SRF 4: Interview – Ben Willson Shows His Strategy For 50,000 Free Site Visitors In ONE MONTH


ClickFunnels

steve larsen:
All right everybody, hey. I’m super excited for today. This is the first interview that I’ve actually done on, Sales Funnel Radio. It’s actually one of the main reasons that I started this podcast. There’s so many cool, silent, unspoken entrepreneurial heroes out there. I really, I just wanted to go expose a lot of those stories and share with you guys how possible it is to make a profitable sales funnel. Today, I have, actually one of my good friends, Ben Wilson, on the phone here recording. Ben and I actually have quite a history together. I’d say that I first got into sales funnels online with him, doing products with him. Anyway, I’m excited. We want to go through our story a little bit and share with you guys things you guys can do in your own business. Ben, how’s it going?

ben wilson:
Absolutely good, man. Great to be here.

steve larsen:
Awesome, awesome. I was thinking back to the time when you and I first met. That was … We were in college, that was back, what class was that?

ben wilson:
I think we were probably, Marketing 101, something wasting our time.

steve larsen:
Yeah.

ben wilson:
I remember leaning over and you were looking at Stripe, and I was like, “Most kids aren’t looking at Stripe in class. Why is this kid looking at Stripe?” Then I leaned over and I was like, “Hey man, we should totally set up an API for you. We could get that going.” You’re like, “What do you know about Stripe?” I was like, “Yeah, man, I’ve set up Stripe.” That was the start.

steve larsen:
That was the start right there. I remember I was making an e-book.

ben wilson:
Yeah.

steve larsen:
Yeah. That was my first attempt ever at making a landing page on WordPress, and I had spent two days trying to get this stupid theme to do what I wanted it to do. Yeah. That was funny. That project, I think I’ve sold two copies of that thing. It’s on Amazon.

ben wilson:
That was a good book though.

steve larsen:
How did we get together after that though? What did we do? I actually can’t remember. I just remember…

ben wilson:
I think we started bouncing ideas off as to what had done in the past. You started sharing to me about, I don’t think you called it funnels at the time, you really started looking at affiliate marketing, and how to push products online without necessarily being attached. I think, I don’t know if it was a clash, or some type of beautiful art piece. I always got attached, like, “Well, we have to brand it. We have to be attached to some level at what we’re doing.” You’re like, “It doesn’t matter what it is. Let’s do it and we’re moving forward.” Just like a rubber band. Sometimes we’d have the snap, but the snap wasn’t a bad thing. The snap was like, okay, I’ll give up that I don’t have to be that attached. You’re like, “Okay, we can kind of brand it,” and something would actually happen. Then we convinced our teachers.

steve larsen:
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

ben wilson:
I was describing this to someone yesterday. We convinced our teachers that what we were doing was a lot more beneficial.

steve larsen:
Than in class.

ben wilson:
Yes!

steve larsen:
I remember that. That was our internet marketing class itself, man.

ben wilson:
We missed … I mean, we convinced several teachers…

steve larsen:
To not go to class anymore.

ben wilson:
To the class, and they’re … Oh man. I can’t believe we actually pulled that off.

steve larsen:
Me neither. I was thinking about it. We drew up that plan. We got in our internet marketing and they were doing that stupid, SEO old school stuff. We both wanted to shoot ourselves. I noticed you were the other kid in the class that was just pounding their head on the wall. Like, “Oh this crap is so old. It doesn’t work.”

ben wilson:
Yes. I remember they were trying to teach WordPress, and they were like, “How do you do such and such?” I was like, every answer, both of us just raising our hands.

steve larsen:
Yeah.

ben wilson:
I was like, “Do we really have to sit here the entire time and build you a website? Can’t we go build ourselves a website?”

steve larsen:
Yeah. That’s funny. Then we wrote up that plan. It was basically a flow chart for pages.

ben wilson:
Yes!

steve larsen:
He said, “Yeah, go for it. Just bring a deliverable.” Then we started meeting every morning for two or three hours. Way more than the other kids in class were doing it. I remember we made that first affiliate product. I think it was, Click Bank. Right?

ben wilson:
[inaudible 00:05:00] was it? Was our first one the weight loss supplements?

steve larsen:
It was something like … No, no, it was the social media producer thing. We put a landing page together using some guys weird generator and put 50 bucks on it and woke up the next morning, saw that 50 bucks had come back, and I was like, “Holy crap! We didn’t lose money!” We got 17 people to opt in, and we sold it.

ben wilson:
I was so stoked the moment we didn’t lose money. That was the first accomplishments of, like, no way!

steve larsen:
How did we get with Paul Mitchell after that though?

ben wilson:
I think he was assigned to our class, and I had to go over …

steve larsen:
That’s right, you closed him.

ben wilson:
He was trying to do something with Facebook, and I noticed he had a lot more other issues than trying to do Facebook advertising through our class. Then we had an assignment that was to get 10 people to fill out the survey. You and I looked at each other like, “We could get a lot more than 10 people, but I’m not calling anyone.” Right? Let’s think hard of a way to get a lot more people. I think there ended up being, was there 1100 people we got to take the survey?

steve larsen:
Yeah. Everyone else got 100 or something.

ben wilson:
Yeah. I think they called their 10 people.

steve larsen:
Yep.

ben wilson:
Yeah.

steve larsen:
That was hilarious. Then we started driving traffic for them. Which, I can’t believe we did that. Oh, and then the Argenis Project.

ben wilson:
Argenis. You and I were out for what, 72 hours straight building a website, and then come to find out, the guy didn’t even mention his website that we had built for him after being asked by him to build this website.

steve larsen:
Gosh, that whole thing was so weird.

ben wilson:
We were like, “There’s a million people watching right now, and the only way you’re going to further your career is by sending people to this website, and you got 2 hours to do it.” We sat, I sat, we sat there and even Paul Mitchell watching. They’re like, “Okay, any time now, any time now.”

steve larsen:
Mention, just say the URL, just say, and he never did.

ben wilson:
We’re like, “We do not have to run any type of funnels. If you just by chance mention this email address that you paid $1800 for, if you could just mention it once.”

steve larsen:
It would be great. Those of you who are listening, Paul Mitchell asked us to come build out … They basically said, “Hey, we’re getting on tv in 2 days, we need a website people can go to, and we need a lead capture system and all this stuff.” This was … Just mapping the same time, this was when ClickFunnels was still in beta. It was a while ago. It was way longer than that ago. Man, how long ago was that? That was 2 or 3 years ago now wasn’t it?

ben wilson:
We’re coming up on … I mean, it’s been 18 months since I graduated, and that was before my last semester. Yeah, at least 2 years.

steve larsen:
Yeah, yeah. Paul Mitchell, they hired us … I think we’re okay. I’m going to say names. This is a while ago now. They wouldn’t pay us, and this is what I love about Ben. Ben looked over at me, and I can’t remember the exact phrase. You know, I won’t say the phrase he said, but you had this crazy look in your eye. You’re like, “Dude, I’m going to go put one period in their code.” I was like, “What?” I remember just watching you, and we were in the library on campus. You opened up the back end code, and you put one period in their PHP, in their code, and it white screened the entire website. I was like, “This kids a cowboy. This is awesome!”

ben wilson:
Like, that’s it. Your website’s done. You’re not paying us, you don’t get our benefit. Then, we set out to make Beauty School Index.

steve larsen:
Yeah.

ben wilson:
Do you remember that?

steve larsen:
Yeah.

ben wilson:
We were like, “We’re just going to just give out free leads to every other beauty school for free, and not Paul Mitchell.”

steve larsen:
We scraped 100, what was it like, 1,000 email addresses for them?

ben wilson:
A thousand email addresses. We ran a campaign to get beauty schools on board with us of how we were going to give them free leads. Our open rate was through the roof.

steve larsen:
We did a 77% open rate.

ben wilson:
Yeah, and we had a really big return. We asked people to fill out questions. I don’t even remember the questions. I remember you coming back and being like, “We got to get them involved and we need their feedback. That way they’re contributing and they’re loyal to whatever we’re going to do for them. That way they value the leads that we give them.” I think one of them was, How is it, or what are you struggling with and how can we help you?

steve larsen:
Yeah.

ben wilson:
That’s everything we have been doing, and everything I do now always stem from that question that you ask them. We’ve got to provide a value, so if we listen to them, they’re a lot more loyal. We’re like, if that’s what you want, let’s give it to you.

steve larsen:
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

ben wilson:
It started from there, and then I moved to Colorado, and it seemed out of sight and out of mind. That’s where my life got dark Steven. No longer with you.

steve larsen:
I got obsessed with sales funnels at that time, and I started dueling for different companies in the area. That was good times man. Talk about a walk down memory lane there. That’s awesome. Now you, I mean, it’s funny. I can’t remember, you sent a message over and asked if I’d look at this site. I was wondering if you could just tell everyone who’s listening right now a little bit about your website, and what is it you do, and how you came about with that. It’s pretty genius. At first, it was like, I had never heard of it, and then you were like, “Oh I have 2,000 subscribers a week later.” Oh, now we’ve made a butt load of money already and not spend a dollar on ads. It’s like, what the heck. I thought it would be kind of cool if you want, this is totally your brag moment. Just tell what happened.

ben wilson:
No, you’re good. It’s similar, I guess backtrack a bit. Steven and I also once … Remember when we launched SWOG… Some of it stemmed from that. There’s this new concept of Trilify stemmed from what we were doing at SWOG when you and I came up with a business, entered into a business competition, and we’ve really been doing it for a week and half. A lot of it was just driving traffic and getting, running people through a certain type of funnel which is so funny because it wasn’t … Neither of us knew what ClickFunnels, at least I didn’t and I didn’t never think of it necessarily like ClickFunnels, but everything at the time was exactly what is going on at ClickFunnels. We were running people through a certain cycle getting a certain amount of information each time. That way there was creating this loyalty. Similar process as to what you and I were doing with SWOG, is running through certain sales cycles.

The concept is only running through affiliates. Affiliates, typically there is the affiliate program that you send out, and anyone can join and sign up.

steve larsen:
Mm-hmm (affirmative)-

ben wilson:
Where as, what we’re doing is approaching…

steve larsen:
Like, specific ones?

ben wilson:
Very specific people who have followers already. Right? When they send out a tweet, they’ve already gained a genuine sincere following. We don’t have to worry about traffic when they send out tweets, or a Facebook post, or making a YouTube video, or anything of that nature because they already have the followers. There’s a certain amount of followers that we’re trying to gather as well as a certain age group of people who haven’t done affiliate marketing, they’re not seeking to only do affiliate marketing. We’re looking at it at a more of a, how do we provide value to them? They don’t recognize how much value they can provide.

Millennials are a perfect target because a lot of them are seeking more fame and if they can get fame and money without having to go through the typical college and Corporate America, and they can continue doing and being famous, even it’s to several thousand people, they still consider themselves like a taste-maker. We look at those people, try to run some ways of how can we provide value. A lot of it is creating a brand for them or running through certain memorabilia designs that they don’t have to worry about their backend. It’s like an agency coming to a talent and saying, you keep doing you, and send people to your new “Websites.” This is what’s going to drive a lot of traffic.

We just launched on June 9th.

steve larsen:
Just a month ago?

ben wilson:
Just a month ago. Came up with a concept and 3 weeks later we just threw together a Shopify because we didn’t have to deal with PCI compliance.

steve larsen:
Sure, sure.

ben wilson:
Or any of the other reasons of our design. Easily threw it together, found a bunch of products that we could have drop shipped that looked pretty cool that we didn’t have to necessarily have any products on hand. We weren’t going to lose out on any up-front costs. It was simply, “Hey, it’s brand new. It’s going to take 3 weeks to get to you, and we’re sending it to you from our Chinese suppliers.”

steve larsen:
Right.

ben wilson:
Which was the beauty behind it. Suddenly everyone didn’t have to care about Trilify, they cared about the person, and the person who had a brand within Trilify.

steve larsen:
You effectively have gone, and you created an e-commerce store, based around clothing that is totally outsourced to China?

ben wilson:
Completely.

steve larsen:
That’s amazing, dude.

ben wilson:
Completely. We’ve got no products on hand, and we don’t have any storage cost. We’re not shipping anything, we’re not wasting our time.

steve larsen:
So it’s a huge drop ship operation basically?

ben wilson:
Completely. Now, we could definitely make a lot more money per product if we were to buy upfront. However, we also had, we wanted to come out with a hundred products and then start narrowing down, and then selecting which products are being purchased and obviously moving forward looking at finding a new fulfillment service that we could buy in bulk and then have someone else fulfill it. We’re run … We’ll scale it as it needs to be but, we had a hypothesis of how much traffic would come, and our traffic was a lot more than we thought we had. We ended up doing 50,000 by the end of the month.

steve larsen:
50,000 people?

ben wilson:
50,000 people off of 1 tweet and 1 Instagram post. That was simply it.

steve larsen:
Wow.

ben wilson:
From there, all we were doing was, we needed ways to capture peoples information, filled up a MailChimp account within a week. That was when I called you. I didn’t actually ever run into that issue before of not necessarily … We had a lot of names before, we had a lot of information. We just had it on hand and we had scraped it and stuff.

steve larsen:
Right.

ben wilson:
More so of, I’ve got to now start dumping names out of this because I’m not, I don’t want to start paying for MailChimp quite yet.

steve larsen:
Right.

ben wilson:
I was just exporting names so that I could continuing running a map free account. We’re up to 10,000 names at the moment of emails, of people who’ve opted in.

steve larsen:
10,000? Dude, a few weeks ago, you were like, “Dude, we’re already at 2,000 subscribers.” You’ve grabbed 8 more thousand subscribers in the past 2 weeks, or whatever?

ben wilson:
Correct, yeah.

steve larsen:
Oh my gosh. Man, that’s amazing. Okay, so you’re “attracting,” people through authority figures. Pulling them in and then … What’s causing someone to subscribe?

ben wilson:
We want all of our, I’m going to call them a brand ambassador, that’s probably the best way to say it. We want all of our brand ambassadors to take ownership of what they’re doing. That way it’s not a 26 year old guy behind the computer who’s actually running. I got 2 other guys that are running this with me, and one’s in production, and the other is an actual talent agent so it’s a lot easier to contact a lot of these people because he’s got the experience.

steve larsen:
Right.

ben wilson:
He knows what to say. We run through and have all of them take full ownership. This is something that they created, therefore, when they send people over to the sites, and there’s this taste of that person. Right? This goes back to that branding. It’s got to be branded.

steve larsen:
Right.

ben wilson:
Everything comes back to how this person is perceived by their audience and not how they think they are perceived.

steve larsen:
Interesting.

ben wilson:
It might be a little confusing so we look at, what is this person actually wearing in their posts? What is that they are into? Then, find similar pictures that we can gather to create the same aura, so it’s another, on the social media means to finding more information about this person, or how this person that they already admire, that they can further their knowledge of someone that they look up to. That’s kind of the approach behind it.

steve larsen:
You go and you … What are you asking for, I guess what are you giving for someone to subscribe. You know what I mean? What’s causing them to subscribe. From the 50,000 that have hit so far, I’m sure it’s way more than that now and 10,000 subscribe, what’s causing them to do that?

Just to follow you?

ben wilson:
Literally, yeah. 10% off, and it says something quirky that probably a millennial would be really attracted to. Right? They’re looking at this thinking, “This person I admire who’s 18 years old, what’s their lingo?” The lingo that pops up right away is, we’ve got an A/B split test. One of them is, “Let’s be BFF’s. Sign up here and we’ll shoot you a 10% off discount on your purchase.” The other one, a little more risque, but I like it. Which is working is, it pops up and says, “Let’s be friends with benefits.” It also has a 10% off discount. That one is killing it.

steve larsen:
These people are signing up for a 10% discount. That’s not only saying, A: Follow us and we’ll give you cool stuff. A 10% discount is implying that they’re going to make a purchase in the future obviously, very near future. You’re really knocking out more than one bird with the same stone. That’s amazing.

ben wilson:
Yeah. They’ve all got on a drip campaign. We’ve got a … Shopify is really nice, and I know ClickFunnels does a lot of similar things where you can do other affiliates, or similar products, or similar brands, and you can keep sending people to where they want to go. Right? Listen to where people want, follow their clicks, understand your analytics. We set up cross sales and up-sales where people are purchasing certain products with, and they’re looking at other products.

steve larsen:
Right.

ben wilson:
Everything is an up-sale and that’s really where we’re making a lot of headway is it’s all in the up-seller, it’s moving people through a funnel.

steve larsen:
Yep.

ben wilson:
If they have a … In a cart, we send out an abandoned cart. If they didn’t do it from there, I would figure out what products that they had. All of this, there’s a lot of programs out there that can help you understand what your customers want, and you just have to listen and find out ways to remind them as to what they came for initially.

steve larsen:
Absolutely. There’s a, I can’t remember if it’s called the secret formula or what Russell Brunson calls it, but he said, “Basically all you need to do is find a raving niche who is willing and able to make purchases and then just give them that thing.” It’s as simple as that. It’s not that hard, especially online. You create these virtual pieces of real estate and they just work for you. That’s amazing. Do you mind, if I ask sales? Things like that, like numbers?

ben wilson:
Yeah, go for it.

steve larsen:
Of the people that are coming in, what percent are opting in right now?

ben wilson:
Percentage wise, it’s low.

steve larsen:
Okay.

ben wilson:
Which is the humble pie I’m eating at the moment. I know it should be a lot better. We’ve had … Dealing with Chinese manufacturers is a lot more time consuming than I initially thought. That’s where I’ve got a lot of time. In this regard, out of … Boy, percentage is dramatically low. If we’ve had 10,000 people who have opted in, we’ve had 50,000 to the site.

steve larsen:
So, 20%?

ben wilson:
20% which…

steve larsen:
That’s awesome.

ben wilson:
That should be better, Steven.

steve larsen:
I mean, it should be, but when you think about other industries and … People get stoked. Most people have a 5% off on their rate, 20% is crushing it dude. I mean that really is awesome.

ben wilson:
I appreciate the lift up, I need that. Definitely, I know … You know when you are doing something, and you’re like, man, there’s so much more I could be doing?

steve larsen:
Yes.

ben wilson:
That’s I guess where the justification comes from. Definitely, 20%’s a good number in looking at what the rate is, but it’s always that inner feeling. You’ve definitely got to trust that movement of flight. I could be doing more to convert.

steve larsen:
How many customers, purchasing customers have you had?

ben wilson:
We’ve had 175 as of yesterday.

steve larsen:
175 customers purchased … I’m pulling out my calculator on the phone because my brain doesn’t do all those numbers.

ben wilson:
That’s okay.

steve larsen:
Here we go. That’s awesome. From all the subscribers, the people that actually do subscribe, you have about a 2% conversion rate. That’s good.

ben wilson:
Yeah.

steve larsen:
I know you look at it and say, we need to do better, but you’re not even paying for traffic, man. That’s amazing. That’s what blows my mind about this. You have a 10,000 person list. I mean, you go drop an email to those people, 2% go and purchase, and you make all this money on the backend also after you acquire the customer. That’s amazing.

ben wilson:
I appreciate it. Yeah. We’re starting to run some more campaigns on testing single products as oppose to just sending people to the whole store itself.

steve larsen:
Yeah.

ben wilson:
Which we’re really excited about launching. We’ve got something coming out this Thursday, which is more of this memorabilia take on the individual, like you would going to a concert. Right?

steve larsen:
Right.

ben wilson:
We’re testing out the single product that’s more branded and specifically to the person with their name on it. We’re excited to see if that changes anything. If the name now suddenly on the clothing as oppose to just similar items of clothing that the person wears.

steve larsen:
Yeah.

ben wilson:
We may have to do a round 2, Steven.

steve larsen:
Yeah.

ben wilson:
Thursday.

steve larsen:
That would be awesome. That would be awesome. It’s trilify.com, right?

ben wilson:
Trilify with one L. T-R-I-L-I-F-Y.

steve larsen:
Okay.

ben wilson:
.com.

steve larsen:
Trilify.com.

ben wilson:
At the moment it’s just at an MVP. It’s just testing out for our, I guess our test run of an individual person, and then we’ve got a lot more affiliates in the pipeline who are watching what we’re doing. We’re keeping them up-to-date as to how we’re doing it, and that gets them excited. They can see that we, that their influence is going to provide them with a lot more sustainable of a future with the amount of followers and they can continue doing what they love doing with us basically running the show.

steve larsen:
Yeah.

ben wilson:
Yeah.

steve larsen:
That’s amazing. I’m looking at the site right now. I mean, this is fantastic. It looks really good. Yeah, definitely applies to or appeals to millennials and what they love and stuff also. Do you know what the average cart value is for someone who purchases?

ben wilson:
We’re running an average of $40 a purchase.

steve larsen:
Oh my gosh. That’s so cool.

ben wilson:
Our hypothesis, or our reasoning I guess, within our justification of why we think it’s 40 is we set free shipping at $35.

steve larsen:
Okay.

ben wilson:
Which is pretty low, but yet again, our average purchase is $40. We think a lot of people are taking advantage. We’re going to start creeping that number up and seeing if that actually changes and test the hypothesis that, that is the reason why the average is up. I mean, it can really only benefit us if we can average each purchase to $45 or even 50 and start seeing if that’s going to move any further purchases.

steve larsen:
That’s awesome. That’d be an interesting split test and this is super cool. I just want to recap just in case, because I get close to projects and I forget the coolness of them or something like that. You got 50,000 people by asking 2 people to drop a tweet and something else, right?

ben wilson:
The same person.

steve larsen:
The same person? You’re out there tweeting people.

ben wilson:
An Instagram post, yeah.

steve larsen:
10,000 opt in, you get a 175 purchase, average cart value of 40 bucks, so you’ve pulled around 7 grand for this thing and you haven’t paid a dime in advertising. This is the classic awesome story. It’s cool.

ben wilson:
I appreciate that. We’re excited. we’re testing each social media to see what kind of pull. Learning Instagram, at least of what we’ve seen is that there’s not as much traffic. We’ve got a speculation it’s because there isn’t a link. Sometimes, or link in each picture. It’s in the bio. Then at the same time, we also figured out that there isn’t as much text that goes below. If you’re describing the pictures that you have posted, we’ve learned put it in the first sentence, in the first line if you’re going to try to get someone to do something. Below that, they typically won’t see it in their feed. Twitter has driven most of our traffic which was more surprising than we initially thought. We’re excited to, like I said, we’re also dropping a vine and a YouTube to see how that affects our traffic as well.

steve larsen:
That’s awesome. Hey, I don’t want to take all your time. I just want to thank you for this. This is fantastic. Guys, this is Ben Wilson. After one month, one month! People try forever to get profitable, and after one month he’s got this awesome result and awesome site. I guess, where can people head? It’s trilify.com. Go ahead and opt in and you can see his sales process. Ben, I want to thank you for this. This has been awesome.

ben wilson:
Absolutely, man. Glad I could come chat and reminisce about the good ole times, man. Definitely miss those time for sure.

steve larsen:
I look forward to seeing your face all over The Wall Street Journal, soon.

ben wilson:
It’ll be the millennial Journal.

steve larsen:
Awesome, man. Thanks so much. We’ll talk to you later.

ben wilson:
Absolutely, dude. Bye.

ClickFunnels

Related Posts

03 Sep , 2016

SFR 3: Shakin’ My Stalker – Prolific Style:)

30 Apr , 2017

SFR 47: Entrepreneurial Cleanse

20 Nov , 2016

SFR 22: …quick, hide! VC Funding Is Lurking Just Outside…

27 Oct , 2016

SFR 16: My Entrepreneurial Bloodline… I think… (What’s Yours?)

GET AHEAD IN YOUR INDUSTRY WITH A COPY OF THIS WEBSITE!

This Website Took Me About 200+ Hours To Make. I Want To Give It To You FOR FREE! Where Should I Send The Download Link?..
100% Total Privacy. I Don't Spam You!

Join awesome people.

I'm a family guy in my late 20's who learned how to sell more by building sales funnels. During college I created my own business helping businesses with their sales funnels. Quickly, I realized that I was onto something. My clients sold more, worked less for the sale, and their customers were being served more. Since internet sales funnels are only now getting the light they deserve, I actively look for ways to fill the world with more of them. Learn more about me here.

LeadPages
Salesfunnelbroker
%d bloggers like this: