TCC Podcast #342: Psychological Triggers and Email Marketing with Rob and Kennedy - The Copywriter Club
TCC Podcast #342: Psychological Triggers and Email Marketing with Rob and Kennedy

Rob and Kennedy of Email Marketing Heroes are our guests on the 342nd episode of The Copywriter Club Podcast. With backgrounds in hypnotism and mentalism, they steered away from traditional marketing and into the world of email marketing. With great success, they began teaching other entertainers how to use the power of email and have since expanded into teaching business owners and entrepreneurs how to use email to its fullest potential.

Here’s how the conversation goes:

  • The reality of human influence and psychological triggers. 
  • How to excel at sales calls and turn them into a formality. 
  • Why you want to get the ‘no’ as soon as possible. 
  • The benefits of having an email list and having control of your house. 
  • The value behind honest and transparent communication during sales calls.
  • Should your potential clients fill out an application?
  • What if someone isn’t a good fit for your program or service?
  • Why you shouldn’t be attached to outcomes in business. 
  • What is the perception of choice?
  • How Rob and Kennedy made a multi-5 figure FB ads mistake and how they recovered. 
  • The silver lining to making mistakes in business. 
  • Their current business model and how they’ve structured it for growth. 
  • Email marketing and being a service provider – what are the best practices for you?
  • Why you need to position yourself to be top of mind. 

The people and stuff we mentioned on the  show:

The Copywriter Think Tank
Kira’s website
Rob’s website
Rob and Kennedy’s website
The Copywriter Club Facebook Group
The Copywriter Underground
Free month of Brain.FM
AI for Creative Entrepreneurs Podcast

Full Transcript:

Rob Marsh:  As a copywriter, you probably write emails for your clients. You almost certainly subscribe to a few email lists to watch what other smart marketers and copywriters are doing with email. And let me just interject here that you should definitely be subscribed to the Copywriter Club email list, but even if you don’t use email or if you only subscribe to just a few well curated lists, today’s episode is going to change the way that you think about email, persuasion and marketing. Our guests today are Rob and Kennedy, the psychic mentalist hypnotist duo behind Email Marketing Heroes. You’ll definitely want to hear what they share about manipulative marketing and the most important thing, maybe the only thing that you should be doing with the emails that you send to your own list.

Kira Hug:  But before we get to our interview, this podcast is sponsored by the Copywriter Think Tank, which we’ve mentioned several times recently. So if you listen to the show, you may already know what it’s all about.

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, so what’s taken you so long to apply and join us there? Is the real question here.

Kira Hug:  Yeah, I mean, okay Rob, I’m going to ask you a question about it, but what has surprised you about the Think Tank and what copywriters have been able to do in the Think Tank, recently?

Rob Marsh:  So I’m not sure that this is recent, well, I mean it happens with a lot of copywriters who join, but just how quickly people make progress in their business. We’ve had people join who are struggling to make four or $5,000 months and literally within 60 days are clearing $10,000 months. That’s not everybody, but it has happened enough times that sometimes I’m thinking the mental switch that you go through when you commit to a program like the Think Tank just has an amazing impact on your business. So I love seeing that happen over and over and over. And that doesn’t mean people don’t go through dry patches as well, we work through those for a lot of people, but it has real impact and I love seeing that.

Kira Hug:  And I love our weekly check-in calls. So every Tuesday in the Think Tank, I host a check-in. It’s usually 45 minutes or an hour and Think Tank members can show up, it’s optional. And the best part is it’s very casual and it’s just a way to stay connected as a community and kind of share what’s working, what’s not working, ask a question. And mostly it’s just a great way to not feel alone in your business because we jump on video and it’s just good to see and hear from other writers and marketers who are working through similar struggles and who are figuring it out alongside you and don’t necessarily have all the answers, but that’s where we talk about what’s happening in the business under the hood, and we get to see kind of all the things that are happening that we don’t typically talk about in social media. And so that’s my favorite time in the Think Tank.

If this sounds good to you and you’ve been listening for a while and every time we talk about it, it perks your interest a little bit, it might be time to chat with one of us. And you can do that by applying at You can fill out a application and jump on a quick call with me to talk about whether or not it’s a good fit and we’ll steer you in the right direction. Let’s kick off our episode with Rob and Kennedy.

Well, let’s just start off with how the two of you met and how you ended up going into business together?

Rob Temple:  So have you heard of

Kennedy:  I swiped left, he swiped left.

Rob Temple:  We both did the same joke from a different angle. I went with

Rob Marsh:  We have used that exact same joke as well, Kira talks about how we met on Tinder all the time.

Kira Hug:  Oh, we can’t use it now.

Kennedy:  No, we can’t use that joke. I’m not doing the old… We’re not starting that episode off with a bloody obvious joke that everyone’s using, Christ, no, right. Let’s do that again.

Rob Temple:  So we’ve got a weird background. I am a hypnotist, hello, I’m Rob. I’ll be using this voice for the rest of the episode. Kennedy’s the other one.

Kennedy:  Attractive, really funny one. I’ll be doing all the humorous parts of this episode.

Rob Temple:  The other one. For anyone listening to this, you’ll just have to take his word for it, that he’s the really attractive one. We’ve got a weird background, I’m a hypnotist. Kennedy is a mind reader or folks in the states and other parts of the world would know that as a mentalist and that means something different here. And basically what we did was about 20 years ago, we were at a magic convention, literally a conference for magicians. It’s literally the coolest place on earth and not really. And we just met and got chatting and Kennedy was off doing his thing. I was off doing my thing. We were just starting out really semi-professionally slash professionally alongside further education doing this entertainment thing.

And the only thing we really knew that we wanted to do was I wanted to get up on stage and do my hypnosis show, Kennedy wanted to get up on stage and do his mentalism stuff at events and venues and stuff like that. But in order to make that work, you can’t just stick an ad in the yellow pages and then wait for the phone to ring. I mean, you can, that’s what most people do, but it doesn’t… It’s not very fruitful. And so we had to learn, we were both sort of just on the same path. We had to learn this marketing business thing, this branding, positioning, pricing, selling, all of that. And just as we started to swap notes about it, it was weird because we weren’t exactly competition because we were working a different market with a slightly different thing, but we were related, we’re both psychology-based entertainers. And so we were just swapping notes and talking about what are you doing and what’s working and what didn’t work and all of that, and we noticed two things.

First of all, traditional marketing didn’t apply to what we were trying to do. You couldn’t just buy a marketing book and directly apply it to what we were trying to do. So we had to be a bit cleverer with it or a bit different with it and figure out how do we make this apply to us? And both of us stumbled across this idea of email marketing, this idea that we could stick a signup form on our website, people could join our newsletter. We didn’t have any idea why they would, but we knew it was possible. And then we signed up for one of the only, I think, two email marketing platforms that existed then, which was AWeber. There was AWeber GetResponse and 1ShoppingCart was starting to turn up, but that was a bit more complicated. So we signed up for this platform and both just started doing email marketing, didn’t really talk that much about it, we were just doing it.

And after a while we did eventually start swapping notes on what was working and what wasn’t, we were having all the clever stuff that doesn’t work, but you could do, like you have it automatically email people every time you posted a new blog post and all the other stuff that again, you don’t want to do, but it was possible and therefore we did it. And so again, this is back in the days where Facebook didn’t exist. MySpace was in its infancy, but it was around and it definitely was a place you hung out with people rather than did any form of marketing or sales or anything.

Kennedy:  I spent loads of time trying to change the culinary background to make it sparkly.

Rob Temple:  I kept sending Tom messages, but he never replied. Do you remember Tom from MySpace?

Kennedy:  Tom on MySpace.

Rob Temple:  Tom from MySpace.

Kira Hug:  Wait, so what year is this for anyone who’s less familiar with MySpace and was not on MySpace?

Rob Temple:  I reckon it must have been 2005, four.

Kira Hug:  Yeah, that sounds right, okay.

Rob Temple:  Something like that. Yeah, something like that. And so the internet was a very different place. I remember putting videos on the internet was difficult, that was a hard thing to do because then somebody released some software that made that easier and it was revolutionary and we take that all for granted now. And there wasn’t really social media, there wasn’t social media. And so email was all there was, and we were just using email to get clients and repeat clients and referrals. And this is again in the infancy of email automations even, it was really largely a broadcast-able thing. You had follow up sequences, but they were very linear and that was it.

And so we just became obsessed with email and because of how obsessed with email we were that long ago when social media started to arise, other than using it for connecting with friends from school and stuff like that, neither of us really dove into it all that much when it came to marketing and stuff because we could just see the power of email and that powers’ continued whilst social media’s become the new trendy kid on the block and then it was whatever came after social media. So we’ve been doing this ever since.

Along the way, we got asked by other entertainers, how are you doing what you’re doing? So I started helping other hypnotists to do what I was doing, Kennedy started helping entertainers more widely through coaching and memberships and stuff. And that was our advent into the idea of selling scalable courses online, which we did. And then that just led from one thing to another. It sounds like a wild journey and we can dig into it, but we started a software business which led to us teaching more email marketing stuff, then we got sort of headhunted, if you like, along the idea of teaching other general businesses beyond entertainers.

Rob Marsh:  Okay, so before we jump into all of the email stuff, I do want to go back mentalist, hypnotist. I’m sure people all the time say, what am I thinking, or hypnotize me. Beyond that typical first reaction, can we just talk a little bit about those superpowers? And I’m asking kind of selfishly, because I know that the psychology behind this stuff actually leads to a lot of the stuff that you do with email today. So just tell us a little bit more about that career, that job title, that role that you had and still do, right?

Rob Temple:  Yeah.

Kira Hug:  And also, what am I thinking?

Kennedy:  Yeah, well what am I thinking? Well, the first thing you’re thinking is bananas. I don’t know why you’re thinking of bananas, but it’s a bit weird.

Kira Hug:  Close, so close.

Rob Marsh:  It’s always ice cream.

Kennedy:  Ben and Jerry’s is that… Or Haagen-Dazs?

Rob Marsh:  Either, I’m good as long as there’s chocolate in it, I’m good.

Kennedy:  Nice, okay. Yeah, I mean the thing is, I think anybody who does this stuff, it’s usually born out of a childhood insecurity of what are other people thinking and are other people in control of me? I’m going to investigate what all of that is really about. And so for me, that’s what it was. I was like, am I being controlled by things? Whoever. I don’t know who… Yeah, and then, how is that all happening? And are we being influenced? And I was always interested in what are people really thinking about me? Because as a teenager you’re paranoid and insecure trying to figure your way out in the world. And so I got interested in all this stuff and that sort of started for me in being… In just playing around with stuff, oh, if I say these things in these ways, I can get people to think of certain things or I can get them to do things in a certain way.

I remember the first time I ever influenced anybody to do anything was, I remember totally manipulating my own mother, which I think is what children are brilliant at doing, they’re just great at manipulating their parents. So look at this in terms of an amazing phraseology, and I must have been really young because it was a couple of days after Christmas and all my presents and my gifts are all underneath the Christmas tree and just all around the place and making a mess. And my mom said, “Will you just go and put all your presents up in your bedroom?” And, of course, little me didn’t want to do that. He was busy doing whatever children do, running around being an idiot.

Rob Temple:  I think the presents are still over your mum’s living room now, aren’t they? Probably still are.

Kennedy:  They probably are. So I was like, how am I going to get out of this? So I said this, and it’s not until later I realized, obviously a lot of years later, I realized what it actually said. But the phrase I said is, “Yes, could I just put them on the dining table like you did?” And my mum said, “Yeah, that’s a great idea.” Now everybody here who’s listening to this, who’s a copywriter who knows anything about influence, about persuasive language and about framing, knows exactly what was going on in that phrase. And so you look at every single day, no matter what we’re doing, we’re all influencing people whether we’re trying to or not. We either influence them towards things or away from things. And I just got interested in the mind. I studied hypnosis for a bit and did a little bit of that.

Rob and I used to talk about that and that became the thing that Rob obsessed over. And he just really went hell for leather into the hypnosis thing and started doing shows. I started getting an interest in other stuff your mind could do, could you memorize massive amount of information? Could you figure things out about people? Not just influence them, but could you figure stuff out as well? Or, statistically, what are people most likely to do under these conditions? And I ended up combining that as did Rob with our joint passion for standup comedy. And it ended up being that both of our shows are comedic, funny, in your face, ridiculous, whatever you want to call it. And ended up, for me, getting booked by large corporations all around the world. I ended up working on some really ridiculously fancy cruise ships, which I had no good place being on frankly. But ended up traveling loads around the world on those things, meeting me meccas, like celebrities and all this sort of stuff.

Rob again started getting booked in theaters and doing events. And started off… Rob’s first gigs were pubs and bars and stuff like that. When you’re learning your craft and trying to find out who am I, what do I do? Oh red, that’s the color I eat to dye my head to make this good. I understand. Doing all that stuff and then ended up being flown to the Seychelles to do stuff for royalty and then now books, theaters up and down in the country. And the whole point of this is we are just obsessed with understanding. The thing is humans are humans. Humans are wandering around humaning all the time and we can be influenced. All we ever are is influence and the reason we laugh and enjoy ourselves is because of a bunch of psychological triggers. The reason we like that new Netflix show is because of a bunch of psychological triggers. The reason we buy stuff is because of a bunch of psychological triggers. And the reason that people buy stuff from us, give us their attention, engage with us is to all down to a bunch of psychological triggers.

And once we understand what those things are and are aware of them; one, we can be more conscious of them. Secondly, we can then start using them to be more interesting or to be more interested or to make more sales or to get more attention or to be slightly more attractive to somebody if you want to attract them, whatever it is. Understanding how humans think is fascinating ’cause you get to ask lots of questions and if you’re as nosy as I am, I flipping love asking questions of other people to understand them and secondly it means you can do a lot more stuff and have more options. And I think that’s kind of one of the reasons we do what we do, isn’t it?

Kira Hug:  I would love to hear more about the triggers. If I am on a sales call, I’m a copywriter, I’m on a sales call, I want to have more influence on my sales calls, I want to close more sales and I’m typically struggling with that. So from each of your perspectives, what are a couple triggers that I could use on future sales calls? Maybe Rob, could you kick it off?

Rob Temple:  Yeah, I think so one of the big things that we often go for is setting ground rules to make sure that we know that there’s a… I’m trying to find a way to make this sound, not like it’s horrifying and terrifying, but basically, so for example, when Kennedy or I go on stage to do a show, one of the big things that we want to set up in advance is the ground rules of how this is going to work. So if you’re booked to perform at somebody’s wedding or a corporate event or something, the first bit you’ve got to do is just make sure that everybody’s facing the same direction. And once you get on stage and you get introduced, you’ve got to get their attention and make sure they’re looking at you and then they know what’s going to happen. And truthfully, however good you are, that’s what’s going to make the difference between the show going really well and the show dying horrendously.

And so you have to get good at that bit. And so we always do the same thing with any marketing interaction too. So there’s a sort of trigger that’s triggered by getting attention and then very quickly pivoting it across to the point where again, you get to lay these ground rules. So for example, on a sales call, the first thing that always happens is we’ll always skip the niceties of these of, how are you? Lovely to meet… Skip all of that, nobody cares. They don’t care, you don’t care, there’s no point in having it. So instead we just lay the ground rules of… Because what’s going to happen, you’re going to get someone to call and go, “Hey, nice to meet you, how are you?” They can either say, “I’m fine, thanks.” Or they can say, “Well, my gran died last week.” And if they actually answer the question honestly and then that derails everything. So there’s no point in asking.

So we just skip it and go, “It’s great to meet you. Listen, we’re going to get straight into this because we know your time is limited, our time is limited. Let’s do this. Here’s how this works, basically we are going to have a conversation for the next however long your sales calls are and I’m going to just want to find out so much about what you’re doing and whether we could maybe help you or not. And at the end of that call, we’re going to present you basically with if we think we can help you… Or if I think I can help you, we’re going to present you with how that would work, what it would look like, what it would cost. You’ll sort of have all that information really. And then at the end of it you can either say, yeah, that sounds like the best thing I’ve ever seen in my entire life. I want to take it, thank you. Sign me up now I’m going to pay you twice. Or you can say…”

And we over exaggerate it, this is the best thing ever, take my money now I’m going to start… I’m going to name my firstborn after you. This is going to be the best thing ever, really anchor this as a comically high value thing. Or you can say no-

Kennedy:  Put a button on that by the way, it’s purposely comically high. It’s not trying going to one of those sales pages where you are going to get $325,000 worth of stuff for $27 on this page today, where everyone goes, that is not true. It’s not one of those situations. It’s like yes, you’re going to have a parade around the village with banners in with my name, it’s that level of-

Rob Temple:  And make it fit your personality. If you are not a naturally funny person, you don’t have to make it that comical. But Kennedy and I wing it every time, it’s different every time. Sometimes it might be you’ll want to open the window and shout at a passing stranger, I’ve just signed up with Rob and Kennedy. Just make it really comical. So that’s… Sorry, really fun. So that’s one option. Or the other option is you might say, “Oh my god, no, that’s the worst thing I’ve ever heard in my entire life. I don’t want to work with you. Now I understand a bit more about…” And that’s okay too, either of those things are okay, we’re not here to twist your arm behind your back until you give us the money and steal your wallet out of the other pocket.

Kennedy:  And again, that’s comical. You can go, you might booing down the phone, boo, all these things that they’re just not going to do. So you’re painting these things as like…

Rob Temple:  You just have to adjust that to your personality so you can tone that down if you need to, but you have to do that level of exaggeration. And then you go and then you’ll have a choice. You can do either of those things and you explain what they are and you go, “Does that sound all right to you?” And then we’ll get started and they say, “Yes.” And so now what’s happened is we’ve set the ground rules for how this sales call is going to work. You are going to go through a bunch of stuff and now you can do whatever you need to do as part of your sales process, ask them questions, let them ask you, whatever it needs to be. But at the end of that conversation, just like when we set the ground rules when we go on stage or when somebody joins our email list, our first bunch of emails, our welcome sequence is all about setting the ground rules for how that relationship is going to work going forward.

You can either receive our emails or you can unsubscribe, those are the only two options. You can’t customize your subscription and only receive these emails every second Friday. You can’t opt in to get a digest, you’re going to get every email I ever want to send you or you can unsubscribe and either of those things is fine. So we set up those ground rules for the sales call and now what that means is at the end of the call we come around and there’s a sense of comfort for them, which is the trigger I want to get to, for them when it comes to the what could be quite an eggy moment, that awful moment where you suddenly have to pivot into saying, do you want the big one or the bigger one? Because now the only thing you have to do is just say the words blah blah blah, and that’s what we do. It’ll cost $15 million, you give them the actual price.

$15,000, their only option is to say yes or no. They can’t say anything else because if they say anything else, you can go, okay great. I totally understand your question. What have we not covered as part of this last 45 minute conversation that means that you still have to wonder about that? And so it turns a sales call for your example Kira, into a really comforting moment where actually the whole ground was set from the beginning. They feel perfectly comfortable saying no, and telling you why. That’s totally fine too. But it creates a sense of… It’s actually an authority thing, creating a sense of feeling very relaxed, which is weird… So that’s one thing

Rob Marsh:  So, as I’m thinking about this stuff, immediately I hear a segment of our audience, probably the marketing world that says, “Wow, this is manipulative. You’re making people act in ways that maybe they wouldn’t act.” How do you guys think about that? I’ve got a lot of thoughts on this as well, but how do you think about that, in order to make sure that you aren’t manipulating people into doing things that they don’t really want to do?

Kennedy:  This is really, really important. This is really, really important. A bunch of things we have to have in mind, actually it sort of speaks to… I’m going to answer that question and actually sort of make my point about the second trigger at the same time. There you go, double whammy. Amazing. How good is this? Because it really kind of comes out in the same thing, which is one of the myths about influencing people and about communicating really effectively is it’s about the stuff that you do to people and it’s not. Some of the things you do are not necessarily about them, one of the things we have to realize is that what you do outwardly is only part of the game, is only part of what’s going on. What you do for yourself, the way you influence yourself is just as important if not more important.

So if I don’t train myself to memorize a deck of cards in 60 seconds and I don’t have a memory system to do that in my head, then I can’t go on stage and do it. It can’t be impressive if I don’t train myself to know the data sets that I need to know to know that okay, I’ve got a man, he’s a Caucasian man standing in the middle of an audience and there’s about 200 people around him and I’m asking him to think of this kind of information. If I don’t have the data set to tell me what he’s likely to be thinking of, if I say certain trigger words, I don’t have the information, I’m not set up, I’m not self-influenced to be informed enough to actually do any of the stuff that I’m doing.

So really important… The big thing is it’s a bit like in email marketing. The big myth that people have is that they believe that I can’t email as often as that or I can’t send that kind of information or I can’t be myself or show up in that way because I’m showing up in people’s inboxes and it’s like being around at their house and being rude. We swear in our emails, we use innuendo in our emails, why? Because that’s who we are, we’ve had people listen to our podcast, the Email Marketing Show, which you guys have been on. They’ve listened to the show and written to us to say, “I find it really offensive.” And I’m like, great, it’s free and there are loads of boring podcasts. I’ll give you a list of them. Go and listen to them. You don’t have to listen to it.

Because what happens for us as the sender of information, the podcaster, the emailer, it’s almost like we have this perception that we’re showing up to their house and being rude, that’s not true. They signed up to your email list, it’s your house. If they come round and they don’t like the curtains, the carpet, or the way the dog sniffs them around the crotch, they can leave and that’s okay. But I can’t come round to your house Kira and go, “Oh, I don’t like that chair. Could you just move it out of the house while I’m here?”

Kira Hug:  Kennedy, you can do that. You’re welcome to do that.

Kennedy:  Thank you, it’s ’cause we’re friends. But to somebody you don’t know that well, you can’t do that stuff. So that’s really… So remembering that they’re in your world. And that’s why when we’re… So going back to the sales call thing we are very conscious about not being manipulative, just in general everyday life, but also in our marketing and the way we do that is we sell honesty. The biggest tool in your belt, in your arsenal of things you can do as a copywriter, as a marketer, as a business person, as an entrepreneur human being is to be really, really honest. So honest that… I’ll tell you for example, our email campaign, that is a shopping cart abandonment campaign, our first email says it’s about 20 minutes after they abandoned cart, it’s like a two-step checkout type situation.

Our first email says, Hiya, this is the bit where I’m supposed to say some… And everybody says, “Hello, this is the bit when we’re supposed to say something broke with the checkout and there’s something left in your cart. We all know that’s BS. So I just wanted to give you the link and make sure you’ve got it in case you want to grab it.” We just sell through honesty, we just show up and be nice. That’s it, and that’s why on our sales calls, we don’t do our own sales calls anymore, we have somebody else doing them now just because we want to be able to focus on other things and we want to find people who are better than us at these things. But our whole methodology is actually… This sounds counterintuitive, and I know this sounds crazy, we coach our salespeople to try and get a yes, really important, because for us, that’s manipulative. That is being naughty, being nasty.

What we actually want them to do is get to a no as quickly as possible, when you focus on just getting to that no as quickly as possible, you’ve removed any manipulation. There’s no way someone can get off a phone call from anything we do and say, “That person forced me to do anything.” Because actually we’re trying to go, are you sure? Are you really? Really? Because what that means is that person, when they buy, there is no buyer’s remorse. There is no regret, there is nothing like that. All we have is people singing our praises about every program, every product, every course and everything we put together, our membership, everything because we just make sure that they’re… And what’s really nice about that for you internally influencing… That’s externally influencing. Internally influencing yourself, what does that mean? If you’re only focused on getting the no, you don’t feel bad when they say no because all you did is achieve your goal. Great. Got the no and I did it in seven minutes, excellent, brilliant. I achieved it.

You’ve now completely reversed and re-engineered your feelings, your emotions, your attachment to getting the yes, the yes is something that’s going to happen sometimes. But here’s the big piece of sales calls and that is to make sure… We wouldn’t go on stage if we weren’t booked. I’m not going to wander down and find a random stage and be like, oh, there’s a bunch of people here. I’m on, hello, can I have your… Can I jump… I’m not going to do that.

Rob Temple:  Elton, who? Kick him off the stage.

Kennedy:  Yeah, Elton, get off your piano, out the way. We’re not going to do that. So you want to set it up right. What we do is we make sure that that old Peter Drucker thing… It’s funny, it’s weird, this is the second time today these exact quotes come up again, is this idea of marketing makes sales superfluous. That’s that old… That thing everyone talks about, but it’s true. By the time somebody gets on a phone call with us, actually what we’re really doing is just taking the payment information. Yes, answering any last minute questions. So we have a program, it’s our email engine accelerator, it’s like an eight-week program. It’s just under $10,000 and somebody generally will want to speak to somebody before they make that kind of investment, fair enough. And they might want to say it’s like two calls a week for eight weeks, a very intensive program where people write their entire email automation system, a great program, but it’s a time investment and a monetary reinvestment.

We’re asking the two biggest things of people, the times often the bigger thing. So people are going to have questions, what time of day is it? What happens if I can’t make them all? What happens if I miss all of them? What happens if I miss one of them? Like lots of questions that someone’s going to have. So we want to get on a call to make sure we can make sure their personal needs are met, really important. And secondly, because we want to be there to take the payment details. So before they even get on the call, we make sure they go through an application form and the trick, if you want to call it with our application form, and you’ll notice this whole idea of honesty and integrity, again, really important because it’s the most persuasive thing you’ve got in a world that’s full of BS, you can stand out by just being honest and real and true.

And that’s this one, which is they go through an application form, and we want to check that they’ve actually got a product or service or an offer before we start enrolling them in a program, which is to sell a thing. Because we’re like, we don’t want to get people onto the program and they’re like, right, first of all, I need to figure out what I’m selling because we’re not going to be able to help them with that during an eight-week intensive program. So we want to make sure the right stage of business, we want to make sure they’ve got the right kind of money to invest or they’re expecting that kind of investment, because if we got on a sales call and we say, “Look, it’s like seven and a half grand.” And their world falls apart because that’s an outrageous number to them, they feel terrible at this point.

That’s not a place I want to put somebody in. I don’t want somebody to ever feel terrible because they’re in a different stage of their business. ‘Cause we’ve all been at the stage where we’re trying to get the money together to buy the $500 course and all we can afford is the 500… Is the 750… Sorry, it’s the $75 thing. We’ve all been at that stage. I don’t want anybody to ever feel terrible about the price that we’re going to say. So we’re going to pre-qualify them on the price as well. And this is what I think particularly interesting, that form that we put them through to apply for the program, and we use this in two different places. We use this for our email writing agency and for this accelerator program. At the end of it, they’re either going to qualify or not qualify.

We’re basically going to go, yes, great book in a call on our calendar, here’s the calendar link. Which means the salesperson is going to just… They know that they qualify, they’re just answering any questions and taking the payment, a really short call probably less than 15 minutes or it’s going to be a no. And this is something I pondered for a very long time, is how do we say no and not make the person feel bad? How do we do that in a way that makes you not go, I’m sorry you don’t qualify to be in our special elite group of friends? I’ll tell you why I don’t like that because I was the friend who wasn’t invited to the popular circle at school. I wasn’t the popular kid at school and I don’t want to be treating anybody else like that.

So what we do on the, I’m sorry page, on the no page, and this is just really simple, please use this, it works really, really, really well, if we have a video of us that’s just like, “Hey, thank you so much for filling that in. So on purely information that’s that form. It looks like you might not be a fit for this program, but that’s just based on that information. We don’t know your situation, we don’t know your business and we don’t know you personally. So let me tell you about the program in detail and then you can decide.” And then we tell them it’s a two calls a week commitment and it’s this kind of investment and you need to have this kind of product and this is why. So we tell them all the details and then we say, “And then you’ll notice… Great, now you know that information. There’s two buttons below this video. The first one is you might go actually now I know all the information, I think I do fit the program, great booking a call and you can speak to our salesperson.”

So now they can still become a yes, converted 100% when they get on the call. When we think about psychology, of course they do. But then we also say, “But if you’ve heard of that information you think actually, do you know what it is? I’m not ready for that yet. That’s cool. People who are at your stage with…” And then we talk about our membership or a down sell. It is the nicest no they’ve ever seen in their lives and we just do it through just being really, really honest.

Kira Hug:  Oh my gosh, that’s amazing. ‘Cause I have to send some of those emails this week just the rejection email and so that’s brilliant.

Rob Temple:  It engineers the perception of choice because they feel like they now have a choice. Well, I could still be in that big expensive program or I can come and check out this other thing or I can leave without doing it either. But actually because of all the parameters in that video, which is the price is X and the commitment is X and the stage of business you need to be in is X. If you still fit all of those things and our form has just misunderstood stuff, totally get it, then you can still apply. But now they’re going to feel like an idiot if they apply for that thing and they get on the call and they say to the salesperson, “Oh, actually no, I don’t have this  and I can’t afford that.” Nobody’s going to take that because they know they’re going to feel like an idiot. So it creates this lovely feeling of choice. They can choose to still book a call, but obviously with lots of rules around that.

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, it’s really respectful, I like that. It’s a great approach for helping people feel good about even decisions they’re not ready to make.

Kira Hug:  All right, Rob, why don’t you kick this off for us? What grabbed your attention? What stood out to you?

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, so as the lads, as the boys were talking about their business, they mentioned that as they got started, this was before social media, this was before courses or whatever. It was all about email and selling through email and email was all that there was to talk about their clients. And as I heard them talk about it as I went back and listened to it again, it’s still the best way. There’s amazing things that you can do with other communication tools like social media, but email is still the very best way to connect with people. People are inviting you into their inbox when they sign up, they want to hear more of you. They’re telling you that they want more of you. And I think a lot of us are afraid to show up very often or we think we don’t have a lot to say. Which again, we talked about last week a little bit, we will talk about in the future with Linda Perry again.

But it’s such a great way to connect with your clients, with your audience in places where they’re considering things like hiring you or how do I improve my business or how do I think differently? And so more copywriters, more content writers, more creatives need to be using email in their business.

Kira Hug:  Agreed, that’s why we’ve increased our email communication. Because we know how important it is, we also talked about this with Laura Belgray on her most recent episode, which I do not remember the number of, but we talked about how it’s really changed her business financially too by increasing the emails she’s sending to her list.

Rob Marsh:

The more she emails, the more she makes, she said that specifically. And so I haven’t tried to measure that with our emails, but the more you show up, the more people see you as an authority and a trusted figure who can help them solve their problems.

Kira Hug:  I really appreciated when we started to talk about psychological triggers and sales calls. And it’s funny because I feel like I know… We teach sales calls. I’ve been on many sales calls. I feel pretty good about my sales call game, but then they were talking through their approach and some of their tips I just felt like were so helpful and something that we could all implement on our next sales call. I mean, the first tip around just kicking off the call without all the small talk because it really… Some people may appreciate that and want to do that, and if it’s your style, you should continue doing that. But I like the idea of being a little bit more direct and just jumping in so we’re not wasting time and taking control over the conversation from the first second, I think that’s a great idea.

And then I also like the idea of laying the foundation, and this is something that you and I have talked about, setting an agenda for the call. It’s the worst feeling is showing up to what a sales call, where you know it’s a sales call, but it’s okay because you’re somewhat interested in buying the service or product, but you get on the sales call and you can tell the person hosting the sales call has no agenda and doesn’t really know what they’re going to do, and you have no idea how long it will take. And the worst case is it might take longer than you’ve planned, so the best thing you can do is set the foundation, lay out an agenda from the first second to give them idea of how long it’s going to take, what you’re going to cover, and that just helps people feel a little bit more comfortable so that they aren’t anxious the entire sales call.

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, I mean, it’s establishes your authority and by doing that, you are showing up to the expert as the partner, as the advisor, the strategist who can help them fix the thing in their business. Then the other tips that they shared around the sales call, starting out with that fun exaggeration of what’s actually going to happen here on the call. And the reason they were very specifically said, it’s got to be comical, it’s got to be over the top. It’s got to be not jokey in a way that’s necessarily realistic, but exaggerated. The parade around the village, I think Kennedy mentioned. And the reason you do that is because that humor or that exaggeration creates a human connection, it’s relatable and you immediately have a sense, I’m not being sold. I’m having a conversation here that’s going to end in one of two ways.

They also talked about setting those ground rules, so you talked a little bit about that, but even during the call where you’re laying out, this is the option, this is exactly how the program goes, or this is how the product works. So no, well, can I do it halfway? Or can I buy this part, but not that part? And really just establishing once again that you’re the authority on the call. And then finally talking about that yes, no decision. And how they’re really trying to get to a no, but you’re basically leaving your prospect with a decision that’s easy for them to make. It’s either a yes or it’s a no and there’s nothing else. There’s no, well, let me talk about it. Or it gives you that opportunity to resolve any objections that might come up, so all of those triggers I thought were brilliant.

Kira Hug:  And I like the one about the ground rules too, because that means you have to have a package in place. We talk a lot about packages, we work through packages in the accelerator, but if you don’t have something concrete prepared ahead of time, or even if it’s just in your mind, you don’t have that ready to go, that’s when you start to fumble and that’s where you start to customize. And that’s where you start to become an order taker where you’re trying to piece it together in the call, rather than saying, “This is what I do, here’s how it works, here’s the process, here are the deliverables, here’s the problem it solves.” So it all goes back to having those packages before you get on your sales call.

Rob Marsh:  And then we talked a little bit about manipulation because when we do talk about psychological triggers, there is an opportunity to be manipulative, certainly we’ve all talked with or seen marketers who have done that. And I really appreciated what Kennedy shared about the best tool to fight manipulation is just being honest, making sure that what you sell actually works, it delivers the benefit that you promised. But talking about it, honestly, the other part of that conversation that I really loved is how he reframed us being in an email inbox. A lot of people talk about how you know, are an invited guest into their inbox, and therefore you must show up respectfully, you only show up once or twice a week or you don’t want to invade. You don’t want to be in there selling all the time.

And I just really appreciated what Kennedy said, that’s not true. They’ve signed up to hear from you, if you’re showing up too much or if you’re selling too much, they’ll unsubscribe. That’s what unsubscribing is all about. And so showing up authentically and in a non-manipulative way, being honest and helping solve problems is a great place to be. And again, going back to the idea that we’re sharing, this is one of the reasons why everybody should be doing email.

Kira Hug:  Yeah, that was such a great reframe because I hadn’t thought about it that way either. Just like, this is my party, my house, you are a guest in my house, but it’s still my house, my rules. And if you don’t like it, you don’t have to be here. Just like if I were hosting a real party and Rob, you didn’t like my party or what I was serving, I know you would leave.

Rob Marsh:  I have left parties before.

Kira Hug:  Well you haven’t left my party.

Rob Marsh:  Not your party, but you’ve seen me leave parties before.

Kira Hug:  I have seen me leave many parties. So I do like that reframe and it allows us… It’s freeing. We can be more of who we are and share more and talk how we want to talk, knowing that we may lose people, but it’s also okay. I also appreciated when we talked about… We were really talking about rejection in my mind and how to handle when clients are not… Or prospects are not a good fit for a program or for a service. And that really spoke to me because I’ve always thought that I need to be the person to reject the applicant.

But what Rob and Kennedy really shared is that you don’t have to do that, you can let them decide. And they had a whole process, I don’t need to talk through it because they talked through it, but you can give them all the information so that they can make the best decision, and that’s how you’ll strengthen that relationship by empowering them and not necessarily be the one to reject them, because rejection never feels good. And so I thought that is something I could implement and really need to implement in our business.

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, it’s just really smart to trust your clients that they know what’s best for them and giving them the information to make those decisions as opposed to say, “Oh, you got to have this, you got to invest.” Or “You really need to invest in yourself, it’s worth putting it on the credit card.” All that yucky stuff, so much better just to be free and fair and a no is a perfectly acceptable answer.

Kira Hug:  All right, let’s get back to our interview with Rob and Kennedy to find out how they structure their business and handle all those roadblocks along the way.

Okay, I want to talk about being a CEO and I’m just wondering with your backgrounds, hypnotist, mentalist, what do you think the two of you bring to the role of visionary… Whatever you want to call it, visionary leader or CEO, I wonder how you two operate differently from others? Maybe the two of us.

Kennedy:  Normal people.

Rob Temple:  So I always-

Kira Hug:  Because of your background.

Rob Temple:  I always bring the biscuits, Kennedy.

Kennedy:  Rob bring the biscuits and I-

Rob Marsh:  And biscuits, you’re talking about cookies?

Kennedy:  I eat the biscuits.

Rob Temple:  Cookies, yeah sorry, I’ll-

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, cookies, right?

Rob Temple:  I bring the cookies.

Kennedy:  Yeah, I eat the cookies.

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, that’s how partnerships work.

Kennedy:  Here’s a funny thing though, is Rob and I’ve never… Neither of us have ever had a job, we’ve never been employed, I’ve never been to an interview. When we interviewed our first ever full-time staff, our software developer, we sat down for the interview and our first question to him in this interview was, how does this go?

Rob Temple:  It was the opposite of our sales calls because we don’t know.

Kennedy:  So what do we bring? Creativity, the fact that we are very detail orientated, we make sure we test things to be really robust, we don’t put campaigns together, we don’t teach stuff unless we’re like… We’ve questioned every single thing, which you would think is normal. I mean, if you go and buy other people’s products… If you go and buy products, you’ll sometimes just go, “Hang on, but what if this?” And then you don’t get any answers to those questions. So I think that’s one of the things we bring… Obviously we’re pretty creative people. And also I think the big thing is communication. Our stuff that we teach in terms of the style that we teach in is really entertaining, we think. And people say, but in terms of the business, I think we’re still figuring that out. I don’t know.

Rob Temple:  We’re not emotionally attached to anything at all, and we try to breed that in our staff, either by hiring them that way or just drilling it into them. So for example, Colin, our software developer, we’ve got two software platforms, and so there’ll be stuff where he’ll spend weeks doing something and then halfway through we’ll go, “Ah, that was actually the wrong decision. We need to change that completely.” And he’ll go, “Okay.” And he’s not attached to the fact that he spent weeks doing it, so he’ll just go, “Okay, that’s fine.” So we’re definitely not attached to anything we do, and then we’re just constant problem solvers. So I think if you look at everything you do as a problem to solve, when stuff is going well, you can just leave it to crack on because you can just constantly go, “That’s working well, let’s focus on what’s this next problem that we need to solve.”

And if you just get to the point where you enjoy solving problems. So it’s probably no coincidence that we love escape rooms and whenever we take our staff out for a day out, we’ll go to an escape room. If we’re in the states for something which is like four, five, six times a year, we’ll go and do an escape room. We like solving problems. And so business is just one problem after another after another after another with the occasional little thing that goes smoothly and then another problem to solve somewhere else. So we’re definitely problem solvers, and again, we breed that in our staff too. We don’t want somebody to come to us and say, “Here’s a problem.” We want them to go, “Here’s a problem. We think this is a good solution, so I’ve done it.” Or we think this is a good solution, do you agree?

Rob Marsh:  As I listen to you guys talking about that, it feels like you’re sort of intuiting what you should be doing as leader of your business. And while that leads to a lot of positive outcomes and kind of the way that I approach the way… And I think Kira and I both approach the way that we work the same. It’s like, hey, we’re trying to figure this stuff out. But also that leads to some mistakes, which you’ve got to be good with. And I’ve heard you talk about this before, guys, you made a six figure mistake on Facebook ads and not to necessarily focus on that kind of stuff, but tell us how that happened and what led to it and how you worked around resolving it.

Rob Temple:  Just one correction, I don’t think it was really a six figure mistake. I think it was a hundred thousand $1 mistakes, just in case that makes us feel any better about it.

Kennedy:  It feels so much better now. This feels great.

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, tell us about that.

Rob Temple:  So we had built this core funnel that was working and we’d marketed to our audience and it worked really well. The numbers are great, we had affiliates promoting it and got a commission, and that was working really great. It was a funnel of info products, standard ascension funnel of a $39 thing with a $97 upsell and so on and so forth. And so we hired an agency to run the ads for it. The agency was recommended to us by somebody who’d done… A really good friend of ours was doing about four grand a day in sales with a two grand ad spend every day. So we were like, that’s great. Two grand a day profit from a similar funnel to ours in terms of price points and stuff. And then somebody else was doing the same thing with the same agency.

So we were like, this is great, we’re going to do it. We’re going to hire the agency. We did, and then we’d do a little bit of ads ourselves and our toe in the water and that would work okay. We’d probably spent maybe four or $5,000 and it was profitable. And we were like, that’s great. So we hired the agency and then for the first two days we made about $500 a day in profit. So we were like, this is great, scale to the moon. I know you’ve got to do it gradually, but scale to the moon. And it fell off a cliff the next day and it just continued to tumble and we tried different things. We tried iterating the ads and the offer and everything, and it just… Over the course of the probably a bit less than 12 months, that followed with the help of two ads agencies in total, we spent a hundred thousand dollars in ads and agency fees, and we made back 20,000 something dollars of it. So we lost about $80,000 in the process.

There was a point at which we said, actually at this point… And this is an interesting fork in the road where you go, we could have just paid ourselves 40 grand or 50 grand each extra in the last 12 months and spent it doing nice things, traveling, doing stuff we wanted to do, and the business would’ve been as well off… The business would’ve been absolutely fine, we would’ve been in exactly the same position we’re in right now. Now fortunately, of course, we’re always doing other things that allow us to be able to afford that loss. Nobody can afford it, but we could get away with it and survive that loss. But it was a really sharp learning curve that we definitely spent too long tumbling down every path that didn’t work. But it’s one of those things you have to battle with yourself all the time about when is the right time for us to turn around.

It got to the point where we were thinking about putting a third version live, and it was just before Christmas when the cost of ads, of everything, spiked. And we said, let’s take a few months out. Let’s get Christmas out of the way. We’ll have a nice time, we’ll come back and we’ll regroup next year and decide if we want to even continue this again. So we put the agency on ice and we said, we’ll just… Because we’re not blaming the agencies for any of it. There’s too many moving parts, we know both of those agencies have had a lot of success for people we know. So we’re not blaming the agencies at all, but just the set of circumstances, that was a very painful thing and it set us off down a long and spiraling path away from ads for a long time. We were like, that’s it. We’re just not doing ads anymore.

Kennedy:  We were just licking our wounds, we were injured.

Rob Temple:  Back and we’ve just literally built a new funnel, we’re taking a whole different approach to it, different sets of products, different things. And we are running out of that now, we’re currently four days in and as yet it’s profitable, so we’ll see how quick… If it falls off a cliff-

Rob Marsh:  You were four days in last when it fell off the cliff. So tomorrow is a very important day for this whole funnel thing.

Rob Temple:  That’s exactly it, yeah.

Kira Hug:  When you’re injured like that, and yes, for you it was six figures or $80,000, for copywriters listening, it might not be that big but it could still feel as painful as an injury. How do you two deal with that and get yourself back up? And would you do anything differently maybe to jump back in so you jump into Facebook ads earlier? Or can boost your confidence if it affects you in that way? I know it affects many copywriters in a dramatic way.

Kennedy:  I think it affects all of us. We’re all humans, aren’t we? No matter what we do, whether we’re copywriters or whatever we do. I think the difficulty is, how do you… Where is the line between tenacity? I’m going to make this thing work. And people say, “You have to just keep going till it works and that’s my secret.” And you go, “Well, where’s the line at which you need to go, this doesn’t work?” And what we figured out is actually it was based on our current understanding, we think it was just the offer. And then there’s two different ways of doing stuff, aren’t there? There’s basically people who take one offer and they figure out how to make it work. And there’s others who launch an offer, does it work? No. Next one, launch a different offer. Launch a different offer and then find the offer that works.

And I think if you can figure out a way to iterate fast enough and launch new offers fast enough, which are good enough, which actually have cachet, don’t be launching semi-good offers, they have to be great. Which is why it’s taken us more than a year to come to the point where we thought we had something, oh this actually would work as an offer. And don’t necessarily go looking for it. The way you get around it is you say, look, we’re going to make mistakes in the business. Some stuff’s not going to work. That’s just the way it is. Our membership, the league, when we first started it, the first three months, the content to what it is now, because there was some stuff people weren’t using at all, we took it away, it was a distraction, it was overwhelming. And there was some stuff we felt they needed and they wanted, which has been a mainstay ever since then. And it’s almost three years or something of content now.

And it’s the same with the podcast, the format of your show, if you go back and listen to old episodes, you go, oh, you used to do this bit… And it’s the same with us when we had some really weird features. So our podcast’s called the Email Marketing Show and we’ve currently got two main sections of the show, you guys know this because you’ve been on it, but it’s like the interview bit and then we do a bit at the end, which is called Subject Line of the Week. But we used to have a section where it was really… Because we’re quite irreverent people, it was all to do with bits of advice. So we would take… Somebody could leave a voice message of a question and then the section was called What would Julie Andrews do? I don’t know why it was called that. And we had this little theme tune.

Rob Temple:  We like musical theater. She is the goddess of music… Is? Was? I don’t know. Anyway, she is or was the goddess of musical theater that was what. We had a thing… There was a thing… And you have to just test stuff. So a little bit off… Even more off the wall.

Kennedy:  You’re going to mention George, aren’t you?

Rob Temple:  One day we were in the office, when we used to have a physical office, sort of between where Kennedy lives and where I live.

Kennedy:  Can’t believe he’s going to tell you this story, this is awful.

Rob Temple:  And Kennedy was… We were talking about the… I don’t know how much of a thing this is around the world, but the idea of where in the street we’d have a green grocer selling fresh fruit and vegetables from a little stand. So there he is. And we live in Newcastle and people from Newcastle are known as Geordie’s. And so they’ve got a Geordie accent and you have a Geordie dialect within the Geordie accent. And so that was that. And we sat around and Kennedy and I don’t really have it right because we’ve been performers and we’ve performed all over the world, our accents have just watered down over time. But everyone said what we’re surrounded by has a Geordie accent and all the rest of it. And I said something about the green grocer on the street and Kennedy suddenly did this voice, which sounds like…

Kennedy:  No, we’re not doing it, no.

Rob Temple:  Oh, he’s not going to do it on the spot? Kennedy-

Rob Marsh:  No, you gotta do it. You gotta do it, Kennedy.

Kira Hug:  Please.

Rob Temple:  This incomprehensible sound of a Geordie gringo, so you can’t understand any of the words.

Kira Hug:  We have to hear it.

Rob Temple:  It’s a sort of comical impression that if you happen to have any listeners who live in the northeast of England, they’ll find it amusing, but nobody else will. So for a while we had George the Green Grocer as a feature in the podcast. If you want to hear it, go back to listen… ‘Cause it’s still there. Listen to the first 10 episodes of the Email Marketing Show or something and you’ll hear George the Green Grocer comes in, you hear the door open in the office, the actual door, not a sound effect. And George comes in and he says nothing for a minute and then he walks-

Kennedy:  Because we would basically ask an opinion, we’d go, George, what do you think we should do about this thing? And he would go, [gibberish] and we’d be like, “All right, yeah.” But then we would react as if we understand what he was saying and we’d be like, “Oh that’s great, yeah.” [gibberish].

Rob Marsh:  Swedish Chef from the Muppets.

Kennedy:  Yeah.

Rob Temple:  And in the end we just dropped it because it was only funny for us, I think.

Kira Hug:  That’s so so sad, I wish you would’ve kept it.

Rob Temple:  So you just have to test stuff, don’t you? And let stuff evolve over time. And the thing that we’re rolling now… When we first started out in business, we didn’t teach email marketing. When we started out as a business partnership, we had a software platform, that we still have, a software platform and then that evolved into us teaching email marketing and the software platform sits as part of our offering. Now we’ve rolled out a new software platform and that’s actually our front end offer that we’re running ads to right now. So it’s not even an info product anymore. We’ve got an agency that we didn’t have when we started and that sits on the back end of everything, so I think it comes down to that old piece of self-development advice that everybody gives about how you have to enjoy every day along this journey rather than trying to get somewhere.

The business we’ve got now is definitely not the business we sat down and would’ve drawn up if we’d drawn up a business plan on day one, which we didn’t. But if we’d drawn up a business plan on day one, it wouldn’t have looked anything like the business we’ve got five years, six, seven years later. This business has evolved out of what that started because every day we go, but what if this? The software platform we’re running ads to now was born out of the fact that one day there was some stuff we wanted to teach in our membership that we couldn’t teach because we didn’t feel that we could teach because it required a piece of software that was a couple of hundred dollars a month and we felt bad saying to our members, you can only do this if you want to go and spend a couple of hundred dollars a month on this piece of software.

And so we were like, well… And Kennedy WhatsApped me one day and he says, “Listen, I’m just going to say this so I’ve got it out of my head, I don’t think we should do it, but what if we had that bit of a… A version of that bit of software made? What if we did our own version of that bit of software? It doesn’t have to work the same way, it just has to achieve the same outcome, but immediately.” We’ve got a software developer we can just pivot and he’s basically in maintenance mode of the other software we’ve got. So that’s fine, we can develop this new cool thing. And we just did it, and so again, it was born out of a spur of the moment idea and now not only is it a thing that our members have, but it’s the new front end for our whole business really.

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, amazing. We’re going to run out of time before we run out of questions. So I have a feeling there’s going to have to be a part two to this episode. But before we do run out of time, I want to ask you guys about email, specifically the copywriters who listen to this podcast generally are sole proprietors, they’re looking for clients. If you could recommend one sequence or one thing that they should be doing other than you should have a list or that kind of advice, what should they be building? What’s absolutely critical for them to find some success with their list and really finding clients with their email?

Rob Temple:  I think that the big thing is to realize that if you’re any sort of service provider, so a copywriter… And this is the same answer we give to coaches who have this offering, but so I’ll apply this to any service provider, copywriters included, is basically to realize that unlike most kind of where they’re relatively inexpensive in the grand scheme of things, it’s a quick purchase decision. I could buy it now… We do this all the time, we’ll buy it… Kennedy will message me going, “Hey, I’ve just seen this course about Pinterest, it’s $300, should we buy it?” And I was like, “Yeah, fine.” We’ve got no plan to do anything with Pinterest. We just one day, we’ll look at it, probably not even in the next year, but it’s on sale now, we’ll buy it now while we remember and we’ll stick it on the shelf. That happens all the time.

That doesn’t happen with copywriters or any service provider and we have to realize that’s the case, I’m never just seeing an ad for a copywriter and going, I haven’t got anything to use it for, but I might have a sales letter written, I’ll do that. Nobody does that. So you have to realize that just because you’re advertising right now and somebody’s seeing you’re advertising right now doesn’t mean that it’s going to be the right time for them to do it. So for us, what we realized is that with our agency as a service that does email marketing for people, and again this applies to any form of copywriting as a service, you need to just constantly be the only logical choice for them to inquire with, at the moment they suddenly realize that they need a sales letter.

Now that happens for one of two reasons. It either happens because of a thing that happens in their life which you have no control over whatsoever, like they suddenly put together a new product or something and they’re at their mastermind and somebody at the mastermind said… They say, “I need to write a sales pitch.” And somebody at the mastermind says, “you shouldn’t write a sales pitch, you should outsource it to a copywriter.” And then completely outside of your control, something’s happened in their life that’s made them suddenly realize they need it and you are there, we’ll talk about the mechanics of that in a second. So that’s one reason it can happen, the other reason it can happen is you’ve just said the right thing at the right moment for the penny to drop in their head that they go, “Oh my God, I need to hire whoever for this.”

I need to hire Rob and Kira, I need to hire whoever the copy… X copywriter for this because you are the person who’s always there. So the truth is, in our business when we want to outsource copy, we’ve got people we’ve outsourced it to, but actually we would go, we need to outsource a sales letter. We’ve got no instant person we just immediately turn to and go, that’s who we outsource our copy to. We would start digging around through the list of people we’ve hired before… And the reason is because nobody’s doing a really good job of this. Nobody’s particularly doing a really good job of remaining top of mind by email and email’s just the best way to do it. So what you want to do is to realize that actually rather than trying to use lead magnets or whatever to attract the perfect client right now, you need to use lead magnets and whatever to attract the list of people who you can slowly engineer this thing with over time until it’s the right time for them.

Now, of course, within that group there’s going to be a small subset who are immediately ready and they’re looking and it’s perfect timing by fate. The rest of them though, you just need to turn up regularly, often and make the offer, which is very casual, if now’s the right time for us to have a chat. Here’s a bunch of ways we can work together, book a call, join my Facebook group, listen to my… Whatever marketing they’ve got going on in their lives and realize that again at some point, one of those two things is going to happen. Either something’s going to happen in their life that makes them suddenly realize they need a copywriter or you are going to say something that’s going to make them suddenly need a copywriter.

One of those things is outside of your control and one of those things is within your control. But the thing that ties those two things together is that either of them only work if you are constantly and regularly turning up as a source of inspiration, authority building and all of that stuff in their life. So that when they are ready for either of those two reasons, you are the first person they think of. You’re the only logical person that they think of to turn to, to at least have that conversation.

Kira Hug:  That is great advice. I think we should just end there, not because we’re out of time, but because that’s brilliant advice. So I know I agree with Rob, we need to have another conversation with you because I have about 20 questions I didn’t get to ask, but for our listeners who want more from both of you, where should they go? How can they connect with the two of you?

Kennedy:  If you like podcasts, which you probably do because you’re listening to this one, we have our podcast called the Email Marketing Show where we teach literally what’s working right now that you can… Stuff you can work in your business, but also stuff you can go on and use for your clients. It’s super practical, so I think you’ll really like that. You can also check out… We have a free Facebook group called the Email Marketing Show Community, ’cause we’re not very good at naming things. So we just put the word community on the end of our podcast Email Marketing Show, so basically if you want to go and hang out and see what people are doing there, apply kind of some of this stuff, ask any questions about email marketing in a place where your market isn’t going to be, so you don’t need to worry about that, then you can go and do that as well. They’re the two best places I would say.

Rob Marsh:  Yeah, you guys had some really smart guests just a couple of weeks ago if I’m not mistaken, so look for the episode with Rob and Kira and you might learn something, who knows.

Kennedy:  Yeah, absolutely. Yeah no, it was a great episode. Got great feedback from that. So anybody who hasn’t heard that episode, even if you don’t even listen to the rest of our show you’ll get some gold from that episode, it’s great.

Kira Hug:  All right guys, we appreciate both of you coming on here and sharing so much over the last hour, thank you.

Rob Temple:  Thanks for having us.

Kennedy:  Our pleasure.

Rob Marsh:  That’s the end of our interview with Rob and Kennedy. So Kira, we already went through the first half. What stood out from the last few minutes in talking with these guys?

Kira Hug:  I think the big takeaway was around solving problems and just we were talking about how they approach business and mindset, especially when you have big losses and they shared their Facebook ad five figure mistake, which is significant, but we all have many losses of that size or even maybe not quite that big or bigger, but it all feels like a really big blow to our confidence and forces us to question can I really do this? And so I appreciated that we were able to talk about that and then they gave really great advice about just solve problems. Our job as a business owner is to not focus on what’s going well, but to everyday wake up and focus on what is a problem that needs to be solved today. And then once that problem is solved, go to the next problem. And that tone and that messaging was really around I’m expecting problems. So if I’m expecting the problems, it makes it easier to solve those problems.

And I feel like that’s helpful to me because sometimes it feels like problems are just another nuisance and it should go away, like why do I have all these problems? But it’s just part of the business and the sooner we can get over that and realize that’s just the game we’re playing, it’ll help. It’ll help me at least.

Rob Marsh:  I think part of it is the word problem. Nobody wants problems, but there are things that are broken in everybody’s businesses. Maybe that email link isn’t working right or maybe the lead form isn’t asking the right questions or maybe I’m attracting the wrong client, there’s little things that we could be fixing all the time in our business. And so that approach really appeals to me. But it’s not just in our businesses, if we show up and do that for our clients, we’re helping them solve the little things in their business that aren’t working right, whether they’re problems or concerns or pain points or however you want to talk about them, that is our role as copywriters, as problem solvers. And that helps us show up as strategists and partners so they get more done, more value from the work that we do.

Kira Hug:  Yeah, you’re right, it’s a negative word, problem is not a great word because it kind of brings me down, but that’s exactly what we do for our clients, exactly what we need to do for our own businesses, it’s exactly what we do in our personal lives. It’s like going from solving one problem at home to the next. And it sounds negative when I say it that way, but it’s not negative, it’s just how life plays out. So maybe I just need to talk about it differently, use a different word.

Rob Marsh:  It’s possible. As they were talking about that too though, it got me thinking about the idea of cutting your losses. They went for a full year as they were losing money on that issue in their business. But a lot of us, sometimes we pull out too fast. It is like something’s not working, we’re like, well, I’m done with that, or I’m not going to worry about that. And we move on too fast. And so there’s this process of iteration in our businesses as we try to figure out is this service one that actually my clients want to buy? And there are all kinds of questions. If people aren’t buying, is it because the price is wrong, the offer is off in some way, or maybe I’m talking to the wrong clients and if I’m talking to different clients, but making the same offer, how does that change?

Or maybe the copy is not what it needs to be and I need to say it in a different way so that I’m communicating the value better. Those are kind of the three big levers, list, offer, copy that we all have in our businesses. But oftentimes we’re like, well, it didn’t work, I’m pulling the plug and we haven’t adjusted the offer, or we haven’t tried talking to a different client, or we haven’t changed the copy. So a year might be too long, but giving things time to work or making adjustments I think is a really important part of that problem solving that we do for ourselves and for our clients.

We want to thank Rob and Kennedy for joining us on the podcast to talk about their business and the importance of email marketing for copywriters. If you want to tune into their podcast, you can find the Email Marketing Show wherever you stream your podcast, and we will definitely link to it in the show notes as well. And if you’re interested in learning more about the Think Tank and joining us for one of our upcoming retreats in June and in September, head to to find out more.

Kira Hug:  That’s the end of the episode of the Copywriter Club podcast. The intro music was composed by copywriter and songwriter Addison Rice. The outro was composed by copywriter and songwriter David Muntner. And if you enjoyed this episode, give us a review on Apple Podcasts. We will see you next week.


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