invest in the market. Don’t try to pick things, because listen, you don’t have it in you. Very, very, very few people have it in them to hold Bitcoin from five cents to $50,000. You’re absolutely not going to do that. It’s better to just invest in yourself, that’s the absolute best investment you can make. And then any extra cash you have, just invest it in the markets, and broad market index funds.
Robin Waite: Who knew we were going to be giving financial advice?
Dylan Ogline: Yeah, I got to add the disclaimer I’m not a financial advisor.
Robin Waite: I am not an IFA.
Dylan Ogline: Don’t listen to me. I have no idea what I’m talking about. You might as well just go burn your money rather than listen to Dylan. I am not a registered financial advisor.
Robin Waite: I think all people have got to do is watch this video or listen to the recording and they will know that we’re not.
Dylan Ogline: You think that I have an idea?
Robin Waite: There are a few clues.
Dylan Ogline: Go buy lottery tickets, people. Just go do that. That’s a good idea.
Robin Waite: Amazing. Listen, Dylan, thank you. I really appreciate your time. You’ve been a fantastic guest.
Dylan Ogline: Absolutely, Robin, thanks so much for having me, man.