Vandaag het gesprek met James Schramko.
James is based in Sydney Australia and has started, developed, and sold multiple successful businesses.
A passionate father, investor, surfer, husband, coach, mentor, and lover of freedom, James excels in making the complex world of business simple so that your quality of life can improve.
When James started online he was a General Manager working with Mercedes-Benz commanding a large team of employees in a multi-million dollar business by day and an online marketer by night.
Since buying his first laptop in 2005 James has sold well over TEN million dollars online.
Author book ‘Work less – make more’
We talked about how James uses his favorite way of creating content to get him, new clients, continuously. How he has added really short videos to his channels. With smart outsourcing creating all this content, costs James not much time and he loves doing it.
James explains the importance of clear numbers to track the effectiveness of what you are doing in your business. How you can increase the results by improving just two things.
James gave some background on the size of his business. Also, he gives some background on the diversity of activities he is doing to be financially secure and why this is important.
Don’t forget to get his book Work Less – Make More on Amazone or via SuperFastBusiness.
And of course, he shares the secret weapon for high performance as an entrepreneur.
Enjoy the insights with James.
Let’s get started…
Erno: Hello and welcome to James Schramko. James is based in Sydney Australia and has started, developed, and sold multiple successful businesses. Welcome, James! It is so great to have you and I admire the way you grow businesses. Your life seems so balanced between family, surfing, and your work.
James: It is not accidental, I come from quite some time of crafting the skill of designing your life around the things you want to do and creating a business that can actually do that.
Erno: Your number 1 priority is to get your surf in each day.
James: That is true, I do plan my surf as a daily ritual, it teaches me a lot about life. It is important to have some time away from devices and get back to basics. Spend time in nature, it is very calming and very good for your business as well as you come back recharged. Fun but also a great exercise.
Erno: How much time do you think you need to replenish every day?
James: In the USA for example, the average adult watches 6 hours of video a day. That is a lot. I need at least an hour a day. In some cultures, people are a little more outdoorsy. If you do not leave your house daily, I would be concerned. Just go for a walk, it is good to go barefooted. I don’t like my feet constrained.
Erno: Interesting, I do run a lot but with my shoes on. I think that people in the Netherlands are quite outdoorsy, it is a small country so we use our bicycles a lot. To get back to your business, you have a lot of things automated or outsourced. That was a choice for you. However, when you started working in cars, you worked a lot of hours.
James: I did, at one point, I did the car dealership by day, where I was general manager and my own company by night. I was teaching myself how to market online. I saw the opportunity but I did not yet know how. The contrast was interesting, by day, everyone else was doing all the work and I was doing everything. It was progressing slowly and understood that I needed to hire people to do certain tasks. Then I started growing, with a support desk and someone who wrote articles. I still have a small team of 5 full-time people. It allows me to focus on the things that I am good at. Outsourcing support very soon is important because you can’t really grow without good support. With an online business, support is required for even the most basic things. If you can answers questions about your products, you will improve your income. Could you hire someone for a fair wage to do that for you? It is a relatively easy thing to find help for. You can then focus on your core business. The same might be true for articles unless you are a brilliant writer. The content I create usually comes from audio being transcribed. I never touch the keyboard, my team does that for me. The key is to find out what you’re good at.
Erno: You have always been pretty clear about that. I meet a lot of entrepreneurs who find it easier to write than to record or video themselves because it seems easier to them.
James: It comes down to personal preferences. Some like audio, and some like video, such as Casey Neistat. Some like getting up early to write. Just embrace what you like and work on it. Don’t be something you don’t like. I like talking, I’ve had a podcast for some 9 years now where I talk and record it. That podcast is the fuel for my business and I feel comfortable doing it for such a long time.
Erno: When did you see that clients came in through the podcast? When do they become customers?
James: It depends on where they are in the buying window. If someone comes across your podcast where you talk about their problem with a solution, it will let them trust you and buy. I noticed people buying from the very start. And also featured in another podcast and the one that kickstarted that was when I was a guest at the Small Business Podcast. On that podcast, I offered a DVD course. We made a lot of sales after that. I saw a direct correlation between sales and that podcast, It encouraged me to list my episodes on Itunes. I realized how powerful that was.
Erno: Recently, you added these 1-minute videos to your content.
James: If you want to make longer videos, it costs a lot more production hours. However, if you possess an iPhone or some other camera, you can start. Just film a short video of a minute, which are easy to script and film. I use a framework called TEA, Topic, Explain, Answer it. Snack-sized content is easy to digest. To make the customer aware of your existence, we post 1 of these videos on social media each day. We get a high amount of exposure. We get about 10.00 views a month. These also yield sales, it costs me about 8 minutes a week to make all these videos. At that start, there was no editing, now we just add a bumper. A 1-minute video will play on Instagram in full. Keep it short. Most people will watch it all the way through. It drops after 2 minutes. For instance, if I’m in my car and have an idea, I’ll just record it there. Sometimes I record 20 at once.
Erno: Thanks for the wonderful conversation today James!
James: You are very welcome Erno.