Sean D’Souza, Owner, Psychotactics
If you’re interesting in learning how to market more effectively and land more sales, a quick Google search will bring up thousands of results, each one promising that their specific tip will be the one that changes your business forever. The trouble is sorting the wheat from the chaff. What’s the stuff that’ll actually work for you, and what’s the stuff that’s just clickbait?
According to Sean D’Souza, the secret to marketing is actually surprisingly easy to understand. At their very core, all marketing strategies follow the exact same model, D’Souza says. He has cracked the code, and he can prove it.
“What I do is I break down things into little pieces, and when I break them down into little pieces it becomes scientific. That’s really what science is. Science is taking something very complex and breaking them down into little pieces and reconstructing it so that anyone can do it,” D’Souza says.
Originally working as a freelance cartoonist, D’Souza somehow found himself indulging his talent for marketing and understanding consumer psychology by helping out others with their marketing efforts. It wasn’t long before he started writing about his own experiences with marketing and slowly but surely, he began to gather an audience hungry to learn more.
- The psychological triggers behind turning someone from a prospect and into a customer
- Why growing your company might not be the best move
- Sean’s most effective marketing tactics and strategies
- The myth behind innate talent and why it’s all about the hustle
- What the perfect marketer look and sounds like
Full Transcript of Podcast with Sean D’Souza
Nathan: My name is Nathan Chan, and I am the CEO and publisher of Foundr magazine and the host of the Foundr podcast, coming to you live from hometown, homegrown Melbourne, Australia. What’s been happening in my world? We’ve been hustling really, really hard on our new goals for the year. What can you expect? You can expect a major boss YouTube TV series, a probably eight-to-ten-part series that’s going to come out soon, which I’m really pumped about. As I mentioned, we’re really scaling up content. Make sure you do check out the blog.
There’s a lot of things happening and changing on Foundr, on the Foundr blog and the Foundr website, really…one of my…it’s a really, really big media asset that, you know, produces a ton of content to help as many fans as we can. And then also, we’re working on scaling up products as well. Long story short, you know, this is crazy. We surveyed the Foundr audience, and we have like, you know, 253, you know, closing in on 300,000 on our email database. And one thing we’ve found was that 25 – 30% of people that responded to that survey hadn’t even started a business yet.
Crazy, I know, and I know that someone listening to this right now, I’m sure would be in this position where you’re looking to start but you haven’t started. Or you want to start a business but you don’t know where to start. I’ll tell you what, we’re working on solving that problem, and we did create a guide to help solve this problem a while ago. If you go to Foundr Mag, foundrmag.com/startnow, we did create an epic guide on how to start an online business. But we’re gonna team up with a ton of super successful entrepreneurs and get them to share and break down idea validation, raising capital.
Do you need to raise capital? How to launch your MVP, how to get your first customers, how to market your product, how to boost traffic, how to set up your website, how to…what to call your company, how to find a niche, how to come up with a business idea that works, how to test that, and how to presell. All these other questions and things that, you know, a ton of super successful founders that we’ve interviewed or, you know, know the brand and worked with…know the answers to this. So, we’re working on something, guys, to help solve this problem, because this is a massive problem that we want to fix.
No more wantrepreneurs. So, you guys, stay tuned for that. That’s another incredible initiative that we’re working on, which I’m really excited about. Feel free to email me: [email protected], foundrmag.com. Would love to hear from you if you are struggling with this problem. We are working on something just for you. But enough about me. Let’s talk about today’s guest. His name is Sean D’Souza, an incredible entrepreneur. Been doing online stuff for at least 15 years. He is a serious veteran. And I met Sean at a conference in the Gold Coast, called We Are Podcast, a podcasting conference.
Sean’s from New Zealand, and we really connected. It’s crazy, these conferences that you go to, and you connect with people and build incredible networks. We really connected, really hit it off. He’s a little older than me, but…I know. It’s really crazy. We just kind of had this uncanny kind of way that we think. And I was challenging him. And he was challenging me. It was fantastic, really great conversation. And I wanted to share that with you guys, and I wanted to interview Sean. He’s an incredible marketer. His talk was hilarious that he did. A very, very smart guy.
I’m sure you’re going to learn a ton from him. All right, guys. If you are enjoying this show, please do check out some more fruits of our labor. Just go to foundr.com, F-O-U-N-D-R.com. And now, let’s jump into the show. The first question that I ask everyone that comes on is “How did you get your job?”
Sean: My job as in what I’m doing right now?
Sean: Quite by chance. I wanted to take breaks. I was a cartoonist before I started out in marketing. And when I’d go on vacation, I would come back and, you know the client, which was usually an ad agency, they would say, “Well, you weren’t around, so we gave this job to someone else.” So, effectively, what happened was that I had not only lost money, but I also introduced them to a competitor. And I thought, “How do I get around this stuff?” Because every time I went on vacation after that, I would go, “I wonder if I come back and then the client goes, ‘Oh, you’ve just missed this five-thousand-dollar job.'”
And that was for my vacations. So, I started to think of what could I do to fix this problem. And I went to the public library. And I started reading books. Like, I started reading two books a week on marketing. So, I would go through a hundred books a year. And along the way, I also joined a networking group, and they would ask me what do I do, and then would speak to them. And then I would ask them what they did and effectively, what they would take half an hour to say, I would do in like a few minutes. And they would go, “You’re really good at this.” So the first time I heard that, I thought, “Hmm. That’s interesting.” But the 30th time, someone said, “You’re really good at this,” I thought, “Maybe I should do this.” So, I started up my first website, which you’ll find funny. It was called Million Bucks.
Nathan: So, this is the first thing you started, did you do it while you were still in your day job?
Sean: No, I never had a day job. I mean I probably worked maybe three years my whole life, if you take all the jobs that I ever held.
Nathan: Hmm, okay.
Sean: So, I didn’t really have a day job. I was freelancing as a cartoonist before then. The story is that I didn’t always live in New Zealand. I got to New Zealand from Mumbai, from India. And for six months, while I had a job, a day job, I would get back home and, I couldn’t do anything. It would just sap the energy out of me. So, I don’t know how people start up a job or start up something while they still have a job. It wasn’t something that I aspired to at that point in time. But once I got made redundant, that was the happiest day of my life. It was like, “Wow. I can do something.”
Nathan: Yeah. That’s really interesting. So, your clients fired you then.
Sean: The clients? No. They were slightly interweaving stuff together. So…
Nathan: Yeah. So yeah. Okay. So a case…
Sean: Yeah. I had the job and then, while I was at the job, which was as a web designer, I couldn’t do anything. I got made redundant. I went out there. I started freelancing as a cartoonist. When I would go on vacations as a cartoonist, I would go, “I can’t, you know, concentrate on this vacation.” And then I’d come back and…or, rather, I came back and then, I’d decide, “Hey. You know I could do this thing called marketing.” But I also read a book by Jim Collins, which was “Good to Great.” And he said, “What can you be the best in the world at?”
And I’m very good at drawing cartoons, but I wanted to start afresh. I was in a new country. I just wanted to start afresh. And I thought, “I’m gonna do this marketing stuff.” And this was the year 2000. Now, it’s 16 years and I mean we’re doing pretty well.
Nathan: So talk to me about Million Bucks.
Sean: So, when you start out, you think that’s the goal. You think that “I wanna make money,” because, at that point in time, you’re paying a mortgage. You’re, you know, you’re doing all this stuff. Now, you have to go back to 2000. On 2000, in the year 2000, there was no such thing as “make six figures in six months.” None of that nonsense existed in the year 2000, which was really, really cool for me because I didn’t have to be distracted by all this nonsense that you see today. And all you had was a very archaic internet, and the first e-books came along.
But Million Bucks predated those e-books. Million Bucks was just, “I’m gonna have this website. I think it’s a really catchy name. I’m gonna call it Million Bucks.” And everyone, at least in New Zealand, was so kind of embarrassed by the name that I never got any referrals.
Nathan: And it was just for…like, what was the purpose of the site?
Sean: It was just…it still exists. I mean, if you got to archive.com and look up millionbucks.co.nz, you can see it’s a site that was just created as a kind of portfolio site for…with a few articles…just like you advise anyone today, “Develop a site. Put up a few articles.” It just had a few articles. The few articles were in six-point or seven-point. You could barely read them. And it didn’t have any subscribe button. You had to read all of this text and then right at the bottom, there was this, “If you’d like to receive more of the Psychotactics Newsletter, then click here.”
And you had to find the here on the page. And 1,000 people found the here on the page, and they signed up to the newsletter, even though the name was not so great. And then, a few years later, I was sitting with a client, with a client who became a friend, and we were having a coffee. And he says, “Why don’t you change the name of the company to Newsletter?” So, I used to call it the Psychotactics Newsletter because it was psychological tactics. And he said, “Why don’t you call it, why don’t you call your company Psychotactics?”
And when I changed the name of the company to Psychotactics, everyone said, “Oh, thank goodness you did that because we couldn’t recommend you to anyone before this.” So, Psychotactics started and again, it just had articles until one day, I gave a presentation. I gave a presentation just at an event, which I truly believe in. I believe that you should be offline as well as online. And at this offline event, there were like 15 people. They just came for a forty-five-minute speech, which I gave. And I called it “The Brain Audit.” I showed you why customers buy and why they don’t.
And after that speech, this woman said, “I’d like to have some notes.” I’m going like, “No, no, no. This is a speech. This is…there are no notes. This is not a seminar or workshop.” And she goes, “I can’t remember everything you said.” So, she bugged me enough so that I put it in a document, which is a 16-page document. And then, I gave it to her, and another friend of mine…so what I started to do was I started to speak at Rotary and all these little clubs all over the place, just not big events or anything, just little clubs. I just wanted to improve my speaking ability, not get so afraid of speaking.
And one of my friends, Allan, he said, “Why don’t you sell it?” So I said, “Well, sell it, what? Sell what?” And he goes, “Those notes you wrote.” I go, “That’s a PDF of 16 pages.” And he says, “But you can sell it.” And I said, “Sell it for what?” He says, “How about trying like $29 or whatever?” So, we went to this event. There were 50 people in the room. And I just at the end of it I said, you know, “If you enjoyed the speech, there’s this booklet, this book. I call it “The Brain Audit. It’s $29.” It was $29 back then. “If you’d like to, there’s Renuka [SP], my wife at the back of the room.
Go and give her your name and your…and of course, there were, you know, business checks and stuff back then. Thirty people bought it. So, $29…that’s $30 and to 30 people. We made $900 that day. It was like, “What just happened here?” I mean, you have to go back to 2000. Most people didn’t have…they didn’t have email. Lots of people didn’t have email in this part of the world. We had to send them a CD.
Sean: And they were buying this book. And so that was like the, what I would call, like, almost the genesis of the internet. It was people were gonna buy something in a PDF format for $30 when a normal book would cost $16.
Nathan: So, you are quite a savvy marketer from, from…would you say from a scientific perspective?
Sean: Yes. I like to…I don’t believe in innate talent. I don’t believe in inborn talent. Lots of people disagree with me. I choose to disagree with them because I can prove it and they can’t. And so, what I do is I break down things into little pieces, and when I break them down to little pieces, it becomes scientific. That’s really what science is. Science is just taking something very complex and breaking it down into little pieces, and then reconstructing it so that anyone can do it.
Nathan: So, what happened next once you had this big epiphany with “The Brain Audit.”
Sean: Well, we ran into an even more interesting situation. So, we have this website. We’re not selling anything. And then I ran into this other guy who was also selling PDFs online. In fact, I got the idea of creating PDFs from this other guy. His name…his name’s Joe and…so, so Joe has these books that are on marketing. And of course, I’m trying to read every book I can on marketing. And Joe’s selling these books. So, I go, “Joe, how about you give me these books, and I’ll draw some cartoons for you?” So, I did good old barter.
And Joe says, “Fine. No problem,” because, anyway, they’re PDF, and so, he sends me all these books. I do a lot of cartoons. Both of us are happy. Joe says…and then in one email, I say, “Hey. I’ve got this book, Joe.” He takes a look at it. I don’t know if he read it. All I know is that he said, “Hey. I’ve got a list. I’m gonna promote this to my list.” So, I’m going, “Oh. That’s cool.” And he goes, “Okay. So, you send me your affiliate account now.” We didn’t have anything. We didn’t…we had spent like three or four months trying to even figure out how to sell anything online because this was 2002.
A bank in New Zealand…when you talk to a bank in the US. It wouldn’t…it didn’t know how to collect any money. It didn’t…it was just a complete nightmare. And Joe goes, “I’ll give you a week.” And I’m going, “We’ve been doing this for six months. We haven’t found a solution.” He goes, ” Don’t worry. Go to this place called ClickBank. Just open up an account. It has an affiliate link. I’ll promote your stuff.” So we go, “Okay.” So we set it up, and then I emailed Joe. And I said, “Okay. I’m ready.” And he says,”It’s a little busy this month. How about we do this next month?”
So, then, you know, September turns to October. I email Joe. Nothing happens. October turns to November. Christmas comes and goes. And, suddenly, we realize that Joe is not gonna come through on his deal, whatever deal he made. He was just there to get us started because people were finding the website through the newsletter or otherwise, and they were buying “The Brain Audit.” And that was our start. I mean, because I call these people kicking angels because they’re not there to buy anything from you. They’re just there to kick you, to get you started, and then they go away. And that’s what Joe did.
Nathan: Interesting. So, what happened next after that? Like, you’ve built quite a sizeable audience. You’re very well known online. You’ve been doing this for a long time. It’s interesting because I…we met kind of over email and you didn’t want to do a barter deal with me, so you changed your ways a little bit, which was just funny. But, you know, it’s…I really, really enjoyed getting to know you up in the Gold Coast, and we had some great chats, man. So, tell me, you know, what like, what’s happened in the past 16 years? How does your business work? What does the model look like?
Sean: What’s happened is that we haven’t…what shall I say? I can’t use the…I won’t use the exact word for it…but we haven’t decided to explode. We haven’t decided to take over the world. Now, I know that doesn’t exactly sit with everyone’s philosophy, but at the very start…this is going all the way back to 2003. “The Brain Audit” was doing really well. There was…I mean there was a lot less competition on Amazon and everywhere than there is today. And I wanted to make “The Brain Audit” a bestseller. And I brought it up in our membership site, which is 5000 BC.
And one of my clients asked me, “Why? Why do you want to make it a bestseller?” And I had no idea why. So, what we did was…at that point in time we decided, “Okay. What we’re going to do is we’re just going to go for enough, what we think is enough. Why do we have to go by what everybody else does?” And so…you’ve heard me say this before. You know, we didn’t…we built this business without any joint ventures, without affiliates, without ads and stuff. And you go, “Why is that important?” It’s important because a newcomer thinks that all of this is critical.
A newcomer thinks that all of this is important. All of this, “I have to make a million dollars,” is important. Now, we have become so…I wouldn’t use the word successful because I, you know…I’m kind of living the same life I did five years ago, seven years ago, whatever. The only thing I do different now is I can buy anything I want. I can go anywhere I want. We have been taking three months off for about, since 2004, so that’s 12 years. We take three whole months off, no email. We don’t go to work, nothing, three months off. Whenever we travel…you know I know lots of people.
They say they do really well. They’re really successful. We travel on our own dime. We pay…we go business class. I don’t know what more you’d want from life. It’s like we live really well. We can do whatever we want. And we, I mean…no…none of the books I write are based on what clients want. Everything I want, everything I create is what I wanna do. And then, of course, I sell it based on a want factor. That’s a whole different topic. But, essentially I’m…all the books I’m writing like, you know I want to write a book on talent. Who’s going to buy a book on talent? I don’t know. I don’t really care.
It’s what I want to do, and I’ll sell it. So, this whole journey has been one of “Let’s kind of keep going in a very slow, organic way rather than this dump on the fertilizer. Let’s do the joint franchise. Let’s do this stuff. Let’s double. Let’s triple. Let’s do all this stuff.” It’s been very organic. And then around 2007 or so, we hit a reasonably high figure in terms of income. And that enabled us to kind of pay one-third of it in tax. One-third was our savings. And one third we needed to go on these holidays and do whatever we wanted. So, we decide, “That’s it. We don’t need to earn more than this.”
And since 2007, we’ve pretty much kept our income around the same amount. Now, I can’t control…people come to our site, Psychotactics and then buy half a dozen books or they buy quotes or whatever. But knowingly, we haven’t tried to double or treble anything. And what’s really happening is that our focus has been this, “How can we be happy and defining what that happiness means.” And for me, the happiness goes all the way back to the original story, which is that I wanted to take time off. And I didn’t want to check email. I didn’t want to do that stuff.
I mean, it’s not like I don’t go on vacation and start checking email. Of course, I do. But, you know, it takes two days, and then after that, if I go to a foreign or the membership site, they throw me out. So, they say, “Go away. You’re supposed to be on holiday.” So…
Nathan: Wow. That’s crazy.
Sean: Yeah. So, it’s now clients have started to expect that from us, and we haven’t really had a problem. I mean, we’ve had some serious issues over the years. Once, when we were on vacation, our entire website got destroyed. I mean, when I say destroyed, this is the membership site. They did something where it was reduced to a single pixel. Like, there was nothing left. And, luckily, we had made a backup because we were transferring it over to another server and stuff like that. But that’s the kind of thing that happened. And the clients just said, “Okay. Sean’s on holiday.
Let’s start up a waiting room.” And then someone got in touch with me and said, “Look, I know you’re on holiday and…” Back then, we were checking email every now and then, like, every week and so. And they said, “Let’s start up a waiting room. And can you just do us a favor? Just send an email to all the members, and tell them, ‘This is the waiting room.'” And then they waited until I got back. And that was it. So, over the years, what we’ve done is we’ve progressed from just 100% consulting for us to go and speak with clients, meet with them to a lot of training and then leverage.
Now we sell a lot of books and courses online. But what’s changed over the years is now the focus on skill. So, when I started out, I wrote books like everybody else and it was all about information. But now we guarantee skill. So, if you do a course with us for instance, we don’t have a money-back guarantee. Now, look at everyone on the internet, most everyone. And what they have is, they say, “You can have your money back, but we won’t guarantee skill.” And what we do is we give no money-back guarantee and we guarantee skill.
So, that means you go, “Okay. I’m not a cartoonist, but in six months, I want to be a cartoonist.” Well, that’s guaranteed. “I’m not a copywriter, but in 6 months or 3 months or 12 weeks,” whatever the course is, “I wanna be a copywriter.” And that’s guaranteed. So, to do that kind of thing, the first thing we have to work through is we can’t believe in innate talent because if you have innate talent or you don’t have innate talent, you’re stuck. You can’t do it. You know? You don’t have the gift. Sorry. So, that’s the first part of it.
But the second part of it is we break it down into such a small portion that it is extremely simple, and you think, “When does it get to be difficult? When does this learning get to be difficult?” And it doesn’t because learning doesn’t have to be difficult. So, everything is broken down into what I call small, consumable pieces, tiny increments. And, eventually, you become very skilled at it. And you don’t have to take my word for it. If you want to look at, say, someone who’s been drawing cartoons, you look at what they did, you look at what they are, what they are six months or seven months later.
It’s on Facebook. It’s everywhere. The proof of the pudding is in eating. And, so we’ve gone from just creating information to creating skill. And that’s where I am right now. I mean, we have the usual books and courses and stuff like that. But to me, it’s pointless. It’s just…we have too much information today. People don’t give a damn about information. They don’t want marketing. If they could get to the endpoint, they could get their result without marketing, they’d be happy. They just want the ability to do something in the most efficient manner possible, and that’s what we do.
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I highly recommend them and now they’re offering our listeners a 30-day free trial. So, if you go to freshbooks.com, so freshbooks.com/foundr and enter FOUNDR in the how-did-you-hear-about-us section… because, remember, when you’re supporting our sponsors, you’re supporting the show. Okay. Now, let’s jump back in. So yeah. This is one question. I mean, you talked about and you told me to go and watch “Jiro Dreams of Sushi.” Do you…? Tell me about why you respect Jiro so much. Tell people a little bit about Jiro. I thought it was fascinating. I’m going to get my whole team to watch the whole documentary. It was so good, man.
Sean: Well, what I thought about at one point…I mean I come from a very philosophical country, India. I mean, philosophy is just part of who you are when you’re growing up. And I was thinking about this whole thing about money and art and stuff. And when you think about life in general, you don’t remember Rockefeller. I mean, you know of Rockefeller. He was ten times richer than Bill Gates is today. So think of the kind of wealth that he had. But what are you really thinking of in history? You think of Leonardo da Vinci. You think of people…you think of people.
You know, like, Elon Musk for instance. You think of a guy, and you think, “This guy is not creating money. He’s creating art. He’s creating…he’s creating magic. And to me, that was the most important thing. And the reason when we had that chat, I was telling you, you should go and watch “Jiro Loves Sushi,” is the guy, Jiro, he has a restaurant under Ginza Railway Station in Tokyo. So, it’s under a railway station. You know it’s not even some fancy district or whatever. And this guy has dedicated his life. Now, he’s been making sushi for, I think close to 80 years.
And in the movie, he says, “I still have to get here.” So, he’s not this guru. He’s not this pompous little ass that’s, that you see all over the internet. You know he doesn’t show you his mansion and his cars and stuff. And he’s got this little restaurant and there are only 10 people. And you think, “This guy, he was the first guy on the planet that was not a French restaurant, if I’m not mistaken, and got a three-star Michelin.” He has a 3-star Michelin and he only serves 10 people. And you go, “Surely you could do 11.” He goes, “No. I’m gonna do 10.”
So, for the last however many years, 20 years, 30 years, 50 years…I don’t know how long he’s run that restaurant. It’s just 10 people. And his focus is on creating magic. When you go there, it’s an experience that you should not be able to forget, not necessarily the…he does talk about the service. He does talk about…
Nathan: So, you’ve been.
Sean: No, I haven’t.
Nathan: I wanna go there.
Sean: Yeah. And here’s the fundamental as well. Now, his company, his restaurant, the gross is about a million dollars a year with 10 people. All right? So, you don’t have to dominate the world to kind of be successful. When you watch the movie, there is a very clear undertone of having done so much work that he’s neglected his family at some level. There is that undertone. And you don’t even have to do that because if you really think about it, half a million…if he did just half the work, he would still be fine. He could still have taken a couple of days off every week.
Half a million is not…it’s quite a lot of money to spend in a year. But, but the thing is that he is dedicated to creating magic, and this is the kind of person that I admire. I admire. It’s very easy to make, to make money. I mean, it might not sound like that to a lot of people who are listening to this because that’s their biggest struggle right now. But over time, money is just…it’s just money. But magic is just the ability, the skill, your experience, your philosophy…it’s who you are. You know it’s just so deep that when you create it, you go, “This stuff could last 50 years, 100 years,” that kind of thing.
That’s just…I know, for instance, you’ve made a book and you’re all fast over. You know that’s the kind of thing that you wanna do. You wanna look at the little things, like…I don’t know if Apple has removed that little magnet that they had for the you know, the power supply. But to me, that’s really cool. When they had that magnet, it’s like, “Who cares about where the plug goes in? Who cares where the power goes in?” But that’s magic. To me, that…those little things…they’re a superior being. It’s what…that’s a person that you call a human. The rest of them are just dumbasses.
Nathan: Yeah. You’re funny. All right. So, let’s talk some tactics, man. How do you get a customer to buy?
Sean: Okay. So, there are…the first thing, right. If you read “The Brain Audit,” and you should read “The Brain Audit,” and I know you haven’t read “The Brain Audit,” but I’ll forgive you for it. Now, the point is that there are two parts to customer buying, and the first part is attention, and the second part is risk. So, the only…if you wanna know just one word in marketing, it’s risk. The only reason why people don’t buy something is because of risk. But for them to get to a point of risk, they have to get to attention. So, in “The Brain Audit,” we talk about putting seven red bags.
So let’s say you go on a trip, and you take seven red bags. And you put them on your flight, and then you get off at your destination. And you’re waiting for your seven red bags. Now, one bag comes out. You get that out. The second red bag comes. You get that out. The third one comes out. You get that off. Then there’s an orange bag and a green bag, and a purple bag. And then the fourth one comes, the fifth one comes, the sixth one comes, and the seventh bag is missing. So, the question is when do you leave the airport. And you don’t. You wait for that seventh red bag.
This is what happens in the customer’s brain. If you don’t remove all the bags from their brain, they stop and they have to ask their uncle…they have to decide, and they would think. So, there’s this hesitation that comes. And so, not only are the bags important, but the sequence of the bags are important. Now, the first three bags are the target profile, the problem, and the solution. A target profile is really a single person. So, a lot of people they associate target profile with target audience. It’s not target audience. You’re speaking to one person, like, you’re speaking to Allan. And Allan has a website.
And the only problem with the website is that it is now HTTP. And you go, “What’s the problem with that?” Well, very soon, if your website’s not HTTP, HTTPS, then you’re going to have trouble with Chrome. It’s gonna just knock you off the listing. Right? So, that’s a problem. Now, that’s not just a website problem. That’s Allan’s problem. Now, there happen to be at least 1000 Allans or 10,000 Allans or a million Allans. What you’re doing is you’re looking at Allan, you’re asking him his specific problem, solving that problem. So, you have your target profile, your problem, your solution.
That’s an attention-getting thing. Because look at Allan, he’s already got a website. You go up there, and you go, “Hey, I build websites.” Not interested. “Hey, I build websites that is not gonna get you knocked off all the search engines in six months.” Now, I’m interested. But as soon as that happens, what happens is you’ve started a relationship. So, it’s like dating. You go out. You’re dating. You’re dating. You’re dating. At some point, you have to start a relationship. “Ooh. Okay.” So, what happens is the next bag kicks in, which is the objections.
So, you have to deal with all the objections that people have, and you have to bring them up. The next bag after that are the testimonials. Now, the testimonials most people sound like, “Oh. That was a really good person. They did a really good job,” No. That’s sugary. That’s hopeless. So, testimonials are based totally on the objections. Supposing the client says, “The site was too expensive.” Your testimonial needs to be an exact mirror of that. So, it needs to go, “When I got to Allan, I thought the site was too expensive, but here’s what I found.”
The second person says, “Oh. I’ve dealt with website developers before. They don’t speak my language.” Your testimonial goes, “Allan speaks the language of the common man. I don’t have to speak in any jargon to him.” It’s the flip side of the same coin. You have a testimonial which is the flip side of the objection. So, you find out the objections, you kill the objections. But then, you use the testimonials the second time around. And then, you kill the objections again, this time from the customer’s point of view. Then, you have what is called the risk reversal.
Now, you think this whole section is risk: objections, testimonial, risk reversal, and uniqueness. It’s all risk. Why do we have a risk reversal in place? You have it because risk reversal is totally different. Most people think that money-back guarantee is a risk reversal, but it’s not. For instance, back in 2007, 2006, we used to sell, you know, this whole master class kind of thing. So, you get a folder, you get CDs and all that stuff. And whenever we got a refund, they had to ship it back. Now, what we noticed when they shipped it back was…it was immaculate. All the notes were perfect.
The CDs were perfect. Now, what we realized was the risk wasn’t that they wanted their money back. They already had their money before they gave it to us. They were afraid of soiling the books. They were afraid of scratching the CDs. So, our risk reversal was if you don’t like this product, you have to take it out on your lawn, run your lawn mower over it, put all the stuff in the box, and send it back. That was it. It was called the Lawnmower Guarantee.
Nathan: Interesting. So, what about the other bags?
Sean: And so, what we have so far is the target profile, the problem, the solution. Then, we went to the risk, which is objections, testimonial, risk reversal. And the final is uniqueness. So, what happens is when you set…you get all these bags off, what it does is it makes the customer very smart. And that’s when they go, “Why should I pick you? Why should I not pick somebody else?” So, that’s what I did earlier. I said, “Hey, you know if you go and buy a course on the internet, they will offer you money-back guarantee, but they won’t guarantee skill. What we do is we offer skill.
We don’t offer the money-back guarantee, but we guarantee skill.” That is uniqueness. Immediately, you go, “Oh. That’s the reason I would buy.” So, now, what this allows us to do is…everybody on the internet, or enough people, will sell a course, say an article-writing course for $500. Ours is like $3,000. Would you buy? We sell out in 20 minutes.
Sean: Twenty minutes. We send out one email. As I said, no joint ventures, no affiliates, no advertising, no publicity, no social media. Often, it’s to a list of like 500 people. Twenty minutes, it’s gone. And people think we’re kidding, so they don’t wait…I mean they don’t buy. They wait for two hours. It’s gone. Next time a course comes along, gone.
Nathan: So, you’re training people and they’re heavily qualified, too. Right?
Sean: Right. But the point is that you can make any claim, but if you can’t substantiate, then the claim doesn’t hold water. So on average, why is it gone? Because the person that did the course the last time got the skill in cartooning, this time wants the skill in copywriting, third time wants the skill in, in whatever. They know that by the time that course finishes, they have the skill. So, we don’t even have to go out and get new customers. They’re already there.
Nathan: Interesting. Look, Sean, we have to work towards wrapping up. But I was going to ask, you know, it’s very apparent to me that you like to do things differently. So out of all the people that I’ve interviewed, what’s that one thing that you’d like to do differently to finish off this call? And then please share what is the best place people can find you.
Sean: Yeah. Well, I would like to tell people to, to figure out what is your enough. So, how much do you need in life so that you can be happy so that you can be like Jiro, who takes weekends off? You know and I would tell them to watch the movie, “Why Jiro Loves Sushi.” Is that it?
Sean: Oh, “Jiro Dreams of Sushi.” Sorry, “Jiro Dreams of Sushi.” So, that’s, that’s my different point. Watch the movie. See how magic is created. And if you would like to come over to Psychotactics, then we’re at psychotactics.com. But you know what? There is a little booklet there that a lot of people like when they get there. It’s called, “Resistance: Why You Don’t Do Anything.” So, you can go to psychotactics.com/resistance, and you get this whole document that I wrote on resistance. It’s free as you would expect. But yeah. If you want to pay for it, that’s cool.
Nathan: Awesome. Well, it’s been an absolute pleasure speaking with you, Sean. I could chat with you all day, man. So, yeah…look, thank you so much for your time.
Sean: Yeah. We can do this another time as well.
Key Resources From Our Interview With Sean D’Souza