Ever wonder how Salesforce and Intuit, some of the biggest names in SaaS, seemed to have reached new heights overnight? The answer lies within one of the least-known yet most effective methods for growing any business: Power Tribes. By leveraging the clients you already have and the relationships you’ve already built, the Power Tribe method aids companies of all sizes by creating enthusiastic brand loyalty and increased profits in as little as 90 days.
How can you adopt the Power Tribe method to explode your revenue?
In this episode of Evolved Sales Live, host Jonathan Fischer sits down with serial entrepreneur and best-selling author, Mitch Russo, to discuss the Power Tribe method and practical ways companies of all sizes can adopt the approach to re-create the path for business expansion.
Don't forget to follow us on LinkedIn for more engaging sales insights and discussions! Happy watching!
Mitch Russo is a serial entrepreneur, best-selling author, coach, keynote speaker, and business partner to greats such as Chet Holmes, Tony Robbins, and Kevin Harrington. His very first venture was a software company which he started in his garage and sold for 8 figures in just a few years!
Check out the transcription of this webinar episode below!
Jonathan Fischer 0:05
Welcome back, everybody. Once again, it's time for evolved sales live. I'm Jonathan Fisher, your host, do you sell b2b? What if there were a way you could open an entire new channel of business recruit an ever increasing army of enthusiastic sales reps who will happily work without pay? Have your new division cash flowing six figures of ad revenue within 90 to 100 days? And do it all by leveraging the clients and customers you already have and spending little to no capital? Would you want to know about it? Well, as our guest today shares in his best selling book power tribes, some of the biggest names in SAS have leveraged this exact method to reach exciting new heights of growth, including Intuit, Salesforce, Microsoft and many others. Here with us today to share this little known but highly effective method for growing virtually any b2b company is Mitch Russo. Mitch Russo is a serial entrepreneur, Best Selling Author, coach, keynote speaker and business partner to greats such as Chet Holmes, Tony Robbins, Kevin Harrington and others. His very first venture was a software company, which he started in his garage and sold for eight figures within just a few years. He went on to run the North American Division of international software giant sage group as CEO for a number of years. But before long, the entrepreneur had bug hit again. And Mitch has gone on to found co found and or lead numerous additional businesses since then, primarily in the software and consulting spaces. And full disclosure, I personally had the privilege of working for Mitch when he was president and CEO of business breakthroughs International, a Chet Holmes and Tony Robbins company. Those are some fantastic years, which I still remember very fondly, Mitch. It's a special treat to have you on the show today. Welcome.
Mitch Russo 1:44
Thanks, Jonathan. Yeah, it's great to be here and love to rekindle a lot of those great memories.
Jonathan Fischer 1:50
Yeah, absolutely. Well, I'll tell you what, we've got a fantastic topic on tap for today. This this topic of power tribes, and we'll get into that shortly. But very quickly, a reminder to our audience. Hey, you're here live for good reason. We're going to have a q&a session. At the end of our main conversation today, we're going to open up for some q&a. So begin right now sending in those questions into the chat. And we'll get you some live answers right here. Right now with your guest. So much, let's just start right at the beginning. What in the world is a power drive?
Mitch Russo 2:24
Well, I'm gonna answer the question with a question. I'll start that way. So do you know what a certification program is?
Jonathan Fischer 2:34
Yeah, I mean, you basically are, you go through a course you're trained and you are deemed competent when you get into the training to retrain others in whatever that solution or software might be or program might be?
Mitch Russo 2:46
Exactly. And many companies have certification programs. And the problem that many companies have when they build a certification program, is they they forgot something a simple but very powerful and important ingredient. The people that are certifying, are actually not sales and marketing people isn't that interesting. Their coaches, consultants, technicians, their their partners, their strategists, but they're not sales and marketing people. And guess what, when you have a certificate that you just paid 10, or 15, or $20,000, to obtain. And it's a beautiful eight by 10, certificate suitable for framing, so that you can place it right here in your zoom window when you're getting on phone calls. But it won't make any money unless you go out and you sell. Well, what a power tribe is, is. And some people have called it a certification program on steroids. I like to think of it as a business model, I think of it as a business model, because what we're doing is we're creating a holistic business for one of our best customers, to then go out and make a whole new profession around our company, our products, and our processes. So yes, we would still go through the process of training them on the product. But we have three levels of training that I take my clients through, only the first level is product training that most companies already have. But the second level is training them on how to use or how to train on the product training, how to take that product training, and train others with it. And then the third level of training, and there's actually a fourth one to the third level of training is how to interact within the culture of the community that you built. Now, this is probably what I think, you know, is the secret weapon of most companies. And that is creating a incredibly powerful culture. As many of you have heard, culture eats strategy for breakfast. And there's a reason why that's such an important phrase. It's so important because the old saying that a bad apple can spoil the barrel is very relevant here. If you Have a bad culture and you have one disgruntled individual in that culture, maybe it's their nature to be disgruntled in their community, we could destroy a community, I've actually had to fire entire departments, because one individual poisoned the entire batch. So what we do when I work with a client is we build a culture in advance, we create that culture in advance to make sure that when someone steps into our certification program called The Power tribe, at that point, they're trained on what that culture is. And they are tested to make sure that they fully understand and accepted before we even allow them near a customer or prospect makes sense so far?
Jonathan Fischer 5:45
Well, it makes a lot of sense. But even though you said it's a certification program, I have to say this sounds very different from most certification programs I've heard of, they pretty much just want to know that you've learned the thing, and they want to give you a certificate. This sounds quite a bit different from that.
Mitch Russo 5:59
It is see what I did that just what you said the first time, I almost ended up being sued out of existence. And the reason was, is because the people I trained were socially inept, they'd show up to my clients offices smelling like a farm looking like Arnold Fudd. And if that's a historical reference, you may not listeners, you may not know who Arnold Fudd is, but trust me, it's not someone you want to look like. And, and at the same time, they were rude, they were late, they didn't understand the communication cycle, or how to listen. And they did a terrible job. So what would happen is that other than that was perfect. Other than that, they were great. I mean, they passed the tests, right? Yeah, that's the problem. The problem is they passed the test. And we did not know or screen, or even train them how to be anything other than that. And that was the big mistake. And I will say that I find that even in this day and age, over and over again, when I interview people casually who belong to other certification programs. And I start to chat a little bit about, hey, how does the company treat you? Hey, what is it company doing to generate leads flow for you or bringing you clients? The answers are not normally positive. And so my perspective is, let's eliminate all these issues. Why don't we build that in advance? Why don't we create a powerful stream of prospects flow and even client flow for the certified consultants for only one reason. And here's the reason, Jonathan, recurring revenue, here's what I mean, if you want to build a certification program and charge $20,000, for someone to pass your test and, and hang that shiny new certificate eight by 10, suitable for framing right behind them on their on their wall, will you go ahead and do that. But the problem will be that next year, they're not going to be paying you anything. In my program, we're trying to generate a five to 20x ROI every year for certified coaches or certified consultants, so that they will gladly pay certification again, every year. And the reason is ROI. Because we are bringing them leads, we are bringing them prospects, we are showcasing their work, we are bringing public relations, assets to the table to help publicize what it is that they do. And that's only the beginning.
Jonathan Fischer 8:16
It sounds like it takes a lot more commitment than a lot of companies probably would be willing, maybe even capable of putting in what are some of the key commitments that you do have to make? And what's that look like in nuts and bolts?
Mitch Russo 8:29
Sure, well, the first of all, the commitment is to stick with it, I mean, it's going to take us 90 days to build this and that's on a good day. And that's if you already have assets. So if you started with no assets, meaning you had no training materials at all, then it's going to take longer than 90 days. Secondarily, we need to build a financial model, like down to the month for the next two years. And I have that financial model. And I make sure that that financial model is completely fleshed out before we even begin building strategy. Next is the business model itself, then we go through a business model, and we look for every possible way that we could use certification to increase revenue for the company. And when I say build a business model, I don't mean philosophically, I'm talking about the nuts and bolts of a fully fleshed out visual business model using mind maps and flowcharts to make sure that we see every pathway to recurring revenue inside the company. Now when I build this program for my clients will usually find a minimum of two. And I've found as many as eight recurring revenue streams that the company didn't know about didn't have and was blown away by the idea that they could utilize. And we find that all out by going through this process that I take people through, which is a the financial model and be the strategy, the business model strategy sessions. That alone can take two to four weeks, because that's a major component The next thing we do is we talk about what the assets are. Now we go through some of this in the strategy part of the program. But what we're really looking for here is we're looking for assets that most people don't realize they have. I'll give me an example of one. So if I said to any customer, any clients that you speak to, or that I speak to, that has, let's say, 1000 clients, and said, Well, okay, you got 1000 clients, how many prospects do you have? No, let me guess. The answer is always about 95% of their entire base 5% of customers, 90 to 95% are prospects. Well, wait a second. Now let's take a look at that number. That means that if you have 1000 clients, 19,000 people know about you have been solicited by you, but have not bought. Now our old buddy Chet would not like that concept one bit. And, and so what we're going to do here is we're going to build the certification program. And we're going to arm our new certified coaches or consultants, with an entire lead base of our prospects. But we're going to tell them to go back to these prospects with a brand new wrinkle. And here's here it is, the wrinkle is, you get at least three, possibly four free coaching or consulting sessions, to make sure that you can be successful with our product. Now, you and I both know that that's exactly what we did with business breakthroughs. So that was something that we brought to the table early on, I still use that to this day. And it works great. So now what did we end up doing is we ended up doing two very key and important things. Number one, we revive a whole lot of prospects, we can generally get about 8% of that prospect base to say yes. So what we're doing is we're selling more product or more licenses, number one. Number two, we're generating commissions now for our strategic and certified consultant base. And we're generating coaching contracts. So as you and I know, if a coach goes, head to head with a client and does a great job for three or four sessions, 25% of those folks will say yes, when that coach offers them additional coaching or consulting. Now for those who say, No, we go back 30 days later with a follow up series, and we get another 10 to 20% of those. So the whole idea here is your prospects are almost always much more valuable than ever have come to believe. And the reason you've come to believe they aren't valuable is because you've tried everything that you know of already, to try and close them and they haven't closed. Yeah. So this is a means by offering something that they didn't have before. And now the timing is different. They may have moved on, they may have used a competitor, or they may now be enticed by the idea of being able to get help when they didn't get it before.
Jonathan Fischer 12:49
Yeah, this sounds like a tremendous way to lower your overall client acquisition costs as well, because you are leveraging what you've already spent to some degree to come back and and make some additional efforts to win that audience. Sounds very powerful. So when it comes to implementing this into the company, I mean, it seems to me like there probably are some entities that are suitable for this. And some that would not be it's not literally every b2b company that could even do this. Even if they're in training and coaching. In some cases, I think there I've seen a lot of times, it's a lack of commitment to treat this as a true business division, the way that you're describing. It's more like another product offering. That sounds like a downside, and maybe a reason to not do it. But what are some of the criteria that you use in assessing? Can a company do this or not?
Mitch Russo 13:34
Well, first of all, is you and you brought this up at the very beginning of the conversation, are they willing to make the commitment, there's a financial commitment, and there is a commitment of time on behalf of the founders, the CEO and the founders. And the reason is, is because they need to work with me. And they need to help me create the strategy with them and for them. And then we need team members to work on on building out the four levels of content, I didn't mention the fourth level, the fourth level of training is sales training, even though we are going to be helping them by generating an enormous base of prospects, we still need them to close those prospects. So we're going to have to train them on how to do that. And you're an expert at that. And you understand how that works. The other thing is, is we're going to build a dedicated CRM login for all of our certified coaches or consultants. So they log in every day. And you're going to get a number, a small number of leads that they can work on every single day. And if they go 72 hours without working on those leads, those leads are taken away from them and reassigned to others because they're too valuable. And we want to instill a sense of urgency in all of our certified coaches and consultants to make sure that they are doing exactly what we want them to do and what we ask them to do. So there are there is a significant commitment. The other commitment is that we're typically looking for one person, either to be hired or someone hopefully already in the company who can step up and become the program manager for this division. And usually, once the heavy lifting is done in the first 30 days, I'm working with the program manager so that they can implement all of what I need done inside the organization as we build out this entire program. Jonathan, I think I lost your audio. Can you hear mine?
Jonathan Fischer 15:26
Yeah, I can hear you just fine. Oh, there you go. Got your operator error. I'm a professional. When you use the sneeze button, it's good idea to hit it again. Yes. So this commitment of having some personnel that are on point ready to be fully committed to this goes right along with this, you're setting this up as a division of business for your corporation? What are some of the criteria that so if I'm listening right now, if I'm one of my audience members, and I have a SaaS company, let's say or b2b services company, what are some other general criteria I know that we're, you know, is maybe there's something I can attain to maybe I'm not mature enough as a company just quite yet to even think about this. What are some of those criteria?
Mitch Russo 16:08
Sure. Well, first of all, the best type of company to work with when it comes to SAS, is a company with a technical product like CRM, or like some form of business management product. Because if it's something simple, and I'll be ridiculously simple, like email, you don't need a certified consultant to come in and set up your email. I mean, but if you think about how many CRM systems are either subscribed to or purchased, and then never get fully utilized? Well, imagine if those CRM systems were fully utilized. Can you imagine the benefit to the company have a full utilization of a CRM platform, not just for the company, but just for the publisher or this, or the company that that created that CRM as well, because now that company is going to stay loyal forever, number one, because they're going to get ingrained with the product. And number two, they're going to buy, add more and more seats every every time they add more people, and any add ons that you have that increases productivity. So we typically like to work with companies that have a business model with a technical product that requires and could be enhanced by assistance through a third party.
Jonathan Fischer 17:21
Well, this sounds like it solves another problem in a very powerful way that is discussed a lot in SAS or technical services companies. And that is utilization. Right you made made the big pitch, you wouldn't a big deal. But retention drops off precipitously when the when the utilization isn't where it needs to be. So, you know, this, this would be a great strategy sounds like for solving that issue. Are there certain benchmarks that a company we need to look at as well? Do they have to have a certain? Like, are there revenue criteria, for example, and maybe years in business, maybe they're reaching the marketplace? What are some of those indicators that can be looked at?
Mitch Russo 17:56
So there's some crude numbers that we use as guidelines, but they could be they could go back and forth a little bit, we like to look at a company that has at least 1000 clients or more, I've worked with companies with a little less than 1000. And that's fine. Let me explain where the 1000 comes from. So if we go back to CEDS materials, and he talks about the early adopter syndrome, where 2% of an any audience is ready to buy now, we take that same idea, and we think about an audience. So let's say you have 1000 customers, and we send out a notice that says, hey, we're building a news program. It's called certification. And if you become a member, we'd like to share with you what you can, how this can change your life, how you can become part of this, and how it will potentially be a new profession for you going forward? Well, 2% of that 1000 is roughly 20 people. Well, 20 people makes up a very nice pilot class. So if we're charging, and I'm using round numbers here, $20,000 for certification, and we have 20 people who say yes, that's $400,000 for a pilot class. Now we have attrition, always. And we build that into the financial model. And we have people at that point who some will be successful, some won't. But the majority will be in fact, the goal of the pilot program is to make as many of them as successful as possible. And here's the reason why. Because if we go down that pyramid, we must use testimonials to convince those on the next level of the pyramid to say yes, so remember, the early adopters, they get the arrows in the back, they go first, then after it's tried and proved, and they come back and say okay, the coast is clear. Then the next batch come through, and those are generally those right before the early adopters. So we take those pilot graduates, we make them successful, we work their clients with them, we guarantee that we will do everything possible, but more importantly we guarantee their work. So that means that if a certified consultant goes into a company and screws it up. Well, you know what, no problem, the company goes in at their expense and fixes that, because that's the most important thing. That's one of the things that you're buying. When you become certified, you're buying the backing of the company that's certifying you. Now, if you're a good company, and you're run by a smart CEO, then at that point, what's going to happen next is that you're going to retrain that person, you're going to make sure that that person is is retreaded. And trained to make sure that they don't do that again, instead of firing them and kicking him aside. I mean, look, valuable lessons, we'll learn here, let's utilize that. So now at this point, we have those testimonials. And at now, we are able to go to people who are not necessarily our very best clients first, and sell them on the idea of certificate of becoming certified so that they can have a new profession number one, and number two, to start building a base of their own clients.
Jonathan Fischer 20:59
Very powerful. And I think highlights once again, why you need a head of this division so that there's somewhere where that buck can stop right there the to protect the brand internally.
Mitch Russo 21:09
That's right. Now the other thing that happens is that once you start getting to a to a certain number, that program manager will need an assistant. The other thing that program manager is going to want and we will help all of our program managers succeed is we're going to want to bring in a part time PR person as well. Our job is to set up PR opportunities for every certified consultant in the program. So that means imagine this, you're certified consultant for ABC Company. And all of a sudden you get a phone call from the program manager or an email that says, Hey, are you available to speak Thursday night, at this at the Bar Association in your town, we set you up as a speaker, if that's okay with you let us know if not tell us and we'll see if we can get you a better date. Well, that guy is gonna go oh, my god, that's amazing. I'd love to speak to the Bar Association, about installing our business services and their client companies. I mean, so that is the job of the company. So this is the difference between a power tribe, and a standard certification program, a power tribe, we are taking responsibility for the success of the people in our program.
Jonathan Fischer 22:14
That's next level stuff right there. Even Google doesn't offer any of that kind of support with their certification programs, the education is great, but you gotta go out there and do something with it.
Mitch Russo 22:24
Exactly. And if you don't, and it's not our fault, because we're going to give you every possible option to be successful.
Jonathan Fischer 22:30
I love that. So what else should the company look at when it comes to implementing this? Are there for example, technologies or other types of solutions? That should be we should be muted considering if I'm heading that company up? Where should I be doing some research in terms of resources?
Mitch Russo 22:49
Well, first of all, I mean, let's, let's see if I could finish answering the question you asked before about the type of company. I mean, if whatever type of company you are, look around, are your competitors doing this? I mean, if you're a SaaS company, I mean, I guarantee most of your competitors are either building an already have completed and running certification programs, or soon will be. And now the difference is, is how, how deep do you want to go and create how much revenue and profits do you want from this program? Now, I don't want to mention names here. But there are other companies out there that added on certification as an afterthought. And the people in that program are not very happy. Number one, number two, they're not getting as much out of those folks as the company possibly can, because you're not thinking in a 360 degree fashion, they're not seeing the potential of what that person really can do for the company. Instead, they're just treating it as one more, one more tool to sell, oh, yeah, we sell certification, and we get $20,000 for that. And it's just one of our products in our product line, any of our salespeople can sell it. That's not That's not our position with the power tribe, our power tribe is a culture based tribe. That means when you aren't a member of this tribe, then there are a set of what I would call qualifications as to whether or not you fit into that tribe. And by the way, and the nice thing about culture is that it's self correcting. So self correcting means that if something goes wrong, before it elevates to management, the tribe can correct it. So in many cases, if there is someone who is struggling with a client, it's very likely another tribe member, another certified coach in the same program might say, hey, I can give you a hand, no problem, be happy to help you. Or if that same individual or a different individual starts to complain, darn these people there, Barbara. Well, you know, not with another one of our certified consultants in that program, because they've been trained on the culture will say, Well, look, you know what, we have resources, we should use them. And it's not if that's if you're not using the resources, you can't blame the company. It's yours, it's yours, your fault. So you gotta need to take responsibility for it. Or maybe this isn't a fit for you. Right? Right. And I've seen that happen. And it's very satisfying when it does, because what that really means is that the community cares for each other. And that's the most important thing.
Jonathan Fischer 25:16
So that's, that's probably a good place to circle back and close with our initial conversation today. And that is on this, this topic of culture. What are some additional insights you can share on how a leader can instill the right kind of culture, and it's probably would be applicable across all the range of their business operations, but especially when it comes to power tribes.
Mitch Russo 25:37
I I'm so glad you asked that, because I wanted to describe how to build a culture so that people listening can can conceptualize of what I'm trying to share. So here's the first part, when we look at building a culture, we always start with the CEO. And the goal here is to is to look at the CEOs values first. Now, or I used to work for a semiconductor company many years ago, the CEO was a sales guy. So we had a sales driven company, because the CEO was a sales guy. There were other companies that were for that we're technology driven CEO was the chief engineer, his patents are the ones that we created the company around. So it was a technology driven company, you see, so it's important to understand where the CEO is, and what their values are first. Secondarily, it's very important to understand the CEOs y. So when I say Y, there's a company called y institute that offers a inexpensive test or quiz that you can absolutely discover your y very quickly. And it's very accurate, it may not be perfect, and it may not be exactly your y, but it's darn close. So my Y is to find a better way. Now, when I discovered my y that explains so much about my life, they explained why when my wife would come to me and say, I want to talk to you about something, can you can you please just listen, I said, Sure. And I'd be sitting there. And my mind is immediately trying to solve a problem, because my mind is designed to find a better way. It is how I am wired, you see, and other people are wired with a different why how to simplify, or how to create clarity. I mean, there's different why's for different people. So if you understand the CEOs driven nature, what it what drives them, and you understand their why, then we have what I call values, and that's a core base, there's more to it. But that's a summary. This is values. Secondarily, if we can picture the Parthenon structure, there's this heavy, thick roof, that's the values, and all of the poles are the columns surrounding the circular roof. Those are what we call the codes of ethics. The codes of ethics are key to the culture, the codes of ethics determine what to do, under certain circumstances, the code of ethics explains how you should act under circumstances and with others. And by the way, some of them are so simple and obvious, it would be almost ridiculous to think that you should state them but you have to. So one of the codes of ethics, I'll just give an example. And I have a base of 38 that I start with. Sometimes we go beyond that, sometimes we pare that down. But one of the codes of ethics that is so simple, is that the company's intellectual property belongs to them not to you. This means you cannot post it on your website and claim it as yours. You cannot author articles about it and claim you invented it. That is a code of ethics. Now, you may say, Well, duh, I mean, come on. That's kind of obvious. But when I'm paid to go in and fix coaching organizations, these are the things that I typically have to start with. These are the things that no one ever delineated or explained in advance when you do this, and you couple that with the CEOs value structure, and the whole company now aligns the alignment is the base of the Parthenon, that alignment creates culture in a nutshell, in five minutes, and like I said, I have a whole program designed to do this within a company. This is the core of what we're trying to accomplish.
Jonathan Fischer 29:34
That's, that was so succinct. That was amazing. But it is I've often seen the same thing that you just observed that things are assumed. And we know what assuming does to you and me, it has to be has to be codified if we expect people to follow it and there's something about the weight of having that in written word right there's an authority there. Yeah. And so it can be it's agreed upon language right this and there's there's no ambiguity At around it. So it sounds like you're saying this these moves really clearly spelled out in a document? Or do people sign this? Is that part of it as well? I mean, that sounds equally rudimentary. But do you recommend that? Well, here's
Mitch Russo 30:09
what I do. I actually have created a culture, of course, that the CEO records in his own voice. And then I've created the culture quiz that goes along with the course. And at the end of the culture quiz, these, the new certified coach or consultant must sign off that they agree and they are fully aligned with the all of the components of the Culture Program, and then they agree with them. And that is almost not the final step. But it's one of the last steps before they're allowed to enter the program.
Jonathan Fischer 30:41
Well, the time has blown by Mitch, there's so much more we would love to discuss if if time allowed, but we'll have to end it there. For our core conversation. We're going to move over into q&a here in a few moments. But before we do that, for those who have to leave early, how can they go further with you? We have the book, power tribes, is that a good place to start for most of our audience?
Mitch Russo 31:01
Yeah, it is. There's a there's a site called Power tribes book.com, where they can go and get some free stuff, as well as the book that book they can get on Amazon either way. Or they can always go to my site, Mitch russo.com. And learn a little bit more about how I work with clients.
Jonathan Fischer 31:19
Yeah. And is there also the my power tribe site that you have?
Mitch Russo 31:23
Yes, my power tribe is place where we go through the three key questions that qualify somebody to want to start a conversation with me about building a power tribe.
Jonathan Fischer 31:34
Excellent. Well, and as always, we want to mention our show sponsor. Today's show is sponsored by overpass.com. Need to build a team of remote sales professionals fast, there are 1000s of highly qualified potential hires waiting for you on the overpass talent marketplace, as a leading solution for hiring pre vetted talent. Overpass makes building a high quality Sales Team quick and easy. You can filter by industry and experience, interview, hire and begin onboarding in as little as two days. create your free account email@example.com. All right, well, with that, let's go ahead and move over into our q&a session. We do have some questions that have come in here. Let's bring this up this one from Dennis, how can you convince the principles of a company that they need to do their work to make the program work? So you know, if you're in the middle somewhere, and you're sold on this concept? How do you sell this up the chains that were
Mitch Russo 32:34
I like to use one word is the basis of that conversation? Can you guess what that word is? Jonathan?
Jonathan Fischer 32:40
Mitch Russo 32:42
You go? Yeah, that's simple. So here's how the here's how the conversation starts. So you want more money? Would you like more money every year? Every quarter? Would you like that money to grow every year? Every quarter? Yes or No? No? Okay, then this isn't for you. So I mean, that's how I would start, I would start basically by saying, Look, this is probably one of the most powerful revenue generation systems you're ever going to come across. In fact, most companies create a fantastic product once. And then from there on, they're nursing that thing till the end of time. What I'm trying to show people is how to take what they've done, and dimensionalize it so that now you're creating multiple levels of access and revenue from that same product idea. Now, sure, if you're a company with lots of products, and you can certify lots of products as well, but many companies don't have lots of products, they generally have one core product that they've made their name on. And over the years, two things happen. Leads become more and more expensive, and expenses continue to increase. Well, that's fine. And as well, as long as you can keep up, that's great. Your investors are probably going to be looking for something a little bit different. But that's what most people run into until they build something like a certification program, where now we are dimensionalizing the product with a whole nother level of service. When I did this initially for TimeSlips Corporation, I was actually kind of surprised by the results, I ended up with the third largest sales channel in the entire company. Turns out those people were selling more of my licenses than I was secondarily. I mean, which was great. By the way, secondarily, it increased the value of my company doubled the value of my company in 18 months. And that was significant. I didn't even know that would happen. I didn't even have a clue that was going to happen until it did and then I ended up doubling the amount I was able to sell the company for
Jonathan Fischer 34:45
that's incredible. So one of the guests I'm not sure if they want me to name her but when we said the word revenue, I think she was referring to that which you said now you're speaking my business love language but What is the difference between a power tribe and an ecosystem? was a question that Andrew asked on the call?
Mitch Russo 35:07
Yeah, Andrew, that's a great question. And I think of an ecosystem, I think of Apple. So I think of apple that has, for example, a phone, and then it has a store where you can buy stuff. And then you have other ways by which you can involve you could you could buy into the ecosystem. So I think of an ecosystem as a place where as a consumer or as a subscriber, you have multiple buying options, the power tribe is outward facing, I think it ecosystem is more inward facing, that would be the way I would think about it. And we could probably have a discussion about this, because I'm sure there are more similarities. But that would be my first take with a with a certification program, particularly with a power tribe. What you've done is you are you are basically bringing people from the outside into the corporate structure, but in an independent way, specifically, from a taxation standpoint, by the way, I share legal documents with my clients to help them make sure that those who sign up and become certified or not ever considered independent contractors, or employees by our friends over the 80,000 new agents at the taxation authorities,
Jonathan Fischer 36:24
what could possibly go wrong? 87,000 new IRS agents? What a plan, right?
Mitch Russo 36:30
How can I apply?
Jonathan Fischer 36:33
Another great question from Dennis. He's thinking very pragmatically, when he asked the question, what do you look for in a program manager? If you want to bring the certification in house?
Mitch Russo 36:42
That is a great question. So the program manager, and this is going to kind of astound you, the program manager needs to be a incredibly nice, warm, helpful, consultative type of personality. Now, Jonathan, you knew when we would hire salespeople, we would run a personality test. And what we were looking for was quote unquote, closers. Right. And that was the type of person that we would reject. And that was a person who came in low on the closer a qualification? Well, those are the exact people we're looking for. When it comes to being a program manager. We want we want people who enjoy interacting and solving problems for others. Being involved, we're looking for an extrovert with a good personality, we could teach them everything else. And I have an entire element of the of my program for the program manager. So that when we when we build a power chart for a company, usually I'm able to bring a program manager up to speed very quickly.
Jonathan Fischer 37:48
brings to mind a couple of things. First of all, I think that overall, there's is an inevitable and inexorable cultural shift away from that hard, closer mentality in our business development. I think people are looking to feel that sense of service, and helpfulness front. And first and foremost, more and more. That said, you still need closers, no question about that. And that's never going to stop. And it makes me feel like as a guy who's involved very frequently with recruiting efforts that can kind of get another extra bang for my buck, give me two extra bang for my buck here. So far, Mitch, one is I can remarket to those to whom I've already marketed. And secondly, I can also re recruit to those who have already recruited it sounds like some of those folks that would have rejected for that role. Yeah, I'd be great for this role,
Mitch Russo 38:33
exactly. As you know, I mean, closers are great for closing, but they're not so great for building consultative relationships over time.
Jonathan Fischer 38:41
Right. Now, what about on the other end of the equation? Is this great for the certification program itself to have some closers out there getting these deals done?
Mitch Russo 38:48
Well, I got to tell you, in average certification program, five to 10% of the people recruit are natural closers, natural salespeople, and naturally, they excel at this process. So we they don't even need our leads, in most cases, they just, they're off and running. Most of them already have a client base that they can't wait to engage in, because now they have something a new service to offer them that they couldn't before. But that's a small percentage as less than 10% of the usual base of folks who become certified.
Jonathan Fischer 39:22
Sounds like that. That's a principle we see very frequently in business, don't we?
Mitch Russo 39:26
Yes. Now, it's interesting, too, that if you took 100% of the people who are interested in certification, only, I'm gonna say only 85% of those people will be independent individuals who are looking to build a business. About 10 to 12% of those people are in house. They work for companies and want to be the train the trainer person, or the authority inside of a company and a few percent and this is a odd but it just the numbers just work this way. A few percent are people who love certification. They want to be certified in as many things as they possibly can and will pay to be certified in as many things as they possibly can.
Jonathan Fischer 40:16
There are those certs collectors out there, I have a few of them among my friends, I and hey, everybody needs a hobby.
Mitch Russo 40:23
Everybody needs something. Because you know what it is? It's needing and wanting significance, right? And if I have a bunch of certifications, and I have significance with my particular peer group. Yeah, absolutely.
Jonathan Fischer 40:35
Plus, some people are just inveterate learners. And that's not a bad thing at all. So I love it. Well, Mitch, you've given a ton of value to our audience. I'm so grateful that you were here today. I know for a fact that a lot of our audience members are thinking of something they did not think of before they heard this episode. So thanks so much for coming on to evolve sales and sharing your wisdom with us today.
Mitch Russo 40:57
My pleasure, Jonathan. Thanks for having me. All right.
Jonathan Fischer 40:59
And for everyone here. Thanks for attending. Come back next time. We're here every Friday as you know, same time, same station. We'll see you then. For everybody else here. I'm Jonathan Fisher, signing off. Take care, everybody