The Unstoppable CEO Podcast
The Unstoppable CEO Podcast reveals the strategies, mindsets, and habits of real-life successful professional service firm CEOs. Discover what makes your peers “unstoppable” in the face of the challenges of growing a firm and find out which growth strategies worked best.
If you went on a vacation for a week… would your business grind to a halt? That means you have an owner-centric business, says David Jenyns. And you need to change the way things are run so you can work on the business – and not so much in it. David, founder of systemHUB and creator of the SYSTEMology methodology, says putting the right systems in place and empowering your team will free you up to be more strategic, spur growth, and increase the business’s value.
In the past several months, we’ve all experienced traumatic upheaval in healthcare, society, culture, politics, the economy… This isn’t the first time in history something like this has happened. And people face their own personal crises – large and small – all the time. But we can’t let fear rule our lives in a time of change and turmoil.
Now, more than ever, says Matt Heinz, you need to be crystal clear about who you’re selling to and why… and build your message around that. Only then can you stand out from the crowd and reach the fewer prospects who are buying (and are buying less, by the way). He says the first step is to set your sales goals – and that informs your target market. Next, setting up a “sales funnel.”
Hugh Liddle has a simple philosophy when it comes to sales: people don’t buy what they need, they buy what they want. He says only when you apply that principle to your interactions with prospects will you get the sale. And it’s even essential for products and services you don’t think people would ever “want”… like tax prep help or legal services.
For consultants and coaches, working with clients one-on-one is just not sustainable, says Jane Sagalovich, CFA, and actually limits how big the business can grow and the revenue you bring in. After all, there is only one of you and just so many hours in the day. And raising your prices can only get you so far.
Podcasts are one of the best ways to reach more prospective clients for your business. Not just from the audience but from the person you’re interviewing – or who is interviewing you, not to mention the referrals they can send your way. Podcasts are a great way to “speed up” a potential business relationship. You get to know your potential client or partner – and can quickly see how you can provide them value… perhaps even to people they know.
If you want to pursue the dream of entrepreneurship but are leery of starting from scratch with a new venture, franchising can be a compelling alternative. As franchise owner and expert Giuseppe Grammatico puts it when he first got into this business model: “I didn’t want the burden of having to figure everything out.”
Access to capital in the startup phase – and to propel further growth – is a must-have for small businesses. But it’s not easy to get those much-needed funds, especially if you go through traditional channels. Lendio, led by founder and CEO Brock Blake, is a lending marketplace that has facilitated $1.7 billion in small business loans to more than 73,000 businesses. These aren’t the next Ubers or Facebooks but rather small retailers, restaurants, and the like – businesses Brock calls the backbone of entrepreneurship in this country.
When it comes to coaches and consultants, it’s the “gurus” that get all the attention… at least on the surface. But, says Dov Gordon, you don’t have to be a guru to build a successful business. In fact, he says that most people don’t have the right personality to be an effective figurehead like that.
What you learned about business development for your professional services firm… is probably dead wrong. Networking – at least in the traditional sense – doesn’t work. That’s a bold statement. But in this episode, I unpack exactly what this means for you and your business… and what you should be doing instead to cultivate contacts with the right people that turn into long-term and lucrative business relationships.
Robert Glazer, founder and CEO of Acceleration Partners, has a recipe for business success: invest in your people. Help them grow… and watch your business grow. Part of that process is creating a company culture that supports this process… and finding people who fit in that culture.
As a business owner, one of your primary roles is to land new clients. And one of the most important parts of that process is to know which clients to pursue now, which to “catch and release,” and which aren’t worth talking to again. It’s a strategy that takes patience and persistence… but definitely pays off in the long run as you end up working with more of your ideal clients – and people who truly value your work.
As a business owner, your taxes shouldn’t be an afterthought, something you only think about when you’re getting ready to file. Jamie O’Kane is a CPA who gets proactive when it comes to creating custom tax planning and preparation strategies that can lead to business growth. Jamie uses her podcast, (Abundant Beans) to help promote her accounting firm. But that’s just the start of her online marketing efforts.
If you’ve ever taken a so-called personality test and been dismayed by the results… you’re not alone. Dr. Benjamin Hardy, organizational psychologist, best-selling author, and entrepreneur, says those tests are far from scientific or the definitive truth about who you are. He says personality is not hardwired, as many think. And this limiting belief prevents most people from getting what they want out of life. His new book, Personality Isn’t Permanent, is an exploration of that concept… and we get a sneak peek.
As a small business, don’t let yourself become a commodity – you’ll get lost in a crowded market. Instead, to compete effectively, says Patti Mara, you must position yourself as a trusted resource and provider of not products and services – but solutions. Patti, a business consultant and author of the new book UpSolutions, says there are key things a business must do to reach that goal. It all starts with the customer – and how you interact with them.
“Thought leader” is a big buzzword these days. But Samantha Riley goes beyond the hype and gives her coaching clients actionable steps they can take to expand their influence in their niche and make themselves more valuable… which means more income.
In this special bonus episode, I interview my friend and client Jeremy Macliver of Guaranteed Traction. We discuss what it's going to take to restart your business and find the new opportunities as "The Great Reopening" begins.
You do great work for your clients… you love what you do. But “selling” yourself and your services has been a challenge, even though you know it’s essential to the growth of your business. Christine Schlonski says it’s time to have more impact on more people… while making more money. You have to switch your mindset; you have to change the negative view you have of sales.
John Jantsch, author of best-seller Duct Tape Marketing and the new The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur, is passionate about helping small businesses market smarter and more effectively through a proven system based on strategies that get more leads and customers. But in many ways, he starts with the basics. First, creating a solid foundation for success by adopting a mindset of curiosity, resilience, gratitude, and desire to give value.
If there is one constant in digital marketing… it’s that what works is always changing. Lacy Boggs, content strategist and Director of The Content Direction Agency, says that sophisticated consumers, who quickly recognize marketing campaigns “in the wild” and make them less effective, have accelerated that trend. That means lower conversion rates for traditional sales funnels, free webinars, and the like. But, says Lacy, there is a solution. It’s all about customizing your marketing campaigns to your business and target market – not following the cookie-cutter approaches out there.
Ever feel like you don’t have enough time for follow up on the leads you generate? You’re not alone. Perhaps 70% of business owners feel the same way. It’s understandable – you feel “stuck” in day to day operations, i.e. putting out fires.
Most business owners spend about 20% of their time generating leads to grow the business. It’s a fraction of what you need. As a business owner, it’s easy to get bogged down in the day-to-day. Administrative tasks and the like. It keeps you busy, and you feel like you’ve accomplished something at the end of the day. But to propel real growth, you have to focus more on business development, specifically generating a steady stream of good quality leads.
You probably don’t need as many clients as you think to have a steadily growing business. You just need the right clients. There is opportunity out there, even in this time of crisis. You just need to get a little creative in how you promote yourself and run your business. And focusing on the right subset of your target marketing and serving the people you really want to serve… that makes your prospecting and marketing easier.
This is an invitation for you to take a close look at your business: where you are now, where you want to go, and… how you’re going to get there. Growth is rarely a straight line going up.
Robert Michon joins me today to talk about how to be resourceful, how to increase your confidence and restore some sense of control in life and business right now.
Collaborating with other businesspeople is a key to success as an entrepreneur. But if you’ve tried and failed to foster mutually beneficial relationships or started a partnership that you felt was too one-sided, you might be skeptical that collaboration can actually work.
One of the most effective ways to get more and better leads that you can turn into high-paying clients, says David Newman, founder of Do It! Marketing, is to talk to them. Well… it’s a bit more than that. David is an expert in using public speaking to help consultants, professional service providers, and coaches build a more profitable business. It’s a way to showcase your expertise, spread your influence, raise awareness about you and your brand, and expand your thought leadership to where it matters most.
Well, here we are… Week 2 of the pandemic crisis (here in the U.S.). The question I’ve heard a lot this week is how do we market right now, in this strange environment.
What a difference a week makes… The world has changed dramatically in a very short time. Like you, I’m working to understand it, adapt, and find the way forward. At the end of the day, that’s all there really is--a way forward. Today’s episode of the podcast is a little bit different. I’m joined by my friend and client Rick Hadrava, host of The Over 50 Entrepreneur podcast to discuss what we’re doing right now to keep moving forward, and what we’re advising our clients to do.
Many business owners – perhaps you – are blissfully unaware that their marketing is confusing their best potential customers. In the worst-case scenario, prospects aren’t sure what you actually do, what you can offer them, and how you’re different from your competition.
According to studies, viewers retain 95% of a message after seeing it in a video compared to 10% retention for text. Including a video on a landing page can increase conversions by up to 80%. It’s no surprise that Rick Cesari is big on video marketing. And he has the background…
Too many business owners look for the “next big thing” in marketing and sales, thinking that’s what they need to accelerate the growth of their business and take it to the next level. The thing is… if you don’t have a solid foundation, the “next big thing” is not going to get the results you hope for. First you need to know your ideal prospect… and it’s not just anybody with a wallet.
After 20 years as an entrepreneur, Thor Conklin has seen a lot. In his work with clients, this profitability consultant not only shares what you should be doing… but just as important, if not more so, is what you shouldn’t be doing. A lot of what he teaches is based on mistakes he’s made and gleaned invaluable experience from. He’s on a mission to help companies avoid being one of the 96% that fail within 10 years.
My guest is Rich Schefren and he’s got a lot to say about the obstacles that are being put in front of small, entrepreneurial businesses like ours by Big Tech. And, he’s got advice on what to do to avoid the obstacles. It was a great conversation and I hope you enjoy this special bonus episode of the podcast.
When you narrow your target market – and we’re talking narrow – you’ll find that business growth is almost inevitable. There’s an old saying: “Jack of all trades, master of none.” And it certainly applies when you pick your business’ niche.
Joseph Warren has been through a lot in his life. Extreme ups and downs were commonplace throughout his journey. Many people give up when faced with tough times. Joseph chose not to. In fact, he turned the tables and used them to radically change his life… and then the lives of others… as he rediscovered his faith in God.
In the popular imagination, the entrepreneur is a risk-taker… ready to change directions on a whim. But the key to growing a business that will be sustainable in the long-term depends on a deep understanding who your ideal prospects are – the more specific the better – and then creating a system to reach them.
When he lost his telecom job in the Dot-Com crash, Mike McKim was inspired to get in early in one of today’s hottest business trends: gourmet coffee. When he started, coffee was coffee to most people. But now he roasts high quality beans sourced from the best plantations on the planet and sells them all over the country.
You have your ideal client clearly identified – and you know how to reach them. Now what? Unless you have your company set up the right way, you can never take advantage of that knowledge to bring in enough new business. And that means slow or no growth.
Before his current success, Ted Thomas had some very tough times as an entrepreneur and investor. As in, he lost it all almost overnight. Ted says he wouldn’t trade it because it showed him the dangers of being over-leveraged and tamed his tolerance for high-risk investments.
What if landing your next 10, or 50, or 100 clients was inevitable? I just love that word… it’s as if achieving the goal has already happened. And that’s precisely the idea I talk about on today’s podcast.
What makes a potential customer choose your product or service? Your marketing efforts tell your prospects you exist and you have solutions they’re looking for. But many business owners focus on the wrong thing in their initial marketing because they don’t understand the mindset of a buyer. In fact, they go after too broad a group… instead of focusing on those who will actually pull out their wallets.
It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day running of your business. But, says Gregory Gray, if you don’t think about the future and work towards it… all your efforts will be for nothing. Because real sustainable growth can only happen if you’re clear on what you want and make an actual plan to get there… a plan that guides what you do on a daily basis.
Many times, whether it’s at work, in your personal relationships, or in your business, you feel powerless. Things are going wrong—sometimes very wrong—and you can’t seem to do anything about it. Not so, says Bryan Falchuk. He shares some simple techniques that will help you recognize your influence and get back the power you actually do have.
You’re ready to grow your business—and that means more clients. But if you just go out into the world and are willing to take on anyone with money who will hire you… you’re going about it all wrong. Sure, you might make some money in the short-term, but you won’t have sustainable growth.
It’s a mantra you’ve heard before: Work on your business, not in it. Easier said than done, right? But, says Mandi Ellefson, it can be achieved… you can scale up your professional services strategically… by finding the right team to run your day-to-day operations, which frees you up to do the work you enjoy most while growing your business – and profits.
You might think a sale is just about a customer or client paying you. But that’s just one part of the whole customer experience. It starts with your first contact, how you create credibility, and everything else you do to make it more likely they’ll not just take your offer, but also stay with you long-term.
Small business owners have a lot on their plate: marketing, product development, sales, hiring, expenses… that’s a recipe for overwhelm, says Adam Lean. And, all too often, what takes a backseat are the financials– the numbers that gauge the true health of your business.
When you charge clients by the hour or project for your consulting or professional services, you end up trading your time for money, says business building and marketing expert Frank Bria. And you, as one person (or even if you have a small team), can only do so much. In fact, you probably do too much for some clients “off the clock.” That means your profit potential is limited.
Skip Weisman specializes in helping small businesses radically transform their work environment, making for a more positive and productive company culture – which boosts profits. Skip draws from his own journey as he advises clients as they make this type of shift. After 20 years working in pro baseball, serving as CEO for five different franchises, he needed a change. He turned the page to the “second chapter” of his life with a new career as a speaker and business consultant.