With 5 multi-million dollar business success stories before the age of 30, Matthew Pollard is a true differentiation, niche marketing, and sales systemization powerhouse. Known as the Rapid Growth Guy, he has been honored with induction into the International Sales Blogger Awards Hall of Fame and listed as the 34th most re-tweeted business coach on Twitter.
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3 Key Points:
- Find your unique message and communicate that to the world.
- Entrepreneurs must constantly evolve.
- Entrepreneurship is a learning process.
Time Stamped Show Notes
(click the time stamp to jump directly to that point in the episode.)
- [01:09] – Matthew grew up in Melbourne, Australia and fell in love with a girl in America
- [01:38] – He has been featured in Forbes
- [01:58] – Matthew is known for rapid growth
- [02:36] – Rapid growth comes down to 3 steps: differentiation, message unification, and not speaking to everyone
- [04:17] – One BIG and Unique Value Bomb: 5 steps you should follow to be able to craft a unified message
- Write down your goals
- List out your customers
- Break them down into segments
- Pick one of the groups using your goals
- Write the unique things that you do and the benefit that brings
- [08:42] – Worst Entrepreneurial Moment: I was 19 and I decided to open up a telecommunications company. People started to copy my idea and go up against me with the exact scripts I was using. I started responding negatively instead of focusing on the fact that copying is the highest level of a compliment
- [09:43] – We have to constantly evolve in business
- [10:06] – The moment we stop thinking we can learn things is the moment we start losing money
- [12:00] – Entrepreneurial AH-HA Moment: I was horribly introverted and I was uncomfortable with myself. I decided to take a job with a real estate agency and unluckily I lost my job during Christmas. The only job I could get was based on commission-only sales
- [14:22] – If I can learn it, you can learn it, too
- [15:20] – What is the one thing you are most FIRED up about today? My rapid growth academy
- [16:56] – The Lightning Round
- What was holding you back from becoming an entrepreneur? – I got promoted 7x and the salary I was getting was big
- What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? – If you think you can, storm the torpedoes and do it!
- What’s a personal habit that contributes to your success? – Do the work and know the job
- Share an internet resource, like Evernote, with Fire Nation – SocialBee
- If you could recommend one book to our listeners, what would it be and why? –Rich Dad, Poor Dad… it’s the book that gave me the guts to go into business myself
- [20:46] – You don’t have to be limited by what you’ve done in the past
- [20:58] – You decide every moment of every day who you are and what you believe in. You get a second chance every second
- [21:18] – Contact Matthew on his website
- [21:33] – FREE document on the 5-Step Process to Getting Your Unified Message here
Matthew: I am, John. Let’s light the match.
John: Yes. With five multimillion dollar business success stories before the age of 30, Matthew is a true niche marketing and sales systemization powerhouse. Known as the Rapid Growth Guy, he has been honored with induction into the International Sales Blogger Awards Hall of Fame, and listed as the 34th most retweeted business coach on Twitter. Matthew, take a minute, fill in some gaps from that intro, and gives a little glimpse of your personal life.
Matthew: Yeah, sure, definitely. Well, obvious tell from the accent that while I lived in the US, I live in Austin, Texas; I’m not quite from around here. I grew up in Melbourne, Australia. In 2013, I spend the entire year traveling the world after some business successes in Australia and fell in love with a girl in America, so it pulled me over here, ad I created my business here, and my online web, and my podcast, which we were talking about before, in February last year.
Just one thing led to another. We had rapid growth unknown for, and top-rated podcasts, six-figure business in consulting and coaching, I speak around the world, and actually just recently, I got featured in Forbes in a recent article talking about the successes I’ve had with clients hear in the US.
John: Wow. Well, I love all of that, but I would like to break down and maybe narrow and focus in on is what you consider right now your current area of expertise. Matthew, take a couple senses, break that down for us.
Matthew: Yeah, definitely. I think the main thing I’m well known for is rapid growth, and people think of rapid growth as, “We just gotta go out and get more customers; we gotta go out and sell more,” and predominantly, especially around professional services, I find that a lot of people don’t like the whole sales thing. They feel inauthentic; they feel like a used car salesperson.
They also feel like they’re screaming out what he do and why what they do is awesome, but no one’s really listening, so it comes down to working out how do you differentiate yourself in that crowded market. This is really what I spend most of my time speaking about now.
While in the past, I used to talk about sales systemization, and we can talk about that a little bit later, about how I went from introversion to a gun salesperson, but really, I find rapid growth comes down to three steps.
It’s differentiation, message unification, basically coming up with a message that instead of saying, “I’m a business coach,” or, “I’m a copywriter,” or, “I’m a ghost writer,” or, “I’m a life coach,” just like everyone else like employment’s told us to do, fit into a box so we’re employable, the problem with that, it makes us a commodity.
Next thing we know, people are like, “Oh, I tried that before. It didn’t work for me.” Coming up with a unified message really inspires people to wanna know more.
The second thing that I really focus on is not speaking to everybody. I mean, if you’re speaking to everyone, you’re truly speaking to no one. One of the things that I beat my head against the wall sometimes trying to make sure people understand is that by selling to everybody, they’re actually a jack of all trades and a master of none.
Very similar to when you go and see a doctor, you pay more for the specialist, and you get referred to a specialist, but the actual doctor, those people are people that charge a lot less, and they’re still trying to fight to get customers.
What I really focus on with businesses is helping them understand that they don’t need to compete in a crowded market; price is not the thing that you need to compete on.
What we need to be focusing on is talking about our uniqueness, and everybody has that. He have a unique set of skills that they’ve learned through a different education, different custom experiences, different upbringings, that allow them to be able to service a specific demographic of people. Once you do that, sales becomes the easiest thing in the world because these people see you as an expert in your own domain.
John: Wow. Let’s dive deep here, now. You’ve told us a lot of thing that work. We’ve heard these things before in different areas. What’s something we haven’t heard? What’s something that’s a unique tip, tool, or tack tech that made you the Rapid Growth Guy? I mean, there must be something special. Let’s hear it.
Matthew: Well, you know what? Let’s do better than that. Why don’t I jus give you the five steps that you should follow just to be able to craft that unified message and discover your niche? Because I think that a lot of people, they talk about the fact that, “Oh yeah, you should speak and share a different message with the world,” but generally, it comes down to saying, “Oh, just come up with a shiny object name.”
I find a lot of branding experts do that. They’ll probably charge you $30000.00 for a 30-page book that it says, “Here’s your fancy colors, here’s your unified message,” and it doesn’t feel congruently and authentically them.
I find, again, professionally [inaudible] [00:04:09] professional services, if it’s not congruent with who we are as a person, then it just doesn’t work, so the first thing I always suggest people do is write down their goals. I get people to write down three business goals, three personal goals, one incredibly selfish to themselves.
Now, we’ve all heard this thing called SMART criteria. I don’t really care about that. What I want people to do is write down a specific goal that is also measurable, so therefore, you need a time frame. Then, more than that, summarize it in 250 words or less, including why it’s important to you.
See, what I find is we tend to inherit other goals from our mother, our father, our drunk roommate we had in college. We hear these goals, and we’re like, “That sounds cool. I’m gonna spend the rest of my life obtaining it.”
I mean, we’re all high achievers. I mean, John, you went to law school probably because you heard that going to law school was really cool, and then all of a sudden, you realize, “This isn’t for me.”
A lot of people can spend their entire lives without even realizing that what they’re focusing on or fixating on isn’t actually important. That’s why we get so much depression in later years, so writing down the why it’s important to you all of a sudden allows you to come and get your compass back and feel and understand what you’re passionate about. Then, it’s just a matter of following a few simple steps.
If you write down a list of all the customer you get unbelievable experiences for, these are the people that sing you praises. They go to a networking event, somebody says, “Oh, I’m looking at this service,” and they can’t stop talking about you.
Then, write down a list of all the people that you make unbelievable money out of. Now, you’ve got these two lists. What I then get people to do is then have a look at this list and say, “Okay, of all of these, is there any similarities?”
This is what’s called breaking down into segments. Now, as soon as you’ve got that, you’re going to start – what I always tell people to do is grab out a red and a blue pen. Now, the colors don’t really matter, it’s just because that’s what people tend to have on their desk. I get people to circle those groups with a blue pen all the people that get unbelievable experiences with, and the people that sing their praises.
Circle the people in red that they make unbelievable money out of. Now, you’re gonna have a couple of groups that have got both blue and red circles around it. I just did this in a group of almost 200 people at the Freelance Association, and what I found is of every single person that was there, there was not one person that did not have a blue and a red circle around at least one group.
Now, I must say, though, when I said, “Who’s here this is the most time you’ve ever spent on your marketing,” more than 80 percent of the room put their hands up. It was 45 minutes, so it’s really about focusing on this stuff.
Then, once you’ve got those groups, if you’ve got more than one, you’re gonna have to pick one of those. What I find is people say, “Oh, I’ll do this, and I’ll do that, and I’ll do this.” We’re taught that what we need to do is hedge in life, keep our eggs in lots of baskets.
Well, if you do that in entrepreneurship, you’re gonna spread your resources, you’re gonna spread your energies, you’re going to fail, so you have to pick one. If you don’t know which one to pick, look at your goals. It’s gonna become crystal clear with that laser focus exactly which one you’re gonna be more excited about.
Them, it’s as simple as saying, “What are the unique things that I do above and beyond that allow me to provide an unbelievable experience for these people?”
Then, write down all of those, and then the next thing that you do is write down what you believe the higher level benefit of that is. For instance, me, I’m a business coach, I’m a branding expert, I’m a marking specialist, I’m a sales systemization strategist, I’m a social media guy, but nobody really cares about any of that.
They don’t care how hard I spent learning these skills. What they care about is my higher level benefit, which is that I’m the Rapid Growth Guy. I help organizations large and small obtain rapid growth. The simplicity of that message gets you heard in a crowded market.
John: Wow, okay. I asked for a sniper shot, and you gave me an atomic bomb, Matthew. Thank you for that. I think –
Matthew: I [inaudible] [00:07:45] to disappoint.
John: Fire Nation’s head are spinning right now, if I must say so myself. Let’s shift a little bit here and talk about a time that wasn’t all rosy for Matthew, a time where you were struggling, a time that you maybe flopped and fell on your face. Really get deep into that, Matthew. Tell us the worst entrepreneurial moment that you’ve experienced to date.
Matthew: The best example of that would be my first company, and I was about 19. I made the decision to open up a telecommunications company. We grew to over a million-dollar turnover in the first year, and then all of a sudden, people started to copy my idea.
People started to go up against me with the exact same wording, the exact same scripted that I was developing, and focusing on creating exactly the same businesses as me.
Now, I started to get angry about this, and I started to respond by getting on the phone and saying, “How dare you do this,” as a person scorned, if you like, where realistically, I should have folks focused on the complete opposite of that.
I should have focused on the fact that other people copying me is the highest form of compliment, and realistically, me thinking that I could come up with one idea, do one thing well once, and then all of a sudden get to rest on my laurels and do nothing else for the rest of my life, well, that was wishful thinking.
What I’ve learned from that experience is that we have to constantly evolve. We have to constantly be looking for how to do things differently. I mean, John, your business has evolved just like everybody else’s had over time.
I mean, you were one of the original people doing this podcast thing. Now there’s thousands of out there, and that a lot of people using your specific system and your specific flow.
I’ve seen that you’ve adapted, you’ve changed the way you do things just like I have to in my business. The moment we stop thinking that we can learn things, the moment that we stop thinking we have to adapt and continually evolve is the moment we start losing money, and that’s what I learned.
I mean, I took a pretty big hit with that in my first business, and it took me about six months to realize that I was the one getting in my own way. I was in effect blaming everyone else for it, and I needed to come back to cause and go, “Okay, what can I do about this? If I was responsible for this problem, how do I go about changing that?”
Then, all of a sudden, my business took a massive turn up where it was taking a massive turn down and by Year 3, we turned over $4.2 million just in that year. You can change everything in an instant, but you’ve got to make clear to yourself that you’re responsible for your own success.
John: Fire Nation, it is a tale as old as time. Somebody finds success doing something, and they say, “Okay, I’ve got the world by the strength, I’ve got everything figured out,” and you just ease back into your cost zone, and you just keep doing that same thing.
Then, new people come up. They’re like, “Oh my god, look what John did, look what Matthew did,” and they learn from us, as they should, as I learned from people that came before me. They stand upon the shoulders of giants, and they do that thing.
Guess what? Now, they’re putting in more hustle. Now they’re putting in different ideas, more innovation, and guess what? You get passed by. I mean, what happens when something becomes stagnant for too long? It rusts. It breaks. It just needs that consistent upkeep. It needs improvement.
We as humans need to progress, Fire Nation. Don’t get stagnant. Don’t get stuck in that cost zone. You can hang out there a little bit, a couple days a week, but you better be getting outside of that comfort zone, making the magic happen three, four, five days a week because that’s you progressing forward.
Matthew, let’s talk about one of your greatest ideas you’ve had today. You’ve had a lot. You’ve had a lot of great businesses, a lot of great ideas. Moving to Austin, Texas is probably one of them as well, for obvious reasons, but let’s talk about one of your greatest business ah-ha moments. Tell us that story.
Matthew: Well, I think it’s probably more to do with my origin story. I mean, I grew up with the reading speed of a sixth grader. In late high school, I was horribly introverted, I had really bad acne.
I mean, there’s a photo I use in one of my presentations at my Sr.’s wedding, and I’ve got this red face. I was just really uncomfortable with myself, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, and I decided to take a job at a real estate agency, just to really work out what I wanted to do.
I’m not the person, definitely, at the front selling, I was the person in the back office saying, “Please do not talk to me. I’m here to do admin work and work out where I am in my life.”
By luck, or unluckily at the time, but luckily now, I guess, I lost my job just before Christmas. I mean, Australia’s very different than it is in the US. We take our summer break and our Christmas break all at the same time, and what that means is there’s no decision making to be found between the 20th of December and the 15th and 20th of January, so the only jobs that I could get commission-only sales.
Now, if you can imagine a person that was as introverted as I was, as scared of talking to my own friends, let alone other people, taking a commission-only sales job. After five days of product training, I got thrown out on this road and satisfied, “Well, go sell,” and then having this horrible realization that no one actually taught me how to do that.
It was 93 doors before my first sale, and that’s 93 doors of rejection, getting told to get a real job, just wondering what the hell I was doing with my life. Then, I remember I made that sale, and I made about $70.00. I was ecstatic for about 45 seconds until I realized I had to do this every single day for the rest of the year.
I many, I promised my father I was gonna support myself, and that wasn’t okay, but it wasn’t I could just pick up a Brian Tracy or a Zig Ziglar book and read it. I mean, it would have taken me the year just to read that.
Look, I had to find another options, and the only thing I could find as a resource was YouTube. Funnily enough and I know it’s a surprise to most people, there’s more there than just cat videos.
I found all the steps to the sale. I found each part of those elements, and every day, I went out and tried a new thing, and implemented new strategy.
It was six weeks of hell. I did nine hours out in the field trying to sell, and then back home learning the strategies of selling, but I went from having no right being in sales to the No. 1 salesperson in the largest sales and marketing company in the southern hemisphere. It took six weeks.
Now, the thing that I would suggest is my most profound ah-ha moment from that is if I can learn something that most people would assume is a natural ability, I mean, everyone talks about in sales you have to have that gift of the gab, then everything is a process that you can learn.
I mean, I’ve learned processes for how to present myself on podcasts like this, how to be on stage in front of thousands of people that absolutely terrifies me before I bet on, and then for people to wonder whether or not I’m really an introvert when I get up there.
Everything is 100 percent systematic, and that’s what I’ve implemented in all of my businesses. I mean, the three steps to rapid growth is exactly that. Me turning my whole business online, I became a student of online business for nearly six months. I must have listen to 1000 podcasts and researched 1000 things to realize it’s actually just a system, and when implemented, it works just like anything else.
John: Let’s talk about what you’re excited about now, Matthew. I mean, you’re here in Austen, you’re rock and rolling. What has you fired up today specifically here in 2016?
Matthew: Well, actually, at the moment, I’m really excited about my rapid growth academy. I spent nearly 18 months coaching clients and getting case studies from different people that I’ve worked with, and just today, actually, we’ve just finished the last part of the video series, and it’s going live in a couple of weeks.
What I’m looking forward to is being able to launch that because what I found, just like any other good coach, like yourself, you can only help so many people. I had a waiting list of three months just to get on the phone to me. I had a waiting list of two and a half, three months, for people to work with me.
What I did is I created the rapid growth academy to teach every single person how to craft a unified and differentiated message, have strong goals so they know what they’re passionate about, create a sales system that works offline, and then how to create a system online to drive their ideal customers to chase them.
One of the things that I did that I’m really excited about is instead of just me being a talking head throughout this, I mean, we’ve all seen these presentations where you’ve got somebody just saying, “Do what I say, and you’re gonna be successful,” what I’ve done is I’ve flown all of my successful clients from all offer the world into Austin, and I’ve interviewed them as well on what they implemented, what worked, what didn’t, what barriers they had, how they overcame them, and what learnings they made along the way.
Not only to we have great content to teach people the strategies that have made me so successful, we’ve also got real life people sharing their shores. That, I think, is just one of the things I’m really excited about sharing with people.
John: Fire Nation, if you have been having a hard time keeping up to this point, the lightning round’s not getting any easier, but don’t go anywhere because the value bombs don’t stop. Let’s thank our sponsors. Matthew, are you prepared for the lightning rounds?
Matthew: Mate, I can’t wait.
John: What was holding you back from becoming an entrepreneur?
Matthew: I told you that I stumbled into door to door sales. What I didn’t say was that I actually got promoted after that about seven times in about 12 months, and I was constantly unfairly treated because I got told that for someone my age, I should be happy with the salary I was getting because one of the things you learn about commission-only sales is as soon as you’re good, they wanna give you a salary.
I made the decision I was gonna go out on my own. I had enough of being unfairly treated, but moving away from that salary was terrifying to me, and I think it is for every single person. Moving away from that, I’m gonna earn money without having to think, “If I have a bad day, it doesn’t matter,” so going into that thing where I’m responsible for my own wage and stepping away from that security, that was one of the biggest, hardest things I ever had to overcome.
John: What’s the best advice you have ever received?
Matthew: My father was actually person that helped me overcome that. I was actually going to stay in that job, and my father said this one thing to me. He said, “Matt, if you think you can, storm the torpedoes and do it. You’ve got nothing to lose except for the fact that you’re gonna hate yourself forever if you don’t try, so storm the torpedoes. Do it anyway.”
John: Can you share a personal habit that contributes to your success?
Matthew: The main one is do the work, and know the jobs. I never get anybody that works for me to do something that I don’t, first, have done myself and created the system around it, and I’m not afraid to do the work, and get in, and actually make it happen.
I think a lot of people try to out source things because they don’t wanna learn skills, and the problem with that is we end up having to deal with the fact things aren’t done the way we want. I mean, the most common part of that is online business owners that aren’t in control of their own website, and are constantly relying on the developer because they didn’t bother to learn WordPress, which you’ll agree is an easy thing to learn, it just takes time.
John: Just takes a little time. What’s a resource, like an Evernote, that you can share with us?
Matthew: Definitely. I’m a big fan of automate and move on. One of the major things that I really wanted to be able to be able to help lots of people, but continually leverage myself. I think these days, a lot of people get caught up on social media, and they don’t know how to do it right. I started using things like Buffer and those sorts of things.
What I found was that you had to constantly reschedule things all the time. There were two things that I realized. One was if you create evergreen posts, thing that you can continually share forever that are just as relevant, then there are social sharing implications out there that continually post that content.
The first one I found was a product called Meet Edgar. Then, recently, I found Social Bee, and Social Bee’s amazing. Social Bee allows you to share content on a regular basis, evergreen content, but not only that, they also have a concierge service to helping you find your ideal buyers on social media, and I think that’s amazing.
John: If you’d recommend just one book, Matthew, what would it be, and why?
Matthew: I love Rich Dad, Poor Dad, and I know everybody knows about this book, but I keep saying it on podcasts because it is the book that gave me the guts to go into business for myself. I mean, The Cash Flow Quadrant, the second book in the series, where it explains to you don’t – you’re just over broke if you’ve got an employment job, and the difference from being a business owner to self-employed – I mean, as a commission-only salesperson, I was self-employed, and I think it just blew my mind.
From understanding that, I started my entrepreneurial journey. I mean, every other book has added to that, and there’s some amazing content out there, but that was my starting point, so I always say it because if people haven’t read it, please go buy the book.
John: Matt, I wanna end it today on Fire Brother with a parting piece of guidance from you, the best way that we can connect with you, and then we’ll say goodbye.
Matthew: Sure, definitely. I think the most important thing for people is that they don’t have to be limited by what they’ve done in the past. I think a lot of people have excuses for why they don’t move past things and continue to experience excellence in their life, so one of the quotes I love to say is you decide every moment of every day who you are and what you believe in.
You get a second chance every second, so I don’t care if anybody out there isn’t happy with what they’ve done and who they were in the past. You get a second chance now. Go and make the decisions that are gonna make you better and more affluent in your future life.
Now, for people that wanna get in contact with me, they can go to Matthewpollard.com. You can Google Matthew Pollard. I think I take up most of the page. You can also go, for the people that are interesting in creating your own unified message, one of the rules that I have is I really want people to try and do it for themselves.
I’ve created a document of the five-step process we covered today in a lot more detail. If they go to Matthewpollard.com/growth, it will give them the five step strategy that will break down exactly how they can do it for themselves.
John: Wow. Fire Nation, you know this. You’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with, and you have been hanging out with MP and JLD today, so keep up the heat and head over to eofire.com. Just type Matthew in the search bar.
His show notes page is gonna pop up with everything that we’ve been talking about today, best show notes in the biz, time stamps, links galore, and, of course, head over to Matthewpollard.com/growth for that gift. That’s P-O-L-L-A-R-D .com/growth. Check that out, Fire Nation. Matthew, I wanna thank you for sharing your journey with Fire Nation today. For that, we salute you, and we’ll catch you on the flip side.
Matthew: My pleasure, John. See you soon.
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