[Start of audio interview]
VT: Vince Tan
MF: Mike Filsaime
0.00 VT: Today, we have Mike Filsaime with us here for our Internet main event, and we’re gonna interview Mike on some questions that you guys have posted to us as SendUstoUS Firesale customers, so Mike, thank you for having us here today.
MF: My pleasure to be here, guys. Thank you very much.
VT: Alright. So Mike, our customers have quite a bit of questions to ask, so I’ll just go ahead and go to it. No. 1 – What do you think were the crucial differences that make you such as a huge success in such a short time span as compared to many others who are still struggling to beat you to the next level?
MF: You know, I guess if you ask a lot of people that question that have
had success, they’re gonna give you a pretty easy answer, and it’s gonna be something like that, “Wow, is that it? Is that the key to success?” You know, for me, it was simply, “Learn something and take action.” And I wasn’t a big fan of just learning and learning and learning and learning.
I would wanna learn something and take immediate and massive action. And not to do anything just for the sake to go through the exercises; I had an end goal in mind, and you know, if I saw something that worked online, I said to myself, “I know we’re all created equal and if that person can do it, I can do it.” And that’s whether or not it’s a tech company like Google or Donald Trump or
Richard Branson or something like that, these are just people that keep moving forward, so…but you know, the first step is I knew that I needed to build a list online, so what’s a logical question? I need software to help on this, okay?
MF: Put it on there, put it on a site, put up a webpage, how do I get traffic, different ways to get traffic? I experimented with it, and just kept building my list from there, so…again, it sounds like a simple answer, but it was just applying what I learned immediately with massive action. Like you guys did to your SendUstoUS promotion.
VT: Right. So I guess it’s like taking a sense of what you’ve done immediately rather than – I mean, you probably are saying that some of those that were not so successful was because they probably were just learning and maybe haven’t taken the time to apply what they learned?
MF: You know, there are a lot of different reasons for other people’s lack of success, and a lot of people say they want success, but they really don’t wanna get out of their comfort zone. And I’m seeing people – they get high on getting 90% done and then they get – as strange as it sounds – they get this fear of actually getting success.
And the last 10% means, “Oh, my goodness, if this launches, I might actually have customers, I might actually have support, I might actually have all the stuff…” and they just like going through the motions unfortunately, but they’re afraid to pull the trigger when it gets right down to it.
There are other people that spend a lot of time studying, there are people that are more intelligent than myself; than you guys; and a lot of things like that – everything we talked about, they can talk us out of eBay; they’ll know more about AdWords and joint ventures and list building than any of us combined, but they seem to be “Jackof-all-trades and master of none,” and what you really wanna do is identify something and decide to become the best in the world at this one thing. And you know, I’ll tell you, I don’t spend more than $500 a month on AdWords.
And at the end of the day, I can’t even tell if I’m making money or losing money. I don’t track my campaigns and I split-test here and there, I do some tracking, but not tremendously, and I don’t make more than $100 a month with AdSense, and I buy 40 times more on eBay than I sell. So there’s a lot of different things for sure that I can tell you that I’m not an expert at. I can talk the game with anyone, but when it comes to list building, that’s my strength, so I’ll tell people, “Identify one thing and just become good at it and stop chasing the money around.”
4.15 VT: Alright, that’s great. Now, this is a question that probably a lot of people would ask – What would be the strategy or rudiment for somebody new that you would ask them to follow – I mean, confident that there’s tons of things that’s being thrown out in the Internet marketing arena; I mean, what will be that one thing that you can tell them that, “Okay, you wanna get started? This is what I’ll suggest you do.” What will that be?
MF: Yeah, well, I would tell them to go out and buy quarters with nickels, and what I mean by that is that I think a lot of newbies are spending money for advertising; doesn’t make sense; and they’re trying to do too many things for free; they try to get free web editors and free FTP software and free graphics programs, and the bottom line is, there’s really the technology out there if you pay for it, but when it comes to bringing traffic to your website, you can’t be afraid to dabble a little bit and pay for traffic.
So I think that mentality of doing everything for free holds you back.
It’s like, “What’s the best free software to get traffic to your website?” It’s like, well, why wouldn’t you wanna spend $10 to make $20? If you can do that, then you can spend $10,000 to make $20,000. So I’ll definitely tell people not to be afraid of finding a way to buy traffic. The Internet breaks down – or, most marketing will break down into two things: traffic and conversion.
So I would tell a newbie just starting out not to worry about the conversion. Don’t try to create a product right now, because if you create a product, you can’t drive traffic to it, that doesn’t mean anything. What you really wanna know is that if you can control traffic, you control your destiny on the Internet. So the most important thing you wanna do is to sign up as a newbie on an affiliate program.
Go to Clickbank, find a hot-selling product; if he’s No. 1 on Clickbank, obviously, that person knows the conversion end of it. You’ll drive the visitor to the website, he’ll take care of making you the money as an affiliate. So what you wanna start learning how to do is how to drive traffic to a website. So don’t worry about market research, product creation, and all this type of stuff. What you simply wanna do is find ways to drive traffic. If you have to buy it, that’s okay; and send it to somebody else that already has the conversion rate up.
And after you learn how to drive traffic, then you can make your own products and start driving the traffic to your own sites, and then you own the game.
VT: Right. Okay. Next question will be – What’s the mindset that one should have in order to become successful online?
MF: Well, I think the mindset to be successful online is the same mindset that it takes to be successful anywhere. There’s a person in my office that just recently told me yesterday – ’cause he’s been working on
some of his product projects himself and he said something like, “I don’t know that I can do it without…” whatever it was, but I remember when I said, “Stop or you’re selling yourself short.”
And he said, “No, no, I’m really now – ” I said, excuse my language, I said, “Bullshit, you’re selling yourself excuses, and you’re talking to your mind, and your mind is listening.” I said, “All you have to do is stop making excuses and start telling yourself that you’re gonna do it, you’re gonna do it by this deadline, and your mind will listen, and you’ll have that confidence.
You don’t have the confidence because you’re setting your mind up that way.” So the mindset is really just asking yourself, “What is it you really want?” And then just make the map up backwards. You know, how do I get there from here?
MF: And everything has a process. You don’t buy a domain name the day before you launch your project, right? There’s a process. So you’ll say, “This is what I wanna do. I need to get a domain name, I need to get a host, I need to get a merchant account, I need to set up an affiliate program, I need my graphics, then I need my affiliate program, I need to do a pre-launch, I need to launch the project with my joint venture partners, and I need a Help Desk to support it after we launch it, so there’s a process – so the easiest thing to always ask yourself is, “What’s the next logical step?”
List down everything that would be done in a project and then ask yourself, “What’s the next logical step?” And obviously, it starts with a domain name. And after you do that, you’ll say, “Then what’s next?” And just keep crossing those items off your To Do list, and the mindset of what needs to be done and attack it, that’s the proper mindset.
9.04 VT: Alright. Next question – What was your vision when you started Mike Filsaime Inc, especially when you just started out, and what is your vision now for the next 3-5 years? Basically, what we wanna see is how it was before and how it will be in the future, and what is the difference that – you know?
MF: Okay…short answer. People can go and see a 48-minute presentation I have over at TheHistoryofMikeFilsaime.com and that will walk you through a journey of my entire online career, month by month. What I would say is my initial vision for mikefilsaime.com was nothing like it is today.
It was to create a, “Hey, how can you have fun on the Internet and make a little bit of money?” I didn’t form a corporation for that 18 months until after I was already making money, so it was just like, “Hey, I know there’s so many people on the Internet, there’s gotta be a way to make money with this thing.” So I started playing with it, I got hooked in, like the three of you here, and everyone listening, I believe.
We know it’s real, we know it works, we know it can be done, it’s amazing when it happens, and so things did start to change, and so it was like, “Well, you know what? Wouldn’t it be cool to make as much money online as I’m making in a dealership and double my income?” and then it was, “Wouldn’t it be cool to leave the dealership and just work from home?” and then it became, “Well, wouldn’t it be cool to have my own office?” and then it was employees, or “We can get more people and leverage,” and everything like that.
So the vision grew – certainly we have to adapt it – but where would we wanna go in the future? I would like to create some type of technology company – something that you would see here in the Bay
Area of San Francisco, like you see here in Sunnyvale or Mountain
View and places like that. So some type of technology; not
necessarily a Facebook or a MySpace or a Digg or a Technorati, but something along those lines for the mass market.
VT: Alright. So now that you know your vision for the next 3-5 years in the future, what our customers wanna know is – How do you foresee the Internet marketing landscape in the next 3-5 years?
MF: Okay. I will say that…even and beyond that, Internet marketing has not even nearly evolved yet. So if anybody was to say, “Is it too late to get in?” or anything like that, I will tell you that many of the biggest names in Internet marketing have yet to even log on to the Internet for the first time.
So there really has never been a better time. What we’re definitely seeing is…you guys standing here today with communication devices in front of me, we’re definitely seeing that the Internet is no longer about the browser. The Internet is really the bringing together of SMS text messages and MMS text messages and the browser and the telephone and voice mail going out through telephone services and…its just so many different things that you’re gonna be able to monetize on the Internet; it’ll be iPhone, it’s just an incredible little gadget, I’m sure it’s gonna be going worldwide very, very soon. So I see Internet marketing, there’ll always be an opportunity in the niches and how to make money online and things like that, but I think it will mature a little bit more.
As you see, like, years ago, it was okay to put an ugly video on your website, you just like, video – it was fine; today, you’re looking at a site like John Reese’s blogrush.com, and if you look at how well the video’s produced there, I think everybody’s growing up, I think technology’s making it easier to do these types of things so I think more and more people who’s showing up online and making money very quickly, because that’s where everybody is today, or have some type of connection one way or another.
VT: Alright, okay. Regarding the Butterfly Marketing script that you made popular, it’s been like, probably close to 2 years now?
MF: January…or February, was when we released the script…in 2006, so it’s coming up on 2 years.
13.45 VT: Right, so how has the concept and the script changed over time, and where do you foresee this product and the methodology move from here?
MF: Well, the script was in constant development. So it has exceeded my original vision for it. Originally, the script was to be a viral script to help people sign up and help people be an instant affiliate where you provide them tools and you would do one-time offers.
And it developed so much more than one time it was in. And I’m not even talking just upsells and downsells and things like that; and if you look at what we did six months later at butterflymarketing.com, it says, “New, new, new…” We had 30% new features that came from the members. That was over a year ago, and I have yet to go back and put up more things that we’ve added, “New, new, new” to yet.
And we have yet to put up much more of the case studies and the success stories that we’ve gotten with it. So it’s really, really come a long way. The second part of the question you said was –
VT: Where do you foresee this method or even the script…
MF: Oh, you know, I’m very proud to have created a term in the industry where people will just say, “I’m gonna create a Butterfly Seminar,” and they don’t say it around me! They say it in forums, and these are two conversations that are going on with people I’ve never even met before. One of them may be a customer; one of them may not even be a customer. Somebody might even be doing it without a Butterfly Marketing software.
So I’m very honored that somebody might be using static technology or they’re using somebody else’s script, but they’re referring to the process as a Butterfly site, which is – the whole thing about Butterfly Marketing is leading in with a free offer. And now we’re hearing other people talking about it, and I love it, and certainly I didn’t invent the idea, but more and more people are starting to understand. Some people refer to it as more than the free line.
Give people something for free; when they love what you want, they’ll pay for the upgrade technology. I’ve been talking about it for years. When you’re at the supermarket, and you’re trying to get your product out there, you’ll do so much better on a Saturday or a Sunday if you cooked a little cocktail franks for people if you’re trying to sell the sauce and you get out in front of a busy aisle with tons of them around with a special and you give it away for free, many people are just gonna stand there, take advantage of you, eat 4, 5, give it to the kids and walk away, and then there are others that are gonna say, “What is that? I’ve never even heard of that,” taste it, and, “Wow, that’s delicious! What’s the name of that?” “Here it is.” And, “What’s the price?” “It’s normally $3.99, but we have a special, they’re two for a dollar.” “Okay! Well…” And now you have a customer for life, and they’ll keep coming back and buying.
But if you relied on being on the top shelf somewhere in a 17-aisle supermarket, then people…what are the chances of them finding you? So get out there and give things way for free; build a customer base and then you can have loyal customers for life.
VT: Alright, that’s great. You often stress about the importance of the Hedgehog concept; now would you mind just briefly mention about what it is and what’s your technique on sticking to that concept, because too often, you’ll get distracted?
MF: Well, there’s the story about the Fox and the Hedgehog, and entrepreneurs were born as foxes. It’s part of what makes us an entrepreneur. We get bored easily and move on quickly. However, we need to have discipline and we need to stop acting like a fox and develop our hedgehog concepts and the story comes from a fox who is much more wise than the hedgehog, and it knows many, many things, and the many things that it knows ultimately get him in trouble more than anything, and it’s haunting this hedgehog.
And the hedgehog really – it’s not quick; it’s not fast; it doesn’t have 15 different defense mechanisms; it can’t claw, it can’t hide, it doesn’t have musk like a skunk; it can’t run fast, it can’t hide very well; but what it does is it does one thing and it does it well. It curls up into a ball and puts out spikes like a porcupine and if you come near it, you’re gonna prick your nose and go running away yelping.
MF: So what happens is the fox, every day, thinks he’s gonna outfox the hedgehog. And the hedgehog says, “There’s this fox again. When will he ever learn?” And there’s the fox saying, “Today I’m gonna hide from behind the bush,” and he jumps, and he hurts himself with the hedgehog, and he goes running away, crying and yelping.
And the next day he says, “I’m gonna come out of a hole” and the next day he says, “I’m just gonna chase after him as fast as I can,” and every day, the hedgehog says, “It just doesn’t understand. No matter what it does, all I’m gonna do is crawl into a ball and put up my spikes.” The hedgehog doesn’t say, “Well, I think today, I’m gonna try this,” or “I think today, I’m gonna try running into a hole.” It does one thing and it does it well, and it will win over the fox every single day for the rest of its life.
So in business, we tend to be foxes. We tend to be, “Wow! Look at this new product, it just came out – ‘How to Make $100,000 a Year on eBay,’ and oh, look at this lady, she makes $436,000 a year with Commission Junction (www.cj.com). Oh, and this guy just came out with this new thing I’m talking about, how to get co-reg leads, and oh, my goodness! Look at this person over here, they’re showing this…how we can make money with the search engine optimization. This guy’s talking about AdWords, so I’m gonna create this great, big thing on paper where I have my AdWords coming in from here and search engine optimization here, and I’m gonna co-reg those leads, and I’m gonna get leads from eBay…” and at the end of the day, as we said, they are Jack-of-all-trades and master of none, so I know you guys don’t know it as well from your country as we have here, but American football –
19.37 VT: Right…
MF: I know you know very well, but the top players are specialists in what they do! So you have a quarterback. And the reason why they’ll make $23 million a year if they’re the best at what they do is ’cause they do one thing well, and that’s all they do. Are they a football player? Yes! Are you guys Internet marketers? Yes. Am I an Internet marketer? Yes. But when you look at a football player, the quarterback, he does not practice kicking it through the uprights. And he does not practice punts. And he does not practice tackles. And he does not practice guarding. And he does not practice running with the ball, and he’s not a wide receiver.
He does one thing, he does one thing well. He picks his position. He passes the ball. He’s a quarterback. And that’s why he gets paid the best. However, if you sit that person right here right now, if you brought Jim Kelly or Joe Montana – these Hall of Fame quarterbacks – and you ask them about the game, they can tell you defense, they can tell you offense, they can tell you everything about the game.
But they did one thing, and they did one thing well. So as I can sit
here and I can talk to you about AdWords, I can talk to you about AdSense, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a big part of my business. I’m a football player; I understand the game in my position as a quarterback. So what I would recommend people do is they pick their positions very well and stick to it don’t try to be every single player on the field. Because then, you become Bo Jackson, and you’ll break your leg very quickly, and you’ll lose a contract for life.
VT: Alright. Coming in to the very last question – As you know we have done our own Firesale project, and that was inspired from the fact that we purchased and participated in your I5 Gold…what have you got to say about this SendUsto.US Firesale, I mean, anything…any talk-show comment?
MF: Yeah, I was very proud of you guys. Extremely proud of you. I put a little P.S. in my e-mail when I did my promotion for the World Internet Main Event. Now, just to let you know about promotions for me – they’re very, very difficult. It’s hard for me to…you know, I plan things out months ahead of time. I did one e-mail for the World Internet Main Event.
So this is my own event, you know, we have 500 people here and we do different types of marketing, and even from my own event, I did one e-mail. So for me to put a P.S. in there for you guys was not because I felt that I owed you anything and it’s not because you asked me to or anything like that, it’s because I was really, truly proud of 3 guys that knew to come up with a kick-butt domain name.
MF: SendUsto.US, I just loved it. I loved the fact that you took action; I loved the fact that not only did you do a fire sale, but you listened to hopefully, fire sale secrets and understood that the most important thing about a fire sale is not just having a junkyard sale and throwing up products for the sake of making money.
It’s about having a reason why. And if your reason why is big enough, people will get on board, whether or not they like the products, ’cause they just wanna be part of seeing making a dream come true. And after that, they provided value, so I think the biggest take-away that you can take away from that is that when you want something bad enough and you can share it with the world and you give them the right reason, they’ll jump on your bandwagon with you and they’ll help you make that dream come true.
I was happy to hear that it exceeded your expectations in sales; I’m also happy to see that as we saw over the weekend – first, you do it, and then you can teach people how you did it, and then you can teach people how you did that because there’s nothing wrong with that; John Childers is one of my mentors, he used to be in front of people on stage, teaching people how to make money with real estate, he used to make a million dollars a year with real estate.
People would say, “If your stuff is so good, why are you teaching it and not doing it?” And John would say, “It’s not a choice. I don’t have to do one or the other. I could do both. So I can make a million dollars a year on real estate, and make $4 million a year teaching people how to make $1 million a year, then I can make $5 million a year, and I’m giving back to the world so I can teach other people how to make a million dollars a year.” So I think that’s a great thing, is that you can do something and then teach people how to do this.
All these people wanna know how to do it.
23.55 VT: Yeah.
MF: And so I think your new project is fantastic; I think you have cuttingedge things on your sales page; I’m watching what you guys are doing; I like the way you’re doing it – the hype is low and you’re delivering on results, I know the way you guys work – and you’re
gonna do a case study of exactly how you did it, and you’re gonna bring my original project, Fire Sale Secrets, to the next level; I’ll probably put my affiliate link inside my members area if you guys…I’ll drive you guys some ongoing traffic because like we did with Michael Rasmussen’s “Fire Sale Profits” and I think you’re now at the 3rd generation of really, really stepping up the case study, so I’m really, really proud of you.
And then, so what I would normally leave you guys with is understanding this – and this is one of the best advices I will give you, it will cost you money in the short run and make you a lot more money in the long run because you’re gonna be in this game for a while.
And that’s making money on the Internet is easy, so don’t become a drug dealer.
Selling drugs on the street is easy, and that’s a metaphor. So my point is now that you know how to leverage, and your JV partners know that you can bring them products on the market and make them money and make yourselves money, don’t get addicted to the cash.
So don’t get addicted to your own products so you can go out and go make cash. What I mean by that is don’t fall in love with the fact that you can leverage a system so you’ll just come out with a product just for the sake of coming out with a product.
If you really, really think about how you can really provide value to the community, you’ll like give them the first two products…you’ll win out over and over and over again. Because I guarantee you can come out with junk the third time around, a lot of people are gonna promote it for you. You’re gonna lose a little bit of credibility with
your friends and JV partners, and then you can come out with bigger junk the next time, and you’ll have a little less people, and you continue to do that, and you could make money selling junk for a long time.
But how you can truly build a following where people come up to you and tell you, “You guys inspired me, I wanna be just like you, I wanna build a business like you,” then you know that whether or not you make $100,000 in X amount of time, you could have made $150,000 but it’s better to make $100,000 if you know you’re truly enhancing lives. So take that wisdom with you when you’re thinking of your projects.