Chris Davis Makes Marketing and Business Automation Accessible

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In this LMScast episode Chris Davis shares several insights and tips for entrepreneurs and business owners. He discuss about marketing and business automation.

Chris Davis is the founder of Automation Bridge, an online education platform that offers training and resources for entrepreneurs and business owners looking to automate their marketing and sales processes. He is an experienced marketer and sales automation expert.

Chris Davis talks about how he realized the need to meet people where they are in terms of automation and not just talk at them with jargon. He emphasizes the importance of humility and aligning with the mission of education.

He also talk about the digital marketing landscape, the email automation landscape, and the marketing automation landscape, and how the industry is just getting comfortable with the idea of email and automation using Active Campaign and other tools.

Chris Davis explains his mission of making automation accessible by equipping the industry with the right technologies and aligning with his mission of education.

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Episode Transcript

Chris Badgett: You’ve come to the right place If you’re looking to create, launch, and scale a high value online training program, I’m your guide, Chris Badgett. I’m the co-founder of lifter l m s, the most powerful learning management system for WordPress. State of the end, I’ve got something special for you. Enjoy the show.

Hello, and welcome back to another episode of LMSCast. I’m joined by a special guest. His name is Chris Davis. He’s from automation We’re gonna talk about some of my favorite topics, and I know Chris is as well. You’ve got two Chrises here who both love marketing. They both love marketing automation. They both love WordPress. Welcome to the show. Chris.

Chris Davis: Chris, thank you for having me. I have been looking forward to this since I put it on your calendar, man. And we, we actually got started before you hit record, like on accident. It is just, I’m, I’m just so excited. Just started oozing out, man.

Chris Badgett: Well, I’m a, I’m a mission and vision guy like you are. And you know, my life mission is my company mission, which is to lift up others through education. Mm-Hmm. , yours is to make automation accessible. How do you do that?

Chris Davis: Yes, yes. So, so Chris, this was, this is a story of humility . Okay? Okay. And by that I say, you know, when you become an expert in your respective space, so for me, that’s marketing automation. I’ve worked for active campaign, I’ve done marketing automation at a high level for other startups to help them raise millions in capital. You get use to what others would look at. Unbelievable.

And super duper becomes the norm to you. Mm-Hmm. , right? And if you’re not careful, Chris, what you’ll do is you’ll go into the market with that mentality and you’ll talk at people, Hey, this is what you should be doing. This is what you could be doing. And, and they’ll love it cuz they’re like, yes, I want to do that. Ow, , you’re right. And then you, you leave them with this excitement, but you, they can’t really do anything with it.

And I realized that that’s what I was doing. And when, when I say humility is because when I, when I assess myself, there was a bit of pride in there to show people how much I know and show off automation. And I really had to say, you know what? Let me slow down and meet people where they’re, where they’re at. When I looked across the market, the, the digital marketing landscape, and then I looked at the email automation landscape and then the marketing automation landscape, right?

So real quick, digital marketing is the umbrella of all marketing online. Then you have email automation under that umbrella in marketing automation under that umbrella too. And I looked at those respective spaces and I saw that the industry is really just now, Chris, getting comfortable with the idea of email and automation. And, and, and I’ll prove it, he, here’s why. Because you now see platforms like MailChimp, that is a email marketing platform, offer automation, right? Finally, but they.

Chris Badgett: Right?

Chris Davis: Right. Finally, and their version of it is the automation of email sending. They’re not giving you, now you take that, we’ve got email automation, and you go to marketing automation with a platforms like Active Campaign where they do everything that MailChimp does, but they empower you with a much more robust automation experience and much more capabilities, right? So I look at that and I, from all my time working at Active Campaign, seeing how confused the users were.

I thought Active Campaign was fairly simple software, honestly. But I come from Infusion Soft Days where things were super complicated. So context there, and if you’re confused on this platform, that should be easy. And people still aren’t emailing effectively. But the email marketing platforms are telling you to not just email Automate, but they don’t want you to fully automate because they know that’ll be too confusing.

It hit me and said, well, wait a minute. I’m, I’m too far. I need to go to where the people are. People are just now getting comfortable with sending emails and then some automation of that sending of emails. So that’s where the entire mission of making automation accessible is that I said to myself, we are gonna be a company that no matter how much we know, we are going to meet the industry, we’re gonna meet our audience where they’re at and equip them with what they need immediately.

Right? Now, the benefit is the immediate equipping will scale. That’s, that’s the bonus, right? That’s where I get to use my superpower, Chris, right? And know, okay, I’ve seen scale. So what I’m recommending today will probably work not just today, but tomorrow and the tomorrow after that. But I’ve gotta make it accessible. So, so that’s one part, right?

Is meeting them where they’re at and, and, and equipping them with the right technologies. The second part is align with your mission, and that’s education. I, I have a, a voice that I’m working on amplifying, by the way. But it is a voice of agnostic reasoning. I’m, I’m in nobody’s pocket, particularly in terms of software, but I have to do, I have to partner, do better partnering with softwares like yourself to give you all that amplified voice so that people understand what’s available to them. That’s the second part of making it accessible. So that’s where it came from. That’s what it means. And that, that’s what we’re committed to. Man.

Chris Badgett: That’s awesome. I love that. And it, you know, I re I re resonate with the story where you’re an early adopter. Like, I remember when lead Pages first launched and you know, I was early in the Infusionsoft community as well, and when you’re an early adopter, all of a sudden one day you end up with all these fancy terms and you’re in this room with just a small group of people that are talking about automated funnels and this and that, and then, but like, the market’s out there and they’re, they haven’t even heard about it yet.

That’s true. So that’s a, that’s a really cool insight you had. And my hat’s off to you as an early adopter and an innovator, but you’re right, the big opportunity is the, the rest of the curve, the majority of people and business owners and stuff out there.

Chris Davis: Absolutely. Absolutely.

Chris Badgett: Can you you touched on it a little bit, but can you expand on what you were saying? There’s email marketing and then marketing automation. How are those different? Like Yeah, yeah. Specifically the marketing automation piece.

Chris Davis: Yeah. Yeah. And, and this is, I, I love talking about this cuz part of my mission with education and I, I, I just released a podcast about it, is now what happens is when people are confused, they conflate. Okay, okay. So when, I don’t know what’s

Chris Badgett: The difference between

Chris Davis: Email marketing, email automation, marketing automation, I conflate it to one word. Automation.

Chris Badgett: Okay.

Chris Davis: Now I can throw this word, this blanket word

Chris Davis: Out there, and hopefully it covers everything.

Chris Badgett: I’m just gonna automate my business, right?

Chris Davis: That’s it.

Chris Badgett: Yeah. Right?

Chris Davis: But what part, what part are we talking about? There’s many parts of, of your Business. Yeah. So a big portion of what I do is breaking down and, and, and, and com compartmentalizing what these things mean. So this is one of my favorite ones. So we’ll start with email marketing. Email marketing is the process of using email to market your, your, your products, right?

So we know that as building a list, the database of people that we can send emails to, and this is where email blasts come from and things of that nature. Automation at that level is essentially an autoresponder. Somebody opts in and they get a series of emails. We call ’em drip campaigns now and all of this, but it’s an autoresponder, it’s nothing new. Marketers took it from like Outlook outta office responders, right? and said, Hey, what if we added More emails to that and put it in the software?

We’ve got whole new software, right? So that’s email marketing, beginning and end as we have known it to be. It’s expanded a bit. Now where you have some tagging they may allow you to collect more custom fields, but usually it’s focused on getting an email address and sending emails to that email address, right? Then you say, okay, we’ve migrated from that. So that would be like our mail Chimps AWeber historically AWeber, eye contacts, vertical response, you know, things like that.

Constant Contact. If you look back three, four years ago, that’s exactly what they were. Now, I don’t see too many people playing in the email marketing space. Chris. All of these platforms have really migrated to the email automation space. And what that means is they’re realizing we need to give people more than just sending emails. And the first, the first two platforms that I saw do this a few years ago was Get Response.

Get Response was the first one that went from email marketing to email automation. Now they’re trying to do marketing automation and Convert Kit. Mm-Hmm. . Those were the two that came out the gate and was just like, Hey, look. And then shortly thereafter, that Drip came on the, on the scene with email automation. And what they did was they expanded a bit of the information that you could capture and what you could do, the automation that you can do with it.

So now I’m not limited to just maybe a auto-responder series. Perhaps I can have some dynamic on and off, like send people between automation series, if they finish one, send them to another one, right? If they’ve already done this one, don’t send it again. I’ve got more capabilities, right? Automation in, in a sense, right? However, I’m still limited to the management of the contacts that I’m capturing.

And the reason being is because the only proper way to manage contacts effectively is to use C R M software. So the introduction of the, the intersection, I should say, of C R M software and email automation is where marketing automation takes place. All right? It takes that email automation and says, Hey, let me ize you with c R M software. Now watch this, Chris. Now that you have a proper way to store your contacts, much more information to capture, now you can do way more automation.

Now we’re talking about marketing automation, not just email, because I can now automate sending a text message. I can now automate some internal things that maybe the customer never sees. Adding a note, adding a tag that triggers something else, that notifies someone and then they do something. I’ve got this whole backend orchestra that I can’t establish with email marketing or email automation. Now, I’m not here to tell you one is greater than the other. Your business needs and the stage of where your business is at is gonna determine which one you need. Myspace is the marketing automation space.

Chris Badgett: You mentioned your podcast, it’s called the All Systems Go Podcast. So if you’re listening to this, go load up some episodes of that. Yes. What, what I kind of have a brain like yours where when I look at a business, I can start seeing the gears and like, what am I gonna automate? What am I not gonna automate? Like, what’s this machine I want to try to build? And yeah, I know it won’t be perfect and I’ll make some mistakes and I’ll have to tweak it. It’s always a work in progress.

But I know for myself and a lot of people in, in the space, sometimes they especially in the early days, they make a lot of mistakes when building that marketing automation machine. What advice do you have around systems thinking or design Yes. To help people approach this animal without wasting a bunch of time or over complicating it or underdoing it.

Chris Davis: Yep. Chris, this is, oh my gosh, this answer is gonna sound so contradictory. It’s painful every time I say it, but they say it’s tight, but it’s right. Mm-Hmm. . And what I tell people is this automation is emulation. What is automation emulating? It’s emulating those tiresome but required tasks that are required to run your business. So what do I, oh, I’m embracing myself to say it. What do I tell people is the first thing you need to do? Go waste your time,

Chris Badgett: Yeah, it’s true. It’s true.

Chris Davis: That’s, and, and that one’s a heavy one that just sits. Cuz nobody wants to do that, Chris. Everybody wants to jump straight into automation. Hey, let’s time more money go waste your time. You have to figure, you have to feel the pain of the processes, Chris, right? You have to, oh, every day I’ve gotta log in and export this C S V and import it over here. Oh, this is so ti All right?

Once you’ve understood what all of the processes are and you feel that pain, you’ve wasted your time. The only way to waste time is to know the value of it. So, in the beginning, Chris, most people don’t even know the value of the time. So watch this. If I don’t value my time, I can’t properly value automation. Because one of the gifts of automation, the big gift is not money.

It’s time. Literally. It’s time. And for those who know, time is money, right? Automation gives you the gift of your time, but if you don’t value your time, you then have a cheapened respect and honor for automation. So you’ll go and buy the latest app AppSumo technology, you’ll, you’ll, you’ll go and just do what the cheapest marketing product says do. And the best sales funnel that you can buy for $30 off theme forest or something like that, right? You have no respect for your time.

So if you don’t respect your time, you can’t respect automation that’s gonna give you more of the thing you don’t respect , right? So go waste your time, and by wasting it, you’ll find value in it and say, you know what? I can’t afford to do this anymore. I I can’t keep operating like this, but I need to get this done. Now it’s time to have a conversation. Now it’s time to think about automating some stuff.

Chris Badgett: I love that I give, you know, I talk to a lot of course creators and coaches, and I often give the advice of put your to new ones, especially without an audience. Or they’re just getting started to put their phone number, their, their real cell phone number on the website and , you know, and let people call you. And ooh, and even even on lifter l m s, we had, I mean, you can get these services to run it through a one 800 number.

But we, we had a number on our site, like for so long that rang my cell phone directly. And it’s through that the market told me, all right, this is the 10th time I’m doing this time to build some automation or make, but you gotta hear the voice of the customer. If you’re just like an inventor and you’re like, oh, wouldn’t that be cool? Oh, wouldn’t that be cool? How you get a little messy? Right?

Chris Davis: Yep. I love that, Chris, because for someone like myself, I’m a, I’m a overthinker. I’m, I’m, I’m always thinking, and I’m an over builder mm-hmm. . So I always vacillate between, Hmm, should I build this to, oh, did I build enough, right? That that’s my life, man. Yeah. And, and discipline and business and success has taught me b, my first version, it’s okay, don’t, Chris, don’t you touch it unless it proves that it needs more, right? So that a lot of times that’s what we have to do is it’s okay to your point, if you have a capture system to where all the leads go to you personally in the beginning, right? Yeah. Work that until it exhausts you, it’s.

Chris Badgett: A good problem to have.

Chris Davis: Right? It’s a great problem to have. But Chris, watch this. What if I, what reverse it? What if I spend all this money in this fancy funnel and this, this and that, and all this automation on the back end and no leads are coming in?

Chris Badgett: Yeah, that’s a waste of time, right?

Chris Davis: No waste of time. So go have the problem, create the problem that automation will solve for you if your phone is ringing every hour on the hour, all right, now we’re ready for some automated team support on the back end. Maybe those 1-800-NUMBERS do some routing, some questions up front you, you know? Yeah. But a lot of times it’s premature and it, and it comes from the conflation of the word automation and the sloppiness around the teaching and implementation of it.

Let me say the expectations around it. People are now starting to use it as industry jargon to get into your pockets. And what they ex, what they’re doing is they’re becoming profitable off your ignorance. And that’s just not right. So what we can do is remove the ignorance. It’s gonna hurt the profit of those who were making money off of your ignorance, but it’s gonna put you in a position to where you can properly grow your business through the use of applying technology to your processes that are ne necessary in producing a profit to truly get the full, the full experience of automation.

Chris Badgett: That’s awesome. I wanna ask a, a more detailed question. I was on your website and I was checking out the automation checklist, which is something we call like a lead magnet. Somebody enters their email and they get the checklist. It’s a pdf, but so if somebody, if you’re a course creator and you’re doing this kind of top of the funnel lead magnet thing and they get the checklist, how long should a nurture sequence go?

I get asked this question a lot, and I’m, I’m an overbuild, I’ll, I’ll put a year’s worth of emails in there. Yep. Yep. But I guess more broadly, when it comes to a nurture campaign Yep. How long should it go? And how should we think about it? Like strategically?

Chris Davis: Yeah. So, so embrace yourselves again for this one. Yeah. it should never end

Chris Badgett: Okay?

Chris Davis: It should never, now, wait a minute. Every slow, whoa, whoa, whoa. I felt it, Chris, I felt your audience judging me real quick. Hold on, on, let me explain , time out. Time out. Let me explain myself. This is what I mean. You have what I call that is a follow-up framework, and there are different phases in the follow-up framework, right? Mm-Hmm. , your initial phase is delivery. That means whatever that person asks for, get it to them.

Chris Badgett: Yeah.

Chris Davis: Once they’ve received it. And, and the, the logic behind how to do this, I call it my single double once and only once they’ve received and engaged with it, do you then activate the next phase, which is your follow up, your lead magnet follow up. Now, this is usually what I like to do, Chris, is three to five email sequence relative to what you opted into to connect whatever the next step is.

I want you to take mm-hmm. . So for me I’ve got, I do have a five point automation checklist. From there, let’s say I wanted you to subscribe to my podcast. So with those three to five emails, I will be using what I’m mentioning in the five point automation checklist and connecting the dots. So you can see that the next step to subscribe to the podcast is like a no-brainer.

Right? Now, that’s my framework, three to five emails for that next phase. Okay? What’s the next phase? The, the phase after that is a transitionary phase. I’ve heard this be called other things by other marketers, but what essentially it is, is saying, Hey, look, I’m now transitioning from talking about that thing that you just opted in for. And the thing that I want you to do, I still want you to do it, but I’m gonna transition a bit. I’m no longer gonna talk about that thing, but I’m gonna continue to send you valuable information actually about more things than, than, than just this one thing too.

Right? So it’s a what to expect going forward email, right? So or one to two emails of that. And then the final phase is your long-term nurture. This is what I mean. It never ends. You, you’ve gotta have some kind of nurture campaign, whether it’s weekly, monthly, or whatever the frequency in your business is, where you’re always staying on top of mine until somebody says, I no longer want to hear from you in they unsubscribe.

Chris Badgett: I’ve seen people write our email list for two years before they buy something. Like it happens Yes. All the time. Now watch this. And I say, six months is the normal for us.

Chris Davis: Yes. Now, do you feel that? Do you, do you, at time you’re like, man, they’ve been on my list for four months,

Chris Badgett: Is just, yeah. Right? Yeah.

Chris Davis: You don’t feel any of it because you’ve done your due diligence and you have your nurture built in. So they come around when they’re ready to come around.

Chris Badgett: Yeah. And podcasting, you mentioned you have a podcast again, it’s the also some SCO podcast. Yes. Sometimes I’ll get on the phone with somebody or on a Zoom call and they’ll be like, I’ve been listening to your podcast for like five years and I got a couple questions for you. And I’m like, this is awesome. Like, just because you don’t hear anything coming back at you, you can’t always track everything, is what I’m saying that Yeah. It’s still, still works. It’s still out there.

Chris Davis: Yeah.

Chris Badgett: Can you give us some tips on designing that? You mentioned like there’s the lead magnet, and then maybe you want to get him on the podcast, and then maybe there’s this customer journey or whatever you you want to call it. Yeah. How do you design that and map that out? Are you a big whiteboard guy, or how do you figure out what that is?

Chris Davis: Huge, huge, Chris. So what I’ve done is I’m, so I’ve got a big whiteboard on my wall over here that’s like the majority of my wall. And then two is I can’t be limited to my office for a whiteboard. So I also have like, note taking apps on my iPad that emulates a whiteboard. Okay. So I I I’m a analog first individual.

So analog first and end first. So I always start analog, and I always start with the end in mind. Stephen Covey, begin with the end in mind. Seven habits, a highly effective people. When you apply that to, to, to marketing and business, what is the product that I essentially want people to buy? And then I reverse engineer it. I build, I I strategize it in reverse. Mm-Hmm. and I build it in sequence. Yeah. You know so that’s

Chris Badgett: Really hat mart. I wanna write that down. . Yeah. All

Chris Davis: Right. So that ensures the customer journey is aligned and my messaging is in sync, Chris.

Chris Badgett: And it saves me from the trap of not what could I build, it’s more like, what should I build to get to the where I’m going? Yes.

Chris Davis: Yes. Right? And, and when you do this, what it allows me to do you know, I mentor marketers. I, I, I teach marketers. I’m an educator. I, I, I do a lot of training. What it allows me to do is get them to focus. Once we identify this is the target, okay, you said you wanted to sell your book. That alone lets me now know what the customer journey should entail. Now the question is, what type of customer journey?

Do you want somebody to have a fully immersive, do you want to take the first three chapters and give it away as a P D F that’s less immersive and kind of like you’re on your own? Or what if we take those three chapters and turn ’em into some kind of minicourse that’s much more immersive. Maybe we can do some tracking of what people are consuming and then be better at o in an automated fashion, getting them to purchase the book based on their consumption.

It all depends. But you see, just by defining and, and say, I wanna sell my book that controls everything in my messaging. Hey, what’s in the book? What are you talking about in the book? What, what transformation does the book give? Now I have ideas for content lead magnets, what quizzes, right? But it’s all aligned, Chris, and, and we don’t talk about anything now. It’s like if somebody comes say, Hey, I had an idea for a lead magnet that for t-shirts. Okay. That, how does the t-shirt connect with the book ?

Just, just, if you can prove that to me, I’m a, I’ll go for it. But most people can’t. They’re like, okay, so, so then what I say is this, Chris, and this is a mind trick that you have to do to yourself. You have to say, you don’t say no, cuz No, in a lot of people’s mind triggers an ultimatum. It triggers a either or. I like to give people a both and in their mind so that they can rest assured that, okay, it’s a no, it’s not a forever.

No. Cuz that’s all people hear when they say no. So I replace no with not now. Mm. That’s it. Not now. . Okay. Can we do this, Chris? Not now. I didn’t say no. Just if we’re looking at now, no. But later, maybe let’s get profitable here and with some money in your pocket. Let’s see if that idea still looks enticing.

Chris Badgett: Most, I wish I have sound effects on this show, so I could make you’re dropping all these knowledge bombs here.

Chris Davis: Yes,

Chris Badgett: Man, let me ask you another detailed one that I personally run into, and I know a lot of people do, which is the idea of segments. Yes. So that you have like a couple different types of customers mm-hmm. , and I know there’s like the ideal customer profile that’s like singular, but for my business, for example, at lifter l m s, we work with subject matter experts and then like WordPress professionals who build sites for clients or that kind of thing. Sure, sure. So very different people.

And, and there’s actually a third group that does both. They like make courses, , they do client sites. Yep. but how do we deal with se how do we think about that? Because especially if you get a lot of segments, sometimes it can be overwhelming. Oh, now I gotta build everything like twice or five times Yeah. Or whatever. Any advice around that challenge with businesses attracting different types of people.

Chris Davis: Yep. I, I love segmentation and I have been a huge abuser of segmentation,

Chris Badgett: Like overlay segmenting. Yep,

Chris Davis: Yep. Absolutely. Yeah, because, because here, here’s what happens. You give people tools to play with and they build stuff, and then you come and look and say, Hey, what’s that? You like, you know, I don’t quite remember what that was supposed to be. . Yeah. But it was fun building it. Right. And that’s what I, that’s what happens to me. Especially in a platform that’s really flexible, like active campaign where you can really build any segment that you want. It’s like, okay, let me make sure this, this and that.

And I fell into that a for a, for a long time. And what got me out of it, Chris was actually tracking mm-hmm. when I realized I could not track the effectiveness of my marketing because I just had too many paths. I I had too many segments, too many outcomes. So segmentation, the, it looks different in, in many ways, right? Segmentation, pre optin, pre optin is really your avatar, right? It’s who am I targeting? And for every target here, here’s what’s interesting. You could have one product for three different avatars, but your lead magnet to that product is probably gonna be different for all three avatars.

Chris Badgett: You mentioned active campaign itself, like it’s for SaaS founders, which is kind of like me, but it’s also for, they have like five solution pages or whatever,

Chris Davis: Right? Yeah. There you go. And that’s the beginning of their segmentation. Yeah. Is depending on who you are, they have custom pages built for that. A lot of the more savvy startups who are familiar with marketing are doing that, right? Yeah. Dedicated pages for their audiences. That’s the pre opt-in, that’s what segmentation looks like.

So it could be the same product, but you’re just gonna position it differently, right. For one audience, like you said, you have the builders. Yeah. They’re probably gonna want something more technical, right? Right. Then you have the subject matter experts. They just need to know that this is the tool that will, that they can trust with their expertise.

Chris Badgett: Right.

Chris Davis: That’s a different approach. And then you got the Boers . Yeah. Like I’m a the

Chris Badgett: Power users. Yeah.

Chris Davis: Right? And they’re probably leaning more towards like an agency model where they’re an influencer and then they have a done for you service on the backend. Yeah. So then they’re looking for, how, how can I use this, this this software to really scale my agency? So those, that’s different language, Chris, same product, right? Yeah. So pre-op in, you have to understand, you know, what those avatars are. Now, once they opt in, they are a known segment.

They’re no longer an avatar. They’re se you named that segment something. And based on where they opt in, they are a segment and they go through the framework, as I mentioned. But here’s the thing, Chris, here’s the thing. Once they don’t take action, they’re no longer, you, I would recommend you no longer market to them as the initial segment that they came into because that didn’t work for whatever reason.

So they’re going into the long term general nurture. Yes. Yeah. Right? Yeah. But look, what we have, Chris, we have behavior that we have tracked to let us know what the next segment that they are in. Yeah. And, and this is critical with marketing automation, because what I’m introducing to a lot of people right now, and I know I’m high level, Chris and I, and I know I’m making automation accessible. So I, but I just wanna speak here for a minute. People think that a segment is one dimensional, monolithic.

You, if you are this, you’re always that. No no, they are not. So when you draft your journey, you have to do such that you know what segments they can fall into. If they don’t, if their initial segment does not convert, where have you heard the term initial segment? You don’t hear it. We just say segment your audience.

And once they’re in there, we do it up here, Chris, they’re in that segment. When are they not? Oh, when they opt out? No, they can still be out of that segment and still be on your list. They’re in a whole nother segment. So again, I, I love it. Most of the, the, when I say love it segmentation, most of the advanced segmentation takes place in the long-term nurture, right? Because you’re, you’re, you’ve got, the more information you have, the, the better the position, the more effective you are with segmentation. And, and guess what, Chris? That’s all pre customer people also forget, you’ve got post customer segments, , everybody has these two. One-Time buyer, repeat buyer.

Mm. You every show me a business that doesn’t, right? And if they don’t have it, I’ll show you a business that will be out of business shortly. Right? So you have those two segments, and then within those, what, what are those sub segments there?

The one time buyer, okay, what’s going on with them? Maybe I, we need to throw ’em back into the marketing nurture and figure out more information so we can get ’em back in to become a, a, a multi-buyer. If, if, if they, if they are a repeat buyer, all right, now I need to look at the lifetime customer value. Maybe I’m segmenting based on that. You know, you’ve got other criteria when you get to the customer side, but you’re always segmenting and you, and you can see easily how it can get overwhelming. So let me break, bring it all the way down. Keep your segments as singular as possible, right?

If you’ve got two audiences, you’ve got two segments, they come in. If they don’t convert, then they go into your long-term nurture and just nurture them. Okay? Just send your emails. I like to send e even though you may have two segments, I like to send it to one segment and I like to talk to one person in that segment. Mm-Hmm. , let me, I, I gotta, I have to give this away, Chris. I have to give this away. Okay. So I did this, I did this, Chris I don’t, I don’t want to give it away too much cuz a person may actually be listening. So, so watch this. I saw in my list that there was a particular profession,

Chris Badgett: Okay?

Chris Davis: I kept seeing, cuz I go to people’s websites. I look at my list. Yeah. I’m not one of those people that just look at the number. Oh, I’m at 5,000, oh, I’m at 10,000. No . I go and look and say, Hey, who’s opting in? Right? And I went and I saw a particular industry and I say, you know what, I’ve got about four top industries from my business. It’s e-commerce, web developers, VAs, and, and operation managers and then marketers.

Those are the primary four that come to me to learn marketing automation. I’ve got outliers, but those are the primary four. So outta that four, I saw one that was really picking up on trends. This is what I did. Chris, I intentionally wrote email copy and recorded an entire episode to the one person in one of those audiences. I had their website up.

Everything that I was talking about was literally to them without saying the name of their business. I just wanted to see how it converted Chris. It converted like immediately. immediate. I was like, whoa, that was fast. Right? So what I’m saying is, even though you have this is to make segmentation simple, everybody, you don’t have to go and say, okay, I’ve got four segments, so I need four different messages. You can literally take the time. The good thing about great marketing and great messaging is it works on the people. It’s for and the people. It’s not for become really good bystanders and fans of it.

Like, oh wow, that was really well written. I mean, I’m not gonna buy, but wow, that, that really made, I like that email, right? It’s a nolo situation. So to keep it simple, just pick one, one person in one of, in one of your segments and write to them, right? I love that. Record a podcast about them. You get what I’m saying? Like, don’t make it specific where you say their name and their business, but talk about the industry, talk about the need, right? And from there you’ll start to see other opportunities to use segmentation based on data and based on how people are responding. You know,

Chris Badgett: That’s a big insight around keeping things simple. Like you don’t need to have four different podcasts. No, but maybe one episode is for the marketers and another episode is for the other person. Yes. And it’s just same for me, one’s for the builders, one’s for the experts, you know, and so on. Yep. Keep it simple.

Chris Davis: Absolutely. And, and sometimes when you’re in your zone, Chris, and you know it, you know when you’re recording an episode and you just, it’s just firing. Actually, this, this podcast kind of feels like it. Chris, you got me at the right time. Yeah. Sometimes you could pepper that in. So what I like to do is if I’m talking to the digital marketer Yeah, I’ll say something like this. Hey, hey, hey, CEOs and founders, listen to how I’m talking to them. Yeah. I just include them.

I’m not, I’m still not talking to them though. . Yeah. Chris, this is for the digital marketer. Hey, digital marketer, do this and that. Hey, founders, did you hear what I said? So, because I’m telling them to do it now, that’s what you need to look for in your next digital marketer. So there’s ways that you can even tie it in once you get good. Right? Don’t try to do all these all these things out the gate. Keep it simple.

Talk to your people like you would, again, automation is emulation. Chris, if I’m, if I met one of the people that were on my list in person, what would that conversation be? Yeah. What would I ask them? What would I tell them about myself? That’s what I want to emulate. You know.

Chris Badgett: You mentioned tracking performance and results, and I forget that famous marketing quote that like something about, yeah, marketing’s awesome, I just don’t know which half’s working or whatever. , what’s your, what’s your take on it? Like, and, and sometimes, you know, there’s friction among you know, business partners or whatever where like, Hey, is the marketing working? It’s kind of hard to tell. Like there’s brand awareness. There’s all these like, kind of intangibles going Yeah. How, how tight can we get our tracking? Especially with market marketing automation and and the things that you help out with.

Chris Davis: Yeah. The good thing is this, I’ve, I am a over implementer of pretty much everything.

Chris Badgett: Okay? So

Chris Davis: Just like I’ve over implemented on segments before, I’ve overdone analytics to where I tracked everything, had a data layer and Google Analytics to push anonymous data down and then tie the cookie to a known user and and it, and initially it sounds like heaven. Oh my gosh, I would love that insight. But truth be told Chris, it, if we’re just gonna be honest, most people not only don’t know what to do with that level of insight.

Chris Badgett: Yeah.

Chris Davis: The other side is they don’t even need that deep of a level of insight. So what I found is that there’s just some key indicators that people really need to measure for business success. And I am a huge fan of source attribution, Chris, huge fan. If there’s anything that I do, I make sure every form that I’ve created has hidden fields for sources. You know, by default I just do UTMs for everything because you can train anybody off of five or free any freelance website of how to put UTMs on a U R L and it automatically capture. But I, I use some other, some other other means. I’ll just say that. I don’t wanna get too technical, but essentially,

Chris Badgett: So you try hard to track the source.

Chris Davis: The source. I want the source for everything. Yeah. So and, and it gets technical how to do that. Like redirects and auto, auto populating, hidden fields, things like that. Just know it’s possible everyone. But if I am looking at my leads this month, Chris, let’s say Chris, let’s say I’ve been on five podcasts,

Chris Badgett: Okay?

Chris Davis: And every podcast I offer the same thing, which by the way, I do. And at the end of the month I see I have a hundred leads, a hundred leads, and I look and see, whoa, 80 of those leads came from Podcast one 20 were amongst podcasts two through five. Yeah. And I had, I had an idea to partner with a particular person, software, whatever. I now at least know where to start.

Chris Badgett: Yeah.

Chris Davis: Right? Like, this was a great source if they would have me back on the podcast. It’s an automatic Yes. , right? That’s one, that’s what source attribution does. If you’re, if you’re posting online in various ways, various social media platforms, I can, I can I, can I take my clothes off and be transparent, get naked. I just looked at my, my analytics for social media and my social traction was not what I thought it was. I’ll just say it. And a lot of it was garbage. And I say, look, we’re posting all these links on these platforms and getting two and three clicks. This is not working. . Yeah. . These are not good sources for us of leads. Right? But then I saw my.

Chris Badgett: Do you, lemme ask a question there on social media, do you take the time to create a trackable link or are you more just looking at the Google analytics, like, oh, Facebook traffic or whatever.

Chris Davis: No, I, I created trackable link. Now it is for those of you who are non-techy, now Google Analytics is good enough to tell you where they came from, like LinkedIn and all of that. If you don’t have it. But yeah, we’ve got an Airtable database that auto populates it and then it even, I’ve got some automation magic where it’ll go through make and create the shorten r url. So my VA clicks a button, the shorten URL just pops up in the next field and she’s like, oh, okay.

Chris Badgett:, oh Awesome.

Chris Davis: The face that with the post. But yeah, I track everything cuz it allows me to just more granularity. But once I know the source, the next thing I’m doing is I want to track the performance of those leads per source. I’m, oh, I’m about to mess everybody up. Chris, watch this. Sticking with the podcast 80 leads came from podcast A. Yeah. 20 word distributed out pod, let’s say podcast c I had eight leads come from. All right. Yeah. Now that could give me a false positive, Chris, it could gimme a false positive. I’ve got to monitor what they do. Yeah. So the next thing that I want to do is look at my sales system and see how many of the people from that source showed up in my sales system.

Chris Badgett: Right?

Chris Davis: Okay. That’s it. So now once they show up over here, I can now say, okay, this was a good lead source, but was it a good sales source? Right? And then I may find that even though podcast C only had eight people, it generated five sales where podcast 20, podcast eight, it had 80 generated three sales. We’ve got, we’ve got some, some solid data here, right? Although I only got eight from podcast C, if podcast A s C reaches out to me, I might prioritize c because it gave me more customers. Right? Right.

So these are just two metrics, Chris, while everybody’s like, but what about this? And if we just keep it simple, man, we have to keep it simple leads from what source did they show up in my sales system? And of those who showed up in my sales system, how many of them converted? If you just tracked those four, just those four consistently, you’ll know which others to add. But you should always have those four that you’re tracking.

Chris Badgett: I love that. I would, I would cue the apo, the applause sound if I had it. I know we’re coming up on time. I wanted to ask you in the spirit of making automation accessible yeah. But can you kind of inspire some people to think beyond email or, or the, the website, like you mentioned in our pre-chat, you were talking about WP Fusion and WordPress and like here at Lifter LMS making courses and we’ve got like other apps and stuff that we can put together.

Like what let’s inspire the people of just some ideas for like a course creator or coach type person. Or if you are building that, those type of websites for clients, if you want to add on some marketing automation services, like what, what can we do when we can actually go beyond individual apps or channels like email? Ooh,

Chris Davis: Yes. Chris.

Chris Badgett: And See what I did there. By the way, I mentioned the builders and the experts , right?

Chris Davis: Look at that immediate implementation, right? Yeah. Chris, oh, this question is so great because you are part of the solution. Yeah. The future, everyone is online learning. It just is what it is. There’s no, the online course industry, I wish I had a number, honestly, this is anecdotal from what I see in terms of the amount of features and amount of players that we have in the l m s space.

Oh my, I mean, it’s blowing up because everybody sees money in online learning and teaching. I would say this, you’re, you’re, when you have a course platform, I’m gonna take lifter for for instance, okay, lifter integrates with WordPress and you all have a freemium model. This means are you listening to this, everybody? This means for a f for whatever it costs for me to get a website hosting and domain, I can be in position to offer my expertise in the form of a course.

Why would I do that, Chris? Because a online course creates a learning environment that is disarming and it allows me to get to know my audience just as much as they’re getting to know me. What do I mean by that? I cannot, I can track performance, I can track progression, I can incentivize them to complete a lesson within a certain amount of time and in an automated way, start a countdown timer and if they’ve done it within that allotted time, give them a gift.

Right? There’s so much more that you can do to create a personalized learning experience. And if you want to take your marketing beyond email, that is the way to go, right? That like all roads point to a more personalized marketing and education experience. You can’t do it without an l m s. The best thing that I’ve done is add training to my business model and tracking training and tracking.

Perhaps this is another episode where we talk about the tracking capabilities of lifter l m s in a platform like WP Fusion because we’ve ne Chris, I’m this is not hyperbolic statements I’m making. This is real. We’ve never been in a time where combining the two has been more accessible and more effective. It, the effectiveness of being able to track what people are doing into my C R M system and be able to trigger internal stuff as well as messaging externally. I’m not doing it to make, I’m not doing it trying to get more money, Chris. It’s money is gonna be a byproduct.

What I want, I want the transformation that I know my education is gonna provide. And if I can use technology and tracking and software to make sure you complete and consume all of that content, I know you’ll get the transformation.

And then, and only then is when I, I want to receive compensation for it, right? So beyond email for, especially for subject matter experts, you’ve, you have to, everybody, you have to get into the game of learning, right? You have to give people that learning experience. People are ready, they’re looking, they’re no covid helped us out. People are looking online for solutions. Youtube is, is is is the, the best indicator because everybody has taken video in some form and added it to their social platforms because that’s what people are looking for. They’re looking to learn, give it to ’em, , give people that.

Chris Badgett: That’s awesome. And one thing I’d add too is that like, even if courses aren’t the main business, like any business may benefit from some kind of education, for example, hundred percent. If you sell a product and you can have like when they buy the product, create an automation to enroll ’em in this course that shows ’em how to use the product and that can actually save you money and customer support and stuff like that. Yes. Education’s everywhere. You can do education based marketing. It can be in front of the sale. It’s, it can be the product, it can be after the sale. Yep. It’s what makes us human.

Chris Davis: Absolutely. I, I wish I could it because it’s fairly complex, but I wish I could just give that gift of a L M S synced with your C R M software. I really wish no knock against like the cajabi and carts and all that. It’s not the same man. Yeah, it’s not the same. But yes. Anyways, you, you guys are getting me going down all kinds of technical tangents. I’m trying to, I’m trying to be good Chris.

Chris Badgett: Well, Chris [email protected], he’s also got a podcast. All systems go. So go subscribe to that. Go check out some of the episodes. And I actually just went through your deal where you had to, on your website, you had to opt in, subscribe to get some of the episodes. Yes. So you got me on your list again. And it’s it was, they’re good. I was listening to some of the recent ones. They were awesome.

Chris Davis: Great. Thank you.

Chris Badgett: What final words do you have for the people? Any or any other places you want to point ’em or ways for them to connect with you?

Chris Davis: Yeah, I want to encourage everyone, I want to encourage everyone that automation, let me, let me be specific. Marketing automation can work for you and there’s a good chance you’re in. I if you’re experiencing any kind of pain with your process, that’s not a bad thing. That’s a good thing. Yeah. We need that pain. We need that pain. So what I would say is the best way to get started is just understanding how to build and nurture an email list.

If, if we, if we keep it that simple, Chris, I believe it will begin to open up doors for other areas of automation. But I like to just slowly walk people through that. And, and, and again, a a word of encouragement is don’t be afraid of the pain that the process is produced that you have to do manually. Don’t shy away from it.

That is going to be the indicator of your success for automation when you implement it. So if anybody wants to get a starter course in email marketing and, and, and automation, I do have a, a, a link specific for you, Chris as automation

And that’ll take you to a a page where you can opt in and get the, get the vi video series. It’s like a minicourse where you can learn about the, the framework that I mentioned with email marketing. And you’ll be connected with me. If you want to continue and learn more and more, you can do that too. But I think that’s the best way to encourage people to, to approach automation appropriately and equip them with a resource to, to allow them to do that as well.

Chris Badgett: That’s awesome. That’s automation Chris, I could talk to you for hours. We’ll have to do it again down the road. Absolut. Absolutely. Man, I, I learned a lot listening to you today. And I just love how you’re making what you’re doing accessible because it’s easy to go deep down the rabbit hole and like get into, the super advanced stuff. But what the people need and the business owners need out there is they need to get in the door. And like you said, just cuz you’re, you’re an early adopter, there’s still a lot of people that are just coming to this party, right? Yeah,

Chris Davis: You’re right. You’re right Chris.

Chris Badgett: Well, thanks for coming on the show and we’ll see you down the road.

Chris Davis: Yes, thank you for having me, Chris. Greatly appreciate it.

Chris Badgett: And that’s a wrap for this episode of LMSCast. Did you enjoy that episode? Tell your friends and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss the next episode. And I’ve got a gift for you [email protected] slash gift. Go to lifter Keep learning, keep taking action, and I’ll see you in the next episode.

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