On this week's Magnetic Marketing hour, No B.S. president Nick Loise interviewing Oli Billson of The Oliver Billson Company, Oli is a serial entrepreneur and completely up to speed when it comes to direct response marketing. In this episode you learn:
How being a youth tennis star fuels Oli’s competitive edge to succeed in business. What his secret source to success is and What FSMC is, and how that works in business
To learn more about No B.S. Inner Circle and how we can help grow your business, please visit us at https://nobsinnercircle.com Or call us at: (800) 871 0147
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Speaker 1: (00:39)
Hey everybody, and welcome to the small business marketing hour brought to you by K. I see this week we have GKIC president Nick Louisie interviewing Oli Billson of the Oli Billson company. Oli is a serial entrepreneur and completely up to speed when it comes to direct response marketing and this episode you're going to learn how being a youth tennis star fueled Oli's competitive edge to succeed in business. What his secret sauce to success is, and what F S M C is and how it works in your business. All right, let's get things turned right over to Nick and Oli and get started.
Speaker 3: (01:19)
Good morning. Good evening. Good afternoon. This is Nicholas, Louie C, president of GKC. Your host of the GKC small business marketing hour. Today we have a very, very special treat for you today ma May 23rd, we have our dear friend Oliver Billson of Oli Billson, and company, and we're going to talk a little bit about his growth into an international agency as well as an international businessmen. But, Oli, before we get into that, I just wanna I just want to just kind of say from the United States and across the pond that our hearts and prayers are with you and all your country men, your, you guys are in England are our greatest ally and when I watched the television and see things that are happening in your, especially the one horrible thing that happened in the concert last night or the night before, it's just terrible.
Speaker 3: (02:07)
So our hearts and prayers are with you guys and you know, our thoughts are with you always. So, you know, sorry to have that happen to you and your country men. Thank you. I appreciate it. Thank you for the kind words. So, you know, I always love interviewing you and I tried to do it as much as I possibly can those that don't know, whenever you get a chance to attend one of our events, Oli is probably one of the number one or number two rated speakers one is we tease him that he's English, so everybody thinks he's just speaking Shakespeare but two is he's one of the brightest marketers and one of the brightest businessmen out there and I, I consider him a personal friend and I enjoy just interacting with him and talking business.
Speaker 3: (02:54)
And every time we sit down for dinner, you know, it turns out to be a four hour to hour marketing, love fast and just business love fast. So you guys are going to take part of that today and just listen in. And Oli, one of the things that we really like to teach people in this marketing hour is how to get hockey stick roads. So how to really, really, really kind of Tenex and grow your revenue and your business. So you have some secret sauces. And when you kind of approach a business problem, what do you like to do and how do you approach it and look at it?
Speaker 4: (03:27)
Sure. Well, I'm glad that we're talking about this because, you know, I think that the, the tactics and strategies around kind of getting incremental growth that often people talk about, often live in silos of each other. But when you approach the, you know, the subject of talking about how do you conduct a 10 X few growth, have a compound effect on what you're doing, you know, what are the things that really go towards, making that real, making it happen so I think he's a good subject by the way. So, what I would say is, for those of you are, first of all, I'm not familiar with the teachings of GKI, Sam. Maybe you're listening to this for the first time and, you're a small business owner that's aspiring to say to grow your business, and, really want as a phase of business that you're in.
Speaker 4: (04:27)
One of the things, that, that he's ready foundational to, really growing any business is, is really having a, a firm understanding of, of direct response marketing and you know, for those of you that are, certainly already acquainted with what direct response marketing is about and what it can do for your business, it's always a very good idea to re, re acquaint yourself, very regularly. We'd rarely what that means to almost give yourself a litmus test as it were, whatever kind of marketing activity you're doing to make sure that you are, you know, your, you are aligned with all of the principles and teachings that come around, especially some of the, the G County say, commandments that come along with it and so really my first, you know, my first big piece of advice to anybody is, make sure that you're practicing direct response marketing and if you're not familiar with that, then certainly find out more about number one and number two, if you are already familiar with direct response marketing, sharpen your soul and, and really make sure that everything that you're doing doesn't drift too far away from that. Because, as we know, as business owners in morass of the day to day, even the sharpest marketers, could consume Toms misses, things that can, that can have, can have an impact on the result.
Speaker 3: (06:08)
You know, if you just, first off, I just loved the way you say direct response, right. It, it makes it even more elegant the, you know, you kind of found your way into direct response. So you didn't start out at direct response you want to just, you know, kind of a quick backstory, for those that don't know, you were a tennis prodigy as a young man and so why don't you go and, you know, kind of just take it from your days going against, you know, some of the, some of the great tennis names that we know today and how you got into business cause you started out very young, and then found your way into direct response.
Speaker 4: (06:51)
Yeah, sure. So, I, I guess I kind of had a fairly unique, start rarely I'd played tennis for, for a long time. From an early age, from about three, four years old, playing short tennis and then going into playing, you know, full tennis and found my way to, playing, playing abroad at the age of nine years old, playing different parts of Europe, playing in different tiny stone elements and reaching a very high standard playing in the nationals and and playing with and against lots of, lots of people. And, being fortunate enough, although I don't remember it greatly, but I'm playing against on the Murray. Of course, everybody's very familiar with Andy and a and other people like Jamie Delgado and other people that, still, these people are obviously create a career for themselves and I did a lot of very young and actually can, it's taught me a lot of, a lot of lessons that even now, I guess subliminally I still apply to business.
Speaker 4: (08:00)
Even, you know, I was a [inaudible] at a young age. I think the psychology of being able to temper a very immature mind, to be able to focus it to, to, to really get results, in a competitive vacuum that I was playing in within the time that was very interesting. And, although I didn't realize it at the time, it was really my kind of education so that would then lead towards my, my first business. I was a pro, I was at AIG a full thing and I broke my wrist doing mountain biking as you do when you, when you're younger. And, that's how I met, was coming out of that. It was an interesting, was interesting to me. So I played tennis at such a high level and done so much so that I was honestly quite exhausted from it and probably falling out of love with tenants.
Speaker 4: (09:03)
And I'm not the kind of re diverted that energy, to the business. And, I was, you know, lucky to have, you know, my dad who was a, MD, a pay, I'll say at the time. And, and being, not necessarily entrepreneurial, but I'd been in, in, in business, in corporate land and I was just always very, you know, very, very open to what that meant and, spending time with him and his offices and so on and so forth. And so at the age of 15, I, I'd had a, as well as tennis. I was also into computers and I started building computers and hand building them and, and selling them, selling these kinds of highly powered computers. And, I even was, he even managed to get into the, input that sport game at the age of 15.
Speaker 4: (09:58)
Ended up fax faulting some computers out to the far Steven. So, quite, quite an interesting kind of story and for, from, from really kind of the buzz of doing that. And, you know, it was very kind of coffee industry, nothing too serious. And it wasn't long before they, you know, the giants of the computer business, suddenly were bringing their prices down and, and, and so it became more difficult to compete in the bespoke computer game but, my other passion at that time was also cars and, I love cars, still love them today. And, I, I figured that, you know, if I was going to do something, I'll do something that I enjoyed and obviously the computer thing was phasing out. So I've got into a business initially doing car detailing and then later doing car window tinting and then vehicle wrapping as well and bolting on lots of these services.
Speaker 4: (10:56)
And, when I first got into that, there's a couple of things that I realized being so young in doing. So. One was I was fastidious and very meticulous with, my approach to these things because I come from a very detail orientated background of building computers, and you know, even though, you know, it has absolutely nothing to do with it. Coming from a very technical background of playing tennis and the way that I used to apply approach my tennis and so, I, I, I wanted to be the best that I could possibly be yet doing window tinting and doing car detailing. And I'm being very meticulous by nature. I wanted to strive to be the best that I could be. And quite honestly, what I realized in a very, very short period of time from doing that is that, it doesn't really matter how good you are at doing something.
Speaker 4: (11:58)
If you have no business, if you have no customers, then there is no direct correlation between you being really good at something and you and you being paid for how good you are at something. You know, McDonald's doesn't necessarily make the best burgers. I've just got a very good system for acquiring, for acquiring customers. And, you know, I think for me, although I never wanted to believe that the stark reality is when you're sitting around being the best probably, you know, I got invited to the world 10 tough championships, for example, I'm in Las Vegas, but yet, you know, being invited to a, you know, there's world championship event and window 10 thing. But yeah, actually not actually having the same results in my bank account. It didn't make sense to me, so I started to look around for what I should be doing to actually grow my business, at the time, which is really [inaudible] GIC and Dan Kennedy and really started then becoming a student of, of direct response.
Speaker 3: (13:13)
You know, we talked, we started off talking about, you know, your young, at a very young age playing tennis and you know, you your competitive edge. Do you think that that is somewhat of your X factor to your success in business?
Speaker 4: (13:30)
I think so. I think that it's probably been, I think that it's probably been tempered somewhat, these days to one of us, I tend to probably a little bit more controlled. I think that there's nothing wrong with being competitive, but you've also got to be very self aware. You've got to know yourself. You've got to go into things with some levels of due diligence into any opportunity. And especially they use days when there's lots of opportunities to do different things, and not let the competitive, your competitive nature just completely drive that there's got to be some direction to it I think being competitive, allows you to do the hard work to make things easy. You know, I always say that term of you've got to do the hard work to make the selling you're using. Well that's just the same as in any aspect of business. If it's not even selling something, you've got to do the hard work to, to make everything else fall into place and so you've just gotta be careful to control that, that, that, that how competitive you are but there's no doubt there's definitely a drawing for that for sure, to, to be the best that you can be. Of course.
Speaker 3: (14:53)
So a tennis and competition question, but I think it relates to business, so that's why I'm going to ask it. When you're on the court and you're kind of in the throws of competition, can you hear the crowd or are you in the flow?
Speaker 4: (15:08)
I would play to the crowd usually. So I use that to my advantage in a way so I, I would, I would want to impress, and you know, I think that in actual fact was probably one of my downfalls was actually that often I would be very much aware of those things and possibly not as focused as I could have been and I think maybe I would have matured a bit neck. I think I would have become a bat on the spot here. I think that's the reality situation I think that, I think I definitely would've been about a fly official telling that.
Speaker 3: (15:50)
Do you, all right. So you kind of fast forward. You've, you, you've got out of tennis right through, through an accident, and you've started to put the competitive juice into, car tinting was your first business, I believe. But I know you have multiple businesses going on at the same time and you got into direct response, so you kind of found your way. Has most of us do, that weren't schooled in a direct response or you found your way into direct response and you know, kind of from that you've, you really became a student. I mean, you, whenever I mentioned a book, you've read it right? Or if you haven't read it, you've, you, you, you, you order it by the time we're done with a conversation and you have it come in from Amazon and you know, I always tease you, you always say like, you know, when you're, you stream, teleseminars and videos and all the time, I mean, you know, so you are a massive student of the marketing as well as the business world.
Speaker 3: (16:50)
What have you seen? And you've got some things that I know that you do for a lot of your clients, some and some not only teachings, but applications that you do. So really, what do you have has the secret sauce to allow people that just maybe have, you know, some, not substantial growth, but just that he growth two to 3% each year? How do you really get them to that next level? If somebody was to hire your agency or hire you on for a day of consulting or be part of a mastermind group, that you do or something of that nature.
Speaker 4: (17:24)
Yeah, sure I think it goes back to what it comes down to. Two key principles. One is, practicing, and embodying fully direct response marketing. Number one that's proven and time tested to work I'm by the way, just for anybody listening and thinking maybe that doesn't work for them or it's not, it's likable to them. We work with businesses, you know, from six figure businesses, seven figure, eight figure businesses and some that are, you know, in excess of $100 million a year and I can absolutely tell you with complete certainty that the same tactics and strategies that we use from a direct response are predicated on direct response. Even those guys, even though they may have different, you know, different objectives from a branding perspective and who they need to pacify, really, the core underlying message is, is a direct response message.
Speaker 4: (18:27)
So, so that is number one. And then number two is coupling direct response up with marketing automation and so when you marry those two things together, we've kind of hung our hat on the, the and coined the term of dynamic response marketing and, and what that allows you to do is be able to, rarely get to a point where, when you start to fully leverage those two things together, actually creating a predictable, system of creating awareness, number one, fuel products, services, whatever they may be to draw even that awareness to a point where there is some kind of a lead capture mechanism, to start building a list of leads. Then three, moving those people then to nurturing them, getting them to know, like, and trust you and ultimately getting them to a phase where that guy who needs to be making a purchase from you so they become a customer.
Speaker 4: (19:43)
Then moving those people to a point where they go into engage in some kind of referral, for you because you've been a great job delighting them and then them becoming a continual advocates of you, to, to then, really that whole life cycle of bringing them back around to then coming to converting them to a repeat buyer and so that whole kind of life cycle, you know, the very, very high level, but we're talking about this on, and really fully utilizing and using dynamic response marketing. I'm a small business you know, it can put these marketing and sales systems in place, that can move people along. Each one of those different phases in different paths with different levels of segmentation, with the absolute perfectly choreographed message to market match, that comes direct response marketing.
Speaker 4: (20:49)
Put it on autopilot and then pull Patro on it. You can really, you can, you can really, you know, you can really embody this, and do it really within virtually any type of business and that really allows you to keep your business very lean because you know, you're not having to employ a complete marketing team off the bat anyway you know, you can leverage marketing automation to a point where, you, you're building out a playbook for your business, for each of the different divisions that your business marketing, sales, fulfillment, finance, the internal stuff, even onboarding new stuff for example so every aspect of the business is covered and, you know, I guess my love for this comes from being a little bit of a control freak, you know, and having to do a lot of things myself but instead of just completely choreographing that journey, do you start with the end in mind when you're going to start a campaign and just work backwards or kind of what's your normal approach to a marketing campaign?
Speaker 4: (22:07)
Sure. This, this full fight uses to it, Nick regardless of how complicated you think a campaign may be, or if you're not really sure why, you know, why are you taking a new initiative, the first place that you start is at the end. And so we have, I have a, having an acronym for this and it's a terrible acronym, granted, but it's called F, S and C. so F for Freddy stands for finish. What's the finish point? W why will you, what we trying to do here? Why are we trying to take people and so we've got to begin with the finish. Okay now that finish point could be as simple as we're trying to get somebody to opt in for something. Maybe a free report or a checklist, a guide or whatever, or register for a webinar. The finish point could be getting them to shed you a call with maybe your sales team.
Speaker 4: (23:01)
The finish point might be getting them to buy a low end purchase or a high end purchase whatever it may be, you've got to finish. You've got to consider what the end point is. What's the finish point? The next part is, which is the start point. How do people actually get into that campaign, it may well be that coming from a certain type of advertising or it might be something that triggers or kicks that campaign off. It might be something so sophisticated is reaching a specific lead score within your CRM system. Or it might be something as simple as they simply fill in the contact form on your website or they opt in for, for a video where did they start? Is the third phase, which is milestones. What are the milestones that they have to go through, from, from point a to point that we need to consider.
Speaker 4: (24:01)
So for example, if they're opting in for a free report, then the next milestone is they actually going click and go and read the report. So they've opted in. Now they, they need to click now that they've clicked now or they need to go to a page to go and watch a video. Now they watch the video, now they need to go and buy our low end offer. So it's what are those, what are those milestones that we need to think of, to really chunk down the phases that somebody's going through within the campaign. And then the final part, if C SES and the contingencies are, if it's really the points between the milestones, if they don't do what we want them to do, how do we get them back to that point? What are the things that we need to build into that system, into the campaign to make sure that we keep people on track to do what we did to, for them to do what we want them to do. So we call that the FSMC formula and, extremely effective in rarely simplifying, rarely any, any type of campaign.
Speaker 3: (25:10)
And this really could be utilized for anybody so it's not just for an information marketer, it could be, I mean, utilize this in really traditional brick and mortar business. I mean, it's, it can be utilized for somebody that's doing a car tinting or car detailing or anything correct. I mean, it's, it's not just for an information marketer.
Speaker 4: (25:33)
Sure. Well, actually we, initially, you know, one of my, one of my businesses that I, one of the things that, talking about tax and growth and just slight kind of segue one of the things that we've always done and I've always been a big believer of is creating businesses within businesses utilizing existing resources, existing overhead, fixed costs that we're already paying for and getting more out of them whether that be existing staff, they a racehorse, or you know, the usual costs that come with running a business. And so creating businesses within businesses where there's an opportunity to cross fertilize and cross sell between those, those different services where there's some congruency behind me, something we've done a lot of one of the services that we did that with was vehicle remapping. So we had a window tinting base, we had a car detailing business expanded into the window tinting.
Speaker 4: (26:38)
And of course the people that wanted car detailing may be interested in car windows and from the people that were interested in call windows. And we were all so interested in vehicle wrapping, people that are interested in vehicle repping rules. So interested in copying thing, we're also interested in detailing. And then the whole idea of increasing lifetime customer value by cross pollinating these things together meant that we can increase average order value, average ticket price when people coming in, people don't change their car very often. So how do we increase the value of that? We add more services to that. We have sophisticated marketing systems to sell people between different things. And so one of the things we did was vehicle remapping, which is a software product to the vehicle to enhance the performance of the vehicle. And so we did all of these things as businesses within businesses utilize an existing resources we have, and really maximizing the value that we have in the list leads that we were generating that might not be interested in. One thing may be interested in another, we call that the mini conglomeration, right? So it's the business within the business, within the business, within the business and each one kind of spider webbing out. So it's really, cause most business people really are linear and they're thinking, right? And when I had my own businesses, you know, you start out with one and then you quickly realize that there, if a person has the need for X, they have the need for Y andZ and one, two, three and F, G, H. right? So you just kind of map it along and bring them in. And so you're maximizing the lifetime value of each and every customer. And you know, that's really how you get that growth. And correct me if I'm wrong, not only did you do it for yourself, but I believe you in the States, we call it franchise. Don't you have like, a distribution or franchises that you also sell?
Speaker 4: (28:29)
Yeah, exactly. Yeah. And then just getting by what you just sign is wow, you're also PO also multiplying the revenue. You'll return on investment from advertising. And also we, one of the metrics we look at is revenue per employee and so, you know, when you've got the opportunity to generate more revenue for more different revenue streams, you can do that. And then what we did was we then franchise one of those businesses, again, using all of the direct response stuff, the marketing automation stuff and dynamic response stuff that we talked about to expand that business into an international franchise, 170 licensees across the globe and giving them the systems that we've used to grow our own business and so we created a franchise from that and so that was another business within a business and on top of that, we created a marketing agency because of course, in order to recruit franchisees, you actually need to market and recruit franchisees.
Speaker 4: (29:40)
So we built a thing around, that business and that income stream then also was a, we'll say, provided a structure to support some of the other businesses now. And so we, we ready [inaudible] not to the degree of, of really capitalizing on our resources. And now we have an international marketing agency, doing done-for-you marketing, for people, you know, across the globe. In fact, most of our, obviously clients are in the States and in Canada and, you know, some people said to me, I was, I was speaking recently at one of your events and, at super conference and it was a great event, by the way. But somebody came up to me and I said, you know what, Oli, I saw you going back in 2012 at the inside summit in Nashville and they, you know, that back then you were doing this franchising thing.
Speaker 4: (30:41)
How did you transform from doing that to this marketing agency? How did that happen? I was like, well, it was very simple. We, you know, if you're a business owner and you want to employ an agency, you better hope that they know what's required in order to grow a business, grow any business it's not just about marketing you really want to employ a company that has been able to prove and that they can do that and are, you know, off the team that we have in the agency which has certainly grown since then has really got the mantle for that. We really have done that and done it many times over. So what agency to use, one that's predicated on all the stuff, you know, works, does actually got the results to back it up as well. So we've made more money than we charge our clients in all cases, for, for doing it. And, and for me that's a big differentiation, in terms of what we bring to the party now with what we do because we've been there and done it in multiple different businesses.
Speaker 3: (31:51)
You know, I was just thinking about, you know, we talked about the franchise and how you created your own and then created the agency. And, in a past life I had, a couple of different businesses and one of them was a publication and we did a lot of direct response advertising. In fact, at my highlight I was mailing 500, million pieces over the course of a year but that, yeah, that's pretty healthy but one of the things that we realized is we did a lot of work with local United States based franchises and really the franchise or didn't understand direct response advertising, didn't understand everything that you're talking about really how to capture that lead, put that lead through a neutral nurturing, how to turn that into a sale, how to, you know, then use NPS scores to drive it and you know, and look at different levels of business lines.
Speaker 3: (32:47)
And I was just standing back and saying, you know, you think about the average person that invests in a franchise and really you're, you're investing in a brand but you're also investing in an advertising system and the advertising system is nothing like the systems that you can put together. And so I want to talk to you about, you know, maybe we get to figure out a business line that we go to all of the U S based franchises and say let us take over your marketing and try to figure out how to drive higher response rates for your franchise doors. Because really a lot of the advertising that they did was brand based, image based advertising. And maybe there was a small call to action, but it wasn't anything as intricate as we would do at GKC or you do it. Oliver Billson design. I'm an agency. I, I have to share this with our listeners that you are one of our many secret sauces, right?
Speaker 3: (33:39)
You're, you're, you are, you are our agency. You are in many cases our back and and I'm sure we are not the easiest clients to work with, but you are always doing it with their level of professionalism and your staff is phenomenal to work with. So I have to put that out there. I know you would never do that, but I can because it's my house and we could do whatever we want in our own houses, but you know, and so if somebody was looking to have a deeper conversation with you about what you do, how you approach marketing, how your agency works or maybe even wants to learn about a franchise for on the, on the opposite side of the business, how would they get ahold of you?
Speaker 4: (34:17)
Sure. Really, the best way is to, to head over to Oliver billson.com and from that, if you want to come and speak to us about your business, you can set up a free discovery call, where we can, we can, we can dive a little deeper into where you are now and obviously where you're trying to get. So, and if maybe that's a little bit too early for you and you don't want to get married too quickly, and you just want to get some free content, without having to give all your information away then, go ahead and do some free content on there, on our blog, we publish it twice a week and a lot of people, a lot of feedback we have from that. People find it very helpful so head over to [inaudible] dot com you also do a podcast, right? You do your podcast or yourself, I know you do some work with Tom breeze. What's, what's your podcast?
Speaker 4: (35:13)
Yeah, pass to purchase, is, is mine and Tom's podcast and he focuses on traffic and focus on conversion, through all of the, you know, all of the different things both our agencies do for, for our clients.
Speaker 3: (35:30)
Perfect Oli, it was a pleasure. I know you gotta you gotta get some stuff off your desk cause you're going to, to Dubai, at the end of this week. I believe. So, you're kind enough with your time and I know, we're gonna, we're gonna do some more interviews with you. We got a gold call interview coming up. If you'd like to learn more about GKC and the services that we do, please visit us online at www dot [inaudible] dot com there you can learn about membership, how to become a member in our newsletter. One of our many newsletters. We have an article every month from Oliver Billson on talking about all things conversion and how to his approach to business if you'd like to attend our events. I know Oli mentioned that he's, was at our shipper conference. He'll be speaking at our info summit. You can also learn more about our firstname.lastname@example.org forward slash events thank you for being a listener once again, we appreciate this. Thank you for being an entrepreneur and most importantly, thank you for being a marketer Oli dakee for taking time out of your day. What time is it there at? Nine o'clock. Eight o'clock at night over there calling me.
Speaker 4: (36:33)
That's all right. No, we're good. We'll use live for it. Three, three, three, three 20. We're good.
Speaker 3: (36:38)
All right. You got, you got at least 12 more hours of work to do because I know you're a workaholic and you enjoy it. So thank you for sharing. Thank you for taking your time. Most importantly, safe travels and once again, our hearts go out to all of you. I'm in England. You, you all take care of. Thanks for being listeners, everyone. Thanks. Bye. Bye. Thanks guys and I hope you all enjoyed this episode. I know I learned some new things and make sure to check back next week for the next small business marketing hour. If you would like to learn more about GKC and how we can help grow your business, please visit us at [inaudible] dot com and have a great week. Everyone. See you next time.