David Meerman Scott spotted the real time marketing revolution in its infancy. And I believe it because I've been watching this guy for years and he wrote five books about it, including the new roles of marketing and PR, which is the one I started with, and now it's in its seventh edition. More than 400000 copies sold in English, and it's available in 29 languages from Albanian to Vietnamese.
NOTE: Complete transcript available at the bottom of the page.
Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 402
How To Automate Your Business – https://screwthecommute.com/automatefree/
Internet Marketing Training Center – https://imtcva.org/
Higher Education Webinar – https://screwthecommute.com/webinars[05:12] Tom's introduction to David Meerman Scott [06:26] Not royalty but for a specific business reason [08:05] Transitioning into “Fanocracy” [15:24] Entrepreneurial as a kid and did the lawn mower thing [18:09] Barriers working outside the U.S. [23:28] Author of twelve books [27:28] Offsetting his carbon footprint [29:54] Sponsor message [33:22] A typical day for David and how he stays motivated [37:54] People want to feel like they belong [47:18] His first commute
Higher Education Webinar – https://screwthecommute.com/webinars
Screw The Commute – https://screwthecommute.com/
Screw The Commute Podcast App – https://screwthecommute.com/app/
College Ripoff Quiz – https://imtcva.org/quiz
Know a young person for our Youth Episode Series? Send an email to Tom! – firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a Roku box? Find Tom's Public Speaking Channel there! – https://channelstore.roku.com/details/267358/the-public-speaking-channel
How To Automate Your Business – https://screwthecommute.com/automatefree/
Internet Marketing Retreat and Joint Venture Program – https://greatinternetmarketingtraining.com/
Fanocracy book – https://www.fanocracy.com/
David's website – https://www.davidmeermanscott.com/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/dmscott
Internet Marketing Training Center – https://imtcva.org/
Rael Bricker – https://screwthecommute.com/401/
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Episode 402 – David Meerman Scott
[00:00:08] Welcome to Screw the Commute. The entrepreneurial podcast dedicated to getting you out of the car and into the money, with your host, lifelong entrepreneur and multimillionaire, Tom Antion.
[00:00:24] Hey, everybody it's Tom here with Episode 402 of screw the commute podcast. I'm here with David Meerman Scott, and I've been following this guy for a long time. I've been promoting his books and stuff to my students, especially the concept of news jacking for many years from one of his extremely popular books will talk about in a little while.
[00:00:46] He sold 400000 books in English only folks. Oh, my God. And who knows how many in 29 other languages. But but there's a statistic out there. I don't know if anyone would even be capable of tracking. So he's a live music fan and he's been to 804 live shows since he was 15 years old. I don't know anybody that's sober enough to keep track of how they were last year, but we'll talk about that a little bit later, too, when we bring him on.
[00:01:21] But he's also passionate about some cool stuff, the Apollo lunar program. And he loves to surf, but he claims he's not too good at it. He's good enough to not drown because he's here with us today. Hope you didn't miss Episode 401 that was Rael Bricker. He's the new Aussie friend of mine.
[00:01:38] He wrote the book called Dive In. And it was based on the fact that he teaches entrepreneurs. Did, you know, just don't plan for the rest of your life. Go jump in and do it. And boy, is he a poster child for it. His buddy ask him how do we get a mortgage? And he says, I don't know. I'll figure it out. And so he went and started a mortgage company. And he's one of three I think three individuals that have more than three billion dollars out in mortgage loans.
[00:02:06] This guy doesn't fool around. So that was episode 401. And any time you want to go to a bank episode, you go to screwthecommute.com and then slash 401 would be the episode number. You want to listen to this one, too, quite a bit because it's 402 with David. Now, how'd you like to hear your own voice here on screw the commute?. Well, if the show has helped you out at all in your business or giving you ideas to help you start a business, we want to hear about it. Visit, screwthecommute.com and look for a little blue sidebar that says send voicemail, click on it, talk into your phone or computer and tell me how the shows helped you and put your website in there, too. And we'll give you a big shout out in your own voice. And a future episode of Screw the Commute. Now pick up a copy of our freebie. It's a twenty seven dollar ebook called How to Automate Your Business. And it's how I've handled up to 150000 subscribers and 40000 customers without pulling my hair out. And just one of the tips, we actually figured it out a couple of years ago. One of the tips has saved me seven and a half million keystrokes over the years. So this and also allows me to ethically steal customers off of the shmucks out there that want to be at the beach with their feet up and they don't take care of their customers. So I get back to them lightning fast and and I get the business. So all the details are in that book. And you can grab it at screwthecommute.com/automatefree. While you're over there, pick up a copy of our podcast app at screwthecommute.com/app.
[00:03:40] All right. I know everybody's freaking out with this pandemic, but I'm not and my students aren't because we know how to sell from home legitimately. And and I've been preaching this for 22 years, 23 years now, have been selling on the commercial Internet since it started in 1994. And nowadays everybody said, oh, I guess we should be able to sell from home. And yeah, you should be able to. And you wouldn't be freaking out when there's when they're screwing your kids over at school and schools open one day, it's not the next. And the kids go to school, they're going to burst into flames or whatever. They're trying to feed you there. But you don't have to worry about that if you can sell from home. So I've been teaching this for 23 years now, and I formalized it in the in the form of a school about thirteen years ago. It's the Internet Marketing Training Center, Virginia. It's the only licensed, dedicated Internet marketing school in the country, probably the world. And it's licensed by SCHEV, the State Council on Higher Education in Virginia. But you don't have to be in Virginia because it's good quality distance training. It's not like the four year colleges that are ripping you off. And then all of a sudden they got a distance program like two days later. And so they can rip you off even further and teach you how to protest.
[00:04:59] And then you get compete for jobs at Starbucks when you get out. So my school teaches the hard core techniques that. Every business on Earth needs a little later, I'll tell you how you can get a full scholarship there if you're in my mentor program.
[00:05:13] All right, let's get to the main event. David Meerman Scott spotted the real time marketing revolution in its infancy. And I believe it because I've been watching this guy for years and he wrote five books about it, including the new roles of marketing and PR, which is the one I started with, and now it's in its seventh edition. More than 400000 copies sold in English, and it's available in 29 languages from Albanian to Vietnamese. Wow. Now, David says now the pendulum has swung too far in the direction of superficial online communications. Boy, do we know that. Tech weary and but wary people are hungry for a true human connection. So organizations have learned to win by developing what David calls Fanocracy, and that's the subject of his Wall Street Journal bestseller book. And he'll be telling us about it today. And he tapped into the mindset that relationships and customers are more important than the products they sell to them. So, hey, David, are you ready to screw? The commute?
[00:06:23] Absolutely. Which I which I originally did 19 years ago, have been committed for a very long time.
[00:06:30] Oh, that's true. That is beautiful. We're going to see what you're doing now. And then we want to take you back to see your entrepreneurial journey. But first thing I got to hit him up with, and this is a good lesson for everybody, is you must be royalty or something, right, with the middle name Meerman, right?
[00:06:46] No, not at all. I did that for a very particular business purpose. I know. So about. Yes. So there are a whole boatload of David Scotts out there. David is my first name. Meerman is my middle name. Scott is my last name. And there's a whole bunch of David Scotts. There's a member of Congress from Georgia named David Scott. There's a professional triathlete named David Scott. A David Scott walked on the moon as the commander of Apollo 15.
[00:07:16] None of those people are me. So I went out using my middle name when I started my entrepreneurial journey. And it was among the best decisions I ever made, because on the Web, on Google, in the social networks, I am the only David Meerman Scott in the entire world. And had I gone with David Scott without my middle name, there would have been thousands and thousands of other people with the same name. So choosing a unique name, very, very, very important. If you want to screw the commute successfully.
[00:07:49] That's that's right. And I recognize that from you right off in the beginning, because that's the way we do around here. And yeah, you could have got buried forever. Never.
[00:07:58] So you would have been brutal. I never could have competed with those other people. So it's all good. I made that right choice when I did.
[00:08:06] Now tell them about when I kind of was exposed to your your book, the the PR rules new for PR. Yeah. Marketing PR. And I just loved that. But you've said that there's a transition going on. But tell me a little bit about that because I still love the concept of news jacking, but transition from that into your current fan ocracy concept.
[00:08:30] So about 20 years ago was when I decided I wanted to go out on my own because what I was seeing at that point was that marketing was completely changing. For a long time, marketing had been simply about buying expensive advertising, whether that's on television or magazines or radio or billboards or whatever it is, direct mail. All of those are forms of buying attention. And I saw early on that the Web allowed us to generate attention for free. So I started to write and speak and do some consulting about that idea 20 years ago.
[00:09:11] Then I decided to write this book, The New Rules of Marketing and PR, which really identified the first book in the world that identified that marketing is not about advertising, it's about publishing content on the Web. And then soon after that, all kinds of social networks started Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and all the others. And so for them, as you rightly said, for the past 13 years since that book first came out, I've been doing a bunch of different editions of it.
[00:09:39] And we're now in the seventh edition, so I'm constantly updating it. But over the last five years or so, what I noticed is that lots and lots of people have started to abuse the channel of online communications. And we all feel that, you know, you get spammed and your social networks are clogged with all kinds of nonsense. And and it's really hard sometimes to break through. So I recognized that people are looking for a true human connection. It's no longer just about the electronic ways of communicating. It's a human connection, which, by the way, you also can have electronically. So I dug into that concept with this new book I call For Democracy Turning Fans into customers and Customers and the Fans, which I wrote with my daughter Reiko. She's now twenty seven years old. I started on this journey together. She was twenty two to research and write about fandom. How does fandom happen? What's going on in our brains when we become fans of something and how organizations can tap into fandom because ultimately we want those human connections in our life.
[00:10:53] Wow, yeah, and that's a beautiful story of working with your daughter, and she's the perfect you know, I teach people a lot of rent, not renting, but but recruiting young people to help them in their Internet stuff and they can figure stuff out in two seconds.
[00:11:10] That would take some of, you know, me my age like two months to figure out, OK.
[00:11:15] So that's what's really interesting about working with her. There's a number of things. But two things that that jump to mind immediately about working with my daughter is, first of all, we're completely different people. Even though she grew up in my house, obviously we're different generations and different genders. My wife is Japanese and my daughter's mixed race. And and I love the live music, as you said in the open. Eight hundred and four live concerts, 75 Grateful Dead concerts. My daughter is hugely into Harry Potter. So we we love different things. And when we came together, we we very much came at this idea of fandom from very different perspectives. She's a young millennial woman. I'm the tail end of the baby boomer guy. And and so we came at it with very different outlooks. And putting those ideas together was great to create a book that's way, way, way better than I could have done myself. But the other thing that was awesome about working with her is that it brought us closer together. I mean, I'm writing a book is a very much an entrepreneurial journey. And we became entrepreneurs together. We collaborated on writing a book and building out the website for the book, which is, of course, dotcom and shooting videos to promote the book and getting onto podcasts. And you're doing all kinds of things to to to research, write and then promote the book. And that brought our relationship much tighter than it was previously. And, you know, I've only got one child and my wife and I and my daughter were very much a team of three people. But being able to embark on this project with just the two of us brought us closer together in a really, really cool way. And what better way to bring yourself together with your child than to become entrepreneurs together? Right.
[00:13:19] I'm totally for it. And I'd like to interview her because we do a special youth editions, and I'd love to have her on without you.
[00:13:27] Oh, I'd love to get her down to organise that. Yeah, I definitely do that.
[00:13:31] Yeah. We you know, but I have never had a job obviously with the name of this podcast. And so I'm totally into assisting young people into this field because, you know, it's not I mean, you know as well as anybody, there's no more gold watches after 30 years.
[00:13:49] No, no, no, no.
[00:13:51] Look, 30 and you're lucky to last 30 years. Most people get the heave ho in their 40s or 50s if they want to stick out the corporate world. So, yeah, no, it's you've got to you've got to fend for yourself. And let me share just one more thing about the super cool relationship that my daughter and I had as I was doing a speaking engagement.
[00:14:11] I speak at Tony Robbins Business Mastery Events, and Tony's an awesome guy and I was presenting with in front of twenty five hundred people. And I came back from the presentation and that evening I learned that Friend Ocracy made the Wall Street Journal bestseller beautiful. And so one of the coolest things I've ever done was early the next morning because we found out very late at night. But early the next morning I texted my daughter. It was like seven, seven o'clock in the morning. And I said, when you're up and you have your tea, give me a call. And so, you know, seven thirty or whatever it was, my my mobile phone rang in the hotel room I was in at the Tony Robbins event.
[00:14:52] And I said, congratulations, Reiko, you are a Wall Street Journal best selling author. And what was so cool about that was that was our entrepreneurial and entrepreneurial journey, kind of having a badge of honor, if you will, or, you know, a gold checkmark next to it because and she she couldn't believe it. She's like the best selling author. Really. Wow. How cool. You know, so so it's just a really super cool thing to be able to share with her after all of the hard work over five years that we did on that book.
[00:15:25] No question about it. So let's take you back a little bit. Were you entrepreneurial as a as a young child?
[00:15:31] Yeah, I was. I did the lawn mowing thing.
[00:15:34] I, I had a paper route. I did that kind of stuff. And so I very much was.
[00:15:40] And then I did enter the corporate world, though, after I got out of school, I went to Wall Street and I got my first job was on a bond trading desk and oh my God, Dad, I hate it. It was so not for me, it was not my style at all, it's just, you know, young young men screaming into telephones, right?
[00:16:01] Not who are not what I was about, but I did find that I became really super interested in the data behind the bond trading that the bond traders are doing.
[00:16:11] So I went to work my entire corporate career. I spent in the real time financial information business for companies like Dow Jones and Reuters. But the first company that I worked with in that business, I was a small economic consulting company, and fortunately I embarked within a corporate career and very entrepreneurial jobs.
[00:16:35] My first job, I was 26 years old. I went by myself to Tokyo to open the Asian office of this small economic consulting firm. I was the only person who was working for this. There was a tiny company, 10 people. I was the only person working outside of Wall Street. And I was living by myself in Tokyo, running, running this this outpost of this business. So it was totally entrepreneurial.
[00:17:05] And then I started to work. I did that for two years and then worked for another company where I was in charge of building up all of their their Asian marketing operations. And I felt like that was very entrepreneurial as well. So even though I was in big corporations, I was definitely doing an entrepreneurial role. So it really got my head spinning around what I wanted to do throughout my life of never just being a cog in the wheel, always having some form of entrepreneurial ism, whether it was within a company.
[00:17:37] And then soon after, when I decide to go out on my own at age 40, 20 years ago, is when I was when I really became an entrepreneur and and have have been happily unemployed for 20 years.
[00:17:51] I know who would who would hire is right.
[00:17:54] Yeah. Oh, my God. Right. Exactly right. I wouldn't last. It gets I get sacked within ten minutes. Oh no kidding.
[00:18:00] Yeah. I've been ragging for years, you know, kids then corporate stuff because it takes a two week committee meeting to go to the bathroom.
[00:18:09] So when you were doing the stuff in Tokyo, though, I understand, you know, English is kind of the business language of the world. But but what kind of barriers did you have working in a, you know, outside the U.S.?
[00:18:24] Well, so I was in the the bond markets and it was the typical of focused very heavily on the American bond markets, the U.S. Treasury bonds and and so on.
[00:18:36] And so that was primarily a business consultant conducted in English. So I spoke zero Japanese when I went over to Japan, did learn quite a bit enough to be quite good conversationally, but not good enough to use it in business. So I was able to use English in business and then soon after I had regional roles throughout the Asia Pacific region. So Australia, New Zealand and Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore and Hong Kong and so on. I moved to Hong Kong for a couple of years as well, and so the language never became an issue. From the business perspective, of course, it would have been fabulous to have business Japanese, but I didn't. So I was able to make do with it.
[00:19:23] But I think that's right, that English is pretty much the international language of of high level business, at least not of all businesses, but of the kind of business I was doing in the bond market. It certainly was.
[00:19:35] Yeah. And you speak all over the place. And I well, I went to Chinese University in Hong Kong for about two weeks and my brother's MBA program. And but, you know, I've spoken all over the world and there's a lot of things that Jesus wouldn't think about. Just speaking in the U.S., for instance, I think I was in Thailand or Malaysia or somewhere, and I normally, you know, go and shake people's hands. Hey, come on, sit up front, you know, and I try to be really nice and but I would have put the Asian young man in a really bad position because the front row is only for the executives.
[00:20:15] Right. Is for the more senior people.
[00:20:17] Right. So he would have been like he didn't want to offend me, but then he can't go and jump in front of his boss.
[00:20:23] If I had known that, I could have really caused them. So I know.
[00:20:27] I know there's like there are some funky things that you need to be aware of. I mean, I, I try my best before and I've spoken in forty seven countries have visited 107 countries in my life, all seven continents and delivered speeches in forty seven different countries. And I really try my best before I go somewhere new to at least learn enough to not make any dreadful mistake. But I recognize I'm never going to be perfect, but I think you have a smile on your face and have a good heart that even if you screw up, that you're going to be OK.
[00:21:01] But one of the weirdest ones I ever did was I presented in Saudi Arabia. And the reason it was so weird was because it was all men, zero women, not a single woman in the entire event.
[00:21:16] And I was like hundreds and hundreds of people. It was I spoke at a a consumer products good marketing conference. So think think, you know, shampoo and toothpaste kind of products. And it was super interesting to have a chance to visit Saudi Arabia. But I got to say, you know, doing business when it's all men was really, really weird. And I wanted no part of wanting to do that any more than just trying it once.
[00:21:44] Now, in Japan, don't they not look at you when you're on stage? Is that true?
[00:21:51] No, they they generally do. But you have to keep their interest like anywhere. You have to keep their interest.
[00:21:59] I thought that in some countries, making eye contact with them is is you know, they purposely don't. But it could have been a lot a lot of years ago. A lot of people.
[00:22:08] I mean, might there might have been pockets of them, but I don't I don't ever recall speaking anywhere that that it was quite that bad. But I have spoken in places where there isn't much reaction, you know, sit, sit, sit with their arms folded and take notes.
[00:22:29] You know, I have experienced quite a lot where there's no eye contact simply because they're taking notes.
[00:22:35] But I don't recall any time where I've I've been where they're they're not looking at you purposely because that's the thing they don't do. But, yeah, they like they feel like they have to write down every single word you say and therefore they're not looking at is fairly common in some cultures.
[00:22:52] So anyway, you got to you got to prepare before you go in these things. But I think I think that's right. I think you learn the four or five things that are important to either do or not do.
[00:23:02] The other thing that's weird is clothing. You know, it's inherent in the US. I usually wear jeans, a nice shirt, sometimes a jacket. But in certain cultures, you know, it's always a suit. Right. Right. And so I have to be prepared not to screw that one up. I remember once I spoke in the Netherlands and I was way overdressed and they laughed at me.
[00:23:23] How are you doing? I'm sorry I screwed up. I didn't think about it. I had it done.
[00:23:29] Okay, so. So I think you have, what, 11 books out and something like that? 12 and Fanocracy. You know, there's one that's probably if they couldn't get Fanocracy the probably the best one on Earth is marketing lessons from the Grateful Dead.
[00:23:49] Yeah. Oh my God. What a what a super fun project that was. I co-wrote that Marketing Lessons from The Grateful Dead with Brian Halligan.
[00:23:59] Brian is the CEO of a company called HubSpot and and Bill Walton, the famous NBA basketball hall of Famer. And what a super cool group of three guys to write a book. So Brian is an entrepreneur. He started this company HubSpot back in 2007. Fortunately, I've been a part of his advisory board ever since the very beginning. But HubSpot just crossed the one billion dollar annual revenue mark. And so, Brian, super successful entrepreneurial CEO employs 4000 people.
[00:24:39] And last time I checked his company, which is traded on the New York Stock Exchange, the market valuation was twenty four billion dollars. And he's a freakin Deadhead like me out there having fun. And, you know, truly, he's just like us Tom. He's just out there having fun and and enjoying life and going to Grateful Dead concerts with his buddy David. And then we decided to write a book together and got Bill Walton roped into it. And and then all of a sudden, Brian starts his company.
[00:25:08] That becomes just fabulously, fabulously successful, one of the most successful start software startups in the last decade. So how cool is that?
[00:25:18] Yeah, really. And if I was him, I'd sell instantly because I'm so afraid of, like, the stuff like parler, you know, like all of a sudden their market cap is going crazy and then boom, they disappear like the next day they've got.
[00:25:32] The thing is they've got tons of fundamentals, so they're going to be around for the long haul. But, you know, interesting story about Brian and this idea of enjoying yourself is when he first went public, you know, they have to do these earnings calls with Wall Street's required. When you're listed as a public company, you have to speak to Wall Street every quarter.
[00:25:52] And tell, tell about your quarterly results, and Brian said, I want to play Grateful Dead music while we're waiting for people to join. And then all of the Wall Street investment bankers said, oh, no, no, no, you can't do that. You can't play Grateful Dead music. Yes, I can. This is my company and I'm going to play Grateful Dead music. So, so so he he just he figured out how to get the company that was running the earnings call to actually play Grateful Dead music while people were waiting on hold.
[00:26:20] So we did that. And then he gave his presentation in the first questioner. The very first question anyone asked as a public company was this guy from JPMorgan. I forget his first name. Let's call him John. He goes, is John from JPMorgan. Brian, congratulations on going public. Congratulations on your first quarter and thank you for having Grateful Dead music.
[00:26:41] All right. So it just goes to show you, if you're going to be an entrepreneur, you've got to carve your own path and don't do it, everybody.
[00:26:50] Exactly. Exactly. One of my students, actually, he was at work for me when I grabbed him out of high school. He just sold the Pluto TV to Viacom for three hundred and forty million.
[00:27:04] I yeah. I said, you're buying dinner next time I see you, buddy. No kidding. Yeah. He called me from a yacht in Greece with a couple of supermodels, so I love it.
[00:27:15] Yeah, yeah, yeah. You know, if my buddy Brian last last time we went to a Grateful Dead show, didn't just come out, I would just hire a private plane. We don't have to screw around. We just do it right. Yeah. So, you know, screw the community. Right. I have a private plane to take you to a Grateful Dead concert.
[00:27:29] Yeah, but then that means you're going to have to spend more money in Panama. I understand you are quite passionate about the environment and you offset your carbon footprint by Tom about that.
[00:27:42] I do. It's very, very important to me to pay attention to the world that we live in in many different ways.
[00:27:51] And one way in particular is, is the carbon footprint that I that I that I have because I travel a lot.
[00:27:59] Well, this this year, because of the pandemic, not so much, but normally I'm on airplanes almost every week traveling to speak at conferences.
[00:28:06] So I was really worried about that. So I actually am a part owner in a ten thousand acre nature preserve in a rainforest in Panama. Wow.
[00:28:18] And the amount of the investment that I made and the the proportion of this 10000 acre nature preserve that I personally own way more than offset my carbon footprint for the rest of my life, plus my wife, plus my daughter, plus my mother and other people, my family.
[00:28:37] So I feel good that I have managed to preserve this very important rainforest in Panama together with some other people.
[00:28:48] And as part of the the part of that makes me be able to sleep at night around just the fact that, you know, I get on airplanes pretty frequently and airplanes burn a lot of fuel and they're bad for the environment.
[00:29:02] Well, you ought to teach that all the celebrities and politicians that talk about it, but then they don't do it, that's for sure.
[00:29:08] Yeah, I mean, it's actually not that difficult, but not in the grand scheme of things that expensive to offset all of your carbon. But so few people actually do it.
[00:29:18] I haven't been on a plane for a year and a half and I'm thrilled to death, but I know I actually haven't been enjoying it.
[00:29:25] And I went I went I went almost 30 years getting on airplanes. Yeah. A hundred thousand miles a year plus. All right. And I haven't been on an airplane since March, March 4th. Twenty twenty.
[00:29:41] And and so I'm sure it'll be probably a year and a half by the time I get on a plane again. So yeah, it's super cool actually.
[00:29:49] I like it. I like it. I don't have to deal with TSA or all that other stuff, but we got to take a brief sponsor break.
[00:29:56] When we come back, we'll come back and want to hear more details about Fanocracy and we'll see what a typical day looks like for David, though. So talk about 23 years ago, folks. I kind of turned the Internet marketing guru world on its head, and the guys like me were charging 50 or 100 grand up front to small businesses to teach him what we knew. And I I knew a lot of these guys. If you give them fifty grand up front, they'd be hiding out in Panama, in the rainforest. They wouldn't have to give you, you know, give you any service. So so I said that's not right for small business. So I kind of flipped it on its head and said I'm going to charge an entry fee, but then I'm going to tie my success to your success. So for me to get my 50 grand, you have to net 200 grand. Well, people like this and 23 years later, the program is still going strong after seventeen hundred students. And and it's the longest running the. The most unique and the most successful Internet marketing mentor program ever, and I have no trouble saying that because I triple dare people to put their programs up against mine and nobody will do it because they'll be embarrassed. They'll go crawl under a rock. So because I'm just a crazy fanatic, I mean, I help people on evenings, weekends, holidays doesn't make any difference.
[00:31:13] I actually accidentally threw a teller class on Thanksgiving one time because I forgot it was Thanksgiving. So so it's good to have fanatic's work. And when they're working for you, put it that way, folks. But anyway, it's it's really powerful. You have an immersion weekend that the great Internet marketing retreat center in Virginia Beach. We have our own TV studio here. We shoot marketing videos for you. You are immersed with a small group here, but the rest of it is all one on one, because I hate group coaching, because if you're advanced and the the beginners are lost, then if you're if you're the beginner, the advanced people are bored. So all of my staff is one on one with you will even take over your computer, show you where to click and when you get done, you have hard core skills. I mean, we're talking not theory stuff. We're talking in our email marketing chat bots, blogs, all the social media stuff, which I abhor. But it's a necessary evil. And we have people in our school making money a couple of months in because every business on earth needs these skills. So if you're in my mentor program, you get a scholarship to the school as part of the deal, which you can either use yourself or gift. We had one guy join the mentor program Gifted, and he had spent eighty thousand dollars on his daughter's crappy education and she's working a crappy job.
[00:32:38] He gifted the school to her after one month. She's making a thousand a month on the side after three months. Three thousand. And the last I talked to her after four months in the school hadn't even graduated yet. She was up to 6000 a month as a side hustle. So this is extremely powerful stuff. OK, so check it out at greatInternetmarketingtraining.com, get in touch with me. There's no high pressure here and I'll be glad to discuss with you your future. And I'll tell you what, that scholarship for a young person in your life would be one of the best legacy gifts you could ever give them for her nephew, niece, grandchild. I mean, people are giving them cars in the cars, junk in two years where this would keep them from coming home and living in your basement. All right. So check it out.
[00:33:24] All right. Let's get back to the main event. We're here with David Meerman Scott have really followed and appreciated this guy's work for many, many years. So, David, give us some more details about Fanocracy and then tell us what the typical day looks like for you since you know we're all off the road nowadays.
[00:33:40] So Fanocracy is such an interesting concept to me because I'm such a massive live music fan. As we talked about 800 and four live shows, my first one's crazy, age 15.
[00:33:53] And here's the reason you mentioned. How in the hell did you exactly how do you keep track of that? So back when I was a teenager, I kept all my ticket stubs and so I had maybe 100 or 200 ticket stubs.
[00:34:09] Then when the first when I first got a computer or with a spreadsheet, which would have been probably thirty years, yeah.
[00:34:19] I started to keep a spreadsheet of the concerts I went to.
[00:34:25] So you're telling people that kind of mind that you have?
[00:34:28] Yeah, I'm the typical consummate I'm a consummate collector. You know, I know I've been to 107 countries. I've been to all 50 states. You know, I've spoken in forty seven countries. And I know I know this data because I managed it because I keep this data and spreadsheets super, super, super geeky.
[00:34:48] So so yeah. So I know how many shows, I mean I probably not the exact exact number because you know, who knows. There's one too many beer and lost the ticket stub. That's what I was thinking. But it's pretty, pretty darn accurate.
[00:35:02] Ok, so, so a huge live music fan and I was thinking to myself, wow, I am so passionate about the Grateful Dead. I've seen them seventy five times. I wrote a book about them. I mean, I've traveled to different country to see this band play. You know, it's really geeky around the Grateful Dead.
[00:35:20] There's talking in my daughter and she's like she told me, which I knew, but not their level of detail about her Harry Potter fandom. She's read every book multiple times, seen every movie multiple times, gone to the wizarding world of Harry Potter in Orlando, several times traveled to London to go on the studio tour. And she wrote an eighty five thousand word alternative ending to the Harry Potter series, where Draco Malfoy is a spy for the Order of the Phoenix. Put that on a fan fiction site that's been downloaded thousands. And thousands of times. So she's dug into the world of Harry Potter and we were both talking about how isn't it cool that we are so, so into the thing that we're a fan of? And that's true of most humans. When we become a fan of something, a sports team or a sport that you love to play or in my case, a rock band or are bird watching or peloton or whatever it is, you've become a fan and you dig into it.
[00:36:19] I was thinking, well, let's look at how and why people become a fan of something and then see if we can apply that to business, see if we can apply that to getting people to become a fan of our entrepreneurial endeavors.
[00:36:36] And so we dug into specifically the neuroscience of fandom and we learned from talking to neuroscientists that all humans are hardwired, each of us to become to want to be part of a tribe of like minded people. And that's one of the reasons why I love going to a Grateful Dead concert, is the I love the music, but it's also being part of my tribe. You know, I can turn to anybody there even if I've never met them and have something in common with them. And so that's really interesting and important for all humans to have is this idea of being a part of a tribe.
[00:37:16] So what this means is that if you're running an entrepreneurial business, you can create a tribe of people, which is exactly what you're doing. Tom, you know, the people who who follow your work, who listen to this podcast, who, who, who who do your programs are your tribe.
[00:37:35] Right. And and so that's rooted in neuroscience, that you're pulling this tribe of people together.
[00:37:41] And so Reiko and I looked at all of those different nuances and ideas around building tribes and and came up with a book that talks about the different ways that you can do that with a whole bunch of different cool examples of companies that have done it.
[00:37:56] Let me ask you a question about because, you know, even though they are kind of a tribe, I don't I'm not sure people want to be treated like a tribe, you know, like the then Kennedy. That's my herd of people. You know, there are people really want to feel like they're just part of a herd.
[00:38:13] Well, it is important for all of us to want to feel like we belong. And so, you know, one of the ways that I love to illustrate it is around unlikely product categories, because often people would have will have told Rayco and I, OK, I get I get the fandom thing.
[00:38:35] Sure. If you're the Boston Red Sox or the Grateful Dead or Harry Potter, I know you have fans, but, you know, I work in, you know, and they'll say I'm a doctor or I'm a lawyer. I'm a dentist. I'm an insurance salesman or whatever it is. I said, well, everybody can develop fans.
[00:38:53] And my favorite example is Hagerty Insurance. So Hagerty does classic car auto insurance. And I met McKeel Hagerty, who's the entrepreneurial founder of Hagerty Insurance and Mikael's, said, When I founded this business, I realized I couldn't sell this business. I couldn't sell to customers in the way that every other insurance company does. I'm not going to spend more money on ads. I'm not going to be the lower cost provider. I'm going to build this business by developing fans, is what he said. And so Hagerty went out and expressly built their business on on developing fans. So a couple of things they do is they go to classic car shows around the country and they're they're meeting people. They're part of the tribe that already exists of classic car lovers. And they go to the he and his people. He's got a team go to over one hundred classic car events a year and they have a YouTube channel with over a million subscribers. They have a drivers club where you can it's an online club where you can mingle with other people who have cars like yours and they have six hundred and fifty thousand members of the drivers club. So all of these things combined, combined with other things that they do to build fans, have made them the largest classic car insurance company in the world. They've grown by double digit numbers every single year since they started this incredibly cool entrepreneurial business. And McKeel said to me, David, it's all built on fandom. It's all built on creating a tribe of people who coalesce around us because we help them to make sense of their classic car hobby.
[00:40:49] And this Fanocracy book goes into details on how people implement these things.
[00:40:55] Absolutely a bunch of different steps, ideas, examples, all kinds of different companies. All right. I'm going to get rid of you off here so I can go order it real quick.
[00:41:05] So. So, yeah, very, very cool.
[00:41:08] So everybody and we have a bunch of great stories and examples and ideas and things. You can download it at fanocracy.com if anyone's interested.
[00:41:23] Yeah. And speaking, you know, you asked me at the top of the show about my regal name with my middle name being Hiraman and why the hell I'm I've got the name. And I said it was for search engine purposes. The name Fanocracy is exactly the same thing as then as is the word newsjacking. So I invented this concept of newsjacking which is the idea of injecting your ideas into a breaking news story to generate attention.
[00:41:51] And I have been spouting that for ever since you wrote the first wrote it in the book.
[00:41:55] You have it. Yeah, you have. And I chose the word newsjacking, because I wanted to own it. I wanted to own the URL, newsjacking.com, I want to own the concept newsjacking but importantly, I didn't trademark the word newsjacking because I wanted other people to use it like you to be able to freely use it. And as a result of doing that newsjacking is now so popular that it's been entered into the Oxford English Dictionary.
[00:42:26] So I invented a concept that's now in the Oxford English Dictionary. How cool is that? And I did the same thing with Fanocracy Reiko and I did the same thing with Fanocracy.
[00:42:35] We wanted a word we could own. We wanted a word that we could own the URL for on the Web. We wanted to be able to have a word that if you entered into Google, you would get us.
[00:42:46] And that's why we chose the word Fanocracy for the book title.
[00:42:50] Beautiful, beautiful. So. So what's a typical day look like for you since you're not on the road as much?
[00:42:55] Oh, my God. Groundhog Day every day is the same. I get up, I drink some coffee, I check my socials and my email.
[00:43:03] I do some exercise, eat some breakfast, work all day and have a glass of wine, go to bed and do it again.
[00:43:09] So this is your not only morning routine, everyday routine, but but but that being said, what I love is that every day is different. You know, I. I love doing what we're doing right now, talking on a podcast with someone super interesting.
[00:43:25] I love being able to broadcast this that I have to get on that.
[00:43:33] Screw the commute and let's have some fun. Forget the commute and have fun instead. And you know, I love doing virtual speaking gigs. Do you know four or five a month?
[00:43:46] Are you getting paid for those? A lot of people are trying to transition to to that and speaking world.
[00:43:52] I am I'm lucky. I'm lucky there. I'm able to come and a good for virtual events. I didn't you know, I love to work, but I don't work for free.
[00:44:00] Yeah, no, I get it. A lot of people are really struggling because I've trained, you know, thousands of professional speakers and they're thinking that, oh, you can't get paid for this. We just have to try to, you know, hope for gigs in the future off of our Zoome event.
[00:44:16] So I said, no, it's not that's not right at all. Those companies have money.
[00:44:22] They don't even have anywhere to spend that since all the newspapers and TV is worthless now.
[00:44:27] Yeah. And when you think about it, the people who are putting on an event, those are organizations or companies. They're putting on an event and they'll reach out to me and said, hey, David, my company is creating an event. We'd love you to speak and I go call my fee for a virtual event is ten thousand dollars. And they said, oh, we're not. We're paying speakers fees because, you know, because we want you to get the exposure.
[00:44:50] So I'm sorry. I like that. Yeah, I'm sorry. I don't I don't work for free. Are you working for free? Are you getting paid right now? And you know, I don't I don't do that right.
[00:45:01] I'm a nice guy about it, but but, you know, I think I think I think it's really interesting that there are very, very, very few jobs out there where for some reason people expect you to work for free.
[00:45:16] I mean, I'm not going to ask someone to come and paint my house for free. I'm not going to go get my teeth cleaned and expect the dentist to do it for free. I'm not going to go to the car repair shop and expect them to fix my car for free. I'm not going to go to the restaurant and expect that the pizza is going to be free. Why the heck do people expect that someone will come and speak at their event?
[00:45:37] And, you know, a lot of the nonprofits really play this up. Well, we're nonprofit and they got more money than God. Yeah. Yeah.
[00:45:45] No, it's and they're also my first reaction is. Oh, and so you're. Working for free, is that right? Of course, no, I get paid well. Yeah, you're not working for free at your non-profit. It's your job.
[00:45:57] You're getting paid. So I do. I'm not. All of that being said, I do freebies if it's an organization that I care about.
[00:46:08] You mentioned Panama, so I've done probably a dozen presentations related to my love of saving the rainforest of Panama. And I'm happy to support an organization that's important to me. But I'm not going to just support them because they happen to be a non-profit unless it's important to me.
[00:46:26] Got it. Well, boy, this has been really great. Thanks so much. Loads of tips in here. And I'm really encouraging everybody to know. I still want them to get the new rules of marketing and PR because that's you've been updating it and then also get Fanocracy because that's a perfect transition so they can get both worlds. So thanks a lot, man. I really appreciate it.
[00:46:49] Oh, hey, thanks for having me on, Tom. I really appreciate what you're doing a lot.
[00:46:53] And I think you have the best name to podcast anybody. I mean, it just like sums the whole thing up, doesn't it?
[00:47:01] That's it. Yeah. I hit you in the face with it literally. When you see my bio, you think that can't be it must be a bunch of B.S.. How could anybody do all this stuff? If you're not sitting in traffic making everybody else rich, you can live two or three lives.
[00:47:17] And I tell you about my first commute. Yeah, please. Oh, my God. I was like, your first what commute? OK, I was living I was living in my parent's house in New Haven, Connecticut.
[00:47:31] I got in my nineteen I think it was eighty Volkswagen Rabbit and I drove ten minutes to the New Canaan train station. I waited about ten minutes for the train to arrive, got on the train when an hour and ten minutes to Grand Central Station took a ten minute walk to get to the the four or five six subway, which I then told her 20 minutes down to Wall Street and another ten minute walk to my office. It was more than two hours each direction, door to door, every single day. So four hours of commuting time every single day.
[00:48:11] I mean, I said screw this commute within the first week. I stuck with it. I stuck with it. But I'm like I said, I looked at some guys who had been on this train that I was on for forty years. Right. They've been doing that commute since they got to college in the 1940's.
[00:48:28] Oh, my mom's gonna be sick. My stomach thinking, no way, man.
[00:48:34] I am gonna engineer myself out of this one.
[00:48:37] Yeah, yeah. I'll tell you what, it's just I mean, I don't deal with anybody I don't like. I just you know, it's it's it's been the lifestyle business for 44 years for me, long before the Internet was around. Even so. And I actually built my I was kind of doing a newsjacking thing before that. You invented that term because my whole beginning of my career was I was on radio, TV and in print. That's how I got my speaking engagements, though, right until the end when the Internet came along in 94. I'm thinking. You mean, you know, it's hard enough to sell back then your cassette tapes across the street, let alone around the world. So that's when I saw the commercial and there come around in 94 and I'm saying I'm going to figure this out.
[00:49:20] Yeah. And then you combine them both.
[00:49:22] But, you know, and I preach this to a lot of speakers because, you know, when 9/11 hit, a lot of big name speakers went bankrupt because all they had was speaking. But yes, you remember Dottie Walters. You ever hear now she was like the grandmother of professional speaking. She wrote the book Speak and Grow Rich. Oh, I know the book. Yeah. Yeah. So she was my first mentor. And this and she said, Tom, you got to become a product machine. Yeah. Because there's no downside to it, especially with digital stuff. Now at 97 percent profit, you know, you can mess up really bad and still make money. But see when all the 9/11 hit, you know, so I wasn't speaking, but I still had loads of money coming in from the Internet sales. You know, I noticed that, hey, this is this is trouble. And I saw people dropping like flies. I said, I don't want anybody to ever be in that situation.
[00:50:17] So, yeah, you know, and with the way that I approached it, because I was thinking exactly the same thing is fortunately, I mentioned to you earlier a couple of times that I worked on Wall Street when I first started. And fortunately, I learned a lot about it, how Wall Street works and investing in a bunch of other things. And there's this wonderful concept called the portfolio theory of investing, which is simply that you you have to diversify.
[00:50:41] Diversify. Yeah, yeah. It's all about diversification. So when I started my business twenty years ago, I was told. They focused on diversification of my revenue sources, and I said I never want to be beholden to one revenue source, and that's the way I see what happens when you work for a company.
[00:50:58] When you work for a company, you you are either on or off. You either have revenue or you don't have revenue. And the revenue that you have is fixed as your salary. And I said, I don't want that. That is not a good way to build wealth because there's not a port. You're not you're not building a portfolio. So when I started my my business 20 years ago, I said, I'm never going to be a I'm never going to have a sole form of income. So I never I never got to the point where our speaking was was anywhere more than about 50 percent of our revenues. So beautiful. I have I have in-person speaking, virtual speaking book royalties, Internet product sales. I have some self published books as well.
[00:51:40] And then I have courses, online courses at all.
[00:51:43] I do have online courses. I have one called New Marketing Master. I also have. Yeah. And and then I also serve on advisory boards of companies. I mentioned to you HubSpot where I take equity, not cash writing. I have ownership positions in about 25 different companies and I've had three of them have gone public and two of them have been acquired. So, you know, it's a portfolio theory of my career. And I think that's so important for people to think about is when you work for a company, you have a single source of revenue when you start your own business to think about how are you going to have multiple sources of revenue.
[00:52:21] So when covid hit, yeah, my speaking revenue went down, but my overall revenue only went down a small amount.
[00:52:29] Right. And that's the whole thing that most speakers would be like freaking out, broke behind on everything by now. But you're like, oh man, it's good. I have to get on a plane.
[00:52:41] Yeah, yeah, yeah. Right, yeah, yeah.
[00:52:43] And and because I wasn't getting on a plane, I was able to take on a couple of other projects. Exactly. Yeah. I joined a couple of other, I've joined three different boards that I wasn't on prior, so that's kind of cool.
[00:52:55] Yeah. You have to have time that you're not fighting the airport thing. So yeah it's, it's a beautiful perfect in alignment with what we believe around here. So. So I got to get your daughter on here though. I got to tell you. Let's do it. Let's do it to a special edition. Youth this and what she do besides writing the book with you.
[00:53:14] She is an emergency doctor at Boston Medical Center.
[00:53:20] Oh, my God. So she's she's a resident right in the midst of this mess.
[00:53:23] She is. And she's in the thick of it. And she has spent time in the covid ICU, which is she tells me is brutal. It's like you don't want to end up in the covid ICU. But she loves being in emergency medicine because she feels like she can really make a difference with people.
[00:53:43] Good. Good for her. Yeah. So, yeah. Well, let's get that going. So thanks so much, man. I really appreciate it. I want everybody to get get your books and look at your courses and and all that stuff. And if there's anybody in, in big companies, David, like I said, he's he's been around the horn teaching this stuff. So I recommend it to your boss for when things open up or get a virtual presentation from him, you will not regret it. So thanks so much for it.
[00:54:11] Thank you. Tom. This is great fun. I really appreciate it.
[00:54:14] All right. Everybody we'll catch y'all on the next episode. See ya later.
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